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Niger Delta Agitators Suspend Planned Attacks on Oil Installations

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  • Niger Delta Agitators Suspend Planned Attacks on Oil Installations

Niger Delta agitators yesterday formally withdrew the quit notice it handed down to northerners and Yoruba to leave the oil rich region.

In a statement made available to The Guardian, the group also resolved to suspend the planned attacks on oil installations in the region and also set aside their intention to declare the republic of Niger Delta on October 1.

They also made peace with the Pan Niger Delta Forum (PANDEF), with whom they had disagreed over who negotiates with the Federal Government.

The coalition of the agitators, led by General John Duku, said that the quit notice withdrawal, amongst other threats, was sequel to the intervention of PANDEF and Nigeria Ethnic Nationality Youth Leaders Forum (NENYLF) led by its Acting National Chairman, Comrade Imoh Okoko.

Nevertheless, they demanded the removal of the current Group Managing Director (GMD), of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mr. Maikanti Baru from office.

Among signatories to the statement were General John Duku (Niger Delta Watchdogs and Convener, Coalition of Niger Delta Agitators); General Ekpo Ekpo (Niger Delta Volunteers); General Osarolor Nedam (Niger Delta Warriors); Major-Gen. Henry Okon Etete (Niger Delta Peoples Fighters); Major-Gen. Asukwo Henshaw; (Bakassi Freedom Fighters) and Major-Gen. Ibinabo Horsfall (Niger Delta Movement for Justice).

The statement reads inter alia: “After series of meetings yesterday between the high command of the Coalition of Niger Delta Agitators and the leadership of the Nigeria Ethnic Nationality Youth Leaders Forum (NENYLF), coupled with the intervention of Pan Niger Delta Forum (PANDEF), Coalition of Niger Delta Agitators, which comprises over 250 groups with their leaders and representatives present at yesterday’s meeting officially withdraw our quit notice issued to the Northerners and Yoruba living in Niger Delta region.’’

Meanwhile, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) said yesterday that it had successfully carried out an evaluation of soil sampling in two oil-spill impacted communities in Imo State.

The programme was conducted under an on-going community based intervention project, which seeks to cleanup and remediate hydrocarbon-impacted farmlands in the communities through sustainable bio-remedial and agro-forestry programmes.

A statement by the Coordinator of the UNDP/FYD bio-remediation programme, Ugo Amadioha, in Abuja, said that the soil sampling and analysis was conducted at Ogada and Etekwuru in Egbema Local Council of Imo State, as part of FYD’s community empowerment project.

Also, suspected illegal crude oil bunkerers have shot two soldiers in Rivers State.

The spokesman of 6 Division, Nigerian Army, Port Harcourt, Col. Aminu Iliyasu, disclosed yesterday that troops of 29 Battalion Tactical Headquarters, Bille, Rivers State encountered armed illegal bunkerers at Feropkakama, a notorious bunkering site, who on sighting troops opened fire.

“The gallant troops repelled the attack and pursued the scampering criminals deep into the creeks with many of them sustaining gun shot wounds.‘’

Unfortunately, two brave soldiers were wounded in action, one of them critically but both are responding positively to treatment at a military facility in Port Harcourt” he said.

Iliyasu also explained that in a follow-up operation, four empty AK 47 magazines, eight pumping machines and several other illegal bunkering tools while a massive manhunt in conjunction with other sister security agencies is under way to track down and arrest the fleeing criminals in order to bring them to justice.

He also disclosed that troops on routine anti-bunkering patrol to Elechi and Abonnema Wharf in Port Harcourt discovered and destroyed several quantities of suspected illegally refined oil.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

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COVID-19 Vaccine: African Export-Import Bank (Afrexim) to Purchase 270 Million Doses for Nigeria, Other African Nations

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African Export-Import Bank (Afrexim) Approves $2 Billion for the Purchase of 270 million Doses for African Nations

African Export-Import Bank (Afrexim) said it has approved $2 billion for the purchase of 270 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines for African nations, including Nigeria.

Prof. Benedict Oramah, the President of the Bank, disclosed this at a virtual Africa Soft Power Series held on Tuesday.

He, however, stated that the lender is looking to raise more funds for the COVID-19 vaccines’ acquisition.

He said: “The African Union knows that unless you put the virus away, your economy can’t come back. If Africa didn’t do anything, it would become a COVID-19 continent when other parts of the world have already moved on.
“Recall that it took seven years during the heat of HIV for them to come to Africa after 12 million people had died.

“With the assistance of the AU, we were able to get 270 million vaccines and financing need of about $2 billion. Afreximbank then went ahead to secure the $2 billion. But that money for the 270 million doses could only add 15 per cent to the 20 per cent that Covax was bringing.

He added that this is not the time to wait for handouts or free vaccines as other countries will naturally sort themselves out before African nations.

