Lemi Gharioku And Temple Management Presents Afro-Artbeat Exhibition

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World renowned album artwork illustrator, Lemi Ghariokwu would be commemorating the 20th anniversary of Fela Anikulapo-Kuti with an exhibition tagged Afro-Artbeat.

Organized by foremost creative talent agency, Temple Management Company, the exhibition holds at the African Artist Foundation (AAF), Victoria Island, Lagos on Saturday, October 21 by 3pm.

The event continues same day at The Artisan, Victoria Island from 6pm with a tribute concert and conversation with Lemi Ghariokwu narrating his time with Abami Eda and his journey to creating his masterpieces.

Lemi Gharioku

Lemi Gharioku

A genius in pictorial narration, realism and iconicity, Lemi was responsible for bringing Fela’s passionate words to life through his vivid album artwork, which is said to be rebellious, satirical, political and erotic.

More than his illustrator, Lemi was Fela’s personal friend. Spending countless hours with The Man over the years, they forged a telepathic relationship that allowed Lemi to see what Fela was saying and thus, capture it on album sleeves for the world to also see.

Responsible for 26 Fela album sleeves, Lemi has also lent his talents to the legendary Bob Marley, Lucky Dube, Miriam Makeba, Gilles Peterson and Osita Osadebe to name a few. Starting in the early 80s, he was the consulting album cover designer for Polygram Records in Nigeria for 11 years. This is why in 2004, The Observer Music Magazine, UK, dubbed him “King of Covers.”

Speaking about the event, Lemi Ghariokwu described it as a fitting tribute to a global icon twenty years on. “It is remarkable that the global recognition and respect commanded by late Fela Anikulapo-Kuti has not waned two decades after. I am delighted to align with like minds like Temple Management Company to further the legacy of the man we all called Abami Eda,” he added.

To underscore the relevance of the event, Winifred Okpapi, Art Manager, TMC said, “Lemi Ghariokwu is the genius mind behind classic Fela album covers and the opportunity to present the man and his work to the public, in this year of Fela’s anniversary, was too good to pass up.”

Aside curating art events under its art division known as Temple Arts, TMC also manage a crop of talented artist including Victor Ehikhamenor, Fola David and Logor.

Highlights of the exhibition include a showcase of a select collection of original iconic Fela album covers recommissioned as wall art to be swelled by four new Fela-inspired works of art. A documentary screening about the life of Fela as well as a tribute music concert to feature music, poetry, dance, spoken word and open mic.

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Football Papers :All The Latest Football News And Transfer Gossips This Evening

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MANCHESTER EVENING NEWS
Anthony Martial is happy at Manchester United amid rumours Arsenal are interested in signing him next year.
David de Gea was rested for Spain’s World Cup Qualifier against Israel ahead of Manchester United’s weekend trip to Liverpool.

LONDON EVENING STANDARD
Charly Musonda has risked possible punishment from Chelsea after hinting his frustration over a lack of progress at the club.
Olivier Giroud’s ‘scorpion kick’ strike has been named as one of the three best goals of the year vying for FIFA’s Puskas Award.
Andrea Pirlo has refused to rule out joining Chelsea’s coaching staff but is yet to decide his next move following his decision to retire.

LIVERPOOL ECHO
Paris Saint-Germain are looking to steal a march on Barcelona by making a move for Liverpool forward Philippe Coutinho.
Real Madrid have set their sights on former Liverpool target Christian Pulisic.

NEWCASTLE CHRONICLE
Former Newcastle star Steve Watson has been appointed manager of non-league Gateshead FC.

BIRMINGHAM MAIL
Mile Jedinak is edging closer to a first-team return for Aston Villa and will be further assessed before the weekend.
Ross McCormack has told Melbourne City that he will only get better after the Aston Villa man made his loan bow against Brisbane on Friday night.

EXPRESS & STAR
West Brom have recorded an upturn in season ticket sales for the first time in five years.
Nuno Espirito Santo says high-flying Wolves are up there to be shot at – but isn’t concerned about being targeted.

THE SENTINEL
Port Vale boss Neil Aspin says the Valiants are in the Football League relegation zone because they deserve to be.

THE DAILY ECHO
James Ward-Prowse is targeting improved home form as Saints look to catapult themselves back into contention for a top seven place and possible European football.

LANCASHIRE TELEGRAPH
Sean Dyche believes Charlie Taylor can take inspiration from the way James Tarkowski has grasped his chance in the Burnley side as the Burnley left-back plays the waiting game.

BOURNEMOUTH ECHO
Brad Smith could be set for a spell on the sidelines after today being forced off during Australia’s World Cup play-off clash with Syria.
Bournemouth youngster Emerson Hyndman revealed his debt of gratitude to Jürgen Klinsmann and insisted the World Cup winner had played a key role in his fledgling career.

