Sudanese authorities are to free a woman who was sentenced to death for having abandoned the Islamic faith, a foreign ministry official says.

Meriam Ibrahim, who gave birth to a daughter in custody, will be freed in a few days, the official told the BBC.

Abdullahi Alzareg, an under-secretary at the foreign ministry, said Sudan guaranteed religious freedom and was committed to protecting the woman.

Khartoum has been facing international condemnation over the death sentence.

In an interview with The Times newspaper, British Prime Minister David Cameron described the ruling as "barbaric" and out of step with today's world.

The UK Foreign Office this week said that it would push for Ms Ibrahim to be released on humanitarian grounds.

Ms Ibrahim, 27, was brought up as an Orthodox Christian, but a Sudanese judge ruled earlier this month that she should be regarded as Muslim because that had been her father's faith.

She refused to renounce her Christianity and was sentenced to death by hanging for apostasy.

On Wednesday, she gave birth to a daughter in her prison cell - the second child from her marriage in 2011 to Daniel Wani, a US citizen.

The court said Ms Ibrahim would be allowed to nurse her baby for two years before the sentence was carried out.

The court had earlier annulled her Christian marriage and sentenced her to 100 lashes for adultery because the union was not considered valid under Islamic law.

Sudan has a majority Muslim population and Islamic law has been in force there since the 1980s.

The ruling has revived a debate over apostasy, with liberal and conservative scholars giving different opinions over whether - and how - the act of abandoning the Islamic faith should be

SAN FRANCISCO (AP)- Google is starting to accept requests from Europeans who want to erase unflattering information from the results produced by the world's dominant search engine.

The demands can be submitted on a Web page
that Google opened late Thursday in response to a landmark ruling issued two weeks ago by Europe's highest court.

The decision gives Europeans the means to polish their online reputations by petitioning Google and other search engines to remove potentially damaging links to newspaper articles and other websites with embarrassing information about their past activities.

Google's compliance thrusts the company into the prickly position of having to balance privacy concerns and "the right to be forgotten" against the principles of free expression and "the right to know."

It will also create a divide between how Google generates search results about some people in Europe and the rest of the world. For now at least, Google will only scrub personal information spanning a 32-nation swath in Europe. That means Googling the same person in the United States and dozens of other countries could look much different than it does
from Europe.

Although the court ruling only applied to 28 countries in the European Union, Google is extending the "right to be forgotten" to four other countries — Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.

It's unclear when the whitewashing will begin.

So far, Google has only said it will happen soon.

There are conflicting reports that the 'Branama' singer may have slipped into coma following her mid-air collapse in a flight to Chicago.

The pilot of that aircraft reportedly made an emergency landing so that Kefee could receive treatment in Los Angeles.

No reason was given as to why she collapsed, but her hubby is said to have flown to the US to be with her.

Reports flying here and there have it that Kefee may have slipped into coma today.

Details are still very sketchy though, as Kefee thanked her fans on Twitter just last night.

I'm trying to get more details on this..

We wish Kefee a speedy recovery by the way.

Read the heartbreaking story of Helen below:

Helen (surname withheld) will be 20 years on
October 10. But she now bears a burden that is too heavy for her age. She was gang-raped in January this year and was diagnosed with HIV last month.

Due to the heart-rending experience and the medical diagnosis that followed, the once cheerful and vivacious Helen now wears a long face as she carries with her the psychological burden of the experience.

After secondary school in 2008, Helen wanted to further her education, but being the fifth of 11
children comes with its own challenge. "Na the
condition of no money, na im prevent me from going further," said Helen when asked why she had not bothered to continue her education.

Despite her background, Helen was unperturbed.

Determined that she would return to school some day, she began working as a cleaner in a big firm at Lekki, Lagos, from where she hoped to save for school. She had worked there for almost a year before the tragic episode that altered her life dramatically took place. It was with a deep emotion that she recounted her ordeal.

All was quiet and the street lonely early that Tuesday morning when the unsuspecting lady set out from her Bariga home to resume her morning shift at work. It was at exactly 5:05am, the same time she often left home everyday to board a bus some streets away to Lagos Island.

But that morning, something was not right. She
noticed five young men lurking about as she got out of her street's gate. On seeing their fearsome appearance, her heart skipped a beat.

Consumed by fear, her first instinct was to turn and run back into the street, but it was too late.

She had been spotted. "They blocked and grabbed me. They pointed a gun at me and told me to be quiet and do everything they said I should do, or else they would harm me," Helen said before she was overcome by emotion. After a short silence that seemed ages, she added: "I tried to shout but when I looked around and did not see anybody except those guys, I was so afraid and did as they said… They, then, carried me to one corner by the side of the street… (She
bowed her head). They asked me to lie down."

Helen went silent again with head still bowed, to hold back tears. She said: "I begged them to release me, that I was on my way to work and that I didn't have anything to offer them.

They told me to shut up, saying they would waste me, if I didn't like my life. I begged them to spare my life." Her plea touched a member of the gang; he said she should be freed. But his statement fell on deaf ears, for Helen's other attackers were determined to carry out their task to the letter. Fighting back tears, she said: "The others said he could leave if he wanted to; they then collected my handbag, my purse and the N5,000 inside with my two phones – one was in my hand. I used its torchlight; the other was in my Jeans pocket. They removed the phone, pulled off my trousers and started violating me (Silence)

…They asked me to pull off my clothes. I begged them."

Her face became contorted as the agony of the incident swelled her being. Helen became silent again. One could see she was fighting to hide several conflicting emotions as she recounted.

"But was there no way you could have shouted for help?" the reporter asked in an attempt to
douse the tension. "There was no way I could have shouted because there were five of them against only me… I was so scared. So, I just kept begging them to release me." As her attackers were beginning to enjoy their violent act, they spotted another young man and lady
walking towards them. Helen's attackers also pounced on the couple, robbing them of their valuables at gunpoint.

Two of them also raped the second lady. By that time, Helen's eyes were already swollen, from her trauma and obvious helplessness in the hands of the crooks. The two men raped the girl while the other three continued raping me," she said in a subdued voice. On how she felt when
her violators had their turns, Helen, in tears, said: "I swallowed my scream, felt very bad and closed my eyes as each of them…(Silence). For my mind e be like say make I get knife take kill them, because it was a very painful thing to experience. Before they started, I had asked if
they had condoms but they said 'No'. ''

After they finished, all I could think of was running to the hospital and getting some drugs or treatment that could wash everything away from my whole being: my physical body, heart, soul and all. (Again, she lapsed into another
silence). I felt very bad and, somehow, dirty." After the incident She ran back home to her sister. Both ladies cried in silence; they felt ashamed to share with neighbours what had happened. As if that was not enough, while
nursing the psychological trauma of the assault she got, another shocker happened to her on the same day. Helen discovered that her violators were her neighbours. "I recognised them: two of them live opposite my house.

Before that time, I did not notice them. I see them every day and cringe; I'm always in fear each time I see them," she said. Three months after Besides the traumatic rape,
Helen has fallen into a worrisome medical condition. Last month, she was diagnosed with HIV at the General Hospital where she was rushed to after she was raped.

Before then, Helen said she had been "negative", adding that she knew through a test she did some time back.

"When I went there when it first happened, they asked me some questions, gave me some drugs and told me to come back after three months for more tests.

The three-month period lapsed last month. The hospital did the followup test and found that I have become HIV-'positive'. ''I felt bad, very bad; and I cried. In fact, the doctor tried to calm my mind; but I kept on crying that 'I'm finished'. I wanted to take my life because I never expected this to happen to me. They told me life still goes on and that I can still live my life to the fullest. They say people with HIV are can be healthier than those who are negative with the help of drugs. Before I left the hospital,
I cried and begged them to help me because I did not plan to live on drugs for rest of my life," she said. With tears dripping freely and looking straight at the reporter as if to find answers on her face, she continued: "What kind of
life can one live now? I feel so bad; I feel so weak and I am asking myself: what did I do wrong in this life to deserve this? What will happen to my dream of going to school? I have not been able to save for school, and I now
am treating HIV."

