Anthony Joshua’s Challenger Jarrell Miller Fails Drug Test, Fight Cancelled

New York State Athletic Commission (NYSAC) has denied Jarrell Miller a licence to box over a failed drug test on Wednesday, scuppering his planned June 1 bout with world heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua.In a statement quoted by US media outlets, the NYSAC said Miller was barred from fighting in the state following the news of his positive doping case.“The New York State Athletic Commission has denied Jarrell Miller’s professional boxing license application for a violation relating to the use of a prohibited substance. We have no further comment at this time,” the commission said.Miller, who is undefeated in his 24 professional fights, was due to take on the Briton at Madison Square Garden for the WBA, IBF and WBO titles on June 1.However on Tuesday it emerged Miller had tested positive for a banned substance following a test conducted by the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association (VADA) on March 20.“We have been informed by VADA that there has been an adverse finding in Jarrell Miller’s sample collected on March 20th, 2019,” Eddie Hearn, Joshua’s promoter, tweeted.Miller previously served a nine-month ban from the California State Athletic Commission after testing positive for methylhexaneamine when kickboxing in 2014.During their promotional tour for the fight, Miller revealed that both fighters had agreed to between 10 and 12 weeks of drug testing in the build-up to the bout.ESPN reported that Joshua still planned to make his US debut as planned in June for what will be his seventh title defence.Promoter Hearn said he was scrambling to find an alternative opponent.“I am on the search for a new opponent,” Hearn said. “Literally anyone can get it. There are some names that would appeal to our partners — DAZN, Sky Sports and Madison Square Garden — more than others and it’s our job to get the ones that appeal most. I’ve spoken to 16 heavyweights in the last 24 hours, 10 of which are not suitable.”

Buhari Signs N30,000 New Minimum Wage Into Law

President Muhammadu Buhari has signed the new 30,000 minimum wage bill into law.
Buhari signed the new bill into law at the State House in Abuja.
The National Assembly passed the National Minimum Wage Bill, approving N30,000 minimum monthly wage for Federal and State workers.
The proposed new National Minimum Wage was presented to the National Council of State on Jan. 22 after which it was sent to the National Assembly.
The Federal Executive Council meeting also deliberated and approved the minimum wage after which it was transmitted to the National Assembly and subsequently passed by both chambers of the legislative arm.
Senator Ita Enang, Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters(Senate) told State House correspondents that the Senate had on March 19, approved N30, 000 as the new national minimum wage with an appeal to the Federal Government to expedite action on assent and implementation.

Buhari Mourns Olowo of Owo

President Muhammadu Buhari has condoled with the family of Oba Folagbade Olateru-Olagbegi, the Olowo of Owo and the people of Owo in Ondo State on the death of the highly revered traditional ruler.
The president, in a condolence message issue by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Adesina, in Abuja on Thursday, also commiserated with the government and people of Ondo on the demise of the traditional ruler.
The President affirmed that the late royal father was recognised as an accomplished legal luminary and tutor who played an exemplary role in the training and development of lawyers in the country during his days as a teacher in Nigeria Law School.
According to the president, the departed monarch will be fondly remembered and honoured for his numerous social, economic, educational, peace building and community development initiatives, which greatly endeared him to people in his domain and other admirers across the country.
The President assured that his thoughts and prayers are with the people of Owo and Ondo as they prepare for the burial rites of the Olowo.
He prayed that the almighty God would receive the soul of Oba Olateru-Olagbegi, who was former Chairman of the Ondo State Council of Obas, and grant his people a worthy successor.

CCT Convicts Onnoghen, Sacks Him As CJN

The Code of Conduct Tribunal, CCT, on Thursday convicted former Chief Justice of Nigeria, CJN, Justice Walter Onnoghen of breach of Code of Conduct for Public Officers.

Tribunal Chairman, Danladi Umar, in his judgment, ordered the immediate removal of Onnoghen from office as the CJN.

The CCT stripped Onnoghen of all offices earlier occupied, such as the Chairman of the National Judicial Council and also the chairmanship of the Federal Judicial Service Commission.

In the judgment, Onnoghen, will forfeit the five accounts which he failed to declare as part of his assets.

The Danladi ordered the forfeiture of the money in the five accounts which Onnoghen allegedly failed to declare to the Federal Government.

Oil Magnate, Igho Sanomi, Raises $1.5 Million For Cancer Research UK

Magnanimity is seldom a strong suit of Nigerian billionaires. But nature does not use a one-size fits all approach which is why billionaire Igho Sanomi is widely perceived as one of the rarest and kindest of money men. Giving, without looking back, is a second skin to him. Whilst he would rather do this without making a song and a dance of it, many a beneficiary, out of sheer happiness and relief, has always rushed to the media. And he has done it again.

