Thursday, 25 May 2017

Osinbajo Storms BIAFRA @ 50, Says Only The Fools Want Biafra Again

Osinbajo Storms BIAFRA @ 50, Says Only The Fools Want Biafra Again

Osinbajo Storms

The Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo, on Thursday said Nigerians should learn from the history of the country’s civil war rather than beat drums of a second civil war.

Osinbajo, who is currently delivering a keynote address at an event organized to mark Biafra at 50, in Abuja said, “while the wise learn from history, the experience remains the best teacher for a fool.”

The Acting President said while it is kinder to learn from history, experience is a harsh teacher.

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Stressing that there was no harm in discussing the nation’s existence, Osinbajo called on Nigerians to use the country’s diversity to make her great, “instead of trying to flee into the lazy comfort of homogeneity.”

Details Later…
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At Last, Nigeria's UK Embassy Source Breaks Silence On Buhari's Health, Death Rumour, And When The President Will Return

At Last, Nigeria's UK Embassy Source Breaks Silence On Buhari's Health, Death Rumour, And When The President Will Return

Muhammadu Buhari

The Nigeria High Commission in London, United Kingdom has revealed that President Muhammadu Buhari’s health has improved significantly, although only his physicians can determine when he will return to Nigeria, fresh report according to Premium Times detailed.

The embassy source who sees Mr. Buhari regularly, but pleaded not to be named, because he had no permission to discuss the president’s condition with journalists, health said the President's as improved significantly, Premium Times reports

He saidl; “Oh yes; we thank God. He is doing very good; he is ok but his doctors will determine when he will return.”

Mr. Buhari left the country for London on May 7 to continue with his medical treatment.

He had returned to Nigeria on March 10 after spending 51 days in the British capital during attending to his health.

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Upon his return, the president said he “couldn’t recall being so sick since he was a young man, including in the military with its ups and downs.”

He also said he could not recall ever having blood transfusion before.

The president also hinted that he would return to the UK for further treatment.

“I’m feeling much better now. There may, however, be need for further follow up within some weeks,” Mr. Buhari had said while addressing the country.

However, as soon as he returned to the UK about two weeks ago, there were rumours that he had passed on.

An SMS announcing his death soon went viral. The text read, “Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has been confirmed dead in London where he was receiving medical attention…. The Nigerian High Commissioner to the United Kingdom told reporters plans are underway to transport the body of the late President to Abuja where final burial funeral rites will be held…Vice President Yemi Osinbajo is expected to be sworn in office as the substantive President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

Government is yet to issue an official statement on the President’s demise. He was 74 years old.”

Our source expressed sadness that some Nigerians could wish the president dead, saying “(it is) sad that any human being will wish another dead.”

He continued, “It’s sad but God is all seeing and will always suffice and to Him we submit all our affairs. They have failed and will continue to fail.”

On the calls for Mr. Buhari’s resignation on the ground of poor health , the source said, “Well that’s their problem because it is God that gives power and takes it when He so wishes and not anybody else.”

When asked if the president’s health was now better than he left home, our source who sees Mr. Buhari regularly retorted, “Of course, yes.”

He said the president is largely stable and is able to regularly and promptly observe his five-time daily prayers.

When told that those calling for Mr. Buhari’s resignation believed he was too sick to ever govern again, the source said, “That’s the view of those arrogating God’s power to themselves and would surely regret it, Insha Allah.”

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Wednesday, 24 May 2017

You are power-drunk – Falana blasts Buhari’s spokesman, Garba Shehu

You are power-drunk – Falana blasts Buhari’s spokesman, Garba Shehu

Human rights lawyer, Femi Falana, has described Garba Shehu’s comments on Ibrahim El-Zakzaky’s detention as a show of official impunity.

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Speaking with journalists on Tuesday, Shehu said El-Zakzaky, whom a court ordered his unconditional release, was not in detention but in protective custody.

However, in a statement on Wednesday, Falana asked if Shehu had become power drunk.

“In a reckless demonstration of official impunity, Mr Garba Shehu, the senior special assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on media and publicity purportedly issued a statement yesterday on behalf of the presidency to justify the illegal detention of Sheikh Ibraheem Elzakzaky and his wife, Hajia Ibraheema Elzakzaky,” he said.

