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Cross River gorillas will boost local tourism if protected – Wild Africa Fund



Cross River gorillas will boost local tourism if protected - Wild Africa Fund

Wild Africa Fund, an environmental NGO, says that Cross River gorillas can boost local tourism if there are deliberate policies to protect them.


The fund urges the public to protect Nigeria’s unique Cross River gorillas by supporting ongoing efforts to safeguard their populations and habitat as well as reducing the demand for commercial bushmeat that threatens them.


This is contained in a statement signed by Festus Iyorah, Nigeria Representative of the fund and made available to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Sunday in Lagos.


According to him, the Cross River gorillas live in the mountainous region between Nigeria and Cameroon and it’s Africa’s most endangered ape species.


He said that available records showed that fewer than 300 individuals of these gorillas remained in the wild, with 100 of them living in Nigeria’s Cross River State and the rest in Cameroon.


He said that the Gorillas were found in Nigeria in the Afi Mountain Wildlife Sanctuary, the Mbe Mountains, and the Okwangwo division of the Cross River National Park.


He explained that the Cross River gorilla, one of Nigeria’s most iconic and cherished wildlife species, faced numerous threats, including hunting and habitat loss due to agricultural expansion, commercial logging and the encroachment of human settlements into its habitat.


Iyorah noted that while the hunting of gorillas had reduced over the last few years, wire snares set for other animals in the bushmeat trade could also entrap gorillas, leading to injuries and, in some cases, death.


“We can’t afford to lose even one of our 100 Cross River Gorillas at this critical stage. Let us all come together to protect the Cross River Gorilla and ensure that these remarkable species continue to thrive in our country for generations to come,” Iyorah said.


The Nigeria representative said that the country had taken significant steps to address those challenges and protect the Cross River Gorilla.


He said that the National Park Service and Cross River State Government, in collaboration with local and international conservation organisations, had been working to safeguard the gorilla’s habitat, enforce anti-poaching laws, and promote community-based conservation initiatives.


He said that efforts were crucial, not only for the survival of the Cross River gorillas but also for the preservation of our rich biodiversity and the sustainable development of our communities.


He listed the benefits of protecting the gorillas.


” Gorilla-based tourism is an invaluable asset to some African countries like Rwanda and Uganda, offering a win-win scenario for both conservation and economic development.


“Tourists from around the globe are drawn to the magic of gorilla encounters, making Gorilla-based tourism a source of foreign currency and funding for community development projects such as schools and healthcare centres.


“Gorilla trekking accounted for 14 per cent of the 498 million dollars Rwanda earned from tourism in 2018 when the government doubled the cost of gorilla trekking permits to 1,500 dollars per person.


” In 2018–19, tourism brought in $1.6 billion for Uganda, contributing 7.7 per cent of the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and employing at least 667,000 people,” Iyorah said.


Iyorah quoted the CEO of Wild Africa Fund, Peter Knights, as saying


“If wildlife can be successfully protected in Nigeria it can become a major driver of increased tourism and jobs.’


Iyorah said that Wild Africa Fund had launched a month-long public awareness campaign, using radio, TV, newspapers, billboards, and social media to inform people about the threats facing the Cross River gorillas and to amplify laws and anti-poaching measures protecting them.


He added that the campaign would feature messages from top celebrity ambassadors, including Davido, Laycon, Emanuella, and Alex Iwobi, and short documentaries highlighting ongoing efforts to protect gorillas and their habitat.

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Nigerian Navy arrests Motor Tanker VINNALARIS 1 Lagos for crude oil theft



The Nigerian Navy Forward Operating Base, IGBOKODA in Ondo State, has arrested 77-meter-long Motor Tanker (MT) VINNALARIS 1 LAGOS in the early hours of Thursday 7 December 2023 at about 3.00am.


A Statement by the Nigerian Navy spokeperson Commodore Ayo Vaughn said the vessel had 17 crew members onboard at the time of arrest and was caught engaging in illegal siphoning of crude oil from one of the well heads at EBESAN oil field about 7 nautical miles off the coast of Awoye riverine community in Ilaje Local Government Area of Ondo State.


He said the apprehension of the vessel was based on credible intelligence received by the Base on the illegal activities of crude oil thieves at the location which informed the swift deployment of FOB IGBOKODA personnel to enforce the arrest of the vessel and her crew.


The vessel, MT VINNALARIS 1 LAGOS, has a storage capacity of about 15,000 metric tonnes and as at the time of arrest had loaded about 500 Metric tonnes of crude oil.


The statement further added, “it is believed that Tantita Security Service TSS is involved in the illegalities because Awoye riverine area which is close to the place of arrest is covered by TSS.” Vaughan noted that it was upon the arrest of the vessel by the Nigerian Navy that TSS began to raise false alarm, which the Navy described as totally unfounded and mischievous.

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The National Judicial Commision has recommended the appointment of 11 Supreme Court Justices, one Justice of Court of Appeal, 6 Heads of Courts and 26 other Judicial Officers.


This was the consencus at the Councils 104 Meeting after considering the list of candidates presented by its Interview Committee



According to a statement signed by the Director Of Information, Soji Oye, the council after much deliberations, recommended Justice Hannatu Sankey, Justice Chidiebere Uwa, Justice Chioma Nwosu-Iheme, Justice Haruna Tsammani and

Justice Aseimo Adumein as Supreme court Justices.


Others are Justice Obande Ogbuinya, Justice Stephen Adah, Justice Habeeb Abiru, Justice Jamilu Tukur, Justice Abubakar Umar, and Justice Mohammed Idris.


The NJC also recommended Justice Mohammed Ramat as a Justice of the Court of Appeal.


Some heads of court nominated are Justice Joel Agya, as the Chief Judge Taraba State,

Justice Umar Abubakar, Chief Judge of Taraba State amongst others.


The Council has said that all recommended candidates to the Supreme Court Bench would be sworn-in after the approval of their recommendation by President Bola Tinubu and the subsequent confirmation of their appointment by the Senate.


NJC has also noted that the various Heads of Court recommended would also be sworn-in upon the approval of their appointment by their various State Governors and subsequent confirmation of same by their respective State Houses of Assembly.

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EFCC denies comments on 70 percent Nigerian Youths involvement in internet fraud



EFCC denies comments on 70 percent Nigerian Youths involvement in internet fraud

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC has denied comments by it’s Executive Chairman, Ola Olukoyede which labelled seventy percent of Nigerian Students as internet fraudsters.




While stating this in a Statement by the Head, Media and Publicity Dele Oyewale, the Commission says it is a misrepresentation of the concerns of the Chairman of the EFCC to the rising incidences of internet- related crimes involving Youths across the Country.




It explains that its Chairman had called for wider media enlightenment of youths as a counter- measure against the menace of internet fraud at a meeting with Representatives of the Civil Society Organizations, CSOs that paid him a visit in Abuja.




Olukoyede says that reports and intelligence available to him indicated that, unless the trajectory of youth involvement in internet fraud is addressed and reversed, the future of their leadership of Nigeria may be threatened and if it continues in the next ten years, seven out ten of the youths may be getting involved in cybercrimes.



The EFCC says that at no time did its Chairman mentioned that “seven out of ten” Nigerian students are criminals” as widely reported.




The Commission assures the public that its Chairman is doubly committed to the progress of Nigerian Youths and underscores his calls for collaborative interventions in offering them more productive and sustainable alternatives.



The Statement added that the concerns of the EFCC Chairman bothers on breaking the jinx of mass indulgence of youths in cybercrimes.

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