Buhari promises Dapchi 105 released schoolgirls safety

By NewsDesk,

Barely 48 hours after controversial numbers of Dapchi abducted schoolgirls were released by their abductors, President Muhammadu Buhari has assured the girls and their parent of safety,just as he urged them to pursue their dreams unconditionally.

Buhari informed the innocent children that their safety were paramount to his government and that efforts were on to also rescue remaining Chibok schoogirls and other Nigerians in captivity of terrorists.

It could be recalled that the girls were released by Boko Haram two days ago, weeks after members the group abducted from Government Girls Science and Technical College, Dapchi, in Yobe State.

Speaking the children who were in Aso Rock to meet with the president after their released, Buhari confirmed that 105 Dapchi schoolgirls and two others previously abducted by the insurgents were unconditionally released by their abductors, and that the development which he described as cheering and hearty,  signified commitment of his administration to security and well-being of all Nigerians.

“To the rescued students, we want to reassure you as our daughters that you will freely live and pursue your dreams in Nigeria of peace and order, without fear of violence or molestation.

“While parents of the Dapchi girls rejoice because of the reunion with their children, I want to appeal to the Chibok Community never to lose hope or to despair.

“We are determined as never before, to bring back our remaining Chibok daughters and this, we must accomplish and that will be soon, by God’s grace,” he added.

The president, who visited Yobe State a week ago during which he sympathised with the parents, families, and people of the state on the tragic abduction of the students in Dapchi, reminded that he made a solemn pledge that Federal Government would do everything possible to ensure the unconditional release of the girls.

“We are never in doubt about our focus and direction since the assumption of this administration – security, anti-corruption and revamping of our economy are the main focus of our government.

“We reached out to our contacts at home and abroad, we embarked on backchannel shuttles with a clear view to bringing to an end this tragedy.

“We entered into negotiations solely to make sure that no single girl was hurt. This strategy paid off as the girls have been released without any incidents,” the President added.

Social media war trails Nigeria model’s N40M claim signature hairstyle

By NewsDesk,

Comments across various social media platforms have continue hitting Nigerian model, Chika Lann, after she claimed that signature hairstyle cost N40 million.

Lann, who made the claim during media chat, stated that she that her hair in several long strands of woollen threads strung together to form a ‘basket like’ shape, said that the sytle cost several millions of Naira if she was not exaggerating.

.The top model and fashion enthusiast added that she loves to showcase her unique personality and thus, and that her personality could be difficult to understand.

She said, “I have been asked on several occasions about this question. Sometimes is not really easy to understand my personality.

“Talking about my hairstyle, this hairstyle is worth 40 million”

“I love to be unique. Because when you look around you will see that everyone style look alike and I am the kind of person that can spend any kind of money.

“I can go through any kind of stress or inconveniences just to stand out from the crowd,” Lann added.

Her claim was met with skepticism and clap backs from some Nigerians on social media, especially Instagram, who argued that the hair could not cost so much.

A social media commentator wrote, “She said 40 million, so till she defines the currency, we would say it’s just nothing.”

Another Tallyenzo said, “40 naira or 40 million, because its thread that I see.”

Another one @Anike_fabrics wrote, “We are sorry, we are not fighting you. On behalf of fellow Nigerians, 40 million what? Thank you.”

However, Lann shared a video on Friday, in response to the criticisms reiterating that the hair actually cost N40 million.

She dispelled the notion that she was hard on drugs for claiming that the hair cost that much, stressing that she was in her right senses when she grated the interview.

South Sudan condemns US sanction on oil companies

By NewsDesk,

The South Sudan Government has condemned a recent decision by U.S. which laied sanction on 15 oil companies including two crucial government agencies, the action which the government claimed was a plot to fasten regime change and collapse the country’s President, Salva Kiir, government presidency.

Through Minister of Information, Makuei Lueth, the government informed newsmen in Juba on Friday that the imposition of sanctions during midweek by the U.S. State Department on the country’s oil operators showed Washington was motivated by regime change through cutting off the oil revenue which is key lifeline for survival of the world’s youngest nation.

