Saturday, 30 June 2012

Covenant University produces 88 first class students


Nineteen-year-old Wukeh Egem-Odey on Friday emerged the overall best graduating student of  the Covenant University, Ota in Ogun State, South West Nigeria, in the 2011/ 2012 academic session.

Egem-Odey is among the 88 first class students produced by the university in the academic session.

The first class students were among 1,389 persons conferred with various degrees at the university’s seventh convocation ceremony at Ota.

The Vice Chancellor of the University, Prof. Aize Obayan, said that 10 of the graduating students were less than 19 years old.

Obayan said that 646 of the graduands had second class, upper division while 576 graduated in second class, lower division while 79 received third class degrees.

The vice chancellor said that the institution’s School of Postgraduate Studies graduated a total of 89 students out of which 70 had master’s degree and 19 PhDs.

Obayan said that the university had, in its first 10 years of existence, laid a solid foundation for raising a generations of new leaders.

In his address, the Chancellor of the University, Dr David Oyedepo, decried the heightening insecurity in Nigeria and appealed to the Federal Government to address the problem urgently.

Oyedepo said that young Nigerian graduates were ready to shun the National Youth Service Corps scheme because of insecurity.

“Everyone today can see that the greatest threat to our nationhood is the ongoing mass killing and attack on churches, since December, 2010, which has claimed over 1,500 souls and left many wounded.
(Vanguard)

Pictures of Flooded Lagos







Photo of the Day

Real man or "woman wrapper"...lol

"Euro 2020 could have 12 host-cities" Platini



Uefa president Michel Platini says the 2020 European Championship could be spread across various cities in Europe, rather than having a single host.

Traditionally one or two countries have hosted the tournament, which is being held in Poland and Ukraine this summer.

The next competition in 2016 will be hosted by France.

"The Euros in 2020 could be held all over Europe," said Platini. "It could be either one country and 12 stadiums, or one stadium in 12 or 13 cities."

When Uefa president Michel Platini told his audience in Kiev that the possibility of having Euro 2020 in 24 to 32 host cities was a "great idea" it is fair to say not too many instantly shared his enthusiasm.

Platini was speaking at his pre-Euro 2012 final media conference in Kiev and if his hope was to capture attention and create debate then he certainly did.
Euro 2012 has been a success on the pitch but there have been logistical problems for supporters getting around Poland and Ukraine and there have been empty seats at high-profile matches. Spreading the tournament around so thinly around so many venues would hardly help.

Platini also says it would help infrastructure costs and circumnavigate the need to build new stadia or improve airports.
 

Turkey had been favourite to host the event in 2020, but their bid has hit difficulties due to a desire to host the Olympic Games in Istanbul in the same year.

Scotland, Wales and the Republic of Ireland have also formally declared an interest in hosting Euro 2020.

France coach, Laurant Blanc Resigns

 

 Laurent Blanc has left his job as manager of the French national team after his contract came to an end.

The 46-year-old, who has been linked with the vacant Tottenham post,  took over from Raymond Domenech in 2010.

Like his predecessor, Blanc endured infighting between players which he admitted had delayed match preparations before their Euro 2012 quarter-final against Spain.

Having guided the side to a 23-match unbeaten run, Blanc's men were defeated 2-0 by Sweden in the last group game of the competition.



 

Mursi sworn in as Egyptian president



Mohammed Mursi has been sworn in as Egypt's first civilian, democratically elected president at a historic ceremony in Cairo.

Hours after the ceremony  Saturday, he was saluted by Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi, leader of the military council which is handing over power.

Mr Mursi has promised to restore the parliament dissolved by the military.
In a speech at Cairo University, the Muslim Brotherhood politician said the army must respect the people's will.

Usain Bolt in shock defeat



Usain Bolt suffered a big upset in the 100m final at the Jamaican Olympic trials when he was beaten by Yohan Blake who clocked 9.75 seconds.

Blake stormed past defending Olympic champion Bolt - who ran 9.86 seconds - to set the year's fastest time and a personal best.

Former world record holder Asafa Powell was third with 9.88 seconds at Kingston's National Stadium.
ll's 9.72.

Missing Person


Twenty five year old, Patience Mark, dark, plump, of average height, long fixed black hair, speaks hausa, English, and pidgin fluently is missing. 
She was last seen at university of Abuja, mini campus Gwagwalada, FCT around 4pm on Friday 29th June 2012 . 
Any information on her where about  should be directed to 08032167288.

