Foreign

Poll: Biden has 8-point lead in Pennsylvania

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Joe Biden has a sizable lead over President Donald Trump in Pennsylvania, according to a new poll released on Thursday, and almost everyone’s mind is already made up.


The Quinnipiac University survey – one of several this week that show Biden with substantial leads in battleground states – found 52 per cent of likely voters supporting Biden, compared with 44 per cent for Trump.

And 94 per cent have settled on their pick for president, the poll said.

If accurate, that would leave Trump little room to maneuver in the race’s final two months.

The Quinnipiac poll paints a different picture than one released just a day earlier by Monmouth University.

The Monmouth survey depicted a much tighter contest in Pennsylvania, with Biden leading by between 1 and 3 percentage points, depending on the level of voter turnout. That’s essentially a toss-up – and in line with strategists in both parties, who have long said they expect the contest in Pennsylvania to be close.

Other August polls from Muhlenberg College and Change Research have also suggested a closer race in Pennsylvania, while Franklin and Marshall College recently found a Biden lead of 7 percentage points.

Trump, who visited south-west Pennsylvania on Thursday night, won the state by less than one percentage point in 2016, one of three razor-thin battleground-state wins that helped him secure the White House.

Both parties see the state as critical to the 2020 election and have showcased its importance this week: After the president’s visit, his daughter Ivanka is stumping in Chester County on Friday.

Vice President Mike Pence spoke in north-eastern Pennsylvania on Tuesday and the president’s daughter-in-law, Lara Trump, stopped in Bucks County on Monday.

Biden delivered a major campaign speech in Pittsburgh on Monday.

The Quinnipiac results are in line with numerous national polls released this week.

The surveys suggest that the national party conventions, and Trump’s increasing focus on crime and civil unrest, have done little to change the overall dynamics of the election since earlier this summer, when polls showed Biden leading nationally and in key swing states.

One bright spot for Trump is that voters still favor him on the economy – 52 per cent to 45 per cent _ and 29 per cent say that’s the most important issue in the election, the most of any topic.

An additional 15 per cent rated “law and order” as their top concern.

But on a range of other major issues, Biden leads. Among them: handling a crisis (52 per cent favor Biden, 44 per cent Trump), health care (54 per cent to 42 per cent), responding to the coronavirus (54 per cent to 41 per cent), and handling racial inequality (57 per cent to 38 per cent).

“The economy is key in Pennsylvania and a majority of likely voters approve of the way President Trump is handling it, but it’s overshadowed by Trump’s handling of the coronavirus and his overall job approval.”

Both are registering double digit deficits,” said Quinnipiac University polling analyst Mary Snow.

Forty-three percent said they approved of the job Trump is doing, while 54 percent disapproved.

The poll surveyed 1,107 likely voters in Pennsylvania from Aug. 28 through Tuesday and has a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.

Edited By: Fatima Sule/Ephraims Sheyin (NAN)

https://nnn.ng/poll-biden-has-8-point-lead-in-pennsylvania/

Foreign

Italy votes in referendum on downsizing parliament

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Polls closed in Italy late on Sunday in the first of two days of voting on a constitutional referendum over the slimming down of parliament.


Voting is also on in local elections expected to favour the right-wing national opposition bloc.

Voting continues on Monday, with polls opening at 7 am (0500 GMT) and closing at 3 pm.

Results are expected later the same day.

Some 51.6 million people are eligible to vote in the referendum on reducing the number of lawmakers in Italy’s two chambers by roughly one third.

The Chamber of Deputies would go from 630 lawmakers to 400, and the Senate from 315 to 200.

By Sunday evening, voter turnout had reached 29.98 per cent in the four of the seven regions for which figures were available, according to the Interior Ministry.

In the referendum on the planned reduction of the parliament, 29.71 per cent of the 51.6 million eligible voters had cast their votes.

Observers have feared a low turnout amid concerns about people being infected with the coronavirus.

No minimum turnout is needed for the vote to be valid, amid expectations that the reform will be approved.

Elections are also taking place in seven regions and just under 1,000 cities, including Venice in the north and Reggio Calabria in the south.

The main national government parties – the anti-establishment Five Star Movement (M5S) and the centre-left Democratic Party (PD) – have been bracing for a poor showing.

The national opposition, led by Matteo Salvini of the far-right League, is expecting to win in at least three regions, including Veneto and Liguria in the north.

The PD is confident of victory only in Campania, the region around Naples, and is desperate to avoid defeat in Tuscany, a former leftist stronghold where a League candidate could achieve a historic win.

The M5S has no strong candidates, but is likely to console itself with a referendum win.

It considers reducing the size of parliament part of its quest to end perks and privileges for politicians.

Critics of the constitutional reform say it produces minimal cost savings and risks undermining the democratic system by weakening the authority of parliament.

In any case, a defeat for the government parties is unlikely to topple Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte, as the PD and M5S have strong incentives to try to hold on to national power together.

One is the prospect of managing more than 200 billion euros (238 billion dollars) in loans and grants from the European Union due to arrive from 2021 as part of the bloc’s post-coronavirus recovery fund.