According to Forbes International, “Nigerian oil magnate, Igho Sanomi has received a commendation from Cancer Research UKand the Bobby Moore Fundfor his philanthropy towards bowel cancer research in the United Kingdom.At a recent Dining with the StarsCharity Event which held at One Whitehall Place in London, and which was graced by top British corporate executives, distinguished British MP’s and Sports personalities, Stephanie Moore MBE, co-founder of the Bobby Moore Fund, expressed her appreciation to the Nigerian business mogul for his company’s generous donations to the fund over the years. Since partnering as a sponsor of the Bobby Moore fund and Cancer Research UK six years ago, Taleveras DMCC, Sanomi’s Dubai-based oil trading company, has helped the organization raise more than $1.5 million.

The Bobby Moore Fundwas set up in memory of World Cup winning England soccer captain Bobby Moore, who died from bowel cancer in 1993 at the age of 51. The Bobby Moore Fund, which is a charity in the United Kingdom, was founded by Moore’s wife, Stephanie Moore, in partnership with Cancer Research UK (CRUK) in order to raise money for research into bowel cancer and create public awareness of the disease. Since its inception, the fund has raised more than $30 million to tackle bowel cancer.

Bowel cancer is the fourth most common cancer in the UK. It is also the second most common cause of cancer death with more than 44 people dying from the disease every day in the UK according to the Bobby Moore Fund.

Igho Sanomi, one of Nigeria’s most successful young entrepreneurs and emerging philanthropists, is the founder of the Dickens Sanomi Foundation, a Nigerian-based charitable trust that supports the education of Nigerian children from impoverished and vulnerable backgrounds. In 2017, the Dickens Sanomi Foundation spent more than $50,000 in funding the surgery of Ali Ahmadu, a seven year old boy who became paralysed after he was run over by the militant Nigerian Boko Haram forces when they attacked Chibok Town in Nigeria’s Borno State. After the surgery, the paralyzed Ali Ahmadu regained the use of his legs and is now attending school in Nigeria courtesy of the Dickens Sanomi Foundation.

Igho Sanomi, 43, is the founder of Chairman of Taleveras Group, a $1.2 billion (annual revenues) commodities trading company, which trades millions of tons of oil and refined petroleum products annually. Taleveras is also active in the Power sector and has investments in oil producing assets in Nigeria, Cote D’Ivoire and Equatorial Guinea.

David Beckham Could Face Ban Over Phone Use While Driving

David Beckham could face a driving ban after admitting using his phone while driving in London.

The former England captain will appear at Bromley Magistrates’ Court next month to learn what punishment he faces after being caught on his mobile in a £100,000 Bentley in central London last November.

The father-of-four pleaded guilty to the charge by post and was set to be dealt with at Lavender Hill Magistrates’ Court this morning.

MailOnline understands the hearing was moved after Beckham, who is currently in the US, confirmed he would attend his sentencing to accept responsibility for the incident.

His case was previously set to be resolved via a single justice procedure, a hearing behind closed doors where one magistrate can choose to impose points or a fine as punishment.

Court officials said it was now listed as a ‘disqualification hearing’, but they admitted they did not have his driving record yet and were unaware how many points were on his licence.

Driving while using a mobile phone can carry a disqualification penalty as well as a maximum fine of £1,000. The offence usually results in six points on a licence.

A court official said Wednesday: ‘Although it is listed as “to attend for disqualification” we don’t know if he has enough points for disqualification.’

She added the court would only have an up-to-date version of his driving record a few days before the sentencing

A single justice procedure is used to deal with minor offences without the need for a defendant to go to court.

Defendants are given notices of the charges they face and asked for their plea, which can be made by post.

Defendants have 21 days to respond to notices and if they do not, a magistrate can make a decision without their involvement.

Malabu: Court Orders Arrest of Dan Etete, Adoke, Raph Wetzels, 3 Others

An Abuja federal high court has issued a warrant of arrest against Dan Etete, a former Minister of Petroleum, and Mohammed Adoke, a former Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, who were implicated in the Malabu Oil scandal.

The warrant was issued by Justice D.Z. Senchi of Jabi Federal High Court, to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, prosecuting the case.

The EFCC also got a warrant to arrest Raph Wetzels, Casula Roberto, Pujato Stefeno, and Burrato Sebastiano.

All the wanted men were meant to be arraigned before Justice Senchi on Wednesday, April 17, 2019 to face charges related to the Malabu Oil Scandal but failed to show up.

The EFCC had since 2017 pressed charges against Shell Nigeria Exploration Production Co. Ltd, Nigeria Agip Exploration Limited, Eni Spa, Raph Wetzels, Casula Roberto, Pujato Stefeno, Burrato Sebastiano, Duazia Louya Etete (aka Dan Etete), Mohammed Bello Adoke, Aliyu Abubakar and Malabu Oil & Gas Limited. All the defendants declared wanted had repeatedly failed to appear before the court.

