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Lagos Magistrate Under Investigation For Assigning Disputed Mortgage Property To Defendant Accused Of Domestic Violence Against Spouse

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*Court document and evidences

Mrs. Balogun L.Y., a Lagos Chief Magistrate 1, may have gotten herself into some trouble over a court consent judgment she rendered about a contentious two-story building that was involved in bank mortgage loan litigation. She also evicted the alleged female property owner, Mrs. Maryanne Mgbeahuruba, from her apartment in favour of her estranged husband, Mr. Samuel Ifeanyichukwu Mgbeahuruba, who is being charged with domestic violence at Yaba Magistrate Court 3 in Lagos State.

Maryanne’s estranged husband, Mr. Samuel Ifeanyichukwu Mgbeahuruba, is accused of domestic violence against her, according to police information, welfare, local government, the Lagos State Agency, and court procedures. As a result, the Inspector General of Police, via the FCID annex in Alagabon, Ikoyi, Lagos, dragged him to Magistrate Balogun’s court in a case marked as Charge No. C/116/23.

When Mrs. Maryanne was called into the magistrate’s chamber for the “discussion” that resulted in the contested Consent judgment, her attorney, Bartholomew Ajagbo Esq., was not present, according to our correspondent who saw the consent judgment handed down by Magistrate Balogun. In contrast, the husband and his attorney were fully represented.

Outside of court, Maryanne claimed that the “Chief Magistrate intimidated her and denied her right to speak out of her mind despite her protest, whose body language and reactions appeared at ease with her estranged husband and his lawyer, Mr. Chinedu Nwosu, inside the Chamber.”

The woman expressed astonishment and dismay upon discovering the alleged court consent judgment, which she claimed she constructed with a bank loan, allocating and sharing three apartments, including the penthouse, with her divorced spouse. The judgment stipulated that she had to move into a different apartment and submit a compliance report by January 8, 2024.

Through her attorney, Bartholomew Ajagbo, Maryanne filed an appeal against the contentious decision made by Magistrate Balogun to allocate her building. On December 28, 2023, the couple requested that the court postpone the execution of the ruling until the appeal was resolved.

In the motion’s affidavit, which was sworn to by Edwin Madubuofu Associates, 42 Alli Street, Lagos Island, and Bartholomew N. Ajagbo Esq., the litigation clerk, Mr. Gani Okeowo, stated under oath that Maryanne was not happy with the content of the consent judgment, which is why the appeal was filed.

He brought to the honourable court’s attention a charge that was still pending against Samuel Ifeanyichukwu Mgbeahuruba. According to him, the charge stemmed from the fact that the consent judgment was delivered on December 20, 2023.

Since Samuel Ifeanyichukwu Mgbeahuruba was the obvious target of the lawsuit, Okeowo argued that the court had erred in its decision and that the magistrate might not have had the authority to hear the case and issue a consent judgment as it did on December 20, 2023.

Barrister Bartholomew Ajagbo began his written address in support of the motion on notice as follows:
“This is a motion on notice brought under Section 6(6) of the 1999 Federal Republic of Nigeria Constitution (as amended), Section 273 of the Lagos State Administration of Criminal Justice Law 2015 with Amendment 2021, under inherent jurisdiction or the Honourable Court. To Order 54 of the High Court of Lagos State (Civil Procedure) Rules 2004 and under the Honourable Court’s inherent jurisdiction under Section 6(6) of the 1999 Federal Republic of Nigeria Constitution.”

For this reason, he requested “AN ORDER for the stay of execution of the consent judgment (or order of this Honourable Court delivered on the 20/12/2023 by His Honour, Mrs. L.Y. Balogun (Chief Magistrate 1) pending the hearing and determination of Appellant/Applicant’s appeal AND for such further or other orders as this Honourable Court may deem fit to make in the circumstances of this case.”

