Monday, September 20, 2021

BBNaija S6: Whitemoney, Pere, four others up for final possible eviction

September 20, 2021


Big Brother Naija Shine Ya Eye housemates Pere, Whitemoney, Angel, Nini, Saga, and Queen are up for the final possible eviction for the season.

This was announced by Big Brother on Monday, day 58 of the show and beginning of the penultimate final week.

The above-mentioned housemates were automatically up for possible eviction after the games and ultimate veto power process.

Before the games, the ultimate power holder title was introduced in place of the usual Head of House games.

At the end of the games, Emmanuel emerged as the ultimate veto power holder for the week.

As the ultimate veto power holder, Emmanuel also has the power to choose the Head of House and Deputy for the week.

He chose Liquorose as the Head of House and Cross as the Deputy. With their new position, Cross and Liquorose also make it to the final week as they gain immunity too.

With Emmanuel, Liquorose, and Cross immune for the week, the rest of the housemates were automatically put up for possible eviction on Sunday.

The Sunday live show for this week would be the final eviction show for the season and will usher the successful housemates into the final week of the show.

[BREAKING] BBNaija S6: Emmanuel emerges ultimate veto power holder, makes it to finale

September 20, 2021


Big Brother Naija Shine Ya Eye housemate, Emmanuel, has emerged as the ultimate veto power holder thereby securing a spot in the finale.

This was announced by Big Brother on Monday, day 58 of the show and beginning of the penultimate final week.

As the ultimate veto holder, Emmanuel also has the power to choose the Head of House and Deputy for the week.

He chose Liquorose as the Head of House and Cross as the Deputy. With their new position, Cross and Liquorose also make it to the final week as they gain immunity too.

Before the game, the ultimate power holder title was introduced in place of the usual Head of House games.

The game for the ultimate veto power holder was quite different from the usual Head of House games.

For the new game, each of the housemates were expected to gather as many points as possible at the end of the games. The housemate with the most points wins the ultimate veto power.

The game involved four lanes with the movement of balls and balloons and the housemates were asked to move the object from the beginning of a lane to the end of the lane.

At the end of the game, Cross and Emmanuel had a tie and were asked to play again to determine the ultimate veto power holder.

After the tie breaker, Emmanuel emerged as the ultimate veto power holder for the week.

As the ultimate power holder, has immunity and therefore secured his place at the grand finale.

London visit to Tinubu not on 2023 – Akeredolu

September 20, 2021


The Governor of Ondo State , Mr Rotimi Akeredolu, has said his visit to a former Lagos State Governor and National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu,  has nothing to do with the 2023 election.

He said he was in London to see Tinubu and he was sure that the rumors flying around on the social media was not true.

The governor gave the explanation on his London trip while speaking on Arise TV on Sunday evening, which was monitored by our correspondent.

Akeredolu, who described the former Lagos State Governor as the ‘capon’ in the South, said he (Tinubu ) was  expected to return to the country soon and would meet with him for certain critical decisions.

Asked if he will support Tinubu as the Presidential candidate of the party in 2023, Akeredolu said, “The APC is a party. The APC will decide who the candidate will be. I have said it several times, I’m going no where; if I leave APC, I am going back to my chamber. For me, whatever APC decides, I will follow.

“We went to London because it was important for us to go and see for ourselves; how he’s doing. He’s the capon for us here. But the time he comes, we can make some serious decisions.”

The governor also promised to appoint more commissioners to his cabinet next month.

Since the beginning of his second term in office, which commenced in February this year, the governor has only appointed four commissioners and few special advisers.

He said, “There is no provision that says the number  of the cabinet; only the Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice is stated there.

“The number of who will work with me will be decided by me. Come early next month we will have more commissioners. I’m to determine the number of commissioner that I will work with. I will have to put in more people next month. But it can’t be as many as it was in the first term because the finances of the state are badly affected.”

There’ll be trouble if IPOB insists Anambra gov election won’t hold –Ubah

September 20, 2021


The candidate of the Young Progressives Party in the forthcoming Anambra State Governorship Election, Ifeanyi Ubah, says there will be trouble if the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra insists that the November 6, 2021 election won’t hold.

Ubah, who represents Anambra South in the upper legislative chamber, made this known on Monday in an interview with BBC Pidgin monitored by The PUNCH.

IPOB had threatened that no election would hold in the entire South-East zone (Imo, Anambra, Enugu, Ebonyi and Abia states) till it achieved its agitation for secession from the Nigerian state.

