Francisco Luz, Consul General of Brazil in Lagos, says one of the sectors that can be used to reinforce the bilateral relations between his country and Nigeria is tourism.
The Brazilian envoy made this known on Tuesday, during an event organised by the Consulate as part of activities to commemorate Brazil’s Bicentennial independence anniversary.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Brazil will mark 200 years of independence from Portuguese rule on Sept. 7. The event, themed, “Developing a Sustainable Framework for Nigeria-Brazil Tourism Enhancement” brought together Nigerian and Brazilian tourism stakeholders.
According to Luz, tourism brings knowledge into societies and has the ability to erase misconceptions.
The consul general said that past years were challenging globally, but nations could find opportunities in challenges.
He noted that tourism was the way forward, urging Nigerians and Brazilians to learn more about each other’s cultures, to change the mindset given by colonizers.
“Culture is one of the integral parts of our nations, so we have to build our cultural ties through all means possible.
“We also want to see more development in areas including agriculture and education, and hope to give more scholarships to Nigerian students in Brazil,” Luz said.
In his remarks, Amb. Chris Okeke, former Nigerian Ambassador to Brazil, said Nigeria needed willing and able partners across the globe to help her on the quest to being great.
According to him, Nigeria has great achievements to be proud of, some of which are her profound resources, both natural and human capital, in domains that stretched from medicine through engineering, from science to technology, and business.
“When we talk about Nigeria and Brazil, discussion really needs to be centered around how to create, manage and sustain a progressive, mutually profitable relationship.
“We can see that the interconnectivity of the world is far more than our minds can comprehend and it is for this reason, that developing allies and in particular economic partners is more critical than ever.
” Okeke said there was a lot beyond tourism, adding that other areas to be considered include diplomacy, literature, art, film, food, music, tech, tourism, agriculture, banking, among others.
He stressed that Nigeria had the opportunity to dismiss and demystify some of the stereotypical beliefs.
According to him, there is a need to drive an initiative that will celebrate the renewed relationship between Nigeria and Brazil.
He said the aim of this initiative would be to establish a fresh idea of what both countries represented today, and to build for tomorrow.
“The initiative will be a catalyst to uncover the many opportunities for cultural and commercial collaborations between both countries and to facilitate them moving forward.
“I encourage us all to do our part in fostering and bettering the representation of Nigeria,” Okeke said.
Mr. Kennedy Chirchir, Country Manager, Qatar Airways described aviation as an enabler of not only tourism, but also the economy.
He said certain destinations could be reached only by getting visas and by flying, adding that without either, there wouldn’t be tourism.
According to Chirchir, Qatar Airways is unique for pushing new frontiers and will continue exploring new routes as long as opportunities arise.
He also urged tour operators to visit different cities ahead, in order to educate clients and make them willing and ready to travel.
The Chief Of Army Staff (COAS), Maj.-Gen. Farouk Yahaya, says Nigerian Army has ensured continuous training to keep officers and soldiers more efficient in facing dynamic operational challenges for effective delivery.
Yahaya stated this when he declared open the Second Commanding Officers Workshop on Tuesday in Sokoto.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the event was tagged ‘ ‘ Equipment Maintenance and Operational Efficiency: The Role of Operational and Tactical Level Commanders in the Nigerian Army and Sister Services through Inter Agency Cooperation ”.
He said that series of training packages were aimed at developing the capacity of officers and men for effective services in line with global best practices.
He said that lack of training constitute a hitch in the operations in recognition of dynamic nature of operations and confronted challenges.
” The efforts are geared towards preparing officers especially Commanders at tactical levels for efficient and right decisions in order to achieve the desired results.
” I urged participants to utilize the skills from experienced resource persons as well as shared experiences among themselves from different locations,” Farouk said.
He added the theme was apt, timely and relevant as a continuation of the first trainings that were in line with Nigerian Army vision, which would go along way in improving perspective of Commanders.
