Sport

Hertha Berlin and Borussi Dortmund players kneel in tribute to George Floyd

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Their action was a tribute to George Floyd, an unarmed black man whose death in United States police custody has triggered protests around the world.

Both teams gathered around the centre circle and knelt ahead of their league game, which was being played in an empty Signal Iduna Park stadium in Dortmund due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The coaches and their staff on the benches also joined in.

Earlier this week the German Football Association (DFB) ruled that players were free to show their support for protests over the death of Floyd.

Several players last week lifted their shirts to show messages in support of the protests.

The DFB said it would take no action against symbols of solidarity with the protests in the United States and across the world.

The protests have been sparked by the May 25 killing of Floyd in Minneapolis after a white officer detaining him knelt on his neck for nearly nine minutes as fellow officers stood by.
OLAL

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Edited By: Olawale Alabi (NAN)
)

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Sport

Reed grabs halfway lead, as Tiger misses cut at United States Open

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Former Masters champion Patrick Reed put his sterling short game on display to grab the United States Open halfway lead on Friday.


Tiger Woods finished well outside the cut in windy conditions which humbled many of the game’s top golfers.

Reed only hit five fairways on a tough scoring day at Winged Foot but made a slew of stunning recoveries.

He then needed only 25 putts en route to an even-par 70 that left him at four under on the week and one shot clear of Bryson DeChambeau (68).

“I feel like the game is where it needs to be. I feel good,” said world number 10 Reed. “I just need to tighten a few things up here or there, but the short game is sharp, and when I play around a place like this, that’s what you need.”

Reed, who started the day one shot back of overnight leader Justin Thomas, grabbed the outright lead with a birdie on his final hole, the par-five ninth.

That was where his shot from a greenside bunker settled five feet from the cup.

Unlike the first round when 21 players finished under par in soft conditions, Winged Foot proved a much sterner test on Friday.

DeChambeau, Bubba Watson (69) and Hideki Matsuyama (69) were the only players from a 144-player field to break par.

DeChambeau, who has turned heads this year with his new physique and prodigious length off the tee, went out in the morning wave.

He muscled his way around a scorecard-shredding Winged Foot course like few others can.

The world number nine finished his round with a monstrous eagle at the par-five ninth hole where, after a 380-yard drive, he stuffed a pitching wedge to six feet.

“Confidence is at an all-time high right now, driving it well, iron play is fantastic, wedging is getting better each and every day, and I’m putting it like I know I can,” said DeChambeau, whose best major finish was a share of fourth place at this year’s PGA Championship.

Thomas (73), Spain’s Rafa Cabrera Bello (70) and Harris English (70) were all two shots off the pace heading into the weekend.

This was a tournament that was originally scheduled for mid-June but postponed because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Masters champion Woods (77) missed the cut for the eighth time in his last 15 majors after a round during which he made five bogeys and two double-bogeys over a miserable 11-hole run.

“Physically it was frustrating that I didn’t drive the ball as well as I needed to,” said Woods.

“Iron play was pretty much the way it has been. It’s been good, and I finally putted well. But on this golf course it’s imperative that you hit fairways, and I did not do that.”

Phil Mickelson’s latest bid to complete the career Grand Slam of golf’s four majors fell apart as the six-times runner-up carded a 74

He missed the cut after posting one of the worst 36-hole scores of his major career.

Among the others to miss the cut were defending champion Gary Woodland, PGA Championship winner Collin Morikawa, and top-20 players Tyrell Hatton, Tommy Fleetwood, Matthew Fitzpatrick and Justin Rose.

(
Edited By: Olawale Alabi)
Source: NAN

 

https://nnn.ng/reed-grabs-halfway-lead-as-tiger-misses-cut-at-united-states-open/
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Foreign

Visa Ban: FG says sanctioning electoral offenders disrespectful to Nigeria’s sovereignty

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The  Nigerian government has said it considers it disrespectful to the Sovereignty of the country for any outside country to apply punitive measures such as visas restriction on its citizens.


The Nigerian government made this known in a statement issued by Mr Ferdinand Nwonye, Spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Friday in Abuja.

The News Agency of Nigeria , reports that this comes as a response to the recent announcement of the United States and the United Kingdom to impose visa restrictions on those who undermine electoral processes.

The Nigerian Government said it was committed to providing all necessary logistic, financial and security support to the electoral process.

“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs wishes to state that the Nigerian government has taken note of the concerns of some of our partners, especially the United States and UK governments regarding the elections in Edo and Ondo States.

“They have also expressed their intentions to take punitive measures against those who decide to, in what they termed as, undermine democracy.

“It is important to highlight that the responsibility for the conduct of elections in Nigeria solely resides with the Independent National Electoral Commission and State Independent Electoral Commissions.