The news of her status has added more sadness to her family who were still recovering from the shock of her violation. "When my parents heard the news, they were very sad and they all cried," Helen said amid tears. The 20-year-old has since turned an advocate, seeking justice against her attackers. After living in fear for months, the
dread of the rapists forced her and her sister to relocate last weekend. The move has emboldened to seek for justice, feeling she is beyond their reach. "I want justice.

I need help. I want those men to go to jail for what they did to me and perhaps many other ladies in the area. These people cannot be allowed to go free. Everybody knows them as thieves in the area; they do not go to work or
school but just hang around all day doing nothing. Still nobody has done anything about it. It is almost as if they are using charms. Their father is a very aggressive landlord. I see them always and I'm always in fear; that's why we packed out of the house last weekend. You won't believe that till we packed, my attackers are still using my phone," she said. Helen's sister, Stella, who was also in her 20s, said the whole incident has left the family heart- broken.

Stella, who learnt a comforting hand to her sister, said: "We felt so weak and very unhappy, but there is nothing else we can do but to support her and pray that those crooks would be made to pay and suffer for what they did to my sister."

Culled from:

Kenyan On air personality Caroline Mutoko has urged video vixen Vera Sidika to change her identification documents to reflect her obvious new look.

Vera, a Kenyan socialite has reportedly been using bleaching cream to change her complexion.

Featured in Prezzo's new hit video 'My Gal' earlier this year, Sidika has been spotted looking remarkably lighter in recent months.

Below is the letter to her from Nairobi's Kiss 100 FM presenter Caroline Mutoko:

Dear Vera – what you do with your life after the age of 18 is your business. So long as you're not hurting anyone – go you Saliva Vic, it's your business and he's right.

However – a little thing to consider. If I may….
You look very different, infact nothing close to what you looked like earlier this year or this time last year…..

Therefore… speak to your lawyer to allow you to process all your important documentation afresh.

Anything that has a visual of you (ID, Passport, bank papers, ATM card, membership, cards etc) you don't want a situation where you have to explain that you're the 'same' person.

It's awkward. Just re-do the paper work.

And do let me know when we can host you on the show to talk about your transformation.

You have not hidden it at all & you made sure people knew that you are changing.

Caroline Mutoko presents the early morning program 'The Big Breakfast' on Nairobi's Kiss 100 FM radio station, a radio station under the Radio Africa brand.


A 27-year old labourer, Francis Mokwe, who publicly proclaimed himself as an insurgent at a banking hall in Lagos, was on Friday brought before an Igbosere Magistrates' Court.

Mokwe, whose address is unknown, is facing a charge for disorderly conduct at a branch of Stanbic-IBTC Bank in the metropolis.

The prosecutor, Cpl. Olanrewaju Balogun, told the court that Mokwe committed the offence at about 9:00 a.m. at the Agungi-Lekki branch of the bank.

Balogun said the accused caused panic and confusion among customers and bankers in the banking hall by publicly professing to be a member of Boko Haram insurgents.

According to him, the accused walked into the banking hall ostensibly for a transaction, but started shouting: "I am a Boko Haram member".

He alleged that the accused also wrote 'Boko-Haram' on the teller in his hand.

"The accused was immediately taken out of the banking hall by security guards, who handed him over to the authorities."

Balogun noted that the offence contravened Section 166 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State 2011.

The accused, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge.

In her ruling, the Magistrate, Mrs Helen Omisore, granted the man bail in the sum of N10,000 with a surety in like sum.

She adjourned the case till June 18 for mention.

An American has invented a new condom which he says is stronger, safer and enables better sensitivity.

The Galatic Cap Pregnancy Prevention device sits on the very tip of the penis, leaving the shaft exposed.

It was developed by LA-based Charles Powell after a friend of his contracted HIV.

He believes his product is 'easier to use, safer and more secure - and vastly more pleasurable - giving a sex sensation the way nature intended.'

The condom comprises two parts - a U-shape polyurethane adhesive film that wraps around the penis - like a plaster around a finger - and a cap that sticks to it to firmly trap semen.

Mr Powell claims the polyurethane part is like a second skin - and can be put on hours or days in advance as it can be worn while urinating and washing.

Jason Warriner, clinical director of the sexual health charity Terence Higgins Trust, told MailOnline: 'This will not prevent the spread of conditions such as HIV or herpes as the whole
penis is not covered.

'It may be suitable for a couple in a long-term relationship but not as a barrier to STIs.

'There is also the risk that the cap may leak, exposing semen.'

As of June 1, the company will be crowdfunding to raise funds for development and FDA approval.

Some have even hailed as it as condom solution for the porn industry as it leaves much of the shaft uncovered.

It's estimated that in 2012, 18.5 billion condoms were sold worldwide. This is expected to increase to 27 billion units by next year, with the market worth $6bn.

Peter Mutharika has been sworn in as Malawi's president after the High Court rejected a request for a recount following allegations of vote-rigging.

The leader of the Democratic Progressive Party urged the 11 other presidential candidates to "join me in rebuilding the country".

Outgoing President Joyce Banda had alleged ballot fraud but has now admitted defeat.

Malawi is one of the world's poorest nations.

It is heavily dependent on aid, which provides 40% of the government's budget.

A protester died on Friday as police used tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse an angry crowd demanding a recount of last week's ballot in the south-eastern town of Mangochi.

More than seven million people were eligible to vote in the elections.

The elections were chaotic and several irregularities were reported

Mrs Banda tried to annul a vote she said was marred by rigging, but was overruled by the High Court.

Mr Mutharika is the brother of the late President Bingu wa Mutharika, who died in office in 2012, and had served as his foreign minister.

He obtained 36.4% of the vote, according to the electoral commission, and said he felt "very humbled" to become Malawi's fifth president.

"It's obvious we are facing serious problems in this country. All of us together, let us build the country which is almost on the verge of collapse," he said.

Former preacher Lazarus Chakwera came second in the election with 27.8% of the vote.

He represented the Malawi Congress Party, which governed from independence in 1964 until the first multi-party poll in 1994.

Mrs Banda, who came to power after the death of Bingu wa Mutharika two years ago, was third with 20.2% of the vote. Her administration had been hit by a corruption scandal dubbed "cashgate", which led donors to cut aid.

Mrs Banda had attempted to have the polls declared "null and void" on the grounds of "serious irregularities".

But she made no mention of this in a statement congratulating Mr Mutharika on his victory in a "closely contested election" and urging "all Malawians to support the newly elected president... and his government as they take on this foundation of progress and endeavour to develop Malawi even further."

The Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) had asked for a 30- day extension to declare the results so that a recount could be carried out.

However, the High Court refused to delay the release of results and ordered the commission to make its announcement on Friday.

1980 African Nations Cup winner, Henry Nwosu in this interview with JOHN EGBOKHAN of the Vanguard says that Super Eagles midfielder John Mikel Obi must change his playing style at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.

What are your expectations from the African champions in Brazil? Do you see them doing better than they did in their previous appearances?

I do not belong to the category of people who are already saying that the team will get to the semifinal. I am a great believer in the Super Eagles ability to excel in any international tournament but I strongly believe that before we can begin to run, we must first crawl, not to talk of flying into the semifinal just like that. I am patriotic but it is important to put things into context and not start counting your chicks before they are hatched.

Even if we are so good, we cannot say for now that we are getting through or not to the quarterfinal round. But I see us doing well if the players show enough passion and discipline on
the pitch.