Declaring the basis for the application, he cited the motion papers, citing the nine paragraphs of an affidavit that was deposed to Mr. Gani Okeowo, Litigation Clerk at the Law Firm of Bartholomew Ajagbo & Edwin Madubuofu Associates; the applicant’s counsel; and the paragraphs of the aforementioned affidavit, particularly paragraphs 2 through 9.

He stated that the questions to be answered are “whether the Applicant herein, is entitled to an order for stay of execution of the Consent judgment of this Honourable Court pending the outcome of her appeal to the Court of Appeal” in his brief Statement of Facts, which is included in the affidavit supporting the application.

During the legal argument, the Counsel pointed out that for an application for a stay of execution to be successful, the applicant must first demonstrate that there is an ongoing appeal against the judgment whose execution is being sought to stay. But the law has long been established that an appeal does not function as a stay.

The applicant needs to present a compelling case to the court that will convince it to grant a stay to succeed once more. For the court to stay the execution of the consent judgment while the appeal is being heard, the applicant must demonstrate such a unique circumstance.”

Subsequently, he directed the court to review the affidavit in support along with Exhibits “A,” “B,” and “C.”
an appeal against the aforementioned consent judgment has already been filed, as evidenced by the 1995 case of Elf Marketing (Nig.) Ltd. v. J.L. Oyeneyin & Sons.

Paragraphs 2 through 9 of the affidavit in support were cited by Maryanne’s legal team as evidence of the special circumstance, stating that the consent judgment constituted an absolute violation of the applicant’s right to a fair hearing.

While pleading with the court to approve the application, Ajagbo argued that the aforementioned passages adequately demonstrate that the applicant has established the required extraordinary circumstances, which is crucial for the court to consider when deciding whether to grant the requested relief.

In a previous deposition, Maryanne’s attorney stated that the respondent, the Inspector General of Police, would not suffer any consequences if the application was approved. Inspector Tosin Adebayo, the prosecutor, is the officer in charge of the OC Legal Department at Force CID Annex in Alagbon, Ikoyi, Lagos.

In part, the contentious court consent ruling from December 20, 2023 states: “After this court assisted in bringing the victim and defendant together, they agreed as follows: 1. To protect the victim and stop more domestic abuse and disturbance, the parties agreed that the victim will move into the apartment currently occupied by her nephew, while the defendant will stay in the matrimonial apartment. Both apartments have equal amenities.)”

The parties have agreed that each party will take ownership of three of the remaining six apartments for the sole purpose of collecting rent while the other party uses the front stairs. The parties have also agreed that the defendant will continue to use the front stairs, while the NC will continue to use the back stairs to access her apartment in the High Court proceedings regarding the discussion of marriage that the NC first started.

Also, the court decided that Maryanne’s removal from her original home was necessary for her safety rather than ownership, but it also ordered her to remove her personal belongings and necessities, barred her husband from getting too close to her or speaking negatively or abusively about her, and directed the husband’s attorney to inform all of Marianne’s tenants of the ruling.

In a petition to the State Chief Judge, which was filed on December 28, 2023, Maryanne further protested the decision, stating vehemently that she had not been given a fair hearing.

Maryanne’s attorney, Barrister Bartholomew Ajagbo Esq., had previously notified the court of “the harassment, intimidation, assault and attempted murder of Maryanne, which resulted to bodily injury, which constituted a breach of peace, with the attendant threatening violence and serious threat to Life,” in a case between Samuel Ifeanyichukwu Mgbeahuruba and Maryanne, dated July 21, 2021, and designated as Suit No.,fal/33bi.

In the notice of summons, the attorney requested that the court impose a stay on Samuel Ifeanyichukwu Mgbeahuruba’s continued harassment, molesting, and disturbing Maryanne in her home at 19 Olatunji Idowu Street, Off Ago – Palace Way, Okota, Isolo, Lagos state.

In his plea, he begged the court to send Samuel Ifeanyichukwu Mgbeahuruba to prison if he is unable to provide justification for his actions and an explanation for why criminal form D 4 should not be filed against him.

