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Peter Obi: I was never arrested in London *Narrates encounter with UK immigration



Peter Obi, presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP), on Monday spoke on his encounter with the UK immigration operatives on April 7th at the Heathrow Airport in London, debunking the story that he was arrested and detained for hours before being deported, was far from the truth.

It was the first time Obi, who appeared as a guest on Prime Time, a current affairs programme on Arise Television, would personally address the issue since the story, which broke about a fortnight ago went viral.

He told his host that the encounter did not even last more than 20 minutes and that he was even escorted through the Very Important Personality (VIP) lounge by the same immigration personnel, who had earlier revealed to him that the issue was all about someone impersonating him.

Hear him: “I was never arrested, I was never detained and I did not commit any offence. I was stopped for a routine immigration check, because there appeared to be a duplication of my identity. All these lasted for a maximum of 20 minutes. I was treated with all due respect. I lived in the UK from 1993 to 2005. Not only that I lived there, from that period to now is a period of 30 years, I’ve never been questioned, arrested, detained in any country in the world. I’ve never for any reason found myself in any manner being questioned for any offence.

“I never committed any offence and it lasted for less than 20 minutes and I was given all the due respect by the border personnel who told me, your identity is duplicated, be careful and actually had to walk me through to the VIP process and every other thing. I have a written document by the British government clarifying that I was never detained. It was just a few minute routine check.

“It was actually Nigerians who were queuing up because I arrived on British Airways. They were even worried that they asked me a question for just a few minutes. But today it is being dramatised and everything. People are saying I was detained that I committed an offence or that I even committed several offences, his company was closed, he wasn’t paying tax. For the years I lived in Britain, I’ve never been questioned. My taxes were duly paid. In fact most times, they had refunded me money for overpayment. I had borrowed money from their system and I’d done everything globally and not one day had I defaulted in anything. If you find one default, it is not Peter.”

Obi, who said he was not perturbed about the noise being made about the whole incident, said he refrained from making the clarification earlier to respect the period, which was holy for Christians and Muslims, adding that he would not be bothered about the “rascality” of certain people in high places, frantically looking for ways to smear him, as the only weapon to cover their own shortcomings.

His words: “I was never deported. Rather I even attended churches and meetings and everything. They didn’t take me to anywhere. I was there in front of everybody and they were saying there was something wrong with your identity. That’s it. It was just about 15 minutes. It was about identity theft, which I would say originated from here. But that is a matter for another day.”

Obi, also spoke on the issue of dual citizenship, saying he never applied to be a citizen of any country and would never do so, adding that he was not a Nigerian, but a proud one at that who would never desire to have any other country’s passport.

“I lived in the UK for a period of 12 years. I had a permanent stay that could allow me to live there for the rest of my life. But when I left the UK I went back to return the stay. I now go to the UK with a visa. Even that stay, I returned it. I’ve never applied and I’ll never, for as long as I live. I was born a Nigerian. God created me a Nigerian. He would have made me an American or a Japanese or a British. But I’m a Nigerian and I’ll like to live and die a Nigerian.”

Obi, who also denied owning property in Solomon’s Island as alleged by leader of the Niger Delta Volunteer Force (NDVF), Asari Dokubo, who had earlier claimed that the only condition to own such a property was to take up the citizenship of the country, said he did not even know where the country was located on the map, adding that the only Caribbean country he had visited, was in Haiti, where he went on humanitarian service when it was hit by earthquake.

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Imo massacre: Armoured vehicles procured for police used to rig elections – LP



Labour Party, palpably in anguish at the slaughter of eight soldiers in Imo State on Tuesday by some rampaging gunmen, has raised questions over the whereabouts of the nine Armoured Personnel Carriers (APCs) Athan Achonu, it claimed its governorship candidate for the November 11 election, repaired and donated to the authorities in the state.

The party, all but called out the leadership of the Imo State Police Command, to whom they claimed the equipment were handed over, alleging that the last time they APCs were seen was during the last general elections, where they were used by members of the All Progressives Congress (APC), the party in power in the state to snatch ballot boxes for candidates in the national and state assemblies.

The claim, was made when Nick Opara-Ndudu  and Nnaemeka Onyeka Obiareri , chieftains of the party appeared as guests on The Morning Show, a breakfast programme on Arise Television to sell the candidacy of Achonu, whom they said would never have allowed the type of insecurity in the state to endure under his watch.

Both men, who said that Achonu, whose highest political office so far, was his short stint in the Senate, where he served via the 2015 election before he was removed through the courts, remained the only solution not to the insecurity, in the state and even the South East,  but the one to rescue the people from years of underdevelopment from poor leadership.

Obiareri, spokesman of the LP in the state, argued that if the APCs had been in place, Tuesday’s incident in which the military men were killed alongside some policemen and officials of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), would probably not have happened, said a check on the social media would reveal how they were used by party men of the APC for rigging the 2023 general elections.

