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[MUSIC UPADATE] Rema – “Bounce” (Prod. by Don Jazzy)

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Rema bunce back with another one

Fresh Update From Emeraldloaded Rema bunce back with another Firework titled “Bounce”, Produced By Don Jazzy this the new Banger!

After revealing to his fans that he’ll be dropping his highly anticipated debut album this year, Rema releases his first single of 2021, ‘Bounce’.

For the first time since signing to Mavin Records in 2019, Rema works with the label’s godfather, Don Jazzy, who switches things up and delivers a menacing, fast-paced production, unlike anything we’ve heard from him before. One of music’s most influential players, Don Jazzy’s discography is one of the legends including work the likes of Jay Z, Kanye West and not forgetting D’Banj’s – ‘Oliver Twist, which was instrumental in the global Afrobeats movement.

[World-news] IPOB: Masked Armed Officers Take Over Federal High Court Ahead Of Kanu’s Trial

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The Nigerian government has reportedly deployed operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS) to the premises of the Federal High Court, Abuja, ahead of the continuation of the trial of Supreme Leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu.

According to DAILY POST, a detachment of hooded armed officers was seen stationed at the entrance of the Federal High Court with motorbikes and vehicles preventing human and vehicular movements into the area.

People in various hotels in the area were also prevented from moving in and out as the officers insisted that they were on a special operation in the area and appealed to them for understanding.

WITHIN NIGERIA recall that the IPOB leader, who was arrested and extradited to Nigeria, is standing trial before the Justice Binta Nyako Federal High Court, Abuja nine charges bordering on terrorism, treasonable felony, among others.

IPOB had dared the Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami (SAN), to prepare more cells and mortuaries should he want to detain or kill its members, as they prepare to flood the court to show solidarity with their leader.

Malami had also warned IPOB members not to show up at the Court hearing on Monday.

[Sport] Ballon d’Or 2021: Three players named as possible contenders

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Shakhtar Donetsk manager, Roberto De Zerbi, has named Juventus and Italy captain, Giorgio Chiellini, to be among potential contenders for the 2021 Ballon d’Or alongside Chelsea’s Jorginho and Barcelona’s Lionel Messi.

De Zerbi believes Chiellini could challenge Jorginho and Messi for the Ballon d’ Or after guiding Italy to win the Euro 2020 trophy this summer.

Chiellini, who is currently a free agent, captained Roberto Mancini’s side to silverware after Italy defeated England on penalties in the final at Wembley earlier this month.

Speaking to Gazzetta dello Sport, De Zerbi said, “If you look at the trophies he’s [Jorginho] won, he deserves it [Ballon d’ Or].

“He is such a smart midfielder. When I was at Sassuolo, I used to tell Maxime Lopez to watch him closely because he sees football one hour before the others.

“You won’t notice him many times, but he was one of Italy’s key players with Gigio Donnarumma, Leo Bonucci and Giorgio Chiellini.

“However, Messi remains Messi and, until he plays, will be among the candidates.

“Fabio Cannavaro won the Ballon d’Or in the past, so I don’t see why Chiellini shouldn’t win it for the spirit he had at the Euros.”

[Sport] Chelsea coach, Tuchel reacts after winning Manager of the Year Award

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Chelsea coach, Thomas Tuchel, has said that winning the 2021 Germany Manager of the Year is a ‘great honour’.

Tuchel also dedicated the award to his whole team.

The former PSG manager beat the likes of Hansi Flick (Bayern Munich) and Edin Terzic (Borussia Dortmund) to win the award on Sunday after receiving 129 votes.

Speaking to Kicker after winning the award, Tuchel said: “I accept the award very gratefully as a great honour for the entire team because I see myself as a team player.

“Therefore, the personal award is a bit uncomfortable for me. Who wants to decide what is the greatest? Maybe Christian Streich or Bo Svensson deserved the award.

“Maybe you could drive him to Freiburg every year. Maybe you would have to drive him to Heidenheim because the work there is outstanding.”

[Entertainment] Yousef BBNaija Biography, Net Worth, Age, State, Facts

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Yousef

Yusuf Garba is one of the Big Brother Naija Season 6 “Shine Ya Eye” housemates who came to fame following his participation in the reality show on July 24th, 2021.

Yousef BBNaija Wiki, Profile

Full NameYusuf Garba
Age29 Years (2021)
SexMale
NationalityNigerian
Place of BirthNassarawa
Marital statusSingle
OccupationTeacher
Yousef BBNaija Biography

Yousef BBNaija Biography

Yusuf Garba born 1992, better known as Yousef is a Big Brother Naija season 6 housemate, 29-year-old Secondary School Teacher.

Yoi came into spotlight in 2021 after making an appearance in the popular reality TV show.

Yousef BBNaija Age

Yousef is 29 year old as of 2021.

Early Life and Education

Yousef is a 29-year-old Secondary School Teacher and describes himself as “soft-spoken, fun-loving, down to earth go-getter”. Apart from being a big food enthusiast, Yousef enjoys hiking, reading, traveling and sports.

He is also a model, host and personal trainer and confesses he can’t resist checking himself out in the mirror. Yousef counts winning the Mr. University of Jos and Jos Carnival King titles as the highest points in his life, while the lowest was when he lost his beloved aunt.

Yousef is a big food enthusiast, enjoys hiking, reading, traveling and sports.

Yousef BBNaija Net Worth

Yousef is a Big Brother Naija season 6 (Shine Your Eye) housemate, his net worth has not been estimated yet.

[Entertainment] Sad! Comedian Oluwadolarz involved in ghastly moto accident (Video)

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Comedian Oluwadolarz involved in ghastly moto accident (Video)

Popular comedian and content creator, Ogunleye Olamide Babatunde higher called Oluwadolarz is involved during a car accident on Lekki-Epe throughway, Lagos.Comedian Oluwadolarz involved in ghastly moto accident (Video)

According to reports, the comedian crashed his white Lexus Salon automobile car to the purpose of no repair.

He but free the car crash with few bruises on the hand and also the head.

No official statement is nonetheless to be discharged on the accident from Oluwadolarz or any of his team as regards his health when being hurried to the hospital for necessary medical attention.

Watch the video below;

[Entertainment] Wahala! Car Wash Guy wrecks his client’s Benz GLC after he drove it to buy ‘Eba and Ewedu’ (Video)

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A video making the rounds on social media captured the moment a car wash guy got into trouble after he’d crashed his client’s expensive Mercedes Benz.

According to reports, the unidentified or unfortunate car-wash guy felt it would be a big flex to drive his client’s car around, and eventually he got more than he bargained for as he crashed it while on a mission to buy food.

See the video below ;

[Sport] Lewandowski Voted German Player Of The Year

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Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski was voted Germany’s Footballer of the Year for the second year running on Sunday.

The 32-year-old Pole was once again the runaway winner of the title awarded by the football magazine Kicker, following a vote by journalists.

Lewandowski, who equalled Gerd Mueller’s 49-year-old scoring record in May as he netted his 41st Bundesliga goal of the season, received 356 of the 563 votes on offer.

“I am aware of how big this honour is. It is a reason for great pride and joy for me, because it is rare to win the title of Footballer of the Year in Germany twice in a row,” Lewandowski said.

Second-placed Thomas Mueller of Bayern Munich was 315 votes behind, while third place went to Erling Haaland of Borussia Dortmund, who received 38 votes.

“Of course I am happy that I have scored 41 goals in 29 Bundesliga games. This number of goals fills me with great pride and is certainly a spectacular achievement in view of my injury,” said Lewandowski, who was out for three weeks from late March with a knee problem.

Lewandowski’s former manager Hansi Flick, who was named the second-best manager behind Chelsea’s Thomas Tuchel, said he was an “absolute professional with enormous quality” and “the best there is as a centre-forward”.

[Metro] Policeman Shoots Student For Not Wearing Mask In DR Congo

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A Democratic Republic of Congo policeman has shot a student who was not wearing a mask while filming on the streets of the capital, witnesses said on Sunday.

“Our friend Honore Shama, a student in the faculty of arts at the University of Kinshasa, was filming a video as part of his acting practical work requirement,” Patient Odia, a friend who was present at the confrontation, told AFP.

“A policeman told him to wear a mask during the filming.”

“Despite his (Shama’s) explanations and after having showed him a mask, the policeman, who was expecting to be offered money, became infuriated, accused him of resisting and shot him at point-blank range.”

Other witnesses told a similar story to the popular Top Congo radio as well as several online news sites.

READ ALSO: Tunisia Rescues 166 Migrants As 16 Die At Sea

The policeman responsible has fled and the city’s police are searching for him, the head of Kinshasa police, General Sylvano Kasongo, told AFP.

“Police have detained two police officers, present during the incident provoked by their irresponsible colleague… as well as the head” of a local police station, he said.

“The search continues to find the fugitive policeman,” Kasongo said.

Wearing a mask is obligatory in DR Congo, with transgressors fined 10,000 Congolese frances (five dollars, four euros).

In Kinshasa, police are regularly accused of harassment and of pocketing the mask fines they collect.

DR Congo has registered 47,786 Covid-19 cases and 1,021 deaths since the start of the pandemic.

Vaccinations have been halted in the country since July 10, because the AstraZeneca vaccines in stock passed their expiration date.

AFP

[World-news] ASUU Threatens Fresh Strike Over IPPIS, Others

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Following the Federal Government’s alleged failure to honour many of the agreements it signed with the Academic Staff Union of Universities, the Union has threatened to resume the industrial action it suspended since December 2020.

Dr. Ibrahim Inuwa, the Chairperson, ASUU, Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University, Bauchi, stated this while speaking with select journalists at the Union’s Secretariat.

He said the protracted strike, which was to press home their  for the continuous survival of public university system in Nigeria, was suspended in December after the two parties signed a Memorandum of Understanding on the various issues providing timelines for the implementation of each of the eight items.

Inuwa, who said that over seven months after the MoU was signed, only two out of the eight issues have been addressed, listed some of the issues to include Earned Academic Allowance, Funding for revitalisation of public universities, Salary shortfall, Proliferation of state universities and Visitation Panel.

Others, he added, are Renegotiation, Replacement of the Integrated payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS) with the University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS) and withheld salaries and non-remittance of Check-off Dues but “only salary shortfall and visitation panels to federal universities have been addressed.”

He said, “Renegotiation of the 2009 agreement which would have been completed within eight weeks from the date of inauguration of the committee has up till now not been concluded, even though the Committee was inaugurated since December 2020.

“The Federal Government of Nigeria willingly agreed that the UTAS will replace the IPPIS as a payment platform in Federal Universities after it passed an integrity test. However, soon after the agreement, agents of the FGN are doing everything possible to frustrate the coming of UTAS onboard.

“Meanwhile the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation through the IPPIS office have continued to omit our members from payment of salaries while others experience serious salary amputation. We are convinced this is done in connivance with the University Administration through the distortion of our members’ personal details.

“In the meantime, IPPIS appears to be the corruption headquarters of the Federal Civil service, as exemplified by double payment of salaries to employees, payment of salaries to non-employees, over taxation, dubious amputation of salaries, etc.”

Inuwa stated that the body language of the federal government on the proliferation of State Universities shows that they are not willing to put a stop to it stressing that instead, the federal government itself has joined in the Proliferation of Universities ignoring the obvious challenges of funding.

He further stated that it is obvious to the Union that the OAGF is deliberately omitting its members from payment of Salaries and withholding check off dues as a ploy for victimization and coercion to enroll ASUU members into IPPIs.

“This plague,” he said, “has been evident across all Federal Universities in Nigeria since February, 2020. This to us is an outright act of ingratitude on the part of the Government for the sacrifices members of ASUU are making in order to establish a progressive nation. A clear case of punishing citizens for being patriotic.”

Inuwa declared that “Enough is enough. ASUU is fed up with deceptive antics of the federal government of Nigeria.

“The University Campuses are becoming restive across the length and breadth as Academics are threatening to shut down activities once again. This is coming as a result of the failure of the FGN to implement many aspects of the memorandum of Action it willingly signed with ASUU that ended the last strike in December, 2020.

“Given the glaring and deliberate failure of Government to honour the agreement it willingly signed with the Union, it is becoming obvious that industrial harmony is gradually being destroyed in the University Campuses.

“We, therefore, call on well-meaning Nigerians to wake up the FGN from its slumber to avoid another disruption of academic activities on Universities Campuses across the nation” adding that “the atmosphere is tensed and charged.”

[World-news] Many People Are Angry We’re Not Catching COVID-19 – Bishop Oyedepo

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Bishop David Oyedepo, the founder and president of Living Faith Church Worldwide, has claimed that coronavirus cannot be spread into the church, accusing some persons of being upset that members are not contracting the dreaded virus.

Oyedepo who had vowed not to participate in the COVID-19 vaccination exercise, said the church is a virus free zone, stressing that the pandemic was satanic.

The clergyman made the remark on Sunday during a sermon at the church’s headquarters, Canaanland Ota, Ogun State.

He said, “They are all scared that this church does not know COVID-19. They are all scared.

“Some are very upset that nobody is catching COVID here! It is a COVID- free zone. You can’t catch COVID here.
They almost moved families against themselves. You lather your parents who gave birth to you. They say, “why?” COVID. It is satan.

“And old age now becomes a disease. See how we are jumping here and enjoying Jesus. Without boldness, you have lost your space”.

[Sport] Wijnaldum takes a swipe at Liverpool fans after completing PSG move

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New PSG signing Georginio Wijnaldum has taken a swipe at some of the Liverpool fans after crossing over to France.

According to the Dutch midfielder, he left Liverpool after starting to feel unloved by some of the club’s fans.
Wijnaldum feels that his contract situation meant he was being singled out for blame after some poor performances, and it seems this may have contributed to him deciding to leave Anfield this summer.

“I have to say also there were social media. When it went bad, I was the player who they blamed – that I wanted to leave. Every day in training and in the games, I gave everything I had to bring it to a good end because, during the years, Liverpool meant so much to me and because of the way the fans in the stadium were treating me.

“My feeling was that the fans in the stadium and the fans on social media were two different kinds. The fans in the stadium always supported me. Even when they came back (after the Covid lockout), already knowing that I was going to leave, they still supported me and, in the end, they gave me a great farewell,” he told the Guardian.

“There was a story that Liverpool made an offer, I didn’t accept because I wanted more money and the fans made it like: ‘OK, he didn’t get the offer, so he doesn’t try his best to win games,’.

“Then the results were not really good and everything looked like it was against me. Some moments, it was like: ‘Wow, me again?’ It’s a collective. But my teammates never gave me the feeling that I let them down or I was taking the piss or something like that. With the team everything was fine.”

[World-news] BREAKING: Again, FG Extends NIN-SIM Verification Deadline

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The Federal Government has further extended the deadline for NIN-SIM data verification to October 31, 2021.

The Director, Public Affairs Nigerian Communications Commission, Ikechukwu Adinde; and the Head, Corporate Communications, Nigeria Identity Management Commission, Kayode Adegoke, made this known in a joint statement on Monday, titled ‘FG Extends NIN-SIM verification deadline to 31st October, 2021′.

Prior before now, FG had approved the extension of the deadline for NIN-SIM data verification to July 26, 2021.

The statement noted that the registration focus is now expected to shift to remote and hard-to-reach areas, schools and health centres.

The Director, Public Affairs Nigerian Communications Commission, Ikechukwu Adinde; and the Head, Corporate Communications, Nigeria Identity Management Commission, Kayode Adegoke, disclosed this in a joint statement on Monday titled ‘FG approves July 26 as NIN-SIM verification deadline as enrolment systems increase to 5,410 .’

The statement read, “The Federal Government has approved the extension of the deadline for NIN-SIM data verification to October 31, 2021.

“The decision to extend the deadline was made following a request by stakeholders to accommodate registration in hard-to-reach remote areas, foreigners and diplomatic missions, diaspora and address low enrolments in schools and hospitals, as evidenced by enrolment statistics.

“It also followed a review of the progress of the exercise which indicated significant progress hence the need to consolidate the gains of the enrolment and NIN-SIM verification process across the country.

“As of July 24th, 2021, there are over 5,500 enrolment systems within and outside the country and this would significantly ease the NIN enrolment process and subsequent linkage of NIN to SIM. The administration of His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR, has approved the extension as part of efforts to make it easier for its citizens within and outside the country, and legal residents to obtain the NIN and it is important to take advantage of the extension.

“The NIN-SIM linkage also makes it easier for the security agencies to carry out their statutory duties and the relevant parastatals under the Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy are supporting them as required.

“There are now a total of 59.8 million unique NIN enrolments, with an average of three to four SIMs per NIN. With the great number of enrolment centres within and outside the country, and many more coming up, every citizen, legal resident, and Nigerian citizens living in the diaspora should be able to obtain their NINs.”

The statement quoted the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Pantami, as commending the Kano State Government and other States that have made NINs a key requirement for school enrolments and access to other important services.

It added, “The Federal Government is also excited at the news that the use of NIN in the process of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board exam significantly reduced the challenge of exam malpractice.

“The Minister, on behalf of the Federal Government, appreciates Nigerians for their patience and compliance with the Federal Government’s directive on the NIN-SIM registration exercise.

“Similarly, the Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission, Prof Umar Garba Dambatta, and the Director-General/CEO of that National Identity Management Commission, Engr Aliyu Azeez, urge citizens and legal residents to make sure they use the opportunity to complete the process of enrolment and verification before the October 31st deadline.”

[Sport] Nigerian Athletes Won’t Disappoint – Tokyo Olympic Games

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AFN (Athletics Federation of Nigeria) president Tonobok Okowa has revealed that his board is working hard to make sure his country ends the long jinx that has troubled their team winning gold in the next Olympics. The Nigerian team last took part in the 2016 RIO Olympics, only managing to secure bronze through their men’s football team.

Nigeria took their last gold medal in the 2000 Sydney Olympic, after dominating the men’s 4×400. That was the country’s third gold in the competition’s history, with the first one coming in the 1996 Atlanta Olympics the men’s football team and long jumper Chioma Ajunwa.

Okowa revealed his optimism to press shortly after Blessing Okagbare recorded a wind-assisted lead of 10.63 seconds in a 100m race during the first day of the National trials. The trials were held at the Yaba College of Technology, Lagos and the AFN president believes his team’s performance will shock fans in Tokyo in 2022. Fortunately, you can use the 1Xbet promo code to bet on any athlete or team participating in the fast-approaching event.

While speaking to the press, Okowa said he’s very optimistic about his team’s ability to bring home some gold medals, especially on field and track events in Japan. The Nigerian team has displayed great potential since the beginning of the year and the recent display at the Yaba College of Technology strengthened the hopes of claiming gold next year. However, the AFN board will need to support its stars with morale and financial support.

Former 400m African medalist Victor Okorie is also excited that the Nigerian Olympics team is in great shape, with performances by Enoch Adegoke and Okagbare being a good sign. Okagbare is also quite optimistic about the possibility of bringing home a gold medal, following her performance in the 100 m race earlier this month. The 100m star athlete also revealed the win at the national trials will boost her confidence ahead of the Olympics and her trust in God that something will happen.

Okagbare started showing potential back in 2005 when still studying at the Yaba College of Technology. That was the same year when a Delta State polytechnic student, Otefe recorded two gold medals at the West African Polytechnics Games. That inspired the press to write a story highlighting Okagbare as Nigeria’s next Mary Onyali of the track. As a result, young Okagbare was invited to be part of the Delta Team’s trials and she dusted other athletes in the program while preparing for the 2006 Gateway National Sports Festival.

[World-news] WHO Donates 1.5m Doses Of Cholera Vaccine To Bauchi

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1.5 million doses of cholera vaccine have been donated to Bauchi state by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

This was disclosed by the executive chairman of the State Primary Health Care Development Agency (SPHCDA), Rilwanu Mohammed at the kick-off of the vaccination exercise in Bauchi, on Saturday.

Mohammed said WHO donated the vaccine doses to support the response to the cholera outbreak in the state.

“Bauchi is among the 18 states with a high risk of cholera outbreak, hence the donation to be vaccinated to those at the prone areas,” he said.

He noted that some wards in Dass and Toro LGA that were prone would also receive the vaccine.

Mohammmed said the vaccine doses would be divided into two phases in the LGAs.

He thanked the WHO for its continued support to the agency in addressing health challenges.

The WHO representative, Goni Ngala had earlier stated that the outbreak was affecting people of different age groups including children under the age of five.

“In its continued efforts to support the cholera response and in particular, the management of cases, the World Health Organisation Country Office donated the vaccine to support prevention,” he said.

Also speaking, Nura Jumba, the district head of Bauchi, emphasised the importance of implementing measures to solve the water, sanitation and hygiene challenges in the affected areas.

Jumba urged the government to be committed to improving garbage collection and desludging of latrines.

“Provision of clean water free of charge to the affected communities including community education and mobilisation will be helpful,” he said.

Bauchi is one of the worst-hit states and has recorded more than 2,870 cases since the outbreak of the disease in May.

At least, 42  people have lost their lives to the disease.

 

[Entertainment] “If you don’t use iPhone 12 don’t come close to me for pictures” – Bobrisky warns fans

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Controversial Nigerian crossdresser, Bobrisky has issued a stern warning to fans who take unflattering photos of him at public gatherings and share them on social media.

Bobrisky warns fans

In a social media rant Bob stated that moving forward only fans with iPhone 12 would be allowed to take pictures with him to prevent ‘ugly’ photos from serving rounds on the internet.

Bobrisky warns fans

“Some of you will want to take picture without cleaning ur phone camera properly!!! And when d pictures DOESNT look good you will be so quick to send it bloggers to post. Enough of my niceness.

“Enough of my niceness to some of you fools here…if you don’t use an iPhone 12 pls don’t come close to me for pictures, if you do I will snap you myself before my security will throw you out!!! Enough of bad phone”. He wrote.

This is coming after the transvestite was dragged to pieces over photos and videos of him at a friend’s party that surfaced online last weekend.

See his posts below,

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Bobrisky warns fans
Bobrisky warns fans

[Entertainment] PHOTOS: Faces of first set of BBNaija season 6 male housemates

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As the Big Brother Naija returns with its 2021 season 6 with the theme “Shine Ya Eye” many Nigerians are expectant and have expressed their excitement on social media.

Photos below are faces of first set of male housemates for season 6 of the reality show.

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[Sport] Solskjaer opens up on Pogba rejecting new Man United contract to join PSG

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Manchester United boss, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has opened up on midfielder, Paul Pogba rejecting a new contract at the club in a bid to join Paris Saint-Germain.

Solskjaer also expressed confidence that Pogba will be part of his Man United squad next season.

He said this while reacting to reports that the France international has rejected a new deal at the club because he wants to join PSG.

Pogba, whose current deal with Man United will expire next summer, has been linked with a move away from Old Trafford to join PSG.

We don’t want you here – PSG supporters warns Pogba

But Solskjaer has now described the report as ‘speculations’.

Asked if Pogba has rejected a contract and whether Man United will need to sell him, Solskjaer told reporters following the Red Devils’ pre-season 4-2 defeat against QPR on Saturday: “There are always speculations about Paul.

“The talks between the club and Paul’s representatives, I am not in the detail of every single one of them, so I have got nothing to say really about that.

Asked further on PSG’s interest in Pogba, Solskjaer continued: “There’s always speculation about Paul and there’s always clubs being interested.

“Of course, we have seen Paul at his best and Paul knows what we feel about it. And of course, I have enjoyed my time working with him and hopefully, we can work together. Let’s see what happens.”

[World-news] Nigeria’s Problem Not Religious, Ethnicity – Lai Mohammed

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The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, has said the challenges facing the country is neither ethnicity nor religion.

The minister said some elements in the country were exacerbating ethnic and religious differences to tear the country apart for their selfish reasons.

Mr Mohammed spoke in Abuja on Saturday at the book presentation and 75th birthday celebration of Bamigboye Ogunbiyi, a re-known obstetrician and gynaecologist.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Mr Ogunbiyi who hails from Ilofa in Kwara state is the husband to Clara Ogunbiyi, a retired Supreme Court Justice from Borno.

Unveiling the autobiography titled, “Ripples of Grace’’, the minister said the things that unite the country were more and significant than those things that the divisive elements were escalating for disunity.

He said the foundation for national unity had been built a long time ago by the nation’s forefathers and what the people needed to do was to sustain it.

Mr Mohammed gave three personal experiences to buttress his position including his days and that of the celebrant at the Government College, Keffi which he described as “a great model for the unity of Nigeria’’.

Speaking in the same vein, Nimi Briggs from University of Port-Harcourt said inspite of all the challenges facing the country, Nigeria was not a failed state and should not be allowed to be one.

Mr Briggs who is the guest speaker at the event said: “several nations have had worse experiences and have returned to the path of rectitude.

“We should be encouraged by their outcome because humans are remarkably good at meeting the challenges of their environment and Nigeria will meet and overcome its present predicaments.

“What we are experiencing these days has inherited various behavioural adaptation that proved useful to previous generations’’.

On his part, the Chairman of the occasion and former Minister of Health, Isaac Adewole described the celebrant as a bridge builder and an epitome of Nigeria unity.

He said besides having the best time of his practice in Kaduna and Borno, Mr Ogunbiyi established a top-rated hospital, Nakowa Specialist Hospital in Maiduguri where he married from.

Other dignitaries who spoke glowingly of the celebrants were Borno Governor, Babagana Zulum represented by his deputy, Umar Kadafar, Serving Justice of the Supreme Court, Justice Mary Odili and former Minister of FCT, Mohammed Abba-Gana also from Borno.

“I have been living in GRA, Ikeja, Lagos, for almost 25 years and during annual Eid-el-Fitr and Eid-el-Kabir, we, the Muslims always have our open prayers at Arch Bishop Vining Memorial Church belonging to Anglican Communion.

“There was a particular year, Eid-el-Kabir fell on a Sunday when the venue will also be used for the usual Christian service.

“With this development, we all agreed that we should come very early to pray so as not to disrupt the church service.

“To our surprise, the management of Vining Memorial Cathedral rescheduled their own Sunday service to noon after we would have left the place.

“I have not seen better example of religious tolerance in Nigeria,’’ he said.

He implored Nigerians to emulate and revive the ‘Keffi spirit de-emphasising ethnicity, religion and social status and co-exist as Nigerians.’’

The minister also gave another instance when he used the premises of St Andrews Catholic Church, Oro, his hometown for Ramadan lectures for three consecutive years.

“This is a shining example of religious harmony and peaceful co-existence that we know in Nigeria.

“For three years, a Church making its premises available free of charge for the annual Ramadan lecture.

“This is contrary to the acrimony and mutual suspicion that many religious leaders are promoting today.

“The lesson from this is that the religious disharmony that is being propagated today by some religious leaders is avoidable, and that adherents of the two major religions do not have to be enemies,” he said.

Mr Mohammed also gave a similar account when a Church in the heart of Lagos had to shift its Sunday service forward to enable Muslim faithful celebrate Sallah when the date fell on a Sunday.

As at the time of filing this report, there was no statement from the state Police Command.

[Sport] We don’t want you here – PSG supporters warns Pogba

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A group of Paris Saint-Germain supporters has made their feelings towards Paul Pogba clear, by hanging a banner outside  des Princes, telling the Manchester United midfielder he is not wanted at the club.

Pogba’s future in England remains up in the air, with PSG reportedly ready to test United’s resolve with an opening offer of £43 million.

The World Cup winner has just a year left on his current contract and looks increasingly unlikely to sign an extension.

However, a group of PSG ultras are unhappy with Pobga, who is known to support fierce domestic rivals Marseille being linked with their club.

In protest, a banner was displayed outside their stadium on Friday, which read: “Pogba you should listen to your mother, she doesn’t want you here. Neither do we!”

With Pogba’s future in so much doubt, United are reportedly looking at potential successors, like Rennes’ youngster Eduardo Camavinga, while Declan Rice and Atletico Madrid’s Saul Niguez have also been heavily linked in recent weeks.

[Metro] Bandits Raid Kaduna School, Mistake NECO Exam Papers For Money

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Suspected bandits on Friday morning attacked Government Secondary School Unguwar Sarki, in Kaduna metropolis and took away packaged examination papers meant for SS3 students who were to about write the National Examination Council of Nigeria (NECO) final year examinations, mistaking it for money.

