FRESH FM TOP NEWS THIS WEEK

Written by on June 12, 2021

The hottest and most trending news articles for this week in all categories captured in one shot. Find articles ranging from News to Sports, to Politics, to Entertainment, to Economy, to Metro plus, and many other categories. See below the top news for the week:

 

 

NEWS

  • Democracy Day: Police Shoot Teargas At Protesters In Abuja, Lagos

The police on Saturday shot teargas to disperse protesters in the Gudu area of Abuja and Ojota area of Lagos as the country marked Democracy Day on June 12.
Similar protests were held across the country on Saturday. According to newsmen, the protesters in Gudu had turned out in their numbers carrying placards and banners with various inscriptions. Among their demands was the resignation of President Muhammadu Buhari. According to them the president has failed in addressing the challenges in the country, including that of insecurity.

Among those leading the protest were social activists Omoyele Sowore and Deji Adeyanju. However, as the protesters continued their protest, heavily armed policemen stormed the scene and began shooting tear gas into the air, dispersing the protest. The Democracy Day protests held at Mokola, Ibadan amid heavy police presence. Young people also gathered at the NEPA roundabout in Akure, Ondo State.

  • We Have Lifted 10.5m Nigerians Out Of Poverty In Two Years – Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari on Saturday said his administration has lifted 10.5 million people out of poverty in the past two years. He made the comment while addressing Nigerians on the occasion of Democracy Day. According to the World BankNigeria has one of the highest number of extremely poor people. In 2019, the President had promised to work towards lifting 100 million Nigerians out of poverty in 10 years.

“I will be the first to admit that in spite of our efforts and achievements which are there for all to see, there is still much more to be done and we are doing our best in the face of scarce resources and galloping population growth rate that consistently outstrips our capacity to provide jobs for our populace,” Buhari said on Saturday. “I am very convinced that this 100 million target can be met and this informed the development of a National poverty Reduction with Growth Strategy.

  • Buhari: FG will reclaim grazing routes for herders

President Muhammadu Buhari has given approval to the return of open grazing practiced during the First Republic where herdsmen used designated grazing routes to move cattle to several parts of the country. The President made this known in an exclusive interview with Arise TV aired on Thursday. Buhari said he had asked the Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, to begin the process of recovering land from persons who have converted cattle grazing routes for their personal use .

The AGF had kicked against the declaration by 17 Southern Governors to ban open grazing, noting that it is like Northern Governors banning spare parts trading.
He flayed Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, for his utterances, implementation of an aggressive anti-open grazing law and for accusing the President of failing to take actions against herdsmen because he is also a member of the Fulani herders.

APEX Igbo socio-cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, said President Buhari has a choice between dialogue on one hand and an avoidable war against the Igbo on the other. Buhari was quoted as saying in his Arise TV interview that “tougher times await the people of the Southeast,” stressing that “this time around, they would not allow them any access to the outside world by sea.”
National Publicity Secretary of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief Chiedozie Ogbonna, said the president’s remarks have been unfair on the zone. He added that the country needs, as a matter of urgency, dialogue, mutual toleration and shared values; not the use of force. “Ndigbo will not support break-up of Nigeria but Ndigbo will not be victims of Nigeria’s unity.”

  • Buhari claims #EndSARS protesters wanted to ‘remove’ him

Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari Thursday claimed the #EndSARS protests against police brutality that took place in the country last October were aimed at ousting him from office. The president made the claim during an interview with Arise TV.

Buhari blamed the protests on the dwindling inflow of foreign direct investment to the country. He insisted that Nigeria’s army of young people that participated in the protests have made it unattractive to investors.

  • Continue Using Twitter – NASS Joint Minority Caucus Urges Nigerians

The Joint Minority Caucus of the Senate and the House of Representatives has met over the ban on Twitter by the All Progressives Congress (APC)-led Federal Government and has restated its condemnation of the embargo as draconian and unacceptable. This position was contained in a communique signed by Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe the Minority Leader of the Senate) and Hon. Ndudi Elumelu the Minority Leader of the House of Representatives.

In the statement, the Joint Minority Caucus also dismissed threats by the APC-led government to arrest and prosecute Nigerians using Twitter and calls on Nigerians to go ahead and use their Twitter as they would not be contravening any law in Nigeria or any international statute. The Joint Minority Caucus recognized the provisions of Articles 19 and 20 of the United Nations Charter on Fundamental Human Rights, which Nigeria is a signatory to, as well as provisions of Sections 39 and 36 (12) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), and notes that by these provisions no one will be violating any law for using Twitter in Nigeria.

  • Twitter, Facebook, others must register in Nigeria – Federal Govt.