LEICESTER MERCURY
Leicester City striker Islam Slimani has revealed that he was in summer talks over a move to Premier League rivals Watford.
Wilfred Ndidi will be assessed by Leicester City after suffering a suspected hamstring injury while on international duty with Nigeria.

WALES ONLINE
Chris Coleman declined to give a definitive answer on his future as Wales manager after watching his side’s World Cup dream crumble against Republic of Ireland.
Manchester United legend Ryan Giggs has been installed as the bookmakers’ favourite to be the next Wales manager amid the uncertainty surrounding Chris Coleman’s future.

YORKSHIRE EVENING POST
Leeds are preparing to widen the recruitment team at Elland Road with the appointment of Oxford United chief scout Craig Dean as their new head of emerging talent.

DERBY TELEGRAPH
Former Nottingham Forest midfielder David Prutton has said that Derby boss Gary Rowett “deserves the chance to do a job”.

BOLTON NEWS
Bolton have handed a trial to ex-Arsenal and Southampton youth product Chris Regis.
David Wheater is keen to be the man to end Bolton’s goal drought.

READING POST
Leandro Bacuna says Reading are frustrated with their poor start to the season but insists they have been playing “really good football”.
THE STAR

Sheffield United will reassess Ben Whiteman’s loan agreement before it expires in January as the youngster continues to impress at neighbours Doncaster Rovers.

HUDDERSFIELD EXAMINER
Huddersfield Town centre-back Jon Gorenc Stankovic is on course for a Huddersfield Town return after six months out through injury.

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Naira Stabilises At 363/$1 As CBN Funds Forex Market With $195M

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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on Monday continued its intervention in the interbank foreign exchange (forex) market with the injection of $195 million.

Figures released by the apex bank showed that it offered the total sum of $100 million to the wholesale segment, while the small and medium scale enterprises (SMEs) segment received the sum of $50 million.

The invisibles segment, comprising tuition fees, medical payments and Basic Travel Allowance (BTA), among others, received $45 million.

Confirming the figures, the bank’s Acting Director, Corporate Communications Department, Mr. Isaac Okorafor, said the injection was in line with the CBN’s pledge of making the Forex market liquid.

Okorafor reiterated that the bank remained determined to achieve its objective of rates convergence, hence the consistent intervention in the foreign exchange market.

He urged banks to only honour requests from customers with genuine needs, noting that the Bank does not intend to falter in its pledge to ensure liquidity in the forex market.

Meanwhile, the naira continued to maintain its stability in the forex market, exchanging at an average of N363/$1 in the Bureau De Change (BDC) segment of the market on Monday, October 9, 2017.

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Nigerian Navy Begins DSSC 2017 Recruitment For Graduates

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The Nigerian Navy on Tuesday announced that it has commenced the process for the recruitment of suitably qualified Nigerian graduates through the Nigerian Navy Direct Short Service Commission (DSSC) Course 25.

According to the Navy, the guidelines for the enlistment can be accessed on the Nigerian Navy Enlistment Portal www.joinnigeriannavy.com which will be opened on October 11 for interested candidates to apply online.

Interested applicants, who must be Nigerians by birth, should possess a minimum of Second Class Upper Division for first degree holders and Upper Credit for HND holders.

While Male applicants must not be less than 1.68 metres tall, female applicants must not be less than 1.65 metres in height.

Applicants should be between 22 and 28 years by 31 January 2018, except for Imams and Chaplains who should not exceed 30 years by January 31, 2017.

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Nigerian Model In “Racist Dove Ad” Opens Up | “I Am Not A Victim, Video Was Misinterpreted”

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The Nigerian model who became the “the unwitting poster child for racist advertising” after the Dove advert she starred in went viral has finally opened up.

Though born in London and raised in Atlanta, Lola Ogunyemi, the Nigerian model in the advert, has said that she is “not a victim” and that the video was “misinterpreted”.

Lola Ogunyemi explained in a comment piece for The Guardian that Dove was trying to say that women of all skin types and colours deserve smooth skin – but that message had been lost in unfortunate editing to the clip being shared on social media.

The ad went viral after screenshots showing Ogunyemi taking off her shirt to reveal a white woman underneath were posted on Twitter.

Scores of “displeased” social media users pointed out that it echoed old racist adverts that sold soap by claiming it was strong enough to make a black person white.

As a result of this, the beauty company has issued an apology for an advertising campaign branded “racist” which included an image of a black woman removing her top to reveal a white model underneath.

She wrote: ‘If I had even the slightest inclination that I would be portrayed as inferior, or as the “before” in a before and after shot, I would have been the first to say an emphatic “no”. I would have (un)happily walked right off set and out of the door.

“That is something that goes against everything I stand for.”

Lola said that after the ad went out, people called her to congratulate her – especially for being the first model to appear in the line-up, and ‘for representing Black Girl Magic’. ‘I loved it, and everyone around me seemed to as well,’ the model wrote. ‘I think the full TV edit does a much better job of making the campaign’s message loud and clear.”

