* With 2019 in sight, Buhari, Tinubu say they’re on a Rescue Mission (ThisDay) * Serious negotiations ongoing for Leah’s release – Yobe senator (Punch)

* With 2019 in sight, Buhari, Tinubu say they’re on a Rescue Mission (ThisDay)                 * Serious negotiations ongoing for Leah’s release – Yobe senator (Punch)



With 2019 in sight, Buhari, Tinubu say they’re on a Rescue Mission (ThisDay)

The political romance between President Muhammadu Buhari and the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Chief Bola Ahmed Tinubu, which has been rekindled by the 2019 presidential election, waxed stronger yesterday when both men in separate speeches assured Nigerians that the country was being rescued from the wreckage of past administrations. Buhari, who is in Lagos for a two-day official visit, spoke at the 10th Bola Tinubu Colloquium held in Nigeria’s commercial capital to mark the APC leader’s 66th birthday. Buhari at the event, restated his commitment to implementing people-oriented programmes, saying: “Our goal is to bring everybody together for mutually beneficial ethnic, economic, social, religion, political and cultural relationships. Read more

Serious negotiations ongoing for Leah’s release – Yobe senator (Punch)

The senator representing Yobe East in the National Assembly, Bukar Ibrahim, has said “very serious negotiations” are ongoing to ensure the release of Leah Shabiru. Leah is one of the schoolgirls abducted from Dapchi, Yobe State by Boko Haram insurgents on February 19. The insurgents later returned all the girls (apart from five who died), but held onto Shabiru. Leah was reportedly not released with others because she refused to renounce her Christian faith. Speaking on the floor of the Senate on Thursday, Ibrahim said Shabiru would be released “not far from now.” Read more

Benin monarch places Libya returnees on salary (Punch)

The Oba of Benin, Oba Ewuare II has announced a three-month stipend of N4.6m to 78 Libya returnees in the state. Ewuare II explained that the beneficiaries would be placed on a monthly allowance of N20,000 each. The monarch spoke when he received the returnees at his palace on Wednesday. He also said that those who had acquired skills, under the state government, would be provided with relevant tools by the Oba Ewuare Foundation. He advised the returnees to embrace agriculture and other legal businesses in order to become successful in the country. Read more

Reps okays NCC’s N204.8b budget (Guardian)

The House of Representatives has approved N204,800,719,000. as budget for the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) for the period ending June 30, 2018. The decision followed the adoption of the report of the Mr. Saheed Akinade-Fijabi-led Committee on Communication at the plenary presided by Speaker Yakubu Dogara. A breakdown of the budget indicates that N27,063,043,000.00 is for recurrent expenditure, while N13,612,183,000.00 is for capital expenditure.Besides, N4,451,491,000.00 is for special projects, while N145,745,300,000.00 and N13,928,700,000 will be transferred to the Federal Government and the Universal Service Provision Fund (USPF) respectively. Read more

Senators laud FG over approval of N20b for Ikorodu-Shagamu Road (Guardian)

The Chairman Senate Committee on Land Transport, Mr. Gbenga Ashafa has commended the Federal Government over the approval of N20 billion for the rehabilitation and construction of the Ikorodu, Ogiji, Mosinmi-Sagamu Expressway. In a statement yesterday, the All Progressives Congress (APC) Lagos East lawmaker commended President Muhammadu Buhari, Minister of Works, Power and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola on behalf of members of his senatorial zone on the attention by the government to address the deplorable state of the road. He also commended Governor Akinwunmi Ambode for his interface with the Federal Government in ensuring the approval for the funding of the project, saying that the rate of accidents and deaths along the corridor due to the deplorable would reduced immediately the project is executed.Ashafa also commended all the legislators from Ogun and Lagos East over their inputs in securing the approval. Read more

Lagosians irate, blast Buhari, Ambode over Lockdown (ThisDay)

