NDLEA Declares Lagos Socialite Wanted For Money Laundering, Drug Trafficking

A file photo of an official of the NDLEA backing the camera.

 

The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has declared Lagos socialite and owner of Adekaz Hotels, Ademola Kazeem wanted over drug trafficking and money laundering.

NDLEA Director, Media and Advocacy, Femi Babafemi, said the decision to declare the suspect wanted followed his failure to honour invitations and an order granted the agency by a Federal High Court in Lagos on Monday, October 17, 2022.

The NDLEA alleged that the suspect is a drug kingpin and the sponsor of some traffickers arrested during recent attempts to export cocaine to Dubai, the United Arab Emirates and other destinations outside Nigeria.

“Soon after the arrest of one of his mules, Bolujoko Muyiwa Babalola, a Lagos BRT driver on 27th June at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, MMIA, Ikeja, Alhaji Ademola Kazeem who is also the Chairman of Adekaz Global Integrated Services, went underground,” Babafemi said in a statement on Tuesday.

“Following his failure to honour invitations sent to him, the Agency approached a Federal High Court in Lagos with three prayers: to attach and seal his identified properties in Lagos and Ibadan; declare him wanted and block his bank account with a cash balance of Two Hundred and Seventeen Million Naira (N217,000,000.00), all of which were granted.

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“As a result, NDLEA operatives on Wednesday 26th October 2022 sealed six of the identified properties located on Lagos Island. They include: 105 Tokunbo Street off Broad Street, Lagos Island; 1 Abibu Oki street off Marina, Lagos Island; 3 Abibu Oki street off Marina, Lagos Island; 54 Palm Church street, Lagos Island; 26 Agarawu street, Lagos Island; and 41 Foresythe street, Lagos Island. The other one is located at 1 Irepodun zone, Adepoju bus stop, Ajoda Ayedun, Ibadan, Oyo state.”

In a related development, the NDLEA said it arrested another drug baron, Udemezue William on Friday at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja upon his return from Brazil.

Some Nigerian Ex-Convicts Stranded In UAE Blackmailing FG – NIDCOM

File Photo of Mrs Abike Dabiri-Erewa

 

The Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM) has cautioned stranded citizens in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates, to stop blackmailing their home and host countries.

In a statement on Thursday signed by NIDCOM spokesman, Abdur-Rahman Balogun, the agency said many of the stranded persons are illegal migrants who have been jailed for several crimes in their host country.

“In line with its citizens’ diplomacy, the Federal Government approved the evacuation of over 300 Nigerians stranded in the UAE. Regrettably, many of those affected have not been cooperative as they refused to follow the laid down procedures.

“Investigations also revealed that over 100 Nigerians who had served various jail sentences (ranging from drugs to credit card frauds, robberies, etc.) suddenly landed at the holding centres, demanding of the Nigerian consulate in Dubai to ‘immediately bring them back’. Their voices have been the loudest,” the statement read in part.

READ ALSO: No More UAE Tourist Visas For Persons Under 40 Years – FG

The statement quoted NIDCOM Chairman, Abike Dabiri-Erewa, as saying, “Rather than complying with the directives of the Nigerian consulate in Dubai, some Nigerians were busy pursuing a media blackmail of the Federal Government as well as the UAE government. This media blackmail, she said, will make an already bad case, worse, noting that rules on such cases would not be circumvented.

“Recalling several warnings to Nigerians, particularly on the zero tolerance of the UAE for the consequences of flouting their rules, she added that the allegation that Nigerians were abandoned in Dubai is completely untrue and misleading as the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Nigerian Mission have been working assiduously with the UAE authorities to assist over 300 Nigerians stranded in the country for various reasons, ranging from overstay, lost passports, lack of documentation especially in the case of infants, to pending cases with the Emirati Police.

“She advised Nigerians so affected to comply with the laid down rules and regulations as stipulated by the UAE and the Nigeria Consulate in Dubai, and await further communication from officials of the mission who have constantly visited them at the holding centre.”

No More UAE Tourist Visas For Persons Under 40 Years – FG

A file photo of the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama.
A file photo of the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama.

 

The Federal Government has reacted to a viral video showing stranded Nigerians at an airport in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates.

The video had suggested the Nigerians had been denied entry into the UAE despite possessing valid visas.

