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Sunday, February 23, 2020

Nigerian Actress; Shan George, Becomes Chairman Callywood Board, She Cries –


There is always a time and date set for a reward for hard work and dedication no matter how long it takes.
Popular Nollywood actress; Shan George, has been recognized by Governor Ben Ayade. She has been appointed as the Chairman of Cross River movie body (Callywood).

The long time actress could not hide her excitement when she woke up to hear the good news.

Sharing a video of her crying via her Instagram Page, the veteran actress wrote:

“I’m still in shock ������� I worked all night and went to bed at past 6 am, I was sooooo tired, I crashed without having a bath or even wipe my face.

“I’m just waking up now, to this good news, of me being appointed as CHAIRMAN CALLYWOOD BOARD. (CALLYWOOD IS THE MOVIE BODY IN MY STATE)
By His Excellency, Sir Ben Ayade, d Amiable Governor of Cross river state.

Thank u very much, Sir.
Thank u crossrivarians.
Praises to d Almighty God.
I pray for God’s guidance so that I can do this job and not disappoint my Governor, my people, and my God. Amen.”

Wow..congrats Shan George.

US Opposes Nigeria’s Plan To Hand Over Abacha’s Looted Funds To Kebbi State Governor


Following the recovery of the huge sum of money looted by Nigerian’s former military leader; Late General Sani Abacha, the United State government has opposed plans by Nigeria’s government to hand about $100 million which the American authorities say was stolen by the deceased to a top ruling party official; Abubakar Bagudu.

The United States Department of Justice revealed in a Feb. 3 statement that Bagudu, was part of a network controlled by Abacha that “embezzled, misappropriated and extorted billions from the government of Nigeria.” Bagudu is the chairman of an influential body of governors representing the ruling All Progressives Congress.

The disagreement may hamper future cooperation between the two nations to recover state money moved offshore by Abacha, who Transparency International estimates may have looted as much as $5 billion during his 1993-98 rule. A commitment by Nigeria to transfer the funds to Kebbi state Governor Abubakar Bagudu appears to undermine Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari’s pledge to quell rampant graft in Africa’s top oil producer.

The U.S. Department of Justice says Bagudu was involved in corruption with Abacha. The DoJ also contends that the Nigerian government is hindering U.S. efforts to recover allegedly laundered money it says it’s traced to Bagudu. Buhari’s administration says a 17-year-old agreement entitles Bagudu to the funds and prevents Nigeria from assisting the U.S., according to recent filings from the District Court for the District of Columbia in Washington.

“This case illustrates how complex and contentious repatriating stolen assets to Nigeria can be,” said Matthew Page, an associate fellow at London-based Chatham House and former Nigeria expert for U.S. intelligence agencies. “Instead of welcoming U.S. efforts, Nigeria’s lawyers appear to be supporting the interests of one of the country’s most powerful families.”

Neither Bagudu nor a spokesman for Attorney General Abubakar Malami responded to requests for comment. A spokesman for Buhari said the settlement and the litigation were matters for Malami. A spokesman for the DoJ declined to comment.

Successive Nigerian governments have sought to recoup the money looted by Abacha, who died in office, and have so far repatriated more than $2 billion with the cooperation of other countries, according to U.S. court filings.

In the case involving Bagudu, the U.S. in 2013 initiated a forfeiture action against a host of assets, including four investment portfolios held in London in trust for him and his family, according to the district court filings.

Despite the forfeiture action being initiated following a Nigerian state request in 2012, Buhari’s government now says it can’t assist the U.S. because it’s bound by a settlement Bagudu reached with the administration of then-President Olusegun Obasanjo in 2003, according to the court filings.

Under the terms of that accord, which was approved by a U.K. court, Bagudu returned $163 million of allegedly laundered money to the Nigerian authorities, which in exchange dropped all outstanding civil and criminal claims against him “stemming from his involvement in government corruption,” according to a Dec. 23 memorandum opinion by District Judge John D. Bates in Washington D.C.

That meant “Nigeria renounced any interest whatsoever” in Bagudu’s trust assets, including those the U.S. is attempting to recover for the West African nation, the opinion stated.

Bagudu was able to return to Nigeria after concluding the settlement and was elected as a senator in 2009. Six years later, he was voted in as Kebbi’s governor in elections that brought Buhari and his party to power.

After Bagudu successfully sued Nigeria for violating the 2003 settlement, Buhari’s administration reached a new agreement with him in October 2018, according to the court filings. That would result in the transfer of ownership of the investment portfolios, worth 141 million euros ($155 million) to the Nigerian state, which would then pay 98.5 million euros to Bagudu and his affiliates, according to Bates’ Dec. 23 opinion. The funds are currently restrained by the U.K. at the request of the U.S.

