- Burna Boy Becomes First African Artist to Surpass 1 Billion Streams on Audiomack
- ‘The Financial System Was Rotten’ – Tinubu Slams Emefiele
- Fuel Subsidy Removal Was Not in Inaugural Speech, But Halt Was Necessary – Tinubu
- ‘I Was Supposed to Join the Titanic Wreck Trip’ – Ned Nwoko
- Court of Appeal Upholds Senator Bassey’s Money Laundering Conviction and Orders Arrest
Across Nigeria’s 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory, these are the five top Nigerian news stories you shouldn’t miss
Burna Boy Becomes First African Artist to Surpass 1 Billion Streams on Audiomack
Burna Boy, the Nigerian Grammy winner and acclaimed afro-beat singer, has achieved a significant milestone by becoming the first African musician to surpass one billion streams on Audiomack. This momentous accomplishment was acknowledged by Audiomack itself, as they sent a congratulatory message to Burna Boy via Twitter.
The music streaming service, known for facilitating the free sharing of unlimited music and podcast content, expressed their admiration, stating, “Congratulations, Burna Boy, on becoming the first African Artist to hit 1 billion Audiomack streams.”
In response to the announcement, Burna Boy took to Twitter with a succinct two-word tweet, referring to his remarkable body of work: “Big 7!”
This achievement adds to Burna Boy’s growing list of accolades. Just earlier this month, the renowned artist made history as the first African performer to headline a solo show in a UK stadium, according to Rolling Stone UK. The London Stadium, boasting an impressive capacity of 80,000 seats, was completely sold out for Burna Boy’s unforgettable performance. Fans were treated to tracks from his hit album “Love Damini” and other chart-topping hits. The London Stadium team praised his remarkable feat via Twitter, acknowledging the significance of this milestone.
Following his triumphant show at the London Stadium, Burna Boy took the stage at the Pepsi Champions League Kick-off Show on June 10, held in Istanbul, Turkey. Alongside Brazilian pop icon Anitta, he delivered captivating performances of songs like “Last Last” and “It’s Plenty,” captivating the audience with his electrifying presence.
As Burna Boy’s global fanbase continues to expand and his artistic achievements accumulate, his influence is transcending borders and penetrating larger music markets. His most recent release, “Sittin’ on Top of the World,” has climbed to new heights on the Netherlands Daily Spotify Top Songs Chart, as well as rising in the UK Daily Spotify Top Songs Chart.
In yet another groundbreaking development, Burna Boy is poised to become the first Nigerian artist to headline a stadium concert in the United States on July 8, 2023, as reported by Billboard. This remarkable feat underscores Burna Boy’s undeniable impact and showcases the extent of his international acclaim.
‘The Financial System Was Rotten’ – Tinubu Slams Emefiele
President Bola Tinubu has described the country’s financial system under the suspended governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, as “rotten.” Tinubu made this statement during an interactive session with Nigerians in Paris, France, where he addressed the alleged irregularities associated with Emefiele’s tenure.
Tinubu highlighted that measures are being taken to address the reported financial irregularities, and Emefiele is currently in the custody of the Department of State Services (DSS) pending further investigations.
During the session, Tinubu emphasized the need to abolish the subsidy on petrol, stating that it only served to enrich a few individuals. He expressed his dissatisfaction with the situation where money was being directed towards smugglers instead of reaching the country’s impoverished citizens. Tinubu also mentioned his meeting with the President of Benin Republic, emphasizing the need to separate the two countries through the removal of the fuel subsidy.
Addressing concerns about the impact of subsidy removal, the president assured that the federal government was working on implementing provisions to mitigate its effects. He emphasized the importance of redirecting the saved funds towards initiatives that would benefit the people, such as increasing palliative measures and improving transportation.
Tinubu further called for unity, stating that if there were protests against the subsidy removal, he would join them. However, he emphasized the necessity of saving the funds to implement effective palliative measures.
Fuel Subsidy Removal Was Not in Inaugural Speech, But Halt Was Necessary – Tinubu
President Bola Tinubu has openly criticized fuel subsidy, referring to it as a “scam” and a deterrent to growth. He stated that the subsidy rewards smugglers and shields some countries from bearing the true cost of the commodity.
