Month: January 2014
Protesters in Ukraine have rejected the terms of a new amnesty law aimed at ending the country’s recent unrest.
Parliament backed the amnesty for arrested protesters on condition they vacate occupied government buildings.
Opposition leaders said this was “unacceptable” and protesters remain camped out in central Kiev and still occupy key municipal buildings.
The protests began in November after President Viktor Yanukovych reversed a decision to sign an EU trade deal.
The next month he signed a $15bn (£9.2bn; 10.9bn euros) bailout deal with Russia.
The new law requires protesters to leave the local administration buildings they have occupied across Ukraine within 15 days.
The pro-EU protesters have taken over a number of properties in Kiev and other cities which they are using as operation centres and dormitories, and to seek refuge from the freezing conditions outside.
The text of the amnesty document says they must remove the barricades they have built in central Kiev and unblock other streets and squares across the country – except in places where protests are peaceful.
The amnesty is the latest of a number of concessions from President Yanukovych to try to end the unrest, including the resignation of Prime Minister Mykola Azarov and his cabinet and the repeal of new anti-protest laws.
However, the opposition abstained from voting on the amnesty law on Wednesday.
Boxer-turned-protest leader Vitali Klitschko told crowds gathered in Independence Square in Kiev that the fight would go on.
An MP for the Fatherland party, Andriy Parubiy, told 5 Kanal TV: “The demands that they have set are unacceptable and nobody is going to fulfil them. We said that the law should come into force without any prior conditions. Our position remains unchanged.”
Another MP, Inna Bohoslovska, told 5 Kanal that the amnesty law was a stalling device.
“They will use these 15 days during which buildings should be vacated in order to get rid of everyone they believe will not submit at the first snap of their fingers and gather forces for a real attack on their own people.
“So we have to prepare to defend ourselves.”
Protesters on the streets also showed defiance.
One of them, Olga Lucuk-Visotska, told the BBC that the demonstrators considered those arrested as hostages and so the amnesty law was not seen as a compromise.
On Wednesday, Ukraine’s first post-independence president, Leonid Kravchuk, warned the country was on the “brink of civil war”.
And visiting EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said she was “shocked” by the deadly violence.
Moscow, meanwhile, has indicated that it may hold back some of a promised bailout package until a new government is formed.
The loans were widely seen as a reward for Kiev’s rejection of the EU deal.
Former President Olusegun Obasanjo and Governor Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun State will on Thursday (today) unveil a multibillion naira ultra-modern ethanol manufacturing plant in Igbesa, Ogun State, a statement said on Wednesday.
The plant built by Allied Atlantic Distilleries Ltd, a subsidiary of the Lexcel Group, is the first of its kind in Africa to produce ethanol, a major component in the production of wines and spirits using cassava.
The Managing Director, AADL, Mr. Anurag Dhiman, said the factory had installed capacity for 10 million litres per annum of ethanol requiring approximately 240 tons of cassava per day at an average of 10 tons per hour.
He said, “After weighing, it will be transported to the rasper machine where it will go through milling, liquefaction and fermentation. In each of these segments, state-of-the-art machines and equipment have been installed to ensure the plant operates at optimal capacity.”
It is expected that the establishment of the plant will herald a new dawn in the production of wines and spirits in the competitive Nigerian market.
He said, “This is certainly the beginning of a new dawn in the wines and spirits industry in Nigeria and we are setting the pace in line with our company’s objective to remain the numero uno (number one) in the nation’s distillery sector.”
He added that the new plant has further reinforced the company’s objective to remain the market leader notwithstanding competition in the distillery sector as no other distillery has a distillation plant in Nigeria, not to talk of extracting ethanol from cassava
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BBC TV presenter Komla Dumor has died suddenly at his home in London at the age of 41, it has been announced.
Ghana-born Dumor was a presenter for BBC World News and its Focus on Africa programme.
One of Ghana’s best-known journalists, he joined the BBC as a radio broadcaster in 2007 after a decade of journalism in Ghana.