UN grants Nativity Church 'endangered' status

Nedu at the grotto in the Church of Nativity, Bethlehem
The UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) has granted endangered
World Heritage status and funding for repairs to the site revered by Christians as Jesus's birthplace in the West Bank city of Bethlehem, despite objections from the United States and Israel.

Thirteen of the 21 members of the World Heritage Committee voted in favour of the move at a meeting on Friday in St. Petersburg, Russia.

Six members had voted against it and two abstained. The fourth century Church of the Nativity is built over a grotto where Christian tradition says Jesus was born, and is in need of repair.

The Palestinian Authority (PA), which exercises limited self-rule in the Israel-occupied Palestinian territory of the West Bank, has been short of funds to make the necessary fixes to the church.

The Palestinian Authoriy's request covered part of the Pilgrimage Route, the path which tradition says Joseph and Mary took into the city in their trek from Nazareth about 2,000 years ago.

Friday, 29 June 2012

Singer Lauryn Hill pleads guilty to tax evasion charges


Acclaimed hip-hop artist Lauryn Hill took responsibility for failing to file three years of taxes on income of $1.8 million and pleaded guilty to tax evasion charges today in a federal court.

The former FUGEES member who is a native of South Orange could face up to three years in prison and $75,000 in fines for her offenses and will be sentenced in late November.

Hill's attorney Nathan Hockman said the star had been targeted by the federal government because of her celebrity status.

"There are many people in society who fail to file their taxes on time who only face civil liability," Hockman said. "They chose Ms. Hill in particular because of who she was."

Hill spoke little at her hearing today and stood attentively with her arms crossed in front of her chest when the judge first addressed her. 

New NSA Hopeful of Boko Haram Ceasefire


The newly appointed National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki on Friday expressed optimism of achieving a Boko Haram ceasefire before the Ramadan Fast.

Mr. Dasuki said this at the commencement of a security stakeholders meeting in Maiduguri.

He explained that his visit was aimed at getting to the root of the Boko Haram insurgence in the North-Eastern Nigeria.

“Since efforts to tackle the insecurity situation in the North-East have failed, I thought the best thing is for me to visit and get first class information on the problem,” Mr. Dasuki said.

He appealed to Borno elders and other stakeholders to help find solutions to the crisis.

“I believe that the best thing is to talk to elders and get their views on the way forward,” Mr. Dasuki added.

Nigerian Emerges Best Graduating Student in Turkish University




A young Nigerian has emerged the top graduating student from the Faculty of engineering at the Eastern Mediterranean University in the Turkish republic of North Cyprus, obtaining a status of High Honours (first class). 

Tunji Anthony Olu-Taiwo hails from Ifako-Ijaiye Local government area of Lagos state.

He finished with a Grade Point Average of 4.00 out of a possible 4.00 (straight A's).

He is the first African to obtain this status from his department, obtaining a degree in Computer Engineering.

Tunji was born in Kano, Nigeria where he attended Air force Nursery and Primary school. He completed his secondary education at St. Thomas Secondary School in Kano.

Nigeria's life expectancy lowest in West Africa




Life expectancy in Nigeria is now 47 years, making it the lowest among west African countries, Prof. Abdulsalam Nasidi, Project Director, Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, has said.

He said this in Gusau on Thursday at the commencement of the second Annual General Meeting and Scientific Conference of the state’s chapter of the Nigeria Medical Association.

Nasidi who stated this in a paper with the theme “Lead Poisoning: Zamfara Experience” said this position was 30 per cent below the world’s average life expectancy.

He said it was a situation that was attributable to some health factors, including child and maternal mortality, spread of polio virus and other epidemics.

``One out of every five children die before the age of five years due to polio and other infections.

“Nigeria is one of four countries where polio is still an on-going epidemic,” the Project Director said.

Villas-Boas to be named new Tottenham manager on Monday




It has been revealed that former Chelsea manager, Andreas Vilas-Boazs has accepted an offer to be the new manager of Tothenham Hotspurs.

The final paperwork on a three-year contract will be completed over the weekend.

Barring any last-minute hitches, Tottenham are hoping to name Villas-Boas as Harry Redknapp's successor after Sunday's Euro 2012 final between Italy and Spain.