Who in your consideration are the players who you feel will make the difference for us in Brazil?

The team is essentially a good and strong one.

The players have shown that they can hold their own amongst their peers in the world. Like I said earlier, team is going to be vital for our success in Brazil but when you want to single out some players who can make the difference for us at the World Cup, then you cannot overlook Emmanuel Emenike, who I dare say will shine in Brazil.

Emenike will do very well for us, likewise Osaze Odemwingie. I also believe that Ogenyi Onazi will do very well for us. I also believe that Obinna Nsofor, if chosen by Coach Stephen Keshi, will do very well for us because he is strong, aggressive and determined.

Surprisingly, you did not mention Mikel Obi as one of the players who can make the difference for us.

I did not mention Mikel's name because the Chelsea player does not believe a midfielder can score goals. He is not adventurous and only adventurous and daring players can make the
difference for their teams at the World Cup.

Mikel likes making square passes and that cannot do us any good in Brazil. Mikel must stop his backward movement in Brazil or else, we will suffer from his actions. He plays negative football. He must change in Brazil. The era of playing backward has stopped and I am surprised that he has not changed.

The players I mentioned earlier are those who can win games for us at the World Cup and Mikel, unfortunately, does not fall into that category, unless he changes now.

It is always unfortunate that instead of attacking and creating chances for his teammates to score, Mikel is always giving square passes. Even if that is the pattern used by his club, when he comes to Nigeria, he must change to suit our style and quest for glory.

There is a general agreement that we are taking good goalkeepers to the World Cup, except that there are concerns surrounding the suitability of Chigozie Agbim for the tournament. Do you see Daniel Akpeyi beating Agbim to the final third choice?

Generally, Vincent Enyeama and Austin Ejide are good goalkeepers who have earned their way to the World Cup. I do not have any fear concerning both players. Between Agbim and Akpeyi, I do not have a preference but I know the coaches will select the better one from the pair.

With about 12 days to the start of the World Cup, the talk in Nigeria has been about our match against Argentina on June 25.

The focus is on Lionel Messi as people talk less of the first match against Iran on June 16 and the following one against Bosnia-Herzegovina on June 21. How dangerous can this be to our World Cup aspirations?

Honestly, I am taken aback with this our over-concentration on the match against Argentina.

They are not the only ones we will play in Brazil. We know Argentina as we have played them thrice at the World Cup, so they are no strangers to us. They are our perennial opponents at the World Cup and even though they have beaten us three times, they did not get the victories on a platter of gold.

I am more concerned about Bosnia-Herzegovina and Iran because they are the unknown teams and we we must be very careful with them.

Unknown teams come with the surprise factor
and such surprises can shock teams who take things for granted.

How do we prepare and approach our matches against Iran and Bosnia-Herzegovina?

We must be very conscious of our defence because any silly mistake can be costly. In as much as we must be conscious of our defence, we must be an attacking team. World Cup is about goals and only teams who score goals get to win laurels.

What kind of World Cup do you see us having in Brazil?

World Cup is the greatest show on earth. It is where all players want to be and I hope that our boys make us proud. Even if they do not go far, I hope they will do well for themselves and the

Speaking after the team had their first training at the Philadelphia Eagles Stadium in Philadelphia, Keshi said he was thrilled by the level of tactical and technical depth displayed by the players but noted there was need to be cautious.

"Yes, I have an idea of those who will go with us to Brazil but we will still wait till the last minute before we announce the list", he was quoted as saying by Team's Media Officer Ben

Keshi said he was delaying naming the list so as to have a second look at those who are not measuring up.

Asked when is the last minute for him to make public his list, Keshi responded "June 2 is the date we are looking at"

Alhaji Alabi Ajikobi, a driver of the former Governor of Oyo State, Adebayo Alao-Akala, was shot dead on Friday by unknown gunmen in Ibadan.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Ajikobi was shot by suspected armed robbers while returning from the bank where he had gone to cash some unspecified amount of money.

Ajikobi was said to have been shot around the Bodija area of Ibadan.

The Oyo State Police Public Relations Officer, Mrs Olabisi Clet-Ilobanafor, who confirmed the incident, said that the deceased was shot and killed on his way from the bank.

"It is true. We learnt that he went to a bank to collect some money. A man stopped him and had some discussion with him on his way back.

"Later, two men on a bike shot him and collected the money.

"We are on the trail of that man that stopped him. We have already begun investigation into the matter," she said.

Twenty-four-year-old Sherifat Bakare, is a young lady one could describe at first glance as pretty. But as she sat on the ground in front of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad of the Ogun State Police Command in Abeokuta, one cannot but imagine how deadly she might have been on
operations with her robbery gang.

"I was hustling before Raji, my boyfriend, told me to join his gang," Bakare began.

But when she was asked to elaborate on what she did as a "hustler," she explained that she meant prostitution.

Bakare in company with four other members of her gang, were apprehended on Wednesday, May 21, 2014 by the men of Ogun State SARS, who had been on their trail after receiving a tip-off about the gang's plan.

It all began a few weeks ago, Bakare narrated. She said another member of the gang, Bola Onasile, (also in SARS custody) had approached her boyfriend about the availability of N70m in a wealthy man's house in Joju area of Sango, Ogun State.

"I have only gone on two operations with them. I don't know him (Onasile) well. I only know that he was the one who brought the job.

"Raji gathered other members and they snatched a vehicle (a Nissan Quest) around Iwo Road, Ibadan. We decided that the vehicle would be used for the operation.

"The gang asked me to sit in the front of the vehicle so that when we were stopped by policemen on the way, being a woman in the front seat would make them unsuspicious. But during the operation, the police cornered us and Raji was shot dead."

Bakare did not betray any emotions as she narrated how the operation went.

Asked if she smoked Indian hemp like other members of her gang, she said, "I have never tasted it, I only smoke cigarette."

But when our correspondent asked about her parents, tears streamed down her face.

"I am from Idofian in Kwara State. My father is late but my mother lives in Ibadan. She has no idea I do this kind of job and she does not even know I am in police custody."

Bakare explained that she was a prostitute in Lekki where she was making up to N5,000 per day until about two years ago.

"I was living with a security guard in a house at Osborne in Ikoyi. The landlord of the house was out of the country.

I was going from there to 'hustle' in Lekki every night.

"Raji was a good helper to me. That was why I decided to leave prostitution when he begged me. When he introduced me to armed robbery, I asked him if there would be no problem and he assured me that there would be none. When we started dating, I did not know he was an armed robber though."

Asked how much she was promised out of the N70m they were going to steal, Bakare said whatever went to her late boyfriend would have accrued to her as well.

The young lady said she learnt photography when she dropped out of secondary school but had not been able to practise the trade because she did not think she could make much money from it.

During Saturday Punch's visit to the SARS office in Abeokuta, 36-year-old Onasile, who brought the N70m job, was evasive when our correspondent asked him how he knew about the money.

He later said that an acquaintance of his, a man named Tunde, informed him about the money.
Onasile said, "Tunde is like a brother to me. He told me the man we were going to rob was his relation. He said the man had N70m at home. I told him I had no boys who could do the job.

But he was always disturbing me about
getting a gang together to do the operation.

"Few days later, I informed Raji about the operation and he told me he could get boys for the job. We planned to sell the vehicle we snatched after the operation but we did not know how police got to know about the operation.

Tunde ran away when the police were after us."

Onasile said he was a revenue collector for a local government council in Lagos before he lost the job when a new chairman weeded out excess employees from the council.

According to him, he got a job as a site thug getting assignments from land grabbers once in a while but the money was not coming as needed.

Meanwhile, a gang of robbers, who specialised in snatching motorcycles have been apprehended by the SARS in Ogun State after an under cover operation.

