We are inspired by Grammy ideals – AFRIMA brand director

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Director of Brand Communication for the African Music Award, Ms Matlou Tsotetsi, has said that the height the Grammy Awards has reached is an inspiration to drivers of AFRIMA, whose maiden edition will hold in Nigeria in October.

She says although AFRIMA is not in vain competition with any brand, it cherishes ideals that can achieve long-term values for African music.

Besides, the marketing and advertising executive – a South African – notes that the award hopes to achieve for the continent what the Grammy has achieved for world music.

“We aspire for Grammy,” She says. “It has been around for decades.  I was actually surprised when one of our potential sponsors, upon listening to our goals and methods, said, ‘This is the Grammy of Africa!’

“So, I can say the Grammy is an inspiration. It is a fantastic award that has been there for generations. It is now a brand with millions of equity. And good enough, AFRIMA is an African brand with growing equity, and the way various people and organisations are buying into our dream is phenomenal.

“We aim very high, and we are painstakingly working on our aspirations. We are actually thinking about a project that will beat the Grammy. Indeed, after October, people will be talking about two things: the World Cup and AFRIMA.”

Only recently, AFRIMA came up with the names of a number of African leaders that will potentially form the board of its patrons.

Members of the public have been asked to vote those they want to be the patrons among the nominees.

These are Desmond Tutu (South Africa), Olusegun Obasanjo (Nigeria), Winnie Madikizela–Mandela (South Africa), Kofi Annan (Ghana), Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o (Kenya), Mohammed ‘Mo’ Ibrahim (Sudan) and Emeka Anyaoku (Nigeria).

Others are Patrice Motsepe (South Africa), Alpha Oumar Konare (Mali), Dame Patience Jonathan (Nigeria), Martha Namundjebo-Tilahun (Namibia), Mohammed Ibn-Chambas (Ghana), Joaquim Alberto Chissano (Mozambique), Kenneth Kaunda (Zambia) and Bola Tinubu (Nigeria).

Tsotetsi stresses that the idea is part of the proof that AFRIMA is not just about annual awards. Rather, it encompasses programmes that would lead to the overall development of African music.

As a result, she adds, it encourages support and partnership from all strata of the society.

She notes that it is the overall ambition that inspired a concert that will hold in June in the US, a reality, trans-Africa show that will bring musicians and allied workers from different parts of the continent together, while workshops will also be held for capacity building. AFRIMA is also relating with the African Union on the ideals.

“We will be raising awareness on education too,” she adds. “The concerts are going to address this. An enlightened mind is an enlightened continent. Education is the foundation of civilisation and modernisation.

“So, Africa must connect its music, film and all to developing this. At AFRIMA, we are not looking at things in isolation.

“These are what we have been communicating to people. We have held meetings with key brands and they are excited about this. Not a single one has said that they can’t support us because they see the uniqueness of our dreams.

“We are, of course, creating publicity and awareness about Africa. We want to establish Africa as a destination.”

Man kills 2-year-old during fight with mother

A middle-aged man, Kehinde Ayelehin, has been arrested by the Ondo State Police Command for allegedly killing a two-year old baby in a fit of rage.

It was gathered that the suspect snatched the child from the back of his mother, Faith Oluwabunmi, during a fight between them.

The incident was said to have occurred on Tuesday at Alumaliu Igbose Camp in Supare Akoko in Akoko South West Local Government Area.

Eyewitnesses say the man went for the baby when he obviously could not overpower the woman and angrily dashed the baby on the floor.

The child was said to have died on the way to the hospital as sympathisers made efforts to save his life.

It was learnt that the fight ensued after Ayelehin accused Oluwabunmi of giving the police information about him, which led to his arrest on Sunday.

It was gathered that the accusation led to an argument, which culminated in an exchange of punches before the little child was attacked.

The suspect was said to have made attempts to escape after the act, but was caught by neighbours who handed him over to the police.

The state Police Public Relations Officer, Mr Wole Ogodo, said the suspect was being detained by the police.

He said, “The suspect’s action is cruel and wicked. He will be charged to court for murder. No person should take the life of another person no matter the circumstance.”

Boko Haram stops 15,000 pupils from schooling …destroys 200 schools

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Activities of the Boko Haram sect has resulted in no fewer than 15,000 pupils dropping out of school in Borno State in the last one year, a non-governmental organisation, ActionAid Nigeria, has said.

The group, which made this known on Thursday, also claimed that the actions of the sect had led to the destruction of no fewer than 800 classrooms and 200 schools in Borno and Yobe states respectively.

The disclosure came as the NGO also described the killing of 59 pupils of the Federal Government College, Buni Yadi, Yobe State as “a heinous crime and a violation of the rights of children to life and education”.

According to the Country Director of AA, Dr. Hussaini Abdu, in a statement, on Thursday, since February 2013, over 15,000 children have stopped attending classes in Borno State.

Abdu said, “In the past eight months, over 100 students have been killed in different attacks on schools in the North-East.

