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North Korea Leader Kim Jong Un Supervises ‘New Weapon’ Test

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South Korea expect Positive Result From Summit with North Korea

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un once again supervised a “new weapon” launch complicating efforts at denuclearisation ahead of next week’s visit to Seoul by the US envoy to Pyongyang.

Friday’s launch was the North’s sixth test in recent weeks as it protests the annual US-South Korea military exercises which Pyongyang considers rehearsals for invasion.

Defence officials in Seoul said Pyongyang fired what appeared to be two short-range ballistic missiles Friday, that flew some 230 kilometres (140 miles) before splashing down in the sea between the Korean peninsula and Japan.

Martin later told reporters that two Irish republican dissident groups, the New IRA and the Continuity IRA, “would be a very good starting point for the investigation”.

He added: “It’s fair to say their level of activity has increased this year.”

Concerns have grown that the possible return of a hard border between British-ruled Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland after Brexit could increase security tensions in the once war-torn province.

Martin said violent attacks had grown in recent months, calling on politicians to take action to heal enduring divisions in society.

“Terrorism of this nature is a societal problem,” he said. “We shouldn’t take our peace for granted.”

Three decades of conflict known as “the Troubles”, in which more than 3,500 people were killed, largely ended in Northern Ireland with the 1998 Good Friday Agreement.

Violent incidents have continued, however.

In April, a journalist was shot dead by Irish republican dissidents during rioting in Londonderry.

“I strongly condemn the cowardly actions of those responsible for this bomb attack, which could have had devastating consequences,” Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar said in a statement.

“There is never any justification to use violence to achieve political aims,” he said.

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Makinde Speaks On PDP Preferring Candidate In Bayelsa

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Gov. Seyi Makinde of Oyo State/Twitter

Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo state has said the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has no preferred aspirant for its primary election in Bayelsa State.

Makinde, who is also the Chairman, PDP Screening Committee for Bayelsa, said this on Monday at the party’s headquarters in Abuja, during the screening of PDP aspirants for Bayelsa election.

He said that the committee would be fair to all governorship aspirants from the state to ensure that the party went into proper election strong and united.

“We don’t want a situation whereby our party will go into the election with a divided house.

“We want to go into the election as one big family that we are, with a view to retaining the state,” Makinde said.

He expressed optimism that PDP would continue to remain a strong and united party, even after the primaries.

Makinde appealed to all aspirants to cooperate with the committee to make the exercise easy.

A governorship aspirant, Timi Alaibe speaking with newsmen at the venue of the exercise, called on party delegates in the state to think deeply while making decision on aspirants to cast their votes for.

“Delegates should be clear in the decision to ensure that they vote for who will understand the need of the people.

“Those who have experience, those who have capacity,” he said.

Alaibe, who was former Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), promised to attract investors in the private sector to Bayelsa, if he emerged governor.

Another aspirant and incumbent Deputy Governor of Bayelsa, retired Rear Admiral John Jonah, expressed satisfaction and confidence in the committee.

“I have the confidence that they will deliver. I am sure of clinching the ticket,” he said.

While Makinde heads the screening of Bayelsa aspirants, Governor Darius Ishaku of Taraba also chaired the Screening Committee for Kogi at the party’s presidential campaign office in Maitama.

Mr Joseph Erico, governorship aspirant from Kogi expressed confidence in the committee and the outcome.

Asked if he was sure of successfully passing through the exercise, Erico said if it was to go by merit he would be the party’s candidate.

Another aspirant, Mr Musa Wada, said that from the screening, there was clear indication that PDP had changed.

Wada said if elected, he would change the narrative of governance in Kogi.

The only female aspirant from Kogi, Grace Adejo, who commended the process, said that being the only female aspirant gave her more motivation.

“I never see myself as a lady, the most important is to dislodge the incumbent.

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Nigerian Newspapers: Top 10 Headlines Today Tuesday, August 20th, 2019

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Nigerian Newspapers
Welcome to the Concise News roundup of top 10 Nigerian newspapers headlines for today, Tuesday, August 20th, 2019.

1. Why I Was Assaulted By IPOB Members In Germany – Ekweremadu

Former Deputy Senate President Ike Ekweremadu says he was assaulted in Germany because his attackers had issues with the handling of the Operation Python Dance in the South-East. He also described his assault as the actions of a few misguided individuals and not a representation of the character of the majority of Nigerians. The Senator made this known to reporters at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport Abuja on Monday after returning to Nigeria from Germany.

