The Department of State Services has arrested Ahmed Salkida, a journalist, who was declared wanted by the Nigerian Army last month.
It was learnt that Salkida was arrested at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, on Monday afternoon shortly after his flight landed.
The suspect, who is based in Dubai, is one of the three persons declared wanted for their alleged link to Boko Haram.
Salkida, a female lawyer, Aisha Waliki; and Ahmed Bolori were declared wanted by the military after Boko Haram released a video showing some of the Chibok girls it abducted on April 14, 2014.
A security operative, who spoke to one of our correspondents on condition of anonymity on Monday, said, “When we declared him wanted, he said he was willing to return to Nigeria but only on the condition that we send him a flight ticket.
“His Nigerian passport had expired but the Federal Government instructed the Nigeria Immigration Service not to issue him a new passport because he could run away after getting the passport. So, he was given an Emergency Travel Certificate, which allows the holder to travel only to his country of citizenship.
“With nowhere to run to, he had no choice but to return. So, immediately he boarded the plane from Dubai, we started waiting for him at the airport.”
It was learnt that the suspect had been taken to the office of the DSS, where he would be debriefed.
It was unclear if he would be transferred to the Nigerian Army’s custody.
The Acting Director, Army Public Relations, Col. Sani Usman, told one of our correspondents that he had not got any information that the Directorate of Military Intelligence had arrested Salkida.
He however promised to call on the development whenever he got information on the issue.
Meanwhile, no fewer than 1,500 members of Boko Haram have surrendered to Nigerian troops in the troubled North-East.
Investigations revealed that some of the Boko Haram members surrendered to troops at Buni Yadi, Yobe State, last week while others surrendered at various battle fronts in Borno State.
It was learnt that those who surrendered to security forces recently were over 700, bringing the total number of those who had surrendered between April 2015 and August 2016 to 1,500.
The Acting Director, Defence Information, Brig. Gen. Rabe Abubakar, who confirmed the figure on Monday, had earlier said 800 of the insurgents surrendered to security forces in April 2016.
Abubakar said the 700 insurgents, who surrendered recently, were undergoing security profiling and documentation.
He said the military was encouraging the Boko Haram fighters to abandon their struggle and surrender to security forces.
Abubakar said, “In the North-East, the operation is going on well and so many Boko Haram fighters have been suffering.
“For now, over 1,500 have surrendered to troops. It used to be 800 but because of the increasing number of those who are surrendering, we have over 1,500.
“I believe so many of them will come out too and we are encouraging them to come out, they shouldn’t continue to suffer.
“We are encouraging those who are still hiding to come out and abandon their unholy struggle. They are undergoing proper security profiling and documentation.”
UK Government Has Approved Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine
The United Kingdom on Wednesday Approved Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine
British government on Wednesday became the first country to approve Pfizer and BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for use, according to the UK government.
The vaccine will be rolled out from next week and the first dose could be administered as early as December 7th, stated people familiar with the matter.
Last week, the UK government announced it had ordered 40 million doses of Pfizer and BioNTech COVID-19 and appointed Nadhim Zahawi, the current junior business minister, as the minister responsible for the deployment of the vaccines.
British government on Wednesday morning said, “The Government has today accepted the recommendation from the independent Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) to approve Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine for use”
“The vaccine will be made available across the UK from next week.”
Matt Hancock, Health Secretary, revealed that the programme would commence early next week.
“It is very good news,” Hancock said.
Zabarmari Massacre: Buhari to Provide More Resources for the Nigerian Military
President Muhammadu Buhari has promised to provide more resources to the military in the aftermath of the Zabarmari massacre.
On Saturday, Boko Haram killed 43 people with around 70 people still missing in Zabarmari, a village in Borno State.
Reacting to the massacre, Buhari, through his official Twitter handle @MBuhari said “Nothing is more important than ensuring the security of lives and property of Nigerians. Everything is secondary when security is at stake. I will ensure that more resources are made available to the military and other security agencies to prosecute the war against terrorism.
“As we mourn all the lives lost in Zabarmari, the Armed Forces have been given the marching order to take the fight to the insurgents, not on a one-off, but on a continuous basis, until we root out the terrorists.
“We will intensify our cooperation with neighbouring countries on bilateral and multilateral levels, to ensure that there is no hiding place for the terrorists.
“As I noted earlier, the massacre by Boko Haram in Zabarmari is nothing short of senseless, barbaric, gruesome and cowardly. It reinforces our resolve to root out all forms of insurgency and insecurity not just in Borno but everywhere across Nigeria.”
Boko Haram Kills Rice Farmers in Borno State, Northeast Nigeria
Rice farmers were killed on Saturday morning in the Northeast Nigeria by suspected Islamist militants, Boko Haram, according to a Reuters Report.
The report also noted that 30 of the people killed were beheaded while over a dozen others were still missing.
However, resident of the Zambarmari Village where the attacks took place said a total of 70 people were feared dead.
Another resident and Amnesty International were quoted as saying at least 10 women were among those missing.
In another statement by Edward Kallon, the United Nations’ humanitarian coordinator in Nigeria, it was armed men on motorcycles that led the brutal attack on civilians harvesting their fields.
“Armed men on motorcycles led a brutal attack on civilian men and women who were harvesting their fields,” Edward Kallon stated.
“At least 110 civilians were ruthlessly killed and many others were wounded in this attack,” he added, noting that several women are believed to have been kidnapped.
“The incident is the most violent direct attack against innocent civilians this year. I call for the perpetrators of this heinous and senseless act to be brought to justice,” Kallon said.
On Sunday, Governor Babaganan Umara Zulum of Borno State, who was at the burial told journalists that at least 70 farmers were killed on Saturday.
The Governor, therefore, called on the Federal Government to recruit more Civilian Joint Task Force members, Soldiers and civil defence fighters to protect farmers in the region.
He added that people are facing desperate choices.
“In one side, they stay at home they may be killed by hunger and starvation, on the other, they go out to their farmlands and risk getting killed by the insurgents,” he said.
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