By Ismaila Chafe
The Presidency says about 250 Nigerian business interests will participate in the African Business Forum, which will bring together African and Russian business leaders in Sochi, Russia, between Oct. 23 and Oct. 25.
Malam Garba Shehu, the Presidents Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, disclosed this in a statement in Abuja on Tuesday.
According to the presidential aide, the forum will be held during the RussiaAfrica Summit to enhance Russian investments in Africa, and promote African business interest in the host country.
It is important that this meeting is taking place at this time. All the big economies are picking stronger interest in Africa.
We now have US-Africa Summit, India-Africa Summit, China-Africa Summit and Japan-Africa Summit, so Russia has signified its interest for political, cultural and economic partnership.
Nigeria has had an excellent relationship with Russia over the years. We will not forget how the country assisted us in keeping Nigeria as one during the civil war when some of our traditional allies deserted us, he said.
He noted that Russia had also stood behind Nigeria in the fight against terrorism, Boko Haram and ISWA, and had also demonstrated its capacity in gas production, a resource which Nigeria has a huge potential of utilising.
Shehu, who also confirmed the arrival of President Muhamamdu Buhari for the event on Monday, said the three-day inaugural Russia-Africa Summit and Economic Forum would focus on peace, security and development.
He said the summit would look into issues of sustainable energy, mines and steel, infrastructure development in Africa, nuclear energy and trade and investment.
On security, the Senior Special Assistant said the meeting would come up with proposals for a security architecture driven by new technology.
The Economic Forum and Summit would hold between Oct. 23and Oct. 24,, with four plenary sessions to be attended by more than 30 African Heads of State and governments.
This included the Chairman of the African Union and President of Arab Republic of Egypt Abdel Fattah el-Sisi.
The summit would be co-chaired by President Vladimir Putin, with a keynote address at the opening on Wednesday, and el-Sisi.
Buhari and Putin will meet at the Nigeria and Russian bilateral meeting on Oct. 23 while the Nigerian leader will make a statement at the summit on Oct. 24.
Other participants at the summit that will showcase Russian interest and investment potential in Africa include businessmen, experts, investors, leaders of major sub-regional associations and organisations. (NAN)
By Jacinta Nwachukwu
Prof. Anthony Kanu of Tansian University, Umunya in Anambra State, has advised media practitioners to always apply a holistic approach that is data based and devoid of bias when reporting migration issues.
Kanu gave this advice in an interview with newsmen at a two-day capacity building workshop for media agencies on migration reportage in Abuja.
According to him, media practitioners need to report for all and not just particular persons, by so doing we will have a holistic reportage that will help national development.
Similarly, Dr Emeka Obiezu, the National Coordinator, Civil Society Network on Migration and Development, Nigeria, suggested that media orgnisations should have migration desks to handle issues related to migration.
Obiezu said that media professionals should appropriately and effectively play their role of enlightening the public on issues of migration, making good use of training and training materials made available by relevant stakeholders.
He added that the training was aimed at engaging media professionals on proper reportage, enhanced media reporting on migration, andcontributing to efficient and effective migration governance in the country.
According to him, the capacity building workshop will also assist media practitioners to cover migration with more accuracy and humanity.
It will also build the capacity of media practitioners on the provision of National Migration Policy, its coordination and implementation.
It will equally increase their knowledge in basic migration dynamics, trend and management and familiarisation with Key migration terms, Migration dynamics, trend and analysis, he added.
Obiezu noted that the media was crucial in delivering verified information, informed opinions as well as balance an inclusive narrative.
The media organisation contributes and shapes the public, political perception on all aspect of life which includes migration.
In many in stance such perception portrays migration as a problem rather than a multi-faceted global phenomenon with a variety of challenges and opportunities, he said.
