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Northern Group To Protest Students Abduction In Buhari’s Hometown

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Northern Group To Protest Students Abduction In Buhari's Hometown

The Coalition of Northern Group (CNG), has disclosed the plan of its state chapters to trek to Daura, the country home of President Muhammadu Buhari, in protest against the abduction of students in Katsina.

Recall that on Friday, December 11, 2020, some gunmen rushed into the Government Science Secondary School in Kankara, Katsina, at around 9:40 p.m., shooting AK-47 rifles into the air and rounding up students.

It was unclear how many students had been kidnapped. But witnesses and officials have estimated that the school typically holds 800 to 1,200 students, and more than 200 students who were abducted had been rescued, Isah Gambo, a police spokesman, said.

Under the banner of the #Bringbackourboys campaign, the CNG spokesperson, Abdul-Azeez Suleiman said the group’s members would storm the President’s residence today (Monday, December 14,) and remain there till the abducted students all returned to their families.

Read Also: Katsina Abduction: Presidency Disputes Katsina Governor’s Claim

He said, “Our state chapters are also embarking on a long trek to Daura in Katsina State to demand immediate action from Buhari who is currently in Daura.

“The Kano CNG will take off from Dambatta in solidarity with the Katsina chapter to link up with the Jigawa contingent at Kazaure from where they will join the Kano team at Mashi and proceed on the great trek to Daura for the long wait in front of Buhari’s country home.”

The spokesperson also said the group was pained by the renewed onslaught by bandits on northerners.

Read Also: Katsina Revenue Board Surpasses 2020 Revenue Target In Spite Of Covid

“The daring kidnap of hundreds of school children in Katsina only goes to confirm the series of warnings raised by the CNG that thousands of our fellow citizens in the north have virtually been abandoned to armed criminals and a vicious insurgency,” he stated.

Meanwhile, since the attack on Friday, all secondary schools in the state have been shut.

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Centre Underscores Need For Accuracy, Truth In Journalism

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Centre Underscores Need For Accuracy, Truth In Journalism

The Premium Times Centre for Investigative Journalism (PTCIJ), an NGO, has stressed the need for accuracy and truth in news reporting to promote meaningful growth journalism in the country.

Mr Dapo Olorunyomi, Publisher/Editor-in-Chief of Premium Times Ltd., said this at the closing of the six-month “Dubawa fact-checking and research fellowship” programme in Abuja on Friday.

Olorunyomi, also the Chief Executive Officer of PTCIJ, said that the centre initiative was borne out of the need to tackle issues bordering the growth of journalism in the country.

Read Also: FG Seeks Support Of Lawmakers In Tackling Fake News

According to him, the concern was on how there could be a positive difference in journalism.

“Immediately Premium Times started, what became very clear was it was impossible not to run into a ditch about ways Journalism was carried out, in terms of sustainability and trust.

“Resources to do good journalism had drifted to the digital media landscape.

“So these were issues that led into thinking and how we innovated ways on those core issues that defined journalism and subsequently the creation of PTCIJ.

“The defining future of good journalism is truth and accuracy; the question about this is that there are things we needed to invest in.

“There can be no meaningful journalism where there is no accuracy and truth in reporting, and that is why journalism must be based on fact-checking,” he said.

Speaking at the event, Mrs Grace Yusuf, a Deputy Editor-in-Chief,  with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), commended the centre for training Journalists on fact-checking.

She said that cutting-edge journalism thrived through research and fact-finding while urging Journalists to always engage in fact-checking as a tool to verify facts for correctness in their news reporting.

“As journalists, it is important to fact-check claims and give the public the right information; therefore, fact-checking can be used to tackle fake news in the media.

“Fact-checking can also be used to correct misconceptions,” Yussuf said.

She disclosed that a member of staff of NAN, who was trained in the maiden edition of the Fellowship programme was supported by the management of the organisation to establish a special desk on fact-checking.

Some graduands, who spoke at the event expressed appreciation to the centre management for knowledge gained, to have improved quality of their reportage.

Mr Jonas Nyabor, a Ghana Dubawa Fellow, said that he learnt best practices through knowledge sharing from trainees of other nationals in the cause of the programme.

“It has been rewarding, especially having gone through strict measures; collaboration and partnership with others on sourcing for the document was interesting.

“The relationship cannot be underestimated, in terms of solving myriads of challenges in relation to democracy,” Nyabor said.

Mr Alie Tarawally, a Sierra Leone Dubawa Fellow, said that the training exposed him to modern techniques for verifying information.

