Some 30 Nigerian ladies trafficked to Lebanon are appealing to Nigerian Government to rescue them as they are stranded in that country.
They made the appeal in a statement by the President of Journalists International Forum for Migration (JIFORM), Mr Ajibola Abayomi, and made available to the News Agency of Nigeria on Saturday.
Abayomi said that the message was being relayed based on an encounter with the victims, which necessitated the call for a speedy rescue action from government.
“JIFORM has forwarded details of the human trafficking agents involved in this matter to the relevant agencies and shall monitor it to the logical conclusion to ensure proper investigation and prosecution of those involved.’’
He said that the ladies were all camped in one room with faulty toilet and other utilities, and were presently housed in a building at Dawra city in Lebanon.
Abayomi said one of the victims, Miss Adebisi Comfort-Oluwatoyin with Passport No. number A10597908, disclosed to JIFORM that they had to escape from the inhuman treatment by their mistresses and hosts.
According to him, the 23 years old lady hails from Ondo State, graduated from the Edo State Polytechnic, Ekpoma, and was a resident in Osun State before departing Nigeria in December 2019.
“Help us plead with the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), National Agency for Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) and others to save us. The Nigerian embassy in Lebanon have tried but we want to go back home.
“Our belongings and international passports were seized with no payments for the service we have been rendering for months. They loosen and cut our hairs with razor blade.
“The police and their immigration are always on their side. We are not getting justice and our lives are in danger,” Abayomi quoted the victim as saying.
Abayomi said that the Executive Director, Rescue Africans In Slavery Organisation (RAIS), Ms Omotola Fawunmi, who spoke from the United States of America, also pleaded with government and other agencies to come to the victims aid.
Fawunmi who claimed she has been responsible for the upkeeps of the ladies stated that the victims are seriously suffering.
“The Nigerian government must act fast. Apart from this case, there are over 300 of them trapped in Oman and thousands across other Asian countries, beyond sustaining the ladies, we have facilitated evacuation of thousands of human trafficking victims in the last few years,” she said.
“First, we want the ladies to be rescued as soon as possible. Their condition is very critical because they don’t have good shelter, food and they need urgent medical attention. My personal conversation with Comfort showed that they were really in a bad state at the moment.
“After rescuing the ladies, there must be thorough investigation and punishment for the agents and other human traffickers involved in this,” Henshaw pleaded.
Edited By: Ismail Abdulaziz (NAN)https://nnn.ng/30-nigerian-ladies-in-lebanon-appeal-for-rescue/
Ekiti Deputy Gov eulogises late theatre icon, Jimoh Aliu
The Ekiti State Deputy Governor, Chief Bisi Egbeyemi, has paid tributes to the late theatre icon, Chief Jimoh Aliu.
He eulogised the late prominent artiste for using his talent in promoting arts and culture locally, nationally and internationally.
Egbeyemi, in a statement signed by his Special Assistant on media, Mr Odunayo Ogunmola, on Saturday, described the late Aliu as a worthy Ekiti Ambassador, who placed the name of the state on the global map of theatre, arts, culture and entertainment.
He described the death of the former National President of the Association of Nigeria Theatre Arts Practitioners (ANTP), as a great and monumental loss not only to Ekiti, his state of origin but also to entire Nigeria.
According to him, the late dramatist and producer exhibited the famed Ekiti virtues of honesty, integrity, hard work and good name, which the youths of nowadays must emulate.
Egbeyemi noted that the Aliu mentored many young artistes and promoted local content in the nation’s entertainment industry.
The Deputy Governor said the plays and films produced by the deceased taught moral lessons, bravery, valour, strong will, determination and self-belief in pursuit of dreams and vision.
He said that Aliu rose to stardom by hard work and perseverance, and never forgot his roots as he lived among his people throughout his lifetime.
Egbeyemi regretted that the late Aliu died at a time his wise counsel was still needed, noting that the deceased contributed his quota to the development of Ekiti State.
The Deputy Governor, while commiserating with the family and associates of the deceased, urged them to be consoled by the good life he lived and the legacies he left behind.
“Surely, the vacuum left behind by this great legend of the stage and movies will be difficult to fill owing to his sterling contributions over the years.
“This is a monumental loss not only to Ekiti, but to our entire country. Our prayers and thoughts are with the family of the deceased.”
He prayed God to grant the family the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss.
Edited By: Remi Koleoso/Felix Ajide
Ondo election: Agboola Ajayi best candidate for good governance — Mimiko
Dr Olusegun Mimiko, National Leader of the Zenith Labour Party (ZLP), has described Agboola Ajayi, the party’s governorship candidate, who is also the incumbent deputy governor of Ondo State, as the best candidate to deliver good governance to the people of the state.
The News Agency of Nigeria , reports that Ondo State governorship election comes up on Oct. 10.
Mimiko, who is the immediate past governor of the state, spoke on Saturday in Ore, headquarters of Odigbo Local Government area of the state, during the party’s launch of campaign for its candidate in the forthcoming governorship election.
Mimiko also urged the electorate to collect the “stolen money” that some party had promised them and still vote for ZLP that would bring back good governance.
The former governor urged the electorate not to fear or be intimidated by those threatening to unleash violence on the day of the election, saying, “we own this state together.”
Addressing the crowd at the event, Agboola Ajayi promised to reduce tuition fees of the state tertiary institution from N150,000 to N50,000.
Ajayi said his administration would bring back good governance and a reformed civil service that would give jobs of the civil servants to consultants.
