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Traditional ruler tasks politicians on peaceful governorship polls



The Oku Ibom Ibibio, Nteyen Solomon Etuk, has urged politicians in Akwa Ibom and across the country not to see the March 11 governorship and state Assembly elections as a do-or-die affair.

Etuk made the appeal in a statement issued by the royal father in Uyo on Friday.

He urged political parties, candidates and supporters to direct their energies in canvassing for votes and avoid violence during the polls.

Etuk, who is also the Chairman, Akwa Ibom Traditional Rulers Council, enjoined residents of the state to avoid rancour before, during or after the elections.

“Election is a democratic contest and not a war. Nobody should beat war drums. Candidates, political parties and supporters should cultivate the spirit of sportsmanship and go into the contest with open minds. Winners should be magnanimous in victory and losers should be gallant in defeat.


“Pre-determined mindset of ‘I must win at all cost’ is against sound democratic values. Let us all give people the opportunity to vote and learn to respect the outcome of the polls.

“Akwa Ibom State is greater than any one person or group of persons. We have enjoyed peace and unity under Gov. Udom Emmanuel since 2015. Let this peace and unity continue,” Etuk said.

The traditional ruler said the forebears and past leaders laboured for the creation of the state and today’s politicians must protect and not destroy it.

“As we know, peace and tranquillity are necessary for society to witness progress and general development. We need a peaceful state.

“Our forebears and past leaders laboured in their agitation for the creation of this state. They kept laudable antecedents and we have to sustain their legacies.


“Let us continue to nourish Akwa Ibom State towards greater heights, rather than destroy ourselves and slow down the pace of development. I call on all sons and daughters, including residents, to give peace a chance.

“Power comes from the Almighty God and He gives it to whosoever He wants. I also call on security agencies to maintain peace throughout the period.

“As Traditional Rulers, we will continue to cooperate with security agencies for the maintenance of peace and security in our domains,” he said.

He warned youths to avoid being used for thuggery and shedding of blood by candidates or political parties, stating that each life is more precious than the ambition of any individual.

Etuk also urged all citizens, especially politicians and their supporters, to eschew violence and hatred against other contestants.


He said: “Let us cooperate with the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to conduct free, fair and transparent polls,” Oku Ibom Ibibio cautioned.

Besides, the traditional ruler called on all successful candidates to know that the primary purpose of their election is service to the people, advising them to work hard and fulfil their campaign promises to the people.

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NCDC registers 1,968 Lassa fever cases in 28 states



The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (NCDC), has registered 1,068 Lassa fever infections across 112 local government areas in 28 states of the federation.

The NCDC said this via its official website on Tuesday in its Lassa Fever Situation Report for Week 37 (Sep. 11 -17, 2023).

The centre indicated that 75 per cent of the cases were detected in Ondo, Edo, and Bauchi States.

Lassa fever is a viral hemorrhagic fever caused by the Lassa virus. It is primarily found in West Africa, particularly in Sierra Leone, Liberia, Guinea and Nigeria.

The virus is transmitted to humans through contact with the urine or feces of infected rodents, specifically the multimammate rat.


According to the NCDC, there are currently 7,352 individuals with suspected cases and the infection has resulted in the unfortunate loss of at least 181 lives in the country.

The centre said that the case-fatality ratio of the infection stood at 16.9 per cent.

“Cumulatively from week 1 to week 37, 2023, 181 deaths have been reported with a case fatality rate of 16.9 per cent which is lower than the CFR for the same period in 2022 (19.1 per cent).

“In total for 2023, 28 States have recorded at least one confirmed case across 112 local government areas.

“Seventy-five per cent of all confirmed Lassa fever cases were reported from these three states (Ondo, Edo, and Bauchi) while 25 per cent were reported from 25 states with confirmed Lassa fever cases.


“Of the 75 per cent confirmed cases, Ondo reported 35 per cent, Edo 29 per cent, and Bauchi 11 per cent.

“The predominant age group affected is 21-30 years (Range: 1 to 93 years, Median Age: 32 years).

“The male-to-female ratio for confirmed cases is 1:0.9. The number of suspected cases increased compared to that reported for the same period in 2022,” it said.

It is regretted that in 2023 Lassa fever infected 49 healthcare workers across the country.

The agency said that the National Lassa Fever Multi-partner, Multi-sectoral Emergency Operations Centre had been activated to coordinate the response activities at all levels.


It added that prevention of Lassa fever involves avoiding contact with rodents and their droppings, practising good personal hygiene and taking precautions when caring for infected individuals.

The NCDC said that early diagnosis and prompt medical care are crucial in managing the disease and preventing complications.

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NLC, TUC suspend planned strike for 30 days




Organised labour unions have suspended their planned nationwide indefinite strike action for the next one month.

This was contained in a memorandum of understanding signed Monday by the NLC President, Joe Ajaero, and General Secretary, Emmanuel Ugboaja; as well as the TUC President, Festus Osifo, and Secretary General, Nuhu Toro.

The three-page document was also signed by the Minister of Labour and Employment, Simon Lalong; Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Dr Nkeiruka Onyejeocha; and Minister of Information and National Orientation, Mohammed Idris.

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