Author

Adeola

Browsing

The UK Embassy in Nigeria has adopted a new visa application process, the British High Commission said in a statement on Friday.

The spokesperson of the commission, Joe Abuku, described the new process as a slight change in which “Visa staff now only need electronic versions of support documents.”

The new process, which takes effect from December 5 for customers applying for a UK visa in Lagos, Victoria Island and Ikeja, would bring applicants benefits from digital improvements to the UK visa application process.

“TLSContact (responsible for UK Visa Application Centres in Nigeria) will scan your supporting documents whilst you’re at the visa application centre, and then return your original documents to you,” the statement said.

“They will then send these (electronic) documents to UKVI, with your passport and application form, and visa officers will consider your application in the usual way.
In order to avoid delays in the visa application centre, the Commission requested applicants to ensure they complied with requirement to provide all documents in A4 size, while any other documents smaller or larger than A4 should be photocopied onto A4 sized paper.

While advising all customers to remove any clips or pins from documents before submitting their application, the Commission warned that any torn, crumpled or heavily creased documents, which is difficult to photocopy, should be photocopied onto A4 sized paper before submitted, as they can’t be scanned in this condition.

Press Release

Gambia’s President Yahya Jammeh, who vowed to rule the country for “a billion years”, was handed a shock election defeat on Friday, 22 years after seizing power in a coup.


The electoral commission head declared Adama Barrow president-elect on state television, with 45.5 percent of the vote against Jammeh’s 36.7 percent.

“Having received 263, 515 votes out of the total votes cast in the election, I hereby declare Adama Barrow newly elected to serve as president of the republic of the Gambia,” Alieu Momarr Njai said.

He earlier told reporters in Banjul that Jammeh would concede, although he has yet to make a public statement.

The Electoral Commission on Friday declared Mr. Barrow President of The Gambia.

The incumbent, Mr Jammeh polled 212, 099 while Mamma Kandeh polled 102, 969.

Below is a copy of the declaration of election results by the Electoral Commission:

President Yahya Jammeh, who has ruled The Gambia for 22 years, has conceded defeat to opposition leader Adama Barrow, the chairman of the independent electoral commission said Friday.


“It’s really unique that someone who has been ruling this country for so long has accepted defeat,” Alieu Momar Njie told reporters ahead of the release of the results of Thursday’s presidential election.

Gambian state television told AFP that the 51-year-old head of state, who seized power in a coup in 1994, would make a statement later in the day to congratulate Barrow.

Jammeh was running for a fifth term with his Alliance for Patriotic Reorientation and Construction (APRC), while Barrow ran for eight political groups who united for the first time to field a single candidate.

AFP

Namibia would remain a member of the International Criminal Court (ICC) if the United States joined, Namibia’s President Hage Geingob told Reuters in London on Thursday.

Namibia said in March that it would withdraw from the ICC, which sits in The Hague and has the jurisdiction to prosecute individuals for genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes. The court has come under criticism from African nations.

“People are saying that it only targets African leaders. That seems to be true … and that’s a problem,” said Geingob, who was elected as president of Namibia in November 2014.

Whilst parliament still needs to debate Namibia’s withdrawal, Geingob said his feeling was it would go ahead.

“But if you convince the United States to come, we will stay,” he said.

The United States is not currently a participant in the ICC as it has not signed or ratified the Rome Statute, a treaty which serves as the ICC’s governing document.

“Africa needs to develop its own processes, systems, courts and institutions,” Geingob added. “It would help us to be self sufficient. We must build lasting institutions … not something imposed from foreign countries.”

Turning to the economy, Geingob said he expects growth of 2 to 3 percent in Namibia in 2017, up from around 2.5 percent in 2016, and below the average longer term trend of 4-5 percent.

“But we need about 7 percent growth, which we are failing to do,” he said. “That’s why are encouraging people to come in to invest, to manufacture in Namibia, transfer technology, and that way we can create jobs.”

Namibia’s economy has been hit by a prolonged drought and a contraction in the mining sector, but Geingob said tourism had picked up this year with more people choosing Namibia over destinations in the Middle East due to the troubles there.

The Namibian economy is also closely linked to that of South Africa, and Geingob added they were following political developments there. An ongoing feud between President Jacob Zuma and Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan has unnerved investors and business leaders.

