Friday, September 28, 2012

Plane crash kills 19 in Nepal

The plane in flames as people watched helplessly. Images: Daily Mail

The wreckage

Victims' bodies being taken away

Kathmandu International Airport (above), a popular start point for journeys into the Everest region

Wads of notes recovered from the wreckage

A policeman looks on helplessly as the plane burns

Seven Britons were among 19 people killed when a plane carrying trekkers to the Everest region crashed in the Nepalese capital today.

The twin-engine aircraft, operated by domestic carrier Sita Air, came down minutes after take-off near the Manohara River on the southwest edge of Katmandu.

Witnesses say it burst into flames before crashing into a field just 500 yards from the airport.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office said it is looking 'urgently' into reports that seven Britons were killed in the disaster.

The other passengers included five Chinese and three Nepalese trekkers, while the three crew members were from Nepal, said Katmandu airport chief Narayan Bastakoti.

The pilot reported trouble shortly after leaving Kathmandu airport and appeared to have been trying to turn back, according to airport official Ratish Chandra Suman. The wrecked plane was pointing towards the airport area.

Investigators were trying to determine the cause of the crash and identify the bodies and Mr Suman said he could not confirm if the plane was already on fire before it crashed.

The weather in Kathmandu and surrounding areas was clear on Friday morning and it was one of the first flights to take off from Kathmandu's Tribhuwan International Airport. Other flights reported no problems, and the airport operated normally.

Mobile phone video shot by local people showed the front section of the plane was on fire when it first hit the ground and it appeared the pilot had attempted to land the plane on open ground beside the river.

The fire quickly spread to the rear, but the tail was still in one piece at the scene near the Manohara River on the south-west edge of Kathmandu.

Villagers were unable to approach the plane because of the flames and it took some time for firefighters to reach the area and bring the fire under control.

Hundreds of rescuers, police and onlookers surrounded the burnt-out shell of the aircraft as they looked for bodies and documents to help identify the victims.

The bodies were taken by vans to the hospital mortuary.

A police spokesman said: 'The pilots seem to have tried to land it safely on the banks of the river, but unfortunately the plane caught fire.'

Firefighters brought the fire in the wreckage under control and police rescuers were trying to pull out the bodies, Bastakoti said.

The plane was heading for Lukla, the gateway to Mount Everest. Thousands of Westerners head to the region around the world's highest peak every year for trekking trips.

English mountaineer Alan Hinkes, who has been climbing in the Himalayas for more than 20 years, told the BBC that he had taken the flight from Kathmandu to Lukla many times previously, and that problems usually occurred at the Lukla end.
He said: 'It is ironic that it has crashed in Kathmandu. You are usually worried about it happening at the other end.

'The landing strip in Lukla is a bit like an aircraft carrier with a mountain at the end of it, with a 1,000ft drop at the end of the runway. Normally crashes happen at that end.'

Mr Hinkes said it was unlikely the victims would have been planning to climb Everest, but were more likely to be trekkers or people attempting other mountains in the Everest region.

He said: 'There is quite good weather in October and November for climbing the mountains around Everest.

'It is a bit worrying and upsetting. There are a lot of people and friends I know who go out at this time of year leading treks.

'It is quite alarming. I have lost a few friends in plane crashes in Nepal over the last 20 years.

'It is not the safest place to fly, I must admit, but it is what you have to do to get into the mountains.'

History repeating: The disaster comes just months after 15 people were killed when their plane crashed into a hill in northwest Nepal in May

A spokeswoman for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office said: 'We understand that British nationals may be involved, and we are urgently seeking to confirm what has happened.

'Our embassy in Kathmandu is talking to the airline and local authorities to find out whether Britons were involved.'

Autumn is considered the best time to trek the foothills of the Himalayan peaks.

The crash follows an avalanche on another Nepal peak Sunday that killed seven foreign climbers and a Nepali guide.

And in May, 15 people were killed when their plane crashed into a hill in northwest Nepal.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Cynthia: Court grants two suspects bail, remands driver

A Yaba Chief Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday granted bail to two suspects arrested in connection with the alleged murder of Cynthia Osokogu.

But  the driver who was accused of driving the prime suspect to Cosmilla Hotel, FESTAC, was remanded in prison custody.

The suspects granted bail – Nonso Ezike (22), who is the younger brother to Olisaeloka, one of the alleged killers, and Ezeaka Chinonso (27) – were arrested by policemen at Area E for receiving and selling Cynthia’s BlackBerry phone.

