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Friday, 18 January 2019

MY LIFE, MY REGRET, MY CROSS
                                                                          PART ONE

EPISODE 1

Oluchi carried the 13 year old on her back as she walked and ran intermittently, all the way to the hospital which was some kilometres away from their house. Her legs were swollen and she was almost losing her breath when she got to the hospital. She almost passed out from fatigue for the girl was heavy coupled with the distance she had trekked. Some minutes later, a nurse took over from her. She hadn't sat down for five minutes when Umeka rushed in. In a twinkling of an eye, Oluchi was struggling for her life on the floor. Umeka had dealt her a blow on her stomach and soon she was bleeding. An older man and a nurse tried to hold him back but he would not. He gave her a hard kick with his right foot on her side and was cursing on top of his voice when the Doctor arrived the spot. He called the security and Umeka was arrested immediately. Oluchi losed the baby and passed away an hour later after losing so much blood. She had kept the pregnancy away from her husband for fear that he might not accept the child.

The Past...

Umeka had lost his first wife to asthma two months ago. He was having a hard time taking care of his three daughters, Nonye, 6, Ugo, 4 and Kamsy, 2 and still go food hunting all by himself when Oluchi, his one time business partner in rubber foot wears who had been out of the village for a year, came to his rescue upon her return when she heard the news. She had come to sympathize with him one day when she saw the two year old on his back tied with a wrap cloth crying while he knelt down to make the fire. She had compassion on him and immediately relieved him of the little girl he was carrying. Surprisingly, Kamsy immediately stopped crying when Oluchi carried her. Thereafter, she volunteered to come check on them every two days as she desperately wanted to help. Sooner than Umeka had expected, his daughters quickly bonded with Oluchi and had began to call her mama already. They had loved her so much and she in turn treated them with love and care as if they were her own.

Meanwhile, Umeka had something for his neighbour, Chidinma. He loved her so much and wanted to tie the knot with her but his only problem were his children. They detested her so much and found it very difficult to be happy whenever she was around and she too, lacked the patience to condone their misdemeanors. She would beat them mercilessly at the slightest mistake. Umeka had taken note of all these and was confused on what to do. Chidimma soon stopped visiting completely  after she began to see Oluchi more often in his house. Umeka could not particularly point out what attracted her to him. Perhaps, it was her shapely and curvy body that attracted him to her. Or could it be because she was very fair in complexion? Umeka soon realized that his daughters' happiness mattered more to him than his after seeking for advice from a Friend. One thing led to another and three months later, he married Oluchi. Some months later after their wedding, Chidimma left the village. Rumour had it that she went to marry her heartthrob in the city.

EPISODE 2

Everything returned to normality for Umeka and his daughters save the fact that no matter how hard a person works, one can never be another but a close substitute for another. Oluchi would never be Umeka's late wife but she definitely was a perfect substitute for her.  The family were so knitted into one that one could hardly tell them apart. Their income as a family was steady as the erstwhile business partners were together again.

EPISODE 3

Seven months later, Oluchi and Umeka discovered that Ugo, their second daughter was asthmatic. She had had five asthmatic attacks in the last five months and this condition had made Umeka to begin to see things, particularly his daughters and Oluchi, differently. He became fearful and overreacted anytime she tried to discipline his daughters. The fear of losing any of his daughters to asthma tormented him like hell as his dear wife had died because of the disease. He would scold her and sometimes even slap or beat her in front of his daughters even when they were wrong thus making his daughter, Nonye, to lose her respect for her. The closest to her heart was Kamsy, for she had from a tender age regarded her as her mother and obeyed her. In Kamsy, Oluchi found understanding and comfort and it was because of her that she did not lose her respect for Umeka despite the undeserved maltreatment he meted out to her without cause. Because of her health, Ugo was not as much of a headache as Nonye. She was always by herself.

EPISODE 4

Until Oluchi died Umeka had blinded his own eyes and heart from seeing reality. Nonye had taken to some bad habits when she was fifteen. She frequently followed their next-door neighbour's daughter, Uju, to fetch water in the village stream. On one of such occasions, Uju persuaded Nonye to accompany her to collect a parcel from a friend. After collecting it, they went straight to the stream to fetch water. Nonye was curious about the content of the beautifully wrapped gift and had asked Uju about it for the umpteenth time when she gave her a condition that must be fulfilled if she must know the content. Naïve Nonye accepted without giving it a second thought. The condition Uju gave her was that she would take a little of the content if she unwrapped it. When she unwrapped it, alas! It was tobacco! Nonye still did not know what it was until Uju told her the name. She had refused to take it at first but Uju enticed her into smoking the substance with her.

However, luck was on their side because no other person came to the stream until they left. When she got home her stepmother was inside the room she shared with their father so she staggered to the other room belonging to her and her sisters. She had only laid down for some few minutes when Oluchi's voice rang like a bell from her room. As she was still experiencing the effect of the hard substance, she did not answer. Angrily, Oluchi stormed the room to see what was preventing her mouth from answering her name. On entering the room, she perceived the smell of tobacco. Unfortunately, Umeka had travelled to the next village to sell his wares and wouldn't be back until after two days. After several efforts to get her to say how she got the substance, She lied to her stepmother about the person that gave her the substance because she did not want to lose Uju's friendship. She told her that it was an unfamiliar boy that had forced her to take the substance because she had refused to assist him in fetching his bucket of water. Umeka did not come back the next day as expected, and the food Oluchi prepared to await his return the previous day got spoilt. The next day, Oluchi began to prepare dinner later than usual as no one assisted her in the household chores. Nonye had become too heady to run errands for her ever since Umeka started maltreating her. Ugo was allergic to smoke and Kamsy was not at home. Umeka arrived that day unexpectedly, when she was still preparing dinner. He was enraged as he was famished and had ill luck in selling his wares. He had beaten her black and blue that day until the neighbours came to stop him. The next day, when Oluchi tried to tell him about Nonye's experience and her view on the matter, she received the beating of her life and he warned her never to speak ill of his daughters again in his hearing.

EPISODE 5

Nonye soon developed a penchant for tobacco and was slowly getting addicted to it. She would smoke it in her stepmother's presence and hide it anytime her father was around. It was on one of such occasions that Ugo had the last asthmatic attack that sent her and her stepmother to their early graves. Nonye was sitting by the window, as usual smoking her tobacco while Ugo was lying on the bed inside. Her health conditions had made her abstain from most of the household chores because of dust and smoke. The smoke was pervading the room little by little without the knowledge of Nonye. Soon, Ugo had another attack. Meanwhile, their mother had just returned from the market and had gone into the house to change her clothes when she heard the familiar sound of Ugo's wheezing. Her inhaler was exhausted and Umeka was to buy it on his way back the previous day but it had escaped his memory. Hence to save the girl's life, she rushed in and carried her on her back all the way to the hospital. On seeing what had happened as a result of her nonchalant attitude, Nonye was about to run away when her father returned from the market with the inhaler. Immediately, she feigned crocodile tears and told her father how her stepmother had attempted to kill her sister through the dust she was raising as she swept the rooms and that was when Umeka stormed the hospital and murdered his wife.

