The Taraba State government has inaugurated an 11-man task force committee to recover all looted items, as well as assess the level of damage done to private and government facilities in four local government areas of the state.
The deputy governor, Haruna Manu, inaugurated the committee on Friday in Jalingo, the state capital.
He explained that the rationale behind the constitution of the committee was to right the wrongs of the rampaging youths during the lootings carried out between October 24 and 27.
“The state government, in its constitutional responsibility of protecting lives and property, has already taken measures to curtail the excesses of these hoodlums who derive pleasure in violence by looting in the state capital and other three local government areas of Ardo-Kola, Takum, and Wukari,” he said.
Manu added, “Government has decided to set up this task force committee to recover all looted items from public and private offices or surrendered items in the state with a view to restoring them to their rightful owners who have fallen victims of circumstance.”
In his remarks at the inauguration ceremony, he listed the terms of reference to include identifying all persons who aided or abated the removal of public and private properties.
The committee was also charged to identify and ascertain all public and private properties looted, and the extent of damage or losses occasioned by the violence in the state.
Manu urged the committee led by Retired Lieutenant Colonel Nashuka Tukura to work within the ambit of the law and the Constitution of the country.
He also asked the members to identify casualties, recommend the way forward, and tender their report within 14 days.
“I call on the residents of Taraba to join hands and cooperate with the committee members to restore sanity to the socio-economic and political life of the state in order to bring about the desired development,” the deputy governor said.
He called on those involved in the looting to willingly surrender the items stolen, warning that failure to do so would attract severe consequences.
South-east governors and other leaders in the region have agreed to implement the 10-point demands of the Movement for the Actualisation of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB) and youth organisations to foster lasting peace and development of the region.
The decision was taken at a meeting between various leaders and youth groups which held on Friday at the Government House in Enugu State.
Ebonyi State Governor and Chairman of the South East Governors’ Forum, David Umahi, addressed reporters at the end of the meeting.
“Today, we interacted with a number of youth organisations in the South East. The communique of MASSOB in our meeting with them is quite informing and I am happy that our leaders at the federal level are here,” he said.
The governor added, “The ones our federal leaders will address immediately, they will and the ones the governors will address, we will immediately.
“And I am sure sometimes in December, working with all the committees we are going to set up to work on these demands, Mr President-General (of the Ohanaeze Ndigbo) will be able to lead select youths and some leaders to meet with Mr President.”
According to Governor Umahi, all the issues raised in the communique of MASSOB are valid and important to ensure lasting peace in the South East and the nation in general.
Some of the demands presented to the meeting by the MASSOB leader, Uche Madu, included the emergence of a president in 2023 from the region, disarming of killer herdsmen, and creation of a new state in the South East.
They also asked the leaders to set up a youth rehabilitation and empowerment fund to address unemployment in the region and take up the alleged imbalance in the federal civil service, among other demands.
Those present at the meeting included ministers and members of the National Assembly from the South East, as well as religious and traditional leaders in the region.
Novak Djokovic suffered his heaviest ever defeat in a three-set match on Friday when he was knocked out of the Vienna ATP tournament by lucky loser Lorenzo Sonego, stalling his bid to wrap up the year-end world number one ranking for a sixth time.
Italian Sonego, ranked 42 and who had intially lost in qualifying last weekend, is the first lucky loser ever to beat Djokovic.
His 6-2, 6-1 quarter-final stunner was 33-year-old Djokovic’s heaviest ever defeat.
The only other time the Serb had won just three games was at the 2005 Australian Open at the hands of Marat Safin in a best-of-five set encounter.
“He just blew me off the court, that’s all,” Djokovic told atptour.com.
“He was better in every segment of the game. It was a pretty bad match from my side, but amazing from his side.
“He definitely deserved this result,” added the Serb star who was playing his first tournament since his Roland Garros final defeat to Rafal Nadal three weeks ago.
Friday’s defeat means Djokovic will have to wait a little longer before he completes the formality of equalling Pete Sampras’s all-time record of ending the season top of the rankings for a sixth time.
“For sure it’s the best victory of my life. Novak is the best in the world. Today I played so, so good,” Sonego said.
“It’s unbelievable. It’s amazing. I played the best match in my life. I’m so happy for this.”
Sonego fired 26 winners past the Serb who lost for only the third time in 2020.
Djokovic, a 17-time major champion, managed just seven winners against 25 unforced errors.
Sonego goes on to face either Britain’s Dan Evans or Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria for a place in the final.
Second seed and defending champion Dominic Thiem also lost Friday, going down 7-6 (7/5), 6-2 to Russian world number eight Andrey Rublev.
Rublev hit 30 winners past the US Open champion and goes on to face South Africa’s Kevin Anderson for a place in the final.
“I came here with the mood that I have nothing to lose,” said Rublev who is chasing a fifth title of the year.
“I had already a really great season. I came here with zero expectations, just wanting to do my best. To try to fight every match. At the end, I am here in the semi-finals.”
Anderson made the semi-finals by accounting for Russian fourth seed Daniil Medvedev 6-4, 7-6 (7/5).
It was 2018 champion Anderson’s first top 10 win in two years.
Canada will aim to welcome 1.2 million immigrants from 2021 to 2023 to make up for a shortfall this year blamed on the pandemic, the immigration minister announced Friday.
The plan calls for accepting 401,000 new permanent residents in 2021, 411,000 in 2022, and 421,000 in 2023 — an immigration rate equal to about one percent of Canada’s population.
“The key to both short-term economic recovery and long-term prosperity is immigration,” Immigration Minister Marco Mendicino told a news conference.
Canada had expected to bring in 341,000 skilled workers, family members of Canadians, and refugees this year.
But because of closed borders and visa offices, quarantines, and few available international flights, only a fraction came.
“As with every other aspect of our lives, the pandemic has affected migration to Canada,” the minister commented.
The new target is about 50,000 per year higher than the previous goal.
To help make up the shortfall, Mendicino said the government would offer permanent resident status to temporary foreign workers, international students, and asylum claimants already in Canada.
He noted that immigrants have been “critical” to Canada’s pandemic response, representing one in four health care workers in hospitals and elderly care homes. They also account for one-third of business owners in Canada.
“Whether they’ve been taking care of our most vulnerable, or putting food on our tables, newcomers have played an outsized role in our response to Covid-19,” he said.
The Ogun State Judicial Panel of Investigation probing complaints of police brutality and abuse of human rights by security operatives says it has received 20 petitions within two weeks of its inauguration.
Chairman of the Panel, Justice Solomon Olugbemi (retired) disclosed this on Friday in Abeokuta, the state capital.
According to a statement issued by the panel’s spokesman, Femi Osipitan, Justice Olugbemi assured the people of the state of transparency and openness by the panel.
He said that the panel’s maiden sitting would hold on November 5, adding that subsequent sessions would be Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays by 10am at the Magistrate Court 1, Isabo, Abeokuta.
“The Chairman called on members of the public who have complaints to send in their petitions to the Secretary of the Panel or send online to email@example.com assuring that justice would be served accordingly,” he said.