Etebo Raring To Go At Stoke City After First Training At Pre-Season Camp

Oghenekaro Etebo is thrilled after having his first training with his new English Championship side, Stoke City at their pre-season training camp in Germany.

Etebo signed a five-year deal with the Potters shortly after the start of the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia where he was one of Nigeria’s standout performers at the tournament.

The 22 year old took to his Instagram page on Monday to reveal that he was impressed with first training session and eager for the new challenge in the new season.

“Good first day at training, pleased to be here and excited for the challenge ahead. #EK# StokeCity,” Etebo wrote on his Instagram page on Monday.

Stoke City got relegated from the English Premier League to the English Championship last season.

Etebo joined Stoke City from Portuguese side Feriense after spending two years at the club. He played four seasons for Nigerian Professional Football League club Warri Wolves before leaving the shores of the country.

Russia 2018: Musa’s Strike Vs Iceland, 17 Others Nominated For Goal Of The Tournament

Ahmed Musa’s second goal for the Super Eagles in their 2-0 win over Iceland at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia has been nominated to view for the best goal of the tournament.

Musa bagged a brace in the encounter to hand Nigeria’s Super Eagles their only win at the tournament.

The Leicester City forward’s strike will contend with 17 other goals scored at the tournament in a poll conducted by FIFA.

Other goals nominated for the goal of the tournament award include, Cristiano Ronaldo’s third goal against Spain,Nacho’s strike against Portugal, Philipe Coutinho long range strike against Switzerland.

Others are goals from Denis Cheryshev against Saudi Arabia and Croatia, Lionel Messi’s strike against Nigeria, Nacer Chadli additional time goal for Belgium against Japan.

Benjamin Pavard’s half volley in France 4-3 win over Argentina, Ricardo Quaresma’s goal for Portugal against Iran, Adnan Januzaj’s curler against England, Angel Di Maria’s goal in Argentina’s defeat to France also were nominated for the goal of the tournament.

Jesse Lingard’s stunner against Panama, Toni Kroos stoppage time goal against Sweden, Luka Modric’s goal in Croatia’s win over Argentina, Artem Dzyuba’s close range strike for Russia in the win over Egypt, Juan Quintero’s strike for Colombia against Japan and Dries Mertens volley against Panama all made the shortlist of goals nominated.

Voting will will continue on the official website of FIFA until Monday 23 July, according to the World football governing body.

 

Plateau Killings: Perpetrators Must Be Arrested, APC Reacts

The All Progressives Congress (APC) has called on the security agencies to arrest the perpetrators of the attack that claimed many lives in Plateau State.

The party made the demand in a statement on Wednesday by their National Publicity Secretary, Mr Bolaji Abdullahi.

“We call on security agencies to spare no efforts in ensuring the arrest and prosecution of the perpetrators and in stemming the occurrence of such violence in all parts of the country,” the statement said.

The APC described the attack as an act of “barbarism, bestiality and cruelty” to a fellow man, saying nothing can justify such incident.

They condoled with the government and people of Plateau State over the attack which left at least 100 people dead in Barkin-Ladi and Riyom local government areas of Plateau.

The ruling party further stressed the need for Nigerians to live in harmony with one another, irrespective of their religious, ethnic, and political backgrounds.

They added, “We appeal to religious and community leaders to demonstrate true leadership even in the face of this terrible challenge by appealing to those affected not to take the laws into their hands and avoid utterances and actions that can provoke reprisal.”

The party, however, said they are confident that the prompt visit of President Muhammadu Buhari to the state would help to provide some succour to the people of the affected communities.

The also described the visit as a reassurance of the President’s commitments to tackling the security situation in the country.

Soyinka Vows to Expose Obasanjo on July 3

Nobel laureate, Professor Wole Soyinka, has accused former President Olusegun Obasanjo of being the most hypocritical former leader of the country, following his attempt to hijack the movement for political change.

He stated this in Abuja on Friday at a dinner organised by the International Press Institute.

“Obasanjo has crossed the red line and I will launch a publication to expose him on July 3 at Freedom Park in Lagos,” Soyinka stated.

He is trying to hijack a recovery process he is least worthy to lead.

