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The three-year old marriage between a popular radio presenter, Omotoke Makinwa and her estranged husband, Maje Ayida has hit the rocks. An Igbosere High Court in Lagos on Thursday dissolved the union, citing husband’s adulterous lifestyle. Makinwa is the co-host of the ‘Morning Drive’ on Rhythm 93.7FM, a blogger and an author. She had on March 9, 2016, asked the court to dissolve the marriage on the grounds that the husband committed adultery. Justice Morenike Obadina, while delivering judgment held that Ayida filed an answer to the petition but did not give oral evidence in support of it. She said the position of the law was settled as pleadings did not amount to evidence. “Pleadings on which no evidence was led are deemed abandoned. Therefore, Ayida’s evidence is deemed abandoned. “The effect being that the petitioner’s evidence is unchallenged and uncontroverted,’’ she ruled. The judge said the issue of cruelty which the petitioner (Makinwa) relied on was established because of the “mental and emotional stress” she was subjected to by her husband. He said Makinwa had sufficiently proven that the husband committed adultery and continued to flaunt his adulterous relationships even to her face. “I hold that the marriage has broken down on grounds of intolerable behaviour. “I hereby pronounce a `Decree Nisi’ dissolving the marriage between Makinwa and Ayida which was administered at the Federal Marriage Registry, Ikoyi, Lagos, on Jan. 15, 2014. “The order Nisi shall become absolute three months from today unless within that period sufficient cause is shown why it should not be made absolute,” Obadina said. Makinwa had told the court that her husband committed adultery with his mistress, Anita Solomon, adding that the relationship produced a child. She said since their marriage was contracted, the husband had “behaved in a way she could not reasonably be expected to continue to bear”. She also said the husband was cruel towards her, adding that their differences became irreconcilable. During the trial, the petitioner (Makinwa ) testified in court and tendered some documents including their marriage certificate which were admitted in evidence. In her testimony, she said that after their marriage was contracted in 2014, cohabitation with her husband ceased on Nov. 8, 2015, without any child from the marriage. She also told the court of an instance where her husband threatened separation and even drafted a separation agreement because she discovered that he bought a ticket for his mistress to travel to London. The first respondent (Ayida) who replied to the petition when served, however, instructed his counsel, Mr T. O. Lawal, not to continue with the defence. Ayida through his counsel, therefore, foreclosed all evidence. The mistress (Solomon), who is the second respondent, refused to join issues with the petitioner.

Five Nigerien soldiers and three U.S. Army Special Forces troops were killed and two wounded in an ambush on a joint patrol in southwest Niger, near Mali. The attack occurred on Wednesday, according to Nigerien and U.S. officials. The five Green Berets were attacked while on a routine patrol in an area known to have a presence of insurgents, including from al Qaeda in Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) and Islamic State, a U.S. official told Reuters. It was unclear who fired on the U.S. and U.S.-backed forces, the official said. Those forces were not patrolling the area with any specific objective, such as a high-value target or rescuing a hostage, the official added. A spokesman for U.S. Africa Command confirmed the attack after Radio France International (RFI) reported a lethal ambush near the Niger/Mali border. “We can confirm reports that a joint U.S. and Nigerien patrol came under hostile fire in southwest Niger,” said the spokesman. Namatta Abubacar, an official for the region of Tillaberi in Niger, said five Nigerien soldiers were among the dead. A Niger diplomatic source said the attackers had come from Mali and had killed several soldiers, without saying whether any of the U.S. troops stationed in the West African country were among the victims. U.S. President Donald Trump was briefed by telephone on the attack by White House Chief of Staff John Kelly while Trump flew back on Air Force One from Las Vegas, where he had been visiting victims and first responders affected by Sunday’s mass shooting. RFI said earlier on Wednesday a counter-attack was underway. African security forces backed by Western troops are stepping up efforts to counter jihadist groups forming part of a growing regional insurgency in the poor, sparsely populated deserts of the Sahel. A relatively new militant group called Islamic State in the Greater Sahara has claimed some of the attacks. Geoff D. Porter, head of North Africa Risk Consulting, said that any confirmation of Islamic State’s role in Wednesday’s strike would lead to a strategic shift from Libya toward the Sahel band, stretching eastwards from Senegal to Chad. “The emphasis … will now shift south,” he said. The U.S. Africa Command has hundreds of soldiers deployed across the region, including at an air facility in Agadez, and offers training and support to Niger’s army in aspects such as intelligence gathering and surveillance.

The Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT) has demanded that the retirement of teachers of primary and secondary schools in the country be raised from 60 to 65 years. Mr Michael Olukoya, the National President of NUT made the call at the 2017 World Teachers’ Day celebration in Abuja on Thursday. The theme of this year’s day is: “Teaching in Freedom, Empowering Teachers’’. Olukoya said that the retirement age for tutors in the Colleges of Education, Polytechnics and Universities was extended to 65 and 70 respectively. He said that doing the same with the primary and secondary schools would remove the segregation since they all belonged to the same teaching industry. “The more years a teacher spends on the job, the better he delivers his service to the learners given the benefit of the experiences gathered over the years and the wisdom of age. “The older the teacher, the more caring and tolerant he is to the students with improved dexterity in the pedagogy of teaching required over time. “It is for this and other similar reasons that the retirement age of lecturers and professors in the tertiary institution was extended to 65 and 70 years,’’ he said. The NUT president also called on the Federal Government to look into the plight of primary and secondary school teachers across the country arising from the non payment of their salaries and allowances for several months. He said that as at the end of September, primary and secondary school tutors were owed between two and 11 months salaries in 17 states in the country. He decried that this was becoming worrisome. “Some state government has since adopted the inhuman act of paying monthly salaries in fractions without any guarantee that the remaining part of the salaries will be paid to the teachers. “In the same vein, promotions are yet to be implemented for teachers for two to eight years in some states. “This situation has brought untold hardship to the affected teachers and has expectedly taken its toll on public education with its attendant effect on the under-privileged children’’. He called on state and local government to effect payment of the backlogs of salaries and other entitlement owed teachers without further delay. On the issue of grade level of graduate teachers, Olukoya said that graduate teachers in the primary and secondary schools were meant to terminate on GL 14 and 16 respectively in some states of the federation. He said that this was an act of discrimination which was unacceptable, while calling for justice, equity and fair play. He called on relevant authority to extend the terminal grade level of graduate teachers of both primary and secondary schools to grade levels 17 as obtainable with other graduates of public servants. He, however, urged the Ministry of Education to facilitate the development of a comprehensive scheme of service for primary and secondary school teachers.

Defending champions Germany confirmed their qualification for next year’s World Cup in Russia by beating Northern Ireland 3-1 in Belfast. Sebastian Rudy shot into the top corner in the second minute, Sandro Wagner rifled home from the edge of the area, and Joshua Kimmich drove in late on. Josh Magennis headed Northern Ireland’s goal in stoppage time. Germany progress as group winners but Northern Ireland remain well placed to make November’s play-offs. Michael O’Neill’s men complete their Group C campaign in Norway on Sunday, aiming to finish among the best eight of the nine group runners-up. They will follow results elsewhere over the next two days but, as it stands, they may need a point in Oslo to make sure of reaching the play-offs, the draw for which takes place on 17 October. According to BBC, of the eight teams, the highest four in the Fifa rankings which will be published on 16 October – Northern Ireland are currently 20th – will be seeded for the play-offs.

Equatorial Guinea have been expelled from the 2019 Women’s World Cup in France for fielding 10 ineligible players and using forged documents. The players all took part in qualifying for the 2016 Olympic women’s tournament in Brazil. The latest sanctions come on top of their ban from competing at the 2020 Olympics, which was issued last year. BBC reports that Fifa has also imposed a fine of $102,000 (£77,700) on the country’s football association. An investigation by the world governing body found the 10 players were “not eligible to play for the representative team of Equatorial Guinea”. Two more players – Muriel Linda Mendoua Abessolo and Francisca Angue Ondo Asangono – were given 10-match bans after being found to have used forged and falsified documents. As well as missing the 2019 Women’s World Cup and the following year’s Olympics, Equatorial Guinea are also banned from the next two Women’s Africa Cup of Nations in 2018 and 2020. The initial ban from the Olympics, announced in April 2016, came after Fifa found that Camila Maria do Carmo Nobre de Oliveira used forged documents in the preliminary competition of the 2016 games. She was discovered with two passports with different birth dates and two birth certificates showing different parental information. In 2016, De Oliveira also played in Women’s Africa Cup of Nations qualifying against Mali, who later made an official complaint which led to the Confederation of African Football’s Nations Cup ban. The two-time continental champions were subsequently disqualified from the 2016 Nations Cup finals in Cameroon (replaced by Mali) as well as the next two tournaments.

