BUSINESS AND ECONOMY
By Abankula/ PM News
Nigeria recorded just one death in 24 hours out of its coronavirus caseload as 348 new cases were announced by NCDC Wednesday night.
The lone death was a departure from the trend in the last few days where at least 2 digit deaths were recorded.
Fourteen people for instance died overnight between Saturday and Sunday. Twelve were reported dead on Monday and 15 on Tuesday.
The death toll is now 315, out of the national confirmed cases of 11, 166.
Those discharged were 90, taking the national figure to 3329.
Lagos and the Federal capital of Abuja shared the greater portion of the new 348 cases.
Lagos has a disproportionate 163 cases, while the FCT got 76.
The FCT has consistently the past five days registered two digits of infections.
It was 52 on Saturday, 48 on Sunday, 14 on Monday and 13 on Tuesday.
Rivers State and Ebonyi showed up strong in the grim chart on Tuesday, with 23 and 21 cases.
Below is the breakdown of the cases:
11166 cases of #COVID19Nigeria
Legendary Nigerian reggae singer-songwriter Majek Fashek has died. The news was announced on his Instagram official handle by his manager Omenka Uzoma.
His statement reads:
Today been having pressure calls,well it is true that the African No 1 Legendary ICON has gone to be with the LORD his Maker,
Let celebrate him ,his achievements and his family,what ever decisions made by his immediate family will be notify.
From his Manager:OMENKA Uzoma Day.
The cause of death is yet to be disclosed as at the time of this report.
Majekodunmi Fasheke, pronounced Ma-je-ko-dun-mi Ifa-kii-she-eke and known on stage as Majek Fashek was a Nigerian musician and guitarist best known for the 1988 album Prisoner of Conscience, which housed his multi award-winning record “Send Down the Rain”.
Majek in the early eighties went by the stage name Rajesh Kanal, and was part of a group Jastix with McRoy Gregg, and Drummer Black ‘Rice. The group was known as the in-house band on the show Music Panorama on NTA Benin, and toured with fellow reggae group The Mandators.
1988–1990: Prisoner of Conscience and I&I Experience
Fashek started to use the name Majek Fashek in 1988 after Jastix disbanded. He signed with Tabansi Records and began a solo career by releasing the album Prisoner of Conscience and became Nigeria’s top reggae artist after the song “Send Down The Rain” became the most popular song of the year, making him win six PMAN awards for “Song of the Year”, “Album of the Year”, and “Reggae Artist of the Year” among others in 1989. Majek’s next album was I&I Experience, released in the same year under the Tabansi imprint.
After his exit from Tabansi Records, Fashek signed to CBS Nigeria in the early 1990s and released So Long Too Long. The record was included on Putumayo World Music’s first album.
Majek Fashek in 1990 signed to Inter scope Records and released his album Spirit Of Love, produced by “Little Steven” Van Zandt. In 1992, he appeared on Late Night with David Letterman in support of his new 1991 album, and performed the song “So Long Too Long” for the television audience.
The 71 year old was later dropped by Interscope before moving to Mango, a division of Island Records, as it was more accustomed to marketing reggae internationally, while Flame Tree released The Best of Majek Fashek in 1994.
Majek has recorded several albums for various labels including Rainmaker for Tuff Gong (1997) and Little Patience for Coral (2004). His first album for Flame Tree included a cover version of Bob Marley’s “Redemption Song”.
Also referred to as The Rainmaker, Fashek has worked with artists worldwide, including Tracy Chapman, Jimmy Cliff, Michael Jackson, Snoop Dogg, and Beyoncé, with musical influences from Bob Marley, Jimi Hendrix, and Fela Kuti.
Majek Fashek played a supporting role in the 2000 Nollywood movie Mark of the Beast, and starred in a commercial for non-alcoholic beverage Diamalt. In 2016, he performed in a comedy show to more than ten thousand audience in Lagos, Nigeria, with a power-filled and soul-lifting performance.