In a statement signed by a Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson, Francisca Omayuli, the government said the stranded Nigerians did not have the correct visas.

The statement added that the UAE has stopped issuing tourist visas to persons under the age of 40 years, “except for those applying for family visas.”

“The Nigerian Mission in Dubai has clarified that most of the supposedly stranded Nigerians were issued with family visas, only to arrive Dubai alone without any family member,” the statement said.

“Consequently, they were denied entry and advised to return to their country and apply for the appropriate visas,” Omayuli said.

“However, those persons allowed entry into the country have their family members in the UAE, while those who claimed their family members were on another flight were told to wait at the airport pending their arrival.

“The general public is invited to note and be guided that the Government of the UAE has introduced a new visa regime and has stopped issuing tourist visas to persons under the age of 40 years, except for those applying for family visas.

“It is, therefore, instructive for prospective visa applicants to indicate clearly their visa preferences without any ambiguity and also respect the immigration laws of other countries so as to avoid unwarranted treatments.”

Only Failed Leaders Move With Escorts After Leaving Office, Says Wike

Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike made an appearance on Channels Television's Politics Today on March 28, 2022. Sodiq Adelakun/Channels Television
Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike made an appearance on Channels Television’s Politics Today on March 28, 2022. Sodiq Adelakun/Channels Television

 

Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State says his administration has fulfilled its promises to the people, maintaining that only failed leaders move around with security details even after leaving office. 

The governor made the comment on Thursday during the flag-off of a flyover project in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of the state, adding that he will leave office next year a happy man because he did not “disgrace” the people of the state.

“Already, I am leaving. In the next few months, I am gone but I am happy going because my people are happy I did not disgrace them,” the governor said during the event which also had ex-governor of Cross River State Donald Duke in attendance.

“I am going without having any policemen following me on the streets. There is nobody that can touch me in any street because I have done what the people want me to do.

“It is only those that have failed because they haven’t done anything for their people that carry soldiers after leaving office. I don’t have one to follow me. Even if they give me, I won’t take. I want to move alone.”

READ ALSO: [Atiku-Wike Rift] It’s Like Some Devil Has Entered PDP – Bode George

The former minister, who said his government has “changed the narrative in terms of governance”, asked the people to hold leaders accountable.

“So, Rivers people ask me what I am doing with my money,” Wike maintained.

“I will tell you what I am doing with my money. If we were getting the kind of money we used to get before, I would have turned this state into Dubai.”

“Ask PDP in Rivers State what they have done for the people of the state. This is our campaign,” the governor added.

“So, when people come and ask you to vote for them, ask them: The one you went before, what happened?”

Italy, Dubai-Bound Drugs Blocked In Lagos As NDLEA Seizes 203,879 Tramadol Tabs

 

 

Fresh bids by drug cartels to export Tramadol, Ecstasy MDMA, and Cannabis to Milan, Italy, and Dubai, the United Arab Emirates through the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, MMIA, Ikeja Lagos have been foiled by operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA).

The officials seized 203, 879 tablets of various pharmaceutical opioids and illicit substances in raids across Abia, Kaduna, Yobe, and Kogi states.

At the Lagos airport, a female passenger, Odia Emiliana Efe was arrested on Monday 9th May while trying to board a Royal Air Moroc flight from Lagos via Casablanca to Milan, Italy with 1000 tablets of Tramadol 200mg concealed in food items.

According to the Spokesman for the NDLEA, Femi Babafemi, five days after, Friday 13th May, a freight agent Kareem Ibrahim was arrested at the SAHCO cargo shed of the airport for attempting to export food items in which were hidden blocks of cannabis weighing 6.65kg and 24grams of ecstasy drug, MDMA to Dubai in UAE.

 

Meanwhile, in Abia, three trucks loaded with drugs coming from Lagos and Onitsha, Anambra were intercepted in Aba, Abia state. When properly searched in the presence of the owners on Wednesday 11th May, 67,100 tablets/capsules of Tramadol and 12,650 ampules of pentazocine, morphine, and dopamine were recovered.

On the same day, NDLEA operatives in Kaduna arrested a notorious drug dealer, Shehu Kabiru a.k.a Dan-Zaira, wanted by the Kastina Command of the Agency for jumping bail. Recovered from him include 45,000 tablets of Diazepam weighing 41.5kg; 50,000 tablets of Exol, weighing 15.6kg; 1,500 tablets of Rohypnol weighing 700 grams and 300 bottles of codeine weighing 41.5kg.

