Thursday, May 31, 2012

Chevron Faces Shareholder, Union and Community Revolt at Annual Meeting

Chevron Faces Shareholder, Union and Community Revolt at Annual Meeting, says Rainforest Action Network

Rep from Brazil's Largest Union Denied Access to Meeting; No Mention of Brazil and Nigeria Liabilities; Record Votes for Separation of CEO and Chairman

SAN RAMON, Calif., May 30, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today, more than 150 protested at Chevron's annual shareholder meeting, joining a unique group of union members, shareholders and community leaders. Every year, Chevron faces opposition at its shareholder meeting, but today's drew a larger and more diverse crowd galvanized by the oil giant's year of legal problems, oil spills and fines for reckless practices.

"CEO Watson's fraudulent omission of the current liabilities the company is facing in Brazil, Ecuador and Nigeria once again highlights his gross negligence when it comes to worker safety, environmental health and human rights. This was reflected in record high votes for the resolution calling for separation of chair and board," said Ginger Cassady of Rainforest Action Network.

Chevron faces more than $43 billion in actual and potential fines: $22 billion for oil spills off the coast of Brazil, $18 billion for oil contamination in Ecuador, $3 million for gas explosions off the coast of Nigeria, and $27 million for tax-dodging in Richmond.

Joao Antonio de Moraes, National Coordinator of the United Federation of Oil Workers in Brazil, the country's largest union, was denied access to the meeting based on a supposed paperwork error: "I traveled across the globe to call on Chevron to increase the safety of its oil rigs and refineries. Being refused access to the meeting underscores the lack of respect Chevron has for the communities where it operates."

The United Federation of Oil Workers filed suit in March to demand the cancellation of all Chevron oil and gas concession contracts in Brazil.

Seven shareholder resolutions were presented to address Chevron's risky operations, including a call for the separation of CEO and chairman that received 38 percent of the vote (double previous years). New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli joined with 39 other investors, with a combined total of $580 billion in assets under management, called on Chevron to settle its two-decade-long legal battle in Ecuador.

"Chevron needs to put its pants on, start acting like a grown up and accept responsibility for its mess in Ecuador," Luz Trinidad Andrea Cusangua, plaintiff in the Ecuador case, said to CEO Watson.

SOURCE Rainforest Action Network

CONTACT: Kerul Dyer, +1-415-866-0005

Web Site:

Top Reports

President Jonathan’s 2015 Political Desperation To MAUL UNILAG

Chief MKO Abiola.

President Jonathan’s 2015 Political Desperation To MAUL UNILAG

Thousands of students and alumni of the world famous University of Lagos (UNILAG) woke up on May 29, to suddenly hear that their beloved citadel of academia has been renamed Moshood Abiola University, Lagos (MAUL) by the dictatorial civilian President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan as one of the dividends of the unpopular Democracy Day enforced his corrupt ruling People’s Democratic Party (PDP).

President Goodluck Jonathan.
University of Lagos.

He said he has changed the name of UNILAG to MAUL to immortalize the late Chief MKO Abiola, the martyr of the presidential election of June 12, 1993, which he won, but was annulled on June 23, 1993 by the military fiat of General Ibrahim Badamasi Babaginda who actually had the right to annual the presidential election after he had earlier cancelled the presidential primaries of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) and National Republican Convention (NRC), two political parties formed by his military regime.

General Ibrahim Badamsi Babaginda's Botched transition to civilian rule

In 1989 Babangida legalized the formation of political parties, and after a census was carried out in November 1991, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) announced on January 24, 1992 that both legislative elections to a bicameral National Assembly and a presidential election would be held that year.

Babangida banned all political parties and formed two political parties by himself, namely the SDP (Social Democratic Party) and NRC (National Republican Convention) and urged all Nigerians to join either of the parties, which the Late Chief Ajibola Ige famously referred to as "two leper hands." The two-party state had been a recommendation of the 17-member Political Bureau.

The legislative elections went ahead as planned, with the Social Democratic Party (SDP) winning majorities in both houses of the National Assembly, but on August 7, 1992, the INEC annulled the first round of presidential primaries, alleging widespread irregularities. January 4, 1993 saw the announcement by Babangida of a National Defense and Security Council, of which Babangida himself was to be President, while in April 1993 the SDP nominated Moshood Kashimawo Olawale Abiola (MKO) as its presidential candidate, with the National Republican Convention (NRC) choosing Bashir Tofa to run for the same position. On June 12, 1993, presidential elections were finally held, but the results were held back although it was announced in some states that Abiola had in fact won 19 of the 30 states, and therefore the presidency.

Rather than allow the announcement of the results to proceed, Babangida decided to annul the elections. Babangida then issued a decree banning the presidential candidates of both the NRC and the SDP from running in new presidential elections that he planned to have held. Widespread acts of civil disobedience began to occur, particularly in the Southwest region from which Abiola hailed, resulting in the killings. On July 6, 1993, the NDSC issued an ultimatum to the SDP and NRC to join an interim government or face yet another round of elections, and Babangida then announced that the interim government would be inaugurated on August 27, 1993. On August 26, amidst a new round of strikes and protests that had brought all economic activity in the country to a halt, Babangida declared that he was stepping aside as head of the military regime, and handing over the reins of government to Ernest Shonekan. Within 3 months of the handover, General Sani Abacha seized control of the government while Babangida was on a visit to Egypt
~ From

The 1993 presidential election was not free and fair as claimed by the purported winner Chief MKO Abiola, because both political parties rigged the election and the more affluent Abiola defeated his only opponent Alhaji Bashir Tofa who was relatively an unknown politician from Kano and obviously no match for the financial and political machinery of the billionaire MKO Abiola who was one of the richest people on earth at the time.

