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    Crystal Palace sign Nigerian-born Eze from QPR

    Eberechi Eze

    Crystal Palace have bolstered their attacking options ahead of the new English Premier League (EPL) season with the signing of Eberechi Eze from Championship side Queens Park Rangers (QPR).

    Eze, who earned rave reviews last season and scored a majestic goal in his final appearance for QPR against West Bromwich Albion last month, is joining on a five-year deal

    Eberechi is a player whose development we have followed closely, Crystal Palace Chairman Steve Parish said of the England Under-21 international.

    We are delighted he has chosen to sign for us over the other clubs that were interested and we feel that this is the right club for him to continue his development.

    The attacker, who was a target for West Ham United and Tottenham Hotspur, could potentially forge an exciting partnership with Wilfried Zaha.

    Zaha could however become a transfer target for several clubs during the transfer window.

    As a club, I feel like there are great players here and its a brilliant opportunity for me to come and be with these players, to link up with them and to really push on, Eze said.

    Crystal Palace finished in 14th place last season but scored only 31 goals in the league campaign.

    Source: NAN News

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    NCDC urges businesses to comply with COVID-19 guidelines

    Dr Chikwe Ikekweazu NCDC Boss

    By Abujah Racheal

    As economy activities resume gradually, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), has called on Nigerian business owners to ensure compliance with the COVID-19 guidelines to curb the spread of infection in the country.

    Mrs Elsie Ilori, Head of Department, Surveillance and Epidemiology Department of NCDC, made the call at the briefing of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 on Thursday in Abuja.

    Ilori said the guidelines, recommendations and practices were aimed at giving workers the confidence of safety at their work places.

    Some of the guidelines include: mandatory use of face masks, use of temperature checks at entry point of business environment, availability of hand sanitisers, development of physical distancing within the business or office environment.

    To develop an infectious disease preparedness action plan to reduce the risk of exposure in the work place, she said.

    Iloriadvised that staff members should be enlightened on COVID-19 symptoms and how to manage suspected cases.

    She urged that businesses, associations and bodies of different sectors to join hands and help the nations economy to regain the lost to the pandemic.

    Source: NAN News

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    Minister commends volunteers for youth investment fund

    Minister of Youth and Sports development, Mr Sunday Dare

    By Franca Ofili

    Mr Sunday Dare, Minister of Youth and Sports Development has commended members of the Nigeria Youth Investment Fund (NYIF), focal group for the dedication in carrying out their job.

    Dare made the commendations in a statement by the Director of Press in the Ministry, Mrs Lere-Adams Adjobome, on Thursday in Abuja.

    He said this when he paid host to the group who presented its preliminary report to him.

    The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that President Muhammadu Buhari on July 22, approved the establishment of NYIF to the tune of N75 billion for three years.

    The minister said the members were selected based on their skills, competence and areas of expertise.

    We will take time to study this interim that has been submitted by the group.

    It will also be harmonised with the interim report that the technical committee has submitted and the outcome will be presented to the steering committee.

    It is important to state that I am impressed and I commend the quality of work you have put in because membership of the group is not a paid assignment.

    This is rendering service to the country and to the youth, he said.

    The team leader, Mr Oladipupo Adebiyi, who presented the report, said that the NYIF initiative enjoyed public support especially from young Nigerians.

    Nigerians believe the Fund will address unemployment and reduce poverty amongst young people.

    The Fund will not only cushion the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on the economic condition of young people; it will also foster the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals.

    Most young Nigerians strongly posit that the success of the Fund will be contingent on its inclusiveness, monitoring and evaluation mechanism and sustainability framework, Adeniyi said.

    He said that the groups terms of reference required that it provided advisory, insights and suggestions on the successful implementation of the NYIF.

    He said that others would propose ideas and initiatives that would promote the NYIF and support its impact on youth entrepreneurship across the country.

    It will also provide feedback on the expectations of the youths with regard to the implementation of the NYIF, he said.

    Adebiyi added that members of the group would serve as the NYIF ambassadors in their various communities, spheres of influence and coordinate the engagement of the Fund with youth groups and other stakeholders.(NAN).

    Source: NAN News

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    NAHCON committed to improving standard of Hajj operations
    By Salisu Sani-Idris

    The National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) has restated its determination to improving Hajj operations in line with global best practices.

    Chairman of NAHCON, Alhaji Zikrullah Hassan, gave the assurance when he paid an unscheduled visit to the FCT Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Board office, in Abuja.

    Hassan said the commission was taking necessary measures and would leave no stone unturned in improving Hajj management for the benefit of Nigerian Muslim pilgrims.

    He also pledged that the commission would involve all relevant stakeholders to provide first hand services to intending pilgrims.