The gunmen who stormed the school asked the NECO supervisor to surrender the exam papers even though she tried to explain to them it was question papers.

It was gathered they snatched the wrapped examination papers and answer sheets and left.

The principal of the school, Hajiya Bilkisu Aliyu, said in an interview with newsmen that the gunmen trailed the NECO supervisor from a commercial bank along Alkali Road where she had gone to collect the exams questions and answer sheets.

“Thinking it was money, they demanded she hand over the bulk of the wrapped papers to them and threatened to shoot her.

“They were told it was not money but they would not listen. They snatched the papers and disappeared into thin air,” she declared.

[World-news] IPOB Accuses Buhari Govt Of Bombing ESN But Protecting Bandits In North

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The President Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government has been accused of “bombing” the Eastern Security Network, ESN, in Enugu State while protecting bandits in the North.

Spokesman of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, Emma Powerful made the allegation following the attack on ESN operatives in Akpofu Nkanu forests, Enugu State.

Powerful alleged that ESN operatives did nothing but defend communities in the area against incessant attacks and destruction of their farms by killer Fulani herdsmen.

He added that Nigerian Army has failed to protect Biafrans against the incursions by Fulani jihadists yet they unleashed attack against innocent ESN operatives.

The secessionist group stated that ESN and IPOB did not kill any police and Nigeria army and police should not hatred and envy attack ESN because they are Igbo.

The statement reads: “We the global family of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) ably led by our great leader Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, wish to place the international community on notice of the unprovoked attack by the Nigeria Army against the operatives of the Eastern Security Network ESN in Enugu on Friday, July 23, 2021. A combined team of soldiers and security operatives were unleashed against innocent ESN operatives at Akpofu Nkanu forests in Enugu State.

“The ESN operatives did nothing to deserve this unprovoked attack. ESN has only been defending communities in the area against incessant attacks and destruction of their farms by killer Fulani herdsmen. The hypocritical Nigerian security agents have failed to protect Biafrans against the incursions by Fulani jihadists. Yet instead of allowing ESN to defend our ancestral land against terrorist invasion, the Nigerian Army and other security agencies have been unleashed against innocent volunteer security outfits safeguarding the lives of Biafrans.

“This is the height of wickedness. NIGERIA is aiding and abating terrorism. Fulani controlled federal government gives tacit support to terrorists but crushes peaceful agitators. This is wickedness and hypocrisy which God must judge.

“The same FULANI terrorists masquerading as herdsmen have for years been kidnapping, raping and killing locals in Nkanu and other communities in Biafra land until December 2020 when ESN was set up to flush them out of our forests. Now their real sponsors have come to defend them against ESN by combing the forests in the hunt of ESN operatives instead of the terrorists.

“Since Fulani herdsmen started their killing spree in Biafra land, has any of them been arrested let alone prosecuted by any security agency? Yet every other day the Army and other security agencies have been hunting for ESN like wild animals. The cowardly South-East governors and the evil political elite will still protect them. We are aware of security operatives were not ESN. The police officers were not killed by ESN.

“The criminals who killed police officers ran into the Bush where ESN operatives were staying. ESN and IPOB members were not involved in the attack against security agents, Nigeria Government and her army group of terrorists should leave IPOB and ESN alone because we do nothing wrong by protecting our people from Fulani terrorists herdsmen who have crossing Akpofu community bushes to Ebonyi State and other parts of Biafraland. We are calling on the governor of Enugu state Chief Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi to call commander 82 division Enugu to know that ESN and IPOB did not kill any police, Nigeria army and police should not hatred and envy attack ESN because we’re Igbo.”

[Metro] Bandits Release 4 Kidnapped Victims As ‘Sallah Gift’ To Katsina Community

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Bandits have released six from a group of 28 people they had been holding for 67 days, saying they released four of them as Sallah gifts to their community in Katsina State.

The bandits had in May killed a local businessman, abducted 28 residents and rustled several cattle in Batsari town.

But local sources said the bandits on Friday evening communicated that they would release a woman and her son after her husband, Umar Tukur, paid them N2.5 million as ransom.

However, a resident, Misbahu Batsari, said “when they were to release Hussaina Umar and her son, they decided to select four out of the remaining people in captivity and sent them as a Sallah gift to the people of the community.”

Mr Batsari, who is a journalist, said the victims had been taken to the hospital for medical check-up.

He, however, said the victims released are from the same house, noting that the community had no knowledge on why the bandits acted that way.

“They (the released victims) look very tired and frustrated. They told us how heartless the kidnappers are. An infant, who was kidnapped alongside his mother, died in the kidnappers’ den.”

Hussaina’s husband, Mr Tukur, declined to comment on the development.

“What matters is my wife and son have come back to me,” he told our reporter.

The police spokesperson in the state, Gambo Isa, said he had issued a statement on the ‘rescue’ of those kidnapped but added that he had no information “about the release of those six people”.

The four people “sent as Sallah gifts” include, Marwanatu Bello, Zainab Bello, Yakubu Bello and Muhammad Bello.

[World-news] Buhari Has Promised To End Insecurity And Return Nigeria’s Lost Glory – Matawalle

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Governor of Zamfara state, Bello Matawalle has disclosed that President Buhari has assured Nigerians that he will put an end to insecurity in the north and return the region’s lost glory.

Matawalle also stated that northern governors are committed to supporting the president’s efforts to end security challenges in the country.

The governor who defeated to APC begged elites and other politicians, especially from northern Nigeria, to be united and face the challenges bedevilling the region’s growth and progress.

He urged northerners to support the government in looking for lasting solutions to poverty, banditry, and kidnapping.

This was made known by Matawalle during a meeting with the president, governors from northern states took turns to table their experiences, expectations from the government, and efforts at finding lasting solutions.

“The president assured that he will put an end to the menace and return the region and the country at large to its lost glories,” he said.

“It is time for us to end destructions and killings, lets nurture the habits of forgiveness of our wrongs, refrain from divisive tendencies and become united.

“We shall remain focused for the development of the nation and shun political differences irrespective of the party we belong.”

Matawalle appealed to leaders to continue rubbing minds toward proper solutions and developmental path of progress of the nation.

“Leaders must deliberate on solutions, refrain from selfish interests and greed to end unwanted killings and destruction of property,” he said.

“Insurgency, especially in the northeast and other banditry activities, have hindered economic activities, education, agriculture and other social activities in northern Nigeria.”

[Sport] Man Utd Manager Solskjaer ‘Delighted’ To Sign New Three-Year Deal

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Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has signed a new-three year deal, the Premier League club announced on Saturday.

The Norwegian, who took over from Jose Mourinho in 2018, will stay at Old Trafford until at least 2024, with the option of an extra year.

“Everyone knows the feeling I have for this club, and I am delighted to have signed this new contract,” Solskjaer told the club website.

“It is an exciting time for Manchester United, we have built a squad with a good balance of youth and experienced players that are hungry for success.”

Solskjaer led United to a second-placed finish in last season’s Premier League while losing in the Europa League final to Villarreal.

However, the 48-year-old, who this week added England winger Jadon Sancho to his squad, has his eyes firmly on the biggest prizes in English and European football.

“I have a fantastic coaching team around me, and we are all ready to take that next step on our journey,” he said.

“Manchester United wants to be winning the biggest and best trophies and that’s what we are all striving for. We have improved, both on and off the pitch, and that will continue over the coming seasons.

“I can’t wait to get out in front of a packed Old Trafford and get this campaign started.”

[Metro] Police Nab Fake Currency Syndicate In Nasarawa

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Seven persons with fake N7.8million and 110,000 dollars have been arrested in Lafia by the Nasarawa State Police Command.

Mr Bola Long, the State Police Commissioner, paraded the suspects at the command’s headquarters together with 61 others for alleged criminal offences.

According to the Police Commissioner, two of the suspects were apprehended on 4th June, 2021 while attempting to pay some money into an account using a Point of Sale (PoS) located in the College of Agriculture in Lafia.

He explained that a student of the Nasarawa State University, Keffi and one other went to deposit N50,000 at the POS when the agent observed some of the notes to be fake.

According to the agent, the suspects wanted to force her to accept the money, resulting in an alteration and the agent had to seek police intervention.

The Police Commissioner explained that when the information was received by the Police personnel attached to the Area Command in Lafia, he moved immediately to the scene and arrested the suspect.

According to Mr Longe, further investigation by the Police led to the arrest of five other suspects and N7.8million counterfeit currency in 1,000 denomination and 110,000 dollars, all counterfeit notes in 100 dollars Bill’s recovered as exhibits against the suspects.

[World-news] Nigeria Records 317 New COVID-19 Cases

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The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) said the country recorded additional 317 COVID-19 cases on July 23, from 187 cases on July 22.

The NCDC made this known on its website on Saturday morning.

The News Agency Of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the country’s COVID-19 cases have continued to rise for nine consecutive weeks, signaling the third wave of the deadly Delta variant.

The NCDC said the 317 additional infections took the country’s total coronavirus cases to 170,623 and 2, 131 casualties.

It stated that the 317 additional new cases were reported from 10 states and for Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

“Lagos State where a majority of the cases were picked on Friday recorded 172, Akwa Ibom registered 62, Oyo announced 33, while Rivers, Ekiti, the FCT and Ogun recorded 32, 5, 5, and 3 each.

“Amongst others were Sokoto, reporting 2, while Bayelsa, Gombe and Kano, recorded one each,” it said.

It noted that Friday’s report included four states with zero cases reported: Imo, Kaduna, Nasarawa and Plateau.

The agency said the country’s active cases stood at 3,702 as of July 23.

It stated that eight people who had recovered from the disease had been discharged from isolation centres across the country.

The public health agency added that till date, 164,780 recoveries had been recorded nationwide in 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory.

The agency said the country had also tested more than 2.4 million samples for the virus out of the country’s 200 million population.

It added that a multi-sectoral national emergency operations centre (EOC), activated at Level 2, continued to coordinate the national response activities.

Meanwhile, the agency urged Nigerians to take responsibility and not allow the Delta and other variants slow the country’s progress in the fight against COVID-19.

“When the virus continues to spread, there are more opportunities for the virus to change and for new variants to emerge.

“If you think about a virus like a tree growing and branching out; each branch on the tree is slightly different than the others. By comparing the branches, experts can label them according to the differences.

“These small differences, or variants, have been studied and identified since the beginning of the pandemic.

“Some variations allow the virus to spread more easily or make it resistant to treatments or vaccines. Take responsibility as we continue to work very hard to monitor these variants more carefully,” it explained.

The NCDC added that Nigerians must protect themselves against COVID-19, as the virus continued to spread across the country and the variants were circulating.

“Take steps to protect yourself from the virus. Get a COVID-19 vaccine, when it is available to you.

“Wear a mask that covers your nose and mouth to help protect yourself and others. Stay six feet apart from others who don’t live with you,” said the agency.

[Entertainment] Lil Uzi Vert Is Allegedly Buying A Planet Larger Than Jupiter

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Lil Uzi Vert is allegedly close to becoming the first human to legally own a planet.

Lil Uzi Vert is one of the most unpredictable characters in the rap world and this week, he proved that the air of mystery constantly surrounding him is a thing of permanence. According to a recent conversation between the Eternal Atake rapper and artist Grimes, Lil Uzi is allegedly very close to becoming the first human to legally own a planet.

A creative thinker and innovative mind, Lil Uzi just upped his game, allegedly completing the required documentation to purchase a planet. The rapper has a close relationship with Grimes, the girlfriend of Elon Musk, who claimed that Uzi is close to making the historic purchase.

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“Apparently @LILUZIVERT owns this planet – just a heads up,” said Grimes on Twitter, responding to a picture of WASP-127b, a gas giant exoplanet larger than Jupiter. 

“I tried 2 surprise everyone,” replied Uzi. “Still working on it.”

“Documentation almost complete for @LILUZIVERT to legally claim wasp-127b – this is huge! First human to legally own a planet,” wrote back Grimes.

Between this and the $24 million diamond that Lil Uzi allegedly bought to insert in the middle of his forehead earlier this year, nobody knows what could be next for the hip-hop superstar. We’ve known for a while that Uzi was out of this world, but we never could have predicted that he would buy an entire planet.

Let us know what you think of this. We’ll keep you posted with more information as this is confirmed.

[World-news] China Donates 470,000 Doses Of COVID Vaccine To Nigeria

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Jianchun said there should be a collaborative effort to eliminate the disease.

“Nigeria is a very important country to China due to its population and size,” Jianchun said.

470,000 doses of COVID vaccine which were donated by the Chinese government have been received by the federal government.

This donation was made by Chinese ambassador to Nigeria, CUI Jianchun to Osagie Ehanire, minister of health, in Abuja on Friday.

Jianchun said the gesture was as a result of the good relationship between Nigeria and China.

He noted that the efforts to eliminate the COVID-19 pandemic required the collaboration of all countries.

The ambassador, however, warned against politicising issues surrounding COVID-19 or blaming China for the outbreak.

“COVID-19 is a health issue. We need cooperation. We need unity to overcome COVID-19.”

He added that China would support Nigeria in vaccine production in the long run.

While responding, Ehanire, commended the Chinese government for the gesture, adding that the donation was timely.

The minister said that Nigeria stopped vaccination on July 8 due to lack of vaccines but with the donation, vaccination of citizens would resume in earnest.

Ehanire called for collaborations and exchange of information on ways to eliminate COVID-19.

[Metro] Youths Flee As Soldiers On Alleged Revenge Mission Invade Enugu Communities

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Residents of Akpawfu, Amagunze and Akpugo communities have reportedly deserted their homes following alleged military operation in the communities.

It was gathered that the invasion was as a result of an attack on a police checkpoint at a neighbouring community of Obeagu Uno in the Enugu South Local Government Area where six policemen were killed by unidentified gunmen on Wednesday.

Youths of the communities have been said to have fled over fear that the soldiers might use the opportunity of the cops’ killings to brutalise them.

According to PUNCH, sources in the communities stated that the soldiers numbering over 40, stormed the communities in four armoured vehicles and stationed at strategic roads connecting to the communities.

One of the sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity from Agudene village in Akpwafu, said that the soldiers claimed that they were looking for members of the Indigenous People of Biafra’s Eastern Security Network alleged to be camped in forests there.

He said that some houses belonging to community members whom they alleged were used to harbour criminals and plan attacks on security infrastructure were demolished.

Another source disclosed that youths fled the communities fearing that the soldiers purportedly attached to the 82 Divisional headquarters of the Nigerian Army, Enugu might use the opportunity of the cops’ killings to brutalise them.

A villager identified as Onyekachukwu Onovo, said, “Right now, young men in the community and even women have fled the community as the soldiers claimed that those houses being searched were used as camps by the gunmen.

“For me, I don’t know if that is true. Why soldiers are punishing us is what I don’t understand. Our youths are running away to other towns because we know that the soldiers see the youth as targets.”

Another villager said the soldiers were attracted to the areas upon discovery of a burnt Hilux van abandoned near St Philip Catholic Church, Akpawfu. He added that the van was said to be one of the vehicles the gunmen used to attack the police checkpoint on Wednesday.

The traditional ruler of Adamagu Akpawfu, Igwe Christopher Nnamani,  who confirmed the invasion said, “People are calling me that there are soldiers in the villages in my community. I don’t know who they are looking for. I have told my subjects to remain calm until they arrest anyone. To the best of my knowledge they have not arrested anyone but people are calling me and they are running away from the villages. Some are running to my own village.”

Igwe Nnamani lamented that the army didn’t tell him the reason behind the invasion.

“Nobody has told me anything as the reason for the invasion. I have not even seen the soldiers with my eyes, only that people are running and that soldiers are in their villages. I am a traditional ruler and if there should be military operations in my community, I should be informed. In this case nobody told me why the soldiers invaded my community,” he added.

[Metro] FBI Declares 6 Nigerians Most Wanted For Cyber Crime (PHOTOS)

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The FBI in the United States of America, has declared six Nigerians most wanted for cyber crimes.

The Nigerian were declared wanted for cyber crime involving a $6 million swindle of over 70 U.S. businesses.

Their names were given as Michael Olorunyomi, Richard Izuchukwu Uzuh, Alex Afolabi Ogunsakin, Felix Osilama Okpoh, Abiola Ayorinde Kayode and Nnamdi Orson Benson.

They were accused of executing a business email compromise scheme that defrauded over 70 different businesses in the U.S., resulting in combined losses of over $6 million.

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The gang’s leader, Uzuh is said to be hiding somewhere in Nigeria since October 19, 2016, when the district court of Nebraska, Omaha, US issued a Federal warrant for his arrest.

The others on the list, according to FBI, are Uzuh, declared wanted for sending spoofed emails to thousands of U.S. businesses, requesting fraudulent wire transfers alongside his co-conspirators such as Uzuh, who provided hundreds of bank accounts.

Okpoh’s warrant of arrest was issued August 22, same year with Afolabi Ogunshakin.

[Entertainment] Obi Cubana: DSS Warns Nigerians Against Public Display Of Wealth

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The Department of State Services, DSS, has cautioned Nigerians against lavish display of their wealth in public, warning that flaunting wealth was a great risk.

DSS Deputy Director Security Enforcement in Kwara Command, Paul Oduh, gave this warning during a paper presentation entitled: “Security tips for health practitioners in Kwara”, at a symposium organised by the state branch of the Nigeria Medical Association (NMA), on Friday.

Oduh disclosed that public show of affluence attracts criminal elements.

The Deputy DSS director said, “People must adopt moderate lifestyles so as not to fall prey to these criminal elements.”

The admonition is coming barely a week after the Chairman of Cabana Group, Obinna Iyiegbu popularly known as Obi Cubana shut down  Oba, Idemili-South Local Government of Anambra Statefor the burial of his late mother, Ezinne Iyiegbu.

Emeraldloaded recalls that the billionaire club owner became talk of the town after he buried his late mother, Ezzine Iyiegbu in grand style, in what many have called a lavish display of wealth .

He further cautioned against negative habitual routines, such as keeping late nights and driving on a particular route every time.

“The country is ravaged by insecurity on a daily basis. However, people should not despair, security should be the concern of all people and they must be enlightened on it,” he said.

“Security can never be 100 per cent everywhere in the world. People should be knowledgeable enough on those things they can do to protect themselves.

“Security denotes free from danger and protection of lives and property where individuals can pursue their lawful activities.

“There is a need to accept that threats exist and people are targets of these threats. This is why people should put in place measures to safeguard themselves from such threats,” he said.

[Sport] EPL: Cavani refuses to hand over no 7 shirt to Sancho as Man Utd unveil new signing

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Jadon Sancho has been given the No. 25 shirt for Manchester United, the club has announced.

This follows the confirmation of the 21-year-old’s arrival from Borussia Dortmund.

United finally landed their man this summer after a year chase in a £73million deal, signing a five-year contract.

There had been speculation that Sancho would wear the No. 7 shirt.

It would have seen him emulate legends like Cristiano Ronaldo, David Beckham and George Best.

However, the club has confirmed Sancho will wear the No. 25 shirt. This means the No. 7 shirt will remain with Edinson Cavani, who took the number last summer.

Sancho wore the No. 7 shirt for Borussia Dortmund and No. 17 for England at the Euros.

The No. 25 shirt was most recently worn by striker Odion Ighalo, while Antonio Valencia wore the shirt between 2009 and 2019, with Nick Powell becoming No. 25 for the 2012-13 season.

[Sport] Ahmed Musa reveals why he left Kano Pillars to join Fatih Karagumruk

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Super Eagles captain, Ahmed Musa, has said he signed for Fatih Karagumruk on a permanent deal because of their philosophy and ambition.

Musa on Thursday, completed a free transfer to the Istanbul club, signing a two-year contract with the option of an additional year.

The move ended his brief stay in the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL), where he penned a short-term deal.

Musa has now spoken out after finalizing the transfer.

“I was very impressed with the team’s philosophy, style of play and it’s clearly an ambitious club.

“I feel wanted and that’s what made all the difference. I want to repay that faith. I can’t wait to link up with my teammates and help the club achieve their ambitions,” Musa BBC Sport Africa.

[Metro] Court Sentences 10 Pirates To 12 Years Jail Term For Hijacking Chinese Ship

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A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has sentenced 10 pirates to twelve years imprisonment each for hijacking a Chinese fishing vessel, FV Hai Lu Feng II, in May 2020.

Justice Ayokunle Faji who said their actions affect the well-being of all Nigerians also ordered each pirate to pay a fine of N1million each.

Delivering his judgment on Friday, Justice Faji said the Federal Government proved beyond reasonable doubt that the pirates did hijack the vessel, FV Hai Lu Feng II, belonging to Haina Fishing Company.

The judge held: “I agree with the prosecution counsel, Labaran Magaji that the prosecution has proved the essential ingredients of the offence committed by each of the defendants; the defendants conspired to commit the illegal act.

“All the defendants acted in hijacking the ship to achieve their common goal.

“Consequently I find each of the defendants guilty as charged on all the counts.

“Each defendant is hereby sentenced to 12 years imprisonment.

“In addition, the defendants should pay a fine of N1million each.

“The offence committed by the defendants affects the wellbeing of Nigerians and our image in the diaspora.

“The naira sum, dollars, and various currencies recovered from the defendants by the Nigerian Navy are hereby forfeited to the Federal Government of Nigeria.”

The judge convicted each of the defendants on all 4 counts made against them.

The convicts said to be residents in Nigeria, are Frank Abaka, Jude Ebaragha, Shina Alolo, Joshua Iwiki, David Akinseye, Ahmed Toyin, Shobajo Saheed, Adekole Philip, Matthew Masi, and Bright Agbedeyi.

They were arraigned by the Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF) on July 13, 2020, on a four-count charge bordering on the hijacking of the vessel in international waters off the coast of Cote D’Ivoire.

They pleaded not guilty and were remanded in the custody of the Nigerian Navy, following which trial commenced.

In the course of the trial, the government told the court that the defendants “while armed with weapons, committed an illegal act of violence against the crew on board FV Hai Lu Feng II belonging to Haina Fishing Company by putting them in fear in order to take control of the vessel.”

The government also said their action violated Section 3 of the Suppression of Piracy and Other Maritime Offences Act, 2019, punishable under Section 2 of the same Act, and urged the court to use the case to send a strong message to pirates that Nigeria would not condone such criminal activities which had huge implications for the country.

[Sport] Zlatan and Giroud model Milan’s new away kit

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One of Italy’s power clubs AC Milan has released a beautiful Puma white-gold away kit for 2021/22.

As explained in the club’s statement, the gold-based kit pay homage to the work of Fondazione Milan – Milan’s charity – with the words “Fondazione Milan” printed under the collar on the back of the shirt.

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The design also features subtle inspiration of the different world city the foundation covers in a pattern form – with “From Milan to the World” initiative.

“AC Milan’s Fondazione Milan, in partnership with PUMA, will give Rossoneri fans across the world the chance to vote to support a socio-educational project out of six proposals that will be presented in September, alongside local and international non-profit organisations,” Sempre Milan confirmed.

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“The end result will be the development of the selected program, linked to one of the six cities chosen for the initiative: New York (USA), Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Kolkata (India), Melbourne (Australia), Nairobi (Kenya) and Milan (Italy),” the statement added.

[Sport] Breaking: Man United complete Sancho signing

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Manchester United has sealed the signing of Jadon Sancho from Borussia Dortmund.

Futaa reported on 30 June that Sancho and United sealed an agreement, but the deal was subject to the player’s arrival in England to sign a contract, the final process has now been finally completed.

“Manchester United is delighted to announce the signing of Jadon Sancho, subject to international clearance, keeping him at the club until June 2026, with an option of a further year,” the Red Devils announced.

Full statement from United, including Sancho and Ole Gunnar’s comments:

Sancho, 21, scored 50 goals and registered 64 assists in four seasons with Borussia Dortmund. The England international was part of the squad that reached the final of Euro 2020.

Jadon Sancho said:

“I’ll always be grateful to Dortmund for giving me the opportunity to play first team football, although I always knew that I would return to England one day. The chance to join Manchester United is a dream come true and I just cannot wait to perform in the Premier League. This is a young and exciting squad and I know, together, we can develop into something special to bring the success that the fans deserve. I am looking forward to working with the Manager and his coaching team to further develop my game.”

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said:

“Jadon epitomises the type of player I want to bring to the club, he is a forward player in the best traditions of Manchester United. He will form an integral part of my squad for years to come and we look forward to seeing him blossom. His goals and assists records speak for themselves and he will also bring tremendous pace, flair and creativity to the team.


“Old Trafford will give him the platform he needs to release his untapped talent and perform at the highest level. For a player of his age, Jadon has already achieved a great deal and showed the courage to go and prove himself abroad. We all look forward to welcoming Jadon to the squad as we prepare for the new campaign,” the note ended.

Meanwhile, Sancho is not fully expected to feature in the Red Devils’ second preseason friendly against Queens Park Rangers this weekend.

[Sport] Real Madrid Striker Benzema Tests Positive For COVID-19

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Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema has tested positive for coronavirus, the club has confirmed.

In a short statement on their official website issued on Friday morning, Madrid said: “Real Madrid C.F. confirm that our player Karim Benzema has tested positive for Covid-19.”

The France international will now self-isolate for a period of time away from his teammates as new manager Carlo Ancelotti prepares for the new season.

[World-news] CBN To Launch Own Digital Currency October 1

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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has stated that it will launch the pilot scheme of its digital currency by October 1, 2021.

This was disclosed during a private webinar on Thursday in which CBN and its stakeholders outlined a digital currency initiative.

Recall that the apex bank in June announced plans to launch its own digital currency before the close of the year.

According to the bank, about 80 percent of central banks globally are currently exploring the possibility of issuing their central bank digital currency (CBDC) and Nigeria could not be left behind.

Speaking on the development, CBN director of information technology, Rakiya Mohammed at the end of the stakeholders meeting explained that the apex bank had been conducting research since 2017 in regards to developing a digital currency.

Mohammed said CBN may conduct a proof of concept before the end of this year.

According to her, the project name is tagged ‘GIANT’ and it will use the Hyperledger Fabric blockchain.

The Hyperledger Fabric is an open source project that acts as a foundation for developing blockchain-based products, solutions, and applications using plug-and-play components that are aimed for use within private enterprises.

CBN said the importance of its digital currency will include macro management and growth, cross border trade facilitation, financial inclusion, monetary policy effectiveness, improved payment efficiency, revenue tax collection, remittance improvement, and targeted social intervention.

If the pilot scheme is eventually launched, Nigeria will join other countries across the globe and Africa racing to develop it’s CBDC.

Some of these countries include South Africa (digital Rand), Tunisia (eDinar), Ghana (e-cedi), Sweden, Japan, South Korea, and Russia.

Meanwhile China (digital yuan), Bahamas (sand dollar), Eastern Caribbean (DCash) are among the few countries that have officially launched their own national digital currency.

Earlier this year, CBN banned cryptocurrency transactions in the country and warned that cryptocurrencies pose the risk of loss of investments, money laundering, terrorism financing, illicit fund flows and other criminal activities.

[Sport] LeBron James Becomes First Active NBA Player With $1 Billion In Career Earnings

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LeBron James has become the first NBA player to make $1 billion while still active in the sport.

The news comes after Space Jam: A New Legacy, which James starred in and produced, enjoyed a whopping $31.6 million in revenue its opening weekend.

According to Sportico, James has earned $330 million in his playing salary alone since being drafted in 2003. The 36-year-old has reportedly made another $700 million off the court through endorsements deals, merchandise, licensing, and his media production company, SpringHill Co. His current endorsement deals, which include partnerships with AT&T, Beats Electronics, Blaze Pizza, GMC, Nike, PepsiCo, Rimowa, and Walmart garner over $100 million every year.

Sportico compared James’ historic earnings to Michael Jordan’s who, of course, starred in the original 1996 Space Jam film.

While Jordan is now worth around $2 billion, the outlet writes that much of that revenue was made after his legendary NBA career.

One venture that has been particularly lucrative for Jordan during his retirement is Nike’s highly successful Jordan Brand. Sportico writes that Jordan fell just short of earning $1 billion while active, making James the first NBA player to achieve the feat.