I was employed as an attaché to the Director of Publicity for the Alhaji Bamanga Tukur Presidential Campaign, therefore was an insider who was fully briefed on all the political developments in the country as the SDP and NRC campaigned for the presidential election. But when the late retired Major-General Shehu Musa Yar’Adua the main presidential candidate of the SDP was leading the presidential primaries by a very wide margin ahead of the presidential candidates of the NRC, the military regime of Gen. Babaginda suddenly cancelled the primaries. I tore my ID card and resigned immediately, because I knew that the whole political shenanigans of Gen. Babaginda and his ruling mafia would end up in a political fiasco. The presidential election was a hoax masterminded by Gen. Babaginda to hoodwink the ignorant Nigerians and the rest of the world. And he really fooled them, including his bosom “friend” MKO Abiola who went along with the so called transition to democracy plan. Then two new presidential candidates suddenly emerged to replace the previous ones and the late Chief MKO Abiola who was a very powerful associate and friend of Gen. Babaginda and his military regime suddenly became the presidential candidate of the SDP and Alhaji Bashir Tofa became the presidential candidate of the NRC after the intrigues of the political power brokers.

As far as I am concerned the whole June 12 Crisis was a power tussle of the corrupt Nigerian ruling class and the ignorant masses were used as pawns in the gambit of the power brokers and hundreds lost their lives in the end. But the same corrupt power brokers divided on two opposing sides have been using the MKO Abiola phenomenon for their political campaigns and those from the same south western region as MKO Abiola have been using it to sway the political passions of the masses to favour their political ambitions. But God knows that the late Chief MKO Abiola was never as great as the late Chief Obafemi Awolowo, one of the leading founding fathers of modern Nigeria who deserves all the honours given to him for his unprecedented achievements in the political development of the western region and the nation building of a New Nigeria in the leadership of Africa.

President Goodluck Jonathan and his ruling cabal in the PDP are scared of their loss of many states in the southwest at the Election Tribunal and the unpopularity of their party among the majority of Yorubas. Therefore, the only way to prevent losing the 2015 presidential election to the main opposition party the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) is to do the most desperate thing by using MKO Abiola to sway the Yorubas to favour the PDP's presidential election master plan for 2015.
They also want to preempt the plan of the ACN to name a new university after MKO Abiola before 2015.

Chief MKO Abiola was a first calss graduate of Glasgow University in accountancy and later worked as a senior accountant at the University of Lagos Teaching Hospital, before going into private practice and becoming a business mogul and a billionaire. He was the undisputed Pillar of Sports and the National Stadium in Lagos would have been more befitting to be named after him as the same President Goodluck Jonathan renamed Liberty Stadium to Obafemi Awolowo Stadium on November 12, 2010 during his maiden working tour of Ogun State.

Imagine renaming Harvard, Yale or Columbia after the late Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. or any of the past presidents of America?
The University of Lagos is as important to Nigerians as Harvard, Yale or Columbia.
It is greater than the personality of any Nigerian living or dead. It is an academic institution that is a timeless heritage of the citadel of knowledge; the legacy of the Nigerian intelligentsia.

President Jonathan can name one of the new nine federal universities after MKO Abiola and leave the University of Lagos alone as the flagship of academia in Lagos, the former federal capital of Nigeria.
Infact, President Jonathan would have even won the support of the majority of Nigerians if he declared June 12 as the MKO Abiola Day.

~ By Ekenyerengozi Michael Chima, Author of Children of Heaven, Scarlet Tears of London, Bye, Bye Mugabe, In the House of Dogs and other books.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Allah Save The Queen, say Muslims

30 May 2012 15:30 Africa/Lagos

Allah Save The Queen, say Muslims

LONDON, May 30, 2012/PRNewswire/ --

Ahmadiyya Muslim Community unveils national Jubilee programme

A British Muslim community has set out plans to mark the Queen's Diamond Jubilee with street parties, lighting up of mosques throughout the UK, feeding the homeless and a launch of 200 special Diamond Jubilee buses across London - a unique contribution to this historic event.

(Photo: )

Ahmadiyya Muslims will play the national anthem in street parties across 30 towns and cities from London to Glasgow. In Birmingham for example the celebrations will feature the Royal Navy band playing the national anthem at the mosque and congratulatory messages being read out in 60 languages by local community representatives.

There will also be special prayers for The Queen at 100 mosques and prayer halls belonging to the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community - one of the oldest Islamic groups in Britain.

The community has also launched a special edition of the book 'A Gift for the Queen' written by their founder, Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, on the occasion of Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee in 1897.

The National President of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community UK, Mr Rafiq Hayat said:

"In the history of the British monarch there have only been two diamond Jubilees, and the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community have been involved with both.

"We share in our country's pride and joy at Her Majesty The Queen's Diamond Jubilee. It is our heartfelt prayer that may God continue to protect the Queen and we look forward to the festivities of the Jubilee weekend and to make them as inclusive as possible.

"As Muslims, we are duty bound to serve Queen and country and we regard this as an important part of our religion as we were taught by Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) that loyalty to one's country is a part of faith."

In addition, Ahmadi Muslims will:

- Take part in the Big Lunch on 3rd June

- Light up all its mosques across the UK

- Say special prayers for the Queen on 1st June

- Feed the Homeless - 10,000 will benefit from this endeavour

- Hold charity walks to raise GBP400,000 for the Queen's charities

- Fundraise through the community's women's network

- Organise blood donation sessions

- Hold interfaith symposia throughout the UK

A charity walk by thousands of community members around the Tower of London has already raised tens of thousands of pounds for the Queen's Jubilee charities.

