News Sun, 22 Jan 2017 16:12:01 +0000 Joomla! - Open Source Content Management en-gb Over 200,000 Women march in Washington, because it's still a man's world Over 200,000 Women march in Washington, because it's still a man's world

Stella Igwe Adesoga in Washington.


An estimated 200,000 people currently crowd the streets of the nation’s capital a day after Donald Trump’s inauguration as the 45th president in a planned protest.

Sister marches are planned for all 50 states and in 32 countries around the world.

The emotions are complex driving hundreds of thousands of women, many first-time activists arriving on Greyhound buses from as far away as Miami and Baton Rouge, to march on Washington.

Singer Janelle Monáe, fresh from her role in the hit movie Hidden Figures;, Maxwell, Angelique Kidjo, Toshi Reagon, Samantha Ronson and  Emily Wells are some of the stars that will perform later at the protest. 


]]> (Super User) Top Stories Sat, 21 Jan 2017 14:43:36 +0000
From Now It's America First- Donald Trump From Now It's America First- Donald Trump

Full text of President Donald Trump's Inaugural Address


Chief Justice Roberts, President Carter, President Clinton, President Bush, President Obama, fellow Americans and people of the world: Thank you.

We, the citizens of America, are now joined in a great national effort to rebuild our country and to restore its promise for all of our people.

Together, we will determine the course of America and the world for years to come.

We will face challenges. We will confront hardships. But we will get the job done.

Every four years, we gather on these steps to carry out the orderly and peaceful transfer of power, and we are grateful to President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama for their gracious aid throughout this transition. They have been magnificent.

Today’s ceremony, however, has very special meaning. Because today we are not merely transferring power from one Administration to another, or from one party to another – but we are transferring power from Washington, D.C., and giving it back to you, the American People.

For too long, a small group in our nation’s capital has reaped the rewards of government while the people have borne the cost.

Washington flourished – but the people did not share in its wealth.

Politicians prospered – but the jobs left, and the factories closed.

The establishment protected itself, but not the citizens of our country.

Their victories have not been your victories; their triumphs have not been your triumphs; and while they celebrated in our nation’s capital, there was little to celebrate for struggling families all across our land.

That all changes – starting right here, and right now, because this moment is your moment: it belongs to you.

It belongs to everyone gathered here today and everyone watching all across America.

This is your day. This is your celebration.

And this, the United States of America, is your country.

What truly matters is not which party controls our government, but whether our government is controlled by the people.

January 20th 2017 will be remembered as the day the people became the rulers of this nation again.

The forgotten men and women of our country will be forgotten no longer.

Everyone is listening to you now.

You came by the tens of millions to become part of a historic movement the likes of which the world has never seen before.

At the center of this movement is a crucial conviction: that a nation exists to serve its citizens.

Americans want great schools for their children, safe neighborhoods for their families and good jobs for themselves.

These are the just and reasonable demands of a righteous public.

But for too many of our citizens, a different reality exists: Mothers and children trapped in poverty in our inner cities; rusted-out factories scattered like tombstones across the landscape of our nation; an education system, flush with cash, but which leaves our young and beautiful students deprived of knowledge; and the crime and gangs and drugs that have stolen too many lives and robbed our country of so much unrealized potential.

This American carnage stops right here and stops right now.

We are one nation – and their pain is our pain.  Their dreams are our dreams; and their success will be our success.  We share one heart, one home and one glorious destiny.

The oath of office I take today is an oath of allegiance to all Americans.

For many decades, we’ve enriched foreign industry at the expense of American industry;

Subsidized the armies of other countries while allowing for the very sad depletion of our military;

We've defended other nation’s borders while refusing to defend our own;

And spent trillions of dollars overseas while America's infrastructure has fallen into disrepair and decay.

We’ve made other countries rich while the wealth, strength and confidence of our country has disappeared over the horizon.

One by one, the factories shuttered and left our shores, with not even a thought about the millions upon millions of American workers left behind.

The wealth of our middle class has been ripped from their homes and then redistributed across the entire world.

But that is the past. And now we are looking only to the future.

We assembled here today are issuing a new decree to be heard in every city, in every foreign capital and in every hall of power.

From this day forward, a new vision will govern our land.

From this moment on, it’s going to be America First.

Every decision on trade, on taxes, on immigration, on foreign affairs, will be made to benefit American workers and American families.