With the distinction, James joins the heavy tier of athletes who have made $1 billion while active, including Tiger Woods, Floyd Mayweather, Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, and Roger Federer.

The Los Angeles Lakers star is also the first active player in a U.S. team sport to hit the monetary milestone.

[Technology] Xiaomi overtakes Apple to become the second largest smartphone maker in the world

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Chinese smartphone manufacturer, Xiaomi has overtaken Apple as the second-largest smartphone maker in the world, after Samsung, according to market research firm Canalys.

In the second quarter of 2021, global smartphone shipments increased by 12% with Samsung shipping the largest number at 19%, Xiaomi came in second at 17% and Apple, third at 14% while Vivo and Oppo maintained strong growth momentum to complete the top five at 10% respectively.

In a tweet, Xiaomi said “We’ve moved up one more spot! Just in from @Canalys, we are now the 2nd largest smartphone brand worldwide in terms of shipments. This amazing milestone couldn’t have been achieved without our beloved Mi Fans.”

Canalys Research Manager Ben Stanton said, “Xiaomi is growing its overseas business rapidly,” citing sales boosts in regions including Western Europe, Africa, and Latin America.

“It is still largely skewed toward the mass market, however, and compared with Samsung and Apple, its average selling price is around 40% and 75% cheaper respectively.

So a major priority for Xiaomi this year is to grow sales of its high-end devices, such as the Mi 11 Ultra. But it will be a tough battle, with Oppo and Vivo sharing the same objective, and both willing to spend big on above-the-line marketing to build their brands in a way that Xiaomi is not.

All vendors are fighting hard to secure component supply amid global shortages, but Xiaomi already has its sights set on the next prize: displacing Samsung to become the world’s largest vendor,” Stanton said.

What you should know

In 2020, Huawei, another Chinese company, was at Number 1 as the largest smartphone maker in the world. This year the company is no longer in the top five as it has been shut out of the worldwide market due to US-imposed sanctions and trading bans.

[Entertainment] “I dey trip for Wizkid but shy to tell him” – Bobrisky finally shoots his shot at Wizkid

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crossdresser Bobrisky has aired his undying love for Grammy Award Winning singer, Wizkid as he declares that he loves him.

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Bobrisky has caused pandemonium in the social media space as he reveals the face of the male artist he has been tripping for all of his life.

The social media influencer had disclosed that he had many opportunities to say hi to him in the night clubs but he was shy.

He wrote;

“D only dude I dey trip for 🙈🙈🙈
Dis guy I love him die I don’t know y 😂
D day I will talk to him ehnnn I will definitely cry cos I won’t be able to hold my tears. Have been his fan since I was 16yrs. Have had opportunities to say hi to him many times at d club but I was then shy.

He is d best artist in Africa you can’t drag that with him naaaa you can’t”

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[Entertainment] Drake Unearth Old MacBook With Unreleased Music, Reveals ‘CLB’ Nike Airforce 1

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Drake unearthed his old MacBook loaded with unreleased music amid revelation of his custom Certified Lover Boy Nike Airforce 1.

Drake raised the hopes of fans and followers when he posted an old computer that he appeared to have stumbled upon. The Canadian rapper took to his Instagram story to post a picture of the laptop that could date as far back as 2013 and captioned, “I wonder what music is on here,” followed by some laughing emojis.

Fans are not joking with their high hopes that another “Dark Lane Demo Tapes” situation could be on the verge. Drake’s “Dark Lane Demo Tapes” mixtape, which was released last year (2020), is considered to be the “warm-up” to the rapper’s extremely anticipated “Certified Lover Boy” album that will be released later this year.

The mixtape, which featured appearances from Chris Brown, Future, Giveon, Playboi Carti, Young Thug, Sosa Greek, and Fivio Foreign, was a compilation of SoundCloud released songs as well as those leaked on the internet.

If history is anything to go by, Drake fans may be in for a bitter surprise since most old forgotten albums rarely get released. For example, 50 Cent’s “Street King Immortal,” which was set to be released in the summer of 2011, is confirmed to be officially shelved. Eminem’s “Relapse 2” and Dr. Dre’s original Detox are other examples of projects which may never get released.

The MacBook’s cover has the name of Drizzy’s 2013 studio album “Nothing Was The Same” slapped across it, which leads to the speculation that the tracks may be up to eight years old.

Drake macbook

While fans remain optimistic in getting a glimpse of Drake’s past unreleased tunes, the Laugh Now Cry Later rapper seems to be looking into the future with “Certified Lover Boy” set to be released any time soon. The promising album is expected to bring great things to the table, including a “special commemorative Nike Air Force 1 dressed subtly with the LP’s themes.”

The design builds on the classic triple white AF1 with subtle changes such as “Love Forever” written in cursive, replacing the word “AIR” imprinted on the shoe’s midsole. The lower heel and toe area are also flushed with hearts instead of stars, which is a wonderful reference to the theme of Drake’s upcoming album. The 6 God has been promoting the album in various ways, such as his display on the CN Tower and his heart-shaped haircut.

drake nike air force 1 low certified lover boy 2

The thematically linked footwear will be dropping in celebration of the upcoming album, and like the album, its release date will be announced very soon.

[Entertainment] “Obi Cubana mama burial dey really pain this man” – Reactions as Reno Omokri says only people with inferiority complex oppress others with their money

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There have been series of brouhaha on social media after the renowned author and activist, Reno Omokri asserted that only people with inferiority complex oppress people with their money.

reno 2

Recently, Reno took to his official Twitter handle to advise people on how to keep calm and lie low despite having enormous wealth. He advised them to allow their riches to speak for them rather than flaunting their riches for the public to see.

He wrote:

“The worst thing to do when you make money is to spend it to show people that you have money. It is the fastest way to return to broke status. When you make money, use it to make more money. By the time you make enough money, people will know without you saying it

Only people with an inferiority complex oppress others with their money. Money is not the goal. It is a tool. If you don’t realise that money is a tool, you may end up a fool. Money is not a tool to oppress people. It is a tool to suppress poverty in you and others.”

See the tweets below:

Reno Omokri Obi Cubana Reactions Mother Inferiority Complex Burial Oppress Money
renotw2

Reacting to this, a social media user who still saw this as a subtle shade to Obi Cubana due to his mother’s lavish burial ceremony asserted that Reno is still pained by the display that occurred at Oba, Anambra state.

Reno Omokri Obi Cubana Reactions Mother Inferiority Complex Burial Oppress Money

Recall that Reno Omokri also surfaced some days after the burial to condemn the amount of money that Africans spend to burial their dead.

See reactions below:

renore
renore2
Reno Omokri Obi Cubana Reactions Mother Inferiority Complex Burial Oppress Money

[World-news] China Explains Nigeria Loans, Rejects ‘Plot To Hijack Sovereignty’

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The Peoples Republic of China on Thursday said the country’s loans to Nigeria are of mutual benefit.

Chinese ambassador to Nigeria, Cui Jianchun, spoke to reporters at a seminar, “Learning from the Chinese Communist Party’s history and creating a brighter future”, which took place at the University of Abuja.

Jianchun explained that Nigeria and China had a history of good friendship and bilateral relations.

The envoy regretted that some super powers were painting a bad picture of China’s intentions.

“Some politicians have tried to use the colonial system mindset to say if I lend you money and you cannot pay me back, you will lose your sovereignty”, NAN quoted him as saying.

The official said China is working with Nigeria on rail because money is now a big constraint, just like in 1978 when his country had no money.

“In China, we did not have money, we did not have technology, and we did not know how to manage the economy.”

Jianchun recalled that when the Communist Party of China (CPC) was founded, it had just a little over 50 members.

The ruling party currently has more than 95 million members in a country of 1.4 billion people, making it the largest governing party in the world.

[Sport] Doctor gives condition for Christian Eriksen to play for Inter Milan again

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Dr. Francesco Braconaro, a member of the Italian football federation’s medical committee, has given conditions for Denmark midfielder, Christian Eriksen, to play for Inter Milan again.

According to Braconaro, Eriksen can’t play for Inter Milan again unless he has a defibrillator removed.

Eriksen collapsed on the pitch during his country’s Euro 2020 opener against Finland last month after suffering a cardiac arrest.

The 29-year-old has since been fitted with an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD).

The device is fitted under the patient’s skin, and it keeps track of the heart rate.

If an abnormal rhythm is detected, the ICD delivers an electric shock to restore a normal heartbeat.

“Christian Eriksen can’t be given the all-clear to play in Italy,” Braconaro said on a radio show in Napoli.

“If the player has the defibrillator removed, therefore confirming the pathology can be resolved, then he can return to play for Inter [Milan].”

Eriksen’s current deal with Inter Milan will end in the summer of 2024.

[Sport] Chelsea cancel pre-season friendly due to COVID-19 cases

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Chelsea’s pre-season friendly against Drogheda United has been canceled as the Premier League club is investigating a ‘possible’ COVID-19 case in their squad.

Chelsea spokesman revealed the club had a possible coronavirus case that it is investigating and they have called their game against Drogheda.

“Earlier today, we had a possible positive Covid case which we are investigating,” he on Friday said.

“The individual has been isolated from the rest of the group. We also decided, as a precaution, to cancel tonight’s behind closed doors game against Drogheda.”

The Blues were preparing for the upcoming campaign just outside of Dublin and were due to take on Drogheda behind closed doors on Friday.

The individual in question remains unnamed and Chelsea informed the League of Ireland Premier Division outfit the game would have to be called off as a consequence.

[World-news] Nigeria Receives First Batch Of A-29 Super Tucano Aircraft

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super tucano
The arrival of the Super Tucano is a major boost to the country’s fight against insurgency.

Nigeria has received the first batch of  A-29 Super Tucano aircraft procured from the United States of America. 

The aircraft arrived in Kano State on Thursday afternoon, the Nigerian Air Force said.

“On hand to receive the aircraft were the Honourable Minister of Defence, Major General Bashir Magashi (Rtd), Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Faruk Yahaya and Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Oladayo Amao,” a statement signed by NAF spokesman, Air Commodore Edward Gabkwet, noted.

The governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria  (CBN), Godwin Emefiele had some months back hinted that the West African nation was expecting the fighter planes from the US as the country steps up efforts to combat insecurity.

“About three years ago, the federal government and the United States signed a pact that resulted in a government to government acquisition of military equipment out of which we are expecting twelve Tucano aircraft or fighter planes that will help combat insecurity,” the apex bank boss explained during a two-day Monetary Policy Committee meeting in Abuja where he also expressed optimism that Nigeria will overcome its security challenges.

“I am aware that six of them are coming to the country in the months of July and August.”

‘Helping Our Nigerian Partners’

President Buhari’s Full Statement At Briefing With Trump
Ex-US President Donald Trump and Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari hold a press conference in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, DC, April 30, 2018. Mandel NGAN / AFP

Former US President, Donald Trump had confirmed the sales of the fighter planes to Nigeria during a 2018 meeting with his Nigerian counterpart, Muhammadu Buhari.

“We are also helping our Nigerian partners by facilitating intelligence, cooperation, and providing training and military equipment to Nigerian forces,” Trump had said after bilateral talks in the White House.

“For example, we recently sold Nigeria 12 US A-29 Super Tucano aircraft, great aircraft, in the first-ever sale of American military equipment to Nigeria.

“This new aircraft will improve Nigeria’s ability to target terrorists and protect civilians.”

Empowering Critical Manpower

tucano super
The arrival of the Super Tucano is a major boost to the country’s fight against insurgency.

Already, airforce authorities have startedtraining personnel to handle the new Tucano aircraft which it says is the most critical airpower component that must be enhanced and sustained for effective and efficient performance.

“On the A-29 Super Tucano aircraft, the CAS stated that about 60 NAF personnel, comprising pilots, engineers, technicians, and other specialists, have completed their training on the aircraft in the USA,” Gabkwet said following the winging ceremony of six new helicopter pilots who recently completed their basic flying training at Draken Helicopter Academy in the United Kingdom.

The arrival of the aircraft is a major boost to the country where mass abduction of students, banditry, and terrorism have become commonplace in northern Nigeria, and separatist movements have gained momentum in the south.

[Sport] Giggs court case details emerge as abuse is detailed

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A court heard that former Manchester United footballer Ryan Giggs allegedly kicked his ex-girlfriend in the back and threw her naked out of their hotel room.

The claim is part of a pattern of controlling and coercive behavior directed at Kate Greville, 36, between August 2017 and November 2020.

Giggs appeared in Manchester Crown Court on Friday, where he pleaded not guilty to the aforementioned offense.

He denied a second count that he assaulted Ms Greville and caused her actual bodily harm on November 1 last year at his home in Worsley, Greater Manchester. Giggs also pleaded not guilty in the same incident to common assault by beating Ms Greville’s younger sister, Emma.

In the particulars of the indictment, the clerk read out details of his alleged controlling and coercive behavior.
According to SkySports, Giggs is accused of the following:

  • Messaging her and/or blocking her when she was on nights out with others, or she asked about your relationship with others
  • Threatening to send e-mails to her friends and her employers about your sexual relationship and behaviour
  • Throwing her belongings out of your house when she questioned you about relationships with other women
  • At the Stafford Hotel in London, kicking her in the back, and then throwing her out of the hotel bedroom naked, followed by throwing her bag at her when she accused you of flirting with other women
  • Sending constant unwanted messages and making constant unwanted calls to her and her friends when she tried to break off the relationship
  • After she had tried to break off the relationship, regularly turning up unannounced and uninvited at her home, workplace, and gym

During the alleged incident in Worsley, Giggs is said to have purposefully head-butted his ex-girlfriend.

Shortly after being charged, he issued a statement in which he denied all of the allegations and stated that he “looked forward to clearing my name.”

The court also heard the former couple were involved in a separate civil dispute over ownership of a pet during a hearing that lasted just over 30 minutes.

On January 24, Giggs will stand trial in the criminal proceedings at Manchester Crown Court.

[Entertainment] “Not even N10 Trillion can make me k!ll Davido”- Davido’s PL Manager, Isreal DMW

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Personal Logistic manager to popular Nigerian singer Davido, Israel DMW has disclosed that no amount of money given to him can make him kill his boss.

Israel DMW kill Davido

This is coming after Israel in a question and answer session on Instagram was thrown aback by a rude awakening question by an anonymous fan.

A fan had questioned if he could kill Davido in exchange for thirty billion naira.

Responding to this, Israel DMW had disclosed that even trillions of naira can never commit such a bastardized act against his boss.

Check out the conversation that ensued:

Fan asked: Can you kill David for 30billion

Isreal replied: Not even 10 trillion

Israel DMW kill Davido

[World-news] Textile Industry: Workers Lament Lack Of Patronage, Inconsistent Govt Policies

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Nigeria textile industry
Photo of local textile materials used to illustrate the story

The National Union of Textile Garment and Tailoring Workers of Nigeria (NUTGTWN) has decried the deplorable state of the nation’s textile sector which they attribute to rising cases of smuggling, lack of patronage, and inconsistent government policies as the cause of the problem.

President of the Union, John Adaji, during a press briefing in Kaduna State on Thursday, called for the implementation of Executive order 003 which he believes will facilitate the recovery of the Textile industry.

While commending the Federal Government and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for the direct intervention to address the cotton scarcity challenge, the textile union also urged CBN to make access to forex affordable for industry players as part of measures to ensure the holistic implementation of the CTG policy.

“The problem of the sector requires a comprehensive approach. The sector is still faced with serious problems that unless effective steps are taken by the government to address them, the gains achieved within the context of the CTG policy will be lost. Some of these issues include stopping the smuggling, counterfeiting, and dumping of textile materials in the country.”

The NUTGTWN boss said cotton is an essential input for textile production and the industry remained a critical plank for addressing the current unemployment challenges in the country.

Textile union
President of the NUTGTWN, John Adaji, and other leaders at the press briefing

According to the union, Nigeria’s CTG sector alone can create over five million jobs, improve internally generated revenues, reduce over $4 billion import bill incurred annually on textile and apparel and conserve foreign exchange for the country.

The workers also noted that the Textile sector is a huge investment opportunity for the country if properly harnessed through the effective implementation of the Executive order which encourages patronage of local content.

The union vowed it will not rest until it ensures that all the relevant agencies of government comply with the executive order by patronising locally produced textiles.

The union also calls on the northern Governors to settle the over N600 million owed to the disengaged workers of the Kaduna Textile Limited,  warning that any attempt by the governors to sell off the company without first settling all outstanding debts owed to the workers, will be resisted through all available legal means.

[Sport] Ghana defender scores two deliberate own goals to stop ‘match-fixing plot’

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A Ghana Premier League defender has scored two deliberate own goals to stop a ‘match-fixing plot’.

Hashmin Musah, Inter Allies central defender put the ball in his own net twice on purpose at the weekend.

Musah’s team were 5-0 down to Ashanti Gold when the defender scored in the final 12 minutes after coming on as a substitute to make it 7-0.

The pace, power and accuracy these strikes are hit with shows it wasn’t an accident.

Musah didn’t hide at the end of the game and spoke to reporters about his decision.

“After the game, my technical team commended me for spoiling the bet they had staked,” Musah told Kumasi FM per Goal.

“I promised my coach that if he allows me to play from the bench, I will spoil the bet. And after the game, my team congratulated me.

“I heard it in our hotel that a bet had been made for a correct scoreline of 5-1 against my club Inter Allies.

“I decided to spoil that bet because I don’t condone betting.”

The 24-year-old was substituted following his antics and it ended a miserable season for Allies, who were relegated as bottom side.

[World-news] 4,000 Children Orphaned In Nigeria By COVID-19, Says World Bank

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The World Bank has disclosed that an estimated 4,000 Nigerian children lost one or both parents between March 2020 and July 2021 due to COVID-19 associated death.

On Wednesday, fatalities from COVID-19 in Nigeria reached 2,130 with two new deaths from 238 new confirmed cases.

The Bank stated this in its latest blog post co-authored by Laura Rawlings, lead economist at World Bank and Susan Hillis, a senior technical advisor, CDC COVID-19 International Task Force.

The report, titled, ‘For every two COVID-19 deaths, one child loses a caregiver. We must do more to address the orphan crisis,’ said the children left behind have been practically invisible.

According to the report, nearly 2 million children have been orphaned since the global pandemic started in 2020.

“By the end of June 2021, because of COVID-19, our estimates show that nearly 2 million children aged under 18 years have lost a mother, father, and/or grandparent caregiver who lived in their household,” the report said.

“The economic, developmental, and psychological impacts on these children will reverberate across generations, a tragic legacy of COVID mortality.

“The COVID crisis will leave many unwanted legacies.

“The world has been closely tracking the COVID-19 death toll, with official mortality counts now reaching over 4 million people, largely concentrated among adults. The children left behind have been practically invisible.”

In Nigeria, it estimated that 4,100 children were orphaned for losing one or both parents or the death of custodial grandparents, according to Imperial College London’s COVID-19 Orphanhood data dashboard developed for the report.

It also showed that 4,600 Nigerian children lost one or both parents, death of custodial grandparents, and/or death of other co-residing grandparents.

Further analysis showed that Nigeria has the highest number of orphaned children in West Africa.

Others in West Africa with more than 1,000 orphaned children include Mali (1,000), Ghana(1,500), Cameroon (2,600) and Senegal (2,400).

South Africa currently has the highest number in Africa with 101,700 children orphaned within the period.

The report added that during the pandemic’s first 14 months, over 1 million children experienced death of primary caregivers, including parents or custodial grandparents.

The report listed countries with primary caregiver death rates of at least one per 1,000 children to include Peru (10.2 per 1,000 children), South Africa (5.1), Mexico (3.5), Brazil (2.4), Colombia (2.3), Iran (1.7), the USA (1.5), Argentina (1.1), and Russia (1.0).

“In addition, over this same time frame, another half a million lost a grandparent caregiver living in their own home.
“At this rate, one child is orphaned every 12 seconds due to a COVID-19-associated death, and the toll is growing. Our most recent estimates reveal that for every 2 adults that die from COVID-19, 1 child is left without a familial caregiver.”

[Sport] I felt for Saka, not many players would dare do that – Mesut Ozil

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Former Arsenal star, Mesut Ozil has said that he felt very much for Bukayo Saka after the winger missed a penalty in England’s Euro 2020 final defeat against Italy earlier this month.

Ozil, a former club teammate with Saka, said that not many players would dare to do what the youngster did for England against Italy.

Recall that Italy defeated England in a penalty shootout to win the Euro 2020 after Saka, Marcus Rashford and Jadon Sancho all missed their spot-kicks.

Arsenal take decision on player to inherit Ozil’s no 10 shirt

The trio eventually suffered online racial abuses for not converting their penalties against Italy.

Speaking on the development, Ozil, who now plays for Fenerbahce, said he sent messages to Saka to show his support to the 19-year-old after the incident.

“I felt very much for Bukayo [Saka]. I know from my own experience how it feels to miss a penalty,” Ozil told Sky Sports.

“In a final, as the last one, to take on the responsibility of an entire nation as a young player – respect. Not many players would dare to do that.

Euro 2020 final: ‘Poor Saka, I feel very sorry for him’ – Mourinho

“There will always be people who racially abuse and scapegoat people of different backgrounds and skin colour when they lose.”

The ex-Germany international added, “Yes, I have [spoken to him]. We all have, I think, spoken to him, sent messages. “

[Sport] Arsenal warned against signing Chelsea forward Tammy Abraham

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Simon Jordan has warned Arsenal against signing Chelsea striker Tammy Abraham.

Abraham has been linked with a move away from Chelsea and according to reports, the England international is attracting interest from Arsenal. As reported by The Athletic, the Gunners want to sign Abraham on loan but Chelsea want to sell the 23-year-old on a permanent deal and hope to make £40million in the process.

However, Jordan believes the north London side should not sign the forward due to the history they had with players from Chelsea.

Willian and David Luiz all signed for Arsenal from Chelsea and have struggled to make an impact at the Emirates. The whole of last season, Willian managed just one goal and five assists and it is reported he could be allowed to leave this summer.

Speaking to talkSPORT on Thursday, Jordan said, “Those are players who those in their right mind would never think were fit for purpose at Arsenal.”

“It’s not so much a reputational thing it’s when you’re going up against your competition and your competition are saying: ‘This player ain’t good enough for me, but he’s good enough for you!’

“How does that work then? It’s universally accepting – and when I say accepting, I mean everyone excluding Kia Joorabchian – would think that the transactions that happened for Willian and David Luiz were just bad business and bad thinking.”

“They were players that weren’t fit for purpose in the make-up of Arsenal that needed something more.”

The winger is set to become a free agent at the end of next season.

[Sport] France Thrashed By Mexico In Olympic Opener As Brazil Beat Germany

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Mexico’s forward Alexis Vega (R) vies with France’s midfielder Teji Savanier during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games men’s group A first round football match between Mexico and France at Tokyo Stadium in Tokyo on July 22, 2021. (Photo by FRANCK FIFE / AFP)

France’s bid for men’s Olympic football glory got off to a nightmare start with a 4-1 defeat by Mexico on Thursday, while Richarlison scored a hat-trick as reigning champions Brazil beat Germany in a six-goal thriller.

Sylvain Ripoll’s France are looking for a first Olympic medal since winning gold in 1984, but collapsed in the second half at Tokyo Stadium.

“We’re obviously disappointed with the result but also with the balance of our play,” said former Lorient boss Ripoll.

“To compete, we would’ve needed a big performance, but that wasn’t the case.”

Mexico took the lead less than two minutes after the break through Alexis Vega, before Sebastian Cordova doubled their advantage in the 55th minute.

The 35-year-old captain Andre-Pierre Gignac, whose last game for the French senior team was the Euro 2016 final loss to Portugal, pulled one back from the penalty spot with 21 minutes remaining.

But any thoughts of a comeback were quashed as Uriel Antuna and Eduardo Aguirre netted late on for 2012 champions Mexico.

France now face a tough task to get out of Group A with a top-two finish, ahead of games against Covid-hit South Africa on Sunday and hosts Japan on July 28.

“The first thing we now have to do is digest this disappointment,” added Ripoll. “We only have two days. There’s no time to waste.”

Japan saw off South Africa, who had two players test positive for Covid-19 on Sunday, 1-0 thanks to Takefusa Kubo’s second-half strike.

Brazil, who won gold for the first time when inspired by Neymar on home soil five years ago in Rio, downed Germany 4-2 in a dramatic match which saw forward Richarlison net a first-half hat-trick.

The Everton man scored three times inside the first half an hour, but Matheus Cunha missed a penalty and Germany then threatened an unlikely second-half comeback.

Bayer Leverkusen’s Nadiem Amiri pulled one back before the hour mark, and although Maximilian Arnold was sent off shortly afterwards, substitute Ragnar Ache cut the deficit to one goal with seven minutes of the 90 left.

But it was another Leverkusen player, Paulinho, who came off the bench and put the match to bed for Brazil in the fourth minute of stoppage time.

Ivory Coast also picked up three points in Group D as AC Milan’s Franck Kessie netted the match-clinching goal in a 2-1 victory over Saudi Arabia.

– Spain held by Egypt –

Spain struggled in Sapporo, as a team featuring six players who reached the Euro 2020 semi-finals dominated possession but created few chances in a 0-0 draw with Egypt.

The closest they came to a goal was when Real Madrid midfielder Dani Ceballos, who recently spent two seasons on loan at Arsenal, crashed a first-half shot against the post.

Spain, winners on home soil in 1992, next take on Australia in three days’ time before their final Group C match with Argentina.

Australia took early control in the table, as goals from Lachlan Wales and Marco Tilio saw them beat 10-man Argentina 2-0.

New Zealand made a successful start in Group B as Burnley striker Chris Wood, one of the three over-age players in the squad, secured a 1-0 victory over South Korea in Kashima with his 72nd-minute winner.

It was their first-ever win in Olympic football, having managed just one draw in each of the 2008 and 2012 tournaments.

An own goal saw Romania edge out Honduras 1-0 in the group’s other game.

AFP

[Entertainment] Wahala! Married man impregnates his side chic’s maid

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A married man has landed on the wrong side of the internet after details of his promiscuous ways emerged.

The man who was apparently cheating on his wife, extended his infidelity beyond imagination by impregnating his side chic’s maid.

A Twitter user @ug_chelsea shared sketchy details of the story on the microblogging platform.

He wrote; “Married man has impregnated the maid of his sidechick”.

See the tweet:

married man side chic

Checkout some reactions we compiled below…

@Drmuzoic said; How do you expect a man cheating on his wife with you to be faithful to you? Anyway, the side chick has moved from num 2 to num 3 now. She is making progress

@EkundayosamE; What do we call this now? Where the olori ebi that will explain to the whole family.

@BoldCute1; The man is still actively in the business of side chicks.

@MountainEagle3; Wow! So he was eating both of them when visiting the side chick.

@ade_texan; Ubi Franklin, the Cubana of anything under the skit

@VictorAdeola10; The guy nah correct business man, nah jara be the side chick housemaid. Just topping it.

[Entertainmen] Fresh graduate inscribes ‘cheated in every exam’ on sign-out T-shirt

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Weeks after we saw a UNIBEN fresh graduate who wrote ‘aggressive malpractice brought me this far’ on her sign-out T-shirt, another fresh graduate, but this time, a man has done something similar to that as he wrote ‘cheated in every exam’ on his sign-out T-shirt.

Fresh graduate inscribes 'cheated in every exam' on sign-out T-shirt

The man who is reportedly said to be a graduate of the Federal University of Technology Minna (FUTMINNA) chose to do something dramatic and awkward on this special day of his as he revealed what aided his success during his school days.

The man showed great confidence as he could be seen smiling at the camera as he stood for a shot.

[World-news] Cholera Outbreak: At Least 33 Persons Killed In Yobe, Jigawa

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PHOTO USED TO ILLUSTRATE STORY: Medical staff give treatment to people suffering from cholera at a medical camp. PHOTO: AFP

The outbreak of Cholera has claimed no fewer than 33 persons in both Yobe and Jigawa states.

In Yobe State, three deaths have been recorded with two others hospitalised at Girgir Community in Jakusko Local Government Area of the state.