 

Similarly, in Yobe state, no fewer than 7,029 tablets of Tramadol, D5, and Exol as well as 1.5kg cannabis were recovered from a drug dealer, Ibrahim Yakubu when his hideout was raided in Unguru town on Sunday 8th May, while in Rivers state, one Chekiri Richard Obomanu was arrested at Eleme area on Wednesday 11th May with 207.2kg cannabis.

No less than 19,600 tablets of Tramadol coming from Onitsha, Anambra state to Abuja were intercepted and recovered along Okene/Abuja highway on Wednesday 11th May by NDLEA operatives in Kogi state.

 

In another development, five members of a syndicate, which conducts fake recruitment into security agencies, have been arrested in coordinated operations in Zamfara, Kebbi, and Bauchi states. The leader of the gang, Yakubu Sani was first arrested in Gusau, Zamfara state. His criminal gang issues fake NDLEA employment letters and identity cards to unsuspecting members of the public for the sum of N400, 000 per person.

A follow-up operation in Zuru, Kebbi state led to the arrest of another gang member, Ibrahim Isah, while three others; Dahiru Musa Limanchi, Gambo Danladi, and Umar Abubakar were nabbed in Bauchi state. Recovered from them include a fake NDLEA ID card; NDLEA guarantor form; INEC offer of appointment letter; Nigerian Customs Special Replacement Form and appointment letter; Nigerian Correctional Service Replacement Form; Credentials of some Applicants; Receipts and passport photos; Five sim packs and one MTN SIM card.

 

Chairman/Chief Executive of NDLEA, Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa (Retd) commended the officers and men of the MMIA, Abia, Kaduna, Yobe, Rivers, and Kogi for the arrests and seizures.

He equally acknowledged the well-conducted operations in Zamfara, Kebbi, and Bauchi that nailed five members of a criminal gang scamming innocent job seekers with fake employment letters. He charged them and their compatriots across all commands not to rest on their oars but should continue to aspire to beat previous records.

 

Exit Expo: Dubai World Fair Closes In Blaze Of Fireworks

Artists perform during the closing ceremony of Expo 2020, in the Gulf emirate of Dubai, on March 31, 2022. – Dubai shuttered Expo 2020 with a colourful closing ceremony punctuated by fireworks, leaving a multi-billion dollar mini-city in the desert and heightened expectations for future hosts. (Photo by Karim SAHIB / AFP)

 

Dubai shuttered Expo 2020 with a colourful closing ceremony punctuated by fireworks on Thursday, leaving a multi-billion dollar mini-city in the desert and heightened expectations for future hosts.

Six months after the delayed opening of the $7 billion, purpose-built site, Christina Aguilera, Nora Jones and cellist Yo-Yo Ma performed at the LCD-lit Al Wasl Dome, Expo’s centrepiece, as pyrotechnics lit up the sprawling site.

Millions of people have flocked to Expo’s 192 country pavilions in its final days, pushing visit numbers over 23 million — not far off the 25 million targeted, despite the ongoing pandemic — and making it tough to find a taxi elsewhere in the city.

In 30 degrees Celsius (86 Fahrenheit) heat, long queues have formed at the most popular attractions, including the falcon-themed United Arab Emirates pavilion and the Saudi Arabia building, a slanted slab that appears to hover in the air.

“It’s been a huge experience, it’s been really, really great,” said Abbas Masud, 66, a retired banker originally from Pakistan.

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“I’ve done about 172 countries. I wanted to do all 192 but I don’t think I will be able to because it’s the last day. I feel a bit sad.”

Expo, housed on a circular site twice the size of Monaco, has been a point of pride for Dubai’s monarchical rulers and one of a number of projects aimed at grabbing world attention.

Dubai, the commercial heart of the oil-rich United Arab Emirates, is famously home to the world’s tallest building, the 830-metre (2,723 feet) Burj Khalifa.

In February, it opened a Museum of the Future — in the shape of a silver ellipse decorated with Arabic calligraphy — that promotions insisted was “the most beautiful building on earth”.

– Inauspicious start –

Expo, which started with the 1851 Great Exhibition in London and has since showcased innovations such as the telephone and microwave, now moves to Osaka in Japan for the 2025 edition on a man-made island.

