Abia gov’t denies abduction of ABSU students.

Nigeria – Abia State

Report had claimed that gunmen reportedly kidnapped some students of the Abia State University, Uturu (ABSU)

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Abia State Government has expressed sadness over report of an attack on commuters by hoodlums operating along Ihube, Okigwe LGA of Imo State.

It was gathered that some students of Marist Comprehensive Academy, Uturu, were attacked by hoodlums while returning from a religious programme on Saturday in Imo State.

A statement by the state government also confirmed the unfortunate loss of one Master Ede Donald and said that three students sustained injuries during the attack.

The state Commissioner for Information, Abia State, John Okiyi Kalu while reacting to the incident stated that Governor, Okezie Ikpeazu, has directed the state Commissioner of Police, Mrs Janet Agbede, to liaise with her counterpart in Imo State to swiftly arrest the hoodlums and bring them to justice.

Kalu also said the three students who sustained injuries from the attack have been treated and discharged while the parents of Master Ede Donald have been contacted.

“While we commiserate with parents of the deceased, students, staff and management of Marist Comprehensive Academy, Uturu, over this unfortunate incident in our neighboring state, we condemn in totality the attempt by agents of opposition political actors in our state whose stock in trade is spreading fake news to diminish the state.”

Report had claimed that gunmen reportedly kidnapped some students of the Abia State University, Uturu (ABSU)

But Kalu said the circulating report sponsored by unconscionable individuals is not only untrue but also wicked.

According to him, the report is a creation of the evil minds of those who are ready to do anything in pursuit of their selfish objectives against the overall interests of the State.

“The management of Abia State University, including the Vice Chancellor, Prof Maxwell Ogbulu, has confirmed that no student of the institution was abducted yesterday as against fake reports obviously sponsored by these elements.

“We shall however continue to update Abians on issues affecting the State and her people with sincerity of purpose.”

#Newsworthy

VAT: “None of you would exist without North” – Masari.

Nigeria – National

Masari said both Rivers and Lagos States would not have huge revenues without contributions from other states.

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Katsina State Governor, Bello Masari, has criticized Lagos and Rivers States over their stance on tax revenue collection.

Masari said both Rivers and Lagos States would not have huge revenues without contributions from other states.

The governor described the move by both Lagos and Rivers States as a joke because they rely on the population of other states to boost their economies.

“What is Lagos without the rest of Nigeria? The market Lagos is boasting of is dependent on the larger part of the country. Benin Republic has a port, Togo has a port; do they have the population to back up the ports? Without us providing the demand part, what will be Lagos?

“VAT serves them and us. We provide the bulk of the market because without the rest of the states, what is Lagos or Port Harcourt?

“Any state that thinks it can survive in isolation is joking. We provide the demand that makes Lagos what it is,” Masari told Daily Trust.

Both Lagos and Rivers States have moved to take over the collection of Value Added Tax, VAT, from the Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS.

The matter is currently before the Appeal and Supreme Court.

Meanwhile, Southern governors have thrown their weight behind their Lagos and Rivers counterpart.

#Newsworthy

BBNaija’6: Just two weeks left – Yousef and Saskay evicted.

Big Brother Naija – Nigeria

Saskay and Yousef stood for eviction alongside Angel, Cross and Emmanuel.

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Big Brother have evicted Saskay and Yousef from the show this Sunday.

With just two weeks left to the end of this year’s Big Brother Naija reality show, Saskay and Yousef have been evicted from the house.

Saskay and Yousef stood for eviction alongside Angel, Cross and Emmanuel.

This came after Whitemoney won the Head of House challenge last week, while Nini used her veto power to replace herself with Cross.

#Newsworthy

Obadiah Mailafia: “May his soul find peace” – Shehu Sani.


Nigeria

Obadiah Mailafia, a former deputy governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN, died on Sunday morning from an undisclosed illness at age 64.

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Former lawmaker representing Kaduna Central Senatorial District, Senator Shehu Sani, has reacted to the death of Dr. Obadiah Mailafiya.

Obadiah Mailafia, a former deputy governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN, died on Sunday morning from an undisclosed illness at age 64.

Shehu Sani wrote on his verified Facebook wall on Sunday;

“Dr Obadiah Mailafiya has stepped out of this troubled,troubling and turbulent World.He is into the realm of immortality.

“He left for us the memories of his powerful words and shattering truth. He cast the light of justice and freedom in the dark corners of power.

“Dr Mailafiya epitomised courage, conscience and conviction. Whenever he speaks, he breaks the ceiling of fear and unsettles a nation allergic to the truth.

“He kept power on its toes with his facts and intelligence. He was a northern star who shined in the darkness of silence and surrender. He raised the moral bar with his boldness.He was a man whose truth is without a season. Like most greats and champions of freedom, He inspired many and irritated the establishment in his journey of life.

May his soul Rest In Peace.”

#Newsworthy

Death hits Sheikh Dahiru Usman Bauchi.

Nigeria

The late Hajiya Zainab, who was said to be in her 60s, The Sequel Times gathered had three children with the revered cleric

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Revered Islamic cleric and leader of the Tijaniyya Movement in Nigeria, Sheikh Dahiru Usman Bauchi, on Sunday, lost one of his wives, Hajiya Zainab Dahiru Bauchi.

