Tension in Magodo as suspected land grabbers clash over green belt (Punch)
There was tension on Wednesday when no fewer than 40 suspected land-grabbers clashed over the ownership of a green belt located in a vast gorge behind the Gateway Zone Community Development Association in Magodo Phase 1, Ikosi-Isheri Local Council Development Area of Lagos State.
PUNCH Metro gathered that the suspected land-grabbers, who belong to two families, were arguing over the ownership of the green belt and the argument degenerated into a clash, which spread into Joy Egbe Street in the Gateway Zone Estate.
During the clash, it was learnt that the land-grabbers fought themselves with weapons and in a bid to avoid being hurt, residents of the estate were forced to stay indoors.
Speaking with PUNCH Metro, the General Secretary, Gateway Zone Estate, Tony Ebinum, said the clash threw the residents into confusion, adding that the development of the green belt under contention had been banned by the state government. Read more
LASPOTECH plants 2,000 coconut trees to combat pollution (Nation)
With coconut trees being one of the best plants that naturally remove excess carbon dioxide from the atmosphere (Carbon sequestration) to mitigate global warming, Rector of the Lagos State Polytechnic (LASPOTECH), Dr. Oluremi Nurudeen Olaleye has flagged off the planting of 2,000 coconut seedlings.
Olaleye said agriculture had a special place in his nine-point agenda aimed at positioning LASPOTECH to compete as a world-class agriculture-focused tertiary institution.
He spoke of plans to partner multinational investors to improve agricultural development in the institution and explore the coconut value chain. Read more
EKEDC explains outage in Badagry (Guardian)
The management of Eko Electricity Distribution Company (EKEDC) has attributed the outage in Badagry and its environs to early downpour, which destroyed over 20 electric poles along the Agbara-Badagry expressway.
The General Manager, Corporate Communications, EKEDC, Mr Godwin Idemudia, said on Thursday in Lagos that the March 8 morning rainfall caused serious damage, which damaged the company’s installation in the area.
Idemudia said fallen poles had been removed and the company’s technical team was already working hard resolve the problem. Read more
Bandits killed 937, kidnapped 1,972 in 2020 in Kaduna- Commissioner (Tribune)
The Kaduna State Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs, Samuel Aruwan, has said bandits killed 937 persons and kidnapped 1,972 others in 2020.
In his presentation which he tagged, ‘The Security Situation in Kaduna State, 1st January, 2020, to 31st December, 2020, presented to the governor, Nasir el-Rufai at Government House Chamber, Aruwane said that victims of kidnapping, banditry and other criminal activities cut across all ethnic and religious groups in the state, contrary to skewed narratives.
‘’Victims of criminal acts like banditry and kidnapping are to be found across ethnic, religious or political leanings and persuasions,’’ he pointed out. Read more
Masari’s wife kicks against almajiri system of education, calls for its abolition (ThisDay)
The wife of the Katsina State Governor, Dr Hadiza Bello Masari, has kicked against the almajiri system of education, warning that northern Nigeria would be doomed if parents failed to abolish the age-long system of education.
She said the original aim of the almajiri system of education has been neglected, and it has become synonymous with “abandoned children” roaming the streets and begging for alms instead of acquiring Islamic education.
Mrs Masari, at a press conference to mark the International Women’s Day (IWD), added that most of the children roaming the streets under the guise of attending Qur’anic schools as almajiri, are been exposed to numerous health challenges.
THISDAY reports that the state government has concluded plans to repatriate 7,893 almajiri to their respective home states, with 2,052 out of the number are from Niger Republic. Read more
Ex-convict bags five years jail term for stealing ATM cards, phones (Nation)
An ex-convict, Femi Akinbo, has been sentenced to five years imprisonment for stealing four Automated Teller Machine (ATM) cards, N227, 000 and two mobile phones from a trader.
The convict, who does not have legal counsel pleaded guilty to three counts of burglary and stealing levelled against him before an Osun State Magistrates’ Court, Osogbo.
The police prosecutor, Inspector Kayode Adeoye, said, “on December 8th, 2020, Femi unlawfully entered into the residence of one Taiwo Afolabi at No. 37, Kobape Community, Oke-Osun, Osogbo to steal four ATM cards, N227,000, Tecno T35 Handset and one Itel Handset. The total valued of what he stole valued N241, 000.”
He noted that the offence committed is contrary to sections 390(9), 412 and 411 of the Criminal Code CAP 34 Vol. II Laws of Osun State of Nigeria 2002. Read more
Cross River engages 3,000 women in cocoa farming (Leadership)
The Special Adviser to the Cross River State Governor, Ben Ayade, on Cocoa Development and Control Dr. Oscar Ofuka, has said that the sector has empower about three thousands (3,000) women in cocoa farming.
Ofuka, who disclosed this while addressing journalists during the Award and Magazine Launch organised in commemoration of this year’s International Women’s Day, in Abuja.
