The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has explained why it raided the head office of The SUN newspaper owned by former Abia State Governor and a chieftain of the ruling All Progressive Congress, Orji Uzor Kalu.
The anti-graft body said it raid was part of routine efforts to ascertain the state of the assets of the publishing company which is subject of subsisting interim forfeiture order.
EFCC spokesman, Mr. Wilson Uwuajaren stated this in a statement.
The commission, therefore, denied allegations that it stormed the media company because the acting Chairman of the EFCC, Mr. Ibrahim Magu, was fighting the newspaper over a March publication accusing him of corruption.
The anti-graft agency said in the course of its prosecution of The SUN publisher, Orji Uzor Kalu, it had obtained an asset forfeiture order which has since been appealed by the company.
The statement read in part, “Operatives of the EFCC in the early hours of June 12, 2017, visited the head office of the Sun Newspaper in Lagos. The visit which lasted for less an hour was part of routine efforts to ascertain the state of the assets of the publishing company which is subject of subsisting interim forfeiture order.
“Prior to the visit, the commission had written to the management of the company to account for its management of the assets for the period of the subsisting court order.
“The commission still awaits the response of The SUN and will not be distracted by any attempt to whip up sentiments by alluding to an appeal which has been pending for ten years. The commission’s action is without prejudice to any appeal and only meant to verify the integrity of the assets.”
The EFCC denied allegations that it harassed and molested staff of the newspaper.
It further denied reports that some of its operatives accused the newspaper of promoting pro-Biafra and pro-Niger-Delta militants in its publications.
The statement added, “Contrary to claims in a statement released to the media by the management of The SUN, no employee of the media outfit was molested or intimidated for the few minutes that operatives of the commission spent in the premises of the company.
“The claim that ‘EFCC operatives subjected our staff to crude intimidation, psychological and emotional trauma, even as some of the men accused our organisation of publishing pro-Biafra, Boko Haram, and Niger Delta Militant stories,’ is strange and clearly the figment of the imagination of the Sun.”
The commission said Magu was taking legal action against The SUN in his private capacity and he would not abuse his power by using the anti-graft agency to settle personal scores.
“There was no reason to molest anybody as the commission has always related professionally with the publishing outfit. The attempt also to link the visit to the acting Chairman, Ibrahim Magu’s, threat to sue the organisation over a libellous publication is also diversionary.
“Magu is pursuing that option in his private capacity and his lawyer, Wahab Shittu, did write The SUN and his letter was widely published in the media on March 31, 2017.”
Man kills mother after impregnating his cousin.
A 25-year-old man who has been identified as Agaezichi Ogbonna from Akpaa Mbato village in Obingwa Local Government Area of Abia State has reportedly killed his 52-year-old mother after allegedly impregnating his cousin.
According to Southern City News , it was learnt on Tuesday that following the development, angry youths in Akpaa Mbato village descended on Ogbonna, but for the timely intervention of the soldiers attached to a nearby checkpoint, the suspect would have been lynched.
An anonymous source disclosed that Ogbonna, who is said to be the last son of his mother, was allegedly accused of having sexual affairs with sisters of the same parents at his maternal home.
He was said to have impregnated one of them in the process, an act which the villagers, said was a taboo in their community and Igbo land in general.
It was learnt that defiant Ogbonna was said to have ignored the warning of the community to continue sleeping with one of the sisters whose name was simply identified as Ugochi, which did not go down well with his sick mother.
The source said,
“Ogbonna’s mother who was managing her high blood pressure condition angered by the son’s action and the negative effect his abominable act would bring to the family, decided to raise the alarm after she noticed that her son was sleeping with Ugochi.
“In the heat of an argument with the mother, Ogbonna kicked her on her ribs which aggravated her health condition. She was said to have collapsed and died shortly afterwards when some members of the family who came to her rescue tried to stabilise her.”
A member of the community, who also pleaded anonymity, said that on seeing that the mother had died, Ogbonna tried to run away, but was prevented.
The source said when the news filtered into the community; the youths stormed their compound and took Ogbonna to unknown destination.
The family source said the youths after beating Ogbonna to a pulp was on the verge of setting him ablaze when soldiers, who were alerted, rescued him from the villagers who had already hung tyre on his neck and about to pour fuel on him.
A soldier at the Akpaa Mbato Army checkpoint said they mobilised to the scene to save the suspect from jungle justice when they were alerted to the action the youths of the community were about to take.
Video game addiction now a mental disorder, says WHO
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has classified compulsive gaming as a mental health condition.
The condition tagged ‘gaming disorder’ will be added to the 11th edition of WHO’s International Classification of Diseases.
It will describe the disorder as “impaired control over gaming, increasing priority given to gaming over other activities to the extent that gaming takes precedence over other interests and daily activities, and continuation or escalation of gaming despite the occurrence of negative consequences”.
A WHO representative estimated two to three percent of video game players meet the criteria for gaming disorder.
“For gaming disorder to be diagnosed, the behaviour pattern must be of sufficient severity to result in significant impairment in personal, family, social, educational, occupational or other important areas of functioning,” WHO said.
Several mental health professionals have been fighting this classification, worried that it’s more grounded in moral concerns than science.
“There was a fairly widespread concern that this is a diagnosis that doesn’t really have a very solid research foundation,” said Christopher Ferguson, a psychologist and media researcher at Stetson University in DeLand.
The American Psychiatric Association also said that there was not “sufficient evidence” to consider gaming addiction as a “unique mental disorder”.
WHO had said in December 2017 that it will recognise the effects of obsessive video gaming as a mental health disorder.
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