Friday, 15 January 2016

Photos: Goodluck Jonathan is a grandfather again!

Former Nigerian President, Goodluck Jonathan's adopted daughter Inebharapu Paul welcomed her first child with husband Simeon Onyemaechi on Jan. 11th at Memorial Hospital West, In Pembroke pines Miami, Florida. The couple got married in December 2014.

Jonathan left everything he is doing in Nigeria  to join the new mother and her husband yesterday in Miami Florida. Their son has been named Kachiside Onyemachi, meaning "The way God has written it" Congrats to them!

linda's blog

Meet the Mentors, Host & Contestants as RedTV present Interiors by Design – Nigeria’s 1st Interior Design Reality TV Show

This season RedTV bring you Nigeria’s first Interior Design reality competition – Interiors by Design which will air on RedTV.

Interiors by Design will pit 15 aspiring interior designers against each other in a quest to be the winner of the competition. In the first season the designers go head to head to see who truly is the most talented. Each week the winning and losing contestants will be selected by a highly esteemed panel of judges.
Who are the judges?
Titilope Fowora – Lead Judge and Mentor
She is the glamorous Lead Interior Designer with Inu Design Ltd and the principal host and mentor on Interiors by Design. A veteran in the industry and one of the pioneers of the design practitioner renaissance currently emerging across Africa, she brings over a decade of experience, with commissions across the globe.
Extremely proud of both her cultural heritage and the potential of the youth in Nigeria, Inu Design is headquartered in Lagos where the business has been at the vanguard of the industry, providing creative solutions for an eclectic clientele. Keen to share her knowledge, Titi heads the committee of Continuous Professional Development Programmes at the Interior Designers Association of Nigeria of which she is also a member.
Titi is the holder of a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from The University of Kent at Canterbury as well as a full Interior Design Diploma from The Design School, London. She also sits on the board of AFPCM, a construction management company with over 35 years of design and project management experience. Prior to her career in interior design she worked in finance, specialising in English corporation tax. It is this winning combination of industry expertise and business acumen that makes her the consummate host for the show.
Osaru Alile – Judge & Mentor
She holds a BFA in Interior Design from Fashion Institute of Technology in NYC – while in school she worked as a design assistant with studioLUXE learning the ropes of the professional world and thereafter as an Interior designer with CetraRuddy Architects, also in NYC.
On leaving CetraRuddy, She co-founded Caxton Alile Design and CC Interiors Limited and has since successfully worked on numerous creative projects in the UK, USA and here, in Nigeria. CC Interiors has since been recognized as an award-winning firm whose main focus is in Interior Architecture and Design Consultation for Residential, Commercial and Hospitality spaces. Osaru acts as a GLOBAL SHAPER in the Lagos Hub of the World Economic Forum (WEF), she was selected in 2014 as a Vital Voices GROW Fellow and sits as the committee chair for education, Interior Design Association of Nigeria (IDAN).
She is very passionate about creativity, entrepreneurship, education and the empowering of Nigerian Youths “I believe it is important to support Young Entrepreneurs in Nigeria because we face hurdles which are unique our nation and can potentially stunt organic business growth, We must be equipped with the knowledge & confidence to see bold ideas through!”
Each week there will be a different guest judge from the various fields of interior design.
Akinola Fafowora – The Host
  Akinola is fast becoming an emerging talent in the entertainment industry, he will be the host of the series, giving us insight to tensions between the contestants. 
The Contestants
ABODERIN Olalekan, University of Lagos, Architecture
AKPOGHENE Ese, Covenant University, Architecture
BABALOLA Seun, Covenant University, Architecture
CHINWUBA Oluchi, Anambra State University, Accounting
CHUKWU Vivian, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Architecture
IJEOMA Matilda, Lagos State University, International Relations MOHAMMED Ummi, University Of Lagos, Urban&Regional Planning
OLADEJI Folarin, Ogun State Polytechnic, Town&Regional Planning 
OLANIPEKUN Tayo, Olabisi Onabanjo University, Architecture
Olanrewaju Shem Oseni, University Of Lagos,Architecture
OLAWORE Ifeoluwa, Covenant University, Estate Management
  OSUNSANYA Olutayo, University Of Ilorin, Mechanical Engineering TIJANI Ohunene Zainab, University of Abuja,Mathematics
Ukpe Mfon JAmes, Federal University Otueke, Political Science
Please join us as the contestants endure a series of design challenges meant to separate the wheat from the chaff and leave us with one incredibly talented winner! Ukpe Mfon JAmes, Federal University Otueke, Political Science
Please join us as the contestants endure a series of design challenges meant to separate the wheat from the chaff and leave us with one incredibly talented winner! 

WHO declares Ebola epidemic over as Liberia is cleared...

