Nigeria

  1. Nigeria probes top police officer over FBI charge

    Ishaq Khalid

    BBC News, Abuja

    Nigeria's Deputy Commissioner of Police Abba Kyari.
    Image caption: Mr Kyari has publicly denied any involvement in fraud or corruption

    The Nigerian police say they have received ‘’allegation and indictment processes’’ from the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) against a senior police officer.

    A statement by police spokesperson Frank Mbah did not give details of the allegations against Deputy Commissioner of Police Abba Kyari,

    It however said they had ordered an internal investigation into the officer following the receipt of the indictment processes.

    Mr Kyari - who is celebrated in Nigeria for his efforts in leading fight against violent crime - is widely reported to be linked to the fraud and money laundering case against Nigerian influencer Ramon Abbas - also known as Hushpuppi.

    Court documents filed in a US court said Hushpuppi’s crimes cost his victims almost $24m (£17m) in total and he has pleaded guilty to money laundering charges.

    But Mr Kyari has publicly denied any involvement in fraud or corruption with the 37-year-old social media celebrity, describing the allegations as ‘’false’’ and saying his "hands are clean’’.

    On Thursday, the Nigerian police said they were committed to the ‘"pursuit of justice" and strengthening its relationship with international partners.

  2. Nigerian officer denies Hushpuppi fraud involvement

    Abba Kyari
    Image caption: Policeman Abba Kyari says his "hands are clean"

    A leading Nigerian policeman has denied any connection with the fraud and money laundering charges that Nigerian influencer Hushpuppi has pleaded guilty to in a US court.

    The policeman, Abba Kyari, was listed in a statement from the US Attorney's Office as one of those who worked with Hushpuppi, whose real name is Ramon Abbas.

    In one scheme, Hushpuppi attempted to steal more than $1.1m (£785m) from someone who wanted to fund a new children's school in Qatar, the documents said.

    In the US Attorney's Office statement, Mr Kyari is accused of agreeing to detain one of Hushpuppi's co-conspirators after they had fallen out.

    In a statement on his Facebook page, Mr Kyari said that he had responded to a distress call from Hushpuppi, who had said this family was in danger, and had briefly detained the man, but no money changed hands.

    "Our hands are clean... We are used to such types of people and false newsmakers and distributors," he concluded.

  3. Adekunle Gold hates being predictable

    BBC Focus on Africa radio

    "I hate being predictable," Nigerian musician Adekunle Gold says speaking about his new track Sinner.

    It's quite a departure from what his fans have grown used to and incorporates different genres.

    "I wanted it to have some pop just to express myself in other genres and other sounds," he told BBC Focus on Africa.

    With the adoption of a new look featuring a beard and long hair, he feels its time to grow on all fronts.

    The singer who is married to songstress Simi says there is more to expect from both their careers.

    Here is his full interview with Bola Mosuro;

    Video content

    Video caption: The singer tells Bola Mosuro about the new direction he’s taking
  4. Nigeria's Hushpuppi pleads guilty to money laundering

    Nigerian Instagram celebrity Hushpuppi , whose real name is Ramon Abbas, has pleaded guilty to money laundering in a US court.

    He was arrested, along with other suspects, in Dubai last June over defrauding someone in connection with a $1.1m (£788,000) school financing deal.

    Hushpuppi was then extradited to the US to face charges in the US.

    His plea document reveals that he admitted to his role in the school-finance scheme as were as other fraudulent activities, including what's known as business e-mail compromise schemes, that totalled $24m, a statement from the US Attorney's Office says.

    The statement adds that Hushuppi worked on the school fraud with a Kenyan and Nigerian who posed as consultants and bankers to defraud a Qatari businessperson.

    Hushpuppi became well-known on Instagram for his expensive lifestyle including a collection of luxury vehicles.

