Wednesday, 31 August 2016

Nigeria to experience solar eclipse tomorrow, public advised to remain calm

A solar eclipse will occur in Nigeria on Thursday, September 1, between the hours of 7:15am and 10:03am with slight variations in actual timing across the country, the National Space Research and Development Agency (NSRDA) said.

A press statement by the Head of Media and Corporate Communications, Dr Felix Ale, appealed to the general public not to panic or attach any spiritual interpretations to this event. He said the eclipse cannot be observed with naked eyes, as this could cause damage.

In the Federal Capital Territory Abuja, there will be a partial eclipse, with an obscurity of 60 per cent, and the first contact at about 7:17am, with maximum eclipse at 8:32am and end at 10:00am.

Lagos will experience its first contact with the eclipse at 7:15am, with a maximum eclipse occurring at 8:32am and ending at about 10:00am. The Agency has arranged a viewing centre tomorrow to enable members of the public, pupils and students from various schools to view the eclipse using specially designed viewing instruments provided by the space Agency.

The viewing centre which has been set up by the Agency will be open to the public on Thursday 1st September, 2016 from 6:45am for school pupils and students to observe the annular eclipse as part of its continuous programmes to expose Nigerians and students to matters concerning astronomical environment.
Read More »

Teenager arrested in Ikorodu for allegedly selling bar of soap as mobile phones


The Operatives of Rapid Response Squad (RRS) of Lagos State Police Command, have apprehended an 18 -year-old boy, Segun Adeyefa, for allegedly selling bar of soap as mobile phones to unsuspecting members of public in traffic. 

The suspect was arrested by the RRS men on routine patrol of Ikorodu Motor Park yesterday at about 19:50hrs, while trying to defraud a young man at the motor park.

Upon his arrival at RRS’s Headquarters, the suspect confessed that before he was caught on Tuesday, he had duped one person of N3,500 who wanted to buy the phone.

He noted that he was lured into the fraud after he was duped through a similar means about a year ago.

"My action was prompted when I was swindled by two guys about a year ago by this way. I had intention of buying a phone but unknowingly to me it was a cut-to-size bar of soap just looked similar to a phone shape... The two guys approached me on my way to work, then, I was learning a plumbing work somewhere around Ikorodu...  I bought the phone which was advertised to me as ‘London used phone’ for N2, 500... As I left the place, I checked the phone I bought, to my surprise, I discovered it was a soap I bought for such amount... That very moment I promised myself to revenge by doing same to the people,"  he revealed.

Explaining how he mastered the tactics to swindle unsuspecting members of public through that means, he said "after I discovered that it was a cut-to-size soap I bought as phone, I learnt that tactics by understudying the material.... The item contained cut-to-size soap, carton and wrapped all together with a cello tape."

The suspect who lived at 81, Oriwu Road, Ikorodu, Lagos State, further revealed how he perpetuated the fraud under the false pretence of selling a genuine phone.


"What I usually do is called exchange. My prospective victims will have the mind of buying handset from me but unknowingly to them I would have changed the real handset to soap wrapped with cut to size carton put inside an envelope... I will engage them in discussion after showing them real phone initially, and in the process of bargaining for the price, I will change it with the aid of white handkerchief to fake phone... And, I will tell them to keep the phone inside their pockets immediately that people are watching us. As soon as the buyer left the spot, I will immediately change my location by moving to another place."

The suspect further stated that the demise of his master who was teaching him plumbing work, also led to his criminal act.

While confirming the arrest, the Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Superintendent of Police, SP Dolapo Badmus, warned the general public to be weary of individuals who approach them to buy phones on highways in order not to fall victim of con men.

Items such as fake phones, key soap cut to size, shirts, some amount of money, packet of envelopes and cut to size cartons were recovered from him. The suspect has been transferred to Lagos State Task Force on Environment for prosecution
Read More »

Tuesday, 30 August 2016

Nigeria and UK sign MoU for the return of looted assets

Federal Government of Nigeria and the British Government today Tuesday August 30th signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the modalities for the return of Nigerian looted assets. The move is a follow up to the agreement reached at the London anti-corruption summit in May.
 

