COVID-19: Adeboye blasts FG, CAN for restriction of crossover services (Sun)
General Overseer, Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), Pastor Enoch Adeboye, has lampooned the Federal Governments for putting restrictions on crossover services.
He also lashed the leadership of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) for supporting the decision.
The cleric, in a sermon titled ‘Divine Lifting’ at the Church headquarters in Lagos, yesterday, expressed displeasure over the restrictions on worship places on December 31 by the federal and some state governments which made it impossible for various Christian denominations to hold the traditional vigil, called cross-over nights, to usher in the new year.
Adeboye who spoke at the celebration of the 2021 First Sunday Service at First Born Parish, Ebutte Meta, Lagos State, said rather than close prayers and usher in the New Year on December 31, 2020 at about 10-11pm being the time suggested by governments, he instructed members of his church to observe the cross over in their homes. Read more
We ferried over 200,000 passengers in 2020 – LAGFERRY (Independent)
The Managing Director, Lagos Ferry Services (LAGFERRY), Mr Abdoulbaq Balogun, said the service ferried over 200, 000 passengers within 150 days of operations in 2020.
Balogun, who made the disclosure in a New Year message to commuters on Sunday, in Lagos, while mapping out LAGFERRY’s operational strategies for 2021, added that the service would have done better if not for the interruptions caused by the COVID–19 pandemic and #ENDSARS protests.
He assured that commuters would witness a lot of transformation in water transportation in 2021, as arrangements had been concluded by the state government to increase the agency’s boat fleet to 20. Read more
200 traders, artisans get lawmaker’s support in Lagos (Guardian)
Determined to reduce poverty level in his constituency, especially during the economic recession occasioned by the COVID-19, a lawmaker representing Oshodi/Isolo Constituency II at the House of Representatives, Ganiyu Johnson, has empowered about 200 traders and artisans drawn from Ejigbo and Isolo local council development areas to benefit from the first phase of empowerment with tools and cash support.
The programme, which held last week at Okota, was tagged: ‘Empowerment for women youth and farmers on agricultural equipment on hand carrier motorized welder.’
It was facilitated by Johnson and supported by the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development in collaboration with Gatem Nigeria Limited. Read more
Lagos sets to inaugurate 377 projects (Vanguard)
Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu made this known during the Year 2021 Hybrid Edition of the Lagos State Annual Thanksgiving Service, held at Lagos House Ground, Ikeja.
Sanwo-Olu said that all the projects were initiated to positively impact the lives of every Lagos resident.
He said that he had signed the largest budget in the history of the state into law on Dec. 31, 2020.
“The budget for the 2021 year is ready for implementation,’’ the governor said. Read more
FG expects to take delivery of COVID-19 vaccines January ending (Thisday)
The federal government has given assurances that the first batch of COVID-19 vaccines will arrive the country latest by the end of January.
National Coordinator of the Presidential Task Force on Control of COVID-19, Dr. Sani Aliyu told ARISE News, the broadcast arm of THISDAY Newspapers, yesterday that
there is a presidential directive to ensure that the vaccines are sourced as timely as possible.
“In terms of when it is going to be available in the country, there is a lot of work going on with National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA) and the president directed the Presidential Task Force on Control of COVID-19 last two weeks to get involved in the nitty gritty of the efforts to ensure that the vaccines come in a timely manner. Read more
Probe missing N3.8bn in health ministry, NAFDAC, others’, SERAP tells Buhari (Sun)
Socio–Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has urged President Muhammadu Buhari “to direct the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice Mr Abubakar Malami, SAN, and appropriate anti-corruption agencies to probe allegations that N3,836,685,213.13 of public funds meant for the Federal Ministry of Health, teaching hospitals, medical centres, and National Food Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) are missing, mismanaged, diverted or stolen.”
The organisation said the allegations are documented in Part 1 of the 2018 audited report released last week by the Office of the Auditor-General of the Federation.
It is also urging him to “promptly investigate the extent and patterns of widespread corruption in the Federal Ministry of Health, teaching hospitals, medical centres, neuro-psychiatric hospitals, National Health Insurance Scheme, and NAFDAC indicted in the audited report, and to clean up an apparently entrenched system of corruption in the health sector.” Read more
Alleged Sexual Harassment: Abiodun suspends commissioner (Independent)
Ogun State Governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun, has suspended his Commissioner for Environment, Hon Abiodun Abudu-Balogun over alleged sexual harassment of a 16-year-old student in Ogun Waterside Local Government.
The suspension was contained in a statement signed by the Secretary to the State Government, Tokunbo Talabi, a copy of which was made available to our Correspondent.
According to the Statement, the suspension was to allow Abudu-Balogun cooperate fully with investigation being carried out by the Police. Read more
Adetoro bags Kings Collage British American Institute award (Sun)
In recognition of his impressive performance as the Auto Desk Officer in the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Commerce, Samuel Adetoro has been honoured at Efulgence 2020, an awards ceremony organised recently by the Kings College British American institute, in Abuja.
