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Niger Army claim to have overthrown President Bazoum after visiting Tinubu in Abuja

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A group of soldiers in Niger said that President Mohamed Bazoum has been removed from power. They also said the nation’s borders are closed and a curfew has been imposed “until further notice.”

Niger Army spokesman Colonel Major Amadou Adramane speaks during an appearance on national television.

Niger’s President Mohamed Bazoum has been removed from power, according to reports from the AFP and Reuters news agencies, citing a statement from a group of soldiers made on national television.

“We, the defence and security forces… have decided to put an end to the regime” of President Bazoum, said Colonel-Major Amadou Abdramane, flanked by nine other uniformed soldiers in the address.

Reading from a statement, the soldiers said, “The country’s borders are closed and a nationwide curfew declared.”

Earlier on Wednesday, the group had blocked off the presidential palace in the Nigerien capital, Niamey.

According to comments made officially and unofficially from President Mohamed Bazoum’s office, a contingent of the presidential guard had been trying to detain Bazoum inside the residence.

Security sources in the president’s office spoke to several news agencies, with one telling AFP that elite troops had suffered a “fit of temper” and that “talks” were underway looking to defuse the situation.

Soon after, Niger’s presidency issued a pair of tweets, the first of which it soon deleted.

The second said that elements of the presidential guard were in effective revolt but that the bulk of the armed forces remained loyal.

“The president of the republic and his family are doing well,” the publication that remained online said. “The army and the national guard are ready to attack the elements of the GP [presidential guard] involved in this fit of temper if they do not return to better feelings.”

A later tweet, published at around 0500 GMT, said: “The hard-won gains will be safeguarded. All democracy- and freedom-loving Nigeriens will see to it.”

An AFP journalist in Niamey reported that the area around the presidential complex was sealed off on Wednesday, but also reported no abnormal signs of military activity or sounds of gunfire in the area. Traffic appeared normal.

The West African ECOWAS group of countries, currently chaired by Nigeria, issued a communique soon after the news broke saying it reacted with “shock and consternation” to the news of an “attempted coup d’Etat.”

“ECOWAS condemns in the strongest possible terms the attempt to seize power by force and calls on the coup plotters to free the democratically elected President of the Republic immediately and without any condition,” the statement, signed by Nigerian President Bola Tinubu, said.

“ECOWAS and the international community will hold all those involved in the plot responsible for the security and safety of the President, his family, members of the government and the general public.”

The United States also condemned the developments and called for Bazoum’s release.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken expressed support for Bazoum and said he had spoken to him after his department said earlier that it had been “gravely concerned about the developments in Niger.”

“The US condemns efforts to subvert Niger’s constitutional order by force, and underscores that our partnership depends on the continuation of democratic governance,” Blinken said on X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter.

The EU’s top diplomat Josep Borrell wrote in French that he was “very preoccupied by the events underway in Niamey.”

“The EU condemns all attempts to destabilize the democracy and threaten the stability of Niger,” he said, adding the EU also associated itself with ECOWAS’ first response to the matter.

A spokeswoman for Germany’s Foreign Ministry told a press briefing on Wednesday that “the situation on site is still very unclear.”

“We are in contact both with our embassy there and also with international partners,” she said. “And if it is necessary, we will of course also take appropriate steps.”

A Defense Ministry spokesman in Berlin similarly said it was too early to evaluate the situation.

He said the German troops in Niger as part of an international mission helping fight Islamist rebels were “in safety for now,” and that what came next would have be evaluated in the coming days.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres condemned “in the strongest terms any effort to seize power by force and to undermine democratic governance, peace and stability,” his spokesman Stephane Dujarric said.

Guterres called on “all actors involved to exercise restraint and to ensure the protection of constitutional order.”

The surrounding region has been unstable in recent years, with a series of coups in neighboring Mali and Burkina Faso since 2020.

And in Niger itself, a failed coup attempt in 2021 two days before Bazoum’s inauguration sought to stop him from taking office.

All three countries are struggling to contain an Islamist uprising in their shared border area, with the fighting not far from Niger’s capital, Niamey.

Niger is also fighting insurgents in its southeastern area bordering Nigeria.

Past coup leaders in Mali and Burkina Faso, and those who tried and failed in Niger in 2021, said poor progress against militants was a motivation for their bids to seize power.

President Bola Tinubu had recently hosted presidents of three neighbouring West African countries at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

The three presidents visiting President Tinubu are Patrice Talon of Benin Republic, Umaro Sissoco Embalo of Guinea-Bissau; and Mohammed Bazoum of Niger Republic.

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Police Rejects Tainted Recruitment List, Demands Transparency

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– Police discovers anomalies in recruitment list
– List contains unqualified and medically unfit candidates
– IGP demands transparent review of recruitment process

The Nigeria Police Force has rejected the Police Service Commission’s recruitment list due to alleged irregularities and corruption.

The list contained names of unqualified and medically unfit candidates who did not apply or failed the recruitment exercise.

Furthermore, the police spokesman, ACP Olumuyiwa Adejobi, revealed that the list included individuals who were disqualified due to financial dealings and corrupt practices.

The Inspector General of Police, IGP Olukayode Egbetokun, has written to the Chairman of the Police Service Commission objecting to the list.

Consequently, the police have dissociated themselves from the published list and called for a transparent review of the recruitment process.

“The same people who recruited anyhow for the police today will turn round to accuse the police tomorrow of inefficiency when their recruits start messing up,” Adejobi stated.

The police are determined to recruit “qualified, competent, trainable, and productive hands into the Nigeria Police Force.

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Rivers Varsity Suspends Four Students Over Brutal Assault

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– Four students suspended for assaulting a colleague
– Suspension lasts for one academic session
– Students urged to live in peace and harmony

The Rivers State University has suspended four students linked to the brutalization of their colleague, Victor Tobins. The students, who are members of the Man O’ War, were suspended for one academic session.

According to the university’s management, the students’ actions contravened the institution’s regulations. Management saw the actions as contrary to the regulations of the University.

The students had beaten Tobins, a 300-level student, black and blue, inflicting injuries on his right eye and other parts of his body. The development sparked a protest among students, who demanded the disbandment of the Man O’ War from campus.

The university’s management intervened, promising to take action within 24 hours. The management has since suspended the four students, urging students to live in peace and harmony.

“We urge the student population to continue to live in peace and harmony and comply scrupulously with all the rules and regulations of the University,” the management said.

 

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