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the capacity building workshop for media agencies on migration was funded by the European Union (EU) within the framework of the EU-IOM Initiative on Migration Governance and Reintegration. (NAN)
A 27-year-old Nigerian, Segun Prosper Otaru, who lived in St. Robert, Missouri, United States has been sentenced to four years and three months in federal prison without parole, almost a year after he was first indicted in November 2018 by by a federal grand jury.
According to US Department of Justice statement, Otaru was sentenced by U.S. Chief District Judge Beth Phillips on Friday.
The court also ordered him to pay $25,056 in restitution, and to forfeit the same amount to the government.
Otaru is a legal permanent resident of the United States.
According to court documents, Otaru entered the United States in April 2013, under apparently fraudulent pretences; contrary to the requirements of his student visa, he did not even begin his studies in the United States. The year after entering the United States, Otaru obtained lawful permanent status through marriage to a citizen.
On May 2, 2019, Otaru pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and one count of aiding and abetting the theft of public money. According to court documents, over the course of his five years in the United States, Otaru used 13 aliases and multiple bank accounts opened under false identities in order to move funds and perpetrate various frauds as a part of an organized crime network.
He admitted that, at least as early as 2016, he participated in a scheme to defraud people through various scams, such as posting internet advertisements on sites such as Craigslist.com for goods, services, and rental accommodations. Conspirators sought to induce individuals responding to the advertisements to pay for the goods and services, which they had no intention to provide.
For example, conspirators used existing pictures and descriptions of properties found from legitimate websites to create fraudulent Craigslist postings under properties for rent. When victims responded to the advertisement, conspirators instructed them to send a deposit in order to hold the property.
Conspirators also defrauded business wholesalers by tricking them into wiring funds into accounts they controlled as purported “shipping fees” for merchandise they purchased using stolen credit card numbers. After using a stolen credit card number to purchase items from the victim businesses, conspirators claimed the merchandise needed to be shipped to a foreign country. Conspirators insisted on using their own shipper and instructed victims to charge the full amounts for the merchandise plus shipping fees to the stolen credit card numbers. They instructed victims to send the shipping fees to “their shipper” at the provided bank account maintained by the conspirators, including Otaru’s accounts.
He also participated in a scheme to submit false and fraudulent federal income tax returns in order to receive refunds. Conspirators used stolen identities to file returns that listed false employers, wages, and employment taxes paid. At least 167 false and fraudulent federal income tax returns were designated for deposit to seven different bank accounts controlled by Otaru and another person. These 167 federal tax returns requested refunds totaling approximately $644,280. They actually received at least $24,356 in fraudulently-obtained tax refunds.
Otaru opened and maintained a series of bank accounts – some in his own name and in the names of various aliases. In order to open bank accounts using false names, Otaru obtained from his co-conspirators false identification documents, usually counterfeit passports and drivers’ licenses, purportedly issued by nations in Africa, such as Nigeria, Gambia, Ghana, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and South Africa. The false passports contained forged and counterfeit United States visas, as false evidence of the bearer’s evidence of authorized stay and employment in the United States.
Periodically, Mr. Otaru received shipments from Africa in which false identification documents were concealed.
In April 2017, U.S. Customs and Border Protection seized a package sent to Otaru from Nigeria that was manifested as “local body scrub.” In addition to a container of soap, the package contained four counterfeit passports (purportedly issued by Nigeria, Ghana, Liberia, and Sierra Leone) with four corresponding foreign driver’s licenses. All documents displayed Otaru’s picture but bore different names. All documents were fraudulent, and the passports further contained counterfeit United States visas.
In August 2017, U.S. Customs and Border Protection seized a package sent to Otaru from Nigeria that was manifested as “native suite and sandals.” Hidden in the soles of the sandals were four counterfeit passports (purportedly issued by Nigeria, Gambia, South Africa, and Liberia) with four corresponding foreign driver’s licenses. All documents displayed Otaru’s picture, but bore different names. All documents were fraudulent, and the passports further contained counterfeit United States visas.