2. Nigerian Embassy Reveals What Will Happen To Ekweremadu’s Attackers

The Nigerian Embassy in Germany has said the attackers of former Deputy Senate President Ike Ekweremadu will be prosecuted under German laws. Concise News had reported that Ekweremadu was attacked by members of the proscribed Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB) in Nuremberg, Germany, on Saturday at an event organised under the auspices of “Ndigbo Germany”. In a press statement released on Monday evening, the embassy of Nigeria in Berlin said the threat level of the event had been classified as “minimal” by the German police, hence the lack of security personnel at the event.

3. Presidency Speaks On Probing FIRS Chairman Fowler

The Presidency has ‘categorically’ denied that the Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service, Babatunde Fowler, is under investigation. It made the statement in reaction to the comments prompted by a query issued to the FIRS boss by Chief of Staff, Abba Kyari. Some reports claimed that the query meant that Fowler’s tenure would not be renewed following the expiration of the first term on Saturday.

4. Academic Disruption Likely As NASU, SSANU Begin Warning Strike (See Full Statement)

Employees tied to the Non-Academic Staff Union (NASU) and the Senior Staff Association of Nigeria Universities (SSANU) on Monday commenced a five-day strike. They have embarked on strike because, according to them, the President Muhammadu Buhari administration had failed to show firm commitment towards resolving the issues raised by the unions, including the payment of earned allowances to members. Concise News understands that a directive from NASU and SSANU has been sent to all branch chairmen of the unions nationwide. The General Secretary of NASU, Peters Adeyemi, and the National President of SSANU, Samson Ugwoke, confirmed the directive in a letter dated August 16.

5. Read Full Address By President Buhari At Retreat For Ministers-Designate, Perm. Secretaries

President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday presided over the Day 1 of the Ministerial Retreat and Induction with Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, all 43 Ministers-designate and top government officials in attendance. Concise News reports that the ministers-designate will be sworn in by the President on Wednesday, August 21. In his address, Buhari said he was counting on his new appointees to build upon his administration’s road map of policies, programmes and projects that would lift the bulk of Nigerians out of poverty and set them on the road to prosperity.

6. Ekweremadu: German Police Break Silence On Senator’s IPOB Assault

The German police have said they did not arrest any member of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) following an assault on Senator Ike Ekweremadu. Concise News understands that members of the pro-Biafra group had on Saturday in Germany molested Ekweremadu during a public function. However, the Press Officer of the Nuremberg police in Germany Raineer Seebauer told Channels TV that the matter is not being investigated.

7. N14b Jewelry: Diezani Challenges EFCC Forfeiture Move

Former Minister of Petroleum Resources Diezani Alison-Madueke has asked the Federal High Court in Lagos to reject an application by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) seeking the final forfeiture of her 2,149 pieces of jewellery and a customised golden iPhone. The court had on July 5 ordered the temporary forfeiture of the items valued at $40million (about N14.4billion), which were recovered from the former minister’s home. Justice Nicholas Oweibo ruled on an ex-parte application in which the commission said the items were suspected to be bought with illicitly acquired funds.

8. Gov Ortom Reveals Benue Government Owes Over N22b Gratuity

Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom disclosed that the state is owing over N22 billion as a gratuity of the state’s workers, Concise News reports. During the inauguration of the Chairman and members of the State Pension Commission in Makurdi on Monday, the governor said that he  inherited N18 billion gratuity liability in 2015, and that because of the paucity of funds to upset the debt coupled with an additional number of retired workers overtime, the debt had risen to N22 billion. He further disclosed that the monthly pension bill of the state was now N800 million as against the N400 million bill he inherited in 2015.

9. Imo: Court Asks INEC To Remove Okorocha’s Son-In-law’s Name From Govship Race

The Federal High Court, Abuja, on Monday, ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to remove the name of Uche Nwosu as a governorship candidate in the last election held in Imo State. Justice Inyang Ekwo voided Nwosu’s candidacy on the grounds of double nomination by two political parties, the All Progressives Congress (APC) and the Action Alliance (AA), in violation of section 37 of the Electoral Act. The ruling came as Nwosu, a son-in-law to the former governor of the state, Rochas Okorocha, is challenging the victory of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its candidate, Emeka Ihedioha, in the March 11 poll at the Election Petition Tribunal, as the candidate of AA.

