The Minister of Aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika, says malfunctioning of Instrument Landing System (ILS), which made landing difficult, was responsible for recent flights diversion at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Lagos.
Sirika made this known in Lagos on Thursday in a statement by his Director of Public Affairs, Mr James Dauda.
“We wish to let the public know that the authorities at MMIA were in the process of replacing the old Category II ILS with the newly procured Category III System that allows for the lowest visibility landing.
“Unfortunately, there was a malfunctioning of the ILS coupled with the unforeseen weather conditions, which made landing at the airport difficult.
“The procurement of the Category III Instrument Landing System is in pursuance of the desire of the Federal Government to ensure the safety of air passengers by ensuring that airplanes can land with almost zero visibility.
“We wish to assure the public and the airlines that efforts are on to return the system to full working condition and that normalcy of operations will be re-established in due course,” the minister said.
Sirika noted with great concern, the experiences of air travellers to and from the MMIA regarding flight diversions and in many cases, outright cancellations, which had been occasioned by highly inclement weather conditions.
On diversion of incoming international flights to neighbouring countries, he reiterated that the decisions were purely those of the airlines which the ministry have no control over.
Sirika said those flights could have been re-routed to the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport (NAIA), Abuja, which was shorter or equidistant from Lagos to the foreign airports to which some of the flights have been diverted.
The minister noted that in recognition of Abuja as an alternate airport, Qatar Airlines had applied to divert its flights to NAIA to which approval was granted immediately.
He assured the general public that the comfort, safety and security of the flying populace remained the central focus of the administration.
The minister added that no effort would be spared in ensuring this.
Edited By: Bola Akingbehin/Olagoke Olatoye
MURIC mourns Emir of Zazzau
The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) on Monday expressed grief over the death of the Emir of Zazzau, Alhaji Shehu Idris, who passed on at the age of 84, in Kaduna.
MURIC director, Prof. Ishaq Akintola in a statement, also commiserated with the head of the Nigerian Muslim community, the Sultan of Sokoto and the Governor of Kaduna State over the death.
“The news of the passing away of the Emir of Zazzau is saddening.
“We commiserate with our leader, the Sultan of Sokoto and President-General of the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA), Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar.
“Our sympathy also goes to the Zazzau Emirate Council, particularly the Yariman Zazzau, Alhaji Munir Ja‘afar and the good people of Zaria.
“Shehu Idris was the 18th Emir of Zazzau and the Chairman of Zazzau Emirate Council as well as the Kaduna State Emirate Council.
He added that the late Emir Shehu Idris was a diligent, pious and patriotic Nigerian.
He noted that his patience could melt Mount Everest.
“He once ordered his convoy to turn back and find another route instead of telling the police to attack a Shiite procession that refused to allow his convoy to drive past.
“May Almighty Allah overlook his shortcomings and grant him a lofty place in Al-Jannah Firdaus. May Allah give the family the fortitude to bear the loss,” he prayed.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the remains of the late Emir was laid to rest in the ’emir’s palace’ of the ancient city of Zaria, Kaduna State.
The funeral prayers were led by the Chief Imam of the Zazzau Emirate Council, Alhaji Dalhatu Kasimu, in the palace at 5. 35p.m. in accordance with Islamic rites.
In attendance were Gov. Nasiru El-Rufa’i of Kaduna State, Secretary to the State Government Balarabe Lawal-Abbas, Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Yusuf Zailani, and other top government dignitaries.
The Chief of Staff to the President, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari, led the federal government delegation that included the Minister of Aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu, head of military and paramilitary, among others.
NAN reports that the monarch spent 45 years on the throne having ascended to the throne in 1975 at the age of 36, following the demise of Alhaji Muhammadu Aminu, the 17th Emir of Zazzau.
He attended Katsina Training College and taught at Hunkuyi.
He served as private secretary to the Sarkin Zazzau, Muhammadu Aminu.
He became the secretary of the Zaria Native Authority Council in 1965, took the title of Dan Madamin Zaria and became the district head of Zaria and Kewaye in 1973.
Edited By: Sadiya Hamza
NCDC records 97 new COVID-19 infections, total cases now 57, 242
The NCDC disclosed this on its official twitter handle on Sunday .
It added that three persons died of COVID-19 complications while 138 patients, who recovered at various isolation centres across the country the same day, were discharged.
Based on the figures released, Lagos state recorded the highest number of infections with 46 new cases.
The data released also indicated that Kwara recorded 12 new infections, Rivers 11, and Adamawa 4.
Others were Niger – 4, Ogun – 4, Osun – 4, Ekiti – 3, Imo – 3, Kaduna – 3, Plateau – 2, and Federal Capital Territory (FCT) – 1.
“Till date, 57, 242 cases have been confirmed, 48, 569 cases have been discharged, and 1,098 deaths have been recorded in 36 states and the FCT,” the centre said.
