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Despite protests Computer village gets ‘Babaloja’ , ‘Iyaloja’

In spite of the protest by traders, Mr Adeniyi Olasoji and Mrs Abisola Azeez have been finally installed as leaders in the popular computer village in Lagos.

The President-General, Association of Commodity Market Women and Men of Nigeria, Mrs Folashade Tinubu-Ojo, on Thursday installed Olasoji and Azeez as ”Babaloja”and ”Iyaloja”.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Tinubu-Ojo installed the market leaders at an elaborate ceremony in Ikeja.

Recall that some traders had staged protests at the market on Tuesday, kicking against the planned installation of the market leaders.

They had claimed that Computer Village is an international market and that the titles of ”Babaloja”and ”Iyaloja”were only suited for markets where commodities like pepper and onions are sold.

The protesters, who paralysed activities at the market for hours, also claimed the market leaders were imposed on them.

They said people outside of the market had no right to choose leaders for them.

But Tinubu-Ojo at a news conference on Wednesday had described the protests as ill-informed.

She had claimed that, as the leader of all commodities traders, it was within her powers to appoint leaders for any market, including Computer Village.

The market leader denied imposing leaders on the traders, saying she only endorsed the traders within the market that were chosen by stakeholders as leaders.

She alleged that some officials of Computer Dealers and Allied Products Association of Nigeria(CAPDAN),whose tenure she claimed had expired, were behind the protests.

The market leader alleged that the objective of the sponsors of the protests was to perpetuate themselves in power.

At the installation ceremony, Tinubu-Ojo urged the market leaders to see their installation as an opportunity to serve the traders.

While praying that they succeed in their responsibilities, she urged them to give their best to impact greatly on the traders and the market.

Tinubu-Ojo pledged her support for the installed market leaders to enable them to succeed.

Speaking to newsmen after the ceremony, she said the aggrieved CAPDAN officials had visited her on issues surrounding the installation of the new market leaders.

Tinubu-Ojo said she expressed her displeasure over the protests during her meeting with them and that she blamed them for taking the action instead of engaging her in talks.

She said discussions to iron out all issues with the other party were still on-going.

”I don’t have any issues with them (protesters), they have been here; they came yesterday after I addressed the press and they related their position.

”In fact, the former President of CAPDAN, Mr Adeniyi Ojikutu, came this morning. We talked at length and the next thing for us is to call another meeting.

”I don’t have issues with them. The only thing was that ,they should have come here instead of carrying placards when they got the information that there was going to be installation.

”They should have come to have a chat with me and perhaps ,we may have ironed out issues and understood each other.

”Disagreements are bound to happen, there is no way we won’t step on each others’ toes in offices, markets and so on, but the ability to manage the crisis is what matters, which is the next line of action.

”I have even told the Iyaloja and Babaloja I installed today that we are still going to revisit the issues with the other people at a round table,” she said.

NAN reports that the installation was graced by many colourfully dressed market women who sang and danced in celebration of the new leaders. (NAN)

Bishop Obembe of El Shaddai Church dies at 63

The Presiding Bishop of the El Shaddai Bible Church, and former Chairman, Pentescostal Fellowship of Nigeria, Lagos branch,  Archbishop Dr Joseph Olanrewaju Obembe is dead. He was 63 years old.

Bishop Obembe reportedly died on Wednesday morning after a brief illness. However ,the cause of death cannot yet be disclosed. The headquarters of his church is located at Dolphin Estate, Ikoyi, Lagos.

His death was confirmed  by  Apostle Victor Olufemi Williams of V.O.Williams Global Evangelistic Alliance. Apostle Williams said the late Bishop Ivonne was a “friend of my Ministry for over Twenty Years now”.

Apostle Williams said that the late Bishop celebrated his 63rd birthday on February 28, 2019. He prayed for the repose of his soul.

Teenager rescued from suspected ritualists’ den

A 17-year-old girl identified as Rachel was on Thursday rescued from a suspected ritualists’ den at Ijanikin where she was whisked to by a gang of three men.

The girl, a make-up apprentice, was said to have been hypnotised and abducted on Wednesday morning while on an errand along Ibasa Road, Alasia, Ijanikin, a Lagos suburb.

Her abductors were said to have taken her to a secluded place on Dan Ajaiyi Street, Ijanikin where they allegedly perfected plans to kill her.

