* Dapchi schoolgirls’ll be released in 2 weeks – Defence Minister (Vanguard) * Come for budget defence this week, N’Assembly panels tell ministers (Punch)

* Dapchi schoolgirls’ll be released in 2 weeks – Defence Minister (Vanguard)           * Come for budget defence this week, N’Assembly panels tell ministers (Punch)



Dapchi schoolgirls’ll be released in 2 weeks – Defence Minister (Vanguard)

Defence Minister, Mansur Dan-Ali, has given hopes that the 110 abducted students of Government Girls Science and Technical College, Dapchi, Yobe State, might be released by Boko Haram in the next two weeks, noting that the federal government was closing in on them. The minister, who dropped the hint on a live Channels TV programme, Sunrise, weekend, said intelligence reports at his disposal indicated that the girls would soon be released, reinforcng President Muhammadu Buhari’s earlier disclosure that the Federal Government would rather negotiate the release of both Dapchi and Chibok school girls to ensure their safety. Read more

Come for budget defence this week, N’Assembly panels tell ministers (Punch)

The Senate and the House of Representatives have asked ministers and heads of agencies to heed President Muhammadu Buhari’s sack warning by appearing for the defence of the 2018 budget this week. The Punch’s investigations showed that after Thursday’s late-night meeting with Buhari at the Presidential Villa, the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr. Yakubu Dogara, relayed the outcome to key committee chairmen working on the budget. It was gathered on Sunday that chairmen of the committees of both chambers had started sending reminders to ministers to come for budget defence this week. Read more

APC moves to reconcile Buhari, Saraki, others (Nation)

All Progressives Congress (APC) leaders have launched a peace move to change the frosty relationship between the Executive and the National Assembly. Lawmakers are threatening to override President Muhammadu Buhari’s veto on the Electoral Act amendment, especially the reordering of the sequence of the 2019 elections. In a joint statement at the weekend, Senate President Bukola Saraki and Speaker Yakubu Dogara vowed to be “on the same page on what is an appropriate reaction to the President’s withholding of assent on the Electoral Act amendment bill”. It was learnt that party Chairman John Odigie-Oyegun, Nigerian Governors’ Forum (NGF) Chairman Abdulaziz Yari and other leaders of the party had intervened through meetings with Presidency officials and National Assembly’s leaders. Read more

2019: Why Buhari can’t declare now –Presidency (SUN)

President Muhammadu Buhari cannot declare his intention to contest next year’s presidential election because he wants to prevent opponents from sabotaging the country, the Presidency has said. In November 2017,  when he went on a state visit to Cote d’Ivoire, the president told some members of the Nigerian community in Abidjan that he came to the meeting with two governors so that their people may vote for him in future. The president reportedly spoke on a lighter note. Buhari had, while apologising for turning up late for the meeting, said: “First, I want to apologise for keeping you for too long, seating. “This is because I insisted on the governors attending this meeting. Read more

I disclosed N13.5m monthly running cost for credibility (Nation)

Senator Shehu Sani spoke yesterday on why he lifted the lid on  lawmakers’ pay. He said he did it to burnish the image of senators. Sani (Kaduna Central) stirred up a hornet’s nest when he unfolded the N750,000 monthly salary and N13.5million monthly running cost received by senators. The Senate defended the pay as “nothing new”, adding that Sani only revealed what had been in existence. But many Nigerians and civil society groups have been angry at what they consider to be an outrageous pay. Speaking in an interview programme aired yesterday on an Ibadan-based radio station, Fresh FM, “Political Circuit”,   Sani, who ran a civil rights group before his election into the senate in 2015, said he saw the need to break the culture of secrecy surrounding the activities of the National Assembly because it had given the parliament a bad name, despite being peopled by by successful professionals and businessmen. Read more

Ekweremadu and the military intervention speech (Tribune)

On March 7, the Senate took a motion which examined the rising waves of violence and political intolerance in the land.  Many of the lawmakers readily made contributions to the motion. What has been unusual is the heat being generated by the reactions to comments made by the Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, on the matter. Ekweremadu, while reacting to the motion by Senator Ahmed Ogembe on the violence that was unleashed on him and his supporters during an empowerment programme in Okene, Kogi Central senatorial district, said that the spate of violence in the country was becoming unbearable and that political actors should not take its democracy for granted. Read more

Nigeria’s lamentable electricity supply challenge (SUN)

The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, recently revealed that about 90 million Nigerians have no access to electricity. The minister, who was represented by the Acting Director in the ministry, Faruk Yabo, at the annual international conference of the Centre for Petroleum, Energy, Economics and Law (CPEEL), University of Ibadan, lamented that despite abundant sources of energy in Africa, such as natural gas, crude oil, coal and renewable energy, half of about 1.5 billion people, who lack electricity in the world live in Africa. We commend the minister for publicly acknowledging the power supply challenge and urge him to find solutions to the problem. Good enough, the minister has underscored the fact that for the government to ensure electricity supply to all Nigerians, the focus should be on developing renewable energy along with conventional power plants. Read more

