Suspected Port Harcourt serial killer arrested

Nigerian police have arrested two suspects in connection with hotel serial killings in the southern city of Port Harcourt.

At least eight women have been found strangled in different hotel rooms in Nigeria’s oil capital in Rivers state since July.

Outrage over the killings has prompted a social media campaign – using the hashtags #ProtectPHWomen and #ProtectPhGirls – to demand that the authorities do more to stop them.

Police said that one man was arrested after a tip-off that he had offered around $80 (£70) to spend the night with a woman.

Advertisements

The other suspect had been arrested in Kaduna in central Nigeria.

Rivers state police chief Mustapha Dandaura says a special task force – including the region’s police, hotel associations and tourism board – had been set up to improve security at hotels.

Any hotel in the state that did not comply with new guidelines, which include installing CCTV cameras and asking guests for documentation when registering, would be closed down, he said.

Port Harcourt Mall Explosion: A terror attack? Here is everything we know

There was an explosion at the newly built Port Harcourt Mall Wednesday, leaving at least 1 person dead and six others injured.

An eye witness told The Bloomgist that the incident happened around 4:00 p.m. forcing an early closure of the mall.

There was an explosion at the newly built Port Harcourt Mall Wednesday, leaving at least 1 person dead and six others injured.

An eye witness told The Bloomgist that the incident happened around 4:00 p.m. forcing an early closure of the mall.

The eye witness said the fire started at the continental cuisines’ kitchen, a section within the mall which cooks and serves Chinese and other continental dishes.

Five workers at the kitchen, who were badly burnt were rushed to the Rivers State University Teaching Hospital where they are currently receiving treatment.

“The fire burnt about five of the workers badly. In fact, one of the victims’ skin was peeling off like burnt clothes as he cried, I couldn’t watch, to be honest.”

A gas explosion or a terror attack?

Analysists have been looking into the explosion which they say is @strange” and looking into a posibility of the explosion being a terror attack.

An anonymous contributor told Bloomgist that the explosion is strange and suspecious, having come amidst fear of terror attack plan rumours in the city.

Police and other security operatives have started investigation to know the actual course of the explosion which has left the residents terrified.

There was a recent post by a Port Harcourt base blogger on how to plant a bomb in the mall seem to be the most popular and most visited in the region.

The post was published on June 7th, five days before the explosion at the mall. Photo: The Bloomgist

The blog with the name ‘Nazcardgard’ shared how to get a bomb into the mall and the processes required to make the ‘mission’ a success, tar getting over 50 casualties which is mostly going to be made up of more ‘rich men’ than normal ‘window shoppers’ at the mall.

The publisher who, according to the post seem to be gunning for fame chose June 12th to accomplish this, and that is the exact day the explosion went off at the mall.

Screenshots of the original post which has been deleted by the publisher. Photo: The Bloomgist

The post which has been deleted after the explosion at the mall was published on June 7th 2019, five days before the explosion.

More details soon.

At least 10 people killed as gunmen attack Port Harcourt Market

At least 10 people killed as gunmen attack Port Harcourt Market

Gunmen attacked a market in southern Nigerian city Port Harcourt early this morning, reports AFP news agency.

At least 10 people killed as gunmen attack Port Harcourt Market
Port Harcourt has high levels of crime and political violence

Most of the victims were market women, said trader Agnes Tarila.

Local resident Arutere Utuama said: “As soon as I heard of the incident I ran to the market where I counted at least 10 bodies.”

Police spokesman Nnamdi Omoni told AFP that the motive for the killings was not clear yet.

Details soon…

Burundi was hit by unrest after the president announced last year that he was seeking a third term

News of ambushed IPOB members by Nigeria army sparks riot in Rivers, Abia

Port Harcourt (Bloomgist) –  Riots are ongoing in Oyigbo Rivers state and some parts of Aba in Abia state over rumours of some IPOB men allegedly ambushed by men of the Nigerian military on their way to Umuahia.

Burundi was hit by unrest after the president announced last year that he was seeking a third term
Burundi was hit by unrest after the president announced last year that he was seeking a third term. Photo: IBTimes

Kanu’s residence in Ibeku, Umuahia was reportedly invaded by men of the Nigerian military with some IPOB members wounded in the process.

