Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu dismissed on Friday as “background noises”, the fact that his former Chief of Staff agreed to provide testimony on behalf of the state in two graft cases in which the Israeli leader has been questioned as a suspect.
In the Facebook video posting, Netanyahu dismissed the developments as “the inevitable scandal-of-the-week”.
The four-term premier has denied any wrongdoing. His family spokesman said Netanyahu would withstand what he described as a “witch-hunt” designed to force him from office.
The decision by Ari Harow to turn state’s witness as part of a plea bargain in his own, separate corruption case adds a new dimension to a long-running investigation involving Netanyahu.
Pope Francis has condemned Saturday’s deadly bomb attack on a bus convoy in Syria.
In his Easter message delivered to thousands of pilgrims who gathered in St. Peters Square at the Vatican, he said the bombing which killed more than 100 people near the city of Aleppo, was “the latest vile attack on fleeing refugees”.
The pope, who also spoke against terrorism and corruption, expressed hope that God would send succor to the people of Syria.
“May God in a particular way, sustain the efforts of those who are actively working to bring healing and comfort to the civilian population of Syria, the beloved and martyred Syria, who are victims of a war that does not cease to sow horror and death,” he said.
At an earlier vigil, he spoke of migrants’ pain, and criticised “paralysing and barren bureaucracies that stand in the way of change”.
Meanwhile, Coptic churches in Egypt also marked Easter after last week’s attack claimed by Islamic State militants, left 45 people dead.
Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari and his Moroccan counterpart, King Mohammed (VI), have resolved to work towards deepening relations between both countries.
In a telephone conversation initiated by King Mohammed (VI), the Moroccan King asked after the president’s health and expressed satisfaction at his rate of improvement.
In a statement, the president’s Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, explained that both leaders also discussed the current stage of the Morocco-Nigeria Atlantic Crude Oil Pipeline project.
The statement added that King Mohammed (VI) thanked President Buhari for Nigeria’s support in returning Morocco to the African Union, while notifying the President of his country’s request to also join the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).
Furthermore, the Moroccan king was said to have expressed his intention to make the Rabat-Abuja strategic partnership a framework for regular consultation and cooperation on African issues of mutual interest to both countries.
The Nasarawa State Governor, Tanko Al-makura, says his focus this year, would be on rural dwellers in the state in order to give them a sense of belonging and to alleviate the hardship they face especially during the raining season.
He emphasised this after an aerial inspection of the ongoing bridges and culverts in the 13 Local Government Areas and development areas of the state.
He said the move is to add value to the quality of life of people in the hinterlands who are predominantly farmers.
He said,”this is the approach we are making towards ensuring that we add value to the quality of life of people living in the rural areas.
“Like I said, this year, the emphasis of my administration will be 100 per cent given to rural areas, their infrastructure in terms of roads and bridges, their schools, their hospitals and a lot of their utilities.
“At least for once, let the ordinary man living in the village, living in the hinterland have a cause to have a relief that there is a government that is thinking on his behalf”.
He expressed optimism that before the year 2017 runs out, the rural areas would have basic amenities and that will motivate the youth to engage in some meaningful ventures that will minimise idleness.
“I believe before the end of the year, the villages will turn to cities where all the youths will go back and participate in making a living through farming and any other thing and that will reduce restiveness in the state and at the same time empower the youth,” he said.
The year was ushered in with the flag off of over 625 bridges and culverts in all local government and development areas of the state and the governor reiterated that the move was propelled by his resolve to alleviate the hardship faced by rural dwellers who are mostly farmers during the rains.
Al-makura therefore hinted that the ongoing constructions are expected to be completed before the rains sets in so that there would be ease of mobility and farmers can transport their produce to the market without any hitch.
Experts believe technology has the power to give Africans home and abroad, the ability to start controlling the narratives of the African stories being told.
Speaking during the Social Media Week Lagos, tech enthusiast and former CNN Anchor, Zain Verjee, said technology is a viable tool to aid Africans; including those living in rural areas, in telling the world about themselves.
