18 Powers & Privileges Of Queen Elizabeth II That You Had No Idea About

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Tuesday, 27 June 2017

Privilege is like a dessert served on a silver platter. But when it comes to Queen Elizabeth II, her silver platter shines brighter than the moon. Now, you're probably thinking "ab ye sab kaun sochta hai?" but trust me, you're about to be completely blown off your game here because she has it all, literally!

The British monarch's powers and privileges can put these terms to shame. See for yourself:

1. The Queen needs no license to drive.

2. She needs no passport either.

3. She gets to celebrate two birthdays!

According to the Royal Mint , t he Queen's official birthday is celebrated on a Saturday in June, although her actual birthday is on April 21st. An official birthday has been a thing for the Royal family since the very beginning.

4. Ever heard of a private poet? Well, she has one.

The role is currently held by Carol Ann Duffy. According to the official website of the British Monarch, this honorary position is given to a poet whose work is of national significance. Carol will hold the position till 2019. Here's more if you wish to read up.

5. She also has a private cash machine.

Installed in the basement of theBuckingham Palace, provided by Coutts (one of Britain's most exclusive banks), this one is a special perk for the queen and her royal family.A private ATM! Awesome, right?

6. She owns all the swans in the River Thames.

7. And all the dolphins in British waters belong to her too.

8. Without her consent, no bill can be passed to form a law.

9. She has the power to appoint Lords and Knights.

10. She can opt out from paying tax.

But she doesn't. She voluntarily began paying her share in 1992.

11. Her family (and she) have been spared from all Freedom of Information requests!

12. In times of "grave constitutional crisis", the Queen has the power to VETO any ministerial advice/opinion.

13. And under no "grave constitutional crisis" the Queen has the right to be consulted, to encourage, and to warn her ministers.

14. She's also the Queen of Australia.

This is since the enactment of the Royal Styles and Titles Act in 1953.

15. Apart from being the Head of State of UK and Australia, she's also dominion to all these commonwealth realms:

Antigua and Barbuda, the Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Canada, Grenada, Jamaica, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Solomon Islands, and Tuvalu.

16. She's also the head of the Church of England under herformal title " Defender of the Faith and Supreme Governor of the Church of England " .

Sounds like a fancy title picked fromGame Of Thrones , don't you think?

17. She's immune from prosecution.

18. Here's the most epic one of them all. She can fire the entire Australian Government!

Here's how it works. T he Prime Minister of Australia is appointed by the governor-genera l. The queen could instruct her representative to appoint a new PM at any time. She can appoint a new governor-genera l too, if he does not comply.

How I wish I was queen!

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The future: what happens when Messi and Ronaldo retires

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Google fined a record €2.4 billion by the EU for manipulating search results

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Google has been hit with a record-breaking €2.42 billion ($2.7 billion) fine by the European Union for breaking antitrust law. The decision follows a seven-year investigation into the US company’s search algorithms, which ended with the judgement that Google had “abused its dominant position by systematically favoring” its own shopping comparison service. Today’s fine is the largest antitrust judgement handed out by the executive body of the EU, the European Commission, topping a €1 billion penalty given to Intel in 2009.


The primary target of the case is Google Shopping, a price-comparison feature built into the company’s search engine. The commission’s antitrust filing states that Google showed users results from Google Shopping “irrespective of [their] merits,” depriving rival price comparison sites of traffic. The EU argues that because Google is so overwhelmingly dominant in Europe, it should not be allowed to actively undermine competitors.

As part of today’s decision, Google will have to change how its search algorithm ranks websites, in order to “comply with the simple principle of giving equal treatment to rival comparison shopping services and its own service.” This is a major imposition that Google will not take lightly. If it does not end its current conduct, the EU says the company faces daily penalties of up to 5 percent of its average daily turnover.

In a press statement, EU competition commissioner Margrethe Vestager praised Google for coming up with “many innovative products and services that have made a difference to our lives.” But added that the company also “abused its market dominance as a search engine by promoting its own comparison shopping service in its search results, and demoting those of competitors.”

“What Google has done is illegal under EU antitrust rules,” said Vestager. “It denied other companies the chance to compete on the merits and to innovate. And most importantly, it denied European consumers a genuine choice of services and the full benefits of innovation."

Google may appeal this decision in EU courts, potentially delaying a final resolution for years. In a statement the company said: “We respectfully disagree with the conclusions announced today. We will review the Commission’s decision in detail as we consider an appeal, and we look forward to continuing to make our case.”

The US company currently faces two other ongoing EU antitrust investigations: one targeting its AdSense business, and another, the deals it makes with Android phone manufacturers. The EU has the power to fine Google up to 10 percent of its annual revenue (around $9 billion) in each investigation. Today’s judgement also opens up the possibility of other companies to take civil action suits against Google.

Today’s decision will anger the US business world, which has accused the EU of unfair treatment against American tech companies. Vestager recently came under fire for a decision last year forcing Apple to pay Ireland €13 billion in back taxes. The EU denies it is biased against the US, and there’s data to support this. Examining past antitrust decisions made by the commission between 2010 and 2017, 15 percent have hit US companies, while nearly two-thirds have targeted European firms.

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BET Awards 2017: Wizkid Wins ‘Best International Act Africa’

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Monday, 26 June 2017

Nigerian singer and songwriter Wizkid on Sunday bagged BET Award for ‘Best International Act: Africa’ in Los Angeles, California

Wizkid topped Tekno, Mr Eazi, Davido, Stonebwoy, Aka, Nasty C, Babes Wodumo who were also nominated in the category.

This won’t be the first time Star boy is bagging the award in this category, as he has gone home with the award in 2012.

However, Wizkid was unavailable to collect his award, he has received a total of 44 awards from 157 nominations as of June 2017.

Wizkid will be embarking on an international tour with American rapper and songwriter, Future later in July.

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Buhari Suffers Speech Impairment In London

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Wednesday, 21 June 2017

President Muhammad Buhari, who left Nigeria 45 days ago to resume treatment for an undisclosed medical condition believed to be cancer, has developed speech difficulties, presidency sources said today.

Previously, Mr. Buhari was also said to be suffering memory lapses.  The latest revelation stems from recent attempts to return the President to Nigeria by members of a cabal managing his health and using it to deceive Nigerians.

Several of President Buhari’s aides who traveled with him are reportedly not in touch with him, reports say, while others were ordered to return to Nigeria, with nobody having any certainty about the prospects of Mr. Buhari’s date of return.

During his last trip Saharareporters revealed that his London doctors rejected the idea of his returning to work.  They asked that he remained in London for four months to see how best they could treat his illness.  Nonetheless, the cabal managing the president brought him back to enable him to undertake a number of acts including military postings and appointments that would have been impossible with an acting President on seat. 

At that time, Buhari revealed he had been very ill and had received blood transfusion, and indicated he would soon return to the UK for further treatment.  During the period he was in Nigeria, he was rarely seen outside, but managed to attend a few Federal Executive Council meetings which he left as soon as the photo opportunities were done with. Two weeks after that return, his condition deteriorated and doctors had to be flown in from the UK to embark on treatment, but that phase lasted only for a few weeks. 

The president then stopped attending the weekly FEC altogether, but to maintain the ruse that he was healthy, members of the cabal would shepherd him to the mosque on Fridays hoping to generate sentiments within the core Muslim north where a rumor had circulated that the president had been “poisoned”.

 Buhari eventually left for the UK abruptly on the evening of May 7, shortly after meeting with some Chibok girls who had been released the previous day by Boko Haram. Although Buhari spoke at the event, his voice was barely audible, as he had lost a lot of weight, his condition reportedly complicated by Crohn’s Disease.

When the President was leaving for the airport, he shocked his aides when he asked if they were going to Sokoto, perhaps one of the first signs of his deteriorating memory.

It has now been learnt that President Buhari has not spoken to Acting President Yemi Osinbajo by telephone since his departure.  Only last week, the Acting President was asked to await a phone call from Mr. Buhari but when a call eventually came in, nothing coherent was heard from Mr. Buhari, despite the cabal having kept telling people of his “tremendous” improvement.

The cabal is also reportedly behind the rumors of a possible coup by some military officers a couple of weeks ago, as well as the recent quit notice by some Northern youths to the Igbos in that area, which they figured would make western countries view such an attempt with understanding if they thought the action would protect Nigeria as an indivisible entity.

Meanwhile, several top western diplomats including the Ambassadors of the US and the UK, are scheduled to meet with Acting President Osinbajo in the coming days. It is unclear if at that meeting the UK will brief Osinbajo regarding Buhari’s exact condition, but a State Department official told Saharareporters that they are more concerned about Nigeria’s indivisibility than the question of Buhari’s health.  A source at the British Embassy told this website they don’t think Buhari could continue to govern in the condition he is in London.