This comes less than three days after 30 persons were reported killed in Jigawa State following the outbreak of Cholera across nine local government areas of the state.

The Executive Secretary, Yobe State Primary Health Care Management Agency, Babagana Kundi Machina told Channels Television on Thursday that the index case in Yobe came from neighbouring state Jigawa.

The Jigawa casualties add to the increasing death toll from the disease across Nigeria. Other states that have reported deaths from cholera in the past few weeks include Enugu, Benue, Plateau, and Bayelsa.

Over 2,000 cases have been recorded in Jigawa with the state Capital, Dutse, and Hadejia local government areas the worst affected.

The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health in Jigawa, Salisu Mu’azu on Wednesday, during a press briefing blamed open defecation for the spread of the disease.

Jakusko local government area in Yobe State shares border with Jigawa and Bauchi states which have recently witnessed the outbreak.

Earlier in May, at least 20 persons died in a cholera outbreak in Bauchi.

The outbreak of the disease in the state hit the capital, Bauchi the most with 147 cases recorded there, out of the 322 cases confirmed cases in nine local government areas.

[Entertainment] NBA YoungBoy 3rd Highest Paid Rapper Of 2020 Behind Drake & Post Malone

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NBA YoungBoy is the third highest paid rapper in 2020 behind Drake and Post Malone who was the highest earner

While 2020 proved to be a huge setback for most artists’ revenue, a new Billboard article says a number of rappers are among the highest-paid musicians of the year. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many delayed their albums and did not get the chance to tour, but thanks in large part to streaming, they still made bank at the end of the day.

Post Malone was ranked as the top earner in hip-hop music in 2020, while for musicians overall, he was only second to Taylor Swift, though not far behind. The rapper, who was a staple on the charts last year thanks to his 2019 album Hollywood’s Bleeding, raked on $23.2 million for the year. Posty was lucky enough to tour for a short while in 2020 before he was forced to end it prematurely due to the pandemic. According to Billboard, touring earned him $12.4 million, and streaming, $8.1 million. He also earned $712,500 in sales and $2 million in publishing.

Similarly, Drake, who did not release an album or tour last year, had most of his earnings come from streaming. The Toronto rapper raked in $14.2 million in total, with more than 80% being attributed to streaming. Drake earned $11.7 million in streaming, $1.9 million in publishing, and $635,000 in sales. He ranked second among rappers and was the No. 6 highest paid musician of the year.

Post Malone and Drake.jpg

Coming in third for rappers was Young Boy Never Broke Again, who, despite his legal woes, managed to become the No. 9 highest-paid musician last year with $11.9 million. This makes him the third highest paid rapper on the list behind Drake second and Post Malone first. Thanks to his loyal and massive fan base, NBA YoungBoy earned $10 million in streaming alone. His tour also grossed $129,000 before covid restrictions cut it short. The rest of his income was made up of sales which was $126,000, and publishing which was $1.7 million.

Lil Baby follows closely behind, with $11.7 million for the year ranking at No. 10 for Billboard’s top-paid musicians. The rapper earned his first No. 1 Billboard 200 album in 2020 with My Turn, which spent weeks doing numbers on the chart. Baby earned $9.1 million in streams, $2.2 million in publishing, and $152,000 in sales. His tour before the pandemic also brought in $253,000.

In addition to the four rappers who made the top 10, Billboard’s list of the 40 top paid musicians for the year also included Eminem and DaBaby in the top 20 with $9.7 million ranked at No. 14 and $9.1 million ranked at No. 17 respectively.

Five other rappers also graced the list, starting with Future, who ranked No. 22 with $8.2 million, Roddy Ricch, who ranked No. 24 with $7.4 million, Rod Wave, who earned $7.37 million (No. 25), Kanye West who earned $6.3 million (No. 30) and Travis Scott who earned $5.82 million (No. 35).

These rappers were able to rake in millions despite the global pandemic. With music festivals and touring opportunities opening up again this year, they are expected to earn even more.

2020 Highest Paid Rappers Full List.

1. Post Malone – $23.2 million
2. Drake – $14.2 million
3. NBA YoungBoy – $11.9 million
4. Lil Baby – $11.7 million
5. Eminem – $9.7 million
6. Lil Uzi Vert – $9.5 million
7. DaBaby – $9.1 million
8. Future – $8.2 million
9. Roddy Ricch – $7.4 million
10. Rod Wave – $7.37 million
11. Kanye West – $6.3 million
12. Travis Scott – $5.82 million

[World-news] Bishop Oyedepo Reacts To Sack Of 40 Winners’ Chapel Pastors

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Founder of Living Faith Church Worldwide, AKA Winners Chapel Worldwide, Bishop David Oyedepo has reacted to the report of the church sacking 40 pastors for not generating enough income in their branches.

Oyedepo described the allegation as “nonsense”, stating that the only criteria for their sack was how many souls had been won in the church.

WITHIN NIGERIA had reported that a Winners’ Pastor, identified as Peter Godwin, had alleged that he and 40 other pastors were sacked for not increasing income in their branches in Ekiti State.

Reacting to the allegation on Wednesday, Oyedepo said the pastors were sacked because they were unfruitful as the church have no patience for failure.

The 66-year-old preacher said, ”When we employed 7000 pastors at once social media was dead. We have more employees than most states in Nigeria and we have not owed them or taken bank overdraft once.

”The pastors were asked to go because they were unfruitful. Many of the churches built can never pay for the church building in 30 years. We have no patience for failure here.

”We have built more than 1,000 Churches in rural areas where in the next 30 years, they can never generate such fund, with each costing more than 14 Million Naira. We are hunting after souls, not income.

”People are confused about our Ministry. I learnt some fellows said, “you know, they are not bringing income, that is why they asked them to go.”

”We asked you to go because you are unfruitful. Unfruitful! Blatant failure. Doing what there? We have no patience with failure here.

”When we employed 7,000 people at a time, Social Media was dead. We have more employees in this organisation than most of the States.

”No one is owed a dime salary and we don’t borrow, we don’t beg. Ask our bank whether we take overdraft. We are covenant bound, working in the light of God’ Word. Enjoying an open Heaven.

”Money: NONSENSE! We have never lacked it and yet we have never prayed for it, we are just simply obeying God and He is backing up what He is asking us to do. Awesome God.

”Now the next set is about to be flagged off, just certifying the landed property issues, nothing else. We have no lack of anything. The world is confused. Walking in the light of God’s Word. Please obey God to the full and watch out for His manifestations in your life.

”Well, you don’t need so much Mathematics to know a thousand buildings; that is not 1000 Naira each, that is not 10 Million (Naira) each, that is not 12 Million (Naira) each, that is not 14 Million (Naira) each. Some are 35 Million (Naira). At a go!

”We have never seen it ourselves. We just watched God doing it.The only criteria: How many souls have they gotten there? Then, build for them.  How many souls? Not once: “how much money do they have?” he asked.

”You want to see what we see, go and do what we do. But if you are not saved, there is nothing you do that matters,” he said.

[Sport] EPL: Man City In Shock Move For Cristiano Ronaldo

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Juventus forward, Cristiano Ronaldo, has emerged as a surprise target for Manchester City, according to the UK Mirror.

Ronaldo has one year left on his current contract with the Italian giants. But he is being linked with a move away this summer, after they failed to defend their league title.

Manchester United were also linked with the Portugal captain, but are about to confirm the £73million signing of Jadon Sancho from Borussia Dortmund.

Manchester City could afford Ronaldo, and in the past, Pep Guardiola has spoken positively about the idea of having a player like the five-time Ballon d’Or winner in his squad.

“We don’t have a single player who can win a game, we don’t have a Cristiano, a [Lionel] Messi, a Neymar.

“We don’t have these types of players who can win games by themselves. I told the players many times, you have to play as a team.

“I will be honest. I’d like to have a player to score, every single game, four goals and run like these players can run. I would love it,” he said.

[World-news] Hundreds Of Ugandans Given Fake COVID-19 Jabs – Health Officials

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At least 800 people in Uganda were given fake coronavirus vaccines — some injected with water — in a scam that involved “unscrupulous” doctors and health workers, government officials said Wednesday.

The counterfeit jabs were administered over May and June during a deadly surge of the coronavirus in the East African nation, when new infections soared to record highs of about 1,700 cases per day.

The fraudsters targeted people looking to pay for immunisation, including corporate employees, at a time when vaccines were in short supply, said Dr Warren Naamara, the director of a health services monitoring unit under the presidency.

“Some unscrupulous individuals with intentions of making money, duped members of the public into a fake Covid-19 vaccine exercise,” Dr Naamara told AFP.

“We have arrested two medical workers in the scam, and one medical doctor is on the run.”

He said those conned into getting a fake vaccine — around 800 people — should not be alarmed as tests indicated the vials contained nothing dangerous.

“Some had water in them,” he added.

The scammers charged recipients between 80,000 and 500,000 Ugandan shillings (around $25-$120 / 20-100 euros) for a fake shot, officials said.

The health ministry said Wednesday that the government was providing free and approved Covid-19 jabs at designated vaccination sites.

On June 18, as coronavirus cases and deaths in Uganda surged to record highs, President Yoweri Museveni announced a freeze on all public and private transport for 42 days, and imposed a strict dusk-to-dawn curfew to try and drive numbers down.

The veteran president warned that hospitals were full and not coping with the outbreak.

Since then, infection numbers have dipped, with 252 cases reported on Wednesday.

Uganda has overall recorded 91,162 infections, of which 2,425 have been fatal, since the pandemic began, according to the health ministry’s latest tally Wednesday.

AFP

[Entertainment] Pregnancy rumour: I want a boy first, American rapper Young M.A says

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American rapper, Katorah Marrero, popularly known as Young M.A, has addressed pregnancy rumours surrounding her on social media.

The ‘Ooouuu’ crooner took to her Instagram account to respond to her fans who had claimed that she was pregnant, Capital Xtra reported.

The pregnancy rumours began after an interview she had on Dish Nation about her future plans.

When asked if she wanted kids, the rapper responded, “Absolutely!” while stating that she’d start a family after marriage.

In response to how many children she wanted, Young M.A responded, “I want a boy first, then a girl. That’s it. I’d rather a boy first.”

She further explained, “I told my girl this. I’d rather a boy first, because he’d be the one taking care of his little sister and he got to hold it down.

“That’s how it was with me and my brother,” she concluded.

After the interview, fans assumed she meant that she had a baby on the way and this caused the rumour to go viral.

Fans have gone wild on social media after rumours spread that the 29-year-old rapper was pregnant.

However, the rapper, who is vocal about her queer sexuality, responded to the rumour on Instagram, stating that her “girl” is the one who will be pregnant.

She said, “Of course my girl is the one that’s gonn be pregnant that’s why I looked at her and mentioned her. Y’all bored but I get it… sell ya stories.”(sic)

She concluded by saying, “We working on one now.”

It is widely known among her fans that the rapper is a lesbian and has had relationships with several women in the past.

In the past, Young M.A had been linked to model and actress Mya Yafai, but rumour has it that both of them had gone their separate ways.

Young M.A had revealed to Time Magazine in 2017 about how her upbringing in New York City made her accept herself and her sexual orientation.

“In New York City, it’s popular. I used to think to myself, man, there’s a lot of gay people out here. And it makes me comfortable, it was like, I can be myself!,” she had said.

[Sport] Ahmed Musa leaves Kano Pillars to join new club

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Ahmed Musa has left Kano Pillars and is set to sign for Turkish side, Fatih Karagumruk, according to Skorer.

The Super Eagles skipper will join as a free agent.

Fatih Karagumruk are also based in Istanbul and are yet to win any major trophy in their history.

Musa has spent the last few weeks playing for Kano Pillars and provided one assist in nine appearances.

The winger signed a short-term deal with the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL), with a clause that he could leave if he gets an offer from abroad.

Musa is expected to arrive in Turkey in the coming days to complete the transfer.

[World-news] Death Toll In South Africa Unrest Rises To 276 – Minister

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Following the imprisonment of ex-President Jacob Zuma, the number of deaths resulting from the violence that erupted in South Africa has now risen to 276.

Recall that atleast 72 people have been killed in the violence as of July 13.

The former president of South Africa, Jacob Zuma was sentenced to 15 months in prison for contempt of court, following his refusal to appear before a graft panel.

Zuma, a 79-year-old man was imprisoned for defying court order to testify before an inquiry probing allegations of corruption against him during his term as president.

The violent demonstrations, which started in KwaZulu-Natal, Zuma’s province, spread to Gauteng province with many shops looted, several injured and vehicles left burning on roads.

An acting minister in the president’s office, Khumbudzo Ntshavheni in a media briefing on Wednesday said investigation on the deaths resulting from the unrest revealed that 276 persons have died so far adding that 168 of these deaths are being investigated for murder.

“Since the unrest, total of 234 deaths as related to the unrest were reported in KwaZulu-Natal to date. The SA Police Service (SAPS) are investigating 151 cases for murder and 83 inquest dockets have been opened and 15 arrests related to the cases of murder have been made,” she said.

“A total of 42 deaths as related to the unrest were reported in Gauteng to date, and of these reported deaths, the SAPS are investigating 17 cases for murder, and 25 cases are still at an inquest stage and no arrests have been made as yet related to the cases of murder.”

She said “stability” had returned to the two provinces rocked by unprecedented violence and that police were carrying out “mopping-up operations to ensure opportunistic and copycat activities do not find traction”.

David Makhura, Gauteng province premier, had accused criminals of hijacking the protest.

“It is extremely sad. Looting is not a solution. We are losing lives. We cannot afford this. We are calling for calm; we are calling for peace. This is destroying everything we had been building. The progress we had made in the township economy is being reversed by this looting, destruction and shutting down. The looting has to stop,” he had said.

[Entertainment] There Were More Mint Notes At Obi Cubana’s Mum’s Burial Than In All Nigerian Banks – Reuben Abati

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Reuben Abati, a former aide to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan, stated that there were more crisp, mint notes in circulation at the funeral of the mother of the Chairman of Cubana Group, Obi Iyiegbu popularly known as Obi Cubana in Oba, Anambra state, over the weekend than in the entire Nigerian banking system.

Abati stated this in an article while reacting to the lavish display of wealth witnessed during the much talked about burial that shut down the social media sphere.

The Arise TV anchor disclosed that the burial which took seven months to organised as the late mother, Ezinne Iyiegbu passed passed on in November 2020 saw Nigeria’s currency grossly abused.

“Nigerian banks would also readily tell you that they don’t have new notes. They give out dirty notes to their customers. But there were more crisp, mint notes in circulation at Oba over the weekend than in the entire Nigerian banking system. And the notes were abused.”

He explained that Obi Cubana and his associates, who threw money around like it’s out of fashion were not bothered about the Central Bank Act of Nigeria which prescribe penalties for the abuse of the country ‘s national currency.

He argued that why we they bother when the funeral was well attended by the same law enforcement officers who should know that it is an offence to abuse the Naira.

“The Central Bank Act of Nigeria – Sections 5, 21 (4-5) prescribe penalties for the abuse of the country ‘s national currency. The law forbids the sale, purchase, and the plunking of the Naira, and prescribes penalties: six months imprisonment or a fine of N50, 000 or both.

“The penalties are so light, I don’t think they mean anything to Cubana and his friends or their likes. And why should that bother them anyway when the Oba funeral was attended by the same law enforcement officers who should know that it is an offence to abuse the Naira (truth is: policemen joined others to collect the notes that dropped on the floor), and there were lawmakers and prominent politicians in attendance too.”

[Metro] 15-Year-Old Girl Commits Suicide Over Poor Exam Results

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Fifteen-year-old, Daphine Kimuli has committed suicide after she reportedly performed poorly in her Primary Leaving Examinations (PLE) at Bwikya Muslim Primary School in Hoima City in western Uganda.

According to her relatives, the teenager disappeared from home three days ago after Uganda National Examination Board (UNEB) on July 16, 2021 released last year’s PLE results in which she scored aggregate 25.

Albertine regional police spokesperson, Mr Julius Hakiza stated that her body was found hanging on a jackfruit tree near her home in Bwikya ward in Hoima East division on Wednesday, July 21, by a 35- year-old neighbor.

The neighbor reported the incident to Kinuubi police post which deployed scene of crime officers and the homicide team to investigate.

“The scene was photographed and postmortem has been done,” Mr Hakiza told Daily Monitor UG.

Mr Hakiza said Kimuli left a suicide note in which she listed several people whom she described as her enemies.

“She also claimed that there were people laughing at her for performing poorly in PLE,” Mr Hakiza said.

Police said the deceased, however advised her fellow children and relatives never to commit suicide.

In the note seen by police, Kimuli said she had decided to leave her purported enemies “to enjoy their world as she was going somewhere else.”

Two people have been arrested to help in investigations. One of the suspects was allegedly found with Kimuli’s note which she kept without informing the girl’s family, only to bring it to their attention after her death. She said Kimuli had given her the note.

The other suspect is one of the people Kimuli described as her “enemies” in the note. The suspects are currently held at Hoima central police station.

The school head teacher, Mr Francis Bagonza described Kimuli as a quiet and well-disciplined pupil.

[Metro] “We Are Ready To Fight For His Freedom” – Agbekoya Asks FG To Release Sunday Igboho

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The Agbekoya Farmers Society has asked the federal government to release Sunday Adeyemo popularly known as Sunday Igboho.

According to the group, its members are ready to fight over “government’s ill-treatment” of Igboho.

Recall that Sunday Igboho and his wife were arrested in Benin Republic on Monday while travelling to Germany.

This development came barely 21 days after he was declared wanted by the Department of State Services (DSS) following a raid on his house in Ibadan on July 1.

Two people were killed during the late night raid while 12 others were arrested and later paraded in Abuja. They have since been charged to court.

The national publicity secretary of Agbekoya Farmers Society stated that President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration is suppressing the south, owing to the treatment of Igboho and Nnamdi Kanu, leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).

The group wondered why criminal herders are left to roam the forest with sophisticated weapons while those who challenge their activities are being hunted by security agencies.

Bandele said in part: “The position of Agbekoya is that federal government should have a rethink about Nnamdi Kanu and Igboho. The agitations are at the instance of the injustices, killing, banditry and kidnapping. Agbekoya is ready to fight for Igboho’s freedom. Nothing must happen to him.

“We have never had it as worse under any democratic government as we have it under Buhari and it is a pity.”

Bandele said the group has reviewed the raid on Igboho’s house and concluded that government acted in a “barbaric” manner.

He added: “Our position is that Igboho and Kanu should be released. Igboho is not a criminal. What is wrong in speaking against killing of one’s people?

“Is there any law that supports carrying out an arrest in the middle of the night, shooting for up to four hours and killing people in the house? They even took away the corpses; that is barbaric. Agitation is a product of insecurity.

[World-news] India Records More Than 45,000 Cases Of ‘Black Fungus’

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n this picture taken on May 5, 2021, relatives wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) suit carry the dead body of a person who died due to the Covid-19 coronavirus at a crematorium in Moradabad. 
Prakash SINGH / AFP

India recorded more than 45,000 cases of the deadly “black fungus” over the last two months, the health ministry said, as a nationwide outbreak sweeps through COVID-19 patients.

The country’s junior health minister Bharati Pravin Pawar told parliament on Tuesday that over 4,200 people had died of the fungus — scientific name mucormycosis.

The infection was previously considered very rare but cases have ballooned during the pandemic, usually striking patients after recovery from Covid-19.

It is a highly aggressive disease and surgeons have been forced to remove eyes, the nose and jaw from patients to stop it spreading to the brain.

The death rate is over 50 percent.

According to government data, the highest number of cases were reported in the western state of Maharashtra at 9,348.

India dealt with just 20 cases a year on average before the pandemic, with only people with severely compromised immunity at risk, including those with high blood sugar levels, HIV or organ transplant recipients.

Experts have attributed the recent rise to the excessive use of steroids to treat Covid-19.

The Indian government declared the fungus an epidemic in May as cases shot up and social media has been flooded with desperate pleas for medicines to treat the illness.

Government data tabled on Tuesday suggested infection numbers peaked during May and June and have since substantially decreased.

But the Hindustan Times newspaper reported Monday that there had been a rise in cases among children in the northern state of Rajasthan.

[Entertainment] “My village people are angry with me, they said I should give them 46 goats” – Cubana Chiefpriest

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Celebrity barman, Pascal Chubuike Okechukwu popularly known as Cubana Chiefpriest takes to social media to make a humourous assertion relating to the burial of Obi Cubana’s mother’s burial.

Cubana Chiefpriest 46 goats Village People

In a recent post, he made via his verified Instagram page with over 3 million followers, he asserted that his village people are angry with him and are demanding 46 goats from him.

The self-acclaimed Dr Ezemuo also noted that he has been warned not to set foot in the village if he doesn’t provide the goats for them.

This is coming days after Cubana Chiefpriest gave Obi Cubana 46 cows for his mother’s burial ceremony.

Sharing a photo of himself, he wrote:

“My Village People Dey Para For Me, Dem Say If I No Bring 46 Goats Come Back From Oba Make I No Enter Village Again, Dem Say The Goats Belong To Them, Say Make I No Use Their Tradition Play.”

See the post below:

[Sport] Chukwueze to join Iwobi at Everton

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Villarreal winger, Samuel Chukwueze, could be playing next to Alex Iwobi at Everton next season, according to The Athletic.

Chukwueze is back on the radar of Premier League clubs.

But it is Everton that is now leading the race to sign the Nigerian star.

New Toffees boss, Rafa Benitez, is said to be an  of the 22-year-old, who has a £71million release clause in his current contract.

Chukwueze, who is under contract with Villarreal until 2023, has also been linked with Liverpool and Manchester United in the Premier League.

If he however makes the move to Goodison Park, he would be linking up with fellow Super Eagles, Iwobi, who joined from Arsenal two seasons ago.

[World-news] Taraba Emir Gives Herders 30-Day Ultimatum To Vacate Forests

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A photo collage of Emir of Muri Empire, Abbas Tafida, and a herd of cows.

The Emir of Muri Empire in Taraba State, Abbas Tafida has issued a 30-day ultimatum to herders terrorizing residents of the state to vacate forests within the state or be forced to do so.

The Emir gave the ultimatum on Tuesday after Eid prayers.

This follows a rising spate of kidnappings, killings, and attacks in the state by criminals suspected to be herders.

He claimed that Fulani herders are responsible for perpetrating crimes in the state and should therefore vacate forests in the state within 30 days or be forced out.

The Emir who spoke in the Hausa language urged the leadership of Fulani Herdsmen to fish out the bad eggs among them.

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Screenshot from a video showing a deserted village in Taraba State following an attack.

“Our Fulani herdsmen in the forests, you came into this state and we accepted you, why then will you be coming to towns and villages to kidnap residents, even up to the extent of raping our women?

“Because of this unending menace, every Fulani herdsman in this state have been given thirty days ultimatum to vacate the forests.

“We are tired of having sleepless nights and the hunger alone in the land is enormous and we will not allow it to continue,” the Emir said.

Taraba State located in the Northeast region of Nigeria is faced with heinous crimes ranging from kidnapping to bandit attacks.

[World-news] Ondo residents protest FG’s abandoned road projects

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Residents of Akure, the Ondo State capital on Wednesday trooped out to protest the alleged abandonment of Akure-Ado Ekiti Expressway by the Federal Government.

They alleged that the abandoned road project gulped a sum of N22 billion and the contractor handling the project had not been sighted on site. They added that the poor state of the road has continued to aid criminal activities, such as kidnappings and killings.

The protesters were armed with placards with inscriptions such as “Too much of kidnapping, raping on Akure-Ado-Ekiti road,” “Revoke Akure-Ado-Ekiti Road contract from Dantata and Sawoe,” “Fix our roads, save our souls,” “Too much killings and robberies on Akure-Ado-Ekiti road,” among others.

One of the protesters, Mr Niyi Majofodun said the road project as a matter of urgency should be revoked from the contractor, saying the road has become a death trap for the motorists.

He said, “The dualization of Akure–Ado Ekiti road was awarded in 2020 and, however, the contractor refused to move to the site until a few days ago after our organisation had petitioned the office of the Director-General of BPP over the abandonment of the project. Copy of the petition letter is hereby attached.

“It is on record that killings, kidnappings, robbery, raping and terrible motor accident have become uncontrollable on the said road (Akure–Ado Ekiti). We cannot afford to die in silence, we want to strongly appeal to President Muhammadu Buhari to please look into this matter as a matter of urgency. We also express our displeasure at the manners in which Director General ( BPP) awarded the road.

“Mr. President should not allow his name to be dragged into the mud on this matter since he had performed his Constitutional right by awarding the contract and subsequently mobilised the contractor. Therefore, he must ensure his directive is complied with and carried out. The President may wish to review this contract without delay.

“The contract should be revoked to save the life of the road ushers. The road is expected to be delivered within 30 months of award, and up till now, no sophisticated equipment is seen on the ground.”

During the peaceful protest, the Akure-Ado Ekiti expressway was blocked, causing a traffic logjam for several hours while motorists took some alternative routes.

See photos below.

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[Sport] Arsenal offer two players in bid to land Maddison from Leicester City

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Arsenal is ready to offer Reiss Nelson and Ainsley Maitland-Niles as makeweights in a potential deal to land Leicester City’s James Maddison, according to the Daily Mail.

The Gunners confirmed the £17 million arrival of Anderlecht midfielder Albert Sambi Lokonga on Monday.

But Mikel Arteta wants to further strengthen his options in this area of the pitch this summer.

Martin Odegaard and Dani Ceballos have both returned to Real Madrid following the end of their loan spells, while Granit Xhaka and Lucas Torreira also look set to leave the Emirates this month.

Maddison is understood to be high up on Arteta’s shortlist of targets, but Leicester’s steep asking price has proved to be a stumbling block for Arsenal, with £50 million unlikely to be enough to reach an agreement as it stands.

However, Arsenal would be willing to throw in squad players to sweeten the deal, with academy products Nelson and Maitland-Niles both available.

[Sport] Real Madrid: Why I picked ex-captain, Sergio Ramos’ shirt number – Alaba

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New Real Madrid signing, David Alaba, has given reasons why he picked the club’s former captain Sergio Ramos’ number four shirt number at Santiago Bernabeu.

Alaba, who was unveiled on Wednesday by Real Madrid, said he accepted the jersey number worn by Ramos, who now plays for PSG because the club told him it was the only one available.

The Austria international also said that the jersey number is a great motivation for him, adding that he wants to honour it.

Alaba joined Real Madrid from Bayern Munich.

“It’s a number [Ramos’ No. 4 shirt] that is a great motivation for me and one I want to honour,” Alaba said during his unveiling on Wednesday.

David Alaba reaches agreement with Real Madrid

“Real told me four was the only number available.

“Ramos wore that number and became a leader. It is something that is in everyone’s head,” said Alaba.

“I want to be David Alaba,” Alaba added.

“It is a dream come true for me, this is the best club in the world.”

Alaba joined Real Madrid from Bundesliga champions, Bayern Munich.

[Metro] How Sunday Igboho beat security at Benin Republic airport before his eventual arrest

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Details have emerged on how Yoruba freedom fighter, Sunday Adeyemo, aka Sunday Igboho, initially escaped arrest at the Cadjèhoun Airport in Cotonou, Benin Republic before his eventual arrest around 8pm on Monday.

According to The Punch, a top security source disclosed that Igboho and his wife, Ropo, at first, escaped arrest but a travel agent was used to lure them back to the airport.

The source said; “He (Igboho) was arrested in Cotonou on Monday night while he tried to travel. He was already at the airport with a passport. The immigration officers suspected the passport and so they stopped him. In the process, they discovered he was the one. He was able to escape in the course of discussion and we were grateful to God for that.

“But the travel agent called back saying the matter had been resolved. But on going back, he was arrested. He was trying to travel to Germany when he was apprehended.”

Also, another security source present in Cotonou told The PUNCH that Nigeria’s Ambassador to Benin Republic, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai (retd.) was instrumental in the arrest of Igboho and his wife.

The source said that the former Chief of Army Staff wrote the government of the Benin and insisted on the arrest and extradition of Igboho.

Buratai, Nigeria’s Chief of Army Staff between July 2015 and January 2021, was deployed as Nigeria’s envoy in the Benin Republic in June 2021.