Paraded alongside the suspects were the receipts, which they told the police that they issued to buyers of the motorcycles they snatched from their victims.

The Police Public Relations Officer, Ogun State, Mr. Muyiwa Adejobi, said he believed that more members of Bakare's robbery gang were still out on the streets. He said investigation was still ongoing to ensure that they did not escape justice.

He said, "We are on their trails. But we can assure the public that wherever they are, we will hunt them down and apprehend them.

"In the case of the gang who specialised in snatching motorcycles, our men were able to track them down after we got a tip-off that one of them wanted to purchase a gun.

"One of our SARS operatives who posed as a potential seller told him the pistol was N250,000 but the gang member said he could only afford N150,000.

"Criminals should understand that it is not a joke when the Commissioner of Police, Mr. Ikemefuna Okoye, says that crime would not be tolerated in any part of the state.

We mean it and will track down any criminal that ventures into this state."

The wives of the gang members were also arrested because they admitted that they knew their husbands were robbers.

Adejobi said the suspects would be charged to court as soon as possible.


Parents of Caleb University students have said the surcharge meted out to each student for damages to the school property during the fracas two weeks ago was high as students could not have destroyed property worth N100 million.

The school management sent this text message to parents earlier in the week: "CUL Parents and Students are hereby notified that school resumes Mon,June 2. Exams start Mon,June 9. Male students are to pay N100, 000 while the female would pay N50, 000 by Bank Draft into Ecobank Acct 1993000979 to offset damage to school property.

Balance of Sch. Fees should be paid into Sterling Bank Acct. 0020022195. No student would be allowed into the University Premises without evidence of payment of school fees and the surcharge. A guarantor must accompany each student with a letter of undertaking to be of good behavior."

A mother, whose daughter is a student at the school told Saturday Vanguard: "The money they asked us to pay is too much. There are at least 1400 students in that school. If they must pay this much to offset the damage, that's at least
N100 million. What did they destroy that is worth that much? A lot of students lost their property.

My daughter lost her laptop, she was in the hostel when the whole thing happened. Where will I get money to buy a new laptop and then pay this surcharge?"

Another parent who did not want his name in print said that his son was at home on his Industrial Training scheme when the
incident occurred, but he also received the text message. "I'm very concerned about the way the school has been communicating with us since this incident occurred.

The day after the incident, we received a text message saying that a new student had a disagreement with one of the school officials, but that the situation was under control since only a few students were involved.

Later in the day, we received another message saying that the school had been shut and people had been asked to go home.

Now, weeks later, we are being asked to pay this outrageous sum of money. This is rather disappointing because we have a forum for parents and the school management."

Another parent, who also chose to remain anonymous for fear that his daughter would be victimised said that the school should have given parents the opportunity to assess the damage
by themselves.

He said: "They should have allowed us to see things for ourselves, that way we can all decide on how much should be paid.

As it is now, my daughter is receiving treatment because she fell from the staircase during the crisis. I have to pay hospital bills and then pay this surcharge also. It seems like school management is trying to manipulate us. See how close the resumption date is to examinations; so that people will have no choice but to pay."

The Special Adviser to Lagos State Governor,
Babatunde Fashola, on Education, Otunba Fatai Olukoga, has said that striking lecturers in Lagos
State risk being sacked.

Olukoga, who oversees tertiary education in the state, made the statement at a youth interactive forum organised by the Ikorodu Ambassadors Group to discuss issues of education bursary, security and the 2015 governorship election.

At the event held at Something Else Recreation Centre, Ikorodu, Lagos, southwest Nigeria, Thursday, Olukoga said the lecturers have no justification to embark on the current strike, and that if the crisis in the Lagos State University persists, the university may be closed.

Olukoga noted that most of the lecturers have not be doing any research work and do not publish books to justify their demands for promotion and longer years of service. He advised that the lecturers should retire and
return as contract staff if they are passionate about the university.

He said retiring early would create employment for the younger generation and further strengthen the quality of output of the lecturers.

"Lecturers in LASU are fighting for us to remove the 'No Vacancy, No Promotion' policy.

We cannot remove it.

Their problem is still coming, they have no basis to go on strike, and if they are not careful, we may end up closing LASU and tell those who are interested to re-apply.

"Today, we have N1 billion naira in the kitty for research in all our institutions, and we ask all the lecturers to come and access it. You won't believe that we did not have any lecturer from LASU that applied. The majority of those
who applied were from the University of Lagos and other institutions. That committee was headed by Prof. Ayo Banjo the former Vice Chancellor of the University of Ibadan, while Dr. A.O.K. Noah from LASU was the secretary," he added.

He restated that the position of the lecturers that
retirement age should be pegged at 70 is not possible, noting that lecturers cannot become Metuselahs in the system.

"If you are a good lecturer and you retire at 60, you would be reappointed by the government and be given more money than what you are getting before, that was the challenge we throw at them but they are not ready for that.

If your are sure of yourself leave at 60 and come back on a contract basis. If you want to be a Metuselah at 70, there would be more unemployment because many young people are out there who are ready to work. We have about 4 to 5 professors in a faculty and none has been
able to produce a new professor," he avarred.

Olukoga cautioned Lagosians not to be fooled by the actions of the lecturers, who in his opinion are afraid of the restructuring efforts of the state government.

"Do not let anybody fool you, the lecturers in LASU are not right. We told them what they are saying is not tenable for a strike, they should go and resume their duty, then we can dialogue," he said.

When P.M.NEWS spoke to the Chairman, Academic Staff Union of Universities, Lagos State University, Chapter, ASUU-LASU, Dr. Adekunle Idris, on phone, he said there is a lot of ignorance in the statement of the Special Adviser who is supposed to know better because of his portfolio.

"I see a lot of ignorance in the statement. We do not retire at 60, we retire at 65. It is the non-academics that retire at 60, he should know better because of his position," he said.

A lecturer in the university who spoke under anonymity said the lecturers are themselves prepared for any eventualities.

"We knew what we were getting into when we started out and we are very prepared for any eventualities.

The government cannot take an adamant stand and expect the lecturers to shift position. Let the school fees be reduced, attend to the issues of promotion decisively, and allow lecturers stay till 70 years, that is all we seek and we are not backing out either. Let government close the
school first and see the reaction of the common people," she said.

The remains of former governor of Lagos State, Sir Michael Otedola, was laid to rest on Friday in his compound at Ibowon, Epe, after a farewell mass at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, Ibuwon, Epe.

The body was committed to mother earth at about 2pm in his compound.

Dignitaries present at the funeral service are – President Goodluck Jonathan and his wife Patience; Governor of Lagos State, Babatunde Fashola and his wife Bimbola; Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Hon. Adeyemi Ikuforiji; former President Olusegun Obasanjo;
former Presidential candidate of Action Congress of Nigeria, Mallam Nuhu Ribadu; Aliko Dangote; Anthony Cardinal Olubunmi Okogie; former governor of Anambra State, Peter Obi; House of Representatives members-
Abike Dabiri and Lanre Odubote.

Others were – former presidential aide, Mike
Oghiadomhe; former military Administrator of Lagos, Olagunsoye Oyinlola; Ministers for Culture and Tourism, Edem Duke and Agriculture, Dr. Akinwunmi Ayo Adesina
and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) boss Arumeh Oteh.

Speaking at the Church service, President Jonathan said the late Otedola served Lagos and Nigeria gracefully and left gracefully.

"He has left his marks on the sands of time, even though he ruled Lagos State for just 23 months but was able to leave an indelible mark which has been tremendous in the development of the state and Nigeria," the President said.

He charged leaders to let the life of the late Otedola be an example to them, adding that the question that should be uppermost in their minds must be "what will people say we have left behind for them to remember us. What would
people say about us?"