The Attorney-General of the Federation, Mr Abubakar Malami, who signed on behalf of the Federal Government in Abuja, noted that the MoU reflected the willingness of both countries to continue cooperation and mutual support.

He outlined the objectives of the MoU to include the fact that the processes of returning stolen assets was a partnership recognising the interest of both countries and based on mutual understanding, confidence and trust. That both countries recognised that they have a mutual interest in ensuring that returned assets are not at risk of being misappropriated again.

"And that both countries recognised they have obligations toward their own citizens for providing such assurances. That both countries recognised the importance of ensuring that the highest possible standard of transparency and accountability are applied for the return of assets." Malami said.

He assured the international community that all funds recovered would be judiciously utilised for projects that would benefit poor Nigerians. Leader of the UK delegation, British Minister of State for Immigration, Robert Goodwill, said that the MoU provided the mechanism by which monies could be returned.

"Our ability to recover and return stolen assets should send a clear message to all who may seek to habour such assets that there is no safe haven in the U.K," he said. "We are keen to do this as soon as the necessary legal process allow. As outlined at the summit, we will be taking steps to accelerate the procedures for identification and confiscation of illegally acquired assets."

He said that they were as committed as Nigeria in ensuring that beneficial ownership of assets was made available to relevant authorities so they know who the real owners of assets held in the UK are.

“Forty jurisdictions, including British Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies announced that they will automatically share beneficial ownership information relating to companies, trusts, foundations, Shell companies and other relevant entities and legal arrangements. It is important that everyone can see how returned assets are used to benefit Nigerians. We have therefore agreed in this MoU to be fully transparent about this."

Source: The Nation/ Andrew Fleming
Read More »

Some cute photos of Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg in Lagos

He arrived Lagos today ‎and would be here till tomorrow. This is his first visit to Sub-Saharan Africa. He is here among other things, to learn about the startup ecosystem in Nigeria. More photos after the cut...

Read More »

Niger Delta Avengers writes open letter to President Buhari, alleges pre-determined genocide in the region

Niger Delta Avengers have written an open letter to President Buhari, accusing him of using the military through its new formation,  Operation Crocodile Smile, to carry out pre-determined genocide in the Niger Delta region. The Nigerian Army last week launched the "Operation Crocodile Smile" which they say is just a training drill designed to prepare the Amphibious Division for a better mastery of the Niger Delta terrain. 
The militant groups in its open letter, allege that the military formation is part of a pre-determined genocide to be carried out in the Niger Delta region. The group says President Buhari's statement in Kenya over the weekend that they should come forward for negotiation or be treated as Boko Haram members, gives credence to the allegations of pre-determined genocide. Read the statement signed by the group's spokesperson,  Brig.Gen Mudoch Agbinibo, below...

We call on President Muhammadu Buhari to put away the garb of a stooge to the imperialists, whenever he speaks outside Nigeria. We have listened carefully and halted hostilities in the Niger Delta; we expect a genuine and positive attitude to restructuring and self-determination for every component unit of Nigeria. Dear president, what makes those countries (Japan, Germany, France, USA, Britain etc.) great is the ability of their governments to accommodate internal protestations and conflicts for the greater good of their nations over the years. Please stop presenting your government as pawn to the web of military industrialists complex, whenever you leave the shores of Nigeria.
Nigeria is not a one-man personal property we must have these talks every time if this union must continue to work as one. The people of the Niger Delta have been living here from time immemorial, so we have the secret of the terrain and survival of amphibious operations. No amount of troop surge and simulation exercises will make you win the oil war, you can only win battles. 
You cannot apply the might of the state to restore the people's confidence in your leadership when you cannot differentiate between genuine demands and being mismanaged by disorganized characters and tribal lords around you in your government that are playing the court jesters role as well as counting the days that is left in your four years term. You can deceive the whole world but We cannot be deceived by the so glamorized ongoing military operations in the creeks Of Ijaw communities in the Delta coded " Operation Crocodile Smiles"... the world should know that with your pronouncement in Kenya and your attitude to the military build up in the Niger Delta, it is crystal clear that the military has nothing less than a pre-determined genocide in Niger Delta and burn more already scared national resources to the pockets of those that have failed to locate the missing  Chiboks School Girls.
Conclusively, dear President Muhammadu Buhari please also tell those foreign nations that you are always at ease talking to, while refusing to listen to Nigerians that your troops are about to carrying out extra judicial killings in the Niger Delta in violation of article four of the Geneva Convention with "OPERATION CROCODILE SMILES". All sane minds knows the meaning of " CROCRODILE TEARS" so by code-naming your military operation CROCODILE SMILES only betrays your motives and attitude to the whole world about the Niger Delta question. 
The whole world will surely applaud you in The Hague when you leave office! This is not the Nigeria and the world of the 1980s and 1990s under General Sani Abacha and your watch.
Read More »