We must protect our borders from the ravages of other countries making our products, stealing our companies and destroying our jobs.  Protection will lead to great prosperity and strength.

I will fight for you with every breath in my body – and I will never, ever let you down.

America will start winning again, winning like never before.

We will bring back our jobs. We will bring back our borders.  We will bring back our wealth.  And we will bring back our dreams.

We will build new roads, and highways, and bridges, and airports, and tunnels, and railways all across our wonderful nation.

We will get our people off of welfare and back to work – rebuilding our country with American hands and American labor.

We will follow two simple rules: Buy American and Hire American.

We will seek friendship and goodwill with the nations of the world – but we do so with the understanding that it is the right of all nations to put their own interests first.

We do not seek to impose our way of life on anyone, but rather to let it shine as an example for everyone to follow.

We will reinforce old alliances and form new ones – and unite the civilized world against Radical Islamic Terrorism, which we will eradicate completely from the face of the Earth.

At the bedrock of our politics will be a total allegiance to the United States of America, and through our loyalty to our country, we will rediscover our loyalty to each other.

When you open your heart to patriotism, there is no room for prejudice.

The Bible tells us, “how good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity.”

We must speak our minds openly, debate our disagreements honestly, but always pursue solidarity.

When America is united, America is totally unstoppable.

There should be no fear – we are protected, and we will always be protected.

We will be protected by the great men and women of our military and law enforcement and, most importantly, we are protected by God.

Finally, we must think big and dream even bigger.

In America, we understand that a nation is only living as long as it is striving.

We will no longer accept politicians who are all talk and no action – constantly complaining but never doing anything about it.

The time for empty talk is over.

Now arrives the hour of action.

Do not let anyone tell you it cannot be done.  No challenge can match the heart and fight and spirit of America.

We will not fail. Our country will thrive and prosper again.

We stand at the birth of a new millennium, ready to unlock the mysteries of space, to free the Earth from the miseries of disease, and to harness the energies, industries and technologies of tomorrow.

A new national pride will stir our souls, lift our sights and heal our divisions.

It is time to remember that old wisdom our soldiers will never forget: That whether we are black or brown or white, we all bleed the same red blood of patriots, we all enjoy the same glorious freedoms, and we all salute the same great American Flag.

And whether a child is born in the urban sprawl of Detroit or the windswept plains of Nebraska, they look up at the same night sky, they fill their heart with the same dreams and they are infused with the breath of life by the same almighty Creator.

So to all Americans, in every city near and far, small and large, from mountain to mountain, and from ocean to ocean, hear these words:

You will never be ignored again.

Your voice, your hopes, and your dreams, will define our American destiny. And your courage and goodness and love will forever guide us along the way.

Together, We Will Make America Strong Again.

We Will Make America Wealthy Again.

We Will Make America Proud Again.

We Will Make America Safe Again.

And, Yes, Together, We Will Make America Great Again. Thank you, God Bless You, And God Bless America.

]]> (Super User) Top Stories Fri, 20 Jan 2017 18:45:20 +0000
FAAC: Monthly allocation to FG, States, LGA's increase by N13b in January FAAC: Monthly allocation to FG, States, LGA's increase by N13b in January

Gift Olivia Samuel, Per Second News

The allocation to the three tiers of government witnessed a significant increase as the sum of N400 billion has been distributed  as Federal allocation in the month of January 2017.


The N400 billion which was distributed on Friday depicted a N13.121 billion increase from the N386.879billion shared in December.

The Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun who Briefed newsmen at the end of the Federation Accounts Allocation Committee (FAAC)meeting, noted that the sum of N248.715 billion Gross statutory revenue received, is  higher by N8.595 billion when compared with the N240.120 billion received in the month of December, 2016.

Adesoun stated that the shared amount comprised the Month's Statutory distributable revenue of N224.883 billion, Value Added Tax of N79.273 billion, Exchange gain of N52. 842 billion and  Excess PPT Account of N42.998 billion, as well as a N6.330 billion refund to the Federal Government by Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).

According to her; "From the Net Statutory revenue, Federal Government received N105.762 billion (52.68%); States received N53.644 billion (26.72%); Local Government Councils received N41.357 billion (20.60%); while the Oil Producing States received N15.504 billion as 13% derivation revenue.

