Tyson Fury To Make Boxing Comeback In June

FILE COPY Former heavyweight world boxing champion Tyson Fury Photo Credit: AFP


Former heavyweight world boxing champion Tyson Fury is to make his comeback for a first fight in two-and-a-half years in Manchester on June 9 with his opponent still to be named, promoter Frank Warren announced on Thursday.

The 29-year-old Briton — who has not fought since his shock win against Wladimir Klitschko in November 2015 to become the then undisputed heavyweight world champion — was cleared to fight again in December by UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) after accepting a backdated two-year ban for testing positive for the banned steroid Nandrolone.

“I can’t wait to get in there and prove I am the best, even after all this time out,” said Fury.

Fury and his cousin and fellow heavyweight Hughie Fury, 23, tested positive in February 2015. However, they were not charged by UKAD until June 2016, by which time Fury had beaten Klitschko.

Both fighters blamed the result on eating wild boar.

A rematch with Klitschko was scheduled for July 2016 but Fury postponed the fight, citing a sprained ankle, on the same day the UKAD charge was announced.

Fury also failed a test for cocaine in September 2016 and later admitted using the recreational drug to deal with depression related to his injury and UKAD problems.

He has previously laid down a challenge to compatriot Anthony Joshua, who unified the WBO, IBF and WBA titles against New Zealand’s Joseph Parker in Cardiff last month.

However, Fury will have to wait for his shot at Joshua, who is targeting a blockbuster unification bout with fellow unbeaten world champion Deontay Wilder, who holds the WBC heavyweight belt.

Fury said he believes Wilder is “top of the pile” of the current crop of heavyweights but insisted “they’re all very vulnerable and very beatable too”.

Warren, though, believes Fury needs “three or four fights” before being ready to take on Joshua.

“He’s going to be busy. He needs to get some rounds under his belt,” Warren said.

“He needs to get himself fighting fit. He’s fit but he needs to be fighting fit.”


Edo Govt Gives Account Of Funds Disbursed To Some LGs

Edo State Commissioners Assume OfficeThe 18 Local Government Councils in Edo state shared N2.95 billion for the month of July as against N2.18 billion disbursed in June by the state’s Joint Account and Allocation Committee (JAAC).

Addressing journalists after the monthly meeting of the committee, presided over by the governor of Edo state, Godwin Obaseki, at the Government House in Benin City, the Edo state capital, the head of Local Government Administration, Esan south east, Macauley Ehonor, said the July allocation increased by N770 million over the June allocation.

Mr. Ehonor explained that N1.45 billion of the N2. 95 billion July allocation was used for mandatory expenditures such as payment of primary school teachers’ salaries, one per cent training fund, as well as five per cent payment for traditional rulers.

He added that the distributable sum left for the 18 LG councils was put at N1.49 billion, while the Paris club refund would be used to pay outstanding salaries of workers across the 18 local government councils.

He further said that the electronic collection of taxes, levies and fixed rates in the entire local government areas in the state commenced in July, and urged members of the public to comply with the directive.

States’ Financial Crisis Will Soon Be History – Kwara Governor

States' Financial Crisis Will Soon Be History – Kwara GovernorThe Kwara State Governor, Abdulfatah Ahmed, is hopeful that the financial crisis some Nigerian states are facing  will soon be over. 

In an interview with reporters on Wednesday at the Ilorin International Airport, on his arrival from a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari, Governor Ahmed revealed that the President had promised to look into the issue.

At the meeting, State Governors and the President had considered ways of solving the crises that had led to the inability of some States to fulfil salary obligation to workers in the states.

The Federal Government promised to refund monies the state governments had expended on Federal projects in their various states to help offset some months of the salaries owed.

The State Governments were also asked to look inwards and increase their Internally Generated Revenue to ensure enough funds are generated for salary payment.

However, Governor Ahmed noted that various issues including the economy, differences at the National Assembly and States owing salaries were given in-depth attention.

