Good morning! Here are 10 things you need to know this morning:
1. The Nigerian Army, 2 Brigade Port Harcourt has confirmed the killing of two of its men in Rivers state. The victims are one officer and another soldier. The Army said the killed army officer was a Major who was hit with bullets in an encounter with unknown gunmen suspected to be sea pirates in Akuku-Toru Local government area.
2. The Nigeria Police has said it will launch the first phase of the deployment of more than 6,000 policemen to liberated communities in the North-East on Friday (Today). The Inspector-General of Police, Solomon Arase, disclosed this at the second round table on security stabilisation in the Northeast in Abuja on Thursday.
3. Nigeria is now ranked the 103 happiest nation of the world, and 6th in Africa in the World Happiness Report. The World Happiness Report 2016 was released in Rome on Wednesday. The result, however, showed that Nigeria has dropped from its 78th position in the World and 2nd in Africa in the 2015 happiness ranking. Denmark is now the world’s happiest place, while Algeria remains the happiest place in Africa.
4. Report says fresh errors in the 2016 budget have been uncovered by the Senate and House Joint Committee on Appropriation. The report claimed that the errors were responsible for the failure of the committee to present its report to the two chambers of the National Assembly on Wednesday as earlier promised.
5. Concerns were raised at a press conference in Ado-Ekiti, the capital of Ekiti State on Thursday when the state government alleged that it had received a news that a member of the State House of Assembly, Hon Afolabi Akanni had died in the custody of the security agency. Those who addressed the conference include the speaker of the Assembly, Hon Kola Oluwawole, Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr Ajayi Owoseeni, Special Assistant on Communications to the governor, Lere Olayinka and Akanni’s lawyer, Barr Obafemi Adewale.
6. Reacting to the news of the dead of the Ekiti lawmaker, Hon. Afolabi Akanni, the DSS Thursday presented live before newsmen, saying the lawmaker was hale and hearty. A statement by the DSS Spokesperson, Tony Opuiyo, called on residents of the state to go about their normal business, insisting that Akanni was doing well in their custody.
7. The Federal Government has reacted to reports at some quarters that it was planning to send MTN out of the country, saying there was no such intention. Minister of Communications Technology, Adebayo Shittu, cleared the air on the report on Thursday. He said it was wrong for anyone to have such impression.
8. President Muhammadu Buhari has said that the current economic crisis in the country was a blessing in disguise. Buhari who was speaking at the opening ceremony of the International Islamic Conference on Peace and Nation Building in Abuja on Thursday said Nigeria will come out of the crisis stronger.
9. The Taraba State House of Assembly has re-elected its former Speaker, Peter Abel Diah as its new speaker after Hon. Mark Bako Useni tendered his resignation letter at the plenary of the house on Thursday. He gave some personal reasons on why he resigned.
10. TIME magazine has recognised 25-year-old Nigerian-born American blogger, Angie Nwandu, as one of the 30 most influential people on the Internet. Nwandu of the celebrity gossip site, “The Shade Room’’ (TSR) came 20 in the ranking as according to the international magazine, Nwandu, within two years, transformed TSR, an Instagram account and blog, to an unbelievable media empire.