In view of their persistent absence in court, the EFCC had through its counsel, Aliyu Yusuf, brought a motion ex parte praying the court for a warrant of their arrest, and an order for leave to execute the warrant outside of the jurisdiction of the court.

At today’s proceeding, Justice Senchi, granted the prayers of the EFCC, and ruled that the Nigeria Police, the INTERPOL and any other law enforcement agency should arrest them anywhere they were found including outside jurisdiction of the Federal Capital Territory, (FCT) High Court.

The matter was adjourned till July 11, 2019 for further hearing.

Kogi Guber: Yahaya Bello Officially Declares 2nd Term Ambition

Gov. Yahaya Bello of Kogi State has officially declared his intention to contest for another term in office on the ticket of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

Bello made the declaration on Wednesday while inaugurating the board of the State House of Assembly Service Commission at Banquet hall Government House, Lokoja.

It would be recalled that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has slated the governorship election in the state for Nov. 2.

The governor said his declaration came after consultations with the leadership of his party both at the national and state levels.

He added that the pressure from the people of the state on him to seek re-election as well as the official release of the State’s Election time table by INEC also necessitated his decision to re-contest.

“I would like to inform the good people of the state, the APC family and supporters from the state, the Local Government Areas (LGAs) down to the wards and polling units, as well as various stakeholders, opinion molders, families and friends of my interest to run for a second term in office as the Executive Governor of the state.

”I have sought the blessing of the Almighty God and our good people; I will have to contest for the second term so that we can build on our modest achievements so far in the state by taking it to the next level,” Bello said.

He urged members of the board to always let the interest of the state be paramount in their mind, and shun any form of tribal or religious sentiment.

He further enjoined them to serve well with all their capacity and ensure they cooperate with the members of the state House of Assembly.

Mr Matthew Kolawole, the Speaker, commended the governor for his magnanimity to have signed the bill and for inaugurating the board.

”All of us in the House of Assembly are happy with the inauguration of the board of the commission, because it marks the beginning of our financial autonomy,” Matthew said.

He expressed happiness over the governor’s declaration for second term bid, saying they had been expecting it.

“Our prime objective right now is to see him returning on Nov. 2, as the 5th executive governor of the state, and it shall come to past,” he said.

Mr Andas Momoh-Jimoh, the Chairman of the Commission, commended the governor for the opportunity given to them to serve.

”I believed in oneness and unity of the state and I am going to carry out this assignment without any bias, fear, favor or any religious or tribal sentiment,” he said.

Over €700m Raised For Notre-Dame

With over €700 million pledged by French businessmen and Apple CEO Tim Cook, President Emmanuel Macron has vowed to rebuild Notre-Dame Cathedral “even more beautifully” within five years.

He made the vow as all of France’s cathedrals prepared to ring their bells on Wednesday to mark 48 hours since the colossal fire began.

The blaze on Monday gutted the great Paris landmark, destroying the roof, causing the steeple to collapse and leaving France reeling with shock.

Macron announced the fast timescale for restoration — a process some experts said would take decades — in an address to the nation where he hailed how the disaster had shown the capacity of France to mobilise and unite.

Pledges worth around 700 million euros ($790 million) have already been made from French billionaires and businesses to restore the Gothic masterpiece.

An unknown number of artefacts and paintings have been lost and the main organ, which had close to 8,000 pipes, has also suffered damage.

But the cathedral’s walls, bell towers and the most famous circular stained-glass windows at France’s most visited tourist attraction remain intact.

The Holy Crown of Thorns, believed to have been worn by Jesus at his crucifixion, was saved by firefighters, as was a sacred tunic worn by 13th-century French king Louis IX.

Rescuers formed a human chain at the site of the disaster to evacuate as many artefacts as possible, which were then stocked temporarily at the Paris town hall.

Macron’s defiant comments indicated he wants the reconstruction of the cathedral to be completed by the time Paris hosts the Olympic Games in 2024.

“We will rebuild the cathedral even more beautifully and I want it to be finished within five years,” Macron said from the Elysee Palace. “And we can do it.”

Macron said that the dramatic fire had brought out the best in a country riven with divisions and since November shaken by sometimes violent protests against his rule.

“Our history never stops and that we will always have trials to overcome,” he added.

The bells of all cathedrals in France will sound at 6:50 pm (1650 GMT) on Wednesday, 48 hours after the fire started.

Images from inside the cathedral showed its immense walls standing proud, with statues still in place and a gleaming golden cross above the altar.

However the floor was covered in charred rubble from the fallen roof and water while parts of the vaulting at the top of the cathedral had collapsed.

