Wednesday, 28 February 2018

Donald Trump confirms he’s running for re-election in 2020, names campaign manager

President Donald Trump has only just completed his first year in the White House, but he is already looking ahead to a 2020 reelection campaign, tapping Brad Parscale to get the ball rolling.

The president on Tuesday named former digital adviser Brad Parscale as campaign manager for his 2020 election bid, a sign he is prioritizing loyalty as he works to secure his own political future in what is shaping up to be a bruising 2018 midterm election cycle for the GOP. The rise of Parscale, largely unknown in politics until just two years ago, has been inextricably linked to Trump's own political success.

In a statement, the Trump campaign said Parscale will lead "advanced planning" for the 2020 effort, and that the campaign also will be engaged in the midterm elections.

The announcement turned heads on Capitol Hill, where Republicans have been lobbying the president for months to keep focused on the November 2018 contests - with leaders and political aides warning Trump that Democrats could gain subpoena power over his administration if Republicans lose the House or Senate.

The campaign also announced that former deputy campaign manager Michael Glassner will serve as chief operating officer, while the president's daughter-in-law, Lara Trump, will serve as senior adviser.

Trump, whose poll numbers have lagged recent predecessors, has left little doubt about his intention to seek re-election. He filed the paperwork to organize his re-election committee on Inauguration Day, held his first campaign rally on Feb. 18, 2017, and has mused publicly about potential Democratic challengers.

Parscale has long been close with the Trump family, a priority for the president as he begins planning his re-election strategy, according to a person familiar with campaign planning but not authorized to speak publicly about private discussions.

The Austin-based digital consultant, an ally of Trump son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner, ran the Trump campaign's digital operations in 2016, which included sophisticated social media targeting.

Parscale entered the Trump orbit in 2011 by doing web design work for the Trump family - including the president's real estate firm and his son Eric Trump's charity - before Kushner hired him for the campaign.

Parscale and Kushner helped craft the 2016 team's digital strategy, which has been widely credited with helping Trump pull off his upset victory. Paracale also established close ties with Eric Trump and his wife, Lara, who in turn was hired by Parscale's Texas-based digital firm.

Working with Kushner, Parscale and Katie Walsh - then the chief of staff of the Republican National Committee - served as de-facto campaign managers, overseeing nearly all aspects of campaign.

In an interview with CBS's "60 Minutes" last year, Parscale described how a team that grew to 100 people created 50,000 to 60,000 ads on Facebook daily to reach different swaths of Trump supporters to maximize support and online donations.

The selection of Parscale for the campaign comes as Kushner's tenure in the White House has been cast into doubt in recent weeks. Chief of staff John Kelly's crackdown on interim security clearances has called into question Kushner's ability to access highly classified information. And Tuesday saw the third announcement in as many months of the departure of a top Kushner ally in the White House, deputy communications director Josh Raffel.

Trump has placed high value on loyalty in his next campaign after feeling burned by some of his previous campaign staffers, according to multiple people familiar with his thinking. Trump has denounced and publicly marginalized Paul Manafort, his former campaign chairman, whom he blames for smearing the president's reputation with his own entanglements in Russia. Manafort is now facing charges brought by special counsel Robert Mueller on money laundering and bank fraud relating to his past work on behalf of the Ukrainian government.

And Trump later soured on a subsequent campaign force, Steve Bannon, who drew the president's wrath inside the White House for taking too much of the spotlight and portraying his family in a negative light in interviews with "Fire and Fury" author Michael Wolff.

Parscale himself is not without critics in Trump's factious political circle. A self-taught coder who wasn't involved in politics until the 2016 effort, some Trump allies raised doubts about his preparedness to run the campaign, suggesting he could be the political equivalent of a one-hit wonder. Parscale did not respond to requests for comment.

The rollout of Parscale's announcement was not without a hitch. A statement released Tuesday by the Trump campaign attributed to White House senior adviser Jared Kushner was in apparent violation of federal law prohibiting the use of official titles in political work.

