The Big 5: Atiku will not disappoint – Obasanjo; Buhari rejected intelligence warnings on Boko Haram – Security consultant | Other top stories

These are the stories you should be monitoring today:

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo on Sunday said the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar will bring honour and dignity to his office if elected by Nigerians at the February 16 presidential election.

Speaking at the Lamido Fombina Palace, Yola, during the turbaning ceremony of Atiku as the 7th Waziri Adamawa by the Lamido of Adamawa, Obasanjo praised Atiku for his strong cultural orientation, adding that even while he served as Vice President under him, he (Atiku) never forgot his roots.

“No matter the issues today, I know you will not disappoint. When we were in Abuja dealing with national and international issues, you did not take lightly the cultural heritage of your people. I am sure you will bring honour to this position and I want to thank you, Waziri for doing all of us proud,” he said.

Meanwhile, the All Progressives Congress(APC) has told the PDP and its presidential flagbearer, Atiku Abubakar, that Nigerians won’t vote a fugitive in the 2019 general elections, as it challenged the former Vice President to come clean on the issue of his travel ban to the United States of America following his indictment for corruption in that country.

As contained in a statement by its Deputy National Publicity Secretary, Yekini Nabena, on Sunday in Abuja, the APC said the unwillingness of PDP governors to financially support his presidential campaign was already public knowledge, accusing Atiku and other PDP leaders of promising to sell some national assets including the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) as payback to some foreign financiers.

“To borrow the words of former President Olusegun Obasanjo, we must stop electing rogues, hooligans and criminals into public office. Truly, we cannot have a fugitive occupying the highest office in the country. Our great country, Nigeria deserves better,” the statement read in part.

Nigeria’s Defence Minister, Mansur Dan-Ali will visit Chad this week, following the worsening insecurity being experienced along the Nigeria – Chad border including recent deadly attacks by Boko Haram on Nigerian troops in Metele, a remote village in Borno, on the Nigeria-Chad border, when they allegedly invaded the camp in military uniforms as friendly soldiers.

In a statement by the Minister’s Public Relations Officer, Col. Tukur Gusau on Sunday, the visit is in continuation of consultations with the defence ministers of countries involved in the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF).

“The minister’s visit to Chad will revolve around strengthening the operations of the MNJTF to enable it achieve its mandate of eliminating security threats and creating a safe and secure environment in its area of responsibility,” the statement read.

In a related development, Specialised Tasks, Training, Equipment and Protection International (STTEP), a South African mercenary company, has said that President Muhammadu Buhari rejected intelligence warnings about operations of Boko Haram in Borno.

In a Facebook post put up by STTEP chairman Eeben Barlow, on Sunday, he said, “the initial 3-phase campaign strategy (known as ‘Operational Anvil’) to degrade and destroy BH in Borno, was rejected by his advisors, adding that the Buhari administration did not allow his company to complete the objective of “degrading and destroying” Boko Haram in Borno.

“There is, in a purely military sense, no such thing as a ‘technical defeat’—something the President, as an ex-military man ought to know. Sadly, he also chose to make the successes of 7 Infantry Division and 72 Mobile Strike Force (MSF) his own, when it wasn’t,” he said in the post reported by The Cable

The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) on Sunday vowed not to suspend its ongoing industrial action until its demands on poor funding of universities and government’s failure to adhere to previous agreements are met.

ASUU National President, Biodun Ogunyemi, who disclosed this in a statement on Sunday, said the union’s “struggle is still alive” and the strike would continue, stressing that any examination taken during this period will be challenged by the body after the strike.

“We met with the Honourable Minister of Education in line with our tradition to honour all invitations with openness to meaningful discussion of issues contained in our demand, so far, nothing concrete has come out of the meetings; rather it is still a projection of their ‘keep-them talking’ culture,” he added.

And stories from around the world:

US agents fired tear gas at hundreds of Central American migrants that climbed over a fence and attempted to rush the border from Tijuana, Mexico into the United States on Sunday. (Reuters)

Russia seized three Ukrainian naval ships off the coast of Russia-annexed Crimea after opening fire on them and wounding several sailors, a move that risks igniting a dangerous new crisis between the two countries.

Russia’s FSB security service said early on Monday its border patrol boats captured the Ukrainian naval vessels in the Black Sea and used weapons to force them to stop, Russian news agencies reported. (Al Jazeera)

Ukraine’s parliament is to decide whether to bring in martial law as anger over the capture of three of its naval vessels by Russia spilled into the streets overnight.

Protesters gathered outside the Russian embassy in the capital Kiev and an embassy car was set on fire. (BBC)

More than 100 people were wounded in Syria’s Aleppo late on Saturday in a suspected toxic gas attack which the government and its ally, Russia, blamed on insurgents. (Reuters)

US agents fired tear gas at hundreds of Central American migrants that climbed over a fence and attempted to rush the border from Tijuana, Mexico into the United States on Sunday. (AFP)

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