Monday, July 30, 2012

NIGERIA: Tuesday Papers, July 31, 2012




COMPILED BY AMBROSE EHIRIM

GROUND REPORT: Nigerian Advocacy Group Caution’s on Mpape Demolition Exercises

THIS DAY LIVE: D' Tigers in Threshold of History against Lithuania

VANGUARD NIGERIA: 2012 Budget: Okonjo-Iweala insists on 56% implementation

VANGUARD NIGERIA: Outcry as oil spill takes over River Ethiope

VANGUARD NIGERIA: Ex-militants protest non-payment of allowances

GUARDIAN NIGERIA: U.S. may take drug war to Nigeria, others

GUARDIAN NIGERIA: Nigerians detained in Trinidad seek visiting Jonathan’s help

PUNCH: Lawyer alleges poor crowd management at Dana crash site

PUNCH: Policeman killed, victim shot in rescue operation

THE TRINIDAD EXPRESS: Kambon honoured by Nigerian leader's visit

SUPER SPORT: Enyimba takes it slow

FIFA: Sunshine Stars shooting for the sky

TRINIDAD & TOBAGO EXPRESS: Wrap it up, African style

ENSTARZ: NBC Olympic Schedule; Streaming for Day 4, Tuesday- Men's Basketball, Swimming, Gymnastics

LEADERSHIP NIGERIA: D’Tigers’ Coach Eyes History

LEADERSHIP NIGERIA: Brutality: Police Get New Code Of Conduct

Brightlife Music Hosts Single Release Party For Hip-Hop Sensation "Emaculent"


For Immediate Release Victoria Ihenacho, NICOCUSA 468 North Camden Drive 2nd Floor Beverly Hills, CA 90210 Email:info@nicocusa.com



Brightlife Music Hosts Single Release Party for Hip-Hop Sensation "Emaculent"

Los Angeles, C.A. (July 28, 2012) Bright "L.A. Bright" Enabulele, a Los Angeles based Nigerian music mogul and the President and CEO of Brightlife Music, will debut his headline Artist, Hip-Hop sensation Emaculent aka Emac and host the highly anticipated Single Release party of his hit single "Roll Up" from his upcoming album "15 Min To E", on July 31st 2012 at Café Entourage in Hollywood.Brightlife. Musics latest musical phenom Emaculent, has taken the music industry by storm with his hard pressing lyrics and silky-smooth delivery. Emaculent has worked with legendary artists such as Ray J, E40, and Lazy Bone. "Roll Up" the single, is exclusively distributed by Bungalo/Universal Music Group and will be available for download on Amazon and iTunes on July 31st, 2012. Emaculent is also slated to embark on a worldwide tour to promote "15 Min To E".

About the Nigerian Chamber of Commerce USA (NICOCUSA):

The Nigerian Chamber of Commerce-USA (NICOCUSA)is a US based business league founded in 2002, which serves as a liaison between business communities and their interests in the United States and Nigeria. Each year, NICOCUSA facilitates lucrative partnerships and contracts between businesses here in the United States and Nigeria, which have created jobs and literally changed the lives of thousands of people all over Nigeria.

The Nigerian Chamber of Commerce-USA 468 North Camden Drive 2nd Floor Beverly Hills California 90210 United States

The Ambrose Ehirim-Claret Onukogu Q & A Interview




Claret Onukogu is Ph.D candidate at Walden University and aspires to be a film-maker and interest in working for the United Nations. In this interview, she talks about her growing up, going to school in Nigeria, Nollywood and her problems with the Miss Nigeria In America Beauty Pageant since her crown.

Excerpts:

Tell me about yourself.

I am the first child from a family of 8 and a native of Imo State, Nigeria who resides in the United States. I am an MBA/ Healthcare Administration degree holder from South University in Savannah, Georgia, and a PhD candidate from Walden University. I am also one of the new faces and rising stars in Nollywood with work ranging in cinema, soap-opera, home-videos, and co-host of a television show (music and vibes). Some of my awards include Who’s Who among American High School students, Who’s Who among American College students, Certificates of Academic Excellence, Outstanding French Student, National Dean’s List (sophomore), Minority Academic Awards, Academic Scholarships, Miss Nigeria in America (2009-2010), and Outstanding Nigerian (World Ebony Network). I am intelligent, spiritual, brilliant, articulate, hard-working, compassionate, and admirable.

What inspired you to be doing the stuff that you now do in the Nollywood entertainment industry?

I have always aspired to be an actress particularly in Nollywood at a young age, but I wanted to complete my graduate level education before I actively pursue a career in acting. As a child, I watched many Nollywood movies and I enjoyed them. I admired the culture, language, and stories and it kept me connected to home. Acting has always been a part of me even as a child and before I decided to become a professional in the field, I did it as a hobby and I loved it, besides, the industry has evolved and is taking a new and different dimension.

How would you compare Nollywood to Hollywood?

Although Nollywood is growing at an incredibly fast pace, it has not quite reached the level of Hollywood. I am optimistic that in the next few years, it will be close to Hollywood in terms of the technology, special effects and in other areas where it lags behind.

Is Nollywood getting better?

The industry is changing. Nollywood is now in cinemas and I happen to be one of the faces appearing on the big screen. Many producers are taking the risk to redefine and create new faces of Nollywood. There are young and talented actors and actresses on the rise. Some of the actors and actresses who have been in the industry for a while have ventured into filmmaking and most of them attended renowned schools to study the art and perfect their skills. I was very impressed at the work ethics and professionalism, talent, enthusiasm and educational backgrounds of some of the rising producers and directors that I was fortunate to work with; they were simply amazing and continue to search for ways to introduce new materials and reinvent the ones that are already in existence. I am definitely impressed at the frequency of growth of the industry.

You went to school both in Nigeria and the U.S. From your experience, how do you compare both educational systems?

I schooled in Nigeria for a few years during my childhood and the educational system then might have changed because it has been a very long time. I liked the experience of being educated back home because it goes beyond the regular academic environment. I learnt culture, language, values and morals as an African woman. I also like the experience of being educated in the United States because it broadened my horizon and exposed me to individuals and cultures from different parts of the world. The educational systems from both parts of the world made me who I am today and I cherish the experiences that I garnered from them. I am very grateful to God and my parents for giving me such an opportunity.

Let's talk about the Miss Nigeria in America Beauty Pageant. You were crowned queen in 2009, right??

Yes, I emerged as the winner for the Miss Nigeria in America 2009 pageant.

I read where you still claim to be Miss Nigeria in America after three years you have been crowned. In what supposedly should have been held annually, how come you still hold the crown?

I still have the crown because MNIA Inc. and its organizers have not been able to stage another pageant since September 5, 2009. My reign ended officially on September 5, 2010, but I have not been able to handover to anyone since no pageant has been held by the organization since 2009 and the public expects to see me crown a new queen who competed in the pageant system and earned the title.

who is Oluwayimika Angel Adelaja?

Oluwayimika Angel Adelaja was the first runner-up for the Miss Nigeria in America 2009 beauty pageant and long-term friend of the organizers at MNIA Inc. She now supposedly claim to be Miss Nigeria in America 2010-2011 with a false public message from her, MNIA Inc and its organizers that I relinquished my title and handed over to her while in actuality I have already served and completed my reign exactly a year after I was crowned from September 5, 2009 to September 5, 2010. Adelaja is currently facing legal actions for impersonation and defamation of character. She is a queen that MNIA Inc and its organizers falsely created for the continuity of the organization because they have not been able to afford any pageants. By doing so, Angel Adelaja has been posing with a purchased and unmerited crown and sash as the current queen with false justification to the public for the questionable act claiming that I (Claret Onukogu), the former queen waiting to hand over to a successor who competed and merited a crown at a pageant, relinquished my title for her due to a pursuit of an acting career in Nollywood which is FALSE because she bears a different title (MNIA 2010-2011) with her crown and sash which has absolutely nothing to do with me and my reign as MNIA 2009-2010. Most individuals are baffled by this unscrupulous act by MNIA Inc and its organizers because if a crown, sash and title can be given to an individual without a competition for the year that she claims to be queen, then the purpose of pageantry is defeated.