As part of its new move to regulate social media, the Federal Government has said Twitter, Facebook and other social media giants doing business in Nigeria must register in the country before being allowed to operate unhindered. Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, on Wednesday, also disclosed that Twitter, which was last week suspended, has called for a ‘high-level’ discussion. He listed conditions that must be met even if there is a discussion with Twitter, including that it must now be registered in Nigeria as a business concern. According to the government spokesman, freedom of speech has not been stifled by the suspension of Twitter as he maintained that Nigerians can still use other platforms such as Facebook and Instagram.

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has called on the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Saudi Arabia and other members of the international community to immediately impose visa ban on President Muhammadu Buhari and members of his cabinet involved in stifling free speech in Nigeria. The PDP predicated its demand on the violation of UN international Charter on Human Rights by banning the use of Twitter in Nigeria. In a statement by its national publicity secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, the PDP insisted that banning Twitter in Nigeria is a clear violation of Article 19 of the UN Charter as well as section 39 of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), which guaranteed freedom of expression to all Nigerians. The party also urged the world bodies to also sanction Mohammed, the Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, as well as “certain leaders of the APC for their individual roles in the ban imposed on Twitter in addition to associated harassments and threats to Nigerians.”

  • Igangan attack’ll never happen in Oyo again – Gov. Seyi Makinde

The Oyo State Governor,Seyi Makinde, on Tuesday appealed to the people of Igangan to cooperate with the government and security agencies to address the security challenge in the area. The Governor said this during his visit to the community to sympathise with the victims and to assess the level of destruction done in the town byattackers, begged the people not to take the law as into their own hands.

No fewer than 17 persons were killed in Igangan on Saturday by suspected herdsmen. But Makinde said he should be held responsible for the act, promising that such attack would never be allowed to happen there or anywhere in the state again. Governor,Seyi Makinde, on Tuesday appealed to the people of Igangan to cooperate with the government and security agencies to address the security challenge in the area.

  • I can’t guarantee security in Imo – Gov. Uzodimma

The Governor of Imo State, Hope Uzodinma, has declared that he cannot guarantee security in the state if left alone. After meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, Uzodimma told newsmen that stakeholders, including traditional, religious and political leaders, must engage more with the people to restore normalcy in the beleaguered state.

According to him, former political office holders, who fail to speak against the activities of trouble-makers, have questions to answer. While acknowledging that all is not well with the country, the governor warned that those destroying government property must be ready to face the consequences. Although insecurity is prevalent everywhere in Nigeria, the authorities in Imo were doing their best to tackle the situation, he stated.

  • NBC Directs All Broadcasting Stations To Deactivate Twitter Accounts

The National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) has directed all broadcasting stations to deactivate their Twitter accounts and suspend the patronage of the microblogging service provider. This is according to a communique put out by NBC on Monday. In the statement signed by Professor Armstrong Idachaba, the NBC noted that the directive is consequent on the suspension of Twitter operations in Nigeria by the Federal Government.

Citing the persistent use of Twitter for activities that are capable of undermining Nigeria’s corporate existence, the government suspended Twitter operations indefinitely. In line with this, NBC directed all broadcasting stations not to patronize the social networking service and to desist from using the platform as a source of information.

  • PDP Caucus Threatens Legal Action Against FG Over Twitter Ban

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) caucus in the House of Representatives has threatened legal action against the Federal Government over its ban of Twitter operations in Nigeria. A statement by the leader of the caucus Kingsley Chinda noted that the Nigerian government does not have the power to ban the social media platform, arguing that the action lowers the country’s image in the eyes of other democratic nations.

The caucus faulted the directive to the National Broadcasting Commission to license social media operators in the country, describing it as an attempt to introduce the ‘Social Media Bill’ by mere executive fiat. While calling on the Federal Government to address numerous challenges facing the country including kidnapping and banditry, the PDP caucus noted that social media is a means of escape from the daily happenings in Nigeria and a source of employment for many.

  • #TwitterBan: SERAP Drags FG To ECOWAS Court

The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) and 176 concerned Nigerians have dragged the Federal Government to the ECOWAS court over the unlawful suspension of Twitter in Nigeria. In the suit No ECW/CCJ/APP/23/21 filed on Tuesday before the ECOWAS Community Court of Justice in Abuja, SERAP and the concerned Nigerians are seeking: “an order of interim injunction restraining the Federal Government from implementing its suspension of Twitter in Nigeria, and subjecting anyone including media houses, broadcast stations using Twitter in Nigeria, to harassment, intimidation, arrest and criminal prosecution, pending the hearing and determination of the substantive suit.”

Following the deletion of a tweet by President Muhammadu Buhari, the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed last week announced the suspension of Twitter in Nigeria. The government has also threatened to arrest and prosecute anyone using Twitter in the country, while the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) has asked all broadcast stations to suspend the patronage of Twitter.

