Wednesday 18 October 2017
(APA 10/06/17)
APA-Abuja (Nigeria) - The Nigerian government has placed health facilities on high alert following the reported outbreak of monkey pox in Bayelsa State in the oil-rich Niger Delta. Health minister, Isaac Adewole said in Abuja on Thursday that the patients suspected of contracting monkey pox in the state have been quarantined, while supportive treatments are being offered them. According to him, monkey pox could not be ascertained until laboratory tests by the World Health Organisation (WHO) referral laboratory in Dakar, Senegal confirms them as such. “Investigation is still on-going and our partners are working with us on this reported outbreak while the team in Bayelsa state would give support,” Adewole said. The minister called for calm and assured Nigerians that...
(AFP (eng) 10/05/17)
At least 17 people drowned when a boat ferrying around 60 passengers capsized in northwest Nigeria, the National Emergency Management (NEMA) said on Wednesday. The boat smashed into a tree trunk in the rain-swollen River Niger on Tuesday. "So far 17 bodies have been removed from the water, 12 yesterday and another five this morning", NEMA coordinator Suleiman Karim told AFP. Another 17 passengers were rescued by emergency workers and local divers, Karim said. "We are still searching for at least 26 people because the 60-passenger boat was full at the time of the accident", he said.
(APA 10/05/17)
APA – Lagos (Nigeria) - Nigeria’s upper legislative chamber, the Senate says it is investigating insubordination allegations against the Group Managing Director of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mr. Maikanti Baru by the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu. The Senate at plenary on Wednesday said that the investigation followed the allegations of malpractices contained in the leaked Kachikwu’s letter to President Muhammadu Buhari, alleging that Baru awarded a $25 billion contracts without his consent as Minister of State for Petroleum Resources. In a motion on “Allegations of Corruption against NNPC Trading: Time to Conduct a Holistic Investigation sponsored by Chairman Senate Committee on Ethics and Privileges Sen. Sam Anyanwu said that the NNPC Trading Limited...
(Xinhuanet 10/05/17)
Nigeria has no immediate plan to bring back home former petroleum minister Deziani Allison-Madueke, to face trial, Minister of Justice Abubakar Malami said Wednesday. Allison-Madueke, who is being investigated in Britain, had earlier urged the Nigerian government to bring her back to the country to face corruption charges against her. Malami told reporters in Abuja, the nation's capital, that bringing Allison-Madueke back would jeopardize the investigation being carried on her in Britain. He said steps have been taken by the British authorities on corrupt practices involving Nigerians. "If Nigeria feels strongly that there is need to bring Deziani Allison-Madueke here to face charges of corruption, the government will not hesitate to do that," the minister added. He said the former...
(APA 10/05/17)
APA – Lagos (Nigeria) - The Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), Mr. Oscar Onyema, has said that Market Data, which is the by-product of activities on the platform of the Exchange, remains a key ingredient for investment endeavours. Speaking at the 2nd edition of the Market Data workshop of the NSE on Wednesday in Lagos, Onyema said that the Nigerian bourse would leverage the workshop to intimate the participants of new data products that would complement our existing list of non-display products, which cut across real time, reference and thematic datasets. He noted that these are designed to help unleash creative juices and take advantage of emerging technologies such as cloud, analytics, algorithmic trading and artificial...
(APA 10/05/17)
APA-Freetown (Sierra Leone) - A fiery Nigerian pastor who provoked religious sensibilities in Sierra Leone last week with a controversial sermon attacking Islam has been released on bail, Wednesday. Rev. Victor Ajisafe walked out of detention after surrendering all his legal papers, including passport, the Sierra Leone police said in a statement. Mr. Ajisaf was detained after audio and video of his sermon in which he mocked Islam and accused Muslims of terrorism surfaced on social media. The Nigerian born pastor who is married to a Sierra Leonean also in the sermon said the Islamic religion had no history in the country.
(Xinhuanet 10/05/17)
At least 11 people have been admitted to hospital in Nigeria's oil-rich Bayelsa following an outbreak of an unknown disease, an official said Wednesday. State Commissioner for Health Ebitimitula Etebu, who confirmed the development, said the new viral epidemic, suspected to be a "monkey pox," broke out in the state. He told reporters that a medical doctor and 10 other people who came down with the disease had been quarantined in an isolation center at the Niger Delta University Teaching Hospital (NDUTH) Okolobiri, Yenagoa local government area of the state. The isolation center was created by the Nigerian Center for Disease Control (NCDC) and the epidemiological team of the state's ministry of health to stop the spread of the disease...
