Hospital to be upgraded by Adamawa partners bank

The Adamawa State government has entered into a partnership with Infrastructure Bank for a comprehensive upgrade of the Yola Specialist Hospital.

The funding for the upgrade would be provided by the bank while the state would provide the political and administrative support, Dr. Fatima Abubakar, the Commissioner for Health, said.

Dr. Fatima Abubakar, Commissioner for health

In a statement released by the commissioner, she explained that the government was not privatising the hospital. “It remains a wholly owned public establishment with full governmental control,’’ she emphasised.

The commissioner said that the Public Private Partnership (PPP) was intended to positively position the hospital to meet the tertiary health needs of the people.

The upgrade, she explained, would entail the comprehensive rehabilitation of the interior and exterior of the buildings within the hospital compound.

It would include “substantial increase in the number of operating theatres, laboratories and associated facilities’’.

The exercise would also involve the provision of specialist hospital equipment, and integrated modern information and communication technology in line with global best practices.

A modern hospital

It would include infrastructure upgrade – roads, storm-water drainage, power and water supply – as well as comprehensive sewage disposal system.

“Renovation and reconfiguration of existing but dilapidated senior, intermediate and junior staff quarters within the hospital premises to house better trained and qualified medical professionals that are expected to operate the proposed ultramodern equipment.’’

The state House of Assembly, she explained, recently passed a bill that would give legal backing to the partnership.

The upgrade would be completed within 12 months .

“On completion, the rehabilitation is expected to deliver a hospital that will be a referral centre of excellence to other health institutions in the state as well as in the North-East.’’

Source : NAN


15-year-old girl defile and impregnated by 4 men

Four men, who allegedly defiled and impregnated a 15- year-old girl, were on Thursday remanded at Kirikiri Prisons by an Ikeja Magistrates’ Court in Lagos.

Henry Edmond, 47, metal fabricator; Richard Effiong, 22, businessman; Simeon Michael, 30, self employed; and Ashumu Muhammed, 33, security guard are being tried for defilement.

Magistrate Mrs B.O. Osunsanmi refused to take the plea of the accused but ordered that they should be kept behind bars pending advice from the State Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).

“Based on the sensitivity of the case, it is difficult to grant bail. Bail will be at the discretion of the court.

“Case file should be documented and sent to the office of the DPP for advice,” she said.

The accused committed the offences between December 2016 and May 2018 at different parts of Ajah and Lekki, Lagos, the Police prosecutor, ASP Ezekiel Ayorinde, told the court.

He said that the accused unlawfully assaulted the girl by penetrating into her private parts on separate occasions.
“The accused have been having sexually intercourse with the girl which resulted in pregnancy.”

Ayorinde said that when the girl’s aunty discovered that she was pregnant, she questioned her.

“The girl, who is five months pregnant, mentioned all the men that have been sleeping with her since her aunty brought her to Lagos in 2016 to be helping her take care of her children.

“Her Aunty’s husband, Henry Edmond, was the first to start having sex with her and he always threatened to kill her if she tells the aunty.

“The other accused sleep with her in their houses and shops in the process of hawking `puff puff’ for her aunty.

“The case was reported and the accused were arrested,” the prosecutor said.
The offence contravened Section 137 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015(Revised).

Section prescribes life imprisonment for defilement.

The case was adjourned until July 23 for mention

Source : NAN

4,600 jobs cut to boost profit – Rolls-Royce

Britain’s Engineering Company, Rolls-Royce, has decided to cut 4,600 jobs over two years in the latest attempt to cut costs and make more profit.

The Chief Executive Officer of the company, Mr. Warren East, said on Thursday in London that the aim was also to create a much more streamlined organization.

“Rolls-Royce is at a pivotal moment in its history,” East said.

“We are poised to become the world leader in large aircraft engines. But we want to make the business as world class as our engineering and technology is.

“We are proposing the creation of a much more streamlined organization. We have to significantly reduce the size of our corporate centre, removing complexity and duplication that makes us too slow, uncompetitive and too expensive.”

Rolls-Royce has 55,000 employees worldwide of which 26,000 are in Britain. The latest cuts follow previous job cuts and the creation of other roles following a series of profit warnings in 2014.

The company had said that two thirds of the job cuts would fall in Britain, where it employs 15,700 at its headquarters in Derby, central England.
It said the cuts would not affect its engineers.

“These changes will help us deliver over the mid and longer-term a level of free cash flow well beyond our near-term ambition,” East said.

“The people that will be leaving the business have nothing whatsoever to do with solving the issues our customers are having with our engines today.