  • #TwitterBan: US, UK, EU Envoys Insist Nigeria Must Protect Freedom Of Expression

The envoys of the United States, United Kingdom and the European Union in Nigeria among others, have insisted that the Federal Government’s suspension of Twitter, is a violation of the fundamental human right of freedom of expression. The envoys who met with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, in Abuja on Monday, urged the government to protect freedom of expression. US ambassador to Nigeria, Mary-Beth Leonards, who spoke on behalf of others said they were delighted to see Nigeria succeed, and that all challenges have solutions.

Meanwhile, the Federal Government says it would restore Twitter operations in Nigeria if the platform would be used responsibly by the citizens. While highlighting that the responsibility of the government is to protect law, order, and human lives, Onyeama made it clear that there is no definite time for lifting the ban.

  • Southwest Governors Okay Amotekun’s Joint Operations

Following Saturday night attack on Igangan Community in Ibarapa area of Oyo State, governors of Southwest states have ordered the region’s security outfit to henceforth operate jointly. In the attack by suspected herdsmen, 11 persons, according to the police, were killed. The palace of the Agangan, the community’s monarch, vehicles and a filling station were burnt down.

Ondo State Governor Rotimi Akeredolu, who conveyed the decision of the governors, said Amotekun commanders in Oyo, Ondo, Ogun, Osun and Ekiti states had been asked to meet to fine-tune the new operational arrangement. Akeredolu, chairman of the Southwest Governors Forum, described the killings in Iganagan as horrendous, callous and highly provocative.

He said well-meaning Nigerians must condemn it because it is an assault on decency and communal harmony. He added: “They will stop at nothing until their set goal is realised. It is, therefore, incumbent on all lovers of peace and freedom to rise against this current regression into savagery.

  • Igangan Attack: Oyo Govt Appeals For Calm

The Oyo State Governor, Mr Seyi Makinde, has appealed for calm following reports of Saturday’s attacks on the people of Igangan, in Ibarapa Local Government Area of the state. The governor, who was briefed about the situation in the early hours of Sunday, said he was shocked to receive the reports of the attacks. He, however, appealed for calm, adding that security operatives have been deployed to take control of the area.

This is the latest in the series of attacks that have occurred recently in Igangan community. The community has been in the spotlight over clashes erupting between farmers and herders, resulting in deaths and injuries. According to the Police 11 persons including some of the assailants were killed in the midnight invasion. Several vehicles and buildings including the palace of the Asigangan of Igangan town and a filling station were also burnt down by the gunmen.

  • IGP Announces Immediate Suspension Of Tinted Vehicle Windscreens

The Inspector-General of Police Usman Alkali Baba has announced the immediate suspension of tinted vehicle windscreens in Nigeria. The IGP announced this on Monday during a meeting with senior police officers including commissioners and DIGs from across the states. He also directed that the issuance of spy number plates be put on hold.

This according to the IGP is part of efforts being put in place to curtail the worsening security challenges across the country. While making the announcement, he reiterated that roadblocks remain prohibited in the country and warned that heads of commands must enforce it and key into the road patrol strategy as an alternative to roadblocks.

  • Bauchi Gov Dissolves Bauchi Executive Council, Fires All Commissioners

Governor Bala Mohammed of Bauchi State has dissolved the State Executive Council. This decision was contained in a statement by the governor’s special adviser on media and publicity, Mukhtar Gidado.

According to the communique, the dissolution took immediate effect. Those affected include the Secretary to the State Government, Sabi’u Baba; the governor’s Chief of Staff, Ladan Salihu, 21 Commissioners, and Special Advisers.

  • NIS reopens passport application portal

The Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) has announced the reopening of its passport application and payment portal. This is contained in a statement by NIS Spokesman, Mr Amos Okpu, in Abuja on Tuesday. The Comptroller-General of the service, Mr Muhammad Babandede, said the portal became effective from 12 midnight on Tuesday.

Babandede said the portal would allow eligible applicants to apply and make payments for the various categories of passports of their choice. He further explained that with the reopening of the portal, a new passport application and payment regime had begun. He said: “Applications and payments for passport services shall be made through the service website, www.immigration.gov.ng.

 

 

 

 

 

ECONOMY

  • Buhari Flags Off Deep Blue Project In Lagos

President Muhammadu Buhari has flagged off the Integrated National Security and Waterways Protection Infrastructure also known as the Deep Blue Project of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA). This Federal Government project aims to prevent illegal activities in the Nigerian Exclusive Economic Zone, enforce maritime regulations, enhance the safety of lives at sea, and prevent illegal activities in the inland waterways.