The Bankers Committee says commercial banks will start the disbursement of the N26 billion equity contribution to Small and Medium Enterprise (SMEs) in agriculture by end of 2017 third quarter. The Managing Director of Unity Bank, Mrs Tomi Somefun, disclosed this while briefing newsmen on the outcome of the Bankers’ Committee meeting on Thursday in Lagos. She said that the framework for the process of the fund had been developed and finalised, while the body of banks will be the shareholders. Somefun said that the CBN had also created a special export intervention to support it to generate more funds. She said that many of the SMEs would benefit from the fund once it started . The Unity Bank boss, however, said that the issues in the past where exporters failed to repatriate proceeds from their businesses would no longer be tolerated. She said that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had agreed that Bankers Committee should henceforth sanction defaulting exporters. Somefun also said that the sanctions would ensure blacklisting of defaulters such that banks would no longer do businesses with them. On further developments in the foreign exchange market, the Managing Director of the FBN Merchant Bank, Mr Kayode Akinkugbe, said it had recorded stability. Akinkugbe said the stability was seen in the foreign exchange and capital markets as well as moderation in the inflation rate. Akinkugbe said that the Gross Domestic Products (GDP) growth would be more deepened and robust following the positive developments. He said that the committee also commended the CBN’s efforts on stability and boosting liquidity in the foreign exchange market. Akinkugbe said the CBN was steady-fast in its approaches on ensuring stability and that brought the confidence in the market. He also said the CBN, not withstanding its successes, had reiterated its commitment in ensuring constant supply of foreign exchange. Also the Managing Director of the Union Bank, Mr Emeka Emuwa, said one of the other areas of discussion was process of collateral registry for SMEs. Emuwa said the collateral registry, which had started, would be an opportunity for small business operators to access funds from bank. According to him, the process facilitates easy lending to small businesses which have potential to contribute to the nation’s economic growth and development. He warned Nigerians to desist from investments that promised too good returns, saying such were likely to come up in the last quarter of the year. Emuwa cited the return of the Mavrodi Mundial Moneybox (MMM). The Director (Banking Supervision) in CBN), Mr Ahmed Abdullah, said there was the need to deepen the growth that the country recorded after existing from reccession. Abdullahi said that the committee recognised that the growth was still fragile and more efforts were needed to improve on it. The CBN director said that a number of projects had been discussed to ensure that the growth became more robust. (NAN)

The lawmaker representing Bauchi central, Isah Misau, has alleged that the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, impregnated a serving deputy superintendent of police (DSP), Esther, an act which he says contravenes the police act. Misau added that the IGP is having affairs with two policewomen whom he has given special promotion. The senator said Idris married Esther because she was “four months pregnant” for him, reports TheCable. “The IG is openly having two relationships with police women which he gave special promotion. One of them is Amina and one of them is DSP Esther which the IG on 15th of last month got married to that woman DSP. Under police act and regulation you cannot marry a serving woman police officer unless that woman retire,” Misau said. “He quickly did a secret wedding in Kaduna because the lady is four months pregnant. I am saying this because of the institution – that institution I am supposed to be a stakeholder in that institution. It is the institution that brought me here which I’m proud of.” Misau said this on the floor of the senate on Wednesday while drawing the attention of the lawmakers to the disagreement he is having with Idris. The Bauchi senator had also accused IGP of receiving money from oil companies where police officers were sent to provide security. The police had declared the senator a deserter after he had earlier alleged that the IGP collects money for the posting of police officers. Attempts to contact the spokesman of the Nigeria Police Force, CSP Jimoh Moshood to comment on the allegations were unsuccessful.

