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Saturday, January 9, 2021

January 09, 2021

Veteran Nollywood Actor, Jim Lawson Maduike Dies


 



Nollywood has lost yet another gem as a veteran actor, Jim Lawson Maduike is reportedly dead.


The Imo-born thespian died today, January 9 after reportedly complaining of body pains at around 12 pm.


Before his death, Maduike was a famous Nollywood actor, radio broadcaster, writer, voice-over artist, filmmaker and a television personality.


He joined the film industry in 2004 where he starred in several films.

Monday, January 4, 2021

January 04, 2021

C'River Govt To Install CCTV Cameras To Monitor Civil Servants, To Introduce Dress Code

Mrs. Geraldine Ekanem


As part of its new policy reform direction, Cross River State Government is set to introduce a new dress code and Close Circuit Televisions Cameras (CCTV) to monitor civil servants' compliance to work and assigned duties in the state as part of effort to reduce truancy, lateness to work and indecent dressing.


The state Acting Head of Service, Mrs. Geraldine Akpet- Ekanem dropped the hint  on Monday, during tour of Ministries, Departments and Agencies(MDAs) to assess the level of compliance of workers on their first day in office after the long Christmas and New Year holiday.


Geraldine who was visibly angry at the dressing of some staffers as well as low turnout  of workers in some of  the offices visited said, henceforth dress code will be introduced to all civil servants in Cross River State while cctv cameras  will be used to monitor their movements in and out of their respective offices.


The new Head of Service who was performing her first official assignment after her appointment, said technology will be introduced to checkmate the excesses of any civil servant who go against service rules.


She said rewards and sanctions system will be reintroduced as part of the new reform policy to spur workers in giving in their best, stressing that the state workforce should be more alive to their responsibilities in order to ensure quick service delivery to the people of Cross River State. 


"I am disappointed in what I saw today, that is why we need to introduce some of this new policies and it is doable. 


"In all the offices i have visited, only Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the Ministry of Justice impressed me, others within the New Secretariat did not, I met a handful of workers today.


"The Christmas and New year break was long enough for all sundry activities, so workers  have no excuse not to resume on their duty post today being the first day in the office". She explained.


Some of the workers who spoke with our correspondent attributed the low turnout to the long holiday, even as those at the work place expresssd their readiness to put in their best for the new year work challenge ahead.


Governor Ben Ayade had penultimate week approved the appointment of Mrs. Geraldine Akpet-Ekanem as the new  Head of the Cross River State Civil Service.


The appointment  was contained in a press release signed by the Secretary to the State Government Barr. Tina Banku Agbor in Calabar.The release stated that the appointment is with effect from 1st January 2021.


Mrs. Ekanem hails from Ikom Local Government Area. She studied law at the University of Nigeria(UNN), Enugu Campus and graduated in 1984.


Wednesday, December 30, 2020

December 30, 2020

Why My Administration Is Shifting From Big Big Dreams - Ayade




Governor Ben Ayade of Cross River State has given reasons why his administration is shifting from big projects to projects that would put food on the table of the masses.


The governor said on Wednesday, December 30, during the signing of the 2021 budget of 'Blush and Bliss' into law, that the drastic reduction in the budget from what it used to be in previous years was because his administration has decided to move away from "big dreams" to ensuring that there is food on the table for the masses.


Shortly after he took over office in 2015, the governor announced his intention to construct a Super Highway, which according to him, would be the first to have wireless internet services and solar-powered street light at the cost of about N700 billion. He also announced other major projects to include: Bakassi Deep Sea Port (N776 billion), Spaghetti Flyover (N18 billion) and Obudu International Airport (About N20 billion).


Financial experts however faulted the governor for embarking on such projects when the state lacks the finances to handle them. 


Adducing reasons for his action, Governor Ayade, during the budget presentation today, said: "For the budget of 2021, the budget of "Blush and Bliss" the gross component is in the dramatic reduction of the budget size from over N1.01 trillion to 218 billion. One will ask what will then happen to that missing gap?

"We had explained this in the budget presentation that we are shifting from all the big big dreams to the basic, primordial things of survival and ensuring that there is food on the table.”

Continuing, the Cross River state number one citizen said: “We had planned in 2020 that by 2021, we are going to move away from food on the table to food on the table and hands on the plough but with Covid-19 and Endsars protest, we realized that we have to sustain the food on the table further.”

December 30, 2020

Governor Ayade Signs 2021 Budget Of 'Blush And Bliss' Into Law



Cross River state governor, Sir Ben Ayade Wednesday signed the state's 2021 budget into law.


Christened, budget of Blush and Bliss, the 2021 budget has a total sum of N281.9billion, a sharp reduction from the previous budget sizes of over 1.01trillion.


Speaking at the signing ceremony which held at the State Executive chambers of the Governor's office, Calabar, Ayade disclosed that the budget has made provisions for the establishment of a state polytechnic.


It also has provisions for social welfare schemes like grants and other financial benefits to help cushion the effect of the Covid-19 pandemic on the people.


He disclosed that the size of the budget was smaller when compared with previous budgets that were in the region of over one trillion naira.


The governor attributed this to the fact that his administration has decided to reduce the financial commitments of the state in key projects such as the Bakassi Deep Seaport and the 275km superhighway to just five percent.


These projects, according to him, are now to be built on a Public Private Partnership (PPP) model.


"For the budget of 2021, the bugdet of "Blush and Bliss" the gross component is in the dramatic reduction of the budget size from over N1.01 trillion to 218 billion. One will ask what will then happen to that missing gap?


"We had explained this in the budget presentation that we are shifting from all the big big dreams to the basic, primordial things of survival and ensuring that there is food on the table.”


Continuing, the Cross River state number one citizen said: “We had planned in 2020 that by 2021, we are going to move away from food on the table to food on the table and hands on the plough but with Covid-19 and Endsars protest, we realized that we have to sustain the food on the table further.”


The governor maintained that the 2021 budget was streamlined in order to meet the intended focus, hence it provided only for 5 percent cost for such capital projects as the 275 kilometre Superhighway, the Bakassi Deep Sea port, Calas Vegas Island among others saying the state's privatization council in partnership with KPMG as their consultants will work to select the best Investors available who are able and willing to invest in the capital projects.


Ayade however, expressed optimism that with the plethora of industries he has so far established taking off fully in 2021, the economy of the state will get a huge boost.


He commended members of the state House of Assembly for sacrificing their comfort and personal pleasure  during the Christmas holidays to ensure that the 2021 budget was ready for signing.


Earlier, the Speaker, Hon. Eteng Jones Williams explained that the House made some adjustments in the appropriation bill the governor submitted to it in October to accommodate new realities that were captured in the bill such as the establishment of the Cross River state Polytechnic which bill the governor recently signed into law.