According to its, the action is continuation of the same policy of regime change. The American government has been clear that current

leaders of South Sudan cannot continue,” Lueth said, referring to earlier remarks by U.S. diplomat Nikki Haley that President Kiir is “unfit partner.”

The sanctions were imposed on the state-owned Nile Petroleum Company, Dar Petroleum Operating Company(DPOC), Malaysia’s Petronas, Nigerian consortium Oranto Petroleum and other listed local companies barredfrom trading and dealing with U.S. based companies.

Oranto oil made entrance into South Sudan, Africa’s third largest oil producer last year to explore blocks in thenorthern Jonglei area.

“They are steps being taken so that the government can collapse and the rebels can take over.

“If they can sanction ministries of petroleum, mining and Nilepet so that the government collapses
within a short time,” he disclosed.

South Sudan depends 98 per cent on oil to finance its annual fiscal budget which has been hugely disrupted byover four years of conflict with production in the northern oil fields declining to less than 160,000
barrels a day.

The ministry of petroleum had earlier on projected to increase oil output to over 260,000 bpd as the completion of the Tharjiath oil refinery nears in Bentiu to help shore up the hugely battered economy amid hyperinflation.

South Sudan descended into violence in December 2013 after President Salva Kiir sacked his former deputy Riek Machar leading to fighting between mostly Dinka ethnic soldiers loyal to Kiir and ethnic Nuer soldiers loyal to Machar.

The violence has killed tens of thousands, leaving two million people displaced and two million others living as refugees in neighboring countries.

The efforts by regional leaders to revive the 2015 peace agreement shattered in the wake of renewed violence in July 2016 are yet to bear fruit as they have been indefinitely suspended after the warring parties failed to make headway.

Osinbajo puts FG’s school feeding program children beneficiaries at 7.4M

By NewsDesk,

The Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, has put number of children benefiting from Federal Government National Home Grown School Feeding Programme (NHGSFP) at 7.4 million, with the program been currently operating in 22 states of the country.

He said that the programme has been providing  social safety net that improves health and education of poorest and most vulnerable children and that NHSGSP was one of pillars of the social investment efforts of the government.

Osinbajo, who represented by Secretary to Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, at a National Symposium on NHGSFP in Abuja on Friday, stated that the present administration has plans to reach family unit in very real times, with good work in regard and the initiative was currently operating in 22 states in Nigeria with 7, 487, 441 pupils as beneficiaries.

At the symposium, organised in partnership with the National Social Investment Office, in honour of African Day of School Feeding, the vice president indicated that the NHSGSP was among the government’s efforts to combat poverty and that it was also anchored on ensuring nutrition for Nigerian children.

“I am amazed at the level this wonderful programme has attained; this is a major success recorded.

“We must appreciate the micro-economic effect of this; it has engaged 75, 330 cooks; over 8000 persons are employed in the value chain– that helps in fighting poverty,’’ he said.

He explained that there was need for all stakeholders to scale up their efforts at making the programme a huge success and that entire arms of government must strengthen commitments to NHSGSP.

However, the Special Advisor to the President on Social Investments, Maryam Uwais, said that objective of the meeting was to showcase the feeding program, its concept, process and challenges to generate the highest level of political commitment.

She dislcosed that the programme was functioning in 22 states including Abia, Anambra, Enugu, Oyo, Osun, Ogun, Ebonyi, Zamfara, Delta, Benue, Plateau, Bauchi, Taraba, kaduna, Akwa-Ibom, Cross River, Imo, Jigawa, Niger, Kano, Kastina and Gombe.

According to her, Ondo and Borno will begin before month runs off.

“During the 26th African Union Summit in Jan. 2016, the heads of states adopted school feeding programmes as a continental strategy to enhance retention and performance of children in schools and to boost income generation and entrepreneurship in local communities.

