Community kicks, demands N500m as Lagos officials demolish houses (Punch)
Rsidents of Oyetubo Oyemade Estate in Sangotedo, in the Eti-Osa area of Lagos State, have kicked against the demolition of their buildings by officials of the Lagos State Ministry of Physical Planning and Urban Development.
The residents and owners of the estate, Oyetubo Oyemade Estate Resources Limited, in a petition to the Lagos State Governor, the Speaker of the Lagos House of Assembly, the state Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, and the National Human Rights Commission, demanded N500m as compensation.
The petition, dated December 23, 2020, was written through their lawyer, Olanrewaju Aiyedun and Co.
They said the demolition was carried out by armed men and officers attached to Special Operations, Governor’s Office, led by their Commander, Toyin Omotosho. Read more
Tin-can gridlock drives up trucking cost by over 100% (Vanguard)
The gridlock currently being witnessed at Tin-can Island Port, Apapa, Lagos, has driven up the cost of trucking consignments from the port to other parts of Lagos by over 100 per cent.
The cost of trucking consignments from Tin-can to Ikeja about two to three months ago used to be between N400,000 and N600,000 but with the worsening traffic situation, trucking cost to the same destination has gone up to between N1.2 million and N1.6 million.
A trucker who operates at Tin-can port and an executive of Bateru General Agencies Limited, Yinka Aroyewun, in an interview with Vanguard, said that the trucking cost has continued to rise because of the difficulties associated with entry and exit at the port. Read more
Sanwo-Olu signs N1.16tn 2021 Budget into law (Guardian)
Lagos State Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Thursday signed the 2021 Appropriation Bill of N1.164 trillion into law.
Speaking during the signing at Lagos House, Marina, Sanwo-Olu said that the budget has a capital to recurrent ratio of 60:40.
He said that the budget comprised of N702,935,416,976 capital expenditure and N460,586,793,741 recurrent expenditure.
According to him, with the passage of the bill, the government will continue its work of rebuilding Lagos, advancing economic growth, and expanding opportunities for Lagosians to flourish. Read more
Rising COVID-19 cases: NUT cautions FG against Jan 18 schools’ resumption date (Punch)
The Nigeria Union of Teachers on Thursday cautioned the Federal Government against the January 18 resumption date for schools across the country.
The NUT Secretary-General, Dr Mike Ike-Ene, who stated this in an interview with one of our correspondents, said there was no need to hurriedly resume, if the rate of COVID-19 infection kept increasing.
Ike-Ene stated that if coronavirus infection was increasing, teachers would stay at home.
Recalled that the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 had on December 17 said the country had entered COVID-19 second wave. Read more
Actors plan health workshop to stem sudden deaths among members (Vanguard)
The Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN) has reiterated it’s commitment to the welfare of members to address incessant deaths among Nigerian artists.
The Guild’s President, Emeka Rollas, make the remarks during the end of year get-together organised for members in Lagos on Friday.
Rollas said the association would begin this life-saving measure by organising in-house health workshops across all chapters of AGN.
He said that the measure became necessary as the increase in deaths of major practitioners, arising from sudden ailments, was alarming. Read more
We’ll diversify Bayelsa Economy in 2021, create jobs – Diri (Guardian)
Gov. Douye Diri of Bayelsa on Friday, said that his administration was bent on diversifying the state’s economy to reduce total dependence on federal allocations in 2021.
The governor made the remarks in his New Year Day broadcast tagged: “Message of Hope and Prosperity,” and said that alternative sources of improving the internally generated revenue would be explored.
The Chief Press Secretary to the governor, Mr Daniel Alabrah, issued a statement on the broadcast to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Yenagoa.
According to Diri, as a consequence of the well-conceived policies and estimates contained in the already passed 2021 “Budget of Growth”, we expect to witness accelerated development and progress across all strata of our lives, all things being equal. Read more
Leah Sharibu’s mother sick, hospitalised (Punch)
The mother of Leah Sharibu, Rebecca Sharibu, fell sick on Christmas Day and was hospitalised, The PUNCH learnt on Thursday.
Recall that Leah had been abducted since February 19, 2018.
She was one of the 110 female students of the Government Girls’ Science and Technical College, Dapchi, Yobe State, who were abducted by Boko Haram terrorists.
