Three dead as explosion rocks Lagos-Ibadan expressway [PHOTO]

Three persons have lost their lives after fire broke out on Wednesday at Kwakyama area of Lagos-Ibadan expressway.

The explosion was following an accident involving a commercial bus and a fuel-laden tanker.

The accident caused a heavy gridlock along the road, with many motorists and passengers stranded.

The Public Relations Officer of Traffic Enforcement and Enlightenment Corps, TRACE, Babatunde Akinbiyi, who, confimed the incident attributed the tragedy to reckless driving.

He said ‎the accident scene was close to Kyakyama Filling station after Ogere toll gate, inbound Ibadan.

Mr. Akinbiyi said overspeeding by the truck driver made the fuel laden truck to flip over, before the ensuing fire razed a bus parked nearby.

Also, the Federal Road Safety Commission, Lagos State Command advised motorists to divert to Iperu, old Lagos/Ibadan expressway.

The command said rescue officers were already on ground to help the survivors.

Ecobank dragged to court over alleged N31m contract scam

A real estate firm, Jetland Properties Limited, has filed a N31m lawsuit against Ecobank Nigeria Limited over alleged breach of contract.

The firm, in the suit before the Lagos State High Court in Igbosere, alleged to have been engaged by the commercial bank to find a buyer for its property located at Plot 7, Block 10, Layi Yusuf Crescent, Lekki Phase 1, Lagos.

The firm said it entered into an agreement with Ecobank that it would be paid five per cent of the purchase price of the property.

It, however, alleged that after finding a buyer for the property for a price of N525m, the bank reneged on the agreement and refused to pay despite repeated demands.

It claimed that it was the refusal of the bank to honour the alleged agreement that prompted its resort to instructing its lawyer, Mr. Dipo Okpeseyi (SAN), to eventually file the lawsuit.

In a 35-paragraph affidavit deposed to by its Managing Director, Mr. Jude Azekwoh, Jetland Properties Limited claimed that it got the instruction to help Ecobank find a buyer for its said property through its then acting Head of Business Services, Mr. Mohammed Jalal.

Azekwoh said, “That in carrying out the respondent’s instructions, the applicant deployed all its efforts and resources in the search of a buyer for the said property as it is its custom of business as an estate agent and had taken several prospective buyers to the property.

“The first offer of N500,000,000 for the purchase of the said property which the applicant secured was rejected by the respondent.

“That after several months of painstaking efforts and contacts with other real estate firms to find purchasers, the applicant, as expected in its ordinary course of business, got an offer from another real estate firm, Messrs Barin Epega &Co.

“The applicant then introduced the offer of the prospective buyer of the property, Punuka Investment Ltd., to the respondent.”

He added the bank did not reply his letter but rather subsequently gave him a series of instructions towards the perfection of the sale of the property, with the buyer eventually paying N525m with a Value Added Tax of N26m that the bank confirmed on December 15, 2016.

He said despite being paid, the bank refused to pay his company the four per cent agency fee, which should have been N21m, a situation which made him to engage a lawyer for N10m to sue the bank.

Azekwoh, through his firm, is urging the court to compel the bank to pay him N21m as the four per cent agency fee and N10m as the cost of engaging a lawyer.

He wants the N31m to be paid with an annual interest of 35 per cent from August 1, 2017 till the judgment day and 15 per cent thereafter until the final liquidation of the alleged debt.

Besides, he wants N250m as the cost of filing the suit.

Efforts to reach the bank for reaction could not yield any result.

However, the court is yet to fix any date for hearing.

Final-year student of UMYU dies of snake bite

Image result for Final-year student of UMYU dies of snake biteIThe Department of Economics at the Umar Musa Yar’Adua University, Katsina, has been thrown into mourning, following the death of a final year student, Zainab Umar, from  snake bite.

The university authority, through its spokesperson, Fatima Sanda, confirmed the incident.

However, insisting that Umar died in her residence and not on campus, Sanda informed our correspondent that a formal statement on the incident would be issued today (Tuesday).