Sunday, 28 August 2016

Another victim of Fulani herdsmen attack in Enugu State dies

A woman severely injured during the suspected Fulani herdsmen attack in Ndiagwu Attakwu, Akegbe-Ugwu in Nkanu West Local Government Area of Enugu State has been confirmed dead.

Mrs Ifeoma Agbo, until her death was receiving treatment at one of the hospitals in the community, along with three other victims. 


The Chairman of Nkanu West LGA, Mr Afam Okereke, who confirmed the death of the victim in an interview with Channels Television, said in a bid to prevent such occurrence, especially after the Nimbo attack, he had called several security meetings with the Fulani community.

Suspected Fulani herdsmen on Thursday, August 25th invaded the community, killing a seminarian identified as Lazarus Nwankwo, a final year student of Spiritan International School of Theology and wounded four persons, including a pregnant woman.

Enugu State Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, who visited the community on Friday vowed to bring perpetrators to book, adding that his administration will not tolerate the wanton destruction of lives and property in the state by the herdsmen.

Meanwhile, the state police command arrested one of the suspects identified as one Umaru Isah from Zamfara State. Investigation has commenced in full scale into his alleged nefarious activities with a view of unmasking his gang members. The state commissioner of police Emmanuel Ojukwu has vowed to unmask all those involved in the attack.

The traditional ruler of Ndiagwu Attakwu autonomous community, Gregory Ugwu, urged the Federal and state government to take a firm and decisive action on the activities of Fulani herdsmen in the area. The people of the area also urged the government to direct that all Fulani should leave the area immediately or they might be pushed into taking laws into their hands.
Read More »

Saturday, 27 August 2016

Polish Olympian sells Rio silver medal to help 3-year-old boy with eye cancer

Polish discus thrower Piotr Malachowski sold the silver medal he won at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics to help pay for the medication of a 3-year-old boy suffering from eye cancer. 
Malachowski wrote, according to Facebook's translation: "In Rio I fought for gold," "Today, I appeal to everyone -- let's fight together about something that is even more precious. The health of this fantastic boy."
According to Malachowski, the procedure to treat the rare form of cancer isn't available in Poland; it is offered only in New York.
Malachowski said on Facebook that siblings Dominika and Sebastian Kulczyk,who are among the richest Poles, "declared the intention to buy my silver medal," which he put up for auction to help pay for treatment of the boy, Olek, who is suffering from retinoblastoma.


Malachowski did not reveal the amount he raised by selling his medal on Friday, but said the target, which was almost $130,000, has been met.
"My silver medal is worth much more today than it was a week ago," Malachowski said.

Source: ESPN
Read More »

Ibe Kachikwu's daughter Nkemdili celebrates her daughter's first birthday



Nkemdili, daughter of NNPC Group Chairman and Minister of State for Petroleum, Ibe Kachukwu recently celebrated her daughter's first birthday. The party was attended by family and friends, including her parents. More photos after the cut...


Read More »

Man gets 40 years in jail for throwing boiling water on sleeping gay couple

An Atlanta man has been sentenced to 40 years in prison after he was found guilty on Wednesday after he threw boiling hot water on a gay couple, Anthony Gooden and Marquez Tolbert, as they slept. The man, Martin Blackwell was convicted of 10 counts – two counts of aggravated assault and eight counts of aggravated battery – in the February attack on the gay couple.

