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Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Help us defeat Boko Haram - House of Reps speaker, Femi Gbajabiamila tells US

Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabimila has appealed to the United States government to help Nigeria defeat insurgency and other security challenges bedevilling the country.

The Speaker who made the appeal while hosting the US Ambassador to Nigeria, Mary Leonard in Abuja yesterday February 11, stated that Nigerians are worried about the lingering insecurity and are looking up to the United States of America for assistance.

Gbajabiamila also commended the US Government for its decision to repatriate over $300m Abacha loot.

He said;

“What is America doing to assist Nigeria defeat insurgency? Is the outcome of the Layee Act affecting the way international organizations operate? What is the status of the Tucano jets we paid for?

“The house and indeed Nigerians are worried about the lingering insecurity in many parts of the country and many citizens of Nigeria are looking up to the United States of America for assistance to tackle this challenge”.

On her own part, Leonard reiterated the commitment of the US government in helping to end insecurity in Nigeria and she also promised to help in facilitating the timely delivery of the Tucano jets.

Electricity in Nigeria is for the elite - NNPC GMD, Mele Kyari

The Group Managing Director of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mele Kyari has expressed disappointment with the state of power generation in Nigeria.

Speaking at the Nigeria International Petroleum Summit which provided opportunity for the signing of a $1.1 million grant between Nigeria and the United States Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) as part-funding for the Abuja Independent Power Project (IPP) in Abuja on Tuesday February 11, the NNPC Chief lamented that Nigerians are still struggling to afford a day’s meal and that electricity is now "a luxury” exclusive for the elite.

Kyari stated that the challenges of power supply must be addressed before Nigeria can go into renewable energy.

He said;

“For this country and very many of us in sub-Saharan Africa, what we worry about today is actually the meals of today. There are many who can’t afford a meal a day. And of course, electricity is largely a luxury; it’s only for the elite, like all of us here.
“It is the dream of very many to have I-pass-my-neighbour in their homes. When you say, ‘do not use fossil fuel,’ but you have not provided alternatives. The world has not looked at their situation. The world has not recognised that there is abject poverty in the communities.
“We have to resolve the issue of electricity so that we can talk about renewable energy in the future and reduce the use of fossil fuel that has a high impact on the environment. We know that there is an energy transition in the world. With time, there will be less dependence on fossil fuel.
“We have gas in abundance, we must create infrastructure that will help create gas for power generation.
“We need power to create jobs and we must create prosperity, so that we can have peace in our country. We are grateful for this grant."

It's unfortunate that the headline for an interview a woman grants is always about her marital status - Beverly Naya

Beverly Naya has reacted to the headline used in a recent interview she granted, stating that 'it's unfortunate that when a woman grants an interview in this part of the world, the headline is almost always about about her marital status or opinions on marriage.'

The actress stated that in spite of spending a better part of her time talking about her life, career and aspirations, the focal point is always "marriage".

Beverly tweeted;

Quite unfortunate that when a woman grants an interview in this part of the world, the headline is almost always about about her marital status or opinions on marriage. You’ll spend 30 mins talking about your life, career and aspirations only to have ‘marriage’ be the focus. Wow.

Most common headlines used for women:

‘Why I’ve chosen not to get married’

‘Why I’m still not married’

‘The kind of man I want to marry’

‘The right man hasn’t found me’

‘I will marry when God says I should’

‘I will get married when the right man finds me’

‘Why I’m single’

"We all know the entertainment industry is now soaked in tribalism" Etcetera responds as Emma Ugolee asks why most top artists are from the Southwest

Media personality, Emma Ugolee and singer Etcetera have started a conversation about tribalism in the Nigerian entertainment industry after they claimed that most of the top artists are from the Southwest, despite the fact that there are artists from other parts of Nigeria doing great music.

Emma wrote;

Nigerias music treasure is so vast and rich. Great musical tradition from Victor Olaiya, Rex Lawson, Ebenezer Obey, Oliver De Coque, Osita Osadebe, Peacocks international, Oriental brothers before you even talk about Fela, Sonny Okosun, Ksa, Nelly Uchendu, Onyeka, Ras Kimono, Mandators and so many others, the Nigerian discography is rich and varied with a lot of unique genres, it’s a national treasure says my friend Obi Asika
Without any intention to stir up a hornet’s nest, this wide spread representation touches a thought that has been disquieting in me for a while now.
Is it a coincidence that the top 10 (if not 15) music acts are from the southwest ? Or is there more to it?
I ask this absolutely free of any bias and no streak at all of tribalism. I truly just would like to know.
I have tried to explain it with the Lagos hub influence but Lagos was still the place to go to (in an era I witnessed) when it was okay for a Zoolezoo to come top the charts from Makurdi. When a Flavornabania could become the the biggest Nigerian act from Enugu, Jeremiah Gyang doing the same from Jos, Duncan Mighty & Timaya killing all the Lagos shows from PH city. Rymzo & Kaha from Benin. Age Beeka, Style & 6foot plus from ABJ. Nigga Raw Abia!!
The story is not the same at all. Traffic has significantly slowed down in the last 10years. Has the inroad into national limelight via Lagos been shutdown?
The same platform that allowed for others who spoke different languages, had a different sound etc to use the same platforms to national acceptance seems to now be region sensitive
The problem isn't coming to Lagos anymore, it's being accepted by Lagos. Seems like the open arms have been folded
Why is Erigga not a hiphop household name in Lagos? Was rap music from the middle belt and north produced only from the the era of swatroot & did it end with MI & Icepeince?
Does the media still show the same unbiased love we used to? Do music awards go to non-Lagos acts?
I speak not of a handful of exceptions. On a grand national scale as it used too, the question is, ....IS NIGERIA STILL represented IN SOUND, LANGUAGE AND MELODY OF MAINSTREAM MUSIC?