She said, “Zainab died on Sunday in her home. She was bitten by a snake on Friday and was treated at the University Health Centre immediately. Her parents came to pick her the following day, which was Saturday. What we heard this morning (Monday) is that she died. The university authority will issue a formal statement on the incident tomorrow (Tuesday).”

Umar, who was a spill-over student in the Economics Department, would have graduated from the institution last academic session. She was said to have died on Sunday night.

Also, a senior lecturer in the department and another student disclosed, on condition of anonymity, that the news of the deceased’s passage was broken to them in the morning through some of her friends who went to visit her at home.

The lecturer said, “It is so sad. Zainab’s class captain, who is now in Minna, Niger State, on national youth service, called me this morning to break the news. I understand she died on Sunday.”

17-year-old Lagos girl stabs boyfriend to death

Image result for 17-year-old Lagos girl stabs boyfriend to deathA 17-year-old girl, Hannah Osazuwa, has allegedly stabbed her lover, Tomide Akintoye, to death.

PUNCH Metro learnt that the incident happened on Gowon Estate, Lagos State, on Monday.

Although the immediate cause of the incident had yet to be ascertained by our correspondent as of the time of filing this report, comments on the Facebook account of the deceased suggested that they had a history of violence.

The tragic death came three days after Akintoye posted a status update on his Facebook page, Lifeoftomson Seun, wishing Osazuwa a happy birthday.

The post was accompanied by a selfie of the duo cuddling in the doorway, with an inscription, ‘she remains my queen.’

“Baby, on your birthday, I pray that you get whatever your heart desires. May this special day of yours bring with it God’s blessings and love into your life…. I love you,” he wrote on the Facebook page.

On Saturday, a day after the post, Akintoye took to his timeline again and wrote, “Sometimes, a man needs to die to leave (sic) again.”

On Monday, he was allegedly stabbed to death by Osazuwa.

A friend of Akintoye, Onyenma Chibundu, stated that he had been warned several times to stay away from Osazuwa to no avail.

Young Tommy, you were told several times to leave this b***h you took as your GF (girlfriend), you disagreed. Now she has taken your life  with her own hands. RIP bro; (I) will forever miss you,” Chibundu wrote on Facebook.

Akintoye and Osazuwa

Another friend of the deceased, identified simply as Jnr Slimzy,also corroborated Chibundu’s post, saying he had tried in vain to separate the lovers.

“I also warned him. Why as I travel this thing con happen? God knows best brother,” he stated.

In another post, Jnr Slimzy wrote, “Rest in perfect peace Lifeoftomson Seun. Never thought it could be you. I never wanted to hear this kind of news. Why would you leave me like this? It hurts so much. After we planned our future together, how could you just leave me like this? Do you know how much it hurts? Your memories can never be erased. My other half just disappeared…. RIP brother, blood, best friend, till we meet again.”

In his post, another friend, Jeda Harry, said the death was avoidable if Akintoye had yielded to his warning to quit the relationship with Osazuwa.

Grieved Sofia Blessing  said it was unfortunate that such fate befell Akintoye “after you told her you loved her on her BD (birthday), she stabbed you. Such wickedness!”

However, efforts to get further details about what transpired between the lovers from their friends proved abortive as none of them had yet to reply to text messages sent by our correspondent as of press time.

Meanwhile, a police source said there was a disagreement between them around 8am and Akintoye assaulted the suspect.

“The suspect retaliated and stabbed him with a pair of scissors in the chest. He was rushed to a hospital, but he bled to death,” the source added.

A commentator, Samantha Florence, said she was disturbed at incidence of violence among teenagers.

She wrote, “Teenage girls of these days are something else. Is it that their parents didn’t bring them up well or what? How can a girl of 17 think of stabbing someone?”

One Yinka Julius added, “Face of a murderer. Who will know this girl is capable of killing somebody… I think this generation is cursed. Na so one go drink sniper two days ago; another one killed her baby daddy in Gbagada just two weeks ago. Maybe God should just wipe this generation out.”

The Lagos State Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Olarinde Famous-Cole, who confirmed the incident, said the suspect had been arrested.

He, however, did not give further details.

He said, “Suspect arrested, while the case will be transferred to the homicide section of the State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department, Yaba.”