The jury deliberated for about 90 minutes after the brief trial and returned with the guilty verdict. Prosecutors have said that on the night of the attack, Blackwell filled the largest pot in his home with water and set it to boil before tossing it on Gooden and Tolbert, who were sleeping and who had been dating for about a month.
The couple had been staying with Gooden's mother, who was dating Blackwell.
"You were soulless, malicious and a violent person [during the attack]," Fulton County Superior Court Judge Henry Newkirk said to Blackwell Wednesday before sentencing him, according to the AJC.
Prosecutors argued that Blackwell was motivated by  homophobia.

Tolbert testified at trial that Blackwell grabbed him after the attack and said, "Get out of my house with all that gay sh**" 

Gooden and Tolbert's injuries were severe.

Gooden was hospitalized for about a month, including two weeks in a coma, and while his boyfriend, Tolbert was hospitalized for 10 days.
Both men had several surgeries and both testified at Blackwell's trial.
Blackwell's defense attorneys did not present any evidence at trial or call any witnesses but they argued that the attack was reckless rather than premeditated.
"It's not about hate. It's about old-school culture, old-school thinking," attorney Monique Walker told jurors.
Blackwell's defense argued he was motivated by a sense of disrespect for the victims' behavior in the home – a claim the prosecution dismissed.

After the verdict, Tolbert told reporters he felt "justice was served," adding "I'm ecstatic," Tolbert said Wednesday.


Source: Associated Press
Read More »

Thursday, 25 August 2016

Naira appreciates to N315.93/dollar as foreign investors take advantage ..

By Peter Egwuatu, with agency reports Naira, yesterday, appreciated by 3.52 per cent to close at N315.93 to a dollar at the interbank market, prompting calls for foreign investors to take advantage of the appreciation. 

However,  the naira suffered a loss in value as it depreciated at the parallel market to trade at N402 per dollar, weaker than N397 it traded at its previous session as dollar shortages gripped the official market. 


The naira, which hit fresh record low since the central bank floated the currency on the official inter-bank market in June, first touched N400 on the black market this month. 


On the inter-bank market yesterday, no trade was posted until three minutes before the end of the session, when the central bank which has been reducing its dollar sales, intervened, traders said.


 Only three deals worth $0.75 million were traded at 305.50 per dollar, a level the market has closed at since Monday. Specifically, according to Bloomberg, in the last two weeks, Exotix Partners LLP and Standard Bank Group Ltd. 


have told clients;  most of who fled after the country started imposing capital controls from late 2014, that they should start buying naira assets again. 


The  naira which has been the worst-performing currency this year among more than 150 globally has depreciated 37 percent against the dollar since the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN  abandoned its peg on June 20, while bond yields have jumped to more than 20 percent. The naira strengthened 4.6 percent to 315 per dollar on Tuesday after falling to a record 350.25 on August 19, 2016. 


The cheap naira is attracting foreign investors,” said Lutz Roehmeyer, a money manager at Landesbank Berlin Investment, which oversees about $12 billion of assets. “At 325 per dollar, the naira is too weak” and Landesbank anticipates a rebound, he said. Roehmeyer’s funds have doubled their holdings of naira debt, albeit in the form of bonds issued by the World Bank’s International Finance Corp. rather than the Nigerian government, to the equivalent of around $9.2 million this month, he said. 


The CBN  fixed the currency in February 2015 at 197-199 per dollar to stop it plunging amid the decline in the price of oil, on which Nigeria depends for 90 percent of exports and the bulk of government revenue. He relented after 16 months as the country stumbled toward a recession and foreign reserves fell to their lowest level in 11 years. 


The naira has now weakened more than any other major oil currency since mid-2014, when crude prices started retreating. 


It’s lost almost half its value against the dollar in that period, compared with 46 percent for Kazakhstan’s tenge and 35 percent for the Colombian peso. 


That makes it a good time to buy Nigerian one-year Treasury bills with yields of about 22 percent, Stuart Culverhouse, chief economist at Exotix in London, wrote in an Aug. 9 note. 


The potential return is more than 33 percent if the naira strengthens to its fair value of 290 against the greenback, he said. In April, one-year T-bills yielded just 10 percent. 