10. Pogba Misses Penalty As Wolves Hold Man Utd To 1-1 Draw

Paul Pogba saw a penalty saved as Manchester United were held to a 1-1 draw by Wolves on Monday Night Football at the Molineux Stadium. Anthony Martial scored for the second game in a row to put United ahead in the 27th minute, but Ruben Neves levelled with a brilliant curling strike from outside the box shortly after half time. Pogba had the chance to restore United’s lead when he was tripped in the box, but his 67th-minute penalty was well saved by Rui Patricio.

That’s the roundup of top 10 Nigerian newspapers headlines this morning. More Nigerian newspapers headlines are available on Concise News website.

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Ndi-Igbo In Germany Apologises To Ekweremadu Over Assault

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What Student Group Said About IPOB Attack On Sen. Ekweremadu
Senator Ike Ekweremadu/File Photo

The Ndi-Igbo Germany has apologised to former Deputy President of the Senate Ike Ekweremadu for the attack on him by members of the outlawed Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB) in Nuremberg, Germany, over the weekend.

The umbrella body of Igbo people living in Germany made the apology known in a statement on Monday signed by their leader, Engr. Ogechukwu Nsofor.

The group said that any embarrassment to a leading light of Ndigbo like Ekweremadu was an embarrassment to the entire Igbo race and Nigeria, vowing to ensure that the law runs its full course.

The body said the event was part of its efforts to encourage foreign investment and industrialisation of Igboland, noting that it “provided a forum for Igbo people in Diaspora to network and to engage German business community with interest in investments and development in Igboland in particular and Nigeria in general”.

The group said: “We, Ndi-Igbo Germany (N.I.G) the umbrella/apex union of all Igbo unions operating in the Federal Republic of Germany are shocked and dismayed by the unprovoked, unwarranted and senseless attack leashed on Senator Dr. Ike Ekweremadu in Nuremberg, Germany.

“Ndi-Igbo Germany, wish to offer our unequivocal apology to our special guest of honour, Senator Ike Ekweremadu – former Deputy Senate President – for the unfortunate treatment misdirected at him by members of Indigenous Peoples Of Biafra (IPOB) in Germany during the occasion of our 2nd Annual Igbo Cultural Festival and Convention 2019.

“It must be emphasised that Senator Dr. Ike Ekweremadu had nothing personal to gain in attending our cultural day. Rather the Igbo residents here in Germany lost an opportunity to tap into his reservoir of knowledge.

“No words can describe our shock, our consternation, and our sadness at this inexcusable, shameful and senseless attack. We apologise from the depths of our hearts that you had to experience such a horrible thing here in our midst. This is not how we are here. Please do not hold this incident against the 99 percent law abiding Umu-Igbo in Germany.

“Our apologies go to Ohaneze Ndi Igbo and to all well-meaning Igbo-Diasporan groups and associations both at home and abroad for this disgrace.

“We sincerely apologize to the National Assembly and indeed to our entire country for such an unwarranted assault on Senator Dr. Ike Ekweremadu by the IPOB members in Germany.

“Let this event be a rallying call to all Umu Igbo at home and worldwide to always seek unity rather than primitively turning against ourselves in senseless violence which will make neutral and friendly global nations turn away from us.

“Ndi-Igbo Germany (N.I.G) condenm in strongest terms this action by the members of IPOB in Germany against Senator Dr. Ike Ikweremadu. Ndi-Igbo Germany distances herself from any group that encourages violence, directly or indirectly.

“It is not acceptable that an Igbo man or woman would come to the occasion of an ancient Igbo traditional event like Iri-ji and not only cause commotion, but also physically attack an invited guest, a fellow Igbo brother from home and a senior Igbo elder statesman in the person of Senator Dr. Ike Ekweremadu. This is an abomination in Igbo land. And in a foreign land! Is this what we have come to in our united struggle, Ndi Igbo? A house divided against itself cannot stand.

“This single action will cost IPOB in Germany more than 70% of her hitherto sympathisers. What IPOB Germany thought in their inept, diminutive, and megalomaniac mindset as a humiliation of Senator Ekweremadu is in reality a humiliation of the Igbo race in a foreign Land.

Finally, and on a serious note: Ndi-Igbo Germany abhors all kinds of violence. We are committed to working and cooperating with our host country Germany and with her constituted authorities.