Charles Oputa, popularly known as Charly-Boy on Wednesday filed a suit at the FCT High Court, Maitama, against the Commissioner of Police in FCT for alleged violation of his rights. Oputa is demanding the enforcement of his fundamental rights pursuant to Sections 34, 39, and 40 and 46 (1) of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended). He is asking the court to declare that the use of teargas, canisters, water cannon and wild police dogs to harass and disperse his group was contrary to the provisions of the constitution. Oputa through his counsel, Mr Inibehe Effiong, is also seeking the order of the court compelling the respondent (Nigeria Police Force) to pay him N100 million as general damages. He is also asking for an order directing the respondent to pay him N400 million as exemplary damages. Oputa said that he and his group, known as Our Mumu Don Do Movement, staged a peaceful demonstration on Aug. 8 at Unity Fountain, Maitama Abuja, when they were attacked by the police. The group had demanded that President Muhammadu Buhari return from his medical leave in London to resume work or resign. The suit has yet to be assigned.

The Bayelsa Government is investigating suspected cases of monkeypox outbreak in its communities, the Commissioner for Health, Prof. Ebitimitula Etebu, has said. Etebu spoke in Yenagoa on Wednesday following reports that some 11 persons, including a medical doctor, had been placed on surveillance in Yenagoa. Those with the suspected cases had been quarantined at the Niger Delta University Teaching Hospital (NDUTH) , Okolobiri, Yenagoa Local Government Area. The centre was established by Nigerian Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) and the epidemiological team of the state Ministry of Health to control the spread of the virus. It was also learnt that the NCDC and the epidemiological team were tracing 49 persons, who were in contact with persons suspected to have been infected. Etebu said that samples of the virus had been sent to the World Health Organisation laboratory in Dakar for confirmation. He described monkeypox as a viral illness caused by a group of viruses that include chickenpox and smallpox. The commissioner said the first case was noticed in the Democratic Republic of Congo and subsequent outbreaks in West Africa. He said the virus had the Central African and the West African types but that the West African type was milder and had no records of mortality. “Recently in Bayelsa, we noticed a suspected outbreak of monkeypox. ‘’It has not been confirmed. We have sent samples to the World Health Organisation reference laboratory in Dakar. ”When that comes out we will be sure that it is confirmed. But from all indications, it points towards it. ”As the name implies, the virus was first seen in monkeys but can also be found in all bush animals, such as rats, squirrels and antelopes. ”The source is usually all animals. It was first seen in monkeys and that is why it is called monkey pox. ‘’But every bush animal, such as rats, squirrels, antelopes are involved. So, the secretions from particularly dead animals are highly contagious, Etebu said. He listed the symptoms of monkeypox as severe headache, fever, back pain, among others. Etebu said that most worrisome of all the signs were rashes bigger than those caused by chickenpox. The commissioner said the rashes were usually very discomforting and spread to the whole body of an infected person. “We noticed the first index case from Agbura where somebody was purported to have killed and eaten a monkey and after that the people who are neighbours and families started developing the rashes. “We have seen cases from as far as Biseni. We invited the NCDC together with our own epidemiological team from the Bayelsa Ministry of Health. ‘’We have been able to trace most of the people who have come in contact with the patients. “So far, we have 10 patients and we have created an isolation centre at the NDUTH and most of them are on admission and we are following up the 49 cases that we are suspecting might come down with the illness. ‘’As a state we are taking care of all the expenses of all the isolated cases. “The disease has an incubation period and it is also self-limiting in the sense that within two to four weeks, you get healed and it confers you with immunity for life. “We have mobilised virtually every arsenal at our disposal in terms of sensitising the general public and making them aware by radio programmes, jingles and fliers. ‘’So the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control has mobilised fully to Bayelsa State. We are on top the situation.” Etebu said.

The Niger State Emergency Management Agency (NSEMA) has confirmed the death of 22 persons in a boat mishap around Mahuta community in Agwara Local Government Area of the state. Malam Hussaini Ibrahim, the Public Relations Officer of the agency, confirmed the incident in Minna on Wednesday. He said the deceased were traveling on Tuesday from Yauri in Kebbi and Mage around Kontagora area to Manhuta in Niger. Ibrahim said that seven of the travelers were, however, rescued. According to him, the victims were traveling to Mahuta following information that a divine stone, with an islamic inscription was found there, when their boat capsised. “Some of the survivors said the boat hit a log of wood inside the river and capsized,” he said. He said the bodies of the deceased were deposited at the General Hospital in Yauri.

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