Nigeria’s government claims the updated 2018 agreement with the Kebbi governor, which requires court approval in the U.K., will “curtail and mitigate its looming exposure” from the judgment in Bagudu’s favor.

The full texts of neither settlement was published in the court filings.

Buhari’s administration submitted the 2018 deal to the U.K. court in September to support its application to unfreeze the assets so they can be sent to Nigeria, according to the opinion. The court has yet to make a decision.

Leadership Requires Knowledge


Blessed are you, Simon Barjona! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock, I will build my church.” *(Matthew 16:17-18)

The saying remains forever true that: “Leaders are Readers.” To be a leader at all, one must have some amount of knowledge but to be a good leader, one must have the right kind of knowledge. Furthermore, to be a spiritual leader, one must know God; that is, one must have the capacity of hearing from the Holy Spirit.

When Jesus asked his disciples about his identity in Matthew 16, Jesus was basically testing the disciples. He wanted to know which of them the Holy Spirit would minister to. Up till that moment, Jesus was just a mystery to his disciples; a puzzle they couldn’t crack.

In Mathew 8:27, we see how the disciples in their confusion and utter amazement wondered aloud: “What sort of man is this, that even winds and the sea obey him?” For Peter to have given the right answer, Jesus knew it wasn’t just Peter speaking, it was the Holy Spirit. “For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 16:17).

By displaying his ability to hear from God the Father, Jesus immediately made Peter the visible head of the church. Jesus was confident that the same Holy Spirit that spoke to Peter that day at Caesarea Philippi would continue to speak to him to make the right decisions, to say the right words and carry out the right actions to move the church forward.

As a man, Peter was weak, often frightened, erratic, quarrelsome and faithless; he tried to dissuade Jesus from the way of the cross, he cut off someone’s ear, he denied Christ three times after boasting, he went back to fishing even after the resurrection of Christ. But as a Pope, God used him perfectly to set the standards of church leadership.

Like Peter, we priests and religious are not free from weaknesses and often embarrassing shortcomings. In his first letter (which we read in today’s first reading), Peter himself pointed out some of these weaknesses while admonishing the elders (presbyters) of the early church.

These weaknesses include an unwillingness to tend the flock from one’s heart, serving for the sake of personal gain, having a domineering attitude rather than serving the people of God, and not showing good examples to the flock. (Cf. 1st Peter 5). As we honour the Chair of St. Peter today, we pray for the Peter of today’s world, Pope Francis – that God would continue to lead the Church through him.

Dear friends, in whatever position of leadership you find yourself, one question you must not fail to always ask is: Do I have the right kind of knowledge required for this job? In other words, “Am I in tune with the Holy Spirit as Peter was?” Am I leading for the sake of personal gain? And above all, “Do I even know Jesus?”

Let us pray: Lord Jesus, bless our dear Pope Francis and all the leaders of the church, despite their shortcomings, use them daily to uplift humanity integrally. Amen.

Be Happy. Live Positive. Have Faith. It is well with you. God bless you. (Feast of the Chair of St. Peter. Bible Study: 1st Peter 5:1-4, Psalm 23 and Matthew 16:13-19).

Fr. Abu.

The Catholic Daily TV Mass – For The Sick, The Aged & Others – Saturday February 22, 2020


The Catholic TV Mass is one of the ways the Catholic Church reaches out to a lot of people that does not have the means to attend the Holy Mass within their physical location.

The Priest celebrates Mass daily online, on-demand, over-the-top, and on-the-go viewing. The Eucharist is the source and summit of the Roman Catholic faith we share in the Sacrifice of the Mass, the center of The CatholicTV Network’s mission. Hear the words of the Gospel, reflect on the daily homily, and worship God with us. 

May the grace of the daily mass abide in our lives as we watch the video below:

Suicide: 13-Year-Old Nigerian Student Commits Suicide


A 13-year old SS1 student, allegedly committed suicide by drinking the popular insecticide, Sniper, after he was suspended from school for two weeks.

According to P.M.Express, it was reported that the late Juwon was a student of Foldemi Private School located at Ola Farm area of Abaranje, Ikotun, Lagos, where the incident happened.

It was gathered that one of the female classmates went to the School Management and reported that the deceased touched the buttocks of another female classmate which he reportedly denied.

However, the School Management found him culpable and subsequently punished him by suspending from the school as a disciplinary measure to serve as deterrent to other students despite his denial.

The boy grew angry and felt humiliated for a crime he said he did not commit. When he got home, he took the insecticide, Sniper, which was kept at home and drank it. Few minutes after, he became unconscious and died in the process before help could come to him as his parents were not at home by the time he was sent home.

When his parents returned home and found him in that condition with a bottle of Sniper insecticide beside him, he was taken to an undisclosed hospital where the doctors merely certified him dead. His corpse was taken to the cemetery and buried immediately.