The former Chelsea manager agreed to take over at White Hart Lane earlier this week, but official confirmation has been delayed until after July 1 due to contractual and legal reasons.

Villas-Boas was initially Spurs' second choice behind France coach Laurent Blanc, but impressed chairman Daniel Levy with his vision for the future of the club during a series of talks throughout the second half of June.

What foreign papers are saying about the man, Balotelli



“Why always him?” asks the back page of The Independent with a photo of the striker’s muscleman-pose celebration, referring to Balotelli’s “Why always me?” t-shirt unveiled at Old Trafford last year. 

Similar images of the Manchester City man are all over the back pages of every paper as the Italian is lauded as an all-conquering hero.

The Sun’s Sean Custis kicks off his report with a reference to one of the 21-year-old’s off-pitch antics: “Mario Balotelli nearly burned his house down when he let off fireworks in the bathroom — last night he set a whole football stadium alight.”

The Daily Mirror’s Martin Lipton is equally glowing: “Super, Mario,” he writes. “Now can you do it on Sunday?”

Over on the continent Italy’s Gazzetta Dello Sport hails Balotelli as the “Pride of Italy”, again using the goal celebration picture of the star with his shirt off (he did get booked for it, incidentally).

But Spain’s AS completely ignores the Italian victory on its back page, instead reporting that over 19 million people tuned in the previous night to watch Spain’s semi-final on TV.

Inside, however, they deliver a scathing verdict on Italy’s defeat of Germany: “Italy, traditionally competitive, rough and functional, have killed a beautiful butterfly.”




Picture of the Day

...So if you voted for President Goodluck Jonathan, let me see your hands up...lol

19 Villages in the FCT for demolition





 
19 villages around Abuja have been ear-marked for demolition by the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA). Mrs Josie Mudashiru, a spokesperson for the Department of Development Control, Abuja Metropolitan Management Council (AMMC), announced this yesterday in Abuja.

Mudashiru said the affected villages comprise Idu, Karmo-Dape, Tasha, Gwagwa, Suburi, Zauda, Jahi, Gishiri, Mabushi, Mpape, Kuchigoro, Chika, Aleita, Piwoyi, Lugbe, Pyakassa, Tudun-wada, Dei-dei and Guzape.

She said that AMMC had begun a two-month sensitisation programme for residents of the areas.

“We have commenced sensitisation programmes in Hausa, Ibo, Yoruba, Gwari and pidgin English in the affected areas before the demolition exercise,” Mudashiru said, “We have involved chiefs, youths and other stakeholders in the sensitisation programme. We will proceed for marking after the programme, and hopefully, the demolition will commence before the end of 2012.”

According to her, several efforts have been made by the FCT Urban Development to disuade non-indigenes from buying land from local chiefs.

“More than 80 per cent of people living in Lugbe are non-indigenes. They have been warned to desist from buying land from local chiefs but they refused to listen to our advice.”

However, the media assistant to the Minister of FCT, Nosike Ogbuenyin, refused to answer questions on the matter.

(Courtesy DailyTimes)

Manchester United to face Barcelona in pre-season friendly


Manchester United will play Barcelona in a pre-season friendly in Gothenburg on 8 August.

The two  teams have met each other in two of the previous four Champions League finals, with Barcelona winning both.

They last met in a friendly in Washington DC last summer, with United winning 2-1.

The fixture will be Tito Vilanova's first experience of United as Barcelona's new coach after taking the reins from Pep Guardiola.

Both sides finished second in their respective leagues last season, with United losing their Premier League title to Manchester City and Real Madrid pipping Barcelona.

Thursday, 28 June 2012

Otedola’s $620,000 Bribe Money Disappears

The alleged $620,000.00 bribe money received by Hon. Farouk Lawan from oil mogul, Femi Otedola of Zenon Oil has now developed wings and can no longer be traced for investigation.

Lawan who collected the bribe money claimed he gave them to Hon. Adams Jagaba, Chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Drugs, Narcotica and Financial Crimes. But Jaagaba denied ever receiving such sums in a letter he wrote to the Inspector General of Police.

Jagaba said in his letter to the police said: “I wish to categorically and unequivocally state that there was never a time I was in possession of the sum of $620,000 or any other exhibits (in my personal capacity or official capacity as Chairman, House Committee on Drugs/Narcotics and Financial
Crimes) relating to the subject matter of the above investigation.