“In the incendiary statement, Mr Shehu claimed that the valid and subsisting order of the federal high court made on December 2, 2016 would not be obeyed by the federal government on the dubious ground that the Sheikh is in ‘protective custody’ while the justification for holding the wife is that she is taking good care of her husband in the illegal custody.

“According to Mr Shehu, ‘El-Zakzaky is held for his own good. If you set him free, what do you think will happen on the streets? He is not in a typical prison condition.

He has the company of his wife and children. They can leave if they want. There is overall public good weighing against his release.’

“In the chequered history of Nigeria, this is the first time that a democratically elected government has openly justified the detention of any citizen in defiance of a valid and subsisting order of a competent court of law.

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“Even under the neo-tarzanist Buhari/Idiagbon military junta, court orders which directed that victims of the obnoxious Detention of Persons Decree No 2 of 1984 be released from illegal custody were complied with.

But under a democratic government, Mr Shehu wants Nigerians to believe that the El-Zakzakys are held in ‘protective custody’ after the federal high court had declared such detention illegal and unconstitutional.

Or has Mr Shehu suddenly become so power drunk to the extent that he can conveniently set aside the judgment of the federal high court?” He querried.

Falana also went on to ask that Shehu be called to order, because he could not have made the comment on behalf of the government.

“Since neither President Mohammadu Buhari nor Acting President Yemi Osinbajo could have authorised the contemptuous statement issued on behalf of the presidency Mr Shehu Garba should be called to order and restrained from further exposing the Federal Republic of Nigeria to ridicule before the comity of civilized nations.

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“However, since the federal government continues to proclaim loudly that it operates under the rule of law it cannot be permitted to treat court orders with disdain.

To that extent, El-zakzaky and his wife must be released from the illegal custody of the State Security Service since the federal high court has dismissed the official claim that they are held in ‘protective custody’,” he added.

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Only PDP can rescue Nigeria from Buhari, APC – Wike

Only PDP can rescue Nigeria from Buhari, APC – Wike

The Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, has declared that only the Peoples Democratic Party can save the country from the economic crisisi the All Progressives Congress has plunged it into.

Wike, who also expressed his support for the Senator Ahmed Makarfi-led National Caretaker Committee, explained that it would lead the country to greater heights.

The governor spoke after the premiere of the Stage Adaptation of Elechi Amadi’s ‘Concubine’ by Imo Edward on Tuesday night in Port Harcourt.

He maintained that no level of intimidation would make the people of Rivers State withdraw their support for the Makarfi-led National Caretaker Committee of the PDP.

“The PDP is the only political party that can bring Nigeria out of its quagmire. Nobody can intimidate us. No amount of machine guns can change us. When we take a position, we stand by it.

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“I am supporting Makarfi-led PDP National Caretaker Committee totally because they mean well for the party,” the governor stressed.

Speaking on the Stage Adaptation of Elechi Amadi’s ‘Concubine’, Wike lauded the cast and crew for their “beautiful” performance.

The Stage Adaptation of Elechi Amadi’s ‘Concubine’ by Imo Edward witnessed the star performance of major Nollywood artistes, including Francis Duru, Segun Arinze, Onyeka Onwenu, Ebere Okaro and others.

Reacting, the State Deputy Chairman of the APC, Chief Peter Odike, disagreed with Wike, insisting that the PDP was responsible for the country’s current economic woes.

Odike said, “It is the PDP that caused the present economic problem in the country through embezzlement of public funds. All these monies being brought in from houses in Lagos are owned by the PDP.

“Those who are facing trial for that; are they not members of PDP? The diversion of money meant for arms; who did it? Our brother, who was the President then, was a member of the PDP and under his watch, all these happened in this country. It is even the APC that is trying to revive the country.

“Right now, we (APC) have been able to fight insurgency to almost an end and we are getting out of recession. We were having fake economic boom under the PDP.

Then they were importing rice and paying the subsidy, selling it low so that people would say Nigeria’s economy was booming. These are all fake.”

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Benue begins translation of science textbooks to Tiv language

Benue begins translation of science textbooks to Tiv language

Benue translates science textbooks to local languages

The Benue State Universal Basic Education Board has started translating science textbooks into Tiv dialect for easy learning and sustenance of indigenous languages.