Edited By: Kamal Tayo Oropo/Emmanuel Yashim
Atiku Support Groups congratulate Obaseki
The All Atiku Support Groups (ASGs), has congratulated Gov. Godwin Obaseki on his re-election as the governor of Edo on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
The group Chairman, Mr Fabiyi Oladimeji, in a statement issued on Sunday in Abuja said Obaseki’s convincing victory was due to the resilience and steadfastness of the people of Edo State who did not give room for any manipulation by undemocratic forces.
“Nothing can be more dignifying than the stance and resolve of the good people of Edo for what they truly believed in.
“The good people of Edo state have demonstrated dexterity and spoken very loudly against god fatherism, against arrogance in power just as they have voted for progress and prosperity.”
Oladimeji commended the courage of Obaseki, his deputy, the State campaign council under the leadership of Chief Dan Orbih and all leaders of note in Edo State, Oladimeji said.
He also commended the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), for maintaining neutrality in the election.
“We understand there cannot be perfection in any electoral process, but INEC by its conduct in the just concluded Edo election has shown that it is possible if we all decided to do what is right.”
Oladimeji said that the group would not take the role played by the security agencies in ensuring the smooth running of the elections for granted.
He said that although there was a full contingent of officers of the Nigerian Police and other security agencies on ground, no recorded cases of intimidation or harassment of voters were recorded during the election.
He also appreciated President Muhammadu Buhari for allowing the good people of Edo to have their say and way.
“Democratic process demands that people should be allowed to freely elect their choices, as democracy is all about the people.”
Oladimeji commended the doggedness of the Chairman, PDP National Campaign Council, Gov. Nyesom Wike, his Colleagues, Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta, Seyi Makinde of Oyo state and all the National campaign council.
He also commended Atiku Abubakar for his timely intervention and support, as well as the Edo State Chapter of ASGs for mobilising voters for Obaseki’s re-election.
Oladimeji appealed to all stakeholders in the PDP to embrace the same strategy adopted and apply same during the upcoming Ondo Governorship election, Lagos senatorial by-election and Anambra governorship election.
Edited By: Donald Ugwu
Kiriji War: Leaders to celebrate 134 years of Yoruba unity
A coalition of Yoruba groups, prominent monarchs and leaders of thought will converge in Ibadan on Wednesday to celebrate 134 years of peace and unity in Yorubaland after the Kiriji War.
The Kiriji War, also known as the Ekiti-Parapo War, was a 16-year-long civil war between the Yoruba people where all the sub-ethnic groups either supported the Ibadan or the Ekiti.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the war came to an end on Sept. 23, 1886, which marked the beginning of unification of Yoruba Land as one.
Prof. Banji Akintoye, Convener of the event and President-General of Yoruba World Congress (YWC), said in a statement that Sept. 23 will now be celebrated as Yoruba National Day annually.
Akintoye said prominent Yoruba monarchs and warrior families would on Tuesday revisit the battlefields in Igbajo and Imesi Ile, Osun, and Oke Imesi Ekiti to pour libations and dedicate foundation stone to peace in Yoruba Land.
The YWC leader described the event as a reawakening and restoration of Yoruba history and culture.
He said that Afenifere Chieftain, Pa Ayo Adebanjo, Archbishop Ayo Ladigbolu of Yoruba Unity Forum, Justice Ademola Bakare (Rtd), Chairman, Yoruba Council of Elders, and Prof. Adetoun Ogunseye, National Council for Yoruba Women were among eminent Yoruba leaders of thought that would grace the occasion.
According to him, Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, Soun of Ogbomoso, Oba Jimoh Oyewumi, and the Olubadan of Ibadan, Oba Saliu Adetunji, are among prominent Yoruba monarchs expected at the ceremony.
“The purpose of the two-day ceremony is to unite the people of Yoruba Land towards achieving prosperity and development.
” The Owa Ooye of Okemesi, Oba Gbadebo Adedeji, Owa Ooye of Imesi Ile, Oba Ademola Akinyemi, the Owa of Igbajo and Oba Adeniyi Fashade, are the Chief Hosts of the event in their various communities on Sept. 22.
“The traditional rulers would also converge to address the Yoruba people at Okemesi, Ekiti, Igbajo and Imesi Ile in Osun, respectively, where the war started and where the peace treaty that marked the end of the war, was signed.
“The Olubadan of Ibadan, Oba Saliu Adetunji who is the Chief Host, would celebrate the day on Sept. 23 in Ibadan,” he said.
According to Akintoye, all the first class Yoruba traditional rulers from Ogun, Osun, Ekiti, Ondo, Kogi, Kwara, Edo, Oyo and Lagos States would be in attendance for the anniversary.
He urged all Yoruba sons and daughters worldwide to make their presence felt at the events, both physically and morally.
Edited By: Bola Akingbehin/Wale Ojetimi