The principal supporter of Boko Haram Arewa Consultative Forum expresses ‘serious concern’ over arrest of 486 northerners (described as suspected terrorists by the Army) in Abia

The Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) this morning expressed “serious concern” over Sunday’s arrest, by men of the Nigerian Army in Abia State, of 486 northerners described as suspected terrorists.The Defence Headquarters in Abuja late yesterday said that a Boko Haram kingpin who had been declared wanted had been found among the suspects.That notwithstanding, ACF in a statement issued in Kaduna by its National Publicity Secretary, Muhammad Ibrahim,

Wanted Boko Haram terrorists chief among 486 suspects held in Abia

The Defence Headquarters said yesterday that a wanted terror suspect was among the 486. It also said other security agencies and para-military organisations had joined the ongoing screening of the suspects. The Director of Defence Information, Gen. Chris Olukolade, in a statement last night in Abuja, said:“A terror kingpin on the list of wanted terrorists of security forces in Nigeria has been detected in the ongoing screening of the 486 suspects nabbed while travelling in over 33 Hiace Hummer buses at night along Enugu-Port Harcourt Expressway last Sunday.“So far, other security agencies including the para-military have joined “the screening exercise to ascertain the status of the remaining suspects.

Convention fall-out: Atiku urges Ikimi, Sheriff, Amaechi to remain in APC

Former Vice-President and chieftain of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, has appealed to the aggrieved members to remain loyal to the party “as there is reward for loyalty”.Top leaders of the party, including former Borno State governor, Modu Sheriff; Rivers State Governor, Rotimi Amaechi and Chief Tom Ikimi have expressed misgiving about the outcome of weekend’s convention, and threatened to quit the party.Atiku also said the emergence of the new Chief John Odigie-Oyegun-led National Executive Committee, NEC, was a product of transparency, democracy and compromise.

Clark disowns document on self-determination for South-South

Leader of the South- South delegates to the ongoing National Conference, Chief Edwin Clark, yesterday, dissociated the region  from a document insisting on self determination,total resource control  for the oil-rich area.He said the zone did not know the source of the document and it did not represent the stand of leaders and residents of the area.A 51-page magazine with a bold inscription ‘Niger Delta…On Resource Ownership We Stand’, was circulated among the delegates at the entrance of the hall of the conference shortly before the commencement of yesterday’s plenary.

Explosion hits Damaturu World Cup viewing

An explosion has hit northern Nigeria’s Yobe state at a venue televising a World Cup football match, residents and security officials say.The blast hit Damaturu town at about 20:00 local time (19:00 GMT), reports said.There were reports of casualties being brought into hospitals, but it is not clear if there were any deaths.Yobe is one of three areas under a state of emergency amid attacks by suspected Boko Haram militants.“There was an explosion outside a soccer viewing centre here in Damaturu at around 20:15,” Sanusi Ruf’ai, police commissioner for Yobe state, told AFP news agency.

National Conference wants Ajaokuta steel completed before 2015

National Conference Committee on Transportation yesterday advocated the urgent completion of the Ajaokuta Steel Company as a way of removing the nation’s economy from the woods.Presenting the report and recommendations of the committee at the plenary, chairman of the committee, Senator Musa Adede, said what is required to complete the project is less than N40 billion, emphasising that it is his committee’s recommendation that the project should be completed before the country will enter into another round of elections in 2015.He said: “The Ajaokuta- Warri rain line was awarded in 1986, with the total completion period of five years, but as I speak to you 14 years after, that project has not been completed