“It’s clear that we have set a new bar here — it’s something I believe (Osaka) will look to aspire to,” said Dimitri Kerkentzes, secretary-general of the Bureau International des Expositions, according to UAE’s The National newspaper.

The event started inauspiciously, with a year’s pandemic delay and a boycott appeal from the European parliament, which criticised the UAE’s human rights record and “inhumane” practises towards immigrant labourers.

Three workers died and more than 70 suffered serious injuries building Expo, officials later said, insisting safety standards were “world-class”.

Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Novak Djokovic were among the sports stars to visit, along with Saudi Arabia’s de facto ruler and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and the leaders of France, Brazil, Turkey and Morocco.

The site, with its canopied walkways and speakers playing soothing music, is now envisaged as a car-free “15-minute city”, with all parts accessible by foot or bicycle within a quarter of an hour.

Eighty percent of the structures will remain, including the self-powering ‘Sustainability’ pavilion and a giant water feature that gives the impression of water flowing upwards.

District 2020, as the Expo site will be known, is attempting to attract high-tech and digital companies to become a centre for innovation.

“It was never an investment to host an Expo,” the show’s director-general Reem Al Hashimy told AFP in September.

“It was an investment to create a new city that is equal distance between Dubai and (UAE capital) Abu Dhabi and really the city of the future.

“That investment goes into a city to 2040, 2050 and beyond.”

AFP

Djokovic Loses World Number One Ranking To Medvedev In Dubai Shock

Serbia’s Novak Djokovic returns the ball to Czech Republic’s Jiri Vesely during their quarter-final match at the ATP Dubai Duty-Free Tennis Championship, in the Gulf emirate on February 24, 2022.
Karim SAHIB / AFP

 

Novak Djokovic lost his Dubai quarter-final and his world number one ranking in one go on Thursday as he suffered a 6-4, 7-6 (7/4) upset at the hands of Czech world number 123 Jiri Vesely.

Competing in his first tournament of the season, and first, since getting deported from Australia, Djokovic needed to at least reach the semi-finals in the Emirates to try and stop Daniil Medvedev from replacing him at the top of the rankings.

But Vesely had other ideas as the left-handed qualifier improved his career record against Djokovic to 2-0 – a result that will see Medvedev become the first man since 2004 outside the “Big Four” – Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and Andy Murray – to occupy the number one ranking on Monday.

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Djokovic, who has spent a record 361 weeks as the world number one, said at the start of the tournament that he “would be the first to congratulate” Medvedev if the Russian succeeded in his quest for the summit.

Serbia’s Novak Djokovic returns the ball to Czech Republic’s Jiri Vesely during their quarter-final match at the ATP Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championship, in the Gulf emirate on February 24, 2022.
Karim SAHIB / AFP

 

US Open champion Medvedev, currently involved in the Acapulco tournament, becomes the third Russian man after Yevgeny Kafelnikov and Marat Safin to ascend to the world’s number one spot.

Vesely, a former junior number one, has won five matches in Dubai so far this week, making it through qualifying to reach his first tour-level semi-final since Pune in 2020.

“It’s an amazing feeling. I never thought I would really have a chance against Novak, he’s one of the greatest of all time, if not the best,” he said.

“After the last 12 months, I’ve been going through… it’s unbelievable, I have so many emotions inside, it’s hard to describe, it’s just an amazing feeling,” added Vesely, who next takes on Denis Shapovalov for a place in the final.

The 28-year-old, who survived a serious car crash last year, came out victorious in his only previous meeting with Djokovic, defeating the Serb on the clay courts of Monte Carlo back in 2016.

Vesely started the match by breaking Djokovic on his way to a 2-0 lead.

He lost his advantage as the top seed struck back but some clever drop shots and some tricky lefty serve saw the towering Czech inch ahead once again and he served out the opening set on the 47-minute mark.

A down-the-line backhand drive earned Vesely a break in the seventh game of the second set but he wobbled while serving for the victory as Djokovic pegged him back to level for 5-5.

Vesely raced to a 3-0 lead in the tiebreak and soon completed a huge surprise win over the five-time Dubai champion.

 Sinner slumps

Earlier on Centre Court, second seed Andrey Rublev advanced to his third semi-final in as many weeks with a 2-6, 6-3, 6-1 victory over American Mackenzie McDonald.

