The killing of 43 Borno farmers is inexcusable

The Christian Association of Nigeria has condemned the killing of about 43 rice farmers by the Boko Haram insurgents in Borno State. It called on the federal government to stop the unending killings by the criminals who now operate with impunity all over the country but more devastatingly in the Northeast and Northwest. The association said these in a statement released on Friday titled ‘Loss of Rice Farmers to Terrorists: A National Disaster and Shame’, and signed by Adebayo Oladeji, the Special Assistant (Media &Communications) to the CAN  President, His Eminence, Rev Dr. Samson Ayokunle. It said, “We are shocked, disturbed, saddened to learn that criminals suspected to be terrorists invaded the Garin Kwashebe community and murdered innocent farmers while harvesting their products. As usual, the number of the deceased gruesomely murdered remains disputed by the Federal Government. To us at CAN, 43 was not only frightening but inexcusable by those who should have prevented it. The massacre was wicked and completely satanic.” CAN said that a situation where farmers were being taxed by the terrorists and bandits before they were allowed to work on their farms was unacceptable and it must be stopped by the government immediately. The Association further stated, “We are in a recession in the country, yet, criminals are still preventing farmers from going to the farm to harvest. We are not aware of any country where similar lawlessness is taking place without being adequately checked. We call on the security agencies to wake up from their prolonged slumber and save their image. The government is urged to think out of the box and take adequate steps to bring the terrorists to their knees rather than finding excuses to justify the failure of governance. Continuous sympathy through press statements or condolence visits after many souls have been wasted is not acceptable anymore. What we need is adequate protection of lives and property by those we have put in charge to do so.” The religious body reassures[…]

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Court orders Maina to remain in prison till end of trial

The Federal High Court in Abuja on Friday ordered the remand of a former Chairman of the defunct Pension Reform Taskforce Team, Abulrasheed Maina, in prison, till the end of his trial. Justice Okon Abang made the order following an application by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission’s prosecution counsel, Mr Mohammed Abubakar. Maina who is being prosecuted by the EFCC on N2bn money laundering charges had jumped bail and fled  to The Republic of Niger. But he was produced in court for the first time on Friday following his extradition to Nigeria earlier on Thursday. Ruling on the  EFCC’s application for a remand order, Justice Abang said, “The defendant is already on bench warrant having jumped bail. “So he shall be remanded in correctional centre pending the conclusion of the trial.” A lawyer, Adaji Abel, who newly took over Maina’s defence on Friday, appealed to the judge to adjourn the case to enable him to prepare adequately for the case. The judge acceded to the request and adjourned till December 8.

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Giroud name written in History books

Olivier Giroud refused to be drawn on his chances of keeping a place in Chelsea’s starting XI after he scored all four goals in the 4-0 Champions League match with Sevilla. Giroud scored with his left foot in the first half at Estadio Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan before adding further goals with his right and his head as well as a penalty to help the Blues secure first place in Group E on Wednesday. Frank Lampard’s Chelsea are in action against Leeds United in the Premier League on Saturday but Giroud (who happens to be the second player from France to score four goals in a single Champions League match after Bafetimbi Gomis for Lyon in December 2011) could  lose his place to Chelsea’s regular forward Tammy Abraham.  “Let me enjoy the night and that great win and after that we will rest and we will see what the gaffer’s plan is,”  Giroud told BT sport. Olivier Giroud is the first Chelsea player to score four goals in a game since Frank Lampard in March 2010 vs Aston Villa, while he’s the first to net four for Chelsea in a European Cup/Champions League game. “When you win 4-0 in a Champions League away game it’s always a great feeling and a good performance from the team. We took the game from the front foot and we were efficient up front, especially for me because I scored four goals. I will try to carry on like that to finish the good job of the team. It’s always nice to be in the club history and we play football to mark our history so I’m pleased to help the team to win and to score the four goals.” Giroud, who scored three goals for Arsenal against Olympiacos in December 2015, is the second player to score a Champions League hat-trick for multiple English sides after Michael Owen (Liverpool and Manchester United). He is the third player to score a perfect hat-trick (left-foot, right-foot[…]