Why is she claiming to be the current Miss Nigeria in America? Since there hasn't been any contest from when you were crowned three years ago, how was she declared winner of the beauty pageant contest?

Mr. Ehirim that is exactly the lingering question that confuses me and everyone else; since my reign ended exactly a year after I was crowned, I moved on with my acting career and other activities. The answer should be given by Oluwayimika Angel Adelaja in court as to why she has been posing with a sash, crown and title that is unmerited. She should be able to answer the question effectively and defend her title without mentioning my name because I never handed my crown and sash to her, MNIA Inc or its organizers, since my reign and responsibilities as Miss Nigeria in America 2009-2010 ended a year after I was crowned like other queens in the MNIA Inc. pageant system.

From what I read, what happened to the show since you were last crowned?

No show has been held by MNIA Inc. and its organizers since the last pageant in 2009. I have not spoken to them after the conclusion of my reign. I traveled out of the country a few weeks before the end of my reign to engage in some charity work in Nigeria, which was highly publicized and recognized, and to begin my acting career a few months after my reign ended. I was astonished when people began to contact me with questions concerning my supposedly forged resignation and relinquishing of title as Miss Nigeria in America 2009-2010 according to MNIA Inc and its organizers. The first time that I received a call pertaining to this issue, I had my crown and sash in front of me. Even though the credibility of the organization and the integrity of its organizer became questionable to me while working with them, I could not believe that they would think about committing a dubious act and using my name for its justification. Apparently, six months and a few days after my reign ended, they lied on Facebook and on their website that I relinquished my title and resigned as Miss Nigeria in America 2009-2010 which is an expensive lie and defamation of character. Since I was out of the country, I could not take any actions towards the issue until I returned to the United States. For the past few months, I have been asked by several individuals and the media about the false and slanderous news until I decided to take legal actions towards the organization and Oluwayimika Angel Adelaja and to grant interviews to the media in order to clear my name and answer the questions that have been directed to me by many individuals. I do not sanction the use of my name in any crooked and questionable act and no one including the MNIA Inc and its organizers has the right or permission to dent the reputation that I have built for myself. I could not believe that MNIA Inc and its organizers had the audacity to fabricate an expensive lie with my name in public for their own interest. From the beginning of my reign (September 5th, 2009) to its end (September 5th, 2010) MNIA Inc specified verbally and in writing that my reign comes to a halt a year after I was crowned and it did; despite the fact that there were no contracts, agreement or conversation stating otherwise and none binding me to the organization stating that my reign will extend more than a year, the organizers of the pageant who reiterated to me during my reign on numerous occasions that they could not have another pageant due to financial and other organizational commitments, thought that it would be a brilliant idea to lie to the public that I relinquished my title in order to justify them crowning a runner-up from 2009 as Miss Nigeria in America 2010-2011 on February 2011 without a pageant which is an insult to those of us who worked hard and earned our crowns. To say that I am highly disappointed in MNIA Inc. and its organizers is an understatement. Please examine a few of the messages that I received from the organizers of the pageant during my reign and its pattern of change over the years. I have also included a response from Oluwayimika Angel Adelaja to someone making inquires about her being the current queen.

Email from Chichi Dike-Emeson “CEO, Executive Director, and Founder of MNIA Inc.)” On May 3, 2010 speaking concerning the end of my reign and management by regal affairs: “The meeting will discuss your management with Regal Affairs and my expectations from you and Regal Affairs. So please come with your ideas and we will draft a game plan for your reign from now till October.”

On July 22nd 2010, the executive director of the MNIA pageant sent me an email also addressing the Regal Affairs manager of the organization stating verbatim in her exact words “September 5, 2010 is the end of your reign and I will ensure that MNIA submits to you all the is due to you. I need a close-out report from you and that should include a reflection of your reign as Miss Nigeria in America 2009. As you know we will not be having any pageant this year but the next Miss Nigeria in America will be on September 3, 2011 in Washington DC. Queen, I also need a close-out report from Regal Affairs also for management of the Miss Nigeria in America 2009.”

Close out report from the executive director on July 29, 2010:

“Dear Claret,

As we come to the end of your reign, MNIA, Inc. wants to thank you for all the work you have done in the past 12 months. As you may be aware, we will not be having the Miss Nigeria in America Pageant in 2010. Financial and other organizational commitments have forced us to move this event in 2011. Due to your hectic schedule and your ongoing work with the entertainment industry, your reign will end on September 5, 2010. MNIA has decided that in order to continue the work of MNIA, Inc, and our charitable/ non-profit mission, the 1st runner-up Miss Angel Adelaja will become Miss Nigeria in America 2010. Please note that the organization will have your EEE bonds to you before your reign is over. Please let us know if there is any thing that you may need. We wish you the best in your endeavors.”

“Los Angeles, CA – February 18, 2011 - MNIA, Inc. has announced today that the first runner-up in the 2009 MNIA Pageant - Angel Adelaja will assume the role and responsibilities as the Miss Nigeria in America 2010. In a statement issued by the President of the Organization, Angel will fulfill all remaining responsibilities of the former Queen, Claret Onukogu. Speaking on this change, ChiChi Dike Emeson, Executive Director said “We gracefully accept the resignation of the Miss Nigeria in America 2009 as of September 5, 2010.”

Oluwayimika Angel Adelaja: July 26, 2012 (Response from Angel to an individual making inquiries as to how Angel became Miss Nigeria in America 2010-2011):

“Anyway I was 1st runner up in the 2009 pageant, but the winner was asked to resign for reasons I am not at liberty to say, and as it is stated in the regulations, the 1st runner up assumes the title in situations such as these. Unfortunately there hasn't been a pageant since 2009, but there will be one this September in Washington DC and I will be handing over the crown to the winner.”

Information on the company website and a word document about Angel on google states:

“Dr. Angel Adelaja is the reigning Miss Nigeria in America (2010 -2011). Angel was the first runner up in the 2009 Miss Nigeria in America Pageant and assumed the role and responsibilities of the former queen Claret Onukogu who relinquished her title to pursue an acting career.”

Mr. Ehirim, please, you be the judge does this sound like I resigned or more like falsification of information and defamation of character? My observations and experience with MNIA Inc and the organizers of the pageant during my reign caused me to dissociate myself from them for almost two years now. It is frustrating and annoying for me to go back to issues concerning them again. It is obvious that MNIA Inc and its organizers are not straight forward and trust worthy. Besides inconsistency and questionable acts, they still owe money in the form of savings bonds and other rewards to me, many runner-ups, winners, and some other former contestants who merited items such as plaques. They lied and did not meet up to their obligations during my reign. Apparently, I am not the only one who is displeased with the unscrupulous behaviors of MNIA Inc and its organizers. From last year till recently, some of the winners who were owed for years before I came on board have approached me concerning the issue of payment or financial assistance that we never received from MNIA Inc as promised and we were planning to find a lawyer collectively to write a letter to the organization. I later decided to sue them because I felt like it will be the most appropriate thing to do at this point since it has become a trend by the organization to owe individuals especially the young ladies who competed in the pageant system. It is disheartening to know that an organization that supposedly prides itself of bringing Nigeria to positive light and empowering women is fraudulent, crooked, manipulative and prone to falsification. This was a message from the executive director on May 19, 2010 concerning my personal information for the supposed savings bond or money which I never received “Hi Claret, I cannot process your bonds without a SSN number so if you want to call me and give it to me so I can process in the bank, then you can call.” I am not the only person who completed the bond forms and never received the money and other rewards that was due to me. Legal actions have also been taken towards MNIA Inc and its organizers concerning the possession and possible use of my personal information. The United States federal government has been made aware of this problem and is actively working towards the issue. The last thing that Nigeria needs is another scam, fraud or dubious act attached to its name, not even in the form of pageantry. Please take note of the report from Better Business Bureau concerning the Miss Nigeria in America pageant:

This Business is not BBB accredited Miss Nigeria in America Pageant/ Danick, INC Phone: (202) 460-2919 1717 K Street, NW Suite 600, Washington, D.C. 20036 http://missnigeriainamerica.org! Miss Nigeria in America Pageant/ Danick, INC is Believed to Be Out of Business ! Additional Information BBB file opened: February 22, 2005 Contact Information Principal: ChiChi Dike, Company Contact Business Category BEAUTY PAGEANTS # of businesses with 1-4 complaints in the past 36 months. Miss Nigeria in America Pageant/ Danick, INC is in this range.