“Ndi–Igbo Germany will let the full weight of the law take its course. As we all work together towards the redemption of Ala Igbo, let no one think that he or she has more claim to Igbo nation than the other”.

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Gov Ortom Reveals Benue Government Owes Over N22b Gratuity

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Latest Benue State News Online For Today
Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue state/The Guardian Nigeria

Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom disclosed that the State is owing over N22 billion as a gratuity of the state’s workers, Concise News reports.

During the inauguration of the Chairman and members of the State Pension Commission in Makurdi on Monday, the Governor said that he  inherited N18 billion gratuity liability in 2015, and that because of the paucity of funds to upset the debt coupled with an additional number of retired workers overtime, the debt had risen to N22 billion.

He further disclosed that the monthly pension bill of the state was now N800 million as against the N400 million bill he inherited in 2015.

The governor said the state needed to urgently commence full domestication of the National Contributory Pensions Scheme Act 2004 to mitigate the sufferings of retirees.

He specially commended the 8th State Assembly for passing the PENCOM bill and expressed optimism that in no distant time retirees would have cause to smile home after retirement.

“The members are all victims of nonpayment of gratuities and pensions; so, they understand the pains of not being paid.

“Benue pensioners have been very patient with me and that has given me a lot of burden on my shoulder to ensure that something is done about it urgently,” he said.

Ortom warned the commission members to be wary of people who may want to sabotage their efforts with the aim of enriching themselves to the detriment of the pensioners.

He urged them to bring their experience to bear on the job and block all leakages in the pension sector.

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Burkina Faso Troops Killed In ‘Major Terrorist Attack’

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UN Reacts To Attack On Aid Workers In Nigeria's Borno
terrorists/file

More than a dozen soldiers died on Monday during as terrorist armed groups attacked northern Burkina Faso, army said.

Concise News gathered that the death toll could hit 20 dead as other soldiers still missing.

“In the early morning, the military detachment of the Koutougou department in Soum province was the target of an attack,” said a statement from the general staff.

“A provisional report states that more than a dozen soldiers were killed, and several were wounded.”

The Sahel state of Burkina Faso has been battling a rising wave of jihadist violence over the last four years which began in the north but has since spread to the east, near the border with Togo and Benin.

The heaviest Islamist attack against Burkina’s army to date left 12 soldiers dead at Nassoumbou, also in Soum province, in December 2016.

More than 40 jihadists aboard pickup trucks and on motorcycles laid assault to a military post close to the Mali border.

Overnight Thursday to Friday armed men described as jihadists raided a village in the restive north, killing 15 people, plundering and burning shops, a regional governor said.

Most attacks in the former French colony are attributed to the Ansarul Islam group, which emerged near the Mali border in December 2016, and to the JNIM (Group to Support Islam and Muslims), which has sworn allegiance to Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb.

Those groups are believed to be responsible for around 500 deaths since 2015. Burkina’s capital Ouagadougou has been attacked three times.

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Barca Injury Woes Mount As Dembele Out For 5 weeks

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Ousmane Dembele

Barcelona injury woes mount as Ousmane Dembele has been ruled out for five weeks with a hamstring strain, Concise News reports.

Dembele’s injury leaves Barcelona short of forwards ahead of Sunday’s game against Real Betis.

It was gathered that Dembele, 22, underwent tests at the club’s training ground on Monday after ending Friday’s loss to Athletic Bilbao with a slight problem.

The injury to Frenchman comes at an unfortunate time for Barca, who are already without Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez.

Messi hasn’t featured for the club since the end of last season after injuring his calf in his first training session back after a summer break earlier this month.

Suarez, meanwhile, was taking off during the first half of the 1-0 loss at San Mames last week, also with a calf problem.

The Uruguayan is not expected back until after September’s international break, although coach Ernesto Valverde could potentially have Messi available for the Betis game this weekend

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Premier League Fixtures: Wolves Held Man United To 1-1 Draw

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Image Courtesy BBC

Manchester United was held to a 1-1 draw by Wolverhampton in the English Premier League week 2 match at the Molineux Stadium on Monday night.

Paul Pogba missed a second-half penalty as the Frenchman won a spot-kick when he was fouled by Conor Coady in the 68th minute.

However, Ruben Neves’ stunning effort cancelled out Anthony Martial first-half goal.

