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Russian forces attack Ukraine after Putin’s TV declaration

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Russian forces fired missiles at several cities in Ukraine and landed troops on its coast on Thursday, officials and media said, after President Vladimir Putin authorised what he called a special military operation in the east.

Shortly after Putin spoke in a televised address on Russian state TV, explosions could be heard in the pre-dawn quiet of the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv.

“Putin has just launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine. Peaceful Ukrainian cities are under strikes,” Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said on Twitter.

“This is a war of aggression. Ukraine will defend itself and will win. The world can and must stop Putin. The time to act is now.”

U.S. President Joe Biden, reacting to an invasion the United States had been predicting for weeks, said his prayers were with the people of Ukraine “as they suffer an unprovoked and unjustified attack”, while promising tough sanctions in response.

“I will be meeting with the leaders of the G7, and the United States and our allies and partners will be imposing severe sanctions on Russia,” Biden said in a statement.

Russia has demanded an end to NATO’s eastward expansion and Putin repeated his position that Ukrainian membership of the U.S.-led Atlantic military alliance was unacceptable.

He said he had authorised military action after Russia had been left with no choice but to defend itself against what he said were threats emanating from modern Ukraine, a democratic state of 44 million people.

“Russia cannot feel safe, develop, and exist with a constant threat emanating from the territory of modern Ukraine,” Putin said. “All responsibility for bloodshed will be on the conscience of the ruling regime in Ukraine.”

The full scope of the Russian military operation was not immediately clear but Putin said: “Our plans do not include the occupation of Ukrainian territories. We are not going to impose anything by force.”

Speaking as the U.N. Security Council held an emergency meeting in New York, Putin said he had ordered Russian forces to protect the people and appealed to the Ukrainian military to lay down their arms.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said Russia had carried out missile strikes on Ukrainian infrastructure and border guards, and that explosions had been heard in many cities. An official also reported non-stop cyber attacks.

Zelenskiy said that martial law had been declared and that he had spoken by telephone to Biden. Reservists were called up on Wednesday.

Three hours after Putin gave his order, Russia’s defence ministry said it had taken out military infrastructure at Ukrainian air bases and degraded its air defences, Russian media reported.

Earlier, Ukrainian media reported that military command centres in Kyiv and the city of Kharkiv in the northeast had been struck by missiles while Russian troops had landed in the southern port cities of Odessa and Mariupol.

A Reuters witness later heard three loud blasts in Mariupol.

Russian-backed separatists said they had launched an offensive on the Ukrainian-controlled town of Shchastia in the east, Russia’s Interfax news agency said, and explosions also rocked the breakaway eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk.

Hours earlier, the separatists issued a plea to Moscow for help to stop alleged Ukrainian aggression – claims the United States dismissed as Russian propaganda.

Global stocks and U.S. bond yields dived, while the dollar and gold rocketed higher after Putin’s address. Brent oil surged past $100/barrel for the first time since 2014.

[Source: Reuters]

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Nigerian rapper Oladips is dead

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Oladips

Nigerian rapper, Oladipupo Oladimeji, popularly known as Oladips is dead.

The news of his death was announced on his Instagram handle on Wednesday.

According to the post, he died last night (Tuesday) at 10:14 pm.

The Instagram post reads: “We are saddened to inform the general public that Oladipupo Olabode Oladimeji aka OLADIPS passed away yesterday Nov 14th Tuesday evening, at exactly 10:14 pm. We are still in shock as we speak!

“For over 2 years he has kept his battles within himself, his body is now with his family.

“The family asked that we respect their privacy in this trying time. May God give us all the fortitude to bear this great loss. (amen).”

His funeral services will be announced as soon as it is concluded, the statement added.

The news of his death comes barely three months after the death of Oladimeji Aloba popularly known as Mohbad.

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Osun Workers Displease With Gov. Adeleke Over Decision Not To Increase Salary

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Workers under the banner of Osun Workers Union (OWU) have chided the state government for foreclosing the chances of paying workers palliative wage at a time Governor Adeleke had secretly obtained approval in the Supplementary Budget to spend N10billion for his office.

Recall the hope of the Osun state workers to earn special Minimum Wage to cushion the effect of fuel subsidy removal was dashed on Saturday when the state government sounded unequivocally that it could not embark on upward wage review in order not to repeat the half-salary regime experienced in the state during the tenure of Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola.

In a press statement authored by the state’s commissioner for information and public enlightenment, Oluomo Kolapo Alimi, the only support the state government could offer Osun workers at the moment is a “well-packaged transport scheme aimed at alleviating the pressure of transportation as a fall out of the removal of fuel subsidy by the Federal Government.”

Alimi’s statement was a reaction to a N25,000 salary allowance news that trended over the weekend.

In the purported news, Governor Adeleke was quoted to have assured Osun workers of his government’s readiness to begin from November payment of N25,000 extra wage to the state workforce to help reduce the economic hardship.

Commenting on the development, Comrade Gabriel Adeoye bemoaned the leadership of the state government for what he termed their act of wickedness towards the state civil servants and pensioners.

Adeoye, who is the organising secretary of the Osun Workers Union, expressed the Union’s utter disappointment in Governor Adeleke, stating that unless he rescinds his decision on not to increase their salary as done by other states, the state workers would have no other option than to embark on peaceful protests. In his words, “What is the excuse of Governor Adeleke not to increase our salary at this difficult time? In the neighbouring Oyo state, civil servants and pensioners have begun to receive N25,000 and N15,000 palliative wage respectively.

Ogun has been paying palliative support of N10, 000 to its workers since August. Same in Ekiti. Same in Lagos. Only Osun is odd out of the states. Yet, the governor has approved N10b (Ten Billion Naira) for himself in the 2023 supplementary budget. The Governor is also yet to account for the N9billion palliative relief money the federal government gave the people of the state. Is this not sheer wickedness?”

The Union wanted Governor Adeleke to disclose to the people of the state the rationale behind the additional budget of N10billion for only his office.

They equally wanted him to account for the N9billion palliative fund received from the Federal Government since July.

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Hope Uzodinma wins all 27 LGAs as INEC annoucnes final result in Imo

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Hope Uzodimma

Hope Uzodinma has won all 27 LGAs as INEC has annoucned final result in Imo state.

It was reported that Governor Hope Uzodimma of the All Progressives Congress (APC), emerged victorious in 27 local government areas in the just-concluded election, with the collation completed at 08:30 am on Sunday.

The collation of results is currently taking place at the State Collation Centre in Owerri, the state capital.

The process commenced around 02:30 am on Sunday in Owerri, with the Vice Chancellor of the Federal University, Oye Ekiti, Prof Abayomi Fashina, serving as the state Returning Officer for INEC in the election.

The APC, represented by Uzodimma, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, with Samuel Anyanwu, and the Labour Party’s Achonu Nneji, were the primary contenders among the 18 parties fielding candidates in the election.

According to INEC, a total of 2,419,922 registered voters in the state for the poll, with 2,318,919 Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) collected.

At the culmination of the collation at 08:30 am on Sunday, Fashina announced that the center would take an hour-long break and reconvene for the announcement of the winner.

 

 

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