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    U.S. travel advisory: Nigeria is safe, open to foreign investments — Minister

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    The Minister of Information and National Orientation, Mohammed Idris, says Nigeria is safe and open to foreign investments and tourists to explore and benefit.

    Idris made this know in his address at an interactive session with senior media editors and executives on Monday in Abuja.

    On November 3, the US Embassy had issued notice of an increase threat to major hotels in Nigeria’s larger cities.
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    According to the Minister, all countries in the world have one challenge or the other which could be economy, political, gun violence, social or cultural.

    “We understand the concerns raised by the United States Government in their recent travel advisory, but believe that it is imperative that we do not generalise isolated incidents across the entire hospitality industry.

    “What we have seen is that, such advisories do not achieve anything other than needless panic, and they can have severe adverse economic impact, not to talk of what they do to undermine the government’s efforts to attract investment.

    “We have consistently prioritised the safety and well-being of all visitors to our country. We have implemented comprehensive security measures, both at the Federal and State levels, to ensure the safety of tourists and international guests.

    “These measures include intense intelligence gathering, acquisition and deployment of additional platforms, training and re-training of personnel, cooperation with international law enforcement agencies, among others, to maintain a secure environment.

    “The Nigerian Government is dedicated to ensuring the safety and well-being of all Nigerians and visitors to the country and will continue to work towards maintaining a secure and hospitable environment for tourists and business travelers and the likes.

    “Our country is relatively safe and open to foreign investment and tourists to come and invest, explore and ripe the benefits,” Idris stressed.

    He further explained that the Nigerian security agencies have been very busy, doing their best to keep us all safe.

    The Minister emphasised that in various parts of Kaduna State, seven bandits were neutralised, in various operations between the Nov. 1 and Nov.3.

    He explained that on Nov.3 in Kano State, a joint operation by troops of the Nigerian Army and the Department of State Services carried out a dawn raid operation on terrorists’ hideout in Gezawa Local Government Area.

    He added that the dawn raid operation successfully averted an imminent attack on Kano by insurgents.

    “The operation recovered AK 47 Rifles, AK 47 Rifle Magazines, a Rocket Propelled Gun (RPG), RPG Bombs, Hand Grenades, Improvised Explosive Device (IED)-making materials, among others.

    “In the North-East and North-West of the country, the Nigerian Air Force has been very busy, with several successful airstrikes on bandits’ and terrorists’ camps and hideouts in Katsina, Zamfara and Borno.

    “The Air Force has also recently taken delivery of four new aircraft, to strengthen the fight against banditry and terrorism.
    “In our maritime environment, on Oct. 25, the Eastern and Central Naval Commands flagged off a Joint Sea Exercise, Exercise SEA GUARDIAN 2023.

    “I have taken some time to outline some of these efforts to make the point that our security and intelligence agencies are constantly at work, foiling threats, and neutralising those who seek to undermine the security of the country,” he said.

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    Governor’s wife showcases Kwara’s tourism wealth

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    The wife of Kwara Governor, Olufolake Abdulrasaq, on Thursday, urged local and international tourists to explore the tourism potential in the state.

    Mrs Abdulrazaq made the call in Ilorin at the ongoing annual general meeting (AGM) and conference of the National Association of Nigeria Tour Operators (NATOP).

    The AGM has its theme as “Tourism as Catalyst for Progress, Peace and Partnership”.

    “Kwara, with its vantage in the North-central region, is endowed with immense and captivating tourist destinations, widely referred to as ‘a wonder in the wilderness’.

    “The Owu Falls is the highest and most spectacular natural waterfall in West Africa.

    “Founded in 1945 and widely referenced as the mother of all museums in Nigeria, the Esie Museum is located in Irepodun Local Government Area of Kwara State.

    “We have Imole Boja Rock Shelter; we also have the Sobi Hills, the University of Ilorin Zoological Garden, the Dada Pottery, and the Aso-oke weaving centres, among other very interesting sites.

    “In celebrating our culture and traditions, we equally have the annual Ilorin Durbar, the Gani Festival, the Shao Mass Wedding and the Patigi Boat Regatta, to mention a few,” she said.