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  5. Nigeria's Shia leader acquitted and freed

    Ishaq Khalid

    BBC News, Abuja

    Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky
    Image caption: Ibraheem Zakzaky became a proponent of Shia Islam around the time of the Iranian revolution in 1979

    A high court in the northern Nigeria has acquitted the leader of a banned Shia Muslim group and his wife who had both been charged with inciting violence and unlawful assembly.

    Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky, 68, leads the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) and was detained in 2015 along with his wife Zeenah.

    Their arrests followed deadly violence between IMN followers and the security forces in the city of Zaria in Kaduna state.

    The couple were released after the court dismissed the charges brought by the Kaduna state government.

    During the unrest in 2015, rights groups say more than 300 of Sheikh Zakzaky’s followers were killed during a military crackdown.

    The army alleges it was forced to retaliate after IMN members - who were attending a religious ceremony in Zaria - attacked the convoy of the military chief of staff.

    IMN was banned while Sheikh Zakzaky was in custody following weeks of protests by his supporters in 2019 who were demanding his release.

    Shias make up a small minority in predominantly Sunni Muslim northern Nigeria.

  6. Hunger surges in Nigeria because of Covid-19 - HRW

    Ishaq Khalid

    BBC News, Abuja

    Women protesting in Lagos, Nigeria about hunger and insecurity - March 2021
    Image caption: These women in Lagos were protesting about hunger and poor governance in March

    The number of Nigerians experiencing hunger has doubled because of the economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, Human Rights Watch (HRW) says.

    Its report - Between Hunger and the Virus - suggests that government cash transfers to the less privileged have not had the desired impact of cushioning the effects of various lockdowns on people’s livelihoods

    It is based on a year’s research done with Justice and Empowerment Initiatives, a local non-governmental organisation.

    It focuses mainly on the commercial hub of Lagos, where researchers spoke with more than 60 people from 13 communities in the state.

    Those interviewed said the coronavirus pandemic had devastated their already fragile access to food and to making a living.

    Only a small fraction of Nigerians had received government cash transfers and food handouts, according to the survey.

    This underscored the need for an effective social security system, HRW said.

    “Increased investment in social security should be one of the key changes brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic,” HRW’s Anietie Ewang said.

  7. Elderly customary ruler abducted by gang on motorbikes

    Ishaq Khalid

    BBC News, Abuja

    Danladi Gyet Maude
    Image caption: Danladi Gyet Maude (L) was seized on his farm in northern Nigeria

    Police in Nigeria say they are trying to locate and rescue a prominent traditional ruler who has been abducted by gunmen in the north of the country.

    A police spokesperson said Danladi Gyet Maude, the traditional leader of Jaba community in Kaduna state, was seized on his farm in neighbouring Nasarawa state on Monday evening by an armed gang on motorbikes.

    The victim is more than 80 years old and is the third traditional ruler to be kidnapped in Nigeria in the last fortnight.

    Since December more than1,000 students have been kidnapped from schools and colleges.

    Most were released upon payment of a ransom but 300 remain in captivity.

  8. Lawyers push Nigeria separatist Kanu's case to AU

    Chris Ewokor

    BBC News, Abuja

    Nnamdi Kanu
    Image caption: Nnamdi Kanu faces treason and terrorism-related charges

    Lawyers to Nigeria’s pro-Biafra leader Nnamdi Kanu say they have started legal action against Nigeria and Kenya at the African Commission on Human and Peoples' Rights.

    They are demanding accountability from the two countries for what they allege as illegal transfer or handling-over of their client without due process of extradition.

    Mr Kanu holds British citizenship and the circumstances of his extradition back to Nigeria last month are unclear. He was reportedly arrested in Kenya, but the Kenyan government denied involvement in his arrest and extradition.

    Nnamdi Kanu's lawyers are requesting that he be taken back to Kenya as a free man and a British citizen, alleging that his arrest there was invalid without successful extradition proceedings.

    Mr Kanu's special counsel, Alloy Ejimako, said in a statement they took the matter to the African Union body because Nigeria and Kenya were both members of the charter establishing the commission.

