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Amnesty International Demands Release Of Tanzanian Opposition Leaders

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Amnesty International Demands Release Of Tanzanian Opposition Leaders

Human rights watchdog, Amnesty International, has called on Tanzanian authorities to stop targeting the opposition and immediately release all opposition members arrested in a swoop on Wednesday.

“Tanzanian authorities must end the escalating crackdown on opposition party and leaders. Unless the authorities have clear legal grounds to justify these arrests, all of those arrested in this swoop must be immediately released,” Amnesty International’s Deputy Director for East Africa, the Horn and the Great Lakes Region, Flavia Mwangovya, said in a statement.

The Tanzania Police Force must also account for the whereabouts of Freeman Mbowe and ensure his security and safe return, the statement said.

Opposition leader Freeman Mbowe and 11 other party officials and staff of Party of Democracy and Progress, officially known as Chadema, were arbitrarily arrested on Wednesday.

“Tanzanian authorities must stop targeting the opposition and trying to narrow the space they are able to operate in. These arbitrary arrests and detentions show Tanzanian authorities’ flagrant disregard for the rule of law, and human rights, including the rights to freedom of expression and association. These politically motivated arrests must stop,” Mwangovya said.

Amnesty International said the 12 members of the opposition were arrested at 2.30 am on 21 July from their hotel rooms in Mwanza by Tanzanian police.

The arrest came hours before a planned conference demanding a new constitution for the country.

On 20 July, Mwanza’s Regional Commissioner Robert Gabriel, banned all forms of gathering except for religious gatherings and funerals, stating that anyone intending to assemble must get clearance from his office.

According to the opposition party’s Protocol, Communications and Foreign Affairs director, John Mrema, the 11 detained at Central Police Station have not been charged with any criminal offence.

Lawyers representing them have also not seen any statements of offence regarding the reason for their arrest.

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Tokyo Olympics: “Golden Slam” Dream Dashed As Djokovic Loses To Zverev

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Tokyo Olympics: “Golden Slam” Dream Dashed As Djokovic Loses To Zverev-Crsutal News

An astonishing collapse ended Novak Djokovic’s bid for an unprecedented men’s “golden slam” as Germany’s Alexander Zverev reached the 2020 Olympic Games final 1-6 6-3 6-1 in Tokyo on Friday.

The world number one Serbian looked in complete control as he took the opening set with ease.

He broke for 3-2 in the fifth game of the second set to move to the verge of victory.

But Zverev immediately broke back to spark an eight-game winning run which leveled the match and put him in a commanding 4-0 lead in the decider.

Djokovic recovered to offer some resistance but could not repair the damage as Zverev claimed 10 of the last 11 games to win.

Zverev was congratulated by Djokovic at the net but then took time to compose himself beneath his towel at the empty  Ariake Tennis Park.

The 24-year-old Zverev, fifth in the world, will now take on the 25th-ranked Russian Karen Khachanov for the biggest title of his career in Sunday’s final.

Neither of the two has won a slam, though Zverev did lose the 2020 US Open decider.

The defeat ends Djokovic’s attempt to become the first man to win all four grand slams plus Olympic gold in a season.

It was only Steffi Graf who  in 1988,  achieved the feat on the women’s side.

The Serbian can still become the only third man to claim a calendar year grand slam if he wins the US Open which starts in a month’s time.

American Donald Budge, in 1938, and Australia’s Rod Laver have only achieved this feat, in 1962 and 1969.

Meanwhile, in the other semi-final game at the Tokyo Games, Khachanov defeated Spain’s Pablo Carreno-Busta 6-3 6-3 to reach the final.

Djokovic and Carreno-Busta will contest the bronze medal match on Saturday.

Djokovic will return to partner Nina Stojanovic in the mixed doubles semi-finals, hoping to set up a final meeting with Australians Ash Barty and John Peers

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NDE Trains 25 Youths On Advanced Agriculture In Kaduna

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NDE Trains 25 Youths On Advanced Agriculture In Kaduna

The National Directorate of Employment (NDE) has begun the training of 25 youths in Kaduna on advanced agriculture under its Post-Sustainable Agricultural Development Training Scheme (POST-SADT) program.

Crystal News understands that the 25 participants had earlier received basic training on different aspects of agriculture such as poultry, fishery, cow fattening among others.

The Acting NDE Kaduna State Coordinator, Mrs. Victoria Dada-Williams, said that the training would last for one week.

According to her, participants will be trained on the practical application of government agricultural policies like the provision of incentives, links to the source of funds, and high productivity.

“It is also to encourage the youth to accept agriculture as a means of livelihood rather than looking for white-collar jobs.
“ I want to encourage you all to be more serious, more dedicated, and make use of this golden opportunity,’’ she said.

Dada-Williams added that the training was a significant step in Nigeria’s quest to win the war against mass unemployment as well as to ameliorate the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

She explained that the NDE in the last three decades had remained at the forefront in the fight against poverty and joblessness which is the core mandate of the directorate.

Earlier, Malam Nuhu Abubakar-Fikpo, Director-General, NDE, said he was impressed with the Kaduna State Directorate for empowering the youth, urging participants to pay attention and learn effectively.

The D-G, who was represented by Mr. Edene Paschal, Rural, Promotion Officer 1 of the directorate, said participants would be given soft loans to start up their agric businesses after the training.

Meanwhile, some of the participants expressed appreciation to NDE and hoped to start up their businesses soon.

Ibrahim Abubakar, a graduate who had learned poultry, said he had gained more knowledge during the first training and was expecting to get loan to start up his poultry business.

Mrs Ruth Sebastian said she felt lucky to be one of the selected participants, adding that she intends to be self-reliant and be an employer of labor after the training.

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Buhari Assents To N983bn 2021 Supplementary Budget

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President Muhammadu Buhari has assented to the N983 billion 2021 supplementary budget recently passed by the National Assembly.

Mr Umar El-Yakub, Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly matters, disclosed this when he briefed State House Correspondents on Monday in Abuja.

El-Yakub said that the core target of the supplementary budget was the security and health sectors.

“The president has asserted the Supplementary Appropriation Bill which is now an Act.

“The bill was submitted to the National Assembly and it made an expeditious consideration of the bill, which was passed and transmitted in record time and the president has today assented to that bill and of course it will come into force form today.

“As you are all aware, the bill is targeted at infrastructure in terms of security.

“It targeted the provision of infrastructure to all the military formations– defence, army, police, civil defence, DSS–all the security outfits in this country will benefit from the bill because of the president’s commitment to combating crimes and indeed insurgency and other security challenges facing the country; so this bill is very important and it has been assented to.

“Another critical area of concern is that of the health sector;  which we know with the pandemic there is need to invest in that sector as well and the president, having assented to the bill, you find that about ten molecular laboratories will be established nationwide,” he said.

According to him, oxygen plants are going to be established nationwide and some rehabilitated especially the ones in Abuja the nation’s capital.

He said there would also be the procurement of vaccines, including the J & J vaccine which was a one-shot vaccine that had been approved by the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC).

“The total amount in the appropriation bill assented to by the president is N983 billion,” he said.

The senior special assistant said that the president also used the occasion to appreciate the National Assembly for maintaining a harmonious relationship with the executive arm of government, for the benefit of all Nigerians.

He added the president had earlier in the month assented to the Orthopedic Hospitals Management Amendment Bill which gave approval for the establishment of an orthopedic hospital in Jos, Plateau.

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