President Buhari left Nigeria flew into Luton airport on a Presidential jet with registration number 5N-FGT in the first week of May.  The jet was then flown on a 17-minute ride from Luton to London Stansted Airport, where it remains parked for over a month.

posted from Bloggeroid

Aug. 21 Total Solar Eclipse, Nasa Provides Safety Information

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For the first time in 99 years, a total solar eclipse will occur across the entire continental United States, and NASA is preparing to share this experience of a lifetime on Aug. 21.

Viewers around the world will be provided a wealth of images captured before, during, and after the eclipse by 11 spacecraft, at least three NASA aircraft, more than 50 high-altitude balloons, and the astronauts aboard the International Space Station – each offering a unique vantage point for the celestial event.

NASA Television will air a multi-hour show, Eclipse Across America: Through the Eyes of NASA, with unprecedented live video of the celestial event, along with coverage of activities in parks, libraries, stadiums, festivals and museums across the nation, and on social media.

Coast to coast, from Oregon to South Carolina, 14 states will – over a span of almost two hours – experience more than two minutes of darkness in the middle of the day. When the moon completely blocks the sun, day will turn into night and make visible the otherwise hidden solar corona, the sun’s atmosphere. Bright stars and planets also will become visible. Using specialized solar viewing glasses or other equipment, all of North America will be able to view at least a partial eclipse lasting two to four hours.  

“Never before will a celestial event be viewed by so many and explored from so many vantage points – from space, from the air, and from the ground,” said Thomas Zurbuchen, associate administrator of NASA’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington. “With our fellow agencies and a host of scientific organizations, NASA will continue to amplify one key message: Take time to experience the Aug. 21 eclipse, but experience it safely.”

Viewing Safety

The only safe way to look directly at the uneclipsed or partially eclipsed sun is through special-purpose solar filters, such as eclipse glasses or handheld solar viewers. Homemade filters or ordinary sunglasses, even very dark ones, are not safe for looking at the sun. In the 70-mile-wide swath of the country that will experience a total eclipse, it’s safe to look at the total eclipse with your naked eyes only during the brief period of totality, which will last about two minutes, depending on your location.

An alternative method for safe viewing of the partially-eclipsed sun is with a pinhole projector. With this method, sunlight streams through a small hole – such as a pencil hole in a piece of paper, or even the space between your fingers – onto a makeshift screen, such as a piece of paper or the ground. It’s important to watch the screen, not the sun.

For more information on viewing safety, visit:


NASA and other agencies will provide vital information and updates on their respective websites that include viewing safety, activities across the country including at national parks, in addition to transportation preparations.

Studying Our Sun

Many researchers and citizen scientists will take advantage of this unique opportunity to study our sun, solar system, and Earth under rare circumstances. The sudden blocking of the sun during an eclipse reduces the light and changes the temperature on the ground, creating conditions that can affect local weather and animal behavior.

Understanding the sun has always been a top priority for space scientists. These scientists study how the sun affects space and the space environment of planets – a field known as heliophysics. As a source of light and heat for life on Earth, scientists want to understand how our sun works, why it changes, and how these changes influence life on Earth. The sun’s constant stream of solar material and radiation can impact spacecraft, communications systems, and orbiting astronauts.

“Eclipse 2017 provides an incredible opportunity to engage the entire nation and the world, inspiring learners of all ages who have looked to the sky with curiosity and wonder,” said Steven Clarke, director of NASA’s Heliophysics Division in Washington.

NASA spacecraft capturing the event include: NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, which will turn toward Earth to track the shadow of the moon on our planet; a host of Earth-observing spacecraft, which can both observe the shadow of the moon and measure how it affects Earth’s weather; and a fleet of solar observing spacecraft. NASA images and data of the eclipse will complement that collected by other scientific organizations.

For more information on eclipse activities, observing assets, and viewing safety, visit:


To watch the Aug. 21 NASA TV eclipse broadcast online and access interactive web content and views of the eclipse from more than 60 telescopes, aircraft and balloons, visit:


posted from Bloggeroid

How Etisalat destroyed themselves by choosing Buhari over Jonathan – Reno Omokri

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Former Special Assistant to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan on New Media, Reno Omokri, has mocked telecommunications outfit, Etisalat, after they were taken over by a consortium of banks on Tuesday.

Omokri claims the company “destroyed” themselves by backing President Muhammadu Buhari and not his former boss.

He tweeted: “Those behind Etisalat backed PMB and undermined GEJ, thinking they were destroying GEJ. Today they find that it’s themselves they destroyed!?”

The banks, led by Access Bank PLC and other local and foreign banks have taken over the telecommunication company effective June 15.

The take-over came as a result of a futile effort by Emerging Markets Telecommunications Services, EMTS, promoted by-one time Chairman, United Bank for Africa, UBA, Hakeem Bello-Osagie, to reach agreement with the banks on debt restructuring plan in the protracted $1.72 billion (about N541.8 billion) debt impasse.

However, EMTS Holding BV, established in the Netherlands, has up to June 23 to complete the transfer of 100 percent of the company’s shares in Etisalat to the United Capital Trustees Limited, the legal representative of the consortium of banks.

Etisalat Group, the parent company of Etisalat Nigeria, announced the takeover on Tuesday, in a letter filed to the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirate.

posted from Bloggeroid

JAMB: 85,000 candidates to write supplementary 2017 UTME

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JAMB: 85,000 candidates to write supplementary 2017 UTME

The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has said that no fewer than 85,000 candidates, will write the supplementary Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME), which has been fixed for July 1.

The board’s Head, Media and Information, Fabian Benjamin, in a statement issued on Tuesday in Abuja, explained that the examination was for those who registered late and those with related issues.

The exams will be spread across some Computer Based Testing (CBT) centres.

“Following an enlarged management meeting of the JAMB, the supplementary 2017 UTME has been fixed to hold on Saturday, July 1.

“No fewer than 85,000 candidates are scheduled to write the examination.

“Affected candidates have been notified through text messages.

“By this notice, they are advised to check their e-mail and profile for the schedule of their examination or visit the board’s website for their status,” Benjamin said. .

JAMB has advised rescheduled candidates, to comport themselves and be of good behaviour.

“Many of the candidates rescheduled for this examination enjoy this privilege because of the board’s principles of equality and inclusiveness.

“It is better to let 100 offenders go free than to punish one innocent person.

“The board will enhance its monitoring of the examination as it would not compromise its sanctity,” the statement added.

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$1.2bn loan: Etisalat Nigeria goes down

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Akinpelu Dada, Oyetunji Abioye and Ozioma Ubabukoh

The ownership structure of Etisalat Nigeria is now set to change after talks with lenders to restructure its $1.2bn (N541bn) loan failed.

This came months after discussions with a consortium of 13 banks, including Guaranty Trust Bank Plc and Access Bank Plc, to restructure the loan after the telecoms firm missed repayment deadlines failed to produce an agreement.

In a statement on Tuesday, Etisalat Nigeria confirmed the development and said it had commenced the restructuring with changes to its shareholding.

The statement, signed by the Vice-President, Regulatory and Corporate Affairs, Etisalat Nigeria, Ibrahim Dikko, did not give details of the new shareholding structure and the likely trading name.

It read in part, “Etisalat Nigeria can confirm discussions are ongoing regarding other issues such as the trading name during this transition phase. Operations and services to our subscribers remain normal and will in no way be affected as we continue to deliver quality services to our subscribers.

“We will continue to tap into the rich, creative and innovative resources within our workforce to build a stronger business upon the stable foundation we have laid in our nine years of operation.”

The Etisalat Group confirmed the changes to Etisalat Nigeria’s shareholding on Tuesday in a letter to the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

The Etisalat Group, with a 45 per cent stake in the Nigerian arm, said it had been ordered to transfer its shares to a loan trustee by June 23, after negotiations failed, Reuters reported.

It added that it was carrying the stake at nil value.

The group has up to Friday to complete the transfer of 100 per cent of the company’s shares in Etisalat Nigeria to the United Capital Trustees Limited, the legal representative of the consortium of 13 banks.

Dikko said the management was continuing to run the business after the shareholding changes and that there were contractual and regulator issues to be finalised.

“Etisalat Nigeria wishes to express its profound gratitude to the government, the Nigerian Communications Commission and the Central Bank of Nigeria for their patriotic zeal and tireless efforts at ensuring collaborative and productive engagement,” he added.

Meanwhile, the NCC has assured the over 21 million Etisalat subscribers that it will do all within its regulatory power to ensure that they continue to enjoy the services provided by the operator.

The commission said in a statement that it had taken proactive steps to cushion the impact of the new shareholding arrangement in the firm, adding, “This is without prejudice to the ongoing effort between Etisalat and the banks toward a negotiated settlement.”

The statement, which was signed by the Director, Public Affairs, NCC, Tony Ojobo, read in part, “In view of the recent development, the NCC wishes to reassure all stakeholders in the telecommunications sector, in particular the subscribers on the Etisalat network, that the commission will ensure that the integrity of the Etisalat network is not compromised.

