Fire guts Lagos building (Punch)
Fire has gutted a two-storey building reportedly belonging to the HAK Air Limited on No 11 Sowemimo Street, in the GRA area of Ikeja, Lagos State.
The Director-General, Lagos State Emergency Management Agency, Olufemi Oke-Osanyintolu, said an investigation revealed that the fire started from the inverter used for the solar panel in the building.
He said, “The Agency’s response team arrived at the incident scene which consist of a two-storey building belonging to HAK Air Limited.
“Investigation conducted revealed that the fire started from the static inverter used for solar panel in the building. Read more
COVID-19: NCDC says UK variant not yet in Nigeria (Guardian)
The Director-General, Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Dr Chikwe Iheakwazu, said the mutant strain of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) in the UK has not been found in Nigeria.
Iheakwazu, who made the disclosure on Thursday in Abuja during the Presidential Taskforce (PTF) briefing on COVID-19, however, advised Nigerians to stay calm and safe.
He, however, noted that viruses by their very nature mutate. Read more
Lagos opens entries for teachers’ merit awards (Nation)
The Lagos State Ministry of Education has called on teachers and administrators in its public schools to apply for the 2020 edition of the Lagos State Teachers Merit Awards which would reward the winners with cars and other mouthwatering prizes.
Teachers can submit entries for the awards on lagosstateteachersmeritaward.ng which opened Monday.
As a departure from the norm, this year’s winners will be selected by a group of mostly private-sector educationists constituted by the Education Commissioner, Mrs. Folasade Adefisayo. Read more
Ex-EFCC boss Lamorde, other new DIGs get portfolios (Punch)
The Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, has ordered the posting of the five newly promoted Deputy Inspectors-General of Police to oversee the departments of the Force, following the retirement of their former heads.
Sequel to the directive, DIG Usman Baba will now head the Force Criminal Investigations Department while DIG Ibrahim Lamorde would be in charge of the Force Intelligence Bureau.
DIG David Folawiyo will oversee the Department of Information and Communication Technology, DIG Joseph Egbunike heads the Department of Finance and Administration, while DIG Dan-Mallam Mohammed would manage the Department of Training and Development. Read more
Police arrest two on Christmas day for stealing company’s bike, others (Nation)
The police in Ogun state on Friday arrested two men, Francis Obeya and Emmanuel Abah for stealing a motorcycle belonging to their employer.
The suspects were arrested following a distress call received from a Lagos based company at the Police Command’s control room that a dispatch rider with the company was sent to deliver a certain goods to a client but absconded with the goods and the motorcycle.
Information further revealed that the said rider was heading towards Sagamu – Ore road, Ogun state. Read more
Boko Haram kills seven in Christmas Eve attack (Guardian)
Boko Haram jihadists killed at least seven people in a Christmas Eve assault on a village in Nigeria’s restive northeast, local sources told AFP Friday.
Security agencies had in recent days warned of an increased risk of attack during the Christian holiday.
Fighters in trucks and motorcycles stormed Pemi, a predominantly Christian village in Borno state Thursday, shooting “indiscriminately” and setting buildings on fire, said Abwaku Kabu, a militia leader. Read more
Christmas: Comply with pandemic protocols, CAN urges Christians (Sun)
The chairman, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) ,Lagos State, Rev. Stephen Adegbite, has appealed to Christians to comply strictly with COVID-19 pandemic protocols and guidelines in their activities during and after the Christmas season.
Rev. Adegbite made the plea in his goodwill message to christians.
According to the statement issued by the Lagos State CAN chairman,“ the season in which we are calls for sobriety and solemnity. Let us avoid crowded places and super-spreader events capable of multiplying the COVID-19 cases in the state.
” Let us ensure we use our nose/face masks and follow all laid down guidelines and safety protocols put in place by the Federal, State and Local authorities until the pandemic finally dissipates and we are returned to normalcy.” “As christians, we are to obey authorities and set example for others to see and emulate. In doing this, there is great reward and God’s blessing is assured.
” I pray that this season will usher in peace and prosperity into our nation; Nigeria and the state of Excellence, Lagos State. In the midst of this pandemic, the joy of the Lord will fill our hearts and minds and our worries and anxieties will be dispelled”. Read more
FCTA prosecutes 20 for breaching COVID-19 protocol (Punch)
The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) yesterday arrested 20 persons for flouting COVID-19 protocols.