“NHGSFP is one of the major pillars of the social investment effort of the present administration that seeks to impact on the lives of millions of Nigerian in the most direct way possible.

“The others include National Cash Transfer Programme(NCTP), NPower, Government Enterprises and Empowerment Programme(GEEP).

“All these programmes have achieved profound successes so far. One the most important aspects of the social investment programmes is the millions of Nigerians who have and would benefit directly and indirectly from each of the various schemes.”

She hinted that social investments had recorded 7.9 million direct beneficiaries since inception and had presence in 36 states of the federation and Federal Capital Territory and that through NPower, 200,000 graduate beneficiaries were currently enrolled and working in various institutions around the country.

“20,000 graduate beneficiaries in non-graduate category have commenced training in 34 states around the country.

“GEEP has 259, 541 beneficiaries of 4, 784 cooperatives that have paid across the country.

“NCTP has commenced developing a social register in all states that have met the criteria provided in the MoU signed with our office.

“So far, we have 455, 857 poor and vulnerable households uploaded onto the National Social Register, from which 297, 973 households have been mined and are being mined and being paid stipends in 20 states,’’ she said.

She listed the states benefitting from NCTP as Jigawa, Bauchi, Kogi, Osun, Cross Rivers, Anambra, Kastina, Kano, Taraba, Gombe, Adamawa, Niger, Nasarawa , Benue, Oyo, Ekiti, Kwara, Borno, Kaduna and Plateau.

Kano PDP links Ganduje to police turning down rally

By NewsDesk,

Following Kano State Police Command turning down of People Democratic Party (PDP) planned rally request for approval but was stop before its slated March 24, the party has linked the State Governor Baudllahi Ganduje to the police’s action, with threatened to take legal action against state government for allegedly using office to intimating the party.

It indicated that during the rally disrupted, the party planned to receive the gubernatorial candidate of People Democratic Movement (PDM), Engr Bashir Ishaq and his supporters into the PDP.

The chairman, State Chairman, Mas’ud Doguwa,said as a matter of official courtesy and to ensure adequate security coverage, the party wrote to inform all relevant security agencies including the Nigeria Police and the DSS weeks ago.

Speaking on Friday through a statement issued to prove that it was ready to marry.

He explained that all the security agencies assured the party of their cooperation which gave them the courage to go ahead with their preparations.

“The police only yesterday (Thursday) communicated to us another decision adivising that we shelve our planned rally over what they maliciously called “security challenges”.

He alleged that it was the state government that planned and decided to give the party what he described as ‘Kwankwassiyya treatment’.

He said the 1999 constitution as amended in sections 40 and 41 (1) and (2) A has guaranteed every Nigerian freedom of assembly and association with other persons including belonging to any political party.

He said the constitution did not require the party to ask for permission pointing out that the party had done the needful.

“It is only fair if a registered political party is allowed to exercise its constitutionally guaranteed fundamental human rights to assemble in Gaya tomorrow, “he said.

Argentina places Russian 2018 World Cup trophy hope on Messi

By SportDesk,

The Argentine national team’s manager, Jorge Sampaoli, has said that Spanish side, FC Barcelona,    forward, Lionel Messi, has talent and maturity to carry Argentina’s hopes of a successful 2018 FIFA World Cup campaign this year,says.

Two-time winners Argentina open their World Cup campaign with a Group D encounter against Iceland on June 16, and will also face Croatia and Nigeria in the pool stage.

Five-time Ballon d’Or winner Messi has led Spanish clubside FC Barcelona to 30 domestic and European trophies during a stellar career.

But he is yet to win a major trophy with the national team, apart from a gold medal at the 2008 Olympics.

Argentina finished runners-up to Germany at the 2014 World Cup and to Chile at the 2015 and 2016 Copa America tournaments.

Sampaoli believes that Messi can help the team go one step further and end their trophy drought in Russia.

“This is going to be his team,” Sampaoli told a news conference.

“He is the best of all and is in a stage of maturity that he can carry the team on his shoulders. This is going to be his team.”

