The Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu Presidential Campaign Organisation, on Friday in Abuja, appealed to the media to avoid over-sensationalising issues of facts.Mr Bayo Onanuga, Director, Media and Communications, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu Presidential Campaign Organisation, made the appeal in a statement.He also appealed to the media to play its constitutional role of informing the electorate to make informed choices at the forthcoming APC presidential primaries.Onanuga, in the statement, was reacting to media interpretation to comments made by Sen. Bola Tinubu, a frontline All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential aspirant, in Abeokuta, Ogun.“The attention of the campaign organisation has been drawn to the erroneous, misleading and mischievous interpretation of Tinubu’s address in Abeokuta, Ogun State, on Thursday.“It is on record that the leading presidential aspirant addressed the party’s national delegates in Ogun, with Gov. Dapo Abiodun in attendance, in his effort to convince the party’s delegates to vote for him at the primaries.“He went down memory lane to provide specific instances when he brought his political clout and strategic skills to assist individuals, groups and tendencies in the party to gain political power,” Onanuga said.He added that these factual references are already in the public realm and had been reported and analysed in the media in the last eight years.He stressed that they were therefore matters of public knowledge.“While we recognise that recent unexpected interventions in the time table and the heat generated by the proximity of the event might have led to some anxiety.“This campaign organisation believes that the main thrust of Asiwaju’s presentation, was that his huge contributions to the formation and electoral success of the APC should count in his favour,” Onanuga said.This, he said, was because Tinubu is a true party man who desired to be the party’s candidate in the coming 2023 presidential election.He added that there was also no doubt that the fresh conditions proposed by President Muhammadu Buhari for the consideration of the party’s presidential candidate made it necessary for Tinubu to labour to convince the delegates that he fits the bill.He said the campaign organisation was therefore surprised at the way the opposition and Tinubu’s traducers turned his statement to give a different interpretation.“At no time did Tinubu play any ethnic card or denigrate any ethnic group, that is surely out of his character, as David Babachir Lawal, attested in his viral whatsApp statement.“Tinubu’s speech in Abeokuta did not demonstrate any disrespect to President Buhari, for whom he has a very high regard, and whose re-election campaign he chaired in 2019.“Since the video of the speech he delivered in Yoruba hit the social media, varied interpretations have been given to the speech, which in the main, was about Gov. Abiodun.“Who in the true tradition of Yoruba culture bowed to his leader after Tinubu’s short speech,” the campaign Director said.Onanuga added that the Tinubu campaign organisation was, however, not surprised why the opposition in the APC had decided to turn and twist the statement.He stressed that the former two-term Lagos governor, a great party man, remains the man to beat at the party’s convention on June 6.“We are least surprised that he is the target of well-calculated and most unkind virulent attacks.“The campaign organisation hereby appeals to the media to avoid over-sensationalising issues of facts,” he stressed.The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the 13 aspirants cleared by the Chief John Odigie-Oyegun-led APC Presidential Screening Committee will contest the party’s 2023 presidential ticket at its presidential primary.The party’s presidential primary had been slated for June 6 to 8 at the Abuja Eagle Square.
Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia, has expressed the readiness of his administration to tackle the problem of kidnapping and other social vices in Umunneochi Local Government Area (LGA).Ikpeazu made this known on Friday during a stakeholders’ meeting at the Palace of Eze Godson Ezekwesiri of Umuelem Community, Isuochi, in Umunneochi LGA.The governor said that the government would work with stakeholders of Umunneochi to evolve strategies for reducing incidence of kidnapping and other criminal activities in the area to the barest minimum.He said that the issue of insecurity in Umunneochi and neighbouring areas had become a matter of great concern, that requires urgent action from government and citizens in addressing the issue.According to him, the state government has made concerted efforts in the past to ensure adequate security in the area, and added that the government would intensify efforts in restoring security in the area.Ikpeazu said that he would not ”rest on his oars” until the problem is solved and the perpetrators brought to serve as a deterrent to criminal elements.He said: “This is our place and we would try our best to deal with the matter on ground with wisdom.“We must identify the flashpoints where people are mostly likely to encounter kidnappers in the area.“I will like to know the institutional knowledge of the youths to help us identify all the inner roads in Umunneochi to facilitate effective policing of the area.“We will try to see what it will take to open Leru road, which leads from Abia to Enugu as part of the strategy to tackle the problem.“The work at hand is not an easy one, but I advise that every thing that is done concerning this matter is done with wisdom.”Ikpeazu directed stakeholders of Umunneochi to articulate various flashpoints in the area, and added that the ban on open grazing is still in full force in Abia.In his speech, Rev Biereonwu Onuagha, Archbishop of the Methodist Church Nigeria, Okigwe Archdiocese, regretted that Umunneochi had become a money-making center for kidnappers and other criminals.Onuagha called on the state government to expedite action in reopening the Ihube-Lomara road.He called for the immediate relocation of the Lokpanta cattle market which he described as a security threat to the people of Umunneochi.Onuagha thanked Gov. Ikpeazu for his role in the timely release of the Methodist Prelate who was recently kidnapped along the Leru-Ihube road.Also, Eze Ernest Onwuka of Aro-Ikpa Autonomous Community, called for the dismantling of various military check points in the area, adding that they are constituting more problems than solutions for the people of Umunneochi.Onwuka appealed to the state government to come to their rescue as most natives of the area living abroad no longer visit home due to prevailing insecurity in the area.Earlier, Chief Uzo Egbo, a former Chairman of Umunneochi LGA, said that Umunneochi had common boundaries with all the South East states and this makes the area vulnerable to all sorts of crimes.Egbo said that over 12 incidences of kidnapping had been recorded along the Leru-Lomara-Nneato road in recent times and called on the government to come to their aid.The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Gov. Ikpeazu visited the scene where the Methodist Prelate, Samuel Kanu and his team were kidnapped on May 29.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said Friday it was aware of more than 700 global cases of monkeypox, including 21 in the United States, with investigations now suggesting it is spreading inside the country.
Sixteen of the first 17 cases were among people who identify as men who have sex with men, according to a new CDC report, and 14 were thought to be travel associated.
All patients are in recovery or have recovered, and no cases have been fatal.
“There have also been some cases in the United States that we know are linked to known cases,” Jennifer McQuiston, deputy director of the CDC’s Division of High Consequence Pathogens and Pathology, told reporters on a call.
“We also have at least one case in the United States that does not have a travel link or know how they acquired their infection.”
Monkeypox is a rare disease that is related to but less severe than smallpox, causing a rash that spreads, fever, chills, and aches, among other symptoms.
Generally confined to western and central Africa, cases have been reported in Europe since May and the number of countries affected has grown since.
Canada also released new figures Friday, counting 77 confirmed cases — almost all of them detected in Quebec province, where vaccines have been delivered.
Though its new spread may be linked to particular gay festivals in Europe, monkeypox is not thought to be a sexually transmitted disease, with the main risk factor being close skin-to-skin contact with someone who has monkey pox sores.
A person is contagious until all the sores have scabbed and new skin is formed.
‘More than enough vaccine’
Raj Panjabi, senior director for the White House’s global health security and biodefense division, added that 1,200 vaccines and 100 treatment courses had been delivered to US states, where they were offered to close contacts of those infected.
There are currently two authorized vaccines: ACAM2000 and JYNNEOS, which were originally developed against smallpox.
Though smallpox has been eliminated, the United States retains the vaccines in a strategic national reserve in case it is deployed as a biological weapon.
JYNNEOS is the more modern of the two vaccines, with fewer side effects.
“We continue to have more than enough vaccine available,” Dawn O’Connell, assistant secretary for preparedness and response in the Department of Health and Human Services, told reporters.
In late May, the CDC said it had 100 million doses of ACAM200 and 1,000 doses of JYNNEOS available, but O’Connell said Friday the figures had shifted, though she could not divulge precise numbers for strategic reasons.
The CDC has also authorized two antivirals used to treat smallpox, TPOXX and Cidofovir, to be repurposed to treat monkeypox.
“Anyone can get monkeypox and we are carefully monitoring for monkeypox that may be spreading in any population, including those who are not identifying as men who have sex with men,” said McQuiston.
That being said, the CDC is undertaking special outreach in the LGBT community, she added.
A suspected case “should be anyone with a new characteristic rash,” or anyone who meets the criteria for high suspicion such as relevant travel, close contact, or being a man who has sex with men.
