Outgoing U.S. President, Barack Obama broke down in tears recently while recalling one of his worst days while serving his 8 year tenure which ends January 20.
While reflecting on his legacies in a series of exit interviews, he said that the day he met with the parents of victims of the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in 2012 the toughest day of his presidency.
“I still consider the day I traveled up to Newtown to meet with parents and address that community as the toughest day of my presidency.
“It’s the only time I ever saw Secret Service cry at an event. So it was brutal.”
Obama said in an interview which will be aired on January 15.
On other occasions while recalling the incidence which climed 20 children and 6 others, Obama himself have been moved to tears Obama cried while delivering a statement the day of the massacre, at an interfaith vigil in Newtown.
He also cried at the White House last January while announcing executive actions designed to curb gun deaths.
“Every time I think about those kids, it makes me mad,” Obama said Jan. 5, 2016.
He said that meeting with the grieving parents of the dead children continue to haunt him.
“It wasn’t just the parents,” he told Anderson Cooper. “You had siblings, you know — 10-year-olds, 8-year-olds, 3-year-olds who in some cases didn’t even understand that their brother or sister weren’t going to be coming home.”
Nollywood actress, Funke Akindele and her husband, JJC Skillz have launched a record label known as Scene One Records.
Artistes signed under the label include Mo’Eazy formerly signed under veteran, Darey Art-Alade.
Others are Ruby and Pearl (members of Gemstones), MartinsFeelz and Sonorous.
“When I met JJC, I loved his talent so much, so, I told him why don’t we have a record label. I don’t know anything about music. My husband is a good producer and singer.
“We went out to look for fresh talent and here we are today,” the actress said.
JJC revealed that the couple are working on a television soap opera called ‘Industreet’.
He said: “They are also stars of the new TV show, Industreet. This is our baby, our project so please support.”
Former Nigerian oil minister, Diezani Alison-Madueke temporarily forfeited $153.3 million to the Nigerian government today.
This was sequel to an order by a Federal High Court in Lagos.
The seized money, according to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission was stolen from the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and stashed in three banks in Nigeria, in US dollars and Naira.
Out of the loot, N23.4 billion was kept in Sterling Bank Plc. The sum of N9.08 billion was kept in First Bank Plc and $5m in Access Bank Plc.
Justice Muslim Hassan, who gave the order, gave Sterling Bank and any other interested party 14 days to appear before him to prove the legitimacy of the monies, failing which the funds would be permanently forfeited to the Federal Government of Nigeria
The judge made the order in favour of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission which appeared before him today with an ex parte application seeking the temporary forfeiture of the funds.
In a nine-paragraph affidavit by by EFCC investigator, Moses Awolusi and filed in support of the ex parte application, the anti-graft agency discovered how sometime in December 2014 Diezani invited a former Managing Director of Fidelity Bank Plc, Nnamdi Okonkwo, to her office. There they hatched the plan of how $153,310,000 would be moved from NNPC to Okonkwo to be saved for Diezani.
Diezani, according to Awolusi, instructed Okonkwo to ensure that the money was “neither credited into any known account nor captured in any transaction platforms” of Fidelity Bank.
Okonkwo accepted and implemented the deal leading to the movement of $153,310,000 from NNPC to Fidelity Bank.
He averred further that two former Group Executive Directors of Finance and Account of NNPC, B.O.N. Otti and Stanley Lawson, helped Diezani to move the cash from NNPC, Abuja to the headquarters of Fidelity Bank in Lagos.
Awolusi said in a desperate bid to conceal the source of the money, Okonkwo, upon receiving it, instructed the Country Head of Fidelity Bank, Mr. Martin Izuogbe, to take $113,310,000 cash out of the money to the Executive Director, Commercial and Institutional Bank, Sterling Bank Plc, Lanre Adesanya, to keep.
He said the remaining $40m was taken in cash to the Executive Director, Public Sector Accountant, First Bank, Dauda Lawal, to keep.
