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Nigerian Govt bars Air France, Lufthansa, others (full list of approved airlines)

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As Nigeria plans for the resumption of international flights on Saturday September 5, September 5, the Federal Government has barred some airlines from operating in Nigeria.

Speaking at the briefing of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 on Thursday, September 3, the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, said the international airlines denied flying approval include Air France, KLM, Etihad, Rwandair, Lufthansa, TAAG Angola Airlines and others.

According to Sirika, the airlines that have been given licence to operate include Middle-East, British Airways, Delta Airlines, Qatar Airways, Ethiopian Airlines, Egyptair, Air Peace, Virgin Atlantic, Asky, Africa World Airways (AWA), Air Cote-d’Ivoire, Kenya Airways, Emirate, and Turkish airlines.

It is important that we announce the airlines that are allowed for operations into the country. The ones not approved are Air France. Middle East Airlines is approved for only Lagos (airport). British Airways (is) approved – allowed entry under Covid-19 protocol.

The reason for Air France is that tourists business holders are not allowed entry. KLM not approved for the same reason as Air France. Delta Airlines, no restrictions – USA, we have an Open Skies with them and they also allow us in.

Qatar Airways are allowed and approved under Covid-19 protocol. Etihad, not approved. Ethiopian Airlines allowed entry under Covid-19 protocol. Egyptair approved, allowed entry under Covid-19 protocol.

Rwandair not approved. Air Peace, not applicable, they are our own carrier in Nigeria, we thank them. Virgin Atlantic, approved, allowed entry under Covid-19 protocol. Air Namibia, not approved. Asky, approved. Royal Air Maroc, not approved. African World Airways, Ghana, approved.

Air Cote d’Ivoire, approved. Lufthansa, not approved. Kenya Airways approved. Emirates Airlines, approved. Turkish Airlines, approved. Cabo Verde not applicable as international flights are not resumed. Angolan TAG, not approved. South African Airways not applicable as international flights are yet to resume.” he said

The Minister also announced that passengers who undergo COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests more than four days before their departure date will not be allowed to enter the country. According to him, all COVID-19 tests must have been done within 72 hours before the departure date.

“All intending travellers to Nigeria must have tested negative for COVID-19 by PCR in country of departure before boarding. This has not changed,” he said.

The PCR test must be within four days before departure and we prefer 72 hours pre-boarding and note that in certain countries, the PCR test will only be accepted from identified laboratories.

Tests done more than four days before departure are not valid. This is very important. And persons will not be allowed to board; but for the 72-hours minimum, this is advisory and will not preclude boarding.” he said

The international airspace was shut in March as part of measures to contain the spread of COVID-19 in the country.

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Metro

UK orders probe into Islamophobia claims by conservative lawmaker

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UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has ordered an investigation into conservative lawmaker, Nusrat Ghani claims that she was sacked as a junior minister in 2020 over concerns that she was a Muslim.

A Downing Street spokesperson announced on Monday in a brief statement to reporters that “the Prime Minister has asked the Cabinet Office to conduct an inquiry into the allegations made by Nusrat Ghani MP.’’

In an interview published by the Sunday Times, Ghani said that she was dismissed as a junior transport minister in February 2020.

She said following her dismissal a senior Conservative lawmaker told her that her Muslim faith made colleagues “uncomfortable” and that her career would be “destroyed” if she tried to complain.

In a subsequent statement on Sunday, she said that she had directly informed Johnson about the matter but that the prime minister wrote to her that he could not get involved and suggested that she use the internal Conservative party’s complaint process.

Reacting to the launch of a probe, Ghani wrote on Twitter that she welcomed the decision and asked that all that was said in Downing Street, and by her senior Conservative colleague be included in the terms of reference of the inquiry.

“As I said to the Prime Minister last night, all I want is for this to be taken seriously and for him to investigate,’’ she added.

The Islamophobia claims came as Johnson was facing calls to resign over a string of parties that were allegedly held in Downing Street during the COVID-19 lockdown.

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Metro

Photos of Arnold Schwarzenegger involved in car crash

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Hollywood actor, Arnold Schwarzenegger has been involved in a car accident, his spokesman has confirmed.

The four-vehicle crash, which occurred on Friday afternoon, January 21 in Los Angeles left one person with injuries, Los Angeles Police said.

Photos from the scene published by TMZ show a large SUV on top of at least two vehicles at an intersection in Brentwood while the ‘Terminator’ actor can be seen standing nearby.

Police said that no arrest has been made and ruled out the involvement of drugs and alcohol.

Officers did not identify those involved but the actor and former California governor’s spokesman confirmed to the Los Angeles Times that he was driving the SUV when the incident occurred.

A report by police, seen by CBS Los Angeles, said that the SUV driver was “near the intersection of Sunset Boulevard and Allenford Avenue, when a collision occurred with a red Prius making a u-turn as he continued through a ‘red arrow’ signal to turn left.”

It added that the SUV rolled on top of the Prius and ended up hitting two other vehicles.

One person was taken to hospital by ambulance, but the injuries are not thought to be life threatening.

Schwarzenegger’s spokesman said that the actor was uninjured and had spoken with emergency services and the injured person.

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Metro

Minna district head suspended over forceful marriage

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District Head of Allawa in Shiroro Local Government Area of Niger State, Mallam Bello Haruna has been suspended by Minna Emirate Council for engaging in forceful marriage.

The district head who was accused of forcefully marrying out a girl (name withheld), humiliating her father and also ordering that she be beaten by vigilantes, was also accused of insubordination by not answering the calls from the Emirate council leaders to explain some of the complaints against him.

In a letter signed by the Emirate’s assistant secretary, Usman Umaru Guni, the district head was accused of not having the leadership qualities necessary for peace and progress of the community he was appointed to lead.

Galadima Allawa, Ahmadu Magaji has now been appointed as the acting district head.

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