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Former Abia state governor, Orji Uzor Kalu, on Friday met the detained leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu, in an effort to broker a political solution to his trial for alleged treason.

Mr. Kanu was arrested by the operatives of the State Security Service on October 14 and was charged alongside three others, David Nwawuisi, Benjamin Madubugwu and Chidiebere Onwudiwe, with treasonable felony.

After the meeting, Mr. Kalu, who defected recently to the ruling All Progressives Congress, told journalists in Abuja that the detainees had given him the “go-ahead to talk on their behalf” with the Federal Government.
The former governor was optimistic that supporters of Mr. Kanu would now be more cooperative with the authorities, following his discussion with their leader.
He said the discussion will form the basis for an interface between the Federal Government and Mr. Kanu.
He added that the planned talk would have the view to end Mr. Kanu’s trial.
“I came to talk to him to talk to his supporters. I think they will have a change of attitude. We are all Nigerians. If both himself and the Federal Government are genuinely interested, we can come to a common ground. It is a possibility,” said Mr. Kanu.
On the decision of the Federal High Court hearing the case against Mr. Kanu and his colleagues to grant partial protection to prosecution witnesses, Mr. Kalu said the practice has long existed.
“The protection of witnesses is nothing new in law. We can do that but it may not get to that stage; if we talk to each other well. It is possible to settle out of court if both parties are realistic.

“Now he has given me the go-ahead to talk on his behalf. And if I can speak on his behalf, then the process will begin; and if things go as they ought to, we might not get to the stage of having to require protection of witnesses.

“If he trusts me and the Federal Government trusts me, I don’t see how this will not work. I know the government well. I am a member of the ruling party. So I can use my position well,” Mr. Kalu said.

The former governor explained that his visit was in line with the United Nations’ charter on human rights and in furtherance of his duty to the state he once governed.
“My visit to Kanu is in compliance with the United Nation’s charter that, anyone who is in prison should frequently be visited.

“I decided to come and visit him as a younger brother and as a former governor of Abia State; once you become a governor, you have a duty to always protect your people.

Mr. Kanu and the three other members of IPOB are being tried at the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court.

The court had on December 17, 2015 ordered the SSS to release Mr. Kanu unconditionally. But that ruling, delivered by Justice Adeniyi Ademola who is being accused of fraud and is currently being prosecuted, was upturned by another judge, John Tsoho, in January.
Shortly after the ruling refusing him bail, Mr. Kanu declared no confidence in Mr. Tsoho’s impartiality, forcing the judge to withdraw from the matter.

Subsequently, the case was transferred to another judge, Binta Nyako. Mrs. Nyako also refused the same bail application for the defendant on December 1.
In recent weeks, Mr. Kanu’s court appearance had been occasioned by commotion caused by his supporters at the court premises.

During the last sitting on December 13, Mr. Kanu’s supporters clashed with prison officials after he made some remarks against President Muhammadu Buhari.
Mr. Kanu hails from Isiam Afara Local Government Area of Abia state.

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Sacked PHCN Staff Electrocuted while doing illegal Connection

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Sacked PHCN Staff Electrocuted while doing illegal Connection

Sacked PHCN Staff Electrocuted while doing illegal Connection

A former staff of the Benin Electricity Distribution Company BEDC, in Agbor, Delta State, who was dismissed in 2009, was, on Tuesday, electrocuted in Agbor.

According to reports, the deceased, identified as Monday Ebor, was illegally working on high tension lines when electricity was restored.

Eboh who was wanted by BEDC for his illegal activities which destroyed many transformers, was said to be illegally diverting lines from one feeder to another when power was restored.

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United Kingdom Accepting Naira Payments from Nigerian Business Owners

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United Kingdom Accepting Naira Payments from Nigerian Business Owners

United Kingdom Accepting Naira Payments from Nigerian Business Owners

Former President of the Nigerian-British Chamber of Commerce (NBCC)Dapo Adelegan, has announced that the British Government will henceforth begin accepting Nigerian currency from Nigerian business owners in the UK.

Adelegan made the assertion in an interview on Wednesday in Lagos.

The British Government on February 9, through its export credit agency, UK Export Finance (UKEF), said it will accept Naira payments from Nigerian business owners trading with the UK.

Adelegan said that the initiative was a monumental step that will deepen trade, open more opportunities, expand patronage and market scope of products from both countries.

“If we look at the quality of manufactured equipment and technology; Made-in-Britain is number one.

“Through this, we will access technology transfer, boost the capacity of workforce and impact on our outputs of consumables and products in the market.

“It is a win-win situation that will go beyond procurement, as there are multiple layers of benefits that this will bring to the economy,’’ Adelegan said.

Joyce Akpata, Director-General, Nigerian-American Chamber of Commerce (NACC), also said the initiative will ease importation of goods from the UK to Nigeria and strengthen economic ties.

“The UK has the largest concentration of Nigerians in the diaspora and given cultural ties, it is something that should have happened before now,’’ Akpata said.

The director general said the initiative would improve knowledge sharing and technology transfer.

“We will see a lot of businesses in the UK supplying equipment and machinery backed by this finance to their Nigerian counterparts.

“This will enhance the activities of manufacturers, especially the growing SMEs that are into processing.

“It will also take off issues of foreign exchange challenges and instability in the market,’’ she said.

Akpata noted that the scheme would be a welcome opportunity for most Nigerian businesses that could not access financing locally.

She urged other countries, especially the United States, to take a cue from the UK to evolve initiatives that will assist businesses to maximise opportunities and strengthen trade ties.

Trade experts put the value of trade between Nigeria and the UK at about £8 billion, with oil and gas making up 60 per cent of the figure.

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South Africa’s Embattled President Jacob Zuma resigns

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President Zuma must face corruption charges - Supreme court rules

South Africa’s Embattled President Jacob Zuma resigns

The embattled President of South Africa, Jacob Zuma has resigned his office with immediate effect.

Zuma made the announcement in a televised address to the nation on Wednesday evening.

Earlier, Mr Zuma’s governing ANC party told him to resign or face a vote of no confidence in parliament on Thursday.

The 75-year-old has been under increasing pressure to give way to Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, the ANC’s new leader.

Mr Zuma, who has been in power since 2009, faces numerous allegations of corruption.

His resignation came at the end of a long speech in which he said he disagreed with the way the ANC had acted towards him.

He said he did not fear a motion of no-confidence, adding: “I have served the people of South Africa to the best of my ability.”

According to President Zuma, violence and division within the ANC had influenced his decision to step down.

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