“I hope this explanation lays to rest once and for all the claims that I or my committee is in possession of the sum of $620,000 purportedly given as bribe to the Ad-Hoc Committee on Monitoring of Fuel Subsidy Regime.”

The inability of investigators to trace the whereabouts of the bribe cash may have dealt a big blow in the investigation being carried out by the Special Task Force, STF, headed by Mr. Ali Amodu

Sources within security circles also hinted that the State Security Services, SSS, have been foot dragging on the investigation because the circumstances that led to them getting involved in the whole bribe saga was not officially approved.

Picture of the Day

Imo state Governor, Rochas Okorocha caught on camera buying roasted corn.


Police quash "end impunity" rally in Abuja

A coalition of civil society groups that gathered at the NNPC towers in Abuja calling for the end to all forms of corruption and impunity in governance were refused the opportunity to march to the Ministry of Justice and the EFCC Headquarters to submit their petition.

Heavily armed police men insisted that the rally will be hijacked by miscreants and therefore refused the handful of protesters from marching.

Their demands include: the implementation of the House of Representatives Report on fuel subsidy fraud, Sacking of the board and management of NNPC, PPMC, PPPRA and DPR, sack and Prosecution of the Petroleum Minister, Recovery of all looted funds, implementation of a comprehensive reform and restructuring of the Petroleum sector.

 Here are some pictures...



Wednesday, 27 June 2012

NNPC Board Reconstituted


Austin Oniwon: Fired.
To further strengthen the ongoing reforms and transformation of Nigeria’s Petroleum sector, and in furtherance of efforts to achieve greater transparency  and accountability in government, President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan has approved the re-composition of the executive management team of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) as follows:

1.      Engr. Andrew Yakubu - Group Managing Director

2.      Mr. Bernard O.N. Otti - Group Executive Director (Finance and Accounts)

3.      Engr. Abiye Membere - Group Executive Director (Exploration and Production)

4.      Dr. Peter S. Nmadu - Group Executive Director (Corporate Services)

5.      Engr. Anthony Ogbuigwe - Group Executive Director (Refineries & Petrochemicals)

6.      Dr. Attahir B. Yusuf - Group Executive Director (Commercial & Investments)

7.      Dr. David Ige - Group Executive Director (Gas & Power)

The incoming Group Managing Director, Engr. Andrew Yakubu graduated from the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria in 1979 with a degree in Chemical Engineering. He joined the NNPC in 1980. Positions he has held in the corporation include Managing Director of the Warri Refining and Petrochemicals Company and Group Executive Director (Exploration and Production). Engr. Yakubu is an indigene of Kaduna State and a Fellow of the Nigerian Society of Engineers.
President Jonathan has also approved the appointment of Engr. Victor Briggs as the new Managing Director of the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC).
The incumbent Group Managing Director, Engr. Austen Oniwon, and Mr. Michael Arokodare (outgoing Group Executive Director (Finance and Accounts), Mr. Philip Chukwu, outgoing Group Executive Director (Refineries & Petrochemicals), and Engr. Billy Agha, outgoing Group Executive Director (Engineering & Technology) are to proceed on retirement.
President Jonathan commends the outgoing directors for their service to the nation and urges the new management team to be fully committed to rapidly implementing the critical interventions needed to positively transform Nigeria’s petroleum industry.
 

Reuben Abati

Special Adviser to the President
, Media & Publicity
June 26, 2012


PW Botha: spoke the truth about Blacks or mere Racism








A friend of mine drew my attention to this Speech made by former South African President P.W. Botha to his Cabinet during the Apartheid era. 

After reading this speech, some sort of depression befell me...that said, i just want to know what you,  my black African brothers think of this speech,  especially black South Africans....  