The death of the student, Juwon, sparked a serious protest in the area and the school to the extent that his classmates mobilised and stormed the home of their female classmate, identified as Chinaza, who was behind the suspension in order to attack her. But sensing danger, her parents managed to sneak her away from the compound and since then Chinaza was said to be in hiding.

The Police at Ikotun Division, Lagos, have started investigation to uncover the circumstances that led to the death of the 13-year old SS1 student. What a loss!

Nigerian President Reveals What Will Determine The Reopening Of Land Borders


President Muhammadu Buhari, on Friday, February 21, 2020, disclosed what will determine the reopening of partially closed land borders.

The President, who received President Roch Marc Christian Kabore of Burkina Faso at the Presidential Villa, said Nigeria’s decision to partially close the border was solely to safeguard national security.

The President of Burkina Faso is the Chairman of the ECOWAS Committee mandated to resolve the issue of the border closure.

“Our major problem is security — the inflow of weapons, ammunition, and drugs.
“We have witnessed a decline in banditry using such weapons since the partial closure of the border.

“Also, our farmers are now able to sell their rice since we stopped the inflow of foreign rice, usually dumped in the country,’’ President Buhari said.

President Buhari also said Nigeria was very much mindful of the concerns of neighboring countries on the issue, assuring that his administration will find an early and enduring solution.

“I will work as fast as I can as soon as I receive the report,’’ He said.

The President added that the issue of partial closure of Nigeria’s land border to goods from neighboring countries will be determined by the report of the tripartite committee made up of Nigeria, Benin, and the Niger Republic.

Earlier, the President of Burkina Faso told President Buhari that he came on the visit, following the mandate of ECOWAS to resolve the issues that culminated in the partial closure of the border, adding that some of the challenges had been discussed, and agreed on, urging the Nigerian leader to reconsider the position of the country.

Ukraine Protesters Hurled Stones At The Buses Carrying China Evacuees


Dozens of protesters in a Novi Sanzhary town in
Ukraine have attacked buses carrying evacuees from coronavirus-hit China.

Earlier on Thursday, 45 Ukrainians and 27 foreign nationals were flown from Wuhan in China, the epicentre of the deadly outbreak, to Kharkiv in eastern Ukraine. Six buses then drove them to the hospital in Novi Sanzhary, where they were met by demonstrators lighting bonfires and hurling stones.

The evacuees were being brought to the hospital in Novi Sanzhary, in the central Poltava region, where they will be held in quarantine for 14 days.

Ukraine’s security service (SSU) said a fake email claiming to be from the Ministry of Health falsely said some evacuees had contracted the virus. A statement said, SSU officials are now investigating the apparent hoax.

Ukraine’s diplomatic mission added that three Ukrainians and a resident of Kazakhstan had been left behind in China, because they had reported having a fever.

Prime Minister Oleksiy Honcharuk, Health Minister Zoriana Skaletska and Interior Minister Arsen Avakov all travelled to the city to try and calm tensions.

In footage published by local media, Mr Avakov was seen telling the protesters: “We are not talking about infected people, we are talking about healthy people.”

One person then replied: “So far.”

In a statement, President Volodymyr Zelensky urged the Ukrainian protesters to show empathy and refrain from protesting.

“Most of the passengers are people under 30. They are almost like children to many of us,” he said.

“But there is another danger that I would like to mention. The danger of forgetting that we are all human and we are all Ukrainians. Each of us – including those who ended up in Wuhan during the epidemic.”

More than 76,000 cases of the disease named Covid-19 have been reported, and 2,247 related deaths. The vast majority of the cases and deaths have been in China.

The Ukrainian health ministry said none of the passengers were sick.

Popular Nigerian Businessman; E-money Celebrates Birthday In Grand Style


Businessman, Emeka Okonkwo aka E-Money, had a dinner party on Friday night, to celebrate his birthday which was on Tuesday, February 18th.

Lots of celebrities were in attendance, they include, Timaya, Funnybone, actor Charles Onojie, AY Makun, Okey Bakassi, BBNaija’s Frodd, atress Lilian Esoro, Tana Adelana, show promoter Cubana Chief Priest, realtor Ned Okonkwo and his wife amongst others.

Here are more photos from the event below.

Mariah Carey Gets $5 Million Dollar Settlement From Ex-billionaire Fiance For Wasting Her Time


Mariah Carey & ex-billionaire fiance’ James Packer have reached a settlement agreement after the Grammy winner argued that she uprooted her life to move to L.A from NYC to be with the wealthy businessman. She also recalled an incident where James allegedly did something not so nice to one of her assistants during their vacation in Greece which caused Mariah to have to cancel some dates on her South American tour and lose out on some major coins.

According to reports, the two have reached an agreement and Mariah was paid somewhere between $5 to $10 million dollars for the inconvenience.