The two counts read, “That you Ezike Nonso Ifechukwu and Ezeaka Chinonso, sometime in the month of July 2012, at 93 Tedi/Memo Road Abule-Osun, Lagos in the Lagos Magisterial District did conspire among yourselves to commit felony to wit: receiving robbed/stolen property thereby committed an offence and punishable under Section 409 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2011.

“That you (accused persons), on the same date, time did knowingly receive one white BlackBerry phone valued at N85,000 from one Ezike Olisaeloka also known as Chidera, property of Cynthia, knowing same to have been robbed/stolen and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 326 (1)(2) of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2011.”

Nonso’s lawyer, Mr. J. C Ngobili, told the court that the accused was a student of the Federal University of Technology, Owerri, and prayed the court to grant him bail in liberal terms.

The Magistrate, Mr. P.A. Adekomaya, admitted that although the offences were bailable, he pointed out that the bail condition ought not to be too liberal in view of the circumstances surrounding Cynthia’s murder.

He granted Nonso and Ezeaka bail in the sum of N500,000 each with two sureties in like sum, adding that the sureties must not be teachers or local government employees. He added that the sureties could be bank tellers.

The third accused person, Gideon Okechukwu, a driver, was however charged with eight counts of murder, rape, robbery, conspiracy, administering a harmful substance to the deceased among others.

The charge reads in part, “That you, Gideon Okechukwu, and others charged to court, on the same dates, time and place, in the aforesaid Magisterial district, did unlawfully kill one Cynthia Osokogu (25) by administering her with obnoxious substance known as Rohypnol Flunitrazepam tablets via a Ribena drink, binding her with padlock and cellotaped her legs, neck and mouth, giving her fist blows all over her body, giving her several human bites, tortured and strangled her to death and thereby committed an offence, punishable under Section 221 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2011.”

Okechukwu had told PUNCH Metro before he was arraigned that he only drove the alleged killers from the area where the hotel was situated, adding that he had no role in Cynthia’s murder.

Okechukwu’s lawyer, Bello, prayed the court to also grant the accused bail, adding that he had been held at the State Criminal Investigation Department.

The magistrate, who quickly interjected, explained that it wasn’t within the jurisdiction of the court to grant bail for such offences.

He said, “Do you think I am drunk or under a spell that I would grant bail for such offences? Before this court is an application for remand. The accused person can only be granted bail based on the advice from the Director of Public Prosecutions or order from a superior court.”

Okechukwu was remanded in Ikoyi Prison. The matter was adjourned till October 3, 2012.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Lagos robberies: Three suspects in police net

The robbery suspects. Image: The Punch

Three armed robbery suspects who police claimed belong to the gang that terrorised Lagos on September 9 have been arrested. They are Uche Okeagbu, Emmanuel Ezeani and Chinonso Nwuangwu.

The suspects were arrested at their Ajangbadi hideout on September 23 following a tip-off.

Police said the suspects were members of a much larger group, which had about three weeks ago, carried out simultaneous robberies in Gbagada, Agege, Anthony, Ojodu, Itire, Ikeja and Ilasamaja areas of the state.

It was learnt that after 23-year-old Okeagbu was arrested, his confession  led to the recovery of a large cache of ammunition, one rocket propel grenade launcher, 225 AK 47 magazines fully-loaded, over 10,000 rounds of AK 47 live ammunition, two general purpose machine guns, 260 rounds of GPMG live ammunition, five dynamite with detonator and nine AK 47 rifles.

A self employed oil dealer before his foray into armed robbery, Okeagbu told PUNCH METRO that he was once based in Port Harcourt. He said he was introduced into the gang by a friend, and had since taken part in four operations in Ibadan ,and one each in Uyo Share, Kwara State and Lagos, where he got N100,000. All the operations happened this year.

A SARS team led by, Mr. Abba Kyari, found the gang’s armoury in two Volkswagen buses with registration numbers LSD 467 AR and AGL 506 XB, parked at Okeagbu’s residence at Ajangbadi.

Also, Nwuangwu said he took part in four robbery operations at Diamond Bank, Akure, in Ondo State, UBA, Osogbo in Osun State, GTB Okene, in Kogi State and Skyebank, Auchi, in Edo State.

The 23year-old said, “I was merely the driver of the vehicles. I just drove them to whereever they had an operation. I used to be an oil dealer in Port Harcourt before I joined the gang but I have stopped going with them for operations for a while now.”