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

December 29, 2020

Legendary French Fashion Designer, Pierre Cardin Dies At 98

Pierre Cardin


French fashion designer Pierre Cardin, hailed for his visionary creations but also for bringing stylish clothes to the masses, died Tuesday aged 98, his family told AFP.

Cardin, who was born to a low-income family in northern Italy but became a France-based fashion superstar, died in a hospital in Neuilly in the west of Paris, his family said.

“It is a day of great sadness for all our family. Pierre Cardin is no more,” the statement said.

It said after a lifetime spanning a century he had left France and the world a “great unique artistic heritage” and not only in fashion.

Born into poverty in 1922 near Venice in northern Italy, his family emigrated to France when he was a small child.

“Italian by birth, Pierre Cardin never forgot his origins while bringing unconditional love to France,” said his family.

– From apprentice to global empire –

He grew up in the French industrial town of Saint Etienne and was apprenticed to a tailor in Vichy at the age of 17, already specialising in women’s suits.

Moving to Paris, he designed the mesmerising sets and costumes for the film “Beauty and the Beast” with poet, artist and director Jean Cocteau in 1947.

After a stint with Christian Dior, he had already set up his own fashion label in 1950.

He quickly established a name as an innovator, creating the now legendary bubble dress in 1954.

He also broke new ground commercially, ruffling feathers in the fashion establishment for producing a ready-to-wear collection for the Paris department store Printemps.

His 1964 “Space Age” collection remains a landmark in fashion history with its cut-out dresses, knitted catsuits, tight leather pants, close-fitting helmets and batwing jumpers.

His global empire had a strong presence in Japan and also signed production deals with the Cold War-era Soviet Union in 1978. He also became the first French designer in 1979 to cement links with China.

He was also the first designer to hold a fashion show in Red Square in Moscow in 1991, drawing a crowd of 200,000.

His family praised how he had plunged “early on into the flow of globalisation”.

But the much-used and franchised Cardin brand later showed signs of wear and, in 2011, he put his fashion label up for sale although it failed to sell.

“We are all proud of his tenacious ambition and the daring he has shown throughout his life,” his family said.



December 29, 2020

Whatsapp To Stop Working On Millions Of Phones From Jan 1


 

A new WhatsApp update will prevent the popular messaging app from working on millions of phones from 1 January 2021.
Older Android and iPhone devices will no longer support the latest version of the app, forcing owners to either update their mobile operating system or buy a new smartphone.

A report by Independent.co.uk says any iPhone not running iOS 9 or newer, or any phone not running at least Android 4.0.3 – also known as Ice Cream Sandwich – will no longer be able to open or operate the Facebook-owned app.

This means all iPhone models up to the iPhone 4 will be unable to support WhatsApp, as these phones are not capable of updating to iOS 9.

The iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPhone 5S, iPhone 6 and iPhone 6S were all released before iOS 9, however owners can still update to the operating system if they are yet to do so.

Android phones that will lose WhatsApp support include the Samsung Galaxy S2, HTC Desire and LG Optimus Black.

Phone owners can see what software their device is using by checking the settings section. For iPhone users, this can be found under Settings > General > Software update.

Most of the 2 billion WhatsApp users around the world will not be hit by the change, though the small fraction that are will likely comprise several million people worldwide.

A similar update at the start of 2020 saw WhatsApp make the “tough decision” of ending support for even older phones.

Phones set to lose WhatsApp support on 1 January 2021:
Apple iPhone 1-4
Samsung Galaxy S2
HTC Desire
LG Optimus Black
Motorola Droid Razr

Any Android released before 2010 


Phones that will need to update to at least iOS 9 or Android OS 4.0.3:
Apple iPhone 4S
iPhone 5
iPhone 5S
iPhone 6
iPhone 6S
Samsung Galaxy S3 and newer
Samsung Galaxy Note
HTC Sensation
HTC Thunderbolt
LG Lucid
Motorola Droid 4
Sony Xperia Pro and newer

The messaging giant will also be updating its Terms of Service next year, forcing users to agree to new privacy rules in order to keep using the app.

Earlier this month, WhatsApp confirmed to The Independent that all users “must agree" to the new terms by 8 February 2021 or else lose access to their chats.


Monday, December 28, 2020

December 28, 2020

Former C'River Assemby Member's Son, 5 Others In Police Net For Armed Robbery, Govt Vehicle Used For Operation



A son of a former member of the Cross River State House of Assembly was among a 6-member robbery gang nabbed by Operation Akpakwu (a special security outfit set up by Governor Ben Ayade) on Sunday night in Calabar, the Cross River State capital.




A reliable source from Operation Akpakwu told George Odok, the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) correspondent in Cross River, that the gang attacked a policeman Sunday night at gun point and luck ran out of them when Operation Akpakwu got the information and immediately chased after them.




"The robbers were chased from State Housing by Chief Obot Street, Calabar Municipality while they were shooting sporadically. During the process of chasing after them by the Operation Akpakwu team, the driver of the armed robbery vehicle lost control and ran into a deep gutter.




"Three of the armed robbers were arrested, the other three escaped, one of them had bullet wounds. The son to a former House of Assembly member was the person who drove the car the robbers used for the operation," the source said.




Interestingly, the car used for the operation is a Cross River State Government registered number plate.


The identity of the ex-lawmaker's son was yet to be ascertained as of the time of filing this report.


Saturday, December 26, 2020

December 26, 2020

Engr. Ben Akak's 2020 Christmas Message Of Hope

Engr. Akak

 

I sent in a short piece yesterday morning, the 25th December, 2020 to you all in the spirit of the season of Christmas, but while ruminating over the litanies of event yesterday, I had this great urge and push share this piece with you which I christened, “2020 Message Of Hope”. In life we are always presented with two sides of the coin. Experiences in life has taught me to look at situation beyond the negative carriage associated with it.



As the curtain closes for 2020 which also mark the dawn of yet another year. It a time to cast a reflective look at our state, Cross River as charity as we know begins at home. As we reflect on our condition, we also glean into our future from our convoluted past and our stigmatized present.


We have been so heavily inundated with critical circumstances and with a devastating situation that only those with hearts of stone fail to acknowledge the obvious.


Aside from our depleted revenue from the Federal allocation, the odd seem to work against us as even the blind can see the intolerable squalor of the masses a sheer contrast to the elites.


For the generality of the people, 2020 came with ominous quiet of an unbearable angst, from the novel Covid-19 pandemic, the EndSars protest and the consequent looting and vandalism that followed, with the later been dominated and sustained by callousness and opportunism.