 "..............We are not obliged even the least to try to prove to anybody and to the Blacks that we are superior people. We have demonstrated that to the Blacks in a thousand and one ways. The Republic of South Africa that we know of today has not been created by wishful thinking. We have created it at the expense of intelligence, sweat and blood.................................We do not pretend like other Whites that we like Blacks. The fact that, Blacks look like human beings and act like human beings do not necessarily make them sensible human beings. Hedgehogs are not porcupines and lizards are not crocodiles simply because they look alike. If God wanted us to be equal to the Blacks, he would have created> us all of a uniform colour and intellect. But he created us differently: Whites, Blacks, Yellow, Rulers and the ruled. Intellectually, we are superior to the Blacks; that has been proven beyond any reasonable doubt over the years. I believe that the Afrikaner is an honest, God fearing person, who has demonstrated practically the right way of being...................................By now every one of us has seen it practically that the Blacks cannot rule themselves. Give them guns and they will kill each other. They are good in nothing else but making noise, dancing, marrying many wives and indulging in sex. Let us all accept that the Black man is the symbol of poverty, mental inferiority, laziness and emotional incompetence. Isn't it plausible? therefore that the White man is created to rule the Black man.................And here is a creature( black man) that lacks foresight...........The average Black does not plan his life beyond a year......."

Hmmm......FOOD FOR THOUGHT.

Guys,What is your candid Opinion about the above comment???

Arsenal to Play Super Eagles in Abuja



English Premier League side Arsenal will play Nigeria's Super Eagles in a pre-season match in Abuja on 5 August.

Ranked 60th in the latest FIFA rankings, Nigeria face a Gunners side that finished third in the English top flight last season.

It will be the first time Arsenal have played in the West African nation.
"We are delighted to announce that Arsenal Football Club will face the Super Eagles of Nigeria in Abuja," said promoter David Omigie of DanJan Sports.

DanJan Sports say that agreement has been finalised with the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) to provide a strong Super Eagles side.

"The NFF have agreed that the country will present a strong side as coach Stephen Keshi continues his development process," said Omigie.

"The Arsenal manager [Arsene Wenger] will also use this game to showcase his full squad for the 2012/2013 football season."

The London club traditionally hosts an annual pre-season tournament at the Emirates Stadium, but they opted to postpone the event for a year because of the 2012 London Olympics.

OPC Seeks Involvement In Tackling Boko Haram






Kwara State Chapter of Odua People’s Congress (OPC) has asked President Jonathan to accept their help in the fight against Boko Haram.

The Coordinator of OPC in Kwara, Moruf Abdulsalam, while speaking in Ilorin on Sunday, said the group had discovered new scientific way of handling bomb blasts.

"When the time comes, the congress will not hesitate to put it into use to protect the lives and property of innocent citizens being wasted by the Boko Haram."
Abdulsalam stressed that the congress was ready to ensure that no life was wasted in the state by the Boko Haram terrorists.

According to him, the main objective of the OPC, with over 19,000 members, was to protect lives and property of citizens.
 
Abdulsalam said the congress had ordered its branches in the 16 local government areas to extend their tentacles to the grassroots to monitor suspicious movements that could pose security risk.

Boxing promoter offers Chris Brown and Drake $1 million each for a mock fight.




A celebrity boxing promoter is hoping to capitalize on the alleged nightclub brawl between singer Chris Brown and rapper Drake by offering them $1 million each to take their beef to the ring.

The promoter, Damon Feldman, also says he is asking singer Rihanna to be a ring girl at the bout, but acknowledged she might not accept the offer.

Feldman says he has the financial backing of businessman Alki David and that he'll donate $1 million to a charity that helps abused women if the fight takes place.

The fight, he said, would feature three minute-long rounds with the participants donning oversized gloves and protective head gear.

Feldman is no stranger to publicity. He has put on fights featuring ex-baseball outfielder Jose Canseco, Lindsay Lohan's dad Michael and Rodney King.

(Culled from CNN.com)

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Africa militant groups training fighters together and sharing funds, explosives





Three of Africa's largest extremist groups are sharing funds and swapping explosives in what could signal a dangerous escalation of security threats on the continent, according to the commander of the U.S. military's Africa Command.

General Carter Ham said there are indications that Boko Haram, al-Shabab and al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb -- groups that he labeled as the continent's most violent -- are sharing money and explosive materials while training fighters together.

"Each of those three organizations is by itself a dangerous and worrisome threat," Ham said Monday at an African Center for Strategic Studies seminar for senior military and civilian officials from Africa, the United States and Europe.

"What really concerns me is the indications that the three organizations are seeking to coordinate and synchronize their efforts," Ham said. "That is a real problem for us and for African security in general."