“What happens in South Africa has a serious impact on the region and Namibia,” he said. “So we are looking at the situation carefully, and are sometimes worried, but the system is resilient and they will overcome that – they are a democratic country.”

Reuters

Efforts by Lagos authorities to turn Nigeria’s chaotic commercial capital into a modern megacity have run into controversy after the demolition of an impoverished waterfront neighbourhood left 30,000 people homeless.

With swanky private estates and a glittering new city under construction on land reclaimed from the Atlantic Ocean, housing for some of the 20 million people living in notoriously-dysfunctional Lagos appears to be getting better.

But as the city undergoes a dramatic metamorphosis, many are experiencing the brutal reality of rapid urbanisation.

The latest casualty was Otodo Gbame (pictured above), a poor fishing community close to the upmarket southeastern district of Lekki, which was completely razed in early November as part of a growing drive to remove shanty towns.

Between November 9 and 11, the district was set alight then bulldozed, reducing tens of thousands of homes to piles of smouldering wood and corrugated iron.

At least three people died when armed police moved in with bulldozers, setting fire to the area and chasing some residents into the nearby lagoon, locals said. They say they were given no warning.

Now homeless but with nowhere else to go, residents huddle together miserably under makeshift structures built out of rubble.

Mostly from the ethnic Egun tribe, they trace their roots to Benin but say they have been living in Lagos for over a century.

But like the vast majority of the city’s poor, they do not have title deeds to prove it.

‘We will fight this’

They accuse the state authorities of conspiring with a prominent Lagos family to seize the land and sell it to the highest bidder.

“They are not happy that we the poor are living close to them.

“Each time, they look through the windows of their mansions and see us, their anger rises,” Toshun Pascal, a pastor in the community, told AFP.

“We are going to fight this injustice with the last drop of our blood.”

Otodo Gbame used to lie between upscale neighbourhood Lekki Phase 1 and Elegushi housing estate, an exclusive area where residents drive Mercedes and Range Rover cars.

Pascal said more than 20 residents, including the community leader, had been detained for weeks “for instigating the violence.”

But Lagos authorities dismissed accusations they ordered the demolitions, claiming a fight between the Egun and their Yoruba neighbours caused the fire which burnt down the community.

They said police only arrived on the scene to restore order and ensure that “the arson did not spread.”

‘Deliberately torched’

Governor Akinwunmi Ambode had in October hinted at a plan to demolish waterfront shanties in a move to rid the city of criminals, who hide there.

But Amnesty International warned that such a move would risk leaving tens of thousands of people homeless.

And after the fires, the London-based watchdog said the community was “deliberately set alight”, demanding an independent inquiry into the “forced evictions”.

“Lagos State Government is trying to evade its responsibilities to Otodo Gbame residents by denying involvement in the state’s biggest forced evictions in recent times,” Amnesty said, insisting that those responsible be prosecuted.

Lagos has a history of demolishing entire neighbourhoods.

In 1990, the authorities demolished Maroko, a shanty town in the well-heeled suburb of Victoria Island, forcing some 300,000 out of their homes.

On the site where it once stood, there now stands a popular South African shopping mall with international chains that caters to the city’s elite.

Housing for the poor?

Noah Shemede, director of a floating school in Makoko, another waterfront neighbourhood in Lagos, said residents are living in fear.

“We don’t know when the caterpillars will roll in,” Shemede told AFP. “It’s Otodo Gbame today, it can be Makoko tomorrow.”

Government plans to build 1,000 new flats would not help those left homeless, Shemede said.

“Where will a poor fisherman get 3.5 million naira ($11,000 dollars) to buy a flat?” he said, indicating that a fisherman’s monthly wage is around 15,000 naira a month — the equivalent of $47 (45 euros).

Building experts say hundreds of thousands of people are in need of shelter in the city and are urging the government to provide affordable houses for the poor.

“A housing scheme is meant to be a social contract between the government and the people,” said Adeniyi Adams, managing director of KnightStone Properties, a Lagos-based firm of estate developers.

He said the Nigerian government should provide funding for private developers to invest in lower-income housing so it isn’t just the rich who prosper in the city.

“It’s only then we can say Lagos is truly a megacity,” local conservationist Michael Kobah said.

Other world-class cities look out for all their citizens, he said.