The Commissioner of Police, Mr. Umar Manko, said the suspects were members of the gang that terrorised Lagos about three weeks ago.

He said the gang stormed Ilorin next, where they robbed a bank and attacked a police station.  He also said a Toyota Camry fitted with sensors and camera was recovered from the gang. The car, according to him enabled the robbers to monitor what was going on behind them.

Viral parting letter from angry employee outs manager

An ad executive quit his job in London yesterday. But before he left, he wrote an explosive mail to the entire staff of the company alleging that his manager bedded a prospective employee in one of the offices 'on the 3rd floor', among other things. The letter has since gone viral after one of the staff uploaded it on the internet...

From: Kieran Allen
Sent: 25 September 2012 08:11
To: MEC London UK All Staff
Subject: Leaving
Hello MEC,

It feels quite strange to be writing my leaving speech after 2 1/2 yrs. of loyal service to the company. It’s the longest I have spent at a company and I owe MEC a lot for my training and development. I leave in a position where I can go and further my career in digital if I so wish and for that I pay MEC great tribute.

However I leave with a horrible taste in my mouth after my working life for the past 8months has been ruined by Greg Shickle.

Joined MEC in May 2010. Soon after I started to receive continuous praise from Kevin Kirby Account Director and Greg Shickle Head of Performance for my outstanding performance across accounts (mainly Specsavers) Inc. a commendation from Greg to Jason Dormieux about my ability and contribution. I also received high praise from Amy Creasey and Louise Temperley (re general Specsavers performance and securing a PPC turnaround for Colgate inc a 100%+ YoY spend increase).

October 2011
I decide to hand in my notice and join another agency in order to further my development. Greg while initially cold to my departure rapidly changed tone and started to court me in order to stay.

January 2012
I retract my notice after Greg promotes me to Senior AM and gives me a substantial pay-rise along with the promise of rapid development.

However while all seemed well on the surface things were far from ideal in the background.

Oct-Feb 2011/12
My client load had been nearly trebled from 6 to 16 clients due to the departures of Aoife Bergin and Jacob Knox-Hooke (Brand team).
I was initially asked to help out in order to help service the clients while staff were recruited but I ended up being made the de-facto brand team manager along with my original client list.

The stress and strain took its toll and during late January - early February 2012 my health started to deteriorate rapidly.
I ended up breaking down to Greg that I couldn't take it anymore and that I was losing my mind under the pressure. Nothing changed although he knew I was beyond stacked.

Feb 21st I had to go to the doctors due to an imminent breakdown where I was ordered to stay off work indefinitely. I was signed off with Work Related Stress. I ended up needing over 2weeks off in order to recover.

On my return things went from bad to worse. Greg instead of welcoming me back and looking to make things right, instead attacked me and made me feel an outsider. I was made to feel that I had actually done wrong.

Soon after my return in early March Greg
- blocked my 2011 bonus due to
1)"poor performance in 2011"
2) "being given a pay rise and promotion in Jan 2012"
3) "things not working out as recently planned"
4) "being monitored after coming back from illness"

- Gave me an official company verbal warning for poor performance in 2011
- Put me on a performance review

All of this though after
- Praising me regularly throughout 2010/11
- Courting me to stay when i decided to leave
- Promoting me to Senior Account Manager
- Giving me a 15% payrise
- Describing my performance as “outstanding” as late as December 2011 to Anna May when there was a lot of issues due to staff departures
and my ability to step in and manage the brand teams PPC activity...

The only thing that changed during Feb/March 2012 is that I had to take 2 weeks off work due to work related stress and that Greg was questioned as Head of Department as to why this had happened under his watch and instead of taking responsibility he instead decided to attack me and my reputation in order to discredit my time off and make himself look less liable for blame.

This type of approach would seem extreme from a decent man but this is Greg the "man" who openly in front of other team members

- Made jokes about the "Spastic Olympics" (referring to Para-Olympics)
- Openly claimed to be proud "not to have a drop of Jewish blood in him"
- Regularly made sexist and other bigoted remarks
- Took a female colleague out for a drink on the day he interviewed her, then later took her back to the MEC offices that night and had
 sexual relations with her in the meeting rooms on the 3rd floor

The above is all common knowledge throughout the team. This is Greg's style of leadership and is gross misconduct on many levels. It is hard to fathom that such a man is responsible for the work wellbeing of over 30 staff.

