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African Press Review 23 February 2018


Confusion reigns in Nigeria over the number of girls abducted from a Yobe State school, and whether Kenya is contracting new debts to pay old ones?

We begin in Nigeria where parents with no news about their daughters abducted from a Yobe State school by suspected Boko Haram insurgents vented their anger on the region's governor on Thursday.

Punch reports that Governor Ibrahim Gaidam, was forced to cut short a visit to the Dapchi secondary school where the girls were taken as angry residents of the town pelted his convoy with stones, injuring some of his aides, as well as government officials.

According to Punch, security men attached to the governor had to use tear gas to disperse the angry crowd who also destroyed seven vehicles in the convoy.

While parents put the head count of the missing children at 46, the paper says the Minister of Information, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, who visited Dapchi, on Thursday was unable to confirm the number of the girls still unaccounted for.

Mohammed was reportedly accompanied by Nigeria's Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Hajiya Khadijat Bukar-Ibrahim and the representative of the Minister of Defence.

The Sun says that the suspected abductions in Kapchi spilled into the Senate on Thursday where three Yobe State lawmakers almost came to blows over the Governor's security record.

One senator reportedly recalled five attacks on public schools in the Boko Haram ravaged State accusing the Governor of abdicating his duties, claims furiously denied by one of his backers in the House.

ThisDay carries angry remarks the Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose, who on Thursday called on the Federal government to stop lying to Nigerians that the Boko Haram insurgency had been “completely defeated.”

Also in Nigeria, the Tribune headlines on a story trending Anambra State, where angry youths burned down a church where a brother got married to his teenage sister.

The paper reports that the 25-year-old groom and his 17-year-old sister took their vows at the “Dwelling Fullness of God” Church in Agba village during a service consecrated by the couple’s elder brother who is a priest. The Tribune says that the Reverend Father cited the Scriptures to back his action.

Kenya's Standard takes up the explosive issue of the country's debt burden. The publication quotes data from the Central Bank of Kenya showing that by December 2017 the internal and external debt “soaked in” from international lenders pushes the burden above Sh4.8 trillion which is approximately 38 billion euros.

What that means, according to the Standard, is that each of Kenya's 48 million people, owes the lenders Sh100, 000 (797 euros) per Kenyan.

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