In December 2016 Fashek contributed the song “We Are Not Afraid” to a video featuring 200 celebrities to raise funds for the International Rescue Committee (IRC) and Human Rights Watch (HRW).
Fashek was married to Rita Fashek with four children but have since divorced. Fashek was revealed to be bankrupt and battling drug addiction in 2015. After admitting he needed help, he was admitted into a drug rehabilitation center in Abuja, where he recovered, and returned to music.
The singer struggled with drug addiction and other health conditions which required his hospitalization on several occasions. He was rumored dead in September 2019 but his manager quelled the rumors, confirming that Majek had been ill, hospitalized at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Woolwich, England, and in dire need of financial assistance.
Billionaire businessman Femi Otedola pledged to cover all the singer’s medical expenses. He died in the early hours of June 2nd, 2020 at 71. His death was confirmed by his manager Omenka Uzoma, on Majek’s official Instagram handle.
There is no agreement between the National Working Committee (NWC) of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and Edo State Governor Godwin Obaseki on the mode of shadow poll for the choice of standard bearer for the September election.
Obaseki acknowledged that his relationship with Oshiomhole was still frosty.
He however said he was prepared to make sacrifice for peace and prevent what he described as bloodbath in the state.
National Chairman Adams Oshiomhole, who reiterated the NWC’s position in Abuja, maintained that there was no going back on the direct primary guidelines issued last week.
But, Obaseki, whose camp had suggested indirect primary, was at Aso Villa to brief President Muhammadu Buhari on his second term bid, after obtaining the nomination form from the APC national secretariat.
There was a fence-mending meeting between the APC governors rooting for Obaseki’s re-election bid and Oshiomhole but the national chairman maintained that he could not go against the NWC’s directive on the Edo primary.
APC governors’ fence mending meeting with Oshiomhole, followed a similar meeting held with the National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, in Lagos on Sunday night.
The governors at the meeting include Chairman of Progressive Governors Forum and Kebbi State Governor Atiku Bagudu, Rotimi Akeredolu (Ondo), Babajide Sanwo-Olu (Lagos), Mohammed Inuwa (Gombe), Abdullahi Ganduje (Kano) and AbdulRaham Abdulrasaki (Kwara).
After the three-hour meeting Oshiomole insisted that the Edo primary would be based on direct primary.
He told reporters: “The issues of primaries are well spelt out in our constitution and we are following it as strictly as possible. So nothing to worry about at all”.
He described as mere rumour the disagreement on the format of the primary, saying: “You are speculating, I don’t have any letter or document to that effect. These are very formal matters. So, stop spreading rumours.
“We have since published our time table because under the law we are required to give INEC at least 21 days notice to monitor our primaries and to state the mode of our primaries and of course the NWC had approved direct primaries for Edo.
“We have commenced the sale of forms. I think as of last Friday to my knowledge, three people had picked the forms. I think by today more people have picked the forms. So, we’re selling forms to all those who wish to buy based on the guidelines and, of course, as the Chairman of the Progressives Governors rightly said, we have ensured in our letter to INEC and even this morning, we had a virtual meeting with INEC leadership. We will conduct primaries taking into account the protocols on Covid-19 by the PTF and NCDC. I think everything has been going fine.
On the Ondo State governorship primary, the chairman said: “That of Ondo has not been discussed because that will come much later, because Edo will come about three weeks before Ondo.”
However, Oshiomhole said Governor Rotimi Akeredolu had done well.
Bagudu said the meeting with NWC was to discuss some sundry issues with the party leadership.
“This meeting was not a continuation of yesterday’s (Lagos) meeting. The meeting was with the national leadership of our party to discuss issues between the Governor’s Forum and party leadership that will lead to the progress of our party.”