Tarawally said, “It was amazing to have been the first fellow from Sierra Leone; it indeed exposed me to a whole lot of new ideas.”

Meanwhile, a Nigerian Dubawa Fellow, Dr Rahimat Adeniran, the staff of Lagos State University, said that the programme afforded her the opportunity to learn about fact-checking.

“It helped me to explore new frontiers that ordinarily would have been impossible for me, but such has become a thing of the past,” Adeniran said.

The high point of the event was the presentation of the best fact-check award to Alie Tarawally, best research article award to Raji Rasaki, 4th place best fact-check award to Kunle Adebajo and Vivian Chime, respectively.

1st Runner-up best fact-check award to Francis Iloani, Daily Trust Reporter, 1st Runner-up best fact-check award to Jonas Nyabor and best Fellow award to Francis Iloani.

NAN reports that out of 104 people who applied for the programme 22 were carefully selected; which consist of 17 from Nigeria, 4 from Ghana and 1 from Sierra Leone.

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”We’ll Not Succumb To Blackmail” – Buhari Reacts To Zamfara Abduction

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”We’ll Not Succumb To Blackmail” - Buhari Reacts To Zamfara Abduction
President Muhammadu Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari has described the latest abduction of hundreds of students of Government Girls Secondary School, Jangebe in Zamfara, as inhumane and totally unacceptable.

The president, who stated this in a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu, in Abuja on Friday, warned bandits and their sponsors that his government would not succumb to blackmail.

While reacting to the incident, President Buhari said:

Read Also: Buhari Orders NSA To Address Attacks On Communities In Zamfara

“This administration will not succumb to blackmail by bandits who target innocent school students in the expectations of huge ransom payments.

”No criminal group can be too strong to be defeated by the government.

”The only thing standing between our security forces and the bandits are the rules of engagement.

“We have the capacity to deploy massive force against the bandits in the villages where they operate, but our limitation is the fear of heavy casualties of innocent villagers and hostages who might be used as human shields by the bandits.”

Read Also: Buhari Orders NSA To Address Attacks On Communities In Zamfara

According to him, the primary objective is to get the hostages safe, alive, and unharmed.

Buhari noted that “a hostage crisis is a complex situation that requires maximum patience in order to protect the victims from physical harm or even brutal death at the hands of their captors”.

He warned the bandits: “Let them not entertain any illusions that they are more powerful than the government.

Read Also: Buhari Orders NSA To Address Attacks On Communities In Zamfara

”They shouldn’t mistake our restraint for the humanitarian goals of protecting innocent lives as a weakness or a sign of fear or irresolution.”

He advised state governments to review their policy of rewarding bandits with money and vehicles, warning that ”the policy might boomerang disastrously”.

He also urged states and local governments to be more proactive by improving security around schools and their surroundings.

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Sunday Igboho: I Cannot Be Intimidated

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Sunday Igboho: I Cannot Be Intimidated

Yoruba activist, Sunday Igboho, has stated that he cannot be intimidated with arrest.

In an interview with Punch where he made this known in his reaction to the face-off between him and security agents around the Guru Maharaji bus stop along the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, Igboho said any attempt by the police, the army, and the Department of State Services (DSS) to arrest him again will fail.

The Yoruba activist, who has been in the news for serving a quit notice on herdsmen in some parts of the South-West, said he was never invited before they attempted to arrest him.

Igboho, therefore, stated that he did not know why he was being targeted. He advised the Federal Government to focus on capturing Boko Haram leader, Abubakar Shekau, and invite Islamic cleric, Sheikh Ahmad Gumi, who has been meeting with bandits in recent times.

He said, “I was never invited. They just lay in ambush for me at Guru Maharaji and started shooting. They started shouting, ‘Where is Sunday Igboho?’ I identified myself and asked them what the problem was. They said I was under arrest and I said, ‘For what? On my father’s land? That was how it degenerated.

“When they noticed how tense everywhere was, they fled. They came in four Hilux vans and a Toyota Land Cruiser. There are bandits operating all over the place but people like me who are defending our fatherland are the ones you want to arrest. Why?”

When asked if the police had invited him, he said, “I have not been invited. What have I done to warrant an arrest? Why do they want to arrest me? What have I done?”

On whether he would honour a police invitation if invited, Igboho said, “Go and ask them to invite Gumi and Shekau first before disturbing me. Let them face the bandits instead.”

When asked if he would go into hiding, he said, “What for? I am in the neighbourhood. I cannot run.”

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