Millions Of Dollars Lost As Elephants On Tour Wreak Havoc In China

UNMING, June 1, 2021 (Xinhua) -- Aerial photo taken on May 28, 2021 shows the herd of wandering wild Asian elephants in Eshan County, Yuxi City, southwest China's Yunnan Province. (Xinhua/Hu Chao) Hu Chao / XINHUA / Xinhua via AFP
June 1, 2021 (Xinhua) — Aerial photo taken on May 28, 2021 shows the herd of wandering wild Asian elephants in Eshan County, Yuxi City, southwest China’s Yunnan Province. (Hu Chao/AFP)


A herd of 15 wandering elephants on an epic trek through southwestern China have entered villages to gorge on crops, broken into barns, and caused a million dollars of losses.

Over the past week, the animals drained a water tank, helped themselves to a cornfield, and guzzled supplies after crashing into a barn, state broadcaster CCTV said.

It is unclear why the wild Asian elephants, a protected species in China, strayed from the Xishuangbanna National Nature Reserve in Yunnan province.

Their destination so far is unknown as well.

READ ALSO: China Confirms First Human Case Of Bird Flu Strain

But since April, the large animals have embarked on a 500km journey, closely monitored by residents and authorities, with hundreds of people mobilised to ensure public safety.

On Tuesday, Yunnan authorities said the herd was in a city just 20km from its provincial capital where millions live.

Experts believe the leader of the group might have led it astray, adding that it is rare for them to trek so far.

Since mid-April, the elephants have wrecked around 56 hectares of crops, causing an estimated 6.8 million yuan ($1.07 million) in losses, CCTV said.

No casualties have been reported so far, with locals attempting to guide the animals with food and by blocking roads with trucks.

The wild elephant population in Yunnan is around 300, up from 193 in the 1980s, reported Xinhua.

But there have been more reports of such elephants wandering into villages and harming crops in recent years, with the plants they usually eat gradually replaced by non-edible varieties amid forest expansion, said, local officials.


Canadian NATO Helicopter Goes Missing Off Greek Island

President Buhari To Swear In Ministers August 21


A Canadian military helicopter operating as part of a NATO surveillance force has gone missing in international waters between Greece and Italy, the Greek air force said on Wednesday.

Initial reports said the helicopter had been 50 nautical miles off the Greek island of Kefalonia, it added.


Ogun Government To Launch ‘Waste To Energy’ Project

ogun state, waste to wealthThe Ogun state government has revealed its readiness to launch the European Union, (EU) sponsored feasibility study on the ‘Waste to Wealth Energy’ project, aimed at improving power supply in Ogun State.

Billed to be launched on Wednesday, November 9, in Abeokuta by the Ogun State Governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, the project is to be carried out by the state government in collaboration with Lafarge-Holcim Africa.

It seeks to convert waste generated in the state to energy.

Ogun State Commissioner for Environment, Mr Bolaji Oyeleye, who disclosed this in a statement said: “The project, when completed, will translate our waste to wealth, improve power supply, and promote green energy.

“It will also bring to an end the present practice of dumping waste in land-filled areas or dump sites, in line with our goal of zero waste to dump site.

“The fruit of this effort will be the establishment of thermal power plants in Ogun State, with the pilot plant in Abeokuta,” the Environment Commissioner stated.

Oyeleye also added that the project had received acceptability both from within and outside Nigeria, while considering that as a confirmation of the confidence that people have in the unrelenting efforts of the Governor Amosun-led administration.

“In this wise, the state government secured the support of the European Union (EU) which has agreed to sponsor the feasibility study for the project and in fact made funds available for the immediate takeoff of the feasibility study by a team of international consultants,” Oyeleye said.

The Commissioner who revealed that the feasibility study would involve field trips and house-to-house enumeration, appealed to the people of Ogun State to cooperate fully with the team of assessors, whenever they visit their homes as well as organisations, in the course of the exercise.

“This project is for all the good people of Ogun State and indeed the first of its kind in Nigeria.

He therefore urged them to join efforts with the government in ensuring that citizens get the dividends of democracy.

