Tech: An NRA spokeswoman blamed an ‘insane monster’ for the mass shooting in Florida...

People with mental health issues aren’t more likely to cause violent, deadly crime. Instead, their disabilities put them at risk of becoming victims.
President Donald Trump and the National Rifle Association have both blamed recent deadly shootings on individuals’ mental health problems.
But mental health issues aren’t predictive of violent outbursts. Although one in five Americans struggle with mental illness, people with mental health problems account for just 3% of violent crime.
There is a different, notable link between violence and mental illness: People with major mental illnesses are 2.5 times more likely to be the victims of violent outbursts than the general public.
As mass shootings by young, angry men armed with machine guns become deadlier and more frequent in the US, politicians and powerful gun groups are arguing that mental health problems may be to blame for these violent massacres.
“So many signs that the Florida shooter was mentally disturbed, even expelled from school for bad and erratic behavior,” President Donald Trump tweeted the morning after the deadly shooting in Parkland, Florida that killed 17 people on Valentine’s Day. “Neighbors and classmates knew he was a big problem. Must always report such instances to authorities, again and again!”
Then, Wednesday night at a CNN town hall, NRA spokeswoman Dana Loesch insisted that Nikolas Cruz, the 19-year-old former student who shot up Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School last week, was an “insane monster” who shouldn’t have had access to guns.
“This individual was nuts, and I — nor the millions of people that I represent as a part of this organization that I’m here speaking for — none of us support people who are crazy, who are a danger to themselves, who are a danger to others, getting their hands on a firearm,” Loesch said.
Cruz did reportedly have a checkered history of jealous and violent outbursts — but that’s not the same thing as a bona fide mental health diagnosis.
In fact, the scientific evidence we have on violence and mental health in the US shows that mentally ill people are not the ones responsible for the growing number of deadly mass shootings plaguing the nation.
Mass shooters don’t usually have diagnosed mental health issues
In 2015, psychiatrist Michael Stone catalogued a comprehensive database of more than 235 mass murders committed in the US. He found that in reality, about a quarter of the perpetrators of those acts were “clearly mentally ill.”
Stone said many people assume that because someone has committed a deadly act, that must mean they’re crazy. But that’s not true. The majority of the rage-filled, bigoted, grudge-holding men who plan these kinds of tragic killings aren’t mentally ill, he said.
In fact, according to the American Psychiatric Association, people with serious mental health problems account for just 3% of all violent crime, though as many as one in five people in the US experience a mental illness every year.
Most mentally ill people are never violent. Information from the National Center for Health Statistics similarly shows that fewer than 5% of the 120,000 gun-related killings in the US between 2001 and 2010 were perpetrated by people diagnosed with mental illness. Only 1% of discharged psychiatric patients commit violence against strangers using a gun. And the mentally ill also account for less than 3% of all violent acts with guns.
Data from American Psychiatric Association suggests Americans are about 15 times more likely to be struck by lightning than to be killed by a stranger with a mental diagnosis.
According to Stone’s research, even shooters who are mentally ill aren’t typically on anyone’s radar before they act. Three of the most dramatic mass murders by people with diagnosable mental illness in recent history include the shooting at Sandy Hook that killed 27 (Adam Lanza), the movie-theater shooting in Aurora, Colorado that killed 12 in 2012 (James Holmes), and the six people who died in Tucson when Rep Gaby Giffords was shot in 2011 (Jared Lee Loughner).
The perpetrators of these deadly crimes were all “young men, barely 20, with no record of previous mental hospitalizations and no compelling reason why they should not have been permitted to buy rifles,” Stone said.
Of course, mental illness often goes undiagnosed. Estimates suggest it’s actually more common in developed countries than any other group of illnesses, including cancer and heart disease. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, roughly 80 million American adults are struggling with a mental illness at any given time, which is a far cry from the 19.2 million that successfully seek treatment every year. The American Psychological Association estimates that only about a third of depressed patients in the US ever get diagnosed by their primary care doctors.
To be sure, there is a need for more affordable, more accessible mental health care in the US. One 2017 estimate published by the Journal of the American Medical Association found that one in five Americans say they or a family member aren’t being treated for a mental health issue because they either can’t afford it, don’t know where to go, or they are afraid or embarrassed to seek treatment. Meanwhile, spending on mental illness treatment accounted for just about 5% of all medical services spending in the US — less than routine checkups.
But given that mental health problems are more common among women than men, and just as common in the US as all other highly developed countries, mental health is not a logical explanation for America’s mass shooting problem.
People with mental health problems are more likely to be victims
Experts say that legislation restricting mentally ill people from getting guns would not do much to stop the deadly carnage the US now sees on a regular basis.
But there is a link between mental health issues and violence. Time and again, studies have shown that mentally ill patients are two to three times more likely to be the victims of violent crime than other people.
If someone has been diagnosed with a serious mental illness, like bipolar disorder or schizophrenia, that number jumps to 12 times the normal rate.
Researchers suggest that people struggling with mental illnesses might face an increased risk for victimization because they tend to live in more dangerous places (like on the streets or in group homes), deal with drug and alcohol addiction, or become irritable, paranoid, and less aware of their surroundings.
If mentally ill people aren’t committing mass murder, who is?
People who study violent events say there is a well-established pattern among most mass shooters: They’re typically angry young men who feel they’ve been “wronged” and are looking for revenge.
Forensic psychiatrist Liza Gold teaches at Georgetown and edited the book “Gun Violence and Mental Illness.” She told Business Insider in 2017 that mass shooters tend to be “impulsive and angry about a lot of different things” and many have a history with law enforcement or violence, especially domestic violence.
Overall, the ratio of male killers to female killers in Stone’s cataloged, which dates back to 1913 in the US, is 24 to 1. Stone says that makes sense psychologically, since men have been shown to be more likely to take out their aggression and anger on the outside world. Women, on the other hand, tend to be more “intropunitive” and blame themselves for their anger.
The men who go on killing sprees also tend to be young (roughly 85% are under the age of 44) and working-class. A 2003 study in the journal World Psychiatry summed the profile up this way: “the major determinants of violence continue to be socio-demographic and socio-economic factors such as being young, male, and of lower socio-economic status.”
That’s not something that can be alleviated with more mental health treatment, but it is a worrisome trend that seems likely to continue if young, rageful American men continue to have easy access to guns.

