On Monday, December 20 2021, it was announced that the Federal Government of Nigeria had launched a new skill acquisition programme known as N-knowledge, a component of the Npower scheme. With the announcement of the launch, it was stated that about 3,000 Nigerian youths from the North Central geopolitical zone of the country were trained under the programme.
The N-knowledge programme has its focus on the digital job market, preparing them for the global and national digital scene, in a bid to reduce unemployment among youths in the country. Plans for N-knowledge include the empowerment of about 20,000 young Nigerians in the digital sector, to aid the creation of jobs.
In the first part of the N-knowledge programme, 3,000 Nigerian youths from the North Central region were trained, and were given some items after the training which would aid their startups, including laptops.
This new phase has seen another 1,500 Nigerian youths trained, handed certificates and subsequently equipped. These 1,500 beneficiaries were from the North East part of the country. This takes the total of Nigerian youths who have benefited from the programme to 4,500.
These new beneficiaries have been trained for three months in three different learning clusters, which include creative art (animation), computer hardware installation and repairs (specifically with Android phones), and finally scriptwriting.
This training took place at the Abubakar Tabari Ali Polytechnic (ATAP) in Bauchi for 90 days, after which the beneficiaries were handed starter packs based on their selected specialisations, as well as a small amount to help get them running.
The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sa’adiya Umar Farouk spoke to the beneficiaries at the ATAP, imploring them to put what they have learnt from the programme to good use. The Minister was represented by a Deputy Director from the Ministry, Gidado Abubakar and also said that the Federal Government is fully committed to empowering unemployed and vulnerable Nigerian youths in order to bring them out of poverty.
One of the consultants of the programme who handled the hardware cluster, Bashir Umar Tofa stated that a total of 1,360 people signed up for the training. However, only 771 were fully certified and trained, and then given starter packs to start working. With the training acquired, these youths will be able to take on installation and repairs of computer system hardware. Tofa encouraged them to take the training seriously and engage other unemployed youths in their specialised areas in order to help bridge the unemployment gap.
Francis Ngannou Defeats Ciryl Gane, Displays Unique Wrestling Skill
Cameroonian UFC Heavyweight Champion of the World, Francis Ngannou, defeated Ciryl Gane to retain his belt with shocking wrestling and grappling skills no one saw coming leading up to the fight.
When the UFC 270 main event between heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou and interim champ Ciryl Gane was made official, it’s unlikely anyone expected an Ngannou win to come on the strength of his wrestling and jiu-jitsu. That’s exactly how the fight played out on Saturday night, however, with Ngannou surviving some rough early rounds before leaning on an unlikely combination of takedowns and ground control to pull away and take a unanimous decision victory inside the Honda Center in Anaheim, California.
Gane came out wanting to grapple with Ngannou, pushing forward and ending up in a clinch, though Ngannou was able to easily fight off the takedown attempt. From there, the expected striking battle broke out, with Gane using his slick footwork to try to move around the Octagon and pick angles and Ngannou looking for his trademark bombs.
The problem for Ngannou was actually finding Gane to land those shots. The grappling early appeared to drain Ngannou’s gas tank and he then was forced to chase Gane around the Octagon, with Gane casually moving, turning sideways and touching Ngannou with a variety of strikes as he built up a lead through cleaner work in the opening rounds.
In the third round, Ngannou finally had a moment, catching a Gane high kick and turning it into a massive body slam to end up on top in side control. Gane was able to escape back to his feet, only taking a few punches when he gave up his back to get back to standing only for Ngannou to again briefly take the fight to the ground. Shockingly, Ngannou scored with another takedown late in the round.
Having seen an unexpected side of Ngannou’s game, Gane looked to maintain distance with a steady diet of kicks in the fourth round, but Ngannou managed another takedown when he was able to close the distance and grab a body lock. Gane fought back to his feet only to be taken down yet again, keeping the fight on the ground for the remainder of the round.
With the fight seemingly tied up at two rounds apiece after Ngannou’s grappling had turned the tide, the fifth round seemed to be where the fight would ultimately be decided. After some early striking from Gane, he stepped inside and scored his own takedown, putting Ngannou on his back. Gane then made a pivotal mistake, abandoning the position in search of a leg lock.
Ngannou survived the leg lock to end up in top position, battling to improve his position while not doing much damage with strikes before the final horn.
The decision to go for the leg lock did prove to be Gane’s undoing, as the official scorecards read 48-47, 48-47, 49-46, all for Ngannou.
“I knew that he was going to be a tough opponent, no doubt,” Ngannou said after the fight. “I was surprised that he held on to the end of the fight but he was very good. The only thing that I had to do, that my coach reminded me all the time, was stay composed. Trust yourself, don’t chase him.”
Ngannou also confirmed rumors of a pre-fight knee injury while discussing the build to the fight.
“I hurt my knee, tore my MCL completely and hurt my ACL,” Ngannou said. “I wanted to pull out of this fight but couldn’t see myself retreating from this fight because it was a chance to make a statement and remind everyone that I’m the champ.”
CBS Sports was with you the entire way on Saturday bringing you all the results and highlights from the UFC 270 below.