In a twenty-three-paragraph affidavit that bolstered her complaint, Maryanne described how, 29 years ago, or precisely in 1992, she married Samuel Ifeanyichukwu Mgbeahuruba with the goal of a peaceful coexistence. However, she soon discovered that Samuel was unfaithful, inconsistent, and flirtatious, which caused problems in their marriage and led to attempts by Samuel to kill her and her son.

She complained to Samuel Ifeanyichukwu Mgbeahuruba about teeth bites and beatings even when she was three months pregnant with their only daughter. The issue worsened in 2010 and 2012 when Samuel nudged her in front of her employees, and she filed a report to the Isolo local government area’s Welfare department.

As a result of multiple attempts on her life, she claimed, Samuel denied her the constitutional immunity guaranteed by the 1999 constitution, a situation that worsened soon after she finished construction.

Furthermore, she claimed that Samuel, who she described as demonic, had poured her an odd, poisonous, and dangerously foul-smelling substance in addition to dousing her in hot water, which was reported to the Ago Palace Police Station. Samuel also spread this substance throughout her flat and the building she had built with her hard-earned money.

“That, Samuel attempted to kill her even after putting her in a wheelchair in addition to wounding her severely enough to require transport to the Orthopaedic Hospital in Igbobi, Lagos.

She expressed her regret for the repeated illegal acts, saying they have made it difficult for her to leave her room. She also claimed that the unconstitutional and illegal torture she has endured—which has included mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual abuse—has left her with serious health issues, including spinal cord injury and waist pain. Furthermore, she is currently undergoing surgery to remove plates that have been inserted into her body.

She further claimed that Samuel had destroyed her kitchen door in addition to causing her pain and persistent threats and attacks.

Appealing, she begged the court to stop Samuel to prevent her from dying too soon and from a breach of public order, stating that “Samuel Ifeanyichukwu Mgbeahuruba is a trafficker who deals on hard drugs, such as Indian hemp, heroin, cocaine, and other hard drugs, which has resulted in his deportation from Spain to Nigeria and the imprisonment of two of his boys, namely Charlie Nwagbo and Ambrose Egbosimba, who were in Kiri Kiri prison and finished their jail terms.”

According to their marriage certificate, their more than three-decades-long relationship officially began on June 5, 1999, when they were married under the Act and joined together at a Catholic church in the Ijeshatedo neighbourhood of Lagos.

Bemoaning the misfortunes that awaited her in the volatile marriage, the traumatised wife, Maryanne, detailed how the divorced husband tricked her into marrying him at a young age and enticed her to move to Lagos from Jos, Plateau state, where she had lived with her late mother and two sisters.

Unfortunately, Samuel is accused of misleading her by taking her to his friend’s office in the Palm Groove neighbourhood of Onikpan, which he claimed to be his office as an importer and exporter. It was only after she became pregnant and gave birth to their only child, who was named after his father Ifeanyichukwu Mgbeahuruba, that she learned that her husband was allegedly involved in the illegal drug trade.

Maryanne, clearly enraged, described the terrible and painful ordeals she had to go through with her first pregnancy after her husband was repeatedly found and jailed for drug trafficking in Spain and Holland for terms ranging from 4 to 6 years, leaving her to suffer alone in Lagos.

In addition, she recalled how she began by hawking goods in traffic jams and driving trucks. Afterward, some kind people introduced her to the world of beer and soft drink sales and distribution, from which she raised a sizeable sum of money to pay drug cartels who later imprisoned her husband in Holland, freed him from prison abroad, and began a two-story building project that she eventually borrowed bank loans to finish in 2015. She claimed that this was the main reason her husband had been at

Maryanne broke down in tears as she revealed that she had sold Senator Mantu the mother’s building and other property, and raised over $70,000 to free her husband from drug cartels in Holland that were holding him captive for drug surety. He stood in for his colleagues in the drug trade who had abandoned their son and fled. Maryanne also gave our correspondent access to court records, police department files, petitions, crime extracts, charge sheets, case files about domestic abuse against h

She further claimed that his spouse had children with a US woman whose son is currently 34 years old, and that is why he wanted to deprive her son of his inheritance. This is despite the $50,000 I lost while attempting to give him and my children a godly life in the United States. When I finished the building, the best thing he could have done for me was to tag me with a witch and a wonton creature from the marine kingdom who tied his destiny.