” It was hoped to enhance professionalism and ensure maximum success in the operations, ” he added.
The COAS commended President Muhammadu Buhari for his sustained supports to Nigerian Army and other agencies.
He also lauded Gov. Aminu Tambuwal for his routine assistance and ensuring cordial relationship in the state.
In his speech, Tambuwal thanked Nigerian Army for establishing formations in security-challenged Isa, in eastern part of the state and Sifawa in Bodinga local government area.
He expressed appreciation for the training in recognition of the challenges faced by the state, which needed enhanced inter-agency cooperation as embedded in the training modules.
Tambuwal further assured sustained support to Nigerian Army and looked forward to more robust partnership to end the security challenges.
In his remark, Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar, emphasized the need for more training and experience sharing among personnel which would surely boost their morales in the operations.
Abubakar, who recounted his days in the Nigerian Army, urged the participants to adhere to rules and boost unity and progress of the nation.
Juul Labs will pay $438.
5 million to settle a probe by 34 US states that found the vaping company marketed to underage smokers, state officials announced Tuesday.
Under the agreement, which is still being finalized, Juul would provide payments over the next 6-10 years to individual US states and pledge to not employ cartoons in ads or otherwise market to younger consumers.
The probe was led two years ago by state officials in Connecticut, Oregon and Texas and joined by other states.
The investigation “revealed that Juul wilfully engaged in an advertising campaign that appealed to youth, even though its e-cigarettes are both illegal for them to purchase and unhealthy for children,” according to a press release from the Oregon Department of Justice.
Juul “relentlessly marketed to underage users with launch parties, advertisements using young and trendy-looking models, social media posts and free samples,” the press release said, adding that the company used age verification techniques “that it knew were ineffective.
” “The conduct that led to this settlement was reprehensible and demonstrates pure corporate greed at its most damaging,” said Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum.
“Just when we were starting to make serious progress reducing tobacco use among our young people, Juul came along and hooked another generation.
” Juul called the settlement “a significant part of our ongoing commitment to resolve issues from the past,” a Juul spokesman said.
“We remain focused on the future as we work to fulfill our mission to transition adult smokers away from cigarettes — the number one cause of preventable death — while combating underage use.
” Juul has argued that vaping products can provide a solution to the harmful health impacts from conventional combustible cigarettes.
Juul has been blamed for a surge in youth vaping over its marketing of fruit and candy flavored e-cigarettes, which it stopped selling in 2019.
In January 2020, the US Food and Drug Administration said sale of e-cigarettes in flavors other than tobacco or menthol would be illegal unless specifically authorized by the government.
More than two million American middle and high schoolers reported they were vapers in 2021, with eight in ten using flavored e-cigarettes, according to a September 2021 government report.
On June 23, the FDA said it was ordering all products made by Juul Labs off the market after finding the vaping giant had failed to address certain safety concerns.
The following day, a US Court suspended the FDA’s action following a Juul appeal.
The Juul spokesman said the agency has submitted an appeal to the FDA, adding that “we continue to offer our products to adult smokers throughout the US.
” Juul maintains that its products meet US public health standards.
Juul products that remain on sale include the Juul smoking device and cartridges in Menthol and “Virginia Tobacco.
National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking In Persons (NAPTIP), in collaboration with the Nigeria Police, rescued nine victims of human trafficking in Kano.The Zonal Coordinator of NAPTIP in Kano, Mr Abdullahi Babale, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Kano on Tuesday.
Babale said that two suspected human traffickers were arrested in connection to the case.
He said the victims who were taken from the Southern part of the country and were rescued while heading to Libya, for labour exploitation.
Babale said the victims were all female, aged between 19 years and 55 years.
He said that the suspected traffickers would be arraigned in court, while the victims would undergo rehabilitation before being reunited with their respective families.
The Head of the Civil Service of the Federation (HOCSF), Dr Folasade Yemi-Esan, has decried the lackadaisical attitude of insurance companies over non-payment of death benefits of civil servants.
