Good morning readers! This is a summary of some top new stories:
1-.The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) says it pays between N100 billion and N120 billion every month to subsidise Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), also known as petrol. NNPC Group General Manager (GMD), Mele Kyari, disclosed this at the weekly presidential ministerial media briefing on Thursday at the State House in Abuja, the nation’s capital.
2-.President Joe Biden warned North Korea Thursday that the United States will “respond accordingly” if it escalates its weapons testing, after Pyongyang fired two suspected ballistic missiles into the sea in its first substantive provocation of the new US administration. The nuclear-armed North has a long history of using weapons tests to ramp up tensions, in a carefully calibrated process to try to forward its objectives.
3-.A Federal High sitting in Port Harcourt has convicted and sentenced one Job Wilfred to three years imprisonment. Wilifred was sentenced on Thursday on one count bordering on illegal dealing in petroleum products – a charge filed against him by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
4-.A bill for an act to restrict the use of foreign vessels in domestic coastal and inland commercial activities on Thursday scaled second reading in the House of Representatives. The bill which seeks to promote the development of indigenous tonnage and establish a Cabotage Vessel financing fund was sponsored by Representative Lynda Ikpeazu (PDP Enugu) and will amend the Coastal and Inland Shipping Act, Cabotage, 2003.
5-.The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, has said that Equal Opportunity Bill will be reintroduced in the House to ensure that the rights of women will be defended. The Speaker stated that on the part of the 9th House, it had already made the protection of women and promoting gender-based issues, an important item on its Legislative Agenda.
6-.The Lagos zonal office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Thursday secured the conviction and sentencing of one Jackson Kamalu before Justice Mojisola Dada of a Special Offences Court sitting in the Ikeja area Lagos. The convict was first arraigned sometime in September 2020 alongside his cohorts, Joseph Adele, Richie Ojeba and John Ogo, the EFCC spokesman, Wilson Uwujaren, said in a statement.
7-.Police in Lagos State have released one Kari O’Rourke, a United States citizen arrested and detained over the death of her host in Nigeria. A Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) and O’Rourke’s lawyer, Mr Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, confirmed the release of the foreigner in a statement on Thursday.
8-.Prominent journalist Khaled Drareni, a symbol of the struggle for a free press in Algeria, is to face a retrial after the supreme court accepted his lawyers’ cassation appeal on Thursday. “The supreme court overturned the decision. The cassation appeal of the defence was accepted, so Khaled Drareni will be retried,” Abdelghani Badi, a member of the defence team, told the press.
9-.The European Medical Agency (EMA) has announced it will convene a group of experts on Monday to delve further into incidents of blood clotting in people who have received AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccine. The Amsterdam-based regulator last week declared the jab was “safe and effective” and not linked to clotting.
10-.Nigeria will travel by boat for this weekend’s 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier in Benin after players raised concerns over the poor road network linking the neighbouring countries. “It will be the best way to go there,” said Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr. “Last Saturday, I made the trip and we were flying on the water. It was so quick and calm.” The trip by sea takes around an hour.