Messi initially announced his retirement from international football after the loss to Chile in 2016, but the 30-year-old has since reversed his decision.

He is the all-time top goal-scorer for both club and country.

Meanwhile, Manchester City forward Sergio Aguero has been ruled out of Argentina’s friendly against Italy at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester on Friday due to a knee injury.

However, he could return for next week’s trip to Spain.

“We’ve been talking to the doctors here at Manchester City and trying to evaluate his situation to see if he can play any part.

“It looks like he’ll be sitting out the first one and we’ll see about the second one,” the former Chile manager added.

Sampaoli believes the friendlies against Italy, who failed to qualify for the World Cup finals, and Spain present an opportunity for Argentina to send out a warning to their opponents.

“Everyone gives us a leading role in the World Cup and my obligation is to increase that, to try to make the rivals fear us even more. Today, Argentina is much respected,” he said.

NSCDC raises alarm on how women rob with Okada in Bauchi

By NewsDesk,

The Bauchi State Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) Command, has raised alarm that women were now new part of tactics motorcycle thieves use for carrying out robbery in the state.

However, Commandant, NSCDC, Bauchi State, Ibrahim Raji stated case of one Hauwa Saleh  of Turum ward in Bauchi, was brough to attention of the police and it was learnt that the woman who pretending to be a passenger, had lured one Usman Sani, 30, to a bush, where he was robbed of his motorcycle.

Bauchi while parading before newsmen, some suspects, namely Hauwa Saleh, 40, Illiyasu Abubakar, 30, Adamu Ali, 29 and Abdullahi Ahmadu, 42.

The commandant alleged that during the week, the commander explained that Hauwa had requested her victim to take her to a village but on their way, asked the motorcyclist to stop, from where Abubakar and Ali, 29, all emerged from hiding to disposes him of his motorcycle.

The commandant said that the suspects, armed with sticks and cutlass, beat up their victim to the state of comma, inflicting injuries on his head.

He said that the suspects took their victim’s motorcycle to one Nuhu (now at large) of Mararaba Liman Katagum who bought same at the rate of N70,000 and made part-payment of N20,000.

According to him, officials of the NSCDC trailed the suspects to their hideouts and later arrested them, including one Abdullahi Ahmadu, 42, of Kandahar, alleged to be their leader.

The commandant said that exhibits recovered from the suspects included one cutlass, one knife, one motorcycle and N1, 520 cash, adding that the suspects would be charged to court.

He therefore warned commercial motorcyclists to be wary of the type of passengers they carried, especially women.

Fielding questions from newsmen, the suspects confessed to committing the crime, saying they had committed similar crimes in the past, working as a syndicate under their leader, Abdullahi Ahmadu.

Afreximbank opens intra-Africa Trade $800M credit line across 55 banks

By NewsDesk,

Intra-Africa Trade may soon start performing beyond bounds with latest development from African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) which opened credit lines amounting to $800 million in 55 banks across Africa to facilitate confirmation of letters of credit to support the continent trade hub.

The bank said that under the strategy launched in 2016, about $25 billion would be disbursed in support of intra-African trade during the five years ending in 2021.

The Director and Global Head, Communications and Events Management Department, Afreximbank, Obi Emekekwue, explained that the bank’s President, Dr Benedict Oramah, disclosed the strategy at the signing of African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreement in Kigali.

Speaking on Friday on the development, Oramah disclosed that under the strategy launched in 2016, about $25 billion would be disbursed in support of intra-African trade during the five years ending in 2021.

He hinted that the bank’s goal was to extend such lines to at least 500 banks in all African countries by 2021 in order to significantly reduce the cost of intra-African trade finance.

According to him, the aim is to counter the constraints posed by country risks associated with the confirmation of such letters of credit and Afreximbank was also on the verge of launching an intra-African trade platform that would facilitate the clearing and settlement of intra-African trade transactions in African currencies.