With Oshiomhole at the meeting were the Acting National Secretary Waziri Bulama, National Vice Chairman, North East Mustapha Salihu, National Vice Chairman, South West, Pastor Bankole Oluwalana National Organising Secretary, Emma Ibediro and National Woman Leader Salamatu Baiwa.
Obaseki at Villa
President Buhari met behind closed door with Obaseki at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, where he sought for his blessing for his re-election bid.
Speaking with State House correspondents at the end of the meeting, Obaseki said he came to formally intimate the president of his intention to seek re-election on the platform of the APC.
The governor, who presented his Expression of Interest form to the president for blessing, said:
“I came to see Mr President to formally inform him of my desire and intention to seek re-election as governor of Edo State on the platform of the APC in the forthcoming gubernatorial election.
“As a father of the country, as our president I should not just assume or take things for granted – I have to come to inform him and solicit his support in my gubernatorial bid, and the president was quiet warm and quiet welcoming.
“When I showed him my Expression of Interest form, he looked through it and teased me that he would not have to go through this again and wished me good luck and assured me of his support.’’
On the political crisis in Edo, the governor said it was being instigated from outside the state.
Obaseki also described the political misunderstanding between him and Oshiohmole as very unfortunate, saying however, that he was ready to reach a truce with aggrieved members of the APC.
He said: “It is unfortunate that he (Oshiohmole) is taking the position he has taken. I believe that he was not properly guided.
“I am his governor and it is my responsibility to seek peace for my State and with all my citizens.
“I will continue to strive for peace, I will continue to pursue peace, seek the interest of our people and I am open, that we should talk about how to move things forward.
“The relationship is still frosty but I am doing all I can to try and make it warm just for the sake of Edo people. I am committed to whatever it will take to have peace and not to lose lives in Edo, within the law, whatever I can do that is constitutional, I will do.’’
According to the governor, he has the full support of his counterparts, all the governors elected
on the platform of the APC, in line with the principles of the party, which encourages continuity.
Obaseki said the party chairman had stuck to his guns because he had been wrongly guided.
He said: “The problem in Edo is not from within Edo, it is from outside. So, the person I am competing or contesting against is not in Edo, he is Abuja.
Asked how far he was willing to go to find peace with Oshiomhole, the governor said: “Whatever I can do that is within the law, whatever I can do that is constitutional, I will do”.
Obaseki said his achievements across sectors would speak for him at the poll, adding that the people wanted him to conclude the programmes and policies initiated for their benefit.
“Well, I believe having been governor of the state for three years, you can check with Edo people whether as Governor, I have served creditably, I have served the people of Edo.
“The general consensus is that we have done well as a government and that people would like us to continue with the laudable programs and policies which we have been taking over in the last three years.
“If you recall when I got into power as governor one thing Edo was noted for was human trafficking. We had over 30,000 of Edo citizens, who were at Libya waiting to cross into Europe. Today, in less than three years we have stopped it.
“We’re celebrated globally, across the continent in terms of the reforms we’ve undertaken in basic education in this country.
“Those children, I can’t abandon them. We can’t stop what we have achieved to date. So based on that, we believe that because of a connection which we have created with our people, we have no doubt in our minds that we’ll win any elections, direct/indirect, general elections in Edo state”, he said.
By Sumaila Ogbaje/ PM News
A teenage Boko Haram terrorist Muhammadu Abubakar a.k.a Babagana has surrendered to the Nigerian troops.
And he has urged his comrades-in-arms to follow his example.
The Coordinator, Defence Media Operations, Maj.-Gen. John Enenche said the 19 year-old terrorist surrendered on 29 May.
The terrorist gave up himself to troops of 242 Battalion at Charlie Six Check Point, Mongonu in Borno.
According to Enenche, preliminary interrogation revealed that the 19-year-old Boko Haram renegade joined the group about a year ago at Shaharam and participated in the attack on Tumbun Shaje.
Babagana has called on his colleagues in the forests to surrender to the troops of the Nigerian Army.
