Rights

Cuba blames unrest on U.S. interference as Joe Biden backs protests

Cuba blamed historic protests that took place over the weekend on U.S. “economic asphyxiation” and social media campaigns by a minority of U.S.-financed counter-revolutionaries, while U.S. President Joe Biden said he stood with the Cuban people. The streets of Havana were quiet on Monday, although there was a heavy police presence. Outages in mobile internet – the only way many Cubans have of accessing the web – were frequent. Chanting “freedom” and calling for President Miguel Diaz-Canel to step down, thousands of Cubans joined street protests here from Havana to Santiago on Sunday in the biggest anti-government demonstrations on the Communist-run island in decades. At least 80 protesters, activists, and independent journalists had been detained nationwide since Sunday, according to exile...

Nigerian airlines list conditions for full refund to passengers after two-hour flight delay

Following the pronouncement of the Federal Government that airline operators must refund the full cost of travel tickets to passengers after a two-hour delay, commercial airlines have listed the conditions for such reimbursement. The airline operators made this known in separate interviews with newsmen. The Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, had, on Thursday at the weekly State House briefing in Aso Villa, Abuja, read out some of the rights of air passengers as enshrined in Part 19 of the Consumer Protection Regulations of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Regulations (2015) and charged them to demand their rights whenever they were being trampled upon by airlines. “On domestic flights, for delay beyond one hour, carrier should provide refreshment, and one telephone call, or one SMS, or one e-ma...

Bayelsa government resolves crisis at Niger Delta University

The mediatory meeting covered Wednesday at the instance of the Bayelsa State Government between the Governing Council of the Niger Delta University, NDU, students’ representatives and other stakeholders has restored normalcy to the state-owned university. Students of the university had been protesting against the closure of the institution’s portal for payment of school fees and alleged enforcement of compulsory wearing of school uniform by the university authorities. But rising from the last round of meetings directed by Governor Douye Diri which were presided over by his deputy, Senator Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo, at the Government House, Yenagoa, it was agreed that the portal for the payment of school fees be reopened. A statement issued by the Senior Special Assistant on Media, Mr Doubara At...

#EndSARS: Ogun panel recommends payment of over N218 million to victims

Ogun Governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun, has assured that he will implement the report of the State’s Judicial Panel of Investigation on Police Brutality and Extra Judicial Killings. The Governor who gave the assurance while receiving the report said its implementation was necessary towards having a peaceful society and engendering of a more robust relationship between the people and security agencies. Governor Abiodun who spoke on Friday appreciated the Panel members for their selfless efforts and contributions towards the successful completion of the task. “I believe that the implementation of this report will end the gory experience often encountered by residents of the State”, the Governor assured. The State’s helmsman added that it is important for all of us as a people and security agenci...

Anambra election: 22 political parties storm INEC office, want participation

Twenty-two political parties, on Friday, stormed the headquarters of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), in Abuja, to submit names and particulars of candidates for the November 6 Anambra governorship election. The parties, which were part of the 74 political parties deregistered by INEC last year, insisted that they must be on the ballot as they had obtained a declarative judgment by the Appeal Court quashing their deregistration by the INEC. The electoral body, however, rejected their request, insisting that the parties remained deregistered. It would be recalled that the parties had, on March 18 this year, submitted letters of notice for the conduct of the governorship primaries for the Anambra poll. But INEC, then, in a swift reaction, signed by INEC National Commissi...

PIB: Ijaw leaders reject ‘disgusting, provocative’ bill

The leadership of the Ijaw nation has rejected the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) just passed into law by the National Assembly describing it as disgusting and provocative. The leaders also called on the Minister of State for Petroluem Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, to use this opportunity to write his name in gold, and on the side of prosperity by standing firm with the Ijaw people against their oppressors. President of the Ijaw National Congress (INC), the umbrella body of the Ijaw people, Prof Benjamin Okaba in a packed press conference, he addressed at the Ijaw House, headquarters of INC in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, declared that the Ijaw nation rejects in its entirety the 3% and 5% provisions as compensation, the redefinition of host communities and other provisions including the alloca...