He signified that the platform would significantly reduce use of hard currencies in the settlement of such trade andthat 44 African countries had so far signed the Agreement Establishing the AfCFTA, while 43 countries signed the Kigali Declaration for the Launch of the AfCFTA.

The bank’s boss stated that 25 countries had signed the Protocol to the Treaty Establishing the African Economic Community relating to Free Movement of Persons, Right of Residence and Right of Establishment.

Afreximbank is the foremost pan-African multilateral financial institution devoted to financing and promoting intra-and extra-African trade.

The bank was established in October 1993 by African governments, African private and institutional investors and non-African investors.

Since 1994, it has approved more than $51 billion in credit facilities for African businesses, including about $10.3 billion in 2016.

Afreximbank had total assets of $11.7 billion as at Dec. 31, 2016 and it is rated BBB+ (GCR), Baa1 (Moody’s), and BBB- (Fitch).

Man lands inside police cell after breaking 12yrs boy limb while punishing over disobedience

By NewsDesk,

A 50 years old man. identified as, Sirajo Mohammed, has landed inside Gombe State Police Command for allegedly breaking limbs of a 12- year-old boy while disciplining him.

The Commissioner of Police, Shina Olukolu, said that the victim was alleged to have stolen a mobile phone from his neighbours which led to the tying of his hands by the suspect.

“The tying of the boy’s hands was supposed to be a corrective measure taken by the suspect to discipline the victim from 0900 hours to 1800 hours of March 6.

“In the process, the victim developed injuries and complication resulting to the amputation of both limbs by medical doctors at the Federal Teaching Hospital, Gombe to save the life of the boy,’’ Olukolu said.

The commissioner further said the state police command had also arrested a 25-year-old man, Ibrahim Umar alleged to be a specialist in robbery and stealing.

He said that Umar was said to be a specialist in stealing motorcycles from banks within Gombe metropolis.

He said the suspect was arrested and fabricated master keys used to steal motorcycles were found on him when the police searched him.

Trump signed memo against China drops stock market

By NewsDesk,

Hours after U.S. President, Donald Trump, signed a presidential memorandum that could impose tariffs on up to $60 billion of imports from China, the trade war was said to have ignited caused a dip in stock markets of both countries..

After the announced signed memo,Dow Jones industrial was reported to had average dropped more than 700 points as investors worried that trade tensions between the world’s largest economies would escalate, MSN reports on Friday.

The planned sanctions include tariffs on $60 billion worth of Chinese imports as well as restrictions on Chinese investments.

Mr Trump said he is taking those steps in response to theft of American technology but the Chinese government was quick to confirm it will defend itself.

Investors are worried that trade tensions would hurt US companies and harm the world economy.

On Thursday they fled stocks and bought bonds, which sent bond prices higher and yields lower.

With interest rates falling, banks took some of the worst losses. Technology and industrial companies, basic materials makers and healthcare companies also fell sharply.

Peter Donisanu, an investment strategy analyst for the Wells Fargo Investment Institute, said the risk of a damaging trade war is still low because the Trump administration is targeting specific goods that are not central to China’s economy.

That could change if it puts tariffs on products like electronics or appliances imported from China.

Reuters also reports that war between the world’s two largest economies jolted China’s markets on Friday, with the country’s main stock indexes tumbling the most in six weeks, while bond yields fell as investors rushed into less risky assets.

But in contrast to stock market ructions, the country’s currency markets remained quiet, with analysts expecting that any Chinese response to U.S. trade actions is unlikely to include changes in its foreign exchange policy.

China shares fell sharply after Beijing unveiled plans for tariffs on up to $3 billion of U.S. imports in retaliation to U.S. duties on Chinese steel and aluminium products went into effect on Friday.

China urged the United States to “pull back from the brink”, while its embassy in Washington vowed Beijing would “fight to the end” in any trade war with the United States.

The Shanghai Composite index closed down 3.6 percent at 3,152.76 points, its lowest close since Feb 9.

China’s blue-chip CSI300 index was down 2.9 percent at 3,891.47, its lowest close since Feb. 12.