Politics

Argungun fishing festival bounces back

By OSA AMADI The Argungun Fishing festival at its prime, many years ago, was on the global tourism calendar. It brought fame and honour to Nigeria and Kebbi State but disappeared from global cultural watch list due to unexplained circumstances, thereby denying Kebbi State the needed tourism revenue and the people access to foreign investments on hospitality and employment. •Alhaji Nura Sani Kangiwa But the festival is set to bounce back with the Kebbi State Governor, Senator Abubakar Bagudu’s appointment of Alhaji Nura Sani Kangiwa as Senior Special Assistant on Tourism Matters with mandate to restructure and rebrand Argungun fishing festival into a notable world-class cultural event. Indeed, the governor’s choice and appointment of Nura Kangiwa to revamp the festival ...

Alleged plot to divide North: Outrage, as Southern leaders blast Ango Abdullahi

By Emmanuel Aziken, Clifford Ndujihe, Dapo Akinrefon, Charles Kumolu, Simon Ebegbulem & Emman OvuakporieLAGOS—Outrage overflowed from leading Southern leaders yesterday over comments attributed to Prof. Ango Abdullahi, the spokesman of the Northern Elders Forum, NEF, accusing them of a plot to divide the north and also, among others, justifying the rampage of herdsmen in the south. In an exclusive interview with Sunday Vanguard, Prof. Abdullahi, a former vice-chancellor had said the kidnap of former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, Chief Olu Falae was nothing extra-ordinary, even as he accused Southern leaders of a covert plot to split the unity of the north. Among Southern leaders, who reacted yesterday, were South-South leader, Senator Edwin Cl...

We would put more pressure on govt over N220bn MSMED fund – MD, BBB MfB

By Providence Emmanuel What are your expectations for the microfinance sub sector in 2018? Actually, we have been having some serious liquidity challenge for a while and we hope that it is worth solving this year. Like the issuing of $300 million that they are trying to release to the market, we hope that would spur economic activities and we should be able to tap into that. We are also hoping that the economy would pick up so that there would be a lot of activities in terms of the microfinance subsector. We are thinking that people would have more economic power so that there would be some savings which we can pay into the little investment of the active poor in terms of giving them more loans to be able to improve their business activities. We are also thinking that ...

LASUTH, Apollo Hospital launch kidney transplant centre

By Chioma Obinna Lagos—With the increasing rate of kidney diseases in the country, Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, LASUTH, and Apollo Hospital, India weekend launched a collaborative renal programme to provide best  treatment as well as crash the high cost of kidney transplant. Addressing journalists in Lagos during a meeting with a team of kidney experts from Apollo hospital India, LASUTH Chief Medical Director, Prof. Wale Oke who disclosed that no fewer than five cases of kidney transplants had been successfully done by doctors in LASUTH, explained that the collaboration with Apollo was to further improve the skills of the doctors as well as reduce number of patients dying from kidney diseases. He said: “The new programme is to create opportunity to empower...

Sixth anniversary: Bayelsa govt thanks Obasanjo, others

By Samuel Oyadongha YENAGOA—BAYELSA State Government has thanked former President Olusegun Obasanjo for spending three days in the state commissioning remarkable projects such as the Bayelsa Specialist Hospital, a world class diagnostic centre and the aquaculture village with 500 fish ponds. Obasanjo visits Jonathan in Bayelsa The commissioning of the projects was part of activities to mark the sixth anniversary of Governor Seriake Dickson’s Restoration Government which also saw the former president inspiring future leaders of the state during a special interactive  session at the Ijaw National Academy. Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Daniel Iworiso-Markson, in a statement, yesterday, said Obasanjo’s visit to Bayelsa was a rare privilege and a great honou...

