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☕️ Border Reopened?

☕️ Border Reopened?

The FG has disclosed that the nation’s land borders could be reopened soon, after being closed for over a year.

 

Good morning. Do you know that the most popular password of 2020 is..."123456."?

 

Humans! The same species who developed the coronavirus vaccine in less than a year and put man on the moon.

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☕️QUICK BITES

Movies. According to Netflix, "The Queen's Gambit" is its most-watched limited series of all time, with 62 million households tuning in for at least the first 2 minutes.
Ethiopia. An apparent ethnic cleansing attack led to the deaths of hundreds of civilians in Ethiopia's northern Tigray region, the country's human rights watchdog said.
China. On Wednesday, the nation launched a spacecraft to the moon to bring back more than four pounds of rocks and debris from the lunar surface. This will be scientists' first opportunity to study material from the moon since the US and Russia missions in the '60s and '70s.
Football. You already know that on Wednesday Diego Maradona died from a heart attack at the age of 60. The Argentinian soccer legend has endured several health-related issues over the past few years, including a recent emergency surgery for a subdural haematoma. President Alberto Fernandez has declared three days of national mourning.

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‍#ONTHISDAY

1895 Swedish chemist Alfred Nobel's will establishes the Nobel Prize.

1960 Patrice Lumumba flees Leopoldville, Congo.

2013 Greece becomes the first developed market to be demoted into an emerging market by the MSCI index.

2013 "Frozen", the highest-grossing animated film of all time, starring Idina Menzel and Kristen Bell, is released.

ECONOMY

Is the Border about to be Opened?

 

Image Source: Punch

The Story
After more than a year of closure, the Federal Government has announced that the country’s land borders may be reopened soon.

Seriously?
This was made known by the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, during a media chat with State House correspondents on Wednesday, November 25, 2020, in Abuja. The country’s various borders were shut down to curtail the smuggling and illegal importation of drugs, small arms, food and agricultural products into the country and to promote local production of agricultural produce like rice.

Is this a result of the outcry over the borders' opening to the Dangote group?
That may not be unconnected. According to a report by Punch, Ahmed revealed that the presidential committee set up to look into the matter has completed its assignment and has recommended the reopening of the borders. It is, however, not clear when the committee's report would be submitted to the President for consideration. SOURCE

CRIME

Interpol busts Nigerian cybergang

Image Source: News Break

The Story
Following a year-long investigation led by Interpol, three members of a prolific cybergang with a confirmed victim count of about 50,000 organizations were arrested recently in Lagos, Nigeria.

How were they identified?
The suspects are likely part of a larger organized group involved in business email compromise (BEC) attacks since at least 2017. Cybersecurity company Group-IB has been tracking the gang since 2019 and assisted the Interpol-led investigation, which received the code name Operation Falcon. The Nigerian Police Force apprehended the three suspects.

Wow! What did they find on them?
The Police Force's cybercrime unit analyzing electronic devices belonging to the three suspects determined their involvement in cybercriminal activity and identified data stolen from at least 50,000 victims. The tally may be much higher, though, as Group-IB established that the TMT gang targeted around 500,000 organizations from the private and government sector in more than 150 countries.

Why are these organizations so vulnerable?
In an announcement on 25 November, the Interpol said that the three suspects “are alleged to have developed phishing links, domains, and mass mailing campaigns in which they impersonated representatives of organizations.” This enabled them to distribute to victims at least 26 different malicious programs. On the list is malware designed to steal information (AgentTesla, Azorult, Loki, Pony, ) and remote access tools like NanoCore, Remcos, and NetWire.

These tools are commonly used by Nigerian threat actors specialized in BEC scams. They are either freely available or widely accessible on cybercriminal forums for low prices. The FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center received close to 24,000 complaints about these attacks last year, causing estimated losses of $1.7 billion. SOURCE

SECURITY

Niger Delta Militants Back in Play? 

 

Image Source: ThisDay

The Story
Eni declared force majeure (FM) on exports of Nigerian Brass River crude oil following pipeline explosions in Bayelsa state, a source with direct knowledge of the matter said.

What is Force Majeure?
It is a common clause in contracts that essentially frees both parties from liability or obligation when an extraordinary event or circumstance beyond the control of the parties, such as a war, strike, riot, crime, epidemic or an event described by the legal term act of God, prevents one or both parties from fulfilling their obligations under the contract. The source added that the FM letter was dated 22 November.

Has the cause been established?
Eni did not immediately comment. An explosion hit pipelines at Shell and Eni facilities around Ikarama in the Yenagoa Local Government Area of Bayelsa, resulting in a leak, a community leader said on Tuesday. It is understood that the blasts may have resulted from attacks on the oil facilities by unknown persons on Monday.

Were there casualties?
It was not immediately clear if there were casualties. A youth leader in the community, Ben Warder, said residents heard loud sounds from the affected oilfields and were very afraid to go near the impacted area. “The site is not far from Ikarama. We heard sounds from the blasts and it sounded like dynamites,” Warder said. “It was not safe to go near, so when the situation became quiet we had to trace what happened and it turned out that Shell’s gas pipeline and Agip’s crude lines were destroyed. “The incident resulted in air pollution from the gas pipeline and crude leak which members of the affected communities are battling to cope with,” he added. SOURCE

INTERNATIONAL

Macron’s Legislative Makeover

 

Image Source: London Daily

The Story
These are not exactly very good times for France's president Emmanuel Macron, as he tries to manage a pandemic, security concerns, and religious intolerance.

