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Militants Give Northerners October 1 To Quite Niger Delta

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Meanwhile, Osinbajo and the Emir of Kano, Muhammad Sanusi yesterday met behind closed doors at the Presidential Villa, Abuja. The Emir was said to have arrived at Osinbajo’s office at exactly 2:40p.m.

The meeting lasted until 4:50 p.m. when Sanusi emerged from Osinbajo’s office with a few palace aides who accompanied him. The Emir declined to comment when State House Correspondents approached him but proceeded to exchange pleasantries with some presidential aides and workers in the Vice Presidential wing of the State House.

There was no official communication from the Presidency yesterday to explain the visit as at press time. Osinbajo began a series of meetings with stakeholders, leaders of thought from the northern states of Nigeria on Tuesday.

At the joint meeting between the Coalition of Niger Delta Agitators and youth leaders across the region to review the state of the nation, the militant leaders demanded an immediate return of oil blocs owned by northerners to the Niger Delta people.

Among the groups and their leaders that endorsed a joint statement issued after the meeting were: Gen. John Duku (Niger Delta Watchdogs); Gen. Ekpo Ekpo (Niger Delta Volunteers); Gen. Osarolor Nedam (Niger Delta Warriors); Major-Gen. Henry Okon Etete (Niger Delta Peoples Fighters); Major-Gen. Asukwo Henshaw (Bakassi Freedom Fighters); Major-Gen. Ibinabo Horsfall (Niger Delta Movement for Justice); Major-Gen. Duke Emmanson (Niger Delta Fighters Network); Major-Gen. Inibeghe Adams (Niger Delta Freedom Mandate); and Major-Gen. Ibinabo Tariah (Niger Delta Development Network).

The militants also threatened that all oil and gas companies operating in oil wells illegally owned by northerners should vacate such blocs, wells and platforms before October 1, 2017.

“We condemn in totality the meeting held by the Acting President with some northern elders and youths. We see it as a grand conspiracy. A responsible government should have arrested those traitors, but our government rather turned round to meet with them and pleaded for peace; does the Nigerian government see people from other zones as second-class citizens? Why are they more important to the Acting President, why is it that the Nigerian law is always weak when it involves the northerners? We are still watching the unfolding events with keen interest,” the militants said.

They said it was not surprising that the Inspector General of Police, Department of State Service and even the Army failed to arrest any of the northern youths who issued similar threats for Igbo to leave the North before October 1, 2017.

The militants said they were fully prepared to declare the Sovereign Republic of Niger Delta on October 1, 2017, and therefore called on all their compatriots to remain focused, united and steadfast.

According to them, the liberation of the people of the region from the alleged slavery of Nigeria remains their primary target. “We want to sound this as a warning to all the northerners living in Niger Delta to quit our land before October 1, 2017 as this is not just a threat. After October 1, 2017, any northerner found within the Republic of Niger Delta shall be seen as an intruder and shall be treated as such.

“We also use this opportunity to advise oil & gas companies in our territory to shut down further operations, PENGASSAN and NUPENG to warn/withdraw their members from Niger Delta before October 1, 2017 or risk their lives. Our next action will surprise you,” they said.

The groups also demanded the immediate relocation of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) headquarters to Niger Delta and replacement of the Group Managing Director of NNPC with an indigene of Niger Delta region.

According to them, all offices, boards and agencies that have anything to do with oil and gas should be relocated immediately to Niger Delta and all non-Niger Delta directors, staff be replaced with the indigenes.

Meanwhile, Acting President Osinbajo will next week convene a joint meeting of northern leaders and their Igbo counterparts in continuation of efforts to resolve the impasse and tension created by the quit notice to Igbo people living in the northern part of the country by the Arewa youths.

The President-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief Nnia Nwodo, who stated this yesterday, appealed to the Igbo to remain calm and patient in the face of the tension created by the ultimatum, noting that Osinbajo had allayed their fear and assured them that the Federal Government would be fair to all.

Nwodo, who was accompanied by some Igbo leaders, including the former governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Prof. Charles Soludo and Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Nsukka, Most Rev. Prof. Godfrey Onah, spoke as they arrived at the Akanu Ibiam International Airport yesterday from Abuja.

He told reporters that the acting president copiously offered explanations to the Igbo leaders on the areas of concern they had raised, including their perceived feeling that the Igbo were being treated as second-class citizens in their own country.

