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Senate President Brings Message of Hope to Christmas Carol Event



In a speech at the 20th Anniversary edition of the Service of Nine Lessons, known as ‘the National Carols 2023,’ President of the Senate, Senator Godswill Akpabio, delivered a powerful message of hope to Nigerians. Despite the global challenges, he urged citizens not to despair, emphasizing that Jesus Christ remains the enduring beacon of hope.

The event, jointly organized by the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA), Radio Nigeria, and Voice of Nigeria (VON), took place at the National Ecumenical Centre, Abuja. Akpabio, as the Chief Host, spoke on the theme ‘Jesus Our Hope,’ encouraging the Christian faithful to embrace Jesus’s teachings for strength, redemption, and the promise of eternal life.

Reflecting on the challenges faced by Nigeria, Akpabio highlighted the resilience of faith and hope in the message of Jesus. He emphasized the need for compassion and forgiveness among citizens, considering the trials the country has endured.

During the event, Akpabio read the Eight Lesson, drawing attention to the enduring nature of hope in Jesus. He underlined the impact of Christmas, bringing goodwill and peace to humanity. The Senate President urged Nigerians to spread love and kindness, emphasizing that small acts of goodwill can bring light to even the darkest corners of the world.

In a world grappling with uncertainty, Akpabio stressed that Jesus remains the beacon of hope, offering solace and assurance to those who seek Him. Drawing an analogy from his tenure as the Governor of Akwa Ibom State, where they achieved a Guinness World Record for the largest ensemble of Christmas Carol Singers, he expressed his belief in the unity of Nigerians.

Akpabio concluded by stating his belief that, just as the star led the way to the humble manger in Bethlehem, Jesus continues to light the path for those who trust in Him. His birth represents a promise and divine covenant, calling citizens out of darkness into His marvelous light. The Senate President’s speech echoed a message of renewal, hope, and collective responsibility for a brighter future.


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FG Seeks Opportunities For Youths In Creative Industry



The minister of budget and economic planning, Abubakar Bagudu, has called on the managing director/chief executives of the Nigerian Film Corporation (NFC), Ali Nuhu, to find meaningful opportunities for Youths to take advantage of the creative industry.

Bagudu also advised the corporation to seek collaboration with KOICA of South Korea, Japan and the French Embassy, to move the creative industry in the country forward.

The minister called Dr Nuhu, a disruptor brought into government to use his creative ability to convey positive messages of Renewed Hope and project resilient Nigerians who daily toil to live meaningful lives.

Bagudu also advocated for support from international  organisations and relevant stakeholders  for the Nigerian Film Corporation to boost the economic growth of the country.

The minister made remarks when Dr Nuhu  and senior members of the corporation paid him a courtesy visit in the ministry on Thursday, according to a statement that was issued by the ministry spokeswoman, Julie Osaige-Jacobs.

Bagudu noted that President Bola Ahmed Tinubu was deliberate in the establishment of the Ministry of Culture and Creative Economy as he recognised the fact that some organisations or fields of endeavours contribute to economic growth of a nation.

In his response, the NFC boss said the purpose of the courtesy  increase in the budgetary allocation of the corporation, is to enable it to achieve its mandates. He specifically noted that the increase in budgetary supplementation would enable the Corporation to maintain its liaison offices, the development of the NFC permanent site, capacity building of the existing staff and the recruitment of its aging personnel.

The NFC is one of the parastatals in the Federal Ministry of Culture and Creative Economy that has the mandate to foster a thriving and enduring film industry and cinema culture in Nigeria.



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Benin Traditional Council Warns Governor Obaseki Over Mediation in Royal Dispute



The ongoing conflict between the Oba of Benin, some suspended Enigies (dukes), and Edo State Governor Godwin Obaseki escalated on Wednesday as the Benin Traditional Council issued a stern warning to Obaseki regarding his attempts to mediate the rift.

Several Enigies have taken legal action against the Oba of Benin, Omo N’Oba N’Edo Uku Akpolokpolo, Ewuare II, and the state government over their suspensions. They argue that the Oba lacks the authority to suspend them without the approval of the state executive council and Governor Obaseki.

The Benin Traditional Council, in a statement signed by nine prominent palace chiefs, condemned any external interference in the kingdom’s customary arbitration processes. The statement emphasized the sacred and time-honored methods of resolving disputes within the Benin Kingdom, which they urged all parties to respect and utilize.