How's he handling it?
President Macron is all about exalting his country’s national motto: Liberty, Equality, Fraternity. But three new pieces of legislation introduced by Macron’s government have critics wailing that it’s threatening the very freedoms he vows to defend. One bill setting the research budget for French universities for the next decade targets student protests.

How?
It includes a provision criminalizing on-campus gatherings that “trouble the tranquility and good order of the establishment” with a fine of up to €45,000 and a prison term of up to three years. A second piece of legislation, a global-security bill, aims to give the police a freer hand. One provision criminalizes the publication or sharing via social media of images of police unless all identifying features are blurred, in effect prohibiting live-streaming, investigative reporting, and citizen accountability of police abuses.

All these in France?
A third bill would assign all French children a tracking number to enforce compulsory attendance in public or government-recognized schools, putting an end to homeschooling and unaccredited religious schools, and ensuring that all children are educated in the values of the French Republic. The bill also criminalizes sharing identifying information about a public servant that could be used to inflict harm — a response to the fact that private information about middle-school teacher Samuel Paty was shared on social media, allowing his assassin to track him down and behead him on October 16th.

Education Minister Jean-Michel Blanquer has bemoaned the influence of American critical race theory on the French social sciences, blaming them for undermining France’s race- and ethnicity-blind universalism, and for giving comfort to “islamo-gauchisme,” or “Islamo-leftism.” That term, coined by the French far right, blames progressive intellectuals for nourishing radical political Islam through their work on structural racism and Islamophobia. “The fish rots from the head,” Blanquer said. SOURCE

WHAT ELSE IS FRESH...

Naira continues further slide, not 490.

Gowon breaks silence on UK Parliament’s claims he ‘stole half of Central Bank’.

I’m shocked my husband’s family is demanding N500m from Gbaja, says slain vendor’s widow.

Wike: Buhari will set the country on fire if he doesn’t implement the people’s demands.

Ondo monarch shot dead by gunmen.

Aisha Yesufu named among BBC’s 100 most influential women in the world.

North, worst place to live, bandits operate freely – Sultan.

‘It’s absurd’ — el-Rufai kicks against zoning of leadership positions.

Lai Mohammed recants, denies announcing N5m hate speech fine.

66% of Nigerian rural children can’t read, write – FG.

Recession: We can’t pay full salaries to civil servants – Govt.

UK to suffer worst economic recession in 300 years —Govt.

Ultimus Holdings to invest $2billion into Africa’s economy in 10 years.

How Maina, ex-HoS Oronsaye stole N14bn pension fund – EFCC investigator.

Diego Maradona: Thousands bid farewell as Argentina grieves.

Australian 'war crimes': Troops to be fired over Afghan killings.

Burkina Faso incumbent Kabore wins presidential election.

Trump says he will leave office if Biden electoral win certified.

UAE halts new visas to citizens of 13 mostly Muslim states.


Paris police beat Black man, sparking fresh outrage in France.

Rejecting Trump’s foreign policy approach, Biden says ‘America is back’.

Pope says for first time that China’s Uighurs are ‘persecuted’.

India banned 43 more Chinese apps, including AliExpress.

Charles Darwin notebooks 'stolen' from Cambridge University.

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PICKS OF THE DAY

It is time to decolonise the World Bank and the IMF. Aljazeera

The Beef Between Apple And Facebook, Explained. Forbes

Why was Diego Maradona considered a genius? Quartz

Online Dating Tips, From People Who’ve Been There. Cupofjo

9 Things to Try If You Hate Social Media but Don’t Actually Want to Quit. Self

Here's A Reddit Thread Of Frequently Circulated Fun 'Facts' That Are Completely Untrue. Digg

The best documentaries of all time. Esquire

The History of CTRL + ALT + DELETE. Mental Floss

The Biology of Dads. Aeon

How to Improve Your Sleep. Pocket Collections

TODAY'S TRIVIA

Friday Puzzle


If five = four, six = nine, and seven = five, what does twelve equal?

Spend a little time with this one and let's see what you come up with.

QUESTION & ANSWER

QUORA QUESTION: 

Why doesn't Putin want to bury Lenin?

Konstantin Petrenko

Burying Vladimir Lenin’s body, which has been held in the Lenin Mausoleum on Red Square for public viewing since 1924, is a contentious issue in the Russian society. Polls show that approximately 28% of Russians disapprove of the idea of burying Lenin’s body. There is still a considerable number of communists and socialists in Russia who admire Lenin and come to the Mausoleum to pay their respects, so burying Lenin’s body would be offensive to these people and cause a political backlash.

Beyond pure politics, however, Putin’s position is that there is no need to destroy historical artifacts and monuments for political reasons. Lenin’s Mausoleum is part of Russian history, and for now it should be preserved just like any other historical landmark. In addition, it is a fairly popular tourist attraction, so preserving it is also good for business. Putin has even compared communism to a religion and Lenin’s body to the relics of saints which are preserved in various religions, including Christianity. Perhaps it is true that for some Russian communists Lenin is a kind of saint, and burying his body would produce a reaction similar to that of offending religious sentiments. SOURCE

TRIVIA ANSWER

Friday Puzzle

55. Each of the first set of numbers (five, six, and seven) contain Roman numerals that lead to the second set of numbers.


fIVe = four, sIX = nine, seVen = five, and tweLVe = 55 SOURCE

LITERATURE

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