"Furthermore, from the Revenue available from the Value Added Tax (VAT), Federal Government received N11.415 (15%); States received N38.051 billion (50%) while the Local Government Councils received N26.636  (35%)" she added.

The Minister further explained that there was a revenue decline of $65.40 million in Federation export sales due to a drop in the volume of Crude oil export of 1.390  million barrels while crude oil sales increased from $47.08 to $47.30 per barrel  during the period  under  review.

She stressed that there was also a shut-in and shut-down of pipelines due to the activities of vandals as well as for maintenance due to leakages and sabotage which impacted negatively on production.

Adeosun added however that collection from Royalties increased significantly, and increases in Companies Income Tax  (CIT) and Value Added Tax  (VAT) were marginal.

]]> (Super User) Top Stories Fri, 20 Jan 2017 13:55:24 +0000
US urges religious leaders in Nigeria to be catalyst for peace, reconciliation US urges religious leaders in Nigeria to be catalyst for peace, reconciliation

U.S. Embassy Chargé d’Affaires David Young Thursday urged religious leaders in Nigeria to serve as catalysts for peace and reconciliation.

He made the statement during a roundtable discussion with Nigerian religious leaders to mark Religious Freedom Day.  All of the participants shared their experiences and perspectives regarding religious freedom, interfaith cooperation, tolerance, and peace building efforts. 

Young commended the efforts of the Nigerian leaders and emphasized the importance of putting faith into action by “walking the talk.”

He said although the United States is one of the most religiously diverse societies in the world, it is not perfect but the United States Government places great importance on protecting religious freedom and promoting tolerance and understanding. 

Commenting on how religious freedom relates to tolerance, Chargé Young said the fact that a majority of Americans do not share the beliefs of a minority faith does not make those beliefs and practices any less protected in the United States.  

Attending the roundtable were Pastor James Wuye and Imam Mohammed Ashafa, Co-Directors of the Interfaith Mediation Center; Imam Fuad Adeyemi, National Chief Imam, Al Habibiyyah Center; Reverend Dominic Adeiza, Director of Training, Lux Terra Leadership Foundation, Catholic Archdiocese of Abuja;  Bishop Peter Ogunmuyiwa, Coordinating Chaplain, Christian Association of Nigerias; Imam Abdullahi Karshi, Chief  Imam of  FCDA Mosque, Jama’atu Izalatil Bid’ah Wa’iqamatis Sunnah; Dr. Stephen Fagbemi, General Secretary, Church of Nigeria Anglican Communion; and Mr. Ustaz Christian Isa Okonkwo, Director of Administration, Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs.

]]> (Super User) Top Stories Thu, 19 Jan 2017 18:54:31 +0000
The Proposed Closure of Abuja International Airport: Matters Arising The Proposed Closure of Abuja International Airport: Matters Arising

By Edwin Nwachukwu, News Agency of Nigeria (NAN)

When on December 10, 2016, the Federal Ministry of Aviation announced its proposed closure of the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, for six weeks, precisely from March 8 to April 19, it explained that it was to effect repairs on the runway.


But controversies have continued to trail the proposal, apparently because of the dangers the closure may expose the users of the airport, including travellers, airline operators, travel agents and, particularly the officials of the foreign missions in Nigeria.

The runway designed in 1982 and expected to last for 20 years, has lasted for 34 years. The lifespan has been exceeded by 14 years without adequate maintenance.

The International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) and Airservices, Australia’s air navigation service provider, consider runways’ safety to be one of their topmost priorities since it remains critical to aviation safety.

They identified runway safety issues to include runway incursions, runway excursions and runway confusion, noting that improving runway safety requires collaboration from all stakeholders, including Air Traffic Controllers (ATC), airports, Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA), aircraft operators and anyone else who operates around a runway.

While announcing the planned closure of the ever busy Abuja airport runway, Mr Hadi Sirika, the Minister of State for Aviation, warned: “If we fail to close the runway now, it will eventually shut down itself. We want to take advantage of the dry season to fix it.’’

Sirika is worried that the continued deterioration of the facility will make operations unsafe.

“I know that it is unimaginable that we will want to close Abuja airport to traffic for such a long time, but we have to because the situation has reduced the riding quality and safety in operation.

“This action will affect travellers, airport users, airline operators, travel agents, hoteliers, car hire services and others,’’ the minister says.

He explains that the Federal Government is being proactive to avoid what happened at the Port Harcourt Airport.