He received the Best Automotive Result Oriented Public Officer award at the event held at the Nicon Luxury Hotel last month, and witnessed by dignitaries from within and outside the country.
Adetoro, whose office in the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment interfaces with Nigeria’s automotive industry, was honoured alongside three other recipients in the Achievers Category for excellence in both the public and private sectors. Read more
Man stabs Stepbrother to death in Ogun (Guardian)
Residents of Salami Ojerinde Street and neighbouring streets in Powerline, Agbado-Oke Aro in Ifo Local Government Area of Ogun State, are yet to overcome the shock of the New Year tragedy, which claimed the life of Femi Akinjogun, aged 42, who was stabbed by his step-brother, Peter Akinjogun.
From the countenance of those who came for his burial on Saturday, it was evident that friends, colleagues, neighbours and family members never believed the father of two could be murdered in such a gruesome manner.
The Guardian learnt that the festive mood in the area was shattered around 5:30 p.m. during the slaughtering of a New Year ram, when a minor misunderstanding between the deceased and his stepbrother, Peter, led to the stabbing of the former. Read more
Death toll rises to 100 after attacks on Niger villages (BBC)
Niger’s prime minister says 100 people are now known to have been killed in Saturday’s attacks by suspected jihadists on two villages.
Brigi Rafini said 70 people were killed in the village of Tchombangou and 30 others in Zaroumdareye – both near Niger’s border with Mali.
It was one of the deadliest days in living memory, as Niger grapples with ethnic violence and Islamic militancy.
No group has said it carried out the attacks. Read more
Vanilla Ice criticised for performing at mask free Mar-a-Lago New Year’s Eve party (Metro)
Vanilla Ice has come under fire for taking to the stage at a New Year’s Eve party where attendees were seen in large crowds and without masks during the coronavirus pandemic. The Ice Ice Baby singer, 53, had been on the bill to perform, along with the Beach Boys, at the bash held at Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida. Trump usually hosts the annual event, but while he wasn’t present this year, his son Donald Trump Jnr and Eric Trump were seen partying in the crowd. Read more
US Congress opens new session amid turmoil over pandemic aid, Biden win (CBC)
The US Congress convened Sunday for the start of a new session, swearing in lawmakers during a tumultuous period as a growing number of Republicans work to overturn Joe Biden’s victory over President Donald Trump and the coronavirus surges.
Democrat Nancy Pelosi was narrowly re-elected as House speaker, giving her the reins of her party’s slender House majority.
The California representative, who has led her party in the House since 2003 and is the only woman to be speaker, had been widely expected to retain her post. Pelosi received 216 votes to 209 for Republican Rep. Kevin McCarthy of California, who again will be the chamber’s minority leader. Read more
Gerry Marsden, U.K. singer of You’ll Never Walk Alone soccer anthem, dies at 78 (CBC)
Gerry Marsden, the British singer who was instrumental in turning a song from the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical Carousel into one of the great anthems in the world of football, has died. He was 78.
His friend Pete Price said on Instagram after speaking to Marsden’s family that the Gerry and the Pacemakers frontman died after a short illness related to a heart infection.
“I’m sending all the love in the world to (his wife) Pauline and his family,” he said. “You’ll Never Walk Alone.” Read more
Blake Shelton faces backlash over new song ‘Minimum Wage’ (PageSix)
Blake Shelton is facing backlash for debuting a song titled “Minimum Wage” while people in America continue to struggle amid the coronavirus pandemic.
“The Voice” coach debuted the new single on NBC’s New Year’s Eve television special alongside Carson Daly to help ring in 2021. The country singer told the host that his fiancee, Gwen Stefani, helped get her brother, Todd, to direct the video.
The artist’s new song has to do with his love for the 51-year-old “Hollaback Girl” singer and contains a lyric in the chorus that upset many people who saw the broadcast.
“Girl, your love can make a man feel rich on minimum wage.” Read more
Star Wars voice actor Tom Kane unable to speak after suffering stroke (Metro)
Tom Kane, best known for his work as a Star Wars voice actor, has been left unable to speak after suffering a stroke, his family has revealed. The 58-year-old, who voiced Jedi master Yoda in The Clone Wars, suffered a stroke two months ago that left him with ‘right-sided weakness’ as well as damage to the speech centre of his brain. Sharing the heartbreaking news in a Facebook post, Kane’s daughter Sam wrote: ‘This means right now he cannot efficiently communicate verbally, nor read or spell. He is still competent and very much himself, but can only get out a few words right now. Read more
In recorded phone call, Trump pressed Georgia election chief to ‘find’ votes for him (CBC)
US President Donald Trump badgered and pleaded with Georgia’s election chief to overturn Joe Biden’s win in the state, suggesting in a telephone call that the official “find” enough votes to hand Trump the victory.
