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Taiwan reports largest incursion yet by Chinese air force

Twenty-eight Chinese air force aircraft, including fighters and nuclear-capable bombers, entered Taiwan’s air defence identification zone (ADIZ) on Tuesday, the island’s government said, the largest reported incursion to date. While there was no immediate comment from Beijing, the news comes after the Group of Seven leaders issued a joint statement on Sunday scolding China for a series of issues and underscored the importance of peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait, comments China condemned as “slander”. Chinese-claimed Taiwan has complained over the last few months of repeated missions by China’s air force near the self-ruled island, concentrated in the southwestern part of its air defence zone near the Taiwan-controlled Pratas Islands. The latest Chinese mission involved 14 J-16 ...

Edo deputy governor: Godfatherism bane of Nigeria’s democracy

The Deputy Governor of Edo State, Comrade Philip Shaibu, has blamed the advent of godfatherism in Nigeria’s politics as the bane of democracy in the country. This is even as he called for the removal of a bicameral legislature to reduce cost of running governance. Shaibu stated this on Saturday at the Government House in Benin, the state capital, while addressing hundreds of youths who were protesting alleged misrule in the country. The protesters under the aegis of Coalition of Civil Society Organizations, Students’ Unions and other concerned Nigerians, brandished placards of various inscriptions, as they joined others across the country to seek for good governance and sustainable democracy. The protest which commenced at 10 am, lasted for more than two hours and disrupted free flow of hu...

Senate reassures Nigerians on PIB, electoral, constitutional amendment bills

Senate President Ahmad Ibrahim Lawan said on Friday that the Senate was closer to passing the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB), the Electoral Act Amendment Bill, and the Constitution Amendment Bill, assuring Nigerians that the bills will be passed between now and July year. Lawan who stated this while interacting with journalists to mark the second anniversary of the 9th Senate stated that it was a mark of excellent effort that the ninth senate would soon be ready to pass the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) after twenty years of failed attempts. “This should happen this June, and it should increase accountability, probity, efficiency, equity and justice in that vital sector of our economy. “Our determination to pass the bill is additionally in line with our resolve to be a result-oriented parli...

Lagos governor asks security agencies to crush criminals

Lagos State Government has tightened the noose on criminal elements, as Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu fortifies the armoury of the State Police Command with new hardware and gadgets. One hundred and fifty units of double cabin vehicles, 30 patrol saloon cars, four high-capacity troop carriers and two anti-riot water cannon vehicles are part of the crime-fighting equipment donated to the police, yesterday, by the Lagos Government to strengthen security responses across the state. President Muhammadu Buhari took inventory and inaugurated the security equipment before Governor Sanwo-Olu handed over the gears to the Inspector-General of Police (IG), Mr. Alkali Usman, for the use of Lagos Police Command. The equipment and gadgets were procured through the Lagos State Security Trust Fund (LSSTF) –...

Nigerian Army reshuffles senior officers in major shakeup

The Nigerian Army has redeployed some of its senior officers in a major shakeup. Outgoing Army spokesperson, Mohammed Yerima, a brigadier general, made this known in a statement on Thursday. Notable amongst the new appointments was that of C.G. Musa, a major general, who was named the new Theatre Commander of Operation Hadin Kai, the counter insurgency operation in the North-east region. Also, Onyema Nwachukwu, a brigadier general, has now been appointed as the army spokesperson. Another brigadier general, A.M. Umar, was named the chief of staff to the COAS. The reshuffle, considered normal when there is a new leadership in the force, was expected when the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Faruk Yahaya, a major general, was appointed on May 27. He replaced the late COAS, Ibrahim Attahiru, who di...