I am writing this message in order to expose these failings and protect others in future. I am far from perfect personally or professionally but I am a good human being who treats people with respect. In 2012 this behaviour is not acceptable and certainly not in a company which touts itself as being all about its people.
Not one thing on this email has been exaggerated or made up. This is my truth to you all.
No doubt I fully expect the above to be ripped apart but as long as the truth is out there then that’s all I can do.

Good luck to MEC and all those good people who strive to make her great.
Kieran Allen
Senior Account Manager
Office : 0207 803 2293
Mobile: 0797 4466 282
1 Paris Garden London SE1 8NU

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Another sex tape shows Kanye as a stallion!

A stallion:  Kanye West

Perhaps, here finally is why Kim Kardashian cannot get enough of rapper, Kanye West. A new sex video just emerging shows that the superstar is a 'marathoner'. 

The rapper is facing more embarrassment as another X-rated video is allegedly being shopped around which shows him participating in a 40-minute lovemaking session with a beautiful brunette.

Kanye was "freaking out" after the first tape emerged last week, featuring him and girl who looks like his current girlfriend Kim Kardashian, and this second recording is double in length. reported: "Both tapes are impressively long - the first is roughly 20 minutes and the second is more than 40.

"And we're talking constant action. Seriously, the guy takes no breaks. It's incredible."

Both tapes were made before he started dating 31-year-old Kim - who was catapulted to fame after becoming the unwitting star of her own sex tape in 2007 when her ex-boyfriend Ray J released the recording.

The 'Stronger' hitmaker has called in his lawyers to stop any footage of the tapes from being released, and it is believed the material has been stolen from his personal computer.  

With regard to the first tape, his lawyer Lisa Buckley released a statement confirming it is Kanye in the video and warning against any party distributing images or clips from it.
She said: "Your posting, advertising, marketing, displaying and otherwise disseminating the stolen screen shot and/or other materials on the tape constitute actionable violations of Mr West's rights of privacy and publicity".

Life-like sex doll triggers emergency rescue at sea

A life-like sex doll. Image:
Turkish rescue workers retrieved an inflatable sex doll from the Black Sea after police were notified by panicked residents who mistook it for a woman's body floating offshore, Milliyet newspaper reported.
Police cordoned off a wide stretch of beach in northern Samsun province and sent a team of divers into the water to rescue what appeared to be a drowning woman, it said.
The team quickly discovered it was in fact a blow-up doll, which they deflated before throwing in the garbage, the daily said.
It was not clear where the blow-up doll had come from.
The Black Sea is a key tourism destination for Turks and also sees busy international maritime shipping traffic.

Don’t be violent, Fashola tells LASTMA, others

Lagos State Governor Babatunde Fashola on Monday urged officials of the state’s Traffic Management Authority, Kick Against Indiscipline and Neighbourhood Watch to respect people’s rights by using non-violent strategy in discharging their duties.

Fashola, who spoke through a video teleconferencing, gave the advice at the commencement of a training programme, organised by the Office of Senior Special Assistant on Transport Education for 7,960 law enforcement officers at the state Public Service Staff Development Centre, Magodo.

The governor said, “As law enforcement personnel, you must display the core values of integrity, commitment, pride, professionalism, self-respect and respect for others in the course of discharging your core responsibilities.

“You are engaged in the difficult yet important business of helping to regulate human behaviour on a daily basis. Your decisions affect people’s lives. You must bear that in mind in your decision making. You are working for the people. You are their servant and not their masters.”

I hope they will hear this and stop behaving crudely on the roads.

Banks Stopped from Lending to Otedola, Dantata, 417 Others

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has barred banks in the country from extending further credit to 113 companies and 419 directors/shareholders, including those belonging to Mr. Femi Otedola, Alhaji Sayyu Dantata, Sir Johnson Arumemi-Ikhide, former Power Minister, Prof. Bart Nnaji, Mrs Elizabeth Ebi and Dr. Wale Babalakin.

The CBN arrived at this decision as a result of the reluctance by the debtors to pay back their loans despite the purchase of the debts at an agreed price by the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON).

In a new circular dated September 17, and obtained exclusively by THISDAY, the central bank stated that the restriction would apply to individuals, organisations, companies as well as principal shareholders and directors of companies where the outstanding value of loans purchased by AMCON amounted to N5 billion or above as at the day of purchase, without regard to the actual amount paid by AMCON.