Contesting a 12th consecutive quarter-final at the ATP 500 level, Rublev recovered from a poor first-set performance against McDonald to reach the Dubai semi-finals for the second year in a row.

The 24-year-old Russian will next face off with fifth-seeded Hubert Hurkacz, who eased past Italian fourth seed Jannik Sinner 6-3, 6-3 in 84 minutes.

“Today I was thinking that for sure it’s over, but somehow I was just trying to tell myself, ‘Just keep fighting and we’ll see what happens,” said an exhausted Rublev, who won both singles and doubles titles in Marseille last weekend.

“I lost twice to Hurkacz. It will be interesting for me. In the situation I am right now, completely tired, the last times I lost against him, I have nothing to lose. I will try to go for it and we’ll see what’s going to happen.”

AFP

After Australian Furore, Djokovic Starts His Season In Dubai

A handout picture made available by the press office of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championship on February 20, 2022 shows Serbian Tennis player Novak Djokovic holding a press conference ahead of the ATP Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championship in the Gulf emirate of Dubai. (Photo by jorge ferrari / Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championship / AFP)

 

Novak Djokovic’s season, derailed in January when he was deported from Australia, finally starts on Monday in Dubai with the world number one insisting players in the locker room “have been positive and welcoming” on his return.

Djokovic missed the chance to win a 10th Australian Open, and 21st Grand Slam, due to the cancellation of his visa in Melbourne and eventual deportation as a result of not being vaccinated.

He returns to the tour this week in the Emirates, where he will be competing for the first time since the Davis Cup Finals in Madrid last December.

Ahead of his opening round against Italian wildcard Lorenzo Musetti, Djokovic spoke to reporters on Sunday night about how it feels to be back on the tennis circuit, and whether there has been any negative reaction from his peers.

“So far here most of the players that I’ve seen have been positive and welcoming. It’s nice to see obviously. I can’t say that was the case in Australia. It was a little bit strange. But here it’s well so far,” the 34-year-old Serb said.

Dubai organisers have dubbed the first day of the ATP event ‘Magnificent Monday’ and a couple of other marquee entrants, Marin Cilic and Andy Murray, will also be in action.

But all eyes will be on Djokovic who last played in Serbia’s Davis Cup semi-final defeat by Croatia.

Djokovic, who saw Rafael Nadal win in Australia to claim a 21st major, is able to play in Dubai as a coronavirus vaccine is not a requirement to enter the United Arab Emirates.

The Serbian is a five-time winner in Dubai and he finally starts his season with a point to prove and his number one ranking under threat.

Even if he wins in Dubai, Djokovic could lose the top spot, which he has held since February 2020, to Daniil Medvedev, who is in action this week almost 15,000km away in Acapulco.

Even if Djokovic defends his status this week, his refusal to get vaccinated could cause problems and cost him ranking points, particularly with two Masters tournaments coming up in the United States.

– ‘Follow the rules’ –

He is on the entry list at Indian Wells from March 7 to 20, even though it is currently restricted to vaccinated players. That is followed by the Miami Open from March 21 to April 3.

“I just have to follow the rules. Whatever tournament that I’m able to play, I’ll be trying to get to that country and play the tournament,” Djokovic said Sunday.

“I really can’t choose right now. It’s really about where I can go and play. Wherever I have an opportunity, I’ll be using probably that opportunity and going to play because this is what I do, it’s what I love to do still.”

There are still three more Grand Slam tournaments to play — French Open,, Wimbledon and the US Open.

Djokovic is the defending champion at Roland Garros and the All England Club.

“We all hope that the health crisis will evolve in a positive direction, but if that does not change, he will need a vaccination pass and therefore Novak Djokovic will not be with us,” at the French Open, French Sports Minister Roxana Maracineanu told RTL radio on Sunday.

Djokovic and Musetti have history, with the 19-year-old taking the first two sets off the Serb when they met in last year’s French Open.

Musetti eventually retired due to injury with Djokovic leading the last 16 clash 6-7 (7/9), 6-7 (2/7), 6-1, 6-0, 4-0.

Cilic, a former world number three, will open the action on Monday against Czech qualifier Jiri Vesely.

Murray is on court immediately before Djokovic, against Australian Christopher O’Connell.

At 34, former world number one Murray is playing with a metal hip after surgery in 2019, and won just a single game as he was crushed by Spaniard Roberto Bautista Agut in Qatar last week.

