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Top stories of Wednesday, March 16, 2016

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BUHARI RECEIVES HIGHEST NATIONAL HONOUR OF EQUATORIAL GUINEA

President Muhammadu Buhari, Monday, March 14, 2015, in Malabo was conferred with the Highest national Honour of the Republic of Equatorial Guinea. According to a statement by the special aide to the president, Femi Adesina, the honour was given for Buhari’s personal integrity, exemplary leadership style and courage to fight terrorism in order to ensure peace and safety in Africa.
The honour of ‘Grand Collar De La Orden De La Independencia” (Grand Collar of the Order of the Independence) was conferred on President Buhari by President Teodoro Obrand Nguema Mbasago of Equatorial Guinea at the Presidential palace. At the investiture ceremony, President Buhari said the recognition was for the people of Nigeria who had worked tirelessly to sustain peace in the country and across other neighbouring countries in Africa.
 
CULTISTS BEHEAD FELLOW STUDENTS AND USE HEADS AS GOAL POST
Suspected cultists beheaded two students and used their heads as football goal posts. The deceased identified as Ebuka Nwaigbo, a 300 level student of the department of Estate management and Samuel Ethelbert, a 300 level student of the department of political science, were living at Chi-Do Lodge along the Uturu-Afrikpo road. Their killers were said to be members of a rival cult group on a revenge mission for one of their members killed in February.
A source said the two cult groups known as Burkinafaso and Mafia had been in a  battle of supremacy for years in the university. There had been a heavy police presence at the school since the incident occurred. The Abia State Police Public Relations officer, Ezekiel Onyebo Udevitu, who confirmed the incident, stated that the commissioner of police, Joshiak Habilah, had directed the criminal investigation department to investigate the murder of the students. He urged members of the public to avail the force with useful information that could lead to the arrest and prosecution of the culprits.
 
AKPABIO DENIES OWNERSHIP OF COLLPASED LEKKI BUILDING
Chief Godswill Akpabio has finally opened up on allegations that he owns the company behind the 5 storey building that collapsed in Lekki area of Lagos state, leaving over 30 people dead. The Senate Minority leader in a statement issued by his special assistant, Anietie Ekong, denied ownership of Lekki Gardens, describing the allegations linking him to its ownership as unfair.
While tasking the said online medium to make inquiries from the authorities of the Lagos State government and the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), if they doubt the ownership of the Lagos Lekki Gardens, Ekong noted that this is one in a series of falsehood that the online media has fabricated against the Senate Minority Leader.
 
THE NFF HAS ANNOUNCED THE DEATH OF JON ENE OKON
The former Nigerian National team midfielder, John Ene Okon has passed on. The player who featured for Nigeria at the 1987 FIFA Under 20 World Cup, as well as the 1992 African Cup of Nations was reported to have died in Calabar on Tuesday, March 15.
He was the coach of Calabar Rovers until his death. Torrents of tributes have been pouring in for the humble late player.
 
SEVEN DISTINGUISHED IGBOS WHO COULD BE CONSIDERED FOR PRESIDENT
It should not come to any Nigerian as a surprise that the All Progressive Congress (APC) is calling the shots as far the political terrain of Nigeria is concerned now. However, the leaders of the APC and the President, Muhammadu Buhari may surprise Nigerians by becoming the first democratically elected president not to contest for a second term in office.
Seven different members of the Igbo people have been singled out as potential presidents of Nigeria one day. Some of the Igbo sons and daughters below are potential presidential material incase President Buhari decides to anoint someone from the South Eastern part of the country.
·         Rochas Okorocha
·         Oby Ezekwesili
·         Chris Ngige
·         Peter Obi
·         Charles Soludo
·         Ogbonnaya Onu
·         Osita Chidoka
 
GOV. WIKE SEEKS HELP OF OVER 5O COUNTRIES
The River state government has called on the United States, Chinese governments and other countries to come to their aid over the forthcoming elections in the state. The letter sent to about 50 countries on Monday, March 14 requested the intervention of the countries, including the African Union, for free fair and peaceful elections.
Austin Tam-George, the Rivers Commissioner for Information and Communication, who signed the letters, asked the world leaders to urgently initiate and maintain pressure on the federal government of Nigeria to allow free, fair and violence-free elections in River state on Saturday, March 19, 2016.
 
CBN INTRODUCES NEW CHARGES ON ATM CARDS, CHEQUES
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has proposed a N100 monthly charge on every debit card (ATM card) in the country. The new charge is separate from the existing N65 charge after the third withdrawal within the same month.
A monthly maintenance fee of N100 was also proposed every month for a naira dominated debit card when used and a N50 charge for other months when the card is used or not.
 
LAWYER DIES IN LAGOS COURT WHILE DEFENDING CLIENT
A lawyer simply identified as Chidi, has reportedly slumped and died while defending some alleged ‘meat’ thieves at Magistrate Court, Igbosere, Lagos on Tuesday, March 15, 2016.
The tragic occurrence happened after the deceased who was scheduled to appear as defence council for alleged meat thieves, Okedairo Okedeji (38) and Akolade Agboola (28) who pilfered the item worth N28,000 from Southern Sun Hotel in Ikoyi, Lagos. The men had been granted bail after being arraigned on Monday, February 29, 2016 and meeting the conditions set by Magistrate FM Dalley. Chidi who was supposed to represent the accused in court on Tuesday, alongside the dependant got into the court after the case had been adjourned till April 14.
After apologizing for their lateness, which he reputedly said was due to the heavy traffic in the state, Chidi also tried to plead with the magistrate for a change in the adjourned date, when he started coughing and began to gasp for breath.
Reports say he started clutching his chest when the cough would not stop, and started panting ‘obim! Obim (meaning my chest in Igbo language).
The people sitting close to him were said to have quickly tried to help him loosen his tie and also took him outside the courtroom to get fresh air as he pleaded that the people should help him get a cab to take him home quickly.
The lawyer appeared to have lost consciousness as he was rushed downstairs, and was carried on the back by one of the clients but by the time the cab arrived, Chidi had stopped breathing. The corpse was later deposited at the Lagos Island General Hospital mogue.
 
CBN HIRES RELATIVES OF INCUMBENT GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has reportedly unlawfully hired a daughter of former vice president, Atiku Abubakar, a nephew of President Buhari and many other relatives of top officials, the leaked document shows a list of at least 91 people tied to powerful or highly placed Nigerians, who were recently proposed appointments.
Sahara reporters says that the CBN’s job generosity comprise a daughter of former Atiku, a son of Mamman Daura, a nephew of Buhari and one of the closest members of the President’s kitchen cabinet, a son of Oil Minister, Ibe Kachikwu, a daughter of ex-Speaker of the House of Representatives, Ghali Na’aba, also daughter of the Inspector General of Police, Solomon Arase, a niece of the Minister of Internal Affairs, Abdulrahman Danbuazzau and at least 86 others. 

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