Oil Production The trade is not for everyone, given Nigeria’s outlook. The economy will shrink 1.8 percent this year, its first contraction since at least 1991, the International Monetary Fund forecasts. 


Oil production has sunk to a near three-decade low of about 1.5 million barrels a day as militants attack pipelines and export terminals in the south of the country. 


While Landesbank Berlin and Exotix say the currency has fallen enough, others aren’t convinced. The naira will weaken to 396 by year-end and 515 by the second quarter of 2017, according to Access Bank Plc, Nigeria’s fourth-biggest lender. Forward prices also predict worse to come. 


Three-month non-deliverable forwards trade at 357 to the dollar, and one-year contracts at 394. The median forecast of economists in a Bloomberg survey is for the currency to stabilize at 344 this year. 


Sidelines Preferred “The combination of a cheaper naira and higher yields on naira paper are tempting, but we remain comfortable on the sidelines,” Brett Rowley, a managing director at Los Angeles-based TCW Group Inc., which oversees $195 billion of assets, said in an e-mailed response to questions on Aug. 16. “Restoring oil output would help assuage our concerns.” 


Investors are also yet to be convinced that the naira truly floats. 


The central bank sold dollars at 309 last week and may be trying to keep the rate stronger than 320, according to Craig Thompson of Continental Capital Markets SA, based in Nyon, Switzerland.


 The naira trades at 395 on the black market, 20 percent weaker than the official rate. 


The exchange rate is closer to fair value in the eyes of most investors,” said Andrew Howell, a New York-based frontier-markets analyst at Citigroup Inc., the world’s biggest foreign-exchange trader. 


But there still aren’t many inflows. 


You can’t really call it a normally-functioning exchange rate yet.” 


Mitigating Risk Bottom of Form Still, bond investors are closer to pulling the trigger than they have been in more than a year. 


They’d be even more confident if they were able to mitigate the risk of further depreciation by buying the naira-settled futures that Nigeria introduced in June, according to Stephen Bailey-Smith, senior economist at Copenhagen-based Denmark’s Global Evolution Fonds A/S, which manages $3.2 billion of assets. Nigerian local-currency bonds have lost 17 percent in dollar terms this quarter, through yesterday, compared with the 3 percent average return for 31 developing nations monitored by Bloomberg indexes. 


The yield on benchmark government naira notes due January 2026 has climbed 226 basis points since June to 15.08 percent. 


We haven’t come back in to the local market yet, but we’re looking at it closely,” Bailey-Smith said. “If you can get a yield above 20 percent and hedge the FX risk, it’s not a bad trade at all. The futures market is intended to help you do that, but it’s difficult to buy them
Read More »

APC Governors hold meeting in Kaduna state(see photos)

APC Governors under the auspices, Progressive Governors, had a meeting in Kaduna state yesterday night where they discussed issues of national importance. More photos after the cut...


Read More »

Religious crisis: All the people burnt to death were muslims- Zamfara state gov

While condemning the religious crisis that broke out in the Abdu Gusau Polytechnic in Talata Mafara in the state on Tuesday which resulted in the death of eight people, the state governor, Abdulaziz Yari, yesterday disclosed that all those killed during the attack were Muslims. Narrating what led to the attack to state House corespondents after his meeting with President Buhari yesterday August 24th, Governor said:

"From the intelligence I heard from the security agencies, there was a fight between two students and I think one of them injured the other and started shouting that the other person abused Prophet Muhammed. Other students came and beat the other boy who is Yoruba and from Kogi State. Some people are saying he was a Muslim and some say the boy was a Christian. They beat the student until he collapsed and thought he was dead. Then security personnel requested help from one shop owner who then took the boy to the hospital in his car. When the students heard that the boy was still alive and in the hospital, they went to the hospital.  But the boy was rescued by the army in the hospital. 
Then the students went back to the polytechnic and burnt down the shop of the person who gave his car to rescue the boy. They went back to town again and as you know the police in the division don’t have enough men to contain the riot and before reinforcement came, the crowd threw tyre in the man’s house and burnt the house down. That was how everybody in the house was killed and everybody killed in the House were Muslims and not like the rumours going around in the social media that Christians are being killed in Zamfara. 
Infact the mob wanted to go and burn churches and attack non- Muslims but the security forces stopped them. It’s my home town and that’s where I live.”
Read More »

Muslims now occupy the Security and Intelligence Committee of the Federal Government - Christian Elders Forum says

The National Christian Elders Forum NCEF which is an affiliate body of the Christian Association of Nieria CAN, yesterday expressed worry over the fact that more Muslims occupy positions in the Security and Intelligence committee of the Federal government. 