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Philip Tachin, the executive chairman of the board, made this known on Wednesday while declaring open a two-week teacher professional development workshop.

The workshop had the theme: “Strengthening Mathematics and Science Education (SMASE).”

Tachin said the board was also exploring ways to translate the textbooks into Idoma and Igede dialects, noting that the aim was to encourage more students in the state to read science courses.

He said the workshop was in line with the state government’s education programmes.

The chairman urged the participants to take advantage of the workshop to develop themselves.

He expressed gratitude to the federal ministry of education, National Teachers Institute and the Universal Basic Education Commission for making the workshop possible.

The representative of the ministry, Salisu Muhammad, said that 200 teachers would participate in the workshop while 1,000 others would take part at the zonal level.

He commended Tachin for the translation initiative.

Abubakar Ibrahim, the representative of NTI, also hailed the translation initiative.

He called on teachers to place premium on the knowledge impartation.

By News Agency

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APC to hold national convention without Buhari

APC to hold national convention without Buhari

Governors on the platform of the All Progressives Congress and members of the party’s National Working Committee, NWC, on Wednesday met in Abuja.

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They agreed to proceed with preparations for the party’s inaugural bi-annual national convention, even with President Muhammadu Buhari still away on vacation.

The governors and NWC also resolved to send a delegation to Acting President Yemi Osinbajo to present him with suggested dates for him to pick from.

This was part of decisions taken at the end of a monthly meeting held between the governors and the Chief John Odigie-Oyegun-led APC NWC.

Plateau State governor, Simon Lalong, made the disclosure to newsmen after the meeting.

He said: “The issue of the National Convention was raised actually, as it was part of the decisions we took at the last meeting. Unfortunately like you realised, Mr. President is not here.

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“But today, we all agreed that we have an acting President the same process should start again through the acting President.”

Lalong noted that though the President as leader of the party normally should attend but that in the present circumstances, the presence of the acting President will suffice.

National Chairman of the party, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun in his welcome address said, “I want to say that I am so happy that we have met twice and we are seeing the effects, very positive, very salutary effect are beginning to manifest in the party.”

Governors in attendance were Godwin Obaseki (Edo), Solomon Lalong (Plateau), Samuel Ortom (Benue), Abubakar Badaru (Jigawa) , Mohammed Abubakar (Bauchi). Others include: Sani Bello (Niger), Aminu Bello Masari (Katsina), Sen. Atiku Bagudu and Abdulaziz Yari (Zamfara).

The Deputy governors of Kwara, Kogi, Lagos, Ogun, Osun, Nasarawa and Imo represented their governors.

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Jonathan’s ally, George Turnah sent to prison

Jonathan’s ally, George Turnah sent to prison

A Federal High Court sitting in Port Harcourt has ordered the remand of George Turnah, an ex-political ally to former President Goodluck Jonathan, in prison custody.

Turner, a former Special Adviser on Youths to the ex-managing director of the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, Bassey Dan-Abia, is facing an alleged fraud.

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He was brought to court on Wednesday by operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.

Turnah, alongside seven firms, were arraigned on 12 counts bordering on obtaining by false pretence, money laundering and abuse of office to the tune of N3, 094, 268, 235.69.

Earlier, the trial judge, Justice Ibrahim Watila, dismissed the oral bail application of the accused person through his (Turnah) counsel, Amuda Kanika, SAN.

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Dasukigate: Witness reveals how Dokpesi allegedly paid N6m to lodge ex-councillors in Abuja

Dasukigate: Witness reveals how Dokpesi allegedly paid N6m to lodge ex-councillors in Abuja

A prosecution witness, Mr. Johnson Ejohwemu, Wednesday, informed a Federal High Court in Abuja of how the African Independent Television’s founder, Chief Raymond Dokpesi, allegedly paid N6m to lodge members of the ex-councillors forum in a hotel in Abuja, in February 2015.

Ejohwemu said he was then the Chief Accountant of Top Rank Hotels Limited, Area 11, Garki branch, Abuja, where the ex-councillors were lodged.

The witness was testifying as the fourth prosecution witness in the ongoing trial of Dokpesi alongside Daar Investment and Holdings Limited.