The World Health Organization (WHO) on Thursday, January 14, announced that the Ebola epidemic that has ravaged West Africa for two years was over after Liberia, the last affected country, received the all-clear.

"Today the World Health Organization declares the end of the most recent outbreak of Ebola virus disease in Liberia and says all known chains of transmission have been stopped in West Africa," the UN health agency said.
It however stressed that the job is not over as it is too early to declare an end to the epidemic.

"We need to remain engaged," Peter Graaff, WHO director responsible for Ebola response, told reporters.
"We still anticipate more flare-ups and must be prepared for them" he added
One of the most feared diseases in the world, Ebola killed more than 11,000 people across west Africa after it surfaced in southern Guinea in December 2013.

At its peak, the tropical haemorrhagic virus devastated Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, dealing a hammer blow to weak economies and fragile health systems.
The announcement came 42 days -- the equivalent of two incubation periods of the virus--after the last Ebola cases in Liberia were tested negative. The hit by the outbreak with 4,800 deaths, discharged its last two patients from hospital -- the father and younger brother of a 15-year-old victim -- on December 3, 2015.

The outbreak infected almost 29,000 people and claimed 11,315 lives, according to official data.
linda's blog

Missing budget: Senate sets up search c’ttee

File: Buhari during the 2016 budget presentation to the National Assembly.
ABUJA — SENATE President, Dr Bukola Saraki, tacitly admitted, yesterday, that the 2016 budget was missing from the National Assembly, when he openly said a search committee set up by the Senate for the missing document would present its report today.
Saraki’s confirmation of the report came just as Vanguard gathered that the search committee quizzed aides of President Muhammadu Buhari in the National Assembly as well as staff of the offices of the clerks to the Senate and House of Representatives, yesterday.
Vanguard sources said those interrogated gave useful information to the committee which would be presented to the Senate in plenary today.
The Senate President, who had earlier at the beginning of Senate’s session, yesterday, announced to senators that copies of the 2016 budget document would be made available to them today, in readiness for general debate on it next Tuesday, eventually owned up on the missing document while responding to Senator Abaribe’s point of order.
Abaribe had, through Order 42(1) of the Senate standing rule, drawn the attention of the Red Chamber to media reports that the budget document was missing and called for immediate deliberation on it by pointedly asking the Senate President: “where is our budget?”
He said: “The matter that I refer to through this order, is what is in every newspaper today, everywhere in all the talkshows in  the radio of a missing budget and therefore Mr President, I want to bring to your attention and that of all my colleagues that yesterday ( Tuesday)  in our closed door session, this matter also came up and some of us who are worried, who have been inundated by messages from our constituents who are really worried about what their fate will be in 2016, are asking us, where is our budget.
“That is why Mr President, I think, it is definite and it is urgent that we look into this matter of missing budget now.”
Abaribe’s submission pushed Saraki to admit that the budget document was not in sight in the Senate, contrary to the earlier denial of the Senate that the document was missing.
Saraki did not only confirm that the issue was raised and discussed at the Senate closed door session on Tuesday but also said a search team had been set up to look for the missing document.

Search c’ttee to submit report today
Saraki added in his response that the search committee set up on the missing budget is expected to file in its report today, which according to him, would help in ending the quagmire.
He said: “Because of the importance of this matter raised through your point of order, I will take it as an exception in not ruling you out of order.
“You know we were all part of the decision at the closed session yesterday (Tuesday), and as part of that decision, we are still waiting for those we have referred to carry out the assignment to come back to us.“I think they will come back to us by tomorrow (today) and we will go into a closed session again and finish up the report and we will be able to debate it properly.”

Anyanwu, Nwaoboshi, Ndume differ
Speaking to journalists after Senate plenary, yesterday, on the controversy, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Ethics and Privileges, Senator Sam Anyanwu (PDP, Imo East), confirmed that the search committee had already swung into action at unraveling circumstances that led to the missing budget.
According to him, ”the committee has as at this morning queried some people suspected to be involved in the missing document.”
He, however, added that the committee as disclosed by the Senate President at plenary, would turn in its report to the Senate today for deliberation.
Also, a member of the committee, Peter Nwaoboshi (PDP, Delta North), confirmed that the budget document was missing and the committee was investigating it.
He said: “The document is missing. We want to find out. We have interviewed some people so far this morning. We are continuing in the next few minutes with out investigation. And we are almost at it. We will conclude in the next few hours because we have already known what is happening.”
However, the Senate Leader, Ali Ndume, in his reaction, insisted that the document was not missing and that it would be distributed to senators today for commencement of general debate on it next Tuesday.vanguardnews

