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Showing posts from March, 2014

N370bn paid to PHCN workers -BPE

The Bureau of Public Enterprises has said a total of N370bn had so far been remitted for the payment of former employees of the defunct Power Holding Company of Nigeria. This is contained in a statement made available to the newsmen and signed by the Head, Public Communications of the Bureau, Mr Chigbo Anichebe, on Monday in Abuja. The statement said the committee on the settlement of labour liabilities in the power sector chaired by the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Power, Dr Godknows Igali, made the payments through the Office of the Account General of the Federation. “The Director-General of the BPE, Mr Benjamin Dikki, has stated that 45,136 staff out of 47,913 staff have been verified to date for payment. “A total of N370bn has been remitted to the OAGF for payment of the former employees of the defunct PHCN. “Also after the bureau’s nationwide field verification of the possible 4,194 PHCN retirees, 2,931 or their next of kin have been verified leaving 1,163 ye

EU denies losing African trade, investment battle

The European Union has retained a substantial share of Africa’s Foreign Direct Investment, contrary to claims that the region has lost its share to Africa’s emerging partners. The Head of the EU Delegation to the African Union, Gary Quince, said trade between the two regions remained on a high growth path. However, the AU is concerned about Europe’s diminishing role in Africa’s trade and investment scene. With up to 60 heads of state expected to attend the fourth European-Africa Summit, both sides are examining the value of their partnership in qualitative terms. “We retain a huge mutual interest,” Amb Quince said on the trade relations between the two regions ahead of the Brussels Summit. EU officials insisted that contrary to claims that Europe’s role was actually on a decline in Africa, European aid to Africa had remained at 45 per cent of global aid inflows. Besides, European imports from Africa have been growing at an average of 46 per cent annually. AU Commission De

Wike has not resigned as minister -PDP

AHEAD of the 2015 governorship election in Rivers State, the Peoples Democratic Party has dismissed speculations in some quarters that the Supervising Minister of Education, Chief Nyesom Wike, has resigned his appointment and membership of the Federal Executive Council. The state chapter of the PDP said in a statement issues in Port Harcourt on Monday that Wike was still in charge of the Education Ministry at the federal level. The statement signed by the Special Adviser on Media to the State Chairman of the party, Mr. Jerry Needam, called on party members and the general public to disregard speculations that the minister had resigned his position. Though Wike, who is the leader of the PDP in Rivers has not officially declared his intention to run for the governorship position, it was gathered that the minister was nursing the ambition to succeed his former boss, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi. According to the statement, “The attention of the Peoples Democratic Party has been drawn to

46 to contest Ukraine’s presidential election

A total of 46 persons have applied to contest Ukraine’s presidential election scheduled for May 25, the Central Election Commission said on Monday as it finished the application processing. “So far seven persons got registered and 12 others were denied the chance, while the rest 27 will have to wait till April 4 to see if they are allowed to enter the race,” the Commission said. Presidential campaigns have already got underway in Ukraine since President Viktor Yanukovych was ousted in February, with former the Prime Minister, Yulia Tymoshenko. According to the Central Election Commission, businessman Petro Poroshenko is emerging as top contender.

Wamakko swears in new commissioners, special advisers

Governor Aliyu Wamakko of Sokoto State on Monday swore-in two new commissioners and two special advisers. The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the commissioners are Alhaji Tukur Alkali and Alhaji Ibrahim Husseini, while Alhaji Harande Mahe and Alhaji Musa Gudu are the special advisers. The four appointees are yet to be given portfolios. Wamakko said the appointment was necessitated by the need and exigency of public service which the electorate had mandated his administration to discharge. He told the appointees that their positions required vision, courage, considerable sacrifices and above all, the fear of Allah. “The fear of God is invariably the key to success in every human endeavour,’’ the governor said. According to him, the new appointees are men of integrity who are dedicated and committed to the socio-political development of the state

Kaduna to spend N2bn on SMEs, Agric

The Kaduna State Government said it would soon commence the disbursement of N2bn for the development of Micro Small Medium Enterprises in the state. The Commissioner for Finance, Alhaji Ismaila Aliyu, disclosed this on Monday in Kaduna at a workshop for managers of micro finance banks from the 23 local governments in the state. He said the money would also be used to finance agricultural activities. According to him, the aim is to promote economic activities and open up new areas of employment. Aliyu said the Bank of Agriculture and the state government had already contributed N500m respectively under a programme tagged, ‘Farmers Entrepreneurship Scheme’, to boost agriculture in the state. The commissioner added that another one billion naira had been contributed by the Bank of Industry and the the state government for issuance to medium and small scale enterpreneurs from April. “Part of the conditions is that women would receive 60 per cent of the loan while the youth will get 40