Ogunyemi added that, while she doesn’t believe the Dove ad was intentionally racist, advertisers need to ‘look beyond the surface and consider the impact their images may have, specifically when it comes to marginalised groups of women’.

“I can see how the snapshots that are circulating have been misinterpreted, considering the fact that Dove has faced a backlash in the past for the exact same issue. There is a lack of trust here, and I feel the public was justified in their initial outrage. Having said that, I can also see that a lot has been left out. The narrative has been written without giving consumers context on which to base an informed opinion.”

READ MORE HERE

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Aviation Unions Give FG 15 Days Ultimatum To Halt Planned Concession

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The Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (ATSSSAN) and the National Union of Air Transport Employees (NUATE) and its ally, the Nigeria Union of Pensioners (NUP) have given the Federal Government a 15-day ultimatum to halt its planned concession of the four viable airports in the country.

Nigeria Approves Concession Of Lagos, Abuja Airports

The three aviation unions, while giving the ultimatum at a joint news briefing in Lagos on Tuesday, threatened to shut down the aviation industry if government failed to accede to their demands.

The federal government had initiated moves to concession the Lagos, Abuja, Kano and Port Harcourt Airports to enable them meet international standards.

However, the General Secretary of NUATE, Mr Olayinka Abioye, said the ultimatum was the unions’ last resolve to force the Minister of State for Aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika, to fully involve them in the concession process.

“Immediately at the expiration of the 15 days ultimatum, we are going to shut down the industry.

“We want the minister to talk to us and share ideas with us on what they want to concession and how it will affect our members, “Abioye said.

He maintained that previous concession agreements had not been beneficial as it had ended in series of litigations against the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) before various courts in the country.

Abioye added that the revenue collection points of FAAN such as toll gate, car parks, bill boards, fuel surcharges, shops and VIP lounges were already under concession arrangements, adding that there was nothing left for the concession exercise.

Nigeria Owns No Money To Fund 22 Airports — No Going Back On Concession

He added that the unions were yet to be assured of the fate of the 6,285 staff and 4,124 pensioners of FAAN if the concession of the viable airports was allowed to proceed.

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Buhari Holds Closed Door Meeting With Nigeria’s Service Chiefs

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President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday, held a behind the closed doors meeting service chiefs, Minister of Defence, Mansur Dan-Ali; and the National Security Adviser, Babagana Monguno at the ASo Rock Villa in Abuja.

It is understood that the behind the closed doors meeting, which is presided over by President Buhari, was ongoing as at the time of filing this report.

Also in the meeting are the Director General of the State Security Services, SSS; Lawal Daura, the acting Director of the Nigeria Intelligence Agency, NIA; Arab Yadam, and the representative of the Inspector-General of Police.

The service chiefs at the meeting include Chief of Defence Staff, Gabriel Olonisakin; Chief of Army Staff, Tukur Buratai; Chief of Naval Staff, Ibok-Ete Ekwe Ibas and the Chief of Air Staff, Sadique Abubakar.

The purpose of the meeting is yet to be known to pressmen.

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Nigeria Plans To Introduce Tourism As Subject In Secondary Schools

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The federal government of Nigeria has disclosed that plans are underway to introduce tourism as a subject at the senior secondary school level.

Kaduna To Employ 25,000 New Teachers After 21,780 Others Failed “Primary 4 Exam”

Mrs Patricia Narai, Deputy Director, Domestic Tourism in the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday in Abuja.

“The Nigerian Educational Development Council has proposed 34 trades and identified tourism as one of the trades to be thought at the entrepreneurship level.

“So students from SS I to SS III will soon start studying tourism and at that level they can come out victorious and establish a tourism business of their own.

“And they can also further their education on that line.

“What is left now is the approval, and am sure that soon, the curriculum will be out and the students will start studying tourism,” Narai said.

On its impact, the deputy director said the students would be empowered with skills and knowledge on tourism and hospitality.

She maintained that after graduation from secondary school, such a person could become a tour guard, event manager, visa professional or get employment in the tourism and hospitality sector.

“This is because he or she would have acquired the needed skills and knowledge to effectively carry out responsibilities that will encourage tourists and boost the positive image of the country.”

On getting the propose tourism subject into Joint Admission and Matriculation Board Examination, she explained that it would be a gradual process.

“We have done the curriculum, when it is approved, the teachers guide will follow to enable them know what they are going to teach and subsequently it will go into JAMB and NECO examinations.

“The essence of this is to catch them young; by the time tourism is studied in all senior secondary schools across the country, it will go a long way to produce large workforce for the sector,” Narai said.

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Infantino: Messi Still Has To Win The World Cup

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FIFA president, Gianni Infantino says Lionel Messi needs to win the World Cup to cement his greatness and expects to see him in Russia.

The talismanic forward helped Argentina to the final in 2010, but lost to Germany in extra time. He has also seen the Albiceleste lose to Chile in the final of the Copa America.