The United States gave the "foreign terrorist" classification to three of the alleged leaders of the Islamist sect Boko Haram, based in remote northeast Nigeria, on June 20. But it declined to blacklist the entire organization to avoid elevating the group's profile internationally.

(Reuters)

Over 1500 Men And Women Stríp Nakéd To Celebrate 2012 Munich Opera Festival In Germany





More than 1,700 men and women have strípped nakéd in a German square in the latest art installation by photographer Spencer Tunick. 

The volunteers, painted red and gold, were arranged in lines by the American snapper in an interpretation of scenes from Richard Wagner’s opera Der Ring des Nibelungen.
The installation, in Munich’s Max-Joseph Platz, was created to mark the opening of the 2012 Munich summer opera season.

Arsenal complete Giroud signing




Montpellier forward Olivier Giroud has agreed to join Arsenal on a long-term contract, the English Premier League club announced Tuesday.

The 25-year-old France striker completed a medical before agreeing terms at the club’s training ground on Monday evening. The completion of the transfer is now just the subject of “formal processes”, according to Arsenal.

Giroud, whose contract with Arsenal will commence on July 1, told the club’s website: “I am delighted to be here at Arsenal and to be part of one of the great teams in English football.
“It’s a huge satisfaction to join this great club and it’s been a dream since I was young to play in the Premier League.”

Giroud said the style of football Arsenal, who finished third in the English top-flight last season, play under French manager Arsene Wenger had been a major factor in his decision.
“I was attracted by the philosophy of football and Arsene Wenger’s ‘touch’ at this club,” he said.

Nigerian breaks academic record at John Hopkins University.



A 22-year-old Nigerian, Emmanuel Ohuabunwa, has made history at John Hopkins University, United States of America.  

Ohuabunwa from Arochukwu, Abia State, has done the nation proud by becoming the first black man to make a Grade Point Average of 3.98 out of 4.0 to bag a degree in Neurosciences in the university. 

He was also adjudged as having the highest honours during the graduation that was held on May 24 this year.

For his efforts, he has won a scholarship to Yale University to pursue a degree in medicine. Besides, he has been inducted into Phi Beta Kappa Society, a prestigious honour group that features membership of 17 US Presidents, 37 US Supreme Court Justices, and 136 Nobel Prize winners.

According to Wikipedia, The Phi Beta Kappa Society is an academic honour society. Its mission is to “celebrate and advocate excellence in the liberal arts and sciences” and induct “the most outstanding students of arts and sciences at America’s leading colleges and universities.”

It was founded at The College of William and Mary on December 5, 1776, and thus it is the oldest honour society for the liberal arts and sciences and among the oldest undergraduate societies in the US.

In an online interview, Ohuabunwa, who was born in Okota, Lagos and attended Lilly Fields Primary School, Lagos, said he left Nigeria after his junior secondary school education at Air Force Comprehensive School, Ibadan, Oyo State. 
 
“My parents moved the whole family when I was 13 years old. I was about to begin SS1 at Air Force, Ibadan. When I got to the US, I was enrolled with my age mates, which meant at 13, I was in middle school. I went to Fondren Middle School, which was in the middle of the ghetto. 

That was one of the darkest years for me because I encountered a lot of peer pressure. Some of the students, ignorant about Africa, bullied me and called me names such as ‘African booty scratcher’ because to them, Africans were dirty.

(Culled from Punch)

Sunderland sign African shirt sponsorship deal

 

English Premier League club Sunderland have announced an agreement with not-for-profit group Invest in Africa to become their official shirt sponsor.
The Black Cats will wear the name of the organisation on their shirts for at least the next two seasons.
Invest in Africa is a partnership of companies formed to promote African business opportunities.
Sunderland have existing African ties, with a number of the continent's players in their ranks in recent years.
They include Ghanaian trio Asamoah Gyan, John Mensah and Sulley Muntari.
(Culled from BBC.com)

Monday, 25 June 2012

NUC suspends Part-Time programmes in universities



The National Universities Commission (NUC) on Monday announced the suspension of all Part-Time Programmes run by universities in the country.

The Executive Secretary of the commission, Prof. Julius Okojie also announced the results of accreditation of courses run by the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN).

Okojie said the suspension of the part- time programmes was to enable the regulatory body “streamline” them.
He said the work of the universities’ regulatory body was becoming more difficult because of the “products of the system” and urged the institutions to cooperate with the NUC to evolve a more focused and credible system.