He stated that the decision of the party, as it affects issues at the National Assembly, was supreme, expressing optimism that the challenges would make the ruling All Progressives Congress stronger in the long run.

In another development, the Osun State Government had assured its Civil servants and Pensioners that the state would pay their remunerations by the end of June.

The inability of the Osun State government to meet the payment of eight months salaries has been attributed to the drop in Federal Allocation.


I Will Pay Osun Workers Before June 30 – Aregbesola

Aregbesola_Osun-election-resultThe Osun State Governor, Rauf Aregbesola, has promised to pay the salaries of workers in the state before the end of June.

Aregbesola made this promise in a statement released in Osogbo on Sunday by the Director, Bureau of Communications and Strategy, Mr Semiu Okanlawon.

The statement read: “Before the end of June, workers would be paid their salaries”.

The Governor stated that he had a great dream for the state, explaining that he desire to achieve the dream had contributed to why he was in hurry to begin programmes which had earned him applause even outside the country.

“The dream has not gone awry and it is a clear vision that Osun must be on its feet, self-reliant and be a reference point in Nigeria. The race to ensure development within the first term of Aregbesola was informed by the fear of what is happening now.

“Aregbesola wanted an Osun State that is self-reliant. That Osun State, almost two decades after its creation, could not boast of tax-paying companies speak volume about the magnitude of the works that awaited the Aregbesola administration.

“But he did not shy away from this task of industrialisation. Within his first term, his government had caused investors to bring up companies, such as the Omoluabi Garment Factory, Osogbo and Adulawo/RLG Technology Company in Ilesa.

“Just last month, a leading telephone line company, Airtel, came to establish partnership with the Adulawo/RLG Company. These are aside the various agro-allied companies which have benefited from the growth schemes of the Aregbesola administration throughout the state.

“The government has also commenced aggressive drive for the development of the solid mineral sector with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding with an Australian mining firm, Andalusia Mining Industry.

“It was in the same vein that the idea of an airport for aircraft maintenance was conceived.

”Only a lazy administration would accept the tag of Osun State as a ‘civil servant’ state as excuse for not developing initiatives for industrialisation.

”To accept that our state must continue to survive on the meagre inflow through what goes to the civil servants alone is to accept that we would continue to depend on external forces for our survival,” the statement further read.

Workers in the state are being owed seven months salary as it was not stated whether the backlogs would be paid in full or it would be in part.

Iraqi Forces To Take Tikrit From IS In 1 Week

iraqiIraqi forces has reiterated its plans and hope to retake the city of Tikrit from Islamic State (IS) within a week, a commander disclosed to journalists.

The head of a Shia militia brigade, fighting alongside government forces, said that IS militants still held about 70% of Tikrit’s town centre.

The Shia leader expressed optimism that Tikrit would be “liberated,” even if it required street-to-street fighting.

Soldiers and militiamen have reportedly retaken key sites, including a Police headquarters and a hospital.

Muain al-Khmdy, a commander of the Iranian-backed Badr Brigade, said that pro-government forces would surround IS-held areas of the city and then attack, aiming to drive IS fighters from their location.

Several hundred militants are believed to be operating in Tikrit, research revealed.

The pro-government force ranged against them includes about 3,000 Iraqi troops with 20,000 Shia militiamen and a much smaller force of Sunni tribesmen.

Earlier, Iraqi Defence Minister, Khaled al-Obedi stated that recapturing Tikrit could be a turning point in the battle against IS.

The Defence minister described the city as a stepping stone to other IS-held territory, including Mosul – the country’s second largest city.

“The liberation of this city [Tikrit] and province will serve as a launch pad for reclaiming the north and the west of Iraq,” Khaled said.

Tikrit was the home town of ousted former leader Saddam Hussein.

Anti-government Sunnis loyal to Saddam’s Baath party collaborated with the militants when they overran a huge swathe of Iraq, including Tikrit, last June.