Lagosians were irate thursday and did not hesitate to show their anger over the decision by the state government to lockdown Nigeria’s largest commercial city of over 20 million people due to President Muhammadu Buhari’s two-day visit to the state. The Lagos State Government also spared no thought for air passengers who were travelling for the Easter holidays, forcing domestic airlines to either delay or cancel their flights thursday. THISDAY investigations revealed that many passengers missed their flights because the roads leading to the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Lagos, were blocked for the presidential visit, compelling airlines to adjust their flight schedules, cancel some of their morning flights and hoping to add additional flights today in order to accommodate those who were not airlifted thursday. Read more

Alleged N605m fraud: EFCC charges Heritage Bank MD, Sekibo, to court (Punch)

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has charged the Managing Director of Heritage Bank, Ifiesimama Sekibo, before the Federal High Court in Lagos for an alleged fraud of N605,321,051.05. Joined with Sekibo in the charge sheet marked FHC/C/95C/18 is one Kolapo Kola Daisi and a company, Greame Properties Limited. The EFCC, in the first count, alleged that Sekibo, on July 29, 2016, “while being a bank employee, to wit:  Managing Director of Heritage Bank, acquired the sum of N180m beyond your legitimate income through Greame Properties Limited, a company owned by you.” Read more

Visionscape reassures Lagosians of commitment to waste management (Guardian)

Visionscape Sanitation Solutions has restated its commitment to fulfilling its part in the Cleaner Lagos Initiative (CLI). The company also expressed its willingness to work with with PSP operators in Lagos. Visionscape’s Head of Corporate Communications, Motunrayo Elias, said this during an interactive session with journalists in Lagos.She said that over 100 PSP operators had joined Visionscape to aid waste collection in the state. “Our plan is to service all the residential areas in the streets of Lagos state. We have a lot of black spots or illegal dumpsites in the states. We want to clear all the black spots before moving into the residential areas”, she averred.Elias appreciated the PSPs for all the work that had been done before Visionscape arrived. She said the company was willing to work with the PSPs Read more

Seplat resolves $20.5m dispute with Canadian Firm over Oil Block (ThisDay)

Newton Energy Limited, a subsidiary of Seplat Petroleum Development Company Plc, a leading Nigerian independent oil and gas company listed on both the Nigerian and London Stock Exchanges, has reached a settlement with a Canadian firm, Crestar Natural Resources Limited, following a protracted dispute over the acquisition of Oil Mining Lease (OML) 25 from Anglo-Dutch multinational, Shell. This is just as Oslo-listed international production and exploration company, Panoro Energy, was said to have entered discussions with third parties on selling its 16 per cent stake in the Aje oil, gas and condensate field offshore Lagos, Nigeria. Read more

‘Nigeria needs continuous bidrounds to offset instability in oil sector’ (Guardian)

An industry expert, who served as Deputy Managing Director of Shell Petroleum Development Company, (SPDC) Egbert Ulogo Imomoh, in Abuja on Wednesday, said continuous bid rounds were needed to enable Nigeria wet the shocks in the oil and gas industry. Ulugo, said bid rounds would attract new players that would bring in new technology that could help the sector mitigate challenges.Speaking at a lecture series, organised by Petroleum Technology Development Fund (PTDF), he said: “ our industry has been very unstable against the backdrop of unstable prices of crude and what we have to do to offset that instability is to have a continuous bid rounds, because the bid rounds will attract new players that will bring in new technology . Read more

Arik, Flying Doctors, Dana, MMA2, others win awards (Guardian)

The air travel industry’s watchdog, Nigeria Aviation Awards (NIGAV), has bestowed 2017 awards on major stakeholders in recognition of their contributions to the development of the sector.Among the awardees are Arik Air, Dana Air, Flying Doctors, Murtala Muhammed Airport terminal II (MMA2), managed by Bi-courtney Aviation Services Limited (BASL). Arik Air won award for the Best Air Crew of The Year 2017 Domestic route, in recognition of the airline’s strict adherence to international standards for both cockpit crew and cabin crew. Read more