The circular, which was signed by CBN’s Director, Banking Supervision, Mrs. A. O. Martins, stated that “it has become necessary to stop debtors who failed to repay their loans to banks and had these loans subsequently transferred to AMCON, from further enjoying credit facilities from Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) until they fully repay agreed outstandings to AMCON.”

The circular, which was accompanied by a detailed list of the blacklisted debtors, showed that worst hit by the directive are Zenon Petroleum, owned by Otedola, which was indebted to banks to the tune of N192.4 billion; MRS Holdings Limited, which belongs to Dantata  – N119.98 billion; Seawolf Limited – N98.32 billion; Arik Air Limited, belonging to Arumemi-Ikhide  – N85.481 billion; NITEL Plc/M-Tel  – N71.547 billion; and Capital Oil and Gas Limited, which belongs to Ifeanyi Ubah – N48.014 billion.

Others include Falcon Securities, whose Managing Director, Mr. Peter Ololo, was arraigned alongside several bank executives in 2009 by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) – N162.9 billion; Rockson Engineering Limited, owned by Arumemi-Ikhide – N60.475 billion; BGL Securities – N6.44 billion; Rahamaniyya Oil & Gas Limited – N46.38 billion; Bi-Courtney Limited – N20.214 billion; and Geometrics Engineering, owned by Nnaji – N19.76 billion.

The restriction also applies to: Aero Contractors Company, owned by the family of Olorogun Michael Ibru - N32.579 billion; Tinapa Business Resort – N18.509 billion; Nestoil Limited, belonging to oil and gas entrepreneur, Ernest Azudialu – N13.506 billion; Dorman Long Engineering – N9.667 billion; Ascott Offshore Nig. Ltd, belonging to former banker, Henry Imasekha and the Berkley Group – N64.728 billion; Gitto Constuzioni – N11.838 billion; and Dansa Foods – N14.880 billion, whose directors, Sani and Abdul Dangote, are the brothers of business mogul, Alhaji Aliko Dangote.

Commercial banks were also directed not to grant further credit to Cross River and Zamfara States because of the failure of the Tinapa Business Resort and Accountant General, Ministry of Finance, Zamfara to pay back loans collected respectively.

 The restriction, according to the central bank, came into effect from the date of the circular and shall remain “until full liquidation of agreed indebtedness to AMCON”.

For Zenon Petroleum whose initial debt of N192.423 billion was priced by AMCON at N140.999 billion, the memo showed that “negotiations are ongoing and with fairly clear roadmap”.  It also revealed that MRS Holdings’ debt of N119.986 billion, acquired by AMCON at a price of N91.620 billion has been “restructured and is performing”.

Similarly, while the remark on Seawolf’s debt of N98.328 billion that AMCON priced at N88.496 billion was put at “negotiations ongoing,” it showed also that Arik Air’s debt of N85.481 billion which was acquired by AMCON at N62.970 billion has been “restored but there is a moratorium”.

It also showed that while Capital Oil and Gas’ N48.014 billion has been “restructured and awaiting performance,” Rockson’s debt of N60.475 billion, which was acquired by AMCON at N36.331 billion, is still “pending”.

To ensure compliance, the CBN warned that any bank that flouts the guidelines would be made to make an immediate provision of 100 per cent of total principal and interest outstanding in the account of the customer and related parties, in addition to whatever regulatory penalties the CBN may decide to impose.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Govt to auction bullion van seized in traffic

There were indications on Thursday that the Lagos State Government was making preparations to auction a bullion van and a truck impounded in the state for violating traffic laws.

The state Taskforce on Environmental and Special Offences enforcement Unit had impounded the bullion van belonging to Bankers Warehouse in August.

The van with registration number BV 171 BDG was impounded on Creek Road, Apapa for driving against traffic while conveying money to a new generation bank in the area.

Also, a truck was impounded on the Third Mainland Bridge on Monday, also for driving against traffic.

A source said, “The vehicles were actually confiscated by the government. And since the governor did not want unused vehicles in the secretariat premises, they have to be disposed of.”

The task force Chairman, Mr. Bayo Sulaiman, confirmed the auction plan.

He said the government would, however, wait for two months before auctioning the vehicles.

He said, “Immediately we caught the drivers violating the traffic law, they automatically forfeited their vehicles to the government.

“The Section Seven of the road traffic law and Section Seven of the environmental law prescribed automatic seizure of any vehicle impounded in violation of the laws.

