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Saturday, 15 August 2020

Most Nigerian Girls In Lebanon Were Not Smuggled — Lebanese Envoy

8/15/2020 11:32:00 am 0

 Lebanese Ambassador to Nigeria Houssam Diab on Friday August 14, stated that most Nigerian girls in Lebanon were not trafficked but entered the country legally.


Diab who said this during a visit to the Foreign Affairs Minister Geoffrey Onyeama in Abuja, further stated that the Nigerian ladies who recently cried out for help from Lebanon did so because they could no longer be paid by their employees as a result of the recent economic downturn. 


He added that the suspension of the issuance of visas to domestic workers since May had also contributed to the situation.


The Ambassador said; 


 “As of May 1, the Lebanese government has stopped issuing visas for domestic workers coming from Nigeria.

“This will definitely stop any new cases from arising; they will not be able to get into Lebanon, the specificity for the issue at Lebanon is that all these girls are entering into Lebanon legally.

“There is no human trafficking illegally into Lebanon.

“About 90 per cent of the agencies involved in it are Nigerian agencies and they apply through Lebanese agencies in Lebanon through the security general to acquire work visas and work permits for the ladies.

“This is how it is; so by stopping the issuing of the visas, we would have stopped new cases from arising.”


Diab further disclosed that the Lebanese government and the Nigerian government has successfully evacuated 500 Nigerian ladies from Lebanon with 200 more to be evacuated soonest. The Ambassador added that there are about 5,000 Nigerians living in Lebanon, and majority of them are gainfully employed.


Speaking during the meeting, Geoffrey Onyeama said the evacuation process has shown the strong bilateral relations between the two countries in spite of the recent explosion in Lebanon. 


The minister added that the temporary ban on visa issuance, will give Nigeria time to review the whole situation and to ensure that we get our labour laws in place.

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Nigeria’s Labour Ministry Denies Complicity In Human Trafficking

8/15/2020 11:26:00 am 0

 The Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment has denied complicity in human trafficking, following claims of illegal issuance of Recruiters’ Licence to Private Employment Agencies (PEAs). 


According to the spokesperson of the Ministry of Labour and Employment Charles Akpan, they've not issued any recruiters’ licence with respect to the placement of Nigerian citizens abroad in breach of the relevant provisions of the Labour Act CAP L1 2004.


Akpan noted that there is a Labour Migration Desk which seeks to ensure and create employment opportunities for Nigerians to work legally abroad, without fear of molestation, exploitation or any form of inhuman treatment or being subjected to unfair labour practices.


He said; 


“Furthermore, at no time did the Federal Government issue any moratorium against issuance of recruiters’ licence.

“The ministry is empowered by sections 23, 25 and 71 of the Labour Act Cap L1 LFN 2004 to licence fit and proper persons to operate as labour contractors and private employment agencies.

“As part of the strategies to reduce irregular labour migration whilst promoting regular migration, the ministry has put in place a Labour Migration Desk to address the associated problems with the movement of skilled and low skilled persons within and outside the country.

”It is apparent from Section 25 of the Labour Act CAP L1 2004 that persons who meet the requirements for International Licences are eligible to engage in domestic recruitment as well.

“Furthermore, a recruiting agency may recruit low, middle, or highly skilled workers for placement within and outside the country. 

“The recruited worker must be brought before an authorised labour officer and certified by that officer as duly recruited in accordance with the provisions of the law.

“It is therefore obvious that the possession of a recruiters’ licence for foreign employment does not confer or guarantee automatic clearance for a recruiter to recruit citizens for work abroad without first complying with the procedures provided in the Labour Act.

“This is before workers travel under a contract of employment with the recruiter.

“To set the records straight, at no time did any person, body or committee request the ministry to suspend its statutory duty of issuing recruiters’ licence to qualified PEAs as being peddled by some uninformed persons.

“It is therefore not true, but a Legislative misrepresentation, for the ministry to be accused or held responsible for the huge numbers of Nigerians trafficked through the Nigerian borders every year.

“The ministry should be commended for instituting a watertight licensing regime which guarantees regular migration of Nigerians to work legitimately in other countries, and for being the Secretariat of the Nigerian Task Force against Forced Labour, Child Labour and Human Trafficking.

