Thursday, 06 May 2021

NEWS AND STORIES

By Chris Njoku, Owerri/ THE NATION

Southeast governors yesterday launched a regional security outfit codenamed Ebube Agu (the glory of a tiger) to battle rising insecurity.

They restated that open grazing remained banned and urged security agencies to enforce it.

The governors met in Owerri, the Imo State capital, with heads of security agencies in the region.

Acting Inspector-General Usman Baba sent a delegation comprising a Deputy Inspector-General and an Assistant Inspector-General.

The meeting was to evaluate the security situation and to strategise on how to tackle it.

Last Monday, gunmen attacked the police headquarters and the correctional centre in Owerri, setting 38 vehicles ablaze and freeing 1,844 inmates.

Police stations have come under attack in the five Southeast states, with many officers killed.

At the meeting were governors Dave Umahi (Ebonyi), Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi (Enugu), Okezie Ikpeazu (Abia), Willie Obiano (Anambra) and Imo State Hope Uzodimma, who was the host.

The governors condemned the attacks on police stations, correctional facility, and the unlawful release of inmates.

They said a committee made up of security personnel, government officials and relevant stakeholders will be set up to coordinate and monitor the implementation of Ebube Agu, with headquarters in Enugu.

The governors urged the IG to invite the leadership of Ohanaeze Ndigbo and the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) “to find out the reason for increasing insecurity in the Southeast”.

They resolved to bring together all the arsenals at their command to fight and flush out criminals and terrorist from the zone.

They promised to back security agencies with all they need to make the onslaught against criminals successful.

Umahi, flanked by his brother — governors and the security chiefs, read a 15 – point communique of their resolution.

They resolved “to strongly and unequivocally condemn terrorism and banditry in any part of Nigeria, particularly in the Southeast.

“The meeting strongly condemns the burning of police stations, violent attacks on custodial centres with the unlawful release of inmates, and the killings, including security personnel, natives/ farmers and headsmen.

“The five Southeast states are on the same page with the Federal Government on the issue of security challenges in the country.

“To this end, the meeting makes it absolutely clear that the Southeast will stand resolutely with the Federal Government to fight terrorists and bandits to a finish.

“The political leadership in the Southeast has resolved to bring together all the arsenals at their command, as one united zone, to fight and flush out criminals and terrorist from the zone.

“To achieve this, there is a need to galvanise all the relevant stakeholders in the Southeast, the political class, the business community, the bureaucrats and the intelligentsia to provide all necessary support to security operatives in the five Southeast states to ensure total success in the fight against criminality in the zone.

“The heads of all the security agencies in the Southeast have resolved to exchange intelligence in a seamless, effective new order that will help to checkmate crime in the zone.”

To fast track crime-busting in the region, the governors mandated the heads of security agencies “to draw up a comprehensive list of their logistics and material needs for sustainable success in the fight against criminality for the immediate provision by the leadership of the Southeast”.

The communique adds: “The meeting resolved to maintain a joint security vigilante for the Southeast, otherwise known as Ebube Agu…to coordinate our vigilante in the Southeast.”

The governors requested the Acting IG to stop the influx of IG monitoring units but to allow commissioners of police and state and zonal commands to handle their cases.

“Meeting approves that the acting IG and other security chiefs do invite the leadership of Ohanaeze Ndigbo and CAN to find out the reason for increasing insecurity of the SouthEast.

“The meeting agreed that military policing in the Southeast should be adequately funded and become effective.

“The meeting agreed that open grazing has been banned and security agencies should implement the ban.

“The meeting encouraged a peaceful coexistence of farmers and herders to allow governors to succeed in the fight against criminality.”

Published in Headliners

Kim Kardashian West is officially now a billionaire with a net worth of $1 billion, according to Forbes business magazine.

The American media personality and businesswoman made the Forbes’ annual “World’s Billionaire List” for the first time on Tuesday. The magazine said West’s booming businesses, KKW Beauty and Skims, helped put her over the top to achieve the billionaire benchmark when added to her television show and endorsement deals.

Kardashian West launched KKW Beauty in 2017, and Coty acquired a 20% stake in the cosmetics line in a deal last year that valued the business at $1 billion. Forbes said her remaining stake in the business is worth about $500 million.

Her other business, Skims, a collection of figure-hugging shapewear and bodysuits. Forbes said she has a majority stake in the private business, which hasn’t disclosed revenue — but a source told the magazine the company is valued “north of $500 million.” That means her stake is possibly worth $225 million, which is “enough to lift her fortune to $1 billion,” according to Forbes.