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Nine teams reach last 16,

Dortmund striker Erling Braut Haaland, Juventus’ Álvaro Morata, and Marcus Rashford of Manchester United are 2020/21 UEFA Champions League joint top scorers with six goals apiece. Haaland had been out in front with six goals from four games, but did not feature in Dortmund’s 1-1 draw with Lazio on Matchday 5. Morata and Rashford, meanwhile, added a goal each to their tallies to join the young Norwegian at the top of the pile. Olivier Giroud is in a chasing pack of two players who are one adrift after scoring all the goals in Chelsea’s 4-0 win at Sevilla. UEFA Champions League leading scorers after Wednesday’s matches: 6 goals: Morata (Juventus), Haaland (Dortmund), Rashford (Manchester United) 5 goals: Berisha (Salzburg), Giroud (Chelsea), Plea (Borussia Moenchengladbach) 4 goals: Immobile (Lazio), Jota (Liverpool), Lukaku (Inter Milan) 3 goals: Braithwaite (Barcelona), Coman (Bayern Munich), Dembele (Barcelona), Felix (Atletico Madrid), Fernandes (Manchester United), Kahveci (Istanbul Basaksehir), Lewandowski (Bayern Munich), Messi (Barcelona), An. Miranchuk (Lokomotiv Moscow), Neymar (Paris SG), Oliveira (Porto), Torres (Manchester City), Werner (Chelsea), Zapata (Atalanta) UEFA Champions League last-16 qualifiers Nine teams have qualified for the 2020/21 UEFA Champions League last 16 after Wednesday’s matches: Barcelona Bayern Munich Borussia Dortmund Chelsea Juventus Liverpool Manchester City Porto Sevilla  

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Russian model stabs Husband

A 26-year-old Model, Lilia Sudakova, has been charged with stabbing her husband to death with a kitchen knife in Russia. According to Mirror.UK, Sudakova is accused of killing her 28-year-old husband, Sergey Popov, after he brought home a woman he met at a bar and demanded his wife cook for the pair. Her mother, Irena Sudakova claims the model was a longtime victim of domestic abuse, and that she had acted in self-defense. ‘Lilia is a victim, it was self-defense. This was such a sick love. It all happened by accident, it was an accident.’ She said that Popov had repeatedly beaten Lilia when he was drunk. Her son-in-law was ‘smart’, ‘mesmerizing with his mind’, and a computer genius, but he was an ‘alcoholic’ who could be ‘an arrogant snob’ and she had witnessed him beating Lilia. ‘My daughter was completely sober,’ she said, claiming the law is biased against victims of domestic abuse in Russia. The model’s friend, stylist Karolina Pavlovskaya, also said Lilia had been a victim of abuse. ‘She was a broken-down girl with a beautiful appearance, but emptiness inside,’ she said. After the stabbing, Lilia immediately called an ambulance, and Popov was rushed to the hospital where he died. She confessed to stabbing her husband of four years with a knife and initially told police it was due to jealousy after he flirted with the woman, according to Russian media. She has been charged with manslaughter and detained in pretrial custody for two months. Lilia faces up to 15 years in jail if convicted.      

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Senate President Lawan frustrates moves to force Senate to adjourn sitting

PRESIDENT of the Senate, Senator Ahmad Lawan on Wednesday during the plenary session, frustrated moves to push the lawmakers to adjourn sitting. Soon after the commencement of business of the day, Senator George Sekibo, Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Rivers East cited Order 10 of the Senate Standing Rules as amended on the lack of quorum.  Citing Order10(1); (2), Sen. Sekibo read that “he Quorum of the Senate shall be one-third of the members of the Senate.If, at any time during the daily sessions of the Senate, a question is raised by any Senator as to the presence of a quorum, the presiding officer shall within fifteen minutes forthwith, direct the Clerk to call the roll and announce the result, and these proceedings shall be without debate.” At this point, the President of the Senate, Senator Ahmad Lawan asked the Clerk of the Senate, Ibrahim El- Ladan to check the register, and having checked, it was disclosed that 35 senators signed the register and the President of the Senate ruled Sekiboout of order.

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Life has lost its value under Buhari

So far under the regime of the President, Major General Muhammadu (retd.), life has  lost its value the Northern Elders Forum, has said. The organisation also said that threat of farming in Northern Nigeria was real in the face of limited production of food in many of the communities. The NEF Director (Publicity and Advocacy), Dr Hakeem Baba-Ahmed, raised these views in a statement on Tuesday night on the recent killings of 43 farmers in Borno. He said, “Under this administration, life has lost its value, and more and more citizens are coming under the influence of criminals. We do not see any evidence of a willingness on the part of President Buhari to honour his oath to provide security for Nigerians. In civilized nations, leaders who fail so spectacularly to provide security will do the honourable thing and resign. “The Northern Elders Forum joins Nigerians in expressing outrage at the killings of farmers in Borno State and many other people on a daily basis in many parts of the North. Our voices have been raised without pause for a long time against pervasive insecurity in our region. “We have consistently drawn attention to lack of political will to fight the Boko Haram insurgency and other threats such as banditry, rustling, and kidnapping. We had offered suggestions on how the security infrastructure could be improved and leadership of the military could be made more effective. Obviously, along with advise and concerns from many other Nigerians, these have made no impression on President Muhammadu Buhari. “These particular killings have been greeted by the most insensitive response by spokespersons of the President. The lame excuse that farmers had not sought permission from the military to harvest produce merely exposed the misleading claims that our military had secured vast territories from the insurgency. “These killings and the reality they expose will make relocation of citizens and resumption of economic activities a lot more difficult to achieve even for a leadership that attaches priority[…]

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Lukaku shoots Inter to victory