The investigator said out of the $113,310,000 handed over to Adesanya, a sum of $108,310,000 was invested in an off balance sheet investment using Sterling Asset Management Trustees Limited.
The money was was subsequently converted into N23.4 billion and saved in Sterling Bank.
Awolusi said the EFCC had recovered the N23.4bn in draft and had registered it as an exhibit marked, EFCC 01.
The investigator said the EFCC had also recovered another $5m out of the money kept with the Managing Director of Access Bank Plc, Mr. Herbert Wigwe.
He said the $5m was recovered in draft and had been registered as an exhibit marked, EFCC 02.
According to him, First Bank’s Executive Director, Lawal had similarly converted the $40m kept with him to N9,080,000,000.
Awolusi, however, said the EFCC had recovered that also in draft and registered it as Exhibit EFCC 03.
Moving the ex parte application today, the EFCC lawyer, Mr. Rotimi Oyedepo, urged Justice Hassan to order the temporary forfeiture of the funds to the Federal Government and to order Sterling Bank and Lawal, who were joined as defendants in the application, as well as any other interested parties, to appear in court within two weeks to show cause why the funds should not be permanently forfeited to the Federal Government.
Oyedepo, who said the application was brought pursuant to Section 17 of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act No. 14, 2006 and Section 44(2)(‘) of the 1999 Constitution, said granting the application was in the best interest of justice.
Justice Hassan granted the order and adjourned till January 24, 2016 for the respondents to appear in court to show cause why the funds should not be permanently forfeited to the Federal Government of Nigeria.
The General Overseer of the Freedom City Ministry, Rev. Ugo Sam has been arrested in Anambra state for alleged car theft.
According to Daily Post reports, The cleric, whose church is located at 77, Ezeiweka Road, Awada Layout, Obosi in Idemili North Local Government Area of the state, was nabbed by operatives of the Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad, FSARS.
The Commander of the FSARS in the state, Sunday Okpe, who confirmed the arrest to newsmen on Thursday, said he was arrested following a tip-off to be the brain behind missing cars in the Awada area and its environs.
Okpe described the suspect’s actions as a total disgrace to the Christian community and his calling as a Pastor.
“He stole a Lexus 330 car from where it was parked.
“The car owner, Obaji lives in the same building with the suspect and the suspect, had on several occasions, borrowed Obaji’s car for use and when the car went missing from where it was parked, Obaji reported the matter to the police and after investigations, the stolen vehicle was traced to the reverend.
“He has been detained and currently under interrogation for using a master key to steal various costly cars.
“The case has been registered in the court of competent jurisdiction and on the resumption of the court after the festivities, Rev. Sam would be charged.”
President John Dramani Mahama of Ghana will on Saturday, 7 January, hand over the reigns of power to Chief Nana Akufo-Addo, who was elected last December.
Many African leaders, including President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria will be attending the inauguration.
Buhari will leave Abuja for Accra on Saturday morning.
The Nigerian leader will join other Heads of State and Government to witness the swearing-in Akufo-Addo and his Vice President–elect, Mahamudu Bawumia.
President Buhari has once congratulated Ghanaians on the peaceful elections and orderly transfer of power from an incumbent to an opposition candidate.
He has also commended out-going President John Dramani Mahama for his maturity and statesmanship.
Buhari will return to Abuja at the end of the ceremony.
The Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, has raised the alarm over alleged plot by the British government and President Muhammadu Buhari to secretly kill its leader, Nnamdi Kanu by administering a “non – traceable posion.”
The secessionist group claimed the move was aimed at preventing Kanu from releasing videos and “classified information ” indicting both Buhari and the British government as “accessory to genocide on Biafrans.”
IPOB also alleged that Kanu was wanted dead before the United States, US, President elect, Donald Trump was sworn in as President.
The pro – Biafra group said a, “phantom road accident” would be arranged for the vehicle conveying Kanu to court should the poisoning attempt fails.
In a statement by its spokesperson, Emma Powerful, the separatist group wondered why the British Government would opt to align with “people of Islamic faith such as Buhari to kill Biafrans and enthrone servitude in Biafraland?”