“If it had been just the surface, we may not close it and will be
working at night; and for a long time, we will achieve a very good result. Unfortunately for us, it is the entire structure of the runway that has failed.

“The structure of the runway through the bottom — all the four levels — are gone; completely dilapidated. They open up without giving notice. We will be working for six months like they do in Gatwick.

“Within the six months, we will close for six weeks to be able to attend to the centre part of that runway. This working at night is what we have been doing for 14 years on that runway and we have been achieving the same result.

“To stop spending billions and getting the same result, we engaged a wide range of engineers, who advised that it be closed and a complete and thorough job be done on it,’’ he explains.

According to him, the airport will be closed by midnight on March 8 and reopened for operations on or before April 19.

Sirika gives the assurance that Abuja airports passengers will board free buses to and from Kaduna airport, adding that security will be provided by aviation security personnel, police, Ministry of Defence, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps and the Kaduna State Government.

This proposal has, however, triggered much argument with many stakeholders opposing complete closure of the airport, though in support of repair of the facility.

Dissatisfied with the proposal, the Senate on Jan. 10, summoned the Minister of Transport, Rotimi Amaechi; Minister of State for Aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika; Minister of Works, Housing and Power, Babatunde Fashola; Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Mohammed Bello; Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadiq Abubakar and heads of the aviation agencies.

The lawmakers asked them to appear before its Committee on Aviation within 48 hours to provide details on the planned closure as well as to explore other options that could avoid a total closure of the airport.

Also, the Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON) is of the opinion that the facility should be repaired at night without shutting down the airport completely for six weeks.

According to AON Chairman, Capt. Nogie Meggison, the Kaduna airport may not be able to take the volume of traffic usually witnessed in Abuja airport on a daily basis.

“We are in total support of the rehabilitation of the Abuja runway which is long overdue and is becoming a safety issue, but AON is of the view that shutting the runway is not the best for now.

He suggests that in the alternative, the runway which is about 3,900 metres long can be repaired in two phases.

“They can fix one side in three or four weeks and come back to the other side.

“A 737 aircraft can comfortably get into it for a one-hour flight; a DRJ, Dash-8 and domestic carriers can also come in. International carriers can go to Lagos and Kano, like what is done elsewhere,’’ he says.

Equally, the Nigeria Air Traffic Controllers Association (NATCA) is kicking against the proposal.

The President of NATCA, Mr Victor Eyaruis, wants the Federal Government to reconsider complete shutting down of the runway due to the economic and security implications.

He argues that while repair of the runway is commendable, it must be done with consideration for the safety of passengers flying the Abuja route.

Eyaruis is not satisfied that the government did not hold a roundtable with the various stakeholders before coming on with the proposal.

“The government put the cart before the horse. It ought to have
exhausted deliberations with stakeholders on how best to go about the maintenance and repair of the runway.

“Also, the facilities at the Kaduna airport are not enough. Presently, air traffic control is done from a fire service building,’’ he says.

The National Union of Air Transport Employees (NUATE), Air Transport Senior Staff Services Association of and National Association of Aircraft Pilots and Engineers (NAAPE) also condemn the proposed complete shutdown.

In an open letter to President Muhammadu Buhari, the unions argue that total closure of the airport should be the last ineluctable option in repairing the runway.

The letter is signed by NUATE, ATSSSAN and NAAPE General Secretaries, Messrs Olayinka Abioye; Frances Akinjole and Aba Ocheme, respectively.

“Skeletal repairs of the runway could be adopted by allowing the airport for use while fixing of the major damaged portions of the runway continues at nights.

“The consequence of total closure will impact negatively on the already dire economic environment of Nigeria, given the dependence of several low and middle income earners on aviation business in and around Abuja airport.

“In reality, most persons, especially international travellers and important local and international personalities will simply shelve all activities in Abuja for the six weeks of closure.

“Then the whole investment in Kaduna airport will be in vain. The airlines, aviation agencies and other businesses around aviation will lose colossal sums of money,’’ the claim.

For Mr Osho Joseph, the Representative of Foreign Airlines in Abuja, Kaduna airport may be an alternative for local airlines, but not for foreign airlines at the moment.

Joseph is also of the opinion that February and March will be ideal for the closure to beat onset of rainfall.

However, the Deputy British High Commissioner, Harriet Thompson, has expressed readiness to support Nigerian Government throughout the period of the closure.