    According to the NAHCON chairman, the commission would continue to support all states pilgrims welfare Boards, agencies and commissions, to ensure that they provided excellent services to the pilgrims.

    Receiving the delegation, the Director of the FCT Muslim Pilgrims welfare Board, Malam Muhammad Danmallam, expressed delight over the visit.

    He said the visit was an encouragement to the board in its efforts at improving services to the guests of Allah.

    Danmallam reassured the delegation of the FCT Administrations resolve to ensure that the board recorded the best Hajj operations.

    According to him, the Administration, through the Minister of State for FCT, Dr Ramatu Aliyu, is committed to supporting the board in the provision of seamless operations in the forthcoming Hajj.

    It is that commitment that inspired the FCT minister of state to mobilise the contractor handling the construction of the boards permanent office complex to return to site, after being abandoned for many months due to lack of funding, he said.

    The director therefore, called on NAHCON to continue to support the board in its efforts at giving pilgrims the best service.

    Source: NAN News

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    Expert advocates gender balance in oil, gas industry

    Expert advocates gender balance in oil, gas industry

    By Edith Ike-Eboh

    Mr Iyke Nnoaham, Portfolio Business Manager, Shell companies in Nigeria, has advocated gender balance in the management of the oil and gas industry in the country.

    Nnoaham spoke at the Nigeria Energy Industry Transformation Summit (NEITS), which held virtually and ended on Thursday.

    He said that gender diversity had remained a major challenge in the industry, necessitating a balance for the sector to attain a greater height.

    The manager said that only about 22 per cent of women were working in the industry, and few seen at the management cadre.

    The sector has gender diversity challenge, only about 22per cent of women are working in the industry.

    There is need for gender balance to achieve active business in the industry, he said.

    Nnoaham said that though many women were seen to be among best graduating students in higher institutions, they were hardly absorbed in the system to work.

    He advised women to ensure that they prepare for challenges and not wait to be pushed to participate.

    Do not wait to be pushed, push yourself and help to correct the imbalance in the industry, he said.

    The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the summit, organised by the Society of Petroleum Engineers, had the topic Challenging Global Energy Landscape: Strategies for Industry Sustainability.(NAN)

    Source: NAN News

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    Military rescues 13 kidnapped foreigners

    Maj.-Gen. John Enenche, Coordinator, Defence Media Operations

    By Sumaila Ogbaje

    The Defence Headquarters says the military in its operations in the South-South zone of the country has rescued 13 foreigners who were kidnapped in Lome waters.

    The Coordinator, Defence Media Operations, Maj.-Gen. John Enenche, said this at the updates briefing on military operations in August across the country on Thursday in Abuja.

    Enenche explained that Nigerian Navy Ship SOROH in one of its operations in August intercepted a speed boat with 13 foreigners made up of seven Russians and six Ukrainians alleged to have been kidnapped by pirates in Lome waters.

    He said that four Nigerians were also on board of the speed boat.

    According to him, the troops of Operation DELTA SAFE have sustained the aggressive fight against economic sabotage in the zone with tremendous successes.

    Subsidiary Operation SILENT HEAT was launched by Operation DELTA SAFE on Aug. 1 for 90 days.

    The objective of the operation was to protect critical installations, key points and vital points as well as combat all forms of illegalities and crimes in the area.

    The operation is conducted to maintain conducive environment for oil and gas industries as well as other economic activities to thrive, he said.

    He said that since the activation of Operation SILENT HEAT, several arrests and deactivation of various militant camps had been made.

    It was during the course of the operation that on Aug. 19, Nigerian Navy Ship SOROH intercepted a speed boat with 13 foreigners made of seven Russians and six Ukrainians alleged to have been kidnapped by pirates in Lome waters.

    The 13 kidnapped foreigners as well as four Nigerians on the speed boat have been handed over to Defence Intelligence Agency for further necessary action, he said.

    He said that in the course of other subsidiary Operations CALM WATERS II and Operation SWIFT RESPONSE on Aug.16, Nigerian Navy Ship VICTORY patrol team intercepted and arrested seven men suspected to be smugglers at Agbana-West by the Nigerian-Cameroun maritime border.

    The suspects were arrested with a medium size wooden boat laden with 203 bags of foreign parboiled rice and 62 empty drums suspected to have been used to smuggle Petroleum, Oil and Lubricant products to Cameroun.

    Accordingly, the suspects, bags of smuggled parboiled rice and the medium-sized wooden boat were handed over to Operation BORDER DRILL for further investigation and prosecution in line with extant regulation, he said.

    He said that within the month of August, several arrests were made by troops of Operation DELTA SAFE; large quantities of stolen crude oil as well as other petroleum products were impounded.

