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UN Libya Mission strongly condemns bombing of military academy, at least 30 dead

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Saturday’s bombing reportedly took place as cadets were gathering on a parade ground at the Hadaba academy in a southern district of the capital.

The forces of the self-styled Libyan National Army (LNA) have been laying siege to Tripoli since April, under the leadership of commander Khalifa Haftar, who is aligned with a rival administration in Tobruk, opposing the UN-backed Government of National Accord (GNA) and allied forces, based in the capital.

Following an uptick in aerial attacks and shelling in recent weeks, which have killed at least 11 civilians since early December, the Secretary-General  António  Guterres  released a statement on Friday, renewing his call for an immediate ceasefire in Libya and a return to political dialogue.

‘Dangerous’ escalation must stop

Responding to Saturday’s attack, where the majority of victims were reportedly cadets from cities across the country, UNSMIL stressed in a statement in Arabic on Twitter, that the escalation in military action “in this dangerous manner further complicates the situation in Libya and threatens opportunities to return to the political process.”

According to news reports, forces allied with the GNA described the attack as an aerial strike, launched by the LNA, but a spokesperson for the eastern-based militia denied any involvement.

Offering its sincere condolences to the families of the victims and wishing a speedy recovery to the injured, UNSMIL added that the continuing indiscriminate shelling of civilians and civilian buildings such as hospitals, “may rise to the level of war crimes, and the perpetrators will not go unpunished no matter how long it may take.”

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Unhindered humanitarian access

In a statement on Friday, the deputy head of the Mission, Yacoub El Hillo, condemned the intensified airstrikes, saying he was “horrified by these senseless, indiscriminate attacks on civilian areas and civilian infrastructure that continue to take innocent lives.”

He said 12 health facilities had been forced to close in the main areas of “active clashes” on the capital’s outskirts, with another four facing imminent shutdown. More than 210 schools are closed leaving 113,000 children out of school.

Basic services must be provided to all civilians who are in desperate need and whose lives are at risk, added the UNSMIL deputy chief: “Unimpeded, safe and unhindered humanitarian access to civilians must be guaranteed, to allow concerned authorities, United Nations and humanitarian partners provide life-saving work…I call on all parties to the conflict to protect civilians and comply with the provisions spelt out in the Geneva Conventions – which must be fully respected and implemented in this conflict”.

Concern is also rising over the prospect of further foreign intervention, with the rival administration in the east reportedly receiving backing from several countries including the United Arab Emirates, Egypt, Jordan and Russia.

Last Thursday, the Turkish parliament approved a bill to unilaterally send troops in support of the Tripoli-based Government.

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In his statement on Friday, the UN chief warned that “any foreign support to the warring parties will only deepen the ongoing conflict and further complicate efforts to reach a peaceful and comprehensive political solution.”

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Crime & Court

EFCC re-arraigns lovers for alleged N17.5m charcoal fraud

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The Ibadan zonal office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, on Wednesday, re-arraigned one Alice Peace John, alongside her boyfriend, Fadi Alloush before Justice Bayo Taiwo of the Oyo State High Court, Ibadan for fraud in the sale of charcoal.

The duo were dragged to the court on three-count charges of conspiracy, stealing and obtaining the sum of N17, 500, 000.00 (Seventeen Million, Five Hundred Thousand Naira only) under false pretences.

One of the charges read, “That you Fadi Alloush and Alice Peace John between the 18th October, 2019 and 23rd December, 2019 at Ibadan, within Ibadan Judicial Division of this honourable court, did commit an illegal act to wit: stealing of the sum of N17,500,000 (Seventeen Million and Five Hundred Thousand Naira only) , property of Coco-Dor Nigeria Limited and Houssam Nasreddine.”

The offence is contrary to Section 390 of the Criminal Code Laws, Cap 38, Laws of Oyo State.

The defendants pleaded not guilty to the charges, following which prosecution counsel, Dr. Ben Ubi, applied for a trial date, while defence counsel, Olukunle Kamisi prayed the court to allow the bail earlier granted the defendants subsist.

Justice Taiwo granted the defendants’ prayer.

According to the judge, “The bail shall subsist and that in the event where there is delay on the defendants’ part, their bail will be revoked.” He adjourned the matter till October 8, 2020 for trial.

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It could be recalled that the defendants were initially arraigned before Justice Iyabo Yerima of the Oyo State High Court on March 17, 2020 but had to be re-arraigned on Wednesday following the reassignment of the case to Justice Taiwo.

The defendants’ journey to the dock stretched from January to December 2019, when the victim, Houssam Nasreddine transferred a total sum of N17, 500, 000.00 to the account of the first defendant, John, for the purchase of charcoal from Iwere lle, Oyo State for export, which the defendant bought and loaded in containers at the Hapag LLOYD Shipping Company, Apapa, Lagos for exportation, but rather than sell the goods in the name of the rightful owner, she allegedly connived with her boyfriend, Alloush and transferred the ownership of the goods and sold them off.
The petitioner added that all efforts he made to retrieve either the charcoal or his money were frustrated by the defendants.

 

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Crime & Court

Ibadan: EFCC arrests brothers, three others for alleged internet fraud {Photos}

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Operatives of the the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ibadan zonal office, have arrested two pairs of brothers : Ayoola Timilehin, Olusola Timilehin, and Oladayo Fayemi, Tolulope Fayemi and three others suspected to be internet fraudsters.

They were arrested at their hide out on Wednesday, at Alaka, Elebu area of Ibadan, Oyo State.

The other three suspects arrested with them are Temitope Kumuyi, Babatunde Oyelakin and Olanrewaju Ibrahim. They are all between 20 and 30 years age range.

The suspects were arrested based on intelligence linking them with opulence without any identifiable means of livelihood. Items recovered from them, include: four cars, laptops, exotic phones and a stamp bearing the identity of the bursary section of Queensland University’s School of Medicine, Australia.

They will be charged to court as soon as investigations are concluded.

 

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Crime & Court

Dapo Lam Adesina disclaims fake Facebook accounts

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A former member of the House of Representatives representing Ibadan Southeast / Northeast federal constituency, Hon. Dapo Lam Adesina says it has come to his notice of parody Facebook accounts opened in his name.

 

The ex-lawmaker, warned  on Friday through his verified Facebook page  that the two parody Facebook accounts that were opened in his name should be disregarded.

The two accounts are : Hon. Dapo Adesina and Dapo Lam  Adesina .

According to Mega Icon Magazine checks, such parody Facebook accounts were being operated by some fraudulent individuals with the aim of deceiving unsuspecting members of the public

“Kindly be informed that these two Facebook accounts that are opened in my name are not mine and should be disregarded.
“DO NOT HAVE ANY TRANSACTION (S) WITH THE ACCOUNTS PLEASE.
“You can also help to report the accounts so that Facebook can pull them down.
“Thank you for the love always . Have a great weekend ahead”, he said.

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