The army denied the initial news claiming that IPOB members had attacked their men.

Nnamdi Kanu refuted this in a video address to press men.

Loyalists to Nnamdi Kanu, leader of IPOB have taken to the streets and gone on rampage burning tires and blocking the roads after news broke that some colleagues heading to Umuahia to side with their leader over the invasion of his residence by men of the Nigerian army has been ambushed.

This has led to loss of lives in Oyigbo, Rivers state and the burning down of a mosque in the area.

Northerners doing business in the area have deserted their properties and taken to their hills for safety.

It is unclear the actual numbers of casualties at the moment.

An eye witness confirmed to a Bloomgist reporter that four persons were killed earlier.

Most areas of the East are in volatile tension at the moment.


SOURCE: The Bloomgist/Report Afrique

Biafra agitators Protesting in Ireland

Biafra day: Traders shut down shops in some parts of Port Harcourt

Business activities in some parts of Port Harcourt were low on Tuesday as many traders closed shops following the holiday declared by pro-Biafra agitators.

Biafra agitators Protesting in Ireland
Biafra agitators Protesting in Ireland

The Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and Movement for Actualisation of Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB) had declared a May 30 a public holiday for their supporters to commemorate 50 years of the declaration of the secessionist state of Biafra.

They also said they wanted to remember those who died in the Nigerian civil war fought between Nigerian troops and rebel Biafra forces.

A News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) check around the city showed that business areas dominated by Igbo traders, were shut down.

Some traders who were seen around their business premises said they came to monitor the situation and not to open for business.

Some normally very busy roads, such as the Port Harcourt/Aba expressway, Ikwerre Road and the East/West Roads witnessed light traffic.

Meanwhile, some traders at the Building Material Market and the Nkpolu Oro-worukwo Shopping Centre, Mile Three Diobu, Port Harcourt, expressed support for the groups’ call.

Ike Nwaugo, a trader said that the market union had given a directive stopping traders from opening their shops for business during the holiday.

“Nobody will open for business today; it is a directive even from the union in compliance with the call by the agitators of Biafra,’’ he said.

A trader at the Oyigbo Truck Park, Ignatius Okorie, said the holiday declared in honour of Biafra was responsible for the low economic activity in the area.

“Many people are at home, economic activities are at a very low ebb, the call for holiday is the cause of all these,’’ he said.

However, a lawyer, Chijokwu Wombu, criticised the observance of the holiday by some traders in Port Harcourt, saying, “ it is of no meaning.’’

He said the traders staying at home in adherence to the declaration of holiday did not make Rivers part of Biafra.

“I see the whole thing as mere showmanship, the traders merely pretend to have closed shops, but they are all milling around the business premises.

“I tell you that they are in business, just go close and ask for something, you will be surprised that they will sell to you, people should stop being deceptive,’’ he said.

Prisons ‘Overall General’ renounces Islam for Christianity in Port Harcourt

The Overall General of Port Harcourt Maximum Security Prison, Adeosun Kazeem, has converted to Christianity.

Men behind bars

Kazeem renounced his Muslim faith after participating in the birthday celebration of General Overseer of Apostolic Army, Bishop Winning Willy Bunting.

It was gathered that Kazeem landed in the prison after he was convicted of murder in 2007 while in the Nigerian Army.

Giving his vote of thanks after the programme, the inmate noted that he resolved to leave Islam as a result of love shown to him by the Christians.

He pointed out that he was abandoned by his family members, friends and Muslim brethren immediately he was convicted and brought to the prison yard.

He said that only Christians remembered and showed him love during his tribulation and that he finally accepted Christ when he saw the humility exhibited by the bishop.

Confirming the development in his birthday massage to the inmates, the Grand Commander of the Apostolic Army, Bishop Bunting, said he was happy with the decision of the inmate to convert to Christianity.

Bunting said: “My birthday had always been celebrated in places such as Government Houses and big event centres. This year, I was instructed by God Almighty to go the prisons and celebrate by 55th birthday that there is a gift for me.

“God instructed that He wants to use my birthday to do a special thing. God specifically asked for those who have been convicted. The Overall General, who was a Muslim for 40 years accepted Jesus Christ and denounced Muslim. I believe that the strong hold of prison has been broken and there is freedom.”