Kardashian West also holds assets in cash, investments and real estate. Forbes added that she earned at least $10 million pretax every year since 2012, thanks to paychecks from “Keeping Up With the Kardashians,” endorsement deals and endeavors like her now-defunct Kimoji app. She’s also got three properties in Calabasas, northwest of Los Angeles, and a portfolio of blue-chip investments, including shares of Disney, Amazon, Netflix and Adidas that her soon-to-be ex-husband Kanye West gifted her for Christmas in 2017.

But Forbes maintained that it is the companies that Kardashian West launched herself that landed her on the World’s Billionaires list.

Jenner, the youngest member of the Kardashian family empire, fell out of the Forbes rankings in 2020 after the magazine claimed the 23-year-old had been inflating the size of her own cosmetic business. She had been named the world’s youngest self-made billionaire in 2019 at age 21.

The family’s hit reality show “Keeping Up With the Kardashians” is set to end this year after a 20-season run, as news also emerged earlier this year that Kardashian West had filed for divorce from rapper Kanye West.

Published in Entertainment

By Gbenga Omokhunu, Abuja/ THE NATION

The outgoing Inspector General of Police (IGP) Mohammed Adamu has handed over to his successor Usman Alkali Baba.

The ceremony took place at the Force Headquarters, Abuja.

He handed over after Vice President Yemi Osinbajo decorated Baba with his new rank in the State House, Abuja.

******************************************

8 things to know about new IGP Usman Alkali Baba

By Alao Abiodun/ THE NATION

President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday announced DIG Usman Alkali Baba as acting Inspector-General of Police (IGP).

According to the Minister of Police Affairs, Maigari Dingyadi, the appointment takes immediate effect.

The Yobe born Police chief has held several strategic positions in the past.

Here are few things to know about the acting IGP:

1. Usman Alkali was born on 1st March, 1963.

2. He hails from Geidam in Yobe State and has had meritorious years in the force.

3. He has also served in various capacities such as DIG Force CID and was also the Force Secretary at the Force Headquarters, Abuja.

4. He has served in various commands including Kaduna as the Deputy Commissioner, Administration; He was in FCT as the Deputy Commissioner, Investigation and was also in the staff college as a directing staff.

5. He was in Ilorin as an Area Commander. He was the second-in-command in Ebonyi, He was also an Assistant Commissioner, CID in Kaduna and before then was DPO (Divisional Police Officer) in various places like Yola, Gombe, Kaduna, and Jos.

6. He holds a Masters in Public Administration (MPA) Degree from the University of Maiduguri, Borno State 1997 and a BA (ED) Political Science from Bayero University, Kano State as well as Professional Courses/Workshop Institution.

Published in Headliners

Along with her daughter Blue Ivy, Beyoncé has two twins — Sir and Rumi — but to date she hasn’t shared many photos of the pair.

Which is why it’s kind of a big deal that B just shared photos of her, Blue Ivy, and the twins at the beach.

There’s a photo of Rumi walking by the waves…

As well as a snap of Beyoncé and Sir getting their feet wet.

She also shared a photo of her and Blue wearing some snazzy frames.

And Blue Ivy and Beyoncé did recently win big at the Grammys (Blue Ivy’s first, no less!), so why not kick back and relax for a sec?

Published in News & Stories

LONDON — The Champions League talking points ahead of the first-leg matches in the quarterfinals:

TUESDAY:

MANCHESTER CITY VS. BORUSSIA DORTMUND

While City could hardly be in better shape, Dortmund has been plunged back into uncertainty and self-doubt. City, the runaway Premier League leader, headed into April still on track for an unprecedented “quadruple” of major trophies this season and has won 26 of its last 27 games in all competitions. The Champions League will be the toughest title to claim and there will be much focus on the approach Pep Guardiola takes for the game, with the Spanish coach often accused of overthinking his tactics on the big occasions. Dortmund’s hopes of qualifying for next season’s Champions League were dealt a major blow by the 2-1 loss to Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday, which left Edin Terzić’s team seven points behind fourth-place Frankfurt with seven rounds of the Bundesliga to go. Speculation over star striker Erling Haaland’s future has added to the concerns, with City among the many clubs reportedly interested in the Norway international. Dortmund failing to qualify for Europe’s premier competition would add to the likelihood of Haaland’s departure. He is the Champions League’s top scorer this season with 10 goals.