EPISODE 6

Meanwhile Ugo had been unconscious ever since she was rushed into the hospital. Some hours later the Doctor confirmed her dead as the smoke from the tobacco had irritated her breathing passages and caused a severe asthma attack which resulted in her death. When Nonye discovered that her sister was dead she ran away. Meanwhile, Kamsy had been sent by her mother to fetch firewood from their little farm that was not so far away from the house. When she returned she met an empty house but was told by their neighbours that her family were in the hospital. When she arrived, her stepmother and sister were dead already and Nonye was gone. She asked about her family from the Doctor and was told of everything that had transpired. She couldn't face her father, not after he had killed the only woman she'd grown to love as a mother after the demise of her mother. She was too bitter to ask her father why and so she refused to go and see him. She left the hospital after seeing the corpse of her stepmother and sister.

EPISODE 7

Umeka sat on the cold, bare floor of his solitary confinement with his thin legs stretched in front of him. He had been condemned to life in prison by the Village Head. He was to be hanged to death but Nonye was no where around to reaffirm the story to the Village Head so he was sent to a solitary confinement. He didn't know if he was to feel sad that he would end up in the prison or that he had used his own hands to kill a woman he had grown to love and his unborn child. The Doctor had told him that his wife was with child when he kicked her. But why didn't Oluchi tell him about it? Was the child not his own? No, Oluchi was too saintly to commit adultery. In fact, He had married her as a virgin. Perhaps, she was going to tell me or was she afraid of my reaction? Umeka reasoned. But she killed my daughter, he reasoned again trying to justify the guilt he felt within. He had never raised a hand on a woman before so whatever came on him to act the way he did, he wondered. As he inhaled the pungent smell of urine in his cell, Umeka couldn't help but ask himself, " Would I have been better off if I had gone for Chidinma?",  "Would it have prevented all these?" He longed daily to see his daughters but none showed up.
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Update From FG On New Minimum Wage

The Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, says the proposed new National Minimum Wage will be presented to the National Council of State on January 22.

Ngige disclosed this while speaking with State House correspondents after the National Economic Council meeting presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, at the Presidential Villa, Abuja on Thursday.

The minister said work was still ongoing on the figure, 
frequency of review, those to be exempted and everything else about the bill before it would be ready for transmission to the National Assembly.

“The information minister told you the other day after the Federal Executive Council meeting that we are taking our deliberations to the National Economic Council and then we close up on the January 22nd at the National Council of State.

“After that, we will be able to say where we are going. It is not a question of governors saying they cannot pay N30,000, discussions are still ongoing and will terminate on 22nd when we meet with the National Council of State.

“Governors are part of Nigeria and they are part of the government’s side of the public sector; so do not disengage them or dis-articulate them from the Federal Government.
“The public is the Federal Government and the state government, and even the local government,’’ Ngige said.

The minister, however, said that the plan was to transmit the National Minimum Wage Bill to the National Assembly on or before January 23 in consonance with the agreement with labour.
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Expert Back Atiku Over Plans To Privatise NNPC

Momoh Aliyu, a financial expert and Managing Director of Cyber1 Systems Network International, has backed decision by PDP’s presidential candidate Atiku Abubakar to privatise the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).

Aliyu made his position known while reacting to statement credited to Atiku on his proposed plan to privatise the NNPC if elected president.

NAN reports that the PDP’s flag bearer on Wednesday said that he would privatise the NNPC if elected, describing the state-owned oil firm as a “mafia organisation’’.

Atiku, who spoke at an interactive session with the business community in Lagos, said that he would take the step even if doing so would cost him his life.

He explained that he sold the idea to former President Olusegun Obasanjo whom he worked with as a deputy between 1999 and 2007.

According to him, the former president did not approve of it but he is convinced that NNPC will run better if not managed by the government.

The expert said that the privatisation of NNPC was long overdue but, however, doubted the integrity of Atiku in spearheading such process.

According to him, a country with population projected to double by 2050, and presently has many Nigerians that are unemployed should only focus on productivity.

Nigeria’s population is presently estimated at 180 million.

Aliyu said the only panacea to productivity and job creation was to privatise and diversify the nation’s economy.
He said that the government would find it difficult to diversify conveniently because of its policies on public service which were critical to key sectors of the economy.

Aliyu suggested that NNPC should be a regulatory body and not a commercial body.
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Atiku Laughs With Saraki As He Arrives US, Checks Into Trump Hotel (Photos)

Former Nigerian Vice President and Presidential Candidate of the PDP, His Excellency Atiku Abubakar, has arrived at Dulles International Airport, in the United States of America.

During his working visit to Washington DC, Atiku will engage in bilateral meetings with a high powered, bi-partisan delegation of US congressmen who are deeply concerned and troubled about the future of democracy in Nigeria.

The delegation is seeking Atiku’s views on how best the United States can support Nigeria in ensuring democracy at all levels and more importantly ensuring the will of the people prioritised at all times.


Atiku will have several other meetings with business leaders, high ranking US government officials, thought leaders and Nigerians in the diaspora.
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See The Man Buhari Called APC Presidential Candidate, Leading To Reactions

Here's the man President Buhari called 'APC presidential candidate' that got people talking. He also referred to the man, APC Delta gubernatorial candidate Great Ogboru, as APC senatorial candidate, he was still wrong.
The incident has made many, especially opposition, to ask if Buhari is fit.

Buhari was to hand over APC flag to him, then he said: "I am handing over this flag of honour to our presidential candidate." When the man to his left corrected him, saying "gubernatorial", Buhari responded with "to our senatorial candidate". 
Again, the man corrected him, saying "gubernatorial". This time, Buhari said: "governortorial candidate".
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Buhari's Team Cries Out: PDP, Atiku Planning To Rig The Election

Buhari Media Organisation (BMO) said yesterday that it has unearthed plans by the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and its presidential candidate Atiku Abubakar to infiltrate the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) by sponsoring its supporters to work within the commission as electoral officers.

BMO also said the opposition was deploying massive resources to rig the election.