On May 24 another Boko Haram fighter Malam Adamu Yahaya AKA Saad Karami surrendered to troops of 242 Battalion in Mongonu.
“On the same day, another Boko Haram/ISWAP fighter, a 35-year-old Muhammadu Kabudumi AKA Amir Sabat also surrendered to the troops 242 Battalion in Monguno.
“Kabudumi confessed to joining the Boko Haram sect in 2015 but denied participating in any of the sect’s operations.
“He, however, revealed that he has done duties at Boko Haram criminals’ camps at Abadam, Malam Fatori and Duguri under the leadership of Muhammadu Lawan, a notorious Boko Haram Commander,” he said
Enenche said Boko Haram fighters are giving up because of the sustained offensive against them by the troops.
He also said more Boko Haram/ISWAP elements had either being arrested or neutralised as the military moves towards the final defeat of the insurgents in the region.
The coordinator further disclosed that troops of Army Super Camp 11 Gamboru in Ngala Local Government Area arrested three terrorists at Isari village on May 8.
He added that the troops recovered one AK47 Rifle loaded with a magazine containing two rounds of 7.62mm Special ammunition, two swords, one cutlass, one axe, a set of arrows and charms.
He said a number of terrorists’ equipment had been captured or destroyed while others continue to surrender amid sustained artillery bombardments and offensive onslaught against their enclaves/hideouts by air and land forces of OPLD.
By Kazeem Ugbodaga
With the deadly Coronavirus still sweeping massively across the nation, Nigerians must be extremely careful where they travel to or else, they will be brought down by the pandemic.
Currently, Nigeria has raked in 8,915 confirmed cases of Coronavirus since February. It has been able to discharge 2,592 patients who survived the pandemic, with 259 people who died from the pandemic. Nigeria has 6,064 active cases of the virus to deal with as at Thursday, May 28.
Of this skyrocketing figures, 10 states in Nigeria play major roles in ramping up the virus. These states are dangerous to travel to right now. Some people who travelled to them in recent time came back with the virus.
The states are:
Lagos is simply the epicentre of Coronavirus in Nigeria. It contributed to almost half of the coronavirus infections in Nigeria. As at Thursday, 28 May, Lagos has raked in 4,123 confirmed coronavirus cases, discharging 745 patients who survived the virus and ramping up 47 deaths.
The State’s active coronavirus cases stand at 3,331. Right now, the state is not a desire destination for tourists and Nigerians except those who can take the risk. Some have done so and came back with the virus. Lagos is experiencing serious community infections. It is simply the New York of Africa in terms of Coronavirus infections.
Kano is certainly not a place to visit right now, as the deadly coronavirus is sweeping through the land. Currently, Kano has ramp up 939 cases of the virus, discharged 139 survivors and lost 41 people to the pandemic, leaving 759 active cases for the state to manage. Those still insisting that they must travel to Kano must be extremely careful or they find themselves in isolation centres.
The Federal Capital Territory, FCT, Abuja is another dangerous place to travel to right now as the virus has ravaged the nation’s capital. Abuja has so far recorded 535 confirmed cases of the virus, with 158 discharges and 14 deaths, leaving 296 active cases to manage.
Katsina has ramp up 358 coronavirus infections, 51 discharges and 14 deaths, with 293 active cases of the virus to manage. The state is now a danger zone as it has been infested with the deadly virus, couple with the fact that more tests are not being conducted.
Ever since its governor, Seyi Makinde contracted Coronavirus and later recovered, Oyo State has not looked back. The state has been raking in cases of the virus. It now has 260 confirmed cases, 88 discharges and six deaths, with 166 active cases left to manage. Oyo is a danger zone for travellers because you don’t know who has the virus.
The Northeast state has so far garnered 258 coronavirus infections, with 160 discharges and 25 deaths. The State is another area to look out for by travellers. It is risky travelling there.
