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Rivers Records 26 More Cases Of COVID-19, Total Infections Now 79

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Rivers has recorded 26 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the total infectious cases in the state to 79.

The figure is the highest number of confirmed cases in a single day since the state recorded its first index positive case on March 27.

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) released the latest figures in its verified Twitter page on Wednesday night.

According to NCDC, the country recorded 284 new cases of the novel Coronavirus bringing the total confirmed cases to 6,677 as at 11:20 p.m on May 20.

It said that 12 states and the FCT recorded the new cases with Lagos accounting for 199 cases and Rivers 26.

A further breakdown of the figure showed that Oyo had 19 cases, the FCT and Borno had eight each, Plateau, seven, Jigawa six while Kano recorded five new cases.

Others are, Abia with two cases while Ekiti, Delta, Kwara and Taraba States recorded one case each.

NCDC said that of the 6,677 confirmed cases in the country, 1,840 have been discharged with 200 death.

(NAN)

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Alleged Exam Malpractices: FG Withdraws Charges Against Senator Ademola Adeleke

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The Federal government has withdrawn the examination malpractice charges filed against the former governorship candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in Osun State, Senator Ademola Adeleke.

Recall that during the heat of the Osun state governorship election campaign in 2018, Adeleke and one of his relatives, Sikiru Adeleke, were accused of engaging in examination malpractice.

Ademola and Sikiru were accused of impersonation, registering as students of Ojo-Aro Community Grammar School, Ojo-Aro, Osun State to enable them to sit for the National Examinations Council (NECO) examination of June/July 2017.

They were later arraigned before a Federal High Court in Abuja in October 2018 along with Alhaji Aregbesola Mufutau (the school principal), Gbadamosi Thomas Ojo (registrar) and Dare Samuel Olutope, a teacher in the school. The other three defendants were accused of aiding the commission of the alleged offence.

At the resumed hearing of the case on Thursday, May 28, the prosecution lawyer, Simon Lough said the state has amended the charge to exclude Adeleke, in view of his continued absence in court. Adeleke has failed to attend court since last year when he was granted permission, by the trial judge, Justice Inyang Ekwo, to travel to the United States on medical grounds.

The Nation reports that lawyers to the defendants, led by Alex Izinyon (SAN) did not object to the prosecution’s decision to amend its charge. They however disagreed with the prosecution on the appropriate order to be made; whether Adeleke should be simply discharged, based on the withdrawal of the charge against him, or whether he should be discharged and acquitted.

Justice Ekwo has fixed ruling on the issue for today Friday, May 29.

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Boko Haram Member Voluntarily Surrenders To Nigerian Military [PHOTO]

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A member of the dreaded Boko Haram sect, Yahaya Adamu aka Saad Karami, has voluntarily surrendered to the Nigerian Army.

A statement released by the Defence Headquarters today May 29, says Yahaya voluntarily surrendered to troops of 242 Battalion in Monguno on May 24. He is said to have led the last attack on troops in Baga town and equally participated in attacks on Metele, Mairari, Bindiram, Kangarwa and Shetimari (Niger Republic).

He is currently in the custody of the military.

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Akpabio Orders Closure Of NDDC As Director Dies

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Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio has directed immediate closure of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC’s) Headquarters in Port Harcourt, Rivers State due to suspected outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic.

In a statement yesterday, its Director of Press, Deworitshe Patricia, Akpabio advised all employees of the commission with symptoms of the disease not to panic, but report to the nearest Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) in Port Harcourt for evaluation and treatment.

Specifically, the commission directed all members of staff to self-isolate for two weeks, after the death of acting executive director of finance and administration, Ibanga Bassey Etang.

Etang joined the interventionist agency on October 29, 2019 as Acting Executive Director, Finance and Administration of the Interim Management Committee (IMC).

The Guardian learnt that Etang was last seen in the office about two weeks ago before he became sick and died at the Rivers State University Teaching Hospital (RSUTH), Port Harcourt.

NDDC employees, who had resumed work yesterday became apprehensive and quickly dispersed when they heard that officials of the NCDC were scheduled to visit the agency.

Management issued a memo ordering immediate closure of the commission’s headquarters for two weeks, while members of staff were enjoined to self- isolate for two weeks and await further management’s directives.

It also requested the Director of Administration to oversee the fumigation and decontamination of the offices and premises during the two weeks shutdown, just as directive that employees should embark on self- isolation has created apprehension among the workers.

Besides, the Niger Delta Rights Advocates (NDRA) described the closure of the NDDC as a plot to divert attention from the probe of N40b allegedly spent within three months by the IMC.

NDRA spokesperson, Darlington Nwauju, said the group was alarmed that after the IMC accused chairmen, Senate and House of Representatives committees on the Niger Delta inserted projects into the NDDC’s 2019 budget.

Meanwhile, Chairman of Asari Toru Council Area of Rivers State, Princewill Odiari, may have died from coronavirus.

It was learnt that Odiari, an ally of Governor Nyesom Wike, died at the Rivers State University Teaching Hospital in Port Harcourt.

An associate of the late Odiari who pleaded anonymity explained that he recently took ill and had been undergoing treatment for malaria and typhoid in Buguma, headquarters of the Council Area.

He said as at Wednesday, Odiari’s health deteriorated and he was rushed to the Rivers State University Teaching Hospital where he died yesterday.

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