Police probe as gunmen kill 2, abduct 1 in Lagos (Punch)
The Lagos State Police Command has said it is investigating the gunmen attack on Wednesday in the Ikorodu area of Lagos State that killed two persons, identified as Suru Arije, 59, and Ilufoye Azeez, 30.
PUNCH Metro gathered that the gunmen also abducted a yet-to-be-identified woman during the incident that happened around 11am in the Alagemo community of Igbelaara, off Ijede road in Ikorodu.
According to police sources, four vigilantes were injured in the course of the attack. Read more
Lagos announces traffic diversion for Access Bank Marathon (Leadership)
The Lagos State Government has issued a traffic advisory for the upcoming annual Access Bank Lagos City Marathon, scheduled for Saturday between 5.00 a.m. and 2 pm.
The Commissioner for Transportation, Mr. Oluwaseun Osiyemi, announced this in a statement on Friday in Lagos.
Osiyemi detailed that several routes would be temporarily closed to motorists during the marathon. These include Funsho Williams Avenue from the Stadium in Surulere, Ikorodu Road to Anthony, and Gbagada to the Third Mainland Bridge. Read more
Strike Notice: Agreements reached with Labour can’t be implemented at once – FG (DailyTrust)
The federal government has said some of the agreements it reached with the members of the organised labour during the October 2023 negotiation meeting are not implementable immediately.
The government specifically explained that one of the agreements, which is setting up of conversion centres for Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) would take some time before it materialised, stressing that the committee handling it had gone far.
Daily Trust had reported how both the leaders of the organised labour and the representatives of government entered into a Memorandum of Understanding on October 2, 2023 after a 16-point agreement was reached. Read more
Scarcity of Forex, high price of aviation fuel threatening our operations – Airline operators (Vanguard)
Airline Operators of Nigeria, AON, has lamented what it termed existential threats, saying scarcity of Forex, skyrocketing price of Jet-A1, now N1,300 per litre and difficulty in acquiring aircraft due to country risk, among others, are some of the challenges faced by members.
The operators, who called for urgent intervention from the Federal Government, stated that aircraft due for maintenance have been grounded and cannot be ferried overseas due to Forex scarcity.
AON’s Spokesman, Professor Obiora Okonkwo, in a statement, said if this continues, the country may not have operating aircraft for domestic services. Read more
Customs arrest 3 over alleged wildlife trafficking (Guardian)
Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) is leaving no stone unturned in their commitments to end Illegal wildlife trade as its Special Wildlife Office and the Customs Police Unit in a joint enforcement operation with the Justice Commission arrest three alleged illegal wildlife traffickers.
The unit said they are determined to dismantle the wildlife criminal networks operating within the country.The intelligence led operations were conducted between January 25, 2024 and February 6, 2024.
The three Nigerian men under arrest were accused of facilitating the illegal export of wildlife to Asia during the sale of five pieces of Elephant Tusks. Read more
Seadogs sensitises Nigerians on ways to curb sexual abuse against minors (Independent)
As part of its efforts to curb sexual abuse against minors, the Ash Montana Deck (National Association of Seadogs) has organized a campaign on sexual abuse against minors at the Adatan axis of Ogun state, where occurrences of the menace are prevalent.
The campaign, which hosted concerned stakeholders including the representatives of the state’s Women Affairs Department and the Nigeria Police Force, highlighted different circumstances that often lead to the menace as well as consequential results and punishment for engaging in such a barbaric act.
Speaking at the event, a representative of the Ogun state, Ministry of Women Affairs, Mrs Odemuyiwa Mariam, comprehensively educated the guests on what could lead to such violent scenes as sexual abuse of minors and what could be done to avoid such an act. Read more
Alleged Sexual Harassment: Court grants UNICAL Professor N250m bail (Channels)
Justice James Omotosho of the Federal High Court in Abuja has granted bail to the suspended Dean of Faculty of Law, University of Calabar, Professor Cyril Ndifon, to the tune of N250 million in the sexual harassment and gratification case instituted against him by the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC).
The court also granted his lawyer Sunny Anyanwu bail to the tune of 50 million naira among other stringent bail conditions.