The net effect of all of these has seen a monumental waste in resources, a slide in social development and an enrichment of economic hardship. All of these has given birth to a new wave in social unrest and spurned new sophistry in the repression and elimination of dissent.


We cannot deny the truism that the past gave birth to the present existence of obscurity, insecurity and instability. We now have in our hands the audacious forms of kidnapping, armed robbery, youth delinquency, cultism, economic sabotage, unbridled immorality, economic stagnation, social disorientation, structural decay, institutionalized corruption and other sundry social vices.


Amidst these troubling situations, there is renewed hope that in the darkest tunnel, there is light at the end of it just the same way that we have a bright dawn after a protracted midnight. This is where the true believers must rise above the frustrations of the moment and continue to dream the dream of justice, reconciliation and peace. We must together fight against the onset of despair and rekindle our conviction for positivism and hope in the emerging year 2021.


We have reached a situation where we could be a lot worse off without hope and without God as our redemption today can no longer be in the hands of men but on God. As Cross Riverians and those resident here, we should know that with the unflattering and uncheering antecedents of our past, keeping hope alive becomes the imperative for a better tomorrow.


As we basked in the popular refrain of, “only God can save Cross River nay Nigeria”, we should also note that God cannot save Cross River without Cross Riverians. We need to reconcile ourselves to God as our reconciliation is not in the hands of men.


Our peace is not also in the hands of men but on God, hence we should not be driven into apathy or despondency but to seek solace in our creator who is the ultimate miracle worker.


We must seek God’s face and renew our hope in the God of the impossible who is capable of transforming our apparent state of helplessness and hopelessness.


Let’s abandon our individuality, our illusions, our social sins, our sordid past, our prejudices, our biases etc and make a firm resolve to be more accommodating, tolerant and inculcate the habit and spirit of sharing.


God bless you all

Friday, December 25, 2020

December 25, 2020

Engr. Ben Akak Celebrates Christmas With The Less Privileged, Doles Out Gifts

 



In his continuous bid to give hope to the hopeless, the needy and vulnerable groups in the society, a frontline philanthropist in Cross River State and Chairman, Ben Akak Foundation (BAF), Engr. Ben Akak, today, December 25 celebrated Christmas with the aged, persons leaving with disabilities (PLWD) and the homeless at Pope John Paul II  Good Samaritan Home for the Poor, Aged and Needy located in Calabar, the Cross River State capital. 


Engr. Akak, whose philanthropic gestures has received commendation from far and wide, said the less privileged are critical stakeholders to the growth of humanity, and that they are often neglected, stressing their importance and contribution to the society. 


His words: "Many people do not understand the importance of celebrating with you but we take you very important. We know that you are very critical to the growth of humanity.



"From the depth of my heart, we love you and we will continue to be supportive of you.


"Anytime there is celebration and the world is celebrating, know that we'll celebrate with you. We came with some things for you to go and celebrate Christmas and a little thing for you to buy chicken". He said.




Responding, the Chairman of PLWD in Calabar South, Mr. Ekpenyong Essien said Engr. Akak's magnanimity towards the less privileged in the society cannot be swept under the carpet. He expressed gratitude to God for bringing Engr. Ben Akak to show them love and give them a sense of belonging.

"It is very rare in this part of the community to find someone who loves and cares about the needy and the less privileged. We have politicians representing us at the National and State Assembly but they don't do half of what your organization is doing for the less privileged in the society. We appreciate you Sir, we are grateful and we say may the Almighty continue to bless and safeguard you". Mr. Essien said.



Also speaking, the Coordinator of PLWD in Cross River State, Comr. Offiong  Okon   said the group has enjoyed so much goodwill from BAF. He said today's visit by BAF was the second during festive period, which shows the love Engr. Akak has for the less privileged and the vulnerable in the society. 

He appreciated Engr. Akak and his foundation for the numerous gestures and prayed God to bless him for the bags of rice and cash gift he presented to the group.

December 25, 2020

Akwa Ibom Overtakes Cross River To Emerge Cleanest State In Nigeria




Akwa Ibom State has overtaken Cross River State to emerge the cleanest state in the Nigeria, according to the index ratings by Clean Up Nigeria (CUN) of the Cleanest State in Nigeria.


Cross River State under the administration of Mr. Donald Duke and Senator Liyel Imoke was adjudged as Nigeria's cleanest state. Cross River's rating dropped drastically in recent years, largely due to the little attention given to environmental sanitation by the present administration.


The group said Abuja emerged as the cleanest city in the cities category.

In a statement, its National Coordinator, Ene Baba-Owo, stated that Ebonyi State came a second, scoring 44 per cent to Akwa Ibom’s 80 per cent.

Lagos, Bauchi, Cross River, Rivers, Plateau, Niger and Ekiti states were placed third to 10th while Kogi was the lowest ranked state in the study.


Baba-Owo said the results were the outcome of a 15-member national technical study group on the state of the Nigerian Environment Report 2020 with focus on the cleanliness index ratings of states and cities/towns conducted by CUN with support from global project partners from Canada, United States, Germany, France and Australia.


He said the study was scored on five performance indicators via physical verification 20 per cent and the deployment of GEO-Eye-1 satellite that has the highest resolution imagery system in the world which collected images with a ground resolution of 0.41 meters (16 inch) in panchromatic and multi-spectral from the orbit every quarter year round and gives accurate reliable data that is applied to the five performance indicators as highlighted as follows: (1) streets/road cleanliness 30 per cent (2) vegetation/drain control 20 per cent (3) waste management service 30 per cent (4) public opinion poll+ social media 10per cent (5) knowledge, attitude and practice (KAP) of hygiene and sanitation of the people 10per cent, totaling 100 per cent.


The study ran from last December to this November, with quarterly evaluation.


While Abuja scored 68 per cent to come first, Uyo followed it with 63 per cent.


Ikeja, the Lagos State capital, placed third with 44per cent while Maiduguri, the Borno State capital, came last in the category.


The study observed a significant drop in the level of waste management in the country, especially in the areas of equipment most of which have been grounded and unserviceable.



But the most disturbing of the study’s observations is that Nigeria still remained the number one country in the world in the practice of open defecation.


It says that “the practice of open defecation in all the 36 states of the Federation and FCT has not reduced”.




Thursday, December 24, 2020

December 24, 2020

Former PDP National Publicity Secretary, Olisa Metuh Regains Freedom

Olisa Metuh

 

By Taiwo Jubril


Former National publicity secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Olisa Metuh has secured his release from the Kuje Correctional Centre where he was serving his 7-year jail term since conviction in February on charges of money laundering. 