“Those who for reasons best known to them have mounted an orchestrated campaign to malign the image of the ministry are therefore by this medium advised to discontinue as facts are sacred."

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NJC Recommends 4 Nominees For Appointment As Supreme Court Justices

8/15/2020 09:21:00 am 0

 Four judicial officers have been recommended by the National Judicial Council (NJC) for elevation to the supreme court.


Two out of the four nominees were part of the panel that dismissed the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Atiku Abubakar's petition which challenged the victory of President Muhammadu Buhari at the 2019 poll.


The National Judicial Council (NJC) recommended the elevation of 20 judges to different courts including the Supreme court, following its second virtual meeting which was held on August 11 and 12. 


The justices who were recommended for elevation to the Supreme Court are Tijjani Abubakar, representing the north-east zone; Mohammed L. Garba from the north-west; Abdu Aboki from the north-west, and Mohammed M. Saulawa, also from the north-west.


Garba was the judge who led the five-man presidential election petition tribunal which heard the petition filed by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Atiku Abubakar. Aboki was also on the panel.


In October 2019, the NJC had recommended Adamu Jauro, Emmanuel A. Agim, Samuel C. Oseji, and Helen M. Ogunwumiju (all appeal court justices) for appointment as justices of the Supreme Court, but President Buhari is yet to forward the names of the justices to the senate for confirmation as required by section 231(2) of the constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria 1999 as amended.


The apex court currently has 12 justices, as against the constitutionally required number of 21 at maximum.

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Trump's Ex-lawyer Claims He Helped Trump Commit Tax Fraud

8/15/2020 09:17:00 am 0

Donald Trump's former lawyer, Michael Cohen, has released a teaser of his new bombshell book, revealing sordid details about his time as Donald Trump’s lawyer.


Cohen, serving a three year sentence, was imprisoned for lying to Congress. 

He was released from prison in May 2020 amid concerns over Coronavirus but returned to prison in early July after tweeting about plans to publish his book.


His book is expected to be published in full in September after the US justice department dropped a gag order restraining the book's publication.

In excerpts of the book released on Friday August 14, Cohen claims he helped the president commit tax fraud, created a secret back channel to Vladimir Putin, covered up affairs of the president and witnessed a ‘golden showers’ incident at a sex club in Las Vegas. 


He said the book will be based on personal anecdotes and ‘documentary evidence.’ 

According to Cohen, he speaks from a position of knowledge, saying that for 10 years, he was Trump’s last call at night and first in the morning and that he was ‘in and out’ of Trump’s office ’50 times a day.’

He also claims Trump tried to ‘insinuate’ himself in Vladmir Putin’s world and his ‘coterie of corrupt billionaire oligarchs.’

 ‘I know where the skeletons are buried because I was the one who buried them,’ Cohen wrote in the foreword, which was published on a website for his tell-all book ‘Disloyal: A Memoir. The true story of the former personal attorney to President Donald J. Trump.’ 

‘In some ways, I knew him better than even his family did because I bore witness to the real man, in strip clubs, shady business meetings, and in the unguarded moments when he revealed who he really was: a cheat, a liar, a fraud, a bully, a racist, a predator, a con man,’ Cohen said.


He said he was a ‘demented follower’ who acted as Trump’s bully, fixer and designated thug.

‘I stiffed contractors on his behalf, ripped off his business partners, lied to his wife Melania to hide his sexual infidelities, and bullied and screamed at anyone who threatened Trump’s path to power,’ Cohen wrote. 

‘From golden showers in a sex club in Vegas, to tax fraud, to deals with corrupt officials from the former Soviet Union, to catch and kill conspiracies to silence Trump’s clandestine lovers, I wasn’t just a witness to the president’s rise—I was an active and eager participant.’ 


Cohen also spoke about the investigation by former special counsel Robert Mueller into Russia’s interference in the 2016 election and his role on the Trump Tower Moscow project. 


In his book he claims Trump ‘cheated’ in the election with ‘Russian connivance’, though he does not say how. 


Cohen says: ‘Trump had colluded with the Russians, but not in the sophisticated ways imagined by his detractors. 

