Xtabella's Blog



Tuesday, 11 June 2019

June 11, 2019


Botswana’s High Court, in a highly-anticipated verdict, on Tuesday ruled in favour of decriminalising homosexuality, which is outlawed under the country’s 1965 penal code.
Judge Michael Elburu “set aside” the “provisions of a Victorian-era” and ordered the laws be amended.
In a courtroom packed with activists, the judge emphasised that the current laws oppressed a minority of the population.
“There’s nothing reasonable in discriminating,” he said.
“We say the time has come that private, same sexuality must be decriminalized.”
“It is a variety of human sexuality,” he said.
The High Court had been petitioned by an anonymous person, identified only by initials LM for security reasons.
The individual challenged two sections of the penal code under which offenders face a jail sentence of up to seven years.
In March, the court postponed a ruling on the issue, sparking fears that the much-awaited decision could be delayed indefinitely.
But on Tuesday, Judge Elburu stressed that the country’s highest judicial body took the matter deeply seriously.
“Sexual orientation is human, it’s not a question of fashion,” he said. “The question of private morality should not be the concerns of the law.”
Last month, Kenya’s High Court upheld laws against same-sex relations, dealing a blow to activists campaigning to roll back anti-gay laws and stigma in Africa.
Before Tuesday’s ruling, 28 out of 49 countries in sub-Saharan Africa had laws penalising same-sex relationships, according to Neela Ghoshal, a Human Rights Watch (HRW) specialist in lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender rights.
The death penalty is on the books, under sharia, in Mauritania, Sudan and northern Nigeria, although there have been no known executions in recent times.
In southern Somalia, gay men are believed to have been put to death in the territory ruled by the Al Shabaab jihadist group.
However, Angola, Mozambique and Seychelles have scrapped anti-gay laws in recent years.
Rights groups say many laws punishing homosexuality date from the colonial area.
They represent a peril even in countries where they are not implemented, according to campaigners, as their existence on the statute books entrenches discrimination and encourages harassment.
June 11, 2019


Ahmed Lawan, the All Progressives Congress preferred candidate, has been elected the president of the Nigerian Senate
Lawan defeated the People’s Democratic Party adopted candidate Ali Ndume, also of the APC with 79 votes. Ndume polled only 28 votes.
In 2015, Lawan, who represents Yobe North, contested the seat of Senate president against Bukola Saraki but lost to the former Kwara State governor.
Four years after, Lawan declared his intention to become president of the Nigeria Senate and chairman of the 9th National Assembly.
The support of the party hierarchy and the presidency earned him a landslide victory against a fellow partyman.
Days before the election, Buhari prevailed on a fellow contender Danjuma Goje to step down  Lawan. But Ndume refused to align himself with the party’s choice to support Lawan.
Lawan was a member of the House of Representatives in 1999 where chaired the House Committees on education and agriculture.
He was elected to the Nigeria Senate in 2007. He became a member of the National Assembly’s Joint Committee on Constitution Review in 2008.
As chairman of the Senate Committee on Public Accounts, Lawan sponsored the Desertification Control Commission Bill in 2009.

Monday, 10 June 2019

June 10, 2019


Cristiano Ronaldo asked Matthijs de Ligt to join him at Juventus after the pair met in the UEFA Nations League final on Sunday.
De Ligt was on the losing side as Portugal built on their Euro 2016 to claim yet another crown with a 1-0 victory, but the Ajax defender was seen laughing with Ronaldo after the final whistle.
"Ronaldo asked me to go to Juventus," De Ligt revealed in the mixed zone after the defeat.
"I was surprised by his request, which is why I laughed.
"I didn't understand him at first."
De Ligt is wanted by many of Europe's elite, notably Barcelona, but he's only thinking about taking some time off now.
"I'm going on holidays now," he said.
"I'm going to think about what's best for me and then I'll decide.
"It's important for a young player to play, that's the only thing I'm sure of."