His release followed last week’s court of appeal Judgement which nullified his 7-year sentence and set aside his conviction on grounds that the proceedings at the federal high court were tainted with bias.  


The appeal court justices also noted that the trial judge Okon Abang made disparaging comments in the course of the trial that betrayed his mindset against the defendant.


The proceedings were therefore declared a nullity with an order for the case file to be returned to the chief judge of the Federal High Court for re-assignment to another judge.


December 24, 2020

Gov Ayade Appoints Geraldine Ekanem C'River New Head of Service

Mrs. Geraldine Ekanem


The governor of Cross River State, Sen. Prof.  Ben Ayade has approved the appointment of Mrs. Geraldine Akpet Ekanem as Head of the State Civil Service.

This was contained in a press release signed by the Secretary to the State  Government Barr. Tina Banku Agbor in calabar today..

The release stated that the appointment is with effect from 1st January 2021..

Mrs. Ekanem hails from Ikom Local Government Area. She studied law at the University of Nigeria(UNN), Enugu Campus and graduated in 1984.
December 24, 2020

Cross River State Green Sheriff Arrests Kidnap Syndicate In Calabar

The alleged kidnappers

 

Operatives of Cross River Green Sheriff has arrested a  syndicate of  criminal gang of  kidnappers.


The kidnappers were arrested at Marian Hill and Mary Slessor in Calabar, by men of the green Sherrif and handed over to NSCDC (operation Akpakwu.


Earlier intelligent report revealed that the syndicate gang were  fraudsters notorious for duping people in the state, but further investigation by the NSCDC disclosed that they are a gang of kidnappers terrorising the state.


This arrest is a huge boost to the commendable efforts of the Governor Ben Ayade led administration in curbing the increasing incident of kidnapping and other criminal activities in the state.


Wednesday, December 23, 2020

December 23, 2020

Trafficking: Immigration Rescues 3-week-old Baby In Calabar

Suspect and the-child

 

NAN



The suspect denies the allegations.


The Marine Patrol team of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) in Cross River has rescued a three-week-old baby suspected to be a victim of child trafficking at the high sea.


The Cross River Comptroller of NIS, Okey Ezugwu, who briefed the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on the incident in Calabar, said that the suspected child trafficker, Maureen Awokara, was arrested on December 19 at the high sea.


Mr Ezugwu said that the suspect was arrested by the marine officers on patrol following her inability to give a comprehensive explanation of the true owner of the baby.


“A few days ago, our officers at the marine patrol at the international waterways intercepted one Maureen Awokara, who claimed to be a native of Imo state with a three-week-old child.


“During the arrest, she came up with all stories that were not adding up. Initially, she said the child belongs to her sister, yet we have carried out a preliminary investigation and all the lines she gave us to reach the sister, (name withheld), is not connecting.


“At this point, we are going to hand her over to NAPTIP for further investigations. The preliminary investigation gives us every reason to believe that the little child is been trafficked.


“The suspect claims she is (was) going to Cameroon, Gabon and wherever. We are suspecting a cartel deal, because over time, we have had a lot of surveillance and serious checks at our border basis and the airport, making it impossible for any of them to use these routes.


“We are looking at a situation where they have now devised a means of using the waterways, using small boats to take away these little children along,” he said.


He said an effort by the command to get in contact with other family members to ascertain if the family members were in agreement for her to take the baby away had been unsuccessful because the suspect was not willing to give them useful information on the matter.


Mr Ezugwu told NAN that the NIS marine patrol team will continue to police the waterways with a view to ensure that all forms of child trafficking and other act of criminality are suppressed.


Suspect


Responding, Ms Awokara, 40, told NAN that the baby belongs to her younger sister who could not afford to take care of her after delivery on December 2.


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She told NAN that the younger sister decided to give her the child because she has been married for 18 years without a child.


“She gave me the baby in Imo state; since they brought me here, I have been trying to get in contact with her but her number isn’t connecting.


“The only time her number went through, I only heard a man’s voice, which was not her own,” she said.


When NAN sought to know if the father of the child agreed for her to take the baby away, she said that the father of the child ”denied the pregnancy even before delivery”.


“My younger sister is between 18-20 years. This is not her first time of giving birth; but, we don’t know where the first child is as we speak,” she said. (NAN)


December 23, 2020

BREAKING: ASUU Calls Off 10-month Old Strike


Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has suspended its 10-month old strike


ASUU and the Federal Government has finally agree on major issues which has led to termination of its 10 month old strike.


The agreement was reached on the early hours on Wednesday morning after eight hours close door meeting of negotiations between both parties.


ASUU expressed joy on how the Federal Government handled the negotiation processes. 


It directed lecturers to resume in January, 2021. 


December 23, 2020

Cultists In C'River Plans Public Procession To Celebrate Christmas & New Year As Police Vows To Arrest Anyone Caught


Cultists in Cross River State are planning public procession to celebrate the Christmas and New Year festivities.


This was made known on Tuesday in Calabar by the Cross River State Police Command, through the Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Irene Ugbo in a statement.


She said the Police  has banned all forms of procession ahead of the yuletide celebrations in the state, following plans by cultists to hold these processions.


“It has come to the knowledge of the command that some groups of persons under the aegis of secret cult groups (whose aim is to disturb the peace of the land, molest steal and even maim unsuspected members of the public) intend to go on procession under the coverage of Christmas/New Year celebration.



“It is to be noted for the avoidance of doubt that all forms of procession is banned before, during and after the festive season.


“To this end, the command hereby warn all members of these groups, miscreants and criminal elements to steer clear, especially this festive season and beyond in the interest of our dear state.


“By this announcement, the command wishes to reassure all law-abiding residents in Cross River of our resolve to clamp down on persons or group of persons who may want to take laws into their hands.



She enjoined peaceful-loving residents in the state to go about their lawful businesses and always give useful information to the police.

Monday, December 21, 2020

December 21, 2020

OpED: Engr Ben Akak: An Ivory Tower Of Charity BY VICTOR NDIFON




It is baffling to truly comprehend the Humanitarian crisis that has and is still bedevilling the whole World because of the surge of the New Corona Virus Pandemic.  We have witnessed the contraction of Major World Economies occasioned by phased lockdowns. This untoward situation has affected immensely the livelihoods of citizens of the World especially those at the lowest rung of the Economic ladder. 


Nigeria is already a very poor Country in terms of our Human Development Index which is pegged at low. This worrisome circumstance has been exacerbated by the Pandemic; ultimately leading to a Recession in our dear Country. The attendant effect of the aforesaid is evident in the economic turmoil and hardship faced by many Nigerians and Cross Riverians alike. 


