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UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres calls for resources to meet Nigeria’s humanitarian needs

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United Nations Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres who is on a two-day mission to Nigeria has called for more resources to help Nigeria meet the humanitarian needs of people affected by conflict.

The UN chief made the remarks after a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari in Abuja on Wednesday as he was concluding his visit to Nigeria.

Guterres also met with Borno State governor, Babagana Zulum in Maiduguri, the state capital, before embarking on a field mission where he met families affected by the Boko Haram conflict ravaging the region for more than 12 years. In 2020, Nigeria counted more than 2.7 million internally displaced persons.

Terrorist activities have taken an upward trend in Nigeria since the deadly Boko Haram sect based in North-Eastern Nigeria, which is also active in Chad, Niger and northern Cameroon was founded in 2002.

According to Statista, “between 2011 and 2021, Boko Haram was responsible for thousands of deaths in Nigeria, Cameroon, Chad, and Niger. Nigeria is the country most affected by the terrorist group’s attacks. States in the North-East register the highest number of deaths. Borno is by far the most threatened state, Boko Haram has caused over 34 thousand deaths in this area…”

“We have called for an additional $351million as part of the overall $1.1billion for our humanitarian response plan for Nigeria. But despite all I have seen, the people I have met remain committed to returning to their communities and resuming their lives,” said Guterres.

On his part, Buhari reiterated his government’s commitment to fighting terrorism and called for international assistance to end extremism.

“There can be no better assurance that the world is with us as we confront extremist terrorist organizations, hunger, and the enormous problems of millions and millions of displaced people during this important visit,” he said.

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Weeks after justices protest, Nigeria’s Chief Justice, Tanko Muhammad resigns

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Nigeria’s Chief Justice, Justice Tanko Muhammad, has resigned.

Sources confirmed that Justice Muhammad resigned on Sunday night, citing ill-health as the reason for his decision.

Hint of potential crises in Nigeria’s judiciary played out last week when fourteen Justices of the Supreme Court wrote to the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Tanko Muhammad, lamenting the parlous state of affairs in the court.

The petition is the first-of-its-kind in the 58-year history of the apex court, the justices chronicled the operational challenges that have almost crippled the efficient adjudication of cases at the court.

Arrangements are said to be ongoing to swear in the next most senior justice of the Supreme Court, Justice Olukayode Ariwoola, as the acting Chief Justice of Nigeria.

President Muhammadu Buhari in 2019 suspended Justice Tanko’s predecessor Chief Justice, Walter Onnoghen, 15 days after allegations of impropriety were lodged against the most senior judge in the country. It was the first time that Nigeria’s head of state had sacked a chief justice since 1975, when the country was under military rule.

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18 years after suspension, Zimbabwe lobbys for readmission into Commonwealth

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Southern African Zimbabwe has continued with lobbying for readmission 18 years after it was thrown out of the body over allegations of human rights abuses.

The country made its latest move to be readmitted at the ongoing Commonwealth summit in Rwanda.

Zimbabwe’s ambassador to Rwanda Charity Manyeruke, who is attending the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Kigali as an observer alongside other top government officials, told newsmen that the country’s participation at the summit was a “positive development.”

“Zimbabwe is excited to be participating in Commonwealth forums as this presents opportunities to network with the international community taking into account the government of Zimbabwe’s policy of engagement and reengagement,” Ms Manyeruke said.

“The Commonwealth meeting in Kigali has provided opportunities for our Zimbabwean diaspora across the globe, who are participating as panellists, facilitators and as delegates in the forums.

Zimbabwe was first suspended from the councils of the Commonwealth for one year, after international observers condemned disputed presidential election as unfairly tilted toward Robert Mugabe in 2022.

One year after the suspension, Mr Mugabe revealed that he did not accept a Commonwealth decision to prolong Zimbabwe’s suspension from the group until the country mended its ways.

“Accordingly, Zimbabwe has withdrawn its membership from the Commonwealth with immediate effect,” said a government statement.

Zimbabwe’s Foreign Affairs deputy minister David Musabayana said he had held meetings with influential people to discuss the country’s potential readmission.

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