“Accordingly, the commission has drawn the attention of the banks to the provisions of the Nigerian Communications Act, 2003, Section 38:

“Sub section 1 – The grant of a licence shall be personal to the licensee and the licence shall not be operated by, assigned, sub-licensed or transferred to another party unless the prior written approval of the commission has been granted;

“Sub section 2 – A licensee shall at all times comply by the terms and condition of the licence and the provision of this Act and its subsidiary legislation.”

The Nigerian industry regulators had tried to prevent the lenders form placing the telecoms firm into receivership to avoid a wider debt crisis and agreed with the banks to pursue a default deal.

But the banks, under pressure to avoid loan-loss provisions, have been pushing to finalise restructuring before half-yearly audits this month.

The President, Association of Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria, Olushola Teniola, asked the NCC to focus on consumers, saying, “Their ultimate choice should be paramount in the minds of all stakeholders during this difficult period for the shareholders of Etisalat.”

Teniola said that the customers and quality of service were key to the future shape and size of Etisalat.

He said, “Investors, both domestic and international, will be watching very closely how our regulator is able to manage any fall out and the precedence this sets for the industry.

“The ATCON has called for and reiterates a call for a competition czar to be created to deal with such issues raised over the last three months concerning takeovers, mergers and acquisitions in a sector that is critical to the future of our economy.”

The Chairman, Association of Licensed Telecommunications Operators of Nigeria, Gbenga Adebayo, said the body had yet to receive formal notification of the development from its member, Etisalat.

“However, we hope that the parties can resolve the matter amicably. Despite the current situation, there is still room for negotiation. We believe strongly that the matter will not affect Etisalat’s subscribers in the country,” he stated.

The loan that has proved so troubling for Etisalat Nigeria is a seven-year facility agreed with 13 local banks in 2013 to refinance a $650m loan and fund expansion of its network.

The Abu Dhabi state-investment fund Mubadala, the second-biggest shareholder in Etisalat Nigeria, declined to comment.

posted from Bloggeroid

Pathetic as over 40,000 Nigeria applicants jostle for 1,112 NIS Job.

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Tuesday, 20 June 2017

Adelani Adepegba, Abuja

The Federal Government has said that the ongoing recruitment into the Nigeria Immigration Service will accommodate just 1,112 applicants based on the approval given by President Muhammadu Buhari.

Our correspondent however learnt that over 40,000 Nigerians had applied for the advertised NIS jobs.

The Minister of Interior, Lt.Gen. Abdulrahman Dambazau (retd.) who disclosed this on Monday in Abuja, explained that the recent advertisement by the NIS was to recruit the balance of 1,112 candidates to make it to 2000 as approved in the last aborted recruitment.

He said this while fielding questions from journalists shortly after the presentation of the handbook on the operations of the Presidential Executive Order at the NIS headquarters.

Dambazau said, “There were two aborted Immigration recruitments that were done. The first one led to fatality and casualties. The second one was dispersed following discovery of so many abnormalities which 2,000 of them were sent home.

“When we came in November 2015, we looked at the whole thing and we discovered for the second one that it was not all the fault of the candidates as such but it was the process that was followed.

“So, we wrote a memo to Mr President that we should recall those candidates, 2000 of them, so that we can reassess them and the President graciously approved that and we advertised in papers and I think about 1,500 or so reported and out of this number 888 qualified for that recruitments.

“Now the balance of 1, 112 is what we are working on now, that is the reason for the recent advertisement by the Nigerian Immigration Service to recruit that balance of 1,112 and this is the process we are in now.”

He, however, assured that the recruitment process would be transparent and fair.

The NIS Comptroller-General, Muhammed Babandede, said competency of the personnel would be given priority under his administration.

He said, “We are going to recruit young officers with priority of those who speak foreign languages such as French, Chinese, Arabic with priority to those who have ICT skills. We are complying with the national level to train quality and not just number.”

On the Presidential Executive Order, Babandede said his agency is using the opportunity of the mandate to further review its services.

He announced that request for official passports by state or local government officials would henceforth be confirmed by state Comptrollers of Immigration and divisional Immigration Officers respectively.

posted from Bloggeroid

Three Principles For Meeting People

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Three Principles For Meeting People: Nobody Cares, Nobody Minds & The Exception Is An Asshole.

I used to suck at meeting people. Really, I’d be that guy standing in a corner for the entire night, staring alternately into an increasingly room temperature beer and the glowing light of my smartphone. I’d be that guy who would sign up for awesome events and then spend the entire afternoon brainstorming valid ways to convince myself that it was okay not to turn up.

I love performing and public speaking and can do those without hesitation — but as I’m sure you know, there’s a clear line between a person on a stage and an audience that can transcend shyness or a lack of confidence. I’ve never been a particularly confident person, when faced with the prospect of talking to somebody one on one.

Part of this probably stems from my years struggling through speech therapy to deal with the fact that most people couldn’t understand me. Even today, my constant fear is that I will open my mouth and people will get that confused look in their eyes and say…..Sorry? Pardon?

The good news is, I can get over it now. I can deal with the lack of confidence, and while there is no chance that I can command a room with my presence and network like a hyped up motivational speaker on 3 acid tabs. But I can get out of my own head, introduce myself and meet cool people. I do this by recognising and acting in accordance with three principles.

These principles are based on a lot of personal experience, but they’re also based on a certain faith in humanity and a belief that most people aren’t that bad. They’re not horrible at least. Every time I approach someone and strike up a conversation, the same three things have rung true.

A) Nobody really cares. You can stumble over your words, spill your drink or not be up to date with the latest hot news and people won’t actually give a damn. As long as you’re excited to meet them, you show respect and you actively try to engage, they’ll be happy to talk.

B) Nobody really minds meeting people. At the end of the day, even someone in a foul is probably not going to respond negatively if you are genuinely interested in who they are and what their story is.

C) The exception to the above principles is either a real asshole or they’re having a bad day. If it’s the first, at least you’ll know for next time. If it’s the second, that’s not your fault.

Instead of worrying about personal branding or how to work a room, try following these principles. They’re a good rule of thumb any time you have to meet new people and interact with them. Take it from someone who used to be paralysed with fear any time there was a chance I’d have to interact with a stranger.

In the end, these principles work if you’re genuine in the way you talk to and treat other people. That’s why these are principles, not networking techniques. Do you know who teaches networking techniques? The same people who actively call themselves motivational speakers and #hashtag #everything #in #their #twitter #bio. People who aren’t genuine. Don’t be those people.

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Ohanaeze reacts as Arewa youths ask Osinbajo to facilitate Igbo exit

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The coalition of northern groups, including the Arewa Youth Consultative Forum, which gave Igbo residents in the North three-month ultimatum  to leave the region, has written to Acting President Yemi Osinbajo to facilitate the process of allowing Igbo to leave Nigeria.

One of the leaders of the coalition and National President, AYCF, Alhaji Shettima Yerima, confirmed this on the telephone to The PUNCH in Kaduna on Monday.

In the open letter, signed by five of the leaders of the groups, the coalition urged the Acting President to ease the exit of the Igbo from Nigeria so that they could have  their dream country, Biafra.

This, they said, should not be through violent means but in a peaceful manner through a referendum.

Those who signed the letter are Yerima; Joshua Viashman (Northern  Youth Vanguard); Aminu Adam (Arewa Youth Development Foundation); Abdul-Azeez Suleiman (Northern Emancipation Network) and Nastura Ashir Sharif (Arewa Citizens Action for Change).

According to the groups, the Acting President should take steps to facilitate the actualisation of the Biafran nation in line with the principle of self-determination as an integral part of contemporary international law.

They added, “We feel that it is risky for the rest of the country, particularly the North, to go on pretending that it is safe for us to co-exist with the Igbo given how deeply they are entrenched in our societies.”

They added that since the principle of self-determination became one of the Charters of the UN, after the World War ll, it was better for the Igbo to go without bloodletting.

The group argued that as the Igbo agitations persisted and assumed threatening dimensions, “we submit that there is the need to ensure that they are given the opportunity to exercise the right to self-determination as entrenched in the aforementioned international statutes to which Nigeria is a signatory.”

They insisted that they were not waging war or calling anyone to violence, but noted that “we nevertheless are also not willing to continue tolerating the malicious campaign and threats of war that the Igbo have continued to wage against us.”

The youth leaders stated, “Neither can we afford to continue giving the keys to our cities to a people whose utterances, plans and arrangements are clearly geared towards war and anarchy.

“We therefore demand that the only enduring solution to this scourge that is being visited on the nation is complete separation of the states presently agitating for Biafra from the Federal Republic of Nigeria through a peaceful political process by taking steps to facilitate the actualisation of the Biafran nation in line with the principle of self-determination as an integral part of contemporary customary international law.