“I know it sounds incongruous at face value, the loss of the workforce while we’re dealing with these issues but they’re really two separate issues altogether.”

East, a softly-spoken former tech boss, has overhauled the 134-year-old Rolls since he took charge in 2015 but the new cuts come as the group grapples with an aero-engine problem that has grounded planes and angered clients.

The announcement, which is not linked to the Trent 1000 engine issue, marks the biggest round of job cuts since the company was forced to retrench during the aviation crisis that followed the 9/11 attacks in the United States in 2001.

The plan will remove just over 10 per cent of the workforce, targeting duplication in corporate and management roles to try to save 400 million pounds ($536 million) a year by 2020.

East, who built the chip designer ARM Holdings from a start-up into Britain’s biggest tech company, has vowed to simplify Rolls and drive greater efficiencies to enable it to generate 1 billion pounds of free cash flow by 2020.

In January he divided the company into three business units and said he was now ready to remove management duplication between those layers and the corporate centre.

Rolls shares traded 2.7 per cent higher by at 851 pence early on Thursday after it published details of the plan.

Source : NAN

World Cup: Parliamentarian rates Eagles high

The Deputy Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Sports, Rep. Anayo Nnebe, says Super Eagles team at the World Cup in Russia is technically strong and will surprise the world.

In an interview with News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja, Nnebe rated the Eagles’ preparation for the competition “very high’’ and expressed confidence in the team’s handlers.

“We look forward to the team coming back with good news; even if they do not come back with the trophy, they will come back with good and cheering news.

“I am optimistic; the team is capable of representing the country effectively and bringing glory to the country.

“I encourage them to dedicate themselves to the progress of the country through superlative performance.

“I am confident because the level of preparedness is high; we have the technical team, we have the coach and I am optimistic that the end will justify the means,” he said.

On legislative support for the team, the lawmaker said that the committee ensured that enough budgetary allocation was made for the Federal Ministry of Youths and Sports Development.

He disclosed that the committee met with the Accountant-General of Federation and relevant stakeholders to address issues of non-release of funds for the ministry and the team.

Nnebe said that the intervention facilitated the release of funds and enabled the team’s early preparation for the tournament.

He called on critics of the team’s list to be patriotic and support them to succeed at the event.

“The problem in the country is that in football everybody is a professional. We have a competent management team handling team selection and player assessment.

“Let us not stay outside as laymen and be challenging decisions made by competent professionals,” he said.
Nigeria will play in group D with two-time World champions, Argentina, Iceland and Croatia in the opening round of the competition.

Nnebe commended ongoing negotiations to handover the National Stadium in Lagos to the Lagos State Government.

He explained that the idea behind the proposed handover was to ensure regular maintenance and to bring the stadium to international standards.

The legislator blamed the poor state of the stadium on limited funds and poor releases of budgetary allocation for its maintenance.

“If you go round this country, you will see that most of Federal Government-owned facilities are out of use.

“The then Presidential Hotel in Enugu and Ikenga Hotel in Awka and so on are some of them; so, if taking over the stadium by the Lagos Government would revitalise and resurrect it, so be it.

“The Lagos State Government is a part of Nigeria, let them take over instead of leaving it abandoned and dilapidated.

“The state government has shown performance and credibility, so let them take it over and bring it to a level of excellence,” he said.

Source : NAN

PM of Japan Abe plans meeting with N/Korean leader

In an attempt to consolidate on peace achieved in the Korean Peninsula, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has met with families of people abducted by North Korea decades ago and pledged to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

Abe vowed Thursday to seek a summit with North Korea to resolve the issue, but only when its leader is committed to resolving the abduction issue.

U.S. President Donald Trump said he raised the issue with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un at their summit in Singapore on Tuesday.

The mother of an abductee, Sakie Yokota, said it is important for Kim to be told of the problem.

Her daughter Megumi was abducted from Japan’s northern coast when she was 13.

Yokota asked Abe to move quickly so elderly families can get their loved ones back while they are still alive.

Source : NAN

Woman poured husband hot water

A 32- year-old woman, Joy Imeribe, who allegedly poured hot water on her husband was on Thursday charged before an Ikeja Chief Magistrates’ Court.

The accused, a trader who resides at 21, Karounwi St., Itire, Lagos was arraigned on a one-count charge of assault.

The Prosecutor, Insp. Clifford Ogu told the court that the accused committed the offence on May 29.

Ogu said that the accussed’s husband, Ibe, alleged that his wife came home late and when he asked her why, she became irate.

