Wednesday, 30 January 2013
Give your relationship a boost by breaking your bad habits
Ah, January.A time when the air is heavy with good intentions, and when everyone has the chance to wipe the slate clean and start afresh.
But while you might be intending to rethink your career strategy or train for a marathon, spare a thought for your relationship too.
Is it the best it can be or have you let bad habits creep into coupledom as well? If so, shake it up this year with these 10 vows.
1) I Will Not Be Glued To My Phone.
Time spent on the sofa together is fun, but if you’re watching TV and checking Twitter and the football scores at the same time, it’s hardly enriching your relationship. Make a simple vow to limit your iPhone usage when you’re together, so even if you’re only watching TV, you’re still able to focus on each other.
2) I Will Not Do My Own Thing All The Time.
Even if you relish your independence, there’s a lot to be said for couples who have shared interests. You might not fancy book club or five-a-side, but there must be something which piques both your interests, be that a cooking course, digital photography or karate. If one of your New Year’s resolutions was to get fit or learn a language, you can kill two birds with one stone.
3) I Will Break Out Of Routine.
There’s nothing less sexy than having a couple’s routine. You might have settled into a pattern of getting Indian takeaway on Friday nights and going shopping in the same place every Saturday but where’s the fun or excitement in that? Vow to mix things up a bit by planning different days out, and surprising your partner with spontaneous ventures.
4) I Will Not Always Say ‘The More The Merrier’.
A good relationship requires quality time spent just the two of you. It might be second nature to invite your brother or your best mate to join you and your partner to the cinema or for Sunday lunch, but try to cut down on the rent-a-crowd so you two have each other all to yourselves once in a while.
5) I Will Not Bottle It All Up.
Is there something which irritates you about your relationship? It could be you feel you’re not being listened to enough, or that you do most of the housework. If neglected, these kind of complaints can cause growing resentment so resolve to be more open with your gripes. Choose a time when you’re alone and unrushed to bring them up, and aim for the chat to be as calm and as good-natured as possible.
6) I Will Not Always Insist On My Own Way.
This month is perfect for a bit of self-reflection too so have a good think about how you behave in your relationship. Have you grown used to getting your own way? If so, vow to balance it out this year with simple moves such as letting your partner pick the film or restaurant on date night.
7) I Will Not Take My Partner For Granted.
You’re feeling secure in your relationship but that’s no excuse for forgetting what made you fall in love in the first place. This year, vow to make your partner feel extra special paying genuine compliments on his/her appearance, cooking or even on how he or she has dealt with a situation. Similarly, don’t be afraid to make a true fuss of him/her just for the hell of it – you don’t need to wait for birthdays and Christmas.
8) I Will Make An Effort With My Appearance.
Don’t let snug coupledom make you lose sight of who you are. It might be bliss to spend all weekend in a oneness but spare a thought for your partner who might crave to see the hot thing he or she fell for originally. Everyone’s grooming routines are different but as a simple start, consign any greying or threadbare underwear to the dustbin, don’t forget to shave, and then really dress up for him and her once in a while.
9) I Will Forget About The Past.
Now we’re in a new year, it’s time to turn the page and forget about events in the past. Wipe the slate clean between you so you don’t bring up historic disputes or reopen old wounds every time the going gets tough. There’s no point sounding like a broken record: if you’re finding it impossible to forgive and forget, maybe this isn't the right relationship for you.
10) I Will Not Ignore The Elephant In The Room.
If you've got serious worries about your relationship, now’s the time to tackle them. If you suspect you’re not on the same page with regards to your future, or if your partner’s behavior is becoming unacceptable for whatever reason, vow to resolve the issues. It might be easier to write down your concerns in a letter, giving your partner time and space to read and react. If your relationship is worth saving, save it now.....
Go ahead and enjoy your relationships.
Tuesday, 29 January 2013
The Boko Haram Islamic sect which has been terrorising some states in the North, particularly Borno, has on Monday agreed to a ceasefire or lay down their arms for peace to prevail.
The agreement was reached after a group suspected to be members of the sect claimed to have held a closed door meeting with the Borno State governor, Alhaji Kashim Shettima, other top government officials and religious leaders from the state.
Briefing journalists after their marathon meeting, the acclaimed commander-in-charge of North and Central Borno, Sheikh Abu Mohammad Abdulazeez Ibn Idris, said after due consultation with the leader of the sect, Shiekh Abubakar Shekau, as well as intervention and pleading from respected individuals and groups in the state, they have all come to terms and agreed to lay down their arms, but insisted that, government should immediately release all their members from custody unconditionally, rebuild their places of worship, and compensate them, among other demands.
Sheikh Abdulazeez said the sect observed that during the lingering insurgency, a lot of muslim women and children have suffered, adding that, they have decided to lay down their arms for peace to reign in Borno and the country at large.
He, however, said: “Henceforth, I am appealing and calling on all our members through this medium to lay down their arms till further notice,” Abdulazeez stated.
On the wanton killings, especially the slaughtering of eight people in Gajigana town of Magumeri council of Borno State on Sunday and burning of public buildings, he totally dissociated Boko Haram sect from the act, insisting that those atrocities were committed by criminals hiding under the guise of Boko Haram.
Meanwhile, the Adviser on Media and Communication to Governor Shettima, while responding said, “Well, I am just hearing from you, but you will agree with me that the issue is that of national security, I am not competent to speak on national security issues. We have a security council in Borno State, I am not a member of that council and of course, you will also agree with me that no governor will speak on such critical security issues, so I cannot speak on the matter. But what I know, which you can also confirm as journalists that have been following the activities of the governor is that from the day he became a governor-elect, even before he was sworn in, he was first to speak on the need for dialogue as the best way out.
“Governor Shettima has been very firm and consistent in his belief as he has regularly advocated, that unless we want to engage in an endless war, the best way out of the crisis is dialogue towards a peaceful resolution. I can confirm to you that Governor Shettima has consistently been exploring different ways to establish means of negotiation for a fruitful dialogue to end the challenges.
“Anytime someone is killed, be it a civilian, a security personnel or any member of the sect, Governor Shettima is deeply pained, he hates to hear that someone loses his or her life, no matter who that person is. He believes that the life every Nigerian is worth preserving. It is the hope and prayers of Governor Shettima that not just peace but indeed sustainable peace, is reclaimed in Borno and the rest of Nigeria in the quickest time because he knows like he says, that no society can thrive without peace.”
An Abuja Area Court sitting in Lugbe, Abuja, on Monday ordered a 16-year-old girl, Maryam Suleiman, and her parents to refund N570,000 to her husband, Mukailu Naibi, over a fraudulent marriage.
Delivering judgment in the case, the judge, Haruna Masanawa, ruled that Suleiman and her parents must refund the money to Naibi within 30 days. Masanawa also ordered that Naibi’s estranged wife, who had filed for divorce, must remain married to him pending the full refund of the amount.
"Based on the evidence before me, the court is convinced that the plaintiff’s parents are dubious people that no child should be proud of.
"They collected money from different suitors, all with the fraudulent intention of marrying their daughter out to them; all of which turned out to be fake promises. This honourable court hereby orders the plaintiff to pay the defendant the sum of N570,000 before divorce is granted to her,’’ Masanawa said.
Naibi of Keke village, Kaduna, whose wife allegedly starved him of sex for two years of their marriage, had demanded N1. 2 million as compensation from the wife’s parents before he would agree to his wife's request for divorce.
Naibi, 37, while testifying in the case, said the amount covered the bride price he paid before marrying Suleiman.
He told the court that the amount also covered the cost of damage done to his house after Suleiman set it on fire before filing for divorce.
Naibi tendered written documents with records of all expenses made on his estranged wife and her parents, in addition to presenting a witness who testified in his favour.
He told the court that his wife had refused to make love to him since they got married two years ago.
"Your worship, since we got married two years ago, my wife never allowed me to make love to her for once and all my attempts to do it always led to fighting. I married her out of love and I still love her, but with this development, I have no choice, but to ask the court to grant her divorce wish for the sake of peace,” Naibi said.
In her testimony, Suleiman said her husband had made love to her once but she was not impressed and so wanted divorce.
"I don’t love him; I don’t love anybody who bears his name and I hate anybody who loves him,” she told the court....
Scientists develop enhanced malaria test - The search for an improved malaria test has received a boost as scientists from the University of Abomey-Calavi, Benin have developed a method for detecting malaria parasites in mosquito vectors that could help yield better estimates of malaria transmission intensity in different settings.