The campaign used Kushner's title and his position as an "assistant to the president" in its press release announcing Parscale's role. The title was removed from the copy of the release posted to the campaign website after questions from The Associated Press.

The Hatch Act bars government employees from using their official titles in political work. Press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Tuesday all senior official and Cabinet secretaries have been briefed on the prohibition.

The White House says Kushner offered the statement in his personal capacity: "The campaign committee inadvertently added his White House title when it drafted the announcement and subsequently removed the reference when instructed to do so by the White House."

Trump's campaign remains based in New York, its headquarters just floors below the president's penthouse in Trump Tower. Lara Trump has become, in many ways, the face of the re-election campaign in its early days. She has appeared in a series of online news videos meant to be an alternative to mainstream media outlets and, alongside Glassner, has helped steer Trump's initial fundraising efforts and schedule his signature campaign rallies.

She and her husband, key members of Trump's first campaign, are expected to play an even larger role for 2020. Kushner also has been discussed as someone to return to leading the re-election effort, according to the person familiar with campaign strategy.

In a statement, Eric Trump said Parscale "has our family's complete trust and is the perfect person to be at the helm of the campaign."

Kushner also praised Parscale in a statement. "Brad was essential in bringing a disciplined technology and data-driven approach to how the 2016 campaign was run," he said, adding that Parscale will "help build a best-in-class campaign."


Scammer Builds Hotel in Lagos after Duping Lady with fake Dollar Trick (PHOTOS)

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ibadan Zonal Office, on Tuesday, February 28, 2018, arraigned the duo of Ebiesuwa Abayomi Fredrick and Tinuola Idayat Oyegunle before Justice Joyce Abdulmalik of the Federal High Court sitting in Ibadan, Oyo State on a two-count charge bordering on obtaining money by false pretence. 

The defendants were arraigned following a petition submitted to the Commission by a complainant, alleging that they masterminded the infamous dollar scheme to entrap her.
According to the complainant, sometimes in May 2013, she boarded a taxi with three other passengers who were purportedly members of a syndicate who specialized in hoodwinking unsuspecting victims with an impending danger. She alleged that she heard the three passengers arguing about a Ghana-must-go bag filled with US Dollars in the boot of the car. 
She added that one of the syndicate told her that she must be cleansed to avert sudden and mysterious death having heard their discussion. At that point, she was taken to an unknown destination where she subsequently started giving the defendants, and the other members of the syndicate different sums in cash and bank payment totaling N53, 713, 260.00, which she allegedly got from the sale of her properties in both Ibadan and Lagos. 
Meanwhile preliminary investigations revealed that over nine million naira (N9.1m) was paid to the second defendant, Tinuola Idayat Oyegunle account domicile in one of the third generation banks apart from other funds traced to the first defendant, Ebiesuwa Abayomi Fredrick personal account from the victim. 

It was also discovered that he has built a hotel located at Igbogbo, Ikorodu, Lagos State from the proceeds of the crime.
The defendants however, pleaded not guilty to the charge preferred against them.
The defendants accepted to take their plea without a legal representative. In view of their plea, prosecution counsel, Adeola Elumaro, prayed the court for a trial date and urged the court to remand the defendants in prison custody.
Justice Abdulmalik however, ordered that the defendants be remanded in the Federal Prison, Agodi. She thereafter, directed the defendants to get a legal representative by the next adjournment or else the court will get one for them.

The case is adjourned to 19th March, 2018 for trial.

EFCC Press Release

Nigerian woman, 51, remanded in prison in Ireland for forwarding sensitive WhatsApp message

A 51-year-old Nigerian mother-of-three is in trouble for forwarding a clip which showed a child being raped on WhatsApp to warn friends of dangers.

Jade sola Agbalade pleaded guilty to one count of knowingly distributing child pornography on July 20th, 2016.

According to Irish Times, Agbalade told gardaí­ she forwarded on the video clip via the messaging platform Whatsapp in a bid to warn a friend about the dangers of leaving her kids alone with her boyfriend, Dublin Circuit Criminal Court heard.