(Reuters (Eng) 10/05/17)
NAIROBI (Reuters) - Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc. (HLT.N) plans to spend $50 million over the next five years to add 100 hotels to its chain in Africa, it said on Thursday, joining other chains keen to tap growing business and international travel on the continent. One property will open in the Kenyan capital Nairobi by the end of this year and another in the Rwandan capital Kigali in 2018, it said in a statement. There was 11 percent growth in Sub-Saharan African tourism in the past year, according to data from the U.N. World Tourism Organisation. Hilton said the remaining additions to its 39 existing African properties would be operational within the next five years. “The model of converting existing...
(APA 10/05/17)
APA-Addis Ababa (Ethiopia) - The African Union (AU) will on Thursday endorse reports and recommendations on Agriculture, Rural Development, Water and Environment (ARWE) made by experts and senior officials in a meeting held on Monday and Tuesday. The endorsement will take place during the ministerial session of the AU’s Specialized Technical Committee on ARWE that opened on Thursday in Addis Ababa under the theme “Improve environmental sustainability and transform agriculture to ensure food and nutrition security.” These include policy papers and reports on agriculture, rural development, water and environment and recommendations and guidance on issues in the 2063 Africa Development Agenda, including agriculture, environment, climate change, and youth engagement. Among the points chosen for the discussions are the assessment of...
(Reuters (Eng) 10/04/17)
ABUJA (Reuters) - Nigeria’s financial crimes agency on Wednesday brushed off allegations by the wife of the country’s former president that it had conducted a “witch-hunt” against her. Patience Jonathan, whose husband Goodluck Jonathan was the president of Africa’s most populous country from 2010 to 2015, accused the head of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) of an “orchestrated plan” to tarnish her reputation and that of her husband. President Muhammadu Buhari took office in 2015 after defeating Goodluck Jonathan in elections during which he vowed to crack down on corruption. Buhari said state coffers were virtually empty when he assumed the presidency. Last year, the EFCC froze four U.S. dollar bank accounts that the ex-president’s wife said she...
(AFP 10/04/17)
Nigeria host Zambia in their penultimate 2018 World Cup qualifier on Saturday knowing that victory would secure a sixth finals appearance since first qualifying in 1994. The 2-1 win in the reverse fixture in Ndola 12 months ago helped get the country behind a team who had failed to feature at back-to-back Africa Cup of Nations. It set the tone for the Super Eagles' excellent campaign in a tough Group B, with Nigeria not dropping points until matchday four in Yaounde. The 1-1 draw in Cameroon, combined with Zambia winning in Algeria last month, have meant the Chipolopolo are now the only team between Nigeria and next year's tournament in Russia. Head coach Gernot Rohr will take much of the...
(Reuters (Eng) 10/03/17)
UMUAHIA, Nigeria (Reuters) - A secessionist leader seeking independence from Nigeria has been missing since an alleged military raid more than two weeks ago left his house in the city of Umuahia riddled with bullet holes, its windows smashed and doors hanging off hinges. The disappearance of Nnamdi Kanu, after the raid the army says did not happen, threatens to ignite separatist unrest capable of destabilizing southeastern Nigeria, a region where a million people died in a 1967-70 civil war over the short-lived Republic of Biafra. Kingsley Kanu, 48, said he was with his older brother Nnamdi, the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) leader, at their family home on the evening of Sept. 14 when soldiers stormed in. “They were...
(AFP (eng) 10/02/17)
President Muhammadu Buhari on Sunday railed against separatists seeking Nigeria's "dismemberment" and called for "proper" dialogue after clashes between pro-Biafra activists and security forces in the restive southeast. Speaking as Nigeria marked its 1960 independence from Britain, Buhari also said that corruption remained the African oil giant's "number one enemy". The 74-year-old former general later flew out of the capital for a lightning surprise visit to Maiduguri, the city in northeastern Nigeria that is the epicentre of the bloody insurgency by Boko Haram Islamists.