The top security source in Benin Republic, who also spoke to The Punch, said that Buratai through the Nigerian Embassy in the neighbouring West African country, sent a secret letter to the Benin government to be on the lookout for Igboho.

It was gathered that the letter was instrumental to the arrest of Igboho and his wife, Ropo, at the Cadjèhoun Airport in Cotonou, the largest city in the French-speaking country.

[Music] Reminisce x Olamide x CDQ – Omo X100 (Cover)

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NSNS Boss, CDQ comes through with his own mind-blowing version of the viral Reminisce’s Omo x100 song.

CDQ Yeye drops some heavy flows to the sublime beat – Check it out…

Listen and download below:-

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[Entertainment] Obi Cubana reacts to allegations of acquiring wealth through ritual (Video)

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Billionaire businessman, Obi Cubana reacts to allegations of acquiring wealth through fetish means (ritual) or fraud as some suggested.

Obi Cubana reacts to allegations of acquiring wealth through ritual (Video)

The celebrity barman became an internet sensation after the burial of his mother which rocked the country like never before.

In an interview with BBC Pidgin, Obi Cubana whose real name is Obi Iyiegbu revealed that he spent the first decades of his life working hard which is the result of the life he lives now.

“Miracle no dey give money because that pastor needs the money more. Native doctor no fit give money because his children are the ones who fetch water from the stream. How can he give you what he doesn’t have? Work hard. Work hard,” he said.

Reflecting on the “cut soap” slang flooding his page, he encouraged people to work hard and be consistent.

“Cut soap” is slang used to ask a successful person to give you a bit of what they are using that makes them successful. It originates from the claims that some young fraudsters visit ritualists who give them soap to bathe with for optimal success.”

“If you are in your 20s, work now. I am 46 years. I have done my first half. I don’t know why someone who is just 20 years will say he has not made it when he still has 50 years 60 years ahead.”

“There is no soap to cut for anybody, there is no soap anywhere, work, pray, be good, make your own soap.”

Watch the video below …

[Sport] We’ll unmask you – Pinnick reacts as Nigerian man harasses Super Falcons in Austria

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Amaju Pinnick, the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) President, has vowed to unmask the unidentified Nigerian man who harassed the Nigerian Women football team, Super Falcons, in Vienna, Austria, while on a train to their way to training on Tuesday.

The man had accused the Super Falcons of failing Nigerian Youths by representing ‘a terrorist government’.

In a viral video, he accused President Muhammadu Buhari’s government of kidnapping Nigerian youths and killing them.

Reacting to the development, Pinnick said the Falcons did not deserve to be subjected to such harassment.

“We’re infuriated because these are young ladies [Super Falcons] who are our ambassadors and are there in Austria preparing for major international competitions.

“That was a dastardly act by that fellow, and we’re not taking it lightly. The girls simply wanted to go on sightseeing, and there’s nothing wrong with that. They don’t deserve to be subjected to such a diatribe by a so-called fellow Nigerian.

“We’ll unmask the fellow and then take it from there,” Pinnick was quoted by Soccernet as saying.

[World-news] UK Asks Nigeria To Explain How Nnamdi Kanu Was Arrested

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The United Kingdom says it is seeking clarification from Nigeria on the circumstances surrounding the arrest of Nnamdi Kanu, leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).

Kanu, who holds British citizenship, was arrested in June and extradited to Nigeria to face trial for treasonable felony.

Although the federal government did not state where Kanu was arrested, Kingsley Kanu, Kanu’s brother alleged that the separatist leader was arrested in Kenya and “handed over to Nigerian authorities who then flew him to Nigeria”.

The Kenya government, however, denied the claim that Kanu was arrested and extradited from the country to Nigeria.

According to Reuters, Tariq Ahmad, junior minister at Britain’s foreign office, says the UK wants Nigeria to explain how Kanu was arrested.

“We are seeking clarification from the Nigerian government about the circumstances of the arrest and detention of Nnamdi Kanu,” he said.

Ahmad also said Britain had requested consular access to Kanu and stands ready to provide consular assistance.

Kanu was first arrested on October 14, 2015, following years of his campaign for the sovereign state of Biafra.

He was granted bail in April 2017 but fled Nigeria later that year after soldiers invaded his residence in Abia state during a military clampdown on IPOB members.

For almost four years after he fled the country, the separatist leader piloted the affairs of IPOB from abroad.

He was mostly in the UK from where he runs Radio Biafra, the group’s radio station with which he often engaged in fierce monologues preaching his separatist cause.

Following his re-arrest, the federal government took him to the federal high court in Abuja where a judge granted the Department of State Services (DSS) order to remand him in their custody until July 26 when his trial will continue.

[World-news] Nigerians should learn – Dino Melaye reacts to video of Ghanaians rejecting bags of rice from politician

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Former lawmaker, Dino Melaye, has urged Nigerian youths to grow up and stop selling their votes to politicians.

The senator who represented Kogi West District at the 8th National Assembly made the call in a post via his Instagram account while reacting to a video of Ghanaian youths rejecting bags of rice from a lawmaker.

The angry Youths of Damongo town were returning the bags of rice sent to them by NPP politician, Samuel Abu Jinapors, who represents their constituency in the country’s parliament.

In the video, they were also heard chanting “We need jobs and not bags of rice.”

He further noted that Nigerian youths needed to grow up and equally learn from Ghanaian youths.

“Ghanaian youths rejecting free bags of rice from politicians and demanding for job creation.

“Can this happen in Nigeria? To be honest, Nigerian youths needs to grow up,” he wrote.

[Entertainment] 50 Cent New Album Coming, Explains Why He Turns Down Verzuz

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New 50 Cent music is on the way and he is explaining why he changed his mind on doing a Verzuz battle.

Even though many now associate veteran rapper 50 Cent with a successful television executive career, he’s still remembered for the classic rhymes that he dropped as an artist. He entered the game as one of those artists with the potential to change the genre. His return to a more gritty style of New York rap in his debut album Get Rich or Die Tryin has been immortalized, having received Diamond certification.

His follow-up album, The Massacre, is expected to be the same in time. He’s transitioned successfully into television, but many of his fans have called on him to produce more music. Eager fans thought this would happen when he hinted at dropping an album named Street King Immortal.

The promise of that began in 2011 and even had confirmed dates in 2012, 2013, and 2016, but it has never been released to this day. It was highly anticipated as well because the review from Jimmy Iovine described it as his best work since his debut.

Following an interview with The Independent, it seems some new music might be coming this September, even though it’s still not the above-mentioned album. While being interviewed about his new series Power Book III: Raising Kanan, 50 said, “That original version is not [being released], but I’m releasing new music in September.” He also confirmed that Eminem would not be joining him on that project even though they have an unreleased track called “Champions.”

Eminem 50 Cent Dr Dre

“I didn’t finish the tracks with him… I’m not gonna tell who’s on it because I’m the most exciting person [on the album],” he added. That’s not to say that he still doesn’t have a lot of respect for Em.

“He’s still one of the best artists to me. He means more to the culture than a lot of other artists – a lot of people looked at him and saw themselves, and understood how they fit into hip-hop culture,” he continued.

His focus seems to really be on television now as he’s taken on several new projects, including his own celebrity battle rap show. That show is expected to be a competitive hip-hop reality series called Unwrapped. If the show is given the green light, it will be produced by his G-Unit Film & Television company and SFO Entertainment.

While he’s still very much into music, you also probably won’t see him on a Verzuz stage, where his gritty street rap would probably be a hit. At the premiere event of his latest work, he was asked if he would participate in the wildly popular Verzuz series. He answered in his typical trolling style and said, “A Verzuz battle? Probably not.”

His reasoning for the decision was pretty simple; things are opening back up around the world, and the Verzuz format was created to meet entertainment needs during the pandemic.

“We back outside. That was something that happened during the pandemic when we was stuck in the house. Now that we back outside, there’s other things to do. We supposed to be creating new history, not being back there,” he added.

Of, course he’s not the first artist to turn down the show. Legends Ice Cube and Mary J. Blige also said they had no interest in appearing. The show continues on full steam ahead in spite of the rejections and seems to be evolving to suit the new needs of its fans who are clamoring to be outside.

Two intensely popular rap groups, Dipset and The Lox, are set to battle next month, and it was recently announced that there will be a live installment of the series at the Madison Square Garden’s Hulu Theater in New York on August 3.

The organizers have already promised that the new version of the show will still be streamed on the Verzuz Instagram page.

[Entertainment] Reality star, Nengi splashes millions of naira to acquire a Range Rover (Video)

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Former Big Brother Naija Housemate Nengi Rebecca Hampson has bought a Range Rover Velar worth N40 million.

nengi

The reality star took to her Instagram stories to flaunt her latest achievements for giving herself a new car.

Captioning the post, she wrote; New whip.

Her fans and followers have congratulated her on her latest achievements.

Reality star, Nengi splashes millions of naira to acquire a Range Rover

Watch the video below …

Check out comments:

lola_zee: Nengi is d most successful BBN Lockdown HM cuz what😮

maryamm_rae: oh Lord whatever nengi said in her prayers, i tap into it😩🤲🏻wideaesthetics: She over deserve am abeg

eyi_kemi6: Yaaaaaaaay she deserved itfavour__1.7: She is such a hardworking lady.. big congrats to her!

[Sport] ‘You Represent A Terrorist Government’ — Nigerian Man Harasses Super Falcons In Austria

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A video has surfaced in which a Vienna-based Nigerian man appeared to be harassing the contingents of Super Falcons on a public bus in Austria.

The yet to be identified man accused the Falcons of failing Nigerian Youths by represent ‘a terrorist government’.

In a viral video, he accused President Muhammadu Buhari’s government of killing Nigerian youths and kidnapping them.

He noted that such government should not be represented, adding that the footballers have failed by representing Nigeria rather than representing the youths.

He said: “I’m a Nigerian I live in Vienna you guys are representing a Terrorist government.

“Everyone of you should be ashamed of yourself, this cannot happen in another European country.

“Their youths will not represent a terrorist government, A football team who knows the truth should not be doing this supporting an Organisation  Buhari killing youths, kidnapping

“You are mother fcers, representing a government that’s killing your people, you ought to be ashamed of yourself.”

The man was, however, stopped midway as the Falcons prevented him from taking a video of their faces.

Source

[Entertainment] Kanye West Previewed “Donda” Album Set To Release This Week – Listen

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Kanye West previewed his upcoming album Donda and so far Justin LaBoy might be correct about it sounding other worldly.

If the words of social media influencer Justin LaBoy are true, Ye fans will be all smiles this week as they welcome new music from the politician/producer/rapper/fashion mogul. Kanye West has been teasing new music for several months now, and it seems it has finally arrived. The rapper’s forthcoming tenth studio album was initially given a July 2020 release date, but fans will be getting it in just a few days short of a year later.

On Sunday, both Justin LaBoy and basketball Kevin Durant got first dibs on what one of the most decorated musicians of the modern era has been working on.

Justin and Kanye West were recently seen at the Big3 Basketball League game in Las Vegas, and it is assumed that it’s around this time that LaBoy got to listen to the album.

“LETS ARGUE ??? His name is @kanyewest & this new album he’s dropping this week is a classic.. DONT @ ME #Respectfully,” LaBoy instructed via his Twitter account.

One collab that has the talk show host super excited is the joint between Kanye West and Lil Baby. The track is believed to be the previously-teased “Hurricane,” which was supposedly recorded in 2020 when Lil Baby journeyed to Kanye’s Wyoming estate.

“This Kanye x Lil Baby record so crazy. Y’all gon leave that mf on repeat ALL DAY & NIGHT. BABY REALLY A GOAT #Respectfully.”

According to sources who attended the private listening session, Kanye has also played the album for a group of other people who have provided information on the additional features fans can expect. These include Griselda, Travis Scott, Playboi Carti, Post Malone, Baby Keem, and others. Tyler The Creator could also feature the project after he was spotted in the studio with Kanye.

Ye’s late mom Donda West is also heard throughout the project, with her voicing serving as interludes to the different sections. “Donda,” “Remote,” “Daylight,” “No Child Left Behind,” “New Again,” and “Come To Life” are just a few of the titles recently spotted on a whiteboard in the studio.

One of the major changes to the album is the title, which has been converted from Donda to LP10.

Listen to a preview of Kanye West upcoming album, Donda, below.

[Sport] Barcelona-Juventus interested in Griezmann-Dybala swap deal

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Barcelona and Juventus have held talks over a Antoine Griezmann-Paulo Dybala swap deal.

French publication L’Equipe via Marca says both clubs are interested in such a deal with Barcelona doing all they can to offload the Frenchman who is currently being considered a surplus to requirements.

There were earlier reports that Barca was willing to do such a deal with Atletico for Saul Niguez with the Laliga giants keen to reduce their wage bill by offloading some of the highest earners in the team.

Conversations between Barca and Juve are at their beginnings and unlike with the Saul deal, Barca would be getting a guaranteed goalscorer in exchange. Griezmann has scored 35 goals and given 17 assists in the last two seasons.

Dybala on the other hand wants a new challenge after being placed in the cold by former Juve boss Andrea Pirlo; the Argentine scoring five goals and assisting another three in the 26 games he played last year.

The player has had a bad knee injury but believes that he has a lot to offer still and a change of environment is something he would like to explore.

[World-news] China Unveils Train Able To Travel Lagos-Kano Under 90 Minutes

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A Chinese state-run company on Tuesday unveiled what it described as the world's "fastest ground vehicle available" on July 20, 2021.
A Chinese state-run company on Tuesday unveiled what it described as the world’s “fastest ground vehicle available” on July 20, 2021.

China on Tuesday advertised “the world’s first 600 kilometers per hour high-speed maglev train”, according to state newspaper People’s Daily.

Theoretically, it can travel from Lagos to Kano under 90 minutes.

However, China has no track line yet for the train, according to Chinese publication, Global Times.

“But some cities are planning to build high-speed maglev lines, and have entered the stage of research and demonstration,” the publication said earlier this week.

A Chinese state-run company on Tuesday unveiled what it described as the world's "fastest ground vehicle available" on July 20, 2021. Peoples Daily

Chinese news agency Xinhua said it was “self-developed” by Chinese company China Railway Rolling Stock Corporation (CRRC).

The Asian economic giant is touting the technology as its “latest scientific and technological advancement in the field of rail transit”.

The train is built on maglev technology, a system of train transportation that uses two sets of magnets, one set to repel and push the train up off the track and the other for movement, taking advantage of the lack of friction.

Maglev technology was conceptualised in early 20th century and has since undergone numerous improvements.

According to a CRRC engineer, Liang Jianying, the train being unveiled works by being suspended, driven and guided without contact between the train and the track by means of electromagnetic force, with its resistance only coming from the air.

[World-news] Buhari Gifts Katsina Corps Members Two Cows, 20 Bags Of Rice, N1m

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NYSC members salute President Muhammadu Buhari during an Eid El-Kabir visit in Katsina State on July 20, 2021. Credit: State House

President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday gave members of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) in Katsina State two cows, 20 bags of rice and N1 million to mark the Eid El-Kabir celebrations.

Buhari also commended former Head of State, Gen. Yakubu Gowon for the NYSC initiative, which he said had created more opportunities for uniting the country.

He stated this while receiving corps members who visited him at his country home in Daura for Eid-el-Kabir homage, asking them to make the most out of the opportunity of travelling around the country especially in understanding different climates, cultures, languages and out views on life.

“Every time I meet with former Head of State, Gen. Yakubu Gowon, like recently, I still commend him for the initiative of the NYSC. The NYSC is spectacular in many ways,” he said.

“Some of you have come from Port Harcourt, Lagos and Calabar and you can now feel the heat of Daura and how close it is to the desert.”

On his part, the Corps Liason Officer, Umaru Babayo thanked the President for all the efforts and sacrifices to restore peace in the country, and the policies to diversify the economy, with agriculture as the main driver.

He said the Emir of Daura, Alhaji Faruk Umar Faruk, had shown a lot of kindness and warmth to corps members as well in his domain, appreciating the community for always supporting them.

Babayo assured the President of prayers for a successful time in office, and God’s providence in decision making that will move the country forward.

[Sport] Chelsea give Arsenal condition to sign Tammy Abraham

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Chelsea have given Arsenal a condition to sign their striker, Tammy Abraham.

According to Express UK, Chelsea will only let Abraham go out on loan this summer if a deal with a permanent switch can be secured.

Arsenal are interested in signing Abraham this summer transfer.

Arsenal boss, Mikel Arteta is keen on bringing Abraham to Emirates if a deal for the forward can be struck.

The Gunners will now have to battle West Ham United for the 23-year-old’s signature.

Abraham is free to leave Stamford Bridge this summer after falling out of favour under Thomas Tuchel’s squad last season.

Chelsea wants to sell the England international to help fund a big-money move for Dortmund’s Erling Haaland.

Abraham has scored 30 goals in 82 matches for Chelsea.

[Politics] Forget about winning 2023 elections, Presidency tells PDP

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The Presidency yesterday told the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, to stop dreaming of winning the 2023 general elections, because the masses will still reckon with President Muhammadu Buhari and will never abandoned him.

The PDP has been asscued of giving false hopes to Nigerians that because of the alleged poor performance of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, at the national level, that it (PDP) will take over power it lost to the APC come 2023.

But the Senior Special Assistant to President on Media and Publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu, who spoke shortly after observing the Eid-El-kabir prayers in Daura, Katsina State, said Nigerians know too well and would not allow another party take over in 2023.

According to him: ’’The President enjoys unshakable support not only in his hometown but also across the country and it is enough for the opposition to admit that the President matters a lot for the ruling party and Nigerians in general.

“Again, he constitutes a political obstacle they cannot dismantle come 2023.

‘’We believe the PDP and other opposition parties are nursing false hopes of taking power comes 2023.

“The masses will never abandon President Buhari’s leadership and the APC. I assure you that in 2023, the masses will be waiting for the President to show the way in courtesy of what he has been building for the country in terms of infrastructure and wellbeing of young people in the country.

“Nobody will take the risk by inviting another party to come and take over in 2023.”

[World-news] Those troubling Nigeria’s peace’ll be fished out — Buhari vows

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PRESIDENT Muhammadu Buhari has vowed that his administration will do everything possible to fish out those that he said had been troubling the peace of the nation and its citizens.

President Buhari, who made the vow yesterday in Daura, Katsina State, expressed surprise that only 2.5 per cent of arable lands in the country is being cultivated.

The President in a statement issued by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu, urged more Nigerians to embrace farming.

Shehu in the statement said that President Buhari told newsmen at his residence, after the Eid-el-Kabir prayers, that the Presidential Economic Advisory Council had notified him that only a small percentage of the land in the country had been used for farming, directing security outfits to work more with communities to create a more friendly environment for farmers.

Also Read: Eid-el-Kabir: Gov Okowa calls for united Nigeria

According to the statement, “The President mandated security outfits to be more relentless in maintaining peace in the country, and ensure a more harmonious relationship with communities so that they can glean intelligence.

“He said the security situation had improved considerably over time in the North East and South-South, and efforts were being made in North Central and North West, assuring that more will be done to fish out those that had been troubling the peace of the nation and citizens.”

Earlier at the prayer ground, the Emir of Daura, Faruk Umar Faruk, called on citizens to be more supportive of the President so that he can actualize his vision of improving security and boosting the economy.

“Since the President came into power we have seen some positive changes in the country.

“May God continue to strengthen the President with good health and courage to bring peace to the country. God will not allow Nigeria to see shame,’’ he said. “God has been keeping the country and he will keep the country.’’

[Entertainment] Obi Cubana: “My dead mother has been disturbing me to do reburial for her” – actor, Victor Osuagwu cries out (video)

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Nigerian actor Victor Osuagwu in a recent statement, claimed his late mother has been reappearing in his dream, asking him for a reburial.

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This is coming following the lavish burial ceremony Obi Cubana had in honour of his late mother over the last weekend in Oba, Anambra state.

Victor Osuagwu, in his statement, however, stressed that he doesn’t have any money for reburial because he isn’t Obi Cubana.

He revealed that his mother never left a substantial amount in her will, so she shouldn’t ask for a reburial.

“Which kind trouble be this na. Since Obi Cubana bury in mama, na so I dey see my mama for dream. If I close my eyes, my mama go appear for dream dey shout say make I do reburial for am. Where I wan get money wey I go take do reburial. I be Obi Cubana?

You sent me to go into the world and misbehave. Since you died, I have been misbehaving……,” he said.

Watch the video below;

[World-news] President Buhari Urges More Nigerians To Embrace Farming

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File photo of President Muhammadu Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari has urged more Nigerians to embrace farming, saying he was surprised to hear that only 2.5 per cent of arable lands in the country is being cultivated.

The President said this while addressing journalists at his residence on Tuesday in Daura, the Katsina State capital, after the Eid-el-Kabir prayers.

According to him, the Presidential Economic Advisory Council had notified him that only a small percentage of the land in the country had been used for farming, directing security outfits to work more with communities to create a more friendly environment for farmers.

The President mandated security outfits to be more relentless in maintaining peace in the country, and ensure a more harmonious relationship with communities so that they can glean intelligence.

He said the security situation had improved considerably overtime in the North East and South South, and efforts were being made in North Central and North West, assuring that more will be done to fish out those that had been troubling the peace of the nation and citizens.

Earlier at the prayer ground, the Emir of Daura, Faruk Umar Faruk, called on citizens to be more supportive of the President so that he can actualize his vision of improving security and boosting the economy.

“Since the President came into power we have seen some positive changes in the country,” the Emir said.

“May God continue to strengthen the President with good health and courage to bring peace to the country. God will not allow Nigeria to see shame,’’ he said. “God has been keeping the country and he will keep the country.’’

[World-news] NCDC Records 59 Suspected Monkeypox Cases

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The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has disclosed that 59 suspected and 15 confirmed cases of monkeypox have been recorded in the country.

This was disclosed on Tuesday by the director-gener of the NCDC, Chikwe Ihekweazu in Abuja.

Recall that the Dallas County Health and phad on July 16 reported a case of monkeypox in a resident who recently returned from Nigeria.

According to the DCHHS, the individual, whose name was withheld, is a resident of Dallas, Texas who travelled from Nigeria, and arrived at Love Field airport on July 9.

Ihekweazu said an outbreak would be declared when there is a large cluster of monkeypox cases.

He said: “The federal government was notified of the situation in Texas, through the International Health Regulations (IHR), who reported a case of monkeypox disease diagnosed in a patient who had recently visited Nigeria.

“Since the re-emergence of monkeypox in the country in September 2017, the agency has continued to receive reports and responses to sporadic cases of the disease from states across the country.

“We have been working closely with state health ministries to strengthen monkeypox disease surveillance and response in the country.

“We work with enhanced monkeypox surveillance project where we have been training health workers across states to rapidly detect and manage cases.

“Our initial focus is on the states with the highest number of cases – Delta, Bayelsa, Rivers and Lagos.

“We will continue working with all states to strengthen monkeypox prevention, detection and control in Nigeria.”

Ihekweazu advised Nigerians that “if you feel ill or have a sudden rash, please visit a hospital for diagnosis and management”.

Monkeypox is caused by a virus closely related to that which causes smallpox and cowpox, although not as deadly as smallpox.

It is spread via large respiratory droplets from someone showing symptoms of the disease, and can also be transmitted by direct contact with bodily fluids or lesion material. People who are asymptomatic cannot spread the virus.

[Sport] Anthony Joshua vs Oleksandr Usyk: Details of fight date, venue, TV confirmed

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British boxer, Anthony Joshua will defend his World Boxing Association (WBA), International Boxing Federation and World Boxing Organisation heavyweight titles against Ukrainian fighter, Oleksandr Usyk.

The fight will take place in London at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on September 25.

Joshua’s promoter made the announcement on Tuesday.

Recall that Joshua was set to fight fellow compatriot Tyson Fury in a unification bout in Saudi Arabia in August.

But that fight was ruined when a United States arbitrator ruled the World Boxing Council champion must defend his title against Deontay Wilder.

The fight will be broadcast on Sky Sports Box Office.

Reacting to the upcoming fight, Joshua said, “The date is set and we are fully locked in.

“I put it all on the line again and it’s time to defend my crown.”

[Sport] EPL: Paul Merson predicts club to win title this season

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Arsenal legend, Paul Merson has predicted Manchester City to win the 2021-22 Premier League title ahead of Chelsea, Manchester United and Liverpool.

Man City won the 2020/21 Premier League title ahead of Man United, Liverpool and Chelsea.

But Merson believes Pep Guardiola’s men will retain the English top-flight league title.

He told Sportskeeda, “I strongly believe this could be one of the tightest ones [Premier League title races] in recent memory.

“Man City, Man United, Chelsea and Liverpool can all win the title – that is a four-way battle for the Premier League crown and I do not expect any of them to run away with it by a margin of double-digit points.

“Some might say Manchester City winning the Premier League title is not exactly a bold prediction, but as I said earlier, four teams could win it.

“We could witness one of the closest [Premier League] title races in ages, but I expect Man City to come out on top this season.”

[Music] Masterkraft Ft. Vector, Seun Kuti – Shabadushkabar

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Masterkraft ft. Vector Seun Kuti – Shabadushkabar Music

Emeraldloaded BoomVybz

Talented Nigerian producer, Masterkraft goes hard on the Afrobeat genre with this new record, Shabadushkabar.

Veteran music producer, Masterkraft gives us “Shabadushkabar“. This weekend vibe features talented rapper, Vector, and top-tier saxophonist and Afrobeat star, Seun Kuti.

Additionally, this song is off Masterkraft’s body of work dubbed, “Masta Groove“. This body of work houses 7 great records and Shabadushkabar claims the 6th spot.

Jam Up and download below:-

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[VIDEO] Bella Shmurda – Party Next Door

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Dangbana Republik frontier, Bella Shmurda premiere the official music video to their latest single titled “Party Next Door“.

The Vibez-produced song “Party Next Door” serves as the lead song off Dangbana Republik and Bella Shmurda’s project, “High Tension 2.0” EP.

The visual was shot and directed by Unlimited L.A for MSAYC Production.

Watch below:-

[Metro] COVID-19 Unemployment Benefits: Three Young Nigerians Arrested In US Over $2.6 Million Fraud

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Federal Bureau of Investigation, FBI, and other law enforcement agencies have arrested a syndicate of Nigerian unemployment fraudsters in the United States of America.

The suspects, identified in court filings as Quazeem Owolabi Adeyinka, Ayodeji Jonathan Sangode and Olamide Yusuf Bakare, were broken up last week, with authorities saying they stole over $2.6 million in bogus unemployment insurance claims.

According to Peoples Gazette, court records showed that the suspected Internet crooks used an address in Hyattsville, Maryland, to rake in about $1.4 million in unemployment benefits from California, Arizona, Maryland and North Carolina. At least $1.2 million of the theft was received from California’s Employment Development Department alone.

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They filed about 200 unemployment claims with California’s EDD using a single address on 75th Avenue in Hyattsville, and the department was deceived into approving 97 of the claims, according to a complaint filed by John C. Collins, a special agent with the U.S. Department of Labor. Mr Collins said the ring was jointly investigated by the FBI, Department of Labor’s Office of Inspector General and state law enforcement authorities.

“Based on the size of the apartment, the investigation has concluded that a high number of UI applications associated with this address is unreasonable, and thus an indicator of fraudulent activity. “(Bank of America) records show that 142 UI claim profiles using the 75th Avenue apartment address issued a total of 175 prepaid cards from the states of Arizona, California, Maryland, and North Carolina,” Mr Collins said in the complaint filed in California.

There were several attempts to claim bogus unemployment insurance using the same address from Hawaii, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Texas, Washington and West Virginia, court records say.

The suspects filed claims that they had lost jobs as an accountant, dance therapist, computer consultant, librarian or other occupations, and used untraceable IP addresses, the complaint said.

Federal authorities said they observed that international scammers and con artists were taking advantage of the high volume of COVID-19 cheques being sent out to cushion the effect of the pandemic amongst Americans.

[World-news] Germany Floods Death Toll Hits 169,

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The death toll from devastating floods in Germany reached 169 on Tuesday, local officials said, bringing the total number of deaths in Europe to at least 200.