SOURCE: The Bloomgist/Daily Post

Port Harcourt declared ‘unofficial’ base of Biafra – IPOB

The Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) has said that Port Harcourt formerly referred to as ‘Igweocha’ is now considered as the unofficial base of Biafra.

Biafra protesters3


 The group said this comes after the huge support given to the IPOB and its leader Nnamdi Kanu at the last court sitting by the people of Rivers state.

In a new statement by its spokesperson Powerful Emma, the IPOB said, the leadership of the group commends the unity among Biafra agitators across the world.

Emma said: “The new solidarity amongst Biafrans from all walks of life in the quest and movement towards the independent state of Biafra is a thing of joy and it shows that our people have realized the past mistakes made by our fathers and cannot allow the divide and rule tactics initiated against the good people of Biafra by Hausa Fulani oligarchy supported by British government to stand again.”

Emma said the fact that the people of Ikwerre and other communities in the South-South and South-East region are concerned in the agitation for Biafra is an advantage in the quest for the freedom of Biafra.

“More so, Igweocha is considered by many now to be the unofficial power base of IPOB led Biafra resurgence. We also hope that Uyo, Oron, Warri, Ogoja and Yenegoa will be the centre for the struggle in no distant future,” Emma said.

Going by what happened among our people on 20th March 2017 in Abuja during the High court sitting presided over by justice Binta Nyako, the case between our leader Mazi Nnamdi Kanu and the federal government of Nigeria where our mothers, fathers, youths, elders, clergymen and traditional title holders in Biafraland converged in one spirit praying to Chukwu Okike Abiama (God Almighty) for the release our leader and restoration of ancient nation of Biafra, you understand that Biafra independent is around the corner.”

IPOB said the unity among its people, “Biafra will be the freest nation on earth where natural justice embedded in the principles of live and let live will guide our interactions between each other and constituent nations.


SOURCE: The Bloomgist/Naij

Photo story: the city of Soot; not garden city

The Nigerian city of Port Harcourt used to be known as “The Garden City”.

the-city-of-soot-the-bloomgist-11


However, it has recently been covered in a blanket of black soot, which has prompted the federal government to declare a pollution emergency there.

The Bloomgist has gathered some of the day’s most disheartening photos showing the weather condition in the city.

the-city-of-soot-the-bloomgist
Port Harcourt is hardly recognisable under the cloud of think could of soot and smog that has covered it since November 2016.

the-city-of-soot-the-bloomgist-2
The smog has led the federal government to declare an emergency in Port Harcourt, while some local factories have been closed.

the-city-of-soot-the-bloomgist-3
This is what happens if you wipe your hand on an exposed surface, such as a parked car.

the-city-of-soot-the-bloomgist-4
The cause of the smog is not clear but some have blamed illegal oil refineries or the practice of burning tyres.

the-city-of-soot-the-bloomgist-5
Local residents have mobilised using the hashtag #StopTheSoot.

the-city-of-soot-the-bloomgist-6
It has become impossible to keep cars clean.

the-city-of-soot-the-bloomgist-7
Local residents are increasingly worried about their health.

the-city-of-soot-the-bloomgist-8
However, daily life carries on as much as possible.

the-city-of-soot-the-bloomgist-9
People still have to go the market to buy and sell food.

the-city-of-soot-the-bloomgist-10
And children still have to go to school…

the-city-of-soot-the-bloomgist-11
However bad the smog is.

the-city-of-soot-the-bloomgist-12
While street vendors and cobbler still brave the smoke to earn their living.


SOURCE: The Bloomgist/BBC

Five militants killed in gun battle with Soldiers in Rivers

About five militants have been killed and 23 others arrested, while several others escaped with injuries during an attack on soldiers by the creek boys in Rivers state.

Nigeria army


A statement issued by the military spokesperson, Colonel Sani Kukasheka Usman revealed that the special forces battalion of the Nigerian Army troops were carrying out a precursor operation to exercise CROCODILE SMILE.

Recall that the Nigerian army recently revealed that the new operation is aimed at training Special Forces and other units of the Nigerian military in Amphibious and Internal Security Operations in riverine environment and also check criminal activities like abducting, militancy and piracy and other forms of criminal activities in support of the civil authority.