‘I also knew that the [Robert] Mueller investigation was not a witch-hunt. Trump had cheated in the election, with Russian connivance, as you will discover in these pages, because doing anything -and I mean anything – to “win” has always been his business model and way of life.’  


Cohen also said that the book will show the President’s behaviour behind closed doors’, including Trump’s ‘pointedly racist remarks against such Black leaders as President Barack Obama and Nelson Mandela, neither of whom he viewed as real leaders or as worthy of respect by virtue of their race’. 

‘Our cell phones had the same address books, our contacts so entwined, overlapping and intimate that part of my job was to deal with the endless queries and requests, however large or small, from Trump’s countless rich and famous acquaintances,’ he writes. 


He also said he feared he would be killed by Trump’s supporters when he gave evidence to Congress after flipping and co-operating with Mueller. 

‘The President of the United States wanted me dead,’ he writes, describing Trump as a ‘mob boss’ who would never directly order a hit but instead spoke in a way ‘carefully calibrated to convey his desires and demands’.

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329 New Cases Of Coronavirus Recorded In Nigeria

8/15/2020 09:10:00 am 0

The Nigerian Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) on Friday August 14, announced that 329 new cases of Coronavirus were recorded in the country. 


A breakdown of the new cases across states in the country is as follows; Lagos-113, Kaduna-49, FCT-33, Plateau-24, Kano-16, Edo-15, Ogun-14, Delta-13, Osun-10, Oyo-8, Ekiti-6, Bayelsa-6, Akwa Ibom-5, Borno-4, Enugu-4, Ebonyi-3, Rivers-2, Bauchi-1, Nasarawa-1 , Gombe-1, Niger-1. 


There are now 48,445 confirmed cases of Coronavirus in the country and 973 deaths has been recorded. 35,998 patients who recovered from the disease have also been discharged. 


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Friday, 14 August 2020

Genevieve Nnaji Appointed As Ambassador For Toronto International Film Festival 2020

8/14/2020 08:47:00 pm 0

 Genevieve NNaji has been chosen as an ambassador of the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) 2020.


The Nollywood actress and producer has joined the list of 50 celebrated filmmakers and actors invited as the ambassadors of the TIFF.


This comes a month after The Academy of Motion Picture, Arts and Sciences, released its list of new members and Genevieve was among the 819 members invited by The Academy alongside other invitees such as Priyanka Chopra, Brie Larson, Natalie Portman, Olivia Wilde, and more.


The esteemed Toronto International Film Festival which will kick off from September 10 to September 19, 2020,  is opting for digital screenings and virtual red carpets in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.


Many of the ambassadors will engage with audiences through interactive digital experiences and events. For instance, filmmaker, producer and screenwriter Cianfrance will lead a dialogue session and actor-producer, David Oyelowo will be a guest speaker as part of the TIFF Rising Stars program, Deadline reports.


Geoff Macnaughton, Senior Director of Industry & Theatrical, TIFF said: "In a time of disruption, professionals from around the world still look for occasions to come together, share innovative ideas, buy and sell content, and find creative ways to collectively forge ahead towards a safer, healthier, and inclusive future. This year, delegates can expect to find community, connection, inspiration, and talent — the foundation that will serve as the way forward."

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FIFA, CAF, NFF Celebrate Jay Jay Okocha As He Turns 47

8/14/2020 08:00:00 pm 0

World football governing body, FIFA, African football governing body, CAF, the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) and football clubs Bolton and Eintratcht Frankfurt on Friday August 14 took to Social media to celebrate African football legend, Jay Jay Okocha as he turned 47 .


Enugu born Okocha, started his career with Enugu Rangers in 1990 before moving to FC Saarbrucken and then Eintracht Frankfurt.


Okocha signed for the Bundesliga side in December 1991 and made 90 appearances for the club during his four-year stay.


He also played for Turkish Super Lig side Fenerbahce in 1996 before joining PSG for £14 million to become the most expensive African player at the time.


In 2002 he joined Bolton Wanderers and is widely regarded as one of Nigeria's most talented footballers of all time.


Happy birthday to him.


See tweets below..


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Angolan Ex-president's Son Get 5-years In Jail For $500m Fraud

8/14/2020 07:52:00 pm 0

 The Supreme Court in Angola has handed a five-year jail sentence to Jose Filomeno dos Santos, the son of the country's former president, for $500m fraud.