I do understand that the organizers at MNIA Inc. are entitled to do as they please with their organization but they are not permitted to use my name in any questionable act to rectify their mistakes or set-backs. Common sense will tell anyone that a supposedly yearly pageant will have winners whose reign ends yearly. If Miss Nigeria in America 2009 was crowned on September 5, 2009 then September 5, 2010 will mark the end of her tenure. I cannot possibly resign on the day that my reign ends. The fact that MNIA Inc. and its organizers can falsify senseless lies makes one wonder about the integrity and the sanity of any individual who will do such. I did not have any form of communication with Chi-Chi Dike-Emeson, her husband Kenneth Emeson and friend Queen Gideon Uchekwe, who are the main organizers and producers of the MNIA pageant, on September 5, 2010 to discuss or hand over any form of resignation. No one forced me to resign. My reign ended when it was supposed to like other queens who served for one year and Oluwayimika Angel Adelaja should defend her crown and title as MNIA 2010-2011 (however it was obtained) without any claims that I relinquished my title for her because if I did, she will have my crown, sash and title as MNIA 2009-2010. I earned my title, crown and sash and never gave them to anyone. She is assuming her own responsibilities as MNIA 2010-2011 and not mine. If the completion of my reign that ended in one year translates to a false imaginary resignation to MNIA Inc. and its organizers, then it means that they are referring to every queen who won and completed their one year tenure with the organization. I went beyond the call of duty to conclude my roles and responsibilities as a queen. MNIA Inc, its organizers and Oluwayimika Angel Adelaja should please formulate another lie to tell the public as usual. The ones they falsified have turned sour. Individuals in the public are not fools, they know how credible organizations conduct pageants. It is imperative that Africans, particularly Nigerians, should join hands in cleansing our image by eradicating fraudulent, dubious and falsifying entities that bear our names and put a halt to the activities of the individuals behind those acts that drag our names to the mud especially in the international community.

Besides what's been going on, what are your interests?

I will like to venture into the production aspect of entertainment particularly film-making. I am also very interested in working with the United Nations.

What projects are you working on now?

I have been working on my PhD in Epidemiology; I have also been taking some classes for film production and screenplay writing. Humanitarian work is still a priority in my life regardless of how busy my schedule might be; I create time to do charity work. I am currently shooting a program in the U.S. that will be shown on Nigerian television networks. I have been privileged to own and operate a webstore with variety of goods at affordable prizes (http://claretijeoma.fscstore.com).

Saturday, July 28, 2012

NIGERIA: Sunday Papers, July 29, 2012




COMPILED BY AMBROSE EHIRIM

CHANNELS TV: Nigeria produces most of W/Africa’s illegal weapons – Army

VOICE OF AMERICA: Nigeria, Tunisia Tip Off London Olympic Men's Basketball

PM NEWS NIGERIA: Captain Ore reports Aviation Minister’s threat

VANGUARD NIGERIA: How we will create new states – Dep. Senate President Ekweremadu

VANGUARD NIGERIA: Ex-deputy gov’s ADC shot dead

VANGUARD NIGERIA: ‘Nigerians can’t be going to India, US for simple diagnosis’

PUNCH: ACN, LP, PDP elect candidates for Ondo gov poll

PUNCH: Third Mainland Bridge: 3.4 million people used ferries in two months

THE GUARDIAN NIGERIA: Boko Haram: JonathanUnder Fresh US Pressure

THE GUARDIAN NIGERIA: Anambra Oil Field Ready For Commissioning Next Month

CHANNELS TV: Okorocha recalls 27 PDP council chairmen

SUN NEWS ONLINE: Abonnema waterfront demolition: drugs, arms sold like groundnuts –Govt

SUN NEWS ONLINE: Mother from hell: Woman stabs son to spite ex-hubby

THIS DAY LIVE: Hillary Clinton to Visit Nigeria Next Month

SUPER SPORT: Hoopers rule Nigeria again

DAILY TIMES NIGERIA: Pepsi Football Academy celebrates 20th anniversary

DAILY TIMES NIGERIA: Security networking will tackle terrorism - Experts

DAILY TIMES NIGERIA: Six die in Edo cult clash

Thursday, July 26, 2012

NIGERIA: Friday Papers, July 27, 2012




COMPILED BY AMBROSE EHIRIM

WASHINGTON POST: US returns 11 cultural artifacts to Nigeria in NY ceremony; recovered from airport shipment

AGI IT: One every 3 pregnant women is HIV positive in Nigeria

THE TIMES OF INDIA: Nigeria asked to punish killers of two Indian traders

THE GUARDIAN NIGERIA: Nigeria to procure $1.2bn on cassava, rice processing plants from China

THE GUARDIAN NIGERIA: Highest budget for defence, a fallacy, says Army chief

THE GUARDIAN NIGERIA: Their bra, hair wig as ‘hideout for drugs’

THIS DAY LIVE: “You Must be Creditworthy to Operate Airline in Nigeria”

VANGUARD NIGERIA: Kidnapped doctors freed

VANGUARD NIGERIA: 10 years younger in London

PUNCH: Women can vote us out in 2015 – Jonathan

PUNCH: Empower police to deal with Boko Haram – Buhari

SUN NEWS: Dana crash: Coroner issues Red Cross, Julius Berger, others bench warrants

BUSINESS DAY: Nigeria seeks $60bn war chest against economic turmoil

TRINIDAD EXPRESS: T&T to host Nigerian president for Emancipation

THIS DAY LIVE: With New Inventions, Army Aims to Check Terror Attacks

THIS DAY LIVE: Subsidy Fraud: Names of 25 Indicted Companies Revealed

BLOOMBERG: Shell to Invest $4 Billion in Two Nigerian Oil and Gas Projects

THE GUARDIAN NIGERIA: Okorocha’s battle with PDP council bosses

Ancient statues smuggled from Nigeria being returned home


Who stole 2,000-year-old figurines made by Nok culture still under US investigation

Two of the figurines American officials formally returned to the Nigerian government on Thursday. These roughly 2,000-year-old sculptures are the work of the Nok culture and were stolen from the Nigerian national museum.

On display for the ceremony were seven pieces of figurines, which resembled bits of cylindrical gingerbread men thanks to the orange hue of the terracotta..

By Wynne Parry, Live Science/MSNBC

A handful of roughly 2,000-year-old figurines began a journey back home to Nigeria Thursday after being seized at John F. Kennedy Airport in New York City.

At a repatriation ceremony held at Homeland Security Investigation offices on the west side of Manhattan, Nigeria's Consul General Habib Baba Habu took legal possession of the terracotta sculptures, which he said had been stolen from the country's national museum.

