This morning, two suspected human traffickers were apprehended for trafficking some Nigerians to Libya with the promise of taking them to Europe.
The suspects (named withheld) were apprehended after they were identified by their victims during the profiling of 164 Nigerians who voluntarily returned from the volatile North African country.
Ibrahim Farinloye, a spokesperson for the National Emergency Management Agency, South West Zone, confirmed the development to newsmen in Lagos saying the suspected traffickers have been handed over to officials of the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons for further investigation.
According to him, the two men were among the new batch of 164 returnees who arrived the Cargo Wing of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos about 12.15am on Friday. He said the Nigerians were brought by the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) and the European Union (EU) under the Assisted Voluntary Returnees Programme that would end in April 2020.
Farinloye said, “The returnees were brought onboard a chartered Al Burag Airline Boeing 737-800 aircraft with registration number 5A-DMG. Upon profiling, the returnees consisted of 71 female adults, 17 female children and six female infants.
There were also 55 male adults 13 male children and two male infants. Among them were three returnees with medical cases and a pregnant woman who was in labour upon arrival in Nigeria.”
Court Convicts Former NIMASA DG, Obi over N136million Fraud
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Thursday, May 23, 2019, secured the conviction of a former acting Director-General, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, Callistus Obi. Also convicted was Alu Dimas, an aide to Patrick Akpobolokemi, a former Director-General of NIMASA. They were convicted by Justice Mojisola Olatoregun of the Federal High Court sitting in Ikoyi.
The duo were arraigned alongside two companies, Grand Pact Limited and Global Sea Investment, on April 12, 2016 on an eight-count charge bordering on conspiracy, conversion, and money laundering to the tune of N136million (One Hundred and Thirty Six Million Naira).
The prosecution proved that the convicts converted the sum of money, N136million, belonging to the Agency to their personal use on August 5, 2014.
One of the counts reads: “That you, Callistus Nwabueze Obi and Dismas Alu Adoon, on or about the 5th day of August 2014, in Lagos within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, did conspire amongst yourselves to commit an offence to wit: Conversion of the sums of N111, 000, 000.00 (One Hundred and Eleven Million naira) property of NIMASA, knowing that the said sums were proceeds of stealing, and thereby commited an offence.”
The defendants pleaded not guilty to the charge preferred against them, thereby leading to their trial.
In the cause of the trial, the prosecution called eight witnesses and tendered several documents, which were admitted in evidence by the court.
At the resumed hearing today, Justice Olatoregun discharged and acquitted the defendants of the charge of conspiracy preferred against them.
The Judge, however, convicted them of conversion and money laundering.
The Judge said: “The prosecution has proved the charges preferred against you beyond reasonable doubt with evident conversion and money laundering of N136million”.
Justice Olatoregun, however, deferred sentencing to May 28, 2019 and ordered that the convicts be remanded in prison custody.
Zenith Bank Emerges First Nigerian Bank To Repeatedly Audit Its Carbon Emissions
Zenith Bank Plc was presented with a Certificate for Greenhouse Gas Auditing by V4 Advisors after a successful completion of the Bank’s Greenhouse Gas Audit for the 2018 Financial Year. The presentation of the certificate and the report of the Auditors was done by V4 Advisors at the Zenith Bank Head Office on May 21, 2019.
The Executive Director, Dr. Temitope Fasoranti, who received the certificate on behalf of the Bank said the Bank started this effort with the 2016 Financial Year and has carried out three greenhouse gas audits to date. He explained that the Bank understands the relationship between greenhouse gas emission and climate change and appreciates the role it is expected to play towards combating the menace of climate change.
Also speaking on the milestone, the Country Manager, Lynsey Elston highlighted that Zenith Bank is the first Nigerian bank to consecutively report the carbon emissions of their Head Office in Lagos using a certified tool which is built on the internationally recognized “GHG Protocol”.
She commended the bank for proving its commitment to United Nations Global Compact (UNGC) Goal 13, Climate Action, in addition to complying with Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Standards.” In response to her, the Executive Director said the initiative has significantly helped the bank reduce its overall carbon footprints and drive energy efficiency.
V4 Advisors is a UAE-based provider of advisory and consulting solutions on climate change and greenhouse gas emissions. The firm’s calculation and reporting tool has been reviewed by the World Resources Institute (WRI) for conformance with the GHG Protocol Corporate Standard.
Senate okays bill seeking to upgrade Yabatech to varsity status
The Senate, on Thursday, passed the City University of Technology (Est, etc) Yaba Bill, 2018 for second reading.
The decision followed a motion by Sen. Gbenga Ashafa (APC-Lagos) at the plenary presided over by Senate President, Bukola Saraki in Abuja.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the bill essentially sought to transform the Yaba College Technology (YabaTech) in Lagos State, to the City University of Technology Yaba.
Leading the debate, Ashafa, who represents Lagos East Senatorial District, argued that if the bill is considered, it would enhance the capability of the institution to achieve its objectives.
”Nigeria’s steady march towards education for all in the shortest possible time has taken a giant leap with the introduction of this bill.
”I am personally excited by the prospect of transforming this polytechnic to a university of technology because it will motivate both students and academic staff.
”It will also upgrade the facilities and enhance it capability to achieve its objectives.
”Similarly, the new university of technology will encourage the advancement of learning and hold out to all persons without distinction of race, creed, sex or political conviction the opportunity of acquiring a higher and liberal education,” he said.
Citing instances, the lawmaker noted that in similar circumstances in the United Kingdom, most of the polytechnics were upgraded to universities.
”If Nigeria has plan to become one of the world’s leading economies as currently being pursued by government, we must be ready to adjust and position our educational institutions so that its products are geared for the technological challenges inherent in such projections,” he said.
According to him, the attainment of university status would definitely enhance the operations of the Yaba Polytechnic and clarify its mission and vision.
Lawmakers, who contributed to the motion, also supported it.
When the motion was put on a voice vote, it was unanimously adopted by the legislators.
Saraki, therefore, referred the bill to Senate Committee on Tertiary Institutions and TETFUND for further legislative action and report back within a week.
Similarly, the Senate also passed a Bill for the Establishment of Federal Polytechnic Iwerekun, Ibeju-Lekki Lagos, sponsored by Ashafa for second reading.
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