"Pa Otedola has been a father to us all, we believe with his departure God will fulfill his promise to us all by providing us a comforter to fill the gap left behind by him," President Jonathan added.

Islamic Militants, Boko Haram who were earlier said to have abducted two Borno rulers have killed the Emir of Gwoza, Alhaji Idrisa Timta while the Emir of Uba, Alhaji Ismaila Mamza is said to be in their custody.

It was earlier said that the two traditional rulers were seized at gun point by the Insurgents at about 10 am on Friday, along Garkida, Hawul road where a report said, there was ongoing
battle between the insurgents and the Nigerian military.

The two rulers were said to be on their way to Gombe to commiserates with the families of the Emir of Gombe, Alhaji Shehu Abubakar, who died on Tuesday evening at the Royal Marsden Hospital in London where he was said to have
undergone operation for cancer.

Another report said, the two first- class Emirs were said to be in the same car when they were
ambushed around Zhur, near Sangere, a Fulani

According to the report, the gunmen opened fire at the royal vehicle and the two Emirs were said to have opened their car doors and fled into the bush.

A local Mallam, Habu Shaffa, claimed that, one of the Emir was shot and the other escaped, "We were going to our farms when we saw police and some people shooting themselves.

We saw a car and we knew that, it belongs to an Emir. We thought it was the Emir of Biu but later we learnt that, it was the Emir of GWOZA and the Emir of Uba who were passing and Boko Haram opened fire on their vehicle. One of the Emirs died, but the other escaped."

DailyPost correspondent, who called on a close relations of the Emir of GWOZA, gathered that, when a relation called a member of the family, there was wailing at the background, and later the person that answered the call announced that,
they lost the "Great One"- meaning the Emir is dead.

Also, another report said, the Emir of Uba, Alhaji Ismail Mamza did not escape but was held hostage by the insurgents who were still battling with soldiers at Zhur forest where the attack took place.

"I don't know if the military were able to rescue him (Emir of Uba) but one of the people with him during the attack said, they were attacked and someone called the military, but it was
too late for the Emir of GWOZA before the military arrived the scene."

It was also gathered from another source, that, a battle was ongoing between the military and the Boko Haram sect, when the convoy of the two Emir ran into the battle line, and that unfortunately for them, they were caught in the
crossfire. " Whatever it is, there was gun battle and it was unfortunate, we lost our Emir," the source said.

Gunmen suspected to be members of the Boko Haram sect have kidnapped two prominent monarchs in Borno State.

Those abducted include, the Emir of Uba, Ismaila Mamza and the Emir of Gwoza, Idrisa Timta.

Premiums Times reports that the duo was whisked away by the extremists around 10a.m Friday, near Shaffa while they were travelling to Gombe to attend the funeral of the Emir of Gombe, Shehu Abubakar, who passed away on Tuesday.

However, the Borno state government is yet to issue an official statement on the abduction at the time of filing this report.

DailyPost earlier reported that there was a gun duel between soldiers and members of Boko Haram sect in bordering town of Garkida under
Gombi local government in Adamawa state
and Hawul local government area of Borno state.

A former Governor of Oyo State, Rasheed Ladoja, on Thursday lost one of his sons in an auto crash on the Eko Bridge in Lagos.

The deceased, identified as Adebola Ladoja, was driving a Golf saloon car, marked, AKD 107 CJ, and was said to be on his way to Lagos Island when a Daf truck, with number plate, JJJ 59 XA, driven by one Justice Oseghai, rammed
into his car on the Eko Bridge.

An eyewitness said the driver of the Daf truck, who was on top speed, lost control of his vehicle, rammed into the median of the bridge, before he eventually crashed into the deceased's car.

He said, "It took several hours before the victim could be rescued from the wreckage of the vehicle. He was trapped behind the wheels with blood gushing out of his head."

The Lagos State Police spokesperson, Ngozi Braide, who confirmed the incident, added that it occurred at about 3.30pm.

She said, "At about 3.30pm on the Eko Bridge, Lagos Island, a Daf truck with number plate, JJJ 59 XA, driven by one Justice Oseghai, ran into a Volkswagen Golf saloon car, marked, AKD 107 CJ, driven by one Adebola Ladoja, the son of a former governor of Oyo State, Senator Rasheed Ladoja.

"The victim died on the spot. The corpse has been removed to the Lagos Island General Hospital mortuary for autopsy while the truck driver has been arrested."

Some friends of Adebola took to Facebook to mourn the deceased.

One of them, Kiri Phoenix Gray, wrote, "Omg I'm in such shock to find out my friend Dee CaKe Ladoja is no longer with us. I'll never forget what such an amazing friend you were to me Dee and the only person I had when I first
moved to London. I'll miss you so much and I regret all the times we said we needed to catch up recently and didn't. It was only a couple of weeks ago since we spoke and I won't forget that conversation.

Another friend, Folarin Amosu, wrote, "Adebola Ladoja, my aburo, my good friend and ex colleague, Just heard the sad news about your accident that led to death. Why bro??? Still saw you two weeks ago when you visited me, we had a lovely time laughing and sharing business ideas.

''You are the true legend Debola. Personally you will always be in my heart and I will always miss you."

President Goodluck Jonathan was on Thursday presented with three Made-in-Nigeria Nissan vehicles to commemorate the nation's Democracy Day.

The Chairman of Stallion Group, Mr. Sunil Vaswani, presented the three vehicles to the President at the International Conference Centre where a special event organised to mark the nation's Democracy Day was held.

The vehicles, which were said to have been produced at the Stallion Nissan Motors Plant located on the Lagos- Badagry Expressway included a Nissan Patrol SUV, Nissan Almera (Sunny) saloon car and a Nissan NP 300

After the President inspected the vehicles, Vaswani said they met global standards of product and technology and that they were produced in Nigeria in pursuant of the Federal Government's new Automotive Policy.

Vaswani said the plant was established following the signing of the agreement between Nissan Motor Company and West African conglomerate of the Stallion Group on October 9, 2013.

He commended the government's automotive policy, which he described as a historic step towards industrial and economic rejuvenation.
He said, "We are grateful for implementing this initiative, which is part of the Federal Government's seven-point agenda to attract Foreign Direct Investments and emancipate the dormant sectors of the economy.

"The evolution of automotive manufacturing sector in Nigeria would not only encourage more FDIs but stimulate industrial clusters such as original equipment manufacturers that include steel plants, glass manufacturers, aftermarket shops and transportation service providers leading to job creation and contributing
significantly to the GDP.

"The current population of Nigeria can convincingly support more than half a million vehicles annually which is more than sufficient to sustain an emerging automotive industry."

Dynamo Kiev defender Ayila Yussuf, who spent last season on loan in Metalist Kharkiv was accused by doctor Leonid Mironov for being much older than it is stated in his official documents.

Officially 29-year old Yussuf came to Dynamo Kiev in 2003. He spent almost his entire career with the Ukrainian team, except short-term loans to Orduspor and recently finished to Metalist.

Yet his age was never part of a public debate, but finally team's doctor decided to share his
opinion with local media. When asked about Yussuf's age Mironoy answered: "This is a
little-known, but much more than declared in official documents.

If you prefer, you can check this, it is elementary." – as quoted by

So far there are no consequences of his words, but if they were true Yussuf could be severely punished, as it would be the violation of FIFA rules.

His papers however were also approved by Nigerian and Ukrainian Football Federations.

Interestingly Yussuf is known in Ukraine as "Grandfather Yussuf", but this nickname was
never created as an insult or as a metaphor of his age.

It was simply used by younger players of Dynamo, because for them Yussuf has been in the club as long as they can remember.

Ayila Yussuf hasn't yet commented on those accusations.