Ogun State recorded the first case of Coronavirus in Nigeria, with the visit of the index case, an Italian. Since then, the state has ramp up 246 infections, 128 discharges and nine deaths, with 109 active cases. Ogun is currently, like others, experiencing community transmission of the virus, making visitors at risk, especially as the state shares border with Lagos, the epicentre of the virus.
Jigawa State is fast gaining notoriety in coronavirus infections. The state has recorded 241 confirmed cases of Coronavirus and 78 discharges, with four deaths. It has 159 active cases still to manage. Travellers to Jigawa must be extremely cautious.
Edo State has recorded 240 cases of Coronavirus. It has also discharged 69 patients and recorded 13 deaths, leaving 158 active cases of the virus to manage. Edo is another risky area for travellers. They must exercise extreme cautiousness if they must travel.
Bauchi has recorded 234 cases of Coronavirus. The state has discharged 205 survivors and recorded seven deaths. It now has 22 active cases to manage. The state has achieved great results, but travellers must be careful as there is still community transmission.
By Taiwo Okanlawon/ PM News
Controversial Nollywood actor, Uche Maduagwu, has stated that he does not regret supporting singer, Cynthia Morgan, because she is born to win like ex-Big Brother Naija star, Tacha.
Cynthia Morgan in an Instagram live video, with Ex-Miss Globe Nigeria, CASSANDRA, had revealed why she disappeared from the music scene despite becoming a household name.
Cynthia Morgan had alleged that Jude Okoye seized her accounts, made her stop using her name as well, and not promote her and does not own rights to the music she produced while still under Northside Inc, losing virtually everything.
However, Cynthia Morgan was dragged on social media after Jude Okoye released copies of the contract between the singer and his record label, Northside Entertainment.
Uche Maduagwu, while reacting to the new development stated this in a post he shared on Instagram on Wednesday.
“I dont regret supporting #Madrina, shes born to win like Tacha. It has never been about the contract she signed in the past and this is where a lot of people are getting it wrong, its about her survival as a woman in a male-dominated #music industry…,” the caption read.
Cynthia Morgan, now Madrina, later wrote an open letter of apology to her former record label boss, Jude Okoye and former manager, Joy Tongo, for blaming her career challenges on them.
She wrote, “I Cynthia Morgan, would like to use this platform to appreciate all the love, well wishes and support from everyone… My heartfelt appreciation once again goes to Jude and Joy. It is the pain speaking, not Cynthia. Thanks for giving me the platform to grow the Cynthia Morgan brand.”
By Nimot Sulaimon/ PM News
Canadian gospel singer, Jonathan Steingard has said that he no longer believed in God.
Steingard, in a lengthy Instagram post, admitted that after a lifetime as a Christian, he no longer believed in God and would be leaving the band.
He goes further to explain the reasons why he came to such a conclusion.
‘‘I still find myself wanting to soften that statement by wording it differently or less specifically – but it wouldn’t be as true”, he said.
Read his post below:
The 36-year-old Canadian musician went on to write that losing his religion occurred over several years.
His former band ”Hawk Nelson” released a statement on Wednesday, supporting his choice to leave the band.
Governor Godwin Obaseki has a big obstacle to overcome to clinch a second term ticket of the All Progressives Congress as the party’s big guns backed another candidate.
He is Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, from Obaseki’s constituency.
In a major move on Tuesday night, the faction that has been fighting Obaseki picked Ize-Iyamu as its consensus governorship candidate.
The faction is loyal to National Chairman of the party, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, Obaseki’s former godfather now his biggest political foe.
Ize-Iyamu, was a former Secretary to Edo State Government (SSG) and rejoined the APC from PDP last year. He lost the governorship to Obaseki in the 2016 election.
He is expected to slug it out with Governor Godwin Obaseki for the direct primary of the party slated for June 22.