Mr Mohammed Ahmed, the Deputy Director, Communications, office of the HOCSF made this known in a statement on Tuesday in Abuja.
Yemi-Esan said this during the meeting with Underwriters of the Group Life Insurance Policy for Federal Civil Servants in her office.
Yemi-Esan expressed her displeasure to the fact that these people were dead and could not fight for themselves.
She said the Federal Government was doing its best to improve the welfare of families of deceased workers through the prompt release of funds for the payment of death benefits.
She lamented that the underwriters and brokers were frustrating the efforts by their unserious attitude.
The HOS said that such situation was unacceptable and must be remedied.
According to her, the meeting is necessary so as to bridge the gap that exists between the underwriters and brokers as it is unreasonable to continue doing the same thing repeatedly without achieving meaningful result.
“If the brokers are no longer relevant, then they should be blacklisted.
“Payment of insurance claim is not rocket science, the office of the Head of the Civil Service performs similar function by settling backlog of claims not covered by the present arrangement seamlessly.
” Yemi-Esan said that from the breakdown of the report, there was a clear indication of a huge gap between the number of claims reported and those paid.
She added that there was the need for improvement from the insurance service providers, as there was always room for other alternatives.
In his remarks, the Lead Underwriter and CEO of Old Mutual (Nig.) Ltd., Mr Segun Omosehin, expressed his gratitude to the Head of Service for her concerns and show of outright displeasure with their low performance.
Omosehin pledged the company’s commitment to support the Head of Service by doing the needful to bridge the gap existing between the underwriters and the brokers.
He, however, identified the gap as the major issue responsible for the late payment of claims to families of departed civil servants.
The Naira on Tuesday further lost value against the dollar at the Investors and Exporters window, exchanging at N436.00 against N434.75 on Monday, representing 0.29 depreciation.
The open indicative rate closed at N433 to the dollar on Tuesday.
An exchange rate of N437.50 to the dollar was the highest rate recorded within the day’s trading before it settled at N436. The Naira sold for as low as N425 to the dollar within the day’s trading.
A total of 63.05 million dollars was traded at the official Investors and Exporters window on Tuesday.
Anambra has given more than 1.3 million households 3.9 million Insecticidal Treated Nets (ITN), as part efforts to control malaria.
The nets were procured and distributed with support from GiveWell Open Philanthropic Funding, National Malaria Elimination Programme and Malaria Consortium.
“No fewer than 7.4 million persons benefited from the free insecticide-treated nets distributed to 1.3 million households in Anambra.
“About 3,850,316 insecticide-treated nets were distributed to residents of the state between Aug. 7 and Aug 21,’’ Campaign Manager of the project, Mrs Olaitan Adeniyi, said in Awka on Tuesday.
Adeniyi said insecticide-treated nets had been proven by research as an effective way of preventing and rolling back malaria.
She said a survey conducted immediately after the distribution showed that Anambra had moved from 37 per cent to 53 per cent ITN usage rate.
“This is a mere few points away from the national target of 57 per cent usage rate,’’ she said.
Adeniyi expressed the hope that with increased media campaign in the communities, the state would be on the journey to meet the national target.
She also acknowledged complaints from residents who were willing to receive the nets but could not.
“The challenge is caused by a shortfall in the statistics provided on the population of some parts of the state which made the number of nets planned for such places to be underestimated,’’ she said.
In his remarks, Commissioner for Health, Dr Afam Obidike, thanked the partners for adopting digital technology in the distribution of the nets.
“We appeal to the public to ensure that they continue to sleep inside the nets as it is proven to be a protection from mosquito bites.
“The ITN prevents mosquito bites, reduces the incidence of malaria and the cost spent in treating the disease,’’ the commissioner noted.
The National Council for Arts and Culture (NCAC) has called on the IBB International Golf and Country Club to patronise Made-in-Nigeria products in its tournament to celebrate 62nd Nigeria Independence Anniversary.