SINKING NAIRA: Senate summons CBN Gov, Emefiele

Mr Godwin Emefiele answering questions  during his screening by the Senate for  Central Bank Governorship in Abuja on Wednesday
The Naira appreciated yesterday to N302 per dollar in the parallel market, thus halting three days of sharp depreciation even as the price of Nigeria’s reference crude oil grade, Bonny Light, slid below the $30 per barrel mark, dropping to $29.47 per barrel.
Meanwhile, following the increasing depreciation of the Naira, the Senate, yesterday, summoned the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Governor, Godwin Emefiele, to appear before it next week.
From N305 per dollar, Wednesday, the parallel market exchange rate dropped to N302 per dollar at the close of business yesterday, indicating N3 appreciation.
President, Association of Bureaux De Change Operators of Nigeria, ABCON, Alhaji Aminu Gwadabe, said that the appreciation was occasioned by drop in demand for foreign exchange and indications that CBN might review its decision to stop dollar sales to bureaux de change, BDCs.
The naira depreciated in the parallel market by N25 naira between Monday and Wednesday, following the announcement by CBN on Monday to stop sales of dollars to BDCs.
Earnings dip
Also, the price of Nigeria’s reference crude oil grade, Bonny Light, slid below the $30 per barrel mark, dropping to $29.47 per barrel, according to data obtained, yesterday, from CBN.
This was even as the price of Brent crude, the benchmark crude oil grade, rose to $30.77 per barrel in the international market. Brent crude had dipped below $30 a barrel on Wednesday, for the first time in more than 10 years, a day after the U.S. benchmark took a similar fall.
Specifically, Brent traded as low as $29.96 a barrel before settling down 55 cents, or 1.8 percent, at $30.31 a barrel on ICE Futures Europe, the lowest settlement since April 2004.
Therefore, using an average crude oil production of 2.2 million barrels per day, as stated by CBN, it is expected that the total amount accruable to the Federal Government and oil companies in Nigeria on a daily basis would dip to $64.83 million, about N12.967 billion daily, using an average exchange rate of N200 to a dollar.
Job loss at BP, Shell, Chevron
Consequently, as a result of the continuous decline in the price of Nigeria’s Bonny Light and other crude oil grades, experts are predicting massive job cuts in the Nigerian and global oil and gas industry in the next couple of days.
Already, the world’s biggest oil companies are slashing jobs and discontinuing major investments, especially as the price of crude falls to new lows.
A report obtained from the Associated Press noted that companies that would be affected by the declining oil price would not only be the big oil producers, but the numerous companies that do business with them, such as drilling contractors and equipment suppliers.
Particularly, companies like BP, which had earlier in the week said it is cutting 4,000 jobs, had already commenced trimming down their operations to cope with the slump in oil, whose price had plummeted to its lowest level in 12 years and is not expected to recover significantly for months, possibly years.
The report had quoted Chevron as saying last year that it would eliminate 7,000 jobs, while Shell announced 6,500 layoffs.
Furthermore, some analysts are forecasting a drop near $10 a barrel, making companies to brace up for more trouble.
In particular, Michael Hewson, chief market analyst at CMC Markets, said: “Calling the bottom in a market is always dangerous, akin to catching a falling knife. But when the clamour for lower prices becomes a stampede, warning signs and alarm bells tend to start going off, which suggests that a more prudent approach might be advisable.”
The uncertainty, the report said, is making companies think twice before sinking money into new oil projects.
“On the North Sea, there is a standstill in the new project, which may create a hole in the pipeline of projects next year,” said Florent Maisonneuve, Managing Director and co-head of Oil & Gas at AlixPartners in Paris.
Subsequently, CBN had in its Economic Report for the Month of October 2015, put the average price of Nigeria’s reference crude, Bonny Light at $49.23 per barrel in October, indicating a 1.3 percent increase relative to the level in the preceding month.
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, on the other hand, had stated that of the 18.24 million barrels of crude oil lifted on the account of NNPC in October 2015, 12.07 million barrels and 6.17 million barrels were for domestic and export markets, respectively.
It said: “At an average oil price of $47.45 per barrel and exchange rate of N195.95 to a dollar, the domestic crude oil lifted by NNPC is valued at $572.998 million or a Naira equivalent of N112.279 billion for the period.
“The remaining crude oil lifted for export was valued at $305,856,048.03 at an average price of $49.58/barrel. The total value of crude oil lifted on the account of NNPC in October, 2015 was thus $878.854 million.ý”
Meanwhile, concerned by the increasing depreciation of the Naira, the Senate, yesterday, summoned the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, to appear before it on Tuesday next week at 11a.m., to explain the continuous weakening of Naira against the Dollar.
The development was sequel to a Point of Order raised by the Leader of the Senate, Ali Ndume, APC, Borno South.
The Senate President, Bukola Saraki, who presided over the plenary where the issue was raised, having listened to Senator Ndume, subsequently directed Ndume to convey the Senate’s resolution to the CBN governor.