Black Panther: Daddy Freeze says movie is overhyped

Despite the accolades pouring in from every corner of the world about Black Panther, Freeze said the movie does not promote black culture. Controversial radio presenter, Ifedayo ‘Daddy Freeze’ Olarinde has discredited the internationally-acclaimed black superhero movie ‘Black Panther’.Freeze said the movie does not promote black culture, and that it is overhyped. While commenting on an anti-Black Panther Instagram post, he said the producers and financiers of the movie who are White folks are only cashing in on black people’s sentiments.”…the overhyped movie is neither promoting black culture nor adding any significant value to us… They are using our sentiments to cash in, while the real money makers are the producers, the marketers and the financier….. and they ain’t us!” Freeze said. The Ryan Coogler-directed action movie has proved wrong the notion that films with black casts underperform overseas – grossing over $184.6 million outside the US.Last weekend, Black Panther raked in an estimated $192 million in North America alone.The movie is Marvel Studios’ first film directed by an African-American.

Obaland Academy officially launched in Benin kingdom

By Iyabo Aina
Obaland academy is the project powered by Edo Reggae Festival Inc, an entertainment company, established in 2017 by the CEO, Empress Adesuwa Omoyeme Obatta a.k.a Dqueen who is a theater artist, known for being one of the constituent member of Nigeria’s renowned Nollywood.
Party after launching
One time interim vice president of PMAN, she graduated from the university of California (UCLA) USA . she also holds a degree in cinematography from the same school, a graduate of business management and marketing training from Boston state university (USA), mother to three, she has worked with the likes of Queen Latifah ,Tupac Umaru Shakur to name but a few, she is also an OAP, popularly known for International Reggae events alongside as an artist management guru with a class, one to behold.
Back in Nigeria. She has also worked and managed mainstream reggae artiste likes Majek Fashek, Winning Jah, The Mandators, King Wadada, Africa meets reggae festival, Roaring thunder sound system of Nigeria.
Dqueen is also the architect and organizer of the Edo State International Reggae Festival ,”Obaland Music Award”, to be endorsed by Commissioner for arts and culture, under Ministry of arts and culture.
The Obaland Academy and the awards programs, was launched in Benin city (Edo State) with the participation of important personalities like Edo state director of art and culture who represented the ministry and other Government bodies, Mr Godwin Egbe of the Edo state broadcasting service, series of Nigerian veteran, artists, with various national hit songs, like Oligbese, Daddy Fresh, Dyckoy, Naxis DG, S.K.O, Eedris Abdulkareem, Dj Oscar B and many other celebrities from the Nigeria entertainment industry at large.
The launching was based strictly on invitations, as the award launching academy wasn’t meant for persons without hard work or social impacts to Edo state and her people globally. During the presentation, the CEO, Empress Adesuwa Omoyeme Obatta, pronounced her vision about this project, pointing out relevances on, why, where and how the recognitions are recorded and also emphasized the necessity of documenting this encyclopedia in private music libraries, for educational and tourism consumption. She counted on the Obaland’ academy to be a reference to reliable content provider, as to promote the Oba’s palace and Otèdo heritage. She also stated that this recognition will be strictly for persons without pending court cases, criminal acts, and anyone found abusing this antique recognition could be revoked by Edo state high court of Justice.
Members include: Video makers, Singers, songwriters, engineers, producers, managers, Individuals, humanitarians and a wide range of professionals working in the music and film industry.
 