She debunks the insinuations that the government of Britain might close down its embassy in Abuja.

Thompson gives an assurance that Britain will stand by Nigeria at all times.

Also, a representative of Gov. Nasir  El’rufai of Kaduna State, Mr Gambo Hamza, assures Nigerians of the state government’s readiness to ensure smooth operations during the period.

According to him, the state government has begun cleaning up of the airport and making arrangements for adequate security.

Amid these arguments on the proposed closure, the Senate has suspended its opposition to the project though they expressed their reservation and called on the Federal Government to put all advices into consideration.

The Senate made its position on the matter known after its plenary on Jan. 17.

But the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE) and the contractor, Messrs Julius Berger Nigeria Limited are, however, sharply divided over a total closure of the airport during the rehabilitation work.

While the NSE is calling for a segmented repair model to allow landing and takeoff on the runway, Julius Berger states that it will be dangerous to work on the runway while it is in use.

Analysts strongly believe that businesses will certainly suffer if the proposal scales through, while travel to Abuja will take more time and cost more.

They are worried that the government allowed that level of dilapidation of the runway before considering total repair which, they say, will create hardship for the flying public.

They urge government to adequately assess the pros and cons of the total shutdown to avoid decisions that will further create more suffering for Nigerians. (NANFEATURES)

News Agency of Nigeria (NAN)

]]> (Super User) Top Stories Thu, 19 Jan 2017 15:06:52 +0000
U.S Inauguration: Trump team denies media report Inviting Former President Goodluck Jonathan U.S Inauguration: Trump team denies media report Inviting Former President Goodluck Jonathan

WASHINGTON, Stella Igwe-Adesoga- The Trump transition committee, Great Again, has denied reports in some sections of the media in Nigeria that President-elect Trump declined invitation to President Muhammadu Buhari and has instead invited former president Goodluck Jonathan to the U.S 45th presidential inauguration scheduled for Friday in Washington.


The official speaking to Per Second News in Washington Thursday morning said that the inauguration was mostly a domestic event for America.

“The US State Department has advised that as in the past, foreign delegations will not be invited to Washington for the President-elect Trump’s 2017 inauguration and that heads of state and governments will be represented by chiefs of diplomatic missions in Washington,” the official said.

A twitter account of Deji Adeyanju, a  PDP spokesperson also said that United States of America president-elect Donald Trump has invited ex-president of Nigeria Goodluck Jonathan to his inauguration on Friday, January 20, 2017.

A U.S State Department official said that “The ‘Heads of Mission’ are the only foreign officially invited. It will be an historic few days!” He further confirmed that one invitation card has been sent to the Nigerian Mission in Washington, DC.

According to the Great Again official, Trump’s Presidential Inaugural Committee has raised a record $90 million-plus in private donations, far more than President Barack Obama’s two inaugural committees.

But while Trump has raised more money for his inauguration than any president in history, lead inaugural planner Tom Barrack said theTrump team wants to avoid a “circus-like atmosphere” in favor of a more “back to work” mindset.

He said only few foreign leaders were invited, which includes Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Canadian Prime Minister.

Trump’s Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson also revealed Thursday that 28,000 officials are dedicated to security for the event, including 7,800 National Guard troops.  

Former leader Jonathan is currently in Bayelsa, according to close aides.

SEE LISTS Attending

• Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton 

• former President Bill Clinton

• former President George W. Bush

• former First Lady Laura Bush

• former President Jimmy Carter

• Ohio Gov. John Kasich 

• New Mexico Gov.  Susana Martinez

• former UKIP leader Nigel Farage 

• Russian ambassador to the U.S. Sergey Kislyak 

•  Anson Chan, the former chief secretary in Hong Kong

• Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass.

• Sen. Ed Markey, D-Mass.

• Rep. Seth Moulton, D-Mass.

• Rep. Jim McGovern, D-Mass.

• Rep. Stephen F. Lynch, D-Mass.

• the Rev.  Samuel Rodriguez, president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference

• Rabbi Marvin Hier, the head of the Simon Wiesenthal Center

• Cardinal Timothy Dolan, archbishop of New York

• the Rev. Franklin Graham, president of Samaritan’s Purse

• televangelist Paula White

• Bishop Wayne T. Jackson, leader of Great Faith Ministries International in Detroit


• Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

• Israeli Prime Minister  Benjamin Netanyahu

• former President George H.W. Bush.