The EFCC is prosecuting Dokpesi and his company on six counts bordering on the sum of N2.1bn, which they allegedly received from the Office of the National Security Adviser between January and March 2015.

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Dokpesi and Daar Investments were said to have received the sum of N2.12bn from ONSA, while being headed by Col. Sambo Dasuki (retd.), as payment for a “purported contract on presidential media initiative”.

Led by the prosecutor, Mr. Rotimi Jacobs (SAN), on Wednesday, the fourth prosecution witness, Ejohwemu, said Dokpesi issued to Top Rank Hotels a N6m cheque to cover the accommodation and feeding of some former councillors, who were delegates to an event which he did not mention.

The witness said, “I know Top Rank Hotels Limited. I was the Chief Accountant of the hotel at Area 11 branch in Garki Abuja from 1999 till March 2017.”

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Man Dies While Masturbating On LGBT Live Cam

Man Dies While Masturbating On LGBT Live Cam

A man based in Eastern Pennsylvania has died while masturbating live on an LGBT website.

The 69-year-old married man identified as Bill was reported to have died of a heart attack while streaming himself masturbating on the website.

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It was reported that the deceased started feeling chest pains while in the act and subsequently fell unconscious.

Bill was later found dead in his chair behind his computer by his wife at about 9:05 minutes into the video.

Attempts to save hois life by paramedics was reported to be unsuccessful.

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I squandered over $300m on jewellery, prostitutes – Mike Tyson

I squandered over $300m on jewellery, prostitutes – Mike Tyson

After earning more than $300m over his legendary career, the former heavyweight champion filed for bankruptcy in 2003, and later went to jail for cocaine problems.

It would take more than a decade, and a trip through rehab, before Iron Mike (Tyson) would escape bankruptcy.

“I didn’t think I’d make it through my thirties,” Tyson said last week during the SALT Conference, a Las Vegas event that attracts big names in money, politics and sports.

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“My thirties were scary, weren’t they?” the 50-year-old former boxer said to nervous laughter from the audience.

The controversial former boxer said he was never “crazy” about money, but admitted he “went crazy with it.” Tyson has said he squandered his fortune on jewelry, prostitutes, mansions and cars.

He isn’t making a fortune like he once did, but he is making money by putting on a show at the MGM in Las Vegas and through a book coming out soon.

“I plan on keeping it this time,” said Tyson.

Tyson insists that thanks to his wife Kiki and support from friends, his life is back on track. He sounds determined to stay out of trouble, both financial and criminal.

“We made it out of our hellhole,” Tyson said, to applause from the crowd.

“I just knew it was time to grow up. It was time to be a man. Time to be present in your children’s lives.”

Tyson explained that it took a “whole deal of rehabs and institutions” before he could turn his life around.

“I’m one of the lucky ones,” he said.

Tyson grew up in the ghetto and had a fractured home life. After becoming the youngest heavyweight champion ever at just 20 years old in 1986, Tyson was sent to prison for three years following a 1992 rape conviction.

Tyson enjoyed incredible success in the 1990s and his relentless fighting style earned him millions of fans.

But Tyson also earned public scorn for, among other things, infamously biting off a chunk of Evander Holyfield’s ear in a 1997 fight.

When Tyson filed for bankruptcy in 2003, he reportedly had $23m in debt. It was a stunning admission, given his blockbuster career.

Looking back on it, Tyson admits he became accustomed to receiving fat checks and was taken advantage of by those around him.

“I can’t even call them leeches. That’s too decent of a word to call them,” Tyson said.

Tyson’s comeback was punctuated in the public eye by his memorable appearance in the blockbuster comedy, the Hangover, in 2009 and then the sequel two years later.

Today, Tyson is spending time with his family, mentoring young boxers and doing a one-man play based on his life at the MGM in Las Vegas called Undisputed Truth.

He also has a new book coming out about his time working with legendary trainer Cus D’Amato.

Jim Gray, a sportscaster who became close with Tyson and interviewed him at SALT, said Tyson has become “beloved” again and today is one of our “national treasures.”

Tyson joked that when fans see him, they “want to take pictures of me biting their ear.” He added, “We charge $200.”

But Tyson did display some of the discipline that was sorely missing during his downfall. Asked twice who he would have liked to have hit outside the ring, Tyson refused to take the bait.