June 10, 2019


Eden Hazard is Real Madrid's latest Galactico and the Belgian will be unveiled at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on Thursday, as a signing that began in 2017 has finally been completed.
It has been a long-term project which got underway when Hazard was in his fifth season at Chelsea.
At the time, MARCA reported that he was being pursued, writing that Madrid were in the hunt for the player and that Jose Angel Sanchez had been to London to watch the player.
Conversations were had between Sanchez, Juni Calafat, Zinedine Zidaneand others to set the wheels in motion on a transfer that the club were desperate to conclude sooner or later.
Calafat visited London secretly to develop something of a relationship, but always did his all to avoid illegal negotiations unfolding.
Madrid have been interested in Hazard since as far back as 2012 though, as MARCA wrote at the time and Zinedine Zidane praised him as early as 2010, and the coach's influence can't be overstated.
Zidane didn't need to intervene much in the discussions, as his adoration of the no.10 have never been held secret.
In these two and a half years, there were countless visits to Stamford Bridge but now, finally, he's a Real Madrid player.
Hazard was always destined to wear white. It's said that he met Roberto Carlos during a summer holiday in recent years and the Belgian reportedly said "tell your president that I'll sign for Real". The Brazilian followed his instructions, and now the deal is done.

The new strategy

Football has changed in recent years and there's no doubt in the minds of those at big clubs that this approach is the best way to sign a player.
Predicting, foreseeing and working in advance are important, as is taking advantage of a player's penultimate year of contract.
This will be seen again in the future, and not only at Madrid. For example, Kylian Mbappe's contract is up in 2023, so the summer of 2022 could be interesting in Paris.

June 10, 2019


By defeating Dominic Thiem at Roland-Garros to claim the 12th French Open title of his career, Rafael Nadal claimed his 18th grand slam.
He is now just two behind Roger Federer's men's record of 20 and has never been the close to the Swiss.
Given that the Spaniard only just turned 33 at the start of the month, while Federer will turn 38 in August, there is a good chance that he could overtake his great rival.
Novak Djokovic, meanwhile, is third in the all-time rankings with 15 grand slams and he just turned 32 in May.
June 10, 2019


Ever wondered what it would be like to have lunch with Warren Buffett, the fourth-richest person in the world? That would make for a very exciting adventure, not to talk of the many business lessons you would surely learn while at it.
However, dining with the fourth-richest man in the world and learning from his overflowing stream of knowledge isn’t just an all-dressed-up and candle lights kind of thing. It’s going to cost you a whopping $3.5 million. Convert that to naira and we are talking over N1.2 billion.
According to Forbes, lunch with the prolific, world-renowned investor, known as the ‘power meal’ is one sure way to learn about the biggest deals and most important investing advice.
The Real Catch: For twenty years, Warren Buffett has been auctioning an off lunch to the public for the highest bidder in other to support one of his charities ‘San Francisco’s Glide Foundation’ with its profit.
People are jumping at it: While you might be slacking and wondering why in the world you may want to splash that kind of money over lunch, many people are already paying up. Within 48 hours after the bidding kicked off on May 26, the record winning bid of $3.456 which was set in 2016 was surpassed.
Since the introduction of the bid in 2000, an opportunity to have a private lunch with Buffett and seven friends have helped to raise $30 million to support Buffett’s charity.
About San Francisco’s Glide Foundation: Glide was founded about 50 years ago. It is a foundation that focuses on stopping the cycle of poverty in San Francisco, which also provides aid and advocates for marginalised individuals and families.
A taxed Lunch: The power meal is surely taxed. Of course, it has to be! Imagine eating a $3.5 million worth of meal; the government has a good reason to be worried.
The truth is that many underprivileged people have benefited from this power lunch. So, you might want to book your slot. In 2010 and 2011, a man named Ted Wechsler single-handedly purchased two slots for $2,626,311 and $2,626,411; respectively. The next year, Ted was hired as the second investment manager at Berkshire Hathaway, Warren Buffett’s conglomerate which owns Geico, Dairy QueenNetJets, and more.
So, what are you waiting for? o book your lunch date with a billionaire! Seriously though, would you actually splash that amount of money for a lunch date with anybody? Many of us around here cannot even relate…