Militants 1


According to Kukasheka: “The 133 Special Forces Battalion of Nigerian Army troops have carried out a precursor operation to Exercise CROCODILE SMILE aimed at getting rid of all forms of criminal activities in the Niger Delta geo-political region of Nigeria.

“In the course of the operation, 5 militants that attacked the troops were killed in action, while numerous others were injured and 23 suspects were arrested.

Militants 3


“The operations which was conducted yesterday 26th August 2016, was carried out by the Special Forces at the militants camps.

“Items recovered from the camps include 2 AK-47 rifles, 11 Pump Action Guns, a locally made revolver pistol, 292 cartridges of live Ammunition, 199 rounds of AK-47 rifle Ammunition, 4 electricity generating sets and a Camp Gas Cooker.

Militants 2


“The troops also recovered an abandoned Engine Boat left by the fleeing criminals.”

In another news, two suspected kidnappers; Dayibu Abdullahi and Nasiru Adamu have been arrested by troops of 33 Brigade, Nigerian Army, at Badiko village along Gumau road, Toro LGA, Bauchi state.

Militants 5


The suspects were arrested with a bag containing the sum of four hundred and thirty nine thousand Naira (N439,000.00k) and some personal items.

According to a statement by army spokesman, Colonel Usman, investigation showed that the amount was their share from a ransom paid by a recent kidnap incident.

Similarly, another suspected kidnapper, Jibrin Dakam, was arrested the same day at Magama, also in Toro LGA, by the troops.


SOURCE: The Bloomgist/NAIJ

PDP National convention: the court orders and the counter rulings, all you need to know

Highlights

  • PDP in Disarray ahead of August 17th National Convention
  • PDP insists on going o =n with the convention
  • Justice Okon Abang Threatens to go after people who will monitor the convention

PDP


The Peoples Democratic Part (PDP) has been in a field of controversy since the 2015 presidential election which removed them from power and installed Muhammadu Buhari as the president, but the recent cases over the leadership of the party which as seen a heavy fight between the party’s former national chairman and former APC member, Ali Modu Sheriff has totally destabilized the party.

Following the announcement of the date for the party’s national convention slated for August 17th, 2016, the fight has gone from word of mouth to court rulings.

On July 28th, 2016, a High Court sitting in Abuja presided over by Justice Okon Abang nullified the ruling of Port Harcourt High Court recognizing the caretaker committee. According to Adeyeye,‎ the motion seeking to restrain the PDP from conducting the proposed Aug. 17 national convention has not been heard by the court and no date has been fixed for the hearing of the same.

“What was before the court yesterday was the issue of who is the authentic legal counsel for the PDP as between Ferdinand Orbih and O. O. Fakunle.” The court in determining the question of legal representation held that the appointment of O. O. Fakunle by Sen. Ali Modu Sheriff was acceptable to the court.

The Abuja High Court ruling, which came to the PDP loyalists as a shock and seemed to be a set back in installing a new leadership to lead the party to the 2019 general elections, was faulted by another high court in Port Harcourt.

In the ruling, the court granted the reliefs sought by members of the National Convention Committee of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to hold its convention in Port Harcourt on August 17th.

The presiding judge, Justice Ibrahim Watila, in the interlocutory injunction also directed the security agencies mentioned in the suit to provide adequate security for the event and also asked INEC to be present.

Meanwhile, the Governor of Rivers State, who is also the Chairman of the Convention Planning Committee, Nyesome Wike, told reporters that with the decision of the court, the party was set for the convention.

He described the request by factional Chairman of the party, Senator Ali-Modu Sheriff, for him to step down as baseless.

The factional Chairman of the party, Senator Sheriff had approached the Federal High Court, Abuja for an order of interlocutory injunction restraining the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the party from conducting the national convention.

He also wanted an order that would restrain the PDP from presenting anybody or sponsoring any person for election into its offices pending determination of the suit.

He asked for an ancillary order directing the Nigerian Police to enforce the orders of the court until all applications are disposed of.

While this was going on, the Ahmed Makarfi-led PDP approached an FCT High Court challenging the power of Justice Okon Abang to hear the suit filed by Senator Sheriff.