Reports in Spain suggest that Cristiano Ronaldo ripped off his shirt in front of the cameras when celebrating his Champions League final goal because he was being filmed for his movie.

The Portuguese superstar scored a penalty in the closing minutes of extra-time to round off a 4-1 victory, and he celebrated by taking off his shirt and flexing his muscles.

His celebration seemed rather excessive given that the game was already won, and reports say that Ronaldo knew where to stand for cameras to pick him up and capture the celebration.

The former Manchester United forward is developing 'Ronaldo: The Movie' to promote his brand.

He helped Real Madrid to their 10th European Cup in Lisbon last weekend as they came from behind to beat Atletico Madrid 4-1 after extra-time.

It was the second Champions League Ronaldo has won having done so with Manchester United in 2008.

Nigeria coach Stephen Keshi launched a furious defence of his players following Wednesday's 2-2 draw with Scotland in a match whose build-up had been disrupted over a matchfixing investigation being launched.

Keshi, who captained Nigeria at the 1994 World Cup finals, said his World Cup finals-bound players were not gamblers they were footballers and ridiculed allegations that anything sinister had taken place.

Austin Ejide watches as Scotland's defender Charlie Mulgrew scores the opening goal during the international friendly football match between Nigeria and Scotland.

The game was threatened after Britain's serious crime squad the National Crime Agency were called to investigate a possible threat of match-fixing linked to illegal betting rings ahead of the game at Fulham's ground in London.

But Keshi, who coached Nigeria to the Africa Cup of Nationa title last year, said his team were not affected by the off-field issues before the kick-off.

"We did (talk about it) because it's something ridiculous, something that we don't know where it's coming from.

We're not gamblers, we are football players," said Keshi.

"I don't even know where that is coming from, we don't know what happened, match fixing or no match fixing.

"This is the first time I've been a coach or been a player and the first time I'm hearing this, match-fixing. I don't think it had anything to do with our build-up or the game."

On the pitch Charlie Mulgrew opened the scoring for the Tartan Army after 10 minutes before Michael Uchebo equalised with four minutes left of the first half.

The Scots regained the lead through a bizarre own goal by reserve defender Azubuike Egwuekwe who appeared to flick the ball into his own net from James Morrison's cross in the 52nd minute.

But super-sub Uche Nwofor converted an equaliser in stoppage time in a game that the Nigerians looked second best in throughout.

Scotland coach Gordon Strachan was delighted with the way his side played as they extended their unbeaten streak to six – whilst also refusing to be drawn on the match-fixing storm.

"I liked that performance," said Strachan.

"I think the only thing we had a problem with is that some of the lads have not trained for three weeks and have been on holiday.

"We could have ended up with four or five goals and that's the first time I have said that.

"In terms of play so far, that's as good as it gets. Overall I think there was a bit of flair and imagination, which I like and it was against a top side.

"It is something we have been working on and we want to take it up a level, Nigeria are a terrific side and they upped their level and pressure.

"There is a lot to be proud of and I'm just disappointed for them that we haven't got the win."

The Italian FA [FIGC] has confirmed that Lazio youngster Joseph Minala is definitely 17 and not guilty of age fraud, as alleged back in February.

An African website reported that the midfielder was in fact 42 and had forged identity documents in a bid to embark on a career with the Italian capital club's youth side.

The claims sparked an investigation in Italy, with the teenager quizzed by Serie A's federal prosecutor, but a ruling on Wednesday cleared the Cameroon prospect of any wrongdoing.

A statement read: "The Italian FA has confirmed that Lazio youngster Joseph Minala is 17 and not guilty of age fraud, as alleged back in February.

"There are no doubts about his age. He is 17."

Age fraud has become an increasing problem within African football. Nine players were excluded from the African Under-17 Championship in Morocco after MRI wrist scans showed them to be over the age limit.

Congo, Ivory Coast and Nigeria each had three players banned, while later that year the Super Eagles lost several players from their Under-17 World Cup squad for the same reason.

Police detectives in Asaba, Delta State have uncovered a hideout of lesbians around Anwai road Asaba and have arrested 26 suspects.

The public relations officer of the state police command, DSP Celestina Kalu who confirmed the arrest of the suspects, said they were arrested while allegedly having sex with one another at their hideout.

The police spokesperson who explained that the suspects were caught naked, averred that the hideout harbours perpetrators of various criminal activities especially lesbianism.

She said the suspects who confessed to the crime during interrogation, claimed they were in it as a way to eke a living.

Kalu further said the suspects would be charged to court on completion of investigation.

It was gathered that the hideout is operated as a pub to ward off suspicion by the public and operators of the spot who have been making brisk business in the last two years, employ thugs who stand sentry at the gate and collect fees from those willing to be exposed to the illicit sexual activities at the hideout.

Teenage girls from neighbouring communities and states reportedly troop to the hideout at night where after smoking and drinking, they engage in sexual acts with patrons who pay them heavily.

Here is a text of President Jonathan's speech:

"I greet and felicitate with you all, today, as we mark 15 years of uninterrupted democratic governance in our beloved country. Our dear nation, Nigeria, has certainly come a long way
and made notable progress since our first Democracy Day on May 29, 1999 when the military finally relinquished power and handed over to a democratically-elected government, marking the true beginning of a government of the people, by the people, for the people."

Although I have ordered a low-key commemoration of this year's Democracy Day in deference to the current mood of the nation, there can be no doubt that the past 15 years, the longest period of sustained democratic governance in our country, have been a blessing to us, as a people.

As we commemorate 15 years of our Fourth Republic today therefore, I believe that it is fitting that we pay tribute once again to all those who played a part in restoring our nation to the true path of democratic governance, built on the foundations of rule of law and freedom of expression.

As a result of our collective efforts since 1999, democratic governance is now entrenched in our nation and institutions. I wholeheartedly believe that our people are the better for it. The scope of fundamental rights and liberties enjoyed by our people over the past 15 years has been expanded beyond measure.

On my watch, we have witnessed high national economic growth rates, steady improvements and expansion of national infrastructure including airports and roads, the restoration of
rail transportation, the efficient implementation of a roadmap for improved power supply, a revolutionary approach to agricultural production, as well as advances in education,
sports, youth development, healthcare delivery, housing, water supply and other social services.

In the oil and gas sector, our promotion of a sustainable local content policy, continues to guarantee equity and better opportunities for Nigerian entrepreneurs and skilled personnel.

Significant increase in mobile telephone and national broadband penetration, making Information and Communications Technology (ICT) one of the fastest growing sectors of the Nigerian economy. We have also developed
strong financial markets and regulatory institutions. Our banks now have regional and global footprints.

Nigeria has also gained recognition as the largest economy in Africa, the most preferred investment destination in the continent and in terms of returns on investment, the fourth in
the world. We are pleased that the world has noticed, as global leaders converged in Abuja early this month for the World Economic Forum in Africa.

The event not only witnessed a record attendance, it brought the prospect of an additional flow of investment into the Nigerian
economy estimated at over $68 billion over the next few years.

In foreign relations, our country has equally done well within this period, by establishing and strengthening strong partnerships with all ECOWAS countries and the rest of the world.

This has helped to deepen Nigeria's leadership role in multilateral institutions including the United Nations.

Furthermore, under this administration, we have made consistent progress in improving the standard of elections in our country to ensure that they are ever more credible and truly representative of the people's free choice. The National Conference we initiated to deliberate and make recommendations on the best ways of resolving our current political and socio-economic challenges is on-going. It is our expectation that its outcomes will help to further consolidate the gains we have made from democracy in the past 15 years, and place our dear nation even more firmly on the path to greatness.

President Jonathan stressed that though the government has achieved a lot in the past years and democracy has come to stay, the democratic governance is being threatened by terrorism.