A total of 121 people are now confirmed to have died in Rhineland-Palatinate, emergency services spokesman Aaron Klein told AFP, up from the previous total of 117 in the western German state

More to follow . . .

[World-news] Subsidy Removal: Petrol price may rise to N1,000 per litre – DPR

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The Department of Petroleum Resources, (DPR) says the pump price of petrol in Nigeria may rise up to as much as N1000 per litre when the petrol subsidy regime comes to an end without an alternative energy source.

DPR Director, Sarki Auwalu, stated this while responding to questions and comments generated by a paper he delivered in Lagos, recently, at the Second Quarter, 2021 Business Dinner of Petroleum Club Lagos.

Responding to the subsidy concerns and the disparity in the petrol consumption figures given by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and the DPR, Auwalu acknowledged that Nigeria was spending so much on petrol subsidy.

He said eliminating it would require making alternative fuel available to Nigerians and that failure to do that could plunge Nigerians into paying higher petrol prices when subsidy is removed.

According to a statement on the DPR website on Monday titled, ‘DPR: Without Alternative Energy, Petrol Price Will Rise On Subsidy Removal’, Auwalu stated that Nigerians may pay as high as N1, 000 to buy one litre of petrol in the country when subsidy on petrol is removed and when the alternative energy or autogas gas policy becomes fully operational.

He, however, said the alternative fuel regime comes with initial cost as it will lead to spending $400 to convert one vehicles from running on petrol or diesel to running on either Liquefied Natural Gas or Compressed Natural Gas.

Auwalu maintained that converting eight million public vehicles currently present in Nigeria to gas-powered will cumulatively cost $3.2 billion to achieve.

He said: “So, to eliminate subsidy, they don’t call it subsidy anymore now, it’s under-recovery of purchase. So, to eliminate under-recovery, what you need is alternative fuel. Without an alternative, you will subject people to higher prices and that is why we go for price freedom.

As at today, there are 22 million cars in Nigeria. Eight million are for public use. Imagine if you want to convert every car into gas, the average cost of conversion is $400. Converting eight million cars requires $3.2 billion. To do that, there are a lot of environmental investors which can invest and recover from the sale of gas and we are encouraging that.

“Once that is achieved, you will see that PMS can be sold at N1,000. After all, the average distance covered by one-gallon equivalent when you compare it with LNG or CNG with respect to energy for mobility is 2.7 against one. One for PMS, 2.7 for LNG or CNG.

”So, with that advantage, you will see that it creates an opportunity for this industry again. The issue of subsidy, the volume will all vanish and that is what we are working towards.”

[World-news] Cholera Outbreak Hits Jigawa, Kills 30

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A cholera outbreak in Jigawa has killed at least 30 people with more than 2,000 hospitalised in the past two months in the state.

Dr Salisu Mu’azu, Permanent Secretary, Jigawa State Ministry of Health, who confirmed the outbreak, said that most of the infected cases were children recorded in nine local government areas of the state.

Mu’azu listed Hadejia; Dutse, Kirikasamma, Birnin Kudu and Ringim as some of the areas worst hit by the outbreak.

He said that of the 2,000 infected cases, some had been discharged while others were still receiving free medical treatment in government hospitals.

The permanent secretary, who could not immediately say what was the cause of the outbreak, insisted that the Hadejia case could be linked to water pollution.

He alleged that there was possibility of water contamination from an area where people practiced open defecation near the water vendors who collect and circulate the water to residents of Hadejia town.

Mu’azu said the state government was on top of situation for now, and has been providing necessary assistance to the residents in the affected areas.

The permanent secretary said the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) had supplied some medications and promised to send more soonest.

[Sport] EPL to make VAR changes ahead of 2021/2022 season

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Premier League bosses are ready to change protocols for the Video Assistant Referees (VAR), following its successful implementation at the just concluded Euro 2020.

The English top-flight has used VAR for the last two seasons, but has encountered some controversial incidents.

Last season in particular, saw a number of contentious calls, while the waiting time used to reach a conclusive decision also drew criticism.

However, fans who watched the European Championships were quick to praise the efficiency and sensible decision-making from officials.

Offside calls were made quickly, without the laborious need for extensive replays and lines.

Premier League effects new changes to VAR ahead of 2021/2022 season

Much of the speed was down to the fact that UEFA appointed twice as many officials for each game, including one dedicated to offside decisions.

That won’t be coming into place for next season’s Premier League, due to the simple fact that there are not enough officials able to do the job.

However, there will be a new level of tolerance added to offside calls and as seen in Euro 2020, if the final image does not produce a conclusive result, the on-field decision will remain.

This would have helped incidents such as Jordan Henderson’s late disallowed goal against Everton at Goodison Park, as well as the controversial decision to rule out Patrick Bamford’s goal at Selhurst Park.

The report adds that fans will also no longer be privy to the working out process made by officials, meaning no more of the lines being shown on screen.

[Technology] Jeff Bezos to blast into space aboard New Shepard rocket ship

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Billionaire Jeff Bezos will blast into space on Tuesday, in the first crewed flight of his rocket ship, New Shepard.

He will be accompanied by Mark Bezos, his brother, Wally Funk, an 82-year-old pioneer of the space race, and an 18-year-old paying customer.

They will travel in a capsule with the biggest windows flown into space, offering stunning views of the Earth.

New Shepard, built by Bezos’ company Blue Origin, is designed to serve the burgeoning market for space tourism.

“I’m excited. People keep asking me if I’m nervous. I’m not really nervous, I’m curious. I want to know what we’re going to learn,” Bezos said in an interview with CBS News.

“We’ve been training. This vehicle’s ready, this crew is ready, this team is amazing. We just feel really good about it.”

Spaceflight pioneer Ms Funk added: “It’s going to happen! I’ve waited a long time and I’ve dreamed a long time to get to go up.”

In the 1960s, Ms Funk was one member of a group of women called the Mercury 13, who underwent the same screening tests as male astronauts, but who never got to fly into space.

At 14:00 BST (09:00 EDT), the four passengers will lift off on a rocket from Bezos’ private launch site near Van Horn, Texas.

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The capsule, containing the Bezos brothers, Funk and student Oliver Daemen, separates from its booster around 76km (250,000ft) up. The booster lands about 2 miles from the launch pad, while the capsule continues upwards to a maximum altitude of around 106km (350,000ft).

“We’re in zero-g for around four minutes, and we get to get out of our seats, unstrap, float around, look at the thin limb of the Earth’s atmosphere,” Bezos told CBS News.

“People who have been up – astronauts – say that when they do that, they can see that the Earth is so fragile.

“The views are going to be terrific, the zero-g will be an unusual experience that you really can’t get in any good way on Earth.”

The capsule then begins its descent, parachuting down to a soft landing in the desert.

The launch is the latest salvo in what has been dubbed the “billionaire space race”. It comes just nine days after Bezos’ space tourism rival, Sir Richard Branson, flew high above the Earth on his space plane on 11 July.

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image captionThe whole system has gone through several years of rigorous testing

Though billed as an effort to expand access to space for all, seats aboard one of Sir Richard’s flights will initially set customers back $250,000, while the regular ticket price for a ride on New Shepard has not been announced.

With a net worth of around $200bn, Bezos is the world’s richest man. The 57-year-old recently resigned as chief executive of Amazon, the e-commerce giant he founded, to focus on special company initiatives and his other ventures such as Blue Origin.

Bezos’ brother Mark, 53, founded an advertising agency and is now a senior vice president at Robin Hood, a New York-based charity.

The fourth passenger is the son of Joes Daemen, founder of Dutch private equity firm Somerset Capital Partners. Oliver replaced the anonymous winner of a public auction for the seat.

This unnamed winner, who paid $28m (£20m) for the ride on New Shepard, had to pull out “due to scheduling conflicts”.

Bezos and Branson have been on the receiving end of a social media backlash, with users arguing the money spent on private spaceflights could be put to better use – such as tackling climate change or helping the world recover from the pandemic.

Branson addressed the criticism on the Late Show with Stephen Colbert, saying: “I can understand it, but I think maybe they’re not fully educated to what space does for Earth.

“Space is connecting the millions of people who are not connected.” He added that satellites were monitoring “the degradation of the rainforests, monitoring food distribution – even things like climate change. These things are essential for people back here on Earth. We need more spaceships going up to space, we don’t need less.”

[Entertainment] Kanye West Is Back On Instagram & Kim Kardashian Is Still The Only Person He Follows

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Kanye is slowly coming back into the world.

Kanye West had a very public 2020. Between running for President and his breakdown with estranged wife Kim Kardashian, West was all over the news. His tweets only stirred the pot more. But Mr. West was strangely quiet for much of 2021, before he started making a buzz with Paris Fashion Week appearances, his hooded mask, and dating a supermodel. All the high-profile press came right before ‘Ye’s secret album listening party, which is supposedly happening tonight in Las Vegas. And now, fans are also starting to notice that ‘Ye is back on Instagram as well. 

Kanye’s Instagram hasn’t changed at all since resurrection. His last post is still a picture of him being proud of himself for voting for himself. And the only person he is following is Kim Kardashian.  

Although Kanye and Kim are done, they seem to be co-parenting very well. Mr. West was recently spotted in the studio with Tyler, the Creator. A DONDA tracklist could be seen in the background. An alleged invite for a secret Kanye album party listening also leaked online recently. Maybe fans will get a little insight into the mind of ‘Ye post-divorce on the new project. Or maybe we’ll be waiting for new Kanye music for another year. Who can ever tell with him?

[Sport] EPL: Everton suspend first-team player over police investigation

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English Premier League club, Everton have suspended a first-team player pending a police investigation.

Everton made the announcement in a statement on their official website on Tuesday morning.

The Toffees, however, did not reveal the player or any details concerning the police case.

“Everton can confirm it has suspended a first-team player pending a police investigation.

“The club will continue to support the authorities with their inquiries and will not be making any further statement at this time,” the statement read.

Everton began their pre-season training earlier this month.

The Merseyside club will depart for the United States to face Colombian side Millonarios and either Inter Milan or Arsenal in the Florida Cup later this week.

Everton will tackle Manchester United in their final pre-season match at Old Trafford, before their 2021/22 Premier League opener against Southampton on Aug. 14 at Goodison Park.

[Entertainmen] Why do ladies endure poverty of their parents but can’t endure poverty of their boyfriend – Man asks

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A Nigerian man has taken to social media to pose a controversial question to women about their mindsets while going into relationships.

It is no strange knowledge that women often mention financial stability when mentioning a man they would love to date or marry. Others specifically say they would never date a broke or struggling guy.

Well, wading in on the matter, a Twitter user with username @henryruckus1 has asked why women are okay with enduring the poverty they were born into but can’t do same with their boyfriends.

He wrote: ”Pls I have a question. Why do ladies endure poverty of their parent but can not endure poverty of their boyfriend”

The post has since generated divergent views with some ladies saying that they had no choice with their parents because that’s the family they were born into, but with a boyfriend, you have the option of not ‘suffering’ with him.

See the post:

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[World-news] Eid El-Adha: Why There Is Food Inflation – Buhari

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President Muhammadu Buhari has blamed the increase in the prices of food on flooding, middlemen, and insecurity, pledging to tackle the ravaging hardship in the country.

The President stated this on Monday while felicitating with Muslims on the occasion of the Eid El-Adha, calling for more patience among Nigerians.

Buhari in a statement issued by his spokesman, Garba Shehu, noted that these, as well as the COVID-19, have ballooned the prices of food items in Nigeria.

“Apart from the destruction caused to rice farms by floods, middlemen have also taken advantage of the local rice production to exploit fellow Nigerians, thereby undermining our goal of supporting local food production at affordable prices,” the President was quoted as saying.

“COVID-19 pandemic has taken a heavy toll on the economies of all countries, including Nigeria, in addition to the fact that floods have caused large scale destruction to agricultural farmlands, thereby impacting negatively on our efforts to boost local production in line with our policy to drastically reduce food importation.

“No government in our recent history has invested as heavily as we are doing to promote local production of about 20 other commodities, through the provision of loans and several other forms of support to our farmers.”

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President Muhammadu Buhari speaks in Katsina State on July 19, 2021. Credit: State House

The Nigerian leader assured that as an elected President who enjoys the goodwill of the ordinary people, he would continue “to bring relief to Nigerians, including making fertilizer available at affordable prices to our farmers.”

While lamenting the deteriorating insecurity in the country,  Buhari lamented that it “has produced severe and adverse effects on agriculture because farmers are prevented from accessing their farms by bandits and terrorists.

“Let me also use this opportunity to reassure Nigerians that we are taking measures to address our security challenges. We have started taking delivery of fighter aircraft and other necessary military equipment and hardware to improve the capacity of our security forces to confront terrorism and banditry.”

[Entertainment] Nigerians react to video of gospel music being played at a strip club (Watch)

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A video which surfaced on social media captures the moment a strip club was playing gospel music as the strippers performed.

In what looked like a setting where friends were celebrating, a stripper was seen dancing on a female client as gospel music was being sung by some musicians.

There was a live band which serenaded the customers much to the shock of social media users who thought it was wrong for gospel songs to be played in such a place.

Watch the video:

[Metro] Police Officer Shoots Driver For Refusing To Stop At Checkpoint In Osun

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A police officer attached to a patrol team from Ijebu-Jeṣa Police Division was reportedly said to have shot a driver on Monday evening.

The driver, James Ajayi, was said to have attempted to run through the barrier at the checkpoint in Ijebu-Jeṣà before he was shot on the leg.

An eye witness, Alabi Olalekan, said the victim drive a car used for commercial purpose and was shot by one of the policemen at the checkpoint while trying to manoeuvre his way around the barrier.

Shortly after he was shot, motorists on the road sought to know the reason he was shot and while tension was mounting, the policemen decided to take him to the hospital.

Before he was taken to the hospital, the policeman who shot him was shouting that the driver intended to kill his colleagues with the way and manner he drove toward them after refusing to stop to be searched.

The victim, it was gathered, was however taken to the Wesley Guild Hospital, Ilesa, where he was treated.

Osun police command spokesperson, Yemisi Opalola, confirmed the incident but added that police has begun investigation to unravel the circumstances surrounding the incident.

[Sport] Real Madrid ‘put Eden Hazard on transfer market’

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Real Madrid attacker Eden Hazard has reportedly been transfer-listed by the La Liga giants.

The former Chelsea man has endured a torrid time with injuries since making the switch from the English to the Spanish capital, making just 43 appearances for Real over the past two seasons.

Hazard has been linked with a sensational return to Chelsea amid his Real Madrid struggles, but he has affirmed that he ultimately wants to become a “leader” at the Bernabeu.

However, Marca claims that Real Madrid are prepared to place Hazard on the transfer market in a desperate bid to raise funds, despite Carlo Ancelotti being keen to work with the Belgian.

The report claims that Ancelotti is convinced he can get the best out of the injury-plagued attacker, but Real would be open to a sale for the right price.

Hazard has only found the back of the net five times for Real Madrid, and he claimed one assist in four appearances for Belgium at Euro 2020.

[Entertainment] Even if you feature Chris Brown 30 times, if you don’t marry Chioma, you won’t win Grammy – Uche Maduagwu tells Davido

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Controversial Nigerian actor, Uche Maduagwu has said that if superstar singer, Davido refuses to marry Chioma, his dream of one day winning a Grammy award will never be realised.

He stated this in a social media post while commenting on Davido’s new song with popular American singer, Chris Brown titled; Shopping Spree.

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On his Instagram page, Maduagwu said that even if the DMW boss features the U.S. R&B star several times, he still won’t win a Grammy unless he reconciles and marries Chioma.

”Davido even if u feature Chris Brown 30 times if you marry Chioma forget Grammy.

chioma davido new

”#Shopping spree and blow my mind are #COOL songs even though dem sound alike, but oga, if all this #international collabo with the same #American singer na to get #grammy nomination, ko le work without marrying chioma, the gods are involved in your audio assurance matter #davido #chrisbrown #shoppingspree”, he wrote.

See his post below;

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[Technology] China accused of cyber-attack on Microsoft

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The UK, US and EU have accused China of carrying out a major cyber-attack earlier this year.

The attack targeted Microsoft Exchange servers, affecting at least 30,000 organisations globally.

The UK said Chinese state-backed actors were responsible, while the EU said the attack came from “the territory of China”.

The Chinese Ministry of State Security (MSS) was also accused of wider espionage activity and a broader pattern of “reckless” behaviour.

China has previously denied allegations of hacking and says it opposes all forms of cyber-crime.

The unified call-out of Beijing signals the gravity with which this case has been taken. Western intelligence officials say aspects of this case are markedly more serious than anything they have seen before.

The hackers exploited a vulnerability in Microsoft Exchange which allowed backdoors to be placed on systems that allowed further access.

The UK said the attack was likely to enable large-scale espionage, including the acquisition of personal information and intellectual property.

The backdoors used by the Chinese group were also exploited by other hacking groups, leaving systems vulnerable to ransomware attacks and espionage.

In the UK, the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) issued tailored advice to over 70 affected organisations.

“The cyber attack on Microsoft Exchange Server by Chinese state-backed groups was a reckless but familiar pattern of behaviour,” UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said. “The Chinese Government must end this systematic cyber-sabotage and can expect to be held to account if it does not.”

Western governments accuse the MSS of using hackers-for hire and want it to sever ties with them.

In a statement, the White House said it was “deeply concerned” that China had “fostered an intelligence enterprise that includes contract hackers who also conduct unsanctioned cyber-operations worldwide, including for their own personal profit”.

The EU, meanwhile, said the hack had “resulted in security risks and significant economic loss for our government institutions and private companies”.

Its statement, like that of the UK, also said it had seen other Chinese behaviour that it was calling-out at the same time. It linked it to two groups known as APT 40 and APT 31 which are believed to be linked to the MSS.

Despite the strong statements, there are no signs of sanctions against China. In contrast, new sanctions were placed on Russia for the recent SolarWinds campaign which many experts believe was less serious than the Microsoft Exchange campaign linked to China.

Microsoft announced details of the hack back in March, and said a China-linked group called Hafnium was responsible. China denied those accusations.

The widespread use of Microsoft Exchange left many businesses and organisations vulnerable, with a huge effort to try to mitigate the potential risks.

At the time, the US Department of Justice announced criminal charges against four MSS hackers which it said were linked to a long-term campaign targeting foreign governments and entities in key sectors in a least a dozen countries.

[Metro] 44-Year-Old Nigerian Man Arrested With Cocaine Worth N18m In India

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A 44-year-old Nigerian national, Umunna Ndubuisi Williams has been arrested by Anti-Narcotic Cell (ANC) in Mumbai, India.

One hundred and ten grams of cocaine worth Rs 33 lakh (N18,167,990.30) was recovered from him.

According to ANC officials, a police constable with Azad Maidan unit received information of a foreign national coming to South Mumbai to make a drug deal.

ANC officials in swift response laid a trap and caught hold of the accused. The accused was arrested in the wee hours of Thursday, July 15, near pole number FR/ 136, near Loha bhavan bus stop, towards Wadibunder, PD Mello road, Mumbai.

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The police said the arrested accused is a cloth trader and resident of sector 27, Kharghar, Navi Mumbai.

“We have seized 110 grams of cocaine worth Rs 33 lakh. He allegedly supplied the drugs to peddlers and customers in Mumbai”, said Datta Nalawade, Deputy Commissioner of Police, ANC.

Nalawade said that a case had been registered under relevant sections of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substance Act, 1985. “We are checking the supply chain of Williams”, said the police officer.

[Sport] EPL: Chelsea ready to sell Timo Werner after Giroud’s exit

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Chelsea  ready to sell Timo Werner this summer, according to Sky Germany.

The Blues have been touting the 25-year-old to top European clubs, in a bid to find a potential suitor.

Should Werner leave, Chelsea is planning to use the money to fund their pursuit of Borussia Dortmund striker Erling Haaland.

Chelsea will need to stump up to £150 million for Haaland.

Giroud agrees deal to leave Chelsea

Haaland has scored 57 goals in 59 games since arriving at Dortmund 18 months ago.

New Blues boss, Thomas Tuchel, is looking to bolster his attack ahead of his first full season in charge.

Tuchel had to endure the patchy form of Timo Werner in his first six months, having frozen Tammy Abraham out of his team.

The Blues have already sold Olivier Giroud to AC Milan.

[Metro] Angry Mob Set 3 Suspected Thieves On Fire In Lagos

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A group of angry mobs on Monday evening meted out jungle justice on three suspected motorcycle thieves in Ayobo area of Lagos State.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the three suspects, who allegedly stole two brand new motorcycles at Olorunsola, Ayobo, Ipaja, Lagos, were set ablaze after lynching them.

According to an eyewitness who spoke on the condition of anonymity, the suspects took to their heels after allegedly stealing the motorcycles.

“Some commercial motorcyclists ran after the suspected thieves and caught up with them along Koloba Road, off Alaja Road, Ayobo, Ipaja, Lagos.

“Two were initially caught and were instantly lynched to death, while the other one scampered for safety.

“He was later caught in one of the streets in Alaja and wheeled down to join the other two before they were set on fire.

“The thieves also injured some people while they tried to escape.

“Those who were injured have been rushed to an undisclosed hospital for medical attention,” the witness said.

The police have been drafted to the scene of the incident.

[World-news] Sunday Igboho Arrested In Cotonou

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Yoruba Nation agitator, Chief Sunday Adeyemo also known as Sunday Igboho, has been arrested in Cotonou, Benin Republic.

According to PUNCH, a top source familiar with the matter disclosed that Igboho was arrested by security forces at an airport in Cotonou on Monday night while trying to board a flight to Germany.

WITHIN NIGERIA recalls that operatives of the Department of State Services had raided Igboho’s Ibadan residence in the Soka area on July 1, 2021, arrested about 12 of his aides and killed two of them in a gun duel.

The Nigerian secret police had declared Igboho wanted for allegedly stockpiling arms, an allegation he has since denied.

The source stated that the Yoruba activist would be repatriated to Nigeria on Tuesday (today) from Benin Republic.

When PUNCH contacted, a member of Igboho’s legal team, Pelumi Olajengbesi, said he would speak with the lead counsel, Yomi Aliyu (SAN), to verify the report.

He was arrested in Cotonou while he tried to travel out on Monday night. His destination was Germany. The security forces in Benin Republic should repatriate him to Nigeria on Tuesday,” the source said.

[Music] Yemi Alade – Enjoyment

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Yemi Alade Enjoyment

Effyzie Music boss lady, Yemi Alade releases a brand new single today titled “Enjoyment”

The new single serves as her first single of the year and a follow-up for her previously heard studio album “Empress” which was released in November 2020.

The Mama Africa gave us some proper afrobeat vibe with this amazing tune.

Listen below:-

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[VIDEO] Davido Ft. Chris Brown, Young Thug – Shopping Spree

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Davido comes through with the official music video for her previously released single titled “Shopping Spree” featuring Chris Brown, Young Thug.

With guest appearances from Nicki Minaj, Nas, Chris Brown, Young Thug, Lil Baby, Sauti Sol, Mayorkun, Sho Madjozi and others.

The video was shot and directed by Des Gray

Watch below:-

[Entertainment] Organisers announce official date for launch of BBNaija Season 6 housemates

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The much-awaited BBNaija reality show is set to commence in the next few days.

This comes as organisers of the reality show have announced July 24th as the official date for the launch of season 6 housemates.

The organisers made this known in a press conference on Monday, as they announced that the housemates would be made public to viewers on the 24th of July.

The opening ceremony is scheduled to run for two days, the 24th and 25th of July.

Also, this time around, viewers of the show who are outside Nigeria now have the opportunity to watch on the web and vote via applications which will be disclosed at the launch.

Recall that Laycon emerged as the winner of the BBNaija 5th edition

[Entertainment] Ram with 5 horns sold at a market in Lagos ahead of Sallah celebration (video)

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A ram with 5 horns was seen at a market on Nigeria.

As Muslims went shopping for a ram for Sallah, they saw one with 5 horns that was up for sale.

“God is wonderful,” a shopper filming the ram is heard saying.

See the video below.

[World-news] DSS Prevents Nnamdi Kanu From Seeking UK’s Assistance – Lawyer

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Aloy Ejimako, one of the counsels of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, self-acclaimed leader of the Proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra, has alleged that the Department of State Services, DSS has stopped his client from signing a consular assistance form by the United Kingdom.

Barrister Aloy Ejimako made this known in a statement on Monday.

Recall that following the rearrest and repatriation of the Biafra freedom fighter back to the country recently, the British High Commission had offered to extended consular assistance to the fugitive.

Kanu who is a dual citizen of both British and Nigeria is currently been detained in the custody of the Nigerian secret police.

He has been scheduled to resume his trial on July 26 after jumping bail in 2017.

[Sport] Lewis Hamilton Racially Abused On Social Media Over Controversial British GP Win

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Race winner Mercedes' British driver Lewis Hamilton celebrates after the Formula One British Grand Prix motor race at Silverstone motor racing circuit in Silverstone, central England on July 18, 2021. LARS BARON / POOL / AFP

Lewis Hamilton was the victim of “multiple instances of racist abuse on social media” during and after his controversial win in the British Grand Prix, according to a joint statement by Formula One, the FIA and his Mercedes team. 

The seven-time world champion was involved early on in an incident that saw championship leader Max Verstappen plough his Red Bull into a wall and out of the race.

Hamilton was hit by a 10 second penalty but went on to win the race and close the gap in the title race to just eight points.

“During, and after, yesterday’s British Grand Prix, Lewis Hamilton was subjected to multiple instances of racist abuse on social media following an in-race collision,” they said in a joint statement condemning the behaviour “in the strongest possible terms”.

“These people have no place in our sport and we urge that those responsible should be held accountable for their actions.

“Formula 1, the FIA, the drivers and the teams are working to build a more diverse and inclusive sport, and such unacceptable instances of online abuse must be highlighted and eliminated.”

Verstappen, who was taken to hospital for checks after the race, later accused Hamilton of “disrespectful and unsportsmanlike behaviour”.

A public supporter of the Black Lives Matter movement, Hamilton gave his support a week ago to the England footballers Bukayo Saka, Marcus Rashford and Jadon Sancho who were also abused after they missed penalties in the Euro 2020 final.

“I hope this opens a conversation around acceptance,” he wrote on Instagram at the time.

“We must work towards a society that doesn’t require Black players to prove their value or place in society only through victory.”

AFP

[Sport] Zlatan Ibrahimovic slapped me for kissing him – Van der Meyde

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Former Ajax winger, Andy van der Meyde, has revealed that AC Milan striker, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, slapped him after he kissed the Swedish international.

Van der Meyde and Ibrahimovic, 39, were team-mates from 2001 to 2003 at Ajax.

The pair were big egos amongst a fiery dressing room which featured huge prospects like Rafael van der Vaart, and they were known to butt heads.

“When we were at Ajax, I always sat next to Zlatan on the bus,” Van der Meyde told Dutch TV show VTBL.

“Once when he was sleeping I got gay tendencies and just kissed him on the mouth. Seconds later, I got a couple of slaps.”

Van der Meyde scored eleven goals and registered fourteen assists for Ajax in the 2002-03 Eredivisie season.

The 41-year-old eventually joined Inter Milan but never and later nailed-down a starting spot in Italy.

He later joined Everton for £2million move in 2005.

The Dutchman made just 23 appearances for Everton and left the Toffee in 2009 before retiring three years later.

[World-news ] COVID-19 Third Wave: Kano Suspends Sallah Festivities

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The Kano state government has suspended all Eid-el-Kabir (Sallah) festivities.

This is in compliance with the Federal Government’s placing of six states on red alert including Kano state.

This was announced by the state Commissioner for Information, Malam Muhammad Garba.

According to the information commissioner, Eid prayers would be held in all the five Emirates and mosques across the state.

He said the development was part of a measure adopted by Nigeria, like most parts of the African continent now facing a COVID-19 third wave, after detecting the more transmissible Delta variant.

Malam Garba said the red alert allows authorities in the affected states to restrict celebrations and gatherings to a minimum, particularly the traditional Durbar (Hawan Sallah) which is marked by colourful horse riding events watched by large gatherings.

