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The Presidency has suspended the Director – General of the National Broadcasting Commission, Mallam Ishaq Modibbo Kawu , sources told
Sources in the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation said Modibbo reportedly got the suspension letter within the week but had been battling to have it reversed .
“ I have confirmed from the relevant department , it is true that the DG of NBC, Mallam Ishaq Modibbo Kawu , was ordered to be suspended by the President ( Maj . Gen . Muhammadu Buhari ( retd . ) following series of petitions and allegations against him ,” a source in the SGF office stated .
Yet , another source said he was asked to “step aside” following investigation of the petitions against him.
The suspension came many months after an ongoing prosecution of Kawu by the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other -Related Offences Commission for alleged corruption .
Consequently , the Director ( Broadcast Monitoring ) , Armstrong Idachaba, was said to have been directed to act pending the outcome of the case .
When  visited the NBC on Friday , the issue was being discussed in hushed tones among staff members .
But when contacted, the spokesperson for NBC, Ekanem Antia , told our correspondent that he would not speak on the issue as according to him , he did not have details of the allegation .
“I am not aware ( of it) , as we speak now . I don ’t have any document on my table to confirm ( it) . But we will issue a statement if at all it is true. The office is still working ; we are all in the office . Everybody is in their department ,” he said .
Several calls later put across to him didn ’t go through as his telephone line indicated that it was switched off.
Last year, a civil rights organisation under the aegis of Coalition Against Corruption and Bad Governance, said it had made a fresh discovery of 16 illegal slots of radio licences approved by the NBC DG.
The organisation had alleged that while six slots were for his private company, Word, Sound and Vision Multimedia Limited , another 10 were approved for companies which did not apply or were not on the list approved by Buhari .
The chairman of CACOBAG , Alhaji Toyin Raheem , who raised the issue in a statement issued in Abuja , claimed that a former SGF was one of the 10 beneficiaries of the radio licences recently doled out by NBC .
The CSO asked the Presidency to direct anti -corruption agencies , including the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission and ICPC to investigate its findings .
But Antia had said the allegations were not new as the same group had petitioned ICPC .
The ICPC had urged the Federal Government to suspend Kawu and 32 other public officers / civil servants undergoing corruption trial at the time .
The commission had arraigned Kawu and two others , Dipo Onifade and Lucky Omoluwa , on alleged N 2. 5bn fraud.
They are being prosecuted on 12 counts for allegedly conspiring with one another to use the position of Kawu to confer a corrupt advantage on Omoluwa , his friend and associate , for which they pleaded not guilty and were granted bail .
The anti – graft agency also charged Kawu for allegedly deceiving Mohammed to sign the deal.
The embattled NBC boss allegedly asked Mohammed to approve payment of N2 .5 bn to Pinnacle Communications Limited owned by Omoluwa as “Seed Grant ” under the Digital Switch- Over Programme of the Federal Government .
The suspended DG has

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Lawal Abdulsalam, Student of civil engineering, student from federal polytechnic Ede if you don't know Lawal Abdulsalam then perhaps you started blogging yesterday.He runs one of the most popular blogs on internet.

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EFCC: Ibrahim Magu opens up on ‘N550b missing interest’

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Ibrahim Magu, the suspended acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has denied the claim that he failed to account for the interest in the N550 billion recovered fund kept in the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, custody.

Recall that the Final Report of Presidential Committee on Audit of Recovered Assets, PCARA, surfaced at the weekend showing how interest rates accruing from N550 billion recovered by the anti-graft agency in the period from May, 2015, to May 2020.

The report said the EFCC, “Failure to report on the interest on actual lodgments clearly establishes that interest element of over N550 billion has been re-looted relating to the period under review.”

But in a statement by his lawyer Wahab Shittu on Sunday, Magu said such recovered fund kept with the CBN do not generate interest.

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The statement added, “It is falsehood that Magu placed N550 billion recovered loot into a deposit account.

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“The alleged transaction never featured in the proceedings before the Salami panel. Magu was never confronted with any such allegation by the panel and the news is blatant falsehood.

“To the best of Magu’s knowledge, no such amount is in any such account and he remains aghast at such outrageous figures. No one has confronted Magu with such allegations.

“All recovered funds are lodged in the Treasury Single Account (TSA) with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). Such recovered funds do not generate interest. This is elementary and can be verified from the CBN and the federal ministry of finance.

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“This can also be confirmed from other government revenue generating agencies. Funds kept in TSA account do not generate interest.”

Recall that President Muhammadu Buhari had on Friday suspended Magu as the acting chairman of the EFCC.

The agency’s Director of Operations, Mohammed Umar, has taken charge and now oversees the activities of the Commission pending the conclusion of the ongoing investigation into Magu’s case.

Magu, on Friday wrote the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, asking to be released on bail.

In a letter dated July 10, 2020, Magu’s legal representative, Oluwatosin Ojaomo, asked Adamu to grant bail to his client on “self recognizance.”

The acting EFCC Chairman was arrested on Monday and taken to the presidential Villa in Abuja, where he is being interrogated by a panel headed by Ayo Salami, a retired president of the Appeal Court.

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World risks another virus like COVID-19 – UN

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The United Nations Office on Drug and Crime (UNODC) says that the world risks another virus of the magnitude of COVID-19.

The UN warned that this could happen if the trafficking, sales and consumption of wildlife are not stopped.

UNODC, in a statement, said the World Wildlife Crime Report 2020 revealed that zoonotic diseases represented 75 percent of all emerging infections globally.

Diseases like SARS-CoV-2 that caused COVID-19 pandemic have already been linked to wildlife with pangolins top on the suspected list.

UNODC noted that the coronavirus pandemic “has shown that wildlife crime is a threat not only to the environment and biodiversity, but also to human health”.

It said when wild animals are poached from their natural habitat, butchered and sold illegally, the potential for transmission of zoonotic diseases is increased.

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UNODC added that pangolins, which were identified as a potential source of coronavirus, were the most trafficked wild mammals in the world.

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The body decried that Nigeria played a significant role in the trafficking and sales of pangolins with at least 51 tonnes of pangolin scales seized in 2019, from just two tonnes in 2015.

UNODC disclosed that in the last 20 years, it made 180,000 seizures from 149 countries and territories.

Executive Director, Ghada Waly, stressed that if wildlife crimes were not stopped, they would heighten the risk of a future public health emergency.

He said stopping the trafficking in wildlife species was a critical step not just to protect biodiversity and the rule of law, but to help prevent future public health emergencies.

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“To protect people and the planet in line with the Sustainable Development Goals, and to build back better from the COVID-19 crisis, we cannot afford to ignore wildlife crime”, the official appealed.

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