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‘They want war’ — Oshiomhole reacts to ‘attack’ on residence in Benin

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The Benin residence of Adams Oshiomhole, national chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), was reportedly attacked by hoodlums on Saturday evening. 

Speaking after the alleged incident, Oshiomhole said the attackers and their sponsors want a war.

He said those behind the attack are bent on creating a crisis in the state, but that they do not have the numbers to fight dirty.

He asked his supporters to be clam, and to not return ”madness for madness”.

“In a moment like this, it is not madness for madness because many of you I see here, in 2007, you were already strong. During my second term in 2012, you were already strong; Even in 2016, some of you were already deployed as party agents,” he said.

“These people want to create what has not happen for a very long time. They want war and want to cause crisis. They are boasting that they want to crush and crush people. Go and buy crushing machine.

“No man born of a woman can change what God has said. And if God says, no, who can say yes? My own is don’t let them drag you out of the bathroom like Igbo man says and be running after them like the town naked mad men because we are not mad.

“If it comes to the ruffle ruffle that he wants, they don’t have the number. You know that when you start to tell lies, you will have to lie many times to sustain one lie.

“We will not condescend to their level.  But, let me say this. It is clear, Nigeria is a free country. There is freedom of association. Thee is freedom of worship. There is freedom of religion. There is freedom of expression. So, nobody in Nigeria can harass you. Just be the good guys that you are.

“My weapon which is the truth, is more powerful than the weapon of the armed forces in the world. Have I threatened any of you? Have I ever sent any of you to prison? How many of you …have I ever said to any of you that if you do not follow me, I will send you to prison?

“…But, the tradition of Edo people is that if you do something and your father is not happy, he will call you home and say my son, don’t do this again.

“As a father or mother, maturity is the ability to change the habit that you are not happy about. There is no wisdom to do as if you are an angel who has never sinned? Those who want to cast the first stone, may God bless them.

Simon Egbebulam, spokesman of Oshiomhole, told TheCable that the APC national chairman was at a friend’s birthday party when thugs besieged his residence.

He said the thugs, allegedly sponsored by the state government, were repelled by security agents.

”Security operatives and youths of the APC in Edo state on Friday repelled attack by thugs suspected yo be loyal to the state government at the residence of the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole in Okorotun Street, Government Reservation Area, Benin City,” he said.

“Oshiomhole came for the purpose of a function that took place in Protea hotel which was his aim of coming to Benin City from Abuja.

“While he was away on the function, some thugs believed to be in the other camp, blocked the entrance to his residence, fanning the embers of war.

“Security men on ground dislodge the hoodlums from gaining entrance into the residence. Brave APC youths also resisted the thugs who took to their heel.”

The Edo state government has denied having knowledge of the attack.

“We have no knowledge of the attack. We have also reached out to the Police, and they affirmed that they do not know about such an attack,” it said in a statement issued by Crusoe Osagie, special adviser to the governor on media and communication strategy.

Oshiomhole and Godwin Obaseki, governor of the state, have been having a running battle spawned by political differences.

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Xenophobia: South African Police detain 180 foreign nationals

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180 foreign nationals have been detained by the South African police for storming the UN refugee agency in Pretoria where they staged a sit-in protest. 

The protesters whose protest centered on their demand to be relocated to another country after a spate of xenophobic violence in South Africa in September, stormed the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) on Thursday November 14 after they were informed of a court order giving them three days to vacate the site.

“One hundred and eighty two men and one woman were taken into custody by the police at different police stations,” said provincial police spokeswoman Mathapelo Peters in a statement.

AFP reported that Peters said the sit-in was cleared and hundreds of women and children were bussed to a repatriation centre on the outskirts of Johannesburg as “temporary accommodation”. 

The protesters who were held on trespassing charges and expected to appear before the Pretoria Magistrate Court on Monday November 18, reportedly threw rocks and other objects when being dispersed with water cannons by security operatives. 

“One hundred and eighty two men and one woman were taken into custody by the police at different police stations,” said provincial police spokeswoman Mathapelo Peters in a statement.

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Boat Conveying Journalists Covering Bayelsa Election Capsizes

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A boat conveying journalists across flooded parts of Sampou community in Kolokuma Opokuma Local Government Area of Bayelsa State on Saturday capsized and threw the four occupants into the water.

According to the News Agency of Nigeria, the boat was carrying four journalists covering the governorship elections, including its correspondent.

The journalists were returning from a polling station when the incident happened and left the victims submerged.

However, the timely intervention of sympathisers saved the journalists whose mobile phones, cameras and recorders were drenched.

Flood had submerged many parts of Amasoma, Yenagoa and parts of Sagbama, a development that displaced polling stations.

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Armed men invade INEC office in Kogi community, chase officials, observers into hiding

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The atmosphere was tense Saturday night at about 10 p.m. in Ugwolawo community, Ofu local government of Kogi State, as thugs who claimed to be from Zamfara State invaded the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) office.

Collation of results was ongoing when the armed men arrived.

For more than an hour, the armed men shot sporadically into the air and are believed to have engaged a police team that arrived later in a shootout.

When they shot sporadically, they shouted on top of their voice for residents of the area to remain indoors and not come out to continue the collation exercise at the INEC office.

Our reporter, among other observers who were caught up in the fracas, had to run into a house and lie down for over an hour.

Residents and election observers were still in hiding at the time of this report.

Efforts to contact the INEC spokesperson and the police spokesperson in Kogi State were unsuccessful as both did not respond to calls and text messages.

Premium Times earlier reported how thugs allegedly loyal to the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) invaded Dekina community in Dekina local government of Kogi State in an attempt to hijack results sheets for the Dekina Ward.

The PDP collation agent for the ward, Obaka James, said the results were already collated and being signed by agents, when gunshot sounds rented the air.

Mr Obaka said; “We know the attackers, they had already operated in the morning and their leader was arrested. But we don’t know how he was released again. Now you can see the problems he is causing. But they don’t know that I have collated result with me.”

He said across eight other local governments in the senatorial districts, collation had been done in most wards.”So, why is ours different? Every time, there must be crisis claiming lives in this place. Is election war?”

Earlier, at about 1:13 a.m. on Saturday, thugs had invaded the registration centre for ward 2 in the local government, which is located at Odu Ofomu community and attacked the electoral officers.

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