The large role of Iranian-backed Shia fighters in the battle for Tikrit has raised fears of reprisals against the mainly Sunni population.

US officials are said to be concerned at reports that Shia militias have been setting fire to buildings as they advance.

Kaduna: Yero Releases N800 Million Pensioners’ Entitlements

Kaduna governorState government has paid the retirement benefits worth over N840 Million Naira to 309 retired civil servants; who have served the state meritoriously.

While speaking during the presentation of cheques to the pensioners, Governor Yero noted that, despite the dwindling revenue accruing to Kaduna, the state government has expended over N2 billion for the payment of gratuities of civil servants who retired between January to July, 2014.

The governor also disclosed that his administration has paid a total of N4.7 billion as backlog of retirement benefits for the state civil servants dating back to seven years, and also cleared the backlog of gratuities and death benefits of retirees and deceased staff in the service.

It was a moment of joy for this senior citizens as they filed out to receive their cheques from the governor, most of whom just retired from service last year.

The beneficiaries are batches 5, 6 and 7 of pensioners who were captured in the months of May, June and July, 2014. They filed out to receive the cheques from the state governor in the admiration of their relations and colleagues.

While pledging the commitment of the State government towards ensuring prompt payment of pensions and other retirement benefits, Governor Yero said his administration remained committed to settling all pension liabilities as part of efforts to raise the production capacity of the civil service.

Some of the beneficiaries expressed appreciation to the state government for the payment of their pension and gratuities, and also promised to reciprocate the gesture by voting massively for the governor, who is seeking a re-election for another four year term.

It is expected that the wealth of experience that this pensioners have acquired over the years in service will be an added advantage in terms of initiating viable ventures with the money.

FRSC Warns Against Fake Licenses And Number Plates

frsc-logoThe Federal Road Safety Corps has warned motorists and drivers against patronizing touts in order not to obtain fake drivers’ license, number plates as it will start arresting those without new number plates from July 1.

The FRSC Secretary from the headquarter in Abuja, Commander Kayode Fanola announced this while briefing journalists on the need to sensitize the public to beware of patronizing touts.

He urged motorists to follow the procedure by patronizing the legally recognized agencies in the issuance of drivers’ licenses and plate numbers to avoid being charged to court. He added that if arrested with the fake documents, it could be likened with having fake Naira notes and international passports.

He therefore noted that the Corps is collaborating with banks to ensure that drivers’ license being presented are verified to detect and arrest offenders, while also urging state governments to consider the issue of the drivers’ license and plate numbers as security concern and not means of generating funds alone.

Comm. Fanola announced that the last day of the month of June 2014, will be the final day for the renewal and obtaining of new number plates and warned motorists to avail themselves of the opportunity to obtain the documents before the deadline.

59 Months After, Nikkei Swings Above 14,000

Japan’s Nikkei average soared 2.8 per cent in morning trading today, breaking above 14,000 for the first time since June 2008.

Investors were playing catch-up from an extended holiday, as last week’s strong U.S. jobs data eased concerns over the health of Japan’s biggest export market.

Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 index was up 364.22 points at 14,058.26 after closing for public holidays on Friday and Monday.

Japan’s top government spokesman said credit for the leap should go to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s efforts to kick start Japan’s economy, dubbed ‘Abenomics’.

A Stronger-than-expected US non-farm payrolls for April, with 165,000 jobs being added and the unemployment rate falling to 7.5 per cent, the lowest since December 2008, provided much needed relief to investors rattled by a series of soft data in recent weeks.

The United States is Japan’s biggest export market, followed closely by China.

More Rains This Year – Meteorological Agency

Nigerians living along the Niger River basin should brace up for more flood this year, going by the latest warning from the Nigeria Meteorological Agency.

The MET office gave the prediction while presenting its report of this year’s rainfall expectations.

It put the commencement of the rains from February running through June, with a lull between early October and late December across the country.