    It follows the Nigerian government's failure to present Mr Kanu in court to continue his trial on treason and terrorism-related charges on Monday.

    A federal high court in Nigeria's capital, Abuja, ordered the authorities to produce him at the next court date on 21 October.

  9. Buhari set for medical check-up during UK trip

    Ishaq Khalid

    BBC News, Abuja

    Nigeria President Muhammad Buhari
    Image caption: Mr Buhari's frequent medical trips have been widely criticised

    Nigerian President Muhammad Buhari is traveling to London to attend an education summit and will use the trip to go for a health check-up, the presidency has announced.

    Mr Buhari will participate in the Global Education Summit co-hosted by UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and President of Kenya Uhuru Kenyatta, a statement said.

    He will also spend days undertaking "an earlier scheduled medical check-up".

    Mr Buhari will return to Nigeria by the second week of August, said Femi Adesina, the president's media aide.

    The 78-year-old leader has made several trips to the UK for medical reasons since taking office in 2015.

    During one such trip in 2017 he spent several months in London. The nature of his illness has never been disclosed by officials.

    His last visit was at the end of March when he spent about two weeks.

    His frequent medical trips have been widely criticised, especially given the poor state of Nigeria's public healthcare system.

  10. Trial of Nigeria separatist leader moved to October

    Chris Ewokor

    BBC News, Abuja

    Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) leader Nnamdi Kanu is seen at the Federal high court Abuja, Nigeria in 2016
    Image caption: Nnamdi Kanu, seen here in 2016, was not present in court on Monday

    A high court judge in Nigeria has adjourned the terrorism and treason trial of the detained secessionist leader, Nnamdi Kanu, after he was not presented to the court.

    The prosecution did not explain the absence of the leader of the banned group Indigenous People of Biafra but his lawyers said they were worried about his safety.

    The trial will now start on 21 October.

    Earlier, at least seven people were arrested for holding a protest outside the court.

    Mr Kanu had been wanted by the authorities since skipping bail and fleeing the country in 2017.

    He holds British citizenship and the circumstances of his extradition back to Nigeria last month are unclear.

  11. Supporters of Nigeria separatist leader arrested

    Joshua Ajayi

    BBC News Yoruba, Lagos

    Nnamdi Kanu
    Image caption: Nnamdi Kanu, who was living outside Nigeria, mostly used social media to communicate with his followers

    At least seven people have been arrested for protesting outside the High Court in the Nigerian capital Abuja where the pro-Biafra leader, Nnamdi Kanu, is appearing to face charges including treason.

    There's tight security with roads blocked off and access severely restricted.

    Mr Kanu's secessionist group - the Indigenous People of Biafra - has been banned by the government and has been accused of carrying out deadly attacks in the south-east of the country.

    He had been on the run for four years after skipping bail.

    Mr Kanu holds British citizenship and the circumstances of his extradition back to Nigeria last month are unclear.

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  12. Nigeria separatist Nnamdi Kanu to appear in court

    Chris Ewokor

    BBC News, Abuja

    Pro-Biafra leader, Nnamdi Kanu
    Image caption: Mr Kanu remains a cult hero to his hundreds of thousands of followers

    Nigeria's pro-Biafra leader Nnamdi Kanu is due to appear in court on Monday in the capital, Abuja, to face treason and other charges.

    His group, the Indigenous People of Biafra, which is campaigning for an independent state in eastern Nigeria, is proscribed by the federal government.

    Mr Kanu emerged as the new face of the campaign for an independent Biafran state, nearly half a century after more than one million people were killed in the separatist war.

    He was arrested and extradited to Nigeria last month.

    Read more:

  13. Video content

    Video caption: Afrobeats in Japan: British-Nigerian hip-hop dancer teaching children how to dance

    Yinka Oshiletu, a British-Nigerian hip hop dancer is bringing Afrobeats sounds to Japan's young dancers.