The organisation said in a statement issued by its chairman, Niyi Akinsiju and secretary, Cassidy Madueke, that the plans of the opposition “to subvert the will of the people”, is the recent recruitment of a former INEC Chairman known to have presided over the worse election in Nigeria’s recent political history.

The group said the rigging plot also involves spending huge sums of money on police personnel and election officials in many parts of the country. It added that the opposition was also plotting to infiltrate the electoral body with their supporters.

The group asked INEC to be vigilant and ensure that PDP supporters were not recruited as electoral officers for the presidential and other elections
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Atiku's Journey To America: How It Really Happened

It was a well guarded trip, no leaks, no distractions, pure surprise for many political watchers. In fact, while he was already in the plane heading to America, some were still busy saying he can't visit America.

Presidential candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, arrived the United States of America yesterday and is, today, expected to speak at the United States’ Chamber of Commerce in Washington DC, from 2.30pm to 4:00pm.

Atiku is expected to speak at a private roundtable, hosted by the US Chamber of Commerce and the US African Business Center at 1615 H Street, NW 20062.

Atiku left Nigeria from the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, in company with the Senate President and Director General of the Atiku/Obi Presidential Campaign Organisation, Dr. Bukola Saraki.
After controversies over the refusal of the US to grant him entry into the country for 12 years, indications emerged in December 2018 that Atiku was finally issued a visa by the US embassy.

The All Progressives Congress (APC) had used the fact that he was unable to travel to the US as a result of a bribery scandal involving William Jefferson, a former US congressman in 2004 to discredit him.

APC National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole, has repeatedly said Atiku could not go to the US because he was “running away from investigations by the US authorities... The PDP has a presidential candidate who can only travel to Dubai,” Oshiomhole had said.

During one of his interviews before he emerged the PDP candidate, Atiku explained that though he had applied for visa, he was told that his application is going through administrative process. He was eventually cleared.
Yesterday evening, his Media Adviser, Paul Ibe, said in a statement that Atiku would meet “with US government officials, the business community and the Nigerian community.”
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Dino Melaye Granted Bail By Abuja Judge

The drama is coming to an end gradually. A High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) has granted bail to Senator Dino Melaye on health grounds.

Justice Yusuf Halilu in his ruling ordered Dino to produce three sureties including the Clark of the National Assembly who must produce a written undertaking to produce him in court.


The other sureties must be residents of the FCT who have landed properties in Abuja.
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Wednesday, 16 January 2019

CJN Onnoghen and President Buhari Meet Face To Face

President Muhammadu Buhari and the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Walter Onnoghen, were all smiles as they shook hands at the Armed Forces Remembrance Day on Tuesday.

Buhari's encounter with Onnoghen becomes significant following reports from government sources that the President is unaware of the actions by the anti-corruption agencies to try Onnoghen.

Special Adviser to the President on Political Matters, Senator Babafemi Ojudu, also denied that his boss demanded the resignation of the CJN.
Onnoghen declined appearing in court on Monday, claiming that the Code of Conduct Tribunal, CCT, has no right to try him over false assets declaration charge by the Code of Conduct Bureau, CCB.
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CJN Onnoghen and President Buhari Meet Face To Face

President Muhammadu Buhari and the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Walter Onnoghen, were all smiles as they shook hands at the Armed Forces Remembrance Day on Tuesday.

Buhari's encounter with Onnoghen becomes significant following reports from government sources that the President is unaware of the actions by the anti-corruption agencies to try Onnoghen.

Special Adviser to the President on Political Matters, Senator Babafemi Ojudu, also denied that his boss demanded the resignation of the CJN.
Onnoghen declined appearing in court on Monday, claiming that the Code of Conduct Tribunal, CCT, has no right to try him over false assets declaration charge by the Code of Conduct Bureau, CCB.
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UNILAG Launches First Campus TV Station

The University of Lagos (UNILAG) has set the pace with its first campus television station in Nigeria. The station, which operates on Channel 184, will be transmitted on StarTimes digital broadcast platform.

It will deliver local, national and international programmes.

At the launch of the station, Vice Chancellor Prof Oluwatoyin Ogundipe said UNILAG TV would be a reference point in sport, documentaries, entertainment as well as an instrument of educational advancement for the promotion of the cultures of the school’s immediate environment.

He added: “UNILAG TV Channel 184 will have a time belt for our Distance Learning Teaching packages. In other words, UNILAG TV will serve as an instructional facility for our Distance Learning students.

“The station will promote the culture of our immediate communities, regularly highlighting the ideas, languages, customs, folklores and social behaviours of our immediate communities, in line with the provision of the National Broadcasting Commission’s (NBC’s) code.”

In line with the university’s entrepreneurship and skills acquisition programme, Ogundipe said the station would be a platform for unleashing the potentials of students.

The vice chancellor said the station would not be limited to students in the Art faculty, adding that it would also be used as a medium to keep students informed of the happenings in the university through its one-hour news.

The chairman of UNILAG Multi-Media Ventures, Prof Muyiwa Falaye, said the station would run in accordance with the codes of the NBC.
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5 Things To Know About The New IGP, Mohammed Adamu

Here are five things to know about Mohammed Adamu, the new police boss:

VICE-PRINCIPAL, GEOGRAPHY TEACHER 
Between 1983 and 1984, Mohammed, on the mandatory National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) service year, taught geography at the Government Teachers College in Wamba, then Plateau state. And from 1984 to 1986, he was made geography tutor and subsequently promoted to vice-principal at Government Day Secondary School, Gunduma, Keffi in then Plateau state.

JOINED POLICE AT AGE 25 

Born in 1961, Mohammed has spent at least 33 years in the service of the Nigeria police force. He joined as a cadet assistant superintendent of police (ASP) in 1986, and he trained at the Police College, Ikeja, Lagos state.

VICE-PRESIDENT AT INTERPOL 
Steadily rising through the ranks, Mohammed, from 1997 to 2002, worked as specialised officer at the headquarters of the international criminal police organization (INTERPOL) in Lyon, France.

In 2005, he was an assistant director at INTERPOL. In 2007, he became a director. He was elected and served INTERPOL vice-president responsible for Africa from 2012-2014.

AIG IN CHARGE ZONE 5 
Until his appointment, Mohammed has been the AIG responsible for the management and operations of the police in zone 5 comprising Bayelsa, Delta and Edo states. He has held this position since 2016.
HOLDS A MASTER’S DEGREE FROM PORTSMOUTH 
Graduating with a bachelor degree in Geography from the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria in 1983, Mohammed returned to school about two decades later for a master’s degree in international criminal justice systems at the University of Portsmouth in the UK.