He was presented by chairman of the screening committee, Senator Francis Alimikhena, the representative of Edo North Senatorial District.
The screening committee has as members a former Edo Deputy Governor Lucky Imasuen; Gen. Cecil Esekhaigbe; ex-Edo Speaker Thomas Okosun.
Others are former Minority Whip of the House of Representatives Samson Osagie; ex-member of the House of Representatives Patrick Obahiagbon and Deputy Leader of the House of Representatives, Peter Akpatason.
Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki on Wednesday said no man can stop him from being governor for a second term in the state.
Obaseki is having a running battle with his godfather and National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Adams Oshiomhole.
Oshiomhole’s faction of the party, had on Tuesday night endorsed the candidacy of Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu as the consensus candidate of the party for the Edo poll.
But Obaseki, in an interview on Channels TV, said he was confident of returning to power as first man of the state because “power comes from God.”
The governor said he is a man of peace and not a violent person.
“I am not a violent person. But I am confident that the way I got into power is the same way I will return.
“God gave me power. If he wants me to return I will continue. No man can stop me. Power comes from God,” he said.
He said he had always canvassed for peace and believed election should not lead to bloodshed.
On the rift within his party, Obaseki said that he was not distracted, adding that his focus was on developing Edo State.
“We have always canvassed for peace. What are the issues in Edo and what are the issues that cannot be resolved in a democracy. Our concern is to use the resources of the people to develop the state.
“This shouldn’t lead to bloodshed. We will not accept to be cowed and intimidated because some people think that they can manipulate rules and cut corners,” he stated.
When asked if it’s not the resources of the people of Edo State that was used for him to become the governor, Obaseki said, “I have friends with resources. I worked for eight years behind the scene before I became governor.
“So all that insinuations about using somebody’s resources…I became Governor on the platform of the party and I am grateful for it.”
Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew by 1.87 per cent (year-on-year) in the first quarter of this year, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) has said.
In a posting on its website on Monday accessed by The Nation, NBS said the performance was recorded against the backdrop of significant global disruptions, resulting in sharp fall in prices and restricted international trade arising from the COVID-19 public health crisis.
It said the Q1 2020 performance represented a -0.23 per cent point drop when compared with Q1 2019, and 0.68 per cent point dip relative to Q4 2019, adding that this was a reflection of the earliest effects of disruption, particularly on the non-oil economy. In the review period, the NBS report indicated that quarter-on-quarter, real GDP growth was -14.42 per cent compared to 5.59 per cent recorded in the preceding quarter.
Also in Q1 2020, aggregate GDP stood at N35,647,406.08 million in nominal terms, NBS said, pointing out that this performance was higher when compared to first quarter of 2019, which recorded N31,824,349.67 million, with a nominal growth rate 12.01 per cent year-on-year.
The report indicated that relative to Q1 2019, the nominal growth rate was higher by 0.11 per cent points but lower than the preceding quarter by -0.32 per cent points.
NBS said in the review period, an average daily oil production of 2.07 million barrels per day was recorded, stating that the production level was higher than the 1.99 million barrel per day recorded in the same quarter of 2019 by 0.08mbpd and the fourth quarter of 2019 by 0.06 million barrels per day (mbpd).
The report indicated that non-oil sector grew by 1.55 per cent in real terms during Q1 2020, saying this was lower by -093 per cent points compared to the rate recorded during the same quarter of 2019, and -0.72 per cent point slower than the corresponding period of last year.
It said the non-oil sector was driven mainly by Information and Communication, Financial and Insurance, Agriculture and Mining.
It said in real term, the Non-Oil sector contributed 90.50 per cent to the nation’s GDP in the review period, which was less than its share in the first quarter of 2019 put at 90.78 per cent and the forth quarter of 2019 which contribution was put at 92.68 per cent.
The NBS report listed activities that witnessed weaker performance relative to Q1 2019, including quarrying, road transport, accommodation, food, services, as well as real estate.