London buses with the special Diamond Jubilee poster also feature the peace campaign website for the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community

Basharat Nazir, , Tel +44-7703-483-384
OR, Mahmood Rafiq, Tel +44-7971-060-962


Source: Ahmadiyya Muslim Association UK

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29 May 2012
13:37 MEDIA ADVISORY: Central Park Celebrates Queen Elizabeth II's Diamond Jubilee With "The GREAT British Run" on 31 May
12:47 888games Celebrates the Jubilee With a Tea Party Fit for a Queen
09:00 Celebrate Being British This Year with a Truly British Brand
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16:25 Be a Jubilant Cashback Queen
16:11 Bingocams Reveals Exclusive Golden Ticket Giveaway with GBP10,000 Jackpot
16:04 Paddy Power Bingo and Super Free Bingo Join Forces to Celebrate Queen's Jubilee
13:58 Sewa Day Pulls out of Government Initiative - Lack of Financial Accountability Mars Queen's Diamond Jubilee Celebration
09:00 British Drivers Loyal to Home Grown Motors
27 May 2012
15:17 New Jubilee Dessert Whips up a Buying Frenzy     
25 May 2012
13:03 Giant Photo of Royal Family Dominates the Thames for Jubilee     
12:29 The Queen's Diamond Jubilee: Thames Pageant, One of the Largest Ever Staged, to be Shown Live During the BBC's London Calling Season
12:28 Hotter Comfort Concept Launches Great British Shoes
24 May 2012
08:00 CATs-i Protects Property & Possessions During the Jubilee Celebrations
23 May 2012
22:15 Vi-Spring releases HRH Diamond Jubilee mattress
19:44 Visit The Land of The Royals With CIE Tours' New Best of Britain Vacation Package     
09:53 "On Her Majesty's Service" Celebrating The Diamond Jubilee at Hyatt Regency London - The Churchill

OTTER 501 Is In Theaters!

Otter 501 is a feature film in theaters now! See our Facebook events page for openings. When an adventuresome young woman discovers a sea otter pup stranded on the beach and in desperate need of a second chance, an entire species' survival gets personal.

A storm grows, a sea otter pup is separated from her mother, and a young woman bound for adventure blows in to town. On a wild, windswept beach these lives collide and an entire species’ survival gets personal. Offering a fresh take on the familiar nature documentary format, Otter 501 combines stunning natural history footage with clever, digital age storytelling. Through Katie’s eyes you will see our playful pup, otter number 501, get an amazing second chance at life in the wild. As the two learn to navigate the opportunities and risks of life without anchor we see the incredible efforts people have undertaken to return sea otters from the brink of extinction. Framed against the strikingly beautiful Monterey Bay coastline, the last stronghold of these iconic animals, Katie discovers just how serious this threat remains. Their adventure, unexpected as it was, illustrates what we can do to contribute to the growing movement to protect the southern sea otter…and ourselves.



at the Osio Cinema


at the Nickelodeon


Opening weekend at the Gaslamp Stadium!

For a limited time you can watch OTTER 501 on Prescreen!


Opening June 1 at Rialto Cinemas Sebastopol


Opening June 1 at the Fox Tower


Opening June 8 at the Back Space Theatre


Opening June 8 at the Metro 4 Cinemas


Opening June 8 at the University of Miami Cosford Cinema


Opening June 15 at the Cinema Paradiso


Opening June 15 at the Valley Art Theater


Opening June 13 at the Cape Anne Community Cinema


Opening June 22 at the Boedecker Theater

Presidential Speech on Democracy Day Short on Police and Prison Matters

President Goodluck Jonathan

Presidential Speech on Democracy Day Short on Police and Prison Matters

~ John Egbeazien Oshodi, Ph.D

President Jonathan’s address to the nation in celebration of the democracy day on May 29, 2012 showed a profound touch on several areas like visa procurement, credit rating, foreign exchange, seaports readiness and cassava growth. While all these aspects are essential in regards to building and enriching our institutions as well as moving towards true democratic governance the inadequate attention to police and prison matters make the movement towards a stable democracy almost impossible.

Despite the continued institutional problems faced by the police and the prisons, and the despair faced by many serving police and prison officers as well as the poor optimism the Nigerian people have about our criminal justice institutions, the poor consideration given to these issues is problematic as it is not a good way to promote better ways to a functional civil society.

The President spoke of the armed forces in terms of their steadfast subordination to civil authority and addressed the judiciary as a problem-driven place that needs improvement but the two main agencies—police and prisons that are responsible for social stability remain almost absent in the speech.

The state of our criminal justice engine is currently clogged by mistrust, low morale, and psychologically the people continue to have low positive regard for our courts, the police and the prisons in particular.

The international world sees our criminal justice system in regards to the police and the prisons as centers of disorganization and ineptitude, and this is partly because those in uniform suffer from many challenges among which are poor remuneration, poor psychological readiness, poor residential environment, and collectively many have become more patriotic to the spirit of self-preservation at all cost, as such many of them see nothing unusual to committing themselves to a world of corruption, to a performance of carelessness and to an unwavering zeal for indifference to matters of public safety.

The President should have uttered words of support for the good works of some men and women in the police and prisons who in spite of all the challenges faced by their institutions have been known for committing their lives to the duty of protecting lives and properties.

Mr. President there is huge challenges facing the criminal justice system, and your administration need to help strengthen and bring the police and the prisons as well as the courts to the steps of professional and democratic standards.

Mr. President it is unhealthy for our young democracy to see our police and prison environments full mostly of unhappy and dejected men and women as the people will be the ultimate bearer of this systemic unhealthiness.

A presidential commitment to several, strong and wavering issues in the police, penal and judicial systems will in fact strengthen every other institution including all the ones you focused on as the absence of full safety and protection of all of them will mean danger to our democracy.