The project is being implemented by NIMASA, in conjunction with the Armed Forces, the Nigerian Police, the Department of State Services, and other security agencies. The project was conceived in 2017 and is fortified with land, sea, and air assets to comprehensively tackle maritime security threats.

  • Importers, agents groan as Customs adopt N404.97/$1 as new import duty rate

Importers in the country are to pay more, as the Federal Government, through the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) adopts a higher exchange rate band from N381 to N404.97 for calculation and payment of import duty. The situation, according to stakeholders, would trigger higher cost of goods in the market and trigger further the country’s already high inflation.

Newsmen gathered that the Nigeria Customs Service (NSC) has immediately implemented the rate on duty payable on consignments imported into the country. Therefore, all transactions and cargoes cleared from the port from Tuesday, had their duty computed based on the new rate of N404.97 to a dollar.

President, Shippers Association of Lagos, Reverend Jonathan Nicole told newsmen that the increment is not palatable with importers, because the move will increase the cost of cargo clearance. He noted that such developments would also cause hike in prices and goods in the market and lead to inflation.

  • Onion Marketers Threaten To Stop Supply To Southern Nigeria

The Onion Producers and Marketers Association of Nigeria has threatened to stop the supply of onions down to the South from June 7, 2021. The group said it would carry out the threat if the government fails to compensate its members who have suffered losses in recent times following attacks in some parts of the country. President of the association, Aliyu Umar, made this known to journalists in Sokoto State.

He explained that the government under a committee led by the Kogi State Governor Yahaya Bello had promised to compensate their members, many of whom suffered huge losses in Abia, Imo and Oyo States during the #EndSARS and Shasha market crisis. However, according to him, the promise has not been kept and the members have reportedly lost over 4 billion naira. In recent times, the price of Onions skyrocketed from just about ₦20,000 to nearly a hundred thousand, in less than a year – a situation which quickly gave it the reputation of ‘new gold’.

  • Federal Govt targets 4 million bpd oil production

The Federal Government plans to raise the daily oil production from 1.4 million barrels per day (bpd) to four million bpd, President Muhammadu Buhari hinted on Monday. Nigeria, which has daily capacity to produce 2.5 barrels, produces 1.4 million barrels due to the Organisation of Oil Producing Countries (OPEC) quota.

Speaking at the 4th Edition of the Nigeria International Petroleum Summit in Abuja on Monday, the President also reiterated the government’s determination to build up the nation’s crude oil reserves to 40 billion barrels. The President was represented by Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva.

  • FG Targets Over 9.1 Million Pupils For School Feeding

The Federal Government on Tuesday said it is targeting over nine million pupils in public schools across Nigeria in the second phase of its school feeding programme. Under the scheme, the pupils will receive free daily meals courtesy of the Federal Government. The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Farouk, made the announcement during a press briefing in Abuja. Those to benefit will be pupils in primary one to three across 54,619 schools nationwide.

Sadiya Farouk discosed that one million Nigerians will also receive N5,000 for six months under the Rapid Response Register, an intervention by the Federal Government targeted at urban informal workers impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic. On the N-Power programme, the Minister said 550,000 applicants qualified for the final selection of the first stream of Batch C and that another 500,000 will subsequently be engaged.

 

 

 

 

 

POLITICS

  • 2023: Oke Ogun APC elders endorse Akande for Gov

Elders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in 10 local government councils in Oke Ogun area of Oyo on Tuesday endorsed Professor Adeolu Akande for governor. They promised to mobilise for his victory at the primary and general elections in 2023. The elders made the resolution in Ilero, Kajola Local Government, after a stakeholders meeting presided over by Alhaji Abu Gbadamosi.

The meeting also resolved not to vie for the chairmanship of the APC in the forthcoming congress of the party. The stakeholders noted that Oyo North Senatorial District has produced the chairman of the party for the past 10 years in the person of Chief Akin Oke, adding it is the turn of other zones to produce his successor.

The meeting, which also had former Commissioners, former House of Assembly members, former local government chairmen and former party officials, commended members of the party for trooping out en masses to register in the last party membership exercise commended the zone for coming out with the highest number of registered members in the party.

  • Emenike chairs APC 7-man committee to screen Anambra gov aspirants

The National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Caretaker/Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee (CECPC), Governor Mai Mala Buni, has approved the appointment of a seven-member Screening Committee for the Party’s 2021 Anambra State Governorship aspirants.

The committee is chaired by a long-standing ally of President Muhammadu Buhari, Chief Ikechi Emenike. The committee is expected to conduct the screening in line with the provisions of the Party’s Constitution and Guidelines for the nomination of Candidates.

