Lagos police free anti-government protesters (Guardian)
Police in Nigeria’s commercial capital Lagos have freed 25 protesters arrested at a banned anti-government demonstration, a spokesman said Thursday.
“All the 25 suspects were released last night after being cautioned against unruly and unlawful behaviour by a magistrate court,” Bala Elkana told AFP.
He said the protesters who were arrested on Wednesday in the Ikeja suburb for staging “an unlawful protest without obeying the guidelines on COVID-19 on social distancing” were arraigned before the court.
“After cautioning them, the court ordered their immediate release and we complied. So it was the court that freed them,” the police spokesman said. Read more
Falling container deaths: Lagos to prosecute truck owner, driver (Nation)
The Lagos State Government has vowed to arrest and prosecute the driver and owner of a truck, which container fell on a commercial bus, killing two passengers and injuring three others last July 26.
Attorney-General and Commissioner of Justice, Moyosore Onigbanjo (SAN) spoke on Wednesday during a condolence visit to the family of one of the victims, Chidinma Ajoku.
The late Chidinma, an employee of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), was killed alongside her colleague when a container fell on a commercial bus they were in at Ilasamaja area of the state on July 26, 2020.
The Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) had described the accident as ‘an avoidable accident’ given that the alleged reckless driving of the truck driver led to its attached 20ft container falling on the commercial bus. Read more
LASEMA, stakeholders constitute committee on gas cylinder safety In Lagos (Independent)
The Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA) and other stakeholders have constituted a working committee to develop and monitor safety procedures of commercial storage and sales of gas cylinders within the state.
The Director-General of LASEMA, Dr Olufemi Oke-Osanyintolu, stated this in a statement issued on Thursday in Lagos.
He said that the committee was coming on the heels of the directives from the governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, following the series of fire incidents recently caused by gas cylinder explosions in some parts of the state.
According to Oke-Osanyintolu, the gas cylinder explosions have had destructive impacts on the lives and property of the people of the state. Read more
Abuja concert: Naira Marley in court (Punch)
Nigerian artiste, Azeez Fashola, aka Naira Marley, has been taken to the Lagos State Special Offences Court at Ikeja.
As of press time, The PUNCH learnt that the police had filed charges against him for violating the COVID-19 order banning interstate travels earlier put in place to curb the spread of coronavirus.
The controversial artiste left Lagos for the Federal Capital Territory for a concert on Saturday, July 13.
The concert, which held at the Jabi Lake Mall, drew public outrage. Read more
Nigeria spends N791.5bn on debt servicing, N139.7bn on capital projects in 3 months (Tribune)
Nigeria spent a total of N791, 545,016,039 billion on debt servicing between January and March 2020, documents from the Debt Management Office have revealed.
This is almost six times higher than the N139.7 billion capital expenditure for the first quarter of the year. It is also 15 times higher than the N51 billion allocated to the Universal Basic Education and 30 times higher than the N25 billion allotted to Basic Health Care Fund in the revised 2020 budget.
The amount expended on debt servicing during the period is, however, 27.3 per cent of the N2.9 trillion earmarked for debt servicing in the revised 2020 budget. Following the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic and its effect on the country’s revenue from crude oil sale, the federal government revised the 2020 budget downward by N84 billion to N10.509 trillion from the initial N10.594 trillion. Read more
We will resist attempt to illegally take over Edo Assembly, says Obaseki (Guardian)
Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo said on Thursday that the state would resist any attempt by anybody to forcefully take over the state House of Assembly.
Addressing newsmen at the assembly complex in Benin, Obaseki said he would do everything within his constitutional powers to protect the sovereignty of the house and the state.
The governor’s statement was not unconnected with media reports credited to the Speaker of the house, Francis Okiye. Read more
Police take over Edo Assembly, roof dismantled (Punch)
Some men on Thursday vandalised the Edo State House of Assembly and removed its roof.
According to a video shared by Channels Television, the men were seen removing the iconic legislative mace on top of the building.
The video also showed trucks offloading gravels at the entrance of the Assembly Complex while the suspected vandals trooped into the building.
The PUNCH had earlier reported that policemen on Thursday surrounded the Assembly complex in Benin City, the state capital. Read more
Insecurity: UK issues travel warning to its nationals in Nigeria (Nation)
United Kingdom has issued travel warning to its nationals in Nigeria, The Nation learnt.
Besides, UK has temporarily withdrawn a small number of its staff and dependents at its Mission in both Abuja and Lagos.
The UK Foreign Office attributed the insecurity situation in the country for the action. Read more
Malaria in Africa: Parasite ‘resistant to artemisinin’ (BBC)
A drug-resistant strain of the parasite that causes malaria has been identified by scientists in Rwanda.
The study, published in Nature, found the parasites were able to resist treatment by artemisinin – a frontline drug in the fight against the disease.
This is the first time scientists have observed the resistance to the drug artemisinin in Africa.
The researchers warns that this “would pose a major public health threat” in the continent. Read more
Beirut port worker found alive at sea 30 hours after explosion (NYPost)
A Port of Beirut worker has been found alive at sea – about 30 hours after the cataclysmic explosion in the Lebanese capital, according to a report.
A bloodied Amin al-Zahed — whose image was posted on an Instagram page created to locate missing residents — was admitted to the Rafic Hariri University Hospital after being pulled out of the Mediterranean, Al-Arabiya reported.
No further details have been released about his condition or how he managed to survive in the water for so long after the blast, which has killed at least 137 people and injured about 5,000. Read more
China sentences Canadian to death on drugs charge (BBC)
A Chinese court has sentenced a Canadian citizen to death on charges of producing the drug ketamine.
