Tag Archives: United States

Anti-gay law: 40% of Nigerian lawmakers, over twelve governors are homosexuals – Uche Maduagwu

Nollywood Actor, Uche Maduagwu has called on the US President, Joe Biden, to place sanctions on the Nigerian government over the 2014 anti-gay law, alleging that 40% of the current lawmakers and over twelve governors are homosexuals.

The law was signed by ex-President, Goodluck Jonathan and it prohibits all forms of gay relationships in Nigeria.

The law also states that a 14-year jail term awaits anyone caught in an act of homosexuality.

However, Uche in a post via his Instagram account asked President Biden to sanction the Nigerian government over the law.

He also alleged that 40% of the current lawmakers and 12 state governors are homosexuals but are hiding behind closed doors.

“Dear President Joe Biden. I am proudly gay, and I beg you to place sanctions on Nigerian government for its inhuman laws against law-abiding homosexuals.

“This same government pampers wicked Fulani herdsmen who kidnap and cause trouble in southern part of Nigeria.

“We are tired and scared despite the fact that more than 40% of current legislatures and over twelve governors are homosexuals in naija; why the hypocrisy,” he said.

Recall that the Controversial Nollywood actor, recently revealed that he is gay.

Maduagwu made the declaration via his Instagram page on Thursday, asking his followers to learn to accept and respect other people’s choices.

Obaseki parleys US govt, private investors on agribusiness drive, targets $32m investment outlay

The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki has said his government is focused on building the capacity of the people to attract private investments in agro-industrialization.Obaseki speaking during a virtual meeting with the United States Ambassador to Nigeria, Mary Beth Leonard, high-ranking US government officials and agribusiness investors, said the focus of his administration on agribusiness development is to attract investors into the oil palm sector as well as production and processing of cassava into high value Consumer-Packaged Goods (CPG).This is as a private investor, Fayus Inc., secured 5000 ha in the state for a plantation, commenced the development of nurseries for oil palm 600,000 seedlings and fast tracking on processing CPG for export.Governor Obaseki stated that efforts to reposition the agricultural sector in his first term in office shifted from lamentation to getting the job done by instituting the framework for the Edo State Oil Palm Programme (ESOPP) in support of oil palm value chain development in the state.He said: “At the sub-national tier of government, we have focused on moving from lamentation to getting the job done. This paradigm shift in the establishment of the EDSOPP will now include a move towards renewed focus on Cassava Industrialization Programme through land administration and civil service reforms.”“We want to build the capacity of our people to attract private investments in agro-industrialization,” the governor added.During the parley, agribusiness investors including Fayus Inc., among others present committed to investing $43.7 million in industrial food ingredients and CPG cassava value creation, food science and technology knowledge transfer and increased trade and investment inflows between the United States, Nigeria and other ECOWAS countries.The firm further disclosed plans to invest over $32 million in cassava value creation in Nigeria and an additional $18 million in Ghana and Togo with support of the USAID funded West Africa Trade and Investment Hub (WATIH).The chairman of Fayus Inc., Fatai Yusufu, noted: “We are ready to get the job done in Nigeria and in Edo State. Over the next four years, I promise you, we will be milling oil palm in Edo State from our investment in the newly allocated 5,000 Ha land by Governor Obaseki’s administration.”Fayus is one of six new oil palm investors in Edo State with state-of-the-art nurseries boasting of over 600,000 high-performance seedlings ready for planting by 2021.“Fayus is committed to sustainable cassava supply chain infrastructure development and value creation in Nigeria to meet its latent demand of 50,000 MT High-Quality Cassava Flour (HQCF) for export to North American, European, and Australian markets in addition to in-country manufacturing of CPG in Nigeria and the United States.”

Breaking : US Congress Certifies Joe Biden’s Election

The US Congress has certified Joe Biden’s victory in the presidential election, hours after Trump supporters stormed the building in an attack that saw four people die.

