Lagos explosion: ‘No student of Bethlehem Girls College died’ (DailyTrust)
The Catholic Archdiocese of Lagos has clarified that no student of Bethlehem Girls College died in the explosion that rocked the Abule-Ado area of FESTAC in Amuwo Odofin local government area of Lagos state on Sunday. It was earlier reported that many people including a principal, students of a boarding school and family of four lost their lives to the explosion. But the Church in a statement signed by the Chief Shepherd of the Archdiocese, Most. Rev. Alfred Adewale Martins, stated that all students of the school were reported safe. He said that with the help of the first respondents, all the students were rescued and some that were injured were rushed to the hospitals while others have been released to their parents and gone to their different homes. Read more
Lagos explosion: Death toll rises to 20, families search for missing relatives (Punch)
The death toll in the Abule-Ado explosion in Lagos rose to 20 on Monday, as many families continued to search for their missing relatives.
Our correspondents also learnt that 50 pupils of the Bethlehem Girls College were injured in the incident.
PUNCH Metro had reported that an explosion, which rocked the community on Sunday, left 17 people dead.
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation had said the explosion was caused by a truck, which hit a stack of gas cylinders.
The impact of the explosion destroyed over 50 houses and many cars parked in the area. Read more
Court to hear N1.2tr National Theatre concession suit April 9 (Nation)
The Federal High Court in Lagos will on April 9 hear a suit by Topwideapeas Ltd on the National Theatre concession.
The firm is challenging the nullification of its concession right over the complex located in Iganmu, Lagos.
The plaintiff said it earmarked $3.5million (about N1.2trillion) for the project development before the contract was allegedly breached.
Topwideapeas, through its counsel Chijoke Okoli (SAN), is praying the court to declare the concession termination as unlawful. Read more
Lagos explosion: Sanwo-Olu meets Buhari, launches N2bn funds for Abule-Ado’s victims (DailyTrust)
Lagos State governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has set up a panel to investigate the explosion which claimed several lives and properties on Sunday in Abule Ado, Amuwo Odofin local government area of the state. He disclosed this on Monday while fielding questions from State House reporters in Abuja after briefing President Muhammadu Buhari on the incident. Governor Sanwo-Olu said the panel led by the Deputy Governor, Obafemi Hamzat and the state’s Commissioner for Special Duties had less than two weeks to submit its full report. The governor, who said President Buhari also looked forward to receiving the outcome of committee’s task, said the government had already established a N2billion emergency relief funds to support the victims of the explosion. Read more
NBA election: Ikeja branch, SAN adopt Adesina for president (Nation)
The Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) Ikeja branch has adopted Mr. Delel Adesina (SAN) as its presidential candidate for forthcoming NBA elections.
It endorsed Adesina’s candidacy at its last monthly meeting in Ikeja.
The adoption was unanimous for the former NBA General Secretary.
Senior members of the Bar, friends and contemporaries of Adesina were among the attendees at the meeting.
Branch Chairman Dele Oloke said the adoption was in line with the desire of the Egbe Amofin Oodua forum headed by Chief Wole Olanipekun (SAN).
Chairmen of the Southwest zones of the NBA, he added, had the mandate to impress it on their members that Adesina was the only candidate for office endorsed by the Southwest zone whose turn it is to produce the next NBA president. Read more
Afenifere seeks forensic investigation into Lagos explosion (DailyTrust)
The Pan-Yoruba group, Afenifere, yesterday called for an open inquiry into Sunday’s explosion which killed over 20 people in Lagos. The group said it was distressed by the explosion which also destroyed “yet to be enumerated property.” Afenifere, in a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Mr. Yinka Odumakin however sympathized with the families of victims of the tragedy. Daily Trust reports that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has blamed the incident on gas explosion. But Afenifere rejected the causes of the explosion, saying a forensic investigation should be carried out to ascertain the true causes. The statement said: “Our hearts go to all the families who are victims of this great tragedy as we pray for the repose of all souls who perished in the sad occurrence. Read more
OPC members in prison over torture (DailyTrust)
Three members of the Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC) in Osogbo, Osun State, have been remanded in prison for allegedly torturing a man, Nurudeen Adeniyi, and rubbing pepper on his wound over a missing phone. The prosecutor, Inspector Razaq Olayiwola, told the court yesterday that the accused persons – Bakare Banke, Oluwafemi Olaoye and Adeyinka Semiu – committed the offence on March 12, 2020 between 5am and 6am at Ori-Eru, Oke-Baale, Osogbo. Razaq said the accused persons tied Adeniyi with a rope and beat him up with a cutlass “without any justification”, inflicted injuries on his body and thereafter sprayed pepper on the injuries. He told the court that the accused persons also maliciously damaged the complainant’s trousers and shirt valued at N6,000. Read more
Ogun sets up committee to decongest correctional centres (Nation)
Ogun State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Akingbolahan Adeniran has said that the state government is determined to give priority to decongestion of correctional centres.