Both defendants are expected to produce two sureties who own properties within FCT with a minimum valuation of 150 million and must submit their bank statements to the court. Read more
Our reform policies are working – Cardoso (Nation)
Yemi Cardoso, the governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has stated that the actions taken by the apex bank to stabilize foreign exchange rates have begun to show promising outcomes.
He pointed out that since high exchange rates and inflation are strongly associated, the steps would assist in stabilizing foreign currency rates and reduce the distortion that high exchange has on inflation.
During a briefing to the Joint Senate Committee on Finance, Banking, Insurance, and Financial Institutions on Friday, February 9, Cardoso asserted that the Nigerian market has seen an influx of $1 billion in recent days due to operations conducted by the CBN. Read more
Shania Twain to headline BST Hyde Park festival for first time this summer (BelfastTelegraph)
Global popstar Shania Twain is the latest musician to be confirmed as a headline act for the British Summer Time (BST) festival.
The Canadian singer, 58, has said it will be a “real privilege” to take to the stage for her debut performance at the festival.
She said: “I’ve seen so many of my own musical heroes headlining at Hyde Park and have wonderful summer memories there.
“It is a real privilege to headline my own show this year. It’s going to be a shit-kicking party!” Read more
US calls for investigation into alleged civilian killings in Ethiopia’s Amhara region (AfricaNews)
The US is calling for an investigation into an alleged massacre of civilians in Ethiopia’s Amhara region, where a local rights group says more than 80 people were killed last week following clashes between soldiers and armed groups.
The US ambassador to Ethiopia, Ervin Massinga, said Friday that the “U.S. government is deeply concerned” by the reports from the town of Merawi and called for “unfettered access by independent human rights monitors as well as an impartial investigation to ensure the perpetrators are brought to justice.”
Massinga said in a statement that the reported killings of civilians in Merawi followed “disturbing reports of other violations” in Amhara and elsewhere in Ethiopia, which is gripped by several internal conflicts. Read more
Russians enter North Korea as first post-COVID tourists (DW)
Almost 100 Russian tourists arrived at Pyongyang International Airport in North Korea on Friday to enjoy a private skiing and sightseeing tour.
The visitors are the first tourists to be allowed into North Korea since it closed its doors during the coronavirus pandemic.
What we know about the tour
Russia’s state-owned TASS news agency said 97 Russians had left Russia’s far eastern city of Vladivostok for North Korea on a group tour. The group was said to include teenage ski athletes.
A North Korean-operated Air Koryo flight carried the visitors to Pyongyang, the Russian Embassy in North Korea said in a Facebook post on Friday. Read more
Acclaimed Japanese Conductor Seiji Ozawa dies at age 88 (VOA)
Seiji Ozawa, the Japanese conductor who amazed audiences with the lithe physicality of his performances during three decades at the helm of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, has died, his management office said Friday. He was 88.
The internationally acclaimed maestro, with his trademark mop of salt-and-pepper hair, led the BSO from 1973 to 2002, longer than any other conductor in the orchestra’s history. From 2002 to 2010, he was the music director of the Vienna State Opera.
He died of heart failure Tuesday at his home in Tokyo, according to his office, Veroza Japan. Read more
Jax Jones collaborates with Pokémon for new single ‘‘Never Be Lonely’’ (NME)
Jax Jones has released his new collaborative single ‘‘Never Be Lonely’’ with The Pokémon Company alongside a Pikachu-starring music video.
‘Never Be Lonely’ is the first new music Jones has released in 2024 and follows on from a string of hit singles. The track features German popstar Zoe Wees and has been released in conjunction with The Pokémon Company.
While the song focuses more on the euphoric, communal feeling of dance, the video features a star turn from everyone’s favourite electric mouse, Pikachu, who seems right at home in the middle of an intergalactic rave. Read more
Oscars announces new award for casting directors (EasternEye)
The board of governors of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) has announced the addition of a new category to the Oscars recognising the achievement in casting for films.
The Academy Award for Achievement in Casting will be introduced to the Oscars beginning with the 98th edition that will honour the films released in 2025. The first award in the new category will be handed out in 2026.
“Casting directors play an essential role in filmmaking, and as the Academy evolves, we are proud to add casting to the disciplines that we recognize and celebrate.