IPOB called on the British government to retrace its step of allegedly scheming to poison Kanu.
The group warned that should anything happens to Kanu and others standing trial with him, the “British Government shall be held directly responsible for their deaths.”
IPOB further reaffirmed its struggle towards the restoration of Biafra, saying “Both Buhari and the Biafra-hating British Government are incapable” of stopping the God ordained project.
The statement reads, “We can confirm that the British Government is working in tandem with President Muhammadu Buhari to stealthily administer a non-traceable poison on the leader of IPOB, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu.
“Our intelligence gathering team revealed that one of the reasons for embarking on this heinous crime by both the British Government and Buhari is to stop the avalanche of leaked videos and some classified information which incontrovertibly placed the British Government as an accessory to genocide on Biafrans.
A e 69-year-old Pensioner and breadwinner gogo Lizzy Mokone is trapped in a life of pain.
According to Daily Sun SA, Lizzy suffers from a painful growth on her face, but she is too scared to have it operated on.
“Doctors advised me to remove the growth through an operation, but I refused because I am too scared of dying,” she said.
Gogo Lizzy from Danville, west of Tshwane, said she is afraid that she could die, leaving her five grandkids without anyone to take care of them.
She said the growth started as a small pimple in 2005 but began to grow until it covered half of her face.
“When it started I didn’t think much of it. I thought it was one of those pimples that would go away after I applied some medicinal cream to it,” she said.
Gogo Lizzy said that as soon she saw it had started growing, she went to a clinic and they referred her to a local hospital for diagnosis.
She said that she also decided to consult sangomas and prophets, hoping that they would help her without putting her life on the line.
“A prophet at my church said it was witchcraft, but another sangoma said I should go for surgery because it could kill me,” said gogo Lizzy.
She said she refused to do anything that would risk her life.
“I had two daughters, but one died and the other one is in a mental institution.
“The responsibility of caring for their kids have fallen on my shoulders.”
She said her growth sometimes becomes very painful and affects her eyes and gives her headaches.
Gogo Lizzy added that she was unable to look for a job because of her growth and that she depended on her pension money to provide for her grandchildren.
Department of Health spokesman Steve Mabona said they contacted the Steve Biko Academy Hospital to assist, but added that it was difficult to help gogo because she believed that if they operated on the growth she would die.
“We will keep on checking up on her and hope that she will one day agree that we can help her,” said Mabona.
Outgoing U.S. President Barack Obama’s administration announced, on Thursday, the transfer of four detainees from the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay to the Government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
The action is against the directive of President-elect Donald Trump to the contrary.
The Department of Defence, in a statement obtained by a correspondent of the News Agency of Nigeria in New York, gave the names of the detainees as Salem Ahmad Hadi Bin Kanad, Muhammed Rajab Sadiq Abu Ghanim, Abdallah Yahya Yusif Al-Shibli, and Muhammad Ali Abdallah Muhammad Bwazir.
“As directed by the president’s Jan. 22, 2009, executive order, the interagency Guantanamo Review Task Force conducted a comprehensive review of these cases.
“As a result of those reviews, which examined a number of factors, including security issues, Al-Shibli and Bwazir were unanimously approved for transfer by the six departments and agencies comprising the task force.
“Periodic Review Boards consisting of representatives from the Departments of Defense, Homeland Security, Justice, and State; the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence determined continued law of war detention of Kanad and Ghanim does not remain necessary to protect against a continuing significant threat to the security of the United States.
“As a result of those reviews, which examined a number of factors, including security issues, Kanad and Ghanim were recommended for transfer by consensus of the six departments and agencies comprising the Periodic Review Board.”
The Department said the Periodic Review Board process was established by the president’s March 7, 2011 Executive Order 13567.
It added that the final date of Periodic Review Board final determination for Salem Ahmad Hadi Bin Kanad was May 5, 2016, while that of Muhammed Rajab Sadiq Abu Ghanim was July 6, 2016.