“I’ll take the fifth on that,” he said with a smile.

Source: CNN
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Dbanj, wife Didi Kilgrow expecting first child?

Dbanj, wife Didi Kilgrow expecting first child?

Singer, Oladapo Oyebanjo also known as D’banj, is said to be expecting his first child with wife, Lineo Didi Kilgrow.

According to online reports, D’banj who is also an entrepreneur and TV host is currently in the USA where Didi is expected to give birth.

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In 2016, the singer reportedly held a secret wedding with his girlfriend Didi, at a low key ceremony both in Lagos and Abuja.

Dbanj in a recent comment had said that his marital status was no body’s business.

“My marriage is my business and it is none of your business. Whether I am married or not, mind your business. If you ever see a wedding ring on my finger, fine, but if you don’t, fine.”

“The truth about it is that it is very important to know what you want as a brand. As a brand, I wanted to focus on the business side and keep my family and private life, private and concentrate on CREAM.”

The Koko master crooner has won several music awards, including the awards for Best African Act at the MTV Europe Music Awards 2007, Artist of the Year at the MTV Africa Music Awards 2009.

He also won Best International Act: Africa at the 2011 BET Awards, and Best-selling African Artist at the 2014 World Music Awards, Evolution award at the 2015 MTV Africa Music awards.

D’banj is currently best known internationally for his 2012 summer hit “Oliver Twist”, an up-tempo dance fusion of Afrobeat and electronic dance music that topped the African charts 2011 and was a top 10 hit in the UK singles chart in 2012 reaching No. 2 on the UK R&B chart.

As at 2016, D’banj was ranked to be the richest solo musician in Nigeria according to T.I.N, an online Magazine.(NAN)

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NNPC partners Chinese investors for crude research and development

NNPC partners Chinese investors for crude research and development

The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), on Wednesday in Abuja said it had established contacts with some Chinese investors to partner in its Research and Development venture.

A statement by Mr Ndu Ughamadu, NNPC Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, said the partnership arose from the need to seek a fortune in a non-core oil sector to stay afloat.

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According to the statement, the NNPC Chief Operating Officer, Ventures, Dr Babatunde Adeniran, at the 10th edition of the Annual Sub-Saharan Africa Oil and Gas Conference in Houston, Texas, has said response from the Chinese prospects has been favourable and from American investors.

He said the non-core sectors that were of interest to the NNPC were in healthcare, shipping and telecommunications.

Adeniran said NNPC had more than 52 clinics across the country and was poised to take advantage of the gaps in the healthcare delivery in Nigeria.

He enjoined oil companies worldwide to think outside the box to fix challenges currently plaguing the industry. (NAN)

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Andrew Yakubu gets bail to travel abroad for medical treatment

Andrew Yakubu gets bail to travel abroad for medical treatment

The Federal High Court, Abuja, on Wednesday granted Andrew Yakubu, former Group Managing Director (GMD) of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) permission to travel abroad for medical treatment.

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Yakubu was arraigned by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on a six-count charge of money laundering and false declaration of asset.

At the resumed hearing of the case, the defendant, through his counsel, Mr Ahmed Raji (SAN), begged the court to allow him travel to the UK to complete his medical treatment.

Raji informed the court that the defendant was undergoing medical treatment before he was summoned by the EFCC to return to the country.

He also pleaded with the court to order the release of the defendant’s international passport which was deposited with the Deputy Chief Registrar of the court as part of his bail conditions.

In his response, counsel to EFCC, Mr Ben Ikani, said he would not object to the application since it was based on health ground.

While leaving the request to the discretion of the court, Ikani however urged the trial Judge to release the passport to Raji, the defendant’s lawyer.

In his ruling, Justice Ahmed Mohammed said he was disposed to granting the motion since it was not opposed by the prosecution. Consequently, he granted the defendant three weeks permission to travel to the UK for completion of his medical treatment.

The court held that the three weeks period would commence from May 25. It directed that one of his sureties must file a separate affidavit agreeing to be held liable should the defendant fail to return to Nigeria to face his trial.

Before adjourning the trial till July 6, Justice Mohammed directed Yakubu to surrender his international passport with the Deputy Registrar of the court on his return to the country.