REAL MADRID VS. LIVERPOOL

It is a meeting between two of the aristocrats of European soccer — they have won the competition 19 times between them — and they come into the quarterfinals in good form. Madrid, a 13-time champion, is unbeaten in all competitions since Jan. 30 and is back in the title race in the Spanish league, not least because of the brilliant form of striker Karim Benzema. The Frenchman has scored nine goals in his last seven games, including against Atalanta in the Champions League’s last 16. Liverpool’s improvement has been more recent — and chiefly due to the return of Fabinho to central midfield after a spell filling in at center back as well as Diogo Jota after injury. The soon-to-be-deposed English champions have kept clean sheets in their last three games but there are still concerns about their defense, especially at center back where understudies Ozan Kabak and Nat Phillips are holding the fort. Real Madrid will remain without the injured Sergio Ramos, but there’s a chance Eden Hazard may return to the squad after another injury layoff.

WEDNESDAY:

BAYERN MUNICH VS. PARIS SAINT-GERMAIN

With a ninth consecutive Bundesliga title almost certain, Bayern Munich can turn its full attention to defending its Champions League crown. Bayern opened a seven-point gap in the Bundesliga with a win over closest rival Leipzig on Saturday and promptly set its sights on Wednesday’s visit from PSG. Parisian Kingsley Coman scored the only goal as Bayern beat the French team in last year’s final, and he may have to do it again with top striker Robert Lewandowski out with a knee injury. Leon Goretzka stepped up with the winner against Leipzig, with Thomas Müller and Joshua Kimmich both involved. All three have been outstanding this season and will be tasked with making up for Lewandowski’s absence. PSG will be without its two best midfielders. Marco Verratti has contracted the coronavirus for the third time and the tough-tackling Leandro Paredes is suspended for the first leg. Danilo Pereira and Idrissa Gueye could find themselves under a lot of pressure to stop Bayern from dictating the game, so PSG’s wide players will probably have to drop back and help out.

PORTO VS. CHELSEA

Porto is the most surprising team in the last eight after eliminating Cristiano Ronaldo and Juventus in the round of 16. The Portuguese club is trying to make it to the semifinals for the first time since winning the European trophy in 2004. It also was a quarterfinalist in 2019, being eliminated against eventual champion Liverpool. Chelsea has drastically improved since Thomas Tuchel replaced Frank Lampard as manager in January. It was unbeaten in 14 games under the German — including back-to-back wins over Atletico Madrid in the Champions League’s last 16 — until a stunning 5-2 loss to lowly West Bromwich Albion in the Premier League on Saturday. Chelsea had previously conceded only two goals in Tuchel’s tenure. Defensive midfielder N’Golo Kante is set to miss the game after sustaining a knee injury during the international break.

———

More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer and https://twitter.com/AP—Sports

Published in Sports

On February 5, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) released a circular addressed to banks and other financial institutions with the directive that transactions in cryptocurrencies and facilitating payment for cryptocurrency exchanges were prohibited.

The CBN further instructed all banks and other financial institutions to identify individuals or entities that transact in cryptocurrency or operate cryptocurrency exchanges and close their accounts.

That CBN letter elicited varied reactions from the Nigerian public with many expressing concern about the potential negative effect it could have on the country’s growing cryptocurrency market and innovation in financial technology.

Some stakeholders supported the ban while others questioned the goals of the policy, which they saw as stifling the livelihood of young Nigerians using cryptocurrencies to escape poverty and unemployment.

The memo, however, created interest in some Nigerians who were hitherto unaware of the existence or workings of cryptocurrencies.

Cryptocurrency is described as a digital asset designed to work as a medium of exchange where individual coin ownership records are stored in a ledger existing in a form of computerised database.

It usually does not exist in physical form like paper money and is not issued by a central monetary authority. It uses decentralised control as opposed to centralised digital and central banking systems.

The first decentralised cryptocurrency, bitcoin, was created in 2009 by presumably pseudonymous developer Satoshi Nakamoto. In April 2011, Namecoin was created and in October 2011, Litecoin was released.

The most popular cryptocurrency transacted in Nigeria is Bitcoin, but others like Dogcoin and Ethereum are also dominant while more cryptocurrencies continue to be created from time to time.

Many youths in Nigeria have found transactions in cryptocurrencies profitable and rewarding, thus increasing its popularity.

Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are unregulated in many countries and their legal status is unclear. This implies that financial safety is really not guaranteed.

Converting local currencies to and from bitcoin, for instance, relies on informal brokers. Prices are usually volatile, and buying and selling are a complex processes that demand technical knowledge.

In 2017, the CBN had earlier warned that cryptocurrencies were not legal tender, and that investors were unprotected.

Findings reveal that Nigeria has accounted for crypto transaction worth N566 million dollars in the last five years.

According to the estimates, out of the top 10 countries for trading volumes Nigeria ranked third after USA and Russia in 2020, generating more than 400 million dollars worth of transactions.

Some stakeholders have urged the apex bank to revisit the ban on cryptocurrency transactions and see digital currencies as another tool for economic growth.

The Nigeria Economic Summit Group (NESG) advised the CBN to carry out a comprehensive study on the workings of cryptocurrencies to check its excesses.

According to Laoye Jaiyeola, Chief Executive Officer of the NESG, though checking excesses in its transaction was a challenge that people were grappling with across the world, cryptocurrency has come to stay.

“Cryptocurrency transaction is a challenge that people grapple with all over the world. While we institute the ban, we should undertake a comprehensive study to understand how it works.

“We have been told that they can easily be deployed to fund criminal activities, but it has come to stay, and if we are going to allow it in future, we should start learning about it now,” he advised.

In July 2020, popular Nigerian social media celebrities, Ramon Abbas (Hushppuppi) and Olalekan Ponle (Woodberry) were arrested in Dubai by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) on charges of fraud and money laundering.

According to an affidavit by the FBI, criminal proceeds from both Woodberry and Hushpuppi were converted into bitcoin, and will most likely be untraceable.

This further emphasised how convenient it could be for criminals to hide their financial crimes using cryptocurremncies.

All around the world, the decentralised nature of cryptocurrency that has made it an attraction for some investors has also made it a nightmare for regulators.

CBN, in justifying the ban, explained that cryptocurrencies transaction was devoid of proper regulation and prone to financial crimes.

Osita Nwanisobi, CBN Acting Director of Communications said that the directive was only a reminder of an earlier directive in 2017 banning cryptocurrency transactions.

He said that the anonymous nature of cryptocurrency, which made it prone to financial crimes, justified the ban.

“It is important to state that cryptocurrencies are digital or virtual currencies issued by largely anonymous entities and secured by cryptography.

“Cryptography is a method of encrypting and hiding codes that prevent oversight, accountability and regulation,” he said.

He clarified that the directive on cryptocurrency was not unique to Nigeria as countries like China, Canada, Taiwan, Indonesia, Egypt, Morocco, among others have instituted similar restrictions on its transactions.

He said that such currencies remained illegal in Nigeria because they were issued by entities that were neither licensed nor legal.

Sen. Tokunbo Abiru, representing Lagos East Senatorial District, support the ban in transaction of the Cryptocurrency in the country.

He, however, suggested that major stakeholders on cryptocurrency transaction be invited to a public hearing to appraise its advantages and its excesses.

At a joint session of relevant Senate committees on Feb. 23, Mr Godwin Emefiele, the CBN Governor further explained reasons for restricting financial institutions from engaging in crypto transactions.

Emefiele gave the assurance that the directive was not inimical to the development of technology-driven payment system in Nigeria.

He said that the Nigerian payment system had evolved significantly over the past decade, boosted by reforms driven by the CBN.

“Cryptocurrency has no place in our monetary system at this time, and cryptocurrency transactions should not be carried out through the Nigerian banking system,’’ he said.

However, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, speaking at a recent CBN Bankers Committee Economic Summit, called for the regulation of cryptocurrency transactions in Nigeria rather than an outright ban.

Osinbajo urged the apex bank to develop a robust regulatory system to check such transactions.

“Rather than adopt a policy that prohibits cryptocurrency operations in the Nigerian banking sector, we must act with knowledge and not fear and develop a robust regulatory regime that is thoughtful and knowledge-based.

“There is no question that blockchain technology generally and cryptocurrencies, in particular, will in the coming years challenge traditional banking, including Central banking, in ways that we cannot yet imagine.

“We need to be prepared for that seismic shift. And it may come sooner than later,” he said.

Meanwhile, speaking at the 30th seminar for Finance Correspondents and Business Editors in Abuja recently, CBN Deputy Governor, Adamu Lamtek, said the bank did not ban cryptocurrency activity in the country.