In 2018, he was also awarded a honourary doctorate degree in international relations from Godfrey Okoye University in Enugu state where he had served as police commissioner, The Cable reports.
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Tuesday, 15 January 2019

Dino Melaye's Trial Begins In Court... He Didn't Show Up

The absence of Dino Melaye in court on Monday stalled his trial before Justice Olasumbo Goodluck of the Abuja Federal High Court.

The prosecuting counsel, Shuaib Labaran, had arraigned Melaye for 
allegedly giving false information that incriminated David Onoja, chief of staff to the Kogi State governor as the mastermind of an assassination attempt on him.

The prosecution counsel further alleged that Melaye had in April, 2017 given false statement during a phone conversation with Mr Mohammed Abubakar, son of the late former governor of Kogi State, Abubakar Audu.

The senator, however, denied committing the offence which contravened Sections 140 and 393 of the Penal Code Law, Cap. 89, Laws of Northern Nigeria, 1963.

On resumption of hearing on Monday, Labaran told the court that Melaye was absent but that his counsel, Mr Olusegun Jolaawo, had explained the circumstance of his absence.

The prosecuting counsel informed the court that Jalaawo had appealed to him to agree to his request for adjournment since the court had initially given two different days for continuation of hearing in the case.

Labaran informed the court that he was not opposed to the defendant’s counsel’s request for an adjournment.

Jolaawo informed the court that Melaye was absent from court because he was in the custody of the police.

“Because the court does not take to speculation, the defence team had obtained a certified copy order of the FCT High Court by Justice Yusuf Halilu on January 9, ordering the remand of the senator in police custody,’’ he said.
He said the defence team had tendered before the court a filed application for the enforcement of Melaye’s rights, filed by Chief Mike Ozekhome (SAN) before Halilu.

The counsel informed the court of the date the remand order would expire, which made Justice Goodluck to adjourn the case until January 28.
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Why Chief Justice of Nigeria Didn't Appear At Tribunal

Justice Walter Onnoghen, the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), scheduled for arraignment for alleged false assets declaration charges, was not anywhere around the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) yesterday.

His lawyers, led by Wole Olanipekun, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), told the CCT that the CJN was not properly served the summons. He is to be personally served tomorrow.

CCT Chairman Danladi Umar called Justice Onnoghen’s case at about 10:08am. But the CJN did not attend yesterday’s proceedings at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT), scheduled for his arraignment on charges of non-declaration of assets.

Olanipekun, SAN, led a retinue of lawyers, including 46 senior advocates, to defend the nation’s chief law officer.

At the commencement of proceedings and the mention of the charge, lead prosecution lawyer Aliyu Umar (SAN) informed the tribunal that the defendant had been served with the charge and that the day’s business was for the arraignment of the defendant.

Umar, however, noted that the defendant was absent and prayed the tribunal to inquire from the defendant’s lawyers why he did not attend proceedings.

He argued that having been served, the defendant had no reason to refuse to attend proceedings.

When Umar asked why his client was absent, Olanipekun said he (the CJN) was not properly served with the tribunal’s summons.

Olanipekun also said his client had filed an application at the Federal High Court, challenging the court’s jurisdiction. He asked that the application be taken without the CJN’s presence.

He cited many decisions of the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeal to support his argument that while a defendant is challenging a court’s jurisdiction or the competence of the charge against him, such a defendant need not attend court.

He said: “The position of the law is that where a defendant in criminal trial is challenging jurisdiction, he does not need to appear in court.”

Olanipekun also cited sections of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA) to support his argument that his client was entitled to personal service of the court summons.

He faulted the information by the tribunal’s registrar that the CJN directed his (CJN’s) Personal Assistant (PA) to accept the court summons on his behalf.

Olanipekun said while the information by the court official confirmed that personal service was not effected on his client, the acceptance of the summons by an aide to the CJN did not qualify as personal service, which is required under Section 123(a) of the ACJA.

He argued that under Section 124 of the ACJA, there is need for the prosecution to obtain the leave of the tribunal where it could not effect personal service on the defendant.

Olanipekun said he was surprised that the prosecution was talking of arraignment when proper service had not been effected on his client and he (the defendant) is appearing in protest to challenge the tribunal’s jurisdiction.

On the Chairman’s question whether or not the defendant was not aware of the pendency of the charge, Olanipekun said awareness is not the issue, but that the proper procedure provided in the law must be complied with.

Responding, Umar argued that no law allows a defendant to stay at home and challenge the jurisdiction of the court.

He contended that Sections 123 and 124 of the ACJA provide for personal service on the defendant.

Umar added that since the defendant directed that his PA should accept the summons, it ought to be taken that he had waived personal service.

He later suggested that the tribunal direct that a fresh service of the summons be effected personally on the CJN, a suggestion accepted by all. Tribunal Chairman Umar ordered a fresh service on the CJN and adjourned till January 22 for the hearing of all pending applications.

The CJN was charged with six counts of false asset declaration by the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) on January 10.

The charges followed a petition brought against him by a group, the Anti-corruption Research and Data Based Initiative, headed by Denis Aghanya.

In a statement, the CCT said it received the request for the trial of Justice Onnoghen on Friday and had slated yesterday to commence with the matter.

But a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja yesterday stopped the planned arraignment of the CJN before the CCT.

Ruling on two ex parte applications, N.E Maha, a judge, ordered parties to maintain status quo till January 17.

He ruled that the defendants should be served with all the papers filed and that they should appear in court at the next hearing.
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Foreigner Sits On The Floor At Lagos Airport Due To Lack Of Adequate Seats

At the General Aviation Terminal, Ikeja – more popularly known as Murtala Mohammed Local Airport 1, some foreigners were seen siting on the floor while waiting to board their flights yesterday.

These individuals decided to assume the sitting position due to the insufficient seating arrangement for travelers at the departure hall of the airport.



Ordinarily, due to the limited amount of seats at the departure hall, more travelers are left to stand. However, these foreigners decide to defy the norm by finding seating positions on the floor, probably because they were tired of standing.
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President Buhari Decorates New Inspector General of Police

President Muhammadu Buhari has appointed a new Inspector General of Police, Mr. Mohammad Abubakar Adamu. He decorated the new IGP at the State House, Abuja on Tuesday.

He was assisted by the immediate past Police IG, Ibrahim Kpotun Idris.

Earlier on Tuesday, the President and cabinet ministers had held an emergency Federal Executive Council meeting in Abuja.

The agenda of the meeting, which took place at the Presidential Villa, was unknown.


Adamu’s appointment as the new Inspector-General of Police was without prior announcement by the Presidency.
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WHO KNOWS?