 
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Tech: Music legend Quincy Jones apologizes for the ‘wordvomit’ of his recent viral interviews,...

Legendary music producer Quincy Jones apologized Thursday for two recent viral interviews that he gave to Vulture and GQ.
Legendary music producer Quincy Jones apologized Thursday for two recent viral interviews that he gave to Vulture and GQ.
Jones, citing a “family intervention” from his daughters, apologized for his “wordvomit” and “bad-mouthing” in the interviews.
In his interview with Vulture, Jones claimed that he “used to date” Ivanka Trump, and that Marlon Brando and comedian Richard Pryor had a sexual relationship.
Music legend Quincy Jones apologized Thursday for two wild interviews he gave to GQ and Vulture that went viral in recent weeks.
The 85-year-old producer shared a note on Twitter saying that his six daughters gave him a “family intervention” over the interviews.
In his Vulture Q&A, among many other quotable responses, Jones claimed that he “used to date” Ivanka Trump 12 years ago, and that Marlon Brando and comedian Richard Pryor had a sexual relationship.
“It’s apparent that ‘wordvomit’ & bad-mouthing is inexcusable,” Jones wrote in the note. “I am sorry to anyone whom my words offended & I’m especially sorry to my friends who are still here with me & to those who aren’t.

‘We’re Young But Strong’: Fela Durotoye Declares Presidential Ambition

 
 
Motivational Speaker, Fela Durotoye, has formally declared his ambition to run for Presidency, come 2019.
The Presidential candidate will be running under the party, Alliance for New Nigeria (ANN).
This comes a few days after fuji musician, Wasiu Alabi Odetola, also known as Pasuma, said he dreams of becoming the President of the country and he will use the position to eliminate poverty in Nigeria
READ ALSO: ‘Good Vision!’ Fans React To Pasuma’s Presidential Ambition
Mr Durotoye took to his Instagram page on Thursday to openly declare his presidential intention.
Read Full Statement Below
“I stand here on behalf of this generation of leaders to declare that we are now willing, able; ready to serve our nation through the elective office; we are not too young to run, …
“We are young, but we are strong; we are ready to deliver the quality of leadership; governance required to build a new Nigeria.
“To build the Nigeria of our dreams would require exceptional candidates who would emerge from a pool of excellent; credible aspirants chosen by the people to represent them at the general elections. And so, over the last few months, I have researched into several political parties to determine if their ideologies, vision and values resonate with mine.
“I am glad to announce that one party has resonated more with me than any other in sharing common ideology, principles and a truly democratic internal political process that is open to all to aspire…
“A party that provides a level playing field for the best candidates to emerge at all levels for Legislative & Executive offices. That party is the Alliance For New Nigeria.
“And today 22nd of February 2018, I have formalized my membership with the ALLIANCE FOR NEW NIGERIA (ANN) & become a member of this great party.
“It Is Our Time… And together, we will deliver the future”.
God Bless You all.
God Bless our Alliance For New Nigeria.
And May God Bless our Federal Republic of Nigeria.
The post ‘We’re Young But Strong’: Fela Durotoye Declares Presidential Ambition appeared first on Channels Television.