Lamtek said that CBN only prohibited transactions on cryptocurrencies in the Nigerian banking sector.

He said: “the CBN did not place restrictions from use of cryptocurrencies, and we are not discouraging people from trading in them. What we have done was to prohibit transactions on cryptocurrencies in the banking sector.”

Published in Business and Economy

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Published in News & Stories

By Evan Simko-Bednarski, CNN

(CNN)The White headmaster of a Catholic school on Long Island has resigned following reports that he had a Black student kneel in apology last month, calling it "the African way" to apologize.

The headmaster was temporarily removed from his job at St. Martin de Porres School in Hempstead, New York, over the weekend, after parent Trisha Paul went to the local press regarding her 11-year-old son's treatment at the school. The incident was first reported by the New York Daily News.
On Wednesday, the school issued a statement saying the headmaster had resigned.
"The leadership of St. Martin de Porres Marianist School continues to review the incident in question to ensure that it is never repeated again in any form," the statement read. "It is important to assure students, parents, and faculty that this incident does not reflect our long, established value of respect for the individual or the established protocols regarding student-related issues."
The school added that a new principal -- a mother of former students and certified school administrator -- would begin leading the school immediately
In an interview with CNN on Tuesday, Paul said she noticed her son seemed sad after school one day late last month. When she asked him what happened, he told her he'd been sent to the headmaster's office for working on an assignment in his Literature class during designated reading time.
Paul said her son's teacher took the assignment, tore it up, and brought her son to the headmaster's office. Once there, Paul said, the headmaster told her son to kneel before the teacher in apology.
"I was filled with all different types of emotion," Paul said. When the headmaster called a few days later to discuss dates for her son's first communion, Paul said she brought it up.
"I asked him what happened," she said. "He began to tell me a story about an African family that attended the school many years ago."
The headmaster, according to Paul, told her about a former student whose father had once told him to bow when apologizing, calling it "the Nigerian way."
"I was just at a loss for words," Paul, who along with her son is Black and of Haitian descent, told CNN. "I didn't understand the relevance."
"I was really sad and disappointed," she said, adding that she went to the school to speak with the headmaster a few days later. "I was hoping to get through to him," she said.
In his office, the headmaster told the story again, Paul said. "This time, it was 'the African way.'" She said she tried to convey to the headmaster that he'd "humiliated and degraded my son," but said she didn't feel heard.
Paul said she decided to remove her son from in-person classes, and he currently attends remotely.
"He has become extremely quiet," she said Tuesday. "His interactions with everyone -- family, friends -- has changed. He's sad. He has questions. He's just trying to cope with this."
"We are not all the same," she said. "We are not all Africans. We are not all Nigerians."
Paul said she was never notified of the disciplinary incident by the school.
"I do believe that had my son not told me about this incident, it would have been brushed under the rug," she said. "I'm hoping there's some kind of resolution where he does step down," she said of the headmaster. "I want there to be change. I want my child to be that person who makes a difference."
The headmaster, who is not being named by CNN, did not respond to requests for comment. Neither Conway nor St. Martin de Porres commented on the matter beyond the acting headmaster's public statement.
Published in Business and Economy

By Mike Odiegwu, Port Harcourt/ THE NATION

  • Says God used him to make Amaechi governor

  • Ungrateful Wike can’t stop Jonathan, says ex-President’s kinsman

Former President Goodluck Jonathan should not expect the support of Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State should he (Jonathan) agree to contest the 2023 presidential election on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

Wike, who served as Minister of State for Education in the Jonathan Administration, said there was no way he could work against the interest of his party, PDP.

Jonathan is a member of the PDP but speculations have been growing about the possibility of his defection to APC to contest the next presidential election.

The governor, who spoke on the Pidgin Service of BBC, also said he was instrumental to the emergence of Chief Rotimi Amaechi as governor of the State in 2007.

Wike said: “I am a PDP member. If former President Goodluck Jonathan picks the ticket to run in my party, I will support him. I can’t do anti-party.

“But if he picks the ticket to run in APC, I won’t support him because I can’t do anti-party.

“He knows I won’t support him in APC even if he is from the south.

“I don’t do that kind of politics. It is party we are talking about, and I don’t play ethnicity.”

Wike mocked Transportation Minister Amaechi for calling him his employee saying that he would not have governed the state if God had not used him (Wike) to make him governor in 2007.