While others were released by the terrorists following negotiations, Leah, then 14 years, was held captive because she refused to renounce her Christian faith. Read more
Protesting Catholic women ground Owerri over Bishop Chikwe’s kidnap (Vanguard)
Vehicular traffic along the ever-busy Wetheral Road, Owerri, Imo State, ground to a halt for hours on Thursday, as members of Owerri Archdiocesan Catholic Women Organisation, CWO, embarked on peaceful rosary procession, praying for the quick release of their Auxiliary Bishop, Most Rev. Moses Chikwe and his driver, Mr. Robert Ndubuisi, by their abductors.
The women lamented that four days after the Bishop and his driver were kidnapped by the hoodlums, not a word had been heard from either the hoodlums or their innocent captives.
The women prayed and sang religious songs throughout the procession, which started at Villa Maria Guest House and terminated at the Government House, Owerri. Read more
Makinde recounts successes in 2020 despite challenges (Guardian)
Gov. Seyi Makinde of Oyo State, on Thursday recounted some of his successes in 2020 despite the myriad of challenges facing the nation, urging residents to maintain a positive outlook for the new year.
Makinde, in a 2021 New Year address, issued in Ibadan by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Taiwo Adisa, said despite various events that set the state back economically, his government was still able to record huge successes.
The governor maintained that his government achieved a success in reducing infrastructural deficit of the state.
He noted that 2020 was characterised by fall in oil prices, which led to a huge drop in revenue from the Federal allocations. Read more
Wuhan crowds pack streets for New Year’s Eve (Metro)
Crowds of people packed together in Wuhan this evening to celebrate New Year’s Eve exactly one year after coronavirus was discovered in the city. Images from the city, which has not reported a locally transmitted case of Covid since May, showed people carrying balloons and wearing face masks as they saw in 2021 on the streets. A concert took place by the city’s philharmonic orchestra, while revellers could also attend a cyberpunk electronic festival or watch a light show along the Yangtze River, which runs through the area. Read more
Brexit now a reality as UK completes economic separation from European Union (CBC)
Britain’s long and sometimes acrimonious divorce from the European Union ended Thursday with an economic split that leaves the EU smaller and the U.K. freer but more isolated in a turbulent world.
Britain left the European bloc’s vast single market for people, goods and services at 11 p.m. London time, midnight in Brussels, completing the biggest single economic change the country has experienced since World War II. A new U.K.-EU trade deal will bring its own restrictions and red tape, but for British Brexit supporters, it means reclaiming national independence from the EU and its web of rules.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson, whose support for Brexit helped push the country out of the EU, said it was “an amazing moment for this country.” Read more
Hip-hop star MF Doom dies aged 49 (BBC)
Hip-hop star MF Doom has died at the age of 49, his family confirmed on social media.
The musician, real name Daniel Dumile, was known for his rhyme style and his performances in which he always wore a mask.
In a post on the rapper’s Instagram account on Thursday, his wife Jasmine confirmed that he died on 31 October.
A number of artists have paid tribute to MF Doom including Run The Jewels and Tyler, The Creator. Read more
Goodbye, 2020: New Year’s celebrations look different this year (CBC)
This New Year’s Eve is being celebrated like no other, with pandemic restrictions limiting crowds and many people bidding farewell to a year they’d prefer to forget.
From the South Pacific to New York City, pandemic restrictions on open air gatherings saw people turning to made-for-TV fireworks displays or packing it in early since they could not toast the end of 2020 in the presence of friends or carousing strangers.
As midnight rolled from Asia to the Middle East, Europe, Africa and the Americas, the New Year’s experience mirrored national responses to the virus itself. Some countries and cities cancelled or scaled back their festivities, while others without active outbreaks carried on like any other year. Read more
North of 60 actor Wilma Pelly dead at 83 (CBC)
Canadian Indigenous actor Wilma Pelly, who was best known for her role as Elsie Tsa Che on the CBC series North of 60, died in Calgary on Dec. 28. Her family says the 83-year-old leaves a legacy of hard work and perseverance.
Pelly’s daughters, Leeanna Rhodes and Stella Pelley, said their mother worked at a gardening centre and in factories before finding work as an extra in the early 1990s.