Stop Lying To Nigerians, Fayose Tells FG

FILE PHOTO
Governor Ayodele Fayose has taken a swipe at the Federal Government over what he perceives as lies being told to Nigerians in the case involving over 50 students who disappeared from the Government Girls Science Technical College in Dapchi, Bursari Local Government Area of Yobe State, after Boko Haram attacked the school.
The governor criticised the Federal Government saying that whenever it boasts of defeating the insurgents, greater tragedy always occurred.
Read Also: Missing Yobe Schoolgirls: Buhari Orders Military To Take Charge
He said this in a statement signed by his Special Assistant on Public Communications and New Media, Mr Lere Olayinka on Thursday, shortly after the news of the abduction broke.
“The Federal Government should stop lying concerning the fight against Boko Haram insurgents because it has now become the tradition that whenever the government boasts of defeating the insurgents, greater havoc is wrecked on the country,” he said.
Speaking further, the governor responded to a report released by Transparency International (TI) on the corruption index in the country.
According to him,  the report vindicates his position that the All Progressives Congress (APC) government of President Muhammadu Buhari was not fighting any corruption.
Read More: Corruption In Nigeria Getting Worse – Transparency International
“Transparency International only confirmed what I have said before that President Buhari is only hiding under anti-corruption fight to harass his perceived political foes while protecting corrupt people in his government.
“Transparency International has placed a question mark on the President’s claim to integrity. Fact is that President Buhari is presiding over the worse form of corruption in the history of Nigeria.
“Despite their propaganda, they have not been able to hide the rot in their government from the eagle eyes of international organisations like the Transparency International,” Fayose said.
The governor also questioned the leadership of the Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr Ibrahim Magu to head the agency despite being indicted by a report from the Department of State Security (DSS).
 
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Tech: There’s a new dilemma in modern romance: What to do if your date...

Moviepass has emerged for millions as a cost-saving mechanism for anyone who frequents the movie theater. But what if your significant other doesn’t have it?
MoviePass is a $10-per-month subscription service for going to the movie theater. It comes with plenty of positives, but it also raises some dilemmas.
One of those is how to navigate a relationship when your significant other doesn’t use the service.
There’s even a comment thread on Reddit dedicated to “MoviePass dating tips.”
MoviePass, the $10-a-month movie theater subscription service, has emerged as a cost-saving mechanism for millions of moviegoers — but it has some drawbacks.
Users have complained about delayed cards and subpar customer service, and that their accounts have been suspended without warning. But even when everything goes smoothly technically, there’s one social issue I’ve faced that you may have experienced as well: Dating someone who doesn’t have MoviePass.
For $10 a month, MoviePass allows you to see up to one movie per day in theaters. You simply check into the movie on the app, within 100 yards of the theater, and use the MoviePass MasterCard to purchase the ticket. The company pays the movie theater full price for the ticket.
For film buffs like me, it’s a no-brainer, and even for casual moviegoers it can save money, which has helped the company snag over two million subscribers.
But here’s a problem: My significant other doesn’t use MoviePass.
It raises a bevy of moral dilemmas: Is it appropriate to use it right in front of her? Should I be discreet, even if we agreed to pay for ourselves? Granted, these may be bigger questions for newer couples, but if you have MoviePass and have entered the theater with someone who doesn’t, I’m sure you’ve thought about it.
Many of these questions stem from the simple fact that when you have MoviePass, there is no marginal cost to seeing one more movie. In one sense, you aren’t paying for a movie, and your date is. That could even come up when you are suggesting that you go to the movies for the date. Are you choosing a movie night because it’s “free” for you? Should you pay for half their ticket?
In my case, I go to the movies a lot, and many of those times it’s alone. My girlfriend doesn’t live with me or even in the same city, and it’s just super convenient to go to the movies whenever I want. That means I don’t see a lot of movies with her.
But for the ones I do, MoviePass has actually provided an unexpected benefit. With MoviePass, I feel even more comfortable seeing movies a second time in theaters. In fact, I saw Oscar frontrunner “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” a second time with my girlfriend. I don’t even like the movie all that much, but that’s okay because with MoviePass, I saw it for “free.”
As to her paying full price for her ticket, most of the time when we go together, I’m not “inviting” her; she wants to see the movie as well, and we’ve been in a relationship long enough where we can pay for ourselves.
But not everyone’s boyfriend or girlfriend loves the high ticket prices in theaters. My colleague Carrie Wittmer shared a different experience with me.
“I’ve been trying to get my boyfriend to get MoviePass, too,” she told me. “He doesn’t go as often as me, and complains about how expensive it is. But even if he saw one movie a month, he would probably save over ten bucks. He hasn’t gotten it yet, but complains about how expensive tickets are every time we go. I tell him to get MoviePass, he doesn’t, and the cycle continues.”
There’s even a Reddit thread named “Dating with moviepass tips,” in which Redditors suggest ways to make a date at the theater go smoothly if your date does not have MoviePass. Some of the responses are … not exactly productive.
“No time for dates,” one commenter wrote. “Only have time for movies.”
But one commenter posed a somewhat compelling argument: “Make them pay for themselves, but tell them they could have saved a lot of money if only they had Moviepass. Then get them to sign up using your referral link.”
Problem solved.