In a study published in PLoS ONE,the new technique detects and identifies the four Plasmodium species in the principal mosquito vectors, Anopheles gambiae and Anopheles funestus. It also enables scientists to detect 'mixed' malaria infections where more than one type of Plasmodium parasite is present.
They maintained that the new malaria test is 98 per cent accurate.
Detects and identifies the four Plasmodium species, which could lead to better estimates of transmission intensity.
The technique optimises polymerase chain reaction (PCR) technology, a laboratory technique that amplifies and quantifies DNA molecules.
The researchers also say their method is more accurate than the traditional technique, which is based on the ELISA (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay) test, a standard laboratory diagnostic test that uses antibodies and colour change to detect DNA molecules.
"This study presents an optimised method for detecting the four Plasmodium species in African malaria vectors," say the authors. They say it could be an "accurate molecular diagnostic tool for detecting malaria parasites in field mosquito populations".
One of the authors, Nicaise Tuikue Ndam, and a researcher at the University of Abomey-Calavi, Benin,said that ELISA measures a specific antigen that detects a single parasite. This older technique can lead to the overestimation of the malaria burden as the antigen used is not very specific....
Brown is serving five years probation for assaulting his on-and-off girlfriend Rihanna in 2009 and risks having his probation revoked should charges be filed.
In the incident on Sunday, sheriff's deputies responded to a call about a fight involving six men in West Hollywood. The deputies cited witnesses as saying that the Grammy-winning Brown, 23, punched Ocean during the brief altercation.
No charges have yet been filed, but Ocean "is desirous of prosecution in this incident," said Los Angeles County Sheriff's spokesman Steve Whitmore.
Ocean, 25, who is nominated for best new artist and best record for "Thinkin Bout You" at the Grammys in February, said on Twitter on Sunday night that he "got jumped by Chris and a couple guys." He said this resulted in a cut finger.
A representative for Brown has yet to comment.
The "Look at me Now" singer has attempted to rebuild his career and public image since 2009, but his entourage and that of Canadian rapper Drake were involved in a June 2012 brawl in a New York nightclub. No arrests or charges were brought in that case.
Brown and Ocean are both nominated in the best urban contemporary album category at the Grammys, which take place on February 10 in Los Angeles.....
Chris Brown And Violence....Smh.
A woman I haven't spoken to in six years is pregnant with her second son. Another college acquaintance reads the Bible a lot. A high school classmate likes to rant about politics. A college dormmate thinks he works too much.
On Facebook, I'm connected to a lot of people who are not my friends. Over the years, as my Facebook friend list grows, it's made me increasingly uncomfortable that I seem to know so much about people that I don't actually know.
So as the new year approached, I decided to review my Facebook life. I took a four-week break - a "Facebook Fast" - from the world's biggest online social network. The break this fall spanned the presidential campaign and election, superstorm Sandy, fighting in the Middle East and my college's homecoming weekend - all events I cared about. These were all reasons for me to crave Facebook as a way to check the zeitgeist.
What did I learn? Sure, there are sleazy and annoying aspects to Facebook. It connects us to each other like tabloids connect readers to celebrities, and it compels us to gossip. It often makes us voyeurs accidentally immersed in the intimate lives of people we barely know.
But after eight years on the network, I rely on it for pictures and news of faraway friends and relatives. I can't quit. Like it or not, Facebook is an important part of my life.
Facebook Inc. is in the midst of trying to make its privacy policies more intuitive for users. It has added a little padlock icon at the top right of the website. When you click on it, Facebook walks you through how to change who sees what you post, who can contact you and how to review what others are writing about you.
But if you're trying to curate your Facebook life, there are more steps you need to take. Here are some tips for remaking the network so it's less a tabloid feed of unwanted updates and more a warmer, personal space that better reflects your real-life social circle.
CUT BACK ON TOTAL TIME SPENT
I used to keep Facebook open on my work computer, checking in periodically throughout the day. I relied on the Facebook app on my phone to entertain me whenever I was waiting in line or riding in a taxi. I would also log in at home.
It was overkill. I check Facebook less often now. The goal: Read less and write more.
First, I disabled the app on my phone.
I also enabled email notifications for whenever someone sends me a message, tags me in a photo, or posts on my profile or in one of my groups. If someone's trying to get in touch with me, I still want to know and be able to respond. Because I get the notifications, I don't need to keep Facebook open at work or check on it constantly at home.
Here's how to get those notifications: Click on the wheel icon at the top right corner of Facebook and choose "privacy settings" on the menu that pops up. Then click on "notifications" on the left. Then, you can edit what Facebook sends you over email - as well as via texts and phone alerts.
I hate it when people send me personal messages by broadcasting it on my profile page, or timeline, for everyone to see. I'd rather that person send me an email or a private Facebook message that I alone could see. But many people still insist on posting such messages on my timeline anyway.
To address that, I effectively turned off my timeline. Someone can still post on it, but I've adjusted the settings so that person and I are the only ones who can see that note. I can still publicly share things that I want seen broadly, like a post I wrote promoting my sister's new yoga business. To make these adjustments, choose "privacy settings" under the wheel again. Then click on "timeline and tagging" on the left.
Facebook alerts me when somebody else has attached my name to a post or picture, and I need to approve it before others can see it. The settings for this are found under the same "timeline and tagging" page. Turn on reviews for posts you've been tagged in.
FRIENDS OR "FRIENDS"?
My news feed - the stream of friends' links, photos and life comments - was too cluttered with information about people I didn't know anymore. Defriending people seems rude and aggressive to me (although it may be a good idea down the road as decades of friends pile up).
Without severely paring down your friend list, here's how to get Facebook to show you only what you want to see:
• Determine who shows up more on your news feed. When you're on your timeline page, click on "friends" at the top, near your profile picture, to see a list of all of your friends. Each person has a "friends" button next to his or her picture. To see more of that person's posts, choose "close friends." To see less, click "acquaintances." Friends won't know that you've sorted them this way. You can also do this by hovering over the name of the person posting on your timeline. A box will pop up with the person's profile picture and the same "friends" button.
• To tweak what kind of updates you get from each friend, click "settings" under the same "friends" button. You can choose to see only updates on major life events and pictures, for example, while ignoring updates about their comments and likes on other people's posts.
• If specific posts in your news feed annoy you, you can hide them. Hover over the top right corner of the post, click on the box that pops up, and choose "hide. ..." That will remove the post from your news feed, although you will still get future updates from that person.
• You can also cut off all updates from a friend. After hiding a specific post in your timeline by that person, click "change what updates you get from. …" Under the drop-down menu that comes up, click "unsubscribe." You can also ignore a person's Facebook activity by unchecking "show in news feed," under the same menu that lets you sort friends into "close friends" and "acquaintances."
Curating your news feed in this manner is burdensome if you have hundreds of connections. But the result is less tabloid magazine, more personal messages and cute pictures from people who are actually your friends.
One of the great benefits of Facebook is that it helps you keep in touch with a handful of people who have a shared interest. Hundreds of Facebook friends don't need to see the intimate interactions I have with a few closer friends. So I created private spheres for smaller circles - smaller than the lists Facebook automatically generates based on your school information, hometown and employer.
To set up a group, go to your news feed by clicking on "home" up top. Then click "create group," which is on the left of the page, in the "groups" section. I typed in the three friends to add and chose to make the group "secret," which means only members of the group can see that it even exists. I also get notifications from Facebook whenever anyone posts to the group. You can turn those on from the "notifications" page under the wheel icon....
Saturday, 26 January 2013
Whatever the case, Ednut is a popular face in entertainment circles and as is always the case, attracts female attention.
However, the Catching Cold crooner, who was a year older last Sunday, has stated that he is reducing his wayward behaviour and planning to settle down soon.
“Bachelorhood and skirt -hasing has become a bore to me. I want to settle down with a God-fearing, responsible, caring, loving, respectful, hardworking woman who in all ways will be totally devoted to me first and foremost, then, our children. And one of the greatest qualities she must possess before I commit my heart in her hands is, she must be very creative in bed,” he said.
“I know who I am, I fear God so much. The Holy book says having sex when you are not married to your partner is a sin. Married, yet doing it with an outsider is adultery. So for me, I don’t want to look for fun beyond the woman I want to spend my married life with; that is why she must be creative in bed. Once I say, ‘Yes, I do,’ it means no more humping around.”
Following a tip-off, a Fulani leader in Mangu local government area of Plateau State was arrested in the early hours of Friday with five human heads while more corpses have been discovered in Wase council as a result of Wednesday’s clash between the Fulani and Tarok in the area.
A source in Mangu local government told Saturday Tribune that a detachment of police and military men stormed the residence of the community leader in Mangum village at about 10:26 a.m.