Another is the opportunity to influence the parliamentary election of the next Italian president, due in January 2022, and avoid snap national polls, which the PD and M5S would likely lose.

Pandemic-era restrictions were in place across all polling stations, many of which are located in school buildings.

Voters currently in self-isolation due to the coronavirus were permitted to vote from home on submitting an application on a one-off basis.

Edited By: Emmanuel Yashim
Source: NAN

https://nnn.ng/italy-votes-in-referendum-on-downsizing-parliament/
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COVID-19

NCDC records 97 new COVID-19 infections, total cases now 57, 242

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The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has recorded  97 new coronavirus (COVID-19) infections in the country, bringing the total confirmed cases to 57, 242 nationwide.


The NCDC disclosed this on its official twitter handle on Sunday .

It added that three persons died of COVID-19 complications while 138 patients, who recovered at various isolation centres across the country the same day, were discharged.

Based on the figures released, Lagos state recorded the highest number of infections with 46 new cases.

The data released also indicated that Kwara recorded 12 new infections, Rivers 11, and Adamawa 4.

Others were Niger – 4, Ogun – 4, Osun – 4, Ekiti – 3, Imo – 3, Kaduna – 3, Plateau – 2, and Federal Capital Territory (FCT) – 1.

According to the NCDC, the 36 states and FCT have now recorded at least one confirmed case of the virus.

“Till date, 57, 242 cases have been confirmed, 48, 569 cases have been discharged, and 1,098 deaths have been recorded in 36 states and the FCT,” the centre said.

NCDC stated that a multi-sectoral national emergency operations centre (EOC), activated at Level 3, has continued  to coordinate the national response activities across the country.

Edited By: Kamal Tayo Oropo/Emmanuel Yashim
Source: NAN

https://nnn.ng/ncdc-records-97-new-covid-19-infections-total-cases-now-57-242/
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Sport

Ligue 1: Mbappe shines as PSG hit top gear against Nice

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France forward Kylian Mbappe marked his return to action with a vintage performance and a goal as champions Paris St Germain rediscovered their form with an impressive 3-0 win at Nice in Ligue 1 on Sunday.


Mbappe, who missed the opening three games after contracting the coronavirus, fired PSG ahead with a 38th-minute penalty.

He also had a big part in Angel Di Maria’s strike before Marquinhos headed home the third in the second half.

PSG made a sluggish start to their campaign as they lost the opening two matches and eked out a last-gasp 1-0 home win over Metz on Wednesday but they tore Nice apart with sublime skill and crisp one-touch passing.

Mbappe blasted his spot-kick into the roof of the net after he was fouled by Khephren Thuram and Nice goalkeeper Waller Benitez could only parry the forward’s crisp low shot for Di Maria to sweep home the rebound.

The visitors missed a string of chances in the second half with striker Mauro Icardi hitting the post, before Marquinhos added the third with a glancing header from a Di Maria cross.

Ander Herrera also hit the woodwork with a deflected shot in the first half while the home side were denied by acrobatic goalkeeping from Keylor Navas.

The result lifted PSG to seventh place on six points from four games, with Nice slipping to 10th also on six points.

In Sunday’s other stand-out fixtures, second-placed St Etienne, who have a maximum nine points from three games, visit 14th-placed Nantes and Olympique Marseille in eighth are at home to fourth-placed Lille.

(
Edited By: Joseph Edeh/Peter Ejiofor)
Source: NAN

https://nnn.ng/ligue-1-mbappe-shines-as-psg-hit-top-gear-against-nice/
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Foreign

NIDO-Ghana plans webinar to mark Nigeria’s 60th independence anniversary

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The Nigerians in Diaspora Organisation (NIDO), Ghana chapter, said on Saturday that it would organise a webinar as part of events to celebrate Nigeria’s sixtieth independence anniversary.


Mr Elija Iposu, Public Relations Officer of NIDO-Ghana, disclosed this in a telephone interview with the News Agency of Nigeria .

Iposu said the event would be organised by NIDO-Ghana in collaboration with a Ghana-based private firm, Diplomats Extra and Milestone Communications.

According to him, the webinar, which will hold on Oct. 2, is a virtual ceremony with Zoom ID: 742450910 and the title: ’60 years of Ghana-Nigeria diplomacy’.

Prof. Bola Akinterinwa, former Director-General Institute of International Affairs, and Amb. Bulus Lolo, former Permanent Secretary of Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Nigeria are among high-ranking personalities expected to participate in the event.

Some other expected guests are Mr Oluwaseyi Adeyemi, Publisher, Inside Watch Africa Magazine, Mr Emmanuel Bombande, UN Senior Mediation Advisor, Prof. Baflour Agyeman-Duah, former UN Special Governance Advisor and Affail Monney, President Ghana Journalists Association.

NAN reports that  President Muhammadu Buhari on Sept. 16, unveiled the logo and theme for the 60th independence anniversary celebration.

He said that the celebration would be observed for a whole year, to end on Sept. 30, 2021 and would be muted due to the coronavirus pandemic.

FEA/

Edited By: Emmanuel Yashim
Source: NAN

https://nnn.ng/nido-ghana-plans-webinar-to-mark-nigerias-60th-independence-anniversary/
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