“We submit that this protocol envisages that people of any nation have the right to self-determination, and although the Charter did not categorically impose direct legal obligations on member states, it implies that member states allow agitating or minority groups to self-govern as much as possible.”

The coalition continued in the letter that past experience had shown that the Igbo of Eastern Nigeria manifested their hatred for Nigeria’s unity barely five years after the country’s independence from the British “when on January 15, 1966, their army officers carried out the first-ever mutiny that marked the beginning of a series of crises which has profoundly altered the course of Nigeria’s history.”

They noted that even in recent times, the agitation for the Igbo to have the Republic of Biafra heightened with the activities of Kanu’s IPOB and never opposed by majority of the Igbo.

The coalition added, “Kanu and IPOB have declared full allegiance to a ‘Republic of Biafra’ and continue to preach hatred and war virtually every day, and not for once did any Igbo leader caution them.

“Instead, many of the leaders, including Mr. Ike Ekweremadu, the Deputy Senate President, the most senior elected Igbo, pay Kanu courtesy calls to prove that he is speaking for the entire Igbo.

“Even the latest statement by the South-East Governors Forum, signed by Governor David Umahi of Ebonyi State, in a response to the northern reaction, did not condemn Kanu and Uwazuruike but characterised their action as peaceful.

“While we do not see this clamour for Biafra as an issue over which a single drop of blood should be shed, we, at the same time, insist that the Igbo be allowed to have their Biafra and for them to vacate our land peacefully so that our dear country Nigeria can finally enjoy  lasting peace and stability.”

You can’t drive us out of Nigeria, Ohanaeze tells North

But in its reaction, the apex umbrella for the Igbo, the Ohanaeze Ndigbo, said the North could not drive Ndigbo out of Nigeria.

The Deputy Publicity Secretary of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Mr. Chuks Ibegbu, who spoke to one of our correspondents in Enugu, said Ohanaeze insisted on the restructuring of the country, and not secession.

Stressing that the northern youths lacked the mandate to speak for the Igbo, Ibegbu noted that the Arewa groups were trying to provoke another war in the country.

Ibegbu stated, “In the first place, I want to thank the Acting President for the role he is playing in this situation. He is a peacemaker and he has shown himself to be conversant with the dynamics of leadership.

“The Acting President has told all the parties to allow peace to reign. Igbo are peaceful people; so, we will abide by what he said.

“We are conscious of what the Acting President told the Igbo leaders and the traditional rulers when they visited the Presidential Villa. Therefore, we will not be drawn into taking issue with these northern youths; they are people who have shown themselves to be lawbreakers and warmongers.

“The activities of these Arewa youths have shown that there is more than meets the eye to the ultimatum they gave the Igbo in the North. They simply want to drag the country into another war.”

Ibegbu stressed that agitation for separation was not peculiar to the Igbo, as claimed by the Arewa youths.

The Ohanaeze spokesman observed that the agitation in the South-East was largely a protest against marginalisation, rather than a wish for secession.

Ibegbu added, “That some individuals are pushing for self-determination in the South-East does not mean that the Igbo want to secede. The real situation is a protest against marginalisation.

“We should not forget that even now, as we speak, the Boko Haram sect is still canvassing Islamic rule in the North, using violent means – that is a form of agitation for secession.

“So why should the northern youths ignore the log in their eyes to bother about the speck in another person’s eyes; why the venom against the Igbo?”

 Afenifere berates northern youths, reinstates call for their arrest

Reacting to the letter, the Yoruba socio-cultural group, Afenifere, slammed the youth for their position.

The spokesperson for the group, Yinka Odumakin, in an interview with one of our correspondents, asked Osinbajo to tell the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, to arrest leaders of the northern groups.

Odumakin argued that the letter signified danger to the southerners in the North.

He stated, “This is a confirmation of what we have said so far. For almost 12 days after their inciting comments, none of them has been arrested by the police.

“That they are giving it back to the Acting President shows that they have an assignment they are carrying out for their sponsors. It also shows that the elders have failed to caution their youths.”

 Northern elders split on youths call for referendum

Meanwhile, the Northern Elders Forum and the Northern Elders Council have disagreed on the call by the coalition of northern youths to the acting President to organise a “referendum that will ease out the Igbo out of the country.”

The Chairman of the NEC, Alhaji Tanko Yakasai, said the referendum would be unconstitutional.

He added that “any secession could only be actualised by war.”

But the Secretary of the NEF, Prof Ango Abdullahi, believed that the northern youths had made a workable recommendation since both warring parties had not shifted their grounds.

Yakasai stated, “You know that in the Nigerian constitution, there is no place where there is a national referendum for secession. If they (the youths) don’t know what they are doing, you should know what you are doing.

“Only the Independent National Electoral Commission can organise a referendum. That is all. Nobody has the power to organise a referendum. The acting President has no power to organise a national referendum. We are governed by our constitution.

“The only way for any group to secede is through war. There is no provision for any part to secede legally.”

Abbdullahi, on the other hand, said, “The fact that there has been a contact with the elders by the acting President has not yet brought out any resolution to the position taken by both sides.

“So, it looks like there is still a lot more work to do. I believe that what the youths have done is to raise a suggestion. They are emphasing that whatever happens in Nigeria should happen peacefully, and this includes the possibility of separation.

“So, I do not know what the worry is all about. What the boys are doing is to more or less make a suggestion.”

How I Landed My First Job as a Web Developer

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Monday, 19 June 2017

I have always had an interest in coding for the web. I built my first site almost 15 years ago using Yahoo’s Geocities, which allowed HTML styling and a few layout choices.

Even when I went to college, I enrolled in engineering and studied Matlab and C++.

I loved coding but I had one major problem holding me back: I never committed to learning.

Information Overload

For years I would start tutorials and classes that would teach me the basics of a certain language or technology (like Dreamweaver, Java, etc.). But I never made the time to pursue anything to an advanced level.

I would spend hours researching and finding new classes or tutorials. I would watch myriads of these different tutorials, and read blogs by different authors, each with different styles of teaching and advice for how I should learn to code. One said this, and the other says that.

I was both confused and frustrated. I wanted to give up, thinking that I would never make it to a high enough level to pursue a career in coding. I was convinced there were more technologies than I could possibly learn, and it would be too stressful a journey.

Professionally, I was a restaurant manager (and later, a salesperson) working 50–60 hours (or more) per week. Between work, helping my grandmother, and other personal obligations, I always made the excuse that I didn’t have time to learn how to code. Yet I spent so many hours surfing the web and reading about how I should go about learning without committing and sticking to any one curriculum.

Fast Forward to 2015

As I so often do, I started this year with ambitious goals to change my life, get in shape, and have the best year ever.

By January of 2015, I had just completed a Treehouse track on using Swift for IOS app development, and I had built three semi-cool working apps on my local machine. I was so excited that I decided that this was — without question — the year I would definitely learn how to code!

The Plan

I had just quit my time-consuming job as a salesperson and gotten a temporary job at a local restaurant, which gave me loads of free time. I immediately began to research and plan what technologies I would learn, and what tools I would use. I started reviewing HTML, CSS, and basic JavaScript.

Around March, I found Free Code Camp, and also CodeCloud.me — a website promising to effectively teach students through building real life projects with some big name companies like Expedia. I decided to leave Free Code Camp in my t0do list and pursue the CodeCloud.me projects.

I wasted about a month trying to figure out how I was going to learn to code on their site. It was confusing, poorly designed, and most of my group quit before the project ever started. I had many other problems with their curriculum, and finally went searching for that site that I’d stumbled upon earlier, Free Code Camp.

Free Code Camp — How I Finally Learned How to Code

I was happy seeing that the number of users on Free Code Camp was increasing, so I figured it was a good program. Plus it was entirely free.

After listening to the audiobook, “No Degree, No Problem” by Josh Kemp, I decided to dedicate several hours every day to learn how to code. I went through the front end development challenges pretty quickly, and completed all five of the front end projects.

These projects took me from three days to a week each to complete. I learned about JSON, APIs, jQuery, Angular, Bootstrap, advanced JavaScript concepts, and so much more. I finally felt accomplished!

I then started the backend sections on Node, Express, and MongoDB. These really gave me a broad perspective on web development, and how front end and server-side technologies tie in to each other.

To date, I have only completed one of the full stack projects, because I am working as a front end developer and studying ReactJS. Soon, however, I plan to complete all of the Free Code Camp projects.

Having a job in web development is helping me immensely, and allowing me to learn everyday while I am working.

Meetups and Networking

I am naturally a very introverted, quiet person, so networking is extremely hard for me. However, I decided I had to at least try. I started going to meet-ups and letting my online network know about my new skills, and that I was looking for a new job.

The first meet-up I went to was a Girl Develop It one where they taught Git and Github, and had time allotted afterwards to socialize. I was already pretty familiar with the material, so I figured it would make me more comfortable for the first meet-up.

