Buhari Visits Benin Republic

Benin RepublicThe Nigerian President is not relenting in his efforts towards building the required coalition to effectively tackle the challenge of insurgency in Nigeria’s north-east.

Barely days after holding talks with his Cameroonian counterpart on areas of cooperation in the fight against the insurgents, including strengthening border security, President Muhammadu Buhari on Saturday paid a one-day visit to Benin Republic in continuation of the effort.

During his meeting with President Boni Yayi, coinciding with the anniversary of the country’s independence, President Buhari pledged to build on the success already achieved in creating a synergy among the Lake Chad Basin Commission members.

Buhari Visits USA

BuhariPresident Muhammadu Buhari has arrived in the United States for that historic meeting with U.S President Barack Obama.

The President arrived at Andrew’s Air Force Base Sunday afternoon and is said to be lodging at the Blair Mansion, on Pennsylvania Avenue, in DC.

Earlier, a statement from the White House said that the U.S President is looking forward to President Buhari’s visit, during which both leaders will be discussing the menace of Boko Haram and how to tackle insurgency.

President Buhari is making this visit, accompanied by a 33-man delegation, who will hold consultations with their U.S counterparts, and other events, aimed at building strong Nigeria-U.S relations.

Also up for discussion during the visit is how the United States would help Nigeria track billions of stolen assets and increase U.S military assistance.

The visit has been seen as a seal on U.S improving ties with Nigeria since Buhari won the April presidential election.

U.S Offers To Help Nigeria Recover Stolen Funds, Assets

stolen fundsThe United States Government says it will offer help to Nigeria in tracking billions of dollars of stolen funds and assets.

The government also said that the United States’ military will offer assistance to Nigeria in the fight against Islamic militants.

A White House statement says that this is part of what is expected to feature during discussion between Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari and U.S. President, Barack Obama in Washington DC.

The cooperation between former President Goodluck Jonathan and the United States government had virtually grounded to a halt over issues, including the alleged refusal of Jonathan to investigate corruption and human rights abuses.

President Obama had long seen Nigeria as arguably the most important influential country in Sub-Saharan Africa and had always been willing to help Nigeria in counter terrorism training.

Since Buhari’s election, Washington is said to have committed 5 million dollars in new support for multi national task force to fight terrorism.

This is in addition to 34million dollars it had provided to Nigeria, Chad Cameroon and Niger for equipment and logistics.

PAN Commences Production Of New Generation Vehicles, SUVs

PAN-2Peugeot Automobile Nigeria (PAN) Limited has organised a nationwide test-drive for some selected members of the media from Lagos to PAN’s Corporate headquarters in Kaduna, North-west Nigeria, aimed at creating public awareness on a number of its new generation vehicles.

Notably among its brands in the past are 504, 404, 505, 406, 307 and 508.

However, the company has commenced production of new generation vehicles such as 301, 3008 and 4008, as the 3008 and 4008 brands took inspiration from the SUV.

The company’s Managing Director, Mr Ibrahim Boyi, said the vehicles still maintain old attributes of durability, luxury and ruggedness, with added new attributes of style and fuel efficiency to put it as the leading automobile company in Sub Saharan Africa.

He said the objective of the media test was to restate the values of Peugeot vehicles through the unbiased driving experience of motoring editors and other experts, adding that it was also to inform the public about the evolution of Peugeot vehicles that are synonymous with quality.

Mr Boyi stressed that the test enabled the media team to have an intimate experience with the products, and exposure to PAN’s quality production processes and quality assurances of its vehicles portfolio.

He said the continuous patronage of Peugeot vehicles by government and Nigerians would not only improve the fortunes of the company, but would also translate into providing employment opportunities for the citizens.



Nollywood Holds “Magic Wand” Over Africa – Maitta Fahnbulleh

Liberian singer, Maitta Fahnbulleh popularly known as DD has called on actors and movie makers in the Nigerian film industry, Nollywood, to produce movies that reflect true African culture; stating that the industry holds a ‘magic wand’ over Sub Saharan Africa.

“I fight a lot with my Nigerian actor colleagues because they hold the magic wand today on this continent. The power of Nigerian movie is right across the sub Saharan Africa”. She said.

She said the stories told in Nollywood movies do not reflect African values adding that “good stories can be told”.

Speaking about her career, Nollywood and her country during an exclusive interview on Channels Television, she said the media has been dominated by foreign ideals and cultures.

She said  “the media has been overtaken by a lot of foreign culture,” which African children are watching and emulating and stakeholders in the industry aren’t countering this.

Maitta Fahnbulleh grew up with her grandmother who would usually take her to ‘Aladura’ church services. At age 5 or 6, she fell in love with the music at the church services.

Speaking about Liberia being tagged a “war ravaged” nation by international media, Fahnbulleh said “it is”.

She disclosed that information released by the Carter Centre show that 40% of citizens in the country live with mental illness as a result of the war.

The first Liberian civil war was an internal conflict in Liberia from 1989 until 1996. In 1999 the second civil war broke out.



Nigeria Has Highest TB Disease Burden In Africa – NMA

The Nigerian Medical Association on Sunday released a press statement calling on the Federal Government to make the fight against Tuberculosis one of its Centenary anniversary projects by massively investing in TB research activities towards the discovery of the much needed anti-TB vaccine.

As part of the group’s efforts to mark the 2013 World Tuberculosis Day, themed ‘In My Life Time,’ the President of the association, Dr. Osahon Enabulele said different stakeholders in the society need to wake up to the reality that Nigeria has the highest TB disease burden in Africa and 10th largest in the whole world.

“We therefore call on the federal government to accord top priority to budgetary allocations to the health sector by complying with the Abuja declaration of 2001 by allocating the prescribed 15% of Nigeria’s national budget to health care. This we believe, with sanity in public spending, would help to positively address many if not all, of Nigeria’s diseases of public health concern that continue to denigrate the image of our beloved country, Nigeria.” The statement read.

According to the 2012 global TB report, considerable progress has been made all over the world despite the insurgence of HIV/AIDS considered hitherto as a major impediment to the control efforts.

However, the statement disclosed that “communal violence, sectoral clashes, various forms of insurgences, natural disasters and deleterious effects of climate change, unhealthy living conditions; tend to paint a sordid picture for the future of anti-TB campaign in reality.”

Dr. Enabuelele emphasized the need for the Government to take heed to the slogan ‘Stop Tb In My Life Time’ and called on research organisations to give greater attention to Nigerian prone issues like TB.