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Triumphant military wrestlers return home, promise to make Nigeria proud

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Last Updated on December 4, 2023 by Fellow Press

The Nigerian Military Wrestlers who won Gold and Silver medals at the just concluded 36th World Military Wrestling Championship at Baku, Azerbaijan, on Sunday returned home, promising to continue to make Nigeria proud.

The wrestlers were received at the International Wing of the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport Abuja at about 10.00 p.m. by the officials of the Defence Headquarters (DHQ).

Addressing newsmen on arrival, the Director of Sports, DHQ, AVM Abidemi Marquis, thanked the Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Christopher Musa, for giving them the platform to project the image of the nation’s military at the world stage.

Marquis said the motivation behind the performance of the athletes stemmed from their awareness that they were going to represent their country and knowing that the national anthem of Nigeria would be played and flag hoisted, if they won medals.

“So the athletes understood the enormous task ahead of them and they were well motivated because all the necessary things that were required for them to compete among the best were provided.

“So before we even left Nigeria, we were highly motivated.

“We just need to build on what we have achieved so that we can get to the level that we are looking at because Nigeria is hosting African Military Games next year.

“So this is a building process,” he said.

Marquis said the CDS, having understood the strategic importance that sports played in making a country to be visible, made sure that all that was needed for sporting engagement was provided.

He said the athlete were happy to have returned with the gold and the silver medals, saying that nobody gave them a chance at the onset of the competition, but were able to compete fairly and fiercely.

According to him, those that don’t even know Nigeria at all because of our presence, knew Nigeria now.

The gold medalist, a female wrestler, Cpl. Hannah Reuben, who beat her Italian contender in the 68 weight category of women’s freestyle, said mindset, preparation and hard work propelled her to glory during the competition.

Reuben said she had been competing at different levels, which she said had helped her to build her up for the just concluded competition that earned her gold medal.

She promised to continue to do better ahead of the military games take would be hosted by Nigeria where she except to win more gold medals.

“I will keep doing better and I will do better next time by God’s grace,” she said.

The Siver Medalist, Lance Cpl. Esther Ojolaide, said the secret behind her performance was the adage that says “to whom much is given, much is expected”.

Ojolaide said the privilege and encouragement that the CDS had given, spured them to action at the world level to represent the Nigerian Armed Forces.

“I am promising the Nigerian Armed Forces the next competition to be hosted by Nigeria that we are going to do more,” she said.

The Coash of the team, Warrant Offcer Godswill Tiebiri, said the support of the CDS and the cooperation between the teams, both athletes and coaching crew, earned them the gold and silver medals from the tournament.

He said it was the gold medal had broken the 50 years record in the history of wrestling in the Nigerian military at the world level.

“We got a silver, we have gotten bronze in the world, but haven’t gotten the gold medal.

“So myself as the coach and my Cpl. Hannah have broken the record of 50 years,” he said.

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Accept FG offer above N60,000 as new minimum wage, Opeyemi Bamidele to labour

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The Senate Leader, Senator Opeyemi Bamidele, APC, Ekiti Central has pleaded with the Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC and the Trade Union Congress, TUC
to accept whatever the federal government offered them above N60,000 as the new minimum wage.

Bamidele urged the NLC and TUC to toe the path of dialogue and peace in the negotiation of a new minimum wage, which the President had promised to send a bill to the National Assembly for this purpose.

The Senate Leader has reiterated the need for Nigerians to demonstrate more patriotic spirit and oneness in their daily activities as the nation journeys through its socio-political trajectory towards the promised land.

He made the call in an Eid-el-Kabir message by his Directorate of Media and Public Affairs on Sunday, just as he highlighted some achievements of the administration of President BolaTinubu.

Bamidele said, “The federal government has conceded to N60,000, which translates to a 100 percent increase. But both NLC and TUC turned down this offer, leading to a two-day industrial action.

“The federal government has promised to make more concessions in this respect. As the federal government reveals its new offer, I plead with the organised labour to accept it in the national interest. The economy will remain in this condition. Collectively, we are taking multi-pronged measures to reverse disturbing economic indicators.”has conceded to N60,000, which translates to a 100 percent increase. But both NLC and TUC turned down this offer, leading to a two-day industrial action.

“The federal government has promised to make more concessions in this respect. As the federal government reveals its new offer, I plead with the organised labour to accept it in the national interest. The economy will remain in this condition. Collectively, we are taking multi-pronged measures to reverse disturbing economic indicators.”

While identifying with all Muslim faithful nationwide, Bamidele who noted that Nigerians, regardless of religion and tribes, should team up with and rally support for the Tinubu administration to safely steer the ship of the nation into a successful end, emphasised that no nation could travel the journey of national rebirth alone without the unwavering support of its citizens not minding their political, cultural and social backgrounds and orientations.

He assured that the current administration would leave no stone unturned in alleviating the economic hardship being faced by the majority of Nigerians and re-offer them a sense of pride in their home country.

In the spirit of the season, the Senate Leader urged all Muslims to emulate love and good neighbourliness exemplified by Prophet Mohammed (SWAT) during his time and how he related very well with people of other faiths and nationalities.

Bamidele who appealed that the ongoing reengineering efforts of the Tinubu Administration could only yield democratic dividends in an atmosphere devoid of insecurity, but where lives and property are protected, said: “Just to mention a few among ongoing projects like the 700 kilometres Lagos-Calabar Coastal Highway, the establishment of N50 Billion Pulako Initiative and annual recruitment of 30,000 new police personnel are Key Performance Indicators of this government.

“Only recently, this government declared a state of emergency in agriculture and launched the National Agricultural Development Fund with N100 billion, in addition to the Dry Season Farming Initiative and the Green Imperative Programme to ensure food security across the land.

“All these and other components of the 8-point Renewed Hope Agenda require the patriotic support and prayers for their deliverables to multiply at the doorsteps of Nigerians in the remaining three years of the first term of this government.”

He further urged the Muslim faithful to use the season of Eid el-Kabir to pray for the leaders of the country for divine wisdom and understanding that can match the enormous tasks of leading the country especially at a time when economic realities are not favourable around the world.

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FG updates on UAE lifting visa ban on Nigeria

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The Minister of Aviation, Festus Keyamo, has revealed that the United Arab Emirates (UAE) government will soon announce the date for lifting the visa ban that has been imposed on Nigerian travellers.

This information was shared during an interview with Otega Ogra, Senior Special Assistant to President Bola Tinubu, which is available on the official YouTube page of the State House of Nigeria.

Keyamo acknowledged that while a resolution was reached between President Bola Tinubu and UAE President Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan during President Tinubu’s working visit to the UAE in September 2023, additional processes were required before the ban could be officially lifted.

He said the processes have now been completed, paving the way for the imminent announcement from the UAE government.

“After that high-level meeting, Mr. President, credited to him, made things very easy for us all. We did our follow-ups as his ministers. We have done everything. We have resolved everything.

“Just wait for the announcement from the UAE government, and that announcement is imminent,” Keyamo stated.

The Minister further mentioned that he is aware of the specific date when the travel restriction will be lifted, but he emphasized that it is up to the UAE government to make the official announcement.

The lifting of the ban is expected to restore ease of travel for Nigerian citizens to the UAE, thereby enhancing bilateral relations and cooperation between the two countries.

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