Rangers will soon reclaim top position – Ogunbote

By Chinedu Adonu
ENUGU – CHIEF Coach of Rangers International Football Club of Enugu, Coach Olugbenga Ogunbote, has said that the club was still a work in progress stating that he was committed to ensure that the club succeeds in the league this season.
Akwa United vs Rangers International
The coach who took over club after it posted a relatively poor performance last year made this known in an interactive session with sports journalists under the Sports Writers Association of Nigeria, SWAN, Enugu State Chapter, held at the association’s secretariat on Thursday.
According to Ogunbote, “We have not gotten to where we want the club to be. I know expectations are high and we know that we will soon get to our destination where we will be singing ‘Holy Holy Holy’ at the end of the season.
“I do not like taking pressure from outside. That is why I always work towards success all the time. Some people are occupying our position and by the time we get there, we will never come down. I’ve managed traditional teams and I know expectations are always high.
Speaking on the slim margin with which the club win most of their home matches, the coach said that, “rangers value three points more than goals in each match. Though we are working in each match to get a win, when the goals starts pouring in, we will appreciate it.
He further stated that the reason why the club registered four grade A goal keepers was to ensure that the club doesn’t lack quality in that department in case of a national assignment.
“the essence of four keepers is that at times, some players can be called up for national assignments. So we wouldn’t like to run into crisis. Every player wants to distinguish himself to be called up for national assignments and we will not stop them, “he said.
He however called on the organisers of the league to ensure live coverage of all NPFL matches to ensure easy followership of clubs by their fans. This according to him will raise the standard of the league.
In his reaction, the Chairman of SWAN in the state, Comrade Norbert Okolie thanked the coach for making out time to interact with sports writers despite his busy schedule.
He urged sports journalists in the state to always ensure that the course of Rangers is promoted in their reportage of the club.
Rangers currently occupies the eight position in the league with 13 points having played eight matches, one less than other teams.
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Tech: mSurvey sets to open Nigeria office in March 2018

The company is about revolutionalising marketing research in Nigeria. mSurvey will be expanding its operation in Nigeria with a new office in Lagos scheduled to open in March 2018.The company is a mobile consumer data collection platform. It leverages use of SMS and mobile messaging technology to get credible and on-demand data from consumers in Africa.Dr Kenfield Griffith, co-founder and CEO of mSurvey, said opening an operational office in Nigeria is a great opportunity for the business.“We’re excited to be expanding into the Nigerian market, and capturing the daily consumer experiences of Africa’s most populous country. In Kenya, we’ve seen many of our partner companies see an increase in sales, having used one of our products to better understand their customers,” Griffith said.The company was launched in 2012 and it is headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya. This move is part of the company’s strategy to consolidate its position in Africa.Why Nigeria is important to mSurveyNigeria has the largest consumer base in Africa. And many companies have taken this to mean presence of market potentials to drive growth and scale their operation.mSurvey also holds this view about Nigeria.“Nigeria is a tantalizing market for us to expand into; we know that Nigerians like to voice their opinions and give honest feedback – but all too often, companies and brands aren’t able to capture this feedback in a meaningful or indeed tangible way, so they are unable to reconfigure their business practices to fit with their customers’ requirements.”“This is where mSurvey can help – by enabling our customers to ask the right questions and speak directly to consumers, we can ensure that our clients can listen to and get really get to know their customers. In an ever competitive market, knowing how to retain your customers is critical to any company’s growth”.

Gqom: All you need to know about this South African township sound influencing Nigerian...

