Residents, traders express shock over demolition of FESTAC Town market (Guardian)
Some Festac Town residents and traders in Lagos State on Tuesday expressed shock and anger over the demolition of the Oyinlola Market popularly called ”23 Road Market” by government.
They said the demolition showed the state government’s “insensitivity” to the plights of the people, especially as the Coronavirus (COVID-19) had brought untold hardship to them.
Some traders, in a separate interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), said they had yet to ascertain why the market was demolished as they were not officially informed by the market leaders. Read more
Fire guts Lagos building (Punch)
Fire gutted a one-storey building in the Ikate area of Surulere, Lagos State, on Monday
The Director-General, Lagos State Emergency Management Agency, Olufemi Oke-Osanyintolu, said in a statement that the fire was caused by electric power surge when supply was restored to the area.
He added that the fire had been extinguished by emergency responders, who stormed the premises when an alarm was raised.
Oke-Osanyintolu stated, “On arrival at Yaru Street, Ikate Surulere, Lagos, first responders discovered that the upper floor of a one-storey building caught fire due to an electric power surge on restoration of power supply to the area. Read more
Buhari approves reopening of four land borders (Guardian)
President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday approved the recommendation of a committee for the reopening of four land borders with immediate effect, while others will be reopened in due course.
The Minister of Finance Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, who disclosed this after a virtual meeting, said restriction on the importation of some commodities, like rice and other products would continue. Read more
Police Service Commission Reform Bill passes second reading (Thisday)
The House of Representatives on Tuesday passed for second reading a Bill which seeks to aid the ongoing total police reform, to ensure effective policing and that erring officers of the Nigeria police are held accountable for their actions.
The legislation was sequel to the public outcry for the disbandment of the now defunct Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) unit of the Nigeria police and a total reform of the police.
The members of the House had on October 7 resolved to work with the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA) and Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) to draft new legislation within 30 days. The draft bill was presented to stakeholders on November 18th for their inputs. Read more
Appeal Court nullifies Metuh’s conviction, orders fresh trial (Punch)
The Court of Appeal in Abuja has set aside the conviction and seven years jail term imposed on a former spokesperson of the Peoples Democratic Party, Olisa Metuh, after finding him guilty of money laundering charges.
A three-man panel led by Justice Stephen Adah in a unanimous judgment, delivered on Wednesday, held that the proceedings of the Federal High Court leading to the conviction of Metuh and his company, Destra Investment Limited, were tainted with bias, and therefore must not be allowed to stand.
Justice Adah, who delivered the lead judgment, held that the utterances of the trial judge, Justice Okon Abang, in the course of the trial, established that he was biased against the convicts.
He, therefore, ordered that trial be conducted afresh. Read more
Nigeria licenses 173 centres for NIN registration (Guardian)
Nigeria government said it has licensed 173 centres and 30 state government institutions to conduct the enrollment of the National Identity Number (NIN) across the country.
“The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Ali Ibrahim (Pantami), has approved the licensing of 173 Agents and 30 State Governments/Public Sector Institutions to conduct enrolment of all persons including legal residents into the National Identity Database (NIDB) on behalf of the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC),” National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) said on its website on Wednesday.
“Pursuant to the above, find the list of all the successful firms who satisfied all the evaluation criteria as stated in the Advert for the Expression of Interest (EOI) of each of the respective categories in full.” Read more
National Assembly to pass 2021 budget Monday (Punch)
The National Assembly announced on Wednesday that it would hold an emergency session on Monday next week to consider and pass the 2021 Appropriation Bill before proceeding on its Christmas/New Year break on the same day.
The President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, who announced the development at plenary on Wednesday, said the delay was to accommodate fresh demands from the executive arm of government regarding the fiscal document.
The Federal Government had on Tuesday, written the National Assembly to demand a fresh review of the 2020 Appropriation Act. Read more
Yuletide: Jos residents decry high price of local rice (Guardian)
Some residents of Jos have decried the recent hike in price of local rice in the area, describing the development as worrisome, especially with the Christmas and New Year festivities fast approaching.