The deceased, The Sequel Times learnt, died this afternoon at a time her husband was away in Saudi Arabia, where he is currently performing Umrah (lesser Hajj) and was buried at about 2pm.

The late Hajiya Zainab, who was said to be in her 60s, The Sequel Times gathered had three children with the revered cleric.

Meanwhile, Bauchi State governor, Senator Bala Abdulkadir Mohammed, has described the death of the cleric’s wife as a great loss not only to her husband but also to the entire state and Nigeria in general.

The governor stated this when he led government officials to condole with the Islamic scholar at his Gombe Road residence in Bauchi metropolis, saying that she would always be remembered as a good wife and mother to all.

He then sympathised with Sheikh Bauchi on behalf of the people and government of state and prayed for the repose of the soul of the deceased.

#Newsworthy

VAT: FIRS amendment move will be “dead on arrival” – Akeredolu.

Nigeria – Ondo State – National

Governor Akeredolu who said the law does not give power to the federal government to collect VAT and share it with other states, adding that the VAT should be under the state.

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Chairman of the Southern Nigeria Governors’ Forum and Ondo State Governor, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, has said that the amendments sought by the Federal Inland Revenue Service, FIRS at the National Assembly on the controversial Value Added Tax will be killed at the State House of Assemblies.

Governor Akeredolu who said the law does not give power to the federal government to collect VAT and share it with other states, adding that the VAT should be under the state.

“That’s the position of the law. The FIRS seeking for amendment is a confirmation that they don’t have the power. The amendment will be dead on arrival. Why seek an amendment to a constitution when the provision is so clear.” Akeredolu explained.

The Governor spoke on ‘Arise TV Sunday Talk Show’ hosted by Reuben Abati.

The Governor insisted that if the federal government was to collect VAT for states, it can only get a percentage which the federal government can decide to share at the FAAC.

“You can only collect VAT on behalf of the states and hand their money over to them. You can only take a percentage there to help us to collect the money.”

#Newsworthy

NSCDC working to end insecurity in Kwara – Governor.


Kwara State – Oyo State

He advised the chairman to address the issue of indiscriminate erection of billboards and signposts in the state capital.

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The Kwara State Commandant of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC, Iskil Ayinla Makinde, has said that the agency is working day and night to identify hideouts of miscreants and men of the underworld in order to dislodge and bring them to book.

He disclosed this when the Chairman of the Kwara State Signage and Advertisement Agency, Alhaji Uthman Abubakar Mora, paid him a courtesy visit in his office in Ilorin, the state capital.

He advised the chairman to address the issue of indiscriminate erection of billboards and signposts in the state capital.

Commandant Makinde, who expressed reservation over the lackadaisical attitude of some individuals to revenue payment, promising that the security agency will do its best within the confines of the law to assist the revenue agency.

“The NSCDC will support Kwara state Signage and Advertisement Agency to effectively carry out its constitutional duty of generating revenue for the state,” Makinde promised.

In his remark, the KWASAA chairman solicited the support of the security agency to enable the agency to carry out its lawful duty across the state.

Mora stressed the need for the signage agency to generate revenue for the state government to carry out more developmental projects.

He also maintained the need for the presence of security personnel in the course of erecting billboards and placement of flets to guide against attacks and harassment.

#Newsworthy

HURIWA to CAN, SOKAPYU: Investigate Mailafia’s death.

Nigeria

The rights group recalled how the former presidential candidate had raised an alarm over threats to life but security agents failed to probe his claim.

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The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, HURIWA, has called for an investigation into the death of Obadiah Mailaifia, former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN.

HURIWA said Mailafia may have been killed “extralegally,” hence his death should be probed.

The rights group recalled how the former presidential candidate had raised an alarm over threats to life but security agents failed to probe his claim.

HURIWA made the call in a statement by its National Coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko and the National Media Affairs Director Miss Zainab Yusuf.

According to HURIWA: “One year ago, precisely on September 11, 2020 at the height of the incessant harassment by the Department of State Services and the Nigeria Police Force, the former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria and a critic of the current administration Dr Obadiah Mailafiya raised the alarm of death threat as follows: “Please, pray for me. I have reasons to believe that my life is in danger and that some powerful political forces want to silence me forever for speaking the truth. For speaking on behalf of the Holy Martyrs — of thousands of innocent children, women, elderly and youths that have been killed in our beloved country”.

“There are very unassailable reasons to believe that the alarm he raised which was never investigated may be the harbinger of his sudden demise in Abuja on Sunday September 19th 2021, hence the Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, which is calling for independent investigation on his death.”

The rights group urged the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, the Southern Kaduna Peoples Union, SOKAPU, to jointly hire “top notch forensic investigation teams to independently probe the immediate and remote circumstances of the death of Obadiah Mailaifia so as to ascertain the exact cause of the death of a man who since the past few Years became the voice of truth against the powers- that -be and the champion of the PRINCIPLE OF RULE OF LAW IN NIGERIA.”

HURIWA regretted that Nigeria seems to have become the killer of her best citizens, adding that “persons who speak truth to power in the past six and half years have come under persistent attacks and pressure from forces embedded within the Nigerian Security Forces and the political class in charge of government at all levels to an extent that even the central ruling party – ALL PROGRESSIVES CONGRESS has gone all out to try to sponsor many toxic, obnoxious and unconstitutional bills all aimed at curtailing the enjoyment of the constitutionally guaranteed fundamental human rights recognised in chapter 4 of the Nigerian constitution.”

