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Obama sends all Russian Diplomats parking
U.S. President Barack Obama has ordered the expulsion of 35 Russian diplomats including shutting down of two Russian compounds in the U.S. in a number of actions announced on Thursday as reprisal for Russia’s meddling in US election.

Obama’s speech obtained by correspondent of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in New York, stated that the actions were “in response to Russia’s malicious cyber activity and harassment.

“Today, I have ordered a number of actions in response to the Russian government’s aggressive harassment of U.S. officials and cyber operations aimed at U.S. election.

“These actions follow repeated private and public warnings that we have issued to the Russian government, and are a necessary and appropriate response to efforts to harm U.S. interests in violation of established international norms of behaviour.

“The U.S State Department is also shutting down two Russian compounds, in Maryland and New York, used by Russian personnel for intelligence-related purposes, and is declaring ‘persona non grata’ on 35 Russian intelligence operatives.

“Finally, the Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Bureau of Investigation are releasing declassified technical information on Russian civilian and military intelligence service cyber activity.

“This is to help network defenders in the U.S. and abroad to identify, detect, and disrupt Russia’s global campaign of malicious cyber activities.”

According to him, all Americans should be alarmed by Russia’s actions.

Obama added that “in October, my Administration publicised our assessment that Russia took actions intended to interfere with the U.S. election process.

“These data theft and disclosure activities could only have been directed by the highest levels of the Russian government.

“Moreover, our diplomats have experienced unacceptable level of harassment in Moscow by Russian security services and police over the last year. Such activities have consequences.”

He explained that he had issued an executive order that provided additional authority for responding to certain cyber activity aimed at interfering with or undermining America’s election processes and institutions, or those of its allies or partners.

“Using this new authority, I have sanctioned nine entities and individuals: the GRU and the FSB, two Russian intelligence services; four individual officers of the GRU; and three companies that provided material support to the GRU’s cyber operations.

“In addition, the Secretary of the Treasury is designating two Russian individuals for using cyber-enabled means to cause misappropriation of funds and personal identifying information.”

The U.S. president explained that “these actions are not the sum total of our response to Russia’s aggressive activities.

“We will continue to take actions at a time and place of our choosing, some of which will not be publicised.

“In addition to holding Russia accountable for what it has done, the United States and friends and allies around the world must work together to oppose Russia’s efforts to undermine established international norms of behaviour, and interfere with democratic governance.

“To that end, my Administration will be providing a report to Congress in the coming days about Russia’s efforts to interfere in our election, as well as malicious cyber activity related to our election cycle in previous elections.”

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United Kingdom Accepting Naira Payments from Nigerian Business Owners

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United Kingdom Accepting Naira Payments from Nigerian Business Owners

United Kingdom Accepting Naira Payments from Nigerian Business Owners

Former President of the Nigerian-British Chamber of Commerce (NBCC)Dapo Adelegan, has announced that the British Government will henceforth begin accepting Nigerian currency from Nigerian business owners in the UK.

Adelegan made the assertion in an interview on Wednesday in Lagos.

The British Government on February 9, through its export credit agency, UK Export Finance (UKEF), said it will accept Naira payments from Nigerian business owners trading with the UK.

Adelegan said that the initiative was a monumental step that will deepen trade, open more opportunities, expand patronage and market scope of products from both countries.

“If we look at the quality of manufactured equipment and technology; Made-in-Britain is number one.

“Through this, we will access technology transfer, boost the capacity of workforce and impact on our outputs of consumables and products in the market.

“It is a win-win situation that will go beyond procurement, as there are multiple layers of benefits that this will bring to the economy,’’ Adelegan said.

Joyce Akpata, Director-General, Nigerian-American Chamber of Commerce (NACC), also said the initiative will ease importation of goods from the UK to Nigeria and strengthen economic ties.

“The UK has the largest concentration of Nigerians in the diaspora and given cultural ties, it is something that should have happened before now,’’ Akpata said.

The director general said the initiative would improve knowledge sharing and technology transfer.

“We will see a lot of businesses in the UK supplying equipment and machinery backed by this finance to their Nigerian counterparts.

“This will enhance the activities of manufacturers, especially the growing SMEs that are into processing.

“It will also take off issues of foreign exchange challenges and instability in the market,’’ she said.

Akpata noted that the scheme would be a welcome opportunity for most Nigerian businesses that could not access financing locally.

She urged other countries, especially the United States, to take a cue from the UK to evolve initiatives that will assist businesses to maximise opportunities and strengthen trade ties.

Trade experts put the value of trade between Nigeria and the UK at about £8 billion, with oil and gas making up 60 per cent of the figure.

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South Africa’s Embattled President Jacob Zuma resigns

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President Zuma must face corruption charges - Supreme court rules

South Africa’s Embattled President Jacob Zuma resigns

The embattled President of South Africa, Jacob Zuma has resigned his office with immediate effect.

Zuma made the announcement in a televised address to the nation on Wednesday evening.

Earlier, Mr Zuma’s governing ANC party told him to resign or face a vote of no confidence in parliament on Thursday.

The 75-year-old has been under increasing pressure to give way to Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, the ANC’s new leader.

Mr Zuma, who has been in power since 2009, faces numerous allegations of corruption.

His resignation came at the end of a long speech in which he said he disagreed with the way the ANC had acted towards him.

He said he did not fear a motion of no-confidence, adding: “I have served the people of South Africa to the best of my ability.”

According to President Zuma, violence and division within the ANC had influenced his decision to step down.

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I Have no Candidate for 2019 Elections : Obasanjo

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Obasanjo denies attending PDP convention committee inauguration

I Have no Candidate for 2019 Elections : Obasanjo

Nigeria’s former President Olusegun Obasanjo has claimed that he has no candidate for any political office in the 2019 general elections.

The outspoken politician made the statement while speaking to a group of political group paid him a visit at his home in Abeokuta yesterday February 7th, Obasanjo said he would remain an elder statesman with a passion for a greater Nigeria.

According to Obasanjo, his statement on President Muhammadu Buhari was not meant to disrespect the office of the president or embarrass him, but rather to articulate his views about the situation in the country and offer his candid advice. In his words;

‘In the year 2015, I said I would no longer participate in partisan politics. And I still stand by my decision.

Everybody, irrespective of his or her political affiliation is free to come here for advice. I will gladly do that.

I have no candidate, whatsoever, for any political office. I just believe that things must be done differently in Nigeria to get a different result.

If you study our transitions since the colonial era, they have all taken place without taking the people of the grassroots into consideration. So, CNM is about the people at the grassroots.

It is a socio-economic movement where youth and women, especially, will be given the opportunity to appreciate their interests and power.

Unlike before, I believe we must put the horse before the cart. If the system and the platform sync, I believe Nigeria will get there. And like I said, the moment the coalition gets involved in candidate sponsoring or participates in partisan politics, I will opt out of it.”he said.

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