Foreign

Maduro govt’s prisoner release does not solve political crisis in Venezuela – Pompeo

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The United States believes the recent release of a number of political prisoners in Venezuela does not solve the political crisis in the country nor it changes the fact that there are no conditions for free and fair elections, according to United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in a statement on Thursday


On Monday, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro pardoned 110 citizens, with more than 20 of them being opposition lawmakers.

“The Maduro regime’s announcement of conditional dismissal of criminal charges against roughly one-third of the political prisoners it holds does not solve, nor even address, Venezuela’s underlying political crisis.

“Conditions for free and fair elections do not exist in Venezuela and the release of a number of political prisoners does not change that,” Pompeo said.

He noted that hundreds of political prisoners still remain under arrest in Venezuela and members of the country’s opposition continue to be harassed and threatened.

He added that many opponents to the Maduro government were prohibited from running for office and the National Electoral Commission was under the government’s control.

The United States and the international community will not contribute to permitting yet another electoral fraud in Venezuela and are urging all democratic actors to insist on the internationally accepted standards for free and fair elections.

The United States State Department has urged its partners to reject the results of the upcoming parliamentary elections in Venezuela scheduled for Dec. 6.

Edited By: Emmanuel Yashim (NAN)

https://nnn.ng/maduro-govts-prisoner-release-does-not-solve-political-crisis-in-venezuela-pompeo/

Economy

BHP in talks with three firms for LNG bunker supply contract – Executive

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BHP Group is in talks with three companies for the supply of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to fuel five ships it plans to use to transport iron ore between Western Australia and China, a senior company executive told Reuters.


A contract is expected to be awarded next month after an initial eight to 10 firms vied for delivery of the super-chilled fuel to the miner over 2022 to 2027, Rashpal Bhatti, BHP’s Vice-President for maritime and supply chain excellence told Reuters.

BHP earlier this month awarded a tender to charter five LNG-fuelled Newcastlemax bulk carriers to Singapore-based Eastern Pacific Shipping, aiming to cut greenhouse gas emissions on voyages to biggest customer China by more than 30 per cent.

The five vessels will be able to carry about 10 million tonnes per year (tpy) of iron ore or about 3.6 per cent of BHP’s 280 million tpy in exports.

BHP will assess the vessels once they are on the water before deciding whether to expand its LNG-fuelled fleet, Bhatti said.

Currently, less than 400 out more than 80,000 registered ships run on LNG as fuel source, according to Mohd Rafe Mohamed Ramli, head of global LNG bunkering at Petronas Marine.

“Our five vessels will make up 10 per cent of all Asian (LNG) bunkering volumes.

“That equates to 1.5 per cent of all global LNG bunkering requirements,’’ BHP’s Bhatti said.

Miners are under pressure to reduce pollution to meet concerns about the environment, while investors increasingly demand that companies offer a compelling sustainability strategy.

Spot LNG prices LNG-AS have fallen sharply over the past two years due to new supply from Australia and the United States

LNG is significantly less expensive than VLSFO (very low sulphur fuel oil),’’ Bhatti said.

“When it comes to cost, the build of the vessel is more expensive than a conventional vessel … but the gas supply is the one that really allows us to take a like for like view.’’

AIB

Edited By: Abdulfatah Babatunde
Source: NAN

https://nnn.ng/bhp-in-talks-with-three-firms-for-lng-bunker-supply-contract-executive/
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Sport

Golf: DeChambeau muscles his way to United States Open victory

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A bulked-up Bryson DeChambeau bashed his way to a six-shot United States Open victory on Sunday, silencing any lingering questions as to whether his brawny game could translate to the major stage.


World number nine DeChambeau, who began the day two shots back of United States Open debutant Matthew Wolff, clinched his first major title with a mix of jaw-dropping drives and clutch putts.

He shot a virtually flawless three-under-par 67 to reach six under for the tournament at Winged Foot.

“On nine is when I first thought, ‘OK, this could be reality’,” DeChambeau, speaking during the trophy presentation, said of his mindset after an eagle at the par-five ninth.