The court heard Agbalade, formerly of Deerhaven Avenue, Clonee, Dublin, is currently living in temporary homeless accommodation. 

Agbalade has no previous convictions.

Judge Karen O’Connor initially heard evidence in the case in October. She said given the nature of the case it required very detailed consideration.

The court heard the clip showed a child between the ages of two and five being raped by a man. Upon further investigation, gardaí discovered it is an international clip that has been in circulation since about 2014.

“I didn’t know it wasn’t right. I’m sorry,” the woman told gardaí.

Judge Karen O’Connor ordered a probation report and remanded Agbalade on continuing bail.

Ms Agbalade was due to be sentenced on December 31, 2017 for distributing child pornography.

A statement by The UK & Ireland Database, a website that profiles child sex abusers, said: “The sentencing of a woman who forwarded a video clip of a child being raped through WhatsApp has been adjourned until March.

“Jadesola Agbalade, formerly of Deerhaven Avenue, Clonee in Dublin, was due to be sentenced this afternoon for distributing child pornography.

“She admitted forwarding the clip on to two people last year but claimed she did not realise she was doing anything wrong.

“The judge said she had received a very positive probation report but said a psychological assessment would be of great assistance.

“The defence has been given four months to furnish such a report before a sentence will be handed down.”

Money ritual: My husband employed Imam to have sex with me for 3 days – Wife

A divorce seeking wife has accused her husband of employing an Islamic preacher to have sex with her for money-making ritual purposes.

The woman, Musilimotu Olashuyi, 48, claimed that she introduced her husband, Gbenga Olashuyi, 55, to the unnamed Alfa because she used to frequent his mosque for prayers.
She said at some point, the Alfa noticed that Olashuyi’s business wasn’t going well, a situation that made her to introduce the Alfa to him.
However, Musilimotu said, the Alfa ended up committing adultery with her, allegedly on the instruction of her husband.
She made the allegations at the Igando Customary Court in Lagos on Wednesday.
“It was with my husband’s consent that the Alfa slept with me for three days,’’ Musilimotu disclosed, while praying the court to dissolve the marriage.
She alleged that her husband had also conspired with the Alfa to use her for money ritual.
She narrated to the court, “Actually, my husband got to know the Alfa through me because I always go to his mosque to pray.
“When he told me that my husband’s business was not moving fine, I brought him home to meet my husband.
“Before I knew what was happening, my husband had conspired with him to use me for money ritual. It was with my husband’s consent that the Alfa slept with me for three days.
“After the incident, I started getting sick and getting emaciated and I told the people around me what happened, which led to the arrest of the Alfa; but my husband ran away.
“Gbenga resurfaced at the station after the Alfa brought a remedy to cure me.”
Musilimotu alleged further that Gbenga had refused to repay a loan she collected on his behalf in which she stood as the guarantor.
She said that Gbenga packed out her belonging from his house last October and stole N1m belonging to her.
Musilimotu pleaded with the court to terminate the union, saying that she was no longer in love with Gbenga after four years of marriage.
But Gbenga told the court that it was Musilimotu who lured him to buy the coffin for the money ritual to turn their fortunes around.
“My wife and her concubine persuaded me to buy a coffin for money ritual and she brought the Alfa to the house,” Gbenga said.
He added that the cleric had told him that God revealed to him that his business was collapsing and that he would make some rituals for him.
“I agreed to make the ritual because truly, my business was not moving well. Since that day, my wife has been coming home with the Alfa and with different objects and concoctions for me to drink and have my bath with.
“Later, Alfa asked me to bring N800,000 to buy some items for another ritual. He also told me to buy a casket for money ritual, which I will put in a separate room where nobody will enter except me.
“My wife begged me to comply with Alfa’s request, but I declined,” Gbenga claimed.
The businessman accused his wife of infidelity, alleging that Alfa always made love to Musilimotu on their matrimonial bed.
He said he knew about the adulterous relationship when his wife had Alfa arrested and accused the cleric of using charms to rape her.
“The cleric told the police that he did not hypnotise my wife to rape her, saying that it was with her consent that he made love to her on those three occasions,” Gbenga said.
Gbenga confessed that he packed Musilimotu’s belongings out of his house.
He also pleaded with the court to dissolve the marriage, saying that he was no longer interested in the relationship.