Scores of police stations, offices of the Independent National Electoral Commission and other government institutions had been burnt by rampaging hoodlums in the past few months. Though security agents had fingered members of IPOB’s military wing, the Eastern Security Network, as masterminds of the attacks, the proscribed group had denied the allegations.

IPOB had also threatened that the 2017 governorship election won’t hold in Anambra but the poll was conducted and the incumbent, Willie Obiano, won his re-election on the platform of the All Progressive Grand Alliance.

Speaking on the worsening security situation in the South-East and how it could affect the November governorship election in Anambra, Ubah said, “We will talk to our brothers – the IPOB people, they should not say no election because if they say so, they will be imposing something we don’t want.

“So, we have to tell them the importance. We know they have power but let them pipe down for us to do this election because if we don’t do this election proper, there will be trouble. Anambra is the head of Igbo Nation.”

When asked what the sit-at-home order by IPOB had caused Anambra, Ubah said, “You cannot estimate (it), the trauma also is so much. The truth about it is that our governors should wake up and engage with IPOB.

“It is IPOB that gave such order; talk to them, tell them that we are losing. We are agitating, we must fight for our brother but we can’t also be fighting for our brother and suffering our people.”

Continuing, the senator said, “I believe in (the) Nigerian entity, I believe also that we, the Igbos, through the instrumentality of our state governments, can make Igbo a mini-nation inside the nation.

“We have everything as contained in the Nigerian constitution as a legitimate state, a state that can make what we want. I don’t think unless I change the name of the state; I believe that the more I get from Nigeria, I can now partner with our brothers abroad to bring the aspirations and what they want in the state.”

Ubah also noted that South-East politicians were working on a political solution to resolve the case of the detained IPOB leader.

The PUNCH had earlier reported that IPOB pronounced a weekly sit-at-home order in the entire South-East beginning August 9, 2021, to protest the continued detention of its leader, Nnamdi Kanu, who has been in the custody of the Department of State Services for over three months.

IPOB subsequently suspended the Monday sit-at-home order, saying it would be observed any day Kanu appears in court but the last seven Mondays had turned bloody in the South-East as “unknown gunmen” attacked travellers, traders, students, and other persons who came out for normal activities.

Many had been killed, injured and vehicles had been burnt while banks, markets, schools, and other public places continue to shut down every Monday as people stayed indoors out of fear of being assailed outside.

The case of Kanu, who is facing terrorism-related charged before Justice Binta Nyako, has been adjourned to October 21, 2021, for continuation of hearing.

Cristiano Ronaldo scammed of £250,000 by travel agent

September 20, 2021


A travel agent, named Maria Silvia scammed Manchester United striker, Cristiano Ronaldo, out of £250,000 (about N140 million) after the football star entrusted her with his credit cards and pin.

The 53-year-old travel agent also scammed Ronaldo’s super-agent Jorge Mendes of £14,000 and Manchester United winger, Nani, of over £1,500.

Due to her wrongdoing, Silvia got a four-year suspended prison sentence on Sunday after being earlier convicted by a Porto criminal court in 2017.

It was also revealed that Ronaldo was targeted for three years between February 2007 and July 2010.

The paper read, “Afterwards the travel agent had to plug the hole in the firm’s accounts. She, therefore, began to bill those trips to Cristiano Ronaldo, who had an account at Geostar and for practical reasons, handed the agent a virtual credit card and pin code. It was a green route to taking money out.”

Quoting a renowned Portuguese daily Jornal de Noticias, Sun Sports reported that the 36-year-old Ronaldo submitted a statement to the police after flying to the court to meet up with his lawyer.

The travel agent, who currently works as a cleaner, was first interrogated in 2011 before her eventual sentence on Sunday, September 19, 2021.

As part of her court deal, she had agreed to repay her firm a sum of £7,680 sparing her prison sentence.

Sunday, September 19, 2021

How Anthony Joshua can defeat Usyk -Hunter

September 19, 2021

Anthony Joshua could soon find out that former cruiserweight Oleksandr Usyk has “enough power to absorb and withstand punches”, says Michael Hunter.

Joshua’s IBF, WBA and WBO heavyweight titles will be at stake when he is challenged by Usyk at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium next Saturday.

Usyk, an Olympic gold medallist like Joshua, inflicted Hunter’s only defeat on points before becoming the undisputed cruiserweight champion.

