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Paris, Los Angeles Confirmed As Olympic Hosts

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The International Olympic Committee named Paris and Los Angeles as hosts for the 2024 and 2028 Olympics on Wednesday, crowning two cities at the same time in a historic first for the embattled sports body.

Loud applause rang out at the Lima Convention Centre shortly after the IOC membership voted to approve a deal hashed out in July which arranged for Paris to be given 2024 and Los Angeles 2028.

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Paris and Los Angeles bid leaders joined International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach on stage as the award was confirmed, embracing after an outcome hailed as a “win-win-win” by the IOC.

Both Paris and Los Angeles made final presentations to IOC delegates before the formality of the rubber-stamp vote was taken.

“You can’t imagine what this means to us, incredible, so strong,” Paris 2024 co-chairman Tony Estanguet told delegates shortly before the vote.

It marked the final act of a campaign that had been stripped of the usual intrigue ever since Paris and Los Angeles agreed to carve up 2024 and 2028 in July following encouragement from the IOC.

Paris 2024 officials hugged and cheered following the vote, basking in victory after three previous failed bids to land the 1992, 2008 and 2012 Olympics.

The 2024 Games will mark the third time Paris has staged the Olympics, coming exactly 100 years after they last hosted the Games.

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Los Angeles 2028 officials also celebrated the return of the Olympics to US soil.

The 2028 Olympics will be the first held in the United States since the chaotic 1996 Games in Atlanta.

It will also mark the third time that Los Angeles has hosted the Olympics following successful editions in 1932 and 1984.

“Los Angeles reflects the face of America’s future and the heart of American values of inclusiveness, generosity and unity,” Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti said during his final pitch to IOC members.

– ‘Too many losers’ –

Paris and Los Angeles emerged from the initial bidding race for the 2024 Games after a number of cities withdrew citing waning public support and concerns over budget.

Hamburg, Rome, Budapest and Boston all fell by the wayside during the competition, reflecting the political difficulties in persuading voters that staging the Olympics is worth the multi-billion-dollar price tag.

IOC chief Bach first signalled publicly that the double-award of an Olympics could be on the agenda in December last year, lamenting that the bidding process produced “too many losers”.

As the tussle for 2024 unfolded, and as the field thinned to leave just Los Angeles and Paris, the IOC’s determination to secure two high-quality bids for the next two summer games became apparent.

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In July, the IOC announced it would award the staging rights for the 2024 and 2028 Olympics at the same meeting in Lima, laying the way for a swift agreement between the two over the running order.

The drama-free conclusion to the race also eliminates the risk of the vote being tainted by the sort of scandal that has embroiled the ballot for the 2016 Olympics.

The IOC was left tackling a fresh wave of graft allegations last week when investigators in Brazil swooped on the country’s Olympics chief Carlos Nuzman.

Nuzman stands accused of plotting to bribe IOC members into awarding Rio de Janeiro the 2016 Games at a 2009 vote in Copenhagen.

The allegations swirling around Rio’s bid revived memories of the Salt Lake City bribery scandal, which led to 20 IOC members being either kicked out of the Olympics’ ruling body or pleading guilty to accepting bribes for votes.

French investigators meanwhile have already announced they are investigating the 2013 vote in Buenos Aires which awarded the 2020 Olympics to Tokyo, following reports of secret payments into a Singapore-based bank account linked to the son of disgraced former world athletics chief Lamine Diack.

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OPINION: Before you vote Buhari for a second term

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By Temidayo Ayodele
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Without a doubt, Nigerians’ experience of President Muhammadu Buhari during his days as a military leader spurred high expectations of his government to be the ‘fixer’ Nigeria always wanted.

He was perceived to be a military dictator-cum-democratic hero in a country where corruption was on the rampage, the economy was deteriorating and a country held hostage by the Boko Haram insurgency groups and other security challenges.

Prior to his election, Buhari promised us that his government will give corruption a ‘no nonsense’ approach. He told us that the Naira that was at N147 to the dollar then will be N1 equal through programmes earmarked to revive the economy. And lastly, Buhari assured us that we would be sleeping with our two eyes closed because insecurity would be death with.

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Buhari also promised us that the price of petrol products would drop from N87 to N60.

Three years since his election, the reverse is the case. I’m disappointed. A lot of Nigerians are disappointed likewise. Petrol price is now almost doubled at N147.

The fight against corruption under Buhari is partisan and witch hunting of opposition. Naira is now N360 against the dollar and Boko Haram has killed over two thousand Nigerians, while over 500,000 have been displaced due to increasing insecurity challenges.

Maybe the warning signs against our expectations were there but many of us didn’t see it or we just wanted ‘somebody else’ asides former president Goodluck Jonathan and the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).

Who would forget how Buhari (PMB for short) was a big media darling? How excited we were of displacing a government and a political party adjudged to be corrupt with a “man of integrity and high values”. We are not to be blamed for trusting Buhari to sail our ship to the promised land. We just wanted to leave Egypt.

Like the Israelites were displeased with Moses, we are in a similar dilemma. Socially, economically and politically, a few of us can relate to the blurry future that awaits us should PMB remain in the helms of affairs.

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I plead with my fellow Nigerians that chanted ‘Sai Baba’ in 2015 to listen to words of the elders, which says, “A dog that is about to go astray will not listen to the hunters whistle”

Ironically, one would expect that a man who had previously contested and lost in an election three times will understand national issues better after previous losses.

It is disheartening to note that a man who the people voted to lead them comfortably led a government for 6 months without ministers. His excuse was that he was scouting for the “right” persons. What did Nigerians do? We did nothing and as usual, we moved on!

Besides all other inadequacies in governance, Buhari is undoubtedly nepotic, tribalistic and divisive leader.

