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Nigerian Lady Who Died In Ivory Coast Prison Laid To Rest

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Nigerian Lady Who Died In Ivory Coast Prison Laid To Rest

Itunu Babalola, the Nigerian lady who died in prison in Côte D’Ivoire after she was wrongly jailed, has been buried in Ibadan, Oyo State.

The remains of Babalola were interred on Saturday, December 4, 2021, at the Sango Cemetery.

She was buried in the presence of officials of the Nigerians in the Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM) sent by the Chairperson, Abike Dabiri-Erewa.

The deceased’s body had arrived at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport Lagos on Friday, December 3, via Air Côte D’Ivoire and was conveyed to Oyo State.

Babalola reportedly died on November 14, 2021, and Nigerians had taken to social media to express deep anger over her death.

According to reports, 21-year-old Babalola from Oyo State was a trader based in Bondoukou, Cote d’Ivoire. Her apartment had been burgled by an Ivorian in September 2019 and she had reported the incident to the police but the DPO informed her that the suspect was his nephew. He reportedly offered her a settlement worth roughly N100,000 to drop the case, an amount lesser than the N300,000 worth of stolen effects.

Babalola was subsequently arrested when she refused the settlement, charged to court for human trafficking, and sentenced to 10 years in prison.

A journalist, David Hundeyin, had shared the story of Babalola on Twitter in March 2021 and NIDCOM had said it was working to prove the innocence of Babalola.

Dabiri-Erewa had confirmed that the lady was charged and incarcerated for a crime she didn’t commit.

However, many Nigerians were shocked on November 14, 2021, when Hundeyin, who had been following the case, gave serial updates that Babalola’s contracted an infection in the Ivorian prison.

Some were gutted that eight months after NIDCOM promised to ensure justice was served on the matter and secure the lady’s freedom, Babalola still remained behind bars in the Francophone West African nation.

In defence, Dabiri-Erewa, blamed Babalola, saying she reported her plight late to the Nigerian Commission in Ivory Coast after she had spent two years in jail.

“She did not inform the mission about the trial. She had spent two years in jail, then her father cried out for help. Perhaps, when she had issues with the burglar and policeman that was changing the case and reported to the Mission, maybe it would have been a different story,” the former member of the House of Representatives said, a comment that many described as unsavoury.

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Daily Headline News (Wednesday, 19-1-2022)

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Here are the top 5 news of the day.

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Boarded MaxAir Passengers Disgruntled Over Delay Caused By NCAA

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Boarded MaxAir Passengers Disgruntled Over Delay Caused By NCAA

Passengers of MaxAir airline were aggrieved over the delay caused by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) after boarding.

It was learned that the NCAA had stopped the already taxiing airline, to carry out a safety inspection on the airplane.

The VM1609 of MaxAir flight was to depart to Lagos from the Abuja airport.

READ ALSO: Illegal Oil Refinery Operators Arrested In Lagos

According to an official report, the flight was stopped due to technical issues as commuters were left stranded in the aircraft.

Narrating the event, a passenger named Raymond had explained how the 11.30 am flight had moved some distance on the tarmac preparatory for take-off before it was eventually turned back to the hangar and parked.

When contacted to explain what actually happened, the Station Manager for MaxAir at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, Kehinde Ogunyale, said the aircraft had to follow the rules of the aviation industry regulator-NCAA.

“It was just a delay on the flight, nothing like stranded passengers please, and it is because we were told that the NCAA wanted to do an inspection. That was it,” he told our correspondent.

Ogunyale added, “So the delay came because we were waiting for the NCAA to do the inspection. There is nothing like stranded passengers on our flight.

“The aircraft was ready to take off and they said they wanted to do an inspection on the flight. So the time spent had to do with waiting for the NCAA officials to do the inspection.

“After the inspection, the flight was meant to take off and as I am talking to you now I’ve just got information that the plane is now taxiing for take-off.”

It was learnt that the flight finally took off around 2 pm after the civil aviation authority had completed the safety inspection on the aircraft.

Although the spokesperson for NCAA, Sam Adurogboye, stated that he had yet to be briefed on the MaxAir incident in Abuja when contacted, he explained that it was a standard practice to inspect an aircraft, especially whenever a pilot raised a concern.

“The pilot might have noticed an issue and might have called the NCAA to inspect the plane. So it is a standard practice to carry out such inspection before clearing the aircraft for takeoff,” he stated.

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BREAKING: Kanu’s Trial Adjourned

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BREAKING: Kanu's Trial Adjourned

Nnamdi Kanu, the detained leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), would again appear before a Federal High Court in Abuja on Wednesday, January 19, 2022, as his trial was adjourned today (Tuesday, January 18).

The court adjourned Kanu’s trial after the IPOB leader complained that the federal government didn’t serve him the fresh 15 amended charges on time.

Kanu, through his team of lawyers led by Mike Ozoekhome (SAN), informed the court that the amended charges were served to them barely 24 hours prior to the former’s appearance in court, which they argued was a limited time for them.

My Lord, the proposed amended charges were served on us yesterday (Monday) evening. As I speak to you, my lord, the defendant, who was just brought in, has not even seen the charges which he is being told to enter his plea.

With due respect, that is not justice. It is ambushing. I know that the Administration of Criminal Justice Act allows the Federal Government to amend, but this is the sixth amendment they are making, and each time they do it, they serve us a day to the hearing, just to frustrate the trial,” Ozekhome stated.

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