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Court orders INEC to identify and hand over officials involved in underaged voter registration



In a recent development, a Federal High Court in Abuja has issued a directive to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), instructing them to identify, within the next 90 days, officials involved in the registration of underaged voters during the continuous voters’ registration (CVR) exercise across the country.


Justice Obiora Egwuatu, delivering the judgment, further mandated that the identified culprits be produced and handed over to the appropriate law enforcement agency for thorough investigation and possible prosecution.


The court’s decision includes a mandatory order for INEC to promptly expunge from its national voters’ register the names of all underage voters from each polling unit across the federation. This action aligns with the information compiled by the plaintiff in “Exhibit A” attached to the affidavit supporting the originating summons.


Moreover, the court has compelled INEC to furnish the plaintiff with a certified true copy (CTC) of the cleaned-up national voters’ register, ensuring that it includes only persons eligible to vote in Nigeria within the next 90 days. Alternatively, the judge ordered that the electoral umpire publish the cleaned-up national voters’ register on its website within the same timeframe.


The plaintiff, Rev. Mike Agbon, initiated the legal action, raising critical questions about INEC’s constitutional and legal obligations regarding credible CVR in Nigeria. The lawsuit questioned whether the defendant is bound by the constitution and the Electoral Act to conduct a CVR in strict compliance with these provisions. Additionally, it delved into the legality of registering underaged individuals during the CVR, and the consequences for such actions.


Agbon sought a mandatory order for INEC to identify and hand over its officials involved in underaged voter registration within a month, urging the appropriate law enforcement agency to conduct investigations and possible prosecutions.


The plaintiff’s claims were rooted in his discovery of underaged individuals registered by INEC, contrary to the stipulated qualifications for registration in the Electoral Act. Despite INEC Chairman Prof. Mahmood Yakubu’s assurance of cleaning up the register ahead of the elections, Agbon faced resistance when requesting the list of underaged and ineligible voters.


In delivering the judgment, Justice Egwuatu emphasized that the conditions for qualification as a voter, outlined in the Constitution and Electoral Act, include being a citizen residing in Nigeria and attaining the age of 18 years. The court found that voters registered by INEC in “Exhibit A” were underage, indicating a failure by registration officers to adhere to constitutional and statutory provisions.


Quoting Section 120(1) of the Electoral Act, 2022, the judge highlighted that any officer breaching their official duty commits an offense and could face a maximum fine of ₦500,000 or imprisonment for 12 months or both. The certified true copy of the judgment was sighted on Monday by NAN.

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EFCC, NUPENG Join forces against oil theft



The National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers, (NUPENG)is seeking a collaboration with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC)to fight the scourge of illegal oil bunkering in the country.



The President of the Union, William Akporeha made the request when he led members of his executive to the corporate headquarters of the EFCC in Abuja.




Akporeha, who commended the EFCC boss for repositioning the anti-graft agency on the path of professionalism and rule of law, stressed the need to sanitise the oil and gas industry.



Akporeha itemised some of the challenges involved in the movement of petroleum products across the country, pleading with the EFCC to always come to the aid of truck drivers experiencing difficulties in the course of their works.




In his response, Olukoyede said it is important that major players in the oil and gas sector collaborated with the EFCC to confront the National Economic sabotage in the sector.




He assured members of the union that the Commission would not arrest or detain any truck or driver who did not dabble into shady deals, noting that the process of profiling suspected oil thieves and evaluation of petroleum products involved are often long drawn.



Olukoyede promises to continue to work with every stakeholder in the oil and gas sector to ensure sanity in their operations.

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Kidnap kingpin, Boderi, feared killed as troops battle terrorists in Kaduna



Troops of the Nigerian Army operating in 1 Division area of responsibility have neutralised some insurgents and recovered more firearms and ammunition in encounters with the criminals in the General area of Igabi, Giwa and Birnin Gwari Local Government Areas of Kaduna State.


A Statement by the Army spokeperson, Major General Onyema Nwachukwu said a notorious terrorist, Boderi, who orchestrated many high profile kidnappings including those of the Yauri school girls, Greenfield University students and the Nigerian Defence Academy attack may have been killed alongside another kingpin, Bodejo in the ambush.


The statement said while on a fighting patrol along Maganda-Dausayi – Mugaba axis, troops came under fire from insurgents who employed rustled herds of cattle as shields while they engaged the troops with direct fire. Two of the terrorists were killed in the process and arms as well as other items including 1 Techno phone, 3 Hilux vehicles and motorcycle keys, wraps of substance suspected to be marijuana, tramadol tablets and the sum of 13,200 Naira only, were recovered.


Also, during the encounter, some of the rustled livestock used as shield by the insurgents were caught in the crossfire. Troops are still on the trail of the fleeing insurgents and remain resolute on ridding the area of armed violence according to the army.


In a separate operation, conducted by troops of 1 Division of the Nigerian Army on Wednesday 22 February 2024, the troops successfully ambushed marauding insurgents along the Bada – Riyawa axis on the Kaduna – Birnin Gwari Road. In the encounter, troops killed 6 insurgents and recovered arms and 19 motorcycles which were destroyed.

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Senate confirms Cardoso Chairman, CBN’s Monetary Policy Committee, 11 others as members



The Nigerian Senate has confirmed the appointment of Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Olayemi Cardoso, as Chairman of the Monetary Policy Committee alongside eleven others.



The confirmation follows the adoption of a report of the committee on Banking and other Financial Institutions presented by its chairman Adetokunbo Abiru (APC Lagos East).



Abiru, in his presentation, said the nominees possess the academic qualifications, technical knowledge and professional experience to be members of the Monetary Policy Committee.



Abiru further stated that the Senate Committee on Banking did not receive any petition against the nominees.



He added that the nominees were all cleared by the Nigeria Police Force and the State Security Services and possessed the Code of Conduct Bureau acknowledgment slip.




Other lawmakers in their submission charged the newly confirmed Members of the MPC to come up with proper economic policies to salvage the current situation in the country.



Those confirmed are CBN Deputy Governors, Mohamed Sani Abdullahi , Bala Bello, Emem Usoro and Philip Ikeazor.



Others are the Director General, Security and Exchange Commission (SEC), Lamido Yuguda, Permanent Secretary Ministry of Finance, Jafiya Shehu, murtala Sabo Sagagi, Aloysius Uche, Aku Paulin, Mustapha Akinwumi and Bandele Amon.

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