He promised to also start a programme that would cater for the elderly and bring back the various caring heart programmes that would benefit the people.
“We will create a civil service revolving credit scheme for civil servants who desire to build house and buy cars.
“We believe this will serve as support for them.
“We will initiate a zero pothole project across the state and start an “Operation Restore Power in the South” in the first 100 days in office,” he said.
Chairman of the Party in the state, Mr Joseph Akinlaja, said industrialisation would take centre stage with better welfare for the people of the state.
Akinlaja said the manifesto of the party was a social contract with the people of the state, which, according to him, is rooted in the principle of social democracy for the populace.
The event was attended by three former speakers of the state House of Assembly, namely: Bakita Bello, Taofeeq Abdulsalam and Jumoke Akindele, among other political bigwigs.
Edited By: Muftau Adediran/Donald Ugwu
Edo 2020: Group commends INEC on equal access for PWDs
Mr David Anyaele, the Chairman of the group, said this on Saturday in its preliminary statement on the conduct of the election.
Anyaele however, said that although priority voting was given to the PWDs, the elderly and pregnant women, other disability support aids where missing at polling units which hindered full participation of the PWDs.
“EVA4PWDs is impressed to observe that marginalised sects such as the aged, nursing mothers and pregnant women and PWDs generally were offered priority voting in most of the polling units observed.
“However, we are disappointed that INEC displayed minimal commitment to the implementation of the framework on access and participation of PWDs in the electoral process, as provided in the National Disability Act, 2018.
“The promised Braille voters’ guide and Braille ballot paper by INEC for easy access of election day instructions, guidelines and ballot paper for Blind voters were scarcely available.
“Where it was available, many INEC ad hoc staff did not understand its usage but got assistance from observers on how to use the Braille materials.
“This was the case in Polling Unit 003, Car Park Ward 1, Oredo LGA, where an observer assisted in locating the Braille material.
“There was absence of magnified lens at the Polling Units, INEC ad hoc staff who claimed to have at some polling units were unable to neither display it for observation and usage,” he said.
An Observer said that other observers reported that the Information, Education and Communication (IEC) materials such as Election Day instructions and guidelines to assist the deaf or persons with hearing impairment were also unavailable at majority of the PU’s visited.
Anyaele also said that reports showed that a large numbers of the PUs were not accessible to physically-challenged persons as they were sited at buildings without ramps and handrail, across gutters, and over staircases.
He noted that INEC Covid-19 guidelines were not adhered to in majority of the Polling Units visited due to uncontrolled large crowds.
“We have reports from areas like Greater Tomorrow High School, Oredo Ward 1, Ramat Park at Ikpoba/Okha, Oredo LGA, among other Polling Units, where the crowds were uncontrollably large,” he said.
Anyaele, however, urged INEC to address the major barriers identified in the Edo elections and make necessary provisions ahead of the Ondo State Governorship election slated for Oct. 10.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the group, in collaboration with the Centre for Citizens with Disabilities (CCD), an NGO, trained and deployed INEC accredited observers to the three senatorial zones of the Edo State.
The observers focused on equal voting access for persons with disabilities and monitored the provisions made by INEC for PWDs. .
Edited By: Idonije Obakhedo
Edo Poll: PDP alleges move to replace election results in Edo North
The party in a statement issued by its National Publicity Secretary, Mr Kola Ologbondiyan, in Abuja on Saturday alerted the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the Department of State Services (DSS) on the allegation.
Ologbondiyan said that the PDP urged its members to remain vigilant and follow their results to all the collation centers.
He also said that it cautioned the security agencies against being used to replace results already being declared at the respective polling units.
“Already, we are aware that results are being manufactured in Kogi state to be used as replacements for already declared results, particularly in Edo North.
“We draw the attention of INEC to such results being bandied by the APC, including the fake result claimed to have emanated from Etsako West, where a vote of 914 was allocated to the APC, as against the genuine declaration at the polling units.
“Whereas polling unit results are identified as Form EC8A, the results being paraded by the APC carry a fake identification number of Form EC60E.
He said that the PDP was alarmed by the report that the development had led to avoidable post-election violence, including reported killing of innocent Edo citizens.
He alleged that the victims had come out to perform their civic responsibilities as the police allegedly withdrew their men in certain collation centres.
Ologbondiyan called on the Inspector-General of Police to protect innocent Nigerians from the violent act.
“We charge the INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, to ensure that his officials are not compromised to replace results.
“The people of Edo state have spoken loud and clear with their votes in their respective units, and they are already aware of the authentic results,” Ologbondiyan said.
Reacting to the statement, Mr Festus Okoye, INEC National Commissioner and Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee, told the News Agency of Nigeria , that INEC was committed to following through its processes and procedures for a successful and credible election.
Okoye said that INEC officers were uploading the results on the commission’s Result Viewing Portal.
“The Commission is irrevocably committed to following through its processes and procedures.
“As at 18.49p.m. 702 results have been uploaded in the INEC Result Viewing Portal.
“Our Presiding Officers are uploading Form EC8A which is the Polling Unit Result.
“Presiding Officers must complete Form EC 60E (The People’s Result Sheet), and paste at the polling unit.
“We understand the challenges posed by poor network in some of our communities and our Registration Area Technical Assistants are working hard at overcoming the challenges.
“The Commission is focused on completing the process. The Commission is not interested in the outcome but focused on the processes and procedures,” Okoye said.
Edited By: Abiemwense Moru/Donald Ugwu