It is in times like this that the greatest virtues of men are unlocked. These virtues are expressed in the humanitarian efforts of charitable individuals and Organisations to alleviate the sufferings of the poorest in our Country Nigeria and Cross River State. This fortunately is the hallmark of the phenomenon and the person Engr Ben Akak and his Foundation. 


Engr Ben Akak Foundation has elevated the generic mandate of the advancement of the Human Race to its peak.  This is made manifest because of the Foundation’s core objective of putting smiles on the faces of people  as  exemplified by the staunch  belief  of Engr Ben Akak that the primary purpose of people of influence in the Society is to better the lot of others .  


Little wonder, Engr Ben Akak Foundation has traversed the length and breadth of Cross River State providing succour to families, individuals and the poorest in our Communities. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum The Prime Minister of United Arab Emirates said in his book titled  “My Vision” that the principle that should govern those in positions of influence  is “the love of God and the love of the people” . This sums up the driving force and ideal of the Engr Ben Akak Foundation.  


The love of GOD (Yahweh) which cannot be relayed without the love of the people is the epicentre of the many humanitarian efforts of Engr Ben Akak as demonstrated by his Foundation.


*Victor Ndifon* _is a Media Consultant to Engr Ben Akak and his Foundation._


December 21, 2020

Ben Akak Foundation To Construct More Projects In Three Senatorial District Of C'River


 
In furtherance of its continued commitment to interventions that transform lives and improve the health and economic well-being of communities, the Ben Akak Foundation (BAF) has concluded plans to construct more capital projects in some selected communities of the three senatorial district of Cross River State to complement the effort of the Governor Ben Ayade.


This was revealed at the weekend by the Chairman of the foundation, Engr. Ben Akak in a brief interview with journalists shortly after he visited the Cross River State Traditional Rulers Council in Calabar.


The foundation had earlier constructed and completed a water project in Yala Local Government Area of the state.

Water project constructed by Ben Akak Foundation in Yala, Cross River State


Engr. Akak during the interview, said: "The governor is rehabilitating and constructing many roads in the state. He's also industrializing the state which is quite commendable. We at BAF, we have decided to complement the governor's effort. We are  embarking on projects in the 3 senatorial district of the state, starting with Yala. We started with a water project there, which is now put into use and it's wonderful. 


"We are starting another one in Ugep, Yakurr Local Government Area and we are going to do a lot more for our people. We are always with them". He added.


December 21, 2020

INEC Issues Certificate Of Return To Hon. Jarigbe As Senator Representing C'River North


 

By Omeiza Ajayi


The Independent National Electoral Commission INEC has issued a Certificate of Return to Hon. Jarigbe Agom Jarigbe as the winner and duly elected candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party PDP in the last Cross River North Senatorial bye-election.



INEC’s decision followed last week’s judgment of the Court of Appeal which declared Jarigbe as the substantive candidate of the Party which won the election.


The appellate court had affirmed the judgment of an FCT High Court which had earlier declared Hon. Jarigbe as duly elected PDP candidate for the December 5 Cross River North Senatorial seat.


The certificate of return was handed over to Jarigbe by an INEC National Commissioner, Mr Festus Okoye at a brief ceremony in Abuja.



Before the appellate court ruling, INEC had earlier issued a certificate of return to Dr Stephen Odey.

Sunday, December 20, 2020

December 20, 2020

#EndSARS Protesters Are Not Hoodlums, Buhari Did Not Handle The Protest Well - Duke

Mr. Donald Duke

Former Governor of Cross River state, Mr. Donald Duke, says it was wrong to label the #EndSARS protesters as hoodlums, adding that the protesters only took to the street to register their grievances.

 Mr. Duke also expressed displeasure with the way the #EndSARS protest was handled by the President Muhammadu Buhari's administration, noting that the president should have listened to their grievances.


He said, “If you have children who are protesting, no matter how nonsensical you may think it is, you have to listen to them. I do not call them hoodlums or miscreants because we produced them. They are children and they have parents. If one loves one’s neighbour as oneself, one would take care of everybody. We have not taken care of a group of people and we are now labelling them as ‘miscreants’. We are the miscreants and hoodlums who have appropriated our commonwealth. As regards the #EndSARS protests, there is disaffection in the entire youth strata of society. You have to engage them because whether you like it or not, they would eventually take over. And, you don’t want angry young people to take over the country.



“At the age of 30, I was a commissioner. I am a beneficiary of youthful exposure. At the age of 37, I was already a governor. I don’t want that to be an exception; I want it to be the norm. All the youths are asking for is exposure and opportunities. You cannot tell people that they have a right to life but don’t have a right to a means of livelihood. It is not a right but a privilege to have a job. So many things are imported, but young people in Nigeria can actually make those things here if they are sufficiently empowered. They should be given concessions because each time we import things, we are creating jobs elsewhere. There are about 200 million people in the country.



“There is a big problem if jobs are not created for them. China is not playing. They are creating jobs for their teeming population because they know the country system would disintegrate if they have so many unemployed people. So, to follow that same pattern, most of the things we import can be made here if we put our minds to it.


December 20, 2020

Late Cross River Police Commissioner Buried In Ilorin

Late CP Jimoh

Abdulkadir Jimoh, the late Commissioner of Police who served in Cross Rivers State, was buried on Saturday in Ilorin, his home town, amidst tears.


Jimoh died on Friday at the University of Calabar Teaching Hospital of complications from the COVID-19 infection.


The News Agency Nigeria (NAN) reports that Jimoh, promoted Commissioner of Police in Dec. 2019, was deployed to head the Cross Rivers Police Command in July.


Before his remains were interred in his residence in the Government Reservation Area (GRA), Ilorin, his colleagues in the Police honoured him with a 21-gun salute, and the Janazah prayer, led by the Chief Imam of Ilorin, Alhaji Bashir Salihu.



The chief Imam was joined in the funeral prayer by friends, family members and sympathisers.


The late police officer is survived by a wife, Segilola Abdulkadir, a two-time member of the Kwara State House of Assembly, and children.



NAN


 

December 20, 2020

C'River State Traditional Rulers Council Heap Praises On Engr. Ben Akak, Says He's A Destiny Child

By Obio Monday, Calabar


Engr. Ben Akak (Right) with traditional rulers in Cross River State

 

As Engr. Ben Akak, through his foundation. Ben Akak Foundation (BAF) continues his philanthropic gestures and empowerment of Cross Riverians, encomiums has continued to pour in for the philanthropist.


The Cross River State Traditional Rulers Council on Friday, December 18, 2020 described Engr. Akak as a destiny child whom God has blessed and is using to bless humanity. 