However, Messi and Argentina are at the risk of missing out of the showpiece event in Russia, needing a positive result against Ecuador to give the Albiceleste hope of qualifying.

The FIFA supremo told La Nacion: “Messi is extraordinary.

“Messi still has to win a World Cup, we have a lot of great players who did not win the World Cup.

“What made Diego so special to football for me is that he made us all fall in love with the game, of course he also won a World Cup.”

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Wright: Kane Will Break Rooney’s England Record

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Ian Wright has praised Harry Kane’s goalscoring prowess, saying he is up there with Messi and Ronaldo.

The former England international has also backed the Tottenham man to break Rooney’s goalscoring record at England.

Kane has been in exceptional form for both club and country so far this season, scoring 15 goals already. He has 12 goals to his name from 23 appearances in an England shirt.

The ex-England frontman wrote in The Sun: “I’d like to think I know a thing or two about striking and I genuinely believe he is going to rewrite the record books for our national team.

“That’s right. By the time Harry hangs up his boots, I would be amazed if he hasn’t surpassed Wayne Rooney and his Three Lions haul of 53 goals.

“His scoring run at the moment is right up there with Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.

“I am not saying he is as good as them yet, but – just like you always fancy them to stick it away when they get a chance – it is the same with Kane.

“And before anyone accuses me of hyping him up just to knock him down, that will not be an issue.

“Harry is so good, with such solid foundations, no one will be able to knock him down.”

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Kachikwu’s Allegations: NUPENG, PENGASSAN Pledge Support For NNPC GMD Baru

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The Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN), and the Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG), on Monday pledged unalloyed support for the transformation stride of the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Dr. Maikanti Baru.

The unions in the oil and gas sector made the pledge in Abuja, according to a statement by Ndu Ughamadu, NNPC Group General Manager Group Public Affairs Division.

The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachikwu, had accused Mr. Baru of flouting contractual agreements, creating a fear culture in the corporation and insubordination among others.

In his reaction to the allegations yesterday, Mr. Ughamadu, however, said the minister’s allegations were not true as due process had been followed in the corporation’s various activities.

Mr. Ughamadu said at a solidarity visit to the GMD, the National President of PENGASSAN, Francis Johnson, said the unions and its members considered it appropriate to rally round Baru and the NNPC Management to pledge their support.

“The unions’ support for the GMD was based on his ability to walk his talk since assuming office last year.

“The National body of PENGASSAN and all the NNPC in-house unions are here today to show our support for you.

”You have brought stability to the NNPC and we are happy today that staff morale is high. You were Chairman of NNPC Anti-Corruption Committee for over five years and that was what informed your appointment as GMD of NNPC.”

The PENGASSAN President also called on Nigerians to be cautious of their comments on the controversy, adding that any wrong information was capable of discouraging investors from the oil and gas industry which is the highest foreign exchange earner.

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LAUTECH: ASUU Rejects One-Month Salary After Being Owed For 12 Months

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The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and other workers’ unions at the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Ogbomoso, (LAUTECH) have rejected the resolve by the school’s Governing Council to pay workers only one month’s salary out of the 12 months being owed.

The Chairman of the Joint Action Committee of the university, Alhaji Muraina Alesinloye, who led workers to the meeting held between the JAC and the Governing Council, said the workers insisted that the university should pay at least three months’ salaries.

The Chairman of the Governing Council of the university, Prof. Oladapo Afolabi, who doubles a former Head of Service of the Federation and was represented at the meeting by a member of the council, Prof. Olaide Adedokun, was quoted to have said that the council had approved the payment of one month salary to all workers through cheques.

Alesinloye said the JAC, which comprised the Senior Staff Union of Universities, the Non-Academic Staff Union and National Association of Academic Technicians, also said their members would not collect their salaries via cheques.

He said, “The Governing Council held a meeting with us today Monday and Prof. Adedokun, who represented the Chairman of the Council, Prof. Oladapo Afolabi, said the council had agreed to pay us one month’s salary now and pay another month on October 20 and pay the third month before the end of October.

“But we said no. They are owing us 12 months’ salaries and the people, who have been selling things to us on credit, are now insisting that we should pay what we are owing because government had paid us six months’ salaries.”

In September, the management of LAUTECH had directed the lecturers, workers and the students of the university to resume after over eight months’ forced holiday.

After the directive, the workers’ unions in the university said they were not aware of the resumption of the institution, which was then scheduled for Friday, September 15, and as such would not obey the directive of the university authorities.

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Kaduna To Employ 25,000 New Teachers After 21,780 Others Failed “Primary 4 Exam”

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The Kaduna State Government has unveiled plans to employ 25,000 new primary school teachers as parts of efforts to restore dignity and quality to its education sector.

This is after about 21,780 out of 33,000 teachers failed the primary four test administered to test their competence by the State government.

Governor Nasir el-Rufai of the State made this known on Monday when he received a World Bank delegation in his office in Kaduna.

He explained that the recruitment is now necessary due to the acute shortage of qualified primary school teachers in the state.