From Patoranking to CDQ, here’s the South African sound that is making Nigeria dance. Right now, dance floors all across Nigeria are turning up to ‘Available’, a sparse record by Patoranking which inspires the craziest of moves. The song released in November 2017, is a hollow record, packed full of banging drums which inspire dancing.You can find a similar rhythm and beat on ‘Legbegbe’, the hit song by Mr Real, which has grown to become one of Nigeria’s early hits in 2018. In fact, the entire Shaku shaku movement and sound is based on this heavy drumming, which is tweaked by producers for variety.That drumming isn’t native to Nigeria, It originates in South Africa, where it is called ‘Gqom’. It’s the South African dance sound that’s come from the townships and is taking over the world.Gqom is described as a “big bang which leaves you happy after it hits you,” and it’s exactly what Available does to you – with a simple catchy chorus and a contagious beat produced by DJ Catzico and Vista; this addictive song will surely get you dancing!What is ‘Gqom’?Gqom (pronounced “gom” with a clicking sound on the “g”) is an unfiltered mutation of South African kwaito that has evolved in the Zulu-dominated neighbourhoods surrounding Durban’s city centre.Instead of the regular House beat and the refined production techniques of commercial South African kwaito, the gqom that comes out of the townships uses broken beats and is made on basic home computers, with producers often utilizing repetitive, sliced vocal samples, echo, and heavy percussive beats. The result is a dark, gritty and minimalist sound with similarities to dubstep, techno and Chicago juke.Citizen Boy, who released one of the gqom tracks to gain international attention, a  2015 rework of Adele’s Hometown Glory, describes to Guardian, the intense atmosphere in any room the music plays. “It is heavy because no one is shy,” he states. “It’s like they become a new version of themselves. And even those who can’t dance, they have the courage to dance.”In South Africa, gqom is regarded as an unsophisticated sound and looked down on. It is rare to find gqom music pressed to CD or vinyl. Producers of the genre generally upload their new productions to mobile phones and spread them via Whatsapp groups, or upload them to MP3 sites like Kasimp3.Over the last five years overseas interest in gqom has increased, with tracks produced in Durban’s townships being played by international DJs including the owner of the Hyperdub, label, Kode9, who’s likened the sound to “being suspended over the gravitational field of a black hole, and lovin’ it.”Gqom In NigeriaNigerians have always made music via copying, adaptation and pasting. We grab sounds from different cultures, bring it back home to our studios, remix, chop and adapt until it is passed through a Nigerian filter. The end result is something local, deeply Nigerian, and syrupy.Nigerians have always had a musical connection with South Africa. Our version of House music borrows heavily from the country, and in Hip-hop, stars of both cities collaborate. At some point between 2013 – 2015, House music dominated our pop music.But Gqom is starting to get in, although much of it is mixed with House, in a new variant named known as ‘Sgubhu.’ You can find it in Lagos club mixes, with notable names including Busiswa and DJ Tirra.You also can find it in CDQ’s ‘Nowo Soke’, ‘Say baba’, and ‘Indomie’. Patoranking’s recent utilization of gqom to make ‘Available’ is likely to inspire a fresh class of musicians, who understand the hack behind leading with heavy, dark and minimalist beats.So whenever you hear that South African sound in the club, inspiring you to move to the beat, just raise your glasses to the air, and educate your friends that this isn’t called a ‘South African’ sound. It is the ‘Gqom’.

#ThrowBackThursday: The story of Salisu Buhari, fake certificates and the 1999 Toronto Saga