He noted that cocoa is the major revenue generation in the state after federal government oil.
He said that before this time the cocoa was completely eradicated, but the administration of Governor Ben Ayade from 2015 up to this moment Cross River State cocoa sector alone had offered employment opportunities to youths, especially women’s in the state. Read more
Gunmen kidnap students, teacher in Edo (DailyTrust)
Armed men have kidnapped two students and a teacher of the National Institute of Construction Techonology and Management in Edo State.
Police has confirmed gunmen stormed the school in Uromi early Wednesday to take the students and teacher hostage.
No contact has been made with families.
When contacted the state command’s Public Relations Office, Kontongs Bello, confirmed the incident, saying the Police is doing everything possible to rescue the victims.
“I also heard about the incident since yesterday night. It is true there was kidnapping, and the police are on the trail of the kidnappers who are fully armed,”. Read more
NIPOST reclaims collection of stamp duty charges from FIRS (Nation)
The Nigeria Postal Service (NIPOST) has reclaimed the collection of stamp duty charges from the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr Isa Pantami announced on Thursday.
The development brought to an end more than three years of controversy and acrimony over the claims of ownership of stamp duty collections in the country between the two Federal Agencies.
Pantami who broke the news commended President Muhammadu Buhari, and the leadership of the National Assembly, especially the Senate and House Committees on Communications and Digital Economy for their interventions on the matter.
He also praised the management of NIPOST and other stakeholders for their resilience, saying it was heartwarming that critical stakeholders ensured that justice was done on the issue. Read more
Michelle Obama: Former US first lady says she is ‘moving towards retirement’ (BBC)
Former US First Lady Michelle Obama has said she is “moving towards retirement right now” and being selective with the projects she takes on.
Speaking to People magazine, Mrs Obama said she and her husband were building up their foundation “so we can retire and be with each other”.
Since leaving the White House both have remained in political life, including campaigning for President Joe Biden.
There has also been speculation Mrs Obama would herself run for office. Read more
Egypt: At least 20 dead in Cairo clothing factory fire (AlJazeera)
At least 20 people were killed and 24 others injured on Thursday in a clothing factory fire on the eastern outskirts of the Egyptian capital.
The cause of the blaze, which ripped through the four-story plant in Obour, an outlying district of the greater Cairo area, was not immediately known, according to a statement released by the government.
Fifteen fire trucks were dispatched to extinguish the huge blaze as smoke billowed over the area. Ambulances were ferrying the casualties to nearby hospitals.
The state prosecutor has tasked a team with investigating the fire, medical sources told AFP news agency. Read more
China approves plan to reform Hong Kong electoral system (DW)
The unanimous vote on the final day of China’s National People’s Congress endorses tighter control over Hong Kong for the ruling Communist Party.
China’s parliament voted to pass legislation on Hong Kong’s electoral system on Thursday.
Chinese leaders are hoping to bring in a “patriotic” government in the enclave after months of pro-democracy rallies shook the city.
How did the NPC vote?
The National People’s Congress voted overwhelmingly in favor of the planned changes.
The legislation passed with only one abstention and 2,895 delegates voting in favor. The Congress regularly unanimously or overwhelmingly rubber stamps plans proposed by the Party. Read more
Prince William insists Royal Family isn’t racist (CBC)
Prince William defended Britain’s monarchy Thursday against accusations of bigotry made by his brother, Prince Harry, and sister-in-law, Meghan, insisting the family is not racist.
In comments made during a visit to an east London school, William became the first royal to directly address the explosive interview broadcast Sunday in the US that Harry and Meghan gave to Oprah Winfrey.
“We’re very much not a racist family,” he said as his wife, Kate, walked by his side. Read more
Two Sessions: Gender roles, mental health discussed at China’s top meet (BBC)
At China’s most important political conference this year, gender roles, mental health and even celebrities have dominated discussions.
Every year, delegates for the “two sessions” or lianghui, meet for over a week, and they put forward proposals for new social policies.
These range from the conventional to the downright quirky, but often ignite furious debate, and demonstrate some of the greater issues affecting people in China, and where support lies.
On Tuesday one of the sessions, the meeting for China’s top advisory body, known as the CPPCC, drew to a close. During this year’s event, policies that were put forward were especially framed around the specific roles of men and women, generating much discussion online. Read more
Cardi B ‘did not approve’ ‘True Hollywood Story’ of her life (PageSix)
Could there be a Cardi B biopic on the horizon?
E! is set to release a “True Hollywood Story” episode about the Grammy winner next week, and she distanced herself from it on Twitter.
“I love E! And I always been grateful for all the love but I did not approve of the E Hollywood story,” she wrote, “My life is my story. How can someone tell my story without asking me.”