June 10, 2019


Some concerned Nigerians have filed a suit against the payment of over N4.68 billion as ‘welcome package’ to the incoming members of the ninth National Assembly.
In the suit filed at the Federal High Court, Lagos at the weekend, the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP), BudgIT and Enough is Enough Nigeria (EiE), are asking the court to restrain, prevent and stop the National Assembly Service Commission from paying individually and/or collectively, the ‘welcome package’.
The defendants are the senate president, speaker of the House of Representatives, National Assembly Service Commission and the Revenue Mobilisation, Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC).
The plaintiffs are also seeking an order restraining, preventing and stopping all members of the Senate and the House of Representatives from collecting or demanding N10,132,000:00 and N9,926,062.5 as furniture and accommodation allowance due to each of them until the downward review of the pay and allowances of the lawmakers by the RMAFC.
SERAP, BudgIT and EiE, suing for themselves and on behalf of 1,522 concerned Nigerians, stated: “The RMAFC has failed to do any downward review of salaries and allowances of members of the National Assembly since 2007 in spite of the economic downturn in Nigeria. Yet, the commission is statutorily required to review the pay of the lawmakers, in conformity with the country’s economic realities and to achieve fiscal efficiency.”
The plaintiffs are also seeking, among other reliefs, a declaration that the N10,132,000:00 and N9,926,062.5 allotted to each senator and member of the House of Representatives as furniture and accommodation allowances are in breach of the Code of Conduct for Public Officers [Fifth Schedule Part 1] of the Constitution of Nigeria 1999; oath of office [Seventh Schedule] of the Constitution of Nigeria 1999 and Section 6[1] of the RMAFC Act 2004.
They further seek an order of court compelling the RMAFC to review and reduce the amount prescribed for each senator and member of the House of Representatives as furniture and accommodation allowances in accordance with Section 6[1] of the Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission Act 2004.
Meanwhile, members of the Arewa Youth Awareness Forum (AYAF) have cautioned President Muhammad Buhari against endorsing Femi Gbajabiamila to become the Speaker of the House of Representatives, saying that the north would only support the emergence of National Assembly leaders through a credible process.
The Arewa youths accused the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu and the party’s national chairman, Adams Oshiomhole of gradually working towards the actualisation of their 2023 presidency plan by ensuring that their loyalists are planted at the National Assembly as leaders.
At a press conference in Kaduna, the coordinator of the AYAF, Obadiah Diji, urged Nigerians to resist any attempt by political godfathers to hijack the National Assembly by imposing its leadership.
“While we are not sponsoring or taking sides with any of the aspirants, we are deeply concerned that Nigeria’s ruling party, the presidency and even the opposition may all stand on the wrong side of history with their support for Gbajabiamila as speaker.
“We advocate populist legislative independence in accordance with Section 50 of the nation’s constitution that explicitly spells out the process of electing a senate president and a speaker for the lower house. According to section 50 (1) (b), there shall be a speaker and a deputy speaker of the House of Representatives, who shall be elected by the members of that House from among themselves.
“This must be done through secret ballot in accordance with extant rules. Indeed, legislative independence is sacrosanct.
“Regretfully, we had a diktat given by Oshiomhole and supported by his mentor, Tinubu, and the presidency, thereby giving rise to concerns that the presidency is being tactically railroaded into a 2023 presidential agenda.”
AYAF said Oshiomhole unilaterally schooled the federal legislators on whom they must vote for. “His mentor, Tinubu, backed this with a call on lawmakers to support Lawan, Gbaja or leave, describing some serving legislators as ‘serpents’. This gave a worrisome recollection of how public hatred was invoked to begin the Rwandan genocide of 1982 with the labeling of some people as cockroaches and snakes.”
The Arewa youths expressed worry that “embedded in all these is a very strong long-term threat to Arewa interests: one man can make President Buhari an impotent force and if anything happens to President Buhari, only one man will coordinate the office of the vice president, senate president and House speaker to put himself in total control as national godfather, preparatory to a 2023 presidential bid.
“Moreover, by ensuring now that a Muslim heads the lower house, in addition to the presidency, senate and judiciary‚ the Buhari presidency and the north may later be further unjustly vilified with the undeserved label of ‘Islamisation agenda’ across the world.
“As we have said earlier, it is very risky for President Buhari, the north and the entire federation for one man to be in control of the vice president, ruling party chairman, senate president and speaker of the House of Representatives when it is known that handpicking of Lagos State House of Assembly principal officers and members at Bourdillon is the primary method of controlling successive Lagos State governors.
“True, Gbajabiamila is erudite and all that, but still, we see cause to worry over red flags in his disposition towards true statesmanship, especially with the basic leadership issues of integrity and truthfulness,” the group said.
Another northern group, the Arewa Youth Consultative Forum (AYCF), warned Nigerians against allowing Ahmed Lawan become the president of the ninth senate.
AYCF linked the support Lawan is currently getting from some chieftains of the APC to the secret pursuit of personal ambitions ahead of 2023.
In a statement by Yerima Shettima yesterday, the organisation fingered Tinubu and Kaduna State Governor Nasir El-Rufai as being behind Lawan’s ambition in a desperate move ahead of 2023.
“We advise the Tinubus and El-Rufais of this world to shove aside any desperate move on 2023 and allow a level-playing field for all political offices. No one should hide behind any political party to turn Nigerians into mere manipulable pawn. That will be undemocratic imposition and totally unacceptable.”
But Lawan has debunked insinuations that he is being imposed on the National Assembly by APC.
Lawan, who spoke yesterday when his campaign organisation unveiled 60 APC and 1 YPP senators-elect who have openly endorsed his candidature, said all the signatures were appended voluntarily by individual senators.
“We have been working extremely hard, talking to every senator-elect to say this is who we are truly, and in the process, we get to know senators-elect better. We have been through a lot of trouble, hence we cannot be an imposition as everybody wrote his or her name and signed in their writing.
“I can tell you that out of the 44 Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) senators-elect, we cannot have less than 35 to 38, so I pay special tribute to them.”
Barely 48 hours to the election of the presiding officers of the National Assembly, President Buhari, may have directed the Clerk, Mohammed Ataba Sani Omolori, to conduct the elections in strict compliance with existing rules of the two chambers.
Omolori, according to sources close to the presidency, was at the Presidential Villa at the weekend to brief the president on preparations for the elections scheduled to hold tomorrow.
Omolori’s visit to the Villa, it was further learnt, was to honor a presidential invitation to that effect.
The method of voting has been a source of serious disagreement between the two main contenders for the seat of the senate president.
When asked about the preparations for tomorrow’s election, Omolori was said to have told President Buhari that the image of the National Assembly must not be endangered in conducting the elections. He also drew attention to the existing rules of both chambers.
Buhari appreciated the fact that Omolori expressed readiness to stick to the rule to avoid chaos.
June 10, 2019