Mr. President it is time that the Nigerian criminal justice system to go through a psychological revolution the type that will reduce a myriad of huge issues.
We need bold mandates, programs and initiatives to drive a sustainable growth in the criminal justice system and there is need for the training of our police and prison officials using the tools of up-to-date psychology which will help bring in new knowledge in form of good attitude and full productivity.

Mr. President, we need to do more than strengthen the management of law enforcement agencies like the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC).

In order to better re-position these agencies for more effective service delivery it could have being very nice if you had used this august opportunity like you did in the case of changing the name of University of Lagos to voice bold modifications in our police and prison systems in particular.

Mr. President, henceforth and as part of the next Democracy Day hopefully you will inform the Nigerian people that the lives of our uniform men and women will be marked with pronounced positive improvements.

In this regard we will no longer hear of officers commercializing their duties, and there will be a reduction of justice for sale, a reduction in arbitrary detention in police cells and prisons, a reduction of highest bidder-oriented freedom, a reduction of police stations as business centers, a reduction of police squads as land speculators, a reduction of complainants turning into instant suspects, and a reduction of dilapidated police training centers.

In the area of prison challenges, future Democracy Day speech would evidence full blown reduction in prison conditions in regards to noticeable problems like congestion caused by persons awaiting trial. We will hear of a clear reduction in detentions without trial, a reduction of inadequate psychological treatment, a reduction of costly or inadequate feeding, a reduction of inadequate accommodation, a reduction of general overcrowding, and a reduction of dilapidated prison buildings.
We will hear from you a line of reductions in regards to poor sanitary, communicable diseases, and poor amenities like electricity, clothing, portable water, and communication system as well as in regards to the issue of prison outbreaks.

Mr. President, the reduction of many of the noted issues will make our criminal justice system, the Nigeria Police and prison institutions in particular more responsive organizations to public needs.

Mr. President it could have been major news in your speech to declare empowerment for our uniform and security detectives by announcing a new and higher salary structure, broadcasting a new and better accommodation allowance and revealing new training centers with established psychological and technological standards.

Mr. President these are the type of stuffs that could lead our officers to optimal performance in their duties and make them less tempted to ill-driven operational acts like criminal actions, indifference, chronic frustration, indiscipline, and selfishness.

Mr. President, the pursue of the rule of law and the formation of good institutions in an upcoming democracy like Nigeria can only occur if the Nigerian police, prison and court systems become full of men and women with the right training, the right resources, the right environment and the right attitude with the safety and security of the people always in their minds.

~ John Egbeazien Oshodi, Ph.D., is an Abuja-based Forensic/Clinical Psychologist. 08126909839.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Manchester United Named Most Popular Soccer Team In The World

29 May 2012 15:29 Africa/Lagos

Manchester United Named Most Popular Soccer Team In The World

New International Survey Finds 19-Time League Champions Have 659 Million Followers

MANCHESTER, England, May 29, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- A new global survey released today – the largest soccer survey ever conducted – named Manchester United the world's most popular soccer franchise, featuring 659 million followers worldwide.


The survey was carried out by leading market research agency, Kantar, and gathered 54,000 respondents from 39 countries around the world. Manchester United, which Forbes recently named the most valuable franchise in world sport, was identified as the favorite team of 659 million followers around the world. Kantar also found that soccer remains the world's most popular sport, with 1.6 billion followers globally, reinforcing the results of a recent FIFA survey which produced a similar figure.

"Manchester United is built on a tradition of iconic players, iconic teams and iconic achievements – Beckham, Busby, Benfica '68," said Richard Arnold, Commercial Director, Manchester United. "Now our games are broadcast to 1.15 billion households globally, to an audience of over four billion a year. Manchester United resonates with followers all over the world, and it's their passion and support that means year after year we can continue doing what matters most to everyone at the Club: playing attacking football and competing for trophies."

"The growth in our followers since 2007 correlates with what we have seen as we have rolled out our new approach to reaching fans. From the increase in TV viewership from two to four billion last season, to the demand from millions of media subscribers in 72 countries through our media partnerships, to the way the footage of Wayne's overhead kick echoed around the world on social media, we can see that the connections to the club are growing exponentially."

"With the DHL Champ19ns Trophy tour we have seen that passion from our community of followers face to face in 38 cities across the globe, and there does not seem to be a beach or street in the world where you do not see the Aon and Nike shirt."

"This survey shows that our family of followers is going from strength to strength."


Philip Townsend

+44 (0) 161 868 8148

Manchester United Ltd

SOURCE Manchester United Ltd

76% of People Conduct Online Searches in Two or More Languages

Internet Searching. Photo Credit: Autism Daddy.

29 May 2012 16:39 Africa/Lagos

76% of People Conduct Online Searches in Two or More Languages

LONDON, May 29, 2012/PRNewswire/ --

It might be assumed that not many people conduct online searches in more than one language. However, results from a global survey undertaken by leading independent digital marketing agency, Greenlight [ ], suggest quite the opposite, that a significant 76% do. Occupations one might most readily associate with the Internet - IT and Marketing - topped the list of those who are most likely to search in more than one language.

Greenlight's global "Search & Social Survey (2011-2012) [ ] " asked 500 people - from students, law enforcement professionals, medical staff, accountants, lawyers to the unemployed, how they engage with online advertising, search engines, and social networks, in order to glean insight into how consumers engage with marketers today, and to formulate views on what the future might hold.

Italy and Spain top multi-lingual search

Some of the countries topping Greenlight's chart are not entirely surprising - Belgium, for example, has three official languages. However, others, namely Italy and Spain, are not so obvious.

"The fact that Italy and Spain top the chart with 100% of respondents claiming to search in multiple languages, despite reasonably homogenised language use, is possibly a testament to the position of English as the quasi-official language of Europe and the relative prevalence of English language web pages," says Adam Bunn, director of search engine optimisation (SEO), at Greenlight.