Government earmarks N90b for special economic zones, to earn $200b from Lekki Deep Seaport (Guardian)

The Federal Government yesterday said that it had in the past two budgets provided an aggregate of N90 billion for the development of special economic zones.It said the Lekki Deep Seaport project is in line with the objectives of creating such economic zones. Also, barring any unforeseen circumstances, Nigeria is expected to rake in over $200 billion from the operations of the deep seaport as President Muhammadu Buhari expressed commitment to a conducive-business environment that would aid investments.Buhari, who spoke yesterday during the flag-off of the construction of the Lekki Deep Seaport, represented by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, said when completed, the project would generate up to 170,000 direct and indirect jobs in the economy. Read more

Yoruba elders seek terrorist tag for killer herders (Guardian)

The Yoruba Council of Elders (YCE) has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to immediately declare the rampaging herdsmen as terrorists. It also sought the sack of all security chiefs for alleged incompetence to curtail the killings in parts of the country. The Yoruba elders noted that some of the service chiefs were overdue for retirement, urging the President to reflect federal character in their reappointment.The YCE made its position known in a communiqué after an expanded national executive council (NEC) meeting at Ado Ekiti in honour of its late president, Chief Idowu Sofola (SAN) who passed on last Friday. Read more

Arts and Culture: Beyond dancing and drumming (ThisDay)

Many see arts and culture as simply nice-to-haves. They myopically consider the aesthetic values rather than looking beyond the pleasure and satisfactions that the sector provides. But in reality, arts and culture are beyond dancing, drumming and painting or even weaving. They are just as important as well-maintained roads, bridges and other social infrastructure. Arts stimulates the minds with new ideas and experiences, they give the opportunity to become more creative. Arts and culture are infrastructure for the mind. Read more

Obey, Tope Alabi, others to Embrace Ikorodu today (Punch)

All is now set for the annual gospel music festival, tagged Embrace, holding in Ikorodu, Lagos State, today (Friday). In its 11th edition, it will feature legendary juju and gospel singer, Ebenezer Obey, and other top artistes like Tope Alabi, Chioma Jesus, Tim Godfrey, Tolu David, Battle Axe, Vickel, Olori Oladapo, The Spirit and Life Choir and Olubukola. The programme marking the Good Friday will hold at the Ikorodu Town Hall. According to Pastor Isaac Adeyemi, Senior Pastor of Embrace International Assembly, Ikorodu, the music extravaganza will be preceded, in the morning, by a health outreach in which scores of people will be given free medical examination and treatment. Read more

Tears for abused girls as Nina unveils Disowned (Punch)

It was a great deal for emerging writer, Nina Ifechukwude, on Sunday when several top film-makers and other stakeholders joined her in Lagos to usher onto the shelf her collection of stories, titled, Disowned. The compact but rich library at Terra Kulture, Victoria Island, beamed with celebrities that included Joke Silva, Ireti Doyle, Kate Henshaw, Ramseh Noah and Lala Akindoju, with the event’s godfathered being Richard Mofe-Damijo, who the author, fondly called Nina, described as her mentor. Read more

Wenger still hungry to succeed –Bould (Punch)

Steve Bould says he has “never met anybody as hungry and determined” as Arsene Wenger, in a stern defence of the Arsenal manager, Skysports reports. Wenger was unavailable for Thursday’s pre-match press conference ahead of Arsenal’s Super Sunday meeting with Stoke due to illness, his assistant confirmed. Bould was unwilling to discuss matters unrelated to the forthcoming fixture, but rushed to support Wenger, who recently claimed to have been the subject of age discrimination in the wake of calls for him to step down. Read more

Why Super Eagles are still a work in progress under Gernot Rohr (Guardian)