Lawmakers resumed the session after police managed to remove the mob, which had been encouraged by President Trump in a bid to overturn his defeat.

The certification clears the way for Mr Biden to be sworn in on 20 January.

In response, Mr Trump pledged an “orderly transition” of power.

Joe Biden’s victory was confirmed in the early hours of Thursday by a joint session presided over by Vice-President Mike Pence, who said the violence had been a “dark day in the history of the United States Capitol”.

Wednesday’s chaotic scenes followed months of escalating rhetoric around the 3 November election, and culminated with the invasion of the Capitol.

Mr Biden blasted the “insurrection” as Mr Trump, while telling the mob to “go home”, continued to make false claims of electoral fraud. His Twitter and Facebook accounts were later frozen.

Mr Biden’s victory was certified after objections by some Republican lawmakers to overturn the result in Arizona and Pennsylvania were rejected.

Shortly afterwards, Mr Trump said in a statement: “Even though I totally disagree with the outcome of the election, and the facts bear me out, nevertheless there will be an orderly transition on January 20th.”

UK court blocks US attempt to extradite Julian Assange of Wikileaks

The United Kingdom has blocked United States’ attempt to extradite Wikileaks publisher Julian Assange.

According to Reporters Without Borders (RSF), UK District Judge Vanessa Baraitser on January 4 took the decision, but RSF has expressed extreme disappointment that the court failed to take a stand for press freedom and journalistic protections.

According to a statement by Rebecca Vincent, RSF Director of International Campaigns, “We disagree with the judge’s assessment that the case was not politically motivated and was not centred on journalism and free speech.

“This decision leaves the door open for further similar prosecutions and will have a chilling effect on national security reporting around the world if the root issues are not addressed”.

Although Judge Baraitser decided against extradition, the grounds for her decision were strictly based on Assange’s serious mental health issues and the conditions he would face in detention in the US. On the substantive points in the case – in which the US government has pursued Assange on 17 counts under the Espionage Act and one count under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act – the judge’s decision was heavily in favour of the prosecution’s arguments, and dismissive of the defence.

The US government has indicated that it intends to appeal the extradition decision. Assange remains detained on remand in high-security Belmarsh prison, pending the judge’s consideration of his bail application on 6 January.

RSF has called again for his immediate release, and says it will continue to monitor proceedings.

Despite extensive difficulties securing access – including refusal by the judge to accredit NGO observers and threats of arrest by police on the scene – RSF monitored the 4 January hearing at London’s Central Criminal Court (the Old Bailey), and has been the only NGO to monitor the full extradition proceedings against Assange.

US Based Nigerian Doctor Shoots Wife, Commits Suicide

A US based Nigerian medical doctor has shot his wife and thereafter turned the gun on himself.

The incident happened in Texas, Saturday morning.

The couple whose wife is a nurse are blessed with three children.

No one could tell the reason for his action but this is how USA based veteran journalist Azuka Jebose reported the incident-

“Morning Texas Tragedy”

At sunrise this cold Saturday, Dr. Ben Okigbo, a medical doctor in Houston, pulled up a handgun and fatally shot his wife. His wife was a nurse too. A few seconds later he turned the gun on himself. These hours their three children are dealing with the tragedy of losing their parents at home. We will never know why Dr. Okigbo, decided to kill his wife and commit suicide thereafter.

It’s my understanding that Dr. Okigbo was originally from Idumuje Unor while his wife was from Akwukwu Igbo, both towns are in Delta State of Nigeria. This is a developing story.

Nigeria is now the world’s second-biggest bitcoin market after the US

Uwagbale Edward-Ekpu

During the police brutality protests in Nigeria in October, bitcoin saved the day when the government shut out protesters from using local payment platforms for collecting donations to support it.