Bunn points to data compiled by Greenlight in 2010. It showed the UK produced the most web pages per head [ ] in Europe at 17 pages per person, compared to ten per person in Spain and just six per person in Italy. "Presumably as well as there being more English spam on the web, this also means there is more high quality English content to be searched for by Europeans as well," says Bunn.

So what if English is used to conduct an online search in Spain?

Search engines use the domain extension to help them determine the geographical relevance of a site, so while a domain stands an increased chance of ranking within the search engine results pages (SERPs) in the UK, it will count against it when people are searching in another country. Consequently, this behaviour may warrant the creation of multiple language sites for a brand or business. This of course runs counter to traditional SEO logic which states that duplicate content is bad - which it is - so this would have to be undertaken with some caution, ensuring that all content is properly localised so that search engines know that one version is intended for region A, the other for region B.

Bunn concludes:

"The point here is that proper research, beyond just gathering a few keywords from the Google AdWords Keyword Tool, really does help to inform SEO [ ] strategy. The first step to deciding whether to progress an opportunity is to define the size of that opportunity. This data does give some food for thought."

About Greenlight:

Greenlight is a leading independent digital marketing agency, providing Search and Social Media services. With over 100 blue-chip clients including Santander, New Look, Sky and ghd, Greenlight is a leader in the digital marketing space, and is recognized worldwide for its commitment to delivering record ROI for its clients and investing in the future.

Greenlight is considered the premier thought leader in the sector, publishing widely read industry reports, original research, speaking at trade events, and delivering a highly respected digital marketing training programme via the Greenlight Academy. Founded in 2001, Greenlight is headquartered in London, with offices in New York. [ ]

Source: Greenlight

Notes to Editors: Adam Bunn is available for interview. For further information about Greenlight's report "Search & Social Survey (2011-2012)" or to arrange an interview, please contact: Krishna Rao, T: +44-(20)-3326-6232, E:

4 Million Football Fans To Buy A New TV Ahead of European Championships

29 May 2012 08:00 Africa/Lagos

Four Million Football Fans to buy a new TV Ahead of Euros

LONDON, May 29, 2012/PRNewswire/ --

One in ten Brits plan to buy a new TV

Despite the current squeeze on household finances, around four million* football fans are planning to pick up a new TV ahead of the European Championships.

Research from leading shopping website reveals three quarters of consumers will be following Euro 2012 at home and almost one in ten (nine per cent) will be purchasing a new TV to watch it on.

These findings are reinforced by analysis from that showed a 30 per cent increase in traffic from savvy shoppers looking for discounts on TVs over the past week. With retailers traditionally offering the deepest discounts in the run up to major sporting events, the leading shopping site predicts television sales to soar as retailers fight it out for Brits' hard earned cash.

The research shows Brits will spend an average of GBP570 - more than enough cash to purchase a 42 inch 3D TV - while 13 per cent plan to spend over GBP1,000. Around a third (30 per cent) say they'll cover the cost with a credit card, but nearly half (48 per cent) say this is a planned purchase and have been saving money especially to buy a new TV for the summer of sport that kicks off with the European Championships.

Duncan Jennings, co-founder of says: "Over the last few years we have noticed demand for TVs rising sharply ahead of major sporting events. We're expecting the two weeks before the championships to be a very busy period for Britain's retailers as consumers look to pick up a bargain ahead of the Euros."

"In the weeks leading up to the 2010 World Cup, we saw a whole host of incredible deals on TVs, with some stores dropping prices by up to 30 per cent. However, it's worth remembering that offers like this tend to pop up suddenly and disappear once the tournament has started, meaning consumers need to move quickly as they only have a small window to secure the deepest discounts."

Top TV deals:

GBP10 Cash for Every England Euro 2012 Goal with TV and Laptop Orders Over GBP549 at
Added 24/05/2012

Up to GBP200 off Selected Televisions at Argos
Expires 29/05/2012

Up to 20% off Selected Plasma, LCD and LED TVs at Comet
Added 24/05/2012

Notes to editors:

OnePoll surveyed 2,000 UK adults between 1 and 3 May 2012. The survey was carried out online.

*8.95% (no. of respondents who plan to purchase a new TV) of adult population that will watch the games (45.7million) = 4 million

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Delegation to Nigeria Hopes for “Transformed Reality”

(Photo: Reuters/Afolabi Sotunde)
Muslims pray while Christians form a protective human chain around them during a protest against the elimination of a popular fuel subsidy that has doubled the price of gas in Nigeria's capital Abuja, Jan. 10, 2012. Photo Credit: Christian Post.

29 May 2012 10:49 Africa/Lagos

Delegation to Nigeria Hopes for “Transformed Reality”

GENEVA, May 29, 2012/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- A high-level international delegation of Christian and Muslim leaders issued a joint statement at the end of their visit to Nigeria on 25 May, expressing hope for their “visit to demonstrate an international model of Muslims and Christians working together in inter-religious engagement aimed at fostering peace and harmony between people of different religions.”

The delegation was coordinated by the World Council of Churches (WCC), led by its general secretary, Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, and Prince Ghazi bin Muhammad of Jordan, chairman of the Royal Aal Al-Bayt Institute for Islamic Thought.

The statement was issued at a press conference of the delegation in Abuja, Nigeria's capital. It expressed concern over the violence in the country and stressed the need for the religious communities to work together for peace and conflict resolution.

“We believe that both Christianity and Islam are religions which long for peace, and that in both our faiths love of God and love of our neighbour must belong together,” the statement read.

The delegates met with government officials, religious leaders, traditional rulers and the families of victims of violence during their visits to Abuja, Kaduna and Jos. In their statement they expressed their hope in the transformation of the situation in Nigeria.