Engr. Akak who had visited the traditional rulers to appreciate them for supporting his foundation especially during the Covid-19 pandemic and for their continuous prayers for his foundation, and for keeping the custom and tradition of the people, said the secret and success of every kingdom lies in the traditional institution, and as such, it must not be toyed with.


His words: "I came to say thank you for standing with Ben Akak Foundation throughout the Covid-19 period that we came to your locality and did the little we could as an individual. You supported and prayed for us.

"The secret and success to every kingdom lies in the institution and unless we go back to our fathers and ask questions, rub minds and brainstorm with them for solution and direction; we'd just be running from pillar to post without solution. I think it is important for me to come and say thank you to my fathers.


"The sacrifices you've made cannot be compared to what you are earning, and I think your earnings should improve". He said.




He appealed for continuous prayers from the traditional rulers for the state governor, Prof. Ben Ayade as he continues his massive industrial and infrastructural development in the state.

" The governor is currently rehabilitating and constructing many roads; his industrialization drive, and there are other sectors the governor is using the meagre resources available to him to build for our people and such is a thing of delight for people like us who are encouraged to assist him as individuals".


On the massive destruction and vandalization of public and private properties in the state during the #EndSARS protest, Engr. Akak condemned the action of the hoodlums who perpetrated the act, describing it as evil.

"Recently, we all witnessed the evil invasion of Calabar. I call it evil and unfathomable because no right thinking human being will ever think of destroying what belongs to him. Such action is totally condemnable, such action is not from Cross Riverians and it should not be condoned by anybody.


"We saw the traditional institution rising up to the occasion and you did it not minding whose ox is gored. You were able to bring some level of sanity and sanctity".


He assured the traditional rulers of the foundation's continuous support, and presented bags of rice, beverages and cash to them in celebration of the Yuletide season.


Responding on behalf of the traditional rulers, the Chairman of the Cross River State Traditional Rulers Council and Paramount Ruler of Bakassi Local Government Area, Etinyin Etim Okon Edet thanked Engr. Akak for his continuous support for the traditional rulers. He called on other Nigerians to emulate Engr. Akak's benevolence and philanthropy, and prayed God to bless the foundation and assured Engr. Akak of prayers from the traditional rulers.


Etinyin Edet however decried the neglect of traditional institutions in the country.

"People use to underrate the traditional institutions. We make it very clear that we don't only custody traditional institutions, we custody economic, religious, cultural and political institutions of our people. If we do that, then somebody should respect that institution". He added.



Friday, December 18, 2020

December 18, 2020

Cross River Police Commissioner Dies, Ayade Mourns

By Ada Wodu


 The Cross River State Commissioner of Police, Abdulkadir Jimoh, is dead.


He died on Friday morning at the University of Calabar Teaching Hospital allegedly of COVID-19-related ailment.


The Chief Medical Director of the University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, Prof. Ikpeme Ikpeme confirmed the death of Jimoh.


He said the CP was brought into the hospital on Friday dead.


“He was dead on arrival. COVID-19 protocols will be followed before his body will be evacuated,” Ikpeme said.



The CMD also advised all those who were with him to visit the hospital for COVID-19 test and subsequently be on self insolation.


Jimoh had spent barely five months in office before his demise. He took over from Nkereuwem Akpan in July this year.


Meanwhile, Cross River State Governor, Prof Ben Ayade has expressed shock and sadness over the death of Jimoh, describing his passing as a great loss to the state, country, and the police force.



Ayade in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr. Christian Ita, described Jimoh as “a brave and courageous officer who was a central figure in the fight against kidnapping and other crimes in the state.”


He eulogised the Commissioner for his commitment and dedication to ensuring the safety of lives and property in the state.


READ ALSO: Masari laid foundation for kidnapping in error, says Ejiofor, ex-DSS director



“You were a hero in our relentless quest to ensure peace. Your gallantry and bravery will remain an enduring memory as we mourn your sudden demise.


“You kept us safe and gave us your all. We will forever remember you for your courage and bravery. Nothing will fill the void your passing has created, especially in our fight against criminality.


“Late Jimoh’s skills, dexterity intellect and expertise will be sorely missed as we unite to confront the security challenges in the country. I have indeed lost a true friend and a brother,” he said.


December 18, 2020

Communal Clashes: Odukpani Youth Forum To Hold Peace Summit


Worried by the incessant communal clashes, resulting to wanton destruction of lives and properties in Odukpani Local Government Area of Cross River State, a youth group, Odukpani Youth Forum is set to hold its maiden get together/peace summit.

In an interview with Grassroot Reporters in Calabar, the Coordinator of the group, Asuquo Antigha said the purpose of the summit is to educate the youths on the implications of communal war and the consequences of engaging in cultism and other social vices.

Mr. Antigha also said the summit would be used to encourage the youths to engage in entrepreneurial skills in order to be gainfully employed.

The event which is scheduled to begin tomorrow, December 19 with a novelty football match between Odukpani Youth Forum and some selected members of the some warring communities in Odukpani, will feature eminent sons of Odukpani such as Chief Akiba Ekpenyong, Chief Press Secretary to the Chairman of Odukpani LGA, Mr. Joseph Edet La-Shakara, Manager, Calabar Garment Factory and Barr. Edet Bassey, who would speak on different topics on the 20th of December, 2020.

Thursday, December 17, 2020

December 17, 2020

BREAKING: Appeal Court Sack Dr. Odey, Declares Hon. Jarigbe Winner Of C'River North Senatorial Election

Hon. Jarigbe Agom

 



By Kunle Olasanmi and Michael Oche


The Abuja Division of the Court of Appeal on Thursday affirmed the declaration of Jarigbe Agom as the duly elected candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the Cross River North senatorial bye election that held on December 5, 2020.

Justice Binta Mohammed of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) had in her judgment declared Jarigbe as the valid candidate of the party for the senatorial bye election.



Dissatisfied, his challenger, John Alaga approached the Court of Appeal to set aside the judgment of the trial court.

However, in a unanimous judgment, the appellate court dismissed the appeal as frivolous, vexatious and abuse of court process.

Justice Peter Ige, held that having not participated in the primary election of the party, the appellant lacked the locus standi to institute the suit.

“The appellant lacked the locus standi to institute the suit in the first place. I wonder why the trial court did not make pronouncement on this. Only a person who participated in the primary election or a political party that has the power to challenge the outcome of the election and not a third party who did not participate in the election.

“There is no evidence before the court that the appellant participated in the primary election. He only exhibited his party card and no other exhibit. The action of the appellant is a gross abuse of the court process.

Justice Ige further held that the facts stated by the respondents to the appeal in their affidavit evidence are well founded and have not been contradicted by the appellant.