The commissioner also urged the public to observe the safety protocols that involve use of face masks, hand washing, and distancing during Eid prayer.

[Sport] OFFICIAL: Arsenal sign Albert Sambi from Anderlecht

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Arsenal have completed the signing of Albert Sambi Lokonga from Anderlecht on a long-term contract.

The 21-year-old midfielder joined the Belgian side in 2014 as a 15-year-old and signed his first professional contract in 2017. 

Mikel Arteta said: “Albert is a very intelligent player who has shown great maturity in his performances during his development. He has been coached well by Vincent Kompany and his team at Anderlecht.

“I know Vincent very well and he talks so highly about Albert and the positive impact he had to Anderlecht in recent seasons. We’re confident Albert’s ready for the next stage in his development and we’re looking forward to welcoming a new member to our squad with his quality and presence.”

[World-news] NAFDAC Warns Nigerians Against Excessive Consumption Of Onions, Garlic As COVID-19 Cure

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The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has warned Nigerians against excessive consumption of onions and garlic with a view to curing Coronavirus infection.

Prof Moji Adeyeye, NAFDAC Director-General, gave the warning in a statement released by the agency’s resident Media Consultant, Mr Olusayo Akintola, on Sunday, NAN reports.

Adeyeye also said the agency was yet to approve any herbal medicine for the treatment of COVID-19 because no single drug has been found to cure the infection.

He said medicinal products available now could only help ease symptoms and up the odds of survival.

She warned Nigerian researchers and other herbal medicine practitioners to desist from parading unverified medicine for the virus.

The NAFDAC boss further revealed that any product without the agency’s approval for the cure of COVID-19 is null and void, adding that such an act was a violation of the national regulatory authorities and a breach of protocols.

“If you eat too much your breath will be smelling and nobody will want to stay by you.

“If it is not documented, it cannot be recognized by NAFDAC for COVID – 19. They work on our cells to keep people healthier, but not to cure COVID – 19.

“They help our body to function better. There is no cure for COVID -19 yet.

“If you eat garlic and onion and you don’t use a face mask you will get COVID -19.

”University of Jos said that there was herbal medicine, whether it is tea or whatever, that can cure the virus.

‘’We sent a letter to warn them that they cannot claim something unless it has gone through our listing process.

“They were trying to sell it to their staff. That is a violation of our own regulatory policies.

“Nobody should say that this one can cure this or that without going through NAFDAC listing process, the research into herbal medicine by the academia is normal, ”Adeyeye said.

[World-news] Eid-El-Kabir: IGP Assures Nigerians Of Sustained Efforts At Improving Security

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Assistant Inspector General of Police Maritime Command Alkali Baba Usman

The Inspector-General of Police, IGP Usman Alkali Baba has assured the nation of sustained efforts by the Force in fighting crimes and criminality and improving public safety and security across the country.

His assurance on Sunday was contained in a communique titled, ‘Eid-el-Kabir: IGP assures sustained efforts at improving public safety and security, by the Force Public Relations Officer, Frank Mba.

In his statement, the IGP charged Commissioners of Police (CPs) in all the States of the Federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), and their supervisory Assistant Inspectors General of Police (AIGs), to beef-up security ahead of the Eid-el-Kabir celebration, to prevent any untoward situation in their Areas of Responsibility (AoR) throughout the Eid-el-Kabir season and beyond.

READ ALSO: NDLEA Arrests Anambra Drug Kingpin Recovers 548,000 Tramadol Tablets

He particularly directed the Zonal AIGs and State Command CPs to put in place all necessary security measures to ensure a secure, peaceful, and incident-free celebration.

“They are to, amongst other things, deploy human and other operational assets to carry out confidence-building and crime prevention patrols on major highways, residential and industrial areas, vulnerable points, places of worship, other places of public resort, and around all critical national infrastructure,” the communique partly reads.

The IGP equally warned that personnel deployed must be professional and mindful of the fundamental rights of the citizens, and discharge their responsibilities with all sense of decorum and alertness.

While congratulating the Muslim Faithfuls in the country on the occasion of the year 2021 Eid-el-Kabir celebration, the Police Boss reiterated that the Force would continue to improve on the recent gains achieved in stabilizing security order in parts of the country, protecting the lives and property of citizens, and denying space for crimes and criminality to thrive in and around the country.

He wished all Muslims a happy and peaceful Sallah celebration and enjoined citizens to celebrate and enjoy the beauty of the Eid-el-Kabir while remaining security conscious and compliant with the COVID-19 prevention protocols.

[Entertainment] “Biafra is sure, it will be the best country in the world” – Actress, Rita Edochie

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Veteran actress, Rita Edochie has expressed a beam of possibilities pertaining to the restoration of Biafra.

Rita Edochie Biafra

The actress took to Instagram to state that the Biafra restoration will be actualized with the help of the indigenous Biafra leader, Nnamdi Kanu.

In an exchange with a follower via her Instagram, here’s what transpired:

Edochie shared a post pertaining to Obi Cubana and his friends as she honors him for investing in his friends.

She wrote:

“Obi Cubana is not the richest man in Nigeria, just that he was busy making his friend’s billionaires and young people millionaires. Investing in human development, that’s why his mother’s burial is the talk in Nigeria. Those he favored in the past want to pay respect to him. From the video I have seen so far, all are going with bags of money and not poison. Grow with your friends. Help people with that your little position today, someone’s destiny may be in your hands.”

LEARN HOW TO HELP PEOPLE AND SEE THE RESULTS LIKE WHAT PLAYED OUT IN OBA.
OBA WAS SHUT DOWN BY ONE MAN BECAUSE OF HIS GOODNESS.

@obi_cubana MAY THE SOUL OF YOUR MOTHER REST IN THE BOSOM OF GOD ALMIGHTY.
IT MUST BE SAID ON EARTH BEFORE HEAVEN. OH NNA JIDEKAIJI AND GOD ALMIGHTY WILL KEEP BLESSING MORE”.

Reacting to this, a follower said that from his observation the Igbo people don’t need Biafra.

“Nice ma’am but with what I saw on that day don’t think igbo people need Biafra ooo … we chasing cow they bringing them giving them house to stay”

In response, she wrote:

“BIAFRA IS SURE MY DEAR THERE ARE NO TWO WAYS TO THAT. IT’S A QUESTION OF TIME. BIAFRA WILL THE BEST COUNTRY IN THE WORLD WITH OUR LEADER MAZI NNAMDI KANU.”

Rita Edochie Biafra

[Metro] Winners’ Chapel Allegedly Sacks Pastors For Failing To Generate Enough Income

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Pastor Peter Godwin has alleged that the Living Faith Church International, popularly known as Winners Chapel, sacked him and about 40 other pastors in Ekiti State for failing to grow their respective parishes.

Godwin said that, on July 1, he received a call that the state pastor wanted to see him, and that he was surprised to see about 40 other pastors when he arrived, PUNCH reports.

“When I got there, I saw other pastors too, over 40 of them. So, I joined them.

“A few minutes later, we were [each] issued a letter. I opened the content of the letter to see what was there and I saw that it was a sack letter.

“So, I called the management the next day to find out what happened since I wasn’t involved in any dubious activity or evil act. I was told by the management that the church doesn’t operate at a loss.

“They also told me that the total income that is being generated from my station should be able to cater for my welfare and accommodation, so as a result of low income, I’m hereby dismissed,” he stated.

One of the letters dated June 25, 2021 and signed by the Executive Secretary of the church, Adebisi Aboluwade, is trending on social media.

In the letter, the pastors were asked to vacate their official accommodation and hand over their identity cards to their respective area pastors.

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“Consequent upon the recent performance reviews which revealed that your church growth index falls below expectations.

“Please be informed that your services as a pastor in charge are no longer required from this commission with immediate effect.

“You are to vacate the official accommodation (where applicable) and hand over all properties of the ministry in your custody, including your staff identity card to the area pastor before departure,” the letters reads in part.

According to PUNCH, a source within Winners’ church, however, stated that the sacking of the pastors had nothing to do with money; rather, the source said, it involved membership growth.

“As indicated in the letter, pastors were sacked for failing to grow membership, which is a key aspect of the ministry.

“It had nothing to do with money and nowhere in any of the letters of disengagement was it stated that it was about money,” the source said.

[Sport] Olympic Athletes Infected As Covid Travel Woe Hits Europe

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IOC Headquarters Olympics

Two athletes became the first to test positive for the coronavirus in the Tokyo Olympic Village, officials said Sunday, as new border rules in Europe caused last-minute travel frustration.

Less than a week before the Olympics is due to begin, the cases will heighten concerns over the event.

Organisers have described the Games as the world’s “most restrictive sports event”, but it faces opposition in Japan over fears it will bring new infections to a country already battling a surge.

A daily tally of new cases revealed two athletes tested positive in the Village and one elsewhere. They come a day after an unidentified person, who was not a competitor, became the first case in the village.

Britain is also facing a backlash over its decision to exclude France from its new looser entry policies — vaccinated returning UK residents will still have to quarantine for 10 days, unlike in other “amber” countries.

“I’m a doctor so I understand the health issues very well, but this doesn’t make any sense,” said Maud Lemoine, a London-based doctor who is visiting France.

And France’s government drew ire after announcing that unvaccinated visitors from Britain and several other European countries must show a negative Covid test taken within 24 hours of departure rather than 48 or 72 hours, as was the case previously.

The interior ministry said almost 114,000 demonstrators gathered across France on Saturday to protest against the government’s handling of the pandemic and continued restrictions on everyday life.

“It’s not that we think the Earth is flat, but we don’t know the long-term effects of these vaccines cobbled together in a hurry,” care assistant Rita, 39, said at a march in the city of Montpellier.

Elsewhere in Europe, Greek officials imposed curfews on the party island of Mykonos and Spanish authorities did likewise in Barcelona and other cities in the northeastern Catalonia region.

EU jabs overtake US

European governments are facing an uphill battle, with the EU’s disease prevention agency warning that infections could rise fivefold across the bloc by August 1.

But the continent also had something to celebrate, with the proportion of people vaccinated topping the US figure for the first time.

Around 55.5 percent have now had a first dose following a sluggish start, compared with 55.4 across the Atlantic.

EU Commissioner Thierry Breton said the achievement validated the EU’s strategy of “remaining open and exporting half of our production to 100+ countries”, vaunting the bloc’s “solidarity” compared with other vaccine makers.

And in Britain, where most of the adult population has now had two jabs, the government is preparing to ease most restrictions.

Quarantine for vaccinated Britons returning from “amber” list countries is due to end on Monday but at the last minute the government decided to retain the status quo for France because of the “persistent presence” of the Beta variant, first identified in South Africa.

While the rule applies only to England for now, devolved governments in Scotland and Wales indicated they were likely to follow suit.

The new looser regime in England, with mask requirements among the rules to be dropped, comes as the UK recorded more than 50,000 cases in a day on Friday and the government said that rate could double in the coming weeks.

However, officials said the high vaccination rate should prevent a spike in deaths and serious illness.

Hajj joy

Among those testing positive was Health Secretary Sajid Javid, who announced on Saturday he had contracted the disease and was isolating.

“I’m grateful that I’ve had two jabs of the vaccine. And so far, my symptoms are very mild,” Javid said via Twitter.

With cases surging, critics say the reopening is a reckless gamble.

“This is a threat not just to England but to the whole world — particularly low- and middle-income countries who have very limited access to vaccines,” a group of international scientists said in a joint statement on Friday.

One poorer country experiencing an infection surge is Senegal, whose national bus operator announced Saturday it would suspend intercity transport.

The announcement comes after the country of 16 million logged a record — 1,366 — of new coronavirus cases on Saturday, almost double the daily record of 733 set on Wednesday.

A new single-day record was also set in Thailand, which had more than 11,300 new infections Sunday, bringing the kingdom’s cumulative cases to more than 400,000. Saturday also saw the single-day death toll reach 141 — a new high.

Three more provinces will be placed under severe restrictions — including a night-time curfew and a ban on gatherings of more than five — that already cover Bangkok and the southern provinces.

Saudi Arabia is allowing crowds to gather for the second downsized hajj since the start of the pandemic.

The kingdom is allowing only 60,000 fully vaccinated residents to take part — a fraction of the pre-pandemic number — as it seeks to repeat last year’s success that saw no virus outbreak during the five-day ritual.

Among the chosen ones this year was Ameen, a 58-year-old Indian oil contractor who was picked for the ritual along with his wife and three adult children.

“We are overjoyed,” said Ameen. “So many of our friends and relatives were rejected.”

[Sport] Rivers United fans beat up Akwa United supporter, hold referee hostage

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Rivers united fans on Sunday beat up a fan of Akwa United at Adokiya Amesiamaka stadium during a match between the two clubs.

Trouble started after the football fan raised a placard in support of his team.

The action was said to have angered the home fans who allegedly descended on the Akwa United fan.

Also, the centre referee who officiated the match was held hostage by the fans after the match which ended in a 1-1 draw.

It took the intervention of the Rivers state commissioner for sports, Boma Yaye for the centre referee to be escorted out of the stadium.

Fans were allowed in the stadium in contravention of COVID-19 protocols.

[Sport] Juventus confirm Ronaldo’s whereabouts

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Serie A giants Juventus have responded to the rather disconcerting reports that Cristiano Ronaldo is heading for the door.

Reports have claimed that Ronaldo’s agents have decided the Portuguese superstar icon is having a future elsewhere come the start of the new season.

Juventus have thus been made to answer a few questions about the report. According to the Mirror, one of the club’s Chief Palvo Nedved understands that Ronaldo is on vacation and is aware when he is expected to return.

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“Cristiano is on holiday. We have no signal from his entourage that he wants to leave,” Nedved said. “We’re waiting for him and he will return around 25 July as scheduled,” the former midfielder concluded.

[Politics] Why We Voted For E-Transmission Of Results With Conditions – Senate President

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Lawan

President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan has advanced reasons to justify the position taken by the Senate on the electronic transmission of election results.

The Senate on Thursday, while considering the Electoral Act 2010 Amendment Bill, voted that “The Commission(INEC) may consider the electronic transmission of results, provided the national coverage is adjudged to be adequate and secure by the National Communications Commission (NCC) and approved by the National Assembly.”

Lawan explained that the Upper Chamber voted the way it did in defense of about half of the Nigerian voters whose votes may not be counted with immediate deployment or application of electronic transmission of election results.

The Senate President spoke to journalists at the weekend while on a constituency visit to his Yobe North Senatorial District.

Asked to comment on the passage of the Electoral Act 2010 Amendment Bill, Lawan said: “I’m happy that we have been able to pass the amendment even though some people are complaining of what we have passed in the Senate and probably what the House of Representatives has also passed.

“When the majority of Senators voted against immediate application or deployment of electronic transmission of results from the polling units, to the ward, to the local government, states and federal, they didn’t say they do not believe in electronic transmission (of election results).

“All of us in the Senate, 109 of us, believe that at one point, our electoral process must deploy electronic transmission so that it eases and enhances the electoral process and give it more credibility and integrity.

“But you see, when you have not reached that stage where you could deploy the electronic transmission from every part of the country, then you have to be very careful. And no matter what anybody may say, you cannot have about 50 percent of Nigerian voters not participating or not getting their votes counted in elections and say it doesn’t matter, that we have to start the electronic transmission.

“We know the evils of not transmitting results electronically but compare the evils of electronically transmitting just half of the electoral votes from Nigerians and say you have elected a President with 50 percent only.

“And others have voted but their results or their votes could not be electronically transmitted. This is disenfranchising Nigerians and we are not going to support this kind of thing because essentially, we are supposed to be fair to every part of Nigeria and when we voted, every part of Nigeria voted for and against(the amendment).

“What I mean here is that you have Senators from the northern part of Nigeria who voted for electronic transmission. Maybe that is their belief or their environment is ready for electronic transmission. And you have Senators from the southern part of Nigeria who voted against the immediate deployment of electronic transmission but they support that the electronic transmission of results should be allowed after certain conditions are met and the conditions are simple: The National Communication Commission(NCC) had provided the technical information that only NCC could give – that only about 50 percent of the Nigerian environment, the polling units, in the country could possibly have their results electronically transmitted.

“So what happens to the other 50 percent. So we believe that all of us in the Senate were aiming at the same target but chose to go through different routes and that is why in my concluded remarks in the Senate after the debate and voting, I said there was no Victor, no Vanquish because we all meant well.

“And for those Nigerians who still feel that the electronic transmission should have just been allowed to take effect, I said well, this is how democracy works. Democracy is to allow those minority views to be expressed and democracy provides that the majority views will always prevail.”

The Senate President faulted some media reports that insinuated that only the APC Senators voted against the immediate application of the electronic transmission of results.

He said the votes cast on either side of the subject matter cut across party lines and regional divides.

“In this respect, it was not just APC. I have seen it reported in the media that only APC Senators voted against the immediate deployment of electronic transmission.

“There are PDP Senators who voted against that but it appears that some people want to target APC Senators. There were PDP Senators who voted against the immediate deployment. I’m using the word ‘immediate’ with an emphasis.

“Nobody said don’t use electronic transmission at all. You use it when we reach there and only NCC can give you information. That is the main reason why, in the Senate version, clause 52(3), there is that provision to contact the NCC because INEC will not know until they go to NCC.

“So NCC will be the only institution to give that information because they are competent and it’s within their jurisdiction. And we say the National Assembly should approve of it.

“It is not when they want to do transmission that they will have to go to National Assembly that we want to do the transmission. No. That once NCC has told INEC is now ready. INEC should come to the National Assembly with the NCC and say we are now ready.

“There is no way any National Assembly, not even this Ninth National Assembly will deny INEC the use of electronic transmission as part of our electoral process when we are ready for it,” Lawan said.

The Senate President said it was wrong to conclude that Senators who voted for electronic transmission with conditions did not like the results transmitted electronically.

“I want to take this opportunity to debunk that insinuation or outright castigation of Senators that voted against the immediate deployment of electronic transmission that they don’t like the electronic transmission. It is not true.

“Even though I didn’t vote. But I believe that what my colleagues did is binding on all of us in the Senate. 28 against 52…l believe that what we have done requires that the Senate and the House will each constitute a conference committee. What we call harmonisation for the two sides. When we harmonise, then we will send it to Mr President,” Lawan said.

[Sport] Hamilton wins British Grand Prix as Horner rages over Verstappen crash

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Lewis Hamilton closed the gap on championship leader Max Verstappen to eight points, but was accused of “dirty driving” after a stunning first-lap crash between the title rivals at the British Grand Prix.

An eighth triumph in his home race for Hamilton came after he passed the Ferrari of long-time leader Charles Leclerc on the 50th of the 52 laps, but it was a highly controversial victory. Leclerc took second place, with Valtteri Bottas third.

The scathing remark about Hamilton’s driving at the start of the race came from Verstappen’s Red Bull boss Christian Horner, who was furious with the seven-time Formula One drivers’ champion.

Pole-sitter Verstappen and Hamilton, second on the grid, came close to making contact before they finally did so at Copse Corner. Hamilton was looking to overtake Verstappen on the inside, but clipped the Red Bull driver’s right rear wheel.

The tyre came flying off and Verstappen’s car went crashing across the gravel and into the barriers at high speed, crumpling badly. Verstappen was able to walk away, but was said by Horner to be “massively winded”. He later went to hospital for precautionary tests. 

It caused the race to be red-flagged, with a delay of around 40 minutes before the grand prix resumed, Mercedes star driver Hamilton served with a 10-second penalty.

Hamilton’s reaction to the crash had been to declare on team radio: “I was ahead going in there, man. He turned in on me, man. I gave that guy space.”

But Red Bull team principal Horner was livid, describing the punishment as “pretty light” and telling Channel 4: “I think it was a desperate move. Copse is one of the fastest corners in the world, you don’t stick a wheel up the inside, that’s just dirty driving.”

Hamilton came in for his time penalty just after halfway through the 52-lap race, returning to the track behind Leclerc, Mercedes team-mate Bottas and Lando Norris of McLaren.

Hamilton surged past Norris at Copse to climb to third place, before Mercedes told their drivers to switch positions with 11 laps remaining. Leclerc was suddenly under huge threat, Hamilton driving exceptionally well and bringing down the Ferrari driver’s lead to barely one second with three laps remaining.

He got past at Copse, ironically, as Leclerc ran wide, and was roared home by the British fans.

Hamilton’s ‘professional foul’  

Formula One has seen a host of famous instances of great drivers colliding during championship battles, and this was a highly dramatic instance as Hamilton and Verstappen fought for supremacy. Their title battle now has plenty more added spice. Horner felt Hamilton got away lightly, saying: “That is a really nasty accident. The biggest result is Max got away unscathed. It’s like a professional foul at the end of the day, it’s just not on.” 

Leclerc so close  

Leclerc and Ferrari are not experiencing the season they might have hoped for, but there was almost a victory for the great Italian marque here. Entering the final 10 laps, Leclerc was holding the Mercedes pair at bay, but once Hamilton jumped ahead of Bottas it was a case of whether there was enough time to chew up the Monegasque’s shrinking lead. There was, and of course Hamilton’s overtaking manoeuvre was fated to come at Copse, with Leclerc running off the track as the British driver took the inside line.

IN THE POINTS 

1. Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) 
2. Charles Leclerc (Ferrari) +3.871 seconds 
3. Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes) +11.125s  
4. Lando Norris (McLaren) +28.573s  
5. Daniel Ricciardo (McLaren) +42.624s  
6. Carlos Sainz (Ferrari) +43.454s  
7. Fernando Alonso (Alpine) +1:12.093s  
8. Lance Stroll (Aston Martin) +1:14.289s  
9. Esteban Ocon (Alpine) +1:16.162s  
10. Yuki Tsunoda (AlphaTauri) +1:22.065s 

CHAMPIONSHIP STANDINGS 

Drivers 

1. Max Verstappen (Red Bull) – 185  
2. Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) – 177  
3. Lando Norris (McLaren) – 113  
4. Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes) – 108  
5. Sergio Perez (Red Bull) – 104 

Constructors 

1. Red Bull – 289  
2. Mercedes – 285  
3. McLaren – 163  
4. Ferrari – 148  
5. AlphaTauri – 49 

[Metro] Man Goes Berserk, Stabs RCCG Pastor To Death In Imo

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A man suspected to be mentally unstable allegedly stabbed a pastor of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG) Thompson Thomas Ugochukwu Onyekuru, to death in Imo State.

It was gathered that the tragic incident happened at Umuokoto town in Umudibia Autonomous community in Owerri West Local Government Area of the state.

According to Daily Trust, the mentally unstable man, identified as Obum had allegedly locked his wife and her baby in their room where he stabbed her several times after accusing her of trying to kill their only surviving son out of the three children they had since they got married in 2016.

Obum, who hailed from Obowo in Imo State, claimed the wife was also responsible for the hardship he was facing.

An eyewitness said the incident started around 4 pm when Obum’s wife, Ogechi, and her one-year-old son were heard screaming for help. The late pastor and other neighbours waded in to prevent Obum from killing his wife.

“As the crowd intensified effort to rescue the woman, Obum with a knife, threatened to kill anyone who tried to stop his action,” one of the eyewitnesses told the publication.

After successfully rescuing the woman from her husband’s grip, Obum became enraged and started chasing everybody with the blood-stained knife. As Onyekuru made to go, Obum stabbed him at the back.

A passing police patrol team was called to the scene, but he attacked the policemen who were attempting to arrest him. The police then shot him in the leg in order to subdue him.

Obum and Onyekuru were subsequently taken to the hospital where two of them died. Unconfirmed report said Obum’s wife also later died.

The President-General of Umuokoto Community Council (UCC), Hon. Charles Anozie, who confirmed the incident, said Obum and the pastor were taken to the hospital where they later died.

[Entertainment] Why I turn down ‘sugar daddy’ roles in movies –Mr Macaroni

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Comedian, actor and activist, Debo Adebayo, popularly known as Mr. Macaroni has disclosed that he is quick to turn down sugar daddy roles as he looks forward to more intriguing characters.

Macaroni sugar daddy roles

In an exclusive interview with Scoop, he disclosed that On the day I was arrested at Lekki tollgate, I was supposed to have a shoot for a big brand. But, when they saw that I was arrested, they called my manager immediately and canceled our deal. They said that they did not want to be associated with me at that time, so it wouldn’t seem like they were part of those fighting government. However, that is their fault, not mine. If they had done their research on me, they would have known that my love for humanity comes before any other thing. That is my priority. As a matter of fact, I believe that God has given me my platform to be able to use it to speak for myself and others. That is what I stand.”

The actor and skit maker also reveals that he turned down roles that portrayed him as a “freaky freaky” sugar daddy. He said,

“The beauty of being a thespian is that I am able to bring any character to life. Even now, when I am called to feature in a project, I am quick to turn down roles that toe the line of ‘freaky-freaky daddy.’ I am working on a project now, ‘Professor Hard Life’ because I want people to see me in another character.”

In relation to his career and prowess, he said; “I am a graduate of Theatre Arts and I was trained by the very best— Professor Ahmed Yerima, who is the former Director-General of National Theatre. The content we create is part of acting. It is also important to note that I had been acting professionally before I started churning out social media content. I am working on a lot of projects, so my fans should watch out,

[World-news] SERAP Gives Buhari Govt 24 Hours To Withdraw ‘Gag Order’On Reporting Of Terrorist Attacks

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A photo combination of SERAP and President Muhammadu Buhari

Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has sent an open letter to President Muhammadu Buhari urging him to use his leadership position “to urgently instruct Mr. Lai Mohammed, Minister of Information and Culture, and the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) to withdraw the directive containing a sweeping gag order banning journalists and broadcast stations from reporting details of terrorist attacks and victims across the country.”

The NBC had in a letter dated 7 July, 2021 issued a directive asking journalists, television and radio stations in Nigeria to stop “glamourising and giving too many details on the nefarious activities of terrorists and kidnappers” during their daily newspaper reviews.

Reacting, SERAP in a letter dated 17 July, 2021 and signed by its deputy director Kolawole Oluwadare said: “The contents of the directive by the NBC to journalists and broadcast stations are entirely inconsistent and incompatible with Nigeria’s obligations under article 9 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights and article 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.”

SERAP said: “We would be grateful if the repressive directive is withdrawn within 24 hours of the receipt and/or publication of this letter. If we have not heard from you by then, the SERAP shall take all appropriate legal actions in the public interest.”

The organization expressed “grave concern that the contents of the NBC directive would impermissibly restrict the rights to freedom of expression, information, and victims’ right to justice and effective remedies that are central to public debate and accountability in a democratic society.”

SERAP said: “Reporting on the growing violence and killings in many parts of the country is a matter of public interest. The NBC directive to journalists and broadcast stations to stop reporting these cases, coupled with the possibility of fines and other punishment, would have a disproportionate chilling effect on the work of those seeking to hold the government accountable to the public.”

The letter, read in part: “The broad definitions of what may constitute ‘too many details’, ‘glamourising’, ‘divisive rhetoric’, and ‘security issues’ heighten concerns of overreach, confer far-reaching discretion on the government, and suggest that the NBC directive is more intrusive than necessary.”

“These words and phrases do not indicate precisely what kind of individual conduct would fall within their ambit.”

“The vague and overbroad definitions of ‘too many details’, ‘glamourising’, ‘divisive rhetoric’, and ‘security issues’ also raise concern that the NBC directive unduly interferes with the rights to freedom of expression and information, and is disproportionate to any purported legitimate governmental aim. Ill-defined and/or overly broad directives are open to arbitrary application and abuse.”

“The use of these words and phrases by the NBC, given their opaque and ambiguous meaning, leaves open the possibility for application beyond unequivocal incitement to hatred, hostility or violence. Such words and phrases may function to interpret legitimate reporting by broadcast stations, journalists, and other Nigerians as unlawful.”

“Exacerbating these concerns are growing restriction of civic space, the suspension of Twitter in Nigeria, and the attempts by your government to push for the amendment of the Nigeria Press Council Act and the National Broadcasting Commission Act, to further suppress media freedom, freedom of expression and access to information.”