“Lagos can’t be an exception.”

AFP (Photo by PIUS UTOMI EKPEI)

Photo credit: Viewslog

Justice Binta Nyako of the Federal High Court, Abuja on Thursday declined to grant the bail application filed by Nnamdi Kanu, the self acclaimed leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).


Others standing trial with Kanu are: Chidiebere Onwudiwe, Benjamin Madubugwu and David Nwawusi.

Delivering her ruling on their bail application, Justice Nyako held that the charges against the defendants “are very serious in nature and therefore not ordinarily bailable.’’

She said, “Irrespective of what the charge is, the court has to exercise its discretion one way or the other.”

She added that the charges against the defendants could attract life imprisonment if proved by the prosecution.

The trial judge also dismissed the contention by the defendants that President Muhammadu Buhari had openly directed that they should not be released on bail.

She held that being a citizen of Nigeria the Buhari was at liberty to exercise his freedom of speech.

According to her, the President lacks the capacity to influence the decision of the court.

She said that the defendants did not place any new fact or law capable of persuading the court to reverse an earlier ruling which denied them bail.

“The offences are serious in nature and carries very severe punishment if proven.

“I hereby therefore refuse bail for the applicants.

“In the alternative, I order for an accelerated trial of this matter to commence immediately which will not be more than two months,” the Judge said.

Kanu and the three other defendants were charged for treasonable felony, managing an unlawful society, publication of defamatory matter, illegal possession of firearms and improper importation of illegal goods.

They were also accused of broadcasts on Radio Biafra and agitation for secession from Nigeria.

Meanwhile, Mr Suleiman Labaran, Counsel to the Federal Government, prayed the court to allow all government witnesses testify behind the screen.

Labaran also prayed the court not to reveal in any record of the court, the identities of the witnesses put forward by the federal government.

However, Counsel to Kanu, Mr Ifeanyi Ejiofor, opposed the prayers.

He contended that granting such requests would amount to gross violation of the defendants’ rights to fair hearing.

“We vehemently oppose secret trial of the defendants.

“They were accused in the open; we also request that they be tried in the open. The defendants need to see those testifying against them eye-ball-to-eye-ball.

“We are ready for this trial,’’ Ejiofor said.

Another defence lawyer, Mr Maxwell Okpara, told the court that majority of the proposed witnesses by the federal government are foreigners imported from neighbouring countries.

“My lord, we have uncovered their plan to bring Ghanaians and people from Cameroon to appear in this court to testify against the defendants.

“We, as Nigerians will resist that plot. It cannot work; that is why they are insisting that they should testify behind screen, the plot has failed,’’ Okpara said.

The Judge fixed Dec. 13 to rule on the application of the federal government to allow its witnesses testify behind the screen. NAN

A 26-year-old First Class graduate of Ladoke Akintola University, Ogbomoso, died in Kano NYSC camp, exactly a week after saying goodbye to her family members to go serve her country, Nigeria, in a compulsory 1 year service.
Ifedolapo Oladepo, a member of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), died due to alleged negligence by NYSC authorities at the Orientation Camp in Kano,.

She was buried on Thursday in Osogbo, the Osun state capital.

The 2016 Batch ‘C’ corps member was a Transport Management graduate.

She reportedly died following complications arising from an ailment few days into the NYSC orientation programme in Kano.

Her family members claim Ifedolapo could have been saved if she had been given the necessary attention by the NYSC authorities at the Orientation Camp in Kano.

Speaking to ChannelsTV, her elder sister, Oyeyode Abimbola, said: “She called me five hours to her death and told me to start coming as the NYSC doctors are not doing anything for her. They thought she was pretending in order not to go for parade, so they did not attend to her.”

“When she started calling people from home, they eventually gave her an injection (and) immediately after the injection, she called me again that she noticed a lot of rashes on her body that I should speak with the doctor who refused to talk to me.

“She called five minutes later and told me her tongue was twisting, then they sent all her friends out after seeing all the reaction on her body after giving her the unknown injection,” she said amidst tears.

The Gambia is holding its presidential election today by voting with marbles in order to curb election fraud.
Each voting booth has three metal drums representing the three presidential candidates contesting for office.