According Soyinka, Obasanjo is not the right person to lead any movement for reform on change of leadership in the country in 2019 and that Obasanjo’s Coalition for Nigerian Movement should not be glorified.

He said Obasanjo and other geriatric leaders of his generation should step aside and allow a new generation to lead the nation.

Responding to a question that he has not been critical of Obasanjo as he had been of other past leaders, especially late General Sani Abacha, Soyinka said, “As for Obasanjo, I have news for him. And it has been a progressive thing.

“I believe Obasanjo has really crossed the red line because he is trying to put himself as the head of a recovery process. He is trying to hijack the recovery process in this nation and I say that he is one of the least worthy of one of the former heads of States to lead that kind of movement.

“I have brought out a publication about that, the title is in Latin but it means; who watches the watchmen. That publication is coming out simply because I will like to see new blood in governance in this nation and I think these corrupt and hypocritical geriatrics should stop recycling themselves and they should stop trying to co-opt their former cronies to take over the reigns of governance in this nation.”

Punch

6 years after, 2000 IDPs return to home for Eid-el-Fitr

The Nigerian Army on Sunday, 17th of June, said no fewer than 2,000 returnees celebrated Eid-el-Fitr at Gudumbali town in Guzamala Local Government Area of Borno, for the first time in six years.

The town, which is 125 kilometres north of Maiduguri, the state capital, was deserted by locals in the area following incessant attacks by Boko Haram insurgents.

According to a statement issued by Brig.-Gen. Texas Chukwu, Director Army Public Relations, the IDPs returned to their ancestral home following successes recorded in the ongiong Operation Last Hold.He said that more returnees were escorted back home by troops.
“Following the achievements recorded by the troops of Operation LAFIYA DOLE, the Nigerian Army consolidated the operations with clearance operation which is Sharan Gwona da Sharan Gida and dominance patrols.

“The returnees, drawn from different IDP camps were assured of their safety and government’s assistance in rebuilding their homes and livelihoods.

“Building materials are already being stocked for distribution as efforts are intensified to clear and open up more communities in the nine Local Government Area Councils of Northern Borno,” Texas said.He quoted the Commander of Operation LAST HOLD, Maj.-Gen. Abba Dikko, who welcomed the returnees, as saying that the military would not rest on its oars until all displaced persons were safely returned to their ancestral homes.

Texas said the commander asked all terrorists to either surrender and be reintegrated into their communities or be “vanquished and conquered”.

Obasanjo, Do You Know Buhari’s Age? By Tunde Odesola

(Published in The PUNCH on Monday, June 11, 2018)

 

The phrase, Sho mo age mi ni, is a Yoruba question meaning, “do you know my age?” It was the proficient thespian, Bayo Salami, popularly known as Oga Bello, and his gifted son, Femi, aka Jelili, that brought the viral video clip, Sho mo age mi ni?, to me at dinner as I browsed through my phone some days ago. The amusing video depicts a son vehemently contesting age seniority with his father. I showed the video to my wife, and we had a good laugh.

 

Unbeknownst to me then was the fact that neither Oga Bello nor his son was the originator of the video concept. I was bemused about the foolery, arrogance and vanity of a son challenging the elderliness of his father. Then I contemplated the talent that birthed the video concept. The following day, I came across some other versions of Sho mo age mi ni? video clips on YouTube and I discovered that the concept belonged to a self-confessed former Yahoo Yahoo practitioner, fast-rising actor and comedian, Kazeem Abimbola, aka Jigan Baba Oja.

 

All over the world, the writer, musician, sculptor, painter, artiste, have no control over the meanings their works evoke from the public. This is why creative artistes, especially musicians, have sometimes had to explain the intentioned meanings of their works – after the public have read different meanings into them. For me, Sho mo age mi ni? is an allegory for the ingratitude, impunity and blind pomposity of Nigeria’s political class, which turns around quickly after election, to bite and abandon the electorate hand that fed it. It is the encapsulation of the big-headedness bestriding the Nigerian Senate, where the comedy of the absurd is daily showing.

 

 

President Muhammadu Buhari doesn’t know his age. He personally disclosed this last December when the Minister, Federal Capital Territory, Muhammed Bello, led a delegation to pay him Christmas homage at the Presidential Villa, Abuja. Buhari said, “I am very grateful (to you) for taking time out on a very important day to come and spend it with us. It has been a tumultuous year. I am thinking I am 75. I thought I was 74, but I was told I was 75…” I think Nigerians have the right to denigrate Buhari and think little of what he says because, like no other Nigerian president, he has, one time too many, made some ‘unpresidential’ gaffes.