Singer Etcetera replied, telling Emma that his assertion is right. He said that artists like Tuface, Omawunmi, Flavour, Phyno, Waje, MI, Duncan Mighty, and Timaya are all great artists, yet, they "do not get as much buzz and recognition as the artists from the Southwest."

He added: "We all know that this SHAM some call Entertainment Industry in Nigeria today (Lagos in particular) is now SOAKED in TRIBALISM."

Read the rest of what he wrote below.

Jussie Smollett indicted again over alleged hoax attack, faces six new charges

Empire actor Jussie Smollett has been indicted by a special prosecutor in Illinois on six counts of lying to police.

Last year, Smollett said he was the subject of a racist and homophobic attack in Chicago. He claimed he was punched in the face by two masked attackers, had an "unknown chemical substance" poured on him and a rope wrapped around his neck. He also said his attackers made reference to MAGA, the Make America Great Again slogan used by Trump supporters.

However, following investigations, authorities accused him of staging the attack on himself for publicity. Police claimed Smollett paid two Black brothers to carry out the attack "to promote his career" because he was "dissatisfied with his salary".

Smollett denied the accusations and after an emergency court appearance in March 2019, all charges against him were dropped.

Yet Chicago Police and the city's mayor stood by their case against Smollett - and accused the courts of letting him "off scot-free".

Smollett now faces six counts of disorderly conduct, special prosecutor Dan Webb said in a statement.

Mr Webb, the special prosecutor assigned in August to investigate how local prosecutors handled the case, said in a statement he was going to further prosecute Smollett.

The actor had now been charged with "making four separate false reports to Chicago Police Department officers related to his false claims that he was the victim of a hate crime, knowing that he was not the victim of a crime," Mr Webb said.

He is due in court on 24 February.

The city has also sued the actor in a civil suit, seeking payment of more than $130,000 for overtime paid to officers involved in investigating his claims. Smollett has filed a counter suit.

    Wholesalesnaija Hair Brand Ambassadors Rocking Different Weaves and Wigs Pieces from The Brand (photos)

    Wholesalesnaija Hair Brand Ambassadors, Mercy Aigbe, Ini Edo, Mocheedah, Biodun Sofuyi Okeowo, are pictured rocking different weaves and wigs pieces from the brand.

    Instagram: @wholesalenaija

    South Africans mourn Joseph Shabalala, Ladysmith Black Mambazo founder who died aged 78

    South Africans and music lovers all over the world have gone on various social media platforms to mourn SA legend Joseph Shabalala who died at the age of 78 in Life Eugene Marais Hospital, Pretoria, on February 11, 2020.

    Shabalala was a South African singer and musician. He founded the choral group Ladysmith Black Mambazo and was the musical director of the group which won five Grammy awards and featured heavily on Paul Simon's Graceland album. The group also reached number 15 in the UK charts with a cover of Swing Low Sweet Chariot, for the 1995 Rugby World Cup.

    The death of Shabalala, who helped introduce the sound of traditional Zulu music to the world, was announced by the band's manager.

    "Yes it's true. Mr Shabalala passed on this morning," Xolani Majozi told the South Africa Times on February 11.

    "The group is on tour in the US, but they have been informed and are devastated because the group is family," Xolani added.

    In a statement, the band said: "We celebrate and honour your kind heart and your extraordinary life. Through your music and the millions who you came in contact with, you shall live forever."

    The South African government also paid tribute to the musician in a tweet, saying : "We would like to extend our condolences on the passing of Joseph Shabalala who was the founder of the group Ladysmith Black Mambazo."

    It added in Xhosa, "Ulale ngoxolo Tata ugqatso lwakho ulufezile." This translates in English to mean "Rest in peace, father, your race is complete."

    Herman Mashaba, former mayor of Johannesburg, mourned Joseph Shabalala, writing: "I am deeply saddened. You will be remembered as a giant of South African music and a pioneer of the industry."

    Below are more tributes from fans.

    Sacking service chiefs won’t end Boko Haram - Buratai

    The Chief of army staff, Tukur Yusuf Buratai has stated that the sack of service chiefs over the recent escalation of Boko Haram attacks won't end insurgency in the country.

    In an interview with TheCable and THISDAY/ARISE in Lagos on Tuesday February 11, Buratai averred that President Muhammadu Buhari should not be pushed into sacking his service chiefs “because he knows where the problems are”.

    He said;

    “I am tempted not to comment on this particular issue because I am directly involved. However, I want to believe that whatever happens, the commander-in-chief is the right arbiter, and he knows where it pinches, he knows where the problems are. I think the decision should be left to him. He should not be pushed or prompted in this regard

    "We are into a very serious issue which should not be taken lightly. This is why when you say a particular crop of leaders in the military should be removed for whatever reason, it sounds very odd because we are not addressing the issues. I am not saying this because I am the chief of army staff and I do not want to leave. No, that is not the issue. It is beyond that because this is a national issue, an issue of national pride and national interest. Those who would cry loudly against the service chiefs are within, and they are the ones who should be more vocal in the things that are not going right.”

    The Army Chief also dispelled claims of Boko Haram starting off in 2009. He stated that it's been difficult to wipe out Boko Haram because the “brainwashing and indoctrination” that created the group started off over 30 years.

    Buratai also insisted that the Nigerian army has won the war against insurgency as Boko Haram insurgents do not control any territory in Nigeria.
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