Voters enter a private area curtained off where they drop a marble into one of the three drums that are painted with the party colors and emblems, and a bell rings confirming a vote has been cast.
Officials demonstrating how votes would be counted

Sawdust or sand is sprinkled on the bottom of the barrel so that no second sound is heard.
The vice-president of the Independent Electoral Commission, Malleh Sallah, said the Gambian Public Works department came up with the marble idea six decades ago.
 “It’s unique and we are very proud of it,” he said. 
Electoral officials say the system eliminates spoilt ballots and allows uneducated Gambians to vote without any problem. Officials said this method also ensures only one vote is cast per person.

About 880,000 eligible voters are expected to vote in this election
                               Officials demonstrating how votes would be counted

President Muhammadu Buhari has again reiterated the essence of the unity of Nigeria, urging those contemplating its break-up to have a rethink.
Speaking at a meeting with the Council of South-East Traditional Rulers at the State House on Thursday, President Buhari warned that the question of having another country out of Nigeria was misplaced.

“The question of having another country out of Nigeria is going to be very difficult. From 1914, we have more than 200 cultures living with one another. God had endowed this country with natural resources and talented people. We should concentrate on these and be very productive,” the President said.

Addressing specific issues raised in the address by the traditional rulers, the President gave assurance that the South-East will also benefit from the new railway architecture being put in place by his administration.

On their request for more representation for the South-East in his government, the President said that he was “very conscious of the sensitivities of the South East”, on account of which, he gave the region’s four out of five states Senior ranking Ministers in the Federal Cabinet.

President Buhari used the occasion to appreciate the good work of the Ministers from the region in the federal government, saying that they are doing very well for the country.

He appealed to the traditional rulers from the South East to persuade their people to give his government a chance and to continue to serve as beacons of culture and traditions of their people.

The President assured the delegation that kidnapping and cattle rustling, which he described as “unfortunate” will be the government’s next target, now that “we have managed to calm down the North-East.”

In taking note of the profuse commendation for his administration’s war against corruption and insecurity by the traditional rulers, President Buhari expressed frustration at the endless nature of some ongoing trials, citing some of the cases as going far back to the tenure of former President Olusegun Obasanjo.

“We are asking the judiciary to clean itself. Nigerians are tired of waiting. They want some actions,” he lamented.

The President said he hoped that the Acting Chief Justice of Nigeria and Attorney-General of the Federation will come to some form of agreement by which specially designated courts will give accelerated hearing to some corruption cases that are pending, arguing that “we want Nigerians to know we are serious.”

Earlier in his address, the Chairman of the South East Council of Traditional Rulers, His Royal Majesty, Eze (Dr) Eberechi N. Dick (JP), had made requests for roads, other projects among other issues, even as he assured the President of their support for his leadership and programmes.

Cross River Governor Ben Ayade has said that sex before marriage is a taboo, adding that the only way to prevent HIV/AIDS was for young people to remain virgins until they get married.


Mr. Ayade said this on Thursday in Calabar at the commemoration of the 2016 World AIDS Day celebration.

He said: “The absolute factor that can put an end to HIV/AIDS spread is total loyalty and abstinence.

“Married couples must be faithful to their partners. Young people must remain virgins until they get married and never allow any barber to use unsterilised clipper to cut your hair.

“Whatever the story, AIDS is real, it is a scourge, you must avoid it.’’

He added that the time has come to teach young people the true African culture where sex before marriage is a taboo.

The governor described the usage of condom `campaign’ as creating a false feeling of protection because it has not helped in stopping the scourge.

“Rather, it increases the level of promiscuity among the younger generation and encouraged unfaithfulness’’.

Oromo – An Ethiopian opposition leader has been arrested following his return from Europe where he had spoken about a state of emergency imposed last month to quell anti-government protests, his coalition said Thursday.


Merera Gudina, the 60-year-old chairman of the Oromo Federalist Congress (OFC) was arrested at his home in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa on Wednesday and is being held in an unknown location with three others, said Beyenne Petros, president of the Medrek opposition alliance of which the OFC is a member.

“This is the first time they are targeting the highest level of leadership. I don’t fully understand. Merera has always done things peacefully and played by the rules,” Petros said of the veteran political leader.

Earlier this month Gudina had addressed the European Parliament in Brussels, alongside Olympic silver medallist runner and fellow member of the Oromo tribe, Feyisa Lilesa.