In another vein, he said he was “not close to Amaechi.”

His words: “We were just in the same party, and in politics, everybody has ambition. He has his own. I don’t regret that as at that time, we preferred him to be governor.”

He said Amaechi had forgotten when he said in a church that after God in his life, the second person was he (Wike), adding that he was at liberty to choose any position in Amaechi’s government because of his contributions.

“Now he’s in APC, and you don’t expect me as a PDP person to support what he does.

“I was the one God used to make Amaechi governor. I will even give you a tape from what he said in the church; that after God, I’m next. But when he was talking the other day, saying I was his staff, his employee, I said no problem.

“We all sat to make you governor, and I was the one who championed it. How do you call someone who made you governor an employee? When he became governor, he asked me: how are we going to run this government, and he offered me to be commissioner of finance, but I said no, let me be in the chief of staff office.

“That time I made him governor, I had power to choose. People know in this state.

“With his APC, did they even score 25 percent here during the 2015 and 2019 elections? His staff stopped him from winning Rivers for his presidential candidate? Not even a senatorial seat?

On the zoning of the PDP presidential ticket for the 2023 election, Wike said if zoning the party’s ticket to the north is the only factor that can make the PDP victorious, he would readily support the move.

He said: “I am from southern part of Nigeria. I will be happy if power returns to the South. But if PDP will win the 2023 presidential election by zoning the presidential ticket to the North, I will not be opposed to it. ”

Asked whether he would defect to the APC sometime in future, he said: “Defect to where? I have malaria, is it cancer that I am looking for? I have malaria that is easy to treat, now you want me to go and get cancer that will kill me immediately.

“Is it APC, a party that has killed Nigeria? I will stay in PDP and fight. If they win me no problem and if I win them, so be it. But I know they won’t win me. But to leave PDP that has malaria to APC, no way. The stage of the cancer in APC is fourth stage where doctors always say is hard to recover. Once they say is the fourth stage, call God and say it has happened.”

On whether he is corrupt, the governor said: “I cannot say I am corrupt. But I will say I am not a perfect person. If you say I like money yes. If I don’t have money, how can I pay my children’s school fees and treat my sick mother. Those who say they don’t like money are lying.”

Below is an abridged version of the BBC interview:

Are you saying that we should expect you would defect from PDP?

Defect to where? I have malaria, is it cancer that I am looking for? I have malaria that is easy to treat, now you want me to go and get cancer that will kill me immediately.

Is it APC, a party that has killed Nigeria? I will stay in PDP and fight. If they win me, no problem, and if I win them, so be it. But I know they won’t win me. But to leave PDP that has malaria to APC, no way. The stage of the cancer in APC is fourth stage where doctors always say is hard to recover. Once they say it is the fourth stage, call God and say it has happened.

Are you corrupt?

I cannot say I am corrupt. But I will say I am not a perfect person. If you say I like money, yes. If I don’t have money, how can I pay my children’s school fees and treat my sick mother? Those who say they don’t like money are lying.

Talking about the Presidency coming to the South, people have been talking about former President Goodluck Jonathan. If he picks ticket, will you support him?

When they say pick ticket, which of the party is he picking the ticket? Is it APC or PDP? When you say ticket, it means you are ready to run on a platform of a party. For me, I am in PDP.

Okay let’s start with your party

Is that one a question? Will I go and do anti-party?

What if he comes from the other party, say the APC?

He knows I won’t support him. I can’t do anti-party.

But he is from the South

No, I don’t play that type of politics. We are talking about party. I don’t play ethnicity.

What is your relationship with the former Governor of Rivers State and Transport Minister, Rotimi Amaechi? Two of you used to be close.

I was not close to Amaechi, we were just in the same party and in politics everybody has ambition. He has his own. I don’t regret that as at that time, we preferred him to be governor.

We fought it and God crowned our efforts and he became a governor. He is in APC and I am in PDP. So don’t expect me to support what he is doing in APC. He said I was his employee. What he said was not good. God used me to make him the governor.

I will give you a tape where Amaechi spoke in Church saying after God, I came next. But when he spoke the other day, he said I was his staff, his employee. No problem but an employee that dealt with him here.

In 2015 to 2019 Buhari did not have 20 per cent here, that is his employee. Your employee stopped you from giving the president 25 per cent. Your staff stopped you from winning governorship election and stopped you from having one Senator.

