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TB Joshua splashes N10 million on deportess from Libya (Photos)

A group of Nigerian deportees from Libya have revealed harrowing details of their thwarted efforts to illegally travel to Europe.

Fifty-two of the 154 who were deported from the North African country last Monday shared their sordid experiences publicly at The Synagogue, Church Of All Nations (SCOAN) in Lagos State on
Sunday 16th October where they had come to seek ‘refuge’.

According to Tracy Stephen, an Edo-State indigene, the treatment they endured in the course of their journey was nothing short of inhumane.

“My mother borrowed N280,000 to finance my travels,” the young hairdresser explained, surrounded by a bunch of other disheveled deportees, mainly female teenagers. “I deposited the money to the man that said he would take us abroad, although I never saw his face. He said I would be in Italy in two weeks.”

Tracy travelled from Edo State to Kano before being “packed like sardines” into the back of a Hilux van.

“We were 48 in the van which was supposed to take only 8,” she recounted.

The subsequent three-day journey through the Sahara Desert was hellish.

“We didn’t sleep nor eat or drink water,” she said, describing how dead bodies lay strewn across the desert floor, evidence that countless others attempting the same journey had woefully met their end.

Arriving in Sabha, Libya, Tracy reminisced on her first drink of water in more than 72 hours of the harsh sun.

 “The water was dirty but we didn’t have any choice. We drunk from the well before we discovered there was a dead body inside.”

Hidden under a makeshift ‘watermelon truck’, the journey continued until the group reached Tripoli where they were encamped for months along with hundreds of other illegal immigrants awaiting the dangerous sea crossing to Sicily.

“We ate only once a day – scraps of food which only filled the palm of your hand.” Vulnerable girls were raped regularly at gun-point by their traffickers.

When her turn finally arrived, Tracy was hoarded onto a flimsy rubber dinghy. A boat meant for less than 40 swelled until 140 had boarded – young children and babies amidst the adults.

“There was no life-jacket and none of us could swim,” she said.

Reaching Italian waters with no rescue boat in sight, the captain decided to retrace his steps back towards Libya when disaster struck.

“Fuel ran out and we were in the middle of nowhere. No food. No water. Just the sea.”

One of the immigrants on board soon died. “We were afraid to throw the body out of the boat because it would attract sharks,” she said. After three days adrift, the make-shift boat was eventually sighted by the Libyan coastguard.

“They arrested us all and sent us to prison for three months,” Tracy divulged.

Through the facilitation of the International Organisation for Migration (IOM), she was deported back to Nigeria last week.

“I wished I had not left my home and country,” she tearfully confessed. “These are the same clothes I have been wearing for the last seven months.”

Tracy’s experiences echoed countless more who recounted their tales including Osama Osifo, a 300-level University of Benin student, who said that he was kidnapped in Libya.

After several torture sessions with his older brother on the phone listening to the sound of his screams, a ransom of N250,000 was paid to secure his release. Whilst incarcerated, his elderly father died “because of the shock”.

 “I thought Nigeria was hell when I was leaving this place,” Osama stated after he was eventually deported following several months of suffering in Libyan prison. “I now see it as Heaven.”

“At Lagos airport, the IOM provided two buses – one to take us to our State and one to take us to Synagogue,” the albino stated. He opted to come to the church.

Precious Chioma sold all her possessions and travelled with her two young boys to Libya. However, she soon resorted to drinking her own urine and feeding it to her sons to survive the harsh conditions she met after being captured under the ‘watermelon truck’.

At the church service, N10,000,000 ($33,000USD) was given out to the group on behalf of ‘Emmanuel TV Partners’, with each of the deportees receiving N150,000 ($500USD) alongside two bags of rice to “start their lives afresh”.

Pastor TB Joshua used the opportunity to advise youth.

“It is where God wants you to make it that you will make it, not where you want to make it or where you admire,” he said.

He also advised people not to be deceived by the seemingly ‘flashy lifestyles’ of many who will be returning to their homeland during the festive season.