The governor stated that his administration would disengage about 20,000 unqualified primary school teachers to restore confidence in public schools.

His words: “We tested our 33,000 primary school teachers, we gave them primary four exams and required they must get at least 75 per cent but am sad to announce that 66 per cent of them failed to get the requirements.

“The hiring of teachers in the past was politicized and we intend to change that by bringing in young and qualified primary school teachers to restore the dignity of education in the state.”

He stressed that teachers would be redeployed across the state to balance the issue of teacher-pupil ratio.

“We have a challenge with the teacher-pupil ratio in the urban schools; there is concentration of teachers that are not needed.

‘’In some LGAs, it’s a teacher pupil ratio of 1-9 while in some places it’s 1-100,” he said.

The governor said that in a bid to improve the education sector, the school Directors decided to enroll their children in public schools starting from this academic session.

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Kaduna To Employ 25,000 New Teachers After 21,780 Others Failed “Primary 4 Exam”

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The Kaduna State Government has unveiled plans to employ 25,000 new primary school teachers as parts of efforts to restore dignity and quality to its education sector.

This is after about 21,780 out of 33,000 teachers failed the primary four test administered to test their competence by the State government.

Governor Nasir el-Rufai of the State made this known on Monday when he received a World Bank delegation in his office in Kaduna.

He explained that the recruitment is now necessary due to the acute shortage of qualified primary school teachers in the state.

The governor stated that his administration would disengage about 20,000 unqualified primary school teachers to restore confidence in public schools.

His words: “We tested our 33,000 primary school teachers, we gave them primary four exams and required they must get at least 75 per cent but am sad to announce that 66 per cent of them failed to get the requirements.

“The hiring of teachers in the past was politicized and we intend to change that by bringing in young and qualified primary school teachers to restore the dignity of education in the state.”

He stressed that teachers would be redeployed across the state to balance the issue of teacher-pupil ratio.

“We have a challenge with the teacher-pupil ratio in the urban schools; there is concentration of teachers that are not needed.

‘’In some LGAs, it’s a teacher pupil ratio of 1-9 while in some places it’s 1-100,” he said.

The governor said that in a bid to improve the education sector, the school Directors decided to enroll their children in public schools starting from this academic session.

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PHOTOS: Amb. Karo Ekewenu Gives Back To The Entertainment Industry

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The United Nations Ambassador on Sustainable Development Goals, Amb. Karo Ekewenu has extended his youth empowerment program to the entertainment industry.

The empowerment program called Ambaville Artist Challenge was launched on Instagram (@ambaville) and has emerged with its first set of winners.

The winners emerged from different sects of the industry ranging from Makeup, Visual Arts, Film and Music.

All 5 winners were hosted to a dinner with Amb. Karo Ekewenu (Chairman, Ambaville Group) and his team.

Amb. Karo started his first empowerment program 11years ago to help entrepreneurs kick start their business and has disbursed a total of N47,000,000 million.

In 2015, he bagged the prestigious Nigerian Entertainment Award in New York as Entertainment Supporter of the year.

He extended the program to social media via his Instagram page (@karowenu) in 2015 via the Startup Fund Challenge (#AmbKaroGiveBack) where 6 winners won N1,000,000 each.

The next empowerment program will be announced soon.

See more photos below:

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PHOTOS: Amb. Karo Ekewenu Gives Back To The Entertainment Industry

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The United Nations Ambassador on Sustainable Development Goals, Amb. Karo Ekewenu has extended his youth empowerment program to the entertainment industry.

The empowerment program called Ambaville Artist Challenge was launched on Instagram (@ambaville) and has emerged with its first set of winners.

The winners emerged from different sects of the industry ranging from Makeup, Visual Arts, Film and Music.

All 5 winners were hosted to a dinner with Amb. Karo Ekewenu (Chairman, Ambaville Group) and his team.

Amb. Karo started his first empowerment program 11years ago to help entrepreneurs kick start their business and has disbursed a total of N47,000,000 million.

In 2015, he bagged the prestigious Nigerian Entertainment Award in New York as Entertainment Supporter of the year.

He extended the program to social media via his Instagram page (@karowenu) in 2015 via the Startup Fund Challenge (#AmbKaroGiveBack) where 6 winners won N1,000,000 each.

The next empowerment program will be announced soon.

See more photos below:

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Kachikwu, Baru And The NNPC Debacle

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Kachikwu, Baru And The NNPC Debacle – Reuben Abati

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The current NNPC debacle is probably the most embarrassing, even if mercifully, eye-opening crisis in the history of that nationally strategic institution since its creation in 1977. I seek in the following commentary to offer a number of observations that would probably throw some light on the muck and confusion running riot out there on the matter. In my view, it was an error to have paired the Group Managing Director of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Dr Maikanti Baru, with Dr Ibe Kachikwu.