IGP charges police officers to keep up with modern policing techniques

The Inspector General of Police (IGP), Usman Alkali Baba, has charged officers of the Nigeria Police Force to keep themselves abreast of techniques and strategies of modern policing. Baba gave the advice Wednesday while addressing officers and men of the Nigeria Police at the Bompai Police headquarters in Kano. The Inspector General, who was on his first official visit to the Command since he assumed office, charged the officers to improve their knowledge on issues of democratic policing, human rights and other aspects of modern policing. Baba enjoined them never to be overwhelmed by challenges. Challenges are welcome and challenges are surmountable, he stated in respect to the plea for additional manpower to be deployed to Kano. He noted that even an additional 7,000 policemen were added ...

Canada leads call on China to allow Xinjiang access – statement

More than 40 countries urged China on Tuesday to allow the U.N. human rights chief immediate access to Xinjiang region to look into reports that more than a million people have been unlawfully detained there, some subjected to torture or forced labour. The joint statement on China was read out by Canadian Ambassador Leslie Norton on behalf of countries including Australia, Britain, France, Germany, Japan and the United States to the U.N. Human Rights Council. Beijing denies all allegations of abuse of Uyghurs and describes the camps as vocational training facilities to combat religious extremism. “Credible reports indicate that over a million people have been arbitrarily detained in Xinjiang and that there is widespread surveillance disproportionately targeting Uyghurs and members of other...

Senate: National Assembly won’t gag media

The Senate has said it was not possible for the 9th National Assembly to stiffen the media in Nigeria with its current amendments to the acts which established the National Broadcasting Commission and the Nigerian Press Council. The Spokesperson for the Senate, Dr. Ajibola Basiru, who gave the assurance on Monday, said the amendments to the acts and other relevant laws should not be misinterpreted as an attempt to gag the freedom of speech and free press in the country. Basiru spoke in an interview with journalists at the sidelines of a two-day capacity building training for Media Aides to Principal Officers of the National Assembly, organised by the National Institute for Legislative and Democratic Studies in Abuja on Monday. Basiru said, “The freedom of speech is an inalienable right of ...

Court restrains Ondo governor from sacking chief judge

A Federal High Court in Abuja, on Thursday, stopped Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu (SAN) of Ondo State from removing the Chief Judge (CJ) of the state, Justice Oluwatoyin Akeredolu, from office. Justice Inyang Ekwo, in a ruling, restrained the governor and five others seeking to remove the Chief Judge from office on the grounds that they lacked constitutional powers to do so. Justice Akeredolu had approached the court for an order restraining the defendants from illegally removing her from office without recourse to the National Judicial Council (NJC). Delivering ruling in the application, Justice Ekwo held that the powers to investigate, probe and indict any judicial officer for any misconduct in the discharge of duties is constitutionally vested in the NJC only. According to the judge, b...

White House considering talks between Joe Biden and China’s Xi Jinping

The White House will consider arranging talks between President Joe Biden and his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, as the two countries spar over issues including human rights, a top U.S. official said on Thursday. Biden’s national security adviser Jake Sullivan said that the two leaders are due to “take stock of where we are in the relationship.” Beijing fumed over a communique issued at Biden’s urging by the Group of Seven leaders on Sunday. It scolded the country over human rights in its Xinjiang region and Hong Kong while also demanding a full and thorough investigation of the origins of the coronavirus in China. “Soon enough we will sit down to work out the right modality for the two presidents to engage,” Sullivan told reporters on a conference call. “It could be a phone call, it cou...

Joe Biden pointedly asks Vladimir Putin about cyberattacks at summit

U.S. President Joe Biden asked Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday how he would feel if someone carried out a ransomware attack on Russian oil pipelines, a pointed question during their summit that illustrated the breadth of their disagreements. The query referred to a cyberattack that closed the Colonial Pipeline Co system for several days in May, preventing millions of barrels of gasoline, diesel and jet fuel from flowing to the U.S. East Coast from the Gulf Coast. Both leaders described their first summit in a lakeside Swiss villa as professional, rather than friendly, and said they agreed to hold lower-level talks on cybersecurity and arms control and to send their ambassadors back to their capitals. But there was no hiding their differences on issues such as human rights, wh...

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