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Lack of trust tearing up Nigeria, says Edwin Clark

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Elder statesman and former Federal Commissioner for Information, Edwin Clark has called on leaders in the country to devote more efforts to the promotion of peace, saying lack of trust is breaking up the country by the day.

Clark stated this on Thursday at his private residence in the Asokoro District of Abuja at an event marking his 96th birthday anniversary.

The event was attended by the Bayelsa State Governor, Duoye Diri, former Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Power, Godknows Igali, ex-Edo State Governor, Oserheimen Osunbor, All Progressives Congress chieftain, Cairo Ojougboh, saw Clark in his elements, renewing his commitment to speak truth to power at all times.

The Ijaw leader told guests gathered to honour him that he stopped celebrating his birthday anniversaries when schoolgirls in Chibok, Borno State were kidnapped in 2014.

On April 14, 2014, over 200 students of Government Girls Secondary School, Chibok, were abducted by gunmen suspected to be members of the Boko Haram sect, from their hostels; a tragedy that sparked international condemnation with calls for the government of President Goodluck Jonathan to swing into action and rescue them alive.

“I will always speak of what I know in defence of Nigeria. We cannot be one country by word of mouth. We must love and trust ourselves. It is a lack of trust that is breaking Nigeria today, Nigeria is divided but we must speak our minds. I am a Nigerian, but I won’t keep quiet when Nigerians are suffering. If Nigeria does not stand properly, there will be no unity, there will be no peace.

“I have worked for Nigeria for over 70 years, from the age of 25 or thereabout. I have served this country in various capacities. I must have offended many people, but I will always speak on any issue concerning Nigeria.

“I am not celebrating. I stopped celebrating my birthdays since the Chibok school girls were abducted in Borno State. It was very painful. Today, I am not celebrating, I am thanking God. I am not celebrating because I lost two younger brothers in the past. On October 13, 2020, I lost my younger brother, Prof John Pepper-Clark. In July last year, I lost my brother, Ambassador Blessing Clark who was Nigerian Permanent Secretary, Ministry of External Affairs. So, I no longer celebrate my birthdays,” he said.

The elder statesman who unveiled his memoir titled, “Brutally Frank,” at the event expressed his readiness to face litigations because of “What I wrote in this book.”

 

He continued, “This is a book, my memoirs that I have written. It contains everything and I titled it, ‘Brutally Frank.” I know some people would like to take me to court but I am waiting for them. I have spoken the truth and you can’t kill the truth. The foreword to the book was written by former Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon.

In his goodwill message, Gov Diri saluted the courage of the nonagenarian for his deep sense of history, stressing that even at his (Douye’s) age, he could not boast of Clark’s athletic mind especially when dealing with datelines of important events.

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Fagbemi warns against obstructing EFCC from performing its lawful duty

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The Minister of Justice, Lateef Fagbemi, SAN has warned against obstructing the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) from carrying out its lawful duty .

Fagbemi’s warning is contained in a statement in Abuja.

“This is a matter of very grave concern, it is now beyond doubt that the EFCC is given power by the law to invite any person of interest to interact with them in the course of their investigations into any matter, regardless of status.

“Therefore, the least that we can all do when invited, is not to put any obstruction in the way of EFCC, but to honourably answer their invitation.

“A situation where public officials who are themselves subject of protection by law enforcement agents will set up a stratagem of obstruction to the civil and commendable efforts of the EFCC to perform its duty is to say the least, insufferably disquieting’’.

He added that running away from the law will not resolve issues at stake but only exacerbate them.

“Nigeria has a vibrant judicial system that is capable of protecting everyone who follows the rule of law in seeking protection.

“I therefore encourage anyone who has been invited by the EFCC or any other agency to immediately toe the path of decency and civility by honouring such invitation instead of embarking on a temporising self-help and escapism.

 

“This can only put our country in bad light before the rest of the world’’.

He said institutions of state should be allowed to function effectively and efficiently.

“I stand for the rule of law and will promptly call EFCC, and indeed any other agency to order when there is an indication of any transgressions of the fundamental rights of any Nigerian by any of the agencies’’.

NAN reports that the EFCC had on Wednesday warned members of the public that it was a criminal offence to obstruct officers of the Commission from carrying out their lawful duties.

Section 38(2)(a(b) of the EFCC Establishment Act makes it an offence to prevent officers of the Commission from carrying out their lawful duties. Culprits risk a jail term of not less than five years.

The warning , the EFCC said, became necessary against the background of the increasing tendency by persons and groups under investigation by the Commission to take the laws into their hands by recruiting thugs to obstruct lawful operations of the EFCC.

On several occasions, the anti graft agency said, operatives of the Commission have had to exercise utmost restraint in the face of such provocation to avoid a breakdown of law and order.

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Unknown Gunmen Abduct Channelstv Reporter In Port-harcourt

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Some unknown gunmen have kidnapped Joshua Rogers, the ChannelsTV reporter in Port-Harcourt, the Rivers State capital.

Politics Nigeria learnt that Rogers was picked up close to his residence at Rumuosi in Port Harcourt and to an unknown destination by the gunmen around 9pm on Thursday, April 11.

The reporter was driving his official ChannelsTV branded car when the hoodlums accosted, pointed a gun at him and took him away in the same vehicle.

 

Rogers was said to be returning from his official assignment in Government House after a trip to Andoni for a government event when the incident happened.

Already, the gunmen were said to have contacted his wife and demanded a N30million ransom for bis release.

His cameraman confirmed the incident and appealed to his abductors to set him free unconditionally.

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