He said "It is a sad fact that as I address you today, all the gains of the past 15 years of democratic governance in our country are threatened by the presence of international terrorism on our shores. Our dear country, Nigeria is facing a new challenge. A war has been unleashed on us. Extremist foreign elements, collaborating with some of our misguided citizens, are focused on an attempt to bring down our country and the democracy and
freedom we cherish and celebrate today.

"The despicable abduction of school girls from Chibok in Borno State has brought to the awareness of the entire world, the heartless brutality of these terrorists who want to instigate a descent into anarchy and balkanize our nation.

"In recent years, terrorist attacks have claimed the lives of several of our compatriots, many have been injured or maimed, whole villages and communities have been destroyed and the
economy of some of our states is in jeopardy.

"There can be no doubt that what we are witnessing in Nigeria today is a manifestation of the same warped and ferocious world view that brought down the Twin Towers in New York, killed innocent persons in Boston and led to the murder of defenceless people in the Southern Russian city of Volgograd. Terrorist activities have brought war and pains to Mali, Somalia, Yemen, Syria, Afghanistan and Pakistan. These agents of evil continue to brainwash and incite ignorant young men and women to attack the innocent. We cannot allow this to continue.

He commend patriotic Nigerians for their solidarity support towards the fight against terrorism.

He said "I welcome the statements of solidarity from patriotic citizens and the global community in support of our efforts to stamp out terrorism. I applaud the understanding that in a democracy, such as we are building, people can have differences while sharing worthy values and standing together in opposition to the scourge of terrorism. Nigeria is the only country we have and we must all work to preserve it for present
and future generations".

President Jonathan commended the security forces for their effort in peacekeeping in different countries over the years, and their gallant confidence in fighting the present terrorists in the country.

He said "Despite the challenges we face, we must commend our security forces. We must not forget their gallantry and successes in liberating nations and in peacekeeping, from Liberia to Sierra Leone, Congo, Sudan, Mali, Guinea-Bissau and many places in Africa and beyond.

Our forces have paid the supreme price in several places at several times.

"Today, they face a different challenge, an unconventional war by terrorists. They are adjusting and are being equipped to tackle the new menace of terrorism. We must show confidence in their ability. I have no doubt that, with the support of Nigerians, our neighbours and the international community, we will reinforce our defence, free our girls and rid Nigeria of terrorists".

President Jonathan expressed pain over the abduction of the Chibok students, saying it has been more than 45 days since they were kidnapped from the hostel. He sympathized with the parents and gardians of the victims.

"It is now 45 days since the horrifying abduction of the college girls of Chibok. I share the deep pain and anxiety of their parents and guardians and I assure them once again that
government will continue to do everything possible to bring our daughters home. He assured Nigerians that the country will be
safe again.

"I am determined to protect our democracy, our national unity and our political stability, by waging a total war against terrorism. The unity and stability of our country, and the protection of lives and property are non-negotiable. I have
instructed our security forces to launch a full-scale operation to put an end to the impunity of terrorists on our soil.

"I have also authorized the security forces to use any means necessary under the law to ensure that this is done. I assure you that Nigeria will be safe again, and that these thugs will be driven away – it will not happen overnight, but we will spare no effort to achieve this goal.

Jonathan reminded Boko Haram that the Federal Government's door remain open should they choose to dialogue.

His words "For our citizens who have joined hands with Al Qaeda and international terrorists in the misguided belief that violence can possibly solve their problems, our doors remain
open to them for dialogue and reconciliation, if they renounce terrorism and embrace peace.

"My government, while pursuing security measures, will explore all options, including readiness to accept unconditional renunciation of violence by insurgents, and to ensure their de-
radicalization, rehabilitation and re-integration into the broader society."

Stressing the importance of unity to fight the insurgents, Jonathan said "Dear Compatriots, we must remain united to win the war against terrorism. Christians, Moslems, farmers, fishermen, herdsmen, teachers, lawyers, clergy or clerics, the rich, the poor and Nigerians from all sections of the country must work together with our security agencies and armed forces
to overcome the terrorists who now threaten all that we hold dear.

"The war against terror may be difficult, but the days of peace will come again. Terror is evil; nowhere in history has evil endured forever. The menace of Boko Haram will surely come to an end. I believe that because of your prayers, your courage, hardwork, faith and sacrifice, we will ultimately prevail over the terrorists and all other evil forces.

"We are a strong, resilient and courageous people. We will continue to partner with the civilized world, to confront international terrorism and every other challenge that comes our way with patriotic zeal and determination.

"Yes, we have challenges but we will surely overcome. Nigeria is our country. Nigeria is blessed. We will all collectively protect, defend and develop this country for ourselves, and our

Apple has confirmed it will buy headphone maker and music- streaming service provider Beats Electronics.

The deal is worth a total of $3bn (£1.8bn), and is thought to be Apple's largest acquisition to date.

As part of the acquisition, Beats co-founders Jimmy Iovine and Dr Dre will join the technology firm.

Apple boss Tim Cook said the deal would allow the firm to "continue to create the most innovative music products and services in the world".

In a statement, Apple said it is paying an initial $2.6bn (£1.6bn) for Beats, and approximately $400m (£239m) "that will vest over time".

Beats was founded in 2008 by music producer Jimmy Iovine and hip-hop star Dr Dre and until recently was best known for its headphones.

It started a subscription-based music streaming service earlier this year.

Apple has its own iTunes store, the world's largest music download service, and launched iTunes Radio last year.

But despite having been an early pioneer of digital music, the Californian firm has been facing increased competition from subscription services such as Spotify, Pandora and Rdio.

However, Beats' music service only has about 110,000 subscribers, compared with Spotify's 10 million.

The deal with Beats also marks a departure for Apple, which has a reputation for developing new products in-house, rather than buying up smaller firms - a method preferred by rivals Google.

But in an interview with the New York Times, Mr Cook hinted that Beats' founders may have been part of the attraction.

"Could Eddy's team [Eddy Cue, Apple executive in charge of iTunes] have built a subscription service? Of course," he told the newspaper.

"You don't build everything yourself. It's not one thing that excites us here. It's the people. It's the service."

"These guys are really unique," Mr Cook added. "It's like finding the precise grain of sand on the beach. They're rare and very hard to find."

The Apple boss also said that Dr Dre and Mr Iovine would be coming up with "products you haven't thought of yet".

However some analysts remain baffled by the acquisition.

Technology writer Benedict Evans tweeted: "If you think Apple's lost it, Beats deal is confirmation. If you don't, it's… perplexing. Few really convincing rationales."

He added: "The Beats deal is totally in character for Apple: everyone is puzzled."

Beats co-founder Jimmy Iovine, who made his name as chairman of the Interscope Geffen A&M record label, welcomed the deal.

"I've always known in my heart that Beats belonged with Apple," he said.

The deal is thought to have made Beats co-founder Dr Dre the first hip-hop billionaire

"The idea when we started the company was inspired by Apple's unmatched ability to marry culture and technology.

Apple analyst Jim Dalrymple hinted that it may be Mr Iovine's talent that the technology firm is after.

Writing on his website The Loop, Mr Dalrymple said: "In my opinion, Jimmy is going to play an important role going forward.

"Maybe not that you always see, but he'll be there".

As well as headphones, Beats sells earphones and portable speakers, and has even developed partnerships with carmakers and computer manufacturers to include its BeatsAudio software technology in their products.

The company's flagship products have also received several celebrity endorsements, with stars including Lady Gaga, Lil Wayne and Nicki Minaj designing their own customised Beats

Subject to regulatory approvals, Apple said it expects the deal to close in the fourth financial quarter of this year.

The African side fell behind in the international friendly but battled back, with the Super Eagles, who are set to compete in this summer's World Cup, grabbing a late draw.