“Allowing the media to freely carry out their duties is essential to building a secure society and leaving no one behind. Conversely, imposing impermissible restrictions on broadcast stations, journalists and other Nigerians undermines the security that builds a healthy and vibrant society.”

“Article 19(1) of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights establishes the right to freedom of opinion without interference. Article 19(2) establishes Nigeria’s obligations to respect and ensure this right, which includes the freedom to seek, receive and impart information and ideas of all kinds, regardless of frontiers, and through any media of one’s choice.”

“Under article 19(3), restrictions on the right to freedom of expression must be ‘provided by law’, and necessary ‘for respect of the rights or reputations of others’ or ‘for the protection of national security or of public order, or of public health and morals’.”

“Although article 19(3) recognizes ‘national security’ as a legitimate aim, the Human Rights Council, the body charged with monitoring implementation of the Covenant, has stressed ‘the need to ensure that invocation of national security is not used unjustifiably or arbitrarily to restrict the right to freedom of opinion and expression.’”

“Since article 19(2) promotes so clearly a right to information of all kinds, this indicates that your government bears the burden of justifying any restriction on reporting of cases of violence and killings, and withholding of such information as an exception to that right.”

“Any restrictions should be applied strictly so that they do not put in jeopardy the right itself. The NBC directive to broadcast stations fails to meet the requirements of legality, necessity and proportionality.”

“The requirement of necessity also implies an assessment of the proportionality of restrictions such as those being imposed by the NBC, with the aim of ensuring that restrictions target a specific objective and do not unduly intrude upon the rights of targeted persons.”

“The interference with the constitutional and legal duties of journalists and broadcast stations cannot be justified in the context of the right to information, as the NBC directive has not shown that their reporting would impose a specific risk of harm to a legitimate State interest that outweighs the public’s interest in such information.”

“The NBC directive may also create an environment that unduly deters and penalizes broadcast stations and journalists, and the reporting of government wrongdoing more generally.”

“The Special Rapporteur on the right to freedom expression has concluded that national security considerations should be ‘limited in application to situations in which the interest of the whole nation is at stake, which would thereby exclude restrictions in the sole interest of a government, regime, or power group.’”

“SERAP notes the collective interdependency of the compendium of constitutional and international human rights, which function to collectively complement and enhance the advancement of the security and rights of each individual in society.”

“We hope that the aspects highlighted will help guide your actions in acting to ensure that Nigerian journalists and media can freely carry out their constitutional duties as contained in Section 22 of the Nigerian Constitution.”

“While your government has the obligation to maintain national security, this obligation is not set apart from the obligation to protect and ensure human rights. National security is a necessary and integral part of the right to security guaranteed to each person individually.”

“According to our information, the NBC called for ‘caution’ by broadcasters while reporting security challenges in the country. The directive, titled: ‘Newspaper Reviews And Current Affairs Programmes: A Need For Caution’, was signed by the Director, Broadcast Monitoring, Francisca Aiyetan, on behalf of the new Director-General of the Commission, Balarabe Ilelah.”

[World-news] Again! Another Nigerian Military Aircraft Crashes In Kaduna

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A Nigerian military aircraft has reportedly crashed “somewhere in Kaduna State”.

According to DAILY POST,  a source revealed that the crashed plane is an Alpha jet.

“The fighter jet left Yola, the Adamawa capital, this morning to go clear bandits”, the informant added.

Nigerian Air Force spokesman, Air Commodore Edward Gabwet, could not be reached as at press time.

Special Assistant to the Defence Minister, Mohammad Abdulkadri did not take calls.

WITHIN NIGERIA recalls that the immediate past Chief of Army Chief, Lt. Gen. Ibrahim Attahiru and other officers all perished in a plane crashed at occurred at the Kaduna International Airport in May.

On February 21, a Minna-bound military jet crashed, killing all 7 people on board.

On April 2, another Alpha jet crashed in Borno during an operation.

[World-news] Jigawa Residents Lament Three Months Total Blackout

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Residents of Ringim and Taura Local Governments Areas have lamented the total blackout they have been experiencing for more than three months now.

The problem started due to the fall of electrical poles caused by heavy downpours and strong windstorms in the area.

According to a report by Daily Post, a resident who owns a business center in Ringim stated that the blackout is seriously affecting their businesses which has forced him to use generator as an alternative to run his business.

He said the situation left him with no alternative than to increase the price of his services for his business to survived.

Another resident in Taura, a perishable sellers narrated to our reporter that almost all perishable food items in her freezer have gone bad over the power cut.

Malam Baba also revealed that the area is one of the worse places mostly under-served by officials of KEDCO for over a year.

He said since the problem, Representatives of the two local governments have lodged their complains to the KEDCO office in Dutse but to no avail.

Also, all efforts to hear from KEDCO Head of corporate communications proved abortive.

[Entertainment] Obi Cubana: Reno Omokri Reveals Secret Behind Money Rain

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Reno Omokri, a former media aide to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan, has shared his opinion as to why ‘money rained’ at business man Obinna Iyiegbu’s mother’s burial.

The lawyer and social commentator has taken to his social media space to share a secret revealed to him by a friend who was a member of a white garment church.

Omokri was speaking about the money rain at the burial of the mother of Obinna Iyiegbu popularly known as Obi Cubana in Oba, Anambra State, at the weekend, quoting his friend as saying that as people pick the money sprayed on them, the more the sprayer’s wealth will keep growing.

Emeraldloaded reported earlier that top Nigerian celebrities such as Davido, Phyno, Kcee, among others on Friday stormed Oba for the burial of Obi Cubana’s mother.

D’banj, Kanayo O. Kanayo, Alex Ekubo, E-Money and many other influential Nigerians were also among the guests at the much talked about burial.

Several celebrities, businesspeople and politicians turned out in large numbers for the funeral and were seen throwing money in the air.

The burial became the talk of the town among Nigerians as viral videos showed celebrities such as Zubi Michael lavishly displaying their wealth in Oba.

Omokri advised people to always give their parents food to eat while they are alive, adding that it is one million times better than giving strangers food to eat after they die!

“True story: I know a guy who attended a white garment ‘church’ in the 80s (thankfully, he is now born again). One of the spiritual rites they used to have him do was spray money on beggars. They told him as long as those people pick it up, his wealth will pick up,” he tweeted.

“Isaac did not bless Jacob because he gave him a good burial. He blessed him because he gave him food to eat-Genesis 27:25-30. Giving your parents food to eat while they are alive is one million times better than giving strangers food to eat after they die!

“Hustle. Work hard. Work smart. Do everything legally possible to make a success of yourself. Not because you want to give your parents a talk of the town burial, but because you want to give them a talk of the town life. When they die, they can’t enjoy your success.”

He added, “The Spraying of Sunny Ade Versus The Spraying of Obi Cubana. Who Won?”

[World-news] Oyedepo Reveals He Warned Nigerians In 2015 About This ‘Evil’ Govt

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Founder of the Living Faith Church Worldwide, Bishop David Oyedepo revealed that he warned Nigerians about President Muhammadu Buhari prior to the 2015 general election.

Oyedepo stated this on Sunday during a sermon on speaking on the power of prophecy at the church’s headquarters, Canaanland, Oya, Ogun state.

The 66-year-old preacher described Buhari’s administration as evil filled with wilderness.

According to him, some fellows were angered by his prophecy when he told Nigerians the country is heading for trouble, until they are now faced with the reality.

He said, “I am privileged to be among the few God shows things long before they happen.

“Some fellows were upset with me when I was talking against this evil government.

“I told this Nation, you are heading for trouble: 2015. Are they in trouble or in turbulence? Turbulence.

“I saw the wickedness of the wicked being forced on the land. Now no direction, no motion.

“When a Prophet speaks, he speaks the heart of God”.

[Sport] Chelsea to offer £50 million for Lewandowski

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According to The Sun, Chelsea will make a £50 million summer move for Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski.

Despite the Blues’ best efforts, Borussia Dortmund have refused to sell Erling Haaland, and they have now turned their attention to Bayern Munich.

Given the current state of the transfer market, Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel sees Lewandowski as his best option, and the Bundesliga goalscoring machine would relish a move to the Premier League.

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The Poland international finished last season with 41 goals in 29 German Bundesliga games, and if Chelsea can sign him, he can lead them to Premier League glory.

The Blues are willing to spend to challenge Premier League champions Manchester City, and with such a prolific striker leading their line, they would become title favorites.

With only two years left on his contract, Bayern Munich may be willing to sell the 32-year-old if Chelsea make a sizable bid and the hitman insists on leaving.

[World-news] We Must Get Isolation Centres Ready For Likely COVID Third Wave – NIMR DG

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Director General of the Nigerian Institute of Medical Research (NIMR), Babatunde Salako has stated that isolation centres across the country should be prepared for a possible third wave of COVID-19 infections.

This was stated on Saturday by the DG of NIMR in an interview with NAN in Lagos.

“We are beginning to see increase in the rate of positive results in Lagos, and that should be a signal that we are entering the third wave,” he said.

“I will not say we have entered yet, but it is an opportunity for us to prepare because a lot of Nigerians have lowered their guards and no longer comply with all the COVID-19 guidelines.

“Five weeks ago, we saw one or two positives per day in over 200 samples tested per week; two weeks ago, it jumped to 13, and the following week, it increased to 30.

“We don’t want to have the kind of experience countries like India are going through. So, it is not only in the hands of the government alone, but also in the hands of the people to do the needful.

“The nature of the COVID-19 Delta variant is that it affects people easily, and with that knowledge, we should preempt that. We must also get our isolation centres ready and there should be retraining of staff in getting ready for a likely third wave.

“More importantly, we should expedite the process of the purchase of our vaccine to vaccinate a large majority of Nigerians, and I am aware that the government is doing a lot about that.”

[Entertainment] American porn star Dahlia Sky commits suicide after battling terminal breast cancer, depression

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Dahlia Sky, a US porn star, who had been living in her car, allegedly died after she shot herself in the head, Los Angeles County Medical Examiner’s Office said.

Dahlia, 31, was found dead in the vehicle on June 30.

Sky, who would have celebrated her 32nd birthday next month, had been diagnosed with breast cancer and was suffering from depression at the time of her death, the Sun reported.

Sky’s body was found in the vehicle in the San Fernando Valley’s Devonshire area, Los Angeles Police Department detective Dave Peteque told AVN.

Police are awaiting autopsy results from the Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner, the  coroner added.

Sky began adult entertainment work in 2010 under the name Bailey Blue. She changed it in 2014 following a cease-and-desist from a clothing company of the same name, according to AVN — and proceeded to accrue more than 600 credits, as well as various industry awards.

She was open about her battle with stage 4 metastatic breast cancer and depression on social media.

[World-news] Nnamdi Kanu: Cameroon Won’t Be Spared For Supporting Nigeria – Biafra Group

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The Biafra Nations League, BNL, has declared that Cameroon will not enjoy peace for supporting President Muhammadu Buhari government on the re-arrest and repatriation of the Supreme Leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu.

BNL disclosed that it has concluded the discussion on how to deal with Cameroun to make them regret supporting Nigeria against the Biafran movement.

The Biafra group made this known in a statement jointly signed by its leaders, Princewill Chimezie Richards, Ebuta Akor Takon, Henry Edet and Linus Asuquo Essien respectively.

The group declared that towns in Bakassi Peninsula renamed by the Cameroon government won’t be recognized as it has already started pulling down billboards and signposts that do not bear original Efik names.

Recall that President of Cameroon, Paul Biya had commended Nigerian government over the rearrest of the IPOB leader, Kanu through his Special Envoy, Felix Mbayu during a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari at the State House.

BNL revealed that “We met to discuss how to increase our efforts in sabotaging their maritime security, Cameroon won’t be spared from maritime security threats in the Gulf of Guinea. They know what they have encountered since 2019 in the Peninsula,” the statement said.

The group further disclosed how its militant wing burnt down newly constructed markets in Idabato subdivision in May 2019 and since then, the market has not been rebuilt by Cameroon authority.

“We kept telling them that the Bakassi people are not comfortable being controlled by their policies. We told them to build their markets in Cameroon that our people can’t pay taxes to them, we rejected every structure here.

“In 2019 when they ignored our warnings to construct markets at Atabong coast which they now call Idabato subdivision, assailants invaded that market with horsepower boats and burnt it down. They have since been afraid of erecting any further structure in the region.

“It seems they have forgotten the attack on BIR in Idabato coast in June 2020 when they claimed that they encountered sea pirates and killed five with about four corpses falling inside the sea. What about the clash in Isangele subdivision in May 2021 between them and militants who declared their supports for us. We won’t allow any nation working with Nigeria to enjoy peace in the Gulf of Guinea.”

[World-news] FG To Take Possession Of Returning Benin Bronzes – Lai Mohammed

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The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, on Saturday said the Federal Government will be responsible for taking possession of the 1,130 Benin bronzes to be returned by Germany.

“The Federal Government is aware of the widely reported controversy on who will take possession of the Benin bronzes when they are returned from Germany,” Mr Mohammed said on Saturday at a press conference in Lagos.

The return of the bronzes, looted by Britain from Benin-city in the 19th century, had recently generated some controversy in Edo State.

While the Oba of Benin wants the artefacts returned to the Benin Royal Museum, Edo State Governor Godwin Obaseki has said they will be kept in “a transformational museum to be built in Benin City.”

Mr Mohammed noted that the Federal Government would take possession while respecting the culture where the art originated from.

“Let me state clearly that, in line with international best practices and the operative conventions and laws, the return of the artefacts is being negotiated bilaterally between the national governments of Nigeria and Germany,” he said.

“What we are saying in essence is that the Federal Government will take possession of these antiquities because it is its duty to do so, in line with extant laws.

“But we have always exercised this right in cognizance of that culture that produced the art works.”

Although he did not state where the artefacts will be eventually kept, he thanked Governor Obaseki and the Oba of Benin for their work in the repatriation of the bronzes.

Mr Mohammed, who recently led a delegation to Berlin to discuss the modalities for the proposed return, said the agreement will be signed by December 2021 with repatriation to be concluded by August 2022.

He added that the return of the artefacts will be unconditional.

“We agreed to have a definite timeline for the repatriation of the artefacts because Nigeria is tired of an indefinite timeline,” he said.

“Thereafter, it was resolved that the agreement on the repatriation should be signed latest by December this year and that the repatriation should be concluded by August 2022.

“We made our Germany counterparts realise that Nigeria is averse to attaching preconditions to repatriating the Benin bronzes. We made it clear that these are our properties and it is not proper to give us conditions for releasing them.

“We therefore agreed that the release will be unconditional, neither will it be staggered.

“We have decided that the repatriation of the artefacts should not be the end of an era but rather the beginning of a new vista of stronger relations, pivoted by cultural diplomacy, between Nigeria and Germany.”

Read his full statement on Saturday below:

TEXT OF THE PRESS CONFERENCE BY THE HON. MINISTER OF INFORMATION AND CULTURE, ALHAJI LAI MOHAMMED, ON THE EFFORTS BY THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT TO REPATRIATE LOOTED/SMUGGLED ARTEFACTS FROM AROUND THE WORLD….IN LAGOS ON SATURDAY JULY 17TH 2021

Good morning gentlemen and thank you for once again honoring our invitation. We have organized this press conference to update Nigerians on the efforts being made by the Federal Government to repatriate looted and smuggled Nigerian artefacts from around the world. We also believe that you, as critical stakeholders, must be carried along in these efforts.

2. Recall, gentlemen, that on Nov. 28th 2019, I announced, at a press conference here in Lagos, the launch of the Campaign For The Return and Restitution of Nigeria’s Looted/Smuggled Artifacts from around the world. I said that with the launch, we are putting on notice all those who are holding on to Nigeria’s cultural property anywhere in the world that we are coming for them, using all legal and diplomatic instruments available. Less than two years after that announcement, I can report back to Nigerians that our efforts at repatriating Nigeria’s looted artefacts are achieving positive results. The work ahead remains tough and daunting, but we will not relent until we have repatriated all our stolen and smuggled antiquities. These artefacts are so cherished all over the world and we realize that if they are returned to Nigeria and properly exhibited within and outside the country under our control, they stand to increase the influx of tourists to our nation and earn us good money. Of course, these timeless and priceless pieces of work are an important part of our past, our history, our heritage resource, and allowing them to sit in the museums of other nations robs us of our history.

3. Gentlemen, even though not everyone in possession of these artefacts is willing to return them, we remain undeterred as we have deployed all legal and diplomatic means and we have been recording
successes in our quest for repatriation. Here are some of the successes we have recorded since that press conference in 2019:

– In October 2020, The Netherlands returned a highly-valued 600-year-old Ife Terracotta.

– In March 2021, the University of Aberdeen in Scotland agreed to return a Benin Bronze from its collections. We shall take possession of this in October this year.

– In April 2021, we received a bronze piece from Mexico.

– The University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom has also agreed to return a disputed Benin artefact. We will soon commence the procedure for the repatriation of this highly-valued piece.

– We have also secured a date in October 2021 for the repatriation of antiquities from the Metropolitan Museum in New York. These antiquities consist of two important Benin Bronzes and an exquisite
Ife Bronze head. We are currently before the Intergovernmental Committee for Promoting the Return of Cultural Property to it Countries of Origin or its Restitution in case of Illicit Appropriation (ICPRCP) in Paris, where we have instituted a claim against a Belgian who wanted to auction an Ife Bronze head valued at $5 million, at least. This Ife Bronze antiquity has been seized by the London Metropolitan Police, pending the decision on who the true owner is. Of course, we all know that the true owner is Nigeria.

REPATRIATION OF LOOTED ARTEFACTS FROM GERMANY
4. The most remarkable progress in our quest to repatriate our looted artefacts has been recorded in Germany, which is currently working with us for the repatriation of 1,130 Benin Bronzes to Nigeria. As you are aware, I recently led a high-level Nigerian delegation to Berlin, Germany, to iron out the modalities for the repatriation. During the trip, our delegation met with Prof. Monika Grutters, the German Minister of State for Culture, who has
responsibility for antiquities; the German Foreign Minister, Mr. Heiko Maas, the Secretary of State in the German President’s office, Mr. Stephen Steinlein, and Harmann Parzinger, President of the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation, which is the centre of the German culture establishment, and his team, I also met with the Directors of at least 20 major museums. The negotiations were tough but fruitful. We have agreed that there is no going back on the issue of returning the Benin Bronzes.

5. At the meetings in Germany, I insisted, and it was resolved that provenance research on the Benin Bronzes cannot and must not delay their return, since the origin of Benin objects is not a subject of dispute as such objects are only associated with the Benin Kingdom. On the German authorities’ proposal to return a ‘substantial part’ of the Benin Bronzes. I have asserted the stand of the Nigerian government by
demanding full and unconditional release of the artefacts. Concerning recording the artefacts in 3D formats for posterity and academic sake under the ‘digitalbenin’ project, of which we are a part. I have told the Germans that this work of digitalizing the Benin Bronzes must not delay the return of the artefacts and that issues related to copyrights ownership and other rights over the digitalized objects will be discussed soon.

6. We agreed to have a definitive timeline for the repatriation of the artefacts because Nigeria is tired of an indefinite timeline. Therefore, we resolved that the agreement on the repatriation should be signed in December 2021 and the repatriation should be concluded by August 2022. I told the Germans that Nigeria is averse to attaching pre-conditions to repatriating the Benin Bronzes. These are our properties, do not give us conditions for releasing them. We therefore agreed that the release will be unconditional, neither will it be staggered.

7. It must be noted, however, that the meetings in Germany were not only about repatriating these objects. We have decided that the repatriation of the artefacts should not be the end of an era but the beginning of a new vista of stronger relations, pivoted by cultural diplomacy, between Nigeria and Germany. In this regard, there are other benefits accruing to Nigeria from the ongoing talks. There will be archaeological training for Nigerians. The Nigerian side and the German side agreed to Nigeria’s proposal to use the repatriated artefacts and other works of art to inspire Nigeria’s Creative Industry towards realizing its high potential. For this and
other purposes, it was agreed that the Germans will facilitate the establishment of an academy in Nigeria.

CONTROVERSY OVER THE POSSESSION OF THE RETURNED ARTEFACTS
8. Gentlemen, the Federal Government is aware of the widely-reported controversy on who will take possession of the Benin Bronzes when they are returned from Germany. Let me state clearly here that, in line with international best practice and the operative Conventions and laws, the return of the artefacts is being negotiated bilaterally between the national governments of Nigeria and Germany. Nigeria is the entity recognized by international law as the authority in control of antiquities originating from Nigeria. The relevant international Conventions treat heritage properties as properties belonging to the nation and not to individuals or subnational groups. For example, the 1970 UNESCO Convention, in its Article 1, defines cultural property as property specifically designated by that nation. This allows individual nations to determine what it regards as its cultural property. Nevertheless, the Nigerian state – through the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture and the National Commission for Museums and Monuments – has in working assiduously over the past years to repatriate our looted artefacts carried along our important
traditional institutions and state governments

9. What I am saying in essence is that the Federal government will take possession of these antiquities, because it is its duty to do so, in line with the extant laws. But we have always exercised this right in cognizance of that culture that produced the art works. That is why the Ministry of Information and Culture and the National Commission for Museums and Monuments have always involved both the Edo State government and the Royal Benin Palace in discussions and negotiations that have now resulted in the impending return of these antiquities. Please note that we are not just involved in the repatriation of Benin artefacts. We are also working on repatriating Ife Bronzes and Terracotta, Nok Terracotta, Owo Terracotta, the arts of the Benue River Valley, the Igbo Ukwu, the arts of Bida, the arts of Igala, Jukun etc. Recall, gentlemen, our efforts over the Igbo statues that were auctioned at Christie’s in Year 2020, and the fact that we took the British and Belgian authorities to ICPRCP in 2019 over an Ife object.

10. Finally, I want to most sincerely commend the Government of Germany for taking the lead in the global efforts to repatriate all artefacts that were looted from Nigeria and indeed from the African continent. As I said during the meetings in Berlin, we see Germany as a leader in the efforts to take practical steps to repatriate our stolen artefacts, and we hope Germany will sustain that lead. I also want to thank Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State, who was with us all through the tough negotiations in Berlin, and His Royal Majesty the Oba of Benin, who sent the Benin Crown Prince, His Royal Highness Ezelekhae Ewuare, to be a part of the Nigerian delegation to Berlin. We thank all Nigerians, especially the media, for their support for our efforts to repatriate all our looted artefacts.

11. Gentlemen, I thank you for listening. I will now take your questions.

[Sport] CAF Champions League final: Al Ahly thrash Kaizer Chiefs to retain trophy

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Al Ahly on Saturday successfully defended their CAF Champions League title following an emphatic 3-0 win over Kaizer Chiefs.

The final was played at the Stade Mohammed V in Morocco.

Goals from Mohamed Sherif, Mohamed Magdi Afsha and Amr El Solia sealed the victory for the Egyptians, who outclassed their South African opponents.

Chiefs, who were making their first appearance in the final, were reduced to 10 men following the sending off of Happy Mashiane in the 45th minute.

Mashiane was shown a straight red card for a reckless tackle on Akram Tawfik following a VAR check.

Eight minutes after the restart, Al Ahly took the lead through Sherif.

The win saw the Red Devils clinch a record-extending 10th CAF Champions League title.

They have also qualified for this year’s FIFA Club World Cup.

[World-news] Social Media Misinformation On COVID-19 ‘Killing People’, Says Biden

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US President Joe Biden holds a press conference after the US-Russia summit in Geneva on June 16, 2021. (Photo by PETER KLAUNZER / POOL / AFP)

President Joe Biden said on Friday that social media misinformation about COVID-19 and vaccinations is “killing people” and the White House said Facebook needs to clean up its act.

“They’re killing people. The only pandemic we have is among the unvaccinated. And they’re killing people,” Biden told reporters at the White House, as he left for a weekend at the presidential retreat in Camp David.

The White House is turning up the pressure on social media companies to weed out what officials say is widely spread misinformation on coronavirus vaccinations.

According to US health officials, a current spike in Covid-19 deaths and illnesses around the country is almost exclusively hitting people who remain unvaccinated.

“There is a clear message that is coming through: this is becoming a pandemic of the unvaccinated,” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention director Rochelle Walensky told reporters on Friday.

Many of those refusing vaccinations, despite the ease of availability throughout the United States, have said they do not trust the shots.

Skepticism is being fueled both by false posts spread by anti-vaccine activists online and by Republican politicians claiming the vaccinations are part of attempts at government control.

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said that Facebook and others are not doing enough to push back.

“Everybody has a role to play in making sure there’s accurate information,” she said.

Psaki said the White House was taking a more active approach in calling out what it sees as misinformation but insisted that Facebook in particular should react more quickly in taking down problematic posts.

– Prolific fake news posters –

“There’s about 12 people who are producing 65 percent of anti-vaccine misinformation on social media platforms. All of them remain active on Facebook, despite some even being banned on other platforms,” Psaki said, without identifying those dozen posters.

The White House has “proposed that they create a robust enforcement strategy that bridges their properties and provides transparency about the rules,” she said.

The turning up of the volume against fake news immediately drew accusations from right-wing media that Biden was installing a “Big Brother” type surveillance over citizens’ opinions.

Facebook, which has contracted an army of independent outside fact checkers, including from AFP, to try and clean up its content, pushed back at the White House claims.

“We will not be distracted by accusations which aren’t supported by the facts,” a Facebook spokesperson told AFP.

“The fact is that more than two billion people have viewed authoritative information about Covid-19 and vaccines on Facebook, which is more than any other place on the internet. More than 3.3 million Americans have also used our vaccine finder tool to find out where and how to get a vaccine. The facts show that Facebook is helping save lives. Period.”

Earlier, Facebook said it was taking “aggressive action against misinformation about Covid-19 and vaccines to protect public health,” and that it had removed “more than 18 million pieces of Covid misinformation,” and disabled accounts spreading false information.

The CDC reported more than 33,000 new cases in the United States on Thursday, bringing the seven-day average up to 26,306, a 70 percent rise on the week before.

The seven-day average of hospital admissions is about 2,790 per day, an increase of 36 percent. And after weeks of declines, the seven-day average of deaths was 211, an increase of 26 percent.

The spikes are focused in communities with low vaccination rates and “unvaccinated Americans account for virtually all recent Covid-19 hospitalizations and deaths,” said Jeff Zients, White House coronavirus response coordinator.

The new wave is driven by the Delta variant, which now accounts for more than 80 percent of new cases, according to the covSpectrum tracker.

AFP

[Entertainment] Mr Macaroni donates N500,000 to family of young girl killed during Yoruba Nation rally

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Nigerian comedian, actor and activist, Debo Adebayo, also known as Mr Macaroni, has donated a sum of N500,000 to the family of Jumoke Oyeleke, the salesgirl who was killed during the Yoruba Nation rally in Ojota, Lagos state.

Mr. Macaroni took to his social media page on Saturday to make this known after visiting the family of late Jumoke.

The sad incident happened on July 3, 2021 when Jumoke was said to have been killed by stray bullet believed to have been fired by the police at the rally in Gani Fawehinmi Park, where agitators for the Yoruba Nation had gathered amid the presence of armed policemen and soldiers.

In a series of tweets, Mr Macaroni wrote; “I visited the family of the late Jumoke Oyeleke; the 25yrs old that was killed during the Yoruba Nation Rally. They need all the support they can get right now. I have donated N500,000 today and I plead with all those who can to kindly support the family.”

The comedian then shared a fundraising link for the family, calling on all members of the public to donate.

He wrote further, “Also important to note is that Jumoke (the deceased) was the breadwinner of the house. She was a sales attendant at a beverage store and she used the little she made to sustain her mother and 3 siblings. As it is, the family has nothing.

“As of the time of my visit, Neither the government nor police force had taken responsibility. The family despite their state of mourning have been told to bear all responsibilities. This is heartbreaking. Very very.”

The skit-maker also shared a video earlier posted by Dabira, showing the appalling living condition of Jumoke’s mother.

The voice in the video states that the woman who conducted her around was Jumoke’s aunt.

”Dabira (the lady in the picture above) a true comrade and fighter had gone earlier to see the family when the unfortunate incident happened and she discovered their living condition. The picture in the main tweet is their family house where the mother is under watch,” he wrote.

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