Maryanne also offered proof in the form of photos purporting to show the husband’s adultery in Nigeria and Holland with a “prophetess” (names withheld), whose only daughter is said to have caught him having sex on their bed.

“My case with Samuel Ifeanyichukwu Mgbeahuruba is well-known throughout the legal system, the police, the Lagos State Domestic and Sexual Violence Response Team, and our Umuchu village in Anambra State, where he had previously filed for divorce. He sent his official notification letter dated November 4, 2023, addressed to Ozara Akukwa, Umuchu General Assembly, Lagos branch, where I was the Chairperson. This is the best reward I have received, as I was able to remove his shame by providing his vi

Interestingly enough, he is still residing in my home, attempting to murder me, and still has a bank mortgage on it. He even rented out one of my apartments for N5 million while I was in Canada to move my only daughter and son; he wanted to kill them. He has not sued me in any court to contest my building; instead, the case I have in court regarding the building is with the bank that provided me with the loan. He has made multiple fruitless attempts to sell my building behind my back, and falsely accused my son of belonging to a cult, only to have him put away, kill me, and take over the property. It will surprise everyone

“To the best of my knowledge, there is no ongoing High Court dissolution of marriage case, as referred by the Magistrate in her judgment,” she continued. “Regarding this annoying judgment, he was charged to court by the Inspector General of Police on the issues of domestic violence. Unfortunately, the Magistrate court decided to detour, shared my property with him, and delegated an unknown lawyer to notify my tenants.” “I am contesting the judgment because I was not given a fair hearing, I was in

“I am calling on the Chief Justice of Lagos State Judiciary, to save me and take over the case, reassign the case to an impartial Court,” she said, appealing for justice.

Samuel Ifeanyichukwu Mgbeahuruba acknowledged knowing Maryanne as his ex-wife during a phone interview with our correspondent. He stated, “I know her, she is my ex-wife, I have traditionally divorced her.”

However, he declined to comment when asked about the claims of drug trafficking, attempted murder, and domestic abuse because he said the case was still pending in court.

“Thank you very much, but I am unable to comment at this time due to the ongoing legal proceedings. I would like to discuss this matter further with the court or the Judiciary Judge. If your office handles litigation outside of law enforcement, please invite me here so that you can hear my side of the story before drawing any conclusions and conducting further investigation. I can bring my documents.”

He said, “She has taken me to Isolo, Okota, Festac, Ikeja, Alagbon, and Lagos State Human Right Centres,” in response to a question about matters not yet before the court.

He said, “The video is viral internationally. She has been abusing my rights on Facebook, but that is a tale for another day.”

She has extended an invitation to the Sun Newspaper regarding this issue. Remember that there may be light at the end of the tunnel, so hold onto your facts.

He stated, “After the judgment, everything I have to say about this woman should be broadcast nationwide.”

“One thing that I have discovered is that some women take advantage of maybe Christianity and men to think that they have the right to do whatever they want,” he continued.

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Abakaliki Lawyers Association Hails Elevation Of Justice Obande Ogbuinya To Supreme Court