The prosecutor said the following morning, the accused poured boiling water on her husband’s body while he was eating breakfast.

He said the man was badly injured and was rushed to the hospital by some neighbours.

Ogu said the couple had been married for 13 years and they have four children.

“The case was reported at the police station by Akachi ‘s family and the accused was arrested, ” Ogu said.

The offence contravened Section 245 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.

The accused, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge.

Chief Magistrate, Mr J. A Adegun, admitted the accused to bail in the sum of N100,000 with two sureties in like sum.

Adegun adjourned the case until July 4 for mention.

Source : NAN

Police in Chile raid Catholic church offices for Sex abuse

Police and prosecutors have raided Catholic Church offices in two Chilean cities looking for documents and investigative reports related to the sex abuse scandal that has rocked the country.

The surprise raids took place at the headquarters of the Ecclesiastical Court in Santiago, and the bishop’s office in Rancagua, in the O’Higgins region where 14 priests are accused of having had sexual relations with minors, the Associated Press (AP) reported.

“In Chile, we are all subject to common justice,” said prosecutor Emiliano Arias, who led the raid in Santiago.

Cardinal Ricardo Ezzati, the Archbishop of Santiago, said Church officials “gave the prosecutor all the requested documentation”, adding that the officials are “available to cooperate with the civilian justice system in all that is required”.

Last month, all of Chile’s 31 active bishops offered to resign over their collective failure to protect Chile’s children from priests who committed abuse, including rape.

The police raids came as two leading Vatican investigators, Archbishop Charles Scicluna, and Spanish Monsignor Jordi Bertomeu, are in Chile to investigate the sexual abuse of minors committed by clergy.

Scicluna and Bertomeu earlier this year put together a 2,300-page report that led the Pope to realise that he had misjudged the situation in Chile and to concede that he had made “grave mistakes” in previously defending Bishop Barros of Osorno, who is at the centre of cover up claims.

On Monday, Francis accepted the resignation of Barros, along with that of Archbishop Cristián Caro Cordero of Puerto Montt and Bishop Gonzalo Duarte García de Cortázar of Valparaíso. The Pope named a temporary leader for each diocese.

Barros, 61, has been the subject of intense controversy since Francis appointed him bishop of Osorno in 2015 despite objections from local Catholics, the Pope’s own sex abuse prevention advisers and certain other bishops in Chile.

In a letter addressed to Chile’s bishops and released by the Vatican in April, Francis said he had made “serious mistakes in the assessment and perception of the situation, especially due to a lack of truthful and balanced information”.

The Pope’s extraordinary apology came after a number of victims alleged that, while a priest, Barros had witnessed them being abused by his mentor, Fr Fernando Karadima.

Karadima denied the charges. But in 2011, he was sentenced by the Vatican to a life of prayer and penance after being found guilty of sexually abusing boys.

Protesters and victims said that Barros was present during some of the abuse and is guilty of protecting Karadima.

Pope Francis visited Chile in January and asked for forgiveness over abuse by some priests in the country, saying: “I feel bound to express my pain and shame at the irreparable damage caused to children by some of the ministers of the Church.”

However, he caused controversy when he told reporters later: “The day they bring me proof against Bishop Barros, I will speak. There is not one piece of evidence against him. It is calumny.”

The raids in Chile this week were reminiscent of the police search in 2010 carried out at the headquarters of the Catholic Church hierarchy in Belgium, which prompted Pope Benedict XVI to intervene against what he described as the “deplorable” intrusion in the Catholic Church’s legal process, the AP noted.

Amid claims that church leaders were continuing to cover up abuse cases, Belgian police removed computers and hundreds of files. The raid led to a Catholic panel investigating abuse to shut down in protest, arguing that Belgian authorities had betrayed the trust of nearly 500 victims who made complaints to the panel.

Source : NAN

Rivers : Wike pledges peaceful LG poll

Gov. Nyesom Wike of Rivers says he has  received assurances from heads of security agencies in the state that adequate measures are in place to ensure a peaceful local council poll.

A media aide to the governor,  Mr Simeon Nwakaudu, in a statement on Thursday quoted Wike as saying that government  would “hold the security agencies professionally accountable should insecurity be experienced in the state in the course of the election.’’

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that there are 23 local government areas, 319 electoral wards and 4,442 polling units in Rivers.

The governor also urged community leaders and members of the public to be alert  and report suspicious characters and movements in their neighbourhoods  to law enforcement agencies.

“Also, the security agencies have definite instructions to strictly enforce the restrictions on human and vehicular movement on election day and arrest any person or group of persons that violate this order.