He said I would only be governor over his dead body. But up until now I am still looking for that dead body. I have won everything. I told him he won’t have a candidate and he didn’t have. I told him he won’t have a senator and an assembly member and he didn’t have, even House of Representative member he didn’t have. How can an employee defeat you like that?

But you have also said some things against Amaechi. Recently you spoke about him being corrupt.

I was not the one who said it. A panel of inquiry indicted him. He went to court and lost. He went to the Court of Appeal and lost again. So, i was not the one who talked. But let us say the truth. Did he not sell our gas turbine for $308m? The money was paid in Access Bank in December 2014.

Is there evidence to …

What is evidence? The bank statement is there and you are talking about evidence. Was it not Sahara Energy? $308million was paid into Access Bank account. As at December 8, 2014, the money was paid into Access Bank account. I came in 29th May 2015. What they left for us was $208,000. See our monorail. How many kilometres? About 1.5km and we spent N64bn. If you are from Rivers State are you not going to cry.

We all sat down and say we should support you for governor. I was the once who championed it. God used me to make you a governor. If I open my mouth to talk to Nigerians how Amaechi became a governor, who did not know? So, why will he say I was his employee? Someone that made you a governor? I asked him how would we run this government and he said I would be commissioner of finance. I declined and told him I would want to be the chief of staff. So, how did I become his employee? The time I made you governor, I had the power to choose what I wanted.

Ungrateful Wike can’t stop Jonathan, says kinsman

A public commentator and kinsman of Dr. Jonathan from Ogbia Local Government Area, Wisdom Ikuli, accused Wike of displaying the highest level of ingratitude with his statement.

Ikuli said Wike lacked the capacity to stop Nigerians if they decided to return Jonathan to power in 2023 on the platform of any party including the APC.

Ikuli said: “Inasmuch as I commend Governor Wike for the great work he is doing in Rivers State in terms of developmental projects, his utterances are becoming unlike a state executive governor

“The way he arrogates to himself the power of a contemporary emperor is unbecoming. Having said that, we should realise that governor Wike is just one person out of the 250 million Nigerians.

“Today over 75 per cent of Nigeria’s having seen what Goodluck Jonathan did during his presidency have realised that if he is not the best president he one of the best that has ruled the country.

“Despite what happened, during Goodluck Jonathan’s presidency, there was no ethnic group or section of this country that clamoured to secede or disintegrate because the country was not threatened.

“Who is Wike? Wike is just one person. He has just one vote. I am talking about 250 million citizens and over 75 per cent of the citizens of voting age are clamouring that Goodluck Jonathan must come back.

“Wike is the greatest ungrateful person. Who was Wike? Goodluck Jonathan brought Wike from nowhere and made him a minister of education and against all odds he became a governor.

“The riverine people were clamouring to govern Rivers state at that time. When you look at democratically in terms of population the riverine is more than the upland in number. It is ijaw people that made Wike governor.”

Published in Headliners

Coinbase IPO Listing Postponed From March to April 2021

  • Coinbase Initial Public Offering (IPO) listing has been pushed from March to April 2021.
  • The change came soon after Coinbase sent an IPO draft registration to the US SEC.
  • Coinbase share prices now stand between $200 and $375.

Coinbase has postponed its Initial Public Offering (IPO) from March to April 2021. The change came shortly after Coinbase filed an IPO draft registration to the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on December 18.

According to Bloomberg, Coinbase will rather do a direct listing of its Class A common stock instead of its planned IPO. Initially, Coinbase wanted to become a publicly-traded company specifically in March. However, the report does not reveal what might be the case behind the Coinbase IPO delay.

But, some claim that Coinbase IPO delay may be a result of its recent allegations of illegal wash trading practices. Others say that the delays might be due to accusations of Coinbase’s misleading trading information. To the latter, Coinbase paid $6.5 million as a fine.

A couple of days ago, Bloomberg Columnists Jared Dillion even expressed his opinion and dislike about Coinbase. In particular, Dillion called Coinbase an ‘old business with lots of risks’.

As per Bloomberg, despite all the allegations and rumors, Coinbase has registered over 115 million shares for its stock trading. To name a few, CEO Brian Armstrong, Co-Founder Fred Ethrasam, Union Square Ventures, and Andreessen Horowitz have registered.

Consequently, Coinbase share prices are now between $200 and $375 based on its private transactions.

This article first published on coinquora.com

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Published in Business and Economy
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