US Passes First Major Gun Bill In Decades

Matrix Arms owner and gun manufacturer Allen Farris displays a new pistol made by his company, at his factory in Claremont, New Hampshire on June 3, 2022. Ed JONES / AFP

 

US lawmakers broke a decades-long stalemate on firearms control Friday, passing the first major safety regulations in almost 30 years, less than 24 hours after the Supreme Court bolstered the right to bear arms.

Gun regulation is a touchstone issue for both conservatives and liberals in the United States that has consumed national politics amid multiple mass shootings in recent years.

The Democratic-led House of Representatives voted to rubber-stamp a bipartisan Senate gun bill that — while modest — amounts to the first significant piece of legislation to regulate firearms since 1994.

Fourteen Republicans defied their leader Kevin McCarthy to cross the aisle and approve the 80-page package, which advanced from the evenly-divided upper chamber with cross-party backing late Thursday.

That vote came hours after the Supreme Court’s conservative majority had struck down a century-old New York law requiring permits for concealed-carry handguns.

The gun legislation includes enhanced background checks for younger buyers and federal cash for states introducing “red flag” laws that allow courts to temporarily remove weapons from those considered a threat.

Billions of dollars have been allocated to crack down on “straw purchasers” who buy firearms for people who are not allowed them and to curb gun trafficking.

‘Long-sought triumph’

The deeply-divisive issue of gun control was reignited by two massacres in May that saw 10 Black supermarket shoppers gunned down in upstate New York and 21 people, mostly young children, slain at a school in Texas.

The Supreme court had voted along party lines, with the six Republican appointees in favor of bolstering the constitutional right to bear arms and the three Democratic appointees dissenting.

The ruling was hailed by campaigners for boosted gun rights, but took the shine off what was expected to be a day of jubilation for weapons control activists.

Liberals had been celebrating the congressional action despite disappointment at the limited scope of the legislation, which doesn’t include universal background checks and omits any ban on semi-automatic weapons or high-capacity magazines.

“This decision won’t stop our grassroots army from doing what we’ve done for a decade: fighting to keep our families safe,” added Shannon Watts, founder of Moms Demand Action, said after the Supreme Court ruling was announced.

“Just as we’re breaking the logjam in Congress, we’re going to work day-in, day-out to mitigate the fallout in New York and any other states impacted by this decision and elect gun-sense lawmakers up and down the ballot.”

Eric Tirschwell, chief litigation counsel at legal non-profit Everytown Law, said the Supreme Court had misapplied fundamental constitutional principles, and added that the group was “ready to go to court” to defend restrictions.

Top Republicans celebrated the court’s decision.

“This is not just a long-sought triumph for lawful gun owners across America, it is a victory for all citizens and our constitutional order itself,” said Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.

McCarthy hailed the ruling as a victory that “rightfully ensures the right of all law-abiding Americans to defend themselves without unnecessary government interference.”

“The decision comes at an important time — as the Senate considers legislation that undermines Second Amendment freedom,” Wayne LaPierre, the National Rifle Association’s executive vice president, said in a statement.

“This decision unequivocally validates the position of the NRA and should put lawmakers on notice: no law should be passed that impinges this individual freedom.”

 

AFP

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Waldrum Unveils Super Falcons Team For AFCON

The Super Falcons are nine-time winners of the competition.

 

Super Falcons coach, Randy Waldrum has picked Captain Onome Ebi and 24 other players to represent Nigeria at the 12th Women Africa Cup of Nations taking place in Morocco, 2nd – 23rd July.

The team will depart Nigeria for Morocco on Monday, 27th June.

The list of the nine-time champions is an interesting mix of experience and youth, with veterans Tochukwu Oluehi, Ebi, Rita Chikwelu, Osinachi Ohale, Francisca Ordega and Ngozi Okobi-Okeoghene on board, as well as defenders Ashleigh Plumptre, Nicole Payne and Michelle Alozie, midfielder Regina Otu and forwards Vivian Ikechukwu, Gift Monday and Ifeoma Onumonu.

Dropped from the contingent that made the camp in Abuja were goalkeeper Rita Akarekor, defenders Chidinma Okeke, Ngozi Emenayo and Opeyemi Sunday. Midfielders Suliat Abideen, Amanda Uju Mbadi and Charity Adule, and forward Anam Imo were also dropped.

The Super Falcons will confront South Africa’s Banyana Banyana in their first match of the tournament on Monday, 4th July before other games against Botswana (7th July) and Burundi (10th July).

The semi-finalists at the championship in Morocco will qualify to represent Africa at the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.