A leading aspirant for the speakership of the House of Representatives, Mrs Nkeiruka Onyejiocha, has stepped down for Mr Femi Gbajabiamila.
Gbajabiamila is the preferred choice of the ruling All Progressives Congress for the post.
The director-general of the Gbajabiamila/Idris Wase campaign, Dr Abdulmumini Jibrin made this known at a parley between Gbajabiamila and scores of his supporters held at the Transcrops Hilton Hotel Abuja.
The others aspirants that stepped down for Gbajabiamila were Messrs Buba Yakubu, Aliyu Betara, and Abdulrazak Namdas.
Jibrin, who said the Campaign was not leaving anything to chances, claimed that the South-East caucus in the House led by Mr Patrick Asadu had also endorsed Gbajabiamila.

Saturday, 8 June 2019

June 08, 2019


Dominic Thiem will play his second consecutive French Open final at Roland Garros after defeating Novak Djokovic 6-2, 3-6, 7-5, 5-7, 7-5 on Saturday afternoon.
The game lasted four hours and 13 minutes, and was played over two days and after three delays due to rain.
Thiem led the duel 6-2, 3-6, 3-1 on Friday, when it was decided the match to be suspended due to bad weather conditions.
The Serbian couldn't come back on Saturday and his Austrian counterpart qualified for the French Open final.
There he will face Rafa Nadal who prevailed against Roger Federer on Friday.