 “There is no room for negotiation in this matter. The law is very clear. If we don’t do this, people will not respect these laws. We must do what the laws say.”

Fashola to tackle Omo Onile next

The gale of laws to sanitize Lagos will next sweep all ‘omo-oniles’ off the face of the earth (sorry, I got carried away there, insert Lagos). This will be one very popular law when it comes into effect.

In case you don’t know, ‘omo-oniles’ (children of the land owners) are members of the families who sell land in Yoruba land.  There is a long held tradition that requires anyone who buys land from a family to pay the ‘omo-oniles’ a token when laying foundation or otherwise commencing construction work on the land.

In essence, after you have successfully bought the land off the family owning it, the children of the family will emerge when you are laying foundation and demand to be paid a token before you commence any work. In the past what was demanded was so small that people complied without any qualms.

Over the years, this tradition has been bastardised by the ‘omo-oniles’, who have largely become lazy, fraudulent and violent. They have progressively increased the token to a sizeable percentage of the land purchase price. In addition, they show up not only when you are laying foundation, but also when decking, when roofing or carrying out any renovation on your property.

The amount collected from hapless land buyers for laying foundation range from N50,000 to N500,000 depending on the location and size of the land.

Apart from the money they collect from the new land owner, they also collect money from the artisans such as bricklayers and carpenters employed to work on the property. The working implements of those who refuse to yield are seized and some workers are beaten.

Many people have lost their lives in the hands of ‘omo-oniles’ in Lagos and environs. Many others have been forcefully dispossessed of their pieces of land or forcefully relocated to less desirable areas after the ‘omo-oniles’ have collected higher money from another land buyer.

If Fashola can effectively regulate this aspect of Lagos life, as hinted by the Chairman, Lagos State Taskforce on and Special Offences enforcement Unit, Mr. Bayo Sulaiman, recently, many people will applaud him.
It may also be a major step in boosting accommodation in Lagos.

Related:  Govt to auction bullion van seized in traffic


Pictures of customers waiting for iPhone 5

These 'oyinbo' people nor dey craze so?

Apple fanatics jostling to be among the first to own iPhone 5

Apple lovers queing in London (By the way, this picture proves that Asians are overruning London (Lol)
Munich, Germany
Paris, France
People sleeping overnight to be the first at the door
Paris, France
iPhone 5, at the unveiling

How not to fight Boko Haram

A Boko Haram accountant was arrested and immediately the media is reporting where the lead emanated from.

We have been told that it was a transfer in a bank that aroused suspicion etc, etc. The Boko Haram guys who probably might not have known how their accountant was traced and arrested in a public transport now know exactly how it happened and how they can be more cautious to evade arrest.

The JTF and other security operatives need to create firewall around their sensitive information. There are too many operatives who talk too much, perhaps in a bid to convince the public that they are working.

The other day a commissioner of police was seen in a press photo story publicly presenting monetary reward to a citizen who gave useful information to the police that led to the arrest of some Boko Haram suspects! Where in the whole wide world is that ever done? 

Definitely the cover of that fellow is blown for life, and he can no longer be useful to the operatives as every other criminal will give him a wide berth. And more importantly, his family is at the peril of vindictive criminals.

The media have a role as well, and perhaps a crash course should be organised by the terrorism specialists. We can’t seriously fight terrorism where sensitive information leaks like water in a basket.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Samsung GS3 ad attracts nearly 3m hits on You Tube in 24 hours

Since it was uploaded yesterday, this Samsung GS III commercial has drawn 2.8million watchers on You Tube. It's a cheeky ad that pokes fun at Apple 5 arriving tomorrow.

65 hoodlums sent to prison in Lagos

The drive to sanitize Lagos is on.  The Special Court in Alausa, Ikeja, Lagos Southwest Nigeria, has sent 65 hoodlums to Badagry prison for constituting public nuisance.

The Lagos State Task Force on Environmental and Special Offences (Enforcement) Unit also arrested 24 other hoodlums in different parts of the Lagos metropolis on Wednesday in a bid to sanitise the state.

The 65 hoodlums sent to Badagry Prison were arrested last Friday in Oshodi, Iyana Ipaja and Abule Egba areas of the state. They could not meet their bail conditions.

In Oshodi, the task force struck around 4:30 am on Friday and arrested 34 hoodlums, including four under-aged children while it arrested another 35 in Iyana Ipaja area of the state the same day.

Task force Chairman, Bayo Sulaiman stated that the 24 area boys arrested in Ogudu, Mile 2, Orile, and other places on Tuesday would soon be arraigned in court.