Imo state governor declares war on kidnappers...swears in 6 new commissioners.



Governor Rochas Okorocha congratulates Chinedu Offor after
being sworn in as the Commissioner for Information and Strategy

Imo State governor  Rochas Okorocha has stated that his
administration would take a decisive action to ensure that kidnapping
becomes a thing of the past in the state.

Governor Okorocha who stated this while swearing-in the six newly
appointed commissioners, stated it clearly that “time is up for
kidnappers” as government would henceforth adopt fire-for-fire
approach to end the menace.

The governor however, urged the new commissioners to queue into the
vision of his administration by imbibing the spirit of rescue mission
that translate to hard work.

He urged them to shun corruption and laziness, warning that his
administration would not condone corrupt practices by any government
official.

The new commissioners are Hon Chinedu Offor, Information & Strategy;
Ichie Best Mbanaso, Commerce and Industry; Prince Charles Onuoha,
Housing; Barr Ugochi Nnanna- Okoro, Culture & Tourism; Barr Emma
Ekweremba, Petroleum and Professor Chima Iwuchukwu, ministry of Public
Utilities.

(Courtesy: Ebere Uzuokwa
For SSA Media to the Governor)

Facebook unveils 'stalking app'.


Facebook appears to have quietly unveiled a new feature designed to let people see which Facebook users are nearby at any given time.
The company calls the feature "Find Friends Nearby," and on Monday it was available through Facebook's mobile apps and website despite the fact that it hasn't been formally announced. 

The blog ReadWriteWeb already has described the feature as a "stalking app" because it could open people up to potentially awkward or threatening interactions with strangers on the social network who know you're nearby.

To test out the feature, go to fb.com/ffn in a browser, or follow this path in the Facebook's mobile apps: menu > apps > find friends > other tools > Find Friends Nearby.

It appears that Facebook users must opt in to the feature by going to that site, otherwise their profiles will not appear in a list of people who are nearby.

The blog TechCrunch first reported on the feature Sunday after a non-Facebook developer tipped off the site to the feature's existence. 

In a comment on that site's post about the new feature, Facebook developer Ryan Patterson, who says he developed Find Friends Nearby, described how he hopes the app will be used:

"For me, the ideal use case for this product is the one where when you're out with a group of people whom you've recently met and want to stay in contact with. Facebook search might be effective, or sharing your vanity addresses or business cards, but this tool provides a really easy way to exchange contact information with multiple people with minimal friction."

A Facebook spokeswoman declined to provide additional information.
"We are constantly testing new features but have nothing more to share at this time," she wrote in an e-mail to CNN.

Reactions to the news were mixed in the tech blogosphere.
The site Gizmodo finds the new feature to be potentially useful -- and dangerous.

"You meet a cute somebody at a concert, you're like, 'Hey, we should be Facebook friends,' and they're like 'OMG, totes!' Then rather than having to spell your names and search around, you've got a much smaller group of people to choose from. I guess that's great, right?" 
(Culled from CNN.com)

Court asks National Assembly to disclose lawmakers earnings.






An Abuja Federal High Court has ordered the National Assembly to release, in 14 days, details of the salary, emoluments, and allowances received by its members between 2007 and 2011.

Justice B.B. Aliyu gave the ruling, on Monday, in a suit filed by Legal Defense and Assistance Project (LEDAP), a non-governmental organisation.

LEDAP had last year written to the National Assembly management to furnish it with the details of payments made to lawmakers. The NGO made the request on July 6, 2011, citing the Freedom of Information Act which was signed into law in May that year.

The National Assembly refused to respond to the group’s request, in a usual characteristic of government agencies.

Following National assembly’s refusal, LEDAP filed its suit in September last year seeking two reliefs which were: an order declaring that the refusal of NASS management to provide the required information was illegal; and an order mandating the NASS management to release the required information within 14 days.

Mr. Aliyu granted both orders. Yusuf Usman, counsel to the National Assembly, argued that legislators earnings were beyond the purview of the FOI, and that LEDAP had no locus standi to institute the suit.

In giving his ruling, Mr. Aliyu disagreed with the National assembly lawyer saying the payments are of public interest since they were made from public funds.