It was learnt that the securitymen combed every nook and cranny of the house and finally discovered five human heads hidden in the ceiling of one of the rooms in the compound as well as some arms and ammunition within the premises.
The combined team of the police and military men who carried out the exercise forced the community leader, popularly known as Ardo, to pack the human heads and ammunition into the waiting Hi-lux van and whisked him to Jos, the state capital .
Chairman, Caretaker Committee of the local government, Mr. Ifa Shikben, who confirmed Ardo’s arrest, said that five human heads were picked from the house.
When Saturday Tribune called both the state Commissioner of Police and the command’s Public Relation Officer, both of them did not pick their calls.
Meanwhile, no fewer than five more corpses were discovered in Wase local government area of the state in the early hours of Friday as a result of the clash....
Wednesday, 23 January 2013
A Harvard scientist has said it would be possible to clone a Neanderthal baby from ancient DNA if he could find a woman willing to act as a surrogate.
The process would not be legal in many countries and would involve using DNA extracted from fossils.
George Church, a genetics professor of Harvard School of Medicine, said that the process was possible and that far from being brutal and primitive, Neanderthals were intelligent beings.
They are believed to be one of the relatives of modern man and became extinct 33,000 years ago. He added that altering the human genome could also provide the answers to curing diseases such as cancer and HIV, and hold the key to living to 120.
He told Der Spiegel, the German magazine: "I have already managed to attract enough DNA from fossil bones to reconstruct the DNA of the human species largely extinct. Now I need an adventurous female human."
The professor claims that he could introduce parts of the Neanderthal genome to human stem cells and clone them to create a foetus that could then be implanted in a woman.
Professor Church helped start the Human Genome Project that mapped human DNA and is well respected in the field. His comments will surprise most geneticists who believe that cloning humans is unacceptable. It is illegal in Britain.
Professor Church said: "We can clone all kinds of mammals, so it's very likely that we could clone a human. Why shouldn't we be able to do so?"
He added: "Neanderthals might think differently than we do. We know that they had a larger cranial size. They could even be more intelligent than us.
"When the time comes to deal with an epidemic or getting off the planet or whatever, it's conceivable that their way of thinking could be beneficial. They could maybe even create a new neo-Neanderthal culture and become a political force. The main goal is to increase diversity. The one thing that is bad for society is low diversity."
Professor Church said the technique would involve artificially creating DNA from fossilised material and introducing this into human stem cell lines.
He discusses his idea in his latest book, Regenesis: How Synthetic Biology Will Reinvent Nature and Ourselves.
He rules out recreating older human ancestors or dinosaurs, as was the subject of the Jurassic Park films, because the age limit of useful DNA is about one million years, he said.
He told the magazine: "One of the things to do is to engineer our cells so that they have a lower probability of cancer.
"And then once we have a lower probability of cancer, you can crank up their self-renewal properties, so that they have a lower probability of senescence [ageing]."
It seems that there’s a new hot rumor spreading around in showbiz that says that Chris Brown has impregnated both Rihanna and his former girlfriend, model Karrueche Tran.
This rumor was launched by “Hollywood Life” and taken a step further by the Gather website.
Everything started from the fact that Chris Brown was recently seen wearing a t-shirt that had the following message: “You’re a Dad”.
The fans have quickly jumped to conclusion and said that this was a message, this was the way Chris Brown decided to let the world know that Rihanna is pregnant.
The problem is that lately we've also heard rumors that Karrueche Tran is also pregnant with Chris Brown’s baby.
Nobody knows if this rumor was launched by Tran though, but many are speculating that she launched this rumor to make Rihanna jealous...
Then what about the rumor about Karrueche dating Drake to spite Chris Brown?
Some publicity stunts, I guess.
President Goodluck Jonathan calls the Nigerian-based Islamist terror group Boko Haram a threat to all of west, north and central Africa.
In an interview with CNN television Wednesday, Mr. Jonathan called on the rest of the world to work with Nigeria to contain the group. He said Boko Haram members have gone to northern Mali, which is under control of al-Qaida-linked extremists.
The president denies that alleged corruption in Nigeria is helping fuel the violence. He also denies charges that Nigerian soldiers have carried out human rights abuses against civilians under the guise of fighting terrorism.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton mentioned Boko Haram during her testimony before Congressional committees Wednesday. She called it part of the same global jihadist movement as al-Qaida and Ansar al-Sharia.
Boko Haram has killed thousands as it seeks to spread conservative Islamic law across Nigeria. Its frequent bombing targets include police, soldiers and Christian churches...
Monday, 21 January 2013
The audit panel set up by the Central Bank of Nigeria to probe the security breach at the Nigeria Security Printing and Minting Company that led to the disappearance of N2.1bn newly printed N1,000 notes has commenced its work.
Investigations by our correspondent revealed that the report of the panel would be ready next month.
A top official in the Presidency, who disclosed this to our correspondent on Sunday, said the report would determine the fate of the suspended Managing Director of the NSPMC, Mr. Ehi Okomoyon.
The audit, according to the source, will unravel the scam at the Mint as well as suggest measures that will help strengthen its internal control system.
The source said, “The CBN auditors have swung into action and they are the ones handling the audit of the security breach at the Mint.
“By the end of this month, they would have concluded their audit and their report is expected to be submitted in February because they have covered substantial ground in their probe.”
The source, who pleaded not to be named as he was not officially permitted to speak on the matter, said once the report of the auditors was ready, it would be submitted to the board of the company, which would now meet to act on the recommendations that would be made in the report.
“Don’t forget that the MD is still on suspension and he won’t be able to interfere with the investigations, and within the next few weeks, the report will be submitted to the board. It is this report that will determine the fate of the MD,” the source explained.
The Board of Directors is responsible for the company’s strategic policy decisions and is chaired by the CBN governor, Mr. Lamido Sanusi.
Other members are Mr. Tunde Lemo, Dr. Christopher Anyanwu, Prof. Sam Olofin, Mallam Dahiru Muhammad, Prof. Emmanuel Edozien, Chief E. F. Oke, Alhaji Suleiman Barau and Okomoyon.
Since it commenced production in 1965, the CBN had relied on the Mint for the production of its banknotes and coins.
The volume of production, which was a little over two million notes per week at the initial stage, is presently over 40 million notes per week, according to investigations.
But following the scam last month, Sanusi had reportedly launched an investigation to ascertain the amount of money missing at the NSPMC and asked Okomoyon and the Head of Security, Mr. Emmanuel Bala, to proceed on compulsory leave.
The source said that owing to the sensitive nature of the matter, the CBN auditors immediately swung into action following the discovery of the theft.
The investigation, it was gathered followed conflicting figures of the actual amount declared missing.
For instance, while the CBN governor had said it was N2bn, the management of the company claimed that the amount was N900,000.
The situation had made the House of Representatives to also resolve to investigate the disappearance.
Following a motion by the Chairman, House Committee on Rules/Business, Mr. Albert Sam-Tsokwa, the lower legislative chamber resolved to set up an ad-hoc committee to investigate the alleged stealing from the Mint.
Sam-Tsokwa said the December 2012 incident was the second known case of large sums of money disappearing from the company.
He observed that it was possible that there could be other unreported cases of theft before the latest one.
But reacting to the probe by the House, the Media Adviser to the company, Mr. Obi Adiele, said NSPMC was ready for investigations.
He denied that the company had recorded series of theft cases as a result of security breaches, adding that its security system had made it difficult for such to occur.
He said, while one of the security operatives was caught with N900,000, another official who tried to steal N1.5m was also arrested at the gate.
Will.i.am says though he's an active supporter of President Barack Obama, don't expect the Black Eyed Peas leader to become a politician.
"Nope. I like it from this angle," he said in an interview Saturday night.
Will.i.am attended an event for OurTime.org, a non-profit organization that encourages young people to vote. Several hundred people packed the Donald W. Reynolds Center for American Art and Portraiture, where John Legend, Common and T-Pain performed.
The event was just one of will.i.am's inaugural appearances: He's attending the Candle Light Inaugural Ball and Green Inaugural Ball on Sunday and will be a guest at Obama's public swearing in ceremony Monday and at the Inaugural Ball later that day.
He said it "feels good" to lend his hand to the Obama campaign and that he wants to see young voters do more.
"This is important for the youth to realize how powerful they are and to stay active and stay informed, and go out when it's time to vote. And not just for a presidential candidate, but for local government, too," he said.
Common kicked off the live performances with songs like "The People" and "Testify." He even danced and kissed a fan onstage - and on the lips - while Beyonce's "Party" blasted in the background.