Habu called today a special day. "It is the day that America has extended a gift of friendship that we will never forget," he said.

Ancient artifacts

On display for the ceremony were seven pieces of figurines, which resembled bits of cylindrical gingerbread men thanks to the orange hue of the terracotta. The two best preserved pieces, a head and torso, and a pair of legs standing on a pedestal, appeared to have once belonged to a single figure.

All are the work of the Nok culture, which existed within what would become Nigeria from more than 2,000 years ago, before disappearing in the early centuries of the first millennium. (Timeframes for their existence vary.) [Image Gallery: Ancient Rock Art of Sudan

Each of the six terracotta heads bore a distinctive face, which is typical of Nok sculpture, Habu said, explaining that the ancient artisans drew from individual people in normal life, depicting them riding horses or donkeys, for example, or with farm tools.

Nok artisans were prolific, many similar figurines have left Nigeria, Habu said: "Many of them are at museums all over the world, some were taken out legally."

Nigeria has laws that control the export of Nok pieces; however, the sculptures have flooded out of the country. In the 1990s, so many reached the European art market that the prices dropped sharply, according to a New York Times article in 2000.

A modern journey

During today's ceremony, two ornate, hardwood boxes sat near the figures. The statues had been packed within these boxes while being shipped as air cargo into the United States.

During a routine inspection in Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris more than a year ago, French customs officers spotted the statues. Although they could not seize them, they notified Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and Customs and Border Protection (CBP) in New York, the items' destination. American officials met the suspicious cargo when it arrived, officials said.

An investigation has since verified that these sculptures were cultural artifacts, not handy crafts and personal effects as described on customs' documents. That investigation is ongoing, and officials declined to give details on who they believed was responsible for attempting to smuggle the items into the United States.

"Often times brokers here in the United States receive a large number of shipments for a large number of people then distribute them. Often times, they have very little to do with the actual shipment," said James Hayes, special agent in charge of HSI New York.

This appears to be the case in this instance, said Robert Perez, director of CBP's New York Field Operations.

It's not yet clear who was responsible for removing them from Nigeria.

"From what we know the items were stolen from the national museum in Nigeria," Habu said. "There is no report of the items being stolen so now the director-general of the Nigerian museum and antiquities is now being subjected to an investigation." [Faux Real: A Gallery of Art Forgeries

Returning home

American officials plan to also return three additional items — two more Nok figurines and a carved ivory tusk — that were seized in Chicago.

Habu said he plans to have everything shipped back to Nigeria in August, where they will be returned to the museum.

He pointed to the two matching pieces, which appeared to have come from a single figurine.

"I am going to ask the government if they will agree to get expert restorers to put this back," he said.

Officials declined to assign a monetary value to the statues, saying as cultural artifacts they are priceless.

Each of the terracotta heads bore a distinctive face, which is typical of Nok sculpture.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Democrats' ideal voter: illegal alien, single mother, convicted felon




By Ann Coulter, Syndicated Columnist/St. Augustine Register

Before taking the oath of office, Barack Obama vowed to fundamentally transform the United States. He has certainly done so. For example, Obama has:

destroyed the job market; sent billions of taxpayer dollars to Wall Street, companies overseas, his campaign contributors and public sector unions; forced the passage of a wildly unpopular national health care law on a purely partisan vote; come out for gay marriage; refused to enforce laws on illegal immigration; eliminated the work requirement for welfare.

How can a country that elected Ronald Reagan have Obama tied in the polls with Mitt Romney?

The answer is: It’s not the same country.

Similarly, when two successful, attractive multimillionaire women in California can’t beat a geriatric leftist like Jerry Brown or an old prune like Barbara Boxer, that’s not the same state that elected Ronald Reagan twice, either.

The same process that has already destroyed California is working its way through the entire country.

While conservatives have been formulating carefully constructed arguments, liberals have been playing a long-term game to change the demographics of America to get an electorate more to their liking.

They will do incalculable damage to the nation and to individual citizens, but Democrats will have an unbeatable majority. Just like California, the United States is on its way to becoming a Third World, one-party state.

Teddy Kennedy’s 1965 Immigration Act was expressly designed to change the ethnic composition of America to make it more like Nigeria, considered more susceptible to liberal demagogues.

Since 1965, instead of taking immigrants that replicate the country’s existing ethnic mix, we’ve been admitting mostly immigrants from the Third World. At the same time, people from the countries that sent immigrants to this country for its first several centuries have been barred.

Eighty-five percent of immigrants now come from “developing countries.” (How are they ever going to develop if their people are all on the dole over here?)

The “browning of America” is not a natural process. It’s been artificially imposed by Democrats who are confident of their abilities to turn Third World immigrants into government patrons.

It’s worked. According to the Center for Immigration Studies, 57 percent of all immigrant households in the U.S. get cash, Medicaid, housing or food benefits from the government — compared with 39 percent of native households. The highest rates are for immigrants from the Dominican Republic (82 percent), Mexico and Guatemala (tied at 75 percent).

Isn’t the idea to get immigrants with special skills? If you can’t even get a job, by definition, you do not have a special skill. Other than voting Democrat.

There’s a strange asymmetry in how this matter can be discussed. Liberals and ethnic activists boast about how America would be better if it were more Latino, but no one else is allowed to say, “We like the ethnic mix as it is.”

That would be racist. By now no one even tries to disagree.

Liberals’ other plan to expand the Democratic rolls has been to destroy the family.

Every time someone gets a divorce, Democrats think: We got a new Democratic voter! Every time a child is born out of wedlock: We got a new Democratic voter! And if the woman has an abortion — we got a new Democratic voter!

According to recent polls, Obama has a negative job approval rating of 45 to 49 percent. The reason the polls are tied between Obama and Romney is that single women support Obama by a 2-to-1 margin. The Democrats’ siren song to single women is: Don’t worry, the government will be your husband.

Our prisons are overflowing with the results of the Democrats’ experiment of subsidizing illegitimacy. Children raised by a single mothers commit 72 percent of juvenile murders, 60 percent of rapes, have 70 percent of teenaged births, commit 70 percent of suicides and are 70 percent of high school dropouts.

Controlling for socioeconomic status, race and place of residence, the strongest predictor of whether a person will end up in prison is being raised by a single parent. (The second strongest predictor is having a tattoo.

A 1990 study by the Progressive Policy Institute showed that after controlling for single motherhood, the difference in black and white crime disappeared.

Human beings in God’s image are being born into ruined lives at rates that boggle the mind. Illegitimate children are never given a chance, their lives destroyed by this social pathology. And Democrats say: More Democratic voters!

Throw in felons voting, and the Democrats have an unbeatable majority.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

NIGERIA: Wednesday Papers, July 25, 2012




COMPILED BY AMBROSE EHIRIM

LEADERSHIP NIGERIA: 2015 Polls: INEC Mulls Accommodating Nigerians In Diaspora

LEADERSHIP NIGERIA: Women Are Taking Over The Role Of Bread Winner In Nigeria

THIS DAY LIVE: ‘BOI Intervention Funds May Fail to Achieve Objectives’

NEWS DAY: Osi Umenyiora calls for players to be more like Tim Tebow

BUSINESS DAY: Brokers chart road map for government insurances

BUSINESS DAY: Ibori’s unclaimed $15m to be forfeited

BUSINESS DAY: EFCC arraigns PDP chairman’s son, 12 firms over subsidy fraud

VANGUARD NIGERIA: Turai vs Patience: FG opts for out-of-court settlement of land dispute

VANGUARD NIGERIA: Suspect in N32.8bn Police pension scam loses bid to defreeze accounts

THE GUARDIAN NIGERIA: Breakthrough as new TB drug emerges

CHANNELS TV: Jonathan mourns Atta Mills’ death

DAILY TRUST: Residents protest demolition of Abuja suburb

DAILY SUN: Dying Nigerian languages

Monday, July 23, 2012

NIGERIA: EVICTION OF MAKOKO RESIDENTS IN LAGOS


Makoko is a slum neighborhood located in Lagos, Nigeria. At present its population is considered to be 85,840; however, the area was not officially counted as part of the 2007 census and the population today is considered to be much higher. Established in the 18th century primarily as a fishing village, much of Makoko rests in structures constructed on stilts above Lagos Lagoon. Today the area is essentially self-governing with a very limited government presence in the community and local security being provided by area boys. The government of Lagos State commenced the demolition of the shanty settlement on Monday , 16th July 2012 after giving the residents a 72 hour eviction notice. Thousands of the settlers were affected by this government action. This is the end of over 100 years of settlement by this community. (SOURCE: WIKI)

Female hawker paddling canoe and selling garri in the Makoko slums of Lagos which is being demolished by the Lagos State Government after a 72-hour eviction notice to vacate the area.