“I made that eagle, long eagle putt and I shocked myself by making it, too, and I thought to myself, ‘I could do it’. And then immediately after, I said, ‘nope, you’ve got to focus on each and every hole’.”

Wolff (75), appearing in only his second major, was one shot back of DeChambeau at the turn but fell apart over a back nine that included two bogeys and a double-bogey.

A fearless DeChambeau, whose final round included the eagle, two birdies and a bogey, attacked at every chance.

For his efforts was the only player to break par in the final round as he cruised to a maiden major at his 16th attempt.

The 27-year-old had re-emerged from the PGA Tour’s three-month COVID-19 suspension in mid-June packing serious muscle and hitting a startling distance off the tee.

He attacked Winged Foot all week like few other golfers can.

So confident in his approach, DeChambeau unleashed his driver on practically every par-four and par-five hole as he figured the birdie chances would outweigh the risk that Winged Foot’s nasty rough creates.

DeChambeau grabbed the solo lead after five holes, hit a perfectly-paced 40-foot eagle putt at the ninth to maintain a one-shot cushion.

It was a tournament that came down to a two-horse race between him and Wolff as they made the turn.

The 21-year-old Wolff was bidding to become the first player to win the United States Open on his tournament debut since Francis Ouimet in 1913.

But he bogeyed the 10th and 14th holes, before a double-bogey at 16.

“I battled hard. Things just didn’t go my way,” said Wolff. “But first United States Open, second-place is something to be proud of and hold your head up high for.”

Former British Open champion Louis Oosthuizen (73) birdied the last to finish alone in third-place, a distant eight shots back of DeChambeau.

He was one shot clear of Harris English (73), who made a double-bogey at the first where he lost his tee shot.

Xander Schauffele (74) looked ready to make a back-nine charge after making the turn fresh off back-to-back birdies.

But the world number seven made five consecutive bogeys from the 13th and finished in fifth-place.

Northern Irishman Rory McIlroy (75), who finished in a share of eighth-place, was almost left in a state of disbelief at DeChambeau’s win.

This was given his inaccuracy off the tee at a tournament renowned for its thick rough.

“I don’t really know what to say because that’s just the complete opposite of what you think a United States Open champion does,” said McIlroy.

“Look, he’s found a way to do it. Whether that’s good or bad for the game, I don’t know.

“But it’s just – it’s not the way I saw this golf course being played or this tournament being played. It’s kind of hard to really wrap my head around it.”

 

(
Edited By: Olawale Alabi)
Source: NAN

 

 

https://nnn.ng/golf-dechambeau-muscles-his-way-to-united-states-open-victory/
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Economy

15th Abuja Int’l trade fair to feature 500 exhibitors – ACCI

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The Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) says its 15th Abuja International Trade Fair will feature not more than 500 local and foreign exhibitors.


ACCI Media Officer Latifat Opoola who made the disclosure on Sunday said the fair would hold in October at the Abuja Trade and Convention with the theme “Trade and Commerce Beyond Borders”.

According to Opoola, this year’s event in compliance with the COVID-19 protocols will only showcase indoor and virtual exhibitions to make room for a controlled environment that will ensure social distancing.

She noted that an average attendance of 100,000 visitors from both Nigeria and 150 countries, including U.K., United States, UAE, India, Malasyia and China would participate both physically and virtually at the fair.

She said other countries like Saudi Arabia, Ghana, South Africa, among others,  were expected to participate.

She noted that over the years, the fair had been an amazing trade platform for international and domestic industry professionals, leading brands and MSMEs to transact, share market insights, cutting edge technology and expertise in an interactive environment.

“This year’s event will provide a platform for sharing of trade, investment and market opportunity as well as information. It will also help buyers, investors and traders to foster business relationships.

“Over 500 exhibitors from within and outside Nigeria in all sectors of the economy, including Agriculture, Manufacturing, Mining, Electricity, Oil and Gas, Tourism, Textile, Transport, Telecommunications, Financial and Service sectors are expected to participate.

