Third Mainland Bridge repairs: FRSC allays fears as motorists queue for switchover (Guardian)
The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) on Saturday reiterated that motorists plying the Third Mainland Bridge should stop all fear and agitation over the partial closure of the bridge for repairs.
The Lagos State Sector Commander of FRSC, Mr Olusegun Ogungbemide, restated this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos, following the long queue by mainland-bound motorists, waiting for afternoon peak period switchover.
NAN reports that the closure of the bridge was arranged in a manner to give priority to traffic during peak periods in and out the Island (morning and afternoon), to forestall gridlock during the six-month-long repairs. Read more
Third Mainland Bridge: We’re observing traffic situation, says Lagos commissioner (Punch)
Lagos State Commissioner for Transportation, Frederic Oladeinde, has said the true test of road user compliance with the partial closure of the Third Mainland Bridge would be accessed on Monday.
Oladeinde made this disclosure Saturday in a chat with our correspondent while he monitored traffic situation on the bridge.
The bridge partial closure of the bridge started on Friday, July 24, 2020 and it is expected to last six months – until Sunday, July 24, 2021. Read more
Amber BRT initiative launched to ease commuting in Lagos (ThisDay)
Amber BRT, an initiative to ease commuting in Lagos, has been launched by a private company, Amber Energy Drinks Ltd., as part of their corporate social responsibility.
Officials of the company said in a statement that the free bus ride initiative, which coincides with the launch of their Amber Energy Drinks, was in recognition of the fact that commuting in Lagos State could be “hellish and sometimes nightmarish for residents with the ever increasing population on a daily basis.”
The statement said Amber Energy drink has put in place a well- co-ordinated plan with the respective transport authorities such that is required by “members of the public is to buy a Can of the drink at BRT bus terminals or yellow buses garages and parks in the city and get a BRT ticket for free. The Can as the automatic passport gives the commuter free entrance into the BRT buses or the conventional popular Lagos yellow buses, depending on destination for a smooth relief and jolly ride between 4pm-6pm Mondays-Friday every week at work close.” Read more
Pensioners hail FG for remitting N7.45b workers’ retirement benefits (Nation)
The Nigeria Union of Pensioners has commended the Federal Government for remitting N7.45 billion accrued rights and benefits into the retirement savings accounts of federal retirees covering April and May 2019.
NUP National President, Dr. Abel Afolayan described the development as a responsive and responsible gesture by the Federal government that will go a long way in assuaging the pains and frustrations of its vulnerable members who are more hard-hit by covid-19 pandemic.
In a statement, the union appealed to the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed to intensify effort in the payment of the 50 per cent outstanding balance due to the Nigeria Airways pensioners which had been approved by the federal government since November, 2019. Read more
Afenifere felicitates with Carrington at 90, says he identified with Nigeria’s democratic struggle (ThisDay)
The Pan Yoruba socio-cultural organisation, Afenifere, has facilitated with former United States Ambassador to Nigeria, Walter Carrington, on his 90th birthday anniversary.
The group in a release titled “90 hearty cheers to Ambassador Carrington” issued on Saturday by its National Publicity Secretary, Yinka Odumakin, described the former envoy as someone who identified with the democratic struggles of Nigerians in the wake of the annulment of June 12 presidential poll in the 1990s.
According to Afenifere, Ambassador Carriggton was an unflinching supporter of Democracy in the tour of his duty in Nigeria making a clear departure from Western Democracies being closet democrats who openly flow with whatever operates in Third World Countries. Read more
Senior lawyer, AbdulRazaq, dies at 93 (ThisDay)
The first lawyer from the Northern Region and father of the governor of Kwara State, Alhaji AbdulGaniyu Folorunsho Abdul-Razaq, SAN is dead.
Late AbdulRazaq, the Mutawali of Ilorin, Tafida of Zazzau (Zaria) and Chairman of the Nigerian Body of Benchers, died peacefully at about 2am. on Saturday.