Naira at lowest level in 43 years, now N305/dollar

As stock market losses peak at N1.2 trillion
*Market capitalization down by 12.36 per cent
By Emeka Anaeto, Economy Editor & Babajide Komolafe
LAGOS—The financial sector appears to have entered a heightened pressure, yesterday, as both the foreign exchange and stock market sustained major negative trends.
The Naira depreciated further to a 43-year low at N305 per dollar as scarcity of dollars intensified in the unofficial market.
From an average of N287 per dollar on Tuesday, the parallel market exchange rate rose to an average of N305 per dollar across the country.
Similarly, the new year stock market haemorrhage entered the eighth day yesterday, with a total N1.22 trillion losses to investors, giving a year-to-date decline of 12.36 per cent in market capitalisation.
The market key index, the Nigerian Stock Exchange All Share Index, NSE ASI, declined year-to-date by same margin.
The stock exchange, which opened this year at market capitalisation of N9.851 trillion began a free fall till yesterday, closing at N8.63 trillion while the NSE ASI which opened the year at 28,642.25 points closed yesterday at 25,103.05 points.
The losses were heightened in the last 48 hours with a cumulative two-day loss of N430 billion following the escalated foreign exchange management crises which came with CBN’s announcement of its decision to cease sale of foreign exchange to BDCs on account of the precarious state the operators had forced the entire economy.
Since Monday when the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) stopped weekly dollar sales to Bureaux De Change (BDCs), the Naira has been depreciating against the dollar.
BDC sources who confirmed the development to Vanguard , however, said that the exchange rate situation is uncertain as the rate changes from time to time. Vanguard investigation revealed that though the exchange rate touched N305 in major cities like Lagos, Abuja and Kano, it dropped slightly to between N295 and N300 per dollar in Lagos and Abuja at the close of business, while it closed at N305 in Kano.
Chief Executive Officer, H.J Trust BDC, Mr. Harrison Owoh, told Vanguard that the market is fluid.
“You cannot quote any rate for anybody now because the rate is changing every time.”
An Abuja based BDC operator who spoke to Vanguard on condition of anonymity said that the rate closed in Abuja at N298 but was above N300 during the day. He however said that it was difficult to quote any specific rate now as the situation was unpredictable. He opined that the rate would stabilize by next week, when the market would have absorbed the impact of the new CBN policy.
Financial analysts believe that the CBN’s state-of-the-economy address which came with the BDCs forex ban are having immediate negative effects on the economy, causing investors to withdraw from the Nigerian bourse to safer securities on the continent.
CBN justifies action against BDCs
Justifying the ban, the CBN Governor, Mr Godwin Emefiele, had said: “This fall in oil prices also implies that the CBN’s monthly foreign exchange earnings has fallen from as high as US$3.2 billion to current levels of as low as US$1 billion.
“Yet, the demand for foreign exchange by mostly domestic importers has risen significantly. For example, the last we had oil prices at about US$50 per barrel for an extended period of time was in 2005. “At that time, our average import bill was N148.3 billion per month.
‘’In stark contrast, our average import bill for the first nine months of 2015 is N917.6 billion per month, even though oil prices are now less than US$35 per barrel.
“The net effect of these combined forces unfortunately is the depletion of our foreign exchange reserves.
‘’As of June 2014, the stock of Foreign Exchange Reserves stood at about US$37.3 billion but has declined to around US$28.0 billion as of today.
“With the current economic realities in the country, the NSE, with the aim of hitting N200 trillion market cap by 2019, may well be moving away from its target.
Reps speaker meets BDC operators
Meanwhile, the Speaker of the House of Representatives yesterday held a closed door meeting with the leadership of the Association of Bureaux De Change Operators of Nigeria (ABCON) over the continued depreciation of the naira. The meeting was still ongoing as at the time of going to press.
Also today the Director General of the Nigerian Stock Exchange, NSE, Mr. Oscar Onyema is expected to present the market outlook where investors’ sentiment is expected to be shaped.

