A suicide bomb attack on a Pakistan church claimed by the Islamic State group killed at least eight people and wounded 30 during a service on Sunday, just over a week before Christmas.
Two women were among the dead at a Methodist church in the restive southwestern city of Quetta in Balochistan province, said provincial Home Secretary Akbar Harifal.
Several of the wounded were in serious condition, police added.
Officials said police intercepted and shot dead one attacker outside the church before he could detonate his bomb. But the second managed to reach the church’s main door, where he blew himself up.
“Police were quick to react and stop the attackers from entering into the main hall,” provincial police chief Moazzam Jah told AFP.
Each attacker was carrying 15 kilograms (33 pounds) of explosive plus grenades, said civil defence official Aslam Tareen.
IS, in a brief statement on its Amaq news agency, claimed responsibility.
Balochistan provincial home minister Sarfraz Bugti said around 250 people normally attend the church on Sundays, but the congregation had swelled to around 400 because it was close to Christmas.
“God forbid, if the terrorists had succeeded in their plans more than 400 precious lives would have been at stake,” tweeted the home minister.
An AFP reporter at the scene saw shattered pews, shoes and broken musical instruments littered across the blood-smeared floor of the church.
Source: ( AFP )
BREAKING: Court Fixes Date For Ndume’s Bail Application
A Federal High Court in Abuja will on Thursday hear the bail application of Borno South Senator, Ali Ndume.
Ndume has been in prison custody since Monday for standing as surety for a former Chairman of the defunct Pension Reformed Task Team, Abdulrasheed Maina, believed to have jumped bail.
Maina is facing charges of money laundering involving N2bn before he was granted bail.
On November 18, 2020, Justice Okon Abang, revoked the bail granted Maina, ordered his arrest, and directed his trial would proceed in absentia.
The judge also on Monday remanded Ndume in prison until he produced Maina or paid the sum of N500m bail bond to the Federation Account.
The judge, in the course of the trial in the absence of Maina, on Wednesday, acknowledged the bail application filed by Ndume’s lawyer.
He said the bail application was brought to his attention at about 8.58 am on Wednesday, disclosing that he had immediately directed that the matter be fixed for hearing on Thursday.
He also said he had directed that hearing notice for Thursday’s proceedings be issued and served on the parties.
Low UTME Cut-off Mark Makes Northern Youth Lazy – El-Rufai
Governor of Kaduna State, Nasir El-Rufai has expressed that the low cut-off mark in the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME for Northern students admission into universities makes them lazy.
He expressed that the North has not taken advantage of the educational benefits the country has provided to the region.
El-Rufai made this remark during a plenary session on “Rethinking Sub-National Competitiveness” at the ongoing Nigerian Economic Summit.
“The northerners are at advantage. The low JAMB cut-off mark is making northern youth lazy rather than encouraging them. Despite the advantage of education in Nigeria, we have the highest number of children out of school,” he said.
According to the United Nations, the huge number of out-of-school children in northern Nigeria poses an enormous challenge.
“For example, Joint Admissions Matriculation Board, (JAMB), gives different cut-off marks for different states and you say you are building a nation, no you are dividing it.
“I am from the north but we have suffered educational disadvantage and the JAMB has given us a lower cut-off mark to catch up, have we caught up?
“It is making people lazy,” the governor said.
Family Of Slain Vendor Demands N500m Compensation From Gbajabiamila, Threatens Legal Action
Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, has been asked to pay N500 million in compensation by the family of Ifeanyi Okereke, the newspaper vendor shot dead last week by a State Security Service (SSS) officer in the convoy of the Speaker.
This was contained in a letter written to Gbajabiamila by their lawyer, Mike Ozekhome (SAN).
The family gave the speaker seven days to fulfill their demand or face legal action.
In the letter dated November 23, Ozekhome, revealed that he has the mandate of the father of the deceased, Okorie Okereke, and his younger brother, Destiny Okereke, to make the demand.
The demand is coming a few days after Gbajabiamila visited the immediate family and pledged to support his children’s education until they become adults.
“Our clients have instructed us to make from your good self, the following modest demands: That you use your good offices to ensure the immediate prosecution of your security aide (Abdullahi Hassan), who went on a frolic of his own, clearly acted outside the purview of his duty and responsibility by shooting to death an innocent, harmless and armless citizen.
“That you adequately compensate the Okereke family with a modest sum of N500m only.
“This monetary demand can never adequately replace or take the place of their son, husband, brother, and breadwinner’s life.
“But it will at least mitigate the obvious trauma and hardship the premature demise of their irreplaceable breadwinner has placed on them.
“Take note therefore that it is our clients’ firm instruction that in the event that you fail, refuse and/or neglect to accede to or proffer reasonable compensatory terms to our above modest demands within seven days from the date of this letter, we shall without any further correspondences from us, take appropriate legal steps to enforce our clients’ constitutional rights,” the letter read.
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