She reportedly miraculously regained consciousness and screamed “Blood of Jesus.”

Her scream was said to have caught the attention of neighbours who invaded the house after the suspected ritualists had fled through the bush.

A resident, Chika Ugochukwu, said the suspected ritualists packed into the neighbourhood last year, adding that people hardly bothered about their activities since their home was isolated from others.

Another neighbour, Tochukwu, said the suspects allegedly touched the girl with a charm which made her followed them unconsciously.

“The suspects were already preparing the girl to be used when some neighbours heard her scream.

“The shrine where they took her to is behind an isolated house on Dan Ajaiyi Street. The suspects fled when they knew that the game was up,” he said.

Again, house of reps summons Buhari over insecurity

The House of Representatives has again summoned President Muhammadu Buhari to appear before it over the insecurity in the country.

The lawmakers summoned the president while deliberating on a motion on insecurity raised by Ahmed Safana from Katsina state.

The development comes less than a month after the lawmakers summoned the president over the same issue.

The president, who is currently away on a private trip to the UK, did not honour the summon till date.

At Thursday’s plenary, the lawmakers lamented the incessant killings being recorded in parts of the country as a result of attacks by bandits among others.

The latest of such attacks was on Wednesday night when some female cooks and other staff were from their school in Zamfara state.

Yusuf Lasun, deputy speaker, said lack of adequate government policies and actions have been part of the major causes of the security challenges.

“Is there any government in the last eight years that have shown us why people are being killed? No government,” he said.

“The major problem is the kind of policy we give out, either at state or local govt level. It took Bill Gates to come and tell us in Nigeria that we’ve neglected health and education.”

Mohammed Monguno from Borno state suggested that the insecurity in the country could be related to the high rate of unemployment.

“If we are going to feed the 200 million Nigerians, it is only thoughtful that we can create jobs for the youth so that they can have a means of livelihood,” he said.

“If care is not taken, if the situation is not curbed, we will not be able to sleep. There are places in my community that you cannot travel to with a jeep or flashy car.”

The lawmakers subsequently resolved to summon the president to address them on efforts being made to tackle the insecurity in the country.

UAE to jail men for catcalling, staring, winking at women

Any gesture that makes a woman feel violated and uncomfortable – from catcalls to long stares and dropping phone numbers – can get one jailed and fined in the UAE, Dubai Police have said.

According to Khaleej Times, the Dubai Police restated the law as they announced the arrest of 19 people ‘harassing and eve-teasing’ women on beaches and roads.

Eleven were caught in Jumeirah, five in Al Mamzar, two on Al Khawaneej roads and one on Commercial Centre Street, the newspaper reported.

Eve-teasing, a common euphemism, is an act where women face sexual aggression ranging from sexually suggestive remarks, catcalls and, sometimes, outright groping.

In the UAE, such a harassment also covers staring at women, winking at them, blowing kisses and commenting on her body. Taking photos of women without their consent is also a crime.

Brigadier Jamal Salem Al Jallaf, director of the General Department of Criminal Investigation, said all women have the right to feel safe, secure and protected. And such crimes of harassment are “alien to the culture and traditions of the UAE”, he said.

According to Article 359 of the UAE’s penal code, a person shall be sentenced to detention for a maximum period of one year or to a fine not exceeding Dh10,000 – or both – if he molests a woman through words or acts in a public or a frequented place.

Ahmad Al Sayyed, senior associate of the London-based law firm Charles Russell Speechlys, said such an offence – although considered a misdemeanour – can also get a convicted expatriate deported.

“Deportation, in this case, is mandatory because the charge falls under crimes against honour, Chapter 5 of Article 121, which mandates the deportation of non-UAE nationals,” Al Sayyed said.

He also urged all women to report any incident that made her feel harassed and violated.

Beaches are some of the most common places where harassments take place. In fact, a total of 1,725 people were arrested for committing various offences on Dubai beaches in 2018 – 289 of which involved people taking photos of women without their consent; 743 were found disturbing beachgoers; and 256 were nabbed for swimming in their underwear.

Officers in plain clothes and patrols are deployed across the emirate, especially on public beaches like Jumeirah Open Beach, Umm Suqeim Beach, JBR and Al Mamzar Beach Park. Security cameras are also installed in certain areas.

“Our aim is to make beachgoers feel safe and protected,” he said.