“In hearing the pain of those who have spoken to us we also caught a glimmer of their dreams, and the hopes of many, both religious leaders and ordinary people, that a transformed reality is possible.”

The delegation will be making further recommendations for joint inter-religious initiatives of working for dialogue and peace in Nigeria at a later stage.

Source: World Council of Churches (WCC)

Releases displayed in Africa/Lagos time
29 May 2012
10:49 Delegation to Nigeria hopes for “transformed reality”
09:26 General Yakubu Gowon calls upon Basotho for a peaceful election
05:57 Pan-African Parliament (PAP) Elects New President and Vice Presidents

Democracy in Darkness in Nigeria

A Nigerian child attempting to turn on a generator! The caption in pidgin English, "Una want use Heat kill Person" means do you want to use heat to kill someone? Millions of children in Nigeria have to sleep with poor ventilation due to regular power cuts and sweat profusely from the heat indoors. Parents have to turn on generators to power extractor fans to ventilate their homes in congested places and arid regions in Nigeria.

Today is Democracy Day in Nigeria, an unpopular public holiday declared and enforced by the government of the ruling People's Democratic Party (PDP) since May 29, 1999. But majority of the population of over 160 million are left in darkness, because of lack of regular power supply.

Power outages are unusually more frequent in Nigeria, the most populous nation in Africa where maladministration caused by rampant corruption and incompetence have left majority of the people in darkness without regular power supply. The country generates less than 4, 000 MW of electricity for a population of over 160 million people. Therefore they have to provide their own power by buying thousands of generators imported and sold by the same contractors who have sabotaged the infrastructure for power supply and they continue to sabotage the means of regular power supply so that there will be more demand for generators from which they have made billions of dollars for decades. The provision of regular power supply will put them out of business, so they would rather die sabotaging the power supply than stop their booming generator supply business.

• Brazil is able to generate 100,000MW of grid-based electric power for a population of 201 million people, while South Africa generates 40,000MW for about 50 million citizens.

• South African is provided 97 per cent more electricity than a Nigerian, while a Brazilian enjoys 93 per cent more. With a population of 150 million, Nigeria’s generation capacity is around 3,600MW.

• South Africa’s 44, 074.4MW (for a population of 49,320,150); and Ghana’s 2,111MW (for a population of 23,837,261).

Per capita, this equals 22.8W of electricity for each Nigerian, 535.8W for a Brazilian, 3, 252.6W for an American, South Africa 1, 093W for a South African and 88.6w for a Ghanaian.

Nigerians Are Suffering and Dying from Hazards of Using Generators

Portable generators are useful when temporary or remote electric power is needed, but they also can be hazardous. The primary hazards to avoid when using a generator are carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning from the toxic engine exhaust, electric shock or electrocution, and fire.

Every year, people die in incidents related to portable generator use. Most of the incidents associated with portable generators reported to CPSC involve CO poisoning from generators used indoors or in partially-enclosed spaces.
~ Portable Generator Hazards.

The whole atmosphere of Nigeria is polluted by hazardous fumes from hundreds of thousands of diesel and petrol generators used by millions of people and many have been killed by the toxic fumes and others are still suffering and dying from the health hazards of using generators indoors and outdoors.

~ By Ekenyerengozi Michael Chima

Photo Credit: WXEDGE.
Consumer Product Safety Commission Safety Alert
Portable Generator Hazards

Portable generators are useful when temporary or remote electric power is needed, but they also can be hazardous. The primary hazards to avoid when using a generator are carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning from the toxic engine exhaust, electric shock or electrocution, and fire.

Every year, people die in incidents related to portable generator use. Most of the incidents associated with portable generators reported to CPSC involve CO poisoning from generators used indoors or in partially-enclosed spaces.

Carbon Monoxide Hazards

NEVER use a generator in enclosed or partially-enclosed spaces. Generators can produce high levels of CO very quickly. When you use a portable generator, remember that you cannot smell or see CO. Even if you can’t smell exhaust fumes, you may still be exposed to CO.

If you start to feel sick, dizzy, or weak while using a generator, get to fresh air RIGHT AWAY. DO NOT DELAY. The CO from generators can rapidly lead to full incapacitation and death.

If you experience serious symptoms, get medical attention immediately. Inform medical staff that CO poisoning is suspected. If you experienced symptoms while indoors, have someone call the fire department to determine when it is safe to re-enter the building.

Follow these safety tips to protect against CO poisoning:

NEVER use a generator indoors, including in homes, garages, basements, crawl spaces, and other enclosed or partially-enclosed areas, even with ventilation. Opening doors and windows or using fans will not prevent CO build-up in the home.

Follow the instructions that come with your generator. Locate the unit outdoors and away from doors, windows, and vents that could allow CO to come indoors.

Install battery-operated CO alarms or plug-in CO alarms with battery back-up in your home, according to the manufacturer’s installation instructions. The CO alarms should be certified to the requirements of the latest safety standards for CO alarms (UL 2034, IAS 6-96, or CSA 6.19.01).

Test your CO alarms frequently and replace dead batteries.

Electrical Hazards

Follow these tips to protect against shock and electrocution:

Keep the generator dry and do not use in rain or wet conditions. To protect from moisture, operate it on a dry surface under an open, canopy-like structure. Dry your hands if wet before touching the generator.

Plug appliances directly into the generator. Or, use a heavy duty, outdoor-rated extension cord that is rated (in watts or amps) at least equal to the sum of the connected appliance loads. Check that the entire cord is free of cuts or tears and that the plug has all three prongs, especially a grounding pin.

NEVER try to power the house wiring by plugging the generator into a wall outlet, a practice known as “backfeeding.” This is an extremely dangerous practice that presents an electrocution risk to utility workers and neighbors served by the same utility transformer. It also bypasses some of the built-in household circuit protection devices.