Women in court for selling baby for N605,000

A Minna Chief Magistrates’ Court has granted bail to a housewife, Eucharia Mba, who was earlier apprehended by the police for allegedly selling her four-month-old baby for N605,000.

Mba was arrested alongside Bright Ahuruezeanya of Chanchaga area of Minna and one Peter Ani.

The defendants are facing three counts bordering on criminal conspiracy, buying and selling of a minor.

The offence contravened sections 79 and 278 of the Penal Code Law.

According to the police First Information Report, one Mr. John of Mechanic Junction in Chanchaga, had sometime in September, 2017 reported to the police that Amaka Bright of the same address with Bright Ahuruezeanya conspired with his wife Eucharia and sold his four-month-old baby boy.

It was alleged that Eucharia and the other two accused persons left for Enugu State where they sold the baby to one Mr. Ani for N605,000.

The suspects, however, pleaded not guilty to the charges when the case came up for mention.

The presiding chief magistrate, Hassan Mohammed, ordered the remand of the two men involved in the matter and granted bail to the two women on health grounds.

The magistrate said, “The court will grant bail to the two accused women because one is eight months pregnant while the other one is nursing a four-month-old baby. It will be unjust to expose them to health hazard and it would be unfair to the innocent four months old baby and the one yet to be born.”

The magistrate later granted the two men bail in the sum of N500,000 each with a surety who must be resident within Minna, the Niger state Capital.

“They should also produce two recent passports as well as their national identification card,” the magistrate added.

The case was adjoined till October 18, 2017.

Court remands five over N15m fraud

Image result for Court remands five over N15m fraudAn Edo State High Court has remanded five former executive members of the Edo State Welders Association in custody.

The suspects were accused of stealing a sum of N15m belonging to the association.

They were arraigned on Monday by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on 15 counts bothering on conspiracy, stealing by conversation, forgery and altering.

The commission listed the accused to include Isaac Ogundimu, Monday Ewemade, John Odaro, Andrew Egharevba and Omorogbe Jacob.

The anti-graft agency stated that the former executive members committed the offences between January and December, 2016.

The charges read in part, “The offences are contrary to sections 383(1)(a), 390(9) and 516 of the Bendel State Criminal Code of 1976.”

The accused, who were arraigned before Justice Ohinai Ovbiadele, pleaded not guilty when the charges were read to them.

The case was adjourned till Wednesday, October 11, 2017, for hearing on the defendants’ bail application.

The justice, Ovbiadele, in his ruling, held that the accused should be remanded in custody until the adjourned date.

CAC Prophet poured liquid on my private part – Woman injured after deliverance from barrenness

A woman simply identified as Mrs. Omowale has accused one Prophet Oni Olakanye of CAC Palace of Mercy, Mathew Olokuta of administering a liquid substance in her private part during a deliverance session.

Mrs Omowale, who claimed the prophet collected the sum of N50,000 from her, said she became injured after Olakanye personally inserted a substance there during deliverance from infertility in Ado Ekiti, the Ekiti State capital.

Narrating her ordeal on 89.9FM in Ado-Ekiti, Mrs Omowale said, “I live in Lagos. One day, my younger brother called me that there was a prophecy from his Prophet, Prophet oni olakanye of CAC Palace of Mercy, Mathew, Olokuta, Ado-Ekiti, that I would need to come down to Ado-Ekiti for prayers concerning my infertility. I have married since 2011, but no child.

“So, I discussed the issue with my husband and he allowed me travel to visit the prophet.

“When I got to the prophet a few days later, he first prayed with me at the church reception. He subsequently called me down into one of the rooms in the mission house where he placed a mirror under my private part—the exercise he called inspection, and later poured some liquid substance in my private part and fingered it in by himself.

“He thereafter took me to bathroom where I bathed on a mortar with a black soap and native sponge while he stood in with me.

“He therefore demanded for N50,000 which I gave to him on the same day.

“Lastly, he gave me a ball-shaped substance to insert into my private part in the bedtime when I get home. I did according to his instructions.

“However, since then, my private part has been badly affected with wounds without cure yet.”

Reacting to Mrs Omowale’s allegation, Olakanye said, “I know her, but not all her allegations against me were true. I collected N50,000 to work for her and to ensure she has child in life.