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NNPC Gets NHIS Accreditation To Provide Medical Services

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NNPC Gets NHIS Accreditation To Provide Medical Services
Group Managing Director of NNPC Mele Kyari/Premium Times

The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has formally been accredited by the National Health Insurance Scheme to provide healthcare services to Nigerians.

This was disclosed in a statement by the corporation’s spokesperson, Ndu Ughamadu,, Ndu Ughamadu, on Sunday.

According to the statement, the accreditation granted NNPC the authority to establish and operate a functional HMO, noting that this was a forerunner to the plan by the corporation to activate a medical delivery system across the country.

Receiving the certificate of accreditation at the NHIS headquarters in Abuja, the Managing Director, NNPC HMO, Musa Ribadu, said the corporation was ready to improve the scheme and offer real-time value to the prospective beneficiaries of its packages.

He was quoted in a statement as saying, “We are confident that our entry into the market will increase the national coverage statistics by at least one to two digits.

“We have better knowledge of the oil and gas sector that can attract active participation within this sector for the scheme.”

Ribadu said the initiative to invest in the venture was part of NNPC’s plan to diversify its revenue base and contribute to the corporation’s bottom line.

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PDP Asks NASS To Investigate Tax Revenue Collected By FIRS

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Kola Ologbondiyan

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on Monday urged the National Assembly to investigate the handling of taxes collected by the Federal Inland Revenue Service in the last four years.

The PDP said this in a statement by the PDP National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, on Monday.

The opposition party said in light of the leaked correspondence to the FIRS boss, Babatunde Fowler by President Muhammadu Buhari’s Chief of Staff, Abba Kyari, the lawmakers should take urgent steps to recover the stolen funds and channel such to projects that have direct bearing on the welfare of Nigerians.

The statement reads: “Therefore, urges the National Assembly to come to the rescue by holding a public inquest into the handling of taxes collected by the FIRS in the last four years, take urgent steps to recover the stolen funds and channel such to projects that have direct bearing on the welfare of Nigerians.

“The party notes that Nigerians are not deceived by the desperation by agents of the Buhari Presidency to cover its complicity by seeking a fall guy in the Executive Chairman of FIRS, Babatunde Fowler.

“The PDP says that a critical study of the leaked correspondence from the Chief of Staff to the President, Malam Abba Kyari, to the FIRS Chairman in the wake of the revelations of financial discrepancies at FIRS, totally betrays the complicity of the cabal in the Buhari Presidency.

“The correspondence also further confirms that our nation and her economy have been in the strangulating grips of a corrupt cabal, who has evidently hijacked the statutory roles and responsibilities of agencies of government, leading to the crippling of our system in the last four years of President Muhammadu Buhari’s misrule.”

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American Actor ‘The Rock’ Marries Long-Time Sweetheart

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Image Courtesy Instagram

American actor, Dwayne Johnson has married his longtime sweetheart, Lauren Hashian on Sunday in Hawaii, after many years of being together.

Dwayne, a retired professional wrestler, known by his ring name ‘The Rock’ announced their union on his Instagram page on Monday.

The Rock, 47, and Hashian, 34, have two children together: Jasmine Lia, 3, and Tiana Gia, 1.

He also has an 18-year-old daughter, Simone Alexandra Johnson, from his previous marriage to Dany Garcia, which ended in 2007.

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Non-Oil Imports Higher Than Export By 463% In Q1 2019

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Non-Oil Imports Higher Than Export By 463% In Q1 2019
crude oil | Twitter

Despite Federal Government efforts to promote local production and boost exports, the non-oil import remains high as local companies continue to import more than they are exporting.

Data released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) has shown that non-oil imports by sea exceeded exports by more than 463 per cent in the first quarter of the year.

Also, the country’s total trade by the sea dipped by N411.4 billion in the first quarter when compared with the number obtained in the fourth quarter of 2018.

A further breakdown showed that between January and March 2019, Nigeria’s total trade in agricultural goods stood at N322.4 billion, while raw materials, solid mineral, energy, and manufactured goods were N366.5 billion, N26.8 billion, N10.6 billion and N3.2 trillion, respectively.

The total value of non-oil export for the first quarter stood at N604.4 billion, 162 per cent higher than the N371.9 billion recorded in the fourth quarter of 2018.

While the total worth of non-oil imports for the first quarter stood at N3.4 trillion. Therefore, the non-oil import was higher than export by N2.8 trillion.