“He is fleet-footed and defensive-minded,” Hunter told Sky Sports about Usyk.

“It will be very difficult to actually get a win over Usyk in a certain fashion.

“Joshua will have to have a concrete game-plan and follow it. It will be a very hard task.

“If he pulls it off? Give the man credit.

“Because this style of fighting, for him, is the most difficult.”

Hunter has been joined by Usyk at heavyweight and insists former cruiserweights still possess power: “Anybody at the 200lbs weight class is pretty much a heavyweight. We all hit hard.”

Hunter said about Usyk: “Even though he doesn’t focus on hitting hard, he has enough power to absorb and withstand punches.

“He is bulking up and he is taller than me, he has some length to him.

“He will do exceptionally well. He hasn’t taken any Ls and hasn’t been in any trouble since he’s been pro.

“A lot of people are saying he hasn’t performed to the best of his abilities.

“Against Joshua, he will have to.

“He has done it a few times before, like at the Olympics. He is a Grade-A boxer.

“Joshua is still learning on the job, going through experiences.

“There is an element of surprise because we don’t know what type of Joshua will come out.

“We know what type of Usyk will come out, we just don’t know at what level.”

BREAKING: Former CBN deputy governor Obadiah Mailafia dies at 64

September 19, 2021


A former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Dr. Obadiah Mailafia, has passed on at the age of 64.

Mailafia, who was a columnist with reporters was said to have died at midnight after a brief illness.

The former deputy governor, who was the Presidential candidate of the African Democratic Congress in the 2019 election, was a known government critic and had advocated for public sector and exchange rate reforms.

Mailafia was born on December 24, 1956, in the Sanga Local Government Area of Kaduna State.

He later graduated top of his class at Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, in 1978 with a B.Sc.

Honours Social Sciences degree (Politics, Economics, and Sociology). He also has an M.Sc. from the same institution.

He subsequently won a French Government Scholarship to France, where he earned a Certificate in French Language and Civilisation from the University of Clermont-Ferrand in 1985.

Mailafia later proceeded to the United Kingdom as a Foreign and Commonwealth Office Scholar at Oriel College, earning a DPhil from the University of Oxford in 1995.

He joined partisan politics in 2018 amid the rising killings in Southern Kaduna.

Despite losing, he remained an ardent government critic and got into trouble with the regime of the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), when he alleged that a northern governor was a Boko Haram commander.

This earned multiple invitations by the Nigeria Police Force, forcing him to recant his statement.

In his last interview with The PUNCH, Mailafia said the refusal of the CBN to sell foreign exchange to bureau de change operators may not yield the expected result because corrupt bankers would frustrate it while the BDC operators were being shielded by a “Jigawa cabal”.

He had also lamented that Nigeria was operating a “dollarised” economy which was hampering economic growth.

Naira crisis: Pursuing Aboki FX, a waste of efforts, Utomi tells CBN

September 19, 2021


Some financial experts however disagreed with the decision of the Central Bank of Nigeria to prosecute the owner of AbokiFX, describing it as a waste of efforts and a deviation from the major problems of the foreign exchange market.

The PUNCH had reported how CBN vowed to clamp down on abokiFX website, its owner and patrons.

According to the experts who spoke to Sunday PUNCH on the development, the devaluation of the naira was not primarily caused by sites like AbokiFX but policies and impulsive decisions of the apex bank, as well as the failure of agencies saddled with the responsibility of the fiscal aspect of the economy to function effectively and stimulate economic growth.

A former presidential candidate and political economist, Prof Pat Utomi, said he disagreed with the decision.

He said, “As a general principle, I disagree with that approach. Of course, markets need to be regulated and have boundaries, but I think that it is too easy to blame markets when sometimes the problem might be from within.

“I think there is nobody who is knowledgeable that does not know that for a number of years, policymakers were the biggest problem with the forex market.

“Let us not deceive ourselves, the current order has ruined the forex market, so for those who made such decisions to now complain, I think it is uncharitable. If they continue to clamp down on this and that, then the market would collapse and we will return to where we were in the 1980s.”

Also, a professor of Economics at the Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ogun State, Sheriffdeen Tella, said while AbokiFX might be influencing the forex market, depending on the size of the forex transactions it conducts, the operations of the  platform was not the major driver of forex scarcity and naira devaluation.