I forced myself to walk up to people after the lesson and introduce myself. It was painful. My hand was shaking because I was so nervous. I wanted to run out of there, but somehow I made it through the two hours or so, and ran out to my car to take a breath!

It did get better. The more meetups I attended the more comfortable I got. I saw there wasn’t a functioning meetup group for Free Code Camp in Indiana, so I started one here so I could be around coders that were at my own level and get them started helping each other. We had several meetups that went well, and allowed us to connect and share ideas. Hopefully, we will be more active in the future with coffee-and-code meetingsand other events.

Reviewing and Debugging Other People’s Code

One thing that has helped me immensely is reviewing other people’s code. It’s one thing to write my own code and make changes to it. It’s another thing entirely for me to review and edit someone else’s project.

I started looking at other people’s code in the Free Code Camp chat room when other students had questions to try and help them. When we started a meet-up group in Indianapolis, several other campers messaged me for help with their projects as well.

At first, it was extremely difficult for me to understand or read code written by anyone else. Especially if I had already completed a different version of the project, I had trouble figuring out where everything was, and why they wrote it the way they did.

I started to clone various github projects to give me practice. After doing this a couple dozen times, I started to get the hang of it.

Everyone has a different style. Some people are better at design, and some are better at functional programming, or other areas. There is something to learn from everyone, even if it’s what not to do.

Looking back, learning how to read other people’s code has helped me immensely in getting to where I am today.

Books vs. Audiobooks

I have amassed quite a collection of unfinished programming books sitting on my shelf. I spent up to $30 or more each, was excited for a few days, and ended up leaving them forgotten on the shelf, only to pursue a new book shortly after.

I found a method that works much better for me: listening to audiobooks. While I am at my house I work through mostly video tutorials, and build projects. And then on the road, I listen to audiobooks.

This system has been working really well for me. Plus I can maximize my learning when I would otherwise just be listening to music.

Another note is that, even though I downloaded all of the books through Audible, I never paid full price for them. I received two free books for the first month I signed up. I then cancelled at the end of the month, and they sent me an email after that offering me three months for a large discount (I think it was 50% off). After I cancelled my subscription again, they sent me an email offering me three months for $.99 per month. Also, they always have some free or really cheap audiobooks available.

I am not saying here that quality material is not worth paying for. Rather, I think that once you are making money from coding it is great to invest in quality training materials. However, if you aren’t making money from it yet, I think you should try to spend as little as possible up front until you get hired.

Here is a list of the (worthwhile) books I have listened to so far. Let me know if you have any other ideas.

Bottom Line

In short, the six keys to my success were:

Diligently Following a Curriculum (Free Code Camp)

Setting aside time every day to code (several hours no matter what!)

Listening to Programming/Web Development audiobooks everyday while driving

Reviewing other people’s code, and asking them to review mine

Compiling a portfolio of at least 5 or 6 working projects that can showcase abilities

Networking and meetups, and more networking!

There are still many more goals that I want to achieve as a professional. I am studying ReactJS and Sass currently, and I have a list of other technologies I want to learn.

I am very happy with where I am at, and I am trying to take one thing at a time.

Adapted from https://medium.freecodecamp.com/how-i-landed-my-first-job-as-a-web-developer-f991fe728b95

Anti-corruption fight must start from churches, says Osinbajo

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The Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo, on Sunday said for corruption to be completely eradicated in the country, the fight against the menace must start from churches.

He said it was only when church leaders resolve to ostracise and expose corrupt members of their congregation that the problem could be solved.

Osinbajo spoke at a special service organised to mark this year’s Father’s Day at the Aso Villa Chapel located inside the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

The Acting President, who himself is a pastor of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, said church leaders must begin to talk more on honesty, unlike the current situation that more emphasis is placed on giving.

“Every time that we come to church, we are told about giving.  But we need to talk more about honesty.  We need to talk far more about honesty.  In the same way we talk about giving, we need to talk more about honesty,” he declared.

Osinbajo said church leaders must be ready to confront their members who are living above their means.

He said once the church took its rightful place and decided to expose treasury looters, the nation’s problems would be solved.

Osinbajo said, “If the church says you are not allowed to steal and we will ostracise you in our midst if you did -if what a man has does not measure up to what he earns; if we found that a man has more money than he should have, if a man is earning a salary of a civil servant or a public servant and he has houses everywhere, we have to hold him to account.

“He must be held to account in the church.  He must be told first in the church that ‘we will not allow you here.’

“If the church says ‘we will not accept you here’ or that ‘we will expose you if you are stealing the resources of the country or stealing the resources of a private company or other establishment where you work,’ then we would not have the type of problem that we have in this country.  If only the church does so. Just the church.”

Jumia 5th Year Anniversary is Arriving Soon: Stand a Chance to Win a ₦30,000 Voucher Everyday

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Sunday, 18 June 2017

Hip, Hip, Hurray! Jumia, the online store you can trust, turns 5 next month July!
Jumia, has set to celebrate 5 years of trust and bringing excellent service all over Nigeria. It is indeed a celebration of providing quality products and services delivered at your doorsteps nationwide.

According to Jumia: "We’re counting down to Jumia’s 5th Anniversary and this birthday celebration is all about YOU! Our customers, our vendors, our partners, our employees and our community. There is no way Jumia would be here without you. You make us Jumia! And to say thank you we’re throwing the biggest sales and promo event everrrr – The Big 5 Promo!!!! From July 3rd to 13th, join us on jumia.com.ngto win hundreds of free vouchers, prizes and of course deals for up to 50% off. This is one party you don’t want to miss!"

Starting from 3rd to 13th of July, 2017, you will be enjoying the following benefits and gift and more

50,000 + super deals on all categoriesDaily Flash Sale Treats everyday at midnightGames all day long to win voucherLive countdown vouchers and secret partiesIf there is any item you want to buy, keep your cash until 3rd-13th of July 2017.

To be a part of Jumia NG birthday party deals;
1. Register your email and get a reminder on the D-day, by visiting the Jumia special created page for Jumia Birthday Deals, at www.jumia.com.ng/anniver...

2. Be the first to get notifications of Jumia daily deals. Download the Jumia app via your Android or iOS devices.

What you should not miss
Stand a Chance to win up to N30,000 voucher every day

 Access Jumia super secret party and get 30% off on all products*
For this you need to:
Visit social media between June 26th - July 2nd
Collect the 7 secret characters
Stay tuned for date & proceedings to be announced

Get the links of Jumia social mediaplatform via Jumia Anniversary Page, at www.jumia.com.ng/jumia...
Note: Voucher valid for first 1000 customers, on a selected of products. Not valid for products by Infinix and Gionee.

I will continue hunting down all the best Jumia 5th Year Anniversary - Birthday Deals, sharing them with you right here, so stay glued.

Beyonce and Jay Z welcome twins

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Beyoncé has reportedly given birth to the much-awaited twins, in the same Los Angeles hospital where she delivered Blue Ivy Carter.

E! News quotes multiple sources as saying that she and her husband, Jay Z, were thrilled with the arrival of their new babies.

“Bey and Jay are thrilled and have started sharing the news with their family and closest friends,” a source says.

US Weekly also reports that the twins arrived earlier this week and the power couple have started informing family and friends.

The Sun claims there has been increased security around the plush Cendars Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles. Some of her fans have claimed to seeing her bodyguards carrying two baby car seats.

Apostle Suleman blows hot over removal of CRK in curriculum, warns Buhari, North

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President of the Omega Fire Ministries, Apostle Johnson Suleman, has expressed outrage at the removal of Christian Religious Knowledge (CRK) as a subject of study from the secondary school curriculum, describing it as a move by President Muhammadu Buhari to Islamise Nigeria.

Recall that the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) complained about the development during its meeting with Acting President Yemi Osinbajo at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

The delegation led by its President, Rev Dr Samson Olasupo Ayokunle, also listed demands on the matter and other burning issues in a letter delivered to Osinbajo.

In a statement issued on Sunday by Phrank Shaibu, spokesman of the church, Apostle Suleman, stated that the decision to scrap CRK as a subject in the curriculum but only to be studied as a theme in civic education while leaving Islamic/Arabic studies as a subject to be studied in the secondary school curriculum, is a deliberate plot by the Buhari administration, among other schemes, eliminate Christianity or at best reduce it to insignificance in Nigeria.

“The new curriculum which is the brain-child of the Nigerian Educational Research Council and which is mischievously crafted to force Islamic Studies down the throat of non adherents is unjust, discriminatory, a subtle attempt at islamization, and therefore unacceptable,” the statement said.

“This is a well orchestrated and articulated plot. Let nobody try to fool Nigerians that it was a mistake or a coincidence. Why is it that CRK would be removed as a subject to be studied from the secondary school school curriculum while Islamic/Arabic studies is retained? This is a plan from hell and it shall not stand”, he declared.