#Newsworthy

Fraud retrial: Uzor Kalu to face judgement Monday.

Nigeria

EFCC had argued that since the Supreme Court order benefitted Kalu, he must bear the burden that arose from the apex court verdict.

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A former Abia State Governor, Senator Orji Uzor Kalu, will on Monday, September 20, 2021, know his fate in his fresh suit seeking to stop the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, from subjecting him to retrial in an alleged N7.1bn fraud charges brought against him.

Justice Inyang Eden Ekwo of the Federal High Court in Abuja, is expected to deliver a make or mar judgment in the suit.

The Judge had on July 2 fixed the date after Kalu and EFCC adopted all processes filed for and against the suit.

Daily Post learnt on Sunday September 19 that notice for delivery of judgment has been issued and served on both EFCC and Senator Kalu through their respective lawyers by the court baillif.

The former governor, who is now a Senator representing Abia North Senatorial district in the senate, is seeking to stop his retrial in the N7.1bn money laundering charges on the ground that he had been tried, convicted and imprisoned on the strength of the same charges.

Professor Awa Kalu SAN, counsel to the former governor while adopting his processes had informed the court that senator Kalu stood for trial for 12 years and got a judgment that convicted and jailed him for 10 years.

The senior counsel cited section 36 (9) of the 1999 constitution which stipulates that no Nigerian shall be subjected to double jeopardy to support his arguments

Awa Kalu insisted that the former governor, having served a period of jail term, would be made to suffer double jeopardy if allowed by the court to be put on trial for the second time by the federal government.

Professor Kalu had produced and read the Supreme Court judgment upon which the ex governor was released after five months in prison adding that there was nowhere in the judgment where the apex court made order for his client’s trial.

He had challenged the EFCC to point out to court where order for retrial was made against the former governor

The senior lawyer had then urged the court to prohibit EFCC from going ahead with the planned retrial.

However in a vehement opposition to the suit., EFCC through its counsel, Mr Rotimi Jacobs SAN, asked the court to dismiss the suit with anger.

He submitted that the judgment which led to the release of Kalu has been declared a nullity by the Supreme Court which also ordered retrial of the appellant in the matter, Mr Udeh Jones who stood trial along with Kalu in the same charges.

EFCC had argued that since the Supreme Court order benefitted Kalu, he must bear the burden that arose from the apex court verdict.

Jacobs described Kalu’s suit as approbating and reprobating at the same time, frivolous, irritating and sought for it’s dismissal with order on Kalu to face retrial.

In a short ruling that followed, Justice Ekwo fixed September 20 for judgment in the matter.

Specifically, Kalu is seeking an order of court prohibiting the federal government, through the EFCC, its officers, servants, others, agents, privies and any other person or bodies deriving authority from the Federal Republic of Nigeria, from retrying him on charge No. FHC/ABJ/CR/56/2007 between FRN vs Orji Kalu & 2 ors, or any other charge based on the same facts de novo, there being no extant judgment and ruling of a competent court in Nigeria mandating same.

The ex governor had also applied for order prohibiting the Federal Republic of Nigeria, through the EFCC (her agent), her officers, servants, others, agents, privies and any other person or bodies deriving authority from the Federal Republic of Nigeria, from retrying, harassing and intimidating him with respect to the charge as concerns charge No: FHC/ABJ/CR/56/2007 between FRN vs Orji Kalu & 2 ors or any other charge based on same facts as he need not suffer double jeopardy.

Also Kalu is asking the federal high court to restrain the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) from retrying him on the same alleged N7.1b money laundering charges against him.

He contended that having been tried once by EFCC, convicted and sentenced in the same charges FHC/ABJ/CR/56/ 2007, it will amount to double jeopardy for him if he is allowed to be subjected to a fresh trial on the same charge.

#Newsworthy

Volcano ‘breaks out’ in La Palma – speedy evacuations in Spain.


Spain – La Palma

The last eruption on the Canary Islands occurred underwater off the coast of El Hierro island in 2011. That eruption lasted five months.

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A volcano erupted Sunday on the Spanish Canary Island of La Palma, after a weeklong buildup of seismic activity, sending fountains of lava and a plume of smoke and ash into the air, prompting authorities to speed up evacuations for 1,000 people.

The Canary Islands Volcanology Institute reported the eruption on Cumbre Vieja, which last erupted in 1971. Huge red plumes topped with black-and-white smoke shot out along the volcanic ridge that scientists had been closely monitoring following the accumulation of molten lava below the surface and days of small earthquakes.

The explosion took place in an area known as Cabeza de Vaca on the western slope of the volcanic ridge as it descended to the coast. Tinges of red could be seen at the bottom of the black jets that shot rocks into the air.

One black lava flow with a burning tip was sliding toward some houses in the village of El Paso. Mayor Sergio Rodriguez said 300 people in immediate danger had been evacuated from their homes and sent to the El Paso soccer field. Roads were closed due to the explosion and authorities urged the curious not to approach the area.

La Palma, with a population of 85,000, is one of eight islands in Spain’s Canary Islands archipelago off Africa’s western coast. At their nearest point to Africa, they are 100 kilometers (60 miles) from Morocco.

Itahiza Dominguez, head of seismology of Spain’s National Geology Institute, told local TV station RTVC that although it was too early to tell how long this eruption would last, prior “eruptions on the Canary Islands lasted weeks or even months.”