Speaking on the report, Dr Victor Iyama, the President, Federation of Agricultural Commodities Association, said the increase in participation of the non-oil export sector boosted the numbers as shown above.

He said, “Apart from the fact that most of the main crops such as cocoa, cashew, ginger, hibiscus and scent leaves are in season from November to March, more people are going into the non-oil export sector and there has been greater transparency and channels of official export declaration and documentation.

“Also, production of many of the vegetables have gone up and with Irrigation, some of them can be grown three times a year.”

Overall, more products are being imported than those being exported, suggesting that pressures remain on the foreign reserves and further highlights why the central bank continues to restrict importers of more items from accessing forex at the official window.

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Lagos Market, Katangowa Up In Flames (Photos)

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Image Courtesy Nairaland

An early morning inferno gutted Lagos popular okirika (fairly used) market, Katangowa in Agbado/Okeodo Local Council Development Area, along the Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway.

According to reports, the fire started at about 3.15am on Monday.

Many of the fairly used good and shops have been ruined by the inferno.

Men of the state fire service and officials of the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) are already on the ground to quench the fire.

Also on ground are policemen from the Okeodo Divisional Headquarters to prevent the looting of unaffected shops.

See More Photos…

Image Courtesy Nairaland
Image Courtesy Nairaland
Image Courtesy Nairaland

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Popular Yoruba Nollywood Actress Welcomes New Born

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Ronke Odusanya | Image Courtesy Instagram

Nollywood actress, Ronke Odusanya popularly known as Flakky Ididowo has welcomed a newborn.

The actress took to her Instagram page this morning (Monday) to share the news with her followers.

Flakky Ididowo posted a picture of herself and the baby with a caption that depicts the joy of motherhood.

She wrote; “My joy knows no limit… Its boundless … Appreciation to God for the process and seeing me through it all … Birthing a new being is a whole new level and experience for me … my love We welcome our child …. oluwa modupe.”

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Why I Was Assaulted By IPOB Members In Germany – Ekweramadu

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What Student Group Said About IPOB Attack On Sen. Ekweremadu
Senator Ike Ekweremadu/File Photo

Former Deputy Senate President Ike Ekweramadu says he was assaulted in Germany because his attackers had issues with the handling of the Operation Python Dance in the South-East.

He also described his assault as the actions of a few misguided individuals and not a representation of the character of the majority of Nigerians.

The Senator made this known to reporters at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport Abuja on Monday after returning to Nigeria from Germany.

He said he will not be seeking the punishment of the individuals who assaulted him and that he has forgiven them.

He said, “The organisers asked me to come to the venue because the place was already full of guests including the Mayor of the town and the Nigerian Ambassador to Germany and I had to rush there.

“When I got there, the Ambassador was not there yet but a lot of people had already assembled. I was excited and I alighted from my car to go and say hello to those standing in front of the hall.

“A group of young people with IPOB emblem and shirts were also standing there. One of them then accosted me and said that we didn’t do much when the Federal Government declared Operation Python Dance in the South-East.

“They asked me to address them on the issue right there but I told them that it was part of the issues I would address when I wanted to speak during the programme but they said No!

“They became agitated and started attacking me immediately.”

Ekwremadu added that his observation about his attackers showed that they were under a heavy influence of drugs and alcohol.

He said, “I had a feeling that they were under the influence of alcohol and drugs. They did not represent the feelings of our people. I have forgiven them and I have moved on.

“The government of Germany is free to do whatever they want to do about their case.”

Concise News reported that members of the proscribed IPOB assaulted the Senator at the second Annual Igbo Cultural Festival in Nuremberg, Germany.

The video of the incident which was uploaded by IPOB on its Facebook page and by some other persons at the scene went viral on Sunday, August 18, sparking various reactions.

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Mugabe’s Ex-VP Flees From Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Agency

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Phelekezela Mphoko. AFP

Zimbabwe’s former vice president Phelekezela Mphoko has fled from anti-corruption questioning after he was summoned over alleged criminal abuse of office, officials said on Monday.

Mphoko, 79, who served under long-time ruler Robert Mugabe, was due at the police in Bulawayo, the country’s second city, to record a statement on the allegations.

But he drove off as soon as officials from the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) approached his car.