Among those expected to witness the event include a delegation from the EU, Lafarge-Holcim Africa, members of the Ogun State Executive Council as well as other stakeholders.

Belgian Media Say Brussels Prime Suspect Not Arrested

beliganBelgian media which earlier reported the arrest on Wednesday of a prime suspect in Tuesday’s bomb attacks in Brussels said the person detained was not, in fact, Najim Laachraoui.

La Libre Belgique newspaper said another person had been arrested. DH, which first reported the story, also said the man detained in the Anderlecht district had been misidentified.

Buhari Arrives FEC Meeting Early

Muhammadu-Buhari-Nigeria-PresidentPresident Muhammadu Buhari surprised members of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) this morning (Wednesday) as he arrived the council chambers for the council’s meeting at about 9:50am.

Some council members were already in the hall for the meeting slated for 10:00am when the President arrived.

Immediately he stepped into the hall, the President noted the absence of most of the council members and jokingly said “I came too early,” as he asked members in attendance to recite the National Anthem.

Only about 19 out of the 36 ministers were in attendance when the meeting started.

The Head of Service of the Federation, Winifred Oyo-Ita and the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Babachir Lawal, were also in attendance.

Boko Haram Militants In Niger Kill Five As Regional Attacks Mount

Boko HaramBoko Haram militants killed two soldiers and three civilians in Niger’s southern border town of Abadam in an overnight raid.

Two security sources told Reuters on Wednesday, in the third suspected attack by the group in less than 24 hours.

Four militants detonated suicide bombs on Lake Chad, also overnight, killing three of the attackers but no one else.

Separately, militants attacked a convoy in northern Cameroon on Wednesday, although there were no reported deaths.

Siasia Invites 31 Players To U-23 Training Camp

siasiaHead Coach of the Nigerian national U-23 team, Samson Siasia, has called up 31 players to camp in preparation for next month’s All-Africa Games, in Brazzaville, Congo.

The list, which is made up of mostly players who qualified the Dream Team for the games, has some new faces including Lucky Jimoh, Bright Onyedikachi and Olisah Ndah amongt others.

The invited players are expected to report in Abuja from Wednesday, August 12.

The dream team will face Ghana, Senegal and Egypt in Group B of the men’s football tournament from September 3 to 18.

Recently, Siasia picked 20 players for the crucial African U-23 Championship qualifier against Congo in Pointe-Noire.




Siasia Picks 20 Players For Congo Return Leg Clash

siasiaNigeria’s Under-23 Coach, Samson Siasia, has picked 20 players for Sunday’s crucial African U-23 Championship qualifier against Congo in Pointe-Noire.

While addressing the players after their last practice match at the FIFA/NFF Goal Project in Abuja on Wednesday, Coach Siasia said that all the players are good enough to make the trip, but it was impossible for everyone to be in Congo for the battle.

He assured the players left out to continue to work on their game as they could form part of the team for the All Africa Games.

“For those of you selected, this is a golden opportunity for you to show to Nigerians and the world that your first leg victory was not a flash in the pan, and as such you must fight hard when we get to Pointe Noire and beat the Congolese.”

The team takes a slim 2-1 win to Pointe Noire and must avoid defeat to stand a chance of qualifying for the eight nation CAF Under-23 Championship in Senegal.

The selected players for the task ahead are: Daniel Emmanuel, Atanda Sodiq, Stanley Amuzie, Azubuike Okechukwu, Olusegun Oduduwa, Erhun Obanor, Godwin Saviour, Etebo Oghenekaro, Junior Ajayi, Usman Mohammed, Etor Daniel, Yusuf Mohammed, Chima Akas, Semiu Liadi, Shehu Abdullahi, Kingsley Sokari, Taiwo Awoniyi, Umar Aminu, Austin Oladapo and Sincere Seth.

EFCC Arraigns Nigeria’s Former Head Of Service

efccThe Former Head of Service of the Federation, Mr Steve Oronsaye, is to appear before Justice Gabriel Kolawole of the Federal High Court Abuja, to answer charges of corruption, bordering on 1.2 billion Naira fraud.

Mr Orosaye on Thursday returned to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission’s custody ahead of Monday’s arraignment.

