FG allays fear on Third Mainland Bridge collapse (Guardian)
The Federal Government has allayed fears of residents and motorists on the stability of the Third Mainland Bridge in Lagos, saying that it is strong and safe.
This is coming against the backdrop of the trending video on the failure of the bridge.
The Federal Controller of Works in Lagos, Adaramola Kuti, who spoke on behalf of the government at a joint press conference addressed with the Special Adviser to Lagos State Governor on Works and Infrastructure, Aramide Adeyoye and the state Commissioner for Transportation, Dr. Fredrick Oladeinde, dismissed the video as old and urged Lagosians to ignore it. Read more
One year after, Lagos brings back Ready Set Work Programme (Tribune)
After one year of waiting by prospective beneficiaries, the Lagos State government has brought back the Ready Set Work (RSW) programme.
It brought back the programme on Thursday last week with sensitisation tour of four participating schools instead of eight of the previous editions.
RSW is an initiative of the Lagos State government which commenced under the last administration. It was designed to sharpen entrepreneurial knowledge and skills of final year students and their immediate juniors in both public and private tertiary schools in the state, ahead of their graduation. Read more
Fire burns building near Tejuosho Market (Punch)
Fire burnt a building close to the popular Tejuosho Market, Yaba on Thursday.
The gutted building was located opposite the renovated market. Read more
”Herbalist” begs court to recover his Apple laptop from ex-girlfriend (Nation)
Mr Festus Jatau, a traditional medicine man, on Thursday prayed an Upper Area Court Zuba, FCT, to recover his laptop from a former girlfriend, Ms Blessing Elisha.
Jatau made the appeal while giving evidence as a nominal complainant in the case against Elisha over the allegation of house breaking and theft.
”We used to be close friends. We were live in lovers but we had a misunderstanding and she moved out of the house with my Apple laptop valued at N100,000. Read more
Court fines Busola Dakolo N1m, dismisses case against Fatoyinbo (Punch)
A Federal Capital Territory High Court sitting in Bwari has dismissed a suit filed by photographer, Busola Dakolo, against the Senior Pastor of the Commonwealth of Zion Assembly, Pastor Biodun Fatoyinbo.
The court also ordered Busola to pay N1m for wasting the court’s time.
In a suit, filed by Busola, wife of Musician, Timi Dakolo, in September, she had accused Fatoyinbo of rape, adding that the alleged action of the pastor, as well as his denial in a statement adversely, affected her marital sex life. Read more
Reps okay Operation Positive Identification as opposition kicks (Nation)
The House of Representatives on Thursday gave the nod for the commencement of the Operation Positive Identification by the Nigerian Army.
The followed consideration of the report by the Abdulrasak Namdas- led Committee on Army.
Namdas, while presenting the report, moved for the consideration of the report of the Committee on Army on the Operation Positive Identification and approve the recommendations.
The House thereafter approved all the six clauses in the report and adopted it.
The operation, which had been widely criticised, was put on hold by a High Court in Lagos had put it on hold.
But the Minority Leader of the House, Rep Ndudi Elemelu, coming under order 6(1) kicked against the consideration of the report saying his constituency is against it. Read more
Four Nigerians among top 10 African E- entrepreneurs- AliBaba co-founder (Nation)
Co-founder of Ali Baba Group Jack Ma has declared four Nigerians are among the ten top African entrepreneurs the group will be supporting.
He spoke on Thursday with State House Correspondents after a meeting with Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.
Ma, who made very commendable remarks about Nigerian entrepreneurs, said he had always looked forward to visiting the country.
He said his company was working on promoting technological innovation in the areas of E-frastructure, Entrepreneurship, E-governance and Education in Nigeria and other African countries. Read more
We’ll resist attempt Hate Speech bill- South East PDP (Nation)
The Youth Wing of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the South East zone has vowed to resist the proposed Hate Speech Bill.
The youths alleged that the bill was a ploy by the All Progressives Congress(APC)- led Federal government to suppress the opposition parties and Nigerians from speaking against the ills of the President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration.
The leader of the Youths in the zone, Comrade Chidiebere Egwu, alleged that Buhari and other APC leaders initiated and excerbated Hate Speech which they used to oust former President Goodluck Jonathan out of office. Read more
Second Ebola vaccine introduced in DR Congo (Guardian)
Authorities in the Democratic Republic of Congo Thursday introduced a second vaccine to fight the deadly Ebola virus in the east of the country, the Doctors Without Borders (MSF) charity said.
It said the new vaccine, produced by a Belgian subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson, is aimed at protecting about 50,000 people over a period of four months.
More than 250,000 people in the region have already been received doses of another anti-Ebola vaccine since last year. Read more
Social-media influencers: Incomes soar amid growing popularity (BBC)
The money made by social-media influencers has risen meteorically in the last few years, according to a new report.
Marketing firm Izea found the average price of a sponsored photo on Instagram has jumped from $134 (£104) in 2014 to $1,642 (£1,276) in 2019.
Brands appear willing to pay handsomely to sponsor posts, videos, stories and blogs, too, says Business Insider.
But one expert insists it will not mean the end of traditional advertising. Read more
Italy to declare state of emergency in Venice after flood (Punch)
Italy was poised to declare a state of emergency for Venice Thursday after an exceptional tide surged through churches, shops and homes, causing millions of euros worth of damage to the UNESCO city.
Tourists larked around in the flooded St Mark’s Square in the sunshine, snapping selfies in their neon plastic boots and taking advantage of a respite in bad weather which has driven the high tides.
Sirens warning of fresh flooding rang through the canal city early Thursday but the water level remained low compared to Tuesday’s tide, the highest in 50 years. Read more
Several injured in California school shooting (BBC)
At least five people have been injured after a gunman opened fire on the grounds of a high school in California, officials say.