“We had agreed to meet at the police post at the magistrate’s court to record a warned-and- cautioned statement and have his fingerprints taken but when our officials approached his car, he drove away at high speed,” ZACC spokesman John Makamure told AFP.

“He is now a fugitive from justice,” the spokesman said, facing accusations of ordering the release from police custody of a chief executive officer and a non-executive director of the state-run roads authority.

Mphoko was, along with current president Emmerson Mnangagwa, one of two vice presidents at the time of the ouster by the military of Mugabe in November 2017.

He left the country as the coup unfolded but later returned.

An attempt to arrest him by ZACC last week was blocked by his family.

ZACC tweeted Friday that it was “sad” that Mphoko had “refused to collaborate with the enforcement officers and unfortunate that he and those around him believe that they are above the law”.

Lawyer Zibusiso Ncube told AFP that they had an agreement with ZACC that on Monday he would sign a statement at the police “but when we got there they said they (the police) had instructions to detain him”.

“He drove away and is at home.”

The lawyer said the ex-vice president was prepared to appear in court to answer the charges, but “Mphoko claims he heard from impeccable sources that if he is detained, he will be injected with a poisonous substance”.

He is the second high ranking member of the ruling Zanu-PF party under probe by the recently reconstituted ZACC.

Prisca Mupfumira, who was fired as tourism minister earlier this month, became in July the first high profile official to be arrested and detained for alleged graft. She is still in remand prison after being denied bail.

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Vladimir Putin Wants Russia Back In G8

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Vladmir Putin/nbcnews.com

Russian President, Vladimir Putin, said on Monday that his country would like to be allowed back into the Group of Eight leading economies.

“We would not refuse,’’ Putin said alongside French President, Emmanuel Macron, in televised comments to reporters in reply to a question about working within the previous G8 format.

Putin said at the French president’s summer retreat in the seaside fortress of Bregancon “any contacts with our partners, in any format, are useful’’.

In March 2014, Russia was suspended indefinitely following the annexation of Crimea, whereupon the political forum name reverted to G7.

In 2017 Russia announced its permanent withdrawal from the G8.

However, several representatives of G7 countries stated that they would be interested in Russia’s return to the group.

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2023: APC Chieftain Reveals Why Another Notherner Could Replace Buhari

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2023: APC Chieftain Reveals Why Another Notherner Could Replace Buhari
President Muhammadu Buhari/Twitter: Ahmad Bashir

The two major parties in Nigeria, the All Progressives Congress (APC) and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), may dump zoning for the presidency.

This was the assertion of a member of the Board of Trustees of the APC Yahaya Kwande.

Nigeria operates an unwritten rotational policy between its southern and northern region for the presidency.

President Muhammadu Buhari who is from northern Nigeria, who is in his second term, is expected to hand over to a person from the south.

However, Kwande said that this arrangement may be dumped by the PDP and APC ahead of the 2023 elections.

“I do not want to get involved into something that is so complicated. It was supposed to be the responsibility of a political party,” he told the Sun News.

“It was a game and a tactic that you can use to win the election but it is not in our constitution.

“If the PDP, for instance, zones their presidential slot to the East, they must have a reason for that.

“They would not even like the ruling party to zone it to the East because that would defeat the purpose for which they wanted it zoned to the East.”

According to him, “Now, how many political parties do we have? Somebody can even say let us zone it to his village so that he can win.

“In that case, you cannot stop him if his political party would go with his idea.

“But it is not something that somebody should worry about. The people you see saying let it remain in the North are doing that because they feel you can use it to get more votes.

“If immediately something changes and they think that only a candidate from Delta would win for their party, believe me, they would say, let us zone it to the South-South. This is the idea; it is not something legal; it is politics.”

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Ekiti: Why Fayemi Banned English Language At Traditional Events

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Governor of Ekiti State Kayode Fayemi

Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State says he has banned the use of the English language to communicate during any traditional events in the state because his administration was desirous to promote arts and culture through Yoruba and Ekiti dialects.

The governor, who was represented at the event by the Head of Service, Deji Ajayi, said this on Monday in Ado-Ekiti during the First Ekiti State Arts and Culture Stakeholders’ Forum.

He said it has now become an offence for anyone to communicate in the English Language during traditional events.

Fayemi revealed that the state will hold its Festival of Arts and Culture in December as part of the ways to boost its economy.

The governor added that there were empirical statistics and evidence to prove that there was a need for the state to enhance the skills and capacities of the youths since government alone can not solve the issue of endemic unemployment in the system.