Medical doctor dies of Lassa Fever in Rivers

PORT HARCOURT—A medical doctor with Rivers State-owned Braithwait Memorial Specialist Hospital, BMH, Dr. Livy Ijamala, has died from Lassa Fever, bringing to three the number of people killed by the disease in the state.
Chairman of the state branch of Nigerian Medical Association, NMA, Dr. Furo Green, disclosed this yesterday in Port Harcourt, saying the late doctor, Ijamala, who died in the early hours of yesterday from the ailment, had contact with patients infected with Lassa Fever.
Dr. Furo added that the late medical doctor had been buried in line with recommendations of World Health Organization, WHO, for deaths from contagious diseases.
He also said a team from WHO had already visited the hospital for assessment, adding that the hospital had been decontaminated and that those who had contacts with the late Dr. Ijamala had been placed on observation.
He said: “Last night, one of our hard-working doctors in the department of obstetrics gynaecology, Dr. Livy Ijamala, lost his life following infection with Lassa Fever.
This is the price medical doctors and health personnel pay for offering health services to the public.
“The hospital is being decontaminated as we speak. All medical doctors and healthcare personnel that had primary contact with the late medical doctor have been placed under observation.”
… as doctors begin strike
He also said medical doctors in the state were on three days strike to protest the frequent abduction of medical doctors in the state.
He said within the week two of his colleagues, Dr. Isaac Opurum and Dr. Ib Aprioku were taken hostage at separate times. He said in 2015, 21 doctors were abducted in the state.
According to him, the warning strike was to draw attention to the plight of medical doctors.
He said: “While we are not happy to go on strike, the strike now appears to be a blessing in disguise because fewer doctors and patients came to the hospital today, thereby, reducing the rate of contacts among medical doctors and patients.”

Buhari’s aide gave us fake 2016 budget – Senate

Buhari presents N6.08trn 2016 budget to NASS
ABUJA — Rumblings over whereabouts of the 2016 Budget proposal of the Federal Government in the Senate came to a climax yesterday as the Senate accused the Senior Special Assistant to the President (Senate), Senator Ita Enang of doctoring and circulating fake copies of the budget proposals.
In defence of its integrity, the Senate vowed not to work on the fake proposals allegedly circulated by Enang until it receives an electronic copy of the budget document which will be reproduced for senators.
Vanguard also learned yesterday that the same alteration of the budget document was done in the House of Representatives, but House officials were quick to intercept the doctoring and insist on the circulation of the original proposals as submitted by the President.
Circumstances around the budget document became an issue last Tuesday when it emerged that the proposal as submitted by the President could no longer be traced. The discovery prompted the Senate into a closed-door session following which the Senate Committee on Ethics was mandated to investigate the issue. The issue also led the President of the Senate, Senator Bukola Saraki to meet with President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday afternoon.
Senator Saraki yesterday confirmed the doctoring of the budget proposals by Enang at the end of deliberations on the report of the Senate Committee on Ethics and Public Petitions on the issue. Saraki added that the available hard copy of the budget presented to the Senate was different from the one laid before the two chambers of the National Assembly by President Muhammadu Buhari, shortly before both chambers embarked on Yuletide break last December. Senate officials, however, shied away from pointing out the differences between the two copies yesterday.
Senator Saraki nevertheless, said the report of the committee fingered the Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters (Senate), Senator Enang, for the act. He said the Senate would as such suspend its initial plan to begin consideration of the 2016 appropriation bill until the Presidency submits the soft copy of the original budget that was laid before the two chambers of the legislature. His words:
“We have received the report of the Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions on investigations surrounding 2016 Appropriation Bill. Our finding is that Senator Ita Enang, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters (Senate), Ita Enang printed copies of the 2016 Appropriation Bill and brought to the Senate.
“We have discovered that what he brought is different from the version presented by Mr President. We have resolved to consider only the version presented by Mr President as soon as we receive soft copy of the original document from the executive.”
‘Budget not missing’But briefing newsmen, after the day’s plenary, Senate spokesperson, Senator Sabi Abdullahi, said, “The report about a missing budget is not true. We don’t have a budget that is missing. But you recall that the Senate President did inform Nigerians that there is an issue that a committee was asked to investigate. The investigation by the committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions, has been submitted in the executive session. It was a decision we took at the last executive session. “Our findings are these: That Mr. President did lay the budget before the joint session of the National Assembly and thereafter, the Senate went on recess and upon resumption, copies of the document were produced by Senator Ita Enang, who is the SSA to the President on National Assembly Matters (Senate) and the copies were submitted to the Senate and House of Representatives.
“What we found out is that the document submitted by Senator Ita Enang, upon our resumption, has some differences, discrepancies with what was originally laid by Mr. President in the joint sitting of the National Assembly.
“However, the Senate in defence of its own integrity, honour, will not work with what has not been laid on the floor of the National Assembly. We are constitutionally mandated and duty bound to consider only that budget that had been so laid by Mr President.
“Right now, for reproduction, we are awaiting the soft copy of the originally submitted budget so that the National Assembly can reproduce the copy itself. That is the only time we can have confidence in the document we want to work with.
“The budget submitted by the President is not missing; we already have copies of it but what we are saying is that for us to reproduce for our members, it is easier, based on the quantum of document that has to be produced, that we get the soft copy of that original version so that we can reproduce it. ‘“
He disclosed that the Senate has fixed Tuesday, next week to discuss the budget, saying copies of the document would be circulated to senators when the soft copy demanded from the presidency was received.
“By next week, we want to go down to business, senators have picked dates to speak during the three days set aside for debate on the 2016 budget.
“The Senate leadership was mandated to speak with all those concerned with the document, that was why the Senate President was in touch with Mr President.”
Abdullahi refused to speak on the claims by the House of Representatives that it had its own original version of the document.
“I am not in the position to say the differences between the document submitted by the President and the one brought by Ita Enang. The committee that investigated the issue did not include that in their report.
“As at the time the Senate President promised to make copies available to senators today (Thursday), he was working on the assumption that what was brought by the executive were copies of the original copies submitted by Mr President, but based on the outcry, it was discovered that there is another version different from what the President gave us,” he said.
Meanwhile, Senator Enang, who is at the centre of the development, has refused to comment on the level of his involvement, as alleged by the Senate.
Enang told journalists who sought his view on the matter that he would not join issues with senators.
“I have chosen not to comment on this issue for personal reasons.
‘’We must work together to make the Senate as an institution to grow. The President is my boss and the senators are my bosses. I won’t join issues with them. So, let the whole matter remain as it is”, he said.vanguardnews