I say this for two reasons. When Dr Ibe Kachikwu was appointed the GMD in charge of the NNPC and as Minister of State in 2015, it looked like a dream appointment and an extraordinary career point for him but not necessarily for the sector. Dr Kachikwu did not hesitate to assert himself and in his attempt to reform the NNPC, one of the victims was a certain Dr Maikanti Baru, most senior Executive Director at the NNPC, who was redeployed under the new dispensation as a Technical Adviser in the Ministry of Petroleum. This was like sending Baru to desert territory of the oil and gas sector. How the same Baru eventually got rehabilitated as GMD of the NNPC, to work with the same man who had tried to marginalize him within the system was a poor demonstration of an understanding of human psychology.

It was common knowledge that there was no love lost between the two men, and yet someone thought it was a good idea to force them to work together as a team. Leadership failed at that point, because the arrangement was not going to work. The Ministry of Petroleum and NNPC that emerged at that point was built on a fulcrum of conflict of personality and interest. The key players in the oil and gas sector can only work together as a team if they must reduce the opaqueness and conflicts in that sector, but the pairing of Kachikwu and Baru practically showed a lack of understanding. The crisis that has now erupted between both men was foreseeable, and I dare say, avoidable. Where is the wisdom in forcing two persons who have shown open dislike for each other to work together?

But let us consider the other level of the conflict: and that is the conflict of interest. One major issue in the oil and gas industry, over the years has been the uneasy relationship between the Ministry of Petroleum and the International Oil Companies (IOCs). The Ministry of Petroleum through its parastatals, the NNPC, and more particularly, NAPIMS, regulates the IOCs. Nonetheless, the relationship between the regulator and the IOCs has always been like that between the cat and the mouse. Civil servants not just in the NNPC but elsewhere within the government have a penchant to want to work with their own.

Political appointees are treated with suspicion, as wayfarers, as the civil servants seek to protect their own territory. The battle for territory in the Nigerian government is one of the most vicious fights in the corridors of power. So it has been that in the oil and gas industry in Nigeria, every attempt to appoint an IOC-associated person as head of the NNPC or other parastatals under the Ministry of Petroleum has always resulted in the equivalent of street fights.

Under President Olusegun Obasanjo, Edmund Daukoru and Funso Kupolokun could not forge a seamless relationship even if Daukoru spent only five months or so in that position. Diezani Allison-Madueke was also from the IOCs (in her case Shell) and obviously, she had issues with NNPC and Ministry officials. She had an advantage though: no GMD of NNPC would dare stand up to her, or by-pass her.

The belief within the Ministry of Petroleum system is that Ministerial appointees from the IOCs have interests that are different from their own traditions. President Buhari made the matter worse by making Kachikwu, an IOC man, from Exxon Mobil, GMD and Minister of State of Petroleum. On the surface of it, the impression was created that he could generate policies as he deemed fit, enjoy direct access to the Minister of Petroleum and gain the authorization to implement the same policies as he liked. From day one, Kachikwu was thus a marked man within the Ministry of Petroleum system. It will be naïve to assume that it is only Maikanti Baru that is fighting him. It will be safer to assume that it is the establishment that is trying to cut him down to size. If you doubt that, then check the history of the system: most of the former Ministers of Petroleum that managed to do well are not even from the system but complete outsiders. Caught in the middle of this conflict, Kachikwu does not want to take the matter lying low. He is fighting back. I’ll comment on whether that is a smart or clever move anon.

I think the other problem signposted so far in this matter, is the role of the Minister of State and the substantive Minister and how power and responsibility are delegated along the reporting lines. The related issue is access to the delegating authority. What we know is that the Minister of State in the Nigerian system has always faced difficulties. He or she occupies the same space in the power spectrum similar to that of a Deputy Governor, even if he or she does not have any Constitutional right of succession, in the event of the death or impeachment of the substantive officer.

So serious is this matter that when certain Ministers of State were treated shabbily in the past they had to protest, and force the issue. The Nigerian Constitution, in line with the Federal Character Principle, says there must be a Minister from every state of the Federation. Since it would make no sense to have 36 Federal Ministries, some Ministers end up as Deputy Ministers, but in reality, they are expected to report to a substantive Minister representing another state! The result has been nothing but conflict.

Under President Umaru Yar’Adua, the then Secretary to the Federal Government had to issue a memo dividing functions and responsibilities between Ministers and Ministers of State. Under President Goodluck Jonathan, there were three Ministers in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs representing different states of the Federation: their functions had to be spelt out to avoid conflict. This was also done in the Ministry of Health between Onyebuchi Chukwu and Muhammed Ali Pate, but one of the unwritten reasons why Pate eventually left the government was that he didn’t like the assigned role of a subordinate.
At a time, not even Rilwan Lukman and Odein Ajumogobia could work together. In Kachikwu’s case, he faced a humiliating situation whereby the GMD of a parastatal under his Ministry seemed to have better access to the substantive Minister and President. For months, the Minister of State could not access his principal, but the GMD of NNPC could, and that must have made him feel really bad. The truth is that the oil and gas sector is Nigeria’s honey pot and every GMD of NNPC has always enjoyed both official and unofficial access to the President. As I said earlier, only Diezani Allison-Madueke could keep her NNPC GMDs in effective check. If they stepped out of line, they lost their job.