.Two underage children paddling canoe hawking. The government of Lagos State commenced the demolition of the shanty settlement on Monday , July 16, 2012 after giving the residents a 72 hour eviction notice. Thousands of the settlers were affected by this government action. This is the end of over 100 years of settlement by this community


Lagos-Nigeria: Female hawker paddling canoe and selling garri in the Makoko slums of Lagos which is being demolished by the Lagos State Government after a 72-hour eviction notice to vacate the area.

PHOTO CREDITS: IDOWU ASUMAH/DEMOTIX

Sunday, July 22, 2012

NIGERIA: Monday Papers July 23, 2012



COMPILED BY AMBROSE EHIRIM

BELLA NAIJA: BN At 6 – Our Stories, Our Miracles: From Earning N3,000 a Month in Aba to Building a Hair Empire! Ugo Igbokwe of “Make Me” is Living the Nigerian Dream

THE GUARDIAN NIGERIA: Tension in Bakassi as Cameroun deploys troops, arms

THE GUARDIAN NIGERIA: Nigeria needs new foreign policy road-map, say Reps

THE GUARDIAN NIGERIA: Third Mainland Bridge: 107 more days of pain ahead

THE GUARDIAN NIGERIA: UBA Foundation features Ngugi wa Thiong’o today

THIS DAY LIVE: Union Bank Risks Delisting over Violation of Listing Requirement

VANGUARD NIGERIA: Nigerian media wins 2012 Free Press Africa Award.

VANGUARD NIGERIA: Jonathan’s Budget Implementation: Reps prepare articles of impeachment

VANGUARD NIGERIA: Leave Nigeria if you can’t improve on service delivery, Senate to GSM operators:

VANGUARD NIGERIA: Nnaji to PHCN workers: Ask your union leaders whereabouts of your pension funds

PUNCH: N’Delta group threatens to attack NNPC installations

LEADERSHIP NIGERIA: Ex-AIG Lauds Abubakar Over N50, 000 Minimum Wage For Police.

LEADERSHIP NIGERIA: Guber Race: Ondo Will Not Submit To Outside Forces – Mimiko

LEADERSHIP NIGERIA: Opposition To Dislodge PDP In 2015 – Buhari

THE SALT LAKE TRIBUNE: Conference: End of AIDS ‘is in sight’

ST. AUGUSTINE RECORD: Coulter: Democrats' ideal voter: illegal alien, single mother, convicted felon

ASIA ONE NEWS: Global popularity of Korean language surges

Saturday, July 21, 2012

U.S. Drug War Expands To Africa, A Newer Hub For Cartels


William Brownfield of the State Department, in Honduras in March, aims to improve nations’ ability to deal with trafficking. Photo: Orlando Sierra/Agence France Presse/Getty Images

By Charlie Savage and Thom Shanker, New York Times

WASHINGTON — In a significant expansion of the war on drugs, the United States has begun training an elite unit of counternarcotics police in Ghana and planning similar units in Nigeria and Kenya as part of an effort to combat the Latin American cartels that are increasingly using Africa to smuggle cocaine into Europe.

The growing American involvement in Africa follows an earlier escalation of antidrug efforts in Central America, according to documents, Congressional testimony and interviews with a range of officials at the State Department, the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Pentagon.

In both regions, American officials are responding to fears that crackdowns in more direct staging points for smuggling — like Mexico and Spain — have prompted traffickers to move into smaller and weakly governed states, further corrupting and destabilizing them.

The aggressive response by the United States is also a sign of how greater attention and resources have turned to efforts to fight drugs as the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have wound down.

“We see Africa as the new frontier in terms of counterterrorism and counternarcotics issues,” said Jeffrey P. Breeden, the chief of the D.E.A.’s Europe, Asia and Africa section. “It’s a place that we need to get ahead of — we’re already behind the curve in some ways, and we need to catch up.”

The initiatives come amid a surge in successful interdictions in Honduras since May — but also as American officials have been forced to defend their new tactics after a commando-style team of D.E.A. agents participated in at least three lethal interdiction operations alongside a squad of Honduran police officers. In one of those operations, in May, the Honduran police killed four people near the village of Ahuas, and in two others in the past month American agents have shot and killed smuggling suspects.

To date, officials say, the D.E.A. commando team has not been deployed to work with the newly created elite police squads in Africa, where the effort to counter the drug traffickers is said to be about three years behind the one in Central America.

The officials said that if Western security forces did come to play a more direct operational role in Africa, for historical reasons they might be European and not American.

In May, William R. Brownfield, the assistant secretary of state for international narcotics and law enforcement, a leading architect of the strategy now on display in Honduras, traveled to Ghana and Liberia to put the finishing touches on a West Africa Cooperative Security Initiative, which will try to replicate across 15 nations the steps taken in battling trafficking groups operating in Central America and Mexico.

Mr. Brownfield said the vision for both regions was to improve the ability of nations to deal with drug trafficking, by building up their own institutions and getting them to cooperate with one another, sharing intelligence and running regional law enforcement training centers.

But because drug traffickers have already moved into Africa, he said, there is also a need for the immediate elite police units that have been trained and vetted.

“We have to be doing operational stuff right now because things are actually happening right now,” Mr. Brownfield said.

Some specialists have expressed skepticism about the approach. Bruce Bagley, a professor at the University of Miami who focuses on Latin America and counternarcotics, said that what had happened in West Africa over the past few years was the latest example of the “Whac-A-Mole” problem, in which making trafficking more difficult in one place simply shifts it to another.

“As they put on the pressure, they are going to detour routes, but they are not going to stop the flow, because the institutions are incredibly weak — I don’t care how much vetting they do,” Professor Bagley said. “And there is always blowback to this. You start killing people in foreign countries — whether criminals or not — and there is going to be fallout.”

American government officials acknowledge the challenges, but they are not as pessimistic about the chances of at least pushing the trafficking organizations out of particular countries. And even if the intervention leads to an increase in violence as organizations that had operated with impunity are challenged, the alternative, they said, is worse.

“There is no such thing as a country that is simply a transit country, for the very simple reason that the drug trafficking organization first pays its network in product, not in cash, and is constantly looking to build a greater market,” Mr. Brownfield said. “Regardless of the name of the country, eventually the transit country becomes a major consumer nation, and at that point they have a more serious problem.”

The United Nations says that cocaine smuggling and consumption in West Africa have soared in recent years, contributing to instability in places like Guinea-Bissau. Several years ago, a South American drug gang tried to bribe the son of the Liberian president to allow it to use the country for smuggling. Instead, he cooperated with the D.E.A., and the case resulted in convictions in the United States.

Even more ominous, according to American officials, was a case in which a militant group called Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb offered three of its operatives to help ship tons of cocaine through North Africa into Europe — all to raise money to finance terrorist attacks. The case ended this past March with conviction and sentencing in federal court in New York.