  • INEC releases notice for Anambra gubernatorial poll, warns against rancorous primaries

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has released notice of activities for the November 6, 2021 governorship election in Anambra State.
Chief Press Secretary (CPS) to the INEC Chairman, Mr. Rotimi Oyekanmi, who made the disclosure on Wednesday, said the notice was pasted at the commission’s offices in Anambra, in accordance with Section 30 of the Electoral Act 2010.

INEC had, in January, published the timetable and schedule of activities for the election. However, the commission appealed to political parties to conduct credible and rancour-free primaries in compliance with the law, regulations and guidelines of the commission. Oyekanmi said the electoral body had implemented the first activity on the timetable by publishing the official notice for the election in its offices in Anambra.

 

 

 

 

 

HEALTH

  • Nigeria gets $900m health grant

Global Fund has allocated $900 million to fight Acquired Immuno Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS), tuberculosis and malaria in Nigeria between 2021 and 2023.
This came as the federal, state and local governments were urged to channel resources for the strengthening of development partners’ various health interventions.

National Coordinator, Civil Society in Malaria Control, Immunisation and Nutrition (ACOMIN), Ayo Ipinmoye, who made the appeal yesterday in Abuja, referenced a report of the World Health Organisation (WHO), which placed Nigeria as the nation with highest malaria burden globally. He noted that the World Malaria Report 2019 put the country’s prevalence at 25 per cent of global cases.

 

 

 

 

 

EDUCATION

  • House committee rejects scrapping of NYSC

The Chairman House Committee on Youth Development, Mr Yemi Adaramodu, has given assurance that the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) scheme would not be scrapped. Adaramodu gave the assurance at the unveiling of nine books on NYSC and a maiden NYSC film to commemorate the 48th anniversary of the scheme in Abuja on Thursday. He said that sponsoring a bill for scraping the scheme should not rattle the agency because any member has the right to sponsor bill at the National Assembly.

Gov. Abdullahi Sule of Nasarawa State, who spoke in the same vein, said that he had headed many organisations that utilized the service of corps members, explaining that no amount of money can buy the unity that the scheme stood for.
While identifying with the virtues of the NYSC, Sule said it remained the only successful indigenous institution that brought Nigerian youth together to appreciate their diversities.

  • JAMB may conduct second UTME this year – Registrar

The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) may conduct a second 2021 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination for candidates with genuine registration challenges. The Registrar of the board, Prof. Is-haq Oloyede, made the disclosure on Wednesday in Lagos while monitoring profiling of candidates with 2021 UTME registration challenges.

He reiterated the board’s commitment to ensuring that every Nigerian child desirous of tertiary education would be given an equal opportunity. According to the registrar, some candidates were honest enough to say they did not have money to procure UTME forms.

  • FG Targets Over 9.1 Million Pupils For School Feeding

The Federal Government on Tuesday said it is targeting over nine million pupils in public schools across Nigeria in the second phase of its school feeding programme. Under the scheme, the pupils will receive free daily meals courtesy of the Federal Government. The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Farouk, made the announcement during a press briefing in Abuja. Those to benefit will be pupils in primary one to three across 54,619 schools nationwide.

  • Lagos fines 27 schools for exam malpractice

The Lagos State government has fined 27 private schools involved in examination malpractices N500,000 each. According to a statement by the Office of Education Quality Assurance, the fines followed their complicity in examination malpractice during the 2020 West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) and the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE).

Director-General, OEQA, Mrs. Abiola Seriki-Ayeni, said the fine was a warning, adding that repeat offense would lead to the deregistration of the school.
Chairman, Teaching Service Commission (TESCOM), Mrs. Elizabeth Ariyo, who led another investigation panel of enquiry involving 19 schools, warned them against breaching government’s trust by perpetrating examination malpractice

  • ‘Retired teachers are pivotal to education’

The Chairman, Odi-Olowo/Ojuwoye Local Council Development Area, Hon. Razak Ajala, has stressed the need to engage retired teachers to share their wealth of experience for the advancement of education in the country. He spoke at an Education Stakeholders Summit in Mushin, Lagos.

The stakeholders included the Parents’ Forum, teachers, school heads, and retired teachers, among others. Ajala noted that when stakeholders were involved in education, the work of government at all levels will be easier.
Education Secretary, Mushin Local Government Education Authority, Mrs. Olufemi Akinlude, who noted that education is a continuous process, said improving education required painstaking and collaborative efforts.

 

 

 

 

 

WORLD

  • G7 to provide 1bn COVID-19 vaccine doses to countries, says UK

G7 leaders will agree to expand global COVID-19 vaccine manufacturing to provide at least one billion doses to the world through sharing and financing schemes, Britain said on Thursday. The announcement came after the United States said it would donate 500 million vaccines to 92 poor and lower-middle-income nations.