To attain this, Adeniran said the government had set up a committee towards achieving the mission.
He stated this during a familiarisation tour to the office of the state Controller of Correctional Centres, Federal Government Secretariat, Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta, Ibara and Oba Correctional Centres.
He said that a Prerogative of Mercy Council Committee and Community Service Centres would be established in conjunction with the Nigeria Correctional Service to decongest the facilities across the state. Read more
History as Maersk Line’s first direct service ship berths at Onne (Nation)
The West Africa Container Terminal (WACT) has received Maersk’s first direct service container ship from Far East at the Onne Port in Rivers State.
The vessel, a gearless 4,800 24-feet Equivalent Unit (TEU) capacity carrier, sailed into Onne Port with Maersk Line flagship under its FEW3 service, thereby becoming the first Maersk vessel to call at Onne Port without first calling at any Lagos port.
WACT’s Commercial Manager, Noah Sheriff, said with the development, the FEW3 service has started. He said the company, with its Mobile Harbour Cranes, has been positioned to handle such vessels.
Sheriff further said the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) initiative to bring larger vessels into other ports aligned with WACT’s Phase 2 terminal upgrade project, which would ensure that its mobile harbour cranes and other container handling equipment are increased by the third quarter of this year. Read more
Idris Elba tests positive for coronavirus and self-isolates with wife Sabrina (Metro)
Idris Elba has tested positive for coronavirus. The actor shared on Twitter that he had recently been exposed to someone who had tested positive for the virus, also known as Covid-19. He appeared in a video with his wife Sabrina, who he explained hasn’t been tested, and that neither of them are showing symptoms. Idris, 47, tweeted: ‘This morning I tested positive for Covid 19. I feel ok, I have no symptoms so far but have been isolated since I found out about my possible exposure to the virus. ‘Stay home people and be pragmatic. I will keep you updated on how I’m doing. No panic.’ The Thor star explained in the Twitter video: ‘I got some test results back and it came back positive, and it sucks. Read more
Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson released from coronavirus treatment (BBC)
US actor Tom Hanks and his wife Rita Wilson have been released from a hospital in Australia after receiving treatment for coronavirus.
The couple, who are now in self-quarantine in their Queensland rented home, announced they had tested positive last week.
The couple were on the Gold Coast as Hanks made a film about Elvis Presley. Production has been put on hold.
There are currently 375 confirmed cases of the virus in Australia.
Hanks, 63, said last Thursday on Instagram he had come down with the virus. Read more
Met Gala postponed amid coronavirus (Metro)
Vogue boss Anna Wintour has confirmed the Met Gala will be postponed due to the coronavirus outbreak. Arguably the biggest event in the fashion calendar, the annual event, held on the first Monday of May, was due to be co-hosted by Emma Stone, Meryl Streep and Lin-Manuel Miranda. The theme this year was About Time: Fashion and Duration. However, in a letter on Vogue, Anna announced the soiree, which benefits the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute, won’t take place on 4 May. She wrote today: ‘Due to the unavoidable and responsible decision by the Metropolitan Museum to close its doors, About Time, and the opening night gala, will be postponed to a later date.’ Read more
Coronavirus: US volunteers test first vaccine (BBC)
The first human trial of a vaccine to protect against pandemic coronavirus has started in the US.
Four patients received the jab at the Kaiser Permanente research facility in Seattle, Washington, reports the Associated Press news agency.
The vaccine cannot cause Covid-19 but contains a harmless genetic code copied from the virus that causes the disease.
Experts say it will still take many months to know if this vaccine, or others also in research, will work.
The first person to get the jab on Monday was a 43-year-old mother-of-two from Seattle. Read more
Don’t worry, 5G is entirely safe say international radiation experts (Metro)
The next generation of wireless technology is being rolled out across the world. Yes, 5G is here and it’s making internet speeds faster and more reliable around the world. It’s also causing a few people to panic about radiation levels. And whether it causes the coronavirus, but that’s another story. Thankfully, the international regulator for radiation levels has given it the all-clear. The International Commission on Non‐Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) is a Germany-based scientific body assessing health risks of radio broadcasts. It has called for new guidelines on 5G but says that the even the most high-frequency 5G waves are far below the threshold for anything that would cause us harm. Read more
Coronavirus: Stocks plunge despite global central bank action (BBC)
Global stock markets have sunk again despite central banks around the world announcing a co-ordinated effort to ease the effects of the coronavirus.
US markets plunged more than 7%, triggering an automatic suspension of trade in the minute after opening.
