Comoros refuses migrants expelled from Mayotte in diplomatic standoff
The Indian Ocean archipelago of the Comoros warned Friday it would not accept migrants expelled from the neighbouring French island of Mayotte in a looming operation that has triggered a diplomatic spat.
Authorities in Mayotte are expected to launch Operation Wuambushu (“Take Back”) next week to remove illegal migrants who have settled in slums on the island.
Those without papers are to be sent back to the Comoran island of Anjouan, 70 kilometres (45 miles) away.
“The Comoros do not intend to welcome people expelled as part of the operation planned by the French government in Mayotte,” government spokesman, Houmed Msaidie, told AFP.
Msaidie said the planned action went against “the spirit and the letter” of agreements between the two countries.
Around half of Mayotte’s roughly 350,000 population is estimated to be foreign, most of them Comoran.
On Friday, French Interior Minister, Gerald Darmanin, confirmed the operation would take place but declined to give a date for its start.
Some 1,800 police oficers were already in Mayotte to deal with “criminal gangs,” he said.
In total, around 2,500 personnel from law enforcement, health and judicial services have been mobilised, according to a source familiar with the matter.
– Migrant influx –
Moroni earlier urged Paris to drop the operation — plans for which were first reported by the French satirical weekly Le Canard enchaine in February.
Anjouan governor, Anissi Chamsidine, said the island was unable to “cope with the violence created from Mayotte by the French state.”
Comoros’ President, Azali Assoumani, told AFP last week he hoped the plan would be abandoned, but acknowledged he lacked “the means to stop the operation through force.”
Mayotte and the three islands of the present-day Comoros were French territories until 1975.
Following a referendum on independence, Grande Comore, Moheli and Anjouan islands declared themselves to be a separate country, the Union of the Comoros.
But Mayotte voted to remain a French overseas territory and later became a French department — a status rejected by the Comoros, which continues to claim the island.
It is France’s poorest department with around 80 percent of the population living beneath the poverty line and high levels of social delinquency.
But it also benefits from French infrastructure support and welfare, and this has encouraged an influx from the Comoros, with many migrants attempting the hazardous crossing on rickety boats used by smugglers.
In 2019, France stepped up eforts to stem the flow, strengthening sea patrols that are supported by air surveillance.
Earlier this month, civil society groups in Comoros warned that Operation Wuambushu — which has been approved by French President Emmanuel Macron — was a “massacre waiting to happen” and urged international organisations to intervene.
Intense negotiations between Moroni and Paris have taken place in recent weeks, raising the possibility of a last-minute agreement.
Fuel Subsidy: Osun Govt threatens to seal stations hoarding petrol
The government of Osun state has warned filling stations against hoarding petroleum products in the state.In a statement signed by the state’s governor spokesman, Olawale Rasheed on Tuesday, the govt threatened to seal filling stations found guilty and prosecute the operators.The removal of fuel subsidy by President Bola Tinubu during his inaugural speech at Eagle Square on Monday, immediately after he was sworn in.“Any fuel station found guilty of hoarding fuel to create artificial scarcity shall be sealed off and operators prosecuted for the crime of economic sabotage,” Adeleke said.It added that the removal of fuel subsidy by Tinubu has caused unnecessary hardship for the people of the state.“This deliberate action is not only inhumane but unpatriotic and will not be allowed by the government. To this end, the Special Monitoring Team on fuel scarcity set up by His Excellency, Governor Ademola Nurudeen Jackson Adeleke headed by the Chief of Staff, Hon Kazeem Akinleye is still effective and shall not condone any form of economic sabotage.“As from today, May 30, 2023, the Committee shall begin special monitoring of all the filling stations across the state in collaboration with law enforcement agencies and other stakeholders,” it added.However, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited has supported the decision of Tinubu on the removal of fuel subsidy.The head of the company, Mele Kyari explained that the company had been spending a significant portion of its profits on the product subsidy.However, he assured Nigerians that there was no need for panic buying as the company had enough product to supply the country for the next 30 days.
Fuel Hike: Tinubu’s thoughtless announcement responsible – Sowore
Omoyele Sowore, the presidential candidate of the African Action Congress, AAC, in the February 25 presidential election has lashed out at President Bola Tinubu. This followed Tinubu’s decision to end fuel subsidy. Reacting to the resurfacing of queues, Sowore said that Tinubu’s “thoughtless fuel subsidy removal announcement triggered fuel scarcity and price gouging all over the country.” Recall that marketers and operators have increased petrol pump prices to N210-N500 per litre, following the confirmation of fuel subsidies removal by Tinubu’s administration. In a post via his verified Twitter handle on Tuesday, Sowore claimed that the nation’s elites don’t care about Nigerians. He wrote, “Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu @officialABAT thoughtless fuel subsidy removal announcement has already triggered fuel scarcity and price gouging all over Nigeria. This is why Nigerians must understand that nothing good will come out the Nigerian Elite-in and out- of power. They’re always after you. They don’t care about you! #Revolutionnow.”
Gov Makinde dissolves park management system in Oyo
Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde has dissolved the Park Management System (PMS) in the state.The park management system was introduced in 2020 by Makinde after he proscribed the National Union of Road Transport Union (NURTW) in the state.Dailypost reports that the dissolution of the PMS is coming few hours after the governor took the oath of office for second term.Makinde noted that the Disciplinary Committee of the PMS, led by Mukaila Lamidi, has been dissolved.He made this announcement via a statement signed by his Chief of Staff, Segun Ogunwuyi.The statement was dated Monday, May 29, 2023.“I have the directive of the Executive Governor of Oyo State, His Excellency, Governor Seyi Makinde to inform you of the dissolution of the Disciplinary Committee, Park Management System with immediate effect from today, Monday, 29th May, 2023,” the statement read.
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