In a statement signed by the NCEF Chairman, Solomon Asemota and released yesterday, the group alleged that Nigeria is an Islamic state which is contrary to Section 10 of the Nigerian constitution. 

The Elders in their statement expressed worries over the recent attacks meted on Christians in most parts in the North.
There is a bill now pending before the National Assembly, titled “NGO Regulatory Bill” intended to silence NGO’s including the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN). 

It is not in dispute that Nigeria is an Islamic State contrary to Section 10 of the Constitution. 

What is in dispute is whether Nigeria is ruled by mainstream Muslims or by Islamist Jihadists.

We plead with the Sultan to appreciate that Nigeria is safer and more peaceful when the Government of the Federation or of a State does not adopt any religion as State Religion. 

It is as a result of the understanding (or lack of it) of civilized Jihad that we are apprehensive of those in the “Security and Intelligence Committee” of the Federal Government by some unexplained reasons are mainly Muslims. 

President Buhari, (Muslim), Chief of Defense (Christian), Chief of Army Staff, Chief of air Staff, Minister of Defense, Minister of Internal Affairs, Inspector General of Police, National Security Adviser, Director General of DSS are all Muslims from the North. 

We are not too sure whether the Vice President is a member of this Committee following information that he was once excluded from the meeting the President called.

When the Vice President summoned the same meeting in the absence of President Buhari who was away in the UK, there was resistance and the meeting had to end abruptly. 

The conclusion which we, Christians, draw is that jihad is being committed against our country, Nigeria, especially when the cohesive instrument of state is in the hands of three ethnic nationalities and one religion. 

This enlists fear in the minds of the populace, especially Christians"the elders said.

They also condemned the recent arrest and arraignment of Joachim Chinakwe Iroko for naming his dog Buhari.  

Chinakwe was picked up again based on Police belief that the suspect’s action was capable of provoking an ethno-religious crisis. Because the complainant and his group have threatened to kill him if he comes back and this may happen.

If Nigeria is being run as a secular State, the Constitution in Sections 10, 37, and 38 guarantees right of private and family life, freedom of Thought, Conscience and Religion that should protect Joe Chinakwe and the Complainant would have been arrested but because Nigeria is an Islamic State, Joe Chinakwe has to face trial in the process promoting; the most effective way to get rid of critics is to instill fear in ordinary Nigerians,” the statement said.
Read More »

Cheeky little boy steals his sister's makeup and proceeds to give himself and all his toys a makeover

Little Damon from Canada just can't wriggle out of this one, the evidence is all over his face and he looks as guilty too. The kid stole his sister's makeup and went all gaga on himself and he gave his toys a treat too.His family filmed the inquisition in his room with loads of evidence in sight. Budding makeup artist. 







Read More »

Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Linda Ikeji Media is hiring! And here's how you can apply...

Like most of you know, I'm expanding my business to include TV, Radio, Music and something else ...shhh...lol. If you missed it, read all about it here. I need to hire staff to get the work done.

At Linda Ikeji Media we are looking to hire the following;
Front desk officer/receptionist, TV presenters, editors, producers, content developers, cameramen, entertainment/music/crime writers, Radio hosts, sound engineers, HR, Accountant, Administrative staff, customer care, marketers and IT professionals. They even said I might need a PA...lol.

If you think you can fit in any of these roles or even qualified for them, please send CV to contactus@lindaikejimedia.com or lindaikejimedia@gmail.com. If you're shortlisted, we will call you for a one-on-one interview. Thanks guys, good-luck and God bless!
Read More »