American counternarcotics assistance for West Africa has totaled about $50 million for each of the past two years — up from just $7.5 million in 2009, according to the State Department. The D.E.A. also is opening its first country office in Senegal, officials said, and the Pentagon has worked with Cape Verde to establish a regional center to detect drug-smuggling ships.

While the agency has not sponsored units in West Africa before, it has long worked with similar teams — which are given training, equipment and pay while being subjected to rigorous drug and polygraph testing — in countries around the world whose security forces are plagued by corruption, including the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala and Panama.

It is routine for D.E.A. agents who are assigned to mentor the specially trained and screened units to accompany them on raids, but it has been unusual for Americans to kill suspects. Several former agents said the recent cases in Honduras suggested that the D.E.A. had been at the vanguard of the operations there rather than merely serving as advisers in the background.

By contrast, the effort in West Africa is still at the beginning stages, officials say. But the problems there are the same — and growing. Officials described one instance in which a methamphetamine lab was discovered in Africa, with documents suggesting that it had been set up by a Mexican trafficking organization. William F. Wechsler, the Pentagon’s top counternarcotics officer, said that observing drug traffickers’ advances into West Africa, and the response from American and local authorities, was like watching a rerun of the drug war in this hemisphere in years past.

“West Africa is now facing a situation analogous to the Caribbean in the 1980s, where small, developing, vulnerable countries along major drug-trafficking routes toward rich consumers are vastly under-resourced to deal with the wave of dirty money coming their way,” he said.

NIGERIA: Sunday Papers July 22, 2012




COMPILED BY AMBROSE EHIRIM

THIS DAY LIVE: The Golden Tulip: Returning to Form

LEADERSHIP NIGERIA: Fans To Interact With Arsenal Players

LEADERSHIP NIGERIA: Capital City Not For The Rich Alone

LEADERSHIP NIGERIA: Security Of Corps Members Should Be Paramount

KANSAS CITY STAR: Day-by-day Olympic TV highlights

THE NEWS INTERNATIONAL: WHO, UNICEF, saddened by killing of polio worker

THE NEW YORK TIMES: The Drug War Shifts to Africa, Hub for Cartels

GULF DAILY NEWS: Cox stripped of Athens athletics relay gold

ENGLISH EAST DAY: China-Africa fraud gangs busted

THE GUARDIAN NIGERIA: Nigeria, Cote D’Ivoire Begin Africa Cup Battle In Botswana

THE GUARDIAN NIGERIA: ‘COD United Will Be A Model For Nigerian Clubsides’

SUNDAY TRIBUNE NIGERIA: FG considers employment generation through lottery programmes

SUNDAY TRIBUNE NIGERIA: Fire destroys N50m property at plank market in Lagos

SUNDAY TRIBUNE NIGERIA: Buhari blames corrupt successive govts for damaged petroleum industry

PUNCH: Argentine customs seize Nigeria-bound N4bn cocaine

PUNCH: Jonathan awards N927bn contracts in 10 months •Niger Delta grabs N246bn

SUNDAY VABGUARD NIGERIA: Aguleri, Umuleri blow hot again

SUNDAY VANGUARD NIGERIA: Grass To Grace: I was locked-up at Kirikiri prisons after I helped Nigeria win Olympic medal – Toblow

SUNDAY VANGUARD NIGERIA: SUBSIDY FRAUD INCORPORATED (1): Fresh scandal surrounds FG’s committee

SUNDAY VANGUARD NIGERIA: Anxiety mounts over missing journalist

Friday, July 20, 2012

NIGERIA: Saturday Papers July 21, 2012, Early Edition


SATURDAY TRIBUNE NIGERIA: I’m Against Nigeria Breaking Up, But... —Fani-Kayode

SATURDAY TRIBUNE NIGERIA: Edo Poll: Nigeria Can Truly Get It Right - Babangida

CHANNELS TELEVISION: Gunmen kill six in Borno after emergency rule was lifted

SATURDAY TRIBUNE NIGERIA: 21-Year-Old Nigerian, Chibundu Onuzo Is UK’s Best Black Student Of 2012

EURO SPORT: Merrit shines again in Monaco

DAILY TIMES PAKISTAN: Nigerian sect suspects kill 6 after emergency lifted

WASHINGTON POST: 2 killed in north Nigeria city drive-by shooting amid growing sectarian violence

THIS DAY LIVE: Please, Let’s Leave Keshi to Plot His Journey

SATURDAY TRIBUNE NIGERIA: Federation Cup: Prime Tops In Ibadan, Draws Enyimba In Q-final

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

BIAFRA: Relative Discourses With Hakan Gottberger, Ed Keazor, Ambrose Ehirim, Ebele Obumselu, Et al


Biafran Food Distribution Map Courtesy Of Ed Keazor/Hakan Gottberger

Hakan Gottberger was a Swedish photographer who volunteered to work for the International Red Cross during the Biafran War helping distribute relief materials as they arrived. In 2007, Gottberger was in an exhibition where he showed his Biafran project photographs in Biafra in 1968-69 during his days of volunteering for the Red Cross in distributing food along the routes designated by the handlers from Item to Uli. Thanks to Ed Keazor, Ebele Obumselu and Hakan Gottberger who made this presentation possible. Presentation was conducted on Keazor's Facebook page between August and September 2011. All images in this article were taken by Gottberger and permission must be sought for any use and reproduction.

Ike Chime: I remember these routes well. At a time during the war, I was a Red Cross volunteer. I served in Hospitals such as Iyienu hosp, Adazi Joint hosp, Achi joint hosp, Gen hosp Owerri etc. I was also at sector rendezvous like Nzam Odekpe axis, and briefly in relief centers . Thanks Ed and Håkan Gottberger.

Ambrose Ehirim: Thanks Ed for this...'preciate it! @Ike: What were your assignments at these hospitals and relief centers?

Ike Chime: My first posting was Iyienu Hospital and my assignment included waiting on hospitalized soldiers and assisting doctors and nurses. Regarding sector rendezvous our duty was to assist military medical personnel in applying first aid and rushing the wounded to hospital. My brief work at the relief center was in Owerri where we doubled as air raid emergency unit and assistants at relief supply centers. I operated at the cenima theatre off Douglas by Ama JK. My coming to Owerri was due to the evacuation of the Adazi joint hospital when Awka was under fire. When I think of it now, I am amazed at the ingenuity of the planners of such a massive operation of moving a large hospital with hundreds of soldiers and civilians with varying degrees of ailment. A group moved to Umuahia, and the other Owerri.

Ambrose Ehirim: How were you recruited in such a critical time of a people? Was it voluntary?

Ike Chime: Ambrose there is more details about my red cross activities during the war in this NVS article http://www.nigeriavillagesquare.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=7886&Itemid=154

Ambrose Ehirim: ‎@Ike: The link doesn't take me directly to the particular article you were referring to. If you would, email me and send me the link. Also, have you considered an eye witness account in book format?

Ike Chime: OK Ambrose, will be looking forward to that.I am putting the pieces together, and hopefully with the encouragement I am getting from people like you, a book to that effect will see the light. I salute you.

Ambrose Ehirim: ‎@Ike: Thank you so much for the attachment. Apparently, NVS does not allow its link related. Once again, thanks, and we should be hooking up soon!

Håkan Gottberger: Sixty's was a turbulent time, a lot happened in the world, but the Biafra war brought an extra strong feelings in Sweden with large collections of money. When the International Red Cross Committee asked Sweden to send aid to Biafra sent the Red Cross, the largest operation since the Second World War. With large ads in newspapers, they sought volunteers to the effort. I signed up because I had little experience in Africa, after having served in the United Nations forces in Congo. Also upset about what happened in Biafra and Czechoslovakia, I did not want to stand next to and just watch.