Meanwhile, Osinbajo and the Emir of Kano, Muhammad Sanusi yesterday met behind closed doors at the Presidential Villa, Abuja. The Emir was said to have arrived at Osinbajo’s office at exactly 2:40p.m.

The meeting lasted until 4:50 p.m. when Sanusi emerged from Osinbajo’s office with a few palace aides who accompanied him. The Emir declined to comment when State House Correspondents approached him but proceeded to exchange pleasantries with some presidential aides and workers in the Vice Presidential wing of the State House.

There was no official communication from the Presidency yesterday to explain the visit as at press time. Osinbajo began a series of meetings with stakeholders, leaders of thought from the northern states of Nigeria on Tuesday.

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Education crisis widening social gaps in Nigeria, others –World Bank

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The World Bank Group has warned that the education crisis in Nigeria is currently widening the social inclusion gaps in the country .

The group said this in its World Development Report for 2018 titled “Learning to Realise Education ’s Promise ” which was presented in Abuja on Wednesday .

The event was attended by the Minister Finance , Mrs . Kemi Adeosun , her counterpart in the Education Ministry , Adamu Adamu , and major stakeholders in the education sector .

The bank in the report called for greater action and coordination of the education sector to achieve the objectives of poverty reduction.

It said millions of young students in low and middle -income countries face the prospect of lost opportunities and lower wages in the future because their primary and secondary schools were failing to educate them to succeed in life .

Warning of a ‘learning crisis’ in global education , the World Bank report said schooling without learning was not just a wasted development opportunity but also a great injustice to children and young people worldwide.

Without learning , it said education would fail to deliver on its promise to eliminate extreme poverty and create shared opportunity and prosperity for all .

The report observed that even after several years in school , millions of children could not read , write or do basic mathematics .

This learning crisis , according to the report , is widening social gaps instead of narrowing them .

It added that young students disadvantaged by poverty, conflict, gender or disability got to adulthood without even the most basic skills of life .

The World Bank Group said like in Kenya , Tanzania, and Uganda “where third grade students find it difficult to make a sentence ,” evidence had shown that in Nigeria , when fourth grade students were asked to complete a simple two- digit subtraction problem , more than three – quarter could not solve it.

It said , “The diagnosis in this World Development Report may make for disheartening reading , but it should not be interpreted as saying that all is lost – only that too many young people are not getting the education they need .

“Learning shortfalls eventually show up as weak skills in the workforce , making it less likely that young people will find good- paying , satisfying jobs .

“But change is possible , if systems commit to learning , drawing on examples of families , educators, communities , and systems that have made real progress . ”

 

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New study finds that 78% of black fathers are unmarried

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A new study has found that most black fathers are unmarried and this revelation has led to a coversation online.

The study carried out by the Centers For Disease Control reveals that more than 3/4 of all Black fathers are not married. The study also found that 72% of Black men have had children by age 44. But only 27% of African American fathers were ever married to the child’s mother. That number applies irrespective of the race of the child’s mother.

The study goes on to point out that 78% of Black men with kids fathered at least one child outside of marriage.

Past studies have pointed out the high percentage of unwed Black mothers. The new study pointing out the percentage of unwed fathers exposes a crisis among Black men and social media activists are concerned by the high percentage of unwed fathers.

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IVF made easy: Scientists create device to identify strongest sperm

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Scientists from Cornell University have created a device that will help doctors identify the strongest sperm to be used for in-vitro fertilization.

The result of the research was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science.

Alireza Abbaspourrad, Cornell’s Yongkeun Joh assistant professor of food chemistry and ingredient technology, said conventional methods of separating motile sperm is tedious and takes hours.

The device takes advantage of sperm’s ability to go against the flow — a process called rheotaxis. It has a microfluidic channel through which the sperm swim and a microscopic corral — shaped like a “C” — with a retaining wall that attracts the strongest swimmers.

“The older method is tedious, time-consuming and not efficient. It’s the time that laboratory technicians and physicians expend that makes the process expensive,” Abbaspourrad said.

“With this method, it’s five minutes instead of several hours.”

Soon Hon Cheong, Ph.D., assistant professor at Cornell’s College of Veterinary Medicine, and Meisam Zaferani, a doctoral student in chemistry, also worked on the device.

“Here, we took advantage of sperm’s natural tendency to redirect against fluid flow, once the sperm reach a certain velocity,” said Cheong.

“Once the sperm detect interference, they can use it to swim upstream. That’s when we can trap them. We could separate the good sperm from the not-so-strong in a reasonably elegant way. We are able to fine-tune our selection process.”

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