The President of the court, Mr. Akin Akinniyi, however, advised the couple to maintain the peace while he adjourned the case until March 22 for judgment.  NAN

Rwanda Shuts Down 714 Churches

Rwandan authorities have closed a total of 714 churches in different parts of Kigali over the last one week for failure to meet minimum standards.

The places of worship were found to lack basic infrastructure, fell short of hygiene, safety standards and had issues related to their legal status, according to local leaders.
The crackdown is being carried out by respective urban district authorities in partnership with the Rwanda Governance Board.
According to Justus Kangwagye, the Head of Political Parties and Civil Society Department at the Rwanda Governance Board, places of worship are required to meet basic requirements in terms of safety, hygiene, infrastructure and legality which those affected were found to be lacking.
In an interview on Monday, Kangwagye said most of the affected places of worship were asked to halt operations until they meet the expected standards.
“Worshiping should be done in an organised way and meet minimum standards. Exercising your freedom of worship should not encroach on other people’s rights.  They have been asked to halt operations until they meet the requirements,” he said.
Some may not be able to resume operations any time soon, he said.
Kangwagye said some premises exposed worshipers to risks.
“For instance, if the infrastructure is deemed likely to cause danger to those worshiping, it is obvious that it fails to meet the requirements,” he explained.
Others were found to have inadequacies such as lack of parking lots which would lead to their members parking by the roadsides and causing traffic jam.
Other churches which were closed operated from tents.
 “Churches that are hosted in tents were also asked to review their premises before they can continue their operations. As for hygiene and sanitation, you cannot have a gathering where there is no water for washing hands, no toilets among other issues,” he said.
Others, he added, were warned on the lack of safety and security installations and asked to look into it or risk closure.
For instance, a number of churches were found not to have metal detectors for security measures, which is a requirement, or a lightening arrestor. 
Heads of such churches were also put on notice to make the necessary adjustments.
The authorities also issued a warning to churches that make noise and disturb peace in residential neighbourhoods.
On legality, Kangwagye explained that setting up a church, requires a temporary certificate which expires after 12 months.
However, one is required to make an application for formalising their operations within nine months of opening before the expiry of the temporary certificate.
“Most failed to honour this and failed to apply for permanent [operation] documents. They cannot be allowed to operate outside the law,” the RGB official said.
Some churches, according to him, were hiding behind freedom of worship in breach of the law.
The directive has not only affected Christian places of worship as a mosque was also affected.
Emmanuel Bayingana, the vice mayor in charge of social affairs in Kicukiro District where 156 out of 352 churches were closed down, told The New Times that hygiene and infrastructure levels of those that were closed were found lacking.
Bayingana said that some of the churches will not be able to resume operations as they have inadequate structures and operate from tents.
“Some of them are unlikely to resume operations as they have been operating way below required minimum requirements,” he said.
Langwide Nyirabahire, the vice mayor in charge of Social affairs in Gasabo District, said that over 355 churches have been closed so far but the process of assessment was still ongoing.
Gasabo has 699 churches.
In Nyarugenge, out of 300 churches, 203 of them have since been closed down for failure to meet standards.
City residents expressed mixed reactions with some saying the move is waranted to protect the general public while others said churches ought to have been given more time to comply with the directives or seek appropriate locations.
Bishop Innocent Nzeyimana, the president of the Churches' Forum in Nyarugenge District, pleaded on behalf of the churches that those lacking slight requirements should be reopened and allowed to operate as they fix issues raised.

The New Times

Pregnant women in Ghana taking bleaching pills to lighten the skin of their unborn babies

A growing trend among women in Ghana sees them take bleaching pills during pregnancy to lighten the skin of their unborn babies while they are still in the womb.

Medical experts say these illegal drugs can cause birth defects, including damage to limbs and internal organs.