 

Recently, in faraway London, he described Nigerian youths as eternally lazy. The other day when his delectable wife, Aisha, publicly sought to make him beware of the sycophants within his government, he reminded her that her roles remained taking care of him and keeping the warmth in the ‘other room’.

 

Less than a year to the 2019 presidential election, however, President Buhari appears to have discovered his mojo as the smut surrounding his oration is fading into the burnishing bellows of political sagacity. I’m not a Buhari apologist; I’ve consistently been very unsparing in my criticism of the inertia-induced woeful performance of his administration in this column. But his shocking declaration of June 12 as the country’s Democracy Day and the recognition of the winner of the June 12 election, Bashorun MKO Abiola, as the ultimate martyr of Nigerian democracy, is akin to the Hand-of-God goal scored by the Argentine wizard, Diego Armando Maradona, in the 1986 World Cup quarterfinal match against England.

 

A Maradona-led blitzkrieg had pushed back the English into their own half and the dribbling little magician flicked a short pass to a teammate in the 18-yard box, an English defender attempted to clear the ball midair but miskicked it towards his own goal, and an onrushing Maradona jumped up to score the most controversial goal in the history of the World Cup. English players saw a hand and protested the dubious goal, but the referee saw a head and upheld the goal. As though to prove his ambivalent capacity for evil and good, Maradona, four minutes later, went on to score the goal-of-the-century when he ghosted the English team before slotting home with his famous left foot. Though arms and ammunition couldn’t win for Argentina the Falkland Islands War which ended on June 14, 1982, a punch and a foot sent England out of the World Cup in the June of 1986, and a bitter revenge was earned. June. June. June.

 

Like Maradona’s Hand-of-God goal, Buhari’s June 12 goal has sent millions of tongues into wagging overdrive – connecting a similarity in the way both captains scored for their respective teams. Both players ended up as devils when they first attempted to showcase their skills to the public – Maradona at the 1982 World Cup in Spain, and Buhari in military uniform, in 1985.

 

Maradona, however, ascended into glory in 1986 with the Albicelestes, which means “white and sky blue,” winning the World Cup in Mexico just as Buhari returned from political wilderness to claim the presidency in 2015. Four years later, Maradona ended up in defeat at the Italia World Cup final, another probable similarity which Buhari is currently battling to avoid.

 

As things stand, Buhari, whose team had been uninspiring in the last three years, is gamely prowling to score more Hand-of-God goals, a situation the opposing Aremu FC coached by old solider Olusegun Obasanjo, is finding extremely difficult to deal with. The fledgling Aremu team had been caught off guard by the late June 12 goal. Pundits believe Buhari wouldn’t have had the opportunity to net this memorable goal if Obasanjo had killed off the game and won the trophy when he captained the Wadata FC 11 years back.

 

Soccer aficionados recalled that when Obasanjo, as a player, faced the yawning net several times, he dribbled back into play, shimmying, shielding, backheeling, heading and thumping his chest until the match ended just as his wish for a rematch never materialized. When the Wadata FC signed Goodluck Jonathan in the summer of 2010, many thought the June 12 Trophy was in the bag as the young Jonathan scored a goal at the University of Lagos stadium in May 2012, but fans trooped unto the field with cudgels, protesting that no goal must be scored against the home team, UNILAG FC, hence the match ended goalless with the strike ruled as offside.

 

When the canny manager of Allied Forces FC, Bola Tinubu, bought the old, half-fit, gangly and injured Buhari from Army FC in 2014 as a free agent, fans thought it was only to give the Daura-born striker the pathway to a fabulous retirement and a three-season poor run of form had made many give up hope on a possible career rejuvenation for the taciturn striker. However, the timing and execution of the career-enhancing goal by Buhari so much jolted opposition teams that efforts have been in top gear to prise off the backline of Wadata to fortify the porous Aremu defence and their leaky goalkeeper. Meanwhile, reports coming in indicate that want-away midfielder, Dinosaur, taken out during a recent match for brain concussion, is responding to treatment.