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China Calls for Better China-U.S. Relations

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China Calls for China-U.S. Relations

Senior Chinese diplomat Wang Yi said on Monday the United States and China could work together on issues like climate change and the coronavirus pandemic if they repaired their damaged bilateral relationship.

Wang, a Chinese state councillor and foreign minister, said Beijing stood ready to reopen constructive dialogue with Washington after relations between the two countries sank to their lowest in decades under former president Donald Trump.

Wang called on Washington to remove tariffs on Chinese goods and abandon what he said was an irrational suppression of the Chinese tech sector, steps he said would create the “necessary conditions” for cooperation.

Before Wang spoke at a forum sponsored by the foreign ministry, officials played footage of the “ping-pong diplomacy” of 1972 when an exchange of table tennis players cleared the way for then U.S. President Richard Nixon to visit China.

Wang, a Chinese state councillor and foreign minister, said Beijing stood ready to reopen constructive dialogue with Washington after relations between the two countries sank to their lowest in decades under former president Donald Trump.

Wang called on Washington to remove tariffs on Chinese goods and abandon what he said was an irrational suppression of the Chinese tech sector, steps he said would create the “necessary conditions” for cooperation.

Before Wang spoke at a forum sponsored by the foreign ministry, officials played footage of the “ping-pong diplomacy” of 1972 when an exchange of table tennis players cleared the way for then U.S. President Richard Nixon to visit China.

Wang urged Washington to respect China’s core interests, stop “smearing” the ruling Communist Party, stop interfering in Beijing’s internal affairs and stop “conniving” with separatist forces for Taiwan’s independence.

“Over the past few years, the United States basically cut off bilateral dialogue at all levels,” Wang said in prepared remarks translated into English.

“We stand ready to have candid communication with the U.S. side, and engage in dialogues aimed at solving problems.”

Wang pointed to a recent call between Chinese President Xi Jinping and U.S. President Joe Biden as a positive step.

Washington and Beijing have clashed on multiple fronts including trade, accusations of human rights crimes against the Uighur Muslim minorities in the Xinjiang region and Beijing’s territorial claims in the resources-rich South China Sea.

The Biden administration has, however, signalled it will maintain pressure on Beijing. Biden has voiced concern about Beijing’s “coercive and unfair” trade practices and endorsed of a Trump administration determination that China has committed genocide in Xinjiang.

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U.S. Supreme Court Allows Release of Trump Tax Returns

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President Trump Signs Executive Order In Oval Office Of The White House

U.S. Supreme Court Allows Release of Trump Tax Returns

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday paved the way for a New York City prosecutor to obtain former President Donald Trump’s tax returns and other financial records as part of a criminal investigation, a blow to his quest to conceal details of his finances.

The justices without comment rebuffed Trump’s request to put on hold an Oct. 7 lower court ruling directing the former Republican president’s longtime accounting firm, Mazars USA, to comply with a subpoena to turn over the materials to a grand jury convened by Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance, a Democrat.

“The work continues,” Vance said in a statement issued after the court’s action.

Vance had previously said in a letter to Trump’s lawyers that his office would be free to immediately enforce the subpoena if the justices rejected Trump’s request.

A lawyer for Trump did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The Supreme Court, which has a 6-3 conservative majority included three Trump appointees, had already ruled once in the dispute, last July rejecting Trump’s broad argument that he was immune from criminal probes as a sitting president.

Unlike all other recent U.S. presidents, Trump refused during his four years in office to make his tax returns public. The data could provide details on his wealth and the activities of his family real-estate company, the Trump Organization.

Trump, who left office on Jan. 20 after being defeated in his Nov. 3 re-election bid by Democrat Joe Biden, continues to face an array of legal issues concerning his personal and business conduct.

Vance issued a subpoena to Mazars in August 2019 seeking Trump’s corporate and personal tax returns from 2011 to 2018. Trump’s lawyers sued to block the subpoena, arguing that as a sitting president, Trump had absolute immunity from state criminal investigations.

The Supreme Court in its July ruling rejected those arguments but said Trump could raise other objections to the subpoena. Trump’s lawyers then argued before lower courts that the subpoena was overly broad and amounted to political harassment, but U.S. District Judge Victor Marrero in August and the New York-based 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in October rejected those claims.

Vance’s investigation, which began more than two years ago, had focused on hush money payments that the president’s former lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen made before the 2016 election to two women – adult-film actress Stormy Daniels and former Playboy model Karen McDougal – who said they had sexual encounters with Trump.

In recent court filings, Vance has suggested that the probe is now broader and could focus on potential bank, tax and insurance fraud, as well as falsification of business records.

In separate litigation, the Democratic-led U.S. House of Representatives was seeking to subpoena similar records. The Supreme Court in July sent that matter back to lower courts for further review.

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