A statement signed by Dr. Alimi AbdulRazaq on behalf of the family said, “With total submission to the will of the Almighty Allah, the AbdulRazaqs of Ilorin Emirate of Kwara State hereby announce the passing of their patriarch and statesman Alhaji AbdulGaniyu Folorunsho Abdul-Razaq SAN (OFR) at the age of 93 in Abuja and was born in 1927.” Read more
Abuja-Kaduna train service resumes July 29, says minister (Punch)
The Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, has said the Abuja-Kaduna rail service would resume on July 29.
Amaechi disclosed this while test-running new coaches recently deployed on the route on Saturday.
Train services were shut down in March to curtail the spread of COVID-19 in the country. Read more
New NIPOST licence fees were not approved, minister says (Guardian)
Minister of Communication and Digital Economy, Isa Ali Pantami, on Saturday said the new licensing fees for logistics companies were not part of the new regulations he approved for the Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST).
“Pls @NipostNgn, our attention has been drawn to an increase of license fee, which was not part of the regulation I earlier APPROVED for you,” Pantami said on Twitter.
“Your Chair and PMG were YESTERDAY contacted to put the implementation on hold and send a report to our ministry by Monday.”
Nigerians have condemned the increase in licensing fees. Read more
Gunmen kill at least 20 farmers in Sudan’s Darfur (Guardian)
Gunmen killed at least 20 people, including children, who were visiting their farms in Sudan’s wartorn Darfur region for the first time in years, a tribal chief said Saturday.
“Two months ago the government organised a meeting between the original landowners and those who took their fields” during the long-running war in Darfur, Ibrahim Ahmad told AFP by telephone.
“An agreement was reached whereby the landowners would return to their fields — but armed men came on Friday and opened fire, killing 20 people, including two women and children.” Read more
Man proposes to girlfriend beneath comet that can only be seen every 6,800 years (Metro)
For many people, a proposal is a once-in-a-lifetime event. But for John Nicotera, 33, and Erica Pendrak, 26, it’s a once-in-about-90-lifetimes event.
That’s because John waited to propose under the Neowise comment viewable by the human eye in the Northern Hemisphere, which only happens once every 6,800 years.
John and Erica, who both live in New York, have been dating for around two years, and both are big into historical events and space phenomenons.
John initially told Erica about Neowise’s appearance, which is extremely rare in their part of the world and even rarer seen without a telescope, and the pair decided to head to John’s family’s camp in Old Forge, New York state, to watch it.
But when they did sight the astronomical wonder, Erica was surprised to see John get down on one knee, all captured by their friend on camera. Read more
South China Sea dispute: Australia says Beijing’s claims have no legal basis (BBC)
Australia has formally rejected China’s territorial and maritime claims in the South China Sea, aligning itself more closely with the US as tensions rise.
In a declaration to the United Nations, Australia said the claims, which take in the majority of the sea, had “no legal basis”. China has not reacted.
It comes after the US called some of China’s actions in the area “unlawful”.
In recent years China has built bases on artificial islands in the sea, saying its rights go back centuries. Read more
Venezuela to challenge UK’s ruling that denies access to its gold stored in Bank of England vaults (RT)
Caracas has won the right to file a court appeal on the decision of the English High Court, which blocked the Maduro government from getting back $1 billion in gold held by the Bank of England.
Earlier this month, British judges said that they recognize self-proclaimed leader Juan Guaido and not Nicolas Maduro as Venezuela’s president. The decision was crucial for the long legal battle for the country’s bullion reserves stored in London, as both the Venezuelan government and opposition laid claim to the gold stockpile.
While Venezuela’s central bank (BCV) promised to appeal immediately after the ruling was presented on July 2, its lawyers said on Friday that they were finally granted the right. The appeal is set to be filed as early as next week, according to Bloomberg. Read more
Mass anti-Kremlin rallies grip Russia’s Far East (Guardian)
Huge anti-government demonstrations erupted in Russia’s Far East on Saturday over the arrest of a popular governor who was replaced this week by a Kremlin appointee who never lived in the fraught region.
Residents of Khabarovsk near the border with China took to the streets en masse for the third Saturday in a row after governor Sergei Furgal was arrested by federal law enforcement and flown to Moscow on murder charges this month.
The running demonstrations have been some of the largest anti-government protests in Russia in years, which the Kremlin said this week were being fuelled by opposition activists outside Khabarovsk. Read more
Bombshell new Harry and Meghan biography reveals ‘bitter tension’ with the Royal Family (Metro)
A sensational new book about Harry and Meghan has revealed just how difficult relations between the Royal Family became around the time of the Megxit drama.