 

SUPER FALCONS TEAM

Goalkeepers: Chiamaka Nnadozie (Paris FC, France); Tochukwu Oluehi (Maccabi Kishronot Hadera, Israel); Yewande Balogun (Coppermine United, USA)

Defenders: Glory Ogbonna (Santa Teresa FC, Spain); Onome Ebi (En Avant Guingamp, France); Osinachi Ohale (Deportivo Alaves, Spain); Ashleigh Plumptre (Leicester City, England); Nicole Payne (West Virginia University, USA); Michelle Alozie (Houston Dash, USA); Akudo Ogbonna (Edo Queens)

Midfielders: Peace Efih (Kiryat Gat, Israel); Halimatu Ayinde (Eskilstuna FC, Sweden); Toni Oyedupe Payne (Sevilla FC, Spain); Regina Otu (Minsk FC, Belarus); Christy Ucheibe (SL Benfica, Portugal); Rasheedat Ajibade (Atletico Madrid, Spain); Rita Chikwelu (Madrid CFF, Spain); Ngozi Okobi-Okeoghene (Eskilstuna FC, Sweden)

Forwards: Francisca Ordega (CSKA Moscow, Russia); Vivian Ikechukwu (WFC Gintra, Lithuania); Chinonyerem Macleans (GSK Gornik Leczna, Poland); Ifeoma Onumonu (NY/NJ Gotham FC, USA); Uchenna Kanu (Tigres Femenil, Mexico); Asisat Oshoala (FC Barcelona, Spain); Gift Monday (Bayelsa Queens)

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Alleged Organ Trafficking: Senators Are ‘Standing With Ekweremadu’ – Smart Adeyemi



 

A federal lawmaker Senator Smart Adeyemi has said Senators will not abandon Senator Ike Ekweremadu and some of them are making efforts to reach out to him.

He was reacting to allegations of organ harvesting levelled against former Deputy Senate President Ekweremadu and his wife, Beatrice Ekweremadu.

The London Metropolitan Police on Thursday arrested and charged Senator Ekweremadu and his wife for conspiring to bring a child to the UK for organ harvesting.

READ ALSO: Trial Of Ekweremadu, Wife Adjourned Till July 7

Speaking in an interview with Channels Television, Senator Adeyemi said there is still a lot of unknown aspects of the case hence the need to proceed with caution and not be quick to condemn Senator Ekweremadu.

Senator Smart Adeyemi spoke to Channels Television on June 24, 2022.

 

He further said until the issue of consent is firmly established, it will be difficult to give a well informed opinion on the matter.

“This issue is most unfortunate,” Adeyemi told Channels Television. “it’s something that is very disturbing to everybody in the Senate because he is one of us; but more importantly is the fact that I know him to be a man of great value and strength of character; a man with very high moral foundation.

“But having said this, I think it is too early to start apportioning blame as to whether he is guilty or not. All of us who are colleagues, we are feeling the pains and we are standing with Ike Ekweremadu on this. We will not abandon him to this.

“Effort is being made by quite a number of Senators to see what we can do by way of giving moral support and any other support that is required.

“But we want to get get the full details of the case. The issues are that the victim was not of age, that he was below 18 years old, so he could not be seen to have had the right of determining as to whether he could offer his organs for someone else.”

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Extension Of Voter Registration Is ‘Inevitable’ – INEC

A file photo of a voter at an election poll center. Sodiq Adelakun/Channels Television

 

The Independent National Electoral Commission will extend the deadline for its Continuous Voter Registration exercise, national commissioner Festus Okoye said on Friday.

Civil society organisations have called for the deadline of June 30 to be extended to enable more Nigerians register to vote in the 2023 general elections.

INEC “is disposed towards extending the date for the CVR,” Mr Okoye said while appearing on Channels Television’s Politics Today.

READ ALSO: Supreme Court Strikes Out Buhari’s Suit Challenging Section 84(12)

However, while civil societies such as Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) have argued that INEC should stop voter registration 90 days before the general elections, the commission says it is constrained by financial and logistic factors.

INEC is disposed towards extending voter registration. An extension is inevitable. But not up to the period that some people are canvassing. – Festus Okoye, INEC National Commissioner#PoliticsToday#CTVTweets pic.twitter.com/YtSvbmnvHO

— Channels Television (@channelstv) June 24, 2022

 

A Federal High Court is set to rule on a suit brought by SERAP against INEC on June 29.

“We are convinced that after we make our arguments, the court will be convinced on why we cannot extend the CVR beyond a certain period,” Mr Okoye said.

“But we are convinced, given the enthusiasm of Nigerians, given the new resolve of Nigerians to register, that an extension is inevitable.

“The Commission is disposed towards extending the period for the CVR but not up to the period that some people are canvassing.”

PHOTOS: Kwankwaso, Fayose Visit Wike In Port Harcourt

Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike receives Rabiu Kwankwaso in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, on June 24, 2022.

 

Presidential candidate of the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP), Rabiu Kwankwaso on Friday paid a visit to Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike in Port Harcourt.

While the meeting’s purpose is yet unclear, it may not be unconnected to the 2023 general elections.

Also present at the meeting was former Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose.

READ ALSO: ADC Nominates Tonto Dikeh As Deputy Governorship Candidate For Rivers

Other political players such as the presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi, have visited Mr Wike in the past few days.

Mr Wike on Thursday received Senate Minority Leader, Philip Aduda and other PDP politicians, also in Port Harcourt.

 

See more photos from Mr Kwankwaso’s visit: