Friday, 27 May 2016
The African Union has unveiled the calendar of events of the 2016 All Africa Music Awards tagged AFRIMA 3.0 at the AUC-AFRIMA Joint Conference in Banjul, Gambia.
The AUC-AFRIMA Conference was attended by officials of the African Union, AFRIMA 2015 winners, and stakeholders in the creative/ entertainment industry in Africa, media executives, and musical artistes.
Formally declaring the activities of AFRIMA 2016 opened at the event, the Head of Culture, African Union Commission, Ms. Angela Martins posited that The African Union was pushing forward its developmental agenda and policies through the AFRIMA platform.
The calendar of AFRIMA 3.0 was announced with a take-off date for submissions of entries for AFRIMA 2016 via the online platform on www.afrima.org. The submission of entries for the 2016 edition of the awards starts on Monday, May 30 and closes Saturday, July 30, 2016.
The President and Executive Producer of AFRIMA, Mr. Mike Dada, urged all artistes, managers, producers, record label owners, publicists and agents to submit their works or those of their artistes within the stipulated time in order to stand a chance at the awards.
``No matter how popular an artiste or their works are, if they don't submit them for the awards, they will stand no chance of winning as the AFRIMA jury will not go sourcing for artistes works themselves,'' he said.
Dada disclosed that AFRIMA Jury would screen the nominees from August 2 to August 16, 2016 after the end of submissions. The full list of nominees will be announced on August 17, 2016.
However, he announced that the voting period for the general public commences from August 26, 2016 while that of the AFRIMA Academy will start on September 26.The entire voting process will close on November 5, 2016.
Also, there will be a Nominees Party in Nigeria on November 3, 2016, while the Africa Music Summit where the African music industry will be discussed and AFRIMA Music Village will hold on November 4 .
The grand finale, the AFRIMA awards ceremony, which is the third edition, holds in Nigeria on Sunday November 6, 2016.The eventual host city in Nigeria will be announced later in the year by the African Union.
On the event sequence, Dada harped on AFRIMA's stance on transparency, stating that AFRIMA will continue to maintain exemplary standards and uphold African music and culture as it had done since inception in 2014.
``The process is very transparent and the public can follow the entire process online and make any enquiries to the AFRIMA secretariat,'' he said.
The All Africa Music Awards, AFRIMA, is a music property developed to celebrate, reward and showcase the rich musical culture of Africa, stimulate conversations among Africans and between Africa and the rest of the globe about the great potential and values of the African culture and artistic heritage for the purpose of creating jobs, reducing poverty, calling attention of world leaders to Africa and promoting the positive image of Africa to the world.
AFRIMA is centered on the promotion and marketing of African music and is by far the largest gathering of such magnitude of stakeholders in Africa and hosting is earnestly sought by different African countries due to the great leveraging opportunities that the platform provides. It will be broadcast to 84 countries around the world.
The Nigerian youths have commended the armed forces for effectively containing the Boko Haram terrorist violence in the North East, describingthe terrorist defeat as one that could only be possible through commitment and selfless service. The youths under the aegis of Youths Sports Federation of Nigeria (YSFON) may soon commence an annual youth sports tournament to be named after the Office of the Chief of the Defence Staff (CDS).
The youths made the commendation on Thursday 26 May 2016 in Abuja when the YSFON national executive visited the CDS at the Defence Headquarters.
YSFON’s National President, Alhaji Nasiru Yusuf Gawura who agreed that the military displayed operational competences in the fight against Boko Haram terrorists appealed that the armed forces under General AG Olonisakin should contribute in the development of the country’s teeming youths through sponsorship of grassroots youth sports tournament for boys and girls of military personnel in barracks across the country.
Responding, the CDS, General Olonisakin thanked the youths for their appreciation of military sacrifices in fighting terrorism. He noted that YSFON had done well in the area of sports development which, according to him, had given the country a pride of place in football and other youth sports in Nigeria.
Speaking through his representative, Major General Barry Idiomu, the CDS thereafter, promised to support YSFON and other sports development in the country.
Gulder, the premium lager beer from Nigerian Breweries Plc celebrated its ambassador, Mr. YemiOlatunji, better known as Yemi Blaq, who turned a year older on Thursday, May 19th, 2016.
The birthday ceremony took place last week with his colleagues, friends and officials of Nigerian Breweries during the Nollywood Beer Academy, sponsored by Nigerian Breweries Plc, in Ibadan, Oyo State. EdemVindah, Corporate Media/Brand PR Manager, NB Plc, explained that the brand is proud of Yemi Blaq because he represents Gulder’s ideals of the “real man who is responsible, hardworking, demonstrates leadership and respect for others.”
Gulder, Edem added, stands for the ultimate sign of achievement, masculinity, respect, self-assurance and success and also a premium quality beer for young success conscious men and women
Blaq, who became a Gulder brand ambassador last year, came into the movie industry in 2005. He has featured in over 250 films and he is seen as a hard working movie producer and one of the most famous in Nollywood.
Blaq was born and raised in a family of four siblings in Ondo state Nigeria and grew up knowing he was going to go into the arts.
From his primary school days, he got a lot of encouragement and support. After he played the role ofthe incorruptible judge in Olu Olagoke’s ‘The Incorruptible Judge’, his teacher came home and said to his mum, ‘oh this one is going to become an actor. Since then he has nurtured it up.
“I always wanted to act, I always loved acting. I used to act back in my days in school I studied theatre arts in school. I travelled and after I came back I joined the Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN),” he said.
Yemi believes he was one of the lucky ones because he got into the industry when everyone said it was a bit tough. He was in it for about five or six months auditioning for roles, and talking to people for opportunities. Then he ran into a really large big audition which turned out to be a grand encounter.
“My first experience on set was with Obi Osotule and Mathias Agbo in Benin city. They were shooting this movie, ‘The Unseen Eyes’ and I had gone there to just flex my acting muscles. I got on set with the rest of the people who came for the audition and we started reading,” Blaq said.
‘Lost to Lust’ was the movie that gave him a breakthrough, being his first lead role movie with Mercy Johnson. "It came out successful and since then every director and producer want me to work for them. Because in the industry if you are good, people tend to look for you, to utilize your talent “he said.
After his breakthrough with ‘Lost to lust’ directors and filmmakers started calling upon him to feature in movies.
Earlier today, Bauchi State's Governor Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar returned to Bauchi after his working visit to Lebanon and a mammoth crowd was on ground to receive him.
Thousands took to the streets to show their solidarity for the governor whose administration would be a year old on the 29th of May. The people later converged at the Government House where the governor addressed them.
The Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Obasa has called for improved efforts at protecting children's rights as well as putting in place measures that will enhance their welfare.
In a statement signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Musbau Rasak, to commemorate the Children's Day celebration, the Lagos Speaker also called on children to do away with crimes and violence. He reminded the young ones that shaping their character and preparing themselves for the challenges of nation building should be paramount to them rather than engage in activities that would hinder their development.
Rt. Hon. Obasa stated that the realisation that children are future leaders of tomorrow makes it imperative for individuals, government at all levels and corporate organisations to put all hands on deck and improve on activities aimed at protecting the rights of children. "Our children are future leaders of tomorrow and the only way we can assist them to attain their full potentials is by protecting their rights," he said.
The Lagos Assembly Speaker stated that it is important for every child to go to school expressing dismay at seeing children of school age hawking or doing other menial jobs during school hours when they are supposed to be in their various classrooms noting ,"I'm always disturbed seeing children of school age hawking or doing other things while they should be in school especially when education is free in Lagos State".
He also called on parents and guardian to be vigilant and ensure that they monitor their wards' movement and the company they move with. "The country is faced with various security challenges and children are now being used as agents of destruction. It is saddening to see children being used in suicide bombing, kidnapping and armed robbery.
This is a critical period in our history and the parents should rise up to the challenge. It is important that we as parents must monitor our children and ask question about the friends they keep," he said.
Rt. Hon. Obasa stated that the state government particularly the state House of Assembly is committed to putting in place measures that will continue to enhance rights of children.
He reiterated the efforts of the state government in ensuring that children are protected under the law against molestation and other acts that can negatively affect the realization of their dreams, citing the state's Child Rights Act of 2003 as one of such efforts put in place by the state government through the lawmaking effort of the state
The Assembly Speaker also advised children to face their studies and engage in activities that will allow them realise their potentials. "This is a very critical period in Nigeria hence our children must be wary of who they associate with. It is important for you to associate with right kind of people and engage in activities that will make you contribute positively to nation building," he said.
Wednesday, 25 May 2016
...38km Bridge To Be Completed In Three Years Without Federal Funding- Ambode
In what is set to become a major milestone achievement in its 50 years of existence, the Lagos State Government on Wednesday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to kick-start the construction of the 38km 4th Mainland Bridge, expected to bring a 14-year old dream to reality.
The Bridge, which is geared towards economic growth in the State, is expected to gulp N844billion in a Public Private Partnership (PPP) initiative and would be delivered in three years.
Speaking at the signing of the MoU held at the Banquet Hall, Lagos House, Ikeja, State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, said that the need for the bridge had become imperative following the phenomenal growth of the State with a population of over 21 million people, which has in turn increased commercial activities and traffic gridlock.
“This has made it imperative for us to have a 4th Mainland Bridge that will serve as an alternative route to the Eastern axis and decongest traffic in the State.
“More importantly this bridge will provide the required transportation compliment to the rapidly growing industrial activities on the Eti-Osa - Lekki - Epe corridor of the State,” he said.
He said the proposed alignment of the Bridge will pass through Lekki, Langbasa and Baiyeiku towns along the shoreline of the Lagos Lagoon estuaries, further running through Igbogbo River Basin and crossing the Lagos Lagoon estuaries to Itamaga Area in Ikorodu.
The Governor said the alignment will also cross through the Itoikin road and the Ikorodu - Sagamu Road to connect Isawo inward Lagos Ibadan Expressway at Ojodu Berger axis.
He said the Bridge would be made up of eight interchanges to facilitate effective interconnectivity between different parts of the State.
“This structure will be a Four-lane dual carriageway with each comprising three lanes and two metres hard shoulder on each side. The bridge will be constructed to have a generous median to allow for both future carriageway expansion and light rail facility. There is no gainsaying the fact that huge benefits will be derived from this project but most importantly, make life more comfortable for Lagosians,” he said.
According to Governor Ambode, the Bridge which would be a PPP initiative is a testimony to the confidence the partners in the project have in the State Government and the Nigerian economy in general.
Expressing confidence that the project would be delivered on a Win-Win framework for all investors, the Governor said for the first time in the history of the State, the Government was embarking on the construction of a long-span bridge and expressway without Federal funding as the project is to be solely funded by the private sector.
“I am delighted that this project which has been on the drawing board for quite some time is now set to become a reality. This again, is the Continuity with improvement which we promised Lagosians.
“We have started the process with the signing of this MOU which is an expression of the commitment of major stakeholders including the government and the consortium of consultants and investors to the delivery of the project within the scheduled time frame,” the Governor said.
Governor Ambode also reassured Lagosians that his administration would remain committed to improving the State with world class transportation system as a vital component, which according to him is a key requirement for the sustenance of economic growth in the State.
The Bridge, among others would accommodate cyclists and pedestrians and feature two service areas as well as additional pedestrian crossing.
The Bridge would also accommodate three Toll Plazas which are still being tested from financial point of view and it would serve as a major boost to the actualisation of the Lekki Master Plan.
The project is to be financed by Africa Finance Corporation, Access Bank and other private investors who have already signified intention to be part of the construction, while Visible Assets Limited would be the coordinating firm.
In his remarks, Executive Chairman of Visible Assets Limited, Mr. Idowu Iluyomade, said the project would go a long way to reduce traffic gridlock in the State and would provide job opportunities for Lagosians.
He said aside improving the quality of life of the people, the Bridge would also be a big asset that would be handed to the Lagos State Government at the end of the concession, assuring that it would be delivered on schedule.
Earlier, Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure, Engr. Ganiyu Johnson said that the Bridge when completed would utilise state-of-the-art tolling system that will ensure free flow of traffic.
POLICE RECORDS MAJOR BREAKTHROUGH IN THE FIGHT AGAINST CRIME · Nabs 5 of the suspects involved in the attack on Enugu Community
· Recovers stolen vehicles, weapons
The Nigeria Police Force in its renewed determination to rid the society of crimes and all forms of criminality, has arrested five of the suspects involved in the midnight raid on Nimbo community in Uzo-Uwani Local Government Area of Enugu State on 25/04/2016, as operatives of theIGP’s Intelligence Response Team (IRT) based on credible technical intelligence swooped on them.
The IGP’s IRT, based on the intelligence gathered on the attack, arrested the following suspects viz: Mohammed Zurai, Ciroma Musa, Sale Adamu, Suleiman Laute and Haruna Laute, and recovered one Gionee L88 mobile phone with memory card containing the video recording of the massacre in the community.
Also, the Team on the 06/05/2016 busted a 3-man syndicate of deadly bank robbers/kidnappers and recovered arms, ammunition, dynamites and rifle servicing tools from them. The gang members, Gogo Daniel Ume, Ikado Michael and Ifeanyi Kalu had been terrorizing Rivers, Imo and Enugu State, respectively.
Items recovered from them include 3 AK-47 rifles; 1 LAR rifle; 310 rounds of live ammunition; 12 rifle magazines; rifle servicing tools; cache of dynamite explosive; 1 Toyota Highlander Jeep; 1 Toyota Venza jeep; and 1Ford Edge Jeep.
In continuation of the IRT anti-kidnapping operations in Kaduna State, the team on 20/05/2016 as well arrested Babangida Ibrahim; Idris Abubakar and Idris Mai Anguwa in the State for allegedly involved in kidnapping and robbery, while different caliber of weapons were also recovered from the bandits.
The Inspector-General of Police, IGP Solomon E. Arase, fdc, NPM, has observed with satisfaction the high sense of patriotism and professionalism with which the members of the IGP’s IRT have carried out their duties so far. He stated that the IRT relies on vital information made available to the Police by the public and attributed the recent break-through to the growing trust and cooperation between the Force and the public.
The IGP assured Nigerians that the Police will remain dynamic and creative in formulating new strategies for fighting crimes and criminality and urged Nigerians to continue to support the Force.
Tuesday, 24 May 2016
…Says Marketers, Transport Workers’ Interest Well Protected
…Project To Gulp $70m, Private Investor Reveals
Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode on Tuesday said the plan of his administration to transform Oshodi into a world class transport interchange in the next 13 to 16 months would go a long way to depict the regeneration plan of the State, just as he said that the project would also totally remove all notorious activities associated with the area.
Governor Ambode, who spoke at the Lagos House, Ikeja during a meeting with key stakeholders on the planned transport interchange, said by the time the project is delivered, the fear of insecurity must have been totally removed from the area, while Lagosians would be treated to the best of facilities compared to any other where in the world.
The meeting, which was a follow up to an earlier forum organized by the State Government through the Office of the Special Adviser to the Governor on Urban Development to sensitize stakeholders on the project, was attended by leaders of National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), market associations and community leaders.
While pleading with the stakeholders to support the project which is billed to take off on June 1, 2016, Governor Ambode said the interest of market men and women and transporters have been taken care of, as they would make more money compared to what they are currently making.
He said: “I am so happy that we are working together on this project. What we are doing today is what we have been planning for long and our plan is to transform some notorious areas in the State to places like Victoria Island. Oshodi is known for all kinds of notorious activities and we want to totally do away with that belief and the best way to go about it is to give the people world class facility and make them to live better lives.
“We want the people in Oshodi to be identified with good and not bad things all the time and that was what made us to decide that the kind of development going on in Victoria Island, Lekki and other places should take place in Oshodi as well. I mean, I find it very disturbing that our children in Oshodi would have to travel to Lekki or Ikeja to have access to good shopping mall. So, what we have decided is to regenerate Oshodi.
“Now, if we say there are 13 Bus parks all scattered in Oshodi. Can we put these Bus parks in the same place? You know it is not possible for me to bring the drivers or the buses to Oshodi. It would still be the people who are currently operating there. But the plan is that those who are operating there now, we can make life more comfortable for them and they would still be the ones operating the buses.
“The issue is that when we transform the terminals, what kind of buses should fit into the new look and that is why we are engaging all the stakeholders, especially the transport people. We can take away all these yellow buses and put these other buses but you will be the operators, and all we are only doing is to provide you with world class terminals that you would even be asking is this happening in my lifetime. So, instead of scattering ourselves all over, let all of us be in one very well organized and secured place,” Governor Ambode said.
Among other plans, according to the Governor, is the provision of about 800 modern buses which would run 24/7 and would convey Lagosians to all parts of the State in a more comfortable arrangement.
Speaking on the market, Governor Ambode said the new transport interchange would accommodate world class containerized shopping mall with recreation and entertainment facilities, while the existing market men and women in Oshodi would be the same people to be allocated with the shops.
“I plead for your tolerance because eventually this whole thing is coming back to you but we must have achieved so much. You see, Oshodi is the entrance point from the international Airport and it create the image of where we want to go and once we are able to create that image, nobody will ever remember Oshodi in their head for anything bad. The only thing that would be left is for us to ensure that the road from Oshodi to international Airport meets international standard and by that, we would have regenerated that part of Lagos for good,” Governor Ambode said.
Responding, Lagos State NURTW Chairman, Mr. Tajudeen Agbede commended the Governor for the initiative, and expressed the readiness of his members to support the government to make the project a reality.
Also, a market leader in the area, Mr. Lateef Tajudeen thanked Governor Ambode for the concretized Brown Street in Oshodi, but pleaded that their members should be carried along in the allocation of the shops in the shopping mall.
On his part, Managing Director of Planet Projects Limited, the contractor partnering with government to deliver the interchange, Mr. Biodun Otunola assured that the firm will meet up with the scheduled time.
He said the project would gulp about $70 million, adding that several financial institutions have expressed interest to be part of the project.