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FlashBack: UNILAG Crisis, NBC Hate Speech Fine, Walter Carrington’s Death and Other Top Stories Last Week

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The National Bureau of Statistics after nearly two years released statistics on employment in the country. The removal of University of Lagos Vice Chancellor and the imposition of fine on a radio station, Nigeria Info, sparked outrage in the just concluded week. The Politico however highlights some of the top stories that generated huge attention last week. 

1 Coronavirus Update


COVID-19 cases globally exceeded 21million as infections continue to rise. Total cases stood at 21,630,910 at the end of the week; death toll increased to 769,207 while recoveries rose to 14,340,406. In Nigeria, the week ended with 48,770 confirmed cases. Discharged patients increased to 36,290 while deaths stood at 974. Nollywood actress, Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde became another public figure who have contracted the disease after announcing that she tested positive. 

2 UNILAG VC Removed, Unions, Others Kicked


The crisis between the management of the University of Lagos and its Governing Council deepened as the Vice Chancellor of the institution, Prof Oluwatoyin Ogundipe, was removed by the Council headed by Dr Wale Babalakin. The VC was removed at the Council’s emergency meeting on allegation of gross misconduct and financial recklessness. The governing council however appointed Prof Theophilus Soyombo, as the Acting VC. The Academic Staff Union of University, UNILAG chapter, and the institution’s Senate however rejected the removal of Prof Ogundipe. 

3 NBC Imposed 5m Fine on Radio Station 
National Broadcasting Commission last week imposed a fine of 5million naira on a Lagos-based radio station, Nigeria Info, for professional misconduct. The regulatory agency said it sanctioned the radio station for violating the NB Code by its handling of the programme: “Morning Cross Fire”, aired on August 10, 2020, between 8.30am and 9.00am in which it featured a former CBN Deputy Governor, Dr. Obadiah Mailafia. Mailafia while commenting on insecurity in the North claimed that a northern governor was the commander of Boko Haram. The commission however accused the radio station of providing its platform to promote unverifiable and inciting views that could encourage or incite to crime and lead to public disorder. The sanction imposed on the station elicited condemnation across the country as many Nigerians and groups described the act as a ploy by government to gag the media. 

4 Unemployment Rate Increased in Nigeria 

The National Bureau of Statistics reported that Nigeria’s unemployment rate rose to 27.1% in the second quarter of 2020. The new rate is an increase from 23.1% unemployed in the third quarter of 2018. The country’s unemployment and underemployment rate (28.6%) is a combined 55.7%. According to the report, about, 17,800 PhD holders are jobless while Master’s Degree holders who are unemployed are about 119, 500. The report shows that 2.8million Bachelor’s degrees and Higher National Diploma holders are jobless in the country. 

5 Walter Carrington Died


A former United States ambassador to Nigeria, Walter Carrington, died at the age of 90. A family statement signed by his wife, Arese Carrington said he “passed away peacefully, surrounded by loved ones.” Carrington served as the U.S. Ambassador to Senegal from 1980 to 1981 and was later appointed by former U.S. President, Bill Clinton, in 1993 as the ambassador to Nigeria, where he remained until 1997. Many Nigerian leaders have been paying tributes to the late diplomat who was part of the struggle for Nigeria’s return to democratic rule. 

6 Death Sentence over Blasphemy Sparked Outrage


There was an outrage over the death sentence passed on a 22-year old singer, Yahaya Sharif-Aminu, for committing blasphemy against Prophet Mohammed in a song he circulated via WhatsApp in March. An Upper Sharia Court in Kano found Sharif-Aminu guilty of the offence and was sentenced to death by hanging. The Sharia Court’s decision sparked outrage in the country as many Civil Society Organisations and human right activists condemned it. They called for the reversal of the judgment. 

7 Bauchi Lawmaker Murdered, Wives, One-year old Kidnapped 


A lawmaker in the Bauchi State House of Assembly, Musa Baraza, was killed while his two wives and one-year old child were kidnapped by assailants. Baraza was killed by gunmen at his residence in Dass Local Government Area. He was buried according to Islamic rites. Reacting to the incident, Governor Bala Mohammed, described the lawmaker’s murder as shocking and despicable. He vowed that the Bauchi State Government will work in close collaboration with security agencies to identify the perpetrators, and face the full wrath of the law. The lawmaker represented Dass Constituency in the House before his death.

8 UK Economy Entered Recession

Britain officially entered recession last week as the negative impact of COVID pandemic lockdown on world economies continues to be felt. Data from the Office for National Statistics showed a collapse of around 20 percent of gross domestic product in the second quarter — the worst contraction in Europe. The UK economy contracted by 2.2 percent in the first quarter and, with a recession defined as two successive quarters of decline, the country officially entered another one for the first time in 12 years. It is Britain’s first recession since the 2008 financial crisis.

9 Bayern Munich, Lyon Qualified for Champions League Semis

Bayern Munich humiliated Barcelona with an 8-2 victory to qualify for the semifinals of the UEFA Champions League. The Bavarians scored four goals in each half of the encounter in Lisbon, Portugal to bundle out Messi’s Barça in an embarrassing defeat. Another German side, RazenBallsport Leipzig stunned Spanish side, Atletico Madrid 2-1 in one of the quarter final clashes last week. Also, French side, Olympique Lyon shocked Manchester City with a 3-1 victory to qualify for the last four. This year’s semi-finals have two German teams and two French sides. Lyon will face Bayern Munich while RB Leipzig will slog it out with Paris St Germain in the last four clashes. 

10 Arsenal Signed Willian From Chelsea

Arsenal announced the signing of Brazilian winger, Willian, on a free transfer. Willian whose contract with Chelsea expired at the end of the current campaign turned down a new deal to keep him for two more years at the Stamford Bridge. The energetic winger however penned a three year deal with the Gunners. He was handed number 12 jersey at the Emirates. 

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