Lilesa drew attention to an Oromo anti-government movement by crossing his wrists above his head — a gesture that has become a symbol of the protests — at the Rio games and has been in self-imposed exile since then.

Berhanu Nega, an opposition activist sentenced to death in absentia, had attended the same meeting in Brussels.

At home in Ethiopia, Gudina has strongly criticised repression of the unprecedented protests that have posed the biggest challenge to the quarter-century rule of the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF).

Hundreds have been killed in a government crackdown since the unrest began about a year ago, according to human rights groups.

A state of emergency was announced in October, a week after more than 50 people died in a stampede in the Oromia region when security forces teargassed a religious festival where protesters were chanting anti-government slogans.

Since then official figures show over 11,000 people have been arrested in the Oromia, Amhara and Addis Ababa regions where protests had been centred.

Among those arrested are leaders of small opposition parties, journalists and at least two bloggers.

Ethiopian authorities said last month that 2,000 of those detained had been released after undergoing a “re-education” and “counseling” programme.

A key complaint of the protesters is a political system which has seen the ruling party hold all 546 seats in parliament.

Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn in October promised electoral reforms, but Gudina said this was “too little, too late.”

AFP

Photo by: Pius Utomi Ekpei (AFP)

Nigerian Nobel prize-winning author Wole Soyinka said Thursday he has fulfilled his pledge to throw away his US residency green card and leave the country if Donald Trump won the presidential election.
Shortly before the vote, Soyinka had vowed to give up his permanent US residency over a Trump victory to protest against the Republican billionaire’s campaign promises to get tough on immigration.

“I have already done it, I have disengaged (from the United States). I have done what I said I would do,” the 82-year-old told AFP on the sidelines of an education conference at the University of Johannesburg.

“I had a horror of what is to come with Trump… I threw away the (green) card, and I have relocated, and I’m back to where I have always been” — meaning his homeland Nigeria.

The prolific playwright, novelist and poet won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1986 and has been a regular teacher at US universities including Harvard, Cornell and Yale.

At the same time he said he would not discourage others from applying for a green card.

“It’s useful in many ways. I wouldn’t for one single moment discourage any Nigerians or anybody from acquiring a green card… but I have had enough of it,” he said.

Soyinka, one of Africa’s most famous writers and rights activists, was jailed in 1967 for 22 months during Nigeria’s civil war.

He was reported to have recently completed a term as scholar-in-residence at New York University’s Institute of African American Affairs.

AFP

A former Secretary of the Christian Association of Nigeria, Archbishop George Amu, has said God has shown him that Nigerian billionaire businessman, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, will one day become the nation’s President.
Amu said just like the emergence of Donald Trump as the President of America shocked the world, so will Dangote’s emergence as Nigeria’s President shock everyone.

The cleric, who recalled telling journalists on August 21, on the occasion of his 75th birthday, that Trump would win America’s election, said God had also revealed to him that Dangote would be Nigeria’s President, but he was not sure whether he would succeed President Muhammadu Buhari or not.

A statement made available to PUNCH correspondent on Wednesday quoted the cleric to have said this in Lagos at the weekend.

According to him, the similarity between Trump and Dangote is that both are successful businessmen, rather than politicians, and God plans to use them to salvage their countries from problems.

Amu recalled that when he predicted Trump’s victory, no newspaper reported it, saying, “I even told my children to circulate the information on their Facebook but they declined. The same God, who revealed Donald Trump’s victory in the US, has also declared His intention to install Dangote as the future President of Nigeria.”

The cleric said God had chosen to entrust Trump and Dangote with power in their countries, because they were wealthy and would not steal their nations’ wealth, adding that it was God’s divine strategy to cripple corruption in governance.
PUNCH

Chaos erupted on Monday as an area Governor and a Member of Parliament in Kenya engaged in a fight in front of the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party leader Raila Odinga and a multitude of people who came for a rally.
ODM is one of the biggest political parties in Kenya.

The rally was briefly disrupted after the host Peter Opondo Kaluma engaged his opponent Washington Ogaga in a fist fight, prompting the intervention of Mr. Odinga.

The two are said to be engaged in a supremacy battle ahead of the 2017 elections.

Governor Cyprian Awiti was not spared either when the crowd shouted him down when he attempted to address the rally with some throwing rocks and plastic bottles at the dais accusing him of mismanaging county resources.