The offenders were charged before Chief Magistrate Raphael Egbe of the FCT Mobile Court, sitting at the Eagle Square Abuja, and slammed with a one-count charge of violating COVID-19 protocol by not wearing face masks.
The 20 accused persons, who were arrested by FCT TaskForce on COVID-19 were given an option of fines that ranged from N1,000 to N5,000, depending on their conduct during and after the arrest. Read more
Elephants hand out face masks to children during Christmas celebrations (Metro)
Thai Elephants dressed in Christmas decoration have been handing out free face masks to children. Footage shows the animals – Sri Mongkon, 14, Sri Raya, 6, Peter, 15, and King Kaew, 18 – holding baskets containing the face coverings in their trunks, for school kids and passing motorists during the special festive initiative. The scheme in central Thailand aims to raise awareness about the threat of coronavirus. White-bearded handlers in floppy hats and Santa outfits sat on top of the elephants, who were decked out in tinsel and trunk masks near the capital Bangkok on Wednesday. Read more
Australian expeditioner evacuated from Antarctica in five-day mission (BBC)
An Australian expeditioner has been medically evacuated from Antarctica following a five-day mission involving ships, helicopters and planes.
Australia, China and the US collaborated in efforts to bring the patient back home.
The Australian Antarctic Division (AAD) hailed the “outstanding success” of an operation it described as “complex and challenging”.
Details of the patient’s condition were not made public. Read more
Man shot dead by Philadelphia cops after opening fire into crowd on Christmas (NYPost)
A gunman in Philadelphia was shot and killed by officers after he opened fire into a crowd in a wild Christmas morning scene that also left a teen dead and another injured, police said.
The incident occurred around 12:20 a.m. Friday when officers responded to a dispute between neighbors in the Port Richmond neighborhood, NBC Philadelphia reported.
Once on the scene, they encountered a group of 10 to 15 people beginning to fight. Read more
Ivry Gitlis: Celebrated Israeli virtuoso violinist dies at 98 (BBC)
Celebrated Israeli violinist Ivry Gitlis has died in Paris aged 98, his family has said.
A hugely charismatic figure with a passion for experimentation, Gitlis has been described as one of the modern greats of classical music.
He played with the world’s finest orchestras but was said to be equally at home performing with rock stars and jazz virtuosos.
In 1955, he became the first Israeli musician to play in the Soviet Union. Read more
“Insecure” star Jay Ellis is doing battle with ‘porch bandits’ (PageSix)
“Insecure” star Jay Ellis is on the lookout for “porch bandits” this holiday season, since all his gifts are being ordered by mail.
“[This year] threw us all for a loop in a major way, so my holiday season is going to be small,” he told us. “Everybody’s gifts had to be delivered … we didn’t want anybody going to stores getting gifts or doing hand-deliveries and taking things around to people.” And, “We also put a limit to $75-a-person.”
But he added: “We got porch bandits in LA. I had somebody on my doorstep and caught them stealing during COVID. It was early in the pandemic and someone dropped off a bunch of masks and hand sanitizer. It was a care package. And a young woman came like she was walking by enjoying the nice day. She looked up at my porch, picked it up the package and turned around and walked the other way. The bad thing is that the package was not resent. I felt like a punk I still look out for her.” Read more
Boris Johnson says Brexit deal is his Christmas gift to the nation (Metro)
Prime Minister Boris Johnson
has described his Brexit deal as ‘glad tidings of great joy’. He added that it is a present ‘for anyone who may be looking for something to read in that sleepy post-Christmas lunch moment’. In a festive video posted on Twitter, he said that people should give it a flick through as they recover from their dinner. He described it as ‘a deal to give certainty to business, travellers, and all investors in our country from January 1. A deal with our friends and partners in the EU. Read more
COVID-19: US imposes tests on UK airline passengers (BBC)
All airline passengers arriving in the US from the UK are to be required to test negative for Covid-19 within 72 hours of departure amid concerns about a new coronavirus variant.
From 28 December travellers will need to provide written documentation of their test result to airlines.
Other countries have shut their borders to UK flights because of the variant.