The shooting took place at the Saugus High School in Santa Clarita north of Los Angeles on Thursday, minutes before the school day was due to begin.
Police described the suspect as an Asian male wearing black clothing. Police describe the scene as “active”.
The school, and other neighbouring schools have been placed on lockdown. Read more
I will be most excited person if I win 2021 AFCON for Nigeria, Rohr says (Nation)
Super Eagles’ head coach Gernot Rohr on Wednesday said winning the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) for Nigeria would make him the most excited person.
Rohr who spoke at a post-match conference in Uyo after his team came from behind to defeat the Squirrels of Benin Republic 2-1 said winning AFCON 2021 was a huge desire.
“It will be exciting for me to win the 2021 AFCON title with Nigeria. That’s my desire, and I will be the most excited.
“So, winning today (Wednesday) is just the beginning. I can’t be excited until we win the title in 2021,” he said. Read more
Lagos agog as Ex-Pros Squash Diaspora Championship begins (Guardian)
Over 120 players have arrived in Lagos to compete in the third edition of the Ex-Pros Squash Diaspora U-13, 16 & over 45 Squash Championship, which begins today at the Teslim Balogun Stadium.
The championship, which the organisers want to use to discover fresh talents and also create more awareness about squash, has lived up to its billing.
More retired players from outside the country have joined in making the competition more attractive and competitive. Read more
VAR cannot work in Nigerian football competitions for now, sports enthusiasts say (Nation)
Some sports stakeholders in Nasarawa state on Thursday observed that the use of Video Assistant Referee (VAR) in local football fixtures in the country would fail due to certain obvious reasons.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that VAR is a match official in Association Football who reviews decisions made by the head referee.
The VAR works by using video footage and a headset for communication, and was first used for a major competition at the 2018 FIFA World Cup finals in Russia. Read more
VAR: Mike Riley tells Premier League club ‘improvement is required’ (BBC)
Referees’ chief Mike Riley has told Premier League clubs that “improvement is required” with the video assistant referee system.
The technology has caused frustration and controversy since its introduction at the start of the season.
At a meeting on Thursday, Riley gave a full appraisal of VAR with clubs discussing their “grave concerns”. Read more
IOC President to commission ANOCA Secretariat (Nation)
President of International Olympic Committee (IOC) Thomas Bach, who arrived in Nigeria yesterday evening for a two-visit, said he was overwhelmed by the excellent reception accorded him at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja by the Federal Government delegation led by the Sports Minister Sunday Dare and NOC President Engr. Abu Gumel.
The IOC President, who was full of smiles, was accompanied by the President, Association of National Olympic Committee of Africa, Mustapha Barraf and was entertained by cultural dancers at the airport.
“I am happy to be in Nigeria and also surprised I am well received by Nigerian Government. Nigeria is a good country for what I have seen and I am looking forward to have a nice stay in Nigeria,” Bach said. Read more
Kimmich “wouldn’t complain” if Guardiola returned to Bayern Munich (Punch)
Germany midfielder Joshua Kimmich said Thursday that he hopes the rumours are true that Pep Guardiola could be persuaded to once again coach the defending German league champions.
Kimmich made his Bundesliga debut as a 20-year-old under Guardiola, after joining Bayern from then-second division side RB Leipzig in 2015, and says he would be pleased to see Manchester City’s Spanish super coach return to coach the Bavarian giants.
Germany’s top-selling daily Bild claim Guardiola, along with Ajax’s Erik ten Hag and Paris Saint-Germain’s Thomas Tuchel, is on Bayern’s list of candidates to replace Niko Kovac, who was sacked in early November. Read more
Zverev denies illegal phone use at ATP Finals (Punch)
Alexander Zverev denied he was using his phone illegally during his ATP Finals round-robin defeat to Stefanos Tsitsipas at London’s O2 Arena.
The defending champion was asked about the incident during the post-match press conference following his 6-3, 6-2 defeat on Wednesday.
TV footage that circulated on social media appeared to show him touching something in his bag at a changeover during the match. Read more
Abua beats Ghana’s Ayaaba, hits second round at Abuja J5 ITF tennis (Guardian)
Nigeria’s Canice Abua advanced to the second round of the NTF International Junior Championships yesterday following a straight-sets victory over Ghanaian sixth seed, Desmond Ayaaba, in Abuja.
Abua, who claimed the ITF Junior title last week, is bidding for back-to-back successes to stretch his win streak to six matches at the Nigerian capital.
He will face Rubi Toba, who outclassed Bulus Bulus 6-2, 6-0 in an all Nigeria clash. Read more
Pascal Siakam: Toronto Raptors star & his unconventional path from Cameroon to NBA (BBC)
Siakam played a crucial role as Toronto Raptors won the NBA title last season
For the first 17 years of his life, Pascal Siakam didn’t pick up a basketball much. It was just a game his older brothers played.
Even though his father dreamed about one of his children growing up to play in the NBA, Siakam, the youngest of six siblings, was always more interested in other sports.
“I played soccer. I was good. I could have played soccer if I wanted,” he says.
The thing is, when you grow to be 6ft 7in tall, basketball is tough to ignore. Read more
UFC star Adesanya:”I want to take the football out and show Nigerians some gloves” (Vanguard)
Nigerian born UFC superstar Israel Adesanya has spoken of his desire to introduce and popularize the mixed martial art sports in Nigeria.
Adesanya who is the current Middleweight Champion of The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) made his intentions known when he was hosted on the Joe Rogan Experience Podcast. The Last Stylebender as he is popularly known said: “I want to take the football out of their hands and show them some gloves”. Read more