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Justice Ogbuinya
By Chuks Eke
Lawyers from Abakaliki in Ebonyi state who are based in various parts of Anambra state, under the auspices of the Anambra-based Abakaliki Lawyers’ Association, have praised the Federal Government of Nigeria for appointing Justice Obande Ogbuinya to the status of a Supreme Court Justice in accordance with the principles of Federal Character as provided under Section 14(2) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 as amended.
The Federal government, through the Judicial Service Commission and the National Judicial Council, NJC, nominated Justice Obande Ogbuinya as a Supreme Court Justice, along with other Appeal Court Justices, who were sworn in on February 26, 2024.
In a press statement issued yesterday in Onitsha, Anambra state, the Chairman of the Association, Barrister Victor C. Alo, stated that Justice Ogbuinya’s elevation was welcome news, as he had reached the pinnacle of the bench.
Alo described Justice Ogbuinya as a well known committed and dedicated man of proven integrity, who hails from Ohaukwu Local Government Area,Abakaliki in Ebonyi state.
He practised law in Anambra state with us and had a law firm on Oguta Road in Onitsha before being appointed to the Bench as a High Court Judge in 2002.
In 2010, he was promoted to Appeal Court Justice, and now he serves on the Supreme Court.
According to Alo, the entire Abakaliki lawyer community in Anambra state is very proud of him, and they are taking this opportunity to encourage him to remain steadfast, focused, and resolute in the administration of justice as a Justice of the Supreme Court.
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Protests Rock Anambra Community Over Alleged Land Encroachment

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Protesters

By Chuks Eke*

The people of Umuenu village, Umuawulu community in Awka South Local Government Area, Anambra state, staged a peaceful protest against illegal encroachment into their ancestral land, Agu Udo/Agu Ofu, by a neighbouring village, Abo Ani, in Orunba North Local Government Area, hometowm of Chief Ernest Ezeajughi, Chief of Staff to Governor Chukwuma Soludo.

Protesters accuse Ezeajughi of using his position as Soludo’s Chief of Staff and Awgbu community indigene to influence the state boundary committee Chairman, Ifeanyichukwu Ibezim, to suppress Umuenu villagers of Umuawulu and favour Abo-Ani villagers of Awgbu.

However, in a swift response, Ezeajughi debunked the Umuenu villagers’ allegation, describing it as extremely spurious.

Ezeajughi, who denied the allegations over the phone, stated that the Deputy Governor is the Chairman of the Boundary Committee, which is responsible for investigating and resolving boundary disputes in the state.

“I am not aware of any meeting, nor was I a member of the team that went to inspect or demarcate the disputed land between villages in Umuawulu and another village in the Awgbu community. According to Ezeajughi, only the Deputy Governor has the authority to preside over land matters brought before the Anambra State Boundary Dispute Commission.

In response, Deputy Governor Ibezim stated, “I made changes to our boundary committee”. I took the time to physically visit these disputed areas and verify all of the claims. At the very least, we would be able to see every sign of demarcation, such as trees, rivers, and landmarks that keep communities together’, the Deputy Governor said.

Ibezim stated, “In the case in question, I went there, walked for kilometres through the bush, and stood there. The two villages and a community – because it is between Enugwu village in Umuawulu, Umuenu village in Umuawulu, and Abo Ani in Awgbu, all for the case in my office, and we set a date to go there. Surprisingly, Umuenu did not show up.

“There, we did not want to make our own decision, so I called the leader of Umuawulu and the lawyer representing them, only to discover that after all of us agreed to meet there, he went back, because he was part of the decision that we would go physically there, and he told me that he decided later to go to court again.”

“I made no statements there. All I told the people present was that we had seen things and would return to make our decision. I left. Whatever they are saying is simply a result of their unwillingness to let peace reign. We have not issued an official statement or made a decision on this matter. “They should wait for my decision first.”

“I have not made a final decision, and they are carrying placards. I simply stated that I had heard and seen the location, but had not made a decision.

When asked if the Supreme Court decision referred to by Umuenu residents favoured the village, the Deputy Governor responded, “People lay claims to all sorts of things.” Let them deliver the Supreme Court decision. You have this and that judgement; we have lawyers.”

“As the executive arm of the government, we have a statutory responsibility to protect judicial decisions. To even protect the laws enacted by the legislature because we control the means to do so.

“I do not own any land there. I do not want to have one because I am not from Umuawulu or Awgbu. So, when someone calls the Chief of Staff or anyone else, the Chief of Staff does not accompany us and is unaware that we are going there.”