One of them, Mrs Mary Edith, a trader, told News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that in 2019 she bought a 50kg bag of stone-free local rice for N13,000, but that the same brand was now selling for N28,000.
“You will agree with me that this increase is outrageous and unfair for an average Nigerian whose salary is about N30,000. Read more
Senate President Swears in Cross River Senator-elect (Thisday)
President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, on Wednesday swore in Stephen Odey as Senator representing Cross River North Senatorial District in the National Assembly.
The oath of office was administered at 11:45am by the Clerk of the Senate, Dauda Ibrahim El-Ladan, immediately after the Senate rose from a closed session to commence plenary.
With Odey sworn in, the number of People’s Democratic Party (PDP) Senators now stands at 46, while the All Progressives Congress, APC, retains majority status with 63 members.
Recall Odey’s swearing in was put on hold on Tuesday following an order of a Federal High Court. Read more
MacKenzie Scott gives away nearly £4,000,000,00 in four months (Metro)
MacKenzie Scott, the ex-wife of Amazon boss Jeff Bezos, has given away more than £3 billion since July. After a £30 billion divorce settlement from Bezos, Scott became the richest woman in the world – and immediately set about giving away her fortune. In a blog post on Tuesday, she detailed how she tasked her team with donating her fortune as quickly as possible. Read more
Wuhan returns to normal after China’s ‘people’s war’ against COVID-19 (CBC)
Handcarts weave through narrow lanes, piled high with bales of fabric. Buyers and sellers haggle while breakfast noodles sizzle.
The bustle seems to be back in Qiaokou, Wuhan’s garment district.
Back in January, this neighbourhood joined the rest of Wuhan in a lockdown that — at the time — was as unwanted as it was unprecedented. Stores were shuttered. Residents became jobless in an instant. Read more
At least 250,000 children and adults physically and sexually abused in New Zealand’s state care institutions – inquiry (RT)
A public inquiry in New Zealand has revealed up to a quarter of a million children, young people and vulnerable adults were abused in the state care system and faith-based institutions from the 1960s to early 2000s.
The Royal Commission of Inquiry claimed in an interim report that many children suffered abuse for years by staff at psychiatric and state care facilities, clergy and foster guardians. Some cases of abuse included rape and electric shock treatment.
“The hurt and anguish that has been caused in New Zealand’s history is inexcusable,” Minister for the Public Service Chris Hipkins said. Read more
Twitter is shutting down its live video streaming app Periscope (NYPost)
Twitter said Tuesday that it plans to shut down Periscope, its pioneering live video-streaming app, by March 2021.
Twitter bought the startup behind Periscope in January 2015 in a deal reportedly worth up to $100 million, in the hopes that personal livestreaming video would compliment its social media platform.
But Twitter said in a blog post Tuesday that Periscope’s usage has been declining over the past several years, and it is to the point where it has become too costly to maintain the app. Read more
Iran nuclear deal participants hold virtual talks amid tensions (AlJazeera)
Senior diplomats from Iran and major powers are meeting online to discuss the state of their nuclear deal that is eroding despite conciliatory signals from United States President-elect Joe Biden.
Wednesday’s consultations are meant to prepare upcoming talks among foreign ministers from Iran, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Russia and China, according to diplomats.
The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCP0A), commonly known as the Iran nuclear deal, was agreed upon in Vienna on July 14, 2015, between Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council – China, France, Russia, the UK and US – plus Germany, together with the European Union. Read more
Iranian president happy ‘terrorist’ Trump’s presidency is ending (RT)
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has told his cabinet that, while Iran isn’t excited about Joe Biden, he is “very happy” that Donald Trump is leaving office, labelling the US president “a killer” and “a terrorist.”
Speaking during a televised meeting, Rouhani issued scathing attacks on Trump, accusing him of hampering Iran’s ability to respond to the Covid-19 outbreak by blocking its efforts to acquire a vaccine through the World Health Organization.
A person who committed so many atrocities, who was a killer, a terrorist, who doesn’t even spare our vaccine efforts. This is how much this person is bereft of all ethical and human principles.
