SeunRN

SeunRNMarch 30, 2018
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2min00

Initial results showed that Egypt‘s incumbent President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi won 92 percent of the votes in the 2018 presidential election, with 23 million Egyptians voting for him, state-run Al-Ahram news website reported Thursday.

According to Al-Ahram, some 25 million Egyptians out of nearly 60 million eligible voters cast their votes in the three-day election concluded on Wednesday.

The initial results also revealed that Sisi’s sole rival in the race, little known politician Moussa Mostafa Moussa, garnered only three percent of the votes. The voter turnout according to the initial results amounted to over 42 percent. The vote counting started right after closure of polling centers nationwide at 22:00 local time (0800 GMT) on Wednesday.

Most Egyptians who voted for Sisi expressed their belief in him as a savior from Islamist radicalism of the currently blacklisted Muslim Brotherhood group and trust in Sisi’s leadership of the country for eradication of terrorism and for further security, stability and development.

The final result will be officially announced by the National Election Authority at a press conference on April 2.

Sisi came to office in mid-2014, a year after he, as the army chief then, led the military ouster of former Islamist President Mohamed Morsi in response to mass protests against his one-year rule and his now-outlawed Muslim Brotherhood group.


SeunRNMarch 30, 2018
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1min00

The Nigerian Navy has launched a fresh offensive against illegal refineries in Rivers State.

Some of these facilities have been destroyed in the ongoing operation, which is targeted at curbing crude oil theft in the country.
From the base of the Nigerian Navy Ship Pathfinder, the journey began to one of the creeks in Rivers State where illegal refineries are hidden away.

It wasn’t long before large billows of smoke indicated that the team was approaching its destination.

A by-product of the illegal refineries has been identified as one of the major causes of soot in Rivers State.

While the unregulated manner of handling the crude itself has led to other forms of environmental pollution.

A storage pit of a typical illegal refinery has the capacity to fill up a 33,000 litre truck of fuel.


SeunRNMarch 30, 2018
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1min00

As Nigerians celebrate Easter, Director of the Muslims Rights Concern, Prof. Ishaq Akintola has called on citizens to intensify prayers for the release of Leah Sharibu, the Dapchi schoolgirl still in Boko Haram captivity.

The Director also prayed that God grant her more strength and embolden her in her trying moments in captivity.

Akintola in his Easter message on Friday appealed for more prayers for the remaining chibok girls still in captivity.

He urged Nigerians to support the Federal Government’s offer of amnesty to Boko Haram insurgents, adding that it should not be seen as a sign of weakness or surrender.


SeunRNMarch 30, 2018
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1min00

The Umbrella body for Estate Surveyors and Valuers in the country, has charged the Federal Government to begin taxing properties left unoccupied in order to subsidize the high cost of housing in the country.

The President of the institution made this call in Abuja on Wednesday, while briefing journalists on housing challenges in the country.

This action it believes will assist low income earners to have access to affordable housing in the country.


SeunRNMarch 30, 2018
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1min00

The European Investment Bank has signed a $25m financing installation of off-grid solar systems with the light to strengthen access to energy in Nigeria and four other African countries.

Vice-President of the bank, Ambroise Fayolle, who announced the project at the ongoing 6th Africa CEO Forum in Abidjan, Cote ‘Ivoire, listed other countries to include Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda.

He said the energy would be supplied via solar kits that do not require a grid, which are easy to use and inexpensive for users, to come in a pre-payment system.

According to him, the energy project will focus on rural and suburban populations and micro-entrepreneurs.


SeunRNMarch 30, 2018
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1min00

A total of 51 different kinds of guns have been voluntarily submitted to the Kwara state command of the Nigeria Police Force my members of the public.

This is in compliance with the 21-day ultimatum given by the Inspector General of Police to persons of unauthorised and prohibited fire-arms to voluntarily submit them to the public armoury.

Kwara state commissioner of police, Lawan Ado said the 21-day ultimatum has lapsed his men will begin the enforcement of mop-up and recovery of illegal and prohibited fire-arms and culprits will be arrested and prosecuted.

The police also paraded one Suleiman Ajenifuja with three human skulls in his possession.


SeunRNMarch 30, 2018
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2min00

The Senate has rejected the 350 million US dollars Kaduna state Development Policy Operation credit facility from the World Bank.

Chairman, Senate Committee on Local and Foreign Debts, Senator Shehu Sani while reading the report of his committee at Thursday’s plenary said the state government has not genuinely stated how the loan request will be properly utilized for the people of Kaduna hence the recommendation for its rejection.

Senator Suleiman Hunkuyi representing Kaduna North gave his backing to the recommendation that the loan request should not be approved because it will increase the loan burdens on the state and that the reasons for the request sent to the World Bank are at variance with what the money is meant for.

He said the loan request is a misplacement of priorities by the Kaduna state government.

Senator Danjuma La’ah representing Kaduna South also kicked against the loan request saying his people had not mandated him to support the credit facility.

Deputy Senate Leader, Senator Bala Na’Allah said it is a lesson for democracy especially governors who refuse to consult with their people and representatives before seeking such massive loan approval.

Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu who presided said a loan application for infrastructural development is not bad in itself but that failure to consult with representatives of the people before such a critical facility is taken is clearly undemocratic.