He said these were driven by the failure of the fiscal segment of the economy to complement the efforts of the monetary aspect in the country.

Tella stated, “It depends on the volume of transactions that abokiFX is conducting. If it carries out large transactions, it can influence the foreign exchange market. If it is true that he has numerous accounts where he is speculating dollar, then he might be influencing the forex market.

“I know that speculation is one of the factors that is causing a devaluation of the naira against foreign currencies. BDCs speculate to pressurise the CBN to start giving them dollar.

“However, I think the problem of forex in Nigeria is not restricted to BDCs or sites like abokiFX, the major problem is that the fiscal part of the economy, the Ministry of Finance and related agencies are not doing what they have to do to support the economy or complement the efforts of the agencies in charge of the monetary aspect of the economy, like the CBN.”

During the briefing after the MPC meeting, the CBN governor, Emefiele, said the apex bank would track and prosecute anyone trying to sabotage the country’s foreign exchange market.

He said, “First, let me make it clear that if you are running a legitimate business and following our rules at the Central Bank for use of financial system, there is nothing to worry about, but for those who think they are smart and they want to sabotage the efforts of the Central Bank in running this economy, we will make life very difficult for you. We will continue to do our jobs in safeguarding the financial system for the betterment of everybody.”

Saturday, September 18, 2021

Aboki FX: How speculators attack, affect naira value —CBN ex-deputy gov Moghalu

September 18, 2021

 A former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Kingsley Moghalu, has said that currency speculators attack and affect the value of the naira.

Moghalu, who was a deputy governor at the apex bank from 2009 to 2014, made this known in a thread posted on his Twitter handle on Saturday.

He made the comments just hours after the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, on Friday, said that the Federal Government would track the owner of Aboki FX, an online platform that gathers and displays parallel market rates in Nigeria, and stop the operations of the website in the country.

The apex bank governor had also accused the owner of the website, a London-based Nigerian, Oniwinde Adedotun, of “speculative activities on the naira”, adding that he has to explain how he obtains his rates.

This is based on the rate of the rise of the naira on the parallel market which is currently trading at N570/dollar.

Following the complaints by the CBN governor, Aboxi FX said on Friday that it would no longer provide daily updates on foreign exchange rates for now and hoped that the naira would stabilise.

Commenting on the FX crisis in the country in a Twitter thread, Moghalu listed factors that affect the value of the Naira to include “supply and demand (if too much Naira is chasing scarce dollars, the dollar gets stronger relative to the Naira, and vice versa).

“Others are inflation (a high inflation economy such as Nigeria’s weakens the value of the legal tender), high government indebtedness ( again, our case especially relative to our revenues and ability to pay which will be stretched the more we borrow on poor revenues, and 90 kobo out of every N1 goes to debt servicing).”

Though Moghalu did not mention Aboki FX, he said, “Speculation also affects the naira value, as there are currency traders around the world for whom the weakness of a currency is their very good fortune. Such traders “attack” such currencies for profit, especially where the currency is using a fixed, official exchange rate determined by the central bank instead of the market.

“As the Naira is effectively pegged officially to a “reserve” currency (dollars, euros, pound sterling), speculators can attack such a currency for profit if the country (Nigeria in this case) is perceived to have insufficient foreign reserves to meet demand. Because our inflation rates at 17% are way higher than those “reserve-currency” countries, again we are exposed to possible currency attacks.

“If reserves are weak, and demand for dollars massively outstrips supply, currency devaluation is inevitable, and currency traders who mount speculative attacks profit from this devaluation.

“Such traders will borrow the Naira from Nigerian banks, convert it to, say, dollars, then buy short-interest paying Nigerian bonds. If, as the speculators anticipate, the central bank devalues the naira, the traders sell the bonds in the foreign currency, convert them into naira, and repay their original loan.

“The steeper the devaluation the higher the speculator’s profit. What should we do about all of this? As I have said before, and say again, we have two options. One is to let the Naira find its level in the market. In order, words, subsidizing the currency.

“While there will likely be an immediate spike in the price of the dollar, this move will have two advantages. The first is that, because Nigeria has a big, profitable economy and market, dollars will likely swamp the market seeking profits for investors.

“When this happens, the laws of demand and supply will work in favour of the Naira. Alongside this, maintaining different exchange rates for different kinds of transactions must end. This is called rate convergence.”

