Four members of Nigeria’s cabinet, including the junior petroleum minister, said on Tuesday that they will not run in next year’s elections as planned after President Muhammadu Buhari gave them a Monday deadline to resign from their posts. The information minister said last Friday ten cabinet members had resigned in order to stand in ruling party primaries which decide who from the All Progressives Congress (APC) will run for the presidency, state governorship and senate. read more But junior petroleum minister Timipre Sylva and the ministers of justice, labour and women’s affairs, said on Tuesday they had decided to stay in their jobs to help the president deliver his policies. The country’s central bank governor Godwin Emefiele is seeking a court order to bar the electoral commission and the attorney general from preventing him from running for president without resigning his post. The matter will be heard on 23 May. More than 20 ruling party members have declared themselves candidates.

Gunmen have blocked the Abuja-Kaduna road and kidnapped several travellers. The Daily Post spoke to a witness, Ibrahim Musa, who narrowly escaped being kidnapped. Musa said the incident, which happened on Tuesday, lasted for more than an hour. According to him, they were approaching Kurmin Kare, close to Katari, when suddenly, he started hearing gunshots. He said while he was returning to Kaduna, he saw a convoy of security personnel, but that the bandits had left with the victims into the bush. The Abuja-Kaduna road has been the scene of a lot of kidnap incidents over the last few years, forcing many travellers to take to the train. However, last month, the train was attacked and hundreds of people were kidnapped. Most are still missing.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has arrested and detained a former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Patricia Etteh, the second arrest by the anti-corruption agency in five days according to Premium Times. Mrs Etteh, who was Speaker between 6 June and 30 October 2007, was arrested in Abuja on Tuesday by operatives of the Special Duty Unit of the anti-graft agency, those familiar with the matter said. The former lawmaker is currently being interrogated for allegedly receiving a suspicious ₦130 million payment from a contractor the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) awarded a solar-powered electrification project in Akwa Ibom. The said contract was awarded to a certain Phin Jin Project Limited in 2011 for ₦240 million. Questions remain about whether the company is registered with Nigeria’s Corporate Affairs Commission.  Investigators are now saying weeks after the contractor was paid the mobilisation fee for the project, ₦130 million was transferred to Mrs Etteh who is neither a director nor a shareholder of the company on record. The EFCC is also suspicious that the contractor did not execute the contract after payment was received. Mrs Etteh was removed from her position in the House of Representatives amid a scandal in October 2007 although she was later absolved of allegations of fraud levelled against her by colleagues. She was accused of awarding a ₦628 million contract for the renovation of her official residence and that of her deputy as well as the purchase of 12 official vehicles. The legislators insisted that the award of the contract did not follow due process. The same year, Mrs Etteh dumped the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to join the ruling APC.

Uganda will pull troops from neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo in two weeks, the military said on Tuesday, after a joint operation against Islamist insurgents since late last year. President Yoweri Museveni’s government sent hundreds of soldiers into eastern Congo in December to join the Congolese military in an assault on the bases of the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF). “Operation Shujaa will officially cease in about 2 weeks according to our original agreement,” tweeted Uganda’s land forces commander Muhoozi Kainerugaba, using the code name Shujaa which is Swahili for “hero”. “It was supposed to last for 6 months. Unless I get further instructions from our Commander-in-Chief or CDF (chief of defence forces), I will withdraw all our troops from DRC in 2 weeks,” added Kainerugaba, who is also Museveni’s son. But Congo government spokesman Patrick Muyaya said later on Tuesday that the terms and timeline of Uganda’s withdrawal would need to be agreed by both countries’ leaders before it could go ahead. Uganda’s deployment of at least 1,700 soldiers constituted the largest foreign intervention in Congo in over a decade, apart from a United Nations peacekeeping operation. The ADF began as an uprising in Uganda but has been based in Congo since the late 1990s. It pledged allegiance to Islamic State in mid-2019 and is accused of killing hundreds of villagers in frequent raids over the past two years. Uganda blamed the group for a triple suicide bombing in its capital Kampala on 16 November which killed seven people, including the bombers.