 “A decorated slave is not only a slave but a big fool. Be careful – appearance out there is deceptive. Warn your children!”

Ihechukwu Njoku is a freelance citizen journalist.

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Super Falcons striker, Asisat Oshoala, comes to Falz defence with regards to statement about glorifying fraudsters

Asisat Oshoala

Nigerian professional footballer, Asisat Oshoala, who plays as a forward in the Chinese Women’s Super league for Dalian Quanjian F.C., took to her Instagram to express deep concern about how people are now proud to be fraudsters.

 

 

In Falz’ defense, she insisted fraudsters shouldn’t be glorified.

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Police reacts to report of its officers collecting bribe with POS

The Nigeria Police Force (NPF) on Wednesday, June 21, reacted to a viral video of an officer caught on camera using Point of Sale (POS) machine to collect bribe.

Many Nigerians had expressed dismay at the attitude of the officer, which they said represented the level of corruption in the Nigeria Police Force.

We gathered that Abayomi Shogunle, the Assistant Commissioner Of Police, Public Complaint Rapid Response Unit in a statement released on its Facebook page said the force once used handheld machines to verify vehicle registration details.

Police officer using handheld device to check registration details of a vehicle

Shogunle also asked anyone who at any time paid a bribe to a police officer using a POS to come forward with proof.

It was reported earlier that the incident reportedly took place on Tuesday, June 20, at Olowora Street, in Mafoluku area of Oshodi.

The Lagos state Police Command also dismissed the video footage making the rounds on social media about one of its officers using a Point-of-Sale machine popularly known as POS to extort a commercial motorcyclist.

PPRO ASP Olarinde Famous- Cole, the motorcycle rider, and policemen Involved

The Command’s Public Relations Officer, ASP Olarinde Famous-Cole, on Wednesday, June 21, said it was necessary to address the situation so as to clarify the account of how the incident in question was reported on various social media platforms.

He disclosed that the video, which drew the attention of well-meaning Nigerians, saw a police officer, attached to the Makinde Police Division, allegedly using a POS to extort a motorcyclist and his passenger on Olowora Street, Mafoluku in Oshodi area on June 20, 2017.

Famous-Cole in a statement said, “The Lagos state police command would like to inform the general public that none of its personnel is in use of a POS machine in any part of the state.”

“The command would also like to state that the officer in the video is being investigated and the commercial bike rider has given a factual account of the event that happened to justify the actions of the police officer.”

“The officer and his team on that fateful day accosted a commercial bike rider and passenger who had a bag on him. The passenger upon inquiry from the police officer about the contents of his bag brought out a POS machine and other documents.

“When asked why he was in possession of a POS, the passenger said his customers usually paid for their utility bills with the POS machine. The passenger was then asked to produce a form of identification which he did and was asked to go by the policeman that accosted him. Famous Cole Added

The PPRO, however, urged members of the public to verify information and its sources before use on social media to avoid misconceptions emanating from false information.

In a previous report,  two traffic wardens, Musa Muktar with force number 394120 GDI and Shuaibu Suleman with number 10627 were sacked for alleged extortion.

The announcement was made by ACP Abayomi Shogunle, the assistant commissioner of police in charge of the Public Complaint Rapid Response Unit (PCRRU), in Abuja on June 20, 2017.

The statement showed that the sacked officers were attached to the Wuse Police Division in the Federal Capital Territory Command.

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“Even dead people signed my recall petition” – Dino Melaye alleges as he sues INEC

Dino Melaye

The Senator representing Kogi West in the house of assembly, Dino Melaye has dragged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) before the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court, seeking an order stopping the ongoing process by his constituents to recall him.

The Embattled Senator revealed this on Twitter Friday evening, while also sharing a photo of a copy of the court paper.

Dino Melaye

He alleged that the recall letter collated and sent to INEC on Thursday were being signed by fictitious, dead and none existing persons in his senatorial district.

Dino Melaye

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