Tinubu made these remarks during a meeting with members of the Nigerian community in France, as reported by his Special Adviser on Special Duties, Communication, and Strategy, Dele Alake.
During the meeting, Tinubu clarified that the removal of fuel subsidy was not mentioned in his inaugural speech. However, he believed it was necessary to halt the subsidy on the very first day. This marks the President’s first public comment on his May 29 inaugural speech, in which he announced the end of fuel subsidy.
Following his statement, there was an immediate increase in prices and hoarding, prompting calls for protests by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC). It is important to note that former President Muhammadu Buhari had already initiated measures to halt fuel subsidy payments by June.
President Tinubu also expressed his commitment to reforming the education and health sectors, while assuring the continuation and expansion of economic reforms. These measures aim to alleviate the burden of poverty and insecurity faced by struggling families.
This statement from the President comes just 11 days after he signed the Students Loan Bill into law, emphasizing his dedication to improving the education sector.
‘I Was Supposed to Join the Titanic Wreck Trip’ – Ned Nwoko
Ned Nwoko, the renowned businessman and senator representing Delta North, has revealed that he was originally meant to join the ill-fated underwater trip to witness the Titanic wreck, alongside the tourists who tragically lost their lives. Nwoko shared his sentiments on Friday through an Instagram post, while mourning the loss of his friend, Hamish Harding, a British businessman who was among the passengers aboard the missing submersible, Titan.
The US Coast Guard (USCG) reported that the passengers met their demise due to a “catastrophic implosion” following the discovery of debris believed to be from the Titan near the Titanic, four days after the vessel went missing.
Expressing his profound sadness, Nwoko described Harding as an individual who embraced adventures and challenges. The senator revealed that he and the deceased businessman had previously embarked on various daring exploits together. Although they had planned to explore the Titanic wreck via the Titan, Nwoko had to forgo the opportunity due to his national duties.
Nwoko reminisced, saying, “We both went on a very dangerous expedition to the South Pole Antarctica a few years back. He was a Gulfstream pilot who achieved a Guinness World Record for circumnavigation of the earth through a record-breaking expedition. He ventured into the Mariana Trench and even invited me to join his space shuttle last year. Unfortunately, I couldn’t participate due to my commitments to national duties.”
In addition to their shared adventures, Nwoko highlighted Harding’s involvement as a partner in several research projects aimed at eradicating malaria in Africa. Harding’s unwavering enthusiasm and support for these initiatives were commendable and greatly appreciated.
Recalling his final exchange with Harding, Nwoko shared, “His last message to me was just this past Sunday when he informed me that they were prepared to dive into the Titanic if weather conditions permitted. He had an insatiable love for adventure and relished taking on challenges.”
Nwoko expressed his heartfelt sympathy for Harding’s beloved wife and children, with whom his own family had forged a close bond over the years. The senator acknowledged that Harding’s wealth of experience and contributions would be sorely missed.
Among the other individuals aboard the Titan were Shahzada Dawood, a prominent Pakistani man, and his teenage son Suleman; Paul-Henri Nargeolet, a French diver; and Stockton Rush, CEO of OceanGate, the ocean exploration company responsible for the Titanic tour.
Court of Appeal Upholds Senator Akpan’s Money Laundering Conviction and Orders Arrest
The Calabar Division of the Court of Appeal has upheld the conviction of Senator Bassey Albert Akpan on money laundering charges. The conviction was originally handed down by a Federal High Court in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State. As a result, the Court of Appeal has issued an order for Senator Akpan’s arrest. The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) announced this development in a statement released by its Head of Media and Publicity, Wilson Uwujaren.
The ruling stems from a case in which Senator Akpan was found guilty of seven counts of money laundering. The charges were brought against him by the EFCC, and Justice Agatha Okeke, on December 1, 2022, sentenced him to 42 years in prison without the option of a fine.
The money laundering charges were related to allegations that Senator Akpan received vehicles worth N240 million as a bribe from companies associated with Olajide Omokore. Omokore, a contractor, had executed a N3 billion contract for the Government of Akwa Ibom State during Senator Akpan’s tenure as Commissioner for Finance and Chairman of the Inter-Ministerial Direct Labour Coordinating Committee.
The EFCC statement explained that the offense committed by Senator Akpan contravened Section 15 (2) (d) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 (as amended) and is punishable under Section 15 (3) of the same Act.
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