A late Uche Nwofor strike rescued a draw for Nigeria against Scotland on Wednesday.

In the first of three friendlies in the build-up to Brazil, Stephen Keshi left the likes of Vincent Enyeama and John Obi Mikel out of the matchday squad against a Scotland side resurgent under Gordon Strachan.

Scotland are now six games unbeaten but were denied a fifth win in that run by Nwofor's late equaliser at Craven Cottage.

Charlie Mulgrew gave them the lead 10 minutes in when he produced a clever flick to divert James Morrison's long-distance effort over Nigeria's second-choice goalkeeper Austin Ejide.
However, Nigeria were level four minutes before the break when Michael Uchebo's effort from outside of the area was deflected in off Grant Hanley.

Gordon Strachan's side were back in front early in the second thanks to Azubuike Egwuekwe's own-goal but Nwofor pounced on sloppy defending from Gordon Greer and Hanley to fire home.

It leaves Keshi with much to ponder ahead of friendlies against Greece and the USA and their Group F opener against Iran in Curitiba on June 16 Ikechi Anya went close early on, as he chested a long ball down and shot across goal only for his effort to strike the post before Uchebo's effort at the other end was saved - as he intercepted a careless pass from Alan Hutton.

Mulgrew then produced a moment of magic as he managed to flick Morrison's wayward effort over Ejide.

Shola Ameobi should have come closer to equalising but could only spoon a free-kick over with Shaun Maloney next to hit an effort high and wide from distance.

Scotland almost edged two goals ahead when Hanley headed a ball in - only for the Blackburn Rovers defender to be denied by the referee's whistle after he was adjudged to have fouled Ejide.

Hanley's misfortune continued before the interval as he was the unlucky party to deflect Uchebo's strike past Allan McGregor.

However, Scotland restored their lead after the break when Egwuekwe inadvertently turned the ball into his own net following Hutton's cross.

Maloney thought he had extended their advantage when he tapped home Hutton's delivery before the linesman flagged for offside.

Keshi introduced attacking trio Victor Moses, Peter Odemwingie and Nwofor in the second half and it was the latter who drilled home from an acute angle late in the game for Nigeria - who next face Greece in Pennsylvania on June 3.

Manchester United owner Malcolm Glazer has died at the age of 85.

The Glazer family purchased United for £790m in May 2005 amid protests from the Premier League club's fans.

However, the Red Devils went on to win five Premier Leagues (2007, 2008, 2009, 2011 and 2013), as well as the 2008 Champions League title.

American Glazer also purchased the Tampa Bay Buccaneers NFL franchise in 1995.

Akwa Ibom State Governor Godswill Akpabio said yesterday that the pension bill seeking N100million medical expenses for former governor and N50million for former deputy governor would stop endless medical expenditure.

Akpabio said the bill was an amendment to the former governor and deputy governor pension law of 2006 and not a new law as being speculated.

The governor spoke through the Commissioner for Information, Aniekan Umanah, in a programme on Planet FM 101.1 in Uyo, the state capital.

Akpabio insisted that the newly amendment bill was in the interest of the state.

He said: "The bill is simply an amendment to the law enacted in 2006. It exists in several states.

What the bill seeks to achieve is limit endless medical expenditure.

"The old law didn't put any cap on medical expenditure.

There was no limit. But the governor in his own wisdom decided it was important we put a ceiling so that we don't make it open ended any more.

"The governor is not seeking an amendment in his own interest, rather it is in the interest of the state because if you leave expenditure open ended it means you can spend close to N500million in one year without anybody stopping you since there is no law.

"People must also understand that medical expenses provision is not a payment provolone.

It is not as if you have access to it. There are procedures before you can get it."

Lawmakers in the House of Assembly on Monday passed into law a bill seeking a pension for life at a rate equivalent to the salary of the incumbent governor and deputy governor.

The law also provided for the former governor a provision for funds to employ a cook, chauffeurs and security guards at a sum not exceeding N5 million per month and N2.5 million for the deputy governor.

According to the bill, the former governor would also be entitled to free medical services for his person and spouse at a sum not exceeding N100 million per annum and N50
million for former deputy governor.

The bill also sought to provide for the former governor a befitting accommodation not below a five- bedroom maisonette in either Abuja or Akwa Ibom.

The bill also provided for yearly accommodation
allowance of 300 per cent of annual basic salary for the deputy governor.

The former governor would also receive a severance gratuity of 300 per cent of annual basic salary as at the time he/she leaves office.

Ogenyi Onazi says he feels fortunate to be alive after he narrowly avoided last week's bombings in the city of Jos. The blasts at a crowded bus terminal and market killed at least 118 people.

Onazi, 21, who was born in Jos, had just left the popular Jos Main Market last Tuesday, when the first blast rocked the area.

The midfielder, who plays for Italian Serie A side Lazio, said: "I am very, very lucky, just by the grace of God."Onazi is now with the Super
Eagles squad in London as they prepare for today's friendly against Scotland and he says he has been struggling to erase the memories of that dark day.

Recounting his lucky escape, he told BBC Sport:

"It was just like an ordinary day. Happy faces and friendly warmth that makes you feel happy to be back home.

"We had gone to the railway market to get something. I think it was 15 minutes later when we heard the loud blast from the place. And suddenly, people were just running."There
was chaos and pandemonium. There was smoke, I was confused, lost and just wondered what had happened. I had no idea what was going on and it was scary."All my life I have never heard a bang or boom like that.

"The second blast killed some of the rescue workers who had rushed to the scene, which was obscured by billows of black smoke.

A week later, far away from the city where
his parents are based and preparing for his first World Cup with the Super Eagles, Onazi insists the unrest back home has made it difficult to focus on football.

"Some will say I should be happy to be alive but I just feel concerned about the security challenges in Jos and Nigeria as a country," he said."I was born and bred in a peaceful Jos. I
may be fortunate enough to live outside the place right now, but I still have my family and friends who live in the city."I always get worried when there are reports of terrible incidents there on a regular basis. It's sad and depressing to live with this."Personally, I think there is a need for a holistic approach to solving this problem once
and for all."Innocent people are dying and the
government seriously needs to step up security across the country."Another blast happened in Jos days after that incident, in an explosion that targeted football fans watching the European Champions League final, the authorities said.

At least three people died and three others
were injured in the blast, according to Chris Olakpe, the commissioner of police for Plateau state.

A mystery benefactor has been leading social media users on a treasure hunt for hidden money in the US cities of San Francisco and San Jose.

A man using the Twitter handle @HiddenCash has apparently given away a total of $5,000 (£3,000) in what he calls a "social experiment for good".

Twitter users have been following his hints to find notes worth $100 in white envelopes.

Many of the winners have gone on to share their findings with others.

In an interview with Time magazine, the anonymous donor said he had made his fortune from property deals and set out to "put smiles on people's faces" by giving a bit back to those less
well off.

Money has been found in locations such as under chairs and inside phone boxes.

Miles Tokatz, 33, found $100 in San Francisco shortly after hearing about the treasure hunt in a bar.

"I was picking my girlfriend up from work. I checked Twitter and it turned out the clue he left was a place I was just a few blocks away," he told the BBC, adding that he spent most of the
money on drinks with his friends and "fancy cheeses".

He added: "I hope more people start taking on this sort of spirit - with all the drama in the world, something that's truly fun is refreshing."

Some critics have questioned the motives of the giveaways and suggested the money could be better spent.

In response, the donor posted on Twitter:

"Because people asked, just want to say that @Hiddencash is NOT instead of charity. We support many charities too. This is for fun."

The account has more than 119,000 followers and it said new drop-offs would take place San Jose, California, on Wednesday.

Further giveaways are also promised in Los Angeles next week and New York.
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