The UK, which is hosting the big powers’ gathering in southwest England, added it would donate at least 100 million surplus doses within the next year, including five million beginning in the coming weeks. The commitments follow growing calls for richer countries to step up their efforts to share COVID-19 shots with less-developed nations, with charities warning the current situation is leading to “vaccine apartheid”. Britain, which has orders for more than 400 million doses, has faced criticism for failing to begin making donations to poorer countries.

  • Man Slaps French President Emmanuel Macron

French President Emmanuel Macron was slapped in the face while greeting a crowd in southeast France on Tuesday, a security scare that drew widespread condemnation ahead of regional elections this month. Video footage on social media showed Macron approach a barrier to meet and shake hands with voters, where a man in a green T-shirt took hold of his elbow and said a few words before slapping him.

Macron’s bodyguards quickly intervened and two people were detained afterward, local officials said. Two 28-year-old men living in the region are being questioned, the local prosecutor’s office said, but “at this stage of questioning, their motives remain unknown.”

Macron, who remains a highly divisive figure, is widely expected to seek a second term in next year’s presidential elections and polls show him with a narrow lead over far-right leader Marine Le Pen. In a rare moment of national unity, even his fiercest critics and political rivals came to his defence on Tuesday.

  • China To Offer COVID-19 Vaccine To Children As Young As Three

China has approved the emergency use of a Covid-19 vaccine for those as young as three, the drugmaker confirmed Tuesday, making it the first country to offer jabs to young children. Since the coronavirus first emerged in central China, Beijing has mostly managed to bring the country’s outbreak under control, and has administered over 777 million vaccine doses after a sluggish start.

A spokesperson for Sinovac told AFP its vaccine had been approved for use on children. But he did not confirm when the young children would be able to start receiving the shots, saying the schedule for the rollout will be decided by the National Health Commission “according to China’s current epidemic prevention and control needs and vaccine supply”.

  • Vietnam Begs Public For ‘Vaccine Fund’ Donations After COVID-19 Surge

Vietnam, once a model for its successful handling of the pandemic, has started asking for public donations to buy vaccines as it struggles to contain a new coronavirus wave. The Southeast Asian country has vaccinated only about one percent of its population of nearly 100 million, and authorities have become increasingly alarmed by a recent spike in cases.

Across the country, tens of thousands of people have lost their jobs, according to state media, with bars and restaurants forced to close in major hubs such as Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City and public gatherings cancelled. The communist government has said it aims to secure 150 million vaccine doses this year to cover 70 percent of its population — at a cost of $1.1 billion. But only $630 million has been allocated to vaccine procurement in the budget.

  • Twelve Killed In Myanmar Military Plane Crash

Twelve people were killed when a Myanmar military plane carrying a senior monk and several donors to a religious event crashed in a central region of the country, a junta spokesman said Thursday. The plane, which was carrying six crew and eight passengers, crashed shortly before it was due to land in the city of Pyin Oo Lwin, spokesman Zaw Min Tun said in a statement, blaming “bad weather”.

Footage broadcast by local media showed wreckage strewn around the twisted body of a plane lying on open ground near overhead pylons, and a small plume of smoke billowing upwards. AFP was unable to verify the footage.

  • India Record Highest COVID-19 Deaths After Data Revision

India on Thursday recorded a global record of more than 6,000 coronavirus deaths in 24 hours after one state dramatically revised upwards its data, stoking suspicions that the country’s toll is much higher than reported.
According to health ministry figures, 6,148 people died in the previous 24 hours, taking total fatalities to almost 360,000, the world’s third-highest.

The previous world record according to an AFP tally was 5,527 in the United States on February 12, although this was also due to an upwards revision of earlier deaths. With record-keeping poor even in normal times, many experts believe India’s death toll is several times higher than the official number, meaning it could be over a million — which would make it the world’s highest.
Suspicions have been heightened by the fact that death rates in many countries, for example Brazil and the United States, are several times higher than in India.

 

 

 

 

 

 

ENTERTAINMENT

  • #TwitterBan: Actor Yemi Solade under fire for supporting Buhari

Veteran Nigerian actor, Yemi Solade, has come under fire for backing the Presidency on the recent Twitter ban. Solade, in an interview with GoldmyneTV, described the ban as the “best decision the Presidency could have made”.
According to him, the microblogging platform went too far by insulting President Muhammadu Buhari, and by extension, all Nigerians.

However, the actor’s claim did not go down well with Nigerians as they have slammed him across different social media platforms. A tweep, @kuntaclaus, said, “I just lost all my respect for Yemi Solade.” Another person, @localspicez, wrote, “Yemi Solade just set himself up for unnecessary avoidable ‘drags’. Imagine this one in government, he’ll surely misbehave.” “Yemi Solade will always defend this government as long as he is a paper carrying member of the APC (All Progressives Congress)” @adekoladammy tweeted.