"Just be whoever you are no matter what they say," Common said to the crowd.
The rapper also hit the stage with John Legend, who played piano as Common performed "The Light." Legend slowed the night's upbeat mood, crooning on songs like "Green Light," ''Tonight (Best You Ever Had)" and "Ordinary People."
Newly crowned Miss America 2013 Mallory Hagan, actress Sophie Bush and Arianna Huffington also attended.
Rapper-singer T-Pain closed the night, performing hits like "Bartender" ''5 o'clock," ''Good Life" and "Blame It."
Sunday, 20 January 2013
Justin Bieber's been caught with his pants down—and on purpose!
The newly single 18-year-old posted a revealing photo of himself, er, his backside, via his Instagram Saturday.
The "Beauty and the Beat" singer, donning a black tank top, sunglasses and a hat, posted a photo of himself revealing his lower half with a come-hither glance over the shoulder.
Biebs later deleted the shot, but according to his manager Scooter Braun it was all in good fun.
Braun took to his own social media site, tweeting: "as a prankster u have to respect another good prank. only makes sense. #crackdealer." To which the Biebs responded with a simple: "haha."
Do we sense a hint of sarcasm towards Bieber's recent alleged blunt brouhaha?!
Tim Tebow endorses Ludacris’ new “Soul” headphone line.
A partnership from left field, NFL superstar quarterback, Tim Tebow, and Atlanta rapper, Ludacris, teamed up for the release of Soul Electronic’s new SL300 line.
Tim Tebow confirms the SL300 headphones will differ from those already on the market like Beats By Dr. Dre and 50 Cent’s SMS headphone line. The headphones are marketed and developed specifically for athletes to maintain during intense training.
Tebow stated, “So many headphones can feel good and sound great but when you’re warming up, they fall off and that is a big distraction. We came up with these ‘Combat’ models to help you keep that focus.”
All you headphone lovers, Watch out for this one...
The wife of the iconic African pop star, Annie Macaulay Idibia has opened up on why Tuface Idibia begged her to marry him.
In a revealing interview she granted Jara, a TV programme on Africa Magic channel on DSTV, the singer’s wife reconstructed the scenario of how Tuface proposed to her and why he chose her among the other women in his life. Hear her:
“He called me up one morning that I should meet him in Lagos so that we can hang out. He said his friends are around and they want to take us out. So, I agreed to see him. I remember it was a particular friend of ours that was around that day, although I would not like to mention his name.
“And when I got to Lagos that day, he was like ‘let’s go to the club.’ When we got to the club, the place was totally empty. Obviously confused, I asked him, “baby, what are we doing here, it’s empty” and before I turned back, my brothers and friends showed up. I was so perplexed that I had to ask what everybody was doing around there and they said they heard we were there and they came.
“Just about few minutes after, Tuface picked up the microphone and I thought he was going to do all the normal hypes he does when he goes to the club. But he shocked me. He started saying things about how I have always been there for him since day one. How I have sacrificed a lot for him. How I have cried and stood strong during his trying moments.
The truth is, he said so many things I can’t remember now. He said so many wonderful things that sent me into another world and I couldn’t even hear the other things he said.
“I didn’t even know when he walked up to me and he said “Please, will you marry me?” And I was like, “Can you imagine? What’s going on here?” he was saying so many things that I can’t even remember. It all blew my head.
“Although, it has not been easy since we had our traditional marriage. The truth is, it is not easy to be married to a superstar but I still live my normal life. Right now, I feel 24 hours is not enough for me because I have my husband, my daughter and myself to take care of. It has really been crazy and God knows I have been trying my best. I wish I have more time to handle all of this.
“Just because of the lack of time, I haven’t been able do my normal acting jobs. I would still go on to do it soon because my husband is very supportive of my career and everything I do. As a married woman, I would be more selective with the roles I take now. I would do away from controversial roles but that doesn't mean if I see a good story line I wouldn't do it.
“One of the reasons I would be careful with the roles I take up now is because I am married. And when you are married you have to be able to manage your career such that it won’t affect your home front. In any case, you need to learn some tips which will help you carry on in the marriage. But before that, you need to be sure that the man loves you as much as you love him.
Even if it is not as much as you love him, but be sure he loves you. You also need to be patient. Men are like babies and babies are very annoying. You need to scold them but you should pamper them more. You need to work on yourself so that you can be proud of yourself. Don’t fake anything.
“Very soon, Tuface and I plan to do our white wedding and you will all be invited and even though it will be something quiet. We don’t want to make too much noise about it. We just want a beautiful and memorable event.”
With a new single about to drop, a solo album in the works and a starring role in a national tour of a Broadway musical, you'd be hard-pressed to tell that Michelle Williams once had difficulty just getting out of bed.
The singer-actress – one third of Destiny's Child alongside Beyonce and Kelly Rowland – said that in the past few months she has emerged from years of suffering from moderate depression. Her dark cloud lifted thanks to exercise, therapy and positive thinking.
"I've dealt with depression," the 32-year-old said during a break in rehearsals for a new touring production of "Fela!" that kicks off later this month. "I had to choose to get out of bed and do whatever I needed to do to be happy."
Williams says she suffered her first bout of depression at 15 or 16 and has managed to avoid medication. She is speaking out for the first time about her battle to encourage others to seek help.
"We're taught, `Just go to church and pray about it. The Lord is going to heal you.' Well, in the meantime, I believe God-gifted people, physicians, doctors, therapists – that's your healing. Take advantage of it," she said. "Go see a professional so that they can assess you. It's OK if you're going through something. Depression is not OK, but it is OK to go get help."
Williams on this day is bursting with energy, smiling and laughing, her body even leaner than normal as she dives into the frenetic biography of Nigerian musician and activist Fela Anikulapo Kuti, who died in 1997.
In the rehearsal room, Williams bounces in her chair with the other cast members as the show's hybrid of jazz and pop songs swells. Though she's a Grammy Award winner, she easily hugs her fellow performers and wears sweat pants and a tank top. Where's the diva? "Who has time for that?" she said. "That's just dumb. I come from Rockford, Ill. – there's no divas there."
Williams will be playing the role of Sandra Isadore, who was Fela's African-American lover. Maija Garcia, the tour director and choreographer, said the presence of a Destiny's Child member in the cast "empowers the musical."
"Sandra is our key for an American audience to look at Fela and understand a bit more where Fela may have been coming from," Garcia said. "And an American audience can very much identify with Michelle Williams because she's of our time. She really becomes a vehicle for people to learn about Fela and for people to understand why Fela is relevant in the United States."
The show, which made it to Broadway in 2009, is set for a 16-city tour starting at the Shakespeare Theatre Company in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 29. By the time summer rolls around, it will have visited Miami, Atlanta, Cleveland, Dallas, Los Angeles, Seattle and Nashville, Tenn.
Williams is looking forward to cheese steaks – extra provolone, please – and fabulous food on the road. "I know it doesn't look like I eat – I'm just blessed with a high metabolism right now," she said. "I'm having a time trying to gain weight."
The Jan. 29 date is important to Williams for another reason. That's when Destiny's Child releases "Love Songs," a collection of previously released songs as well as a new track co-written by Williams, "Nuclear," the group's first new recording since 2004.
The new song was recorded before Christmas in Los Angeles when all three members were recording their own solo projects. While Williams said the trio isn't ready to make a new full-length CD right now, the old magic that created songs including "Say My Name" and "Bootylicious" is still there.
"Stacking those harmonies on top (of) each other gave me goose bumps," she said of recording the new song. "We were like, `We still sound good together.' Duh! The bond will never die. We're always going to be close. We're always going to work together."
"It's amazing that people are still fascinated by the connection. It's been about eight years since we released original material and people still ask me, `Do you all talk?' We could take a picture together today and then tomorrow, people would say, `Do you all still talk?'"
But Williams was coy about whether she and Rowland will join Beyonce at the Super Bowl halftime show on Feb. 3. "Who knows?" she said with a smile. "We make sure not to go too long without doing something."
Williams has her own CD – her fourth – that she's putting the final touches on, an album of original Christian pop influenced by her own struggles, which includes being bullied. She laughs that she hopes listeners will be inspired, even if that sounds cliched.
"Sometimes you're going to wake up on the wrong side of the bed or some situation might have you down in the dumps, but you have to choose to be happy," she said. "I'm choosing life. And I'm hoping this album makes people want to choose life."
In the meantime, there's her fifth stage show to concentrate on. Williams adds the character of Sandra Isadore to a list that includes the title role of "Aida" on Broadway and Roxie Hart in "Chicago" on Broadway and in London.