The Nigerian Petroleum Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) has confirmed a fire incident triggered by a suspected associated gas reservoir within the vicinity of Caritas University in Enugu.
Mr Gbenga Komolafe, Commission Chief Executive, NUPRC in a statement on Friday said the incident occurred on May 22 but was reported to NUPRC on May 26.
Komolafe said it was confirmed that there was no pipeline right of way in the area but the incident was caused by the activities of some contractors who were drilling a water borehole on the university premises.
He said on receipt of the incident report, NUPRC and related agencies immediately carried out an investigation and discovered that the incident happened in the process of drilling a water well with a target drill depth of 400 meters for the university.
He said it was learnt that the university engaged the services of HydroGeo Engineering Services for the drilling of water borehole but the job was later sub-contracted to Orange Water Wells Drilling Company.
He said in the course of the drilling, pressurised seepage was encountered after about 200 meter and fumes were gushing out of the drilled hole.
“One of the workers who suspected the fumes to be gas seepage reportedly wanted to confirm his suspicion, and in process introduced a source of ignition which led to the fire outbreak.
“It was the unfortunate action that provided a stronger basis for the qualification of the fumes as associated gas.
“Following the fire outbreak, the drilling contractor swiftly removed the drill pipes, demobilised the rig and immediately notified the Enugu state government of the incident.
“The state and federal fire services which were mobilised to the site, battled the fire for more than two days.
“The university authority cordoned off the site and restricted access to the area; and directed for the immediate discontinued usage of all facilities within the affected area, including a nearby hall used for examinations,” he said.
He further said that the NUPRC representatives, in collaboration with officials of the National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency, Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority, NNPC, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps and other related enforcement agencies visited the site on May 27 and 31.
He said the visit was for preliminary investigation to ascertain the status and gain insight on the cause.
He said it would determine immediate safety and geotechnical measures required to put off the fire and prevent loss of lives, property and damage to the environment.
He said the officials confirmed that no fatality was recorded as a result of the incident, although a staff of the drilling company had sustained first-degree burns.
According to him, the staff was treated and discharged from the hospital.
“The preliminary investigation revealed that there is no pipeline right of way in the area.
“There is a continuous supply of gas from the underground source evidenced by the continuous fire which is suggestive of the presence of shallow gas which may be associated with coal bed methane gas or gas seepage.
“In both cases, it may not necessarily be a reservoir accumulation but associated gas which the drilling process provided a flow line; a development similar to incidents associated with coal mines.
“Plans are being finalised by Caritas University to carry out Geophysical Resistivity Survey of the area from June 3 to June 4, to acquire data that will give better insight on the near surface gas concentration in the area and its potential spread.
“Also, an all-inclusive stakeholder engagement took place in Enugu on the June 1, for alignment deliberations and mutual commitment to achieve the immediate killing of the fire and stoppage of the gas leakage,” he said.
According to him, NUPRC is proactively collaborating with all relevant stakeholders and is determined to deploy appropriate technology to ensure that the fire is put off and the source of gas leakage is sealed.
This, he said would ensure environmental sustainability and safety of lives and property.
He added that the Commission has already identified an indigenous company with verified competence and proven track record in managing related fire incidents.
He said intervention options were being considered which would be finalised after another visit scheduled for June 6.
Hajiya Hajara Danyaro-Ibrahim won all the 35 votes at the rescheduled primary election of the All Progressive Congress (APC) into Nasarawa Central constituency in the state’s House of Assembly.
She defeated the only opponent, the incumbent member of the House, Hon. Ismail Danbaba, who got no vote at the election, held on Friday.
Neither Danbaba, nor his electoral agent showed up at the election.
Announcing the result, Chairman of the Electoral Committee, Dr Bala Salisu, said total number of delegates was 35 and all 35 voted.
After she was declared as winner, Danyaro-Ibrahim thanked God for the successful conduct of the election which she said was peaceful, fair, free and devoid of rancour.
“This is my fourth time of contesting for the seat in the Nasarawa State House of Assembly.
“Delegates decided this time around that it must be Hajara Danyaro-Ibrahim to contest for the seat and represent them.
“I thank the people of Nasarawa Central constituency. I hope and pray to win at the general election because that is the wish of the people of Nasarawa Central constituency,’’ she told newsmen.