The defendant was granted bail to the tune of N300 million with two sureties in like sum. Yakubu was arrested following a tip-off by a whistle-blower.

The EFCC raided his guest house situated at Sabon Tasha, Kaduna State and discovered 9.7 million dollars and 74,000 pounds hidden in a fireproof safe.

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Iwuanyanwu: Igbo have invested more in Nigeria than any other tribe

Iwuanyanwu: Igbo have invested more in Nigeria than any other tribe

Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, frontline politician and businessman, says the Igbo do not wish to secede from Nigeria “because they have invested in the country more than the Hausas and Yorubas”.

According to PUNCH, he said this in Imo state while speaking at a national unity summit organised by Arewa Ambassadors Congress of Nigeria in partnership with Youth Assembly of Nigeria.

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Describing the Igbo as major stakeholders in the country, Iwuanyanwu said they would not be party to any move to divide it.

He said the Igbo want to be one Nigeria in fairness.

Faulting the federal government over the arrest of Nnamdi Kanu, leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Iwuanyanwu said “Biafra is not about secession”.

“He (Kanu) only expressed his view. No arm was found in his possession. We are Biafrans and we are not ashamed to say it,” he said.

“Igbo have invested more in Nigeria than Arewa and Oduduwa. We want to be one Nigeria in fairness.

“Biafra is not about secession. It is a name of a particular people in Nigeria from the south-east. Therefore, it is not an offence to say that I am a Biafran.

“There was no victor, no vanquished after the civil war. I am impressed with Yakubu Gowon because he implemented all the agreements reached at the end of the civil war. Igbo were not deprived at the end of the civil war.”

Iwuanyanwu also accused the federal government of marginalising the Igbo “simply because the zone voted en masse for the peoples Democratic Party in the last presidential election.”

He, therefore, challenged youths in the country to always “shun tribal and religious sentiments” and work for the growth of the Nigeria.


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Reps drop motion on recovered assets, loots

Reps drop motion on recovered assets, loots

NASS - National Assembly

The House of Representatives on Wednesday dropped a motion that sought to “urge the Federal Government to submit to the National Assembly within 30 days a detailed report on the total amounts and assets that have been recovered from public officials since May, 2015.”

‎The motion was listed on the Order Paper against a sponsor, Honourable Uchechuku Nnam-Obi.

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The Deputy Chairman, House committee on Rules and Business, Honourable Bode Ayorinde, moved that the motion be stepped down; but in his ruling, the Speaker, Honourable Yakubu Dogara ruled that the motion was withdrawn by the leave of the House.

The motion as contained in the order paper averred that it had become necessary for the Federal Government to furnish the National Assembly with full details of the recovered loot and what it has been used for, owing to keenness with which Nigerians have followed the anti-corruption war.

A 30 days ultimatum was proposed for the presidency to submit the list of recoveries to the National Assembly, Nnam-Obi urged the Federal Ministry of Justice to ensure that quarterly reports on the various amounts and assets recovered are submitted to the National Assembly.

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The lawmaker commended the Federal Government for confronting corruption in an effective manner, noting that in order to ensure proper monitoring of recovered assets and funds, a Presidential Committee on Recovered Assets was set up by government under the leadership of Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, with the Attorney-General of the Federation, the Inspector-General of Police, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC), the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture, the Department of State Service (DSS) and Presidential Advisory Committee on War Against Corruption as members of the committee.

According, to the motion, “We however have to take cognisance of the fact that considering the importance of the recovered funds to the revival of the nation’s economy and the interest being shown by many Nigerians in the matter, there is a need for the Federal Government to submit to the National Assembly Reports on the amount and assets so far recovered and how they are being ploughed back into the economy.”

Committees on Special Duties and Financial Crimes were to be mandated to ensure implementation as part of the proposed resolution.

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NPA’s seizure of 156m euros equipment stalls 245MW power plant

NPA’s seizure of 156m euros equipment stalls 245MW power plant

OFFICIALS of the Ministry of Power have told the Senate Committee on Power, Steel Development and Metallurgy, headed by Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe that vital equipment meant for the completion of the 245 Megawatts Kaduna Power Plant are rotting away in Onne Port, Rivers State, since 2015.