When he put the question, the Senate overwhelmingly rejected the 350 million US dollars loan request by the Kaduna state government.


SeunRNMarch 30, 2018
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5min00

A tearful Darren Lehmann said on Thursday he would quit as coach of the scandal-tainted Australia cricket team after the fourth and final Test of the ongoing series in South Africa.

“This will be my last Test as head coach of the Australian cricket team,” Lehmann told a press conference on the eve of the match.

“Saying goodbye to the players was the toughest thing I have ever had to do.

“After seeing events in the media today with Steve Smith and Cameron Bancroft, the feeling is that Australian cricket needs to move forward and this is the right thing to do.

“I really felt for Steve and as you see I’m crying in front of the media. All the players are really hurting.”

Lehmann, who was due to leave the job after the 2019 Ashes series in England, is quitting despite being cleared of any role in the ball-tampering scandal that has rocked the sport.

His decision follows 12-month bans given to captain Smith and vice-captain David Warner for the roles they played in a plot to cheat in Cape Town last Saturday during the third Test.

Opening batsman Bancroft was banned for nine months for his part in the affair.

“As a team we know we’ve let so many people down and for that we’re truly sorry,” added the 48-year-old Lehmann.

“The players involved have been handed down very serious sentences and they know they must face the consequences. They have made a grave mistake but they are not bad people.”

Lehmann said the scandal had affected him and his family.

“My family and I have copped a lot of abuse over the last week and it’s taken its toll,” added the 48-year-old Lehmann.

“I am ultimately responsible for the culture of the team and I’ve been thinking about my position for a while.

“Despite telling media yesterday that I’m not resigning, after viewing Steve and Cameron’s hurting, it is only fair that I make this decision.”

Lehmann was hailed as a saviour when he took over in 2013, but critics now accuse him of overseeing a toxic culture that has dented the reputation of the famed Baggy Green cap.

After being appointed, Lehmann’s response when asked to list his top three priorities was telling.

“Probably win, win, win, for a start,” he told reporters.

Cricket Australia (CA) had other ideas when it gave him the job.

“Discipline, consistency of behaviour and accountability for performance are all key ingredients that need to improve,” chief executive James Sutherland said at the time.

If part of Lehmann’s brief was to improve the Australian team’s behaviour, there is little doubt he has failed.

Players were once considered role models for children, but the situation has become so bad that CA is setting up an independent review into the team’s conduct and culture.

Even Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has weighed in to criticise the practice of sledging — taunting opponents verbally with the aim of distracting them.

Australian Broadcasting Corporation senior cricket commentator Jim Maxwell said the coach had to accept some blame for an “arrogant” team culture where certain players felt cheating was preferable to losing honourably.

“He’s done a very good job with the side but has a very narrow view of the way players should conduct themselves,” Maxwell said.

Lehmann became a national coach after Australia sacked the first foreigner to hold the post, South African Mickey Arthur, on the eve of an Ashes series.

A respected former batsman who played 27 Tests and 117 one-day internationals for Australia, Lehmann was seen as an antidote to the disciplinarian Arthur.

Australia lost Lehmann’s first Ashes series in charge but later in 2013, after he had stamped his mark on the team, they crushed England 5-0 in ruthless fashion.

The Australians have been successful under him, with a Test record of 30 wins, 19 losses and eight draws.

AFP


SeunRNMarch 30, 2018
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3min00

Russian authorities hit out at “political manoeuvering” after freestyle wrestlers were denied visas to attend an important competition in the United States.

According to Russian Wrestling Federation president Mikhail Mamiashvili, a former Olympic champion, the American “embassy refused to meet” with the wrestlers when they went to request visas.

As things stand, they are set to miss the World Cup event in Iowa City from April 7-8.

Former heavyweight boxing champion and Russian politician Nikolai Valuev blasted the “very clear political manoeuvering in this affair”.

Russian diplomatic spokeswoman Maria Zakharova described the move as “an example of the United States obstructing Russian athletes from participating in international competitions”.

American embassy spokeswoman Maria Olson, quoted by Russian media, blamed Russian authorities for diplomatic restrictions imposed on the embassy.

“Unfortunately, we don’t have the capacity to answer every one of the numerous requests from the Russian ministry of foreign affairs, especially when it relates to large numbers of people,” she said.

Diplomatic relations between Washington and Moscow are at one of their lowest ebbs since the end of the Cold War.

Tit for tat diplomatic measures brought on by US sanctions against Russia over the Ukraine crisis saw the American embassy in Moscow reduced from 755 to 455 staff last year.

That was in response to the Donald Trump administration confiscating two Russian diplomatic properties in the US.

Contacted by AFP, a USA Wrestling spokesman denied all knowledge of the visa issues.

“We can’t verify the Russian team’s status yet, as we have not been notified by their wrestling federation,” the spokesman said.

However, a statement on the USA Wrestling website said that in light of Iran’s predictable withdrawal from the competition and a lack of contact from Russia, they had “proactively sought commitments from Mongolia and India to compete in the event”.

Mamiashvili, the Greco-Roman middleweight champion from the Seoul Olympics in 1988, hasn’t given up hope, claiming USA Wrestling were doing “everything they can” to facilitate Russian participation in Iowa.

“If we have to miss the World Cup event it would be a huge tragedy,” he said.

AFP