Mr. Aliyu’s ruling is a clear distinction from that made by Yetunde Idowu of a Lagos High Court. Ms. Idowu had ruled that salaries and allowances of lawmakers were personal information, and not covered under the FOI act; in a suit filed by an NGO against the Lagos State House of Assembly.

Nigerian lawmakers are considered the highest paid lawmakers in the world with each Senator believed to be getting a quarterly sum of N45million and each member of the lower house, N36million. These sums are outside of their legally approved salaries and allowances.

The Director of Information of the National Assembly, Monima Daminabo, has expressed the willingness of the assembly to comply with the ruling.
“We are going to comply exactly in line with the court order,” said Mr. Daminabo who categorized the controversial earnings of the lawmakers as “operational expenses.”

(Culled from Premium times)

Shell to Build 3.5 Billion Dollar Gas Plant in Imo state







 The shell Petroleum Development Company [SPDC] has concluded plans to
build a $3.5 billion gas plant in Imo State.

Briefing Governor Owelle Rochas Okorocha during a courtesy visit by
the management of SPDC to the governor in Government House, Owerri,
the Managing Director, Mr Mutiu Summonu, said the Assa - North, Ohaji-
South Gas supply project is in line with the local gas content policy
of the Federal Government to boost power generation in the country.

He said the gas plant on completion would supply domestic gas to power
energy plants across the country as well as generates massive job
opportunities for Nigerians.  

The Shell boss further disclosed that the project would be executed in two phases 
and would be completed in 2018.

While soliciting for the collaboration of the state government in the
handling of the project, Mr Summonu also urged the government to play
its part by providing 200 hectares of land for the project, enabling
and secured environment for the expatriates and workers and ensure a
healthy collaboration between SPDC and the host communities.  He
promised that his company would always live up to expectation in the
area of its Corporate Social responsibility [CSR] in the course of
executing the project.

In his speech, Governor Okorocha who was visibly excited on the
development assured the SPDC team that the state government would
definitely play its part to ensure immediate commencement of the
project.  The governor enumerated how SPDC began its operations in
Nigeria when gas was first discovered at Iho, Ikeduru LGA in Imo State
and urged the company to show enough presence by building a befitting
corporate office in the state.

Governor Okorocha further assured all adequate security, good working
relationship with host communities as well as general hospitality to
SPDC.  He urged the company to improve on its Corporate Social
Responsibility by embarking on meaningful projects especially on the
power sector to ensure appreciable improvement on power generation and
distribution in the state.

(Courtesy: Ebere Uzuokwa
For SSA Media to the Governor)

Wedding Pictures of Manchester City's Kolo Toure


 More pictures when you continue

Texas Cattle Deaths Linked to Genetically Modified Grass




A sudden die-off of almost an entire herd of Texas cattle has been linked to genetically modified grass. 

The 15 animals on an 80-acre Elgin ranch began bellowing, went into convulsions, and quickly died three weeks ago when they were let loose on a genetically modified form of Bermuda grass known as Tifton 85, which has been growing on the ranch for 15 years. 

Preliminary results showed that the Tifton 85 grass was mysteriously producing cyanide gas and poisoned the cattle. 

Researchers aren't certain what caused the change, and USDA scientists are attempting to determine if there has been some new strange mutation in the grass. 

Other farmers have since tested their Tifton 85 grass to find it's also toxic with cyanide gas—though so far no other cattle have been killed.

(Culled from CBS)

Update: Bauchi Bomb explosion






 An explosion near a cluster of bars in the northern Nigerian city of Bauchi, recently targeted by Boko Haram Islamists, has injured nine people, police said Monday.

The home-made explosive device planted in an unfinished building next to a group of pubs went off at around 10:00 pm on Sunday in the city’s Tudunwadan Dan-Iya neighbourhood, Bauchi state police commissioner Mohammed Ladan told AFP.

“It was an IED (Improvised Explosive Device) planted in the relaxation spot that caused the explosion which injured nine people but there were no deaths,” Ladan said.

“We still don’t know who was behind the attack but we have commenced investigation into the incident.”

Among those injured were seven men, a woman and a three-month old girl, he specified.

No group claimed the attack, but the city has been previously targeted by Boko Haram, responsible for more than 1,000 deaths since mid-2009.

The Islamists claimed a suicide blast at a church in Bauchi city on June 3 that killed at least 15 people.