The second seed Andrey Rublev, fresh from a ninth career title in Marseille at the weekend, faces Briton Dan Evans on Tuesday.

Number three Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime has been drawn against Georgian Nikoloz Basilashvili and number four Italian Jannik Sinner will play Spaniard Alejandro Davidovich Fokina.

Last year’s Dubai winner Aslan Karatsev will face American Mackenzie McDonald.

Work Permit Row: Nigerian Professionals In UAE Embark On Narrative-Changing Campaign

File photo of Nigerians on the streets in UAE.

 

Nigeria professionals living in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have commenced a narrative campaign online to appeal the work permit restriction by the country.

President of the group, Professional Nigerians in UAE, Kayode Ogungbohun is leading the campaign.

He spoke on Monday during an interview on Channels Television programme, Sunrise Daily that the campaign started after the problem was identified and it is aimed at projecting Nigerians living in UAE, positively.

“We saw the problem, although we don’t have any official reason why UAE took the decision. We speculated that some things were done by Nigerians in terms of not obeying the law of the host country. So, we came up with the solution to speak to ourselves to be law-abiding, to appeal and pacify to the UAE government to allow all categories of jobs to be given to Nigerians.

“Because these jobs that they are not giving to Nigerians is being given to people of other nationalities.

“The #iamNigerian campaign is aimed to project us positively. Nigerians are now aware that there is a problem in our hands. We have left the stage of denial and realised that there is a problem, and it is everyone’s responsibility to play a role,” Ogungbohun explained.

He added that the campaign which commenced 14 days ago is helping to project Nigerians and how Nigerian professionals contribute to UAE’s economy.

“We can’t fold our hands and do nothing,” he said.

Meanwhile, a resident of Fujerah in UAE, Esther Adedokun insists that the problem is not necessarily due to atrocities committed by Nigerians resident in UAE but a diplomatic row between both countries.

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She also explained how the permit restriction has left her stranded.

“My situation is so critical that I have spent all my savings.

“I don’t want us to have the impression that because of the atrocities committed by some Nigerians, that is why we have this problem. Nigerians are not the only citizens in UAE that commit worse crimes and they are there are no restrictions on their work permits.

“I am against crime and criminality but the diplomatic issue if resolved will ease the problem of this restriction,” she said in the interview.

Nigeria High Commission Office in UAE.

 

Over seven months, hundreds of Nigerians in UAE became jobless and homeless following a change in diplomatic policy which led to the restriction of work permits.

The policy has left many Nigerians in pathetic conditions and most of the victims have lost their jobs.

This has led to frustration with many rendered homeless. A work visa is the most common route to getting residency in the Middle East country, so all those caught in the web of the lingering work permit restrictions row have also lost their residency status.

FULL LIST: Mbappe, Ronaldo, Chelsea + All Winners At 2021 Globe Soccer Awards

globe-soccer-award-winners-2021
Mbappe had a sterling year with club and country.

 

French forward Kylian Mbappe has won the Best Men’s Player of the Year at the Dubai Globe Soccer Awards on Monday.

The 23-year-old Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) star scooped the prize in a ceremony at the Armani Hotel.

He beat six-time winner Cristiano Ronaldo; Lionel Messi, Mohamed Salah, Karim Benzema, and Lewandowski to the award.

“It is a big achievement for me. I want to say thank you to my club Paris Saint-Germain, who believed in me these past five years, even better this season,” he said after he was handed the award.

“To my national team; to all the people who nobody knows who work with me, who help me a lot; to my family, they are there with me, always with me.”


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Last season, Mbappe scored 27 to emerge as the highest goalscorer in Ligue 1 although his form did not stop PSG from finishing as runners-up to Lille.

Mbappe also helped France win the UEFA Nation’s League.

Aside from him, other winners at the 12th edition of the awards include Cristiano Ronaldo, Robert Lewandowski, and Ronaldinho.