Ed Keazor: Incredible stuff gentlemen. @Ike: I am still intrigued by your accounts especially your detention after the war and how Nze Mark Odu tutored you, incredible! @Hakan: Did you serve in the army in Congo? Of course you did, as you clearly said so...

Håkan Gottberger: Yes, the Swedish army sent volunteers to serve in United Nations forces. A tradition since Dag Hammarsköld time.

Ambrose Ehirim: ‎@Hakan: As a voluteer serving for the Red Cross, what role did you play during the course of volunteer work in Biafra?

Håkan Gottberger: At first, I was stationed in the village Item to distribute food and other supplies to refugee camps in the surrounding area and to try to Check whether the items came to the needy, children and pregnant women. Everything was done in close collaboration with Biafra Red Cross young enthusiastic volunteers. When it became difficult to get staff to work at Uli, the airport, I started there.

Ambrose Ehirim: ‎@Hakan: At Item and before Uli, did food distribution get to the needy -- women, infants and children -- in the manner it was suppose to? We heard there were incidents of coercion and theft, leaving the desperately starved short of relief materials.

Håkan Gottberger: Sure, it happened that trucks with supplies were robbed, but we got over time, police escorts, as well it happened to older people tried to oust the young people to access goods. But we managed to keep control in our area, I think. I hope my English is not too bad, use Google for translation, it can sometimes be wrong.

Ambrose Ehirim: ‎@Hakan: Your English is perfectly well, sir! On your own personal account, what was it like working at Uli? We heard relief materials came in at night and some couldn't sneak in because of the 'Economic Blockade.' Were you aware of that?

Håkan Gottberger: What was the cargo in the aircraft that was not RC I do not know. It was a stressful work situation in the darkness of night to retain sole responsibility of the load was taken care of and that nothing was stolen, but that happened occasionally. We also took the gasoline from the aircraft to be used for our cars. Sometimes there was gunfire when the police would catch any thief, the routine was at least one bombing raid every night. Of course they were scared when they heard the whistling of the bombs and we counted seconds after it ceased to detonation was heard, then you knew how close it was
.
Ambrose Ehirim: ‎@Hakan: How long were you stationed at Uli and what were your findings with regards to the war?

Håkan Gottberger: About 3 months. I was at the airfield, difficult to answer the second question, the memory fades, but the UN did not have the ability to intervene because of the prevailing balance of power is a sad story. Maybe it's a little better world now.

Ed Keazor: Really enlightening gentlemen and thanks Ambrose for asking the right questions. Its a privilege to have you guys share this with us while you're still here and to Ebele for making it all possible.

Ebele Obumselu: Ed, we could not have done this better. Many thanks for organizing, annotating and presenting the material.

Ruth Bourne: Fascinating stories, gentlemen.

















Ed Keazor: For those who are not aware Capt August Okpe was the Chief Pilot of the Biafran Airforce, who flew under the command of Chude Sokei and Count Carl Gustav Von-Rosen and was in the pioneer set of Nigerian Airforce Pilots. His book is the only focused work on the Biafran airwar, I cannot recommend it enough.

Håkan Gottberger: There is a small book written in Swedish for Swedish volunteer effort in the war. In it are a shared feature in English, when I'm home again I will copy the pages and mail them to you Ed.

Ed Keazor: I definitely will and looking forward to it- many thanks Hakan safe journey back.

Obaro Ege: Ed, as we give Captain Okpe due recognition, do you have any information on Wing Commander Ezeilo? I had written earlier on a couple of his missions, using the captured Nigeria Airways DC3. It would be nice to know where he is today and if he recorded his memoirs as Captain Okpe did.

Ed Keazor: I believe Ezeilo is deceased (I stand to be corrected) there is quite a lot about him in "The last Flight". What comes to my mind from reading is that whilst a brave and talented Pilot, he probably found Command challenging. On another note what is intriguing is the camaraderie between all the members of the first set of the NAF who trained in Canada- Aleyideino, Okpe, Ezeilo, Ukeje, Yisa Doko etc. They remained close like brethren, even until the Eastern members returned to the East after the July 66 coup.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

NIGERIA: Thursday Papers, July 12, 2012 Early Edition




COMPILED BY AMBROSE EHIRIM

GLOBAL TIMES: Nigeria to set up cassava bread development fund

GLOBAL TIMES: Nigeria to send petroleum bill to national assembly

LEADERSHIP NIGERIA: Sen. Emodi Says Justice Mukhtar's Appointment Is Historic

NIYI TABITI: Multiple Grammy Awards Nominee,Femi Kuti,Wife Now Officially Divorced

KCUR: Despite Grim Headlines, Africa Is Booming

LEADERSHIP NIGERIA: Absence Of Judge Stalls Hearing Of Lagos Doctors' Case

REUTERS: WAfrica Crude-New July Bonny cargoes add further pressure

REUTERS: Nigeria's cabinet approves bill to overhaul oil sector

BUSINESS DAY: Edo Police arrest 4 over Oyerinde's murder

BUSINESS DAY: Gunmen kill 4 persons in Bauchi

CHANNELS TELEVISION: Security agencies deny fresh violence in Plateau and Bauchi states

WALL STREET JOURNAL MARKET WATCH: Air Products Celebrates Manufacturing of 100th LNG Heat Exchanger

INDEPENDENT UK: Catholic Melinda Gates defies the Vatican over birth control funds

THE NATION: Senate confirms Justice Mukhtar as CJN

THE NATION: 27.5% Salary: Teachers to begin indefinite strike July 23

PM NEWS: Military Denies Further Killings in Plateau

PM NEWS: New Igbo Group Vows To Avenge Killings In The North

PM NEWS: KILLING OF ARMY GENERAL: Police Arrest 4

UNESCO: Nigerian city of Port Harcourt named 2014 World Book Capital


Young boy and girl reading books in a street in Qazvin, Iran. Photo: UNESCO/Dominique Roger

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) today (July 11, 2012) announced the selection of the Nigerian city of Port Harcourt as the 2014 World Book Capital.

“I extend my congratulations to the city of Port Harcourt for the quality of its proposed programme, which provides for extensive public participation and aims to develop reading for all,” said UNESCO’s Director-General, Irina Bokova, in a news release. “I wholeheartedly endorse the commitment of Port Harcourt to support literacy through the activities organized for the year.”

According to the agency, its selection committee chose Port Harcourt for the quality of the programme it presented. It focused on youth and the impact it will have on improving Nigeria’s culture of books, reading, writing and publishing to improve literacy rates.

The selection committee, which met last Thursday at UNESCO’s headquarters in Paris, brings together associations in the book industry – the International Publishers Association, the International Booksellers Federation and the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions – as well as representatives from the culture agency.

Each year, the committee bestows the title of World Book Capital to a city which has committed itself to promoting books and reading, and to highlight the vitality of literary creativity. The nomination does not imply any financial prize, but it is an exclusively symbolic acknowledgement of the best programme dedicated to books and reading, UNESCO said.

Port Harcourt is the 14th city to be designated World Book Capital following Madrid (2001), Alexandria (2002), New Delhi (2003), Antwerp (2004), Montreal (2005), Turin (2006), Bogotá (2007), Amsterdam (2008), Beirut (2009), Ljubljana (2010), Buenos Aires (2011), Yerevan (2012) and Bangkok (2013).

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

NIGERIA: Tuface, M.I., Others To Tour N-America




By Ngozi Opurum, Daily Times-Nigeria

The United Sounds of Africa (USA) would kick off their first ever North American tour with Tuface, M.I, J.Martins.

Organised by Interglobe Entertainment Group (IEG) and Live Nation, the tour would get together new and existing partners to create music and cultural connections with their individual brands in the context of a global music agenda.