 

Veteran match commentator, Ernest Folorunsho, in his post-match analysis, said, “What a match! Soccer and politics are interesting games. The takeaway from the June 12 victory is that it teaches Nigerians, especially our youths, the virtues of self-belief, perseverance, hopefulness, dedication, heroism and patriotism. MKO never backpedalled in the face of death.

 

 

“Buhari is the most lethargic and unpredictable player ever to don the green-white-green jersey; when you expect him to shoot, he holds on to the ball, when you expect him to run, he shuffles. But never overlook him; in a combination of leg-over and body swerve, he beats both Obasanjo and fascist defender, Ibrahim Babangida, to lift the June 12 Trophy. In an amazing sermon delivered on September 11, 2016, Pastor Tunde Bakare warned on the divine need to honor and recognize MKO. Today, the sermon is fulfilled. Congratulations, Nigerians!”

 

35 Tramadol Containers Seized, NAFDAC

Prof. Moji Adeyeye, Director General, National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) says not fewer than 35 containers of Tramadol have been seized at various ports in the country.

She said nine out of the seized containers of tramadol were released to NAFDAC by the Nigeria Custom Service (NCS), and had been destroyed by her agency.

NAFDAC-DG, Prof. Moji Adeyeye: says Customs has only released nine of the containers
“We are seriously working with the Customs on this and each time they seize any container, they usually invite us to come and see the containers with Tramadol.

“So far, 35 containers were seized and only nine of them have been handed over to NAFDAC which we have destroyed,” she said.

She, however, decried the delay by the Customs in handing over the rest of the containers to her agency.

The NAFDAC boss stated that tramadol was a restricted drug but had been abused by Nigerian youths who use it without prescription.

According to Adeyeye, who is also a professor of pharmacology, the drug destroys children’s brain thereby threatening the future generation of the Nation.

She lauded the present administration for placing an embargo on codeine, which she said, like tramadol, should only be given through prescription as done in advanced country.

The director general said the agency was more determined to stem the menace of illicit and fake drugs in the country.

What is Tramadol?

Tramadol, sold under the brand name Ultram among others, is an opioid pain medication used to treat moderate to moderately severe pain. When taken by mouth in an immediate-release formulation, the onset of pain relief usually occurs within an hour. It is often combined with paracetamol (acetaminophen) as this is known to improve the efficacy of tramadol in relieving pain.

The drug called Tramadol
Common side effects include: constipation, itchiness and nausea.Serious side effects may include seizures, increased risk of serotonin syndrome, decreased alertness, and drug addiction.A change in dosage may be recommended in those with kidney or liver problems.It is not recommended in those who are at risk of suicide. While not recommended in women who are breastfeeding, those who take a single dose should not generally stop breastfeeding.

It works by binding to the μ-opioid receptor and by acting as a serotonin–norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SNRI). Tramadol is in the benzenoid class. In the body it is converted to desmetramadol, which is a more potent opioid.[10]

Tramadol was launched and marketed as “Tramal” by the German pharmaceutical company Grünenthal GmbH in 1977 in West Germany, and 20 years later it was launched in the UK, US, and Australia. It is marketed under many brand names worldwide.

Kingibe, Soyinka, Falana, Tinubu, Others to Grace June 12 Ceremony as Guests

The Federal Government has invited prominent Nigerian journalists, human rights activists and politicians to the ceremony in Abuja on Tuesday 12 June, to confer national honours on late billionaire Moshood Abiola; his running mate Ambassador Baba Gana Kingibe and late prominent lawyer, Gani Fawehinmi.

The journalists and activists invited all played salutary roles in the fight to validate the June 12, 1993 election, annulled by the Babangida junta.

Those invited include Nobel laureate, Professor Wole Soyinka, Mr. Femi Falana, SAN, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, Chief Bisi Akande, Ms. Ayo Obe.

Others are Bayo Onanuga, Kunle Ajibade, who represent TheNews and TEMPO, Nosa Igiebor of Tell Magazine.

Mr Kayode Komolafe and Senator Janathan Zwingina who worked on the Abiola campaign were also invited, along with Comrade Frank Ovie Kokori, who was the leader of the oil workers union, NUPENG.