In 1999, Salisu Buhari became Speaker of the House of Representatives. Months later, Nigerians learned he had falsified his age and university certificate. It was the beginning of what we now know as the Toronto University Saga. Nigeria’s political scene is a dance drama with drunk performers and a story that the actors make up as they go. If you were lucky (or unfortunate) enough to be around then, you would most likely have shared a sense of boundless optimism that most Nigerians carried into the civilian era on May 29, 1999.After a long era of successive military regimes characterised by misrule and oppression, the people had high hopes for a government they could hold accountable, or so they thought.Barely a month into the new government, the dancers came out again.Supposedly aged 36 at the time, Salisu Buhari was a young businessman who was deemed one of the young, promising leaders who would usher Nigeria into the new era. ALSO READ: A brief walk into the lives of Nigeria’s Senate Presidents in the Fourth RepublicAfter getting elected into the House of Representatives, Buhari began his ascent, competing for the position of Speaker.On the 3rd of June 1999, Salisu was elected Speaker.Nothing is as it seemsUnbeknownst to the politicians of the Democracy era, and the millions of bullish Nigerians, Salisu Buhari was not who he said he was.Buhari set about snuggling into his new role as the new administration settled into and restructured Nigeria’s mangled government institutions. The role of Speaker is the 4th highest position in the country and Buhari’s role was important, to put it mildly.But barely six weeks into his new role, the veil was lifted.On the 16th of February 1999, Nigerian investigative news publication, THE NEWS Magazine, ran an article attacking Buhari’s credibility.It claimed that the new speaker was born in 1970, not 1963 as he had claimed. Buhari had also claimed that he graduated from Toronto University. The article dispelled that; according to its findings, Buhari had not even attended the university, talk less of graduating.If the findings were proved true, they posed a massive problem for the new speaker. First, Section 65(1) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria disqualifies anyone below the age of 30 from running for membership of the House of Representatives.Running at the age of 29 would disqualify Buhari from his membership and his position as Speaker of the House of Representatives.Buhari responded sharply, vilifying the publication for attacking him and protesting his innocence. He took it a step further by making efforts to charge the publication to court for libel.His confidence and assertive nature in addressing the allegations were relatively convincing when one considers the scale of such a fraud.A complex web of liesBut when the NEWS put out its sources, there was little Buhari or anyone for that matter, could do. The magazine had written to Toronto University, requesting confirmation that Buhari was an alumnus.In response, Carlo Villanueva, an official of the Institution wrote, “ Regarding your request for confirmation of degree for Mr Ibrahim Salisu Buhari. We have searched our records and could not find anybody with the name you are inquiring with”.It didn’t end there.Buhari had claimed that he completed his National Youth Service at Standard Construction in Kano.ALSO READ: Is Obasanjo’s messiah complex good for Nigeria?This was also proved untrue as the records as his name could not be found in the list of those who completed the scheme.Cornered and outed by the very institutions he claimed membership of, Buhari’s cobra-like retorts served no purpose. He had been found guilty in the court of public opinion and among in the halls where policies are made and sentences are meted out, the tension had reached a fever pitch.On Thursday, July 23rd, 1999, disgraced and cornered, Salisu Buhari faced Nigerians and admitted to falsifying his age and forging certificates as well as other contents of the NEWS report.“I apologize to you. I apologize to the nation. I apologize to my family and friends for all the distress I have caused them. I was misled in error by zeal to serve the nation, I hope the nation will forgive me and give me the opportunity to serve again.”He resigned from his membership of the House of Representatives and with his tail between his legs, disappeared into the unknown.Only the powerless will be punishedFor a decade, very little was heard of Buhari. In 2013, he made his return to the news and the public space when he was appointed as a member of the governing council of the University of Nigeria by President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration. Naturally, the move drew a lot of criticism.In a feeble attempt to justify the appointment, Reuben Abati explained that Buhari’s apology had earned him a pardon from the President at the time, Olusegun Obasanjo.ALSO READ: Run Buruji Kashamu, run from these drug trafficking allegations while you canThis statement only served to explain the lack of accountability that defines the Nigerian government and the many politicians that continue to live lavish lives with allegations and clear evidence of wrongdoing at various levels hanging over them.Since the Buhari fiasco, Nigeria’s legislative houses have seen many similar incidents.One that comes to mind is that of Buruji Kashamu, a senator representing Ogun East Senatorial District, who is also the Chief Executive of Kasmal Group, a conglomerate with interests in oil and gas, property and hospitality. He is also the subject of trials and investigations in the United States regarding several cases of heroin trafficking.Despite many attempts to extradite him, Kashamu still sits in the Nigerian Senate.Little is known about what Buhari is up to these days, but if we had to guess, we’d say he’s going about his business and sitting pretty on the board of one of Nigeria’s few passable tertiary institutions.So much for a new era.

Investing In Empowerment Programmes Will Reduce Poverty Rate In Nigeria – Ooni

 
The Ooni of Ile Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, has called for change in approach to tackling financial crises facing the country, suggesting a well-planned empowerment programme for only women to reduce the poverty rate.
According to him, engaging women in productive ventures, will aid wealth creation and eventually reduce the rate of poverty in the country.
The monarch who spoke during the 2018 edition of the Ooni Women Empowerment Forum which took place at Okunade Sijuade Hall, in Ile Ife, Osun state, urged Nigerians to ask questions that can check excesses of people in positions of authorities.
Decrying the increasing population in the country without plans to productively engage them, the monarch advised women trained under the programme to make maximum use of the skills acquired to improve their earnings and be financially independent.
He said over 500 women drawn across the country benefitted from the programme and therefore, called on people in leadership positions to assist local product makers in growing their businesses by buying from them.
In his remarks, the Director General of National Directorate of Employment (NDE), Dr Nasir Mohammed, commended the monarch for lending a helping hands to the beneficiaries, urging privileged Nigerians to assist the less privileged acquire skills that can make them productive and earn decent living.
He assured the beneficiaries that the NDE will assist them to market their products, starting with those in Internally Displaced People camps.
Mohammed also said the directorate will later assist them to package and sell the products to some West African countries.
“Privileged Nigerians should help the downtrodden. They all need to learn from Ooni. He is passionate about helping his people. We will assist to market these products the beneficiaries of the empowerment programmes have produced.
“We will try to liase with the relevant government agencies and sell the products to the IDP camps. After we have helped them package the products, we will then sell to other West African countries”.
The NDE boss also noted that women have proven to be better in loan repayment, saying that on that basis, the organisation plans to go to rural areas and organise women into cooperative societies, through which they can assess loans to finance their businesses.
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Amnesty International Accuses Security Agencies Of Abuses, Violence