A court notice in the city of Guangzhou said Xu Weihong was found guilty after a trial. His alleged accomplice, Wen Guanxiong, was given a life sentence.
No details of the case were disclosed. He is the third Canadian to be sentenced to death in China recently.
Relations between the countries have been tense since the arrest of a Huawei executive in Vancouver in late 2018. Read more
Princess Diana’s bridesmaid says she spent time on Jeffrey Epstein’s island (NYPost)
One of Princess Diana’s bridesmaids has admitted she socialized with Jeffrey Epstein — including at his notorious private island — but says she was “clearly very lucky” she wasn’t molested by the pedophile.
Clementine “Clemmie” Hambro, 44, said she flew on Epstein’s private jet twice in 1999 following visits to his New Mexico ranch and Little St. James in the US Virgin Islands, the Daily Mail reported.
Epstein allegedly abused young women and girls at both locations — but Hambro said she never witnessed such things, nor was she preyed upon. Read more
Zoe Saldana apologises for playing Nina Simone: ‘She deserved better’ (BBC)
Actress Zoe Saldana has apologised for playing Nina Simone in a heavily criticised 2016 biopic.
The Marvel star, who is of Dominican and Puerto Rican descent, wore a prosthetic nose and skin-darkening make-up for the role.
Simone’s estate refused to endorse the film, and the late singer’s daughter questioned the casting decision. Read more
Smoking weed ‘raises risk of irregular heart rate, heart failure and heart attacks’ (Metro)
Smoking cannabis puts people at a higher risk of heart failure and heart attacks, warns a new study. Scientists found taking cannabis comes with substantial risks and could have a negative impact on the heart and blood vessels, with no benefits for cardiovascular health. Many countries have legalised cannabis and attitudes have changed towards its medicinal and recreational use. Read more
Hiroshima bomb: Japan marks 75 years since nuclear attack (BBC)
Bells have tolled in Hiroshima, Japan, to mark the 75th anniversary of the dropping of the world’s first atomic bomb.
But memorial events were scaled back this year because of the pandemic.
On 6 August 1945, a US bomber dropped the uranium bomb above the city, killing around 140,000 people.
Three days later a second nuclear weapon was dropped on Nagasaki. Two weeks later Japan surrendered, ending World War Two. Read more
Stranded Nigerian chess player returns home after four months (BBC)
Nigeria’s number one chess player, Oladapo Adu, is back to his home country after being stuck in Ivory Coast for four months and five days due to the coronavirus lockdown.
Adu had been stranded in the Ivorian capital Abidjan since 24 March, when flight restrictions and border closures left him stuck as he attempted to return home from the African Chess Championship.
“It’s nice to be back home – I feel relieved and happy this is all over. I have never had an experience like this in my life”, Adu told BBC Sport Africa. Read more
Napoli: Rohr allays fears on Osimhen (Nation)
Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr has allayed fears that Napoli new big-money recruit Victor Osimhen might not get adequate playing time under coach Gennaro Gattuso.
The Gli Azzurri (Blue Azzurri) are loaded with dream strikers including Polish Arkadiusz Milik, Belgian Dries Mertens and Spanish Fernando Llorente hence growing fears in certain quarters that Osimhen might struggle to find his feet at the San Paolo Stadium.
But the 67-year-old experienced German Super Eagles’ coach said the moment is with Osimhen because he already have a Teutonic attitude and was well advised by him to get the commitment of Gattuso as per enough playing time before he signed the Partenopei. Read more
NFF inaugurates caretaker committee for Anambra FA (Guardian)
The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) on Thursday, inaugurated a six-man Caretaker Committee to pilot the affairs of Anambra State Football Association (AnSFA) in the next three months.
The inauguration was conducted by Ibrahim Gusau, Chairman of Chairmen and member of Nigeria Football Federation(NFF) Board in Awka.
Gusau who represented NFF President, Amaju Pinnick said the committee was duly constituted by the NFF in view of the fact that the tenure of Ifeanyi Ubah led executive committee had elapsed on Aug. 2. Read more
WWE legend Marty Jannetty’s apparent murder confession sparks police probe (BBC)
An apparent murder confession by former WWE star Marty Jannetty is prompting cops in Georgia to launch an investigation, according to a report.
The former intercontinental and tag team champ who rose to stardom as part of “The Rockers” duo with Shawn Michaels in the late 1980s and early ’90s said he “made a man disappear” in a since-deleted Facebook post early Wednesday, TMZ reports.
“I was 13, working at Victory Lanes bowling alley buying weed from a f-g that worked there .. and he put his hands on me,” Jannetty wrote. Read more
Arsenal squad feel ‘betrayed’ and will speak to board after 55 members of staff are made redundant (Metro)
Arsenal’s players reportedly feel ‘betrayed’ and will demand talks with the club’s hierarchy over the decision to make 55 members of staff redundant this week. On Wednesday, Arsenal announced they needed to ‘reduce costs further to ensure we are operating in a sustainable and responsible way’ as they deal with the impact of the coronavirus crisis and would be proposing 55 redundancies.
Head of international scouting Francis Cagigao – who spotted the likes of Cesc Fabregas and Hector Bellerin – is one of a number of high-profile figures who will be let go. Read more
Premier League clubs vote against retaining five subs rule (Vanguard)
Following the resumption of the 2019/20 campaign after the coronavirus shutdown, clubs were allowed to name nine substitutes and make five changes during matches to support player welfare.
Some clubs wanted the new regulation carried over but the Premier League confirmed they were voted down at Thursday’s annual general meeting, held virtually.
All 20 members also backed changes to the video assistant referee as the system is to fall in line with FIFA protocol. Read more