Bet9ja: Man jailed for gambling without paying

An Abeokuta Magistrates’ Court on Thursday sentenced a 23-year-old painter, Oluwatobi Olaore, to 14 days’ imprisonment for playing N7,000 lotto (bet9ja) and refusing to pay.

The Magistrate, Mr Sam Obaleye, sentenced the painter who pleaded guilty to the charge.

Obaleye, however, gave the painter  an option of N20, 000 fine.

Earlier, the prosecutor, Sgt. Adejoke Adebari, told the court that the painter  committed the offence on April 27 at 8:30p.m. at Ijaye area of Abeokuta.

Adebari said that the defendant entered into the shop of one Zainab Tejuoso and played bet9ja game of N7,000 knowing that he did not have any money to pay.

She submitted that the defendant also refused to drop the ticket he used to play the game, and was about running away when he was apprehended and handed over to the police.

The prosecutor added that the painter conducted himself in a manner likely to cause breach of public peace.

She said that the offence contravened Section 249 of the Criminal Code, Laws of Ogun, 2006.

Thailand: King Maha marries bodyguard ahead of coronation

Thailand has a new queen just in time for the coronation of King Maha Vajiralongkorn in elaborate Buddhist and Brahmin ceremonies on Saturday in Bangkok.

King Maha Vajiralongkorn and his consort, Gen. Suthida Vajiralongkorn named Queen Suthida, attend their wedding ceremony in Bangkok.

The 66-year-old king unexpectedly married the deputy commander of his personal bodyguard unit on Wednesday in a surprise ceremony, giving her the title Queen Suthida Vajiralongkorn na Ayudhaya.

Suthida, 40, is expected to participate in some of the coronation events.
Here are some facts about the new queen from the palace’s household bureau, past royal decrees and media.

She was born June 3, 1978, as Suthida Tidjai.

She graduated from Assumption University, a private university in Bangkok, with a bachelor’s degree in communication arts in 2000, according to the Thai Rath newspaper.

She worked as a flight attendant at Thai Airways before joining the protection unit of then-Crown Prince Vajiralongkorn.

Criticising or insulting her is a crime under Thailand’s lese majeste laws, which carry punishment of up to 15 years in prison.

The king, queen, heir to the throne and regent are covered under the law.
She already held the rank of general in the Royal Thai Army before her marriage, having been promoted to the position in December 2016 by King Vajiralongkorn by royal decree.

That was shortly after he took the throne following the death of his father, King Bhumibo Adulyadej.

Before the wedding, she was deputy commander of the King’s Own Bodyguard Regiment.

The king himself is commander of the unit, and he first designated her to the special officer unit of Crown Prince’s Bodyguard Regiment in 2013.

She made her debut on Royal News, a nightly segment about the king and his family aired on all Thai television channels, hours after her wedding.

The wedding came as a surprise to many Thais because the palace had never previously acknowledged any personal relationship between her and King Vajiralongkorn, who has previously been married and divorced three times.

She has been awarded royal honours in 20 royal decrees, the first in 2012 when King Bhumibol awarded her the Order of the White Elephant for her “honesty, loyalty and responsibility, dedication and sacrifice’’ in service to then Prince Vajiralongkorn.

The royal decree named her as Lt. Col. Suthida Vajiralongkorn.

During the upcoming coronation, the king is likely to bestow his new bride with new royal titles.
It is a tradition for a new monarch to grant new titles to family members. (Reuters/NAN)

Father-in-law of Buhari’s ADC kidnapped in Daura

Musa Umar, the district head of Daura in Katsina state, has been kidnapped by gunmen.

Umar, a former customs officer, is reported to be the father of Fatima Musa, wife of Mohammed Abubakar, Buhari’s aide de camp (ADC).

NAN reports that police officers are on the trail of the criminals.

Witnesses told NAN that the kidnappers stormed his residence at 7pm on Wednesday and sporadically shot into the air, scaring the hell out of bystanders, who scampered for safety.

Umar had just returned from the mosque where he took part in the evening prayer when the incident happened.

He was sitting in front of his house with some people when the gun-toting men came.

A witness told NAN that the kidnappers came in a Peugeot 406 saloon car.

After the gunmen left, the Daura council chairman Malam Abba Mato and hundreds of sympathizers came to Umar’s residence, to discuss the bewildering incident.