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The Senate Committee, which was on tour of the power installations in Kaduna, was also informed that the 156 million euros (about N54 billion) power plant which should have been completed since 2014 had remained in limbo due to repeated tango with port authorities among other issues.

Director of Distribution at the Ministry of Power, Priscilla Sapke, who briefed the Senate Committee during the tour of the power station, said repeated appeals to the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) and other agencies in Onne, Rivers State, had fallen on deaf ears as the port had completely seized 19 containers said to contain accessories critical to the installation of the Kaduna Power Plant.

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Sapke said several containers were initially seized by the port between 2012 and 2014, but that a number of the containers were released to General Electric and Rockson Engineering, contractors to the plant on payment of 50 per cent of an agreed demurrage while 19 others had been lying at the Onne Port since 2015.

She did not give details of the exact amount paid by the companies.

She said: “The directive is that they (the port) should release government’s goods and talk later about commercial issues but they refused.”

As a result of that refusal, the project, meant to last 24 months, now has no definite date of completion.

The Dual Fired LPFO/Gas 215 MW Kaduna Power Plant was initiated in 2009 and initially meant to be completed in 2011, but the shift in the original location at Kakuri in Kaduna metropolis to the current location at Kudeda was said to have necessitated the change in the completion date.

Officials of General Electric and Rockson Engineering, who were also on hand, told the Senate committee that the project could come on stream in November if the seized equipment were released.

“Besides the 215 megawatts plant, the Gurara Dam is also expected to supply 30 megawatts to the power plant to take its capacity to 245 megawatts.

Senator Abaribe, who led 10 other senators on the tour, said the Senate was disappointed that the completion date of the power installation remained uncertain years after it was initiated.

He said: “The committee is not very pleased at the cost overrun and the time overrun. This is a project that should have been completed years back, but we are not even sure when it will be completed because some of these also infringe on cost components and our worry is for the Nigerian public who are going to pay for this.

“We are not pleased that if we are not careful we may end up getting a white elephant from this. Whatever this committee needs to do to get this project completed, we are ready to do.

“We will be interacting with the Minister of Power and also with his counterpart in the Ministry of Water Resources, because the Gurara Dam is also part of the problem.”

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‘Uber most stupid investment in history’ – Top Fund Manager

‘Uber most stupid investment in history’ – Top Fund Manager

A co-founder of the Magellan Financial Group, which manages more than $37 billion, thinks the ride-hailing service Uber has a less than 1% chance of surviving the next decade.

“It’s constantly losing money, and its capital-raising strategy is a Ponzi scheme,” the co-founder, Hamish Douglass, said at the annual Stockbrokers and Financial Advisers Conference in Sydney.

Douglass says Uber is under threat from the arrival of autonomous cars, in which he doesn’t think ride-sharing business has an advantage.

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He referred to Uber as one of the most stupid investments in history with a high probability of going bankrupt.

“When I look at Uber … I think of it as one of the most stupid investments in history,” the Australian Financial Review reported him as saying. “The probability of this business going bankrupt in a decade is 99%.”

And the competition is coming because the barriers to entry to ride-sharing are low.

“All they do is keep increasing their private-market valuation, and someone always says, I’ll put some money up, because next time they raise, it’ll be at a higher price,” Douglass says.

Uber was founded in 2009 in San Francisco and now operates in 58 countries and is valued at more than $60 billion.

Douglass and Chris Mackay founded Magellan a decade ago on the investing principles of Warren Buffett at Berkshire Hathaway.

The 2016 BRW Rich list shows Douglass’ wealth at about $376 million.

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Obanikoro: Why my relationship with Tinubu fell apart

Obanikoro: Why my relationship with Tinubu fell apart

Former Minister of State for Defence, Musiliu Obanikoro, has revealed that he fell out with the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, because he could not balance personal relationships with political disagreements.

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He has made peace with Tinubu, following the intervention of the Oba of Lagos, Rilwan Akiolu and other prominent figures.
In an interview with the Punch, Obanikoro says the fallout will “serve as a good lesson to the younger generation.”

 “I was happy that the reconciliation was done successfully. As I have said earlier, a very good friend of mine was also involved in the process. What has happened to me as regards my relationship with Asiwaju Tinubu should serve as a good lesson to the younger generation.