• former Florida Gov.  Jeb Bush


]]> (Super User) Top Stories Thu, 19 Jan 2017 14:28:14 +0000
ITF Equip Over 14m in 45 years – Ari ITF Equip Over 14m in 45 years – Ari

Persecond News – Amos Dunia, - Abuja.


The Industrial Training Fund (ITF) has in its 45 years of existence, equipped over 14 million Nigerians with employable and entrepreneurial skills, Director-General of the Fund, Sir Joseph Ari has said.

This is just as the Director General expressed gratitude for the encouragement and confidence reposed on the management and staff of the Fund by President Muhammadu Buhari and the two Ministers of the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment which propelled the ITF to set higher goals and achievements within a short period of time. 

Sir Ari, who announced this in Abuja at a press conference, also said this is aside the Managerial, Supervisory and other Capacity Building programmes implemented for the Public and Private Sectors of the economy.

He further said that on assumption of duty as Director General in September 2016, the management of the Fund in its quest to deliver on its mandate in line with the philosophy of the Federal Government especially with reference to key areas of fighting corruption, provision of adequate security for lives and property, job creation/reduction of youth unemployment infrastructural development including good health care delivery and entrepreneurial development innovation and creativity, set out strategies to reinvigorate and reposition the organization. 

The Director General explained that the Fund is mindful of the fact that Industrialized Nations like Brazil, Singapore and China moved from developing to developed economies through harnessing their skilled manpower and less dependence on mono-economy, adding that empirical evidence from several skills gaps surveys has revealed that, despite soaring unemployment especially among the youth, vacancies still exist that are currently filled by persons other than Nigerians.

“The ITF is ready to provide dynamic and proactive services aimed at achieving her mandate in line with the current Federal Government’s agenda. It is against this backdrop that the Fund reviewed its vision and came up with policy and implementation strategies to enable her take a leading role in Human Capital Development aimed at strengthening the Federal Government policy on diversification, industrialization and subsequently reposition the economy,” Ari said. 

He explained that the ITF’s modus operandi at this precarious time will determine the impact it makes on the nation and for posterity and therefore stressed that in this wise, the Fund is seeking the cooperation and support of every stakeholder in skills development for job creation especially Agencies under the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment (FMITI), the OPS, media and international collaborators in order to accomplish the set goals.

The ITF Director General also announced that part of the Fund long tern goals include the establishment of one Automative Parts Production and Training Centres,  facilitate Automative part import substitution, develop requisite skills in Automative spare parts production and encourage local production of automotive spare parts.

 He said the ITF intends to leverage on its three Es which are – Expanse presence in every state of the Federation including Abuja with 33 Area Offices and 5 ISTCs. It also include expertise of over 2,000 staff with specialization in various disciplines and experience of over 45 years among other goals.

]]> (Super User) Top Stories Thu, 19 Jan 2017 12:50:34 +0000
World oldest gorilla born in zoo dies at 60 World oldest gorilla born in zoo dies at 60

Colo looks over a cake during her 58th birthday at Columbus Zoo in Ohio, US on December 22, 2014. Colo, the worlds first gorilla born in captivity, died in her sleep overnight, less than a month after her 60th birthday.



Colo on her 58th birthday photo above


Colo, the matriarch of the Columbus, Ohio, zoo gorilla family, was born in 1956 at a time when much less was known about the western lowland gorilla and conservation. Her surprise birth at the time made headlines around the world and sparked greater interest in the endangered species.

"She was an ambassador for gorillas and inspired people to learn more about the critically endangered species and motivated them to protect gorillas in their native habitat,” said Tom Stalf, the president of the zoo.

Colo went on to have three offspring, creating an entire family at the zoo. She was the grandmother of 16, great grandmother of 12, and great-great grandmother of three gorillas. The zoo said her family would be allowed time with the body before it is cremated.

There are fewer than 300 cross river gorillas in Cameroon and Nigeria with over 5,000 lowland gorillas in Democratic Republic of Congo.


Deutschland Gorilla-Mutter gibt totes Baby seit Tagen nicht her im Allwetterzoo Münster


A gorilla couldn't accept her baby's death

]]> (Super User) Top Stories Wed, 18 Jan 2017 13:38:40 +0000
Nigeria's Vice President Denies Report of Sour Relations With South Africa Nigeria's Vice President Denies Report of Sour Relations With South Africa

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo Tuesday at the mountain resort of Davos, Switzerland, dismiss notions that the relationship between Nigeria and South Africa – the two largest economies on the continent – had soured.