Apostle Suleman also noted that the policy has been introduced at a time when Fulani herdsmen are on rampage in parts of the country and just before so called Arewa youths gave Igbo people living in the North to quit before October 1.

“Over 7000 people have been killed by these Fulani herdsmen with our security forces unable to stop the bloodshed. So called Arewa youths backed by some discredited elders have also issued a treasonable ultimatum to Igbo people without any reprisals from the Buhari government. So, is it a coincidence that Christian Religious Knowledge has been expunged from the school curriculum?” he queried.

Apostle Suleman called on the Federal Government to reverse the “offensive” policy and immediately restore Christian Religious Knowledge to the curriculum while commending the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) for being at the forefront of seeking to redress the anomaly.

“This evil policy must be reversed immediately. What is sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander. Christain Religious Knowledge (CRK) must be restored to the school curriculum. And I’m happy that the CAN has taken up the battle to ensure that those who seek to banish our faith do not succeed. We will continue to speak out until satan and his agents are put to shame”, he declared.

Similarly, he called on the government to stem the tide of consistent attacks by Fulani herdsmen as well as deal with those giving ultimatum to people from an ethnic group to vacate the north.

“For long, Fulani herdsmen continue to kill, rape and burn people’s homes without restraint. In the event that the safety of an ethnic group cannot be guaranteed in any part of the country, then Nigerians should know that it is not a coincidence. And my God shall not fold arms while the devil and his children seek to destroy the destiny of Nigeria”, he declared.

“We have the strength of character, the courage and the conviction to mount a sustained campaign in defence of justice, and in defence of our religion. We will not give up our religious practice because of someone else’. Nigeria belongs to us all and not for a few bigots who currently occupy positions of authority,” the cleric added.

Davido, Wizkid fire shots at each other

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Nigerian superstars, Davido and Wizkid, and their fans are locked in a supremacy battle.

This was triggered when Davido on Saturday called out Wizkid in a Snapchat post: “Na ‘pon pon’ sound dey reign now ooo!!! No dey jonze!! All other sounds nah d least for now LMAO.”

Reacting, Wizkid fired back in a series of tweets via his Twitter handle @wizkidayo

“U can’t hate on someone doing better than u in what u failed at! Learn and appreciate! Free ur mind from hate young kids.

“And remember kids! Drink more water!!

“The game is only for the real! Catch up or stay local! Don’t blame anybody for ur failures! Pray and work hard kids!”

The comments by the duo has generated conversation and arguments on the social media, with fans making comparisons of songs, awards, scandals, among others.

The list was put together using factors such as endorsement value, popularity, show rates, sales, awards, YouTube views, appearance in newspapers, investment, social media presence, influence and others.

How to Train Your Brain to Get What You Want in 60 Days

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How to Train Your Brain to Get What You Want in 60 Days by Benjamin P. Hardy

In April of 2015, I got serious about my goal to become a professional writer. I had written an eBook, Slipstream Time Hacking, and was anxious to know how to traditionally publish it. At that time, I had just barely put up my own website and had a subscriber-base of zero.

I decided literary agents would be my best source of advice. After all, they know the publishing industry back-and-forth — or so I thought. After talking to 5–10 different agents about their coaching programs, it became apparent my questions would need to be answered elsewhere.

One particular conversation sticks out.

In order to even be considered by agents and publishers, writers need to already have a substantial readership (i.e., a platform). I told one of the agents my goal was to have 5,000 blog subscribers by the end of 2015. She responded:

“That would not be possible from where you currently are. These things take time. You will not be able to get a publisher for 3–5 years. That’s just the reality.”

“Reality to who?” I thought as I hung up the phone.

Never Ask Advice From…

In his book, The Compound Effect, Darren Hardy said, “Never ask advice of someone with whom you wouldn’t want to trade places.”

Who you follow determines where you get in life. If your leader isn’t moving forward, you’re not moving forward, because your results are a reflection of your leader’s results.

As I pondered Darren Hardy’s words, I realized I was asking the wrong types of people for advice. I needed to turn to people who had actually walked where I wanted to walk. Anyone can provide nebulous theory. We spend our entire public education learning theory from people who have rarely “walked the walk.” As George Bernard Shaw said in Maxims for Revolutionists, “He who can, does; he who cannot, teaches.” Similarly, there is an endless supply of content being published everyday by people who rarely practice the virtues they preach.

Contrary to theory, which cannot get you very far in the end, people who have actually been “there” provide practical steps on what you need to do (e.g., here are the five things you should focus on and forget everything else).

Why You Need To Know What You Want

“This is a fundamental irony of most people’s lives. They don’t quite know what they want to do with their lives. Yet they are very active.” — Ryan Holiday

Most kids go to college without a clue why they are there. They are floating along waiting to be told what to do next. They haven’t seen or thought enough to know what their ideal life would look like. So how could they possibly know how to distinguish good advice from bad?

Conversely, people who know what they want in life see the world differently. All people selectively attend to things that interest or excite them. For example, when you buy a new car, you start to notice the same car every where. How does this happen? You didn’t seem to notice that everyone drove Malibus before.

Our brains are constantly filtering an unfathomable amount of sensory inputs: sounds, smells, visuals, and more. Most of this information goes consciously unrecognized. Our focused attention is on what we care about. Thus, some people only notice the bad while others see the good in everything. Some notice people wearing band shirts, while others notice anything fitness related.

So, when you decide what you want, it’s like buying a new car. You start seeing it everywhere — especially your newsfeeds!

What are you seeing everywhere? This is perhaps the clearest reflection of your conscious identity.

The Magical Things That Happen When You Begin Paying Attention

“How can you achieve your 10 year plan in the next 6 months?” — Peter Thiel

Wherever it is you want to go, there is a long and conventional path, and there are shorter, less conventional approaches. The conventional path is the outcome of not paying attention. It’s what happens when you let other people dictate your direction and speed in life.

However, once you know what you want — and it intensely arouses your attention — you will notice simpler and easier solutions to your questions. What might have taken 10 years in a traditional manner takes only a few months with the right information and relationship.

“When the student is ready the teacher will appear.” — Mabel Collins

When I decided I was serious about becoming a writer, the advice from the literary agents couldn’t work for me. I was ready for the wisdom of people who were where I wanted to be. My vision was bigger than the advice I was getting.

In May of 2015, I came across an online course about guest blogging. It must have popped in my newsfeeds because of my previous searching. I paid the $197, went through the course, and within two weeks was getting articles featured on multiple self-help blogs.

Around this same time, I listened to a podcast where Tim Ferriss said, “One blog post can change the entire trajectory of your career.” Such was the case for him. An article he wrote generated wild traffic, which spilled-over into book sales for his at the time recent book, The 4-Hour Workweek. This wave of traffic led to the book’s success and the rest they say, is history.

When your mind takes hold of an idea, you do everything in your power to manifest it. The idea, “One blog post can change your career,” was always in the back of mind. Subconsciously, it forced itself into my conscious reality.Around this time, I wrote an article that literally did change my career. To quote William James, the father of American psychology, “What is impressed in the subconscious is expressed.”

Thus, 60 days after being told it would take 3–5 years to have a substantial following, I was there. Personally, I don’t fully credit myself for this fact. In an age of skepticism and doubt, a child-like faith can take you a long way. Before each article I wrote (and continue to write), I pray that the work I produce will be beyond my own capability; and I visualize my work reaching the people who need it. To quote Napoleon Hill, “Whatever the mind can conceive and believe, it can achieve.”

Just because other people have limiting beliefs does not mean you need to.

Again, the advice you take and the people you emulate matters. You are being influenced, especially subconsciously, by the influences you take to heart. There are people out there operating at brilliantly high levels. If you’re serious about getting results, find those people and begin thinking like them. You’ll be stunned how fast your life can change.

Your mindset and desires determine how big you’re willing to play. To quote Peter Diamandis, founder of XPRIZE and author of Abundance and BOLD, “The challenge is that the day before something is truly a breakthrough, it’s a crazy idea. And crazy ideas are very risky to attempt.”


When you know what you want, you notice opportunities most people aren’t aware of. You also have the rare courage to seize those opportunities without procrastination. What you focus on expands.

Courage doesn’t just involve saying “Yes” — it also involves saying, “No.” But how could you possibly say “No” to certain opportunities if you don’t know what you want? You can’t. Like most people, you’ll be seduced by the best thing that comes around.

But if you know what you want, you’ll be willing to pass up even brilliant opportunities because ultimately they are distractions from your vision. As Jim Collins said in Good to Great, “A ‘once-in-a-lifetime opportunity’ is irrelevant if it is the wrong opportunity.”

“Once-in-a-lifetime” opportunities (i.e., distractions) pop up everyday. But the right opportunities will only start popping up when you decide what you want and thus, start selectively attending to them. Before you know it, you’ll be surrounded by a network you love and by mentors showing you the fastest path.

Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, “Once you make a decision, the universe conspires to make it happen.” This quote is completely true. Once you know what you want, you can stop taking advice from just anyone. You can filter out the endless noise and hone in on your truth.

Eventually, you can train your conscious mind to only focus on what you really want in life. Everything else gets outsourced and forgotten by your subconscious.

Decide what you want or someone else will.

You are the designer of your destiny. What will it be?

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Etisalat Bonus Offer: Recharge N200 and Get N4000 Bonus Instantly

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Saturday, 17 June 2017

 seems we are in the Etisalat season of surprise, lots of people are still flexing Etisalat Ramadan Special Offer, here is another tempting offer from the Arabian Company -Etisalat. 

Etisalat want to bowl over all their inactive subscribers who had dumped their sim card on a dusty wardrobe for higher than 30 days with this whooping offer tagged #MissETmissOut.

If you have not used your Etisalat SIM in over 30 days, Simply; 

• Insert it back into your phone, 

• Recharge N200 Airtime and you will get N4000 bonus instantly, (N3000 for data + N1000 for calls to all network) extra bonus which you can use to call, and surf the net. When you recharge N100 the second month, you will get a N2,000 bundle (N500 airtime + N1.5k data)

The validity period for this offer is 30 Days.

Remember: The offer is for those who intentionally dump their sim for higher than 30 days. If you have been using your sim as a committed Etisalat subscriber, then the offer is not for you. Try the Ramadan Special Offer.

MasterCard Scholarship (Undergraduate & Masters) for African Students 2018 :Apply Now

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Friday, 16 June 2017

The MasterCard Foundation offers a full scholarship to students who have applied for and been admitted to one of the following Undergraduate and Masters study programmes at the University of Pretoria.

Application Deadline: 30th August 2017

Offered annually? Yes

Eligible Countries: Sub-Saharan African countries

To be taken at (country): South Africa

Fields of Study: 

Faculty of Engineering

BEng (Industrial Engineering)

BEng (Chemical Engineering)

BEng (Civil Engineering)

BEng (Electrical Engineering)

BEng (Electronic Engineering)

BEng (Mechanical and Aeronautical Engineering)

BEng (Mining Engineering)

BEng (Computer Engineering)

Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences

BCom (Accounting Science)

BCom (Financial Science)

BCom (Economics)

BCom (Informatics)

BCom (Agribusiness Management)

Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences 

BScAgric (Food Science and Technology)
BScAgric (Agricultural Economics/Agribusiness Management)
BScAgric (Animal Science)
BScAgric (Plant Pathology)
BScAgric (Applied Plant and Soil Sciences)

Postgraduate Study Programmes

Master’s degree applicants in the above-mentioned fields may also apply.

Honour’s candidates will be considered if they are prepared to commit to continuing to a Master’s degree.

About the Award: The MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program (MCFSP) targets academically qualified, yet economically disadvantaged young people in South Africa, SADC and the rest of Africa, who will contribute to the transformation of the continent. Community service is a necessary component of the Program with all students giving back to disadvantaged communities.

Type: Undergraduate and Masters (Taught)


Candidates should be citizens from Sub-Saharan African country.Applicants should come from economically disadvantaged backgrounds and demonstrate financial neediness.Candidates should demonstrate leadership potential and ought to be involved in a giving back project eg. in a community, at school, church etcAcademic excellence is paramount and students have to maintain a high academic average at all times.Candidates need to be first time applicants as first year students in the degree programme

Selection Criteria:  The identified scholars need to demonstrate a commitment to making a difference in their communities, having faced significant barriers to accessing and completing quality tertiary education. The Program provides a comprehensive scholarship, mentoring and counseling, academic support and access to work readiness skills.

Number of Awardees: Several

Value of Scholarship: The Program will cover the following:

Full tuition feesAccommodation in a UP residenceMealsBooks and printed materialA modest monthly stipendMedical aid (Ingwe only)Travel costs (one return trip for the duration of the study period)Cost of one visa application for the duration of the study period.

Duration of Scholarship: Period of degree

How to Apply: Students who are interested in studies at the University of Pretoria and wish to apply for The MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program must follow the application process in the Scholarship webpage (Link below)

Visit Scholarship Webpage for details

Award Provider: Mastercard Foundation, University of Pretoria

Important Notes: All potential MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program (MCFSP) applicants for academic year 2018 have to apply at the respective faculty FIRST before applying for the MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program.  Once your application has been approved then you may apply for the MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program.

No MCFSP applications will be considered if you have not applied at the faculty first.

FG to hire 7,500 Graduates

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The Federal Government is targeting an increase in the number of taxpayers in the next two years from the current 14 million to 17 million.

The Minister of Federal Inland Revenue Service, Mr. Babatunde Fowler, and other top officials in the ministry.

Specifically, she said the Federal Government was planning to achieve the objective by recruiting 7,500 graduates as community tax liaison officers to raise the level of tax awareness in the country.

She said the graduates would be recruited under the N-Power programme of the Federal Government for a two-year period, adding that graduates with accounting, economics and similar backgrounds would be given priority during the recruitment process.

The minister stated that the major responsibilities of those employed under the programme would be to enlighten people in public places such as markets, schools, religious centres, offices and recreational centres, among others, on the need to pay taxes.

Adeosun said, “We will be recruiting them through N-Power and they can apply through the website of the Federal Ministry of Finance or through the N-Power website. It’s a two year fixed contract and they will be deployed in states and attached to states’ internal revenue service or the FIRS.

“Their job is to improve the level of education on Nigeria’s tax system. Our tax system is progressive, meaning those who earn less should pay less, and those who earn more should pay more.

“A lot of people don’t know that. So it’s a chance to get people on ground to answer all these pertinent questions.”

She encouraged intelligent graduates interested in pursuing a career in tax administration to apply as the government planned to sponsor the recruits to become tax professionals.

Adeosun added, “This exercise is extremely important for the fiscal sustainability of the states, because as you know, most of the revenue for the states apart, from FAAC, is supposed to come from tax. So if we improve the number of taxpayers, we will be improving the fiscal health of our state governments as well as the Federal Government.

“It’s an important initiative for the nation as we undertake reforms to reduce our overdependence on oil. We have to make sure that everyone who is economically active pays tax, no matter how little, they have to contribute to the pool.”

When asked how much they would earn, Adeosun said those employed under the scheme would be paid N30,000 monthly.

She, however, added that they would receive performance-based incentives to be measured by the number of people that gets enrolled during the two-year period.

Fowler reiterated that tax evasion was a punishable offence in the country.

He said that the Tax Appeal Tribunal was being reconstituted and stated that tax evaders would be prosecuted.

Budget: N’Assembly tackles Osinbajo

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The Senate and the House of Representatives, on Thursday, replied Acting President Yemi Osinbajo over his comments on the 2017 budget after appending his signature to the appropriation bill.

Osinbajo was reported to have queried some “alterations” in the budget by the National Assembly, saying they would affect the plans of the executive to execute the projects that were altered.

A member of the House of Representatives, Mr. Abubakar Lawan, had brought up the Acting President’s post-budget comments on the floor under matters of privilege at the session, which was presided over by the Speaker, Mr. Yakubu Dogara.

He cited Daily Sun and Daily Trust among newspaper publications he said quoted Osinbajo’s comments on the powers of the National Assembly to alter the budget.

Lawan noted that if Osinbajo continued to comment on a budget he signed into law, he was undermining the legislature and also assuming the duties of the judiciary at the same time.

“These comments have been coming and they are reported in the newspapers.

“Is the power of appropriation no longer with the legislature?” Lawan asked.

He spoke amid applause on the floor, following which Dogara summed up the position of the House.

The speaker said there was no need to debate the issue further because there was “no debating the fact that power of the purse resides with the legislature.”

The speaker expressed surprise that Osinbajo would question the powers of the National Assembly on appropriation.

He reminded the Acting President that on matters of legislation, the National Assembly had powers, including the power to override the President’s veto on any bill.

Dogara added, “We all know where these powers are and under our watch, there is no way this House will be a rubber stamp of any executive.

“Budgets are priorities of the government because we are representatives of the people. We can say even though these are priorities of the government, based on our job of representation, these are not the priorities of the people and we can refuse to fund them.

“As a matter of fact, I don’t even want to believe that the Acting President made those statements.”

Osinbajo had signed a budget of N7.441tn into law on Monday.

Meanwhile, the House, at the session, passed three petroleum industry bills for second reading.

One of them was the Petroleum Industry Governance Bill, which had already been passed by the Senate.

The PIGB deals strictly with governance issues and the role of the Minister of Petroleum Resources and the ministry in a liberalised oil and gas industry in the country.

The second bill deals with Host Communities’ rights, while the third bill sets the guidelines for investments and operations in the Upstream and Downstream sectors of the industry.