The last eruption on the Canary Islands occurred underwater off the coast of El Hierro island in 2011. That eruption lasted five months.

After days of what scientists call an “earthquake swarm,” authorities on La Palma had already started to evacuate residents with reduced mobility Sunday shortly before ground broke open. The area near the southern tip of the island where the ridge is located is sparsely populated.

Residents of the five nearby villages had already been told to be on alert and ready to leave their homes in case of an eruption.

A 3.8-magnitude quake was recorded before the eruption as vibrations from the seismic activity were felt on the surface.

The Scientific Committee of the Volcano Risk Prevention Plan said stronger earthquakes “are likely to be felt and may cause damage to buildings.” The committee of experts also noted that a stretch of the island’s southwest coast was at risk for landslides and rock falls.

#Newsworthy

Justin Trudeau pleads to Canadians as election kicks tomorrow.

Canada

Conservative leader Erin O’Toole has refused to say how many of his party’s candidates are unvaccinated and Trudeau has been reminding Canadians of that at every opportunity.

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The final day of campaigning in Canada ahead of Monday’s election, which is poised to be a tight battle, kicked off as Prime Minister Justin Trudeau of Liberals lashed out against his Conservative opponents one last time.

Polls indicate Trudeau’s Liberal Party is in a close race with the rival Conservatives and that it is unlikely on Monday to get the outright majority needed to govern without relying on an opposition party to remain in power.

“We do not need a Conservative government that won’t be able to show the leadership of vaccinations and on science that we need to end this (pandemic),” Trudeau said at a campaign stop in Montreal on Sunday.

Conservative leader Erin O’Toole has refused to say how many of his party’s candidates are unvaccinated and Trudeau has been reminding Canadians of that at every opportunity.

O’Toole has described candidates’ vaccine choice as a personal health decision, but a growing number of vaccinated Canadians are becoming increasingly upset with those who refuse to get vaccinated.

Trudeau supports making vaccines mandatory for Canadians to travel by air or rail, something the Conservatives oppose. And Trudeau has pointed out that Alberta, run by a Conservative provincial government, is in crisis.

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney, an ally of O’Toole, said the province might run out of beds and staff for intensive care units within days. Kenney has apologized for the dire situation and is now reluctantly introducing a vaccine passport and imposing a mandatory work-from-home order two months after lifting nearly all restrictions.

Trudeau gambled and called an early election to capitalize on his government’s handling of the pandemic. But the opposition has been relentless in accusing him of calling it for his own personal ambition.

“This pandemic election is vain, risky and selfish,” O’Toole said at a campaign stop in Ontario on Saturday.

A Conservative victory would represent a rebuke of Trudeau, whose opponent has a fraction of his name recognition. O’Toole, 47, is a military veteran, former lawyer and a member of Parliament for nine years.

The 49-year-old Trudeau channeled the star power of his father, the Liberal icon and late Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, when he won in 2015, but a combination of high expectations, overexposure and scandal have contributed to fatigue.

“A Liberal majority is possible but it’s not the most likely scenario,” said Daniel Beland a political science professor at McGill University in Montreal. “It is clear that the issue of vaccination mandates has allowed the Liberals to score points against the Conservatives, who keep emphasizing personal freedom.”

#Newsworthy

Lifeless bodies ‘suspected to be of migrants’ found on Belarus-Poland border.

Belarus – Poland

Belta said that three children, a man and an elderly woman were found near the body. They are all Iraqi citizens, Belta added.

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Polish authorities discovered the bodies of three foreigners at different locations near the border with Belarus, while nine other migrants were hospitalized, the country’s Border Guards said Sunday, while Belarusian authorities said they discovered the body of an Iraqi woman near the border.

In one case, local police spokeswoman Edyta Pacuk told regional Radio 5 that residents picking mushrooms in the forest near Poland’s border with Belarus and Lithuania came across three Iraqi men, one of whom was dead. The two other men were taken into police custody and hospitalized.

Border Guards spokeswoman Anna Michalska told The Associated Press that the bodies of two other foreigners were also found near the border with Belarus.

Prosecutors have opened investigations into the three deaths, the Border Guards said on Twitter.

In a separate incident, eight migrants — three women and five men — who got stuck in the swamps near Poland’s border with Belarus were saved Sunday by the joint efforts of Poland’s border guards, police, firefighters, military and airborne ambulance service, Michalska told Polish media. Seven of the migrants were taken to the hospital.

Michalska said over 3,800 attempts at illegal crossings from Belarus have been foiled so far in September, over 320 on Saturday alone.

Meanwhile, Belarus officials discovered the body of a dead Iraqi woman on its border with Poland after Warsaw implemented a state of emergency following a surge in migrants.

“Today, on September 19, the body of a woman of non-Slavic appearance was discovered within a meter of the Belarus-Poland border,” a border official told state news agency Belta.

The acting head of the “Usovo” border post, Yevgeny Omes, said there were “clear signs” on the ground of the body being “dragged” from Poland into Belarus.

Belta said that three children, a man and an elderly woman were found near the body. They are all Iraqi citizens, Belta added.

Belta reported that the dead woman’s husband said that Polish law enforcement drove them to the border and “under threat” forced them to cross over to the Belarusian side.