“All those who have no official business with conducting the election should therefore stay away from the polling units after casting their votes or risk arrest and prosecution,’’ he said.

According to the governor,  there is no legal instrument stopping the conduct of  Saturday’s election in the state.

“As things stand now, we have no other choice but to conduct the local government election and allow democracy to settle and thrive once again at the grassroots and drive the development of our communities.

“I can confirm to you that the election will take place as scheduled in all the 4,442 units, 319 wards and 23 local government areas of the state as there is no legal obstacle significant enough to warrant otherwise.

“Let me therefore appeal to all registered voters to turn out in their numbers to vote for the candidates of their choice.

“This is a civic responsibility you must exercise in order to rekindle the touch of democracy, good governance and accountability in the local government system.

“I am very pleased with the information that 67 out of the 68 registered political parties have fielded candidates for the election  and are therefore participating,’’ Wike said.

He expressed happiness with the assurances by  the Rivers State Independent Electoral Commission (RVSIEC) that it would conduct free, fair and credible election on Saturday.

“For us, this is an irreducible minimum and we demand nothing less as government will hold the commission strictly accountable for any act  or omission  that compromise the integrity of both the process and the election,’’ Wike said.

In a broadcast to the people of  the state,  the governor  had given  reasons for the delay in the conduct of the election.

“After three years of legal vacillation,  it is now clear that the subject matter or fundamental interest of the claimants in that case has practically been wasted by effluxion of  time.

“ And whatever remedies derivable by the parties, if any, can only be nominal.

“While the legal challenge continues, the people of Rivers State are denied their rights to freely elect officers to run the councils democratically.

“However, as things stand now, we have no other choice but to conduct the local government election and allow democracy to settle and thrive once again at the grassroots and drive the development of our communities,’’ he said.

Source : NAN

Russian: Putin to meet Saudi crown prince

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Energy Minister Aleksandr Novak will meet Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman and Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih on Thursday, according to the Kremlin schedule.

Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov has previously said that the two delegations would discuss an agreement on cutting global oil production, which Saudi Arabia and Russia are leading.

They did not plan to discuss an exit from the deal. Crown Prince Mohammad is one of world leaders visiting Russia for the soccer World Cup.

The Saudi and Russian soccer teams are due to play in the first game of the tournament on Thursday.

Source : NAN

Blood donation lowers calories, boosts fitness

Regular blood donation blood helps save millions of lives every year, lowers calories and improves body fitness, the Institute of Human Virology, Nigeria (IHVN) has said.

Mr Abdullahi Abubakar, the Blood Safety Programme Manager of the Institute, made explanation at a blood donation drive in Abuja to mark World Blood Donor Day.

The expert explained that donating one pint of blood (450 ml) removes 650 calories from the donor’s body.

Abubakar, who spoke on“Blood Donation as an action of Solidarity” for the celebration of the day, tagged ”Be there for someone else” as the slogan for the donation drive.

IHVN Field Officer

He said that transfusion of blood helps in saving millions of lives every year and put a natural smile on the face of blood receiver.

According to him, blood donation can help patients suffering from life-threatening health conditions to live longer with higher quality of life.

He also said that blood donation had an essential life-saving role in maternal and child care and during emergency response to man-made and natural disasters.

Abubakar said that blood donation enhances the production of new blood cells, adding: “When blood is withdrawn, the donor’s body immediately begins to replenish the lost blood within 24 hours of donation.

“All of the red blood cells the donor loses during donation are completely replaced within one month to two months.”

He added that the best way to ensure adequate safe blood supply for an effective health system was through regular donations by voluntary and unpaid blood donors.

IHVN: CEO Patrick Dakum

Mr. Fawehinmi Akindele, Safety and Security Officer, IHVN, said that there was no pain in donating blood rather there was more gain.

“I have been donating blood for 22 years now and I don’t regret it, I donate every three months and am glad my blood has been saving lives.

“I used to suffer high blood pressure but I realised that each time I donate blood, my blood pressure reduces to normal, so donating blood reduces my blood pressure tremendously,” he said.

Akindele called on Nigerians to use this opportunity to donate blood as no one knew whose life the blood would save.

A donor, Mr. Ezeibe Ikechukwu, said that he had peace each time he donated blood.

Ikechukwu said that blood was sacred and using it to safe life was priceless.

“I will do this over and over again because the purpose is to help someone who is dying,” he said.

Ms Jane Akubuiro, Donor Care Manager, National Blood Transfusion Service, urged Nigerians with no health challenge to come out and donate blood to save lives.