"People might look at my resume and be confused. I'm not just one thing," she said. But switching genres and projects – she one day wants to record jazz and bluegrass albums – comes naturally.
"People I look up to did it all the time – Whitney Houston, Aretha Franklin, Sam Cooke, Marvin Gaye," she said. "Sometimes I'm like, `Man, I really should be more like my other peers and really stick to one thing,' but I love what I do."
Two clergymen, Pastor Glory Okeoghene Abrefera and Reverend Vincent Okpogho, have been sentenced to 20 years imprisonment with a fine of N8 million for operating voodoo banking in Warri, targeted at defrauding unsuspecting depositors of over N1 billion.
Delivering judgement in the case which spanned over two years, Justice Ibrahim Buba said the clerics were convicted on a two-count charge of operating a bank without a valid license, contrary to sections two (2) and 49 (1) of the Banks and Other Financial Institutions Act.
Buba explained that the Mustard Seed Micro Investment Limited was convicted on two counts and fined N2 million on each of them while the two clergymen, both directors of the firm, were to spend 10 years behind bars in addition to N2 million fine on each of the counts against them. However, their jail term were to run concurrently.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) prosecuted the case.
The activities of the voodoo banking operators came to fore following a petition by Chief Tuoyo Awani, Pa Fregene, Manei Johnson and others, alerting the authorities and the general public over their activities.
According to Awani, the activities of the bank became suspicious when it became clear to some of the depositors that the bank could not give accurate amount of deposits at its disposal.
The petitioner said the depositors were cajoled into believing that the “bank” was operated by “men of God”.
He, however, advised Nigerians to be wary of dubious characters, particularly those who operate under the guise of “men of God” in order to avoid losing their money.
Awani expressed optimism that depositors may not lose all as the court had appointed liquidators to oversee what remains of Mustard See Micro Investment Limited with a view to repaying them.
Mr. John Okoriko, counsel to the convicted clergymen, said the company was not run as a bank.
Okoriko said throughout the legal battle none of the prosecution witnesses testified that they opened an account with Mustard Seeds Micro Ltd nor used cheque books, drafts and other banking documents during the period. But counsel to the EFCC, Mr. Gbolahan Latona, commended the judge for a brilliant and well-researched judgment, saying the verdict would go down as a watershed in the history of the judiciary and enrich the judicial process.....
Friday, 18 January 2013
Africa’s king of RnB and co-owner of Soul Muzik Records, Darey Art Alade is set to give music lovers the ultimate Valentine experience this February.
The special Valentine concert titled “Love…Like a Movie” will hold on February 17, 2013 at the Convention Centre of Eko Hotel and Suites Victoria Island, Lagos.
Love…Like a Movie is a concert produced by Soul Muzik Records. This specially-designed event is also the maiden episode in the “Darey Presents…” series.
According to the singer/songwriter, Darey Art Alade, “We intend to create a magical experience that will stay with our fans for a lifetime. This concert is definitely one to watch out for as it is one of the very few concerts that will have a full display of exciting performance varieties interpreting powerful emotions, music, traditionally inspired dance/acrobatic performances and so many more.”
Headlined by award winning artiste, Darey, with support from his protégés, international returnees Mo’Eazy and Zaina, the event will feature some of the best theatrical performances ever witnessed in Nigerian concert history. Some of the biggest names in Nigeria as well as international artistes are expected to join him for the spectacular love concert.
Darey Art Alade, an apostle of love, with the biggest theme of his art revolving around love has over time warmed his way into the hearts of many within and outside the shores of the country with his exceptional vocal skills and charisma....
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Thursday said it has taken into its custody, two men who have been parading themselves as its officials.
Tanimu Abubakar (also known as Ibrahim) and Mohammed Yaba, were rounded up in Abuja on Tuesday at the Federal Capital Territory Authority, while offering to assist a Director of the Agency to kill a petition allegedly written against him.
A statement by the Agency said both were arrested after an intelligence report on the suspects’ activities was received.
EFCC observed that there is a rise in impersonation of its officials by fraudsters who use fake letterheads to write fake invitation letters to unsuspecting members of the public.
“Some citizens with issues to hide have unwittingly fallen victims to these fraudsters,” the statement
said. “Most victims usually do not report to the Commission and some go away with the erroneous impression that the fraudsters are bona fide officials of the EFCC.”
“We implore members of the public to report any solicitation for gratification by any person claiming to be an official of the EFCC to the Commission or the nearest police station,” it said.
Rihanna and Chris Brown are, once again, making beautiful music together.
On the heels of their recent collaboration, "Nobodies Business," a rep for Breezy tells E! News that the two are indeed currently working on another single.
Which certainly explains why the duo was spotted leaving, albeit separately, from a recording studio in West Hollywood on Thursday night.
Rihanna cozies up with Chris Brown on new single cover for "Stay"?!
This will be the fourth collaboration of sorts for Rihanna and Brown.
In addition to "Nobodies Business," a track on the Barbadian beauty's latest album, Unapologetic, they also joined forces nearly a year ago on remixes of Rihanna's "Birthday Cake" and Brown's "Turn Up the Music."
So... a grampa took a bubble bath with his four-year-old granddaughter. And her mother took a photo. And the photo was posted via Instagram. And oh by the way, the grampa happens to be a senior pastor at a mega-church in Chicago. And now everyone is freaking out over the photo.
Bishop Larry Trotter says his family was visiting him. He was taking a bubble bath when his four-year-old granddaughter asked if she could join him. Why not? Trotter claims he and the granddaughter were both wearing swimming trunks and that the girl's mother was present through the five minutes the girl was in the tub. But the photo has brought a furious storm of criticism to Trotter and his family. And I can see why!
I kind of sympathize with Trotter up to a point. I'm sure at the time, in his mind, this was all perfectly innocent. I don't buy that bit about both of them wearing swimming trunks -- that smells like baloney. But I doubt he was having creepy, pedophile thoughts about his granddaughter.
Still, I wouldn't be okay with this if I were the girl's mother. I think it's okay for parents bathe with their babies. I've done it. But I stopped once my son was toddler age -- well, more because it was just too splashy by then than because I thought it was inappropriate. But I think for everyone there's sort of an age where this starts to feel weird. Remember how freaked out people were when they found out Gwyneth Paltrow bathes with her school-age kids?
Then there's the generational difference. It's one thing to be body-positive and free around your own kids. But add another generation and... I don't know, I have no justification except that again, it just feels weird to me. Grandparents bathing a baby, changing its diaper, helping toddlers get dressed, all seem fine. The idea of bathing with grandparents, though, just makes me cringe a little.
And then there's the gender issue. I think it's fine for kids to find out that our bodies all look different. But you have to watch your kids closely for when they start showing their own sense of modesty. Some kids never have any -- other kids want privacy at an early age. I think this photo would be less disturbing if the girl were with her grandmother (as long as the grandmother's chest was fully submerged), or if it were with Trotter and a grandson. But there's just too many taboos thrown together here: Gender, generation, age. I mean, pick one or two out of three and it's not quite so bad. Don't you think?
Of course, in another culture in another country people would be wondering what all the fuss is about.
Obviously it was a bad idea to 1. take the photo and 2. post it on Instagram. (Trotter said someone else posted it on his account.) I hope Trotter's career survives this scandal! I think people need to give him a break. But a few lines were definitely crossed here.
Do you think it's inappropriate for kids to take baths with their grandparents?
Though the university did not state any reason for the postponement, sources claimed that the development followed President Goodluck Jonathan’s insistence to rename UNILAG as Moshood Abiola University of Lagos and effect the change in its certificates as a condition for holding the convocation.
Jonathan on May 29, 2012 renamed UNILAG after the late Chief Moshood Abiola as a mark of honour for the acclaimed winner of the June 12, 1993 presidential election.
The announcement was greeted by protests, with the students demonstrating, and the alumni association asking a Federal High Court, Lagos to restrain the Federal Government from renaming the institution.
But the university, our correspondent learnt, had been insistent on retaining its name pending the outcome of different suits filed in court.
Sources close to UNILAG authorities told our correspondent in a telephone interview on Wednesday that the university decided to postpone the convocation because the President said he would not attend the convocation except the name change was effected.
Our correspondent learnt that the institution sent a letter informing the President as the Visitor to the university about the convocation through the Federal Ministry of Education since last year.
Jonathan, it was learnt, told the ministry that UNILAG was not known to him and as such would not honour the invitation.
It was learnt that the Vice-Chancellor of the school, Prof. Rahamon Bello, had travelled to Abuja to meet with the minister over the issue.