Nonetheless, the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria does not have to be the Minister of Petroleum of Nigeria. At face value, the President seeing that the oil and gas sector is the honey pot of Nigeria may want to supervise it directly. Oil generates close to 80% of Nigeria’s foreign exchange. Even a President who does not hold on to that portfolio will be tempted to keep a close eye on that. In President Buhari’s case, he had been a Minister of Petroleum in the past and chairman of the Petroleum Trust Fund. All of this when new players in the industry were in kindergarten class, and so it can be assumed that he knows much about the industry. But the President being the Minister of Petroleum creates exactly the kind of crisis that we are witnessing. The President is the final authority.

Whoever is appointed Minister of Petroleum Resources exercises in any case, delegated authority. Both the Petroleum Act and the NNPC Act further vests authority in the Minister of Petroleum Resources exercising delegated authority. When the President combines the positions of President, Minister of Petroleum and Chairman of the Executive Council, and memos by all Ministers are to be processed through the Council, the President turns himself in the case of the Petroleum Ministry into a mini-god over Nigeria’s honeypot. If the President acting as Minister presents a Memo to Council, it is most unlikely that anyone among his own appointees will oppose that memo.

The memo ordinarily receives automatic approval, no matter how it may be. NNPC GMDs from Obasanjo’s time have tried to exploit this, when given that advantage, and it is why the NNPC’s response to Ibe Kachikwu now in the public domain is so troubling. Baru quotes the law. He insists that he has followed due process in all that he has done. He merely exploits the loopholes within the system that work perfectly in his favour under the present arrangement.

In his opportunistic statement released yesterday, he quotes NNPC’s alleged fidelity to the Procurement Act, and why and how the NNPC Group Executive Council does not have to report to a Minister of State, but the Minister or the Federal Executive Council. Mr Baru should be told that due process is not the only issue raised in Dr Kachikwu’s memo. He raised issues about the appointment and deployment of NNPC Executives and the appointment of COOs. Is that part of the mandate of the BPP? So, why should we have a Board that cannot perform oversight functions? The truth is that in many government departments, the chief executives often undermine the Board, especially if they are as powerful as an NNPC GMD who wields enormous influence and goodwill, as he wishes. On his part, Dr Kachikwu himself ruins his own case when he begins to talk about his being pro-North and his father having served in the North. What is that all about? It is completely immaterial. When a serving Minister begins to justify his own Nigerianness on the grounds of being pro-north, then we get closer to the root of the problem with Nigeria. Is Kachikwu also trying to play smart, to protect himself strategically?

Kachikwu and Baru have created a significant mess in the petroleum industry due to their own conflicts. With due respect, that is the truth and the situation. It is a conflict that must be resolved in the national interest and the buck for doing that stops at the President’s table. This particular conflict, and other intra-governmental conflicts before now, almost becoming recurring decimals: EFCC vs NIA, DSS vs. EFCC, Babachir Lawal and NIA probe, the Senate and the Inspector General of Police, have altogether dramatized to the international community cracks within this administration, and a growing governance crisis. President Buhari has a responsibility to rescue his administration from the same odium that has often compromised Nigeria’s most strategic revenue sector. So far, he has not done so, and his failure will be remembered appropriately, if not now, then at the right time. It is tragic.

The National Assembly also probably has a role to play, beyond claiming it would look into the allegations that have been raised. The Senate has since separated the Petroleum Industry Governance Bill into three sections. It has passed the Administrative Section. But it would appear that the key issues in that industry would be both the Fiscal Regime and the local community frameworks. Administrative reform is not enough, and may even cause more serious problems such as we are witnessing. However, more probing questions have to be asked for the benefit of the divided public: how many NNPC contracts have been tabled before the FEC in the last two years, and what is their status? There is more to this matter than we know.

This piece was written by Reuben Abati. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of 360Nobs.com.

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31 Cases Recorded As Monkeypox Spreads To 7 Nigerian States

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The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has said that 31 suspected cases of monkeypox have so far been reported in seven states across the country.

The National Coordinator/Chief Executive Officer of NCDC, Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu, made this known on Monday in Abuja.

2 Cases Recorded As Monkeypox Spreads To Lagos

According to him, following the notification of a suspected monkey pox outbreak on Sept. 22, 2017 in Bayelsa, other suspected cases have been reported from six more states.

He listed the affected states as Bayelsa, Rivers, Ekiti, Akwa Ibom, Lagos, Ogun and Cross Rivers.

Panic As Monkeypox Spreads To Akwa Ibom

Ihekweazu said that samples had been collected from each suspected case for laboratory confirmation.