Otaru also possessed and used a fraudulent Kenyan passport and two fraudulent Nigerian passports.
He kept some of the funds obtained from the schemes for his own use. He transferred some of the funds to co-conspirators in the United States and in other countries. He sometime laundered proceeds of the various frauds by purchasing vehicles and shipping them overseas to co-conspirators in Africa through his business, Big-O-Motors.
Court documents note that following Otaru’s release from incarceration, it is expected that he will be removed from the United States.
Source: PM News
Why are Nigerian politicians ravished by the thought of election? They plot and machinate over it. And when they eventually get into office, they spend four years scheming for another turn instead of honouring their contract with citizens.
There is always a blue-print for the next election, but a subterfuge for governance and duty. The last general election was held in February, and just eight months after, there are already ‘’crusades and evangelism’’ ahead of the next one in 2023.
How can we make progress this way? We need to ask ourselves some uncomfortable questions? Do we keep reprocessing the same class of predators every four years? Do we consider a single term presidency? How do we reduce the cost of elections?
Our elections are about the most expensive in the world, with the cost ballooning from about N2 billion in 1999 to more than N240 billion in 2019, trumping India’s — a country much bigger in size and in population than Nigeria.
Really, the argument of former President Goodluck Jonathan on this climacteric issue reverberates with me. He foregrounded the paradox of our elections at the constitutional term limits summit in Niamey, Niger Republic.
“Four years is quite a short period for a country that is developing for a person who wants to change the country to do much. In Nigeria we just finished the election and some people are already talking about 2023 election. It is distracting,’’ he said.
“That is why some people come with the idea of a single tenure; so a president can sit down and plan all his programmes for the good of the country. We are too distracted with these elections. Why must we waste money every four years to elect a leader? Those are the things that agitate our minds.”
I think, a single term of six years may not be outrageous. Whoever is president will have to buckle-down and work, instead of thinking of the next election, which is distracting.
Also, I believe, this should apply to other elective offices. I know some lawmakers who have become fossils at the National Assembly – every four years they buy their way into the legislature but with nothing to show for their perpetuity in office. Should this continue?
Electing credible candidates is a different matter entirely. As long as ethnicity and religion are the kernel for electing persons to public office here, competence and credibility will always be extraneous.
The current administration is yet to clock a year, but some agents of ‘’the presidency cabal’’ are already crusading for a ‘’pretender to the throne’’.
Babachir Lawal, former secretary to the government of the federation, who is a consort of the rulers, principalities and powers of present-day Nigeria, has kicked off the crusade with evangelism for Bola Tinubu.
Hear him: “By 2023 when Buhari’s tenure will be over, he’ll go back to Daura to face his cows like I am doing. But you see, every leader must leave behind a legacy. I will like to see that he leaves behind a legacy of achievement.
“Bola Tinubu is my friend of many years. Buhari is my big boss. Bola Tinubu without prejudice that he’s my friend will make a good president.
‘’Other issues notwithstanding, he (Tinubu) will make a good modern president because the presidency these days is scientific. Nigerians, by convention, seem to have agreed that there should be rotation of the presidency.”
But, I would like to say, ‘’buyers beware’’. I do not intend to de-market product Tinubu, but I believe he should remain tamed as a wraith hovering over the seat of power. He could dance around the throne, but he should not sit in it. His antecedents are well established.
I do not think we need a president, who has publicly admitted arrogantly to conveying cash in bullion vans on the eve of an election, in contravention of the country’s money laundering laws.
If by 2023, the ‘’children of Eris’’ unbalance the scale and decide to skirt the south-east by tilting the office of the president to the south-west, then, I will gamble my vote on a refined, expansive and level-headed person, who does not cut the figure of a mob boss, like Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo – if he decides to run.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC) Gombe Zonal office has handed over 26 suspects arrested for production and sale of adulterated palm oil in Gombe, to the National Agency for Food Drug Administration and Control, NAFDAC.