Prof. Humphrey Nwosu, the chairman of the National Electoral Commission, stopped by the junta from announcing all the collated results, is also on government’s guest list.

President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday corrected the injustice of the annulment by announcing the highest honour of GCFR for Abiola, who won the election.

He also said that with effect from 2019, June 12 will become Nigeria’s Democracy Day, as against May 29, which marked the transfer of power from the military to the civilians.

Read rest of the statement below.

FEDERAL GOVERNMENT HONOURS JUNE 12 PRO-DEMOCRACY HEROES

Following the historic designation of June 12 as DEMOCRACY DAY and NATIONAL HOLIDAY, Muhammadu Buhari, President, Federal Republic of Nigeria, will confer PostHumous national honours on Chief M.K.O. Abiola as Grand Commander of the Federal Republic (GCFR), Chief Gani Fawehinmi as the Grand Commander of the Order of the Niger (GCON). He will also decorate Ambassador Babagana Kingibe with the Grand Commander of the Order of the Niger (GCON), at an investiture scheduled to take place as follows:-

DATE: Tuesday, June 12 2018
VENUE: Conference Hall, State House, Aso Rock Villa, Abuja
TIME: 10.00 am

2. Accordingly, Ambassador Babagana Kingibe , the family of the late Bashorun M.K.O. Abiola and that of Chief Gani Fawehinmi , along with the underlisted key players of June 12 struggle are cordially invited:

· Members of the National Executive Committee of the SDP including States Chairmen and Secretaries at the time of June 12, 1993

· Governors elected under SDP platform

· Former Senate Presidents – Iyorchia Ayu and Ameh Ebute and Speaker Agunwa Anekwe along with Principal Officers of the National Assembly elected under SDP platform

· Speakers of the States Assembly elected under SDP platform

· All Chairmen of the States Traditional Councils from the six South-Western States

3. Also invited are Senate President, Bukola Saraki, Speaker Yakubu Dogora, Principal Officers of the National Assembly, Members of the Federal Executive Council and all State Governors.

4. Accommodation has been reserved for all invitees at the NICON Luxury Hotel, Tafawa Balewa Way, area 11, Garki, Abuja from Monday, 11th June 2018. For further inquiries please contact William Alo, Permanent Secretary, Special Duties Office, Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation by telephone on +234 803 585 4332.

5. Invitation letters have been despatched. However, should the invitation arrive late, this publication serves as a formal invitation.

*Boss Mustapha

Secretary to the Government of the Federation

Ex Minister Bags 10-Year Imprisonment in Congo

A court in Congo-Brazzaville has sentenced a former government minister to ten years in prison on charges of violating state security and being complicit in the illegal possession of weapons.

According to the indictment, Jean-Martin Mbemba currently lives in France and wanted to “organise a popular insurrection in 2013”. He was sentenced on Friday in absentia.

The former ally of long-serving President Denis Sassou Nguesso had held numerous positions in the Republic of the Congo government between 1997 and 2012, including justice minister.

“There were never any weapons in this case. Nothing was found,” said Mbemba’s lawyer, Alphonse Dianguitoukoulou, adding his client went to France for health reasons.

READ ALSO: Defending me, my govt, a tough job – Buhari

Two other co-defendants were also sentenced in absentia to ten years by the court in the capital.

Four others appeared before the judge, including a police officer, and were given sentences of five years and two months.

They were detained in 2013 so have already served the bulk of their sentences.

“They have one or two months left before they are freed,” said president of the court Christian Oba, adding that the defendants had three days to appeal.

Sassou Nguesso, a former Marxist soldier, has ruled the smaller western neighbour of the vast Democratic Republic of Congo since 1979, apart from a five-year period in the 1990s.

AFP

Court Orders Late Husband’s Name Replaced With Wife’s

The Supreme Court on Friday ordered that the name of Late Brig.Gen. James Abdullahi be replaced with his wife, Elizabeth, in an appeal the deceased earlier brought against the Nigerian Army.

The other respondents are listed as Chief of Army Staff, Chief of Defence Staff and the Minister of Defence.

Justice Kumai Akaas while reading the ruling written by Justice Kudirat Kekere-Ekun, held that the decision was novel as it was guided by other considerations.