Land Use Charge: OPS, landlords seek more reliefs despite Ambode’s concession (SUN)

As the public awaits measured response from the critical stakeholders to the Lagos State Land Use Charge (LUC) reduction by Governor Akinwunmi Ambode, investigation has shown that the failure of the state to put consultation ahead of the legislation as well as its opaque-cum-military style of integrating purposes of taxation may have again cost it the support of the bar and the Organised Private Sector (OPS). Recall that last Thursday, following much pressure from the public, the state bowed to the popular demand by scaling down the LUC. This was announced by its Commissioner for Finance, Akinyemi Ashade, who stated that responses from the dialogue with various stakeholders on the amended LUC Law 2018 forced its rate cut. Read more

If you’re not a senator, leave Ambode’s Lagos now! (Punch)

It is not the red piece of cloth waved by the matador in a bullfight that enrages the bull. Bulls are colourblind. The red piece of cloth is to mask the blood of the gored bull. Sheer animalistic instinct propels the bull to charge at one of the three matadors, who rides a horse, taunting the brawny beast. Bullfighting is common to Spain, Portugal, France and some Latin America countries such as Mexico, Colombia, Ecuador, Venezuela and Peru. Basically, bullfighting is in three parts: The entry, the planting of the banderillas, and the killing of the bull. Read more

Total PoS transactions rose to N1.41tn in 2017 – NIBSS (Punch)

The Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System has disclosed that Points of Sale transactions increased by 54.3 per cent to N1.41tn in 2017 as more retail merchants embraced PoS as a means of transactions. It stated in a report that PoS transactions in 2016 were worth N0.76tn, while in 2015, they were N0.45tn from N0.31tn in 2014. The report read in part, “Transactions on PoS were impressive in 2017 setting a milestone of over N1.4tn in value in 2017. Furthermore, volume of transactions recorded a 92 per cent compound annual growth rate between 2014 and 2017. Volume of transactions was driven mostly by brick and mortar stores in the wholesale and retail sector.” Read more

Energia reopens talks on 10,000 bpd refinery (SUN)

Nigeria’s refining capacity may soon be increased by 10,000 barrels per day (bpd) as Energia Limited has reopened talks with investors over its planned refinery project. Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the company, Mr. Felix Amieye-Ofori, stated this when Executive Members of the National Association of Energy Correspondents (NAEC) paid a courtesy call to the Corporate Headquarters of Energia in Lagos last week. Amieye-Ofori, explained that the downturn in oil and gas industry which affected the operations of most companies delayed progress on the project because most financial institutions at that time, were not willing to provide funding for most oil and gas projects. Read more

Shell Debunks Amnesty’s Allegations on Spills Management in Niger Delta (ThisDay)

Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria (SPDC) has denied allegations of environmental mismanagement in the Niger Delta levelled against it by Amnesty International, reiterating its commitment to swift response to oil spill incidents as much as access and security conditions permit teams to mobilise and deploy to spill sites to investigate, clean up and remediate such areas. SPDC’s General Manager, External Relations, Mr. Igo Weli, said in a statement yesterday that the company had also deployed technology and best practice to make it more difficult for unauthorised persons to break pipelines and steal crude oil from its facilities. Read more

Adamawa IDPs Appeal to NEMA to Step up Humanitarian Response (ThisDay)

The Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) at the Malkohi  official camp  in Adamawa State have appealed to the Director General of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Mr. Mustapha Yunusa Maihaja, to step up his humanitarian response to them. Speaking with Thisday at the weekend, one of the IDPs who simply identified himself as Usman, said NEMA used to give them food items when their food finished but now they waste time before food are given to them. He said the DG should note that it was not their wish to continue to live in the camps, adding that if only the federal government would clear the Boko Haram insurgency still bedeviling their areas, they would not be depending on the government for food. Read more

C/Wealth Games: Adekuoroye, Daniel, Oborodudu among 12-man wrestling team (Vanguard)

World Silver medallist and 2014 Commonwealth Champion, Odunayo Adekuoroye (57kg), Eight time African champion, Blessing Oborududu (68kg) and Six time African champion, Amas Daniel (65kg) who doubles as the captain of the Nigeria male team are among the 12-man team of wrestlers that will fly the country’s flag at the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia next month. The team made up of six male and six women apiece which include 2014 Commonwealth Champion, Aminat Adeniyi, 2014 Commonwealth Bronze medallist, Blessing Onyebuchi (76kg), 2015 All Africa Games gold medallist and two-times African Champion,Mercy Genesis (50kg) and African champion, Bose Samuel (53kg). Read more

18 die in Lagos-Ibadan Expressway crash –TRACE (Punch)

Eighteen persons reportedly died on Sunday in a multiple accident at the Alapako/Ogunmakin, Ogun State end of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway. The victims were travelling to Lagos from Ibadan, Oyo State, in a Mazda commercial bus, with the number plate, KJA 278 DS, when the vehicle had a head-on collision with a Ford Explorer Jeep, marked GGE 873 XU, which was coming from the opposite direction. Our correspondent gathered that the accident occurred where there was a road diversion due to ongoing construction work on the road. The Public Relations Officer, Ogun State Traffic Compliance and Enforcement Corps, said the accident was caused by wrongful overtaking. Read more