Poland last week imposed a 30-day emergency measure that bans non-residents from the area along its border with Belarus, the first time the country has used such measures since the fall of Communism in 1989.

It has also sent thousands of soldiers to the border and started building a barbed-wire fence.

In early August, Belarus said it discovered a dead Iraqi man near its border with Lithuania, claiming he was murdered.

Western governments have slapped Belarus with several sets of sanctions over a crackdown on dissent that began when protests erupted across the country following a disputed election last year.

Poland and Lithuania are building razor wire fences, have increased border patrols and have introduced a temporary state of emergency along their borders to stop illegal migration.

#Newsworthy

Russian polls end – Vladimir Putin’s party set to retain majority.

Russia

Russian social media meanwhile was inundated with reports of ballot stuffing and military servicemen patrolling polling stations.

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Russians voted on Sunday as a three-day election wrapped up the parliamentary election and President Vladimir Putin seemed set to retain a majority.

The vote comes in the wake of an unprecedented crackdown on the opposition this year, with Russian authorities jailing Putin’s best-known domestic foe Alexei Navalny and banning his organizations as “extremist.”

In the lead-up to this weekend’s vote, all of his top allies were arrested or had fled the country, with anyone associated with his groups kept from running in the parliamentary and local polls scheduled to close at 8 p.m. in each of Russia’s 11 time zones. Polling stations in the exclave of Kaliningrad will be the last to close at 6 p.m. GMT.

“There is no one to vote for,” Andrei, a 33-year-old IT professional who declined to give his last name, told Agence France-Presse (AFP) in Moscow.

But he cast his ballot in the “sham” elections, he said, to “at least show some kind of protest against the current government.”

As voting kicked off Friday, Apple and Google caused an uproar among Russia’s opposition after they removed Navalny’s “Smart Voting” app, which advised supporters which candidate they should back to unseat Kremlin-aligned politicians.

Sources familiar with Google and Apple’s decision told Agence France-Presse (AFP) the move was taken under pressure from Russian authorities, including threats to arrest the tech giants’ local staff.

Kremlin ‘blackmail’
By late Friday, the popular Telegram messenger had also removed Navalny’s “Smart Voting” bot, and by Sunday Google Docs and YouTube videos containing the lists of the recommended candidates had also been blocked.

Navalny’s allies said that Google had complied with demands made by Russia’s media regulator Roskomnadzor, with Leonid Volkov describing U.S. tech giants as having “caved in to the Kremlin’s blackmail.”

But Navalny’s team promptly made new Google Docs and YouTube videos with the lists of candidates, and in a final pitch to voters from behind bars, the Kremlin critic wrote on Instagram: “Today is a day when your voice truly matters.”

Turnout was at 40% as of Sunday afternoon, according to Russia’s elections commission.

Russian social media meanwhile was inundated with reports of ballot stuffing and military servicemen patrolling polling stations.

Critics also pointed to online voting, new limits on independent election observers and the polls being spread over three days as presenting opportunities for mass voting fraud.

No one to trust but Putin
As of Sunday afternoon, independent election monitor Golos – which authorities branded a “foreign agent” ahead of the polls – had tracked close to 4,000 reports of voting violations.

Elections chief Ella Pamfilova said her commission had received 137 reports of voting “coercion” and confirmed eight cases of ballot stuffing, with three polling station heads fired as a result.

Pamfilova also said the commission’s website was under “powerful” cyberattacks, adding that the majority were coming from the United States and Germany.

Going into the lower house State Duma vote, Putin’s United Russia party was polling at historic lows.

Surveys by state-run pollster VTsIOM showed fewer than 30% of Russians planning to vote for the party, down at least 10 percentage points ahead of the last parliamentary election in 2016.

While 68-year-old Putin remains popular, United Russia has seen its support drop as living standards decline following years of economic stagnation.

But the ruling party is expected to keep its two-thirds majority in the lower house, allowing it to push through legislative changes without resistance.

In addition to United Russia, 13 more parties are running in the elections. They, however, are widely seen as token opposition doing the Kremlin’s bidding.

Anna Kartashova, a 50-year-old pharmaceutical company manager in Moscow, said she voted for United Russia because she “simply trusts” Putin.

“We just don’t see anyone else we can trust in the current political landscape,” she said.

#Newsworthy

Qatar flight leaves Kabul with Americans, Europeans, Afghans.

Afghanistan – America – Kabul – Taliban – Qatar

The passengers will initially stay in a compound in the Qatari capital Doha that is hosting Afghans and other evacuees.

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The fourth flight carrying Afghans, European and American nationals left Kabul for Qatar, an official said Sunday.

The Qatar Airways operated flight was carrying citizens from Afghanistan, the U.S., Germany, Belgium, Ireland, Canada, France, Italy, Britain, Finland and the Netherlands, Qatari Assistant Foreign Minister Lolwa al-Khater wrote on Twitter.

A second Qatari official said there were 236 passengers, making it the largest evacuation flight since the withdrawal of U.S. and allied forces ended on Aug. 31.

“Qatar will continue its collaboration with international partners on efforts that ensure freedom of movement in Afghanistan, while working with various parties on the ground towards more general progress in the country moving forward,” the second official said.

The passengers will initially stay in a compound in the Qatari capital Doha that is hosting Afghans and other evacuees.

Qatar has emerged as a key interlocutor between the West and the Taliban. The Gulf state is a close U.S. ally, hosting the largest American military base in the Middle East, and has hosted a Taliban political office since 2013.