Ghanaian President John Dramani Mahama said on Twitter that his country had lost one of its finest ambassadors.
BBC Global News Director Peter Horrocks called Dumor a leading light of African journalism who would be deeply missed.
it really is,” Mr Horrocks said in a statement.
“Africa’s energy and enthusiasm seemed to shine through every story Komla told”.
“Komla’s many friends and colleagues across Africa and the world will be as devastated as we are by this shocking news.”
The BBC understands he had suffered a heart attack.
Komla Dumor featured in New African magazine’s November 2013 list of 100 most influential Africans. It said he had “established himself as one of the emerging African faces of global broadcasting”, who had “considerable influence on how the continent is covered”.
James Harding, BBC Director of News and Current Affairs, spoke of Komla Dumor’s “singular role in transforming the coverage of Africa”. “He brought a depth of understanding, a great deal of courage, a joyous charm and boundless charisma to his work,” Mr Harding said.
Komla Dumor had a wide-ranging career as an interviewer and presenter
Komla Dumor was born on 3 October 1972 in Accra, Ghana.
He graduated with a BA in Sociology and Psychology from the University of Ghana, and a Masters in Public Administration from Harvard University.
He won the Ghana Journalist of the Year award in 2003 and joined the BBC four years later.
From then until 2009 he hosted Network Africa for BBC World Service radio, before joining The World Today programme
In 2009 Komla Dumor became the first host of Africa Business Report on BBC World News. He was a regular presenter of Focus on Africa and had fronted the programme the day before he died.
He travelled across Africa, meeting the continent’s top entrepreneurs and reporting on the latest business trends around the continent.
I first met him in Ghana in 2007… I noticed even then how young Ghanaian journalists looked up to him ” BBC Chief International Correspondent, Lyse Doucet
He interviewed a number of high-profile guests including Bill Gates and Kofi Annan.
Last month, he covered the funeral of former South African President, Nelson Mandela, whom he described as “one of the greatest figures of modern history”.
He anchored live coverage of major events including the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, the funeral of Kim Jong-il, the release of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, the Norway shootings and the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton.
In his review of 2013, published last month, Dumor said the passing of Mandela was “one of the moments that will stay with me”.
“Covering the funeral for me will always be a special moment. I will look back on it with a sense of sadness. But also with gratitude. I feel lucky to have been a witness to that part of the Mandela story.”
Meeting Komla Dumor for the first time in Ghana in 2007, BBC chief international correspondent Lyse Doucet said she had noticed how young Ghanaian journalists looked up to him.
He never flinched from asking tough questions, but also loved to share a laugh, she says.
She adds that Komla Dumor had many loves including football, his faith, his family: “He always said ‘I just love talking with people’.”
Here is a selection of your comments.
Justice Lee Adoboe, Accra, Ghana: Komla was the trail blazer of modern radio journalism in Ghana. He was the icon, most of us local journalists looked up to, for inspiration. May he rest in peace.
Samuel Nyambu, Nairobi, Kenya: As an ardent listener of the BBC, Dumor’s voice had become a signature for all news in Africa and my encounter with him on TV matched the energy and enthusiasm that came across while on radio. I will definitely miss him and I condole with his family, his BBC fans and the BBC family. May his soul rest in peace.
Jimbo, Pattaya, Thailand: I loved this enthusiastic and dedicated man. My heart goes out to his family and friends in this tragic time. Hard to believe I will not see his smiling face and down to earth assessments of his home roots, Africa, again. A tragedy and one which I trust BBC will honour and respect to the best of their ability. Amongst all of the BBC’s many great and famous human assets, Komla Dumor’s name should today be irrevocably established.