Pedro Rodriguez keeps Chelsea in the hunt for FA Cup Glory (Sports.Ndtv)

Pedro Rodriguez came off the bench to keep Chelsea’s chances of silverware this season alive with an extra-time winner in a 2-1 victory at Leicester City on Sunday to reach the FA Cup semi-finals. Alvaro Morata’s first goal since Boxing Day on his return to the Chelsea starting line-up put the visitors on course to bounce back from their Champions League elimination at the hands of Barcelona in midweek. However, Jamie Vardy’s equaliser 15 minutes from time made them do it the hard way in an extra 30 minutes. Yet, for all Antonio Conte’s complaints this season about his side’s strength in depth, the Italian was able to call on Pedro to turn the game in Chelsea’s favour when he headed home former Leicester favourite N’Golo Kante’s cross. Read more

Cristiano Ronaldo absolutely faultless in four-goal display (Kwese.Espn)

Real Madrid and Girona played an enthralling game in the Bernabeu that ended 6-3, with the keepers instrumental in keeping the outcome reach double figures. Cristiano Ronaldo will dominate the headlines after bagging four with Lucas Vazquez and Gareth Bale also on target. Cristhian Stuani (two goals) and Juanpe replied for Girona, who apparently forgot their gloves in the dressing room. Read more

Jennifer Scavino filed for divorce from Dan Scavino on January 18, 2018, in NY (Dailymail)

The wife of Dan Scavino, one of President Donald Trump’s top aides, has reportedly filed for divorce. Jennifer Scavino filed for divorce on January 18, 2018, in Dutchess County, New York, according to the Huffington Post.  The Scavinos, who have two children, own a home in the area and have been married since September 2000. Dan Scavino, 42, currently serves as the White House social media director. He is also the assistant to the president, which is the highest-ranking staff position in the White House. His wife suffered from chronic Lyme disease for 14 years after she was bitten by a tick. Scavino has said in the past that he believes his wife was bitten outside their home while she was gardening.  Read more

Trump sharpens attacks on Russia probe (Manilatimes)

President Donald Trump Sunday intensified his attacks on Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation as biased against him, but stopped just short of targeting the special counsel — whose ouster lawmakers warned would cross a “massive red line.” In a morning flurry on Twitter, Trump insisted that Mueller’s team of investigators is staffed with “hardened” Democrats biased against him. “Does anyone think this is fair? And yet, there is NO COLLUSION!” Trump wrote. The night before, he had tweeted, “The Mueller probe should never have been started.” Read more

US-educated Yi Gang becomes head of China’s central bank (BBC)

US-educated economist Yi Gang has been named the next governor of China’s central bank, replacing Zhou Xiaochuan. Mr Yi joined the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) 20 years ago and has been its deputy governor since 2008. His appointment is being seen as one of ensured continuity as Beijing continues to try and rein in growing debt and limit risky financial practices. The announcement was made on the second-last day of the annual sitting of the National People’s Congress. Read more

 ‘Britain has become a sordid, cruel and lawless country’ (Guardian)

Can I add my support to the letter on deportations (17 March). They are worse than shocking; they break international UN law which the UK is signatory to, and the European convention. The cuts to legal aid and the private security companies exist side by side with the deportations. Under the present and previous governments Britain has become a sordid, cruel, lawless country which has demolished the most precious and necessary elements of a democracy. Read more

Meet the world’s deadliest female sniper who terrorized Hitler’s Nazi army (Independent)

In early 1941, Lyudmila Pavlichenko was studying history at Kiev University, but within a year, she had become one of the best snipers of all time, credited with 309 confirmed kills, 36 of which were German snipers. Pavlichenko was born in 1916 in a small town in Ukraine. She was described as an independent, opinionated tomboy who was “unruly in the classroom,” as the Smithsonian notes. At the age of 14, Pavlichenko’s family had relocated to Kiev, where she worked as a metal grinder in a munitions factory. Read more

Republicans warn Donald Trump not to fire Robert Mueller (Telegraph)

Republican senators warned President Donald Trump on Sunday not to fire Robert Mueller, the special counsel, and said the president must let federal investigators looking into Russian meddling in the US election do their jobs. The Republican president has renewed his Twitter attacks on both the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Mueller’s probe since the firing on Friday of the bureau’s former deputy director, Andrew McCabe, two days before he was eligible to retire with a full pension. Republican Senator Jeff Flake, who has criticised Mr Trump harshly, said the president’s latest comments appeared to be aimed at the firing of Mr Mueller. Senator Lindsey Graham, another Republican, said if Mr Trump were to dismiss Mueller, it would mark “the beginning of the end of his presidency”. Read more



Lilian Osigwe Editor

A Creative and Versatile Writer.  
Currently writes for SabiNews Media

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