But she suggested there could be an authorized movie about her life on the cards. Read more
Adele finalises divorce with joint custody of son (BBC)
UK singer Adele has finalised her divorce from ex husband Simon Konecki, Los Angeles court papers have shown.
The Brit and Grammy-winner separated from the charity boss in April 2019.
Now, documents obtained by the PA news agency have confirmed the pair will share custody of their eight-year-old son Angelo.
Much of the divorce settlement, which was arranged through mediation, remains confidential and neither party will be paying spousal support. Read more
I respect Rohr’s decision to put me on standby- Onuachu (Punch)
Genk striker Paul Onuachu has opted to keep mum over his standby role for this month’s 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers against Benin Republic and Lesotho, The PUNCH reports.
The Super Eagles travel to Port Novo to face the Squirrels at the Stade Charles de Gaulle on March 27, before hosting the Crocodiles at the Teslim Balogun Stadium three days later in their final group fixture.
Many had expected Onuachu to be included in the squad for the games, having shone in the Belgian topflight division for Genk.
The 26-year-old has 26 goals in 30 games, with three assists across all competitions this term. Read more
Anthony Joshua aims dig at ‘warm-up act’ Tyson Fury ahead of unification fight (Metro)
Anthony Joshua says Tyson Fury will serve as a ‘warm-up act’ as he looks beyond ‘The Gypsy King’ – who he believes could retire shortly after their unification showdown. A deal to bring the Britons together to crown the first undisputed heavyweight champion since Lennox Lewis is edging closer with Joshua and Fury expected to collide this summer. While IBF, WBO and WBA (Super) champion Joshua says unification is ‘part of his journey’ and not the end of it, he has questioned whether Fury, WBC and The Ring Magazine champion, will continue after they have gone to war. ‘He (Fury) can bring whatever he wants, it don’t matter to me,’ Joshua told the JD Sports Road to Undisputed series. Read more
Ruqsana Begum: Muay Thai world champion’s difficult journey to the top (BBC)
Muay Thai world champion. Dutiful daughter. Fastest girl in school. ME sufferer. Wife. Architect. It is difficult to categorise Ruqsana Begum.
Now aged 37, for much of her life she was caught between two worlds that could never meet. With two strings pulling on her in different directions, she was forced to keep each half of her identity separate, until both imploded and something new was forged from the debris left behind.
Today she lives in harmony with her difficult past. She has a bright, open smile as she warmly recounts her tale.
It is a twisting, turning story but if there is one dominant thread it might be this: the secret she once thought would ruin her turned out to be her saviour. Read more
IOC, China make vaccine deal for Tokyo, Beijing Olympians (CBC)
The International Olympic Committee and China have teamed up to offer vaccines to athletes and teams preparing for the upcoming games in both Tokyo and Beijing.
The collaboration with Chinese Olympic officials was announced Thursday during an online IOC meeting.
“We are grateful for this offer, which is in the true Olympic spirit of solidarity,” IOC president Thomas Bach said. Read more
Champions League: RB Leipzig out as Liverpool end comeback hopes (DW)
RB Leipzig are out of the Champions League after a deserved defeat to Liverpool in Budapest. In a game accompanied by an odd atmosphere, Julian Nagelsmann might see his side’s exit as a positive.
Liverpool took 70 minutes to decide a game and a tie they always looked like winning.
After an hour of football that was predominantly about good saves and poor composure, a frustrated Mohamed Salah sent a low shot in at the near corner and then Sadio Mane converted a superb cross by substitute Divock Origi.
“The biggest performance was that in both games, but particularly tonight, it wasn’t clear how good we know RB Leipzig can be,” Jürgen Klopp said afterwards. Read more
Yannick Bolasie & Arnaut Danjuma: Middlesbrough & Bournemouth condemn ‘vile’ online abuse (BBC)
Championship clubs Middlesbrough and AFC Bournemouth have condemned “vile” racist social media abuse sent to Yannick Bolasie and Arnaut Danjuma.
Both players posted details of racist online messages they had received, with Boro’s on-loan Everton winger Bolasie calling abusers “keyboard warriors”.
Danjuma’s message followed an interview in which he expressed frustration at criticism of the taking a knee gesture.
Boro said the abuse was “unacceptable” and the Cherries said it “has to stop”. Read more
Mets’ Pete Alonso and Jeff McNeil won’t get money they asked for (NYPost)
Pete Alonso and Jeff McNeil won’t get their respective asking prices from the Mets.
Both players had their contracts renewed Wednesday, when the Mets announced they had agreed to terms with 15 other players for this season.
Alonso and McNeil, who are not yet arbitration-eligible, have zero leverage in negotiations, but can seek any financial arrangement.Last year, under general manager Brodie Van Wagenen, the Mets, as a goodwill gesture, gave Alonso a contract for $652,521 — a season after he established a MLB rookie record with 53 homers. The league minimum salary was $563,500. Read more