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FG bows to pressure, reapproves use of Eagle Square for May Day rally



The federal government has reapproved the use of Eagle Square in Abuja by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) for the annual May Day rally in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) tomorrow.

This followed pressure from the NLC and the Trade Union Congress (TUC) of Nigeria.
The federal government had earlier approved the venue for the workers’ rally but later rescinded its decision and offered the workers the Old Parade Ground as an alternative.

Both the NLC and the TUC had protested the change of venue and vowed to organise the rally on the streets of Abuja.
But the Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige conveyed the revalidation of the venue to the workers in a statement issued by his ministry yesterday.

In a statement signed by the Director of Press and Public Relations, Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment, Olajide Oshundun, the minister urged all guests including the president, vice president, ministers, diplomatic missions, and international partners, to endeavour to be at the Eagle Square venue, which he said remains sacrosanct.

The minister gave this assurance following reports that the federal government, acting through the Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA), had withdrawn the permit granted to the NLC to use the Eagle Square for this year’s May Day celebration, for reasons bordering on the preparation of the venue for the May 29 inauguration of President-elect, Bola Tinubu.
Ngige said on getting the information, he contacted his colleague, the Minister of FCT, Muhammad Bello, who attributed the development to some overzealous officials of the FCDA, who acted without his authority.

Ngige said sequel to his consultation with the FCT Minister, the NLC has been asked to go ahead with its preparation for the celebration at Eagle Square, which the president, ministers, other top government officials, and the diplomatic missions are expected to attend.
“It was actually the contractor handling the renovation of the Eagle Square that informed the Transition Committee for the handover ceremony that they erected their equipment even before last Thursday when the Nigerian Army used the venue for an event attended by the President.
“Consequently, the FCT Minister assured the Honourable Minister of Labour and Employment that the place is available for NLC to use on May 1, which is the workers’ day.

“This May Day is the last in the life of this administration. The NLC parade belongs to everybody, including government, diplomatic missions, international organisations, organised labour and affiliate unions, and members of the public. The president, ministers, and others cannot shut themselves out. The Eagle Square is still available for all these individuals.

“All invited people should make themselves available for the parade at Eagle Square, most especially the Nigeria Employers Consultative Association (NECA), the diplomatic missions, and the international partners.
“The Honourable Minister of Labour and Employment has been in touch with the leadership of organised labour led by Comrade Joe Ajaero and has briefed them on these developments and equally extended the apologies of the Honourable Minister of FCT for the unintended embarrassment occasioned by the action of their officials who misinterpreted the general intention and work plan of one month of Messrs Julius Berger, the company in charge of the renovation of the Eagle Square for the May 29 inauguration to also include May 1, 2023.”

The statement added that the FCT Administration has promised to give all necessary material support to make the event hitch-free and successful, while the Honourable Minister of Labour and Employment wishes all Nigerian workers a blissful Workers’ Day on May 1.

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President Bola Tinubu Suspend Godwin Emefiele as CBN Governor



President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has suspended the Central Bank Governor, Mr Godwin Emefiele, CFR, from office with immediate effect,” the Director of Information, Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation Willie Bassey said in a Friday statement.

“This is sequel to the ongoing investigation of his office and the planned reforms in the financial sector of the economy.

“Mr Emefiele has been directed to immediately hand over the affairs of his office to the Deputy Governor (Operations Directorate), who will act as the Central Bank Governor pending the conclusion of the investigation and the reforms.”

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Outrage As Hilda Baci Reportedly Charges People N25,000 To Meet Her In Abuja



Nigerian chef, Hilda Baci has sparked outrage on social media as reports suggest she is charging a fee of N25,000 for individuals to meet her in Abuja.

On May 15, 2023, Hilda Baci achieved a remarkable feat by surpassing the previous Guinness World Record for the longest cooking time held by Chef Lata Tondon from Rewa, India in 2019.

The Akwa Ibom chef, not only broke Tondon’s record of 87 hours and 45 minutes but went on to cook for an astounding 100 hours and 40 minutes, making her the first individual in the world to spend such an extended duration of time cooking.

Although the Guinness World Record is yet to officially confirm Hilda Baci as the new record holder for the longest cooking marathon, the Nigerian chef has engaged in controversial acts that have triggered widespread criticism and debate within the country.

On Thursday night, reports emerged that Hilda is charging a substantial fee for personal meet-ups in Abuja. It is alleged that individuals are required to pay N25,000 to have a brief encounter with her on June 24, 2023.

While Hilda Baci has not publicly addressed the allegations, the reported fee has ignited public outrage on social media platforms with many Nigerians expressing their disappointment and concern over what they perceive as an exorbitant charge to meet a chef.

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Messi Won’t Find Life Easy In MLS –Rooney



Former Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney has warned Lionel Messi that he should braze up for tough time in Major League Soccer (MLS).

Recall that Messi confirmed this week that he is joining Inter Miami as a free agent.

Rooney, who is currently in charge of DC United, is hoping that the 35-year-old’s MLS debut could come against his side.

Inter Miami are due to face DC United in Washington on July 8.

Rooney told reporters: “It’d be nice if we were his first opponents for D.C. fans to see him up close and for us to challenge ourselves against him.

“One thing I will say is that it’s not going to be easy for him. The league’s a difficult league, and I don’t think he’s going to come over here and absolutely tear it up immediately.

“He’ll have to adapt because it’s a bit different; it won’t be an easy ride for him.”

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