    Mrs Abdulrazaq, who commended the tour operators for bringing their annual conference to the state, urged them to explore the spots mentioned and further promote the economic potential of the state.

    She said Kwara’s rich historical background, wonders of nature and exquisite cultural events are sights to behold.

    She said Governor AbdulRahman Abdulrasaq was leaving no stone unturned to ensure that opportunities in the tourism sector in the state were maximised.

    According to her, this is evident in the government’s engagements in partnerships, evolving investment-friendly policies and putting in place infrastructure to drive all sectors of the state’s economy.

    “In complementing this drive of government, my office and the Ajike People Support Centre are actively involved in promoting tourism and celebrating the cultural heritage of our people.

    “It may interest you to know that during our host of the Commonwealth quiz competition, top functionaries of the British government were conducted around some of these beautiful sites.

    “Also, I have sponsored some of our traditional aso-oke weavers to participate in fashion shows of international repute to showcaseenhanceate and enhancing their capacities,” she said.

    Akonitv reports that the conference began on 17 July and will end on 20 July.

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    Breaking News: Ooni of Ife Palace denounces fake romance scam allegations

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    The Palace of the Ooni of Ife has addressed a trending fake news story involving Ms Fagbule, who was allegedly defrauded of $180,000 by a scammer posing as Arole Oduduwa Olofin Adimula, Ooni Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, CFR, Ojaja II, the Ooni of Ife.

    According to a release made available Otunba Moses Olafare, Director of Media and Public Affairs at the Ooni’s Palace, clarified that the allegations are unfounded and part of a character assassination tactic aimed at gaining popularity on social media.

    The Palace emphasised that the Ooni does not engage in any personal social media interactions, with all official communications handled by the palace’s media directorate.

    The alleged scam is a fabrication, and the letter used as evidence does not match the Palace’s official letterhead or the Ooni’s style.

    Ms Fagbule, if genuine, is invited to the palace in Ile-Ife for assistance with law enforcement to uncover the perpetrators of this crime.

    The Palace advises the public to be cautious of social media engagements and reiterates that the Ooni does not interface online or via proxies.

    The Palace’s letterhead is distinct, signed by the Ooni as “Arole Oduduwa Olofin Adimula” and not “His Imperial Majesty”.

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    Akpabio reshuffles Senate committees, demotes Ndume to tourism

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    Akpabio reshuffles Senate committees, demotes Ndume to tourism

    The Senate did a minor reshuffling of its standing committees on Wednesday in addition to creating an entirely new Committee on Livestock to oversee the just-established Ministry of Livestock Development.

    The Senate President, Sen. Godswill Akpabio, announced the changes soon after Sen. Ali Ndume was removed as the Majority Whip.

    He was replaced by fellow Borno compatriot, Sen. Mohammed Monguno (Borno-North).

    Monguno also replaced Ndume as the Deputy Chairman, Senate Committee on Appropriations, while Ndume was redeployed to chair the Committee on Tourism.

    The Senate President said, “With the elevation of Distinguished Senator (Mohammed) Tahir Monguno to the position of the Majority Whip of the Senate, his committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters will now go to the only Senior Advocate of Nigeria that we have in the 10th Senate.

    “Senator Adegbonmire Adeniyi SAN

    now becomes the Senate Chairman on the Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters.

    “The Chairman of the Senate Committee on Tourism becomes Senator Muhammad Ali Ndume.

    “The Chairman of the Senate committee on the proposed Reparation and Repatriation becomes Senator Ned Nwoko.

    “The deputy chairman of the Senate Committee on Appropriation, in line with our earlier practice, lies with Senator Mohammed Tahir Monguno in addition to being the Chief Whip of the Senate.

    “The Deputy Chairman of the Senate Committee on Tourism is Senator Anthony Ani.

    “In line with the spirit of togetherness and forgiveness, Senator Abdul Ningi retains his earlier position of Senate Committee Chairman on Population.

    “The Chairman, Senate Committee on Agri-Institutions, becomes Senator, Simon Lalong.

    “Senator Saliu Mustafa, becomes the chairman of Senate Committee on Livestock Development, a new ministry just created. Any further changes shall be announced in due course.”

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