    Cumulatively, a total of 1,309,000 litres of stolen Automotive Gas Oil (AGO), 1,824.04 barrels of stolen crude oil and 302,000 litres of stolen Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) were recovered in the month of August 2020 in Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River, Delta and Rivers.

    Additionally, a total of 344 bags of smuggled parboiled rice were impounded in the zone.

    From these successes, it is clear that troops of Operation DELTA SAFE and other security agencies working together remain resolute and dedicated in their endeavor to end the fight against economic sabotage, he said.

    Source: NAN News

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    AfDB: Senate President congratulates Adesina on his re-election

    Senate President, Ahmad Lawan

    Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, has congratulated the President of the African Development Bank (AfDB), Dr Akinwunmi Adesina on his re-election for a second term in office.

    Lawan, in statement on Thursday in Abuja by his Special Adviser on Media, Ola Awoniyi, said Adesinas victory unequivocally affirmed the confidence, trust of the shareholders, management and staff of the bank due to his leadership.

    He said the renewal of his mandate was an attestation to Adesinas excellent performance as president, evident in the banks numerous developmental initiatives on the African continent.

    I am elated to convey the joy and pride of the entire National Assembly over the electoral acclamation for integrity, grace, substance and hard work.

    Your re-election should be an impetus for taking the continental financial institution to a greater height realising that the reward for hard work is more work, Lawan said.

    Lawan urged Adesina to consider the storm that preceded his re-election as the fire test for gold and, having come out of the test glittering, to remain focused and resolute on his mission.

    Source: NAN News

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    Bayelsa Govt tasks leaders of oil-rich communities on peace

    Douye Diri Bayelsa State Governor

    By Nathan Nwakamma

    The Bayelsa Government on Thursday urged community leaders to foster peacein the state, saying that it remained committed to ensuring a peaceful atmosphere for oil and gas exploration and other activities.

    Dr Ibere Jones, the state Commissioner for Mineral Resources, made the call at the inauguration of a 25-member Dodo River Community Rural Development Association leadership, in Yenagoa.

    The Dodo River Communities Rural Development Association in Ekeremor LGA is host to Chevron Nigeria Ltd. which funds development projects in the area under the Global Memorandum of Understanding (GMoU).

    The communities in the association are Amatu 1, Amatu 2, Bilabiri 1, Bilabiri 2 and Bisangbene.

    Jones said that the Douye Diri-led administration placed premium on peace to enable it to fully implement its prosperity agenda.

    The administration of Gov. Douye Diri is very keen on maintaining peace for economic activities to thrive, and it is a prerequisite for the realisation of its prosperity agenda.

    Without peace, there cannot be progress and prosperity.

    The government sees peace as a basis for everything we do, and the governor is very careful and passionate in providing a peaceful environment for businesses to thrive to attract more investment to the state, Jones said.

    The commissioner inaugurated the leaders of the association at the Dodo River Communities Secretariat located at Kpansia in Yenagoa.

    He advised the leaders to justify the confidence reposed on them by their communities by running a transparent and accountable administration and ensuring judicious application of development funds at its disposal.

    In his inaugural speech, Mr Francis Amamogiran, the Chairman of Dodo River Communities Rural Development Association, noted that the GMoU model adopted by Chevron helped the communities to develop.

    So far, the GMoU has provided an answer to development, transparency, accountability and lasting peace in the Niger Delta.

    I commend Chevron for the history it has made in the Niger Delta with the introduction of the noble idea of the GMoU.

    What is more remarkable is the commitment of officials of Chevron to the implementation of the terms of the GMoU to the letter.

    To my peace-loving communities, I promise to work with this team to attract all forms of development to our communities.

    Your support to me and the GMoU process is my source of strength, Amamogiran said. (NAN)

    Source: NAN News

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    JAMB delisted 22 CBT centres for alleged fraud


    The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has delisted over 22 Computer-Based Test (CBT) centres for allegedly defrauding 11,823 of its candidates to the tune of N59 million.

    The Registrar of the Board, Prof. Ishaq Oloyede made this known during a virtual meeting with representatives of the affected centres on Thursday.

    Oloyede said the centres carried out the fraud by charging candidates more than stipulated amount for effecting correction on profile and by-passing One-Time Password (OTP) required of candidates to initiate such changes.

    He said the affected centres from nine states were indicted for the infractions, adding that any centre that shared the same ownership with the affected ones also stood being suspended from all JAMB activities.

    The purpose of calling this meeting is to interact with 22 institutions that have grossly violated the prescription of the Board, particularly during COVID-19, and those who had done things not expected to do thereby endangering the lives of candidates they were supposed to protect.