Many thousands of Afghans remain desperate to get out, afraid of what Taliban rule might hold. The Taliban have repeatedly said foreigners and Afghans with proper travel documents could leave. But their assurances have been met with skepticism, even with the departure of the Qatar flight.

U.S. lawmakers, veterans groups and others are pressing the Biden administration to ensure that former Afghan military interpreters and others who could be in danger of Taliban reprisals for working with the Americans are allowed to leave.

#Newsworthy

Death hits Etinosa Idemudia!

Nigeria

You lived an exemplary life. Without words you impacted not just me but everyone you came across.

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Death hits Nigerian comedian and actress Etinosa Idemudia on the 19th of September, 2021.

Comedian and actress, Etinosa Idemudia, is bereaved as she has lost her dad. Etinosa shared the sad news on her Instagram page this afternoon, September 19. She wrote;

”Dear dad, Engr S.O.
I know no one lives forever but I never thought I will be writing this so soon. When you left my house barely 2 weeks ago you said you will be back. Look I even made a big family diner in the garden so the next time you come we will all sit there and chill. So you won’t be coming back? This is by far the worst pain I’ve ever had to deal with. But It’s fine.
You were too good for this world anyway

You lived an exemplary life. Without words you impacted not just me but everyone you came across. You taught me the true meaning of righteousness- doing the right thing irrespective of how many people are doing the wrong. Always doing good was your lifestyle.

Talk about work ethics:
Never have I seen a more principled and organised person in my life with an intimidating curriculum vitae, lists of national and international achievements yet so humble.

Family/Social life:
You always put us first, your only social life was family and church.

Thank you for being my loving father, my role model, protector, provider, for impacting me with wisdom and the spirit of excellence upon and within you. Thank you for being a living manual of what a decent man should be. The perfect role model.

Goodbye dad. These tears I cry are just because I miss you and I selfishly want you here with me forever but to be honest, I take joy in the confidence that you are in a better place resting. Where there is no pain, no sickness, no strife, no struggle. I take joy in the knowledge that you will live forever. Forever in our hearts, in our memories, through your legacy and in my DNA. Tughator Baba

Engr. Etinosa Idemudia
Your cat (I always preferred snuggle bunny)
(Daughter)”

#Newsworthy

Bovi and wife, Kris celebrate 12 years together.

Nigeria

Today, we celebrate the day you gave up on finding anyone better than me

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Comedian Bovi and his wife, Kris Asimonye are celebrating their 12th wedding anniversary today September 19.

Bovi who shared a photo of their hands locked together, wrote;

12/12 ! @krisasimonye @officialbovi #anniversary

Bovi and wife, Kris celebrate 12th wedding anniversary

Kris who also shared a smiliar photo, wrote;

4,380 days today

Today, we celebrate the day you gave up on finding anyone better than me

happyanniversary to us

#Newsworthy

Johannesburg mayor – elected last month – dies in auto crash.

Johannesburg

The pedestrian and the other vehicle’s driver also died, but Mr Matongo’s two bodyguards are being treated in hospital for their injuries.

“3”
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Newly elected Mayor of Johannesburg, Jolidee Matongo has died in a car accident which occurred on Saturday September 18.

The 46-year-old politician who was elected a month ago, was returning from campaigning with South Africa’s president for voter registration in Soweto township ahead of local elections, when the accident happened.

Local media reported that his vehicle collided with a van while trying to avoid a pedestrian who had run on to the road. The pedestrian and the other vehicle’s driver also died, but Mr Matongo’s two bodyguards are being treated in hospital for their injuries.

Newly-elected Johannesburg Mayor dies in car accident

Commenting on his death, President Cyril Ramaphosa said;

“It is hard to comprehend this tragedy, given the vitality and passion with which Mayor Matongo interacted with me and residents of Soweto so shortly before his death.

“Nothing could prepare any of us for this sudden loss, which has deprived our nation’s economic centre of its second Executive Mayor in two months.”

Mr Matongo who became a mayor on 10 August following the death of his predecessor from COVID-19 complications, is the son of a Zimbabwean migrant and has been a political activist in South Africa since the age of 13, campaigning against apartheid – a legalised system of racism that was in place at the time.

He was a member of the governing African National Congress (ANC), and was expected to be at the forefront of the party’s campaign to win Johannesburg – South Africa’s commercial capital – in local government elections due on 1 November.

#Newsworthy

EndSARs damages: Igbosere courts beg for rehabs.

Nigeria – Lagos State – End SARs – Igbosere

While inaugurating the committee, the governor promised that it had put the criminal destruction behind it and was committed to the huge task of rebuilding the state.

“15”
minutes read

Almost a year after October 20, 2020, the #EndSARS crisis during which the Igbosere High and Magistrate Courts in Lagos Island were razed and vandalised by protesters, the Lagos State government is yet to start the rehabilitation of the structures. This is contrary to the promise made by Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu after the incident.

The agony of the destroyed court edifices peaks as the Lagos Judiciary prepares to hold its annual legal year service on September 27.

The parade of the guard ceremony, which usually takes place in front of Foyer Building, Lagos High Court, Igbosere, Lagos from time immemorial would not hold there this year due to the current state of the structure.

The colourful parade of the guard ceremony is part of the activities to mark the new legal year in Lagos. Unfortunately, that glitz and glamour would be missed this year.