The former presidential candidate of the Young Progressive Party in the 2019 election also said that one of the best ways to strengthen the naira is to make the “right trade policies to support and create such incentives for massive exports of finished, value-added goods from Nigeria”.

“The second, and more important benefit is that, since the current practice of the CBN pumping dollars in the FX market (from the reserves, which also depleted them) is essentially a subsidy for imports, which has made Nigeria more and more import-dependent, letting go of the subsidy on the Naira will refocus the economy towards exports.

“This will create an incentive for complex production of a quality that can be competitive in the international market. Accompanying this must be the right trade policies to support and create such incentives for massive exports of finished, value-added goods from Nigeria.”

Being born again has nothing to do with my inner craze, says Tonto Dikeh

September 18, 2021


Nollywood star, Tonto Dikeh, has stated that her being born again has nothing to do with her inner craze.

She stated this on Saturday via her verified Instagram page, as she warned users who claimed that she was sponsoring a blogger known as ‘gistlover’.

The actress wrote, “I don’t know if I speak bad English or I am ignorant about how bad my English is.

“I said it earlier. I don’t know gistlover. I am an ‘amebo’ just like you. Just that I have shame now. So all these verified accounts hiding behind the fakes accusing me of fueling gistlover or being a team, you a fool or what?

“I heard I am broke. So how am I supposed to pay a blogger or be on the money side and not be in money? See, y’all don’t stress me or I publish your freaking DMs.

“Being born again has nothing to do with my inner craze. Gistlover, I ‘stan’ for life. If they give me ‘gbas’, it’s my right to give ‘gbos’ back or not.” (sic)

As the caption, she added, “God bless whoever from y’all supports or supported me. Regardless, I win.

“What I ain’t gonna take is knowing that’s your fake account and not ‘chocking’ my hands in your eyes.

“From A -Z, I will deal with anyone who comes to me, so y’all keep streaming the fake accounts. If I catch you we die together and that’s on your parents grave.

“And I’ll always still remain the #jesusgirl. If you are born well enough, write with your real accounts. I’ll slap, beat the living daylight out of your demons… and beating of demons dey Bible.” (sic)

BREAKING: Lagos #EndSARS panel suspends sitting indefinitely, member alleges ‘frustration’

September 18, 2021


The Lagos State Judicial Panel of Restitution and Inquiry set up to investigate cases of police brutality especially involving officers of the now-defunct Special Anti-Robbery Squad has suspended its sitting indefinitely.

This is as a member of the panel, Ebun Adegboruwa, alleged that the panel was frustrated.

The suspension was announced by a retired judge heading the panel, Doris Okuwobi, on Saturday.

“EndSARS panel is being frustrated. There are attempts to frustrate the EndSARS Judicial Panel from reaching meaningful conclusions on investigations into the Lekki Toll Gate Incident of 20th October 2020. I will give details subsequently,” Adegboruwa said.

Details later…

Thursday, September 16, 2021

BBNaija S6: Nini, Saga receive strikes for flouting house rules

September 16, 2021


Big Brother Naija Shine Ya Eye housemates, Nini and Saga, has received a strike each for flouting house rules.

This was announced by Big Brother on Thursday, day 54 of the show, after Biggie played a video of Saga and Nini whispering.

Worse still, the duo was whispering about Pere, Saga’s supposed best friend, in bad light and the video was played for all to see.

After the footage was played, Big Brother announced that the duo had received a strike for speaking in hushed tones, thereby breaking one of the fundamental rules of the house.

He said, “Saga, Nini, you have both been found guilty of breaking a fundamental house rule and are hereby issued a strike.

“Saga, this is strike number two. One more strike and you will be disqualified from the Big Brother Shine Ya Eye house. Do you understand?”

After Saga replied in the affirmative, Big Brother went on to address Nini.

“Nini, this is your first strike. Two more strikes and you will be disqualified from the Big Brother Shine Ya Eye house,” said Big Brother.

This comes after Big Brother punished Saga and Nini for failing the secret task involving a ‘fight’ between the two.

BREAKING: EFCC Chairman Abdulrasheed Bawa slumps in Abuja

September 16, 2021

Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Abdulrasheed Bawa, slumped at a programme at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, on Thursday

The incident happened when Bawa was giving a goodwill message at the National Identity Day celebration.

The EFCC boss suddenly stopped talking, staggered and later laid down.

The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Professor Isa Pantami, and other dignitaries immediately held him for some time.

He was later taken out of the hall.

Details later…