Photo credit: standardmedia.co.ke

63-year-old President of Botswana, Seretse Khama Ian Khama, plays soccer, tennis and drives himself when not on duty. 


The slim, fit-looking President graduated from Waterford Kamhlaba, a United World College in Mbabane, Swaziland. He also attended the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, in UK, and he is a qualified pilot. 

Khama has never been married, but in 2010, he hinted that his future wife must be tall and slim. 

Mr. President about to take a public bus

Gambian President Yahya Jammeh said Tuesday that no protests would be permitted after a two-week electoral campaign, as rallies in favour of opposition leader Adama Barrow reached boiling point in the capital, Banjul.
A day of opposition protests ahead of a presidential election in two days’ time highlighted deep divisions over Jammeh’s 22-year-rule, while the president took the opportunity to say his opponents could not succeed.

Barrow, a businessman, emerged from obscurity to become the flagbearer of all The Gambia’s opposition parties bar one after mass arrests of supporters from the largest anti-government grouping in April.

“People have shown us tremendous support. With that support we are 100 percent plus that we are going to win and with a big margin,” he told AFP on the final day of the campaign.
With no official opinion polls, it is difficult to corroborate Barrow’s claim, but diplomatic sources have indicated in recent days that Jammeh faces his most significant challenge since taking power in a 1994 coup.

“If Jammeh wants advice… if he loses, let him accept the will of the people and accept the value of the Gambian people,” Barrow said.

Rights bodies and media watchdogs including Reporters Without Borders (RSF) accuse Jammeh of cultivating a “pervasive climate of fear” and of crushing dissent against his regime, one cause of the mass exodus of Gambian youths to Europe.

At a rally near the capital Tuesday, people shouted “Step down!” as they waved red cards demanding Jammeh’s removal after 22 years in power.

“He killed dozens of our brothers, he’s a killer,” one man shouted, as supporters hanging out of parked vehicles kept up a chorus of: “Murderer, murderer!”

“This is to show I would sacrifice my blood for the country,” said Mustafa Njie, a former Jammeh supporter turned opposition activist, gesturing at his red bandana.

– ‘They will not win’ –
Following unprecedented rallies nationwide, Barrow has urged President Jammeh to go peacefully if he loses power on Thursday.

Jammeh has won four elections with his ruling Alliance for Patriotic Reorientation and Construction, following a 2002 constitutional amendment lifting term limits.

At his own final meeting with thousands of green-clad supporters in Banjul, the strongman said there was no question of a different result this time.

“Nothing is going to happen, this is not the first time we have conducted elections,” Jammeh told journalists.

“They will not win,” he added.

The leader added there was “no reason for anybody to protest” as The Gambia’s elections could not be rigged. “In this country we don’t allow demonstrations,” he added. Protests have been permitted only during the two weeks of the electoral campaign.

Barrow said a memorandum signed by all the coalition parties in October had laid out plans for a reform-led administration.

A third candidate, former ruling party deputy Mama Kandeh, is standing for the Gambia Democratic Congress.

Campaigning has until now been overwhelmingly peaceful.

More than 880,000 voters are expected to cast their ballots when this tiny west African nation goes to the polls on Thursday.

AFP

Lagos – A dead body was found on Wednesday in the wheel well of a Nigerian plane after it landed in South Africa, the airline said in a statement.

The body was found on a plane operated by Arik Air, one of Nigeria’s largest airlines, that had departed from the country’s commercial hub of Lagos and landed at Johannesburg’s OR Tambo International Airport on Tuesday evening.

“The lifeless body of a stowaway was on Wednesday, November 30, 2016 found in the main wheel well of one of Arik Air’s A330-200 aircraft,” Arik Air spokesperson Adebanji Ola said in a statement.

South African engineers “discovered the body of the stowaway during inspection,” the statement said.

“Investigations are ongoing to determine how the stowaway found his way into the aircraft’s main wheel well.”

In the past five years there have been reports of dead Nigerian stowaways found in planes travelling from Lagos to Johannesburg and New York who have frozen to death or have been crushed by a wheel.

Dire economic conditions force Nigerians to embark on risky trips in search of better lives abroad, with many attempting the dangerous Mediterranean crossing to Europe.