$1.69m fraud: Court dismisses Ajudua's bail application

A Lagos High Court, Ikeja has again denied a suspected advance fee fraud kingpin, Mr. Fred Ajudua, bail in an alleged $1.69m fraud case. It was Ajudua’s fifth bail application since the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission instituted the charges against him in 2003. Justice Kudirat Jose, before whom the defendant was on February 5, 2014, re-arraigned along with his co-accused, Charles Orie, ruled on Wednesday that the fresh bail application lacked merit. The court had earlier allowed Orie to continue enjoying the bail earlier granted him by the former trial judge, Justice Olubunmi Oyewole. Ajudua, who was ordered to remain in detention after the re-arraignment, had, through his lawyer, Chief Charles Edosomwan (SAN), filed his fresh bail application on the grounds of “serious” ill health. Justice Jose in refusing the application on Wednesday, cited Ajudua’s antecedents of tampering with evidence and absconding from trial when he was initially granted bail. Though, the judge in

'I am working on my divorce' - Joseph Benjamin

Actor Joseph Benjamin was a guest on Rubbin Minds yesterday Sunday March 30th where he opened up about his divorce. When the host, Ebuka Obi-Uchendu, asked him if he was finally divorced, the father of two said he was 'working on it.' Ebuka also took him up on rumours of violence and infidelity being the reason for his separation, Benjamin said it wasn't true. What he said below... "A lot was misconstrued and I will not hold anyone responsible for it because everyone is entitled to their opinion and for me I believe that when you embark on a journey like that, it is something that, it requires the two people involved to have a certain form of understanding. Let me go a bit spiritual with you here, the Bible says can two work if they do not agree? So there should be some form of agreement. You guys should have this certain joint that kind of links you up together and if to an extent its not there and one feels that there is a need for you to like maybe, move

Kwara compensates 2,000 land owners, farmers

The Kwara Government has compensated more than 2,000 traditional land owners and farmers whose land were acquired for public use in Lafiagi, Edu Local Government Area of the state. The Director-General, Bureau of Lands, Alhaji Yusuf Abdulwahab, disclosed this in Ilorin on Monday while presenting cheques to beneficiaries in 19 communities in the area. He named the beneficiary communities to include Bindofu-Essun, Puta, Efagi, Estu-salam, Npagulu, Dumagi, Cheche and Landan. He said the land was acquired by the defunct Federal Military Government for the establishment of the Lafiagi Sugar Company. He said the company later became moribund and was sold by the Bureau of Public Enterprises to BUA International Limited, a subsidiary of BUA Group. Abdulwahab said BUA could not access the property due to agitation by traditional land owners who insisted on being compensated because the land was not originally paid for. He said that the state government was playing a mediatory role in th

Injured Gasquet out of Davis Cup quarter-finals

Richard Gasquet has pulled out of France’s Davis Cup quarter-final tie against Germany this week with a lower back injury, the French tennis federation said on Monday in Paris. The FFT said in a statement that captain Arnaud Clement called up Edouard Roger-Vasselin and Michael Llodra, to make up for the absence of Gasquet, who requires eight days of rest. Clement, who also called up Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Julien Benneteau and Gael Monfils, has until Thursday’s draw to name his final team. Germany is already without Tommy Haas and Florian Mayer, who are both injured, for the tie taking place in Nancy, Eastern France from Friday, April 4.

UK donates $13.7m to S'Sudan

The UK has released 13.7 million dollars to the FAO to help affected families in South Sudan to restore their agriculture-based livelihoods and stave off hunger. Sue Lautze, Head FAO’s team in South Sudan, said the emergency funding was coming at a critical time because over seven million people were facing the risk of hunger. He said FAO had appealed for 77 million dollars to assist more than 2.3 million people with immediate support designed to help them plant rapidly. Lautze said of the seven million people considered being at risk of food insecurity, over 3.7 million people were estimated to be facing acute or emergency levels of food insecurity in February. He said as a result of this, UN agencies and non-governmental organisations had called for 1.27 billion dollars to meet urgent humanitarian needs in the first half of 2014. Lautze said FAO has mobilised more than six million dollars to date and is in discussion with a variety of donors for another 25 million dollars, becaus