The suspects Yahaya Sanusi, Mohammed Abubakar, Nasiru Bappa, Bello Ahmed, Emeka Oppah, Theophilus Samuel, Auwalu Abubakar, Monday John, Chindo Garba, Mohammed Umar, Dauda Mohammed, Anas Musa C, Umar Friday, Abbayo Musa, Hamisu Mohammed, Ali Garba, Inuwa Auwal, Tukur Adamu, Ahmad Usman, Emmanuel Etuk, Auwal Iliya, Ejike Samuel, Peter Ndubuisi, Babangida Yerima, Giginna Alphonsus and Usman Musa were picked up October 17 in Gombe market.
They allegedly adulterated palm oil with yet to be identified chemical before selling same to unsuspecting members of the public as genuine.
The head of EFCC Gombe Zonal office, DCDS Michael Wetkas, told journalists that the Commission acted on an intelligence report, adding that some of the suspects were in the process of mixing palm oil with the said substances when they were apprehended. A total of 33 shops were sealed during the operation.
He said that the Commission informed the National Agency for Food Drug Administration and Control, NAFDAC about the arrest as issues of food adulteration and unwholesome products fall within the purview of the agency.
Before handing over the suspects and the keys to the sealed shops to NAFDAC officials, DCDS Wetkas called on the public to partner with the Commission to rid the market and Gombe State of unwholesome products to protect the health and wellbeing of the people.
The Gombe State Coordinator of NAFDAC, who was represented by Laras Jatau, Assistant Chief Regulatory Officer, expressed surprise at the arrest, noting that his agency, especially during World Food Day, had been educating the people on the hazards of deliberate adulteration of food products.
“It is really disturbing that after such lectures, someone will still go ahead to do a thing such as this; this is a crime against humanity”, he said.
Jatau, however, pledged that NAFDAC will not relent in its sensitisation efforts and surveillance across the markets in the state.
He assured that the suspects would be handed to the agency’s investigative arm, for further investigation
Lagos State Government on Friday alerted residents on the rise of sea water level resulting in the inability of the lagoon to discharge water into the ocean causing backflow into the drainage channels.
In a statement by the Commissioner for the Environment and Water Resources, Mr Tunji Bello, the officials of the state are also working on different measures to remove the constriction and blockades that would allow easy passage for the resultant flooding.
The state Government is also in talks with the officials of the Ogun Osun River Basin Authority which is
releasing water to do so gradually.
He explained that the rise in sea level has contributed to current flooding in many parts of Ikoyi, V.I, Dolphin and Oworoshoki because the lagoon can not discharge and is causing back flow into drainage outlets.
The commissioner said the officials of the Drainage department had expected it to go down by evening but from the look of things now may last throughout the weekend.
Similarly, the Commissioner said the Ogun-Oshun River Basin Authority could no longer hold the Oyan dam hence has been releasing its water causing rise in Ogun River and that this has affected low line areas like Isheri North and Magodo and up to Owode Onirin.
Bello said until the ocean level goes down, the lagoon cannot discharge water into the ocean and causing back flow into all the drainage outlets in the state.
No fewer than 300 shops and goods worth millions of Naira were on Saturday night destroyed by fire that engulfed at the popular Santana Market along Sapele Road by Oba Eradiawa junction Benin City, Edo State.
The residents and owners of the shops could not salvage the situation due to the intensity of the fire, according to an eyewitness.
Mr Monday Ogbeide, a resident around the market said the fire started at about 11pm on Saturday.
“We just saw the market burning and we do not know the cause of the fire. All effort to put out the fire was not successful because of the intensity of the fire.
“When we got here, we called fire service but up till now they did not respond,” he said.
Ogbeide, however, blame the fire on power surge that might have occurred in one of the shops in the market when power was restored at night.
Mrs Justina Amadasun, a shop owner whose shop was affected by the fire, wept saying that the shop was her only means of livelihood.