It is a yearly tradition that takes place after the Muslim and Christian faithful have finished their thanksgiving services in the Church and Mosque. Workers of the judiciary, lawyers, judges, and retired judges, friends, and relatives usually gather in the court premises at Igbosere, being the oldest court in the country and a symbol of justice, to celebrate and usher in the new legal year.
The Igbosere High Court building is the oldest and most recognised judicial building in Nigeria.

Not less than 100 Police personnel and their musical band corps normally grace the occasion and form part of the Judiciary Guard Parade. They appear in their ceremonial dress, which gives visitors the opportunity to see a vibrant display of pomp and pageantry as a highlight of the legal ceremonial calendar.

Since last year October when scores of hoodlums burnt down the Igbosere High Court and the Magistrates’ Court, carting away computers, printers, files, fans, air conditioners, and other valuable items, the structure has remained a relics.

Some judicial workers and lawyers who spoke with The Guardian during the week lamented that nothing much has been done by the Governor Sanwo-Olu government to rehabilitate the structure, wondering how long it will take the government to put the structure back in shape.

Meanwhile, the Chief Judge, Justice Kazeem Olanrewaju Alogba has announced Monday, September 27, 2021, as the opening of 2021/2022 New Legal Year for the Lagos judiciary.

The annual thanksgiving for the year will hold at the Central Mosque, Nnamdi Azikwe Street, and Cathedral Church of Christ, 29, Marina Lagos simultaneously by 9 am prompt. While Parade of Guard follows at the TBS instead of the normal parade ground, Igbosere.

When The Guardian visited the High Court and Magistrate Court, the gates remained shut. Burnt vehicles and other exhibits still littered the premises, which hosted the courtroom of Justice Babajide Candid-Johnson, Justice Atinuke Ipaye, Justice Kudirat Jose, Justice Lateefa Okunnu, and Justice I.O Harrison, among others.

On November 4, 2020, Governor Sanwo-Olu signed an Executive Order to establish an eight-man Lagos State Rebuilding Trust Fund, headed by Mr. Yemi Cardoso to rebuild the razed edifice.

While inaugurating the committee, the governor promised that it had put the criminal destruction behind it and was committed to the huge task of rebuilding the state.

The government, he said, would be embracing new standards of governance and building stronger partnerships, which would enable the state to bequeath stronger institutions and cohesion among residents.

When contacted, the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Gbenga Omotosho dismissed the insinuation that the government has neglected the razed structure or is doing nothing to revive necessary activities in the affected places.

According to him, “Government has not neglected the relics neither is it drag footing as some are feeling. The destruction was massive and it would require a lot of money and expertise to fix.

“Remember that the government set up a committee to handle the rehabilitation and building of the edifices, which definitely requires public and private partnership. You may contact the chairman of the committee for further details.”

When also contacted on phone, Cardoso said, “First and foremost, this whole thing started as a committee of government but it is no longer a committee of government. It was subsequently decided that we would set up an independent arms-length entity limited, for credibility purposes. This will help us to have something independent because, at that point in time, there will be a lot of concerns over many things. What we have is a lot of public entities that will have the presence of private and government. It is now a Public-Private Partnership (PPP), which has its own status and laws for procurement policies and others. The governance and the legality of it will obviously face its own time. If it is a committee of government, it would have started work immediately but in this case, you have to ensure that it goes through CAC and other necessary procedure.”

Cardoso added: “Secondly, which is also very important, is that to rehabilitate the destruction you saw is more than putting bricks and mortar together. When we talk about rebuilding, we need to go beyond merely fixing the edifices; we have the task to as well help rebuild the future.

“To ensure that whatever bricks and mortar we put there stands the test of time, you have to make substantial provision to ensure that what happened last year does not repeat itself. So, in the process of doing all these, you need to reach out and make sure that you carry necessary stakeholders along and create confidence in what you are doing.”

#Newsworthy

Chelsea defeat Spurs – pays emotional tribute to Jimmy Greaves.

Chelsea – Tottenham Hotspur – Soccer

An image of Greaves wearing Tottenham’s famous white shirt was displayed on screens inside and outside the club’s north London stadium before kick-off.

“9”
minutes read

Chelsea extended their flying start to the season with a 3-0 win at London rivals Tottenham as both clubs paid an emotional tribute to their former striker Jimmy Greaves on Sunday.

Thiago Silva put Chelsea ahead early in the second half before N’Golo Kante bagged his first club goal since December 2019.

Antonio Rudiger rounded off Chelsea’s dominant display with a stoppage-time strike as Thomas Tuchel’s latest tactical masterclass paid rich dividends.

Tuchel’s unbeaten side sit top of the Premier League after winning four of their first five games.

Chelsea have only conceded one league goal so far this season despite a tricky fixture list that featured trips to Liverpool, Tottenham and Arsenal.

They face another test of their title credentials next weekend when champions Manchester City visit Stamford Bridge.

It was fitting that two of Greaves’ old clubs met on the day he passed away aged 81.

Hailed as “the finest marksman this country has ever seen” by Tottenham, Greaves is the club’s record scorer with 266 goals in 379 appearances between 1961 and 1970.

The charismatic Londoner started his career with a prolific spell at Chelsea and netted 44 times in 57 appearances for England, featuring in their 1966 World Cup-winning squad.