An official of the school’s Information Office, who spoke to our correspondent on the telephone on condition of anonymity, said, “There is no truth in that. Normally if you pick a date for convocation, you have to send it to the Visitor and the Visitor will confirm if the date is convenient, that is what is happening in this case; it is nothing strange.”
Asked when the ceremony would hold, the source said, “I don’t know yet. I guess by tomorrow there could be a specific thing to say on the date.’’
In challenging the name change, the alumni association claimed that the President erred in renaming the institution without following due process, explaining that since the university was established by an act of parliament, the President could not unilaterally rename it.
But the President sent a bill to the National Assembly asking it to effect the name change. The bill passed through the first and second reading at the Senate before the court stopped the Federal Government from further action until the determination of the case before it.
“This position was enough a sign for the Minister of Education, Prof. Ruqquayat Rufa’i, not to reply the university,” the source said.
Meanwhile, a statement by the Deputy Registrar, Information, Mr. Oluwatoyin Adegbule, said, “The authorities of UNILAG wish to inform all members of the university community and the general public that the golden jubilee convocation ceremonies will not hold at the university’s normal convocation period (January 17-19, 2013).”
The nation has been inundated lately with the news that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, to borrow $1.5 billion to pay its foreign creditors, including Glencore and Mercuria, which it owes $3.5billion in accumulated fuel supply bills.
The NNPC reportedly pledged 15, 000 barrels of crude per day as collateral for the syndicated loan deal said to have been brokered by Standard Chartered Bank, with funds to be supplied by a consortium of foreign and local banks, which would be paid over a period of five and half years. Granted Section 6 of the NNPC Act permits it as a state-run oil business concern to borrow with or without the approval of the “council of Ministers”, we unequivocally state that every constitutional righteousness must be fulfilled to ensure transparency and accountability in such transaction.
No one is averse to it meeting its financial obligation to its offshore partners, but things must be done constitutionally. One of which is seeking proper advice from the Debt Management Office, DMO, and seeking the approval of the National Assembly in doing so. Since DMO in consonance with the Ministry of Finance is empowered to handle the country’s local and foreign debts, one would naturally have believed it had been notified.
One wonders why such borrowing was not initially captured in the medium-term expenditure framework of the present government approved by the National Assembly.
Besides, bypassing the National Assembly is clearly a breach of fundamental constitutional procedure and smacks of a clandestine motive by the NNPC to shroud the process in secrecy.
Such unilateral decision in the management of a collective patrimony is illegal, unconstitutional and exposes NNPC’s abhorrence to corporate governance. It also shows its disregard for constituted authority and a tendency by a cabal in government and their corporate sector collaborators to alienate themselves from the rest of society, create its own rule and carry same through with odious gusto and impunity.
If the law says no government agency or states within the federation can borrow without approvals by the National Assembly, on what basis could some executive deviants rationalise their ill-conceived descent to official recklessness?
In spite of various mind-boggling revelations of sleaze, inefficiency, and mismanagement in the NNPC, successive governments have demonstrated spineless incapacity to push through logical reforms that would help the behemoth it has become stand on good stead and become competitive among its counterparts in other climes. Rather, it has become a festering sore, which stench makes worse the odious air of corruption permeating the Nigerian oil sector.
The NNPC has become no more than a facilitator to rampaging foreign oil companies and unscrupulous indigenous oil shieks at the detriment of the country. No wonder it has been described as a shrine of corruption in some quarters.
This was revealed in the findings of the Petroleum Revenue Special Task Force headed by Mallam Nuhu Ribadu, which indicted some oil majors who, in cahoots with highly placed government officials, in swindled the nation of billions of dollars in signature bonuses and cut-price gas dealings, among others. Like many before it, and several others that would precede it, the Ribadu Committee report is gathering dust in shelves somewhere.
We make haste to ask: where is the “breath of fresh air” President Goodluck Jonathan promised when he stood election for the office of President? The incumbent government seems to have conferred sovereignty on the NNPC, with the Petroleum Minister, Diezani Allison-Madueke as its de facto empress. She is so powerful that Jonathan cannot touch her in pite of the corruption in NNPC which her ministry presides over.
Let the “breath of fresh air” start with NNPC.
Thursday, 17 January 2013
The words are written all the way up the back of the woman’s leg. “Matronly” appears at her calf, “proper” at the knee, and “whore” at the very top — words meant to reflect how women are often perceived based on the length of their skirt.
The provocative photo, called “Judgment,” was posted by Rosea Lake, a first-year university student at Capilano University in Vancouver, B.C on her Tumblr site in early January. In a matter of a few days, the photo went viral, with more than 280,000 people liking and re-blogging it on Tumblr.
She took the photo as part of a high school art project last year as a way to reassess her assumptions and preconceptions about how women dress.
“If you see a girl wearing something you see as distasteful, then you automatically discount them as a person and you don’t give them the opportunity to really be somebody in your eyes,” said Lake, 18. “And that’s really shameful.”
She says the image is also meant to be a response to rape culture. Right under the words “slut” and “whore” on model Ali Mackenzie’s leg, are the words “asking for it.”
Lake says that living in a “rough neighbourhood,” she has often wondered if her outfit will result in her being “sexually harassed or verbally abused.”
“These are the things I think about, and I don’t think women in particular should have to worry about am I going to be raped because of what I am wearing today?”
When she did the art project, she wrote on her blog that she “used to assume that all women who wore hijabs were being oppressed . . . and look(ed) down on and judge any woman who didn’t express her sexuality in a way that I found appropriate.
“I’d like to think I’m more open now.”
Thanks to the Internet, the image has been seen all around the world. And it’s a message that has resonated with everyone who has seen it.
She has received emails from women in Turkey and Bosnia who have loved the photo. Rape survivors from around the world have emailed her to thank her for her candidness. And professors have asked her permission to use it in their classes as a teaching tool.
“I think it hit at the right moment. I think it hit people who had these feelings and thoughts in mind, and wanted to discuss these issues, but didn’t know how to express them,” she said.
But there have been some people online who have taken it the wrong way and don’t understand that it’s satire. “There have been some comments where people say, this must have been made by a man, by a chauvinist pig . . . which upsets me, but you can’t control the Internet.
“I think most people know that it’s a photo meant to call out society on its ridiculous views.”
In the meantime, she is making prints of the photo in response to popular demand — and as a way to make some money as a “poor art student.” But she knows the exposure the photo has received is priceless.
“I’m just happy that it has sparked so much dialogue and conversation. The message is much more important than I am, so I want people to use it.”
Operatives of the Nigerian Customs Service, NCS, Wednesday, arrested a female passenger with $151,205 at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, MMIA, Lagos on her way to board an Emirates flight to China.
The passenger, Mrs. Akinnuote Abiola Oluwafunke, was apprehended for not declaring the total sum of foreign currencies she had to the officials of the NCS and was arrested after the discovery of additional currencies by men of the command.
Speaking on the arrest, the spokesperson of the Nigerian Customs Service, MMIA Command, Mrs. Thelma Williams, pointed out that the female passenger was arrested while trying to board an Emirates Airlines flight EK 784 to China.
She explained that Oluwafunke failed to comply with the law of full disclosure of FER oreign currencies
According to Mrs. Williams, the passenger with passport number AOO882373 only declared $100, 000 on the prescribed currency declaration forms: CDFIA and CDFIB, noting that a search on her bag, Customs officers discovered that she was carrying $151, 205
Mrs. Williams explained that the false declaration of the sum of $51, 205 ran contrary to the rule, which warranted her arrest.
The passenger, she said, had been immediately transferred to Economic and Financial Crimes Commiss- ion, EFCC, saying EFCC would carry out further investigation on the arrest.
She said: At about 1300 hrs, one intending passenger travelling with Emirate Airline flight EK784 to China by name Mrs. Akinnuote Abiola Oluwafunke with passport No. A00882373 declared $100,000 on both forms CDFIA and CDFIB. On searching her bag, it was discovered she was carrying $151,205....
The sequel to the explosively popular Temple Run is out Thursday morning for iPhone and iPad.
Temple Run took players on a jungle adventure as they attempted to escape from a horde of demonic monkeys with a stolen idol from a ancient temple. Players had to jump, dodge and duck under obstacles with swipes on the touch screen as they ran for their lives. The endless runner was downloaded more than 170 million times from Apple's App Store and Google Play since its 2011 release; 2.5 million of those downloads were on Christmas Day of 2012 as people unwrapped new mobile devices to game on.