    We have discovered that the 22 centres also defrauded candidates by collecting from them more than you are expected to collect and doing certain things that will bypass the normal process and procedure.

    We have invited you to this meeting to hear you out and also let the public know how some of you are engaging in criminal activities in the process of registering candidates.

    There are some of you who can even be classified as certified fraudsters.

    The registrar also noted that the affected CBT centres owners would also beprosecuted as the board had reversed the changes done illegally by affected candidates.

    He advised such candidates to change their passwords to avoid further damage following exposure of the secret code to operators of the now blacklisted CBT centres.

    Oloyede lamented that such behaviour of fleecing both innocent and not innocent candidates of several amounts of money under the guise of effecting changes in registration details portends danger for the country.

    Some of you were collecting N3,000 and N5,000 from candidates for an amount that is supposed to be N200 as service charge for the centre.

    What you have collected is over N59 Million. JAMB has concrete proof of the infractionsbecause we under covered payments to the centres in order to actually detect the fraud that was being perpetrated by them.

    Meanwhile, a representative of Duntro CBT centre, Mr David Ugochukwu blamed the illegal act on his technical staff, saying that they have been sacked from the organisation.

    Ugochukwu claimedhe had earlier written to JAMB to inform it of the identified breaches in the registration application that might allow the bypass of OTP in the correction of candidates data in their absence with the submission of their passwords.

    Other CBT representatives who spoke at the meeting, apologised and admitted to the illegal activities but blamed the problem on technical staff.

    The affected CBT centres are Bright Stars, Aba, Abia State, 68 candidates; Flourish Computer Centre, Akwa Ibom State-105; Ibom-E-Library, Akwa Ibom-12; Chukwuemeka Odumegwu University, Igbariam 661. Anambra State; Deacons Digital Solutions Ltd. -96; Federal Poly, Oko 314, Mega Dataview, Onitsha-733.

    Others include Bayelsa State; Linnet Paul Innovative Institute, Yenagoa- 3435; Niger Delta University 1,200; Edo State: Diict, Benin-81; Gateway Edutech, Benin-10; Gifted Hands Science and Technology, Benin-223; NABTEB ICT Training Centre, Benin-291; Samuel Adegboyega University, Ogwa-670 and Supreme ICT Foundation, Benin-22.

    Others are Enugu State: Elco ICT, Nsukka-538; Peaceland and Stalwart Solutions, Enugu-554; Union ICT-773; Kaduna State: Time online ICT, Sabon Tasha, Kaduna 67: Lagos State: Duntro High School, Surulere 21; Elite BusinessConsult, Ikorodu 218 and Rivers State: Ave Maria international academy, Rumuodara, Port Harcourt 1,731.

    Source: NAN News

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    Group hails Nigerian Armys successes in north-west

    Some of the soldiers fighting terrorists in the north-east

    By Taiye Agbaje

    The Peace, Reconciliation and Rehabilitation Initiative (PRRI), on Thursday, commended the Nigerian Army for recording massive successes in its operations across the northwestern part of the country.

    The PRRI, in a statement through its Director, Mary Odoma, said the establishment of the Army Super Camp IV as well as the launch of Operation Sahel Sanity in Faskari, Katsina State last month, marked the dawn of a new era.

    According to the group, the troops have been ruthless in its operations in Sokoto, Katsina and Zamfara, quelling the activities of bandits, kidnappers and cattle rustlers.

    The establishment of the Army Super Camp IV in Faskari, Kastina State on the 6th of July 2020, marked a new dawn in the fight against banditry, cattle rustling, kidnapping and other similar criminal activities in the North West region of the country, Odoma said.

    When Operation Sahel Sanity was launched, the residents of these areas welcomed the operation with open hands and minds.

    By the first month of operation, Sahel Sanity was already yielding desired results.

    The gallant troops of operation Sahel Sanity had conducted several operations, including aggressive clearance operation and ambush operation in Sokoto, Katsina and Zamfara States.

    These operations according to information from the defence Headquarters website, indicated that within the first month of the operation, about 80 armed bandits were neutralised and another 33 suspected bandits arrested.

    Also several arms and ammunition were recovered from the bandits.

    During the many operations, the notorious Dangote triangle and their logistic bases, plus many other bandit camps were equally destroyed.

    This has denied the criminals the much needed cover for regrouping. Several other hideouts of these criminals have been cleared and the criminals either neutralised or dislodged, the group said.

    The PRRI said it was time for social works to begin in the region to rehabilitate the internally displaced persons.

    The group, however, called on governments at state and local levels, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), traditional and religious leaders to unite to fashion out the way forward.(NAN)

    Source: NAN News

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