Reacting to a question from a reporter from Business Day Johannesburg, Osinbajo was at pains to point out that there was "not any kind of hostility". Referencing the MTN case which saw the Johannesburg-based telecoms company initially fined a record $5.2 billion for failure to disconnect 5.1 million unregistered customers in the country on time, Osinbajo said that that individual cases did not amount to a souring of relations between the two nations.

"MTN was a violation of regulations, not an arbitrary imposition of a fine," Osinbajo said, adding that the company had been party to developing the regulations.

"MTN has not complained of unfair treatment. "There is not any kind of hostility. MTN has been in Nigeria for about 16 years and doing very well, and continues to do very well."

 The Vice President also revealed that the Buhari administration has commenced fresh talks with representatives of groups in the Niger Delta in a bid to resolve grievances and bring an end to the recurring militancy that has once again plagued the region.

 “We have spoken earlier to the Pan-Delta forum. The Pan-Delta Forum is a forum of leaders, youths and civil society groups in the Niger Delta including the various ethnicities and they are accredited by practically all the groups,” Osinbajo said. “They presented what they describe as dialogue issues and we think that’s a sensible roadmap as to what to do and what steps to take to resolve issues.


Osinbajo made this statement at a press conference at the 2017 World Economic Forum, WEF. 

The Vice President also assured the international community that Nigeria could boost its oil production above 1.8m barrels per day (bpd) “very quickly” if the government is able to come to an agreement with communities in the ongoing discussion with militants. 

“We’re close to about 1.7 to 1.8m [bpd], but we think that could improve very quickly once we’re able to sort out all the issues in the Niger Delta,” he said.

“Yesterday I was in the Delta and that was possibly the first direct engagement at the level of the presidency with individuals there.”

Osinbajo also promised that the problems in the currency exchange rate will be resolved very soon. 