Related story: Taskforce arrests soldier, driver driving against traffic


Soldier, driver arrested for driving against traffic on 3rd Mainland bridge

The Lagos State Task Force on Environmental and Special Offences (Enforcement) Unit has arrested a Lance Corporal, Umaru Usman and a driver for driving against traffic on Third Mainland Bridge.

The truck with the registration number, YOBE XB 323 FKA, in which the driver and the Lance Corporal were in, was impounded. The truck was carrying bags of rice, cement and boxes of sugar when it was impounded.

According to Task force Chairman, Bayo Sulaiman, the truck had been forfeited to the state while the lance corporal, who acted as a pilot to the truck, has been handed over to the military authorities “because we found out that he had no pass and was piloting the vehicle for monetary gains. The driver will be charged to court for violation the state traffic law.”


Samsung launches low-cost smart dual-SIM phone, Chief Hero

Samsung Chief Hero

Those whose budgets for mobile devices cannot accommodate the high-brow Samsung Galaxy Gs 3 now have a viable alternative in a newly introduced low-cost smart dual-SIM phone with Smartphone-like functionalities.  

The phone, Samsung Chief Hero E 1500 dual-SIM phone, was formally introduced into the Nigerian market yesterday at Samsung Experience Store in Ikeja, Lagos.

The Samsung Chief Hero E 1500 supports GPRS dual band technology and has a 1000mAh battery that provides users with 11 hours of talk time and 550 hours of standby time. The JAVA-enabled device also features a 1.8” TFT screen, MP3, and FM radio, to deliver the ultimate communication experience to users.

Other features of the Samsung Chief Hero E 1500 include access to Internet content, and social network services, such as Facebook, Twitter, and Yahoo. It also has Eskimi link already preloaded on the devise.  Together with the embedded rich multimedia application support, the device also possesses multilingual features that enable users send text messages and multimedia messages in Nigerian languages, (we would rather not mention the languages)

Speaking at the launch of the device on Wednesday, Mr. Abiodun Odejayi, Head of Marketing (HHP), Samsung Electronics West Africa, reiterated the company’s commitment to providing mobile phones that suit the unique needs and resources of individuals in Nigeria and indeed, the whole of Africa.
“Mobile handsets are rapidly becoming the centre of our lives, even as more and more users desire access to content and to enjoy more features and activities such as gaming, video and music anytime, anywhere, via their devices, "said Odejayi. 

"At Samsung, we understand that consumer habits and consumption patterns are changing, thus, we strive to smarten up mobile phones and bring smartphone-like experiences to feature phone users. The Chief Hero E 1500 is not only designed to provide the best mobile internet experience at a very competitive price, but it also brings together rich messaging and multimedia features. As such, the Samsung Chief Hero mobile phone is a smart dual-SIM phone that is targeted at the Nigerian market,” Ojo explained.

On his part, Samsung’s Head of Sales, (Hand-held Products), Olumide Ojo highlighted the Samsung Chief Hero E 1500’s durability and “Always On” dual-SIM capability as two major unique selling points of the device. 
“Whether users want to take advantage of different pricing plans from two network operators, or want to keep their business and personal calls separate, the Samsung Chief Hero E 1500’s “Always On” smart dual-SIM feature provides the convenience of two cell phones with one-mobile solution.
Also, there is a perception that low-cost mobile phones are not reliable. Samsung is proud to say that our Chief Hero is not only cost-effective and reliable, but it is also ultra-durable, and with its great battery life, Nigerian local language support and 24-month warranty, the Samsung Chief Hero is certainly designed with the African consumer in mind,” said Ojo


Women beware! That slimming pill can kill you

Devastated: Michelle Rumsay is only expected to live for another 10 years after she took an over-the-counter cold and flu remedy consistently to help her control her weight
It is always better to opt for natural means of losing weight: regular exercise or working out and watching what is eaten. I’m sceptical of any drug that purportedly helps people to slim down. They always come with a price not stated on the box.

A woman in the UK has just been told she has only 10 years to live after a consistent use of slimming pills for four years negatively affected her heart.

Like most women, Michelle Rumsey thought that dropping a dress size would give her confidence a much-needed boost. At 5ft 5in tall and weighing 9st 6lb, she was hardly overweight, but hated the extra fat she had put on around her middle.