Globe Soccer Awards 2021 Winners 

Below is a full list of winners at the Globe Soccer Awards 2021

Fan’s Player of the Year – Robert Lewandowski

Men’s Player of the Year – Kylian Mbappe

Maradona Award – Robert Lewandowski

Top Scorer of All Time – Cristiano Ronaldo

Best National Team of the Year – Italy

Best Agent of the Year – Federico Pastorello

Best Sporting Director of the Year – Txiki Begiristain

Best Men’s Club of the Year – Chelsea

Best Defender of the Year – Leonardo Bonucci

Best Goalkeeper of the Year – Gianluigi Donnarumma

Women’s Club of the Year – Barcelona

Women’s Player of the Year – Alexia Putellas

Innovation Award – Serie A

Best eSports Player of the Year – Msdossary7

Best Youth Academy in Africa – ZED FC

UAE Concedes Seven Flight Slots To Nigeria

A file photo of the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika.

 

The Federal Government has confirmed that the United Arab Emirates has conceded seven flight slots to Nigeria’s carrier, Air Peace.

The move, which was confirmed by the Ministry of Aviation on Tuesday, follows the withdrawal of Emirates’ 21-slot winter schedule by the Federal Government owing to what it described as a breach of reciprocity.

The UAE had earlier denied Air Peace flights from operating to Sharjah, near Dubai, three times a week.

It also joined the United Kingdom, Canada, and Argentina in adding Nigeria on its travel red list over cases of the omicron variant of COVID-19.


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While the UK has cleared Nigeria and 10 other countries from its red list, the UAE has still maintained the travel restrictions.

The presidential steering committee on COVID-19 has assured Nigerians that the Federal Government is working assiduously to ensure that the flight restrictions are lifted in about a week.

Meanwhile, also on Tuesday, Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rep. Femi Gbajabiamila, met with representatives of Emirates Airline, the Chairman/CEO of Air Peace, Allen Onyema, and heads of agencies in the aviation sector over the flight flow between the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Nigeria.

Others present at the meeting were the Ministers of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyema, and his aviation counterpart, Hadi Sirika.

After the meeting which lasted for about three hours behind closed doors, Gbajabiamila told journalists that it was a fruitful deliberation where issues at stake were discussed.

The Speaker said both Nigeria and UAE had good diplomatic relations and that they would not allow the current row to mar the long-standing friendship.

Nigeria Remains Most Viable, Attractive Investment Destination In Africa, Buhari Declares

President Muhammadu Buhari gives a speech during Nigeria’s National Day ceremony at the Dubai Expo 2020 in the United Arab Emirates (Dubai).

 

President Muhammadu Buhari Saturday in Dubai declared that Nigeria remains the most viable and attractive investment destination in Africa, adding that the country is on the path of becoming the continent’s leading industrial and trading nation.

Addressing a trade and investment forum at Dubai Expo 2020, organised by the Nigerian Arabian Gulf Chamber of Commerce, Nigeria’s Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment, and the Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC), the President said Nigeria is reaping from the efforts his administration has made to consciously improve the investment environment.

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‘‘Nigeria’s pavilion at the Expo 2020 clearly shows why we remain the most viable and attractive investment destination in Africa. Our location, our natural resources, our population, and our regulations are there for all to see. Nigeria is on its way to become a leading industrial and trading nation in Africa,” special media aide, Femi Adesina quoted Buhari as saying.

‘‘To achieve this, our government focused on policies, projects, and programs that support private sector investors. We introduced numerous fiscal incentives and infrastructure projects aimed at enhancing the viability of investments.

‘‘Despite the adverse global economic environment of recent years, Nigeria’s investment environment has greatly improved both at the national and sub-national levels.’’

The president also assured captains of industry, and entrepreneurs, who have shown interest and commitment to further enhance trade and investment relations with Nigeria, that his administration would continue to work with them to improve the business climate especially as the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) comes into full effect.

‘‘Just last month at the Intra Africa Trade fair in Durban, I reminded business leaders that most of Africa’s challenges, whether security, economic or corruption, can be traced to our inability to domesticate the production of our most basic requirements and provide jobs to our teeming and dynamic youth population.

‘‘I am pleased that this Forum focuses on ‘Unveiling Trade and Investment Opportunities in Nigeria,’ and will encourage you all to keep an open mind and look beyond the challenges.

‘‘In this room, we have governors, ministers, and heads of government agencies that can address all your questions and concerns. We are here to support you and I hope you will all take this opportunity to move your investment decisions forward,’’ he said.

The Nigerian leader also used the occasion to express profound gratitude to his hosts, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the President of the United Arab Emirates and the Emir of Abu Dhabi, for their unwavering commitment to strengthening trade and investment relations between both countries through various initiatives, partnerships, and support.