Mrs Blessing Ayo, another shop owner who sells bags of rice and frozen food, said “l lost everything to the fire.
“All the bags of rice, cartons of chicken and deep freezers, including money which l could not take home yesterday among others went with the fire.
“Nobody should come and tell me that it was power surge because for three days now we did not have light in the market.
“I am calling on the government to come to our aid because this market is where we get our daily bread.
“Some of us are single mothers, we take care of our children from the money we make here.
“Government should come and help us now, it is not only when it comes to elections that they remember us. We need them now,” Ayo said.
It was learnt that it took the effort of firefighters from the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC), to put out the fire.
All effort to reach the state fire service to find out why they did not respond to the distress calls put across to them was not successful.
Davido welcomes baby son that he has named after himself
Nigeria’s singer Davido has tweeted the arrival of his baby son, that he has named after himself: David Adedeji Adeleke Jr.
On his Instagram page, he gave the son an additional Igbo name, Ifeanyi.
OMOBA TI DE!!! DAVID ADEDEJI ADELEKE Jr I !! D PRINCE IS HERE!!!! 20 - 10 - 2019 !!! Love you my STRONG WIFE!!! I LOVE YOU!!!!! ❤️💕 pic.twitter.com/KfWgBdlaqn— Davido (@iam_Davido) October 20, 2019
“DAVID ADEDEJI IFEANYI ADELEKE Jr I !! D PRINCE IS HERE!!!! 20 – 10 – 2019 !!! Love you my STRONG WIFE!!! @thechefchi I LOVE YO, he said on Instagram. The post was done in London.
On Saturday, Davido hinted about the impending arrival of the baby when he told a fan asking about his new album that he was “in the delivery room”, with his wife Chioma Avril Rowland.
The announcement to his 13.3million Instagram followers drew over 160,000 likes in 30 minutes and close to 30,000 congratulatory comments.
On Twitter, the post attracted more than 13,000 likes in 30 minutes.
The lion that reportedly escaped from the Kano Zoological Garden has been found, right inside the zoo.
It was found resting inside a cage that belongs to goat. The lion had devoured all the goats.
Head of the zoological garden, Sai’du Gwarzo confirmed the finding told BBC Hausa on Sunday.
“The rangers had succeeded in locking up the cage before the lion was shot with an injection which made him less harmful before it was captured and returned to its cage,” he said.View this post on Instagram
VIDEO of Kano lion recaptured, returned to cage emerged .. ____________________________ The Management of Kano Zoological Garden has said the escaped lion in its custody has finally been captured and returned to its cage. . The Managing Director of the Zoo, Alhaji Saidu Gwadabe, confirmed the capture of the lion in an interview with News Agency of Nigeria in Kano on Monday. . He said the animal was captured around 7:00 a.m. on Monday by the staff of the Zoo that used to feed it on a daily basis. . “The operation was to be conducted after the arrival of some experts from the National Park, Abuja but luckily around 7:00 a.m. today, our staff were able to use their expertise to put it back into its cage. . “I’m happy to tell you that the escaped lion has finally been captured and taken back to its cage this morning,” he said. . NAN reports that the reinforcement from the National Park, Abuja arrived Kano around 6:00 p.m. on Sunday for the operation. . The escaped lion was said to have killed three goats and an ostrich before moving into the bush within the premises of the zoological garden on Saturday night. . NAN recalled that the lion escaped when rangers were about to put it back into its cage after returning it from the national agricultural show in Nasarawa State. . (NAN)
The escape was said to have occurred around 9 pm on Saturday when rangers were trying to put the lion back to its cage after returning from the national agricultural show which took place in Nasarawa State.
The incident caused panic among residents of Zoo Road. “My entire family members will be indoors even if it will take one month to recover the lion. I have not experienced this kind of fear since I packed into this area more than 15 years,” a resident had said.
Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu has disclosed that the State Government is in the process of acquiring an estimated 32,000 hectares of farmland for rice cultivation in seven states.
Sanwo-Olu, who spoke in Lagos today on the occasion of this year’s Grand Finale of the World Food Day celebration in Lagos listed the states as Ogun, Oyo, Osun, Ekiti, Ondo and Kebbi as well as Lagos.
He said that a key component in the food security programme of the State government was the 32 metric tons per hour capacity Integrated Rice Mill in Imota which is expected to be completed and commissioned in the next seven months.
The governor, who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Mrs. Folasade Jaji stated that when completed, the mill would ensure sustainable supply of wholesome rice at an affordable price to the populace in Lagos and help to reduce rice importation into the Nigerian economy.
He said that the theme for this year’s celebration, “Our Actions Our Future: Healthy Diets for a Zero Hunger World” spoke to the need for a collective action towards not only increasing food production but also ensuring that adequate attention was paid to the quality of food being consumed adding that the theme aptly highlights the state government’s efforts through the food security initiative and commitment to prevent the consumption of unwholesome food.
“Today, we are happy to join the rest of the World in celebrating this year’s World Food Day. This annual celebration being spearheaded by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation, is about raising awareness on issues related to food such as poverty and hunger and to highlight efforts being made by Governments, Institutions, Organizations and individuals to mitigate the negative effects on people,” Sanwo-Olu averred.
The governor said that the only way to effectively fight poverty and hunger in the country was to boost agricultural production and prevent post-harvest losses and wastage which he noted constitute a major threat to the achievement of food security objectives.
While noting that the use of Reusable Plastic Creates [RPCs] as alternative to Raffia baskets for the carriage of perishable farm produce was being promoted as a strategy to minimize wastage in the State, the governor enjoined farmers and traders in the State to embrace this new initiative for improved profit.
“We have to imbibe the lessons learnt from the dwindling returns from oil to encourage family participation in farming so that most of our basic needs could be met locally and we would be independent of others to feed ourselves. We have also put this to practice in our schools where we have established different farming enterprises to train and teach the students in modern farming techniques,” Sanwo-Olu explained.
According to the governor, Lagos State was one of the participating States in the World Bank Assisted APPEALS Project which was aimed at enhancing the agricultural productivity of small and medium scale farmers and improve value addition along priority value chains, stressing that the selected value chains for the State which aligned with her comparative advantage in agriculture were poultry, rice and aquaculture.
He added that the project was also collaborating with Africa Rice for the development of Pure Ofada Rice Strain, capacity building for seed out growers and rice-based products and as such no fewer than thirty-five farmers and State Officers had been trained while the Institute is expected to supply 200kg of foundation Ofada seed by February 2020 for cultivation.
The Governor added that the State Government recognized the contributions of hard working and enterprising farmers in Lagos State and assured them of the State Government’s continued support in order to ensure greater output and bountiful reward for their efforts.
Earlier, the State Commissioner for Agriculture, Prince Gbolahan Lawal stated that the State Government had instituted and encouraged the cultivation of crops under the irrigation farming and the use of greenhouses in order to overcome the various challenges posed by the change in climatic conditions as a result of the global warming.
He said that climate change had equally greatly affected the growth and multiplication of fish in the water bodies thus in a bid to address this issue, the State Government has embarked on some innovations such as the Cage and Pen Culture where fish are cultivated in nets in the deep sea as a way of synthesizing a natural habitat for them.
“A prototype of this Cage and Pen Culture is presently being set up at Agbowa. The list of other areas where the Ministry of Agriculture has put up a revolution which advertently is combating the effect of climate change as it affects agriculture are the reforms in abattoirs across the State to provide hygienic meat for the populace and the acquisition of Agricultural land outside the state to exploit and reduce cost of production outside the State in order to stem the tide of rising prices of food in the State among others,” Lawal said.