The perpetrators should, of course, be brought to justice, but the government, at all levels, must also be held accountable; it is their duty to protect the lives and education of children. A duty they are utterly failing to uphold.”

Declaring that the North-East was already behind the rest of the country in education enrolment, retention and completion, the AA noted that security challenges in the zone would undermine education of their children.

He added, “More than 200 schools have been destroyed in Yobe and over 800 classrooms destroyed in Borno State. Since February 2013, over 15,000 children have stopped attending classes in Borno State alone. Every child has the right to learn in an environment free of danger.

“ActionAid Nigeria demands that the Federal Government upholds its obligations as a signatory to the Convention on the Rights of the Child and immediately implement special protection mechanism to safeguard the lives and education of our children, particularly those in the vulnerable North-East.

“As Nigerian citizens, we must consciously hold the government at all levels to account and demand that the government go beyond rhetoric and take concrete steps to end this senseless violence.”

Meanwhile, the National Human Rights Commission has called for the transfer of pupils in the eight unity schools in Adamawa, Borno and Yobe to other schools outside the region, The News Agency of Nigeria has reported.

The Chairman, Governing Council of the commission, Prof. Chidi Odinkalu, made this known in a statement on Thursday following the killing of some pupils of the Federal Government College, Buni-Yadi, Yobe.  Gunmen, suspected to be members of the Boko Haram sect, invaded the school on Monday, killing no fewer than 50 pupils.

“In the interim, proposals for the transfer of children in the eight Unity Schools in Adamawa, Borno and Yobe to other schools outside the region should be taken seriously,” the statement said.

The commission also called on the National Assembly to urgently reconvene plenary in memory of the pupils and others that died in the ongoing crisis in the North-East.

Odinkalu, who described the incident as a tragedy, added that the perpetrators clearly did not wish the country well.

“Words are insufficient to comfort parents of the affected pupils as the killing of children is any parent’s worst nightmare.’’

He said it was painful that the killings took place while the pupils were exercising their right to educational pursuit.

“The pursuit of education cannot be a cause for the mass murder of innocent children.

“These children were killed while exercising their right, and education is a basic right guaranteed in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights, and the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria,’’ Odinkalu said.

He said it was disheartening to note that children, who were symbols of the country’s unity, had become sacrificial offerings in some people’s project toward disunity.

The President, Nigeria Bar Association, Mr. Okey Wali, also called on President Goodluck Jonathan, security chiefs and governors of the affected states to intensify efforts in addressing security challenges in the country.

“We call on the President Goodluck Jonathan, the service and security chiefs and governors of the affected states to intensify efforts to address the increasing security challenges that we are currently facing in Nigeria.

“This carnage must stop,’’ the statement read.

P Square launches Alingo Animated series

Over the past few months, the multiple award-winning duo of Peter and Paul Okoye, famously known as P-Square, have relentlessly been working on a ground-breaking and unprecedented family-oriented animated series entitled “The Alingos.” The project is an innovation from the stables of P-Classic Entertainment.

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P-Classic entertainment is an entertainment company founded and controlled by the P-Square brothers and headed by Peter Okoye. The outfit is aimed at producing television contents, animation, discovering and grooming young musicians, and providing an array of entertainment to Nigeria, Africa and the world at large.
In their usual style of raising the bar in the entertainment scene, the duo is taking it a notch higher.  The Alingos was inspired by the need to create a unique content for children and fill the vacuum in the media sphere for this demographic. Adults would also find the animated series appealing. The Alingos will be the first high quality animated series from Nigeria to fit local television while intelligently crafted to serve international audience as well. It will initially run as a weekly web series and then on TV.
This family animated series is just one of many surprises the duo have stocked in their goody bags to revolutionise the entertainment industry. It’s no news that P-Square has become synonymous with top class standards, reflective in the quality of their song-writing, dance and music videos.
To herald the launch of The Alingos, the brothers are releasing a teaser – an animated music video for their hit single ‘Unlimited’. It is the first high quality animated video in Nigeria and by extension the whole of Africa. This animated music video is 100% Nigerian; no foreign inputs and is created in High Definition with superior picture and sound quality, as expected from the duo. The production quality compares to anywhere in the world.
The public and fans of P-Square will get to watch the ‘Unlimited’ animated video as well as The Alingos (when it hits the screens) by first downloading the P-Square app (P2) due for release next week.

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The P-Square app is another novel and exceptional concept from the creative minds of the twin brothers, to connect and interact with their numerous fans and followers all around the world. Definitely, this app will transform the fan community and pioneer a new trend in the entertainment scene.
The app will contain an archive of exclusive pictures of P-Square, gallery of latest musical videos including all the videos from past albums, compilation of all P-Square’s songs, behind-the-scene videos, awards and concerts videos, concert tickets, events and tour dates as well as their flagship project The Alingos series. The app also integrates popular social media networks – facebook, twitter, youtube etc. into one space and serves as a platform to bring P-Square closer to their fans.
Fans and the public will have endless access to all these materials and more awesome content from P-Square in the future by downloading the P-Square app for free on andriod, iOS and windows devices.