Emmanuel, New York City, USA: I first met Komla while we were both students at the University of Ghana around 2000-2001. He was working at JOY FM while still studying at the time. He was affable, friendly and had a good sense of humour. I have also been in the studio with him once as the second highest winner of a radio contest, where he quizzed us for the grand prize a couple of years later. We have spoken on the phone a couple of times and chatted on Facebook once or twice and when he was about to start BBC Focus on Africa TV he asked me to kindly publicise the programme banner with his photo on my profile, and I did. The last time we met, we were both in Addis Ababa in October 2012 at the Second Africa Trade Forum organised by the UNECA. He was there to moderate some of the sessions and I was covering for Ghana Business News. He made a mark on radio journalism in Ghana, and was a great source of inspiration for many Ghanaian youth, especially, those who wanted to get into radio. May his soul rest in peace.
Vanessa Bobai, Ottawa, Canada: Komla was a great man and very passionate about his job. He brought out the best in everything he did. Komla rest in peace you will be greatly missed.
Rickie Davies, Ghana: It is a sad day today, we have lost a talented journalist. I am still in shock. A true representation of Africa, strong, a true gentleman, a go getter. You will be missed Komla.
Beverley Zimba, New York, USA: Komla was like a brother that I never met. That smiling happy face will surely be missed. What a loss! Komla my brother rest in peace.
Charles Okot, Kampala, Uganda: I am really shocked and saddened by the tragic news of the death of Komla Dumor. I watched Komla on Friday evening full of life and humour. Komla always makes me smile in front of the TV. This is a terrible loss for Africa, BBC and the entire world. May his soul rest in eternity!
Jack Wolstenholme, Kranevo, Bulgaria: I am in deep shock, hearing of the early death of Komla Dumor. He added a different aspect on the world’s developing stories, somehow making many, pleasant and more understandable, even with sensitive subjects. He will be really be missed by the viewing audience.
Anderson Chinorumba, Gaborone, Botswana: I remember his coverage at the World Cup 2010. The time he took off his shirt to reveal the Ghananian football team jersey he was putting on. He was a light indeed to many particularly African journalists. He will be greatly missed for his tireless efforts in journalism.
Maximus, London: As a fellow Ghanaian I’m saddened to hear the death of Komla Dumor. As a child growing up in Ghana I always listened to his shows on the local radio and when I moved to London I was honoured to have met him in person whilst at work at the Apple Store in White City.
Denise Sangster, San Francisco, California: Mr. Dumor brought to the world the hope, vision, plight, and challenges of Africa in an understandable manner with his unique perspectives, interviews and coverage of stories that no other network covered. I am sorry to learn of his passing. My thanks to his family and BBC for sharing him with the world. My sympathies to his family, friends, colleagues and fans.
The Central Bank of Nigeria has approved the change of name of Fokas Savings and Loans Limited, an Abeokuta-based Primary Mortgage Institution (PMI) acquired by the Nigeria Police, to the Nigeria Police Mortgage Bank Limited. This is coming on the heels of the successful fulfillment of the CBN’s guidelines for the acquisition of the Primary Mortgage Institution by the Nigeria Police Force.
The apex bank has also approved the appointment of the Board of Directors of the bank with the Commissioner of Police in charge of the Police Cooperative Society Limited as the Chairman, and Mr. Bola Adeboye as the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the new mortgage bank. The bank, presently has an authorized share capital of N5.5billion out of which N3.95billion has already been paid up by the Nigeria Police.
It should be noted that this recent great achievement is part of the efforts of the present Inspector-General of Police, IGP MD Abubakar, CFR, NPM, mni, psc, to cater for the welfare of all officers and men of the Force by ensuring that every serving or retired Police officer owns their houses through the new Nigeria Police Mortgage Bank Limited.
Currently, machineries have been set in motion to ensure fast and early issuance of share certificates to all shareholders of the bank, who are mostly Police personnel, while arrangements have been concluded for the commissioning of the new corporate Headquarters of the Bank located at Plot 11 Port Said Street, Wuse Zone 4 Abuja.
Meanwhile, the Inspector-General of Police, IGP MD Abubakar has described the feat as a turning point in the history of the Nigeria Police, and called on all officers and men of the Force to take advantage of the opportunities provided by the new mortgage bank.