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I won’t revert to old national anthem, Oby Ezekwesili fumes

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The former Minister of Education, Mrs Obiageli Ezekwesili, has said that she would not revert to the old national anthem, newly signed by President Bola Tinubu as the country’s new anthem.

Ezekwesili made this disclosure in a post on her X handle on Wednesday.

According to her, no one can suppress her right to dissent from what she described as an “obnoxious law” repugnant to all who are of good conscience in Nigeria.

The ex-minister said, “Let it be known to all and sundry that I, Obiageli “Oby” Ezekwesili, will, whenever asked to sing the Nigerian National Anthem, sing:

“1. Arise, O compatriots, Nigeria’s call obey

“To serve our fatherland

“With love and strength and faith

“The labour of our heroes past

“Shall never be in vain

“To serve with heart and might

“One nation bound in freedom, peace and unity.”

She added, “2. Oh God of creation, direct our noble cause

“Guide our leader’s right

“Help our youth the truth to know

“In love and honesty to grow

“And living just and true

“Great lofty heights attain

“To build a nation where peace and justice reign.

We had earlier reported that the Senate and the House of Representatives rapidly passed the National Anthem Bill 2024, seeking to reinstate the old anthem, “Nigeria, We Hail Thee.”

Leading the debate in the lower chamber on the general principles of the bill, the sponsor of the proposed law, Julius Ihonvbere, anchored his argument on the need for patriotism and nationalism.

The 10th Senate passed the bill after reviewing a report by Tahir Monguno, the lawmaker representing Borno North Senatorial District and chair of the Judiciary Committee.

But many Nigerians on social media questioned the relevance of the move, wondering if it would help salvage the nation’s economy, being Nigeria’s biggest challenge at the moment.

Similarly, Ahmad Satomi, a lawmaker representing Jere Federal Constituency, Borno State, challenged the Green Chamber last week regarding the bill.

Satomi questioned the bill’s relevance to Nigeria’s pressing issues, sparking widespread discussion and debate.

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Cholera patients in Eti-Osa LGA took unregistered tiger nut drink, says Lagos state government

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The Lagos state government says patients who contracted cholera in Eti-Osa LGA had an unregistered tiger nut drink.

Eti-Osa is the epicentre of the latest cholera outbreak in Lagos, Nigeria’s most populous city and commercial capital.

As of June 21, Lagos had recorded 24 deaths and 35 confirmed cholera cases.

Speaking in an interview with Punch on Saturday, Kemi Ogunyemi, special adviser to the Lagos state governor on health, said when the government noticed a spike in suspected cholera cases in Eti-Osa LGA, it visited the neighbourhood for a firsthand assessment.

Ogunyemi said a survey showed that people who visited hospitals all said they had consumed a particular tiger nut drink.

She said officials were then dispatched to find the drink in other to test samples for cholera.

“We found empty bottles with a name on them, but we discovered that it wasn’t even registered with the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), the regulatory body that ensures the safety of consumables,” she said.

“There was a phone number and a name on the bottle, and we started tracing. We did contact tracing, similar to what we did with COVID-19.

“We combed the area to ask people where they got the drinks from. We couldn’t find any full bottles. We only found empty ones, which were of no use because we could not test them. The phone number on the bottle was not reachable.

“Cholera is also water-borne, so we took samples of the water to test it. The bottom line is that we took stool samples because different things cause diarrhoea.

“It could be anything else. We found out that it was confirmed cholera, specifically Vibrio cholera subtype 01, which is the most infectious and aggressive type.

“There are different types, but we identified this one. In Lagos Island, Eti-osa, and Kosofe, we recorded the highest number of cases that went to the hospital.

“I’m not talking about reported cases. These are the people who did the right thing by going to the hospital to complain of symptoms, and they were treated. That’s when we were alerted.”

Ogunyemi added that the government has ramped up sensitisation and awareness to ensure that the outbreak does not morph into an epidemic.

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Immigration service warns Nigerians against fake employment letters

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The Nigerian Immigration Service has raised the alarm over fake and invalid employment letters in circulation purportedly issued by the service.

The NIS made this known in a statement by its Public Relations Officer (SPRO), Mr Kenneth Udo, in Abuja.

Udo warned desperate job seekers to exercise caution so as not to fall victim to the fraudsters.

According to him, the fraudulent letters falsely claim that the recipients have been offered employment with the NIS.

He said “The Service categorically denies any involvement in this fraudulent scheme and refutes the misinformation being spread on social media platforms regarding an ongoing recruitment/replacement exercise.

“The NIS shall continue to ensure that any unscrupulous elements engaging in this criminality will be made to face the wrath of the law.

“The public is hereby advised to report these scammers to the nearest NIS office or law enforcement agencies.

“The Nigeria Immigration Service recruitment exercise is exclusively advertised through reputable national dailies, television broadcasts, and our official website, http://www.immigration.gov.ng.

Udo said that the Service was resolutely committed to safeguarding the interest of Nigerians and upholding the integrity of its recruitment processes.

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Court orders final forfeiture of N12bn properties linked to Emefiele

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A federal high court in Lagos has ordered the final forfeiture of properties worth N12.18 billion.

The properties were linked to Godwin Emefiele, a former governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

The court ordered the final forfeiture of the properties after the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) filed a motion to that effect.

Chukwujekwu Aneke, the judge, had ordered an interim forfeiture of the properties on June 5.

The properties are located in upmarket areas of the federal capital territory (FCT).

Aneke ordered the anti-graft agency to publish the order in a national newspaper, for any interested party to show cause why the final order of forfeiture should not be made.

The properties were listed by the EFCC in two schedules — A and B.

The judge said: “Having carefully considered the application and submission of counsel, it is hereby ordered as follows: that a final forfeiture order of this honorable court is hereby made forfeiting to the Federal Government of Nigeria, properties contained in Schedule A herein which were traced and reasonably suspected to have been acquired with proceeds of unlawful activities.

“That a final forfeiture order of this Honourable Court is hereby made forfeiting to the Federal Government of Nigeria, properties contained in Schedule B herein which properties were traced to have been acquired with proceeds of unlawful activities.”

Emefiele is facing multiple counts of fraud and abuse of office.

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Bodex F. Hungbo, SPMIIM is a multiple award-winning Nigerian Digital Media Practitioner, Digital Strategist, PR consultant, Brand and Event Expert, Tv Presenter, Tier-A Blogger/Influencer, and a top cobbler in Nigeria.

She has widespread experiences across different professions and skills, which includes experiences in; Marketing, Media, Broadcasting, Brand and Event Management, Administration and Management with prior stints at MTN, NAPIMS-NNPC, GLOBAL FLEET OIL AND GAS, LTV, Silverbird and a host of others

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