He had earlier been arrested on Wednesday by the anti-graft agency but granted an administrative bail after several hours of questioning.

He was thereafter asked to return the following day to be formally charged to court.

The former top civil servant was appointed the Head of Service of the Federation in 2009 and is alleged to have been involved in bogus contract award between 2009 and 2010

Senegalese President Holds Talks With Jonathan

senegaleseThe Senegalese President, Mr Macky Sall and the President of Nigeria, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, met on Wednesday to discuss issues of concerns to both countries.

The meeting was held in closed-doors after which President Sall of Senegal briefed reporters.

He said that the ”brief solidarity visit” was to pay his solidarity and discuss some issues that concern both national and regional affairs of both nations.

The Senegalese President arrived the Presidential Villa at about 6:00pm local time.

Mr Sall expressed concerns over insecurity in north-east Nigeria and praised the present effort to contain the situation.

“I came to bring my solidarity with the situation in the north of Nigeria and also have quick exchange with him on this national situation and the situation of ECOWAS.

“It is very important to let him know about our solidarity and our concern about what is happening in Nigeria and the whole of West Africa,” he said.

The Senegalese leader noted that other deliberations with the Nigerian President, centred on the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).

He immediately returned to his country after the parley with Journalists.

Communities in Nigeria’s north-east have witnessed over five years of terror attacks by members of a terrorist group, the Boko Haram, which the military is tackling in a renewed counter-terrorism effort in the region.

Mourinho Hails Chelsea Team, Singles Out Drogba

ChelseaChelsea Manager, Jose Mourinho, has hailed the bravery of his team to see-off the challenge by Tottenham at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday night to maintain their lead atop the English Premier League.

He said that his team played a good game against a spirited Spurs side who should have gone ahead when Harry Kane’s header hit the bar. The attempt brought Chelsea into the game, subsequently taking the lead through Hazard.

The Portuguese also applauded the effort of his aging Ivorian striker, Didier Drogba (now 36) who set up Hazard for the opener and scored the second before Remy made it three.

When asked about what he felt on Drogba’s performance he said, “Yes, it is remarkable. Didier is a team player, one of these with an old school mentality. Not selfish, not vain, a humble guy who plays for the team, fights for the team. Fantastic,” Mourinho said.

“When he is on the bench and comes on for the last few minutes to help the team defend, he does that with the same enthusiasm as when he starts a game against Tottenham.

“We played against him when he was at Galatasaray last season so I could feel the kind of potential he still has and I was expecting exactly this, with not even a doubt about a player who is not playing every game. I knew he would adapt very well mentally to his role.”

However, Spurs Boss felt hard done as his side failed to convert opportunities they had in the opening stages, with the loss now stretching their poor run at the bridge to 28 games since 1990.

“We started very well and made some chances, but they scored with their first chance and the game changed. That is the difference,” Pochettino said.

“I’m very disappointed with the result because 3-0 is harsh but we can take some positives. We were very brave at the start.

“If we scored when Kane hit the bar then the game changes, but we were playing a very good team. Our history here is difficult but we came here with the idea to take three points. That was our intention in the beginning, but in football it’s hard to manage the luck.”

Heavy Sounds Of Artillery In Damaturu Despite Normalcy

damaturuThe normalcy enjoyed from morning to afternoon in the troubled Damaturu, Yobe State after the relaxation of curfew on Wednesday was slightly punctuated on Wednesday evening with isolated and heavy gunshots being heard at the southern parts of Damaturu town.

Residents said they heard sounds of some heavy gunshots along the state university located along the route through which the insurgents had access to the town.

A military officer who pleaded anonymity told Channels Television that security forces heard of the presence of the insurgents in the suburb of the town and are on alert for any return of the leftover sect members.

“We heard of the presence of the Boko Haram members in the outskirt of town and we are on alert. Residents should never be frightened as we are on top of the situation,” he said.

On the heavy sound of gunshots heard, the source said “We are testing some of our equipment in readiness of any eventuality, but be assured that all is well. Kindly tell some of the residents not to panic.

“We are trying to authenticate the presence of the few militants left hanging outskirt of the town,” the source said.