“There is something called monumentation. Ask them if we have done monumentation, which is when we physically go out and use beacons to fix and establish boundaries. Let them decide whether we did that. Let them say whether I pointed to any point as the boundary.”

“Many elders from other villages went with us and climbed the hills, but there was no single representative from Umuenu; in the meantime, you agreed to be there on a date you even set. There is so much insincerity in this land dispute. Some claim that we go out and place beacons in order to obtain lands for ourselves. I just wonder why I should do that,” said Ibezim.

Protesters held placards reading, “Governor Soludo come to our rescue, Abo Ani encroached on our land, we have supreme court judgement in our favour on the land, Deputy Governor Onyekachukwu Ibezim is biassed, Deputy Gov has been influenced by Chief of Staff who hails from Awgbu, Deputy Gov writes scripts of Chief of Staff and former director of Anambra State Boundary Commission, Chief Davidson Nkala, Soludo intervene before they take over.”

Speaking to reporters during the protest, the protesters’ spokesperson and former chairman of the Umuenu Umuawulu community, Chief Humphrey Obi, recounted how the land dispute began in the 1960s and how Umuenu won all three court cases involving the Court of Republic of Biafra, Onitsha Judicial Division, the Supreme Court of Nigeria, and others that ruled against the Abo Ani Awgbu community.

Obi specifically cited the July 5, 1967 decision of the High Court of the Republic of Biafra, Onitsha Judicial Division, presided over by Justice W. O. Egbuna in the suit filed by Jerome Okpala and Nwanaka Nwankwo for themselves and on behalf of Umuenu village, Umuawulu against Richard Onyenegbu and five others for themselves and as representing the people of Abo-Ani village, Awgbu, which gave Umuenu village victory.

In the judgement, which bears the suit number 0/41/1963, Justice Egbuna stated: “I have monitored the evidence led by the plaintiffs and I am satisfied that this Aguofu land in dispute belongs to the Umuenu people of Umuawulu and not to the defendants, Abo-Ani Awgbu.”

The court went on to say, “I am also convinced that the plaintiffs have been farming on this land, received a judgement over it in 1928, and have continued to use the land until the defendants trespassed into it.”

He stated that, dissatisfied with the three court decisions, the Abo Ani people went to the Anambra State Boundary Commission, which was chaired by the Deputy Governor, His Excellency, Onyekachukwu Ibezim, and demanded the demarcation of the disputed land.

“At the Commission, we insisted that we are the owners of the land and that the Supreme Court’s decision must be followed because it is still binding law.

“Funny enough, our brother Enugwu community Umuawulu, who supported Abo Ani and testified against us in court that Abo Ani owned the land, has now reversed course and claimed that the land belongs to them, Enugwu, demonstrating that they are backed up by some powerful forces from the state government.

“While we were interfacing with Abo Ani at the meeting presided over by the Deputy Governor, he informed us that he has no business with the Supreme Court judgement and others, and that he has not even gone through the documents we submitted; he only wants the inspection and demarcation of the land in dispute.

“It is clear from the Deputy Governor’s utterances that he is biassed and influenced by the Chief of Staff, who is from Awgbu, and Nkala, a former Director of the Anambra State Boundary Commission, which is why we are calling on Governor Soludo to come to our rescue.

“It is the sacred duty of the Anambra State Boundary Committee to follow and apply the said demarcation as judiciously fixed to accord with the judicially fixed boundary, as anything less will not only amount to the Anambra State Boundary Committee reviewing and reversing the judgement of the competent court, but will also amount to contempt of court,” Obi warned.

In a petition to Governor Soludo, the President and Secretary of Umuenu Umuawulu, Nze Okoye Godwin and Mr. Nwafor Tochukwu, respectively, reminded him of his belief in the supremacy of law, stating that he should not allow any influence from any quarter to cede the land or part of it to both Abo Ani Awgbu and Enugwu Umuawulu because they were trespassers stopped by the courts of the land.

Reiterating the dangers of ceding land to unauthorised communities, the duo urged Governor Soludo to instead invite the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice to explain the implications of disobeying a court order.