If you must connect the generator to the house wiring to power appliances, have a qualified electrician install the appropriate equipment in accordance with local electrical codes. Or, check with your utility company to see if it can install an appropriate power transfer switch.

For power outages, permanently installed stationary generators are better suited for providing backup power to the home. Even a properly connected portable generator can become overloaded. This may result in overheating or stressing the generator components, possibly leading to a generator failure.

Fire Hazards

Follow these tips to prevent fires:

Never store fuel for your generator in the home. Gasoline, propane, kerosene, and other flammable liquids should be stored outside of living areas in properly-labeled, non-glass safety containers. Do not store them near a fuel-burning appliance, such as a natural gas water heater in a garage. If the fuel is spilled or the container is not sealed properly, invisible vapors from the fuel can travel along the ground and can be ignited by the appliance’s pilot light or by arcs from electric switches in the appliance.

Before refueling the generator, turn it off and let it cool down. Gasoline spilled on hot engine parts could ignite.


CPSC documents are in the public domain; a CPSC document may be reproduced without change in part or whole by an individual or organization without permission. If it is reproduced, however, the Commission would appreciate knowing how it is used. Write the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, Office of Information and Public Affairs, 4330 East West Highway, Bethesda, MD 20814 or send an e-mail via CPSC's Online Form.

All CPSC publications - including exclusive web-only content - are available to consumers to print for free from their home, school or office computers. To order hard copies of any of the Neighborhood Safety Library Publications or Technical Reports and Handbooks, please e-mail CPSC. Be sure to include your mailing address, and specify the document number and name of the publication desired. Please allow 3-4 weeks for delivery.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is charged with protecting the public from unreasonable risks of injury or death associated with the use of the thousands of consumer products under the agency’s jurisdiction. Deaths, injuries, and property damage from consumer product incidents cost the nation more than $900 billion annually. CPSC is committed to protecting consumers and families from products that pose a fire, electrical, chemical, or mechanical hazard. CPSC’s work to ensure the safety of consumer products - such as toys, cribs, power tools, cigarette lighters and household chemicals - contributed to a decline in the rate of deaths and injuries associated with consumer products over the past 30 years.

To report a dangerous product or a product-related injury, go online to:, call CPSC’s Hotline at (800) 638-2772 or teletypewriter at (301) 595-7054 for the hearing and speech impaired. Consumers can obtain this news release and product safety information at To join a free e-mail subscription list, please go to

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Monday, May 28, 2012

Jobs For Youth Key To Africa's Continued Economic Growth And Social Cohesion

African Youths. Photo Credit: INSIDE UVA.

28 May 2012 11:45 Africa/Lagos

Jobs for youth key to Africa's continued economic growth and social cohesion

ARUSHA, May 28, 2012/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- With the number of youths in Africa set to double by 2045, countries across the continent should boost job creation and help young people acquire new skills, according to the African Economic Outlook 2012.


“Creating productive employment for Africa's rapidly growing young population is an immense challenge but also the key to future prosperity”, say the authors in the foreword.

Co-written by the African Development Bank, the OECD Development Centre, the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) and the UN Development Programme (UNDP), the report says youth are an opportunity for future economic growth.

Between 2000 and 2008, despite world-topping economic growth rates, and a better educated youth, Africa created only 16 million jobs for young people aged between 15 and 24.

Today, youth represent 60 percent of the continent's unemployed, and of these 40 million youths, 22 million have given up on finding a job, many of them women.

“The continent is experiencing jobless growth”, said Mthuli Ncube, Chief Economist and Vice-President of the African Development Bank (AfDB). “That is an unacceptable reality on a continent with such an impressive pool of youth, talent and creativity”.

The report argues youth unemployment figures will increase unless Africa moves swiftly to make youth employment a priority, turning its human capital into economic opportunity. On the other hand, youths can present a significant threat to social cohesion and political stability if they do not secure decent living conditions.

High growth alone is not sufficient to guarantee productive employment. Youth employment is largely a problem of quality in low-income countries and one of quantity in middle-income countries, the report says.

“In low-income countries, most young people work but are poor nevertheless. In African middle-income countries, on the other hand, such as South Africa or the Northern African countries, despite better education, more youth are inactive than working”, said Mario Pezzini, Director at the OECD Development Centre.

The report recommends that African countries design better coordinated strategies to effectively tackle youth employment, focusing on job creation in the private sector while providing the right conditions for businesses of all sizes to grow and expand their work force.

In addition, given the small size of the formal sector in many African countries, the report finds that a government focus on the informal sector and rural areas, which contain immense entrepreneurial talent, can serve as engines for inclusive growth since they can absorb higher numbers of unemployed youths.

It also advocates for policies focused on creating the skills that are necessary for youths to compete in the job market, for instance by improving the quality of education in agriculture and new technologies.

Increased policy focus on youth employment must be coupled with measures to boost investments in social and economic infrastructure and diversify the continent's economy.

“Export diversification beyond raw material and private sector development are important to mitigate the continent's susceptibility to external shocks, but that takes time”, said Emmanuel Nnadozie, Director of Economic Development at UNECA.

With the right policies in place, the continent could capitalize on its recent economic growth to achieve a development breakthrough.

“Youth employment is an investment in the future. It contributes to reducing poverty, wealth creation, well-being and social cohesion,” said Pedro Conceição, Chief Economist at UNDP's Regional Bureau for Africa.

The African Economic Outlook presents a comprehensive analysis of the economic, social and political developments in the region. The report includes in-depth country notes on 53 of the continent's 54 economies, a macroeconomic overview.

The document also offers a chapter on human development which focuses this year on the importance of reversing capital flight to achieve sustainable human development.