The Director-General of NCAC, Otunba Olusegun Runsewe, gave the advice on Tuesday when the Chairman, Independence Planning Committee of the Club, Dr Banjo Obaleye, paid him a courtesy visit in his office in Abuja.
Runsewe pleaded with the committee to ensure that local materials were sewed for jackets for golfers who would participate in the tournament, adding that the committee should also focus on Nigerian cuisines.
According to him, this will not only promote arts and culture, but it will also enhance jobs creation and boost the Nigerian economy.
“Let me plead with you, because I don’t know what your plans are.
The jackets, if it is possible, we should use local materials.
“Let me start by saying that I’m happy that you are sewing the jackets in Nigeria so that our tailors will get jobs.
“The materials, for instance, as you know me very well, I don’t play golf with foreign materials.
I use local materials to play golf.
“I use to say that If there are over three million golf fans in Nigeria; if all of us should patronise our tailors, we will be adding value to them,’’NCAC boss said.
He said that the council would support the club in organising cultural exhibition to showcase the nation’s arts and crafts to the world.
“For the exhibition, I want to assure you that we will take charge of the entire 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory.
“At the corridor of IBB Gulf, we will make sure that every state is being represented.
“If we don’t do that for you, others will take over the space and sell Nigeria from the wrong angle which will not be of our interest,’’Runsewe said.
According to him, what IBB International Golf and Country Club was doing was a ”story awakening us to our consciousness of unity of our country.
“If Oct. 1st comes and goes without doing anything, I want to tell you the danger, all those embassies will say what is wrong with our country.
“But, if there are activities going on, the negative stories can be overcome with positive ones which will make a lot of difference.
“So, for me, IBB Golf Club has made an impact in developing and making Nigeria to be seen in the right angle,’’he said.
The NCAC chief commended the IBB Golf Club for sustaining the independence golf tournament.
Earlier, Obaleye, who is also Vice Captain of the club, said the visit was to seek the NCAC support for the independence tournament, aimed at developing sports and tourism in the country.
“Independence tournament is the biggest event in the history or calendar of the club every year.
“This year is not going to be an exception.
We are going to start with rider cobbler match play between Nigerian community and International community and a winner of that tournament will have a trophy.
“Again, the winner of the overall tournament will have a jacket and we will equally prepare a jacket for past winner,’’he said.
Obaleye said that the club was planning to have exhibition of arts and culture aimed at showcasing Nigeria’s heritage.
He added that Korean Embassy has indicated interest to participate in the cultural exhibition.
According to him, IBB International Golf and Country Club is a premier club in Abuja and the major focus is to develop sports and tourism in Nigeria.
“It is also aimed at showing our cultures to a very big global community.
”The club has numerous national teams that represent the expatriate and local community,’’he said.
The Ohanaeze Ndigbo and Igbo Community Development Association (ICDA) in Oyo State, said all Igbos living in the state are under one umbrella.
They made this known at a news conference jointly addressed by the leaders of Ohanaeze Ndigbo and ICDA on Tuesday in Ibadan, The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the news conference was held to avoid crisis within the Igbo Community in Oyo State.
Addressing newsmen, Chief Alex Anozie, the Eze Ndigbo of Oyo State and Chief Emma Nzeako, the ICDA President, explained that the briefing was important to avoid crisis in the state.
NAN recalled that the Igbo leaders after several interventions had approached the court over the leadership tussle within the community.
It reports that the court had in three different judgments affirmed the leadership of Anozie and Nzeako as authentic in the state.
Anozie, in his remarks, appealed to all Igbos in the state to obey the subsisting judgment and sustain the peaceful coexistence among them.
According to him, sustenance of peace and harmony in a society is a collective responsibility of all.
“We are peace loving people.
We are appealing to everyone to join hands with us to ensure peace reigns in Oyo State, where we are all residing,” he said.
Anozie appreciated the state government, traditional rulers and people of the state for the hospitality extended to all ethnic groups in the state.