Earthquake hits Tibet

An earthquake measuring 5.5 on the Richter Scale hit Nyima County of southwest China’s Tibet Autonomous Region at 1.10 a.m. on Monday, according to the China Earthquake Networks Centre. The centre said that the epicentre was monitored at 31.4 degrees north latitude and 86.5 degrees east longitude with a depth of 10 kilometres. The Governor of Nyima County, Migmar Cering, said there had so far been no reports of casualties or property damage. He added that the county government had sent two work groups to the epicentre to further check the condition. Cering said the epicentre lied between two townships, but the tremor was strongly felt in the county seat and many residents were awakening from sleep. Report said Nyima, with an altitude of over 5,000 metres, was a quake-prone region, adding that it administered 14 townships though its northern part was uninhabited

Egypt trial of Al Jazeera journalists resumes

Al-Jazeera English journalists have been back in court in Egypt after spending nearly 100 days in jail since their arrest. Peter Greste, Mohamed Fahmy, and Baher Mohamed, who have been held in a Cairo prison, appeared in court for the fourth time on Monday. The three men are charged with spreading false news and aiding the blacklisted Muslim Brotherhood of deposed President Mohamed Morsi, who was overthrown by the army in July. Al Jazeera rejects the charges against its staff and continues to call for their immediate release. Greste and seven co-defendants appeared in a caged dock on Monday wearing white prison uniforms, AFP news agency reported. “After three hearings, it’s apparent that there’s no case against us. No witness has anything that incriminates us,” Fahmy told AFP, just minutes before the trial resumed. Before the proceedings began, Greste’s brother Mike said his brother was “strong… but 100 days in prison must have left its effect on him”. Monday’s hearing comes a da

Russia begins Ukraine border pullout

Ukraine’s defence ministry have said it has noticed a gradual withdrawal of Russian troops from its border that may be linked, to Washington’s latest push for a diplomatic solution, to the worst East-West crisis since the Cold War. Oleksiy Dmytrashkivskiy, Ukraine’s defence ministry spokesman, said on Monday that he could not confirm how many soldiers the drawdown involved or the number of troops still stationed at Russia’s border with its former Soviet satellite. “In recent days, the Russian forces have been gradually withdrawing from the border,” Dmytrashkivskiy told the AFP news agency. US and EU officials estimated over the weekend that Russia’s sudden military buildup along Ukraine’s eastern frontier had reached 30,000 to 40,000 soldiers. Kiev’s Centre for Military and Political Studies analyst Dmytro Tymchuk said on Monday that his sources had told him that Russia had only 10,000 soldiers remaining near the border by Monday morning. The Ukrainian defence ministry official

Confab delegates adopt 70% voting mode

The ongoing National Conference on Monday adopted 70 per cent majority as the voting mode to be used in arriving at decisions at the conference. This followed a motion by Sen. Iyorchia Ayu, representing the Former Senators Forum, seconded by former Akwa Ibom Governor, Obong Victor Attah, representing the Former Governors’ Forum. The delegates adopted the resolution at the resumption of plenary in Abuja. Proceedings at the conference were stalled last week as delegates failed to reach consensus on whether or not to adopt 66 per cent or 75 per cent majority as the voting mode on decisions taken at the conference. The particular issue in contention was Order VI Rule 3 of the Procedure Rule, which provides that any decision in the conference shall be decided by at least a three-quarter majority. The Rule reads: “Any questions proposed for decision in the conference shall be determined by consensus and when this is not achievable, by a three-quarter majority of the delegates present and

US hires ex-German coach Vogts as special adviser

The US have hired former Germany coach and World Cup winner Berti Vogts as a special adviser until the World Cup in Brazil. The move was described as one that would boost their chances of getting through the group stage, the team said on Monday. The US has been drawn with Germany, Ghana and Portugal for the preliminaries at the June 12 to July 13 finals. Vogts, who won the trophy as a player in 1974 and coached Germany and current US coach Juergen Klinsmann to their last international title at Euro 1996, has also coached Nigeria. He is currently the Azerbaijan national team coach. “We are absolutely thrilled to have Berti join us as an adviser,” Klinsmann said in a statement. “He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience, both as a player and a coach, and he knows what it takes to succeed at the highest level.” Vogts will help development of training plans, prepare scouting reports and will travel to watch opponents in the run-up to the tournament. Nicknamed ‘the terrier’ for h