June 08, 2019


Cristiano Ronaldo has warned the football world that he still has much more to give in his career at the age of 34.
The Juventus forward netted a stunning hat-trick against Switzerland in the Nations League semi-finals earlier this week and will be looking to pick up his second trophy with Portugal by beating the Netherlands in the final on Sunday.
"I still feel good despite being 34 years of age," Ronaldo told UEFA.com.
"The most important thing is your head, to feel motivated and happy, and to follow my path is a player, because I still have a lot to give and I feel very good."
Ronaldo returned to international football after taking a short break after the World Cup in Russia last year.
"It's always an honour to come back to the national team," he went on. "It's my country and wearing this shirt is a great honour.
"Obviously, being part of this competition is even more special and scoring goals in it is the cherry on top of the cake."
The Netherlands await in the final in Porto and Ronaldo is fully aware of the threat that Ronald Koeman's team pose.
"The Netherlands are an excellent team," he said. "They have been playing pretty well.
"I've been watching them in recent matches and they have an excellent squad with great players - young players and more experienced players, which makes their team even stronger.
"We know that they will be quite a difficult opponent, but I think that for both Portugal and the Netherlands, this is simply what finals are like."
This will be Ronaldo's third final in a major tournament with Portugal after losing against Greece at Euro 2004 and beating France at Euro 2016.
"Three finals and I hope to win two of the three," Ronaldo said. "That would be fantastic and I have hope - so does the team.
"We are positive; we are playing at home. I hope the stadium will be great, that there will be good energy, that this energy will be transmitted to us, and that everyone can be confident because we will try to give our best.
"Together we can become champions."
June 08, 2019


Nigeria now has a microfinance bank for education, the first in the history of the country. There are 898 licensed MFBs in Nigeria and only Edfin Microfinance Bank has been set up for the purpose of funding education for Nigerians.
The specialised bank is aimed at school owners, teachers, and parents who have their children in school or want to enroll their children in school. While speaking about Edfin MfB, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Mrs. Bunmi Lawson said 80 per cent of Nigerians has a stake in the education sector directly or indirectly.
“Edfin is the first specialized education finance bank in Nigeria. We finance the education eco-system, by that, we mean people who own schools, teachers or principals. We give financial service and value-added services so that schools can grow.
“80 percent of Nigerians have a stake in education, it could be that you run a school or you have a child in school, so we hope that if everybody is educated we would realize human potential.
“If you fund education, you are touching all sectors of the economy, Two-thirds of Nigerians send their children to private schools. The public school system is inadequate to meet the growing population so the private sector has a role to play to ensure that everybody is educated.” 
Why this matterEdfin Microfinance Bank will drive up the level of education among all societal classes, giving each child a chance to experience formal education with proper funding. Lack of funds has always denied children of proper education and sometimes, no education at all. The bank will, therefore, broaden access to funds to keep children at school and increases the education sector’s contribution to the gross domestic product of Nigeria.
What you need to know: Nigeria is among the twelve countries that were picked for education financing by Graymatters Capital which is also a major shareholder in Edfin Microfinance Bank. According to the Chairman of the bank’s Board of Directors, Paul Dileo, Lagos was chosen as the top choice to kickstart the initiative because it met the requirements of the core investor.
About Gray Matters CapitalGray Matters Capitaloperates as an investment company. It invests in energy sectors, educational institutes, and large scale enterprises. Gray Matters Capital conducts its business in the United States.

June 08, 2019


Which players have been released by Premier League clubs this summer?
Premier League rules require all clubs to submit their retained and released lists, though the league notes that players signified as a "free transfer" or released by a club on the expiry of their contract on June 30 could still remain there next season.

  • Cohen Bramall
  • Petr Cech (retired)
  • Charlie Gilmour
  • Stephan Lichtsteiner
  • Julio Pleguezuelo
  • Aaron Ramsey
  • Danny Welbeck

Aston Villa

  • Mile Jedinak
  • Alan Hutton
  • Tommy Elphick
  • Albert Adomah
  • Glenn Whelan
  • Ritchie De Laet
  • Mark Bunn
  • Micah Richards


  • Bruno (retired)
  • Ben Barclay
  • Owen Moore
  • Joe Tomlinson
  • Josh Kerr
  • Ben Hall
  • Stefan Ljubicic
  • Billy Collings
  • Richie Towell
  • Will Collar
  • Julien Carre
  • Jordan Araujo