In his remarks, Nzeako said that some people have been claiming to be Igbo leaders in the state, calling on security agencies to beware of their antics.
He said: “We are peace loving and law abiding people.
Igbos residing in Oyo state have been supportive to all successive governments, irrespective of their party affiliations.
“Please, all authorities, including the media and Nigerians residing in Oyo State should advice these group of people who boast to be highly connected, to be law abiding in the interest of peace.
“We say this because, we are peace loving Ndigbo in Ibadan and Oyo State.
We believe in the rule of law and won’t want to see a breakdown of law and order in our society.
“This is why we are raising this alarm,” he said.
Nzeako appealed to the Gov. Seyi Makinde, the judiciary, Police, the DSS, Olubadan of Ibadan, Central Council of Ibadan Indigenes (CCII) and all lovers of peace to come to intervene in the interest of peace.
He said, “we are calling on all authorities to intervene to avoid crisis within Igbo Community in the state.
The Director-General, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Mr Kashifu Abdullahi said Nigeria is now a global supplier of tech talents.
This is coming as U.
S. Tech. giant, Google, unveiled 60 Africa Startups grantees of its second cohort Black Founders Fund (BFF) initiative on Tuesday in Abuja.
Abdullahi, in his remarks during the unveiling ceremony, said the project will boost Nigeria’s Digital Economy.
According to him: “This is the a golden opportunity for our Startups, because funding is one of the biggest challenges facing the Nigerian tech.
“We have global talents shortage, everywhere they are looking for talents.
In Nigeria, we have the talents that is why they are coming to tap from the pool.
“This kind of initiative will help us create more talents in the country, because it is the people’s component of technology.
“If you don’t have the people that will think and invent new ideas, there is no way we can have a good technology.
“It is an opportunity to position ourselves to be the global talent suppliers.
” Abdullahi said that this is because Nigeria cannot compete with the big countries in terms of hard ware manufacturing, but in terms of software and talent.
“This initiative will help build more in-country talents, solve local problems and upscale them to global scale.
”This will open up Nigeria tech industry to the global market,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Head, Startup Ecosystem Africa, Mr Folarin Aiyegbusi, has disclosed that Africa’s challenges need to be solved through deliberate efforts by Africans and globally.
He said that there was no better time than now to solve these challenges.
“Africa is a diverse continent with massive opportunity, but the continent is faced with the challenge of limited diversity in venture capital funding flow.
“We hope that the BFF program will be able to bridge the gap of disproportionate funding between expat startups over local and black-led companies.
“The equity-free cash assistance to startups will enable them to take care of immediate needs such as paying staff, funding inventory, and maintaining software licences.
“This is to help the grantees buffer the cost of taking on debt in the early stages of their business as many of them do not have steady revenue streams yet,” Aiyegbusi said.
One of the grantees, the founder of Norebase, Mr Tola Onayemi, lauded Google for promoting tech.
innovation in Africa.
Grantees include, Lifebank, HerVest, Healthtracka, Agrickool, Ajua, Awabah, Bailport, Estate Intel, Bag Innovation, Bee, Bookings Africa, Branstorne, Built, BuuPass, Cauri Money, Clarifa, Eden Life, Flex Finance, Gamr, Haul247, and LifeBank, among others.
The winners, who were made up of 50 per cent women-led businesses, hailed from Nigeria, Botswana, Cameroon, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Rwanda, Senegal, South Africa and Uganda.
They specialise in sectors such as fintech, healthcare, e-commerce, logistics, agtech, education, hospitality and smart cities.
Each of the selected Startups will receive support in the form of a 6-month training programme that includes access to a network of mentors to assist in tackling challenges that are unique to them.
They include tailored workshops, support networks and community building sessions.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that 60 grantees will also get non-dilutive awards of between $50,000 and $100,000 and up to $200,000 in Google Cloud credit.
The previous cohort grantees of BFF such as CredPal, Wellahhealth have started contributing tremendously to the growth of tech.