Human rights organisation, Amnesty International, has accused Nigerian security forces of carrying out widespread abuses such as extra-judicial killings, arbitrary arrests, mass detention in sub-human facilities, attacks on the media and journalists, violent crackdown on peaceful protesters, forced evictions, among other things.
In its 2017/2018 Human Rights Report released on Thursday, the agency said the Nigerian Military had “detained hundreds of women unlawfully, without charge” among other inhumane treatments.
According to Amnesty International, “the military detention facility at Giwa barracks, Maiduguri, held more than 4,900 people in extremely overcrowded cells.
“Disease, dehydration and starvation were rife and at least 340 detainees died. At least 200 children, as young as four, were detained in an overcrowded and unhygienic children’s cell. Some children were born in detention,” the report said.
Furthermore, the agency accused the Police and the State Security Service (SSS) of “torture, other ill-treatment and unlawful detention”, especially in a case involving one Nonso Diobu and eight other men who were arrested and detained by officials of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS).
Also listing another case involving a member of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Bright Chimezie, AI said even after the high court had ordered the SSS to release him, his name was included in another case and he was held in detention for another year.
It also made mention of the case involving the leader of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN), Ibrahim El-Zakzaky and his wife who have remained in detention since his arrest in 2015, despite a court ordering their release and compensation.
The Police was also accused of breaching the fundamental human rights of Freedom of Expression and association, among other things.
“The security forces disrupted, in some cases violently and with excessive force, peaceful protests and assemblies,” the report said.
At the time of this report, none of the agencies had reacted to the accusations of Amnesty.
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Rooney Chose Everton ‘Pressure’ Over China Payday

FILE PHOTO Wayne Rooney
 
Wayne Rooney says he chose the “pressure” of returning to boyhood club Everton over a massive payday in China when he left Manchester United.
The former England captain was linked with a move to the Far East in the final months of his career at Old Trafford but eventually decided on an emotional homecoming 13 years after leaving Goodison Park.
Rooney, 32, told the BBC’s Football Focus programme he decided against seeing out his career “earning a lot of money” overseas.
“That’s not me, I need those goals, I need that pressure. That desire to play would have been lost if I’d chosen that other option,” he said.
“I knew that coming back to Everton was more pressure — that’s what I wanted.
“I wanted to prove myself again to the Everton fans and to try to help this club move forward and win silverware. I think it was the perfect fit for me and hopefully, in the next two or three years we can do that.”
Last month manager Sam Allardyce suggested he could not play Rooney and £45 million ($63 million, 51 million euros) summer signing Gylfi Sigurdsson in the same side.
That led to Rooney spending a couple of matches on the bench but the past two games he has started, in a deeper role, resulted in the club’s only two wins in the past 10 fixtures and it now seems Allardyce is open to the options he can offer.
“The one thing which stays is my attitude to playing, my attitude to win, but of course you change and adapt your game and that’s what I feel I’ve done over the last few years,” Rooney said.
“Two years ago, I thought my best position to play was midfield, and that’s starting to happen now.”
Rooney played 559 times for United, becoming their all-time leading goalscorer with 253 goals, winning five Premier League titles and the Champions League.
He said he has followed the example of former United team-mate Ryan Giggs, who retired from playing at 40.
“I’ve learnt that you can manage yourself in training like Ryan did,” he said. “He was there in every session but he managed it. You know when to run, when to make a 50-yard sprint and when not to. It’s just having that awareness about yourself.
AFP
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2019 Polls: Jega Faults National Assembly Over Election Sequence

File photo
 
Former Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Professor Attahiru Jega, has faulted the power of the National Assembly to alter the sequence in which elections are conducted.
The immediate past INEC boss faulted the lawmakers’ move on Thursday while speaking at an event organised by the Youth Initiative for Advocacy Growth and Development in Abuja, the nation’s capital.
Delivering a speech at the event with the theme, ‘Is Nigeria’s Democracy Under Threat?’ he noted that the changing the election sequence undermines the independence of electoral body.
Professor Jega pointed out that several sections of the constitution also stated that the power to organise and set the date for elections remain the exclusive preserve of INEC.
He also decried that more funds would be needed to finance the conduct of elections if the nation was to go by the recommendation of the National Assembly.
More to follow…
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