Anambra election: Political parties start primaries today

In line with the guidelines of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for the conduct of next year’s Anambra state Governorship Election, primary elections by political parties to democratically nominate their candidates for the election will commence today (Thursday). Also the collection of nomination forms from INEC Headquarters has started even as the Commission had on Wednesday, June 9, 2021, implemented the first activity on the Timetable by publishing the official Notice for the election in its offices in Anambra state. This cheering news was disclosed in a terse statement by Rotimi Oyekanmi, Chief Press Secretary to INEC Chairman, Professor Mahmoud Yakubu. The statement read in parts: “It will be recalled that on 19th January 2021, the Commission published the Timetabl...

Morocco says Madrid seeks to ‘Europeanise’ its crisis with Rabat

Morocco’s foreign minister on Wednesday accused Spain of trying to turn a political crisis between the two countries into an EU problem by focusing on migration and ignoring the root causes. The row blew up in April after Spain admitted the leader of the Western Sahara independence movement, Brahim Ghali, for medical treatment without informing Rabat, which regards the disputed territory as its own. Morocco then appeared to relax border controls with Spain’s North African enclave of Ceuta on May 17, leading to an influx of at least 8,000 migrants. Since then Spain and Morocco have traded accusations of violating good neighbourliness, with Spain saying Morocco used the migrants while Rabat says Spain acted in connivance with “adversaries” of its territorial integrity. “Spain tries to Europe...

Israel lawmakers to vote Sunday on anti-Netanyahu government

After weeks of political wrangling, the Israeli parliament is set to vote Sunday on whether to install a “change” coalition and end Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s record 12 consecutive years in power. Announcing the date for the confidence vote, speaker Yariv Levin, a Netanyahu ally, said on Tuesday “a special session of parliament” would debate and vote on the fragile eight-party alliance, after the country’s fourth inconclusive election in two years back in March. Later in the day, the prime minister’s office announced that a march by Jewish nationalists through Jerusalem would go ahead in a week’s time, potentially de-escalating tensions with Hamas, the Palestinian Islamist group which went to war with the Jewish state for 11 days last month. Israeli right-wing groups had the day b...

Roger Federer hints at withdrawal from French Open after Saturday’s hard won match

Former world one, Roger Federer, was made to go at great lengths to reach the last 16 of a Grand Slam for a record-extending 68th time by Germany’s world number 59 Dominik Koepfer in their battle, which the Swiss won 7-6 (7-5) 6-7 (3-7) 7-6 (7-4) 7-5 in a late-night slugfest at Roland Garros. Although the tennis icon was solid in his opening two matches, with encouraging victories over qualifier Denis Istomin and former US Open champion Marin Cilic, upon his return to Open action after two knee surgeries, he got a tough test of his mettle on Saturday. The 20-time Grand Slam champion knew it was not going to be plain sailing, as newsmen reported him as saying, and he found out just how in the night-session showdown with Germany’s Koepfer. It was tough enough to make Federer admit that, base...

Abia government renames technical colleges

The Abia State Executive Council has approved the renaming of some existing colleges in the state. The institutions renamed are, Boys Technical College, Aba to Government Technical College, Aba and Secondary Technical School, Afara to Government Technical College, Afara. The decision to rename the colleges was taken at a meeting presided by Governor Okezie Ikpeazu held inside the Executive Chambers of Government House Umuahia on Wednesday. This was disclosed in a release signed by the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Barrister Chris Ezems and made available to newsmen in Umuahia on Friday. According to the release, the Council approved that all students enrolled in the Technical schools will enjoy free education whilst Abia State Universal Basic Education Board (ASUBEB) should as a...

Governor Makinde: We have tackled poverty, unemployment in Oyo

Oyo State governor, Seyi Makinde, has said his administration had made steady progress in tackling poverty and unemployment in the last two years. The governor, who stated this during a special thanksgiving service to commemorate his second year in office, held at the Cathedral of St. Peter, Aremo, Ibadan, also promised to provide more equipment for security agencies. He said his administration will do more in the area of security where it has already invested heavily, adding that all hands must be on deck to secure the state. The governor explained that 299 primary health care centres were being remodeled by the administration, in line with its determination to ensure that there is a functional primary health care centre in each of the 351 Electoral Wards in the state. He lauded clerics a...