Nigerians have also been among the hundreds of illegal migrants intercepted off the Red Sea coast of oil-rich Saudi Arabia this year.
AFP

Ugandan police on Wednesday morning arrested two Nigerians trafficking drugs through Entebbe International airport.


 According to Chimpreports, 76-year-old Aniugo Agnes Egona and her daughter Aniugo Gloria Vera were found carrying 10 kilograms of suspected heroine which were concealed in their luggage.

Kampala Metropolitan Police spokesperson Emilian Kayima told journalists that the two suspects were carrying four bags full of new clothings and the packed heroine was hidden under the bags’ underlining.

The 10 kilograms of the narcotic drug are valued at Ugshs 2.6 billion, according to Kayima.

“The two were caught this morning at the airport as they were leaving Uganda for  and each of them had 5 kilograms of heroine,” Kayima told the press at Entebbe airport police station.

Photo credit: Paul Ampurire (Twitter)/chimpreports

For anyone who might like to see Michelle Obama run for president as a Democrat, it’s time to rein in that early enthusiasm. Or so says her husband, President Barack Obama.
“Michelle will never run for office,” the president said in an interview with Rolling Stone magazine done the day after Donald Trump’s surprise win, and amid some social media swirl urging the first lady to consider throwing her hat in the ring.

“She is as talented a person as I know. You can see the incredible resonance she has with the American people. But I joke that she’s too sensible to want to be in politics,” Obama said.

Her confidence and style struck a strong chord on the campaign trail, where she supported Hillary Clinton. The first lady slammed Trump’s attitude toward and treatment of women.

Obama, who will be 53 when she leaves the White House, is the first black first lady in American history. Her husband is 55.

A Harvard-educated lawyer, she will leave the White House on January 20 enjoying sky-high ratings — approved by 79 percent of the American public, according to a recent Gallup survey. That makes her more popular than her husband, the first African American president of the United States.

Asked about her ambitions in the past, Michelle Obama has repeatedly said that she would not follow in the footsteps of Hillary Clinton, who ran for the presidency her husband Bill held from 1993-2001.

AFP

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) on Wednesday announced the immediate suspension of the new minimum pricing template for data services by mobile operators.
According to the NCC, the decision is as a result of the outrage that followed the announcement of the planned price hike.

In a statement by its Director, Public Affairs, Mr. Tony Ojobo, NCC said: “Following the concerns that visited the directive to introduce price floor for data segment of the telecommunications sector beginning from December 1, 2016, the Nigerian Communications Commission has suspended any further action in that direction,”

“The decision to suspend this directive was taken after due consultation with industry stakeholders and the general complaints by Consumers across the country.

“The commission has weighed all of this and consequently asked all operators to maintain the status quo until the conclusion of study to determine retail prices for broadband and data services in Nigeria.”

The commission explained that its decision to choose a price floor for data was aimed a promoting a level playing field for all operators in the industry and encourage small operators and new entrants.

Noting that there had been a price floor of N3.11k/MB in 2014 which was removed in 2015, it said the proposed price floor to take place on December 1, 2016 was 90k/MB.

It added, “In taking that decision, the smaller operators were exempted from the new price regime, by virtue of their small market share. The decision on the price floor was taken in order to protect the consumers who are at the receiving end and save the smaller operators from predatory services that are likely to suffocate them and push them into extinction.

“The price floor is not an increase in price but a regulatory safeguard put in place by the telecommunications regulator to check anti-competitive practices by dominant operators.”

This is coming a few hours after the Senate ordered a stop to the planned increase.

Senate President Bukola Saraki on Wednesday tweeted: “#NoDataHike @NgrSenate we condemned proposed increase of data tariffs by Service Providers, in line with the directive of @NgComCommission”

“At a time when cost of living has gone up, due to inflation being at 18.3%. @NgComCommission action without consultation is unacceptable.”

“I have seen power of internet and how it serves to give a voice to voiceless, and a platform for millions to air their views. #NoToDataHike”

“This is why @Ngrsenate will continue to maintain that access to the internet remains affordable for all Nigerians and #NoToDataPriceHike”

In a letter sent to telcos, the NCC had claimed the price increase was necessary “in order to provide a level playing field for all operators in the industry.”

The new rate was scheduled to take effect from December 1.