Pensioners are treated with dignity during PTAD verification — Onokpise

The Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate, PTAD, recently concluded the first phase of verification exercise of defunct Nigerian Telecommunications Limited (NITEL) and its mobile subsidiary, MTEL. At the Ketu, Lagos centre. Leader of NITEL/MTEL Pensioners Union, Comrade Austin Onokpise told Vanguard that the decision by the federal government to start paying them pensions have brought them relieve. Comrade Austin Onokpise Excerpts: WHY were NITEL/MTEL workers not being paid pension? At the time of privatization of NITEL/MTEL, there was a five year buy-out policy, which entails that the new buyers will pay off the workers five years benefits. However, that policy was not part of the condition of service stipulated in the labour law. Nigeria is one of the affiliat...

Theresa May’s Vision Starts to Emerge for Post-Brexit Reality

As Theresa May retreats to the countryside with her Cabinet to thrash out differences on Brexit, it’s starting to become clearer what the prime minister wants the divorce to look like. Some in Brussels will call it cherry-picking, but May wants to stay very close to the European Union in some areas, while breaking free in others. With trade talks round the corner, a picture is emerging after Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson kicked off a series of big speeches last week. Next up is the U.K.’s chief negotiator. Last time David Davis spoke, he said very little would change after Brexit and that the important thing was just to win the freedom to ditch EU rules if a future government chose to. With just 13 months until Brexit Day, here’s where we are: 1. May wants to pick and choose EU rules May...

White House Stands Firm on Immigration Bill Demands

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Three Things Worrying the Global Security Establishment

After a year of U.S. President Donald Trump, the trans-Atlantic security establishment seems unsure whether to be relieved that a major war hasn’t begun on his watch or alarmed at the scale of emerging risks. Speeches and panel discussions at the Munich Security Conference in Germany over the weekend portrayed a world on the cusp of three potential conflagrations: In the Middle East, on the Korean peninsula and, in years to come, cyberspace. Add to that a growing concern that arms control agreements that kept the nuclear peace between the U.S. and Russia since the 1980s are at risk of unraveling, and the mood among the annual assembly of political leaders and generals was unusually sober. For a look at why U.S.-Russian nuclear weapons pacts are at risk, click here. “The situation is pretty...

Trump Tweets 14 Times in 24 Hours on Russia Investigations

February 18th, 2018, 11:45 PM UTC President Donald Trump spent much of his weekend hammering the FBI, Democrats, Robert Mueller’s investigation and his own national security adviser over Russia’s efforts to sway the 2016 election that he won. Bloomberg’s Chelsea Mes reports on “Bloomberg Daybreak: Australia.” (Source: Bloomberg) https://www.bloomberg.com/news/videos/2018-02-18/trump-tweets-14-times-in-24-hours-on-russia-investigations-video

U.S.-led Group Mulls Asia Infrastructure Plan, Australia Says

By Jason Scott February 18, 2018, 6:45 PM EST Senior officials from the U.S., Japan, India and Australia are discussing establishing a joint infrastructure plan, Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said, amid reports it could act as a counterweight to China’s Belt and Road Initiative. The officials have discussed “a range of opportunities and challenges,” Bishop said in a Sky News interview on Monday. “There is an enormous need for infrastructure, particularly in our region.” While not identifying President Xi Jinping’s plan to build or upgrade a network of highways, railways, ports and pipelines, Bishop said that any new “infrastructure initiative need not be at the expense of any other initiative.” Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull is expected to discuss the idea when he visits Washington this w...

Move Over Brexit, May Attempts to Take on Corbyn With Education

Theresa May will temporarily set Brexit aside and try to repair her image with young voters with a speech on education, an issue where the opposition has the upper hand. To be clear, free tuition is not on the menu. Echoing the tone of her first public address as prime minister in 2016, May on Monday will call for a system with fairer funding that opens up “opportunity for everyone,” while warning against an “outdated attitude” that favors academic over technical qualifications. The reboot comes after a disastrous June election in which her Conservative Party lost its majority, with Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn’s pledge to offer free adult education a major draw. University students frequently graduate in the U.K. with debts of 50,000 pounds ($70,000) or more. But education politics have al...