Just as surely as I knew my name, I was certain of the deal.
It was as good as done.
Come tomorrow, the deal I shall seal,
Then to Canada, I shall be gone.
But who knows? Tomorrow could be serpentine.

And when I laid down to sleep,
For excitement, my lofty bed seemed to be floating on air.
Uncountable were the number of times I went to the window to peep.
I could hardly wait for the morning so I could fly to see Mr. Claire.
But who knows? Tomorrow could be serpentine.

Finally, I sat with Mr. Claire in the morning.
Alas! I'd only sat with his image and the deal only existed in my head.
My full blown balloon of certainty was now as thin as a mucus-saturated kerchief in the house of mourning.
I had only been living in the exquisite mansion of expectancy instead.
But who knows? Tomorrow could be serpentine.

My hope was dashed.
And my sky scraping expectations came tumbling down like children's building blocks,
But I pretended as if I've not been ditched
And as though I already earned some bucks.
But who knows? Tomorrow could be serpentine.

I realized that I would've been safer if I had expected less.
The scattered building blocks of my expectations had taught me a bitter lesson.
Tomorrow taught me to remain on the fence and ceaselessly bless,
In and out of season.
But who knows? Tomorrow could be serpentine.

With my lofty bed gone, I'm laying on my bed that's as thin as a dog's tongue.
I want to hope for the better but I can't anymore.
I hear short raps on my door that sounds like music played with a metal gong.
As he disappeared into the dark, I then realized that my non stop thanks must have made Mr. Greg's ears sore.
But who knows? Tomorrow could be serpentine.


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Sunday, 13 January 2019

New Canada Jobs For More Than 1 Million New Immigrants

For those who desire to work outside Nigeria, the opportunity is coming. The Canadian Parliament has announced plans to add more than one million new permanent residents in the next three years. That's nearly one percent of the country's population each year.

Canada welcomed more than 286,000 permanent residents in 2017 and projects that number could reach 350,000 this year.

And 360,000 in 2020.
And 370,000 in 2021.

"Thanks in great part to the newcomers we have welcomed throughout our history, Canada has developed into the strong and vibrant country we all enjoy," said Ahmed Hussen, Canada's minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship (IRCC).

Hussen, himself an immigrant from Somalia, said the influx will help offset Canada's aging population and declining birth rate while growing its labor force.

Canada's friendly stance towards new residents comes as many other Western nations, including the United States, are adopting more restrictive immigration policies.
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Aisha Buhari Disagrees With Okorocha Over His Son-in-law

*Scores injured as Uzodinma, Nwosu’s supporters clash at APC rally.
The First Lady, Mrs Aisha Buhari yesterday in Owerri canvassed votes for President Muhammadu Buhari and the All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship candidate in Imo State, Senator Hope Uzodinma to the chagrin of Governor Rochas Okorocha.

Represented by the wife of the vice president, Mrs. Dolapo Osinbajo, the first lady was confident that the South East and Imo State in particular would vote all APC candidates in the coming elections.

“A vote for Buhari is a vote for progress. APC has done well and we must all support all APC candidates,” she said at a rally in Owerri organized by APC women and youths in the South East.

She added: "I am happy with the crowd we saw today. It shows that Imo is APC and I want to urge all our youths not to fight, avoid any form of crisis because President Buhari is a peaceful man. From what we have seen today President Buhari has won the South East the same way all our APC candidates have won.”

At the rally was Uzodinma whose candidature is strongly opposed by Okorocha.

The governor is rooting for his son in law, Uche Nwosu, who is contesting the March governorship election on the platform of the Action Alliance (AA).

Nwosu was originally in the APC until the party gave its guber ticket to Uzodinma.

An angry Okorocha said at yesterday’s rally that nothing would stop Nwosu from succeeding him as governor.

He said: “Let me say this madam First Lady, this time around we are not here to ask you to campaign for Buhari. What my wife has done is to tell you that Buhari is on ground.

“Imo victory for Buhari is designed, sealed. In Imo state, we have 47 political parties and one of the perfect alliances is Action Alliance led by Uche Nwosu.

“Nwosu is APC in spirit. APC, owes Imo people an apology because of the injustice meted to Imo people. In Imo state, Nwosu will win Imo state. It is not anti-party. We refused imposition in Imo state.”


At some point during the rally supporters of Uzodinma and those of Okorocha/Nwosu began to tear each other’s  campaign posters, and eventually clashed.

Security personnel had a tough time bringing the situation under control. No fewer than 15 persons sustained injuries and were rushed to hospital for treatment.

Speaking to reporters on the situation, Uzodinma asked the APC leadership to “look into the matter and take appropriate action.”
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Saturday, 12 January 2019

QUEEN FANAGA


A very long time ago in Tumbara Kingdom, there lived a very wise king who loved his people and did everything within his power to protect his people. Because of his zeal to cater for the needs of his people, he devoted so much time and resources to train his warriors and fortunately, it was recorded in the history of Tumbara Kingdom that his reign produced the greatest King the Kingdom ever had. The gods too were highly pleased by his sacrifices and blessed him with a beautiful daughter that worth more than ten sons.

One belief of the Tumbarans that had on countless occasions been justified was the foreknowledge of death by the King. That is, their Kings perceived their death a little while before they died and thus, had time to make plans for the next reign. How good the reign of a particular King turned out to be was usually designed by the early plans of the erstwhile King.

One beautiful morning, the old King called his two children, Guna and Fanaga and asked them to sit on a mat that had been laid on the mud floor in his 'Basha' -  palace. He then began to enlighten them on the history of their father land and the ploy of the Samugese to usurp authority over them and make their sons and daughters slaves forever in a strange land. He was still talking when a warrior ran into the 'Basha' and whispered in the King's ear.

Quickly, the King rose from his throne and summoned his children to come along with him as he rode on his horse's back to the border. They got to the border just in time to prevent their oppressors from gaining entrance into the Kingdom. He kept his children under the care of two warriors in an enclosed place but in such a way that they could have a clear view of the battleground.

Normally, youths were not allowed in the  battlefield  but the wise King felt he needed to acclimatize his children with the things that happen in the Kingdom. The young Prince and Princess watched as the Chief Warrior stood at the forefront with his warriors behind him as they worked and fought hard to prevent the Samugese from advancing any closer. Fanaga was greatly wowed by the way her father and the Chief Warrior led the warriors at war rather than fearful.

Suddenly, the King fell down. He had been wounded by a stray arrow from the Samugese on his right thigh. Immediately, the King, his children and personal guards were taken back home leaving the Chief Warrior to handle the situation. The Chief Priest was called upon immediately and medications were given to the King.