They specifically asked the court to restrain Justice Abang on the grounds that there is a circular from the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court restraining all judges handling PDP leadership tussle cases to stop further action pending the outcome of the appeals before the appellate court .

But the prayers were not granted by Justice Olukayode Adeniyi, who held that the application lacks merit, as the applicant who is listed as PDP is not a natural person as such not entitled to any fundamental human rights.

Sttill planning the convention, the PDP team of learneds were busy fighting the Abuja High Court ruling, but just a day to the convention, the Abuja High Court once again bared the IGP, INEC and other relevant bodies to desist from monitoring the convention.

In the ruling on August 17th 2016, Justice Okon Abang of the Federal High Court in Abuja re-affirmed his Monday’s interim order stopping the Peoples Democratic Party from going ahead with its plan to conduct its national convention slated for Wednesday.

The judge on Tuesday turned the interim order into an interlocutory injunction that will subsist till the time the substantive suit is heard and determined.

He adjourned the hearing of the case till September 7, and gave a stern warning to the Chairman and Secretary of the Independent National Electoral Commission, not to monitor the planned convention.

The judge, who faulted the decision of the Port Harcourt Division of the Federal High Court to assume jurisdiction on the case relating to the PDP convention, also directed that his order be endorsed with Form 48 (Notice of disobedience of court order) and served on the INEC chairman and secretary.

He said failure by INEC or any of the defendants to comply with his order “will attract disciplinary action” provided “the plaintiffs ‎know what to do.”

He made the order after the plaintiffs, comprising the factional National Chairman of the PDP, Ali Modu Sheriff and others moved their motion praying for the interlocutory order on ‎Tuesday.

The judge held that the motion was not opposed as the respondents, including members of Ahmed Makarfi-led ‎caretaker committee of the party, failed to file a counter-affidavit opposing the motion.

He said the Makarfi-led caretaker committee members who were only on Tuesday joined as the third to the ninth respondents adopted strategy of not filing counter-affidavit but other processes that were not found in the court file.

“They must sink and float with their legal strategy,” the judge ruled.

Justice Abang said the request for an adjournment by their counsel, Mr. Yunus Ustaz (SAN) and Chief Ferdinand Orbih (SAN), asking for an adjournment after the plaintiffs’ counsel, Chief Adeniyi Akintola (SAN), had moved his motion was an afterthought.

Counsel for the PDP, Mr. Olagoke Fakule (SAN) and that of INEC, Alhassan Umar, did not oppose the application.

The judge ruled, “In any case, the plaintiffs’ application ‎is not opposed by any of the parties. The law must take its course. The facts placed before this court are unchallenged by the respondents when they had the opportunity to do so. The facts deposed to by the plaintiffs are credible.”

The judge blamed the Port Harcourt division of the Federal High Court for the conflicting orders that had so far been issued by him and from Port Harcourt.

Justice Abang said the Chief Judge, Justice Ibrahim Auta, having first assigned the case relating to PDP convention to him as far back as July 4, the Port Harcourt division ought to have drawn the CJ’s attention to the a case later filed with respect to the same subject matter.

Reacting to the news, PDP, through an official statement published on its Twitter hand, stated that the convention will continue despite the ruling by the High Court, as long as the other ruling by another Federal High Court siting in Port Harcourt is still valide

(INSERT Twitter feeds)

Who is not right?

The recent development and rulings by the two Federal High Courts has made people to ask questions about the independency of the Nigeria judiciary system and how it’s being runed.

The PDP has two leaders, both of whom are powerful former governors: 

  • Ahmed Makarfi, a former governor of Kaduna – his faction is in favour of the convention
  • Ali Sheriff, a former governor of Borno – his faction is against it and he views it as an attempt to oust him after falling out with some key players in the party. 

All efforts to reconcile the two powerful camps have so far failed. 

It is a sad state of affairs for a party which ruled Nigeria for 16 years until losing elections last year.

It also means that with so much infighting, the country’s main opposition is not focused in its job of holding President Muhammadu Buhari’s government to account.

Additional reports by Kunle Oyelewo and other agencies


SOURCE: The Bloomgist