The young, tech-savvy protesters quickly switched to using bitcoin, and in about a week bitcoin accounted for around 40% of the nearly $400,000 raised. It was just one high-profile example of how young Nigerians increasingly use bitcoin to navigate a complicated and restrictive banking and monetary system.

In the last five years, Nigeria has traded 60,215 bitcoins, valued at more than $566 million which, apart from the US, is the largest volume worldwide on Paxful, a leading peer-to-peer bitcoin marketplace. The data scraped from Coin Dance shows from the beginning of May 2015 to the middle of November this year, bitcoin trade in Nigeria have increased yearly at least 19% in volume since 2017, and the highest volume (20,504.50) was traded in 2020.

Bitcoin trade had its highest spike of 30% this year during the national lockdown in the country and the highest volume traded during the peak of the pandemic. between January and September, Paxful was reported to record a 137% increase in new registrations in Nigeria.”

The company says Nigerians make up around a quarter of its customer base with 1.3 million registered accounts. “They mostly use the platform for peer-to-peer and arbitrage trading,” says Nena Nwachukwu, Paxful Nigeria regional manager. “Remittances is also a popular use case.” Nwachukwu says bitcoin transfers are “much cheaper and faster than using traditional money transfer operators.”

The growing uncertainty and instability around the Nigerian naira, which has had increasingly divergent official and parallel exchange rates with the US dollar, has created an opportunity and practical use case for bitcoin trade in Nigeria. The divergent rates have long been a striking feature of Nigeria’s economy but more so in the last half decade as the country’s financial authorities have attempted to micro-manage the supply of foreign exchange and “defend” the naira.

In the last couple of years, other African countries, most prominently Zimbabwe, have seen a spike in cryptocurrency trade led by bitcoin, due to currency fluctuations and uncertain monetary policy. In some cases limits to the trade has been prompted by a lack of reliable local platforms.

“The lack of bitcoin liquidity was the first obstacle to solve to introduce bitcoin to Africa,” says Ray Youssef, co-founder of Paxful.

Nigerians are often restricted on international platforms such as PayPal, which does not allow payment to Nigeria, and local banks place a cap on international transactions and charge high fees for transactions due to dollar deficiency.

“People want to be able to buy and sell, transact internationally and the more the traditional channels are being restricted the more people trade crypto and mainly bitcoin,” explains Eleanya Eke, co-founder of Buycoins Africa. “And the best thing about it is that it’s almost impossible to stop. If you block the exchange it moves to Peer-to-peer platforms that are non-custodial.”

The increased awareness and availability of easy-to-use bitcoin platforms to Nigerians have largely increased bitcoin liquidity in the country, therefore solving the first problem hindering adoption. Nigerians now have several formal and semiformal bitcoin platforms to use, ranging from international platforms including Paxful, Binance, and Luno, and local ones such as Quidax, Busha, and BuyCoins. However, long-term watchers say most trading in the country is done on informal channels such as Telegram, WhatsApp bad WeChat.

“Globally, there was a shift to online transactions from the physical,” says Osaretin Victor Asemota, a Nigerian tech investor. “In Nigeria, as banks were closed, the agency outlets recorded much higher transaction volumes. I think this shift was inevitable, and it is not a temporary pandemic boost.”

Bitcoin traded as low as $3,600 in March due to a massive sell-off on global financial markets has this month surged past $20,000 for the first time. While in the past, the value has increased like this only to later dropped drastically in a few weeks, some analysts say this increase may continue into 2021 as it appears it is due to the growing interest of institutional investors in the cryptocurrency.

Institutional investors such as MassMutual and MicroStrategy were reportedly planning to purchase hundreds of million-dollar worth of bitcoin, while PayPal, a top global online payment company recently added cryptocurrency to its functionality, letting people use bitcoin to pay for things online.

Zucked: United States government wants to break up Facebook

Less than 2 months ago, the US Department of Justice (DOJ) smacked Google with an antitrust case.