“The materials put forward by the 1st and 2nd respondents have dislodged the evidence adduced by the appellant.

The court also held that the appellant did not prove allegations of forgery which is criminal in nature and needed to be proved beyond reasonable doubt.”

The court accordingly dismissed the appeal for lacking in.merit and award a cost of N250, 000 against the appellant in favour of the 1st respondent and N100,000 in favour of the 2nd defendant.

Justice Binta Mohammed had in her judgment, held that contrary to the claim of the claimant, John Alaga, the defendant (Jarigbe) did not supply any false information to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in his INEC Form CF001 by purporting to have sat for / and or obtained educational qualification making him eligible to contest for the Cross River North Senatorial Bye election.

The court also held that the Cross River North Senatorial primary election of the PDP wherein Jarigbe (1st defendant) was nominated as the Senatorial candidate was conducted with the authentic list of the Ward and Local Government Area Executives of the party.

Justice Mohammed further held that “the first defendant having won the highest number of valid votes at the said primary election is validly nominated as the candidate of the PDP for the Cross River North Senatorial Bye election scheduled to hold on October 31, 2020 or any other date.

That the primary election of the PDP for the Cross River North Senatorial held on September 5, 2020, was duly nominated by INEC (2nd defendant) and therefore valid and in accordance with the law.

The Court therefore directed INEC, sued as the second Defendant, to include and publish the name of Hon. Jarigbe on the list of candidates for the bye election scheduled for 5th December, 2020. The INEC was also further ordered to give Hon. Jarigbe every other rights and privileges pertaining to his lawful qualification and nomination as the PDP candidate.

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

December 16, 2020

President Buhari Orders Immediate Reopening Of Land Borders


 



Nigerian president, Muhammadu Buhari has ordered the immediate opening of four land borders.

The borders are Seme in the southwest, Illela in Sokoto State, Maigatari in the northwest, and Mfum in Cross River State, south-south.

The announcement was made by the Minister of Finance at the end of the 28th virtual FEC meeting on Wednesday.

The President also directed other land borders to be opened by December 31, 2020.

The Nigerian government had on December 8, 2020, revealed plans to reopen its land borders.

He explained that the closure of the nation’s land borders was part of the efforts by the government to control the smuggling of weapons and drugs into the country.

President Muhammadu Buhari stated at a security meeting with members of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) at the Presidential Villa in Abuja.

“Now that the message has sunk in with our neighbours, we are looking into reopening the borders as soon as possible,” he was quoted as saying in a statement by Garba Shehu, his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity.

The President asked the 36 state governors to work more with traditional rulers and community members to improve local intelligence gathering that would aid the work of security agencies.

December 16, 2020

Dr. Stephen Odey Sworn-in As Senator Representing Cross River North

Dr. Stephen Odey

 

Nigeria's Senate President, Dr. Ahmed Lawan, today, December 16, 2020, swore-in Dr. Stephen Odey as Senator representing Cross River North Senatorial District.


Dr. Odey's swearing in was deferred to today. No reason was given for the deferment.


His candidacy has been the subject of litigation with Hon. Jarigbe Agom laying claim to the candidacy of the Peoples Democratic Party, the party that won the election on December 5. 


Despite conflicting court judgments, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), went ahead to recognise and present certificate of return to Dr. Odey.

Sunday, December 13, 2020

December 13, 2020

I Am Proud To Be A Male Prostitute, I Have A Vision For 2023 - UNICAL Graduate Who Is Into Male Prostitution Confesses

Kelvin Akparanta, a male prostitute

 

Kelvin Akparanta, a graduate of Biochemistry from the University of Calabar has come out public on his trade of male prostitution. 


According to Kelvin, he makes money from sleeping with different women for a fee. He describes himself on Instagram as Africa’s number one Man ashawo (Male prostitute). He also displayed a form that his prospective female clients have to fill to enjoy his services.



In an interview with Saturday Sun, Akparanta said that he prays before meeting a client because the world is evil. Excerpts:


How did you get into ashawo business?


I decided to make money from having sex with women instead of doing it for free. I am a professional in other fields too. The reason why I made that video that recently went viral is to help build my other businesses.



 

I am a professional graphics designer. I am a graduate. I studied Biochemistry at the University of Calabar. I am an orphan. I lost my parents when I was in primary school. My uncle saw me through school.


After school, the reality of the society where I found myself in hit me. I discovered that without the right skills, you couldn’t make it in this society. I started getting money from women.


As a sharp guy who knew what I wanted, I started to think of other legitimate ways to make money in this country. I love technology and using computers. I had a friend who had a computer he uses to play games. So, every night, when he is asleep, I use the computer to watch tutorials on YouTube about how to make graphics. After a while, I was able to master the art of graphic designs. I started making money from graphics design. At a point, people started referring me to others for jobs.


So far, I have done some big jobs. I designed for Calabar Festival. I have designed for Miss Africa Calabar and some big corporations under a company name, Box One.


The male prostitute thing was like a joke. I saw it as an opportunity to be famous. I define myself as phenomenal, smart and intelligent. I took advantage of an opportunity that presented itself to advertise myself.


How does your family feel about your prostitution business?


Some of them have been calling me but I have been avoiding their calls. They sent me messages saying I am spoiling the family name by saying I sleep with women for money. I responded to some and apologized. I told them that I didn’t plan for the video where I explained what I do to go viral. I let them know that I am an adult and I have my life to live. I tell them sorry about their family name but I still have to worry about my own name. As far as I am doing something that no one else has been able to do, that’s courageous enough.


How do you cope with the stigma of being a male prostitute?


Some of my friends ask me the same question all the time. I ask them how they cope with stigma of poverty. As long as I am getting clients and making money to fund my lifestyle, I don’t care about the stigma. Let the stigma be there. It means nothing to me. As far as I am living my life, I don’t care about the stigma of being a man ashawo.


How many clients can you handle in a day?


Some of the things I said in the interview that went viral were exaggerated. When I granted the interview, it was meant to show my comedy side. It’s not like I sleep with women everyday and all the time. With digital marketing, I have been able to grow my customer base in graphics designing. I have jobs to do everyday. I manage social media accounts for some brands. It’s not like the ashawo work is what I give 100 percent of my life to.


Sometimes in a week, I can have one or two clients to have sex with. I don’t really mind. The five thousand naira I mentioned in the interview was what I charged back when I started.


Right now, five thousand naira can’t buy me a shirt, fuel my car, and fund my lifestyle. That was meant to be humour. These days, I charge higher.


In a day, I don’t mind if I have one or two clients. I granted that interview four or five years ago. It isn’t a recent interview. I have played down on my prostitute business because I am trying to prove my worth to people. I am living my life now polishing my skills and making money from my talents.