“From today, henceforth, the government has banned the speaking of English in any cultural programme. Whoever that will participate in any traditional programme must speak Yoruba or our dialect.

“In the primary school teachers’ recruitment exercise we advertised recently, we wanted to employ 1,100 teachers and over 19,000 had applied on our website. This shows that the government must develop the skills and capacities of our youths to be able to be on their own.

“We are going to organise Ekiti State Festival of Arts and Culture in December this year to enhance our capacities in crafts, dancing, weaving and other vocational areas of arts.

“We should not forget to teach our children those values that will make Ekiti to remember their heritage and sustain our culture as a people.”

Fayemi said that the government would build a new traditional rulers’ Secretariat for monarchs in the state to make them more active and functional.

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Transfer: Why I Joined Bayern Munich – Coutinho (Photo)

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coutinho news
Coutinho joined Barcelona from Liverpool. Credit: Twitter/Bayern Munich

Philippe Coutinho has said things did not work out the way he wanted at Barcelona following his move to Bayern Munich, Concise News reports.

The Brazilian had a hard time at the Nou Camp after sealing a €160million move to Spain from Liverpool in 20018.

He scored eight goals in his first 18 La Liga games.

He was also courted by Paris Saint Germain (PSG) but Bayern Munich on Monday secured a loan deal for the forward with a €120m purchase option.

Speaking after his unveiling in Germany, the player admitted that he tried to make things better at Barcelona.

He, however, expressed happiness at joining the German outfit.

“Concerning Barcelona, things didn’t work out the way we wanted,” Coutinho said.

According to him, “Within those years I did have great experiences.

“I learnt a lot, won a lot with that club and then we had the Copa América, which I won with Brazil and that was really important.

“Now I have a chance at a new club, a big club. I didn’t have any doubts when Hasan [Salihamidzic, Bayern sporting director] called me.

“He really wanted me to come here, so they flew to Barcelona, we met, they showed me the project and that’s why I really want to thank them, because from the first second [it was clear] how they see me. That was important for me to see.”

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Lagos Assembly Rejects Three Of Sanwo-Olu’s Commissioner Nominees

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Lagos House Of Assembly/NAN/Concise

The Lagos State House of Assembly on Monday rejected three of the commissioner nominees presented to it for approval by Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu.

Concise News gathered that those rejected include Ajayi Bembe, George Obafemi and Prince Olanrewaju Sanusi.

Recall that the Assembly’s 16-man ad hoc Committee for screening the commissioners and Special Advisers resumed screening of the second batch of the nominees last Thursday.

The committee on August 1 commenced the screening of the first batch of the cabinet list comprising 25 nominees and had concluded the exercise on August 3.

Following the receipt of additional 13 nominees on Tuesday, shortly after the screening of the first batch, the committee was mandated by the Assembly to continue the screening.

Sanwo-Olu’s second batch of cabinet nominees includes Mr Oladele Ajayi, Mr Oluwatoyin Fayinka, Mrs Yetunde Arobieke, Mr Olanrewaju Sanusi and Mr Joe Igbokwe.

Others are Mr Bonu Solomon Saanu, Mr Kabiru Ahmed, Mrs Lola Akande, Prince Anofi Elegushi, Mrs Solape Hammond, Mr Moruf Fatai, Mrs Shulamite Adebolu and Mr Tokunbo Wahab.

The 25 nominees earlier screened were Mrs Toke Benson-Awoyinka, Princess Aderemi Adebowale, Mr Tunji Bello, Ms Adekemi Ajayi-Bembe, Dr Wale Ahmed, Prof. Akin Abayomi, Mr Hakeem Fahm and Mr Gbenga Omotoso.

Others were Mrs Bolaji Dada, Mr Lere Odusote, Mr Moyo Onigbanjo (SAN), Mrs Uzamat Akinbile-Yusuf, Mr Segun Dawodu, Mrs Folashade Adefisayo, Mrs Ponnle Ajibola, Dr Rabiu Olowo, Mr Olatunbosun Alake and Mr Samuel Egube.

The rest were: Dr Idris Salako, Dr Frederick Oladeinde, Mr Gbolahan Lawal, Mr Aramide Adeyoye, Ms Ruth Olusanya, Mr Afolabi Ayantayo, and Mr Femi George.

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