Although the Nigeria Army says it inflicted heavy casualties on Boko Haram/ISWAP fighters who launched an attack on Geidam, Yobe on Friday, a federal lawmaker disputes this. The lawmaker said the insurgents were still in charge of the town. The spokesperson of the army, Mohammed Yerima, in a press release Saturday evening, had attributed the success of the operation to the “air component of Operation Lafiya Dole.” He said a gun truck and assorted weapons were recovered from the insurgents during the fight. He also commended the efforts of the soldiers for successfully engaging the insurgents. However, the federal legislator representing Geidam, Yunusari and Bursari Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives, Lawan Shettima, said the insurgents were still in control of Geidam town. “Authoritatively I can tell you that these insurgents have taken over Geidam. You can see the videos and the pictures as they move about burning what they want,” Mr Shettima said. The lawmaker also said his constituents “have been under the mercy of Boko Haram for more than 24 hours without any credible challenge”. “My people are helpless, you can’t imagine that as a full Nigerian citizen you can be at the mercy of Boko Haram for the past 24 hours and nobody cares to do anything about it. They will send jets that will go and bomb innocent people instead of Boko Haram. This is the kind of thing that is going on now. “The military formation that is stationed there does not care to react to what is happening or to counter them. The military is sitting at the western side of the town while Boko Haram are busy moving around town destroying government structures and other things belonging to our people, attacking or harassing innocent people sent out of their houses. The only word I can use here is that people are helpless in their motherland. This is very terrible,” he said.
A new law signed by Lagos Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu mandates agencies like the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission, and other anti-graft agencies to hand over corruption cases to the state government. According to the legislation titled ‘Lagos State Public Complaints and Anti-Corruption Commission Law,’ a new anti-corruption agency will have the exclusive rights to investigate financial crimes and corruption cases involving the finances of the Lagos State Government. Section 13(3) of the law reads, “The commission shall upon the commencement of this law take over the investigation of all anti-corruption and financial crime cases involving the finances and assets of Lagos State Government being investigated by any other agency.” Section 13(5) also states, “The commission shall have the power to the exclusion of any other agency or body to investigate and coordinate the investigation of corruption and financial crimes cases involving the finances and assets of the state government.” Currently, three former Lagos governors, Bola Tinubu, Babatunde Fashola and Akinwunmi Ambode, are under investigation by the EFCC. The anti-graft agency is also investigating the Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Mudashiru Obasa, who helped facilitate the passage of the law. Observers think the Lagos law would not survive legal scrutiny as the powers given to the new anti-corruption agency are extensive and Section 4(5) of the 1999 Constitution establishes the supremacy of federal law over state law, especially in corruption matters. Nigeria’s main anti-corruption agencies, the EFCC and ICPC were established in furtherance of the FG’s exclusive legislative powers.
The Nigerian army says security operatives conducted a raid on the headquarters of the Eastern Security Network (ESN) in Imo on Saturday, during which the deputy commander of the group, identified as Ikonson, was killed. Army spokesman Mohammed Yerima, a Brigadier-General, confirmed the development, adding that six other top ESN members died during the operation. Yerima alleged that Ikonson was behind the recent attacks on the police command and the correctional centre in Imo, adding that security operatives had been on his trail. He explained that the joint operation was carried out by officers of the Nigerian army, police, and the Department of State Services (DSS). In a statement on Saturday, the army spokesman said Ikonson was tracked to Awomama village in Oru East Local Government Area, during which a gun duel ensued. Four security operatives died during the operation.
The rebel group Front for Change and Concord in Chad (FACT) has said it is willing to discuss a ceasefire, days after Chadian President, Idriss Déby, was killed in fighting between government forces and rebels in the restive north of the country. “FACT is ready to observe a ceasefire for a political settlement that respects the independence and sovereignty of Chad and does not endorse a coup d’état,” FACT spokesman Kingabe Ogouzeimi de Tapol told Reuters on Sunday. Déby, a commander who ruled Chad with an iron fist for 30 years, went to visit troops who were fighting FACT in the northern part of the country. The rebels had crossed the northern Libyan border on 11 April, calling for Déby to leave office. The president had just won his sixth election and was due to return to N’Djamena, the capital, for a victory party when he was wounded. He died of his wounds on Monday. FACT fighters advanced to within around 300 km of the capital before the Chadian army pushed them back. The rebel declaration comes after the Chadian air force bombed their positions on Saturday, which was confirmed by both sides. The Chadian military said it had “annihilated” the rebels. A military council headed by Déby’s son, Mahamat Idriss Déby, seized power after his death and dissolved the parliament. The council has said it will oversee an 18-month transition. The African Union expressed “grave concern” about a military takeover in Chad. Niger President Mohamed Bazoum and Mauritania President Mohamed Ould Ghazouani are the AU mediators in the crisis, while the United Nations are speaking with both sides. France and other allies have backed a mixed civilian-military compromise.