“I hope you have a copy of the election results. The constituents, for example, gave me 97% (votes)- (they) cannot, in all honesty, be treated on some issues with constituencies that gave me 5%. I think these are the political reality,” Buhari said in an address at the United States Institute of Peace (USIP) on 22nd of July 2015.

While some may argue that Buhari’s statement is merely political reality, I think it is careless to say as a leader of over 190 million people. It also portrays PMB’s intent of being a leader who is not willing to unite us a people. Hence, the talks of PMB running an uninclusive and lopsided government is evident in words and in deeds.

Another matter of concern is President Buhari’s medical fitness. Buhari is 76 with a rich history of medical vacations, including the historic unofficial vacation of 104 days in the United Kingdom. The responsibility of leading the most popular black nation on earth is beyond Buhari’s strength.

The consistent derail in Buhari’s physical and mental strength cannot be overemphasized. Twice at the his re-election campaign rallies in Delta and Ekiti State, Buhari committed some politically unforgivable blunders.

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In Delta State, he pronounced the APC governorship candidate Ogboru as the presidential candidate, despite correction, he doubled the blunder, saying the governorship candidate was the senatorial candidate before assimilating the corrections after a third attempt.

Similarly in Ekiti State, the same blunder was not just committed, but toppled when Buhari fell off a walk path at the rally and had to be helped up by escorts. Buhari is not fit to lead us for another four years.

A man of his age ought to be resting with his family. However, a few ‘powerful’ Nigerians are imposing Buhari on a larger population for their selfish and gains.

It is no longer news that since his election as president in 2015, Buhari was never in charge of governing Nigeria as he was elected to, instead a few people.

Buhari’s wife, Aisha, on two occasions attested to this when she said he husband was not in control of Nigeria, but ‘two powerful people’.

Conclusively, President Muhammadu Buhari, you have run a good run, we thank you for all you have done, please return to Daura and get a much-deserved rest.We love you.

As we go to the polls again, we have to be wise, conscientious and logical in committing the next four years of our lives to the hands of any individual.

Your vote counts. If it does not, politicians won’t lobby to buy it. Your vote is your future, do not trade it for anything.

The time has come to determine which path our ship will sail for the next four years. Together, let’s sail Nigeria to the promise land, to the land flowing with milk and honey. God bless Nigeria.

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How two men drugged, raped girl

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The Gender Section of the Lagos State Police Command is investigating a case of rape reported against one Razaq Oluwaseun Oke, 28, and Don-Chima George, 25, of Dallankester Hotels, Lekki, Phase one Lagos.

The duo allegedly took a girl, 23, to a club on Saturday, February 2, 2019, unknown to her that they had evil motive. While at the club, they mixed the young woman’s drink with a substance that made her weak and almost unconscious.

According to Lagos State police spokesman, Chike Oti, a Chief Superintendent of Police (CSP), “Satisfied that the drug was beginning to affect the victim, they quietly left the club with her to Dallankester Hotels in Lekki Phase one, owned by the father of one of the suspects named Don-Chima George. At the hotel, they took turns to rape her. As if that was not enough, they recorded a video of the abused girl.

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“When the victim woke up from the induced sleep, she confronted the suspects who denied having carnal knowledge of her. Not satisfied, she placed a call to her elder brother complaining that she had been violated.

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“The brother immediately invited policemen from Maroko Division led by the Divisional Police Officer, CSP Isah Abdulmajid to the scene. On searching the suspects, the DPO recovered their phones and went through their video recordings where he saw a video of the suspects sexually abusing the apparently unconscious victim”.

Lagos State Commissioner of Police, CP Edgal Imohimi has directed the Gender Section of the Command to investigate and diligently prosecute the suspects to serve as deterrent to others.

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PDP berates Buhari over claim of assuming office in 2005

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• President is weak, tired, can’t continue, says Secondus

For referring to the year he assumed office as 2005 instead of 2015, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ekiti State has described another gaffe by President Muhammadu Buhari’s as a national disgrace and embarrassment.

The party said those still rooting for Buhari’s reelection in spite of his clear demonstration of lack of intellectual capacity, were enemies of Nigeria and its citizens.

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Director of Media and Publicity, Atiku/Obi PDP Presidential Campaign Council in Ekiti State, Lere Olayinka, said in a statement yesterday that Nigerians should ask leaders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) how a man who could no longer remember when he assumed office should continue to preside over a country of over 200 million people.The President had said in Ado-Ekiti yesterday that, “I assure you that we are conscious of the promises we made when we came into office in 2005.”

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Olayinka, who said he was sure those still supporting President Buhari will never pray that God should give their children his kind of brain, stressed that the only reason the cabal running the country wants him (Buhari) to remain in office was to guarantee their 2023 presidential ambition and access to the national treasury.

“Nigerians must not allow the cabal to impose calamity on the country for another four years. They knew even in 2015 that President Buhari lacked both mental and physical capacity to run any business venture and that explained why he could not grow his cows from 150 for 12 years,” he stated.Elsewhere, National Chairman of the PDP, Prince Uche Secondus said that President Buhari was tired, weak and could not go further and therefore, should surrender power.

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He said the propaganda could not work for the APC, as the party could no longer deceive Nigerians. Addressing PDP members in Bauchi, Secondus said: “Nothing can help him (Buhari) because he cannot interface, interact or engage. We believe that Atiku Abubakar can engage anybody in Nigeria.”

Addressing supporters at the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa Stadium in Bauchi yesterday, Atiku regretted supporting APC in the 2015 general elections.

“Three years have passed, what has APC done for you except hunger, poverty and lies? Also, Speaker, House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara enjoined the electorate to vote Atiku to stop the lingering poverty in the Northeast, saying if truly Nigeria was the capital of poverty, the Northeast was its stronghold.

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