Oh, and she gets to keep the $10 million engagement ring!

This was allegedly paid back in October and we wonder if this major lick has anything to do with her currently canceling shows on her Christmas tour.

We all know Mariah Carey is the ultimate DIVA & if anybody could cough up a couple of million dollars from an ex-boyfriend–it’s her.
I mean can you fault her?

Vigils Held In Germany For Victims Of ‘Racist’ Gunman Attack


Thousands of mourners
took part in vigils across Germany on Thursday after a gunman with apparent far-right beliefs killed nine people at a shisha bar and a cafe in the city of Hanau.

Chancellor Angela Merkel condemned the “poison” of racism, as anger mixed with grief over the latest and deadliest attack linked to Germany’s extreme right in recent months.

The suspect, 43-year-old German Tobias R., was found dead at his home after the rampage along with his 72-year-old mother in what appeared to be a murder-suicide.

Hundreds of people, many carrying candles or a white rose, gathered in silence in Hanau in the evening to show solidarity with the victims.

Large crowds also gathered in Frankfurt and at Berlin’s Brandenburg Gate, some carrying signs that read “Take racism personally” or “Never Again!”, in scenes replicated across dozens of German cities.

The nine people killed at the two bars late Wednesday evening were aged between 21 and 44 and all had a “migrant background,” although some were German citizens, chief federal prosecutor Peter Frank said.

He added that evidence, including video footage and a “manifesto” found on the suspect’s website, showed Tobias R. had “a very deeply racist attitude”.

The Turkish presidency said five Turkish nationals were among those killed. A Bulgarian and a Bosnian were also among the dead.

The Kon-Med association of Kurds in Germany said there were “several victims of Kurdish origin”, and criticised German authorities for not taking a tougher stance against “far-right terrorism”.

Speaking in Berlin, Merkel said: “Racism is a poison, hatred is a poison and this poison exists in our society and it is already to blame for far too many crimes.”

She recalled the murders carried out by the neo-Nazi “NSU” cell between 2000-07, as well as last June’s killing of pro-migrant politician Walter Luebcke as examples of the threat posed by the far right.

She also cited October’s deadly anti-Semitic attack in Halle, which raised alarm over rising anti-Jewish hatred in Germany.

Wednesday’s rampage started at around 10:00 pm (2100 GMT) at the Midnight shisha bar in central Hanau, some 20 kilometres (12 miles) east of Frankfurt.

The gunman reportedly rang the doorbell and then shot at people in the smoking section, mass-market daily Bild said.

He fled the scene by car before opening fire at the Arena Bar & Cafe.

After a massive manhunt, the suspect was found dead at his flat, along with his mother. Both were killed by gunshot.

Prosecutor Frank said investigators were trying to determine if the suspect had accomplices, or contacts in Germany or abroad who might have known about the attack plans.

Relatives and friends of the victims gathered at the Arena bar on Thursday, an AFP reporter said, tearfully embracing one another.

“I couldn’t be any more upset,” said Inge Bank, 82, who lives near the bar.

“We have to nip it in the bud if the Nazi party is coming back,” Bank said, adding that she had lived through World War II.

German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier placed a wreath of white flowers outside the Arena bar on Thursday evening before addressing the main Hanau vigil.

Steinmeier, who serves as a moral compass for the nation, condemned the shooter’s “brutal act of terror”.

But he said he was heartened to see “thousands, maybe even tens of thousands” turning out across the country to honour the victims.

“We stand together, we want to live together and we show that over and over again. That is the strongest way to fight hatred,” he said, to the occasional shout of “Nazis Out!” from the crowd.

Elsewhere, Frankfurt’s Eintracht football team held a minute’s silence ahead of its Europa League match against RB Salzburg.

Growing threat

In a rambling 24-page document seen by AFP, the alleged gunman wrote that people from more than two dozen countries, including Turkey and Israel, should be “destroyed”.

He also said he had never been with a woman, which he blamed on being “watched” by unspecified secret services.

King’s College London counter-terrorism expert Peter Neumann tweeted that the text contained “various, but mostly extreme right views, with a do-it-yourself ideology cobbled together out of parts found on the internet”.

As condemnation of the Hanau violence poured in, the co-leader of the far-right AfD party Joerg Meuthen stood out by saying the shootings were “neither right- nor left-wing terrorism” but the actions of “a madman”.

Politicians from across the political spectrum however accused the anti-Islam, anti-immigrant AfD of normalising hate speech and fomenting anti-foreigner sentiment in recent years.

German police have identified around 60 far-right adherents as “dangerous” individuals capable of carrying out a violent attack.

Last Friday, they arrested 12 members of a German extreme right group believed to have been plotting “shocking” large-scale attacks on mosques, similar to the ones carried out in New Zealand last year.