* Osinbajo, UK ex-Prime Minister Tony Blair meet at Aso Villa * N179bn fraud: You can’t substitute witness, Akingbola’s lawyer tells EFCC

* Osinbajo, UK ex-Prime Minister Tony Blair meet at Aso Villa                   * N179bn fraud: You can’t substitute witness, Akingbola’s lawyer tells EFCC




Osinbajo, UK ex-Prime Minister Tony Blair meet at Aso Villa

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and a former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair on Friday had a private meeting at the Presidential Villa, Abuja. There was, however, no interview after the duo emerged from the meeting. Blair served as Prime Minister of the UK from 1997 to 2007 and Leader of the Labour Party from 1994 to 2007. He was Leader of the Opposition from 1994 to 1997. The former UK prime minister runs, among other foundations, the Tony Blair Africa Governance Initiative, a non-profit initiative that works to support effective governance in Africa. According to the Senior Special Assistant (Media & Publicity) to the VP, “the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will be supporting the Delivery Unit in the Presidency regarding some critical sectors of the economy.”


N179bn fraud: You can’t substitute witness, Akingbola’s lawyer tells EFCC

The N179bn fraud trial of a former Managing Director of the defunct Intercontinental Bank Plc, Dr Erastus Akingbola, continued on Friday with the defence opposing the admissibility of certain statements of accounts from Access Bank. The defence team, led by Chief Wole Olanipekun (SAN), also contended that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission could not substitute a witness in the case. Akingbola’s 10-year-old trial reopened last month, after it had journeyed all the way to the Supreme Court and back. He was re-arraigned on March 13, 2019 on further amended 22 counts, wherein he was accused of using N179bn belonging to the defunct Intercontinental Bank for “fictitious transactions.”


Police witness says Dino Melaye allegedly damaged 2 vehicles while attempting to escape from custody

A prosecution witness on Friday, told a Federal Capital Territory High Court in Apo, Abuja that Senator Dino Melaye, damaged police property when he allegedly attempted to escape from custody. The police alleged that Melaye while being transported to Lokoia, broke the windshield of the vehicles with his elbow. The witness, ASP Dennis Agbi,  member of the IGP Special Tactical Squad, made the allegation while testifying in the ongoing case of attempted suicide, attempt to escape from custody and damage to police property, filed against Melaye.


Shehu Sani accuses FG of bias in tackling northern security challenges

Nigerian lawmaker Senator Shehu Sani on Friday accused the Federal Government of being selective in addressing security challenges in some parts of the country. Sani, who represents Kaduna Central Constituency in the Nigerian Senate, alleged that the Muhammadu Buhari government has been more attentive to cases of extra-judicial killings in South-West than the rate of banditry and kidnapping in the north. “The FG shows more concern over the extrajudicial killing of one person from the South West over the mass and continuous killings and Kidnappings in the north,” Sani said in a Facebook post.


INEC replaces APC Enugu East senatorial candidate

The Independent National Electoral Commission has replaced Lawrence Ezeh, the All Progressives Congress’ Enugu East Senatorial candidate with Adaku Ogbu-Aguocha. The replacement comes after a Federal High Court sitting in Enugu nullified Ezeh’s candidature stating that he was not properly nominated by the party. Ezeh defected to APC from the opposition People’s Democratic Party after he failed to clinch the party’s senatorial ticket during its primary in October 2018. Following his defection, the nominated candidate during the ruling party’s primary Uchenna Ezemba stepped down for Ezeh which gave room for him to appear on the ballot paper during the senatorial poll in March.


Robbery: We didn’t review visa validity for Nigerians —UAE

The United Arab Emirates has dismissed a report alleging that it had reviewed the visa validity for Nigerians from three months to one month, describing it as inaccurate. The UAE Embassy in a statement in Abuja on Friday explained that it had not suspended tourist visas for Nigerians. It said, “In the light of the press reports published this morning, and alleging that the United Arab Emirates has suspended issuing tourist visas to Nigerian nationals, the United Arab Emirates Embassy in Abuja would like to announce this news is inaccurate and stresses the importance of getting the news from its official channels.”


