A looming war is threatening the hitherto peaceful operation of the lotto industry in Nigeria no thanks to the underhand tactics of Senator Buruji Kashamu in his desire to illegally take over the industry in the country.
At the centre of the storm is the seeming collaboration of officials of the National Lotto Regulation Commission (NLRC) with Kashamu to bastardised due process guiding the rules and regulations of the industry in Nigeria.
Members of the Lotto Operators Association of Nigeria are not ready to fold their arms hence their decision to take every legal steps to stop both Senator Kashamu and his cohorts in the NLRC from perpetrating their illegalities.
The bone of contention is the ownership of the Ghana Games in Nigeria.
Ghana Games have been introduced to Nigeria by major lotto operators in Nigeria. They worked hard to popularise the games and make them the favourites of lotto players in the country.
Just as the Ghana Games began popular acceptance in Nigeria, Kashamu appeared suddenly claiming exclusive ownership of the games.
He not only claimed exclusive ownership of the games, he also aimed at collecting commission from other operators operating the Ghana games. In fact, he claimed that he is entitled to 40% from each operator operating the Ghana games.
The other operators resisted this and Kashamu went to court. The other operators also raised their legal team to counter him in court.
A total of 25 lotto operators were taken to court by Kashamu claiming exclusive ownership of the Ghana games from them while the NLRC is one of the respondents in the case. The case is ongoing in court.
But Kashamu suddenly introduced a bizarre twist to the story – he is seeking an out of court settlement with the NLRC thereby leaving the other operators in the lurch.
The question on the lips of many is why would Kashamu seek an out of court settlement in a case he is the plaintiff?
Not a few, particularly members of the lotto operators association, suspected foul play.
The many questions on the lips of many is why will Kashamu rush to sign an out of court settlement in a case he initiated? Has he suddenly lost faith in the court process? Why is he such in a hurry for a back door out of court settlement?
Going by his unscrupulous antecedents, many believed that Kashamu’s sudden love affair with NLRC would not bear any good fruit.
Aware of the desperate, underhand tactics of Kashamu, aided by NLRC officials, to circumvent due process, the other lotto operators, determined not to allow this to happen, swung into action.
Already they have written a petition to the House of Representatives Committee on Gaming which has commenced full investigation into the matter.
They have not stopped – they have also sent petitions to the Senate and the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF).
The lotto operators are protesting the move by the NLRC to sign out of court agreement with Kashamu behind their back. “This is very suspicious and inimical to the progress of other operators. Signing such agreement with him, will Kashamu a pseudo-regulator where other operators will now be paying him royalties for inventing nothing, a case of eating where he did not sow,” an official of one of the lotto operators based in Ibadan explained to this medium.
Further investigations at the NLRC revealed that indeed Kashamu’s nocturnal activities in the commission have polarised staff and management of the commission. There are claims and counter claims of money inducement among staff and management of the commission and Kashamu, huge sums of money were reported to have exchange hands and Kashamu even had the gut to introduce a consultant to the commission.
The lotto operators have vowed not to waiver in their collective struggle to ensure that due process is not toy with by Kashamu and his cohorts in the NLRC.
The die is indeed cast
Aregbesola Insists On Digitalisation Of Security Agencies
The Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola said for the country to get things right with the security challenges in Nigeria, digitalization of intelligence gathering and monitoring is the best approach.
He emphasized that the world had gone past the manual process of operation as it is still being done in Nigeria presently.
Responding at the IT Audit Presentation on the Ministry of Interior and its Agencies to the Minister by Mr. Folusho Philips, Chairman of Philips Consult, Aregbesola pledged that he would make sure his Ministry put the necessary efforts and tools in place to ensure maximum capacity building for digitalization in the Ministry and the agencies under his watch.
He said “What distinguished the individual is how he can challenge and overcome situations”. He advised that Nigerian leaders should put in all their best to overcome the security challenges facing the country to distinguish the country to meet world digital standard.
The Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Dr Shuaib Belgore, mentioned that significant efforts have already commenced to fully digitalize operations in the Ministry.
He stated that the Electronic Data Management System which would ensure digitalization of file records and implementation of the Human Resource Module of the IPPIS are set to take off in the Ministry. He however emphasized the need for more funding to be appropriated to further strengthen the Ministry’s Information Technology backbone.
