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Thursday, May 14, 2020

80 million Africans could be pushed into extreme poverty if action is not taken - Olusegun Obasanjo

Former Nigeria President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, has warned that the African continent could suffer the most from the economic fall out of Coronavirus if measures aren't taken towards boosting agriculture in the region.

As at Thursday morning, the African continent has suffered 72,391 cases of Coronavirus, of which there have been 2,493 deaths and 25,269 recoveries with Nigeria having 4,971 cases of the novel Coronavirus.

Obasanjo, alongside ex-Prime Minister of Ethiopia, Desalegn Boshe, has now detailed steps Africa must take if the continent is to survive post-Covid-19.

Giving the warning on Thursday during a publication on the International Fund for Agricultural Development’s website, Obasanjo and Boshe said, “Africa has so far escaped the worst health consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the continent looks like it could be the worst hit from the economic fallout of the crisis: 80 million Africans could be pushed into extreme poverty if action is not taken. And disruptions in food systems raise the prospect of more Africans falling into hunger.

“Rural people, many of whom work on small-scale farms, are particularly vulnerable to the impacts of the crisis. It is therefore vital that the COVID-19 response addresses food security and target the rural poor.

“Agriculture contributes 65 per cent of Africa’s employment and 75 per cent of its domestic trade. However, the rich potential of agriculture as a tool to promote food security and fight poverty is at risk from the effects of COVID-19.”

It added, “The effect of restrictive measures on food trade is especially worrying, in particular for food-importing countries, but also because of the shrinking export markets for the continent’s farmers.

“African governments have defined stimulus measures to mitigate national and regional economic impacts of COVID-19. As they do, they must remember that investments in agriculture can be up to five times more poverty-reducing than investments in other sectors.

“Small farms everywhere traditionally make a huge contribution to global food security. Around the world, small-farm dominated systems produce 50 per cent of all food calories on 30 per cent of the world’s agricultural land. In sub-Saharan Africa, however, the role of small-scale farms is even more significant: 80 per cent of farms are small in most of these countries.”

Ondo uncovers N4.3bn kept in secret account for 10 years

N4.3bn which was kept in a secret account for more than 10 years has been uncovered by the Ondo state government.

Ondo Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Donald Ojogo confirmed this in a statement released on Thursday May 14.

He said the money which was uncovered due to the discrete financial intelligence of the Commissioner for Finance Mrr. Wale Akinterinwa, was lodged in a third generation bank without due process for over 10 years ago.

Ojogo said;

“We recall that at inception of this administration, concerted efforts were made to take a comprehensive inventory of all assets and liabilities of Government which include liquidity status.

“This exercise, modestly conducted without the usual noise, was aimed at avoiding sensationalization and needless acrimony. In this regard, all development partners of the Government, including Banks rendered highly commendable forms of assistance.

“It should be noted that neither the Finance Commissioner nor the Accountant-General was in his present position as at when the said account was opened more than ten years ago.

“The invitation of the Finance Commissioner by the House of Assembly and indeed, same extended to both the State Accountant-General and the Auditor-General are in line with Government’s desire to make as transparent as possible, the management of our commonwealth in Ondo State.”

The Commissioner for Finance Mrr. Wale Akinterinwa who also confirmed this while appearing before lawmakers, said the money has been ploughed into the revenue account of government. He also denied claims of a consultant being hired in the course of retrieving the N4.3bn.

Ex-PSG star, Ezequiel Lavezzi and his model girlfriend Natalia Borges caught up in sex tape blackmail plot as hackers ‘threaten to post their intimate videos'

Former Paris Saint-Germain striker, Ezequiel Lavezzi and his model girlfriend Natalia Borges have been caught up in a sex tape blackmail plot as hackers are threatening to post their intimate videos and photos online.

Buenos Aires daily La Nacion said the alleged blackmailer demanded £4,000 per video or image not to publish.

A source close to Lavezzi and Natalia told the paper: "They began writing to the couple via two Instagram accounts.

"Not just to him, but also his girlfriend, the Brazilian model Natalia Borges, who lives with him.

"To be specific, these people told the couple that they had their videos and recorded conversations in their possession.

"They described details of the contents - which gave credibility to their claims.

"But even if they were false, this would still be extortion in any case."

The ex-Argentine footballer, 35, has now instructed his lawyers to act on their behalf after the couple were reportedly threatened with having their intimate videos and pictures posted online.

According to the Sun, Lavezzi's lawyers have contacted the Argentine police division dealing with cybercrime.

Lavezzi , who also played for Napoli, retired last December following a spell with Chinese club, Hebei China Fortune.

He won four Ligue 1 titles with PSG and helped Napoli lift the Coppa Italia in 2012. He also won 51 caps for Argentina.

Update: Court awards N10m to man who sued DSS and Buhari's daughter, Hanan, after he was illegally detained for buying sim card previously used by her

A Federal High Court sitting in Asaba, Delta state, has awarded the sum of N10m to a businessman, Anthony Okolie who was allegedly detained by the Department of State Services (DSS) for using a sim card previously used by President Buhari's daughter, Hanan Buhari.

Recall that on July 19, 2019, Okolie, an Asaba-based businessman was arrested by the DSS and detained for using a telephone line that was previously owned by Hanan.

According to Okolie, he remained in custody, bound by handcuffs till September 22, 2019- a period of 10 weeks, without any charge as the DSS waited for Hanan who was schooling in the UK as at the time.

After his release, Okolie sued the DSS, President Buhari's daughter and MTN for N500m in damages “as general and aggravated damages for the gross and unlawful violation of the applicant’s right to acquire moveable properties, freedom of movement and self dignity.”

On Thursday the court presided by Justice Nnamdi Dimg alt='Update: Court awards N10m to man who sued DSS and Buhari's daughter, Hanan, after he was illegally detained for buying sim card previously used by her' class='img-responsive text-center' style='margin: auto;'ba, awarded him N10m in damages to be paid by the DSS for the abuse of Mr Okolie’s fundamental human rights, but struck out the charges against Hanan Buhari, and telecoms company, MTN saying that there is no substantial evidence against Hanan and MTN.

The DSS had in court papers claimed they got a directive from the presidency to arrest Okolie as he was using the phone number to solicit for funds from the public, an allegation Okolie's legal team flatly denied.

Tope Akinyode, lawyer to Okolie in a Twitter post on Thursday confirmed the news of the court ruling. “I've been able to persuade the Federal High Court to award N10m against SSS for the 10 weeks detention of Anthony Okolie over an MTN SIM card once used by the daughter of President Buhari, Hanan." he said

Lagosians are asking for the return of keke because of worsened traffic after ease of lockdown

Just a few days into the ease of Lockdown by Lagos State government, many Lagosians are taking to twitter to ask for the return of Keke to ease the difficulty they experience on Lagos roads.

This conversation arose due to the heightened , lack of buses to convey people to their destination, and the large scare caused by the unsafe nature of buses during the pandemic.

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