According to him, an action summarily would come to an end when an applicant in the matter dies, but that the prevailing circumstance surrounding the case warranted this intervention.

Akaas said the unanimous decision stemmed from the simple reasoning that all objections raised in the notice of appeal by the original applicant should still be considered on their merit.

He said there was merit in the application by the deceased’s widow to be substituted as the new appellant.

Elizabeth brought the application fundamentally under the powers conferred upon the court by Section 6 (6) (a) of the 1999 Constitution.

She filed the application on April 27, 2015 following the death of her husband on October 22, 2014.

Elizabeth had prayed for an order substituting Abdullahi’s name for the purpose of continuing the prosecution.

She also prayed for an order granting her the leave to amend the notice of appeal filed by her late husband on May 22, 2009.

She said there was obvious challenge to the judgment of the court of appeal affirming the deceased applicant conviction.

Abdullahi was convicted to 10 years by General Court Martial on September 30, 2005 for offences of stealing various sums of money totaling N33.5m being property of the Nigerian Armed Forces.

The court also convicted him for a conduct prejudicial to good service and discipline.

The judgment, which purportedly affirmed the decision of the General Court Martial as confirmed by the Army Council, directed the forfeiture of the deceased landed property by way of restitution.

Meanwhile, the General Court Martial as confirmed by the Army Council had directed the deceased to refund N33.5m within 90 days or the property be confiscated to recover the amount.

The appellant had argued that the property, which the respondents purportedly confiscated to recover the said amount only was valued since January 20, 2005 at N83.1m.

The appellant had argued that the General Court Martial might have ordered the forfeiture of the property but that the decision of the confirming authority was for the properly to be confiscated to recover N33.5m.

Elizabeth, therefore, averred that the error noticed in the judgment had adversely affected her and the five children the marriage with Abdullahi produced.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that no date has been fixed for the hearing of the appeal.

Olori Omobolawa: Remembering A Selfless Icon

In a time like this, one would appreciate the reality of Bob Marley’s saying that: “Live for yourself and you will live in vain; live for others, and you will live again.” Sometimes last year December  (13th Dec.2017) the world lost one of her rare gems in an unfortunate tragedy. Birds refused to leave their nests, displaying muteness in unison and sorrow. The rivers of Osun charged at onlookers uncommonly and everyone close could see the river beds pouring out sands in grief.  It was the day Olori Omobolawa Margaret Akinyemi departed this pain-filled world to the world of bliss.

Olori Omobolawa Akinyemi was a Rotarian, a selfless icon whose adventures in serving humanity were of great impacts on the lives of countless masses – women, children, aged and youths. Her contribution to the success of Osun Ambulance Agency can not be over emphasis, she was accommodating to strangers and kind to kits and kin; with a generosity that competed with soothing breeze. Her short sojourn on planet earth was purposeful and fixed on putting smiles on faces of the downtrodden and the depressed. Indeed, she exemplified the maxim that life is all about contribution not acquisition; that life is all about fulfilment not attainment.

In recognition of her noble sacrifices to make lives better for others, Rotary Club of Osogbo GRA which she was the president before her demise has decided to organize its Annual Medical Outreach in honour of the late selfless icon .The medical outreach took place  on Friday 18 May 2018 at the Alayegun Palace Ode-Omu, HRM Oba Lamidi Oke Ladowe 1 Osun State. The sole aim is to promote medical services and increase access to health for people whose happiness and well-being was the cardinal call of the late Olori Omobolawa Akinyemi.

The activities embedded in the medical outreach include checking of BP, eye tests and provision of free eye glasses, mental health counselling, and ear tests among others. Happily, the natives and residents of Ode-Omu have continued to troop out en masse as they know the unique saying that health is wealth. They cannot quantify their elation and appreciation.

As days go by, our memories continue to swing with thoughts about the loss of Olori Omobolawa – a priceless jewel. At times our hearts become filled with sorrow and our eyes, laden with tears. But we find solace in the fact she has indeed left indelible paths in the memories of many and remarkable feats that will continue to shine in the sands of time. The honour by Rotary Club of Osogbo GRA today – a community she served whole-heartedly is one of the numerous manifestations that  she was one of a kind. It clearly depicts that goodness outlives us all and we cannot but agree that: Olori Omobolawa lives on!