An image of Greaves wearing Tottenham’s famous white shirt was displayed on screens inside and outside the club’s north London stadium before kick-off.

In a moving tribute, several former Tottenham greats, including Greaves’ old team-mate Martin Chivers, lined up on the touchline to join both teams and the 62,000 crowd in a minute’s applause.

“Jimmy was an incredible player, a legend for club and country. It’s frightening really how good he was,” said Tottenham striker Harry Kane, who is second behind Greaves with 223 goals for the club.

Clinical instincts

Kane had urged Tottenham to “put in a great performance” in Greaves’ honour.

But the England captain was unable to land his first league goal this season as Chelsea showed the kind of ruthless instincts Greaves would have approved of.

In a tight first half, Chelsea’s Andreas Christensen shot just over from the edge of the area before Kai Havertz poked narrowly wide after Marcos Alonso’s cross caused chaos in the Tottenham defence.

With Chelsea keeper Edouard Mendy absent after complaining of a hip injury in midweek Champions League win over Zenit St Petersburg, Kepa Arrizabalaga made his first start this season.

Tottenham’s frenetic tempo meant Kepa had to stay alert and he rushed off his line to save bravely at Son Heung-min’s feet after the South Korean sprinted onto Giovani Lo Celso’s pass.

In a game-changing move, Tuchel sent on France midfielder Kante for Mason Mount at half-time, neutralising Tottenham’s high press in the process.

Where Chelsea had found it hard to take control before Kante’s introduction, now they were in the groove and Silva struck in the 49th minute.

Alonso’s corner found the Brazilian eight yards out and he rose above Dele Alli to thump a superb header past Hugo Lloris.

It took Eric Dier’s agile goal-line clearance to deny Chelsea a second when the defender blocked Alonso’s close-range strike from Cesar Azpilicueta’s pass.

But Chelsea were rampant and they struck again in the 57th minute when Kante’s 25-yard drive took a wicked deflection off Dier and trickled past the wrong-footed Lloris.

Tottenham lost heart as their second successive league defeat loomed and Rudiger rubbed salt into the wounds with a fine finish from Timo Werner’s cross in the final moments.

#NobleSport

MP3 » Sam Smith – You Will Be Found feat. Summer Walker

Song

Sam Smith comes through with a new song titled “You Will Be Found” featuring Summer Walker

Sam Smith – You Will Be Found

Year: 2021

Song: You Will Be Found

Artist: Sam Smith

Album: N/A

Featuring(s): Summer Walker

Producers:

Samuel Frederick Smith is an English singer and songwriter. They rose to prominence in October 2012 after being featured on Disclosure's breakthrough single "Latch", which peaked at number eleven on the UK Singles Chart. 

#NobleSong

[Album] » Lil Nas X – MONTERO

Album – Song

Lil Nas X comes through with a new album project titled “MONTERO” featuring Doja Cat, Elton John, Mega Thee Stallion and Miley Cyrus

Year: 2021

Song: N/A

Artist: Lil Nas X

Album: MONTERO

Featuring(s):

Producers:

Montero Lamar Hill, known by his stage name Lil Nas X, is an American rapper and singer-songwriter. He rose to prominence with the release of his country rap single "Old Town Road", which first achieved ...

#NobleSong

MP3 » Jon Bellion – I Feel It feat. Burna Boy

Song

Jon Bellion comes through with a new song titled “I FEEL IT” featuring Burna Boy

Jon Bellion – I Feel It

Year: 2021

Song: I Feel It

Artist: Jon Bellion

Album: N/A

Featuring(s): Burna Boy

Producer(s)

Jonathan David Bellion is an American rapper, singer, songwriter, and record producer. He was born and raised in Lake Grove, New York on Long Island. He is best known for his song "All Time Low," along with his many big writing and producing credits. Bellion has released four mixtapes and two studio albums. 

#NobleSong

Nigeria will further cooperate with China – Lai Mohammed.

Nigeria – China – National

Mohammed said this would be within the framework of the protocol on implementation of cultural cooperation and exchanges between Nigeria and China in Beijing, signed in 2018.

“6”
minutes read

The Federal Government has assured the government of China that Nigeria is committed to the continued expansion of bilateral cooperation between the two countries.

This assurance was given on Saturday by Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, at the mid-autumn festival and National Day Celebration of the Republic of China, organised by Hauxing Arts Troupe in Nigeria and the Chinese consulate in Abuja.

The Minister who was represented by the Director, Cultural Industries and Heritage in the Ministry, Rose Kwarsen, said the bilateral cooperation would be strengthened through cultural exchanges between Nigeria and China.

Mohammed said this would be within the framework of the protocol on implementation of cultural cooperation and exchanges between Nigeria and China in Beijing, signed in 2018.

He commended the organisers of the programme, the China industrial and commercial enterprises association and the Nigeria-China business council for their collective efforts in support of government policies on cultural and educational relationships between Nigeria and China.

“It is instructive to note that the bilateral relations between Nigeria and China date back to over five decades.

“The cultural relations between the two countries were concretised with the signing of the agreement on cultural and educational cooperation in March 1990.

“The cooperation between the two countries has witnessed several cultural activities and exchanges in the sphere of arts, music, dance, exhibition, cultural administration, training and capacity building of cultural officers.

“And recently, the development of cultural industries centres in Nigeria amongst others,” Mohammed said.

#Newsworthy

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