In perhaps the greatest “hold my beer” ever, another government agency — the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) — just launched an antitrust case of its own against Facebook.

And, unlike the Google case, this case is aiming for a breakup of its Big Tech target, according to the New York Times.
More than 40 states will join in on the lawsuit.

The meat of the case concerns Facebook’s history of buying on-the-rise social apps and snuffing out future competition.

Of particular note are Facebook’s acquisitions of:
Instagram for $1B in 2012
WhatsApp for $19B 2014
Today, Facebook is a $790B+ behemoth with annual revenue of $80B+ and 4 products that boast 1B+ users: Facebook (2.7B), WhatsApp (2B), Messenger (1.3B), Instagram (1.1B).

Few major antitrust cases have tried to unwind previous mergers.

One of Facebook’s defenses is the very fact that the FTC approved these mergers years ago.

Facebook further contends that without its infrastructure and social expertise, the likes of Instagram and WhatsApp would not have seen the same growth.

In more recent years, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has latched onto TikTok as an argument against a breakup of Facebook:

First, the video app’s hockey stick rise proves that social media remains competitive.
Second, Facebook is a defense against the rise of social apps from China, a country which has a “dangerous” approach to internet regulation, according to Zuckerberg.

Prosecutors want to break up Facebook and block future deals.

These are “some of the most severe penalties regulators can demand” according to the New York Times.

The case — which took 18 months to put together — will likely take years to resolve.

Somewhat ironically, Facebook announced a $1B acquisition of chatbot startup Kustomer last week.

If the FTC wins this deal, the period of freewheeling Big Tech M&A may come to an end.

The Hustle

US ELECTIONS:FEC Chairman Debunks MSM Claims Of ‘No Fraud’, Says Counting Illegal Votes Can Make Election ‘Illegitimate’

The chairman of the Federal Elections Commission (FEC), Trey Trainor, said reports of voter fraud in key battleground states are credible.

In a recent interview, he pointed out that Democrat officials removing GOP poll watchers from polling locations is a violation of state law and federal court orders.

“When you have claims of, you know, 10,000 people who don’t live in the state of Nevada having voted in Neveda, you have the video…they’re (poll workers) either duplicating a spoiled ballot there or they’re in the process of marking a ballot that came in blank for a vote,” Trainor explained.

The FEC chief added, he agrees with the Trump campaign’s lawsuits and said their observers were denied meaningful access. Trainor also said questionable actions by the Democrats may render this election illegitimate.

“That’s a process that is to be observed by election observers, the law allows those observers to be in there,” he continued. “And if they’re not then the law is not being followed, making this an illegitimate election.”

In recent days, the mainstream media has continued to claim there was no voter fraud in this year’s elections, but Trainor’s statements reveal this election is far from over.

BREAKING: ‘The election is far from over’, Trump reacts over media’s projection of Biden as winner

United States President Donald Trump has reacted to the projection of Joe Biden as winner of the 2020 Presidential Election.

Trump in statement he personally signed, accused Biden of claiming victory.

“We all know why Joe Biden is rushing to falsely pose as the winner, and why his media allies are trying so hard to help him: they don’t want the truth to be exposed. The simple fact is this election is far from over. Joe Biden has not been certified as the winner of any states, let alone any of the highly contested states headed for mandatory recounts, or states where our campaign has valid and legitimate legal challenges that could determine the ultimate victor.”

Trump said in Pennsylvania, for example, his campaign’s legal observers were not permitted meaningful access to watch the counting process.

The Republican stressed that legal votes decide who is president, not the news media.

He said from Monday, his campaign will start prosecuting our case in court to ensure election laws are fully upheld and the rightful winner is seated.