The conversation Saturday was the latest step in an unprecedented effort by a sitting president to pressure a state official to reverse the outcome of a free and fair election that he lost. The renewed intervention and the persistent and unfounded claims of fraud by the first president to lose reelection in almost 30 years come nearly two weeks before Trump leaves office and two days before twin runoffs in Georgia that will determine control of the Senate.
Trump confirmed in a tweet Sunday that he had spoken with Georgia’s secretary of state, Republican Brad Raffensperger, who tweeted that claims Trump made during the call were untrue. Read more
Again, uncertainty surrounds Sports Festival take off date (Guardian)
The build-up to the February 14 commencement date of the 20th National Sports Festival in Edo State seems to be shrouded with uncertainty once again.
The Ministry of Youths and Sports Development had, in November last year, moved the festival from December 3 – 18 to January 3 – 17, 2021, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The date was later shifted to February 14 – 28, 2021 by the National Council on Sports (NCS) following stakeholders’ complains that it would be unwise for athletes to compete two days after the New Year festivity.
However, what appears another major hurdle ahead the February 14 commencement date may have cropped up, following alleged poor finances by some directors of sports. Read more
NFL: Cleveland Browns beat Pittsburgh Steelers to seal first play-off place since 2002 (ESPN)
The Cleveland Browns have secured a play-off spot for the first time since 2002 with a 24-22 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers on the final day of the regular season.
Nick Chubb and Jarvis Landry each ran for a touchdown and Baker Mayfield threw for another.
It ended the NFL’s longest active post-season drought.
The Green Bay Packers clinched the top seed in the NFC Conference while the Tennessee Titans won the AFC South.
The Baltimore Ravens, Indianapolis Colts, Los Angeles Rams and Chicago Bears also qualified for the play-offs, which start on Saturday. Read more
Jets fire Adam Gase (NYPost)
As the final seconds ticked off of the Gillette Stadium scoreboard on Sunday, it was not just counting down the end of a 28-14 Jets loss to the Patriots. It was also counting down the final seconds of Adam Gase’s time with the team and to the beginning of an offseason that could feature massive change for the organization.
The Jets fired Gase on Sunday night, just hours after the loss to the Patriots dropped the Jets to 2-14 this season, the worst record for the team since 1996. In Gase’s two years, the Jets went 9-23, featured the worst offense in football and looked uncompetitive for long stretches.
“While my sincere intentions are to have stability in our organization — especially in our leadership positions — it is clear the best decision for the Jets is to move in a different direction,” team CEO and chairman Christopher Johnson said in a statement. “We knew there was a lot of work that needed to be done when Adam joined us in 2019. Our strong finish last year was encouraging, but unfortunately, we did not sustain that positive momentum or see the progress we all expected this season. Read more
Bayern score five second-half goals to thrash Mainz and go top (BBC)
Bayern Munich scored five second-half goals as they came from 2-0 down to beat struggling Mainz and go top of the Bundesliga by two points.
Jonathan Burkardt and Alexander Hack struck before half-time to shock the defending champions.
It took just 10 second-half minutes for Bayern to draw level thanks to Joshua Kimmich and Leroy Sane.
Substitute Niklas Sule also scored before Robert Lewandowski netted twice, the first from the penalty spot. Read more
Japan exits badminton event after top seed Kento Momota tests positive for COVID-19 (CBC)
World number one badminton player Kento Momota has tested positive for COVID-19, prompting the withdrawal of all Japan’s players from this month’s tournaments in Thailand, the Badminton World Federation said on Sunday.
Momota, 26, was looking to make his international comeback in Bangkok after almost a year out following a car crash that left him with serious injuries.
The two-time reigning world champion tested positive after undergoing a mandatory COVID-19 test at Narita Airport ahead of the Japan team’s departure for Thailand. Read more
10-man AC Milan beat Benevento to reclaim top spot (BBC)
AC Milan ensured city rivals Inter’s stay at the top of Serie A was a brief one despite playing much of their win at Benevento with 10 men.
Franck Kessie’s penalty put Milan ahead before Sandro Tonali’s knee-high lunge on Artur Ionita was changed from yellow to red by the video assistant referee.
However, Rafael Leao curled in a second to move unbeaten Milan a point clear.
Benevento’s Gianluca Caprari also missed a spot-kick, firing wide after being fouled by Rade Krunic.
The hosts, managed by Milan legend Filippo Inzaghi, registered 25 shots, but somehow failed to turn prolonged second-half pressure into a goal. Read more
Pressure mounts on Frank Lampard as Manchester City ease past struggling Chelsea (Metro)
A depleted Manchester City laid down a Premier League title marker and piled more pressure on Frank Lampard with an emphatic victory over struggling Chelsea at Stamford Bridge. City were without six players due to an outbreak of coronavirus at the Etihad but still eased to a 3-1 win over Chelsea thanks to first-half goals from Ilkay Gundogan, Phil Foden and Kevin de Bruyne. The win sees Pep Guardiola’s side climb to fifth in the Premier League table – four points behind joint-leaders Liverpool and Manchester United with a game in hand – while Chelsea slip to eighth. Read more