  • DBanj set to reintroduce self with new single ‘Banga’

D’Banj is set to reintroduce himself to his fans and the music industry as he prepares to release a new single titled “Banga”. ‘Iambangalee’ revealed this via a post on his Instagram page on Monday, June 7, 2021. In the caption of his post, “Eja nla” revealed that his new singer, “Banga” will officially drop on Wednesday. The caption reads: “ Allow Me to ReIntroduce Myself. #BANGA … Coming Soon.

In May, Dbanj had declared his faith during a Christian concert he attended with his wife. The ‘Tongolo’ crooner in a video that made rounds on social media declared he is born again. The Nigerian singer also in the video spoke about how God blessed him with two kids after his first child drowned in a swimming pool in his home. Dbanj’s decision had generated several reactions on social media.

  • Tiwa Savage, Seyi Shay clash at popular Lagos salon

The long-standing rivalry between Nigerian pop stars, Tiwa Savage and Seyi Shay, took a different dimension on Tuesday when they finally engaged in a skirmish at an upscale salon in Lekki, Lagos. In a video making rounds on the internet, the artistes could be seen exchanging words, cursing each other and almost going physical save for the timely intervention of other patrons at the salon. Their confrontation began when Seyi Shay walked up to Tiwa Savage to say “hi” to her but it didn’t go down well with the latter.

Tiwa initially ignored her colleague and then blurted out, “Don’t come to me and think you can say hi, with the dirty and disgusting spirit that you have. You think I have forgotten how many years ago you and Victoria Kamani (Kenyan singer) did. Do you think I have forgotten? You think I can forget.” Seyi Shay said she made an attempt to reconcile with Ms Savage by saying “hi” to her but Tiwa stressed that if you have an “issue” with somebody, “you don’t try to squash it by saying hi, you try to squash it by calling me on the phone” to talk about it.”

  • Chinedu Ikedieze gets Aki memes minted as NFTs

Nollywood actor Chinedu Ikedieze aka Aki might just be setting the records as the first Nigerian actor to get his own NFTs. The actor recently confirmed that memes of his film character, Aki will be minted into non-fungible tokens, a digital asset which could be videos, pictures, audio, and other types of digital files.

The award-winning Nollywood comic actor, who gained popularity and breakthrough in the industry after the movie “Aki ni Ukwa” shared the information on his Instagram page on Tuesday, June 9, 2021.

 

 

 

 

SPORTS

  • 20-Year-Old Nigerian Footballer Drowns In Belarus

Nigerian footballer Kelvin Odenigbo has been found dead after the 20-year-old drowned in a lake in Belarus. His Belarusian club FC Vitebsk confirmed the sad incident, explaining that he drowned in Lake Beloye. While commiserating with the family and friends of the deceased player, the football team assured it will release further information about the footballer’s demise.

The Nigerian who played four games this season for the Belarus team also provided one assist for the sixth-placed club. He joined the club from the Nigerian National League team NAF Rockets FC, at the end of last season before sealing a permanent deal for the 11-match-old 2021/22 campaign.

  • Manchester City’s De Bruyne Wins PFA Player Of The Year

Kevin De Bruyne became just the third player to win the English Professional Footballers’ Association’s (PFA) player of the year for a second consecutive season on Sunday. The Belgium midfielder follows in the footsteps of Thierry Henry and Cristiano Ronaldo as the only other players to win the award in back-to-back years.

De Bruyne was vital to City’s third Premier League title in four years and a fourth consecutive League Cup triumph. The 29-year-old also guided City to the club’s first ever Champions League final, where his presence was badly missed during the latter stages of a 1-0 defeat to Chelsea last weekend as he was forced off early in the second-half with two fractures to his face.

  • Naomi Osaka Withdraws From Berlin Tournament

Naomi Osaka has pulled out of next week’s Berlin WTA grasscourt tournament in the wake of her controversial exit from the French Open, organisers confirmed Monday. Osaka has not said when she plans to play next, casting doubt on her participation at Wimbledon, which starts on June 28, and the Tokyo Olympics.
The 23-year-old four-time Grand Slam winner has been in the spotlight since withdrawing from Roland Garros after a dispute over her refusal to attend press conferences.

As a result, French tennis officials fined Osaka $15,000 and threatened to axe her from the tournament for not honoring mandatory media commitments, prompting the Japanese star to withdraw. On Saturday, Osaka, who revealed her ongoing battle with depression and anxiety which she said having to face the media exacerbated, thanked her supporters in a brief message on Instagram.