The presentation identified that the Ministry and its agencies are yet to update in the digital world’s standard and needed to braze up to the world acceptable practices in the quest to curb insecurity and bring peace to the Nation.
The Directors commended the Minister’s initiative and efforts to see that insecurity is a thing of the past in Nigeria.
Present during the presentation are the Permanent Secretary, Directors in the Ministry, representatives of the agencies and the delegation of Philips Consultant.
”Its Not Our Building” Senators Reject Ownership Of Leaky National Assembly Building
Senate President Ahmad Lawan has urged Nigerians to stop bashing the National Assembly management for the parliament’s leaky roof, even as it is being maintained that the building housing the National Assembly belong to the FCTA.
During Tuesday’s downpour, the roof of the White House, where the two chambers of the National Assembly are started leaking, resulting to the lobby being taken over by flood.
Many Nigerians and civic groups described the incident as a national embarrassment.
Reacting to the media reports on the incident, the Deputy Whip of the Senate, Senator Sabi Abdullahi, raised a point of order, saying the reports breached the privilege of the lawmakers.
He clarified that the Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA) was in charge of the maintenance of the complex and not the lawmakers against the belief of many Nigerians.
Abdullahi noted that the N37 billion earmarked for the renovation of the National Assembly complex in the 2020 budget was slashed to N9 billion in the revised one.
He said up till now, nothing has been done.
The Senate President said the roof leakage confirmed the position of the lawmakers that the building was due for renovation.
Lawan said: “The fact that there was a leakage to me is a clear testimony, confirmation and vindication of the position the national assembly took initially.
“Everyone knows that this place is overdue for rehabilitation. We went to see Mr President and he was gracious and he asked us to meet with FCTA, the owners of the building.
“Myself, the speaker, late chief of staff and minister of finance met to look for money for the rehabilitation of the national assembly.
“When the N37 billion was approved, it was not a National Assembly budget, it was an FCDA budget.
“If this place leaks, we are not holding our democracy with the respect it has. We expect the press to inform the people responsibly.
“This house is the house of Nigerians. It belongs to Nigerians and it deserves to be rehabilitated.”
Guest Flees As Hotel Uncovers Murdered Female Companion
The Kwara State Police Command has begun searching for a man who allegedly killed a lady in a hotel in Ilorin, the state capital, about three weeks ago.
The suspect, whom the police identified as Adegboye James of Okelowo Street, Ede, Osun State, was alleged to have murdered the lady whom he brought to the hotel on Adewole Housing Estate, Ilorin, on May 27, 2021.
The police, in a statement signed by the command’s Public Relations Officer, Ajayi Okasanmi, said the address given by the suspect was fake and could not be traced.
He called on members of the public whose daughter or female relation was missing since May 28, 2021, to check the Homicide Section of the State Criminal Investigation Department for possible identification of the corpse.
The statement read, “On May 28, 2021, around 7.30pm, we responded to a call from one Olalekan Anafi, the supervisor of Premium Diamond Hotel, in the Adewole area of Ilorin that on May 27, 2021, around 2pm, one Adegboye James, lodged at their hotel.
“The said Adegboye James went out and came back with a lady. The said Adegboye James later checked out of the hotel without the knowledge of any of the hotel staff.
“In the morning of the following day when nothing was heard from the room occupied by the said lodger, a spare key was used to open the room and the hotel was confronted by the dead body of the lady.
“Investigation into the incident is already at an advanced stage as ordered by the Commissioner of Police, Kwara State, CP Mohammed Bagega, to arrest the lodger whose name and address as reflected in the hotel’s logbook is fake.”
In another development, the Kwara State command of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps said its operatives are searching for a motorist who allegedly cut off the hand of a seven-year-old Alimanjiri student, Usman Abubakar, of Malam Aliu Adamu School, Patigi, in the Patigi Local Government Area of the state.
A statement by the Public Relations Officer of the NSCDC, Babawale Afolabi, said the child was allegedly kidnapped together with his schoolmate by the unknown motorist, who promised to take them to where they would eat on Monday night.
Babawale said the suspect, who is now at large with the boy’s hand, later escaped into the bush.
He said the victim lost much blood and was treated at the Patigi General Hospital.
The PRO said the NSCDC had commenced investigation into the incident.
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