]]> (Super User) Top Stories Wed, 18 Jan 2017 04:25:08 +0000
Ex-Rep, Chidi Duru Arraigned for Alleged Theft and Conspiracy Ex-Rep, Chidi Duru Arraigned for Alleged Theft and Conspiracy
A Former Member of the House of Representatives, Hon. Nze Chidi Duru, was on Monday arraigned before a Chief Magistrate’s Court at Tinubu, Lagos, for alleged stealing.
Also arraigned with him by the Zone 2 Command, Nigeria Poice Force, Onikan, Lagos, was a senior lawyer, Mr. Smart Iheazor.
The two men are are facing a four-count charge bordering on conspiracy, stealing, breach of peace and impersonation.
The duo were alleged to have conspired and committed the offences on Wednesday, January 11, 2017, when they, in company of other suspects still at large,  invaded the phead office of the First Guarantee Pension Limited (FGPL) office with intent to forcefully take over the management and assets of the Pension Fund Administrator, PFA. They were also alleged to have carted away some valuables belonging to the company.
Duru and Iheazor, lawyers of 28 and  30 years at the Bar, respectively, allegedly committed the offences at No. 65, Kudirat Abiola Way, Oregun Ikeja Lagos.
The charge marked No. 12/02/2017 read: “That you, Nze Chidi Duru ‘M’, Smart Iheazor ‘M’ and others now at large, on the 11th day of January 2017, at No. 65 Kudirat Abiola Way, Oregun, Ikeja, Lagos,  in the Lagos Magistrate District, did conspire among
yourselves to commit felony to wit stealing and thereby committed an offence punishable under section 409 of the Criminal Laws of Lagos State of Nigeria, 2011
“That you, Nze Chidi Duru ‘M’, Smart Iheazor ‘M’ and others now at large, on the same date, and place in the aforementioned Magistrate District, did steal (3) three office files, (1) one HP Laptop valued at the sum of 250,000 (Two Hundred and Fifty Thousand Naira) property of First Guarantee Pension Limited (FGPL) and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 285 of Criminal Laws of Lagos State, 2011.
“That you, Nze Chidi Duru ‘M’, Smart Iheazor ‘M’ and others now at large, on the same date, and place in the aforementioned Magistrate District, did conduct yourselves in a manner likely to cause breach of the peace by wilfully and unlawfully invading First Guarantee Pension Limited (FGPL) offices with an intent to forcefully takeover the management and assets of the company and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 111(d) of the Criminal Laws of Lagos State, 2011.
“That you Nze Chidi Duru ‘M’ and Smart Iheazor ‘M’ on the same time, date, and place in the aforementioned Magistrate District, with intent to defraud, did introduce yourselves as Vice Chairman/Secretary, respectively, of First Guarantee pension Limited (FGPL) and acted same in an attempt to takeover the management and assets of the company and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 378(1) of the Criminal Law of Lagos state, 2011”.
Both defendants, however, pleaded not-guilty to the offences.
A drama, however ensured before the arraignment as counsel to the accused, Emeka Etiaba (SAN), informed the court‎ that one of his client, Chidi Duru, was at the bring of slumping in the courtroom, having just been discharged from the  hospital the same Monday morning from where he was taken to the court. 
But the prosecutor objected, noting that the doctor at the police hospital, where Duru was admitted, had certified him (Duru) fit.
Magistrate Adefulire, after listening to both counsels, ordered the defendants to take their pleas.
Thereafter, counsel to the defendants persuaded the court to grant the accused bail on self-recognition, nothing that both were senior lawyers, while Duru was a  former Member of the House of Representatives. He added that their offences were bailable ones.
The prosecutor, however, objected to the bail on self-recognition, insisting that they should be given sureties as they reside in Abuja, not Lagos.  The Magistrate granted the accused bail in the sum of N500,000 each with one surety each in like sum.
The matter was adjourned till march 9, 2017 for trial.
It would be recalled that Chidi Duru was arrested and detained by the Police on Thursday, January 13, 2017 for the alleged offences. 
Also, efforts by his lawyer, Mr. Emeka Etiaba (SAN), who was in the company of Mr. Wole Olanipekun (SAN) and his associate, Hon. Chuma Nzeribe, to secure his release proved abortive as the ex-Rep was alleged to a record of jumping bail and therefore on police wanted list.
The lawyer to the First Guarantee Pension Limited reportedly produced a police gazette declaring Duru wanted in 2013. 
A former IGP, Mr. MD Abubakar, had in 2012 allegedly released Hon. Duru on administrative bail over alleged conspiracy, forgery, theft of N20 million, and cheating, but only for him to disappear and subsequently obtain a court injunction restraining the police from arresting or charging him to court.
Excerpts of the gazette entitled “Nze Chidi Duru ‘M’ Wanted by the Office of the Inspector-General of Police, Louis Edet House, Abuja” and marked CR: 3000/GP.SEC/MU/TB/ABJ/21/02/13, reads: “The above named person is hereby declared wanted by the Nigeria Police on C.R.O Form 5, Issued by the Office of the Inspector-General of Police.
“He is wanted for the offence of conspiracy, forgery, theft, and cheating.
“Method used in committing the offence is that suspect illegally diverted the sum of N20 Million Naira, which belong to First Guarantee Pension Limited”.
His brother, Ugochukwu Duru, was also declared wanted in the gazette for the same alleged crimes.
The previous leadership of the National Pension Commission (PenCom) under Mr. M. K. Ahmad, sacked the Board of FGPL and set up an Interim Management Committee (IMC) pursuant to Sections 88 (2), 20(i), and 21(j) of the Pension Reform Act 2004 (as it was then). 
Also indicted and sacked were Chief Orlando O. Ojo, the former Chairman of the PFA and one Mr. Derrick Roper (representing the interest of Novare Holdings (Pty) Ltd of South Africa) over violations of the Code of Ethics and Business Practices as well as Code of Corporate Governance for Licensed Operators issued by PenCom, the provisions of the Pension Reform Act (PRA) 2004 (at it was at the time), and other laws of Nigeria. 
Following his alleged indictment by the PenCom examinations, Chidi had reportedly offered to resign as a soft-landing during a meeting summoned by the former DG of PenCom, Mr. Ahmad, in May 2011. He allegedly resigned vide a resignation letter to PenCom dated July 21, 2011. 
However, he was said to have subsequently reneged and got his lawyers to sue PenCom. 
He reportedly fell into his current trouble when he allegedly led thugs to invade the PFA in contempt of his sack by the industry regulator, PenCom, and pending suits on the matter before several courts, including the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court.
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