The statement was signed by the following chiefs:

  • Chief Norense Ozigbo-Esere, Osuma of Benin
  • Chief Edionwe Oliha, Oliha of Benin
  • Chief Henry Osato Bazuaye, Aiwerioghene of Benin
  • Chief Ekhoerovbiye Oviasogie, Uwangue of Benin
  • Chief Ada Igbinovia, Eribo of Benin
  • Chief Stanley Obamwonyi, Esere of Benin
  • Chief Osaro Idah, Obazelu of Benin
  • Chief Okuonghae Edomwandagbon, Ine of Benin
  • Chief David Aibiokun Ehondor, Obahiagbon of Benin

An excerpt from the statement reads: “Our attention has been drawn to the reported plan by the Governor of Edo State, His Excellency, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, to initiate dispute resolution of the suit filed by two suspended Enigie against His Royal Majesty, Omo N’Oba N’Edo, Uku Akpolokpolo, Oba of Benin.”

Governor Obaseki’s involvement has been seen by the traditional council as an overreach, potentially undermining the established customs and authority of the Oba. The council’s declaration reflects the deep-rooted respect for traditional governance in the Benin Kingdom and a commitment to preserving its independence from political influence.

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Ladoja, Chiefs End Feud, To Unveil Next Olubadan Thursday




In an attempt to resolve the lingering crisis over the vacant stool of the Olubadan of Ibadanland, the Otun Olubadan, High Chief Rashidi Ladoja has decided to withdraw his suit against the Oyo State governor, Seyi Makinde and the late Olubadan, Oba Lekan Balogun.

Ladoja had initiated the legal action over the elevation of 10 Ibadan High Chiefs to beaded crown-wearing Obas, and had in the suit filed before the state High Court in Ibadan, in July 2023, also joined the 10 monarchs as defendants.

The former Oyo State governor is also expected to convene a meeting of the Olubadan-in-Council to nominate the Olubadan-designate, Oba Owolabi Olakulehin, as the 43rd Olubadan of Ibadanland, on Thursday.

It would be recalled that Makinde approved the elevation of the 10 from the High Chiefs to Obas, following the recommendation of the late Olubadan, Oba Balogun.

Ladoja’s decision to withdraw the case and the convening the Olubadan-in-Council meeting, , it was  gathered, formed part of the resolutions of a meeting convened by the leadership of the Central Council of Ibadan Indigenes, CCII, in conjunction with the elders, held at the Ikolaba residence of Chief Bode Amoo, on Monday.

It was further gathered that issues surrounding the enthronement of the new monarch and the reported lingering crisis among the kingmakers had been finally resolved.

Apart from the uncertainty in the health condition of Olakulehin, which had stalled the coronation, following 21 days after the transition of Oba Balogun, Ibadan elites had successfully mounted pressure on Ladoja to withdraw the case to pave way for the next Olubadan to emerge.

Until the meeting on Monday, some members of the Olubadan Advisory Council were insisting that they would not be part of any meeting that Ladoja would convene.

Going by the Ibadan chieftaincy arrangement, Olakulehin will be nominated by the next person to him in his line of Balogun, which is the Otun Balogun, Oba Ajibola, at a meeting to be convened by the most senior high chief in the other line (Otun), within 21 days of the demise of the paramount ruler.

A source said that, “The aggrieved kingmakers have resolved to put the past behind and work together as one for the common interest of Ibadanland. The meeting has in attendance all the kingmakers except the Osi Balogun of Ibadanland, Oba Tajudeen Ajibola and the Ekerin Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Hamidu Ajibade Salaudeen.

“The fifth columnists have been put to shame as we have resolved all the issues surrounding the enthronement of the 43rd Olubadan of Ibadanland. The CCII convened the meeting which had in attendance all the kingmakers except the two of them, notable elders of the land, and present and past leaders of the CCII.

“All issues have been resolved. There is now peace and harmony among the kingmakers. The Olubadan-in-Council is now one. God has put the fifth columnists to shame. In attendance at the meeting were the Asiwaju of Ibadan, Chief Bode Amao; Prelate Ola Makinde, past Presidents-General of CCII, Chief Y.K. Akande, Chief Bayo Oyero, Chief Wale Akinwande, Chief Soladoye and a host of others. We used an internal dispute mechanism to resolve our dispute in Ibadanland.

Notice of Thursday’s meeting to be convened by High Chief Ladoja is out. The meeting to be convened by Ladoja is in accordance with the 1957 Olubadan Chieftaincy Declaration.”



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