Distributed by the African Press Organization on behalf of the African Development Bank.

Information about the report: The annual 2012 African Economic Outlook covers economic, social and political development in 53 of the continent's 54 countries. It is published with financial support from the European Union and the Committee of African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States (ACP).

For the whole report, including statistics and specific country performance, please visit

Press Contacts:

African Development Bank: Pénélope Pontet, T: +216 71 10 12 50 (Tunis) / M: +216 24 66 36 96 . Now in Tanzania : +255 65811 25 49

OECD Development Centre: Elodie Masson, T: +33 (0)6 26 74 04 03

UNDP: Sandra Macharia, - T: +1.212.906.5377 (New York)

UNECA: Yinka Adeyemi, T: +251 11 544 3537 (Addis Ababa)

Source: African Development Bank (AfDB)

Unemployment, Frustration and Crime in Nigeria

Nigerians protesting against corruption and insecurity. Photo Credit: AfriPol.

Unemployment, Frustration and Crime

~ By Nwaorgu Faustinus

Unemployment can be defined as state of being jobless. An unemployed person is one who is searching for job, ready and available to work, but cannot find it.

Nigeria is not the only country grappling with the challenges of unemployment particularly among her teeming youths and graduates, other countries both third world, developing and advanced are as well in this boat as she is. In Nigeria, the situation has led to the establishment of such bodies as; National Poverty Eradication Programme (NAPEP), National Directorate of Employment and others.
As sound as these bodies’ policies and programmes are, not much has been achieved in terms of comprehensive and exhaustive job creation and employment.

It is no longer uncommon to see unemployed persons besieging cyber cafes in search of job opportunity on the internet. Some who do not have the financial muscle to spend hours at the café, trek kilometers of road visiting government owned and private organizations with their hand written application letters and qualification for inquiries for available employment opportunities, all to no avail.

In the same vein, those who have exposed themselves to series of interviews with assurances from their interviewers that they would be contacted in no distant time have continued to wait in vain. It is even more disheartening for one to pass an interview, whether it is written or oral and to discover that one’s position has been taken by another person. This circumstance is the lots of many job seekers who
do not have connection with “the powers that be” in an organization be it public or private. It is at this point that a few job seekers view their chances of securing employment as “bleak”, then frustration and despondency will set in. It is also at this point that negative thoughts will infiltrate their minds.

Many a job seeker may know how some purported paramilitary recruits who gained employment in the time past or recently were able to make it. Applicants who paid allegedly N150,000 – N300, 000 to some top paramilitary officers are counting their losses. This is because the top paramilitary agents were not able to pull a string on their behalf. It was purportedly ministers’ and other top ranking politicians’ candidates whose names were short listed for training. The alleged payment of thousands of naira in Delta State recently by job seekers in the state to secure employment which is under investigation demonstrate the bleak chance indigent job hunters have and the extent bribery and corruption has enveloped Nigeria.

In a circumstance of this nature, what becomes the future and fate of indigent applicants who do not know or have connection with a minister or a strong politician who can wield enormous influence for them? Only God knows.

Consequently many job seekers, who cannot bear the pangs of poverty and hunger, after fruitless years of job hunt, become ready tools in the hands of politicians who equip them with guns and use same to perpetrate crime during political campaigns and elections to actualize their paymaster’s selfish political ambition.

I still recall how some alleged state government called on people whom guns were given to, to return them after 1999 and 2003 elections were over. But were the guns returned? Your guess is good as mine. Such guns no doubt have found their way into the hands of those who ought not to have them. What more? They use guns to rob, kidnap and assassinate.

The rate of crime which is on the increase can be attributed to joblessness among other factors. One who has been privy to the confessions of armed robbers will concur with me that majority of them are driven into life of crime because of not having anything to do. It is high time the powers that be; politicians, ministers and bosses of both public and private organizations stopped using their position to
favour the employment of those who grease their palms, close relations, political associates’ friend or children etc. to the detriment of people who merited to occupy such positions base on merit and ability to contribute meaningfully to growth of the organization.

They should employ those who did excellently well in both their written and oral interviews.

The creation of employment opportunities should not be left in the hands of government only; the private sector should also take part in reducing the rate of unemployment by investing in key sectors of the economy.

The likes of Alhaji Alinko Dangote, Mike Adenuga, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, Orji Uzor Kalu, Prince Tonye Princewill and others too many to mention that have contributed in no mean measure towards employing a lot of graduates through various investment ideas should be emulated by others who have the financial clout to setup private companies that will serve as avenue for the creation of more jobs for the unemployed.

It is when this is done that crime associated with joblessness will be reduced.

~ Nwaorgu Faustinus wrote in from Port Harcourt. Email: Tel: 08035601312.

Winners of the 65Th Cannes Film Festival

Michael Haneke with his Palme d'Or. This is the second time the Austrian director has won the Palme d'Or after winning it in 2009 for his The White Ribbon.

The 65th Cannes Film Festival ended last night with the following winners.

1. Palme d'Or (Best Film) - 'Love'/Amour (Austria) by Michael Haneke

2. Grand Prix (Runner-up) - 'Reality' (Italy) by Matteo Garrone
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3. Jury Prize (Third Prize) - 'The Angels' Share' (Britain) by Ken Loach

4. Camera d'Or (Debut Film) - 'Beasts of the Southern Wild' (U.S.) by Benh Zeitlin

5. Best Director - Carlos Reygadas for 'Post Tenebras Lux' (Mexico)

6. Best Screenplay - 'Beyond the Hills' (Romania) by Cristian Mungiu

7. Best Actress - Cosmina Stratan and Cristina Flutur in 'Beyond the Hills'

8. Best Actor - Mads Mikkelsen in 'The Hunt'

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