“Whenever you play your politics, always have it at the back of your mind that when you have disagreements, politically with someone, leave personal relationship out of it. Don’t allow your disagreement to affect the personal relationship you have with that person.

 “I was never comfortable all along that I lost personal relationship with Asiwaju Tinubu. We can always mend fences after political disagreements easily but it is the personal relationship that is crucial,” he said.

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Evander Holyfield donates $3m health equipment to Lagos State

Evander Holyfield donates $3m health equipment to Lagos State

Former Heavyweight boxing champion, Evander Holyfield, has announced the donation of health equipment worth $3m to the Lagos State government.

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Holyfield, a  five-time world cruiserweight, and heavyweight boxing champion arrived in the country on Wednesday ahead of his bout with former Lagos State Governor and National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

The exhibition boxing match is part of activities marking the Golden Jubilee anniversary of  Lagos State.

Speaking during a courtesy call on Governor Akinwunmi Ambode, Holyfield said the donation was part of his plans to also give back to the society through his foundation.

The 54-year-old recalled how he started boxing at the young age of 8 and became champion at 9, Holyfield said he felt like quitting after initially suffering defeats but his mother told him to hang on.

“I became the person I am because I listened, I followed direction and I did not quit even when I lost. In giving back to the society, I am here to say I got a Real Deal Promotion. We are looking for young fighters who want to listen and follow instruction.

“This is about giving back to the society. I want kids to learn from me how I became four times heavyweight champion,” Holyfield said.

He also announced the donation of $3m worth of health equipment to Lagos State Government, a gesture which Governor Ambode commended and urged other sports’ legends and individuals to imitate.

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Lawyers disagree on Fayose’s tenure

Lawyers disagree on Fayose’s tenure

THE move by the Ekiti State governor, Ayodele Fayose, to seek an extension of his tenure due to the abortion of his first term through impeachment is attracting diverse reactions.

The governor, on Monday said he could contest the 2018 governorship election in the state to complete his first term that was truncated in 2006.

Constitutional lawyer, Mike Ozekhome, speaking on the issue, said the governor will be right to seek such a relief.

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According to him, if the 2006 impeachment that got his first term terminated seven months to its full course had been ruled illegal and unconstitutional by the Supreme Court, then the governor would be entitled to the outstanding part of the four-year mandate.

According to him, “if the Supreme Court says his impeachment in 2006 is illegal and unconstitutional, then it would be deemed that he had not spent the outstanding seven months and it would mean those seven months still subsist.”

A social commentator and the second vice president of the Nigerian Bar Association, Mr Monday Ubani pointed out that the governor would be doing so at his own discretion.

“Please, the constitution is quite clear; you get elected as the governor of a state, you are expected to spend four years.

“Honestly, the constitution does not recognise whether you were impeached at one certain time or not. The law is crystal clear on this; you get elected, spend your four years and leave.

“Doesn’t the governor have lawyers and advisers? I believe even Ekiti State has an Attorney General, then I am wondering and surprised why he would make such a declaration.

In an SMS exchange with a former president of the NBA, Olisa Agbakoba, he said he was abroad. He didn’t comment on the issue.
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NCAA to meet EU on Medview Airline ban

NCAA to meet EU on Medview Airline ban

medview airline

THE Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) is set to hold high level talks with the European Union Air Safety

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Committee (ASC) of the European Commission (EC) this week to resolve all discrepancies that will lead to lifting of the ban on Medview Airlines.

This is just as  the regulatory body has announced plan to conduct a full scale audit of Medview Airlines’ operations after which the result would therefore determine further actions and engagements by the Regulatory Authority.

According to the NCAA, this move formed part of a series of engagements with the European Commission (EC) in the aftermath of a failed application by Medview Airlines for a Third Country Operator Authorisation to the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA).

The application failed during the verification of documents submitted by airline which were found to be non-compliant with Regulation (EC) No 2111/2005 and therefore could not qualify for approval.

“The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) thereafter received the notification of non-compliance through the office of the Nigerian Mission to International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).

“Upon receipt of notification the Director General, NCAA, Captain Muhtar Usman met with senior officials of European Commission in Gaborone, Botswana, during the Regional Safety Oversight Organization Conference in February of this year.

During this meeting extensive discussions were held with a view to resolving the matter.

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