Sugar Consumption Accounts for a Big Chunk of Healthcare Costs

America spends two and a half times more on healthcare per capita than any other developed nation, quickly approaching $3 trillion EVERY year. With this kind of expenditure, you would expect our citizens to be the healthiest in the world, but this is not the case. In fact, the US ranks dead last in quality of care— Americans are sicker and live shorter lives than people in most other industrialized nations. So where's the money going? The Credit Suisse Research Institute's 2013 study 1 "Sugar: Consumption at a Crossroads" found that 30 to 40 percent of US healthcare expenditures are for diseases directly related to the overconsumption of sugar! We spend more than a trillion dollars each year fighting the damaging health effects of sugar. This, combined with the massive waste, fraud, and inefficiency of our healthcare system, make it completely unsustainable over time. US Government Actually Encourages Sugar Consumption Excess sugar causes obesity as well as

Secretion Secrets: Things You Didn't Know About Earwax

Earwax, known technically as cerumen, is produced by glands in your ear canal. Made up mostly of dead skin cells, earwax also contains other substances, including lysozyme, an antibacterial enzyme, fatty acids, alcohols, cholesterol, and squalene. 1 In fact, earwax isn't "wax" at all; it's a mixture of water-soluble secretions. And although you probably don't give your earwax much thought, it actually represents one of your body's most ingenious protective mechanisms. Earwax isn't simply a hygienic nuisance… far from it. Earwax Benefits: Why Your Ears Need Wax Your ears produce earwax constantly so that, ideally, you'll maintain just the right amount in your ear canals. Unless you have an earwax blockage, which I'll discuss below, it's actually best to leave your earwax alone – don't try to remove it with cotton swabs or other devices. In fact, if you have too little earwax in your ear canal, your ears may feel dry and itchy. This is

The Truth About Fluoride Becoming More Widely Known

Fluoride is a poisonous substance added to many municipal water supplies across the US, Canada, and elsewhere without the permission of the residents. Is there a model that communities can follow to remove it from their water supply? The short answer to this question is yes . Dr. Paul Connett, a chemist by training and director of the Fluoride Action Network (FAN), is recognized worldwide as a leader in the movement to eliminate fluoride from municipal water supplies, and I'm pleased to be working with him to achieve this goal. He's been active in this area for decades, becoming an environmental activist shortly after joining St. Lawrence University in 1983. In 1985, he got involved with the Zero Waste movement, fighting incineration and promoting alternatives to waste burning. Those earlier efforts recently culminated in the publication of the book, The Zero Waste Solution: Untrashing the Planet One Community at a Time . 1 Then, in 1996, his wife alerted him to the pro

Scientists Probe Dark Chocolate's Health Secrets

The health benefits of dark chocolate are all the rage right now, with increasing numbers of studies pointing to its rich concentrations of beneficial antioxidants and polyphenols. This applies particularly to dark chocolate because it contains a higher concentration of cacao seeds than milk chocolate, and therein lies the secret to its health-promoting powers. Cacao refers to the plant, a small evergreen tree of the species Theobroma cacao , which is cultivated for its seeds, also known as cacao beans or cocoa beans. The term “chocolate” refers to the solid food or candy made from a preparation of cacao seeds (typically roasted). If the cacao seeds are not roasted, then you have "raw chocolate," which is also typically sweetened. Cocoa , on the other hand , refers to the powder made from roasted, husked, and ground cacao seeds, from which most of the fat has been removed. Knowing the meaning of these terms is important, because if you think you’re improving

Spring Cleaning, the Non-Toxic Way

By Dr. Mercola Spring is right around the corner, and as the weather warms up, it’s the perfect time for the age old ritual of spring cleaning your home. The featured video also gives several pointers for “dusting off” your health and fitness routines, to demarcate a fresh start. In this article, I’ll focus on spring cleaning your home, as this is an area where many unwittingly introduce more unnecessary toxins into their lives. The typical American home contains about three to 10 gallons of toxic materials 1 in the form of household cleaning products. Indeed, the very things you use to clean your house are actually among the primary sources of toxins and indoor air pollution you expose yourself to on a regular basis. Even "green" alternatives can contain harmful ingredients. It’s unfortunate, but the terms “green” and “natural” are really nothing more than marketing terms, and they do not automatically equate to safety. Moreover, many ingredients do not even hav