  • Debbie Hewitt Set To Be First Woman Chair Of English FA

English football’s governing body, the Football Association (FA), on Tuesday said former RAC chief executive Debbie Hewitt would become its first chairwoman, replacing Greg Clarke, who stepped down after his comments on diversity in the sport.

Hewitt was selected by a seven-member panel largely due to her successful career in business including at the RAC, a British automotive services company where she led all commercial activities, including roadside and recovery business.

More recently the 57-year-old has been non-executive vice-chairman of companies such as Visa Europe. Should she have her nomination confirmed by the FA Council on July 22, she will be a permanent successor to Clarke, as the governing body — founded in 1863 — strives to make football more inclusive.

  • Nigeria vs Cameroon 2nd Friendly In Vienna Ends in Draw

The second international friendly match between Nigeria and Cameroon in Vienna has ended in a goalless draw. Last week Friday, at the same venue, the Indomitable Lions won the first game by a lone goal and the Super Eagles were hoping to put up a better performance to avenge that defeat but the plan failed to manifest for Gernot Rohr’s team.

Nigeria had another opportunity to finish a counter-attacking move but couldn’t finish it. Coach Rohr is impressed that his team didn’t concede a goal despite the number of players that were missing. “I’m very happy for Valentine, a lot of people did not understand why he was with us but today he showed reasons why he can play with the team. He did so well in central defence,” he said.

  • UEFA Demands Ukraine Make Changes To ‘Political’ Jersey

UEFA on Thursday demanded that Ukraine make changes to their jersey for Euro 2020 to remove a “political” slogan that sparked protests from Russia. European football’s governing body said the message “Glory to the Heroes”, a rallying cry during the 2014 anti-Russia protests in Ukraine that is featured inside the shirt, was “clearly political in nature”.

Russia welcomed the move, but the Ukrainian football association said it was in talks with UEFA to reverse its decision. The Ukrainians stressed that “earlier UEFA had approved the new kit and every element of it, including the slogan.” But UEFA said the map would not need to be removed or changed because a United Nations General Assembly Resolution “recognises the territorial borders as broadly depicted by the design”.

 

 

 

 

 

METRO PLUS

  • Igangan: Makinde Vows to End Insecurity In Oyo State

Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde, on Tuesday, declared that he would do everything within his powers to safeguard the lives of residents of the state.
Governor Makinde said his government would do everything possible to prevent a recurrence of violent attacks on Igangan and other communities.

Makinde made this declaration in Igangan, Ibarapa North Local Government, where he visited the families of last weekend’s attacks, stating that the state would empower local security guards and vigilantes in addition to other measures taken to ensure that insecurity becomes a thing of the past in Ibarapaland. He added that the government has been able to identify areas where there are lapses, calling on the people to give his government the opportunity to address the situation and put in place the right architecture that will enable them to return to their normal lives without fear.

  • Northern women demand referendum to end insecurity

Northern women group, Jam’iyyar Mayan Arewa (JMA), has called for national conference or referendum to address the spate of insecurity, killings and banditry ravaging parts of the country, especially the North. Since the emergence of Boko Haram in 2009, Nigeria has variously suffered spates of attacks, insurgency, banditry, but recently the insecurity has become heightened with kidnapping and killings coupled with threats of secession in the South followed by the killing of Northerners and burning of their properties in the Southeast and Southwest geopolitical zones.

While protesting the spate of killings which, they said have turned their children to orphans carried placards with various inscriptions such as, “#Stop Banditry in Arewa,” “#Stop Killing Northerners,” “#Safe Arewa,” “#Referendum is the Answer,” and “#Jaw Jaw not War War” among others.

  • Poverty, unemployment fueling insurgency – President Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari has stated the the security crisis in the Northeast has been largely fueled by unemployment and poverty. The President, who spoke during an exclusive interview with a team of Arise Television Executives, led by its Chairman Prince Nduka Obaigbena, also confessed it has been extremely difficult fighting corruption under a democratic setting.

Buhari also said he believed the majority of the Boko Haram members are Nigerians after being told so by the Borno Governor Babagana Zulum. According to him, his government has done a lot to fight the terrorists but the problem in the “North-East is very difficult.”

  • Judiciary Workers Suspend Strike, After More Than Two Months

The Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN) has suspended its industrial action after over two months. The union had embarked on the strike on April 6, shutting down all courts nationwide, to demand financial autonomy for the judiciary in states.

JUSUN’s suspension of the strike followed a meeting of its national executive council (NEC) held in Abuja on Wednesday. The National Judicial Council (NJC) and members of JUSUN met with a view to finding a lasting solution to the lingering strike. The Chief Justice of Nigeria, Tanko Muhammad, and other stakeholders during the interface, lamented that the strike had affected the Judiciary in particular and the nation at large and therefore sought a way to resolve the lingering issue.



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