She said this is achievable through the use of open platforms and apps to wrestle the narrative from European and western media and to ensure Africa tells its own story in its unique way.
The only way to fix the situation of western media telling our own stories, according to her, is to harness the talents in our country.
“There are millions of diasporans all around the world that want to share their story, that want to remain connected to Africa that have something they want to say.
“Anyone around the world who is interested in sharing their African story can come on to an open platform and share it”.
She believes that if various categories of content creators such as writers, video editors and photographers come together, Akoma exists as a canvass for them all to tell their stories in their own way.
The Acting President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, is calling on Nigeria’s anti-corruption agencies to learn from the international community on the model some “less corrupt” countries have used to curb the menace in their country.
Osinbajo, who described corruption as systemic and life threatening, also appealed to the international community to assist Nigeria in the identification, recovery and repatriation of stolen assets.
Meanwhile, the Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption, Professor Itse Sagay, decried the perception and reaction of the public to corruption, saying that corruption is omnipresent in Nigeria.
Also recently, the Kwara State Governor, Abdulfatah Ahmed, called on members of the judiciary to stand against corruption and uphold the rule of law.
According to him, the recent happenings on alleged corruption especially against some members of the judiciary, make the public question the integrity of the judiciary.
While he advocated that rights of all citizens must be upheld regardless of age or gender, Ahmed also noted that the integrity, independence and impartiality of the judiciary are essential to promoting human rights and fostering development.
Forwards: Ahmed Musa (Leicester City, England); Kelechi Iheanacho (Manchester City, England); Moses Simon (KAA Gent, Belgium); Victor Moses (Chelsea FC, England); Alex Iwobi (Arsenal FC, England); Isaac Success (Watford FC, England); Noah Joel Bazee (Hannover 96, Germany); Victor Osimhen (Wolfsburg FC, Germany)
The trial of the Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki, over alleged false assets declaration, has continued, with the cross examination of prosecution witness, Mr Samuel Madujemu.
The witness told the tribunal that he is not in possession of the report of investigation conducted on the senate president’s asset declaration. Under cross examination, the defence counsel, Kanu Agabi, asked if he was a member of the team in 2006 when a team was set up to investigate Saraki’s claim.
The witness said he was not a member of the team but was a member of the team set up in 2015 to review the earlier report by the 2006 team.
When asked why he swore an affidavit affirming knowledge of the investigation, Mr Madujemu said that the earlier report as told to him by the EFCC, was scanty.
Also, when asked if he had any record by the EFCC declaring the report scanty, he said that he had a mental record because he had only been informed orally by the EFCC members of the team.
The witness was also asked why he did not invite the Senate President as part of his investigation and in response, he said the statements on the senate president’s asset form were enough for the investigation.
He further stated that besides that, it was the prerogative of the chairman of the Code of Conduct Bureau to invite a public servant for interview, even though it was the convention at the bureau.
The United States government has confirmed Attorney General, Jeff Sessions, met with Russia’s ambassador in 2016.
At his January confirmation hearing, Mr Sessions, a senator at the time, said he had no contracts with the Russians during the campaign, stressing that he never met any Russian official to discuss campaign issues.
The democrats, have however accused him of lying under oath, saying he must resign.
They have also called on him to step aside from the FBI investigation which he oversees as Attorney General such as the alleged Russian interference in the U.S election.
Mr Trump’s National Security Adviser, Michael Flynn, was fired last month after he misled the White House about his conversations with the Russian ambassador, allegedly regarding sanctions against Moscow.
Nigeria’s beach soccer team have been drawn in group B of the 2017 FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup in the Bahamas.
The Beach Eagles will play European representatives Italy, Mexico from the Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) and the champions from the Asian Football Confederation.
This year’s event will be Nigeria’s fifth trip to the beach soccer world cup.
They reached the quarter-finals of the competition in 2007 and 2011.
Meanwhile, African champions, Senegal, are up against hosts Bahamas, Ecuador and Switzerland in group A.
The tournament is expected to kick off on April 27.