The saying goes that a team is only as good as its last result. However, the obvious fallacy of this statement is apparent when one zooms out and takes Tuesday’s friendly loss to Serbia in the right context. That context is this: that match in Barnet was Nigeria’s third friendly game since securing qualification for the FIFA World Cup in June this year, and there will be three more before Nigeria kick off against Croatia in Kaliningrad. That ticket was itself punched with relative ease in a group that seemed anything but easy, and this feat was achieved at enough of a canter that the forfeiture of the final qualifier posed no worries.The Super Eagles will go to Russia with, on average, the youngest side in the competition, and have developed a stern exterior under German boss Gernot Rohr. There is a stable harmony within the squad, a jocular atmosphere marked by enthusiastic song and dance videos on social media. Read more

Man United to use Luke Shaw in a swap deal for 24-year-old FC Barcelona star (Thesportsreview)

Manchester United are considering using Luke Shaw as bait in a potential swap deal to sign FC Barcelona defender Samuel Umtiti, according to a report in Spain. Don Balon, as quoted by the Daily Express, is reporting that Manchester United are ready to offer FC Barcelona their out of favour full-back Shaw in return for France defender Umtiti. The same article states that Umtiti is a standstill in contract negotiations with the La Liga leaders and the Frenchman could be signed in a £50m deal thanks to a clause in his current deal. Read more

Lionel Messi vs Cristiano Ronaldo: Neymar has his say on who is best in the world (Express)

PSG star Neymar has threatened to dethrone both Ronaldo and Messi, who have won the last TEN Ballon d’Ors between them. Neymar, who moved from Barcelona to the French capital in the summer, played alongside Messi at Barcelona. He is rumoured to be teaming up with Ronaldo at Real Madrid next season with reports suggesting the Brazilian star is unhappy in France. Messi and Ronaldo have similar career stats, Messi netting 603 times and Ronaldo ahead on 647. Read more

Real Madrid decision has ‘huge effect’ on Man Utd, Chelsea and Liverpool (Dailystar)

Los Blancos are expected to undergo a huge squad revamp in the summer. The club have fallen well short of their lofty standards after floundering in La Liga. After winning a Champions League and Spanish league double last season, they have never looked like defending their domestic crown. However, after a poor start, they have made their way into the last-eight in Europe and face Juventus in the next round. But chief Perez wants a new era of Galacticos and is ready to sell stars to bankroll this. Read more

India limits visits to Taj Mahal to 3 hours per person (CNN)

One of India’s most famous landmarks, the Taj Mahal, is planning to place a three-hour cap on visits to avoid overcrowding at the popular tourist location. The enormous white marble tomb, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, can attract at least 50,000 visitors a day on the weekend, according to a spokesman for the Archaeological Survey of India, which oversees the Taj Mahal. “Sometimes people end up spending a whole day at the Taj. This creates a situation where there are too many people,” the spokesman D N Dimri told CNN. “It is being implemented so that the movement of visitors can be regulated. Day by day, the number of visitors are increasing. This is to ensure no untoward incidents or accidents occur.” Read more

Shelling ‘kills Palestinian’ in Gaza (BBC)

A Palestinian farmer has been killed and a second person wounded by Israeli artillery fire, Palestinian health officials and residents say. The strike happened early on Friday near the town of Khan Yunis, in southern Gaza, according to a spokesman. Israel’s military has not yet commented on the report. The area is in a state of heightened tension ahead of a six-week protest by Palestinians along the Israeli border. Read more

FBI questions Ted Malloch, Trump campaign figure and Farage ally (Guardian)

A controversial London-based academic with close ties to Nigel Farage has been detained by the FBI upon arrival in the US and issued a subpoena to testify before Robert Mueller, the special counsel who is investigating possible collusion between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin. Ted Malloch, an American touted last year as a possible candidate to serve as US ambassador to the EU, said he was interrogated by the FBI at Boston’s Logan airport on Wednesday following a flight from London and questioned about his involvement in the Trump campaign. Read more


Lilian Osigwe Editor

A Creative and Versatile Writer.  
Currently writes for SabiNews Media

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