Inter Milan Striker Romelu Lukaku kept Inter’s Champions League hopes alive on Tuesday, scoring two second-half goals to seal a dramatic 3-2 win at Borussia Moenchengladbach in their  group game. Lukaku’s double gave Inter their first victory in the Champions League this season in a rollercoaster game, blowing Group B wide open ahead of the final round of group matches next week. Gladbach still sit on top of the group after Shakhtar Donetsk beat Real Madrid 2-0 earlier on Tuesday, but they are now just three points ahead of bottom side Inter. With just a single point separating the top three sides, all four teams still have a chance to qualify next week. In need of a win at all costs, Inter set up to hit Gladbach on the break, with Matteo Darmian causing early trouble for the German defence on the right wing It was Darmian who gave Inter the lead on 17 minutes, nutmegging goalkeeper Yann Sommer from a sharp angle after a neat passing move between Lukaku and Roberto Gagliardini. Alassane Plea equalised for Gladbach on the stroke of half-time, heading in a pinpoint cross from Inter loanee Valentino Lazaro. With Inter unsettled by the equaliser, Marcus Thuram almost headed the hosts in front shortly after the break. Yet the Italians hit back, with Lautaro Martinez hitting the post before Lukaku restored the lead. Having been stifled by the Gladbach defence for much of the game Lukaku finally found space to shoot on 65 minutes, and sent a low strike whistling past Sommer. The Belgian doubled the lead seven minutes later, slotting home Achraf Hakimi’s cross at the end of a clinically executed counter-attack. Gladbach hit back equally clinically, Plea squeezing the ball past Samir Handanovic on the break just two minutes after the restart. The Frenchman found the net again seven minutes from time, but the goal was disallowed for offside after Breel Ebomlo was ruled to have blocked the goalkeeper’s view. With the group now poised[…]

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CHAMPIONS LEAGUE: , Man City top group after stalemate as Porto reach last 16

Porto qualified for the Champions League last 16 and Manchester City sealed first place in Group C after Agustin Marchesin’s superb display for the hosts in Tuesday’s 0-0 draw at the Estadio do Dragao. Sergio Conceicao’s side were on the defensive for long periods, but a series of superb saves from Marchesin secured the point they needed to advance. City dominated throughout but Gabriel Jesus was denied a late winner after VAR ruled out his goal. City had already booked their place in the last 16 after winning their first four games and, with top spot now secured, Pep Guardiola can now rest players for their final match against Marseille next week. Guardiola insists City will thrive in the Champions League this season as they bid to make amends for last term’s shock quarter-final defeat against Lyon. City have never won the Champions League and Guardiola, who last lifted the trophy with Barcelona in 2011, has been unable to take them past the quarter–finals. Finishing on top of the group was the first step towards that target and Guardiola will be encouraged by City’s improved defence. They have conceded just six goals in their last 13 games in all competitions, a run that includes four successive Champions League clean sheets. Guardiola made seven changes as Kevin De Bruyne, Riyad Mahrez and Kyle Walker were among those resting on the bench following the 5-0 thrashing of Burnley. Raheem Sterling felt he should have had an early penalty when Malang Sarr thudded into him without getting the ball, but VAR decided not to intervene despite the strong claim. With Sergio Aguero still troubled by a knee injury and Gabriel jesus on the bench, Ferran Torres started up front for City. Torres was denied the opening goal by a fine save from Marchesin after the Spaniard raced onto Phil Foden’s pass. City had 70 percent of the first half possession and Sterling almost made the breakthrough when he cut in from the left[…]

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Super Falcons Oshoala nominated for UEFA Fans’ Women’s Team of the Year

Super Falcons captain, Asisat Oshoala, is one of the fifty nominees for the UEFA Fans’ Women’s Team of the Year’ for 2020. The list was revealed by UEFA on Tuesday. The 26-year-old, who has scored twice in six league appearances for Barcelona Ladies this season, is the only African shortlisted among the 50-women nominated by UEFA. Oshoala is competing with two of her Barcelona teammates, PSG, Lyon, Arsenal, Chelsea, Wolfsburg and Juventus’ players for one of the striking positions in the Team of the Year. For the forwards, Barcelona have representation through Oshoala, Caroline Graham Hansen and Jenni Hermoso; Chelsea are represented by Pernille Harder and Beth England; Arsenal by Vivianne Miedema and Jill Roord. UEFA Women’s Champions League winners Lyon have the most players represented with 13 of their finals squad (including since-departed Lucy Bronze) nominated, two more than runners-up Wolfsburg. On why Oshoala made the list, UEFA wrote, “Powerful and sometimes unplayable forward with an unerring eye for goal. “Free-scoring in Barcelona’s title win, either up front on own or partnered with Jenni Hermoso. Another UEFA Women’s Champions League semi-final, a year after scoring in final.” Fans across the continent are expected to select their line-up from the 50 players who have stood out across European competitions and domestic leagues before the deadline on January 6.

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