“With a team of trade professionals, we are persistent in providing a conducive trading atmosphere for our exhibitors, which will lead to strategies and tactics needed to innovate, grow and promote businesses,” she said in a statement.

The opening ceremony is scheduled to take place on Oct. 22,  while the closing ceremony holds on Nov. 2.

(
Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Peter Ejiofor)
Source: NAN

https://nnn.ng/15th-abuja-intl-trade-fair-to-feature-500-exhibitors-acci/
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General news

Declare Badagry’s historical monuments protected structures, expert urges LASG

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A tourism expert, Mr Babatunde Ajose, on Sunday urged the Lagos State Government to declare the historical monuments of the ancient town of Badagry protected structures.


 

Ajose made the appeal at the Tourism Stakeholders’ Meeting organised by the Badagry Media Group in Badagry.

 

The meeting was tagged: “On the Proposed Delisting of Heritage Sites and Attractions by Lagos State House of Assembly’’.

 

The expert said that this would protect the historical monuments from destruction or delisting by any agent in the state.

 

According to Ajose, the recent call on the state house of assembly by a lawmaker for the removal of all historical monuments in Lagos State had put fear in the minds of the residents of the town.

 

“When the issue of delisting of historical monuments in Lagos was mentioned by a lawmaker during a sitting of the Lagos assembly, residents of Badagry started running from pillar to post.

 

“The local media in the town were writing different stories on the social media, people started castigating the people in the assembly.

 

“Even when the LASEMA was coming with their vehicles to access the extent of damage done by rainstorms in some communities in the area, they started crying, “they have come to destroy our sites’’.

 

“What I expect from them in Badagry is organise themselves on how to meet the people in authority and explain things to them on the implications.

 

“The stakeholders should find a way of meeting the lawmaker in question and educating him more on what we have in Badagry.

 

“We will tell him that all these monuments are still in existence in the United States, where the protest started from.

 

“What they are only pulling down is the monuments of slave dealers; all slavery museums in America are still there,” he said.

 

Ajose urged the stakeholders in Badagry to engage the council Chairman, Mr Olusegun Onilude, on the potential of tourism in the town.

 

“We need to meet the chairman of the council on the need to make bylaws that will protect the monuments from external attacked.

 

“Then, move to engage the lawmakers at the state level on the need to protect the structures,” he said.

 

Pastor Sunday Humyinbo, the Coordinator, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Badagry Chapter, urged the organisers of the meeting to work in unity to achieve it aim.

 

According to Hunyimbo, always speak with one voice in whatever you are doing.

 

He said no historical monuments from Badagry should be removed or destroyed by the state government, adding they serve as tools for revenue generation for some people.

 

Also speaking, Pastor Senahu Mofinleun, the Convener, Badagry Christian Heritage Festival, said that the town was waking up from its slumber, urging the organisers to be transparent in whatever they were doing.

 

He said that they are ready to mobilise people to support the cause so that the historical monuments of the land would be protected.

 

Mr Kehinde Avoseh, a representative of Zangheto from Ajido community, commended the media group for their efforts in organising the meeting.

 

According to him, we need one voice to be the bringer of good omen to Badagry heritage.

 

Mr Sewede Akande, the Founder, Citymood Communications, said the meeting was to brainstorm on the issue of delisting of historical monuments in Lagos.

 

He said that the stakeholders meeting would come up with ways to engage the Lagos State Government on best ways to tackle the issue.

 

Akande commended the critical stakeholders that attended the meeting, adding that they would meet again to present their take on the proposed delisting of historical monuments in the state.

 

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that on July 1, the Lagos State House of Assembly urged Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu to direct the Commissioner for Tourism, Arts and Culture, as well as that of Justice to look at sites and monuments in the state, to remove all vestiges of slave trade and colonial superiority.

 

NAN also reports that many local group and associations in Badagry, however, disagreed with the move.

 

Edited By: Idonije Obakhedo
Source: NAN

 

 

 

 

https://nnn.ng/declare-badagrys-historical-monuments-protected-structures-expert-urges-lasg/
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