CONFAB: Igbos canvass secession, self determination rights

The Igbo leaders of thought led by eminent Constitutional lawyer, Professor Ben Nwabueze, yesterday, rolled out its position paper that would guide the Igbo delegates to the proposed National conference with a strong proposal for the inclusion of the right of secession or self determination in the new constitution.
At a public presentation of two booklets, entitled “The Position of the Igbo Nation at the National Conference for a Renegotiated Constitution” as compiled by the Igbo Leaders of Thought, a group of eminent Igbo think-thank led by him, Nwabueze apologized to Ndigbo on behalf of former Vice President of Nigeria; Dr. Alex Ekwueme for rejecting their nominations to lead Igbo delegates to the conference.
He said that he agreed with Dr. Ekwueme that both of them would not be delegates to the conference due to age and to also give the younger ones a chance to participate.
The renowned lawyer told newsmen in Enugu that the Igbo Leaders of Thought advocated for the right of the zones to form the basis for the federating units as well as the rights of self determination, including the right to secede.
According to Nwabueze, while he is 83, Ekwueme is about 81 or 82 years of age, and that both of them had taken part in previous constitutional conferences in the past and made their contributions.
“But we also agreed that we owe a duty to Ndigbo, that we are not going to abandon our people. That we are not going to be delegates sitting in the hall exposed, taking all abuses, bombardments, but we will stand behind; our role should be that of guidance.,” he said.
He stated that they will reach out to Igbo governors and other prominent Igbo sons to provide a meeting place in Abuja, where Igbo elders like him and Ekwueme would be meeting with Igbo delegates to the conference twice a week, to guide and educate them on the Igbo position as contained in the document.
On the summary of some of the contents of the Igbo position paper, Prof. Nwabueze said that Ndigbo is proposing the inclusion of the right of secession or self determination in the new constitution; adoption of the regions as the basis of the federating units and establishment of regional or state police to enable the governors or regional leaders enforce their authority and law.
He said that the position paper reduced the items in the exclusive legislative list as currently contained in the 1999 Constitution, from 68 to 36, adding that the current constitution is abhorrent to true federalism where a commissioner of police has overriding power over a state governor and chief security officer of the state.
He said that the right of self determination is contained in the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights, which he said was domesticated into the Nigerian Constitution by National Assembly enactment.
“In this document we are proposing the rights of the zones as the federating unit to self determination, including the right to secession… the Yorubas have already accepted it, they are coming to the conference with this. Its part of the law of the country already because the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights, says that all people shall have an unquestionable and inalienable rights to self determination.
“It is part of the law of this country already because I know that we have already enacted a law, the National Assembly enacted a law incorporating the African Charter as part of domestic law of Nigeria. This is the only international treaty that has been incorporated as part of our domestic law.
“So it’s nothing new; all that we are now saying is that it should be elevated from being part of the ordinary law of the country into a right enshrined in the constitution, that’s all that we are saying now,” he buttressed.
The secretary of Igbo Leaders of Thought, Prof. Elochukwu Amaucheazi stated that initially Ndigbo were worried by the refusal of Nwabueze and Ekwueme to be at the conference, but expressed happiness that the two elders have now agreed to remain behind the scene to give support.
He said that that his group want Nigeria to remai

Power Sector: Kano Distribution Coy To Partner With Turkish Firm

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Residents of Kano State and its environs have got a reason to smile, as the state’s electricity distribution company is set to partner with its Turkish counterpart towards improving the quality of power supply in the state.

At a meeting in Kano, the Managing Director of Sahelian Power Limited, Mr. Jamil Gwamna said that the Turkish technical team would help train Kano electricity technical staff in order to increase power generation in the state.

According to the Turkish Distribution Company, a number of technical projects have been slated for execution to improve the quality and quantity of electricity in the north western states of Kano, Katsina and Jigawa.

Super Eagles World Cup Jersey Unveiled

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Ahead of the 2015 FIFA World Cup, the Nigeria Football Federation has unveiled two sets of jerseys for the Super Eagles in Abuja.

Speaking at the event held at the Federation’s secretariat in Abuja, Director-General of the National Sports Commission, Gbenga Elegbeleye, said that the newly unveiled jersey was a deliberate attempt to rebrand the Super Eagles.

The Chairman, House Committee on Sports, Mr Ali Gaiya, who also spoke at the occasion applauded the efforts of the Nigeria Football Federation.

The newly unveiled jerseys were later presented to the representatives of President Goodluck Jonathan and the Senate President, David Mark.

The Super Eagles are to wear the newly launched jersey at the forthcoming international friendly against Mexico in Atlanta, Georgia, USA.

The new design was produced by Adidas, a leading kit manufacturer in the world and the official kit supplier of the Nigerian national teams.