  • Marc Pugh
  • Jordan Holmes
  • Tom Parker-Trott
  • Nathan Clements
  • James Boote


  • Stephen Ward
  • Anders Lindegaard
  • Jon Walters (retired)
  • Peter Crouch
  • Ntumba Massanka
  • Conor Mitchell
  • Adam Bruce
  • Ed Cook
  • Mark Howarth
  • James Clarke
  • Aiden Stone
  • Marley Blair
  • Tinashe Chakwana


  • Gary Cahill
  • Bradley Collins
  • Rob Green
  • Todd Kane
  • Ruben Sammut
  • Kyle Scott
  • Jared Thompson
  • Martell Taylor-Crossdale
  • Josimar Quintero
  • Eduardo Carvalho
  • Fankaty Dabo

Crystal Palace

  • Tyler Brown
  • Joseph Hungbo
  • Ollie O'Dwyer
  • Jason Puncheon
  • Bakary Sako
  • Julian Speroni
  • Pape Souare (currently in talks, according to the club's official website)


  • Ashley Williams
  • Phil Jagielka
  • Leighton Baines (offered new deal)
  • Harry Charsley
  • Boris Mathis
  • Mateusz Hewelt
  • Shayne Lavery
  • Jack Kiersey
  • Danny Bramall
  • Joe Hilton
  • Chris Renshaw


  • Danny Simpson
  • Shinji Okazaki
  • Lamine Sherif
  • Louis Ramsay
  • Max Bramley
  • Alassane Meite
  • Habib Makanjuola
  • Davide Lorenzo
  • Kairo Edwards-John


  • Alberto Moreno
  • Daniel Sturridge
  • Connor Randall
  • Adam Bogdan
  • Juanma
  • Conor Masterson
  • Glen McAuley
  • Corey Whelan
  • Ben Williams

Manchester City

  • Vincent Kompany
  • Luke Brattan
  • Cameron Humphreys-Grant
  • Charlie Oliver
  • Tom Dele-Bashiru
  • Aaron Nemane

Manchester United

  • Ander Herrera
  • Antonio Valencia
  • Regan Poole
  • Zak Dearnley
  • Tom Sang
  • Callum Whelan
  • Matty Willock
  • James Wilson
  • Matthew Olosunde
  • Tyrell Warren
  • DJ Buffonge
  • Callum Gribbin
  • Millen Baars
  • Josh Bohui
  • James Thompson


  • Mo Diame
  • Cal Roberts
  • Josef Yarney
  • Tyrique Bartlett
  • Juanito
  • Otto Huuhtanen
  • Stefan O'Connor
  • Max Allen
  • Thomas Cole
  • Sam Joyce
  • Deece Kasinga Madia


  • Ivo Pinto
  • Matt Jarvis
  • Yanic Wildschut
  • Steven Naismith
  • Pierre Fonkeu
  • Tristan Abrahams
  • Louis McIntosh
  • Bilal Kamal
  • Spencer Keller
  • Finlay Barnes
  • Ryan Dickerson
  • Aaron Ekumah

Sheffield United

  • Paul Coutts
  • Martin Cranie
  • Conor Washington
  • Daniel Lafferty
  • Caolan Lavery


  • Jonathan Afolabi
  • Jamie Bradley-Green
  • Steven Davis
  • Jake Flannigan
  • Siph Mdlalose
  • Ben Rowthorn


  • Michel Vorm
  • Fernando Llorente
  • Dylan Duncan
  • Charlie Freeman
  • Tom Glover
  • Connor Ogilvie
  • Jamie Reynolds


  • Miguel Britos
  • Ashley Charles
  • Andrew Eleftheriou
  • Heurelho Gomes
  • Tommie Hoban
  • Sam Howes
  • Tom Leighton

West Ham

  • Samir Nasri
  • Andy Carroll
  • Adrian
  • Toni Martinez
  • Moses Makasi
  • Noha Sylvestre
  • Vashon Neufville
  • Josh Pask
  • Mason Barrett
  • Kevin Dalipi
  • Jay Mingi
  • Odysseas Spyridis


  • Michal Zyro
  • Carlos Heredia
  • Ben Goodliffe
  • Aaron Hayden
  • Diego Lattie
  • Enzo Sauvage