The three bills, though dealing on the same subject (oil and gas industry), were separated so that the various aspects of the industry would be thoroughly addressed.

Dogara explained that this was to avoid the pitfalls of the past when the PIB failed because so many issues were lumped together in one bill, causing setbacks for the legislation.

“During the planning stage for the PIB, we invited many experts from across the globe.

“The consensus we arrived at after collating their views was to split the issues and take them separately,” the speaker stated.

Speaking on the objectives of the three bills, the Chairman, House Committee on Petroleum Resources (Upstream), Mr. Victor Nwokolo, said they would reform the industry to open up more investment opportunities and bring higher revenue returns to the Federal Government.

Nwokolo explained that with the PIB in place, many existing laws, including the 1969 Petroleum Act, would give way.

The Deputy Chairman, Committee on Petroleum Resources, Mr. Joseph Akinlaja, spoke more on the changes, “The host community problem in the oil industry has been an issue over the years since oil was struck in the late 60s.

“What should be the roles of these communities? What should be their share or benefits from oil operations? Communities suffer a lot of environmental degradation and health issues.

“In this bill, we are saying that some percentages of the revenue should go to the host communities.”

The three bills were passed without opposition, leaving Dogara to set up an ad hoc committee to work on them and submit a report to the House.

The Chief Whip of the House, Mr. Alhassan Ado-Doguwa, was named as the chairman of the committee.

At the Senate, the Deputy Majority Leader, Senator Bala Ibn Na’Allah, who raised a point of order at the plenary on Thursday, stated that the legislature was empowered by law to regulate government spending.

He stressed that the lawmakers could also adjust proposals in the appropriation bill.

Na’Allah said, “I rise this morning based on what happened yesterday in my office. About five senators bombarded my office, angrily complaining about a statement allegedly credited to the Acting President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, to the effect that the National Assembly does not possess any powers to alter the budget submitted to it by the executive.

“I have also had the privilege to work with the Acting President while practising in Lagos as a lawyer. We did a lot of cases together. He is somebody I know so much that I will rather believe that what was alleged to have been said could not have been said by him. And even it was, he must have been misquoted,” he added.

According to him, the Senate is to check imbalance in the legislation from the House of Representatives.

“The chambers are equal. There is nothing like upper and lower chamber as far as the Constitution is concerned. It is a bicameral legislature and the intention is to put in check whatever democratic decisions arrived at in the House to avoid domination,” Na’Allah stated.

Senate President Bukola Saraki, in his remarks, also said Osinbajo might not have questioned the powers of the National Assembly on budget amendment or the Acting President might have been misquoted.

“I am sure that the Acting President must have been misquoted because there is no

ambiguity in the Constitution on our responsibilities. The matter has been cleared and settled,” he said.

But the matter took a dramatic turn when the Minority Leader, Senator Godswill Akpabio, raised another point of order to fault Na’Allah on the argument that the country operates a bicameral legislature of equal chambers.

Akpabio stated that the Senate was superior to the House of Representatives due to the fact that Section 81 of the Constitution gives the power to confirm executive appointments to the Senate while Section 5(4)(b) empowers the Senate to approve the deployment of the military on combat duty outside the country.

“These are powers not given to the House of Representatives and the framers of our Constitution knew that definitely, there must be an upper chamber.

“From the duties ascribed to both chambers, it is clear that one is the upper and the other is lower,” he said.

The Majority Leader, Senator Ahmad Lawan, however, raised another point of order to counter Akpabio’s arguments.

He stated that that the two chambers were equal even though the Senate was given more responsibilities than the House of Representatives.

He said, “I served as a member of the House of Representatives for eight years and came to the Senate in 2007. I think, in fact, I am convinced that no chamber in the National Assembly can (solely) make any legislation.

“If we cannot, as a Senate, pass a bill and send it for executive assent until it goes to the House of Representatives, it means that we have equal responsibilities on this. The Senate is only given additional responsibilities.”

Saraki, however, ruled Lawan out of order, noting that it was a controversial matter and the point of order under which the Majority Leader was speaking was not for such matters.

The 7 Worst Lies They Want You To Believe About Creativity

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Thursday, 15 June 2017

The 7 Worst Lies They Want You To Believe About Creativity

And 5 absolute truths

I want to talk about creativity.

The creativity that people like me need to make a living and make our living worthwhile. The creativity that drives us to re-invent things that need re-inventing and to “hit targets no-one else can see.”

It’s easy to become caught up in the tropes and myths that surround people who create things. The misconceptions and pretensions that people tell each other about what it takes to make stuff.

I sometimes wonder how many great creatives were turned off because they didn’t fit these tropes:


It’s All About The Unexpected

One of the hardest obstacles in any creative work is making something unique and interesting. A piece of work that can surprise a user or a reader. It’s hard to break through the jaded complacency of most people.

They can’t help being hard to please — in the digital age, they’ve seen it all.

But creating isn’t all about doing the unexpected. Sometimes, it’s just about discovering what you believe matters and making work that reflects it, honestly and openly.


Your Entire Life Should Be Dedicated To Creativity

For most of us, doing our best creative work is a challenge simply because we work all the time. We have jobs that are stressful, with long hours and long days that blur and blend into each other. By the time we get home, it can seem almost impossible to turn on another screen and pour out even a drop of creativity.

Does that make us any less creative than a College student studying alternative literature who spends 5 hours a day writing “The Next Great Novel” on an antique typewriter? No.

J.K. Rowling wrote Harry Potter while working and being a single Mum. She just made time for it.

Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn’t really do it, they just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after a while. That’s because they were able to connect experiences they’ve had and synthesize new things. — Steve Jobs


You Need To Be Magical

There’s a clichĂ© about artists and writers that they have a mysterious magic about them. It’s perpetuated by creatives who insist on quirkiness as their main defining characteristic and look down on people who seem normal.

The truth is, great creative work can be made by artists who wear suits as much as artists who are half-pixie. You can have your feet on the ground, and you can still create amazing things.

You don’t need your Hogwarts letter to be a creative. You just need to work.


If You’re “Gifted” It Will Be Easy

This might be my biggest peeve. When people look at something I have made and tell me that they wish they had my gift and could do what I do. It’s invalidating in a way because I wasn’t born a writer or an artist or a musician. I worked hard, my entire life, to build those skills.

I don’t think anyone is born with an innate gift for creativity that makes them the Chosen One of long-form text pieces, for example.

Great creatives make sacrifices and stay up late, and you know what? Other people could too. The idea that all creativity comes from a unique gift is just wrong.


It’s About Being A Tortured Genius

Here’s the thing. You don’t need a crushing drug habit or an open bottle of Jack Daniels to be creative. You don’t need to be the reclusive, slightly mad genius who lives in a run-down mansion and is a bit of an asshole.

You just need to be able to work, and work hard.

The artists and writers who create Pixar’s films don’t do it on the back of self-destructive egotism and drama. They turn up every day and they treat it like a job and they create some of the most engaging and brilliant art of our time.


You Have To Wait For Inspiration

I’m finishing this piece at 7 AM on a Sunday morning. You think I’m inspired right now? Think again. I’m tired, I’m hungry, and I want nothing more than to go right back to bed. There’s no burning fire inside me at this moment. I’m writing because that’s the job I’ve given myself. Because if I don’t, I’ll never be a writer.

I’ve seen plenty of artists and creatives who give it all up because they say their muse has died. It’s a damn shame. They never had a muse to begin with. What they call inspiration, I call motivation. You don’t wait around for motivation, you create it.

Don’t get me wrong — inspiration does happen, and it’s a real thing. But if you need it to be creative, you’re going to lose this one.


A Creative Is As Good As Their Tools

I think I’ve seen this more with musicians than any other creative breed. They’ll tell you that if they only had that one guitar pedal, or that $1,000 synth, or that brand new MacBook Pro, they could create something incredible. Or they’ll only record their music in an analogue studio on real tape.

The fact is, some of the most influential albums in our history were recorded on a shoe-string budget with hardly any resources. Ever heard of the Ramones?

If you’re a musician, you need an instrument and a tool to record it.

If you’re an online writer, you need a laptop and an internet connection.

Anything else is dressing.


It’s not all about tropes though. There are some truths that will apply to every creative, in every creative field, no matter who or where they are.

1. You need hard work. You need back-breaking, heart-breaking hard work. Creativity shouldn’t and won’t come easy.

2. You need honesty. If you’re lying to your audience in your work, you’re lying to yourself, and it will destroy you.

3. Nobody is a special snowflake. Nobody is a magical artist-being. Anyone can be creative, and anyone can do great things. How? See: 1.

4. You can act like a creative, walk like a creative, talk (shit) like a creative, but that doesn’t mean you’re anything but a drone if you don’t follow through. Writers write. Creatives create.

5. If you wait for inspiration, you’ll be waiting a long time. Get some motivation instead. And get off your ass.

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