UFC 270 card and results
- Francis Ngannou (c) def. Ciryl Gane via unanimous decision (48-47, 48-47, 49-46)
- Deiveson Figueiredo def. Brandon Moreno (c) via unanimous decision (48-47, 48-47, 48-47)
- Michel Pereira def. Andre Fialho via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
- Said Nurmagomedov def. Cody Stamann via first-round submission (guillotine choke)
- Michael Morales def. Trevin Giles via first-round TKO (punches)
- Victory Henry def. Raoni Barcelos via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
- Jack Della def. Pete Rodriguez via first-round TKO (punches)
Petrol Company Owner Arraigned Over Alleged N38.2m Fraud, Tax Evasion – EFCC
The Kaduna State chapter of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has accused the owner of Najaatu Petroleum Limited, Wasila Musa Ibrahim of money laundering and tax evasion.
In 2020, Ibrahim had reportedly defrauded a company known as Lee Group of a total sum of Thirty-Eight Million, Two Hundred Thousand Naira (N38,200,000). According to the EFCC, the suspect had approached the Lee Group owner with a business proposal to supply the company Diesel and Premium Motor Spirit (petrol).
Using the name of her company, Ibrahim collected the money from the victim and his family members, diverting it for her personal use.
According to the victims, after learning of the fraud, Wasila Ibrahim lied that she had paid the money with one Alhaji Lawan who allegedly absconded and could not be reached.
The suspect was then reported to the antigraft agency, after which investigations revealed that she never did pay the N38.2 million meant to supply petrol. The investigations also led to the discovery that Ibrahim’s company, Najaatu Petroleum Limited had evaded tax payment from January 2013 to 2020.
The suspect arraigned on Thursday before Justice Mohammed Nasir Yunusa of the Federal High Court, Kano was accused of money laundering and tax evasion.
One of the twelve counts charges against the defendant reads: “That you, Wasila Musa Ibrahim “F”, sometime in October 2020, in Kano within the Jurisdiction of this Honourable Court did make a cash payment of the sum of N38,200,000.00 (Thirty-Eight Million and Two Hundred Thousand Naira) only to one Alhaji Lawan for the purchase of five (5) trucks of Diesel without passing through a financial institution and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 1 (a) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 (As Amended) and punishable under Section 16(2) (b) of the same Act.”
The second charge against her by the EFCC also read: “That you, Wasila Musa Ibrahim “F”, Managing Director of Najaatu Petroleum Limited and Najaatu Petroleum Limited sometime in January, 2013 in Kano, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, did fail to pay your company income tax for the year 2013 to the Federal Inland Revenue Service and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 9 (1) (a) of the Companies Income Tax Act, 2004 and punishable under Section 82 of the same Act”.
The case was however adjourned after the defendant pleaded not guilty to the charges read before the court.
Leading the prosecution counsel, Y. J. Matiyak prayed the court to set a date for the hearing and remand of Ibrahim, while she remained in EFCC custody. However, Ibrahim’s legal counsel, Suleiman Abdulrahim informed the court of a pending application for bail of the defendant, requesting that she be admitted to bail. The prosecution swiftly moved against the request.
The judge, Justice Yunusa, in his ruling adjourned the case and ordered that the defendant remained in EFCC custody until the hearing of her bail application, holding on February 8, 2022.
NYSC Trust Fund Bill Passes 2nd Reading
A bill sponsored by Hon. Akinfolarin Mayowa for an act to establish a trust fund for National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) has passed the second reading stage in the House of Representatives.
Mayowa, the representative of Ileoluji-Okeigbo/Odigbo federal constituency, on Thursday at the plenary, stated that the bill seeks to provide a sustainable source of funds for Corp members.
The National Youth Service Corps Trust Fund (NYSCTF) aims at equipping corps members with skills acquisition, training and empowerment. Training and retraining of NYSC staff is inclusive
The bill sponsor mentioned that the funds would also be used for the development of NYSC camps and maintenance of its facilities.
He added that it would have a long-lasting impact on job creation and the empowerment of youths.
Hon. Mayowa stated that the NYSCTF Bill would further complement the purpose of the scheme and enhance entrepreneurship among corps members.
He said, “in the early years of the establishment of NYSC, the scheme was able to carry out its objectives under the National Youth Service Corps Act.
“The management of the scheme had not only trained, equipped and empowered corps members enrolled under the scheme, but had instilled patriotism and the spirit of nationalism in corps members.
“My colleagues and I have sincerely considered the significant role this NYSCTF Bill will play if passed by this honourable house and assented to by President Muhammadu Buhari.
“Corps members and supporting staff will be trained and introduced to various skills which will make them establish a self-sustained business after the mandatory service year.”
Calling for its reading to continue and moved to the relevant committee of the house for further legislative actions, Mayowa pointed that the bill will reduce the adverse effect of COVID-19 on the nation’s economy and create employment opportunities for the youths.
“The call had become imperative in view of the effort currently being made by the government to diversify the economy, and considering the passion and willingness of the house in reducing poverty,” he said
In turn, the Speaker, House of Representatives, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila, referred the bill to the relevant committees of the house for further legislative actions following the consent of the house.
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