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Page 6 Tuesday Feb 16

Page 6 Tuesday Feb 16 Bristow crew declared emergency before ocean plunge- AIB From Abdullateef Aliyu, Lagos The Accident Investigations Bureau (AIB) yesterday said the…

Page 6 Tuesday Feb 16

Bristow crew declared emergency before ocean plunge- AIB

From Abdullateef Aliyu, Lagos

The Accident Investigations Bureau (AIB) yesterday said the crew of the Bristow helicopter which recently plunged into the Atlantic Ocean in Lagos sent two distress signals before the plunge.

The Sikorsky 76C++ helicopter marked 5N-BQJ crashed on February 3 with the 11 people on board rescued alive.

AIB Commissioner, Dr. Felix Abali, told newsmen in Lagos yesterday that the first distress signal technically known as May Day was declared at 78 nautical miles from Lagos, complaining of instrument problems.

Following the declaration, he said the aircraft descended from 3,000 feet to 1,500 feet while the captain took over from the co-pilot, expecting to stabilize the helicopter but it did not respond to control inputs.

The commissioner said the captain declared the second May Day to the radio operator at the offshore platform which was relayed to the air traffic control by two separate aircraft.

He said investigation was still in progress to determine the cause of the incident while vital components including the black boxes and the Cockpit Image Recorder were retrieved for further investigation.

The flight data recorders, he said, would be flown to the UK for analysis.

Lagos Assembly summons education officials over contempt

From Femi Akinola, Lagos

The Lagos State House of Assembly yesterday summoned Tutor Generals and Permanent Secretaries of the Education Department in the state to appear before it on Thursday.

This followed the refusal of the officials to appear before the House Committee on Education after several invitations to explain their activities.

Chairman of the Education Committee, Lanre Ogunyemi, who informed the House about the misconduct of the officials, said they had continued to treat the House with disdain by ignoring the invitation.

The chairman, House Committee on Information, Segun Olulade, said their action amounted to insubordination which would not be tolerated.

Protesting company workers injure DPO

From Eugene Agha, Lagos

Several people including a Divisional Police Officer, CSP Tansan Tsav, were injured yesterday in Lagos when policemen went to stop a protest by workers of Expression Nigeria Limited over certain actions of the company’s management.

The protest started around 8am until the police arrived an hour later.

It was gathered that the workers decided to take to the streets to protest against the continuous casualisation of staff by the management of the weave-on manufacturing company. The workers had barricaded the entrance to the company premises on Iju Road, Ogba as early as 7am.

Some of them made bonfire at the middle of the road with used tyres, while others displayed placards asking labour unions to come to their aid. A witness said: “As soon as the workers discovered that their management had called in the police to scuttle their plans, some of them started to pelt the policemen with stones and sachet water. The DPO was hit on the head by one of the stones. In return, the policemen started to beat some of the protesters with clubs and baton while a few of them were arrested and taken to the station where they were detained”.

Efforts to get the management of the company were rebuffed by security guards. Lagos State police spokesman, SP Dolapo Badmos, said when the DPO moved in to restore order they broke his head with a stone.

“He is currently being treated in a clinic. But normalcy has been restored by the Area Commander and his team”, she added.

Kwara to hold staff verification exercise

From Romoke W. Ahmad, Ilorin

The Kwara State government is to conduct a staff verification exercise among workers and pensioners to weed out ghosts.

Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed disclosed this at a stakeholders’ meeting with leaders and supporters of the All Progressives Congress in Ilorin yesterday.

The governor, who blamed some workers for collecting multiple salaries, said the government was already collaborating with banks to use the Biometric Verification Numbers (BVN) to detect those collecting such illegal salaries.

He announced that the new internally generated revenue drive was yielding positive results, assuring workers that all outstanding salaries would be cleared before the end of next month.

On the proposed N20 billion naira bond, Ahmed said the process had reached advanced stage with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Debt Management Office (DMO) and Federal Ministry of Finance in order to access the bond for capital projects.

Ahmed promised that his government would continue to meet its obligations despite the prevailing economic situation in the country.

In his remarks, the state chairman of the APC, Alhaji Ishola Balogun-Fulani, commended the governor for his commitment to improve the living standard of the people despite the current financial challenges.

Balogun-Fulani appealed to APC supporters to continue to support the administration and protect public installations against vandalism.

Police smash kidnap gang in Bauchi

From Balarabe Alkassim, Bauchi?

Police in Bauchi State have intercepted another gang and arrested three of its members for kidnapping two children.

The command’s spokesman, Haruna Mohammed, said the operation was carried out after an intelligence report on activities of the gang.

He said detectives from the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) led by Inspector Thomas Kwabika arrested the three suspects.

According to him, they conspired to kidnap two children aged between 7 and 8 and went on to demand N500,000 from their parents.

DSP Haruna added that the children were rescued in good condition and had been reunited with their parents.

“The suspects arrested are; Abubakar Mohammed, 27 years from Jos, Plateau State, Sanusi Inuwa, 40 years, from Wuntin Gobirawa village in Bauchi and Danlami Abdullahi, 45 years of the same address,” he said.

He said one dane gun and N66,000 were recovered from them, adding that the case was under investigation after which the suspects would be taken to court. ?

EFCC arraigns school provost, 4 others over fraud

From Lami Sadiq, Jos

Officials of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) yesterday at the Federal High Court in Jos arraigned the Provost of Federal School of Medical Laboratory Technology, Vom in Plateau State, Dr. Nkereuwem Etukudo, over allegations of embezzlement and diversion of public funds running into millions of naira.

Etukudo was arraigned with two members of staff of the institution and two contractors before Justice Y.D Dakwak.

The others include the Accountant/Bursar of the institution, Mr. Yusuf Samuel and the Data Analyst, Mr. Ernest Demto. The contractors are Messrs Esio Udoh and Goodluck Echenwa.

The charges were however not formally read to the accused because the prosecution counsel, Steve Odiase, told the court that one of the accused persons, Ernest Demto, was suffering from a kidney disease and was receiving treatment at the National Hospital, Abuja.

Odiase said the accused were to be jointly arraigned but since Demto was unavoidably absent, it was improper to arraign the others without him and asked the court for adjournment. Justice Dakwak granted the plea and adjourned the case to May 2, 2016.

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