But its rapid spread has also led to stricter rules in the UK, including a ban on overseas trips for many Britons. Read more
Manchester City stars Kyle Walker and Gabriel Jesus test positive for coronavirus (Metro)
Manchester City have confirmed that Gabriel Jesus, Kyle Walker, and two members of the club’s staff have tested positive for Covid-19. All four will now enter into a period of self-isolation ahead of City’s Boxing Day match against Newcastle, who themselves have been adversely affected by the disease which has ruled Jamaal Lascelles and Allan Saint-Maximin out of action. Both players featured in City’s 4-1 Carabao Cup win over Arsenal on Tuesday, with City due to host Newcastle in the Premier League on Boxing Day. Read more
Joshua warns he’ll fight Usyk if Fury rejects ‘serious offer’ (Guardian)
Anthony Joshua says he wants to fight Tyson Fury next and says the fight will happen as long as Fury is serious about it, reports boxingscene.com.
Joshua, the WBA, WBO, IBO and IBF heavyweight champion, did not call out Fury’s name after his knockout victory over Kubrat Pulev this month and says he is interested in the fight taking place not the endless talk about it.
“If this is the fight that people want to see – whether it’s in the UK, in Saudi Arabia or Africa – I just hope the fight gets done.” Joshua said. “I put too much energy into this stuff. I just want to fight. I’m not about talking and creating false narratives. Read more
Winners emerge at 7TH Nigeria Pitch Awards (Nation)
Super Eagles and Leicester City midfielder Wilfred Ndidi and Super Falcons and FC Barcelona hit woman, Asisat Oshoala emerged the King and the Queen of the Pitch for year 2019 respectively at the 7th edition of the Nigeria Pitch Awards.
Making the announcement on Tuesday at the Ibis Hotel Ikeja, organizers noted that the 7th Award Ceremony amid the guidelines of the COVID-19 Protocol as outlined by the Presidential Task Force set up by the Federal Government.
Ademola Olajire, NFF Communications Director reiterated the Federation’s support for the awards stressing that the organizers have been resilient and committed to holding the event year after year. Read more
NBA forbidding teams from getting early COVID-19 vaccinations (NYPost)
A few days after NBA commissioner Adam Silver vowed the league would not “jump the line” to obtain COVID-19 vaccines, official warnings were sent out Thursday that administering the newly released immunizations ahead of public-health prioritization guidelines are prohibited.
The NBA sent a memo – which was obtained and reported by ESPN — to its franchises that the league will “work to vaccinate its players and staffs consistent with the timing and prioritization set by applicable public health guidelines.”
The memo also stated that medical experts advising the league “are in agreement with the FDA that the new Pfizer and Moderna vaccines for the coronavirus are safe and effective,” according to ESPN. Read more
COVID-19: FIFA cancels U-17, U-20 World Cups (Punch)
World governing body FIFA has canceled the 2021 editions of the U-20 and U-17 World Cups in Indonesia and Peru respectively due to COVID-19 pandemic, The PUNCH reports.
The Bureau of FIFA Council made this known in a statement made available to The PUNCH on Thursday.
FIFA stated that Indonesia and Peru will now host the tournaments in 2023.
“As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Bureau of the FIFA Council has decided to cancel the 2021 editions of the men’s FIFA U-20 World Cup and FIFA U-17 World Cup, and to appoint Indonesia and Peru respectively, who were due to host the tournaments in 2021, as the hosts of the 2023 editions. Read more
Frank Lampard praises Mikel Arteta ahead of Arsenal vs Chelsea (Metro)
Frank Lampard is confident Mikel Arteta believes it is only a matter of time before Mikel Arteta reverses Arsenal’s fortunes and has hinted it would be premature of the club to sack the under-fire Arsenal boss. The Spaniard is clinging to his job just four months after he masterminded Arsenal’s FA Cup triumph against Chelsea at Wembley. The Gunners are just four points above the relegation zone ahead of Saturday’s Boxing Derby against the Blues who are still hopeful of mounting a title challenge. Chelsea bounced back from consecutive defeats against Everton and Wolves to get their campaign back on track with a win over West Ham but Lampard expects a real test of his side’s credentials against an Arsenal side who he believes are in a false position at present. Read more