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‘Protest by Ile-Ife indigenes over OAU VC crazy, disgusting’, Nigerian Nobel Laureate, Wole Soyinka says



Foremost Nigerian Nobel Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, has condemned the invasion of the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife, Osun State, by indigenes of the town on Monday, following the appointment of a new Vice Chancellor who is not a native of the town, saying those who invaded the institution with charms “must have been crazy.”

Africa News Watch had reported how the townspeople who were not happy that a non-indigene, Professor Adebayo Bamire, was announced as the 12th substantive VC of the foremost institution, had invaded the school’s main campus to register their displeasure.

The protesters had stormed the school with charms, amulets and other fetish objects to insist that an Ile-Ife indigene should have been appointed the VC following the announcement of Bamire.

They had insisted that an indigene of Ile-Ife, Prof Rufus Adedoyin, should be installed instead, but according to the institution’s Joint Council and Senate Selection Board in a statement on their position, Prof. Adedoyin who was also in the running during the selection process, came ninth in the screening exercise which saw sixteen candidates shortlisted for the post.

Soyinka, himself an alumnus and former lecturer of OAU, decried the invasion which he described as not only “shocking and disgusting” but “crazy.”

Soyinka, who spoke on the incident while delivering a lecture titled, ‘The Politics of Black Intellection and Creativity,’ at the University of Pennsylvania on Thursday, expressed distaste over the unholy act, wondering why no intelligent indigene of the town had come out to disown the protesters.

While reacting to a question by one of the panelist, Professor Wale Adebanwi, a Presidential Penn Compact Professor of African Studies at the University of Pennsylvania, the Professor of English said it was absurd for the people to insist that the OAU VC must be an indigene of the town.

“An Ife person wrote me and say, look at these people disgracing us. I told him to go there and disgrace them. You are an Ife person. You should be in the front line,” the erudite professor said.

“The Ife people should say those people don’t belong to us, we don’t know where they came from. And they should be dealt with ruthlessly. Why should there be an Ife VC anywhere? I just don’t understand what they put in the water these days. It is crazy,” he added.

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DR Congo: President Tshisekedi says Rwanda’s Kagame acting like Adolf Hitler



Democratic Republic of Congo President, Félix Tshisekedi, has taken a dig at President Paul Kagame of Rwanda, comparing him to German dictator, Adolf Hitler, while on the campaign trail in the troubled east of the country.

While addressing his supporters on Friday at a rally in Bukavu, capital of South Kivu, Tshisekedi, who is seeking a second term in office in the general elections scheduled for December 20 after first coming to power in January 2019, said Kagame behaved like Hitler while pursuing his “expansionist aims”.

“I’m going to address Rwandan President Paul Kagame and tell him this: since he wanted to behave like Adolf Hitler by having expansionist aims (in the DRC), I promise to end up like Adolf Hitler,” declared Tshisekedi.

“When I took power as president of this country, I proposed a plan to live in peace with our neighbors, but the problem is that our neighbors have eyes bigger than their stomachs, and that’s the case with my colleague Paul Kagame.

“But this time, Paul Kagame has met a son of the country determined to protect his country against all kinds of foreign aggression,” he stated.

Tshisekedi’s speech was not unconnected with the activities of the M23 (March 23 Movement) rebels who are mainly Tutsis believed to have the backing of the Rwandan government and have been wreaking havoc in North Kivu and Ituri in South Kivu and other eastern provinces of the DRC in the past 30 years.

Relations between the DRC and neighboring Rwanda have also witnessed tense turmoil which reached a climax in 2021 with the resurgence in North Kivu of the rebellion, allegedly supported by Kigali, seizing large swathes of the province.

On numerous occasions, Tshisekedi has denounced what he often describes as Rwandan aggression under the guise of the M23.

Tshisekedi has also accused Rwanda of sponsoring the rebels, an accusation Kigali has vehemently denied.

He has also described Rwanda as a “horrible neighbor” which wants to monopolize the mining wealth of DRC which is largely located in the eastern Congo.

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Nigerian lady detained for condemning religious killing regains freedom after 18 months



A Nigerian lady, Rhoda Jatau, who had been held in prison in Bauchi State in North-East Nigeria for allegedly condemning the killing of a student, Deborah Samuel, by Muslim religious fanatics in Sokoto State has regained freedom after 18 months.

Deborah, a 200-level student of Shehu Shagari College of Education, Sokoto, was brutally murdered by her fellow students on May 12, 2022, after she advised against sending religious materials on a WhatsApp page created for her department.

The murder of Deborah cause a lot of consternation and outcry in the country with many Nigerians calling for justice for the victim.

Jatau, a mother of five and a Christian, also joined in the cry for justice for the murdered student, and also shared a video of the lynching of the girl which was allegedly made by her killers.

After sharing the video on social media, Jatau was arrested on May 20, 2022, and accused of inciting public disturbance, exciting contempt of religious creed, and cyberstalking.

She was subsequently charged under Sections 114 and 210 of the Penal Code Law, as well as Section 24 Subsection 1b(i) of the Cyber Crimes Act, and had been kept in detention since then.

But reprieve came her way on Friday when she was released from prison following interventions by the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Nigeria Inter-Religious Council (NIREC), and the Christian Solidarity Worldwide Nigeria.

NIREC, in a press statement confirming the release of Jatau, said:

“Following the outcry from the Christian community in Nigeria over the continued detention of Rhoda Jatau in Bauchi Prison, the Christian Association of Nigeria, the Nigeria Inter-Religious Council, and Christian Solidarity Worldwide Nigeria intervened in the matter.

“We are pleased to report that Ms. Rhoda Jatau has been granted bail and subsequently released from detention.

“We have high hopes that the case will end in praise. Let’s continue to keep her in our prayers. The leadership of NIREC played a key role. Praise be to our God.”

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