“Results are still being awaited. So far, there have been no deaths recorded.

“It is unlikely that many of the suspected cases are actually monkey pox, but all are being investigated.

“All the suspected cases are currently receiving appropriate medical care, and the patients are all improving clinically in their various states,’’ he said.

The NCDC national coordinator said that the Federal Ministry of Health, through the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), was supporting the affected states to ensure the outbreak is brought under control and to limit further spread.

“NCDC has activated an Emergency Operation Centre (EOC) to coordinate the outbreak investigation and response across the affected states.

“The EOC is currently supporting State Ministries of Health in their response to the outbreak through active case finding, epidemiological investigation and contact tracing.

“Measures have been put in place to ensure effective sample collection and testing for laboratory confirmation.

“Risk communication activities have been heightened to advise the public on preventive measures. All 36 States and the FCT have been notified for preparedness,’’ he said.

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Can Honoured By Juventus Interest

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Liverpool defender, Emre Can says he is honoured by the interest Juventus has shown in him and is not ruling out the possibility of returning to Bayern.

Can’s contract with Liverpool will expire at the end of the 2017-18 season and the Germany international is yet to pen an extension.

Klopp admits the situation is imperfect, as Liverpool are in danger of losing a vital player. Juventus tried to sign the defender in the summer.

The Germany international told Kicker: “It’s always an honour to receive an offer from such a renowned club, but currently I am only focused on the season with Liverpool. My agent takes care of the rest.

“The Premier League is just a really cool league, the most interesting in the world, but you must always respect other big clubs and leagues.”

Can added when pressed on whether both he and Klopp could be back in Germany next season: “You never know what will happen. And I don’t know what Jurgen Klopp plans.”

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Tite: Argentina Must Be Having Sleepless Nights Over WC Qualification

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Brazil head coach, Tite sympathises with Argentina , as he believes they will be having trouble sleeping as they are in danger of missing out of the World Cup in Russia.

Argentina are sixth on the CONMEBOL table , outside of qualification and face an important clash against Ecuador. A draw or a loss will see them miss the competition for the first time since 1970.

There are suggestions that Brazil, who play Chile will try to harm the chances of the Albiceleste, but Tite insists that is not the case.

“I want the competition to be fair,” Tite told reporters on Monday. “That will make us all play well.

“I have friends in Argentina. I respect Jose Pekerman very much in Colombia and I recognise the capacity of Chile.”

“Qualification for the World Cup is not about one game, it is about a full campaign”, added Tite, who is open to continuing in his role beyond the World Cup.

“Yesterday [Sunday], we thanked each other because we are already qualified.

“I can’t imagine what it is like for others — they must be having trouble sleeping. We are going to do what is most important for us, for the dignity of a people. [In the end], others will reap what their work sowed.”

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Lloris Backs Mbappe To Deliver For France

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France goalie, Hugo Lloris has backed Kylian Mbappe to step up and deliver for the national team.

The Les Bleues are top of the group with one point, but need a win to qualify for Russia. Mbappe started his second match of the campaign against Belarus, but could not deliver as expected.

However, Lloris has backed the young forward to develop and do big things for the national team.

“Mbappe needs to keep up with the French team. It’s hard to judge a player’s performance in the game against Bulgaria,” the Tottenham goalkeeper said.

“It was more of a fight. It’s hard to talk about the performance of a single player. The team fought, and we were in the duel and we won this game in a difficult way.

“Kylian should not be held entirely responsible. He’s a young player, even if he’s very talented.

“He still has time to make the next steps. He can rely on his talent because he is able to make a difference in the big moments.”

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Ventura: Italy Took A Small Step Forward

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Giampiero Ventura says Italy has taken another step forward, albeit a small one, after their 1-0 win over Albania.

Italy were already guaranteed to finish second in their group, but needed to win their last match to secure a playoff seeding.

Ventura already came under fire after Italy played a 1-1 draw against Macedonia on home soil, now that is all gone, as the win over Albania has granted him a small reprieve.

“This was the objective we had set. I think we made another small step forward, but we continue to control the game badly and give the ball away too often,” he told Rai Sport.

“I think the only chances they had were gifted by us giving the ball away in banal fashion. I am happy for the lads, as they work really hard and I confirm what I said, that we need the time to do something important with this squad.

“It seemed only right to be in front, as we had some incredible chances. I was happy inside, but above all for the players. We have a few limitations at the moment, and some injury emergencies, but we wanted to try things out.

“Slowly today, a few looked around and realised certain things could be done. I hope to get some players back for the play-off, as otherwise there might be a problem.”

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Get Familiar: Dayo Amusa – Fargin (Cover)

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Nollywood actress cum artiste Dayo Amusa has once again showcased her unique brand of musical dexterity by releasing a mind-blowing cover to “Fargin” by Teniola.

The cover is a true compliment to the song and will expectedly enjoy massive airplay in the weeks to come as the delectable entertainer continues to dish out good music for her adoring fans.


 
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