(AFP (eng) 09/29/17)
Trials of Boko Haram suspects in Nigeria will take place behind closed doors with no media present, a justice ministry official with knowledge of the matter told AFP on Friday. The move was made on security grounds following discussions between the government and the Department of State Services intelligence agency. "There will be no access to the media," said the official, who asked not to be identified. "The decision was based on the need for confidentiality because of security issues that may come up during the trial." The justice ministry announced last week that the trials of more than 1,600 suspects were scheduled to begin from October 9. It blamed delays in prosecution on poor investigation techniques such as lack...
(AFP (eng) 09/29/17)
Most schools in the state worst-hit by the Boko Haram conflict remain shut, the UN said on Friday, blaming the jihadists for deliberating targeting education. Unicef, the UN children's agency, said at least 57 percent of schools in Borno state were closed as the new academic year began this month, with teacher numbers as well as buildings badly hit by the violence. More than 2,295 teachers have been killed and 19,000 displaced, while nearly 1,400 schools have been destroyed in eight years of fighting, it added in a statement. Schools were shut because they were too badly damaged or were located in areas still deemed unsafe despite a sustained military fight-back against the Islamist militants since 2015. Unicef warned the...
(APA 09/29/17)
Ahead of Nigeria's 2019 presidential election, the Governor of Ekiti State in south-western Nigeria, Mr. Ayodele Fayose, has declared interest to contest the election against the zoning policy of his political party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). Fayose said in Abuja on Thursday that his action to contest the presidential election was in line with democratic tenets. With his declaration, it brings to two, the number of aspirants for the exalted office. Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) has been in field campaigning. President Muhammadu Buhari has yet to declare his position, but some of his supporters have lampooned former vice president of trying to subvert Buhari. Fayose, who is also the Chairman of...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/29/17)
Nigeria’s debut 100 billion naira sovereign sukuk issue launched last week was more than 5.8 percent oversubscribed, the Debt Management Office said on Wednesday, suggesting it may tap this demand more to help fund its budget. Nigeria has a growing consumer and corporate banking sectors and is home to the largest Islamic population in sub-Saharan Africa, with Muslims accounting for about half of its population of 180 million. “With the success of the (sukuk) offer, another window has been opened for the government to raise funds to close Nigeria’s infrastructure gap,” the debt office (DMO) said in a statement. The seven-year Islamic bond, which is structured as a lease and guaranteed by the government, fetched 105.87 billion naira in bids...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/29/17)
More than half the schools in the state at the epicenter of Nigeria’s conflict with Boko Haram are still closed, the United Nations’ children agency said on Friday, as the insurgency drags into its ninth year. The lack of schools could continue to fuel Boko Haram or similar movements in the future. Poor education for Nigeria’s restive northeastern youth left them with few prospects, driving them to join the Islamist insurgency, experts say. The conflict has killed more than 20,000 people since 2009 and embroiled the region in one of the world’s worst humanitarian crises, with at least 10.7 million people in need of assistance, according to the United Nations. “In addition to devastating malnutrition, violence and an outbreak of...
(APA 09/29/17)
Faced with the harsh economic realities in Nigeria, the Federal Government says that it is withdrawing its membership from 90 international organisations in order to meet its obligations to these organisations. Nigeria’s Minister of Finance Kemi Adeosun told journalists after the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting on Wednesday in Abuja that Nigeria was spending over $120 million every year as a member of 310 international organizations. She lamented that the government was no longer meeting up with its obligations to these organization. The minister explained that a committee was set up by government to review the rationale of Nigeria’s continued membership of such a large number of international organisations and the financial implications of such membership. According to local media...
(APA 09/29/17)
Japan has contributed an additional $1 million to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to respond to critical needs of refugees and Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Nigeria. Ms Elizabeth Mpimbaza, UNHCR’s Senior External Relations Officer in Nigeria, said on Thursday in Abuja that the money was given to the agency to cater for the needs of people forced to flee their homes. These people, she said, included Nigerian refugees wishing to return to their north east home from neighbouring countries. Mpimbaza said that the gesture brings Japan’s total contribution to UNHCR Nigeria this year to $3.5 million. She said that Mr. Sadanobu Kusaoke, Ambassador of Japan to Nigeria, reiterated his country’s commitment to support efforts that create...

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