The 42-year-old was accused of trying to embezzle up to $1.5bn from the sovereign wealth fund, which he oversaw from 2013 to 2018.


He was later charged with stealing $500m from the fund and transferring it to a bank account in Switzerland.


His father, José Eduardo dos Santos, led the country for 38 years. He was president from 1979 until he resigned in 2017, and was replaced by his former defence minister, Joao Lourenço.


On Friday August 14, judge Joao da Cruz Pitra jailed Jose Filomeno dos Santos, also known as Zenu, for five years. 


"For the crime of fraud ... and for the crime of peddling influence ... the legal cumulus condemns him to a single sentence of five years in prison," judge Joao da Cruz Pitra said.


Three co-defendants, including the former governor of the National Bank of Angola (BNA), Valter Filipe da Silva, were sentenced to between four and six years in prison for fraud, embezzlement and influence peddling.


Zenu is the first member of the former presidential family to be prosecuted as part of an anti-corruption campaign led by President Joao Lourenco, who came to power in 2017.


Back in February, Angolan investigators froze the assets of Zenu's billionaire half-sister, Isabel dos Santos.


She is being probed for a long list of crimes in Angola, including mismanagement, embezzlement, and money laundering during her stewardship of the state-run oil giant, Sonangol.

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APC-Led government Has Failed Nigerians – Wike

8/14/2020 06:40:00 pm 0


Governor Nyesom Wike has said that the All Progressives Congress-led Federal Government has failed Nigeria.


The Rivers state Governor who said this while receiving the newly inaugurated Executive Council members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) who paid him a courtesy visit at the Government House in Port Harcourt, stated that the ruling APC has failed to deliver on its electoral promises. 


Wike urged PDP members to focus on governance rather than playing politics as Nigerians are hoping on the PDP.


He said; 


“APC has failed Nigeria. Nigeria is hoping on PDP. There is nothing anybody can talk about again. This is no more time for politics.

“You have promised and you have failed, nothing to try you again. We have tried APC and it has not worked.

“Nigerians have realised that it is better they stay with PDP that has the future, that has the interest of Nigeria than the party that gives excuse every day.

“We are tired. You know there is a problem with Nigeria and you make promises that if you vote for me, I will do this. Now they have voted for you, yet you cannot solve the problem. The party cannot solve any problem."

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Teacher Sentenced To Life Imprisonment For Raping 10-year-old Girl

8/14/2020 05:33:00 pm 0

 A teacher has been sentenced to life imprisonment for raping a 10-year-old girl.


Omotayo Adanlawo was sentenced by an Ondo State High Court sitting in Akure.


The judge, Justice Samuel Bola, who gave the judgement, said the defendant failed to give convincing evidence and testimony to prove his innocence in the rape allegations.


The sexual assault incident occured on August 24 2018. Adanlawo who used to attend the girl’s father’s church, allegedly went to the victim’s house at Iju in Akure North Local Government Area of Ondo State when she was alone and raped her after which he threatened her not to tell anyone else she will die.


After the incident, the victim was said to have complained of stomach pains as she could not walk afterwards. Her mother took her to a hospital for examination where it was revealed that the girl had been raped.


According to a family source, after rigorous interrogation, the little girl opened up and said Adanlawo had sexual intercourse with her.


The case was then reported at Iju-Itaogbolu Divisional Headquarters before being transfered to Ala area command, and a medical report revealed that there was actual penetration into the 10-year-old girl’s private part.


Adanlawo, in his statement before the police, claimed the young girl told him to lay on her after asking for 50 naira and chinchin, but during cross examination he claimed that he was at his home at the time of the incident.


He also claimed to be battling with hernia and as such was not medically fit to have had sexual intercourse with the girl.


Justice Bola in his judgement, however, said the prosecution was able to prove there was penetration in the rape allegation against Adanlawo.


He also said the defendant gave no medical report to prove his condition as well as any evidence to suggest he was in his house as claimed on the day of the incident.


The Judge subsequently sentenced Adanlawo to life imprisonment in line with section 358 of the crimanal laws of Ondo State.

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