It led to 25 years of TV, film and theatre roles for Pelly — a consistent source of pride for her children. Read more
Thousands cram together for fireworks in New Zealand (Metro)
New Zealand and Australia have welcomed in 2021 with huge crowds and firework displays, in stark contrast to Brits who face NYE at home in lockdown. Most countries have been forced to put on muted celebrations as a second wave of coronavirus sweeps the globe. Others, such as the UK, have cancelled events outright amid the spread of a second more infectious variant. Samoa and Christmas Island became the first place to welcome 2021 at 10am this morning. Read more
Andy Murray pulls out of ATP event in Delray Beach (BBC)
Britain’s former world number one Andy Murray has pulled out of next week’s ATP event in Delray Beach – but not because of injury concerns.
Murray had accepted a wildcard to start his 2021 season at the Florida event.
“Given the increase in Covid rates and the transatlantic flights involved, I want to minimize the risks ahead of the Australian Open,” said the Scot.
Players will have to pass a series of Covid tests during a 14-day quarantine in Melbourne before the Grand Slam. Read more
Onuachu facilitates electricity to Umuota community (Punch)
Genk striker Paul Onuachu has come to the aid of Umuota Agbaghara Nsu village in Ehime Mbano Local Government Area of Imo State by providing a 45KVA transformer, The PUNCH reports.
The area has been without electricity for years our correspondent learnt.
The 26-year-old forward who was born in Owerri, Imo State, but raised in Lagos said he hopes his gesture will alleviate the poverty and hardship in his village.
“It’s just the least I can do at the moment,” Onuachu told The PUNCH. Read more
LeBron James reacts to Becky Hammon making history as first woman to coach an NBA team (Metro)
Becky Hammon made history on Wednesday night by becoming the first woman to officially coach an NBA team during the regular season. Hammon, 43, took over from Gregg Popovich after the San Antonio Spurs head coach was ejected in the second quarter of a 121-107 defeat to the Los Angeles Lakers. Assistant coach Hammon could not stop her side from defeat as LeBron James celebrated his 36th birthday by scoring 26 points – the 1,000th consecutive game he has hit double figures. ‘It’s a beautiful thing just to hear her barking out calls, barking out sets,’ said NBA legend James afterwards. ‘Congratulations to her and congratulations for our league.’ Read more
Pascal Siakam benched as Raptors come alive late to beat Knicks for 1st win (CBC)
The Toronto Raptors finally have their first victory of the season, putting an end to their worst start in 15 years.
Fred VanVleet had 25 points, while Kyle Lowry had 20 and the Raptors pulled away to beat the New York Knicks 100-83 on Thursday.
On a night coach Nick Nurse benched all-star Pascal Siakam reportedly for disciplinary reasons, Norman Powell started in his place to finish with 17 points and Alex Len had 11 off the bench.
Julius Randle and Kevin Knox had 16 points apiece to top the Knicks. RJ Barrett, one of 18 Canadians on NBA opening-night rosters, had a tough night. The sophomore from Mississauga, Ont., who’s averaging 16.3 points a night, had 12 and eight rebounds. Read more
Canelo Alvarez backs Anthony Joshua to beat Tyson Fury in style (Metro)
Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez has backed Anthony Joshua to upset the odds and not only beat, but stop, Tyson Fury in their propsed fight in 2021. The fight is far from signed, but Joshua and Fury are expected to meet for the undisputed heavyweight championship of the world in the first half of 2021, as long as fans can return to watch the action by then. Joshua will be bringing his WBA, WBO, IBF and IBO titles to the party, while Fury holds the WBC and Ring Magazine belts, meaning the winner will leave with all the heavyweight hardware – as long as the WBO do not enforce Oleksandr Usyk’s mandatory bout and throw a spanner in the works. Read more
US investors complete takeover of Premier League side Burnley (Vanguard)
US investment group ALK Capital has completed its takeover of Burnley, acquiring a controlling 84 percent stake in the Premier League club, it was announced on Thursday.
Delaware-based ALK, which specialises in investments in the sport and media sectors, said its managing partner Alan Pace would take over from Mike Garlick as chairman.
Pace, the former president of Major League Soccer’s Real Salt Lake, said the move marked “the start of an exciting journey for the entire Clarets family”.
“With a rich heritage, a brilliant academy, and a passionate fan base, this club has solid foundations to build upon,” he said in a statement on the club’s website. Read more