Finding Freedom, a biography serialised by The Times and The Sunday Times, claims things had become so bitter that by March the Sussexes and the Cambridges – Prince William and his wife Kate Middleton – were barely speaking. An insider said to the Sun of the book: ‘There are buckets of bitterness. It will certainly not help relations with the Royal Family.’
The bombshell biography, which the couple did not personally contribute to, claims the couples hardly spoke at the Commonwealth service at Westminster Abbey despite not having seen each other since January. Read more
Judge faults Trump administration’s response to DACA ruling (Politico)
A federal judge on Friday criticized the Trump administration for a confusing and sluggish response to the Supreme Court’s decision last month invalidating the administration’s attempt to rescind the Obama-era program protecting so-called Dreamers.
During a telephone hearing, U.S. District Court Judge Paul Grimm said he was troubled that the Department of Homeland Security’s website has yet to be updated to account for the high court’s ruling on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, better known as DACA.
Grimm also expressed concern about the government’s admission that some new DACA applicants have received letters in recent weeks saying their applications were denied because DHS isn’t accepting new applicants, even though the Supreme Court ordered the agency to return to the status quo in 2017, when it was accepting new applications. Read more
Choosing between Nigeria, England will be tough – Saka (Nation)
Arsenal winger Bukayo Saka admits it will be challenging to choose between England or Nigeria, should his impressive Premier League form be rewarded with international selection.
In a wide ranging interview with Sky Sports News the teenager discussed a memorable few years rising through the ranks at Arsenal.
Saka is yet to receive a call-up from either England or Nigeria but he’s attracting admiring glances from both associations. Read more
Osimhen will surpass Maradona’s feat at Napoli – Pinnick (Punch)
President of the Nigeria Football Federation, Amaju Pinnick, has backed Victor Osimhen to shine in the Seria A and surpass the record of the legendary Argentine Diego Maradona.
Osimhen is set to seal a five-year contract with the Italian giants for a fee believed to be around €60m, which could rise to €81m with other add ons.
In a statement published on the website of Naples-based radio station, Radio Kiss Kiss, Pinnick said he was elated with the imminent transfer of the striker, and backed the youngster to do better than Maradona who led the club to UEFA Cup triumph in the 1988/89 season. Read more
Westwood pulls out of US PGA over Covid-19 concerns (BBC)
Lee Westwood says he will not play at next month’s US PGA Championship, despite coronavirus quarantine rules being relaxed for players and caddies.
The lifting of the 14-day quarantine on arrival in the United States means Westwood could have gone straight into the tournament “bubble” and played.
However, he said: “I still don’t feel comfortable and I don’t feel it is right to jump on a plane for 12 hours.” Read more
George Foreman spots weakness in Mike Tyson’s punching technique in training video (Metro)
George Foreman believes he has spotted a weakness in Mike Tyson’s punching technique ahead of his eagerly anticipated comeback.
After several months of intense speculation, the former heavyweight king confirmed earlier this week that he would be returning to the ring in September to face fellow boxing legend Roy Jones Jr in an eight round exhibition bout. Read more
PSG confirm ‘serious’ ankle sprain after Mbappe left French Cup win on crutches (BBC)
Paris St-Germain forward Kylian Mbappe suffered a “serious right ankle sprain” in his side’s French Cup final victory over Saint-Etienne on Friday.
Mbappe, 21, left the pitch in tears after being fouled by Saint-Etienne defender Loic Perrin in the first half.
PSG say the injury will be re-evaluated in 72 hours by a doctor. Read more
Joshua questions Fury’s fights’ quality (ThisDay)
Anthony Joshua has said that Tyson Fury “hasn’t been in the deep end long enough” to be considered “intimidating”.
Joshua criticised the amount of difficult fights that his fellow world heavyweight champion has battled through.
He said at a Sky VIP event: “What have you seen from Fury? A couple of feints? Moving around? What have you seen that makes him seem so intimidating? Speed?
“If the sport is lacking so much talent then all you need is feints and movement to be classed as a great of this generation. Read more