N5,000 stipends: No country would give free money — Ngige


ABUJA—Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige, yesterday, said that the stipend of N5,000 promised by the government of All Progressives Congress, APC, for unemployed youths was not for the indolent people.
He said that no country would give free money, stressing that Nigeria would not be an exception.
Speaking to journalists yesterday at the national secretariat of the APC in Abuja, Ngige, however, revealed that the Federal Government would ensure that the youths were trained in various skills and programmes to justify the money.
He added that the project would also involve the state governments.
According to him, there will be categories of people, who would earn higher than the N5,000.
“We also have the programme on the commission cash transfer. Though even you, the press, has said it,  we won’t pay N5,000 for people to be indolent. No country in the world would pay people to go home and sleep and collect cash. So, Nigeria would not be an exception.
“We will pay some people N5,000, we will pay some N10,000, and even for people in teacher conversion scheme, we will pay more than N10,000 and N15,000 as stipend while in training, and then after the training, they are going to be employed by state government and the Federal Government in different institutions.
“It is not a programme we shall run alone, the state governments are going to buy into it. They are going to synchronize with us.We are going to do it in synergy.”
Ngige also stated that some of the programmes will “span through Ministry of Education, Ministry of Agriculture and Ministry of Labour.
“Agriculture, because we have some agricultural universities, we will convert some people to teach the relevant agricultural science.”
The minister who stated that Nigeria has various skill acquisition centers also underscored the importance of training the youth.
“The ministry has specialist skills acquisition centres; we have seven like that in the ministry under the commissioner of skills or directorate for skills.
“The NDE have over 120 centres scattered all over the country. We also have those that have been built by state government and we want to capture all of these into that scheme and then get people to the scheme to be bricklayers,  POP designers, builders, welders, electronics repairers and the one they called mecha-tronic, repair of vehicles, automobile carpentry, painting and fabrication of all sorts.”