In search of a quick-fix one evening, she came across an internet forum on slimming pills where dieters talked about using a drug called Ephedrine to speed up their metabolism and help them lose weight.

Michelle, now 46, placed an order for the drug online — a decision that was to have tragic consequences. She developed a four-year dependence on the pills, causing a heart condition that has left her with a life expectancy of just ten years.

‘I’m angry and depressed that I have effectively been handed a death sentence,’ she says. ‘It never occurred to me that these pills could be so dangerous.’

Ephedrine is legal in the UK and available without prescription. Marketed as a cold and flu remedy, internet chatrooms are awash with women waxing lyrical about its weight-loss properties.

It is one of several ‘diet’ drugs being used by increasing numbers of women desperate for a short-cut to weight loss.
Until she reached her late 30s, Michelle, from Saxmundham, Suffolk, was the epitome of good health. At 8st 7lb and a size ten, she ran a horse yard and enjoyed running, cycling and climbing.

In November 2005, she met Michael Harrowven, a steel constructor, then 28. Michelle relaxed into her new romance, letting her healthy eating habits slip and swapping salads for Michael’s favourite fast foods. By the following May, she’d put on 13lb.

Michelle says: ‘Michael said I looked beautiful but I was 39 and 11 years his senior. I wanted to look like his girlfriend, not his mother.’

She researched slimming pills online, and on one forum, users recommended Ephedrine.

A naturally occurring substance with amphetamine-like properties, it is not prescribed as a slimming aid, but is available as an over-the-counter cold remedy.

It can increase blood pressure, however, leading to heart disease, anxiety and insomnia. Its dangers have not gone unnoticed by the medical profession.

‘There is a move to make it prescription-only,’ says Dr Campbell.

Michelle didn’t realise Ephedrine was available in Britain, so she ordered 50 tablets for £12 from a manufacturer in Canada, which was marketing it as a nasal decongestant.

She bought two packets of 50 tablets every month and admits she should have known better.
‘I actually thought it was illegal, but didn’t see how it could be dangerous. Michael was against the idea, but I was determined to lose weight,’ she says.

She started taking two tablets a day, cut down on what she was eating, and was delighted when she lost 7lb in three weeks. By August 2006, she weighed 8st and was a size eight.

‘I skipped breakfast and dinner and had a baked potato with a small amount of cheese mid-afternoon,’ she says.

‘Michael said I was too skinny, but I liked the way I looked. The pills kept my appetite down and I was convinced that if I stopped taking them, the weight would pile back on.’

In February 2008 she and Michael broke up, but her addiction to the pills continued. Two years later, she started suffering side-effects after she’d taken her pill one morning.

‘I felt light-headed. The room was blurred and my heart was racing. After ten minutes, my heart rate went back to normal, but I was terrified. I was sure the pills were to blame and threw them in the bin.’
Despite her decision to stop taking the tablets, Michelle didn’t put on any weight. ‘I’d been spending £12 a month for nothing,’ she says.

In September 2010, Michelle met Mark Malster, 39, a mechanic, and they started seeing each other. They were out on a bike ride together that month when she suddenly developed chest pains.

She says: ‘Over the next few weeks, I became more out of breath, and within a month I found it hard to walk up half a flight of stairs without gasping for air.’

In January 2011, Michelle’s GP referred her to the specialist heart and lung hospital, Papworth, in Cambridgeshire. She had scans and tests, and in September 2011 was diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension — high blood pressure in the arteries of the lungs which causes heart failure.

Ephedrine had constricted the vessels in Michelle’s lungs, and the doctor said her heart was under so much pressure it wouldn’t be able to cope for much longer.

It is illegal for shopkeepers and chemists to sell it in large quantities because it is dangerous if taken for long periods of time or in large volumes. But the drug is sold over-the-counter because it is intended for short-term use as a nasal decongestant.

Michelle was prescribed a cocktail of seven drugs to keep her blood vessels open, her blood thin and the muscles in her lungs working.

When they fail — and doctors can’t predict when — she will have to have a tube inserted into her heart to infuse drugs to keep it pumping. Her life expectancy is now just ten years.

‘I couldn’t stop crying when the doctor told me what was wrong,’ she says.‘I thought about all the experiences I’ll miss and the horrible death I’ll have, bed-ridden and breathless. Mark is supportive, but we are both devastated.’

Michelle no longer works at the horse yard, and even a simple walk leaves her exhausted.

‘I’m so angry with myself,’ she says. ‘Nobody forced me to take them.’

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