On his sick bed, the wise King called his daughter and recounted to her what the Chief Priest had said at the time of her birth. Fanaga had been born with her umbilical cord around her neck. The King out of worry had called the Chief Priest to know the reason and he had said that she was a gift to the people of Tumbara and that she had been blessed by the gods of their land with beauty, wisdom and strength to fulfill her mission. The Chief Priest did not reveal what her mission was but he had said she'll know in due time. As a result, the King took extra care to train her and her brother and had asked the Chief Warrior and Chief Hunter to train her to fight and hunt because he felt led to do so.

Meanwhile, the warriors fought day and night for several days and unfortunately, they lost the victory to the Samugese. Amidst the sore cries for the departed warriors, the good and wise King of Tumbara died and the Kingdom of Tumbara seemed to have gone extinct for the space of seven months. The King was given a befitting burial and was buried besides his father as he had requested while he was still alive. As expected, his son, Guna was crowned King and Fanaga his sister was made his adviser.

Things had started to fall in the right places for the people of Tumbara again after a long while when the Samugese sent a message to the King of Tumbara requesting for a meeting with Guna, the King. The King of Samuga wanted to discuss a way to go round his greedy and evil wish for black slaves who would work tirelessly in his colossal cocoa farm that was close to Tumbara Kingdom. King Guna however, completely trusted the wisdom of his sister as he had seen her display so much wisdom and maturity in her position as his adviser because of the innate blessings of the gods upon her and therefore sent her to represent him.

The King of Samuga was so displeased when he heard that King Guna had sent a woman as his emissary. He believed it was downgrading and insultive for him to negotiate politics with a woman and so when she finally met him in his ritzy palace, he refused to give her a chair to sit on as a welcome courtesy, at least.

However, in order not to make Fanaga feel inferior, one of her maids quickly bent down so she could sit on her back and negotiate with the King of Samuga.
Fanaga's determined spirit and Guna's resenting spirit did not permit them to reach an agreement after discussing for several hours.

Fanaga returned to Tumbara three days later to hear of the demise of her only sibling, King Guna.  The Tumbarans mourned him for days and ensured he was given a befitting burial.

Afterwards, she voiced her wish to be the queen after witnessing all the calamities that had befallen her people but her people would not crown her because she was only a woman. She left Tumbara for good and went to live in the mountains as she could not bear to see her people suffer another calamity when she was sure she could liberate them.

She got to meet some refugees who had escaped with horrible injuries from a recent war between two villages close to Tumbara one night as she went hunting for food on the mountain. At first, they wanted to kill her because they thought she'd been sent after them to kill them but with wisdom, she placated their fears and even offered to treat their wounds with herbs. Soon all the refugees scattered across the mountain got to know about her and came to her so she could help treat their wounds. She treated their wounds with joy and they in turn made her their master as she became very powerful. Fanaga later trained them to become strong warriors and built forts around their little dwelling place in the mountain.

As expected, the King of Samuga heard of her power and fame and launched an attack to take back their men who were part of the refugees she'd met, treated and trained and subsequently capture the rest of the warriors as slaves. Fanaga loved her warriors and refused to exchange them for the cowries of the Samugese. They tried every possible ploy to get her to surrender but she was too powerful that they could not overcome her nor her warriors.

After trying desperately to get to her and all efforts proved abortive, the Samugese decided to use her warriors to get to her. It happened that a warrior from Samuga had a relative who had been long lost. He'd been searching for him for a long time until report came to him that his relative was seen in the camp of the 'resilient ruler'. They had nicknamed Fanaga to be a resilient ruler because of how persistent and powerful she was. Hard times hardly weighed her down. The warrior schemed a way and got his relative who was named Danga, to talk a large number of his fellow warriors to tyrannize Fanaga's reign.

One cold night, Fanaga woke up to hear the whisperings of her guards. She was sleeping on a mat close to the entrance of the cave where her guards stood on duty. As a warrior and hunter, she'd been trained by the Chief Warrior of Tumbara to be at alert always even while sleeping. And given that she was born with the blessings of the gods, she had the ears of the spirits. She could hear things even while sleeping.

One of the guards was telling the other of the plan to overthrow and if possible, kill Fanaga the next night. Though they were speaking in hushed tunes and in a language that Fanaga could not speak, the gods were kind to her such that she could hear and understand them clearly. She laid quietly and waited patiently for the first cock crow. She had been taught by Ruga of Tumbara Kingdom; a man who stripped a Leopard of its skin with his bare hands, who taught her to war, that it was foolish to try to defend oneself in the midst of strangers. He had said that, "if you must fight, you should do so in a land in which you and your opponents are aliens for it is better that both of you lose than for you to lose to him".

At cock crow, when the cold of the night fanned sleep into the drowsy eyes of the refugees, she took her sword and a little bag that contained a bottle of water and a large chunk of meat and sneaked away into the welcoming embrace of the dark. She decided to go on foot so she wouldn't awaken the sleeping warriors and make her escape a Herculean task.

She wandered on foot for days and slept in caves in different places. She was weary of the journey as she had no destination in mind. She thought about going back to her father land but she was afraid of rejection by her people especially since they believed that she had killed her brother.

After ten days of travelling without meeting a single soul, she met an old man who seemed to be travelling on foot carrying a very big load on his sagging shoulders. She felt pity for him and went to help him carry his goods. He had politely refused her help and told her to run to her people as fast as she could because something disastrous was about to happen. She looked closely at him and was about to ask him where he was coming from and who he was when he disappeared. She searched for him in the surrounding bushes but she couldn't find him. That was when she realized that she had spoken to one of the gods.

Fanaga arrived Tumbara just in time to prevent the Samugese from completely destroying the Kingdom. They had learnt that she was no more ruling Tumbara Kingdom and had come to attack the Kingdom. Her brother's son who was supposed to be King in his father's stead was killed in the battlefield. When the people of Tumbara saw Fanaga, they welcomed her with open arms. She immediately set to war with the few warriors alive. With their unwavering support, her resilient spirit and the blessings of the gods, Fanaga was able to put the Samugese to flight and on edge as long as she lived.

After the historic war, the people of Tumbara non hesitantly crowned Fanaga as the first Queen in the history of Tumbara Kingdom without a husband. No slave trade was recorded as long as she lived and even after she died, no Kingdom dared to come against Tumbara. When she died, the people of Tumbara mourned her for fourteen whole months and subsequently celebrated her death every year. She died in her sleep at 107 years.
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Thursday, 10 January 2019

FG May Reduce Salary Of Those Earning Above N30,000 To Pay New Minimum Wage

Workers earning more than N30,000 – the likely new minimum wage – will have their pay renegotiated, the President said yesterday.

