Nigeria celebrated its 54th Independence Anniversary in Abuja yesterday with a golf kitty without the usual Ghanaian delegation from Achimota Golf Club that graced the occasion.Interclub matchplay friendly between the two capital city clubs at IBB International Golf and Country Club Abuja is a routine during the national day of Nigeria.But the sequence was first broken in March 2014, when Abuja did not visit Accra during Ghana’s 57th anniversary. The apparent reason for that was due to the massive upgrading of the Achimota Golf course to meet international standard.IBB Golf Club Captain, Hon Tam Brisibe, who played the ceremonial four-balls with the Presidential Special Adviser on Power Bekinbo Dagogo-Jack, the of Managing Director of PWD, Ali Ibrahim and the DIG Police Operations Sotonye Wakama, yesterday morning, attributed the absence of the Ghanaians to logistics reasons beyond their control.‘’Unfortunately the Ghanaians could not come to play the normal interclub match play with us. We did not go to Accra because they were repairing their course. We invited them but I understand they had some logistic challenges,’’ Brisibe said.A field of 230 golfers graced yesterday’s 18-hole Independence Cup. Everybody enjoyed the game as undue delays were eliminated while a lot of entertainment was provided at the gala night where prizes were presented to discerning golfers. In spite of the myriad of challenges confronting the country, some Nigerian political and business leaders used the independence Kitty to convey messages of hope and solidarity.Brisibe tasked Nigerians to learn to live in unity and harmony which is a tenet imbibed by golfers through sports.Former Governor of Rivers State, Sir Celestine Omehia wove his anecdotes around the game of golf which he used to mirror the prevailing challenges the country is facing. He noted that the crises with Nigeria are those usually encountered by golfers during a normal round of golf.‘’Like golf, the world we live in is full of ups and downs; you face obstacles on the course like bunkers, roughs and end up shooting bogies. It is the same challenges you face in normal life. As a country we should settle for a birdie or at best a par,’’ Omehia said.The Vice Chairman of Construction Kaiser, Igbuan Okaisabor observed that a lot of the problems hampering Nigeria would be subdued if the diverse ethnic groups come together and forge a synergy.‘’If we come together we will be a force to reckon with. Our diversity should be to our advantage. Asides, we are beginning to turn the corners through improved GDP per capital and a growing middle class,’’ Okaisabor said.
zoomIllustration. Image Courtesy: Pixabay under CC0 Creative Commons license French cruise company Compagnie du Ponant and the master of cruise ship L’Austral have been fined a total of NZD 100,000 (USD 65,800) for endangering human life and entering a prohibited zone following an incident in the remote New Zealand Subantarctic islands.The company received a fine of NZD 70,000, while Captain Regis Daumesnil, a French citizen, was fined NZD 30,000 in the Wellington District Court. They had pleaded guilty to charges following the January 9, 2017 grounding of the cruise ship L’Austral on an uncharted rock at the Snares Islands.Both Maritime NZ and the Department of Conservation (DOC) brought charges against Captain Daumesnil, with DOC also prosecuting the company.Charges were filed against Captain Daumesnil under the Maritime Transport Act 1994 for causing unnecessary danger or risk to the people on board, and against both Captain Daumesnil and the company under the Resource Management Act 1991 for entering a 300-meter exclusion zone around the Islands.As a result of the grounding the vessel’s hull was punctured in three places. Rather than return to Bluff, the nearest port, Captain Daumesnil made the decision to continue on the cruise schedule to the Auckland Islands, a further 285 km south. There were 356 passengers and crew onboard.“His ship grounded, was holed and everyone on board was endangered. Captain Daumesnil then made the situation worse by sailing further away, from any possible help, should it have been needed,” Mike Vredenburg, Maritime NZ Southern Regional Compliance Manager, said.Captain Daumesnil had an inadequate plan for sailing around North East Island, no plan at all for drifting close to shore while recovering boats, did not identify areas of danger, and did not monitor that the ship remained in safe water.The Court has ordered that 90 per cent of the fine laid under the Resource Management Act charges be awarded to DOC, on behalf of the Minister of Conservation, as the local authority for the Subantarctic Islands. DOC intends to use those funds towards planning for its Auckland Islands pest eradication project.
HALIFAX – Canadian rapper Classified has released a new song in support of people who feel powerless, with a focus on women and children who have suffered abuse.The Nova Scotia musician — whose real name is Luke Boyd — says the song, titled “Powerless,” is drawn from the experiences of multiple people who have reached out to him.He says the inspiration for the song first came from a letter he received from a young girl in Newfoundland and Labrador.Boyd says she called him her hero after he blasted a judge on Facebook for handing a man from St. John’s, N.L., a five-year sentence for sexually assaulting the girl when she was 11 years old.The rapper says the song acknowledges the difficulty of coming forward after abuse.His song also highlights the struggles and injustices that Indigenous people in Canada face, including the ongoing discussion about missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls.(Global News)