Junior interior minister Laurent Nunez told reporters at the scene that work to secure the structure would continue into Thursday, allowing firefighters access to remove remaining artefacts and artworks.

He said the building had been saved within a critical time window of 15-30 minutes by a team of 400 firefighters who worked flat out through the night.

Though “some weaknesses” in the 850-year-old structure had been identified, overall it is “holding up OK”, he added.

Renovation work on the steeple, where workers were replacing its lead covering, is widely suspected to have caused the inferno.

Investigators interviewed witnesses and began speaking with employees of five different construction companies that were working on the monument, said public prosecutor Remy Heitz.

“Nothing indicates this was a deliberate act,” Heitz told reporters, adding that 50 investigators had been assigned to what he expected to be a “long and complex” case.

A public appeal for funds drew immediate support from French billionaires and other private donors as well as from countries including Germany, Italy and Russia which offered expertise.

French billionaire Bernard Arnault and his LVMH luxury conglomerate, rival high-end designer goods group Kering, Total oil company and cosmetics giant L’Oreal each pledged 100 million euros or more.

Support came from outside France as well, with Apple chief Tim Cook announcing the tech giant would give an unspecified amount.

But experts had warned a full restoration will take many years.

“I’d say decades,” said Eric Fischer, head of the foundation in charge of restoring the 1,000-year-old Strasbourg cathedral.

The cathedral is visited by 13 million tourists each year.

Ambode Receives UEFA League Trophy In Lagos

…Lauds Okocha, Puyol’s Contributions To Football Development

Lagos State Governor, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode on Wednesday received the UEFA Champions League Trophy alongside its Ambassador and former captain of Barcelona FC of Spain, Carles Puyol in Lagos House, Alausa, Ikeja.

Puyol, a three-time Champions League winner is in Nigeria on a three-day visit to lead the UEFA Champions League Tour connecting with consumers and football lovers.

Governor Ambode, who was represented by the Chairman of Lagos State Sports Commission, Dr Kweku Tandoh, also received Nigerian football legend, Austin JayJay Okocha, who was part of the delegation.

Speaking while receiving the trophy, Governor Ambode expressed excitement with the fact that the organisers of the tour considered Lagos as one of the states to visit, adding that the development was particularly gratifying more so that the synergy between sports and entertainment as well as tourism had been massively played up in the last four years.      

The Governor also lauded the contribution of Puyol and Okocha to the development of the round leather game in Nigeria and worldwide, saying they deserved to be appreciated and celebrated.

“I must say I am very pleased with the organisers of this Trophy Tour for deeming it fit to take the UEFA Champions League Cup to Lagos. We are particularly excited because our administration has focused on the synergy between sports, tourism, entertainment and the arts, among others and the people can see the positive effects of our efforts in that regard.

“We are pleased to also welcome Barcelona FC and Champions League legend, Carles Puyol to Lagos, as well as our legend, JayJay Okocha to Lagos House. Many of us underrate this legend that we have and just yesterday, I understand Puyol had a very difficult time on the field of play in Uyo when JayJay had to give him a few tricks.

“Unfortunately, JayJay did not get to play for Barcelona; he would have lifted the Champions League but I must say we appreciate what Okocha has done for Nigerian football. If you have a player that is sometimes compared to Messi, Maradona and spoken about in the same breath, then we know we have a star in our midst and so I like to thank JayJay for his contribution to football,” Governor Ambode said.  

He said in order to ensure a successful Trophy Tour, the relevant security and government agencies have been contacted, assuring that all the activities lined-up as part of the tour would be hugely successful.

While wishing the team a successful tour in Nigeria, Governor Ambode said the State Government would be glad to receive the trophy back in the State in the nearest future, just as he assured that the government remained committed to make Lagos the sports hub not just in Africa but the entire world.

Speaking earlier, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Nigerian Breweries Plc, organisers of the Trophy Tour, Mr Jordi Borrut Bel thanked Governor Ambode for warmly receiving the team, saying the Trophy Tour was specifically organised to bring the tournament closer to fans.

He said as part of the tour, there would be a road show from Maryland Bus Stop to Ikeja City Mall, among other activities.   

Besides, he commended Governor Ambode for his well-though out policies and projects in all sectors and sections of the State, saying the Governor deserved to be appreciated for also creating enabling environment for businesses to thrive in the State.

“I will like to say that this visit is a great opportunity for the management team of Nigerian Breweries to appreciate Governor Ambode on the success that he has recorded in the last four years of administering the State which is a testament to the fact that well-thought policies have been implemented as has been witnessed in security, in transportation, in health, in welfare sectors in the State, and particularly in the continuous construction of impactful infrastructure as well as the Governor’s focused and dynamic leadership in the State.

“We also want to thank the Governor for sustaining a supportive business environment in the State,” he said.