Court orders Tompolo’s arrest


A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos, yesterday, ordered the arrest of a former Niger Delta militant leader, Government Ekpemupolo (aka Tompolo).
Trial judge, Justice Ibrahim Buba issued a bench warrant for Tompolo’s arrest after he failed to appear in court to face the criminal charges filed against him and others by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.
The judge had, on Wednesday, summoned Tompolo, ordering him to appear yesterday, but the accused did not turn up.
Other accused in the charge include a former Director-General of the Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, Patrick Akpobolokemi, who appeared in court in crutches; Global West Vessel Specialist Limited, Odimiri Electricals Limited, Kemi Engozu, Boloboere Property and Estate Limited, Rex Elem, Destre Consult Limited, Gregory Mbonu and Captain Warredi Enisuoh.
They were all in court and represented by counsel, except Tompolo.
Meanwhile, the charge was not read to the other accused persons as it is a joint trial, which requires the physical presence of all the accused persons, before the charge could be read to them and their plea taken.
EFCC’s prosecutor, Festus Keyamo, informed the court, yesterday, that the summons and charge were duly affixed on a conspicuous part of Tompolo’s home at 1, Chief Agbanu DDPA Extension, Warri, Delta State, as ordered by the court.
He said Tompolo ignored previous invitations by EFCC during investigation and failed to report to make a statement.
“We were able to go to Warri on Wednesday and pasted the processes on his wall. We took photographs of them as ordered by this court
“In view of the absence of the first accused (Tompolo) despite being served, may we come under Section 141 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA) 2015 to apply for a warrant of arrest.
“Even at the point of investigation, the accused person spurned all invitations to him. Now he has also disobeyed the court. We, therefore, apply under Section 141 so that we can compel his attendance,” Keyamo said.
Akpobolokemi’s lawyer, Dr Joseph Nwobike, SAN, said though he was not representing Tompolo, it would be in the interest of justice if the former militant leader was given more time  to be in court having only been served with the summons a day earlier.
“A person served in Warri, Delta State, may need some time to come to court, moreso, when he is outside jurisdiction,” he said.
But Keyamo pointed out that before the summons were issued, Tompolo had acted like an “outlaw.”
Ruling, Justice Buba said there was evidence that Tompolo had consistently ignored EFCC’s invitations, so he had no option than to order his arrest.
The court said, “The process is to serve him with summons to appear. Where he appears, that is the end of the matter. He will answer the charges. Where he fails to appear in obedience to the summons, the other process is to compel his attendance by way of arrest.
“There is an affidavit showing that the first defendant was served as ordered by the court. In the circumstance, the court is in a position to exercise its discretion to order for the arrest of Government Ekpemupolo (aka Tompolo) to compel his attendance to answer the allegations before the court.
“It is so hereby ordered that the warrant of arrest of Government Ekpemupolo (aka Tompolo) shall be issued forthwith.”
The accused persons in the 40-count charge were alleged to have  diverted N34 billion, which accrued from a public private partnership agreement between NIMASA and Global West Vessel   Specialist Limited for personal use.
The alleged offence contravenes Section 15 (1) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) (Amendment) Act 2012 and punishable under Section 15(3) of the same Act.
Meanwhile, further hearing in the matter was adjourned till February 8.

Musik Genie presents 2baba's new single, Coded Tinz, ft Phyno

2baba unlocks his brand new single to usher in the new year. The Award winning Hypertek Hip hop star brings to you the single titled Coded Tinz, in which he features Phyno and Chief Obi. As a trend setter, 2baba has released Coded Tinz exclusively through the excitingly trendy web & mobile music portal,

You simply cannot miss out on 2baba’s latest rave; to get the song CodedTinz, go to, where you can be listen, and trip you friends and loved one by dedicating Coded Tinz to them and all with intention of sharing love through music.

In this light, you can dedicate CodedTinz to a special person, and the more dedications you do, the closer you are to getting a Codedtin and a Selfie from 2baba himself. One love!

To get a Codedtin from 2baba you have to follow and like MusicGenie pages on Facebook : MusikGenie Instagram : @MusikGenie Twitter: @MusikGenie #Coded Tinz -
  linda's blog

Tuesday, 12 January 2016

Special Invitation: Roundtable Discussion on the Nigerian Economy in 2016

We are pleased to invite you to the Business Eye Magazine Roundtable Discussion, which will be gathering top public leaders, economic experts and analysts, captains of Nigerian industries, regulatory agencies and government officials, together to rub minds on the Nigerian economic outlook – expectations, reforms and changes - for 2016.

Our special guest and Keynote speaker is His Excellency, YemiOsinbanjo, the Vice President of the Republic of Nigeria. In addition, our panelists will include:

  • BabatundeRajiFashola, Federal Minister of Power, Works and Housing
  • ChibuikeRotimiAmaechi, Federal Minister of Transport
  • UdoUdoma, Federal Minister of Budget and National Planning
  • KemiAdeosun, Federal Minister of Finance
  • Bola Adesola, Managing Director of Standard Chartered Bank
  • Bismarck Rewane, Managing Director of Financial Derivatives Company Ltd
  • Doyin Salami, Member of the Monetary Policy Committee
  • AyodeleTeriba, CEO of Economics Associates
Details of the event are as follows:
Date: Thursday 14 January 2016
Venue: The Wheatbaker, 4 Onitolo (Lawrence Road), Ikoyi, Lagos.
Time: 9am – 12noon

Ashimolowo to Buhari: Looters deserve only 20% of your time

President Muhammadu Buhari has been advised to adopt the Pareto’s Principle in governance, where just 20 per cent of governance time is dedicated to the past, “otherwise, it will take forever for majority of Nigerians to see changes.”