London’s FTSE 100 index has fallen more than 8%, and other major European markets have seen similar declines.
On Sunday, the US Federal Reserve cut interest rates to almost zero and launched a $700bn stimulus programme.
It was part of co-ordinated action announced alongside the eurozone, the UK, Japan, Canada, and Switzerland. Read more
PrEP drug that prevents HIV infection to be made available on NHS (Metro)
A drug which prevents HIV infections is to be made available on the NHS this year in a move to try and eliminate new transmissions of the virus within the decade. PrEP – or pre-exposure prophylaxis – will be made routinely available to patients deemed to be at greater risk of catching HIV from April. UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: ‘We are rolling out PrEP and making it available across the country – with evidence showing it almost completely eradicates the chances of getting HIV. This will benefit tens of thousands of people’s lives, and drive us towards our ambition of zero HIV transmissions in this decade.’ Read more
WTA postpones all tournaments until at least 2 May (BBC)
No WTA tournaments will be played until at least 2 May after the tour extended its suspension because of coronavirus.
The tour was initially on hold until 20 April but events in Stuttgart, Istanbul and Prague have now also been dropped.
The WTA says it will make a decision this week about the season’s remaining European clay court tournaments in Madrid, Rome and Strasbourg.
It added it “will continue to monitor this situation closely and its impact on the 2020 WTA Tour season”. Read more
Cameroon, Morocco to host African club finals (Vanguard)
Cameroon and Morocco will host the finals of the CAF club competitions in May after the scrapping of the traditional two-leg title deciders, the organisers said Monday.
The Cameroonian port city of Douala has been chosen to stage the Champions League final on Friday May 29 at the recently built 50,000-seat Japoma Stadium.
On Sunday May 24, the Confederation Cup final will be played at the Prince Moulay Abdellah Stadium in Moroccan capital Rabat. Read more
Gobert ‘feeling a little better’ after testing positive for coronavirus (DailyTrust)
Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert said on Sunday he is “feeling a little better” in a video updating his status since testing positive for coronavirus. “I’m going to start by saying thank you to all the people that have been supportive and for all the positive energy. It really means a lot,” he said in a video posted on the NBA.com Twitter feed. “As for myself, I’ve been feeling a little better every single day thanks to the healthcare people of Utah and Oklahoma City and all the great people around me.” Gobert, 27, was the first NBA player to test positive for coronavirus on Wednesday, prompting the league to suspend its regular season indefinitely, just minutes after the Jazz and Thunder were set to tip-off in Oklahoma City. Read more
NFF glad CAF postponed AFCON qualifiers (Punch)
Nigeria Football Federation president, Amaju Pinnick, says he heaved a sigh of relief over the postponement of the 2021 African Cup of Nations qualifiers by the Confederation of African Football.
CAF postponed the qualifiers due to the Coronavirus outbreak worldwide.
The postponement comes in the wake of the declaration of Covid-19 as a pandemic by the World Health Organisation and following strict travel restrictions by some African countries to contain the spread of the virus. Read more
Okowa adopts Okagbare, Brume, 4 other Olympic-bound athletes (DailyTrust)
The Delta State governor, Dr Ifeanyi Okowa has keyed into the Adopt-an-Athlete initiative of the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development by adopting six Olympic-bound Nigerian athletes. The athletes are Ese Brume, Blessing Okagbare, Divine Oduduru, Raymond Ekevwo, Itshekiri Usheorise and Ogho Oghene Egwero and Divine Oduduru. Sports Minister Sunday Dare launched an “adopt an athlete” initiative last year December to increase funding for the development of sports in the country in the build up to the Olympic Games in Tokyo. Read more
Man City wouldn’t block £80m Mahrez move (DailyTrust)
Manchester City will not hinder Riyad Mahrez’s move to Paris Saint-Germain in the summer. The Parisians are reportedly trying to lure the 29-year-old away from the reigning Premier League champions. Having scored nine goals and provided 14 assists in 37 appearances across all competitions this term, it is understandable why the Parc des Princes giants would want him. Nevertheless, the Citizens have disclosed that they would not stand in the way of the ex-Leicester City man should he desire a move, if the price is right. Read more
Nigeria to host MGI International Scrabble Classics September (Guardian)
Top scrabble players from across the world will be in Nigeria in September for the first MGI International Scrabble Classics (MISC) billed to hold at the D’Podium International Event Centre, Lagos.
The competition will hold from September 17 to 20, 2020, the organisers have announced. According to the organisers, letters of invitation have been sent to all local and international scrabble players from to attend the memorable event.
MGI has also declared that Nigerian players across the federation would also be participating at the World Scrabble Championship to show the world that the country is still the number one in the game. Read more