Press focuses on plans by ICC to investigate abduction of school children, others

The move by the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), Mr. Karim Khan (QC), to seek authorisation from the…

The move by the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), Mr. Karim Khan (QC), to seek authorisation from the court’s Pre-Trial Chamber to open investigation into the abduction of school children in parts of Northern Nigeria is one of the trending stories in Nigerian newspapers on Monday.

The Guardian reports that the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), Mr. Karim Khan (QC), is seeking authorisation from the court’s Pre-Trial Chamber to open investigation into the abduction of school children in parts of Northern Nigeria.
Khan will also probe the closure of schools, and the persistent failure of Nigerian authorities at the federal and state levels to end the menace.
The ICC prosecutor’s decision followed a petition sent to the court by the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP), which disclosed this yesterday in a statement by its Deputy Director, Kolawole Oluwadare.
SERAP had, in the petition dated September 4, 2021, urged the ICC prosecutor to push for those suspected to be complicit in the crimes to be tried by the ICC.
In the petition, SERAP argued that the severe and lifelong harms that result from depriving children of the right to education satisfied the gravity of harm threshold under the Rome Statute.
Responding to SERAP, the ICC prosecutor, in a letter with reference number OTP-CR-363/21, and dated October 22, 2021, confirmed to the organisation that the criteria for opening an investigation into a string of abductions and closure of schools in some parts of Nigeria had been met.
The newspaper says that 36 House of Assembly speakers have called on President Muhammadu Buhari to declare bandits as terrorists and enemies of the nation. This was their resolution at a Conference of Speakers of State Houses of Assembly in Katsina State yesterday.
The call of the Conference of Speakers is coming a day after Katsina Governor, Aminu Bello Masari, reiterated the earlier call of his Kaduna counterpart, Nasir el-Rufai and the National Assembly for the Federal Government to declare a state of emergency on the nation’s security and declare bandits as terrorists.

The Chairman of the Conference, who is also Bauchi State Speaker, Abubakar Suleiman, while making the call at the end of their third yearly meeting, said it was part of their five-point communiqué at the end of their eight-hour deliberations.

He said: “We call on President Buhari to declare bandits as terrorists and enemies of the state. The conference has observed all the activities carried out by the bandits as containing the same mode of operations used by terrorists.

“The Conference also decried the state of insecurity in the country and resolved to work out legislative frameworks, to complement the efforts of the Federal Government to address the security challenges in the country.

“In addition, the Conference also resolved to make appropriate laws to address the fundamental issues that breed insecurity in the land, as well as create employment for the youths and curb the menace of insecurity in the country.”

The Sun reports that Freight forwarders under the aegis of National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (100 percent Compliance Team) have threatened to withdraw their services over an alleged multitude of extortions by shipping lines in Nigeria.

The freight forwarders allegedly lose over N50 million everyday due to various multiple of extortions by shipping lines. In a notification on withdrawal of services addressed to the managing directors of all shipping companies operating in Nigeria, National Coordinator of NAGAFF 100 percent Compliance Team, Ibrahim Tanko, said shipping lines are not interested in the welfare of freight forwarders or Nigerians.

He accused the shipping companies of using dubious means, which include the transfer of containers against freight forwarders’ wish, consent, or approval of consignee; depletion of container deposit refunds, to extort freight forwarders.

He said other means of ripping off the freight forwarders by the shipping companies are detention invoice; undue debiting of their clients; unnecessary extortion of importers of up to N150,000 before dropping empty containers; and causing disputes between freight forwarders and their transporters/clients.

The Nation reports that President Muhammadu Buhari will unveil the Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC), known as the eNaira, today at the State House, Abuja.

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had in February barred banks and financial institutions from dealing in or facilitating transactions in cryptocurrencies, warning of “severe regulatory sanctions” and freezing accounts of firms it said are using them.
The CBN Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, has said the eNaira would operate as a wallet against which customers could hold funds in their bank account.

“The eNaira, therefore, marks a major step forward in the evolution of money and the CBN is committed to ensuring that the eNaira, like the physical Naira, is accessible by everyone,” the bank said in a statement.

According to experts, Nigerians were turning to crypto for business, to protect their savings as the naira loses value, and to send payments abroad because it is often hard to obtain United States’ dollars.

In March, just after the Central Bank ban, the dollar volume of cryptocurrencies sent from Nigeria rose to $132 million, up 17 per cent from the previous month, research firm Chainalysis said. Transactions in June were 25 per cent above the same month last year.

The Punch says that the Senate has ordered Shell Petroleum Development Company to discontinue its ongoing litigation with Global Gas and Refining Limited and embrace an amicable settlement over the gas project dispute involving the two firms.

The Chairman of the Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions, Senator Ayo Akinyelure, disclosed the development in an interview with our correspondent after his committee met with the representatives of the two firms.

The Leader of the Global Gas and Refining Limited, Kenneth Yellowe, had petitioned against the management of Shell Petroleum Development Company before the Senate over a $400m gas project contract terms which was allegedly not honoured by the SPDC.
Akinyelure had laid the petition before the red chamber, on behalf of the President of the Senate on Wednesday, October 13. Yellowe alleged in the petition that the management of the SPDC failed to honour its side of a binding Gas Supply Agreement which it executed with his company in March 1998.

He stated in the petition that the violation of the agreement had put the over $400m Global Gas and Refining Limited’s funds secured from international financial institutions and individual investors in jeopardy because of the hurtful decisions made by SDPC.

ThisDay reports that the federal government has expressed worry over what it described as inadequate investments in renewable energy to support the country’s intended accelerated transition from fossil fuels, which currently satisfy 83 percent of primary demand for energy.

The government pointed out that while investments in fossil fuels had declined by 40 percent since 2015, there is no requisite ramp up in renewable energy.

Speaking at the World Energy Day Discourse held over the weekend at the Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI), Nigeria’s Vice President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo admitted that the planned transition would not be as easy and seamless as envisaged without having to make difficult choices.

He said, “The risks of trying to make 30-year commitments to reaching net-zero were plain and apparent for all to see. The Economist reported that since May the combined prices of oil, coal and gas increased by 95 percent. It was also reported that Britain has turned back on some coal-fired power stations.

“I surely believe that the energy transition was not meant to make energy less available and unaffordable. These events if not handled carefully may turn global public sentiment against climate change policies.”

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