He said: “The military men that were killed if they had armoured vehicles patrolling, they wouldn’t have been shot by those criminals. Athan Achonu, go and confirm from Innoson, paid hundreds of millions of naira to Innoson, Innoson is still alive, you people can still go and interview him, to repair nine armoured vehicles for the police. Five were supposed to be in Okigwe zone. Till today, we don’t know where those nine armoured cars are.

“If you go to Youtube, you’ll see Youtube record of members of the House of Assembly in Imo State using those APCs to carry ballot boxes. It’s there on Youtube, you can search it out. What Athan Achonu will do is very simple. Every local government area will have one humvy vehicle for the police. Police stations had been totally burnt in Imo State and Athan repaired most of those police stations.

“Then, there will be community vigilante. We’ll train those 50 youths per community – train them, equip them and arm them. They should guard their communities. When you have over 50,000 hectres of land, reclaimed from the bandits, and you have youths who are not only just farming, but who are trained to protect their communities, they’ll do the job.

“Then, we have to set up a security trust fund. Ndi-Imo are not scared. As at today, there are some communities in Imo State, where bandits – unknown gunmen, are ransacking and collecting levies from the communities. Basically, Athan Achonu will provide training, recruitment for people donated by the communities. Communities know those who are the terrible ones in their midst. And I tell you, in six months, they will flush them out.”

Opara-Ndudu, who dismissed the claim by the state governor, Hope Uzodimma that the carnage and other killings in the state were politically-motivated, blamed the governor for misplacing his priorities and failing to provide jobs for the teeming youth population in the state, questioning why nobody had been arrested and prosecuted fully in the courts if the insecurity in the state was all about politics.

Hear him: “The security problem has to do with objective conditions in the state. The young people are frustrated. The government is not making any investments in the areas that are required. We’re busy pursuing projects that are designs in deception. Look at the roads that are being done in Imo State, you know for you to deal with the problem of poverty and other economic challenges, you have to deal with the problem of infrastructure.

“In Imo State, the government has dedicated all of its time and half of its time to reconstructing federal roads without any attention – little or no attention paid to the rural areas. If you go to length and breadth of Imo State – Ngor Okpala, Ezinifte Mbaise, even in the governor’s local government – everywhere in Imo State, you find that the rural areas are looking desolate and abandoned.”

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Police find body of missing female student dumped in the bush, vow to get killers



Operatives of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), command, have vowed to fish out the killers of a university student, Blessing Karami, whose body was said to have been picked up from the bush days after she was declared missing on September 11.

The FCT police, which released the painful news on Thursday, said in a statement by its spokesman, Josephine Adeh that the remains were found in the woods in the Karimu area of the city.

The police spokesman acknowledged that her disappearance was reported to the police authorities last,  Thursday, September 14 added that 26-year-old Blessing, a student of the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN), was declared missing after leaving her place of work in Garki, Abuja.

She said in the statement: “The body of Blessing Karami Moses, a 26-year-old woman who had been missing since September 11, 2023, was tragically discovered in a wooded area in Karimo. Her disappearance was reported to the authorities on September 14, 2023,” the statement read.

She said Commissioner of Police, FCT, Haruna Garba, had directed that command should conduct a thorough and impartial investigation into the circumstances surrounding the incident, adding: “While we are working closely with the Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) to facilitate the respectful retrieval of the decomposed remains acknowledging the sensitive nature of this task, we will continue to provide updates to the public as our investigation progresses.”

Adeh, a Superintendent of Police (SP), also commiserated with Blessing’s family and loved ones over the incident.

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Ogun cult massacre: DSS raid home, pick up PDP lawmaker, five others



Damilare Bello Mohammed, a serving member of the Ogun State House of Assembly (OGHA), is currently telling operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS) his side of the story, after he was picked up over his alleged involvement in the rival secret cult clashes that occurred in Sagamu town.

Mohammed, recently elected on the platform of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) to represent Sagamu State Constituency 1, was picked up on Wednesday by the agency over the incident in which at least eight persons were killed last weekend during the violent clash in the town, alongside five other suspected cultists allegedly involved in the cult violence.

The five other suspects; Debbo Animashaun, Bamidele Saheed, Ismaila Onitire, Adewale Otesanya and Tobi Owoade, were arrested by the DSS operatives during a sting operation after a tip-off at the early hours of Thursday within the residence of the lawmaker.

Lekan Adeniran, spokesman to Dapo Abiodun, the Ogun State governor, announced the development in a statement on Wednesday, saying the secret police tracked the six suspected cultists to the official residence of the lawmaker.

Accusing the lawmaker of providing shelter to the cultists, Adeniran, said in the statement, that the suspects were presently undergoing interrogation in DSS custody after many dangerous weapons, including guns, were recovered from them.

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