NBS: Nigeria imported 5.32bn litres of Petrol in Q4 2018

The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) on Friday said that 5.32 billion litres of petrol were imported into the country in the fourth quarter of 2018. The NBS disclosed this in its Petroleum Products Imports and Consumption (Truck Out) Statistics for fourth quarter 2018 posted on its website.  It also reported that 1.3 billion litres of diesel, 114.19 million litres of kerosene and 267.80 million litres of aviation fuel were imported during the period. In addition, the report indicated that 50.73 million litres of base oil, 42.38 million litres of bitumen and 10.63 million litres of Low Pour Fuel Oil were imported.


FG to complete Apapa Trailer Park April

The Federal Controller of Works in Lagos, Mr Adedamola Kuti, on Friday said that the Apapa trailer park project in the state would be completed before the end of April. Kuti told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos that the shoreline protection aspect of the project was 25 per cent completed, adding that the entire project had achieved 94 per cent completion. “We expect that the work will be completed this April and we should be handing the trailer park over to the NPA – Nigerian Port Authority – by end of this month. “The materials we were waiting for have arrived and being cleared in the port as we speak.


Griezmann heads to Barcelona wondering what might have been

Antoine Griezmann was convinced Atletico Madrid were making progress but, 10 months on, he may wonder if he was right to stay after all. Atletico play Barcelona on Saturday at the Camp Nou, where Griezmann could have been walking out behind Lionel Messi, a few weeks from almost certainly winning a La Liga title, perhaps a domestic double, and possibly the Champions League too. Instead, he remained, his choice to reject Barca revealed in a television documentary in June.


Sterling stands for ‘better society’, says Man City boss Guardiola

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has hailed Raheem Sterling’s decision to buy 550 tickets for his side’s FA Cup semi-final against Brighton for pupils of his former school as an “incredible gesture.” Sterling grew up in the shadow of the old Wembley, having moved to England from Jamaica at the age of five. “I grew up right next door to the stadium and would dream of one day playing in a cup final or even representing my country there,” said Sterling. “To now be able to play there myself is an honour and this is a great opportunity to give back to the community that helped me get to where I am.”


‘Good signs’ for Ronaldo ahead of Ajax, says Juve coach Allegri

Cristiano Ronaldo could be back in the Juventus line-up in time for their Champions League quarter-final with Ajax, coach Massimiliano Allegri revealed on Friday. Ronaldo hasn’t played for the runaway Serie A leaders since scoring the sensational hat-trick that saw Juve come back from a 2-0 first-leg deficit to knock out Atletico Madrid last month. He was rested in the subsequent 2-0 league defeat at Genoa and then picked up a thigh injury on international duty with Portugal last week, but Allegri is confident the 34-year-old will be ready for Wednesday’s first leg in Amsterdam.


Facebook to block foreign ads for Australia election

Facebook will block election advertising from outside Australia ahead of polls next month, in the wake of growing criticism of the social media giant’s role in the spread of disinformation. The restrictions — already rolled out for polls in other countries such as Thailand and Indonesia — will come into force when the government announces the election date in the coming days. “We’re temporarily not allowing electoral ads purchased from outside Australia ahead of the election in May,” Facebook’s Australia and New Zealand policy director Mia Garlick said in a statement.


World’s first 5G phone released in South Korea

Telecom giant Samsung Electronics on Friday released the Galaxy S10 5G, the world’s first available smartphone with built-in fifth-generation communications, as South Korea seeks to build a lead in the transformative technology. On Wednesday the South became the first country to launch nationwide 5G services, with three superfast networks going live offering data speeds that allow users to download entire movies in less than a second. Hours later US giant Verizon began commercial services in Chicago and Minneapolis, after rival AT&T made a 5G-based system available to selected users in parts of 12 cities in December.


Potential in ICT sector shows Nigeria’s readiness to digital economy

An ICT expert, Mr Peter Akinremi, says the potential in the Information Communication Technology (ICT) sector shows the country’s readiness toward digital economy. Akinremi, who is also the West Africa Regional Coordinator, African Civil Society for the Information Society (ACSIS), an NGO, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Friday. He said that the statistics and growth in internet usage are indications of Nigeria readiness toward digital economy and the transition to ICT-driven system and processes.


About The Author

Osigweh Lilian Oluchi is a graduate of the University of Lagos where she obtained a B.A (Hons) in English, Masters in Public and International affairs (MPIA). Currently works with 1stnews as a Database Manager / Writer. [email protected]

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