It is important to prepare the minds of those to be affected — that a windfall is not on the way — so as not to be caught unawares, President Muhammadu Buhari said.

The government will begin talks with the workers after the new minimum wage Bill must have been passed into a law.

The President spoke at the inauguration of the Technical Advisory Committee on the Implementation of a New National Minimum Wage.

The development came barely 24 hours after the government and Labour agreed that a New National Minimum Wage Bill will be sent to the National Assembly on or before January 23.

The unions are demanding N30, 000 for the least paid worker. But governors are willing to pay N22, 500 and the Federal Government is offering N24, 000.

The President named Bismarck Rewane as head of the panel, which he inaugurated at the Council Chamber, State House, Abuja, before the weekly Federal Executive Council (FEC) began.

Mermbers of the committee have been drawn from the public and the private sector.

It has a month to complete its work and summit its report and recommendations. The members are: Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) Chairman Babatunde Fowler, ex-FIRS boss Mrs. Ifueko Omoigui-Okauru, Dr Ayo Teriba and Prof. Akpan Ekpo.

Others include: Budget Office Director-General Ben Akabueze, who is the secretary of the committee, representative of the Nigeria Governors Forum (NGF); National Salaries, Incomes and Wages Commission Chairman Richard Egbule; Permanent Secretary, Service Welfare Office of the Head of Service of the Federation, Mrs. Didi Walson-Jack; Permanent Secretary, General Service Office, Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Olusegun Adekunle; Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Finance, Dr. Mahmoud Isa-Dutse; Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Budget and National Planning, Olajide Odewale; Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Labour Mrs. Ibukun Odusote, and Solicitor-General of the Federation and Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Justice, Mr. Dayo Apata.

The other members are: Special Adviser to the President on Economic Matters, Office of the Vice President, Dr. Adeyemi Dipeolu; Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Economic Policy, Dr. Joseph Nnanna; Accountant-General of the Federation, Ahmed Idris; Director-General, Debt Management Officer, Ms. Patience Oniaga; Director-General, National Institute of Social and Economic Research, Dr. Folarin Gbadebo-Smith; Statistician-General, National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), Dr. Yemi Kale; Mrs. Aisha Hamad, Mamman Garba and Tunde Lawal.

Pointing out that the last time Nigeria’s national minimum wage was reviewed was in 2011, Buhari said that it was evident that a review was necessary, despite the prevailing fiscal challenges.

He said: “This is why I constituted the Tripartite Committee of government (federal and states), the Organised Private Sector (OPS) and Labour to consider the national minimum wage and make recommendations to the government for its upward review.

“That committee has since submitted its report with some recommendations. We are currently working on the final steps that will lead to the submission of a National Minimum Wage Amendment Bill to the National Assembly.

“I want to make it clear that there is no question about whether the National Minimum Wage will be reviewed upwards. I am committed to a review of the Minimum Wage.

“Also, it is important to explain that even though the subject of a national minimum wage is in the exclusive legislative list, we have been meeting with the state governors because it is imperative that the Federal Government carries the state governments along in determining any upward review of the minimum wage for workers.

“This is especially necessary considering the prevailing public sector revenue challenges, which have made it extremely difficult for some of the governments to pay workers as and when due.

“As you know, we, at the federal level, have made adequate provision for the increase in the minimum wage in our Budget 2019 proposals which we submitted to the National Assembly.

“Therefore, we will be able to meet the additional costs that will be incurred in moving up all personnel who are currently earning below the new minimum wage.

“However, we anticipate that after the new minimum wage has been passed into law, we will be going into negotiations for salary review for all the workers who are already earning above the new minimum wage. It is therefore important that we are properly prepared to meet these demands.

“We must therefore look at ways of implementing these consequential wage adjustments in a manner that does not have adverse effects on our national development plans, as laid out in the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP). The ERGP sets appropriate targets for levels of capital expenditure, public debt, inflation and employment among others.

“It is absolutely important that the implementation of a new minimum wage does not adversely affect these targets, and thereby erode the envisaged gains for the workers.

“It is against this background that I have set up a Technical Committee to advise the government on how best to fund, in a sustained manner, the additional costs that will arise from the implementation of the consequential increases in salaries and allowances for workers currently earning above the new minimum wage.”

Buhari said the committee will be chaired by an economist and financial expert, Rewane, with other experienced economists and administrators from the private sector working with government officials.

The committee is to advise the government on how to successfully bring about a smooth implementation of impending wage increases and identify new revenue sources, and areas of existing expenditure from where some savings could be made in order to fund the wage increases without adversely impacting the nation’s development goals as set out in the ERGP.

It is also to “propose a work plan and modalities for the implementation of the salary increases, any other suggestions that will assist in the implementation of this, and future wage increases”.

“Given the urgency of this exercise, the Committee is expected to complete its deliberations and submit its report and recommendations within one month today.

“It is now my pleasure to formally inaugurate the Technical Advisory Committee on the Implementation of an Increase in the National Minimum Wage.”

President Buhari had during the budget proposal presentation promised a new minimum wage which, he said, will help maintain jobs for the teeming unemployed.
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Fake News On Strippers Almost Caused Problem With My Wife - VP Osinbajo

Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo has narrated an experience he had with his wife Dolapo as a result of a fake news story about him.

Speaking during a BBC world service conference on countering fake news, Osinbajo recalled how the said story nearly caused trouble between him and his wife.

He recalled that a blog had posted a picture of him intertwined between two strippers with a headline ‘Osinbajo caught with strippers’.

Osinbajo said the story in question was manipulated to portray him as being with the strippers whereas they were “fully clothed” in the original picture he took with them.

The VP said: “I have been one of the targets of fake news and it can also sometimes cost you marital peace. I got a call from my wife recently and she said, ‘Yemi what are you doing with strippers’. I said ‘what do you mean by strippers?’

“So, I read a story in a famous blog that said, ‘Osinbajo caught with strippers’. And there was a photograph of me sitting between two perfectly clothed ladies but underneath this picture, the same ladies were not wearing much.

“In checking, the photographs with these two ladies at an entertainment event were taken when they were perfectly clothed but by the time the story was put out, it was as though I had taken a photo with them at the time they were not clothed at all.”