“The substance I gave her to insert into her private part; she didn’t use it according to my instruction.”

5 killed as kerosene-laden tanker explodes along Abuja-Kaduna expressway

No fewer than five people died yesterday after a fuel tanker exploded at Tafa village along the Abuja-Kaduna Expressway.

An eyewitness, who asked not to be named, told journalists in Kaduna that the tanker laden with kerosene was trying to avoid dangerous potholes on the road when it suddenly fell by the roadside and burst into flames.

“Two of the deceased died after inhaling fumes from the flames and the other three were burnt by the fire,” he said.

According to him, many others who sustained severe burns have been hospitalised while several vehicles parked by the roadside were burnt.

Thousands of Abuja-Kaduna bound passengers were left stranded following the incident.

A spokesperson for the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), confirmed the incident to newsmen.

The official, however, said he could not ascertain if lives were lost in the incident.

The busy Kaduna-Abuja highway links the Federal Capital Territory with the North West and North East, with thousands of vehicles plying it every day.

It also links the North with the South through Lokoja, the Kogi State capital.

Clerk’s abductors demand N20,000 recharge cards

Image result for Clerk’s abductors demand N20,000 recharge cardsKidnappers of the Ikeja Local Government council clerk, Shamsideen Omotayo, reached out to his family on Thursday, demanding N20,000 recharge cards.

PUNCH Metro learnt that the abductors, who spoke with a member of the family on the telephone, also insisted on N20m ransom before the gang would release him and his driver.

Omotayo was being driven to the office in his official car on Tuesday when some gunmen waylaid him in Imota, Ikorodu, Lagos State.

The assailants whisked him and his driver away in the vehicle and later contacted the clerk’s immediate boss, demanding N20m ransom.

An official of the state’s neighbourhood security corps confided in our correspondent on Thursday that the kidnappers had established contact with a family member of the clerk.

He said, “They have allowed him to speak with his family. They asked them to send N20,000 recharge cards and insisted on the N20m ransom. He told the family that he and the driver were in good condition.”

The Information Unit Officer of the council, Ademola Bello-Onilegbale, could not be reached for comments.

The state Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Olarinde Famous-Cole, had yet to respond to a text message sent to him as of press time.

Whistle-blower alleges N1.2bn fraud in Niger SDG office

Image result for THE Governor of Niger State, Abubakar Bello,

THE Governor of Niger State, Abubakar Bello, has ordered full-scale investigation into an alleged fraud of N1.2bn in the state’s Sustainable Development Goals office.

Bello’s directive followed a petition by a whistle-blower who claimed that top officials of the organisation were involved in financial and contract scam.

The SDG officials were accused of misappropriating well over N1.2bn meant for different projects across the state.

It was learnt that the officials had claimed in their project reports that a number of ambulances and generators were purchased for some hospitals across the state which, according to the whistle-blower, turned out to be untrue.

The officials were also accused of awarding multi-million naira contracts which they allegedly cornered after collecting the contract papers from the contractors on the excuse that the contractors might not meet the specifications.

The suspects were said to have bribed the contractors with 30 per cent of the total contract sum.

According to the petition, the SDG officials also claimed to have rented a two-bedroomed apartment for N1.5m to be used as  ‘Corpers’ Lodge’ as against N150,000 that was paid as rent.

Disturbed by this development, the governor directed the Commissioner of Police in the state to carry out a full-scale investigation into the matter, promising to bring the perpetrators to book in line with his administration’s anti-corruption stand.

It was learnt that Bello had suspended some of the officials named in the scandal to prevent them from interfering with police investigation.

Northern City News, however, gathered that one of the officials involved in the alleged scam is still occupying his duty post on account of his alleged closeness to the state chief executive.

He and the governor were said to hail from the same senatorial district.

It was leant that police had made some arrests in connection with the incident, some of whom were reportedly released on bail.

The Police Public Relations Officer, Bala Elkana, on Thursday confirmed the receipt of the petition.

Elkana said, “We received a complaint from the governor and the commissioner has launched an in-depth investigation into the matter; reports of our findings will be submitted to the state government for necessary action.”