“We congratulate our Casting Directors Branch members on this exciting milestone and for their commitment and diligence throughout this process,” Academy CEO Bill Kramer and Academy President Janet Yang said in a joint statement. Read more
Violent protests in Indian city kills 2, more than 80 injured (StraitsTimes)
Two people were killed and more than 80 injured in violent protests in India’s northern city of Haldwani following a government demolition drive against what it calls illegal encroachments, officials said on Friday.
The violence erupted on Thursday when Uttarakhand state officials moved to demolish a property that an official said was neither registered as a madrasa nor as a place to offer Islamic prayers, though some locals considered it a religious site.
“I can confirm two have lost their lives and three people are serious (injured),” said senior police official Prahlad Narayan Meena. “Over 80 suffered injuries due to stone pelting, including some police and reporters.” Read more
How Nwabali failed Rohr’s Eagles test in 2019’ (Punch)
Former Vice President, Nigeria Football Federation, Shehu Dikko, has given insight into why new Super Eagles first choice goalkeeper and fans favourite, Stanley Nwabali, didn’t feature for the team under former coach Gernot Rohr, PUNCH Sports Extra reports.
Nwabali has established himself as the country’s undisputed first-choice goalkeeper with his impressive performances at the ongoing Africa Cup of Nations in Ivory Coast.
While Nwabali’s rise to stardom has come as a big surprise to many Nigerians, Dikko said the keeper had always been under the watchful eyes of the federation. Read more
AFCON Final: Give your absolute best, Igoche Mark tasks Super Eagles (Independent)
Ahead of Super Eagles final clash against the Elephants of Cote D’Ivoire Coast at the ongoing 2023 Africa Cup Nations, Igoche Mark, founder of the Mark D’ Ball Basketball Championship, has tasked the National Football Team to go all out for the grand prize.
Expressing his utmost support to the 3-time AFCON champions the sports philanthropist charged the Super Eagles to deploy all that is left in their arsenal against the Elephants , warning that the host would use every antics to attract the sympathy of the match official.
He therefore urged them to do their absolute best on Sunday to ward off distractions. Read more
Ivory Coast’s Haller eyes AFCON glory after cancer battle, Bundesliga agony (France24)
No single player symbolises Ivory Coast’s remarkable turnaround to reach this weekend’s Africa Cup of Nations final quite like striker Sebastien Haller.
The 29-year-old was the host country’s match-winner in the semi-final against the Democratic Republic of Congo in his first start of the tournament after injury.
That came after a year marked by a return from cancer and then an agonising climax to the German Bundesliga title race with Borussia Dortmund. Read more
Jordan face hosts Qatar in Asian Cup final (BBC)
Jordan are aiming to win the Asian Cup for the first time when they take on hosts and reigning champions Qatar in Saturday’s final (kick-off 15:00 GMT).
Ranked 87th in the world, Jordan stunned South Korea 2-0 in the semi-finals to reach their first final.
The match is at the Lusail Stadium, the venue for the 2022 World Cup final.
“This match is very important, and may witness the first major title for Jordan football,” said Jordan head coach Hussein Ammouta. Read more
Tom McKibbin four off the lead at Qatar Masters (RTE)
Northern Ireland 21-year-old Tom McKibbin is four off the pace at the halfway stage of the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters, with Australia’s Haydn Barron the man to catch heading for the weekend.
Barron added a flawless 67 to his opening 68 on the 7,532-yard layout Doha Golf Club course, four birdies in his last five holes giving the Qualifying School graduate a halfway total of nine-under-par.
Compatriot Harrison Endycott and Japan’s Rikuya Hoshino share second place on seven-under, with in-form South African Zander Lombard and Denmark’s Niklas Norgaard another stroke back. Read more
Liudmila Samsonova using last year’s final memories to fuel Abu Dhabi Open bid (National)
Liudmila Samsonova can remember as clear as day last year’s Mubadala Abu Dhabi Open final. In fact, she’s barely been able to forget about it. Unfortunately, it’s not for the right reasons.
The Russian was within touching distance of her fifth WTA Tour title when she had three match points in the second-set tiebreak against Belinda Bencic, having won the first set 6-1. As the short history of this tournament would show, Samsonova did not end up with her arms wrapped around the trophy.
Back for its second edition this week and seeded eighth, Samsonova is playing as if on a mission. She dropped just one game in the first-round demolition of Lesia Tsurenko and conceded just four to Anhelina Kalinina in the second round. Read more