Imangi Studios sprung Temple Run 2 on fans with little announcement or fanfare prior to its launch. Studio cofounder Keith Shepherd says the game is more of what fans loved, but with a depth his team wasn't able to add to the first game.
"We wanted to set out and do all the things we wanted to do with Temple Run but we couldn't fit in," Shepherd says. "It feels like a bigger, better, more awesome version of the first game."
Temple Run was developed in five months by Shepherd, his wife and Imangi cofounder Natalia Luckyanova, and graphic designer Kiril Tchangov. Shepherd says he was inspired by games like Sonic the Hedgehog and the platforming of Mirror's Edge. But mostly, he wanted to see an endless runner in 3D; earlier games released in the genre, like Canabalt, were only two-dimensional games.
Temple Run 2 greatly expands on the first game's concepts, according to Shepherd. The game now takes place in a floating temple in the clouds. Players are confronted with new obstacles, like swinging from zip lines and riding in a rickety mine cart.
"The world you're running in is much more rich and vibrant," Shepherd says. "There are curves and hills and valleys and stairs."
The new game also adds more things for players to do and collect, including characters that have their own specialized powers. The power meter is a new element to the series.
"Our fans have been fantastic and have given us great ideas and feedback," Shepherd says. "People always wanted more out of the game. It was so easy to unlock everything, so we're glad we can offer a lot more for this one."
Temple Run 2 is available now for iPhone and iPad for free. The team says Android versions will be coming out soon....
Image courtesy of Imangi.
In its bid to ensure that Lagosians have smooth ride driving within the state, the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA), Wednesday unveiled new plans to manage traffic gridlock on the roads.
This came as the agency also deployed more officers to traffic-prone areas in the state with the aim of ensuring general road safety.
Speaking at Ogudu Ori-Oke area of Kosofe local government area during the traffic management exercise, tagged: ‘Operation Unlock the Gridlock’, a renewed approach to manage traffic, especially in the traffic-prone areas, LASTMA General Manager, Mr. Babatunde Edu, said the action was in line with the agency policy in the year 2013 to identify traffic prone areas with a view to unlocking them so that motorists would spend less time travelling within the city.
Edu, who led top officials of the agency to the flag off exercise, pointed out that adequate research and information have been gathered by the agency to determine the best approach and solution to each traffic problem, and the agency will apply scientific solution to the peculiarity of each area.
Noting that continued influx of more people and vehicles into the state necessitates periodic traffic review of traffic management plans, he maintained that with the new plans, travelling within the state during peak period will be less tedious.
He stressed further that some roads have been converted to one-way, just as some diversion points have been reviewed to enable free flow of traffic and save travel time of the motorists.
“It is part of the year agenda to unlock all the gridlock in the metropolis. We have received complaints from residents on the flash points, notable for traffic gridlock.
The thrust of the whole exercise is to look at how best we can use the road and have a sustainable culture of road usage.
“The ongoing construction works should not be an excuse for any motorist to cause traffic, we all have to sacrifice and be disciplined, while using the road. That is one of the reasons we are out to control traffic in the places where road and drainages construction work is ongoing,” he said.
According to him, “before the end of the week, we would also mount road signage in some of the roads to further inform motorists on the traffic directives.”
Edu, however, urged motorists in the state to cooperate with the traffic officers, saying LASTMA was not resting on its oars to ensure free flow of traffic in the state despite continuous influx of vehicles into the state.
“We don’t have to wait for the uniformed men before we do the right thing. The sight our men on the road should not elicit fear from motorists, if we all adopt the culture self-discipline on the road usage,” he added.
He enjoined motorists and residents of Ogudu Ori-Oke and its environs to cooperate with LASTMA as measure was to ameliorate the hardship they always experience when moving in and out of the area.
The new traffic measure and order was to change the two roads that link up Ogudu Bridge when coming from the Island from serving as dual carriage roads. Henceforth, motorists coming from Ogudu will divert right to join the express road, also those that are descending from the bridge will turn left to join the express road.
With this development, motorists from Lagos Island coming to Ogudu will turn right at the first turning by the Ogudu bus stop to climb the bridge or enter the estate.
Edu called on the motorists to observe and obey the road signs to guide them properly on the road when driving. The agency said it will soon move to Iyana-Ipaja and other areas in continuation of the exercise to solve the perennial traffic jam in the axis.
Facebook Graph Search is a search engine that allows search based on Photos, Interests, People and places. It means that if one wants to search about people situated in a particular place, having interest in television or cricket, Google search will show the relevant results. With the unveiling of Google Search, Facebook has now a total of three pillars, namely, Timeline, Newsfeed and Google Search.
Mark Zuckerberg, founder and Chief Executive of Facebook, told in a press conference at Menlo Park, that the new Graph Search feature is a really big and powerful project. He described Graph Search as one of the coolest things ever done by Facebook. He focused on the point that the new feature would not hamper the privacy settings of the individual. Only the information shared with friends, friends of friends, and the public will be found by the person who is looking for.
Zuckerberg said at the press event that the Graph Search map is growing big constantly. Almost 240 billion photos are uploaded and a million new people are added everyday. He said that Graph Search is not web search as it does not display best possible results; but results based on information shared by the friends by typing the relevant phrase. It means that Graph Search gives the exact answer to the query entered by the user ant not to results which might lead one to the answer.
He publicly revealed that his relation with Google grew hostile over issues related to privacy. He told that the company entered into partnership with Microsoft in 2010 and has been working with it since then; as Microsoft was keener in doing things that were of paramount interest to Facebook.....
Edo State governor, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole has hinged the spate of kidnappings and other high profile crimes to greed which he said had led to high moral decadence in the society, even as he commended security agents for tackling crimes in the state.
He also commended the State Security Service (SSS) and the Nigerian Army for investigating and arresting criminal elements in the state.
The governor made the commendation yesterday during a parade by the Edo State Command of the SSS, where seven suspected kidnappers were paraded for their various levels of involvement in kidnapping and other criminal activities.
Two of the suspected kidnappers, Peter Omoregbe ,31 and Oshaifi Karimu, 38, who allegedly kidnapped the Auditor General of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, Fred Omoaka, at Igbanke in Edo State were also paraded.
State Director of the SSS, Tukur Bello Bakori, who paraded them before governor Adams Oshiomhole, confirmed that the suspects collected the sum of N10 million ransom from their victim, and that N2.7 million was recovered from them after their arrest.
Another group of two kidnappers, Osatofo Patrick and Efe Osasebor, were said to have kidnapped Prof. Patrick Imoisili, the Dean of Natural Science, Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma.
The suspects however confessed their various involvements in the crime, adding that they were tracked down by security operatives when one of the suspected kidnappers was caught with a Blackberry handset belonging to one of their victims.
Wednesday, 16 January 2013
Nollywood actress, Shan George, has relocated to her state, Cross River. But contrary to reports, she says she has not gone in search of greener or saner pastures.
According to the news making the rounds online, George is said to have relocated because Calabar is more peaceful than Lagos. She was quoted as saying, “Calabar is heaven on earth. My hilltop Calabar home is as peaceful as a baby’s sigh.”
However, in a telephone exchange – spiced with hiccups due to erratic network – between the actress and our correspondent, she says she is in a remote part of Cross River to nurse her mother who is bedridden.
Although George did not disclose the nature of the illness, she says, “My beloved aged mother has been sick since March 2012. She’s been bedridden with a terminal illness. As an only child, it falls on me to stay with her till the end, so to make it less burdensome; I had to relocate to Calabar to take care of her. So for now, I just want to be with my mum and look after her. Whatever happens after that is in God’s hands.”
She adds that she does not know how long or short her stay in Calabar would last, but that she is channelling all her strength towards her mother’s care while everything other thing would be on hold, “for God to handle”.
When the news of George’s temporary exit from Lagos broke online, there were several comments. Some of these include insinuations that she may be warming up to take a political appointment like some popular artistes, including Richard Mofe-Damijo, who is currently the commissioner for Culture and Tourism in Delta State.
George only laughed at the insinuations of a political appointment. She says politics is not one of her aspirations.
“I won’t make a good politician, I’m too brutally honest,” she adds.
Nigerian operator Globacom has released a new bundled device, the Glo Mobile Wi-Fi, to give fast, affordable internet service in the home, office or in transit. Globacom said the portable device can connect up to five different gadgets with equal power. Marketing Coordinator Niyi Olukoya said that the router comes with a free SIM and 1 GB of free data for the first one month and another free 1 GB data for the next six months based on a continuous subscription. The device is mini-sized with a long battery life......
Categories: Mobile & Wireless
Companies: Glo Mobile / Globacom
Tuesday, 15 January 2013
Chimpanzees have a sense of fairness previously believed to be uniquely human, according to a small new study.