"United Sounds of Africa presents a perfect platform to connect with fans of the beautiful music coming out of Africa and taking the world by storm. I am excited and it is going to be a lot of fun," Tuface said.

IEG is a global leader in media and entertainment, while Live Nation Entertainment is the world's leading live entertainment and eCommerce company, comprised of four market leaders: Ticketmaster.com, Live Nation Concerts, Front Line Management Group and Live Nation Network.

"I am proud to be joining Tuface and everyone on stage as a part of this very first United Sounds of Africa tour. I think American audiences will be blown away by the talent and diversity onstage and by how much the African music scene has to offer. These will be amazing shows," M.I. said.

The tour which kicks off on August 1 in Houston, Texas, has Timi Dakolo, J. Martins, Iyanya, and Brymo as artistes to perform.

IEG created the USA project to bring the best African music vocalists /artistes /composers together for a series of live performances uniting Africa's diverse musical cultures. In addition, the USA tour will connect current African artistes with those of the diaspora, continuing the legacy of such globally successful, African-born artists as Akon, Sade, and K'naan.

"This will be an open platform for any audience that relates to a musical exchange and collaboration from one continent to the other. This tour presents Live Nation with the unique opportunity of introducing some of Africa's top musical talent to crowds across the country," Jay Belin of Live Nation said.

CEO Efe Omorogbe of Now Muzik, said, "We at Now Muzik are very proud to partner with Interglobe Entertainment Group and Live Nation on the U.S.A platform. We look forward to a thrilling experience on this tour and more importantly, we hope that the platform delivers for our artists, Tuface, Timi and J. Martins, along with many other exceptional African talents, the much-needed in-road into the mainstream American circuit."

Sunday, July 08, 2012

Senator killed in fresh Plateau attack



CHANNELS TV NEWS
Senator Gyand Dalyyop Datong (Plateau North, PDP) has been shot dead by gunmen while attending a mass burial ceremony for victims of an attack by Fulani herdsmen in Riyom and Barikin Ladi local government areas of Plateau state, North Central Nigeria.

A statement from the Plateau state commissioner of Information, Abraham Yiljap confirmed the shooting.

Senator Datong won his first election into the Senate in 2007 and was re-elected in 2011. He was previously a member of the Federal House of Representatives representing Barkin Ladi/Riyom federal constituency.

Also shot dead is Hon. Gyang James Fulani, the Chief Whip of the Plateau state House of Assembly. Hon. Fulani was representing Barkin Ladi constituency. Barkin Ladi is about 25 kilometres from the state’s capital, Jos.

Another lawmaker representing Barkin Ladi/Riyom federal constituency in the House of Representatives, Simon Mwatdkon is currently hospitalised after recovering from coma.

Over 37 people were killed in Barkin Ladi at the weekend in a new cycle of violence between Fulani herdsmen and Berom tribesmen who live in the two local government areas.

Over 9 villages were attacked by people believed to be Fulani in the raids on Saturday.

The attack reportedly took place at the venue of the burial of some of the victims of Saturday’s attacks.

Saturday, July 07, 2012

Clashes in Nigeria's volatile Jos kill 10


(Reuters) - Clashes between Nigerian security forces and armed Fulani herdsman erupted on Saturday, killing at least 10 people in the ethnically mixed and volatile city of Jos, a government official said.

Jos is the capital of Plateau State in the heart of Nigeria's religiously diverse "Middle Belt", where the mostly Muslim north meets the largely Christian south.

Plateau has for more than a decade been a tinderbox of ethnic and religious rivalries over land and power between local people and migrants from other areas. Hundreds have been killed in ethnic clashes in Jos in recent years.

Islamist sect Boko Haram has claimed several suicide bomb attacks on churches in Jos this year, prompting a Christian backlash against Muslims.

A spokesman for the military Special Task Force, Salisu Mustapha, told Reuters his men engaged the Fulani herdsman, a migrant community, after they attacked local indigenous communities.

But a spokesman for the Fulani said the military instigated the violence. "It was the soldiers that first opened fire," Miyetti Allah, chairman of the Plateau cattle association, told Reuters.

"The soldiers were being used by the government because we are in war with the tribes of the governor."

Mustapha denied his troops started the violence.

Plateau State Information Commissioner Abraham Yiljap confirmed the death toll of at least 10.

Security experts believe Boko Haram's attacks on churches in central and northern Nigeria are an attempt to provoke a wider religious conflict inside Africa's biggest oil producer.

The militant group has killed more than a thousand people since an uprising in 2009 and is maintaining a low-level insurgency against President Goodluck Jonathan's government. The sect wants to carve out an Islamic state in northern Nigeria.

However, much of the violence in Jos is not instigated by Boko Haram and is a result of long-running ethnic tensions and local political power struggles.

(Reporting by Buhari Bello; Writing by Joe Brock; Editing by Pravin Char)

Monday, July 02, 2012

Scientists at Children's Hospital Los Angeles Identify Mechanism Critical to Lung Formation and Regeneration




PRESS RELEASE

Eya1 phosphatase acts to maintain barrier integrity in the lung

(LOS ANGELES, Jul 02, 2012 BUSINESS WIRE) -- Scientists have provided the first evidence that an enzyme called Eya1 protein phosphatase is a critical regulator of lung function and that this may have broad implications for sufferers of a variety of pulmonary diseases. "Identification of the role of Eya1 in establishing pulmonary tight junction and barrier integrity could have a significant impact on asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and acute respiratory distress syndrome, all diseases characterized with disruptions in permeability," said Ahmed El-Hashash, PhD, investigator at The Saban Research Institute of Children's Hospital Los Angeles and assistant professor at the Keck School of Medicine.

Proper formation of lung epithelium is essential to life. The normal growth and functioning of the lung depends on the formation of tight junctions between adjacent cells making up the alveolar epithelial sheet, a thin layer of tissue separating neighboring alveoli. Alveoli are the site of gas exchange between the lung and blood vessels. Loss of these tight junctions alters the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide. Permeability dysfunction has been implicated in both acute lung injury and acute respiratory distress syndrome, a life-threatening lung condition that prevents adequate oxygen from getting from the lungs and into the blood.

Until now, very little has been known about the basic regulatory mechanisms underlying permeability barrier formation and integrity of the lung epithelium. David Warburton, MD, director of Developmental Biology and Regenerative Medicine at The Saban Research Institute, and El-Hashash provided the first evidence that the enzyme Eya1 protein phosphatase controls tight junction and permeability barrier formation in the lung epithelium. They have also provided the first evidence that Eya1 enzyme coordinates a complex network of other cellular proteins and molecules that are essential for epithelial barrier integrity, and are therefore critical to optimal lung function. Both in vivo and in vitro experiments showed that interfering with Eya1 phosphatase function resulted in defective formation of tight junctions and the permeability barrier.

"These findings identify a novel therapeutic option for lung diseases like COPD and ARDS," said Warburton. "Our discovery of Eya1 enzyme control of pulmonary barrier integrity suggests that influencing alveolar epithelial junction formation by manipulating the activity of enzymes has the potential to identify future targets for the treatment of lung injury and may provide solutions to the problems concerning regeneration of lung tissue for restoration of functional alveoli."

Results of the study will be published in the Journal of Cell Science.

About Children's Hospital Los Angeles

Children's Hospital Los Angeles has been named the best children's hospital in California and among the top five in the nation for clinical excellence with its selection to the prestigious US News & World Report Honor Roll. Children's Hospital is home to The Saban Research Institute, one of the largest and most productive pediatric research facilities in the United States, is one of America's premier teaching hospitals and has been affiliated with the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California since 1932.

SOURCE: Children's Hospital of Los Angeles.