Pastor Matthew Ashimolowo, Senior Pastor of Kingsway International Christian Centre, KICC, who gave the advice, said going by Parento’s Principle, the Federal Government should dedicate 20 per cent of its resources to going after perceived looters, while 80 per cent should be given to creating an enabling environment for Nigerians.
Speaking to journalists at the 10th edition of the annual widows New Year party in Ode-Omu, Osun State, he said: “President
Buhari is a man of great integrity, who wants the best for the country. But if he spends all his time pursuing looters, the majority of us who did not steal will suffer.
“Therefore, he must use the Parento’s Principle to approach governance. If you have your eyes permanently on the rear view mirror, you cannot drive fast. The past deserves just 20 per cent attention.”vanguard news

An 11-year-old just earned the highest IQ score possible

Kashmea Wahi, an 11-year-old student from the UK, just earned a place among the world’s intellectual 1 percent by getting a perfect score on her IQ test. The test’s maximum score is 161 for adults and 162 for test-takers below the age of 18. To make her achievement even more impressive, her score of 162 puts her two points higher than the likes of Stephen Hawking and Albert Einstein.
After stumbling upon the Mensa test while surfing on her iPad, Wahi decided to test herself as a way of proving a point to her parents, both IT management consultants at the Deutsche Bank in London. She figured an impressive score might be an effective way to stop her parents from nagging her to study.
Wahi is currently a student at West London’s Notting Hill and Ealing Junior School, where she helped her team secure third place at last year’s Oxford Maths challenge. She plays chess amongst other hobbies and has competed on the national level. She is thought to be one of the youngest test takers ever to achieve a perfect score, partly because participants have to be at least 10 and a half to take it.
linda's blog

Michelle Obama goes out with a bang for her final State of the Union appearance in a $2000 dress

First Lady of the United States of America, Michelle Obama certainly made a statement with a bright dress for husband's optimistic final State of the Union address.
Michelle Obama opted for  a show stopping sleeveless yellow wool and silk sheath dress from Narciso Rodriguez's Fall 2015 collection - priced $2,095. According to The Week magazine, the dress has already sold out! We can say she is the most stylish first lady in modern era. linda's blog

Lassa fever: Death toll rises to 41 from 93 suspected cases —Minister

Abuja— The Federal Government disclosed, yesterday, that Lassa fever has claimed 41 lives from 93 reported cases in 10 states of the country even as the Senate has summoned the Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole, over the outbreak of the disease.

News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that the Federal Government, last Friday, put the death toll at 40 out of 86 reported cases of Lassa fever outbreak in same 10 states. The number of the suspected cases also rose from 86 last week to 93.
Adewole, who confirmed this in Abuja, yesterday, at a joint ministerial news conference on the update of the outbreak of the disease, however, said there were no new confirmed cases or death in the last 48 hours.
He said: “In the last 48 hours, the government raised a four-man expert committee, chaired by Prof. Michael Asuzu, to visit Kano, Niger and Bauchi, the three most endemic states. The committee will embark on a fact-finding mission, assess the current situation, document response experiences, identify gaps and proffer recommendations on how to prevent future occurrences.”
The minister assured the public that the task of the committee was not to apportion blame but rather to document lessons learnt for better planning of an affective responsive.
According to Adewole, part of the long term response is to establish an inter-ministerial committee to deliver a final blow on Lassa fever and other related diseases.
The committee comprised the Ministers of Education, Agriculture and Natural Resources, Environment, Information and Culture as well as Health.
Adewole advised communities to improve on their hygiene, including food hygiene and food protection practices. He also urged the public to avoid contact with rodents and rats as well as food contaminated with rat’s secretions and excretions.
“Avoid drying food in the open and along roadsides, it is also important to cover all foods to prevent rodents contamination,” he said.
According to him, the affected states are Bauchi, Nasarawa, Niger, Taraba, Kano, Rivers, Edo, Plateau, Gombe and Oyo.
Senate summons Adewole
Meanwhile, the Senate, yesterday, blamed the Ministry of Health for not being proactive which led to  the outbreak of Lassa fever in Nigeria even as it summoned the minister to appear before it.
According to the Senate, the minister must appear before the Senators to explain the efforts put in place by the ministry to combat further spread of Lassa fever in the country, and urged Nigerians to be very conscious of the situation by adhering to rules of reasonable hygiene. It also urged non-affected states to be educated on preventive news

Presidency reacts to missing budget, says Nigerians should hold N/Assembly responsible

Senior Special Assistant to President Buhari on Media and Publicity, Shehu Garba has asked Nigerians to direct all their questions about the missing soft and hard copies of the 2016 budget to the National Assembly. According to Garba, nobody can withdraw the budget from the National Assembly except President Buhari.

Senator Ali Ndume had announced to his colleagues during plenary today that the budget was missing.

"Nobody, except the president, can withdraw the budget. As far as we know, he (the president) has not done that. The copies in their hundreds have been delivered to both chambers of the National Assembly. By tradition, once the budget is submitted, it ceases to be our property. Enquiries as to where it is should be directed to the appropriate quarters", Shehu said.

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