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IMF Head Christine Lagarde Convicted in France

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  • IMF Head Christine Lagarde Convicted in France

International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde was convicted of negligence by a Paris court over her handling of a multimillion-euro dispute during her time as France’s finance minister nearly a decade ago.

The 60-year-old managing director of the IMF won’t face a fine or prison term, Judge Martine Ract-Madoux said Monday. The judges on the Cour de Justice de la Republique said that Lagarde should have done more to overturn a 285 million-euro ($300 million) payout to a businessman in an arbitration case.

The trial has been an ongoing distraction to Lagarde’s duties at the IMF, which was on the front lines of the effort to combat the global financial crisis and provides billions of dollars in loans to countries at risk of default. The Washington-based institution said it would meet shortly to consider the verdict.

Patrick Maisonneuve, Lagarde’s lawyer, said he couldn’t understand the reasoning behind the verdict.

Lagarde “requested opinions from lawyers — and that’s where I don’t understand the court’s decision,” said Maisonneuve. “She always acted in the general interest, with knowledge of the facts.”

Lagarde, who didn’t attend Monday’s hearing, was cleared of another count related to her initial decision to enter into the arbitration agreement.

1993 Adidas Sale

The trial looked into how Lagarde handled a decade-old dispute between former state-owned bank Credit Lyonnais and businessman Bernard Tapie over the 1993 sale of Adidas AG. Lagarde allowed the disagreement to go to arbitration — at the start of the financial crisis — and then didn’t appeal the payout, which later was cut to zero.

Lagarde didn’t fully examine the award, the “violent wording” of which could “only have led the minister” to seek to overturn it in court, Ract-Madoux said. “Overall, Lagarde was negligent in seeking information” to guide her views about a bid for annulment, the court president said.

Still, the court “noted that we were in a particularly difficult economic and political context that truly ate up a lot of the minister’s time,” Maisonneuve said.

On the second day of the trial earlier this month, Lagarde told the court, which specializes in ministerial misconduct, she’d relied on her then chief of staff, Stephane Richard, to screen thousands of documents and provide advice on using arbitration in the dispute.

Richard Didn’t Testify

Richard, now Orange SA’s chief executive officer, refused to testify during the trial, citing a parallel criminal probe that allowed him to remain silent.

Bruno Bezard, a former senior French official who is a long-time critic of Lagarde, said the failure to appeal the award was a “scandalous decision.” He was head of the French investment agency Agence des Participations de l’Etat, which briefed Lagarde’s office on the situation.

Lagarde had said she was aware of the French investment agency’s opposition to arbitration, but believed the possible benefits outweighed any disadvantages.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

Government

University Of Ibadan (UI) Goes Digital, Releases Timetable for Virtual Academic Session

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University Of Ibadan (UI) Goes Digital, Releases Timetable for Virtual Academic Session

University of Ibadan (UI) on Friday announced it is going ahead with resumption on February 20 despite the second wave of COVID-19.

In a statement released by the school, the First Semester of the 2020/2021 academic session will commence virtually on February 20, 2021.

The virtual academic session will last for 13 straight weeks and end on Friday May 12, 2021, while the matriculation ceremony will hold on Tuesday March 16, 2021.

The University of Ibadan also scheduled one week for the Finalization of Continuous Assessment, to begin from Mon. 17 May and ends Friday 21 May.

The rising number of COVID-19 cases has compelled the Senate to approve the virtual academic session in an effort to ensure the tertiary institution abides by the protocols established by the Federal Government to curb the spread of the pandemic.

“It, therefore, agreed that the 2020/2021 First Semester lectures will be delivered online. In this regard, students will not be accommodated on campus,” a statement from the school said.

“Senate also approved the cancellation of the 2019/2020 session. The next session is, therefore, renamed 2020/2021 Academic Session. Consequently, students who have been admitted for the 2019/2020 session will now be regarded as the 2020/2021 intakes.

“Kindly note that online opening of Registration Portal and Orientation Programme for the 2020/2021 intakes may commence ahead of the Sat 20/02/21 date indicated above,” the statement said.

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House of Representatives Impeached Trump Over Capitol Invasion

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House of Representatives Impeached Trump Over Capitol Invasion

The United States House of Representatives on Wednesday impeached President Trump for the second time after instigating the US Capitol invasion.

Led by Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, 232 representatives, including 10 Republicans, voted to impeach the outgoing president against 197 that voted for him to remain in the office for the next six days when he would handover to the president-elect, Joe Biden.

The ten Republicans were Representatives Liz Cheney of Wyoming, the party’s No. 3 leader in the House; Jaime Herrera Beutler of Washington; John Katko of New York; Adam Kinzinger of Illinois; Fred Upton of Michigan; Dan Newhouse of Washington; Peter Meijer of Michigan; Anthony Gonzalez of Ohio; David Valadao of California; and Tom Rice of South Carolina.

Speaking before the vote, Pelosi said “a constitutional remedy that will ensure that the Republic will be safe from this man who is so resolutely determined to tear down the things that we hold dear and that hold us together.”

“He must go. He is a clear and present danger to the nation that we all love,” she said, adding later, “It gives me no pleasure to say this — it breaks my heart.

Republicans, who unanimously stood behind president Trump in 2019 during his first impeachment, were divided this time over the attack on Capitol.

A Republican representative from California, Kevin McCarthy, said “The president bears responsibility for Wednesday’s attack on Congress by mob rioters,” Mr. McCarthy said. “He should have immediately denounced the mob when he saw what was unfolding.”

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US Congress Declares Joe Biden as The 46th President of The United States After Trump Mob Left

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Joe Biden Economic Impliccations on Nigeria

US Congress Declares Joe Biden as The 46th President of The United States After Trump Mob Left

The joint congress of the United States on Thursday, January 7, 2021 certified Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States following President Trump’s mob action that disrupted the congress joint proceeding on Wednesday.

After ordering his followers to disrupt proceedings on Wednesday, President Trump later announced that there will be an orderly transition on January 20.

Even though I totally disagree with the outcome of the election, and the facts bear me out, nevertheless there will be an orderly transition on January 20th,” Trump said in a statement issued by White House Deputy Chief of Staff Dan Scavino.

“I have always said we would continue our fight to ensure that only legal votes were counted. While this represents the end of the greatest first term in presidential history, it’s only the beginning of our fight to Make America Great Again!” Trump added.

While the certification was just a mere formality as Biden had secured enough electoral college votes (270) required to clinch the world’s most powerful seat, the refusal of Donald Trump to accept the results of the November 2020 election made the session a keenly watched, especially after Trump mob disrupted a joint session of the Senate.

Also read Facebook, Twitter, Instagram Lock President Trump Out of Their Platforms Following Insurrection

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