Ghana's Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) says using Glutathione pills for this purpose is dangerous, adding it wants "the general public to know that no product has been approved by the FDA in the form of a tablet to lighten the skin of the unborn child”.

The practice is growing in Ghana, according to the FDA, with pills often smuggled into the country inside luggage at airports in large quantities.

Although comprehensive data has not yet been gathered, the body says market surveillance and stakeholder activity have helped to reveal the trend among women crosses socio-economic divides.

Security agencies and police are working together to arrest and prosecute companies and individuals in possession of the illegal tablets.

Ghana hit the headlines last month when candidates for jobs in the immigration service were disqualified from the recruitment process if they bleached skin or stretch marks, for fear they might bleed during the "strenuous" training.


Man jailed for fracturing ‘cheating’ wife’s skull after taunting him with Rihanna’s song

A teacher was today jailed for more than eight years for attacking his wife with a machete - after she taunted him over her affair with another man.

David Wing, 56, had only been married for a year when wife Yvonne, 45, began having sex with the son of their landlady.

The court heard the relationship with lover Don Watkins, 37, was at first permitted by her new husband.

But Wing later logged in to his wife’s Facebook account and read messages between the married lovers discussing plans to run away together.

Wing was cleared of attempted murder for the machete attack, but is facing jail after he admitted grievous bodily harm.

The court heard he was 'provoked' to attack his wife - who taunted him by repeatedly playing Rihanna song Love on the Brain.

Prosecutor James Wilson said Mrs Wing was attacked by the machete with a 26inch blade - and suffered a gashed forehead and fractured skull.

Mr Wilson said: 'There was a slightly unusual aspect to their relationship, in that three to four weeks after moving to Porth she had sex with a local man called Don.

'Her husband had no problem with her having sex with this man, but after time she became emotionally involved with Don.

'He had a problem with this and began checking her Facebook and realised a relationship was beginning between them.

'He couldn’t accept this and the matter came to a head with him attacking her with a machete.

'She was in and out of consciousness until she was brought to hospital having suffered serious head injuries.'

Cardiff Crown Court heard Wing carried out the attack after his wife taunted him over her affair with Don by playing raunchy Rihanna song ‘Love on the Brain.

Stephen Thomas, defending, said before Mrs Wing was attacked she repeatedly played the song on a stereo at their home, and repeatedly rewinded an explicit verse to 'taunt' him.

Mr Thomas said: 'You put some music on didn’t you? Music called "Love on the Brain" by Rihanna.

'You kept on replaying the part of the song "but it f**** me so good. And I can’t get enough" and you started to laugh.

'You specifically chose that song.'

Mrs Wing admitted playing the song on repeat, but denied she rewound it to repeat the particular verse.

Mr Thomas said Wing told his wife to leave him alone, saying he just wanted to pack his things and leave - but Mrs Wing was determined to mock him about their sex life.

Mr Thomas said: 'He wasn’t responding to any of your taunts was he, so you became more aggressive to him.

'You told him the reason why Don was going to leave his wife was because she was frigid, and the reason you were leaving him was because he was impotent.

'You saw he had a machete in his hands before he hit you. You said to him "you’re too much of a p**** to use that" and continued to charge at him.'

Cardiff Crown Court heard Wing bludgeoned his wife around the head with the blade after covering her in paint - leaving her with a gashed forehead and fractured skull.

Wing, from High Street in Cymmer, Porth, admitted grievous bodily harm but was cleared of attempted murder after a three day trial.

He was jailed for eight years and eight months by Judge Neil Bidder QC.

Judge Bidder said: 'After discovering your wife was to leave you for another man and after some provocation from her which did not justify any violence, let alone the violence you inflicted, you lost your temper on her.

'You took a long and heavy machete from its sheath and struck her three times with heavy blows.

'You used a vicious weapon to assault your wife.

'This was a case of repeated assault.

'There was a degree of provocation but none of which justified this type of violence.'

The judge said Wing’s actions to staunch the bleeding coming from his wife’s head, performing CPR and immediately calling emergency services showed he had 'genuine remorse' for the attack.

DailyMail/Photo credit: Wales News Service