Iran has been the worst-hit country in the Middle East, with over 1.1 million confirmed coronavirus cases and 52,670 fatalities from the virus since the start of the pandemic. Read more
January Jones shows off new tattoo (PageSix)
January Jones’ new ink is all about love.
In an Instagram post on Tuesday, the 42-year-old actress revealed a new forearm tattoo that reads, “love you more.”
Jones entrusted Los Angeles tattoo artist Winter Stone with the design, but chose to keep its meaning private in her Instagram post showing it off.
It’s not the “Mad Men” star’s first time getting inked, and eagle-eyed fans noticed that Jones’ white ink tattoo of the word “Bellatrix” — Latin for “female warrior” — was also visible in the photo.
Her other tattoos include two pink flowers, the word “belleza” in white ink, and a design with intersecting circles and a heart for her son, Xander. Read more
African badminton champion Kate Foo Kune handed two-year doping ban (BBC)
African badminton champion Kate Foo Kune has been handed a two-year doping ban after failing to prove her drink was spiked.
Foo Kune, who carried the Mauritian flag at the 2016 Rio Olympics, tested positive for a banned steroid at the 2019 African Badminton Championships.
The Court of Arbitration for Sport (Cas) found there was no evidence to back up her claims.
The 27-year-old’s ban from competition begins from 15 December.
The Badminton World Federation initially accepted that “an ill-intentioned individual” had sabotaged Foo Kune’s water and she “bore no fault or negligence”. Read more
Andy Murray signs up for Battle of the Brits event to begin Australian Open preparations (Metro)
Andy Murray will be part of a third ‘Battle of the Brits’ event in December in order to get some pre-season matchplay. Murray, the three-time Grand Slam champion from Dunblane, will join fellow Brits at the Lawn Tennis Association’s (LTA) National Tennis Centre in Roehampton from Sunday 20 December. The four-day event, organised by his brother Jamie Murray and the LTA, has been dubbed the ‘Battle of the Brits Premier League of Tennis’ and is designed to give players some much-needed pre-season match practice in the buildup to the Australian Open – which is now set to start in early February. Read more
CHAN 2020: Cameroon ready off the pitch but concerns on it (BBC)
The razzmatazz and hype that comes with hosting the 2020 African Nations Football Championship (CHAN) is evident in Cameroon 30 days before kick-off.
However the preparations for the team, known as the Intermediate Lions, which will represent the hosts at the 16-team event are not going as smoothly.
The continental tournament for players plying their trade in their domestic championships was due to take place in March but was delayed due to the global Covid-19 pandemic.
Cameroon’s government has invested heavily financially and with material resources to build new infrastructure including 50,000-seat stadium in Douala for the tournament. Read more
Doha to host 2030 Asian Games, Riyadh 2034 edition (AlJazeera)
Doha will host the 2030 Asian Games, the Olympic Council of Asia announced on Wednesday, while Riyadh was chosen to host the 2034 edition.
“I can now announce… that the city who had the highest vote and will host 2030 is Doha,” said OCA President Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah.
“The second hosting city, for 2034, is Riyadh.”
Sheikha Al Mayassa Al Thani, the sister of Qatar’s emir, congratulated both cities on the decision. Read more
Slaven Bilic sacked by West Brom with Sam Allardyce set to take over (Metro)
West Brom have sacked Slaven Bilic and are lining up Sam Allardyce as his replacement. The 52-year-old is the first managerial casualty in the Premier League this season as he leaves the Baggies after just 18 months in charge. Bilic guided West Brom to second place in the Championship last season, securing promotion to the Premier League. The Baggies currently sit 19th in the Premier League having secured just one win in their opening 13 games. Read more
Giannis Antetokounmpo: Milwaukee Bucks star signs ‘$228.2m’ deal – the richest in league history (BBC)
Milwaukee Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo has signed a contract extension worth a reported $228.2m (£170.1m) – the richest in NBA history.
The two-time Most Valuable Player, 26, has agreed a five-year deal.
His agent confirmed the details of the contract to ESPN, with the total value beating the mark of $228m (£169.9m) set by Houston Rockets guard James Harden in 2017.
“This is my home, this is my city,” said Antetokounmpo on social media. Read more