The study included six adult chimpanzees and 20 human children, aged 2 to 7, who played what is called the Ultimatum Game.
In the game, a participant chose between two different colored tokens that, with a partner's cooperation, could be exchanged for rewards. The chimpanzees were offered food and the children were offered stickers.
One color of token provided equal rewards to both partners, while the other color favored the individual making the choice and shortchanged their partner. The chooser had to give the token to the partner, who then exchanged it with a researcher for the reward. This way, both partners needed to be in agreement.
Both the chimpanzees and the children responded in a way typically seen in adult humans. If the partner's cooperation was required, the chimpanzees and children split the rewards equally. But if an individual had a passive partner who had no chance to reject the offer, the chimpanzees and children chose the selfish option.
The findings, published online in the new issue of the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, suggest that a sense of fairness comes from a common ancestor of both humans and apes, said the researchers at the Yerkes National Primate Research Center at Emory University in Atlanta.
"Until our study, the behavioral economics community assumed the Ultimatum Game could not be played with animals or that animals would choose only the most selfish option while playing," study co-author Frans de Waal said in a university news release. "We've concluded that chimpanzees not only get very close to the human sense of fairness, but the animals may actually have exactly the same preferences as our own species.".......
Arnold Schwarzenegger's first order of business on the New Mexico set of The Last Stand in the fall of 2011 was to sit down with the stunt team for a frank talk.
He wanted to make sure that in his return to action films (Stand opens Friday nationwide) that every stunt he attempted counted — he was age 64, and there wasn't going to be an endless supply of physical feats.
"I said, 'Look guys, here's the deal,' " Schwarzenegger recalls. "'When Carl Lewis did the long jump that won the gold medal, I was there. There was no cameraman that went up to him afterward asking to jump again because he didn't get the (expletive) shot. That's going to be the case here. There's no room for that."
Yes, the former bodybuilder who launched an acting career more than 40 years ago, and turned the Terminator role into a seemingly indestructible icon in the 1980s and 1990s, is making concessions to aging. Especially after an eight-year detour from Hollywood that led him to the governor's mansion of California for two terms.
But like his Last Stand character — a small-town sheriff who leads a comical group of deputies to fight off a drug cartel — Schwarzenegger has come out swinging as he attempts his first leading role since leaving office in 2011. Yes, swinging, even if it's tougher on the joints these days.
"This is not the Terminator," Schwarzenegger, now 65, admits. "This is a very different character, you know. You get older and wiser."
This also means the one-time box-office champion has moved to another phase in his life. After leaving political office and then enduring a headline-making split from his wife of 25 years, Maria Shriver, in the wake of a paternity scandal, Schwarzenegger is looking to put his movie career back into high gear.
"This is a new chapter, re-winning audiences' affection and loyalty, which he has done many times in his career," says producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura. "This is the beginning. And Arnold wants to win. He has this robustness and energy that's the same as when I met him in 1980. That has not dissipated. If anything, it's accentuated, because you'd imagine with someone getting older it would be less. But it's definitely not."
This robustness is on display as Schwarzenegger strides into the members-only Grand Havana Room, his frequent Beverly Hills hangout spot, wearing a custom-made suit, Prada shoes and a large ring with the California governor's seal ring on his wedding ring finger. He's eager to sit down with di Bonaventura to talk about the film, just as long as he has a Davidoff cigar brought to him from his private humidor.
"I smoke much less than I used to," Schwarzenegger says. "But one little cigar at the end of the day isn't bad."
He boasts about the cigar tent he erected in the courtyard next to the governor's office: "Legislators liked to pass anti-smoking laws," he says, flicking open his lighter and bringing the flame to his Davidoff. "And then they would come to the smoking tent."
At the end of his final term as governor, Schwarzenegger told his longtime collaborator di Bonaventura, with whom he had worked at Warner Bros., that he would return to the business. Di Bonaventura immediately sent over a script. Schwarzenegger, who says he was too busy working "my (butt) off" in his final days, insisted he didn't even read the script.
"I felt like an ant, there was so much happening with the (state's) economic decline, people losing jobs, that I wanted to pay full attention and sort of sprint to the finish line," says Schwarzenegger. "I didn't want people to say it's a lame-duck session, bla bla bla...
But after leaving office, Schwarzenegger signed onto two parts — a small role in last summer's The Expendables 2 and The Last Stand, where Korean director Kim Jee-woon makes his English-language debut. Working with Sylvester Stallone in Expendables for four days proved to be "a great warm-up, the perfect transition" for the much larger follow-up role.
As The Last Stand cast and crew debated how they should refer to the former governor and action icon, Schwarzenegger jetted in ready to rumble.
"People wanted to know, 'Should we call him Governor? Should we call him Arnold?' " Schwarzenegger says gleefully. "I said that I didn't care. We just have to grind this movie out. We have to be on the set and work, work, work."
The fiscally conservative Republican took his leader status seriously for the modestly budgeted $40 million action film.
"Everyone got the cue. Don't (mess) around," says Schwarzenegger. "If we're shooting a scene late, don't complain, there's a reason for that. When the call time is for 7 o'clock, I was there at 7 o'clock. That's what kind of movie this was. The leading man creates the atmosphere on the set."
And while Schwarzenegger had laughs with co-stars Johnny Knoxville and Jaimie Alexander between scenes, they knew when showtime started. "He worked his butt off," says Alexander.
Luis Guzmán, another one of the actors playing deputies, said he was impressed that Schwarzenegger was willing to show the vulnerability of age in the movie.
"It would be a mistake to make a 65-year-old man act 35," says Guzmán. "But fun fact, that guy still got the moves."
For Schwarzenegger, the screen vulnerability comes naturally with age — even if he remains active and works out for 80 minutes every day. "Automatically it gets dialed into your brain whether you want to or not. You look at things totally differently. You look down the black diamond hill more cautiously when skiing. In the old days, you wouldn't think of it. Now I look at it and think 'Where's the best way to get down?' ''
Despite that, Schwarzenegger was also eager to do as many stunts as needed, strapping on the safety harness for one key fighting sequence that leads to a building fall. In another scene, he is thrown through a door and announces, "I'm old."
"They have it fixed up so that you break through the door easy," says Schwarzenegger. "But you still have to land on your arms and chest and all that stuff."
They shot some of those scenes three times, which was fine in his book.
"They were very much aware, 'Let's use Arnold, but let's not abuse Arnold,' " says Schwarzenegger.
Yet the hardest days were the relatively mundane stunts where, for example, Schwarzenegger had to jump over the hood of a car. "You have to do it over and over again. And your pants are too tight and you cannot lift your leg up high enough to get it over the hood."
Ironically, his worst injury was a fluke that came while he was walking off the set as the camera crew was rehearsing a shot.
"I put my jacket on to walk away and all of a sudden the camera comes in and smacks into my forehead and the blood is gushing down," says Schwarzenegger. "It wasn't even a scene."
Maintaining his tough-guy image, he was whisked away to the local emergency room, took four stitches and zipped back for more shooting.
"The director said the wound could be removed digitally. So we continued."
"A lot of people take the day off and there's an insurance claim and everything," says di Bonaventura. "That's just a fact of what is. But not Arnold."
Wade Allen, one of the film's stunt coordinators, recalls Schwarzenegger skillfully driving his Camaro in an intricate cornfield car chase with him repeatedly slamming into his screen foe's car — "It was fantastic, and with Arnold driving!''
"There was a lot of physicality in that last sequence. It's (Schwarzenegger) throwing punches and dropping the other character on the side of a bridge. There was not a lot of Hollywood tricks," says Allen. "At the end of the last day, he was moving a little slower. He had that look of an action star that has given his all and was a little tired. But he did a great job."
While shooting The Tomb, the 66-year-old Stallone injured his calf in a scene while carrying a heavy pack down a ladder. Schwarzenegger decided to warm up to prevent the same injury.
"The reason we put faith in guys like Arnold and Clint is that we want them to decide what's right and wrong," says di Bonaventura. "They don't have to be invincible. It's not an age thing. It's a hero thing."
One thing for sure, Schwarzenegger is certainly not going to be like his small-town Sheriff Owens in Stand, content to sit back and let the world go by. He even refuses to sit in a plush leather chair for a photograph, preferring to sit in ready position on the chair's arm.
"I cannot be happy if I'm not useful, it's that simple," he says. "I get up and I have work to do. I am happy on a movie set. I wouldn't be happy to sit back. And do what? That's not my style. I will be doing things until I'm six feet under.".....