Osinbajo said while he wasn’t in the picture where they were not wearing clothes “with just the caption, the stories gave the impression that I was in the company of these ladies at a point when they were doing their business.”
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QUEEN DESPERATION


When you hear this resounding cry
Because the well of tears has refused to dry,
And you see no actions to hide the reason that would make people to want to pry,
And the heart can only afford a smile that is wry;

When suddenly Mountain Kilimanjaro is seemingly not high,
And like friction, perseverance wears off the hardness of the heart just to get nigh,
Like the clever escape of a noiseless fart out of an arse, you constantly hear a deep sigh,
And you feel and even see the pressure mounting up the thigh,

Then be alert because Queen Desperation is awake!
She'd make you restive with her slender fingers of desire that is as long as a rake,
Adding more wood to the fire of that desire of yours that tastes like a chocolate cake.
She'd orchestrate the actions that would satiate the flame of desire just for your sake.

Her majesty is indubitably a kind Queen,
Who is always at the beck and call of elders and teens.
Are you in a dire need and do feel that your needs are neglected or unseen?
Just whisper her name, for to help, she's always keen!
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Tuesday, 8 January 2019

Amaechi's Leak Tapes: Oshiomhole Reacts To His Revelations On Buhari

The National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, has reacted to the leaked audio tape making the rounds about the Minister of Transportation, Chibuike Amaechi criticising President Muhammadu Buhari.

The party chairman claims the position held by the former governor of Rivers State in the APC is causing the opposition sleepless nights.

In a tweet on Monday via his official Twitter handle, @A_Oshiomhole, the former Governor of Edo State asked those circulating such information to do more.

Oshiomhole, in a post liked by President Muhammadu Buhari’s Senior Special Adviser on Diaspora Matter, Mrs. Abike Dabiri-Erewa, said, “Rotimi Amaechi giving some people headache. This #DubaiStrategy isn’t working, tell them to do more.

“For the avoidance of doubt, Buhari taking us to the #NextLevel is non negotiable.

“And truth is, we have even more than #44reasonstoreelectbuhari. No alternative.”


Recall that Amaechi was allegedly caught on tape portraying President Buhari as a dismal failure who has been unable to meet the expectations of various segments of the society, saying he doesn't listen to anyone.
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Popular Comic Actor Osita Iheme Opens New Hotel

Nollywood comic actor Osita Iheme has joined the list of celebrities investing in the hospitality business. The actor reportedly launched a new hotel in Owerri.

In a post on social media, musician Daddy Showkey showed off the hotel.


He went on to the actor, advising folks to always show support for others when they start a new business. Osita also confirmed the story with posts online.
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Buhari Deceiving Tinubu With Presidential Campaign - Afenifere

Leading Yoruba socio-political group, Afenifere, has said the declaration by President Muhammadu Buhari making the national leader of the APC, Bola Tinubu, leader of his campaign team is deceitful.

The spokesperson for the group, Yinka Odumakin, said the President should not use that as an excuse to avoid the Presidential debate, adding that it could spell doom for his re-election bid.

Buhari, while inaugurating the APC Presidential Campaign Council in Abuja had said he was handing over the campaign to Tinubu so that governance would not suffer.

He said, “Even though we have only 40 days, this campaign is going to tax us all because we intend to touch all corners of our great and vast country. But I must also add that though we will all be deeply involved, I would like to assure the nation that I will do my part without making governance or my work suffer. Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, my co-chairman, will be fully in charge and is going to be on 24-hour vigil.

“That is to say the operational buck of this campaign stops at his table, and I, therefore, urge all of us in the leadership of this campaign, in the field operations on the campaign trail and in the secretariat to consult with Asiwaju whenever guidance is needed.”

Odumakin, who spoke to The Punch on the phone on Monday, said, “I think the whole thing is just to make Tinubu feel good and think he is being reckoned with. But in any case, it is said that those who don’t learn from history will repeat it.

“This confirms that there are political forces that see some personalities at desperate times as people they can just toy with and once they dangle some carrots before them, there will be no problem.

“But if he tries to avoid the debate, it cannot work. Nigerians will not be unwise to vote for anyone who is not ready to debate.”
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Breaking News! ASUU Settles With FG? N15.4bn Has Been Released

The Federal Government has reached an agreement with members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) over the prolonged strike.

Addressing journalists on Monday evening after the meeting with the striking lecturers in Abuja, the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, said the majority of their demands have been met including the release of N15.4 billion for payment of salary shortfalls.

According to him, the Federal Government is also in the process of releasing another N20 billion for payment of earned allowances for university lecturers.

Meanwhile, the ASUU President, Professor Biodun Ogunyemi, said the National Executive Committee of the union will review their decisions based on the new commitment by the government.

According to him, it is only after that meeting of the ASUU leadership that the union will announce its position on the ongoing strike action.

Its been over two months since the union went on strike following the alleged inability of the government to respond to its demands.
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Amaechi Speaks About Lagos In Latest Leaked Tape

The third in a series of leaked audio recordings by Rotimi Amaechi, Nigeria’s minister of transportation and irector general of President Mohammadu Buhari’s campaign team, has been released.

Mr Amaechi has been in the eye of a storm in the last 48 hours following the release of two earlier audio recordings where he expressed gloomy views about Nigeria and the administration of Buhari.

In one of the recordings, the minister was heard saying the president has failed to meet the expectations of Nigerians and that there was widespread suffering in the land.

Tolu Ogunlesi, a spokesperson of Mr Buhari, had dismissed the first leaked recording, saying Mr Amaechi was referring to immediate past president, Goodluck Jonathan.

But after the release of the second audio, Mr Ogunlesi claimed the audio had been cleverly edited by a former aide of Mr Jonathan, Reno Omokri, to paint the minister and the current government in bad light.

However, on Monday evening, Premium Times obtained another audio recording where the minister was heard badmouthing Lagos, the country’s commercial centre.

Amaechi described Lagos as a “glorified village”.

The minister said the city lacked basic infrastructure compared to Abuja, the country’s capital. He added that the city has poor road network, no running water, and is infamous for vehicular traffic congestion.

“I live in Abuja, tell me where else we have infrastructure. Lagos is a glorified village. The only difference between Lagos and other cities is the fact that business is in Lagos, everybody is there doing business, so you can at least have food,” he said.

“If not tell me what else you have in Lagos? 1,000 plus megawatts. That’s all. That’s what you have. What else do you have? No water, there are no roads. When you hear traffic jams in Lagos or any part of Nigeria, why are there no traffic jams in Abuja? The reason why you meet traffic jams in Lagos is because there are no roads,” the former governor of Rivers State added.
Since 1999, when Nigeria returned to democratic rule, Lagos State has been exclusively governed by the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) or parties, which formed the merger that birthed the APC.

Amaechi’s comment is even made more ironical given the announcement on Monday by Buhari that a former governor of Lagos is in charge of his re-election campaign. Bola Tinubu is commonly seen as the man who decides whatever happens in Lagos. Tinubu is to supervise Amaechi as he co-chairs the campaign organisation with Buhari.
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