“The American People are entitled to an honest election: that means counting all legal ballots, and not counting any illegal ballots. This is the only way to ensure the public has full confidence in our election. It remains shocking that the Biden campaign refuses to agree with this basic principle and wants ballots counted even if they are fraudulent, manufactured, or cast by ineligible or deceased voters.”
NEWS: End SARS: Court grants CBN’s request to freeze accounts of SavvyRinu, Pamilerin, 18 others [Full list]

Trump added that only a party engaged in wrongdoing would unlawfully keep observers out of the count room – and then fight in court to block their access.

“So what is Biden hiding? I will not rest until the American People have the honest vote count they deserve and that Democracy demands”, the statement added.

US ELECTIONS: Armed men arrested in Philadelphia were trying to deliver truck full of fake ballots

Two armed Virginia men who were arrested Thursday outside the Philadelphia Convention Center were “coming to deliver a truck full of fake ballots” to the city, CNN affiliate KYW reported, citing prosecutors.

The center is one of the places where election workers have been counting votes from the 2020 general election, which includes the race for president.
Text messages reveal that the men were concerned about the tallying of votes at the convention center, prosecutors said, according to KYW.

Antonio LaMotta, 61, and Joshua Macias, 42, both of Chesapeake, Virginia, were arrested Thursday night outside the center on suspicion of carrying handguns in Pennsylvania without permits, authorities said.
Philadelphia police said they found the men Thursday night after receiving a tip that people with firearms were heading to the Pennsylvania Convention Center in a silver Hummer truck.

Officers found a silver Hummer a block from the center — parked and unoccupied — around 10:20 p.m. Thursday, about seven minutes before finding the men, who acknowledged the Hummer was theirs, police said.
Both men were carrying loaded handguns, and police found an AR-type rifle in the Hummer, authorities said at a news conference Friday. About 160 rounds of ammunition were found in the weapons and the vehicle, authorities said.
Stickers and a hat with logos of the QAnon conspiracy movement were found in the vehicle, Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner said.
LaMotta and Macias were charged with having a concealed firearm without a license and carrying a firearm on a public street or public property, Krasner said.

“This alarming incident is still very much under investigation regarding additional charges,” Krasner said.

LaMotta and Macias were arraigned Friday night, and a judge set bail at $750,000 each, Krasner’s spokeswoman Jane Roh said.

Details about the alleged fake ballots — including where they came from, whether they were found in the Hummer, or what was marked on them — weren’t immediately available.

It wasn’t immediately clear whether the men had legal representation. CNN has sought comment from the Philadelphia Public Defenders Office and LaMotta’s relatives.
A woman who was traveling with the men has not been arrested, Krasner said.

A hat with the QAnon logo was found in the Hummer, Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner said.

A hat with the QAnon logo was found in the Hummer, Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner said.

Suspect said he needed to take leave to go to Philadelphia, employer says
LaMotta told his work supervisor a few days ago that he needed leave for an “assignment” in Philadelphia, according to the CEO of the company that employs him.
LaMotta works in the Virginia area for Nationwide Investigations & Security, a Houston-based security services firm, according to company CEO Allen Hollimon and LaMotta’s personal website.

Hollimon told CNN that LaMotta this week told his supervisor he needed to take leave for the “assignment” in Philadelphia that was not assigned through the company.

Hollimon said he did not know why LaMotta was in Philadelphia and emphasized that he believes he is “a good guy.”

“He’s a very devoted guy. I’ve never had an issue with him,” Hollimon told CNN. “He’s not a threat.”

LaMotta’s website, which has since been taken down, described him as a “crisis response, security, fugitive recovery agent, bodyguard, security contractor.”

The website included his date of birth and hometown, both of which matched information shared by the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office.
The website displayed pictures of him posing beside a silver Hummer. It also detailed his work experience, including his work at Nationwide Investigation & Security, as well as documents related to a military discharge.

The website detailed other work experience, including for the Virginia city of Chesapeake, where he lives.

LaMotta was a facilities maintenance technician for the city from August 2014 to May 2019, Chesapeake spokesman Heath Covey told CNN. Cover said he could not provide details about why LaMotta left the job.