Do you believe in God, what religion do you practice?


I am a Christian. I pray before meeting a client and before doing the do. I tell God to protect me and keep me safe from all evil. I tell him to save me from danger because I don’t really know who I am with anytime I meet a client. I remind Him that He is the Father of the fatherless.


Don’t you think your pastor and church members have watched the video where you talked about sleeping with women for a fee?


I am not very religious. I am sure some of them must have watched the video and they may be trying to reach me. I choose messages I reply to. I don’t give people the opportunity to tell me trash. They must have been messaging me. I know that some of them are the ones who are being judgmental about what I do.


There are some guys who sent me messages asking how they can join me in the business of having sex for money and I was shocked. Some want me to refer customers to them. I now know that many guys do the same thing I am doing but they are doing it in hiding. They are not bold enough to come out like I did.


The society is hypocritical. I tell guys to stop pretending because as a man, if you have more than one girlfriend, you are an ashawo. If you are a husband and you cheat on your wife, you are an ashawo. There is no difference between you and I. The only difference is that I get paid to sleep with women while you spend money to do the same. Stop the pretense. He who is without a sin should cast the first stone. We are all sinners.


Some girls have more than one boyfriend and they are abusing me, they don’t know that we are in the same business. I am outspoken about what I do and I make more money from it while these girls are still playing local matches.


Do you have a girlfriend, what does she think about what you do?


I have a girlfriend but I don’t want to bring her into this issue. We are cool.


How much money do you make from your prostitution business?


Like I said, that interview portrays my life five years ago. Whatever I make from ashawo business is side money. I use it to buy clothes and buy drinks for my friends. I don’t drink or smoke. I don’t calculate the money I make from ashawo business as my income. I spend the money on my wears because I need to look good.


Why don’t you drink or smoke?


Drinking is not my thing. I come from a good Christian background. Right from when I was a child, I was taught that smoking and drinking are bad habits. I don’t fancy smoking and drinking. I select my friends in such a way that none of my close friends smokes or drinks too. I don’t see a reason why I should drink or smoke.


The first time I took alcohol, I had impaired judgment. I like doing things when I am thinking straight. I don’t like blaming my decisions on something that I induced. I hardly go to clubs.


I am into artist management too. I have a comedian I am managing. They are the only ones that drag me to the club once in a while. I am not a social person. I don’t like going out. I don’t even like being in the presence of people.


Who are your clients for your ashawo business?


I have a general clientele. There are different women who demand my services.


What are some of the risks and dangers you face doing your prostitution business?


The very imminent risks are infections. There are some clients that won’t want you to use a condom to protect yourself. There are some clients that would to do oral sex and oral is not safe.


The other risk is safety. There are some ritualists and kidnappers who prey on people. You don’t know who is who these days. You don’t know if the client you are meeting wants to harm you. The fear of the unknown is the biggest risk in the business.


Have you had a near death experience in this business?


I was with a lady in Abuja and I don’t know what she wanted the condom with my semen in it for. She wanted me to hand it over to her and I refused. A gun was pointed at me. I put the condom in my mouth and pretended I swallowed it. I was scared to death that day. That is the only near death experience I have had doing this business.


How do you relax since you don’t like hanging around people, what do you do for personal enjoyment?


I am not a movie person too. I sleep off while watching a movie. I love my own company. Innovative thinking keeps me relaxed. I love it when I spend time with myself.


Where do you see yourself in the next two years?


I have a vision for 2023. I call myself Africa’s number one ashawo in the viral video and it was fun intended. I see myself as number one brand strategist. I really want to go fully into brand strategy. The video is not recent. I want to turn this negative publicity around and make a fortune out of it. There is always an opportunity in any negative situation. In the next two years, I want to be the most sought after speaker, digital marketer and brand strategist. That has been my dream even before that video went viral. I am also a writer. I have a book that will be published soon. I hope to maximize my talent to the full.


Do you have plans of getting married and having children?


Yes, I want to get married and have children. I love myself and I want to transfer the love I have for myself to my family. It might happen next year or in two years time.


What advice do you have for young men in Nigeria who want to make money but they don’t know how to go about it?


After that video went viral, I cried when I opened my DM on Instagram. Some guys were asking me what charm I use to get female clients; some asked if they could join me in the business.  I was sad because I saw a big mental shift in the minds of Nigerian youths.


Some were calling me their role model. I tell them that I am not their role model. I tell them not to be like me. Apart from me being a male prostitute, I have skills. I have a career I am pursuing. For the people who want to be like me, what are they doing with their talents?


In that line of business, you will end up wasting your life. Don’t be like me. I don’t want to be your role model in that aspect. If you want me to be your role model in business, that’s fine.


I have to organize training for young men and when they come for training, I will tell them that prostitution is not the way to go. I know what it means to spend five hours of your life on a woman. It means you have wasted your time. Imagine how much they can accomplish doing profitable things.


Young guys should develop skills that will bring them money. They shouldn’t tow that road of selling sex for money. I have been able to turn my life around and it is possible for young guys to do the same.


They need to harness their talents and follow their passion. Where your passion and talent meet, that’s where you will maximize progress. I want to use the publicity the viral video has gotten me to impact the lives of young people positively especially those who have gotten a wrong impression from that video.

December 13, 2020

Buhari Sacks Pondei, Appoints Effiong Akwa As New NDDC Interim Administrator

Mr. Effiong Akwa

President Muhammadu Buhari has sacked Prof. Kemebradikumo Daniel Pondei as the Acting Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) and has replaced him with an interim administrator to oversee the affairs of the Commission.

He is Mr Effiong Okon Akwa, the Ag. Executive Director, Finance and Administration of the Commission who is from Cross River State. He is to assume headship till completion of the forensic audit.

According to a statement by presidential spokesman, Femi Adesina, Akwa is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants and a Solicitor of the Supreme Court of Nigeria.

The development became necessary as a result of plethora of litigation and a restraining order issued recently against the Interim Management Committee of the NDDC by a Federal High Court in Abuja.

 

Friday, December 11, 2020

December 11, 2020

Covid-19: Cross River, Kogi, Five Others Are Not Testing Enough - NCDC Laments


 


The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has listed Cross River State and six other states as states that are not conducting enough Covid-19 test in their states.


The Director General of the centre, Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu made this known yesterday in Abuja during the briefing by the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19.  Dr Ihekweazu listed Cross River, Jigawa, Kogi, Osun, Ebonyi, Adamawa and Zamfara as states not testing enough.


Figures released  on Thursday shows that Cross River has reported 90 cases but Kogi has not recorded a single case, more than 157 days after it recorded five cases of the virus.