“The Federal Government, and especially the President, is committed to providing all necessary logistic, financial and security support to the electoral process.

“The President has continually urged all parties and contestants to peacefully conduct themselves before, during and after the elections, and supported patriotic non-governmental initiatives such as the Abdusalami Abubakar-led Peace Committee.

“Furthermore, it should be noted that there are ample provisions in our laws to sanction violators and perpetrators of electoral violence and fraud.

“It would be considered disrespectful of the sovereignty of Nigeria for any outside authority to sit in judgment over the conduct of our citizens and apply punitive measures such as visa restriction, unilaterally.

“While we appreciate the support and encouragement of our international partners such as the EU, we urge our equally valued partners such as the UK and United States to cooperate with our relevant agencies,” the government said.

The government called on the partners to support security agencies by providing them whatever concrete evidence of observed misconduct to allow our laws and regulations to take their course.

The Nigerian government also expressed solidarity with the government and people of the United States as regards their forthcoming election, which it hoped would be free from interference and violence.

Edited By: Abiemwense Moru/Donald Ugwu
Source: NAN

 

 

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Defence/Security

Kidnappers free ex-US Army officer in Ekiti

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After four days in captivity, a former officer of the United States army and native of Ijan Ekiti in Ekiti, Mr Jide Ijadare, has been released by his abductors.


Ijadare was kidnapped about 2.05p.m on Tuesday at his palm oil producing factory on Tuesday alongside one of his staff.

A contractor working with the factory was also shot dead by the assailants.

A family source told journalists that Ijadare regained freedom after paying the ransom demanded by the kidnappers.

The source said the abductors had called few hours after the incident and demanded for N20 million ransom.

“My brother was released this afternoon around 4.15 p.m and he has reunited with the family,” he said.

The Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Mr Sunday Abutu, confirmed that the victims had been freed

He, however, said that the police were not aware of any ransom being paid before the release.

“We are not aware of any ransom being paid.

” We believe he was released after the pressure the security agencies and local hunters had put on them by combing the surrounding bushes,” he said.

(
Edited By: Mufutau Ojo)
Source: NAN

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Science & Technology

Facebook announces opening of new office in Lagos

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Facebook on Friday  said it would be opening an office in Lagos, Nigeria, as part of its continued commitment and ongoing investment in Africa.


Facebook, in a statement made available to newsmen in Lagos, said this would be its second office on the African continent.

It said the opening of the new office was aimed at supporting the entire Sub-Saharan Africa region.

The office, it said, was expected to become operational in 2021.

According  to Facebook, it will be the first on the continent to house a team of expert engineers building for the future of Africa and beyond.

It said the office would be home to various teams servicing the continent from across the business, including Sales, Partnerships, Policy, Communications as well as Engineers.

Commenting, Ime Archibong, Facebook’s Head of New Product Experimentation, said: “The opening of our new office in Lagos, Nigeria presents new and exciting opportunities in digital innovations to be developed from the continent and taken to the rest of the world.

“All across Africa, we are seeing immense talent in the tech ecosystem and I am proud that with the upcoming opening of our new office, we will build  products for the future of Africa, and the rest of the world, with Africans at the helm.

“We look forward to contributing further to the African tech ecosystem.

“The investment of the new Facebook office follows the 2018 opening of NG_Hub, its first flagship community hub space in Africa.

“The hub was opened  in partnership with CcHub, and the 2019 opening of a Small Business Group (SBG) Operations Centre in Lagos, in partnership with Teleperformance, “Archibong said.

Kojo Boakye, Facebook’s Director of Public Policy, Africa said that the new office in Nigeria presents an important milestone which further reinforces the company’s ongoing commitment to the region.

“Our mission in Africa is no different  from other parts of the world, which is to build community and bring the world closer together.

“I am excited about the possibilities that this will create, not just in Nigeria, but across Africa,” Boakye said.

The policy director said since the opening of its first office in 2015, Facebook had made a number of investments across the continent, aimed at supporting and growing the tech ecosystem.

Boakye noted that the support  includes the recent rollout of its SMB Grants programme in Nigeria and South Africa.

He said thia was aimed at supporting over 900 businesses by providing a combination of cash and ad credits to help small businesses as they rebuild from COVID.

Nunu Ntshingila, Regional Director, Facebook Africa, said:  “We are  delighted to be announcing our new office in Nigeria.

” Five years on from opening our first office on the continent in Johannesburg, South Africa, we will continue to invest in and support local talent, as well as the various communities that use our platforms.

“The office in Lagos will also be key in helping to expand how we service our clients across the continent,” Ntshingila said.

Edited By: Oluwole Sogunle
Source: NAN

 

https://nnn.ng/facebook-announces-opening-of-new-office-in-lagos/
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