“The United States is grateful to the government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for its humanitarian gesture and willingness to support ongoing U.S. efforts to close the Guantanamo Bay detention facility.
“The United States coordinated with the government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to ensure these transfers took place consistent with appropriate security and humane treatment measures.
“Today, 55 detainees remain at Guantanamo Bay,” the Department said.
Trump had on Tuesday said there should be no more prisoner releases from the U.S. military detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
“There should be no further releases from Gitmo.
“These are extremely dangerous people and should not be allowed back onto the battlefield,’’ Trump said.
President Barack Obama had sought to close the prison since he entered office in 2009, but has been unable to carry out the plan in the face of opposition from Congress.
Obama, in Nov. 2016, announced renewed plans for closing the facility in 2017, indicating he would release more prisoners in the final weeks of his term in office, which ends on Jan. 20.
A police officer stationed at Matapi Police Station, Zimbabwe is believed to have shot himself to death at a guardroom on Monday.
According to H-metro, Constable Nephat Nyoni booked a gun and went to the guard room where he was assigned and returned within a few minutes to change the gun after realising that it had a fault, impeccable sources told H-Metro.
Officers on duty rushed to the scene after hearing a gunshot and discovered Constable Nyoni’s body lying in the pool of blood with the gun by the side.
“He had a few days working at Matapi police station after he was transferred from working at a tollgate,” said the source.
“For the few days he was at Matapi, he was complaining of problems with his wife over maintenance and he looked stressed all the time and I want to believe that its domestic,” added the source.
National police spokesperson Chief Superintendent Paul Nyathi could not furnish us with details by the time of going to print promising to provide information when he get into office.
“I am not in office right now for details, if you may call me later when I get back to office,” said Chief Supt Nyathi.
Mourners are gathered at Glen Norah B flats and he will be buried in Gokwe today.
The police have dismissed an Inspector and five sergeants attached to the Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, over alleged misuse of firearms during the legislative rerun in the state in December last year.
They are ex-Inspct. Eyong Victor, ex-Sgts. Peter Ekpo, Oguni Goodluck, Orji Nwoke, Okpe Ezekiel and Tanko Akor.
The errant operatives were said to have stormed the Port Harcourt City Council Secretariat and prevented the movement of election results of Emouha polling unit to the appropriate collation centre designated by the Independent National Electoral Commission in disobedience to senior officers present.
Their actions were said to be contrary to the provisions of Force Order 237.
Parading the former policemen on Friday in Abuja, the Force Public Relations Officer, Donald Awunah stated that despite strict warnings from the Inspector-General of Police that all personnel on election duty should be of good conduct and desist from escorting their principals to polling units throughout the period of the election, the recalcitrant operatives were found blatantly breaching the directive.
This, he added, was unacceptable by all standards in the Force, noting that in the course of discreet investigations, the dismissed personnel were found to have in total disrespect to orders and directives, compromised, engaged in unprofessional acts and other unbecoming conduct.
Awunah said, “These aforementioned police personnel while in the convoy of the Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike on the date of election on December 10, 2016 misused the firearms in their possession contrary to the provisions of Force Order 237.
“The personnel became overzealous, took laws into their hands and opened fire, causing panic in the crowd.
“They joined in storming the Port Harcourt City Council Secretariat and prevented the movement of election results of Emouha polling unit to the appropriate collation centre designated by INEC, in flagrant disregard and disobedience to senior police officers present at the venue.”
The spokesman stated that the operatives, after the conclusion of investigation into the public mischief, were subjected to internal disciplinary measures, found guilty and consequently dismissed from the Force.
“They will be prosecuted under the Electoral Act to serve as a deterrent to others,” he stressed, noting that the personnel’s misconduct, if not checked could be inimical to discipline and proper administration of the Force.
Awunah added, “Their actions are capable of bringing the entire Nigeria Police Force to disrepute and portray the Force in a very bad light as a lawless organization not guided by the rule of law.”
The former policemen protested loudly against their dismissal as they were taken away in handcuffs.