Among those who spoke during the protest was Tochukwu Okoye, 94, who said, “I am surprised that someone who signed witness for another now claims to be the owner of the land; let us think twice. I am calling on Soludo, a peaceful man, to intervene in this situation.”

Chief Johnson Anazonwu Nwafor, 88, stated, “I was cultivating with my father in that land as a child, so I know everything there. We have no problem with Enugwu in that land; only Awgbu people. Our village is peaceful; otherwise, there would be bloodshed in that land as a result of what they are doing to us.”

Mr. Roseline Adobe, a widow, added, “I cultivated yam and cassava, among other things, but they destroyed all of my crops and took my hoe and knife.” “That is the only place I feed my kids.”

According to Mrs Susan Nwaeke Ogbunike, “They stormed into the farm where we were cultivating, chased us away, levelled all my farm, destroyed all my crops, and as a result, my blood pressure rose, and I am still suffering from it today. Governor Soludo, we are requesting your assistance.

Mrs Chinwendu Nwanaka, a widow, said, “I was on my way to get something in my farm when someone told me that everything we cultivated, yam, cassava, cocoyam, was destroyed. When I got there, I could not get anything, and I started crying because no one could help me.”

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Zulum Distributes Food Items To 100,000 Families In Maiduguri, Environs

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Borno State Governor Babagana Zulum has launched a food distribution campaign to over 100,000 households in the state capital Maiduguri and its surrounding area, the Jere Local Government.

According to a statement released on Wednesday, the distribution aimed to alleviate the hardship caused by rising food and other essential commodity prices.

Zulum gave a symbolic presentation of the palliative on Wednesday at the Maiduguri Sports Centre, where the distribution would take place.

Each of the 100,000 households received one bag of 25kg rice and another bag of 25kg maize.

After flagging off the distribution, Zulum spoke to journalists about the importance of continuing to support the people in order to address the country’s hardships.

The governor reiterated his administration’s commitment to prioritising the welfare of the people, especially those facing extreme hardship as a result of the Boko Haram insurgency.

He said: “We are here today to flag off the distribution of food items to 100,000 heads of households from Maiduguri Metropolitan and its environs. Everyone in Nigeria is aware of the hardship people face regarding food shortages.

“All the preceding food distribution exercises we had conducted were carried out in other local government areas. Because of the difficulties our people are experiencing, we decided to come here today and kick off the exercise for the people of Metropolitan and its surroundings. These communities have not benefited immensely compared to other places.”

He noted that the exercise targets the most vulnerable members of the society in order to reduce the burden of the high cost of living in the metropolis, adding that the current economic hardship is not only in Borno State, but it is a global crisis.

He promised that the distribution of the palliative would be scaled up from 100,000 households to over 200,000 families in order to cover other places, including seven local government areas in southern Borno.

He said: “We have flagged off the distribution of the palliative for 100,000 today; my intention is not to stop at 100,000 households; we believe before the end of Ramadan, we shall reach up to 200,000 across the state.

“Wherever there is insurgency, they may experience a food crisis because of the limited access to agricultural land. For this reason, in Borno State, we have started the distribution of palliative since 2011.”

He added, “As long as I am the governor of Borno State, the distribution of palliative will continue. However, I want to stress that while the palliative distribution continues, we will continue investing in commercial and subsistence agriculture.”

The governor urged the people, particularly those without a source of income, to engage in agriculture while assuring them of all necessary assistance, such as free buses, agricultural inputs, and cash support.

He disclosed that: “The FG has also rolled out an agricultural scheme under the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security and in Borno State; we have programmes to boost irrigation and commercial farming.

“We have started distributing food palliative care since 2011 and are doing our best. I call on our people to be patient because the government handles the crisis. What we are doing is enormous, but as a responsive and responsible government, we shall continue to do our best to cushion the effects of the hardship.”

The governor, however, warned that his administration would not condone anyone sabotaging its efforts in peacebuilding.

“Some people are trying to instigate the public to cause disturbances. ,

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