Items filtered by date: Tuesday, 22 October 2019
Tuesday, 22 October 2019 11:22

Facebook to launch a dedicated news tab

Social media giants, Facebook, has concluded plans to launch a dedicated news tab that would enable its subscribers to source for news on the platform.

To that end, the Mark Zuckerberg- led social media platform has apparently struck a deal with news providers that would let it display headlines in a dedicated news tab.

That’s as per a report from the Wall Street Journal, which said licensing fees and other details have been worked out with the WSJ, the New York Post, the Washington Post, BuzzFeed News, and Business Insider.

Reports said News Corp. and Facebook managed to reach this deal after overcoming a few obstacles along the way.
For example, the two companies had to work around difficulties presented by WSJ’s subscription business model.

Despite this, the two firms have agreed on a licensing fee that would be paid by Facebook in order to include news from the publications on the social media website.

Published in Telecoms

Russian hackers have allegedly hid their efforts to attack organisations in the UK and other countries around the world by pretending to be a rival Iranian hacking group.

A Russian hacking group dubbed “Turla”, which has been linked to Russia’s FSB agency, hacked into Iranian servers to mask attacks against more than 35 different countries over the last 18 months, British and American security officials have said.

The hacking campaign was revealed on Monday by the UK’s National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) along with the American National Security Agency.

The Russian hacking group’s targets were not disclosed by the security services, but the NCSC said that the group has previously hacked into “government, military, technology, energy and commercial organisations.”

Most of the victims of the hacking campaign were in the Middle East, security officials said on Monday.

The security officials also added that hacked organisations included universities and scientific organisations.

Reports say disguising the origin of cyberattacks is a common tactic used by hacking groups to avoid political responses such as sanctions and to cause further confusion amongst their targets.

Published in World

One of the most senior politicians in South Africa’s historically white main opposition Democratic Alliance (DA), Herman Mashaba,  has resigned his post and quit the party over how it handles race.

Mashaba was mayor of Johannesburg for three years.

The BBC reports that the election of a black mayor from the DA was seen as a sign that the party could potentially threaten the ruling African National Congress (ANC)’s grip on power at the national level.

But at a press conference on Monday, Mr. Masaba said: “I cannot reconcile myself with people who believe that race is not important in their discussion of inequalities.”


The Mayor said his decision was sparked by the re-admission of Helen Zille, a white politician who provoked widespread anger in 2017, when she praised aspects of colonialism, to the party’s high ranks:

“The election of [Helen] Zille as chair of the federal council is a victory for people who are opposed to my belief systems,” Mashaba added.

Published in World

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) notified the general public on Sunday about a partial disconnection of Glomobile by Airtel Network Limited over non-settlement of interconnect charges.

A statement signed by NCC’s Director of Public Affairs, Henry Nkemadu, said partial disconnection would commence October 28.

The statement read: “The Commission has approved the partial disconnection of Glomobile by Airtel in accordance with Section 100 of the Nigerian Communications Act 2003 and the Guidelines on Procedure for Granting Approval to Disconnect Telecommunications Operators.

“At the expiration of 10 days from the date of this notice, subscribers on the network of Glomobile will no longer be able to make calls to Airtel but will be able to RECEIVE CALLS.

“The partial disconnection, however, will allow in-bound calls to the Glomobile network.”

The implication of this is that from October 28,  Glo subscribers won’t be able to call subscribers from Airtel but can receive calls from the network.

Airtel had dragged Glomobile to the NCC over non-payment of interconnect charges. Interconnect charge is a charge paid to a receiving network by the mobile network operator a call is coming from.

The NCC notified Glomobile of the Airtel’s application and was given the opportunity to state their case.

The NCC discovered that Glomobile had no sufficient reason for not paying the interconnect charges. As such the regulator approved the disconnection from Airtel in accordance with section 100 of the Nigeria Communications Act of 2003.

Published in Telecoms

The Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) resumed its free fall in the first trading day of this week, closing the All Share Index at 26,390.08, down by 0.22%. Year to date the market is down by 16.04%.

Top 5 trades

245.9 million shares worth N1.4 billion exchanged hands in 2,514 deals during Monday’s trading session.

Omoluabi Mortgage Bank top the 5 most traded stocks by volume with 110 million shares valued at N60.5 million exchanged 1 deal. This might be as a result of an investor leaving or taking a position.

Fidelity Bank followed with 25.4 million shares worth N43.2 million traded in 97 deals. 14.4 million Transcorp shares valued at N14.7 million were traded in 63 deals.

FBN Holdings traded 14.4 million shares worth N75.3 million in 163 deals. GTBank rounds up the top 5 most traded stocks by volume with 13.6 million shares valued at N357.8 million traded in 234 deals.

Top 5 gainers

On the gainers’ chart, May & Baker Nigeria Plc led with a 9.50% gain to close at N2.19. Cornerstone Insurance followed with a 9.37% gain to close at N0.35.

Union Diagnostic & Clinical Services Plc Trans Nationwide Express Plc both gained 9.09% to close at N0.24 and N0.84 respectively.

Law Union and Rock Insurance rounds up the top 5 gainers closing at N0.51 to gain 8.51%.

Top 5 losers

On the flipside, NEM Insurance was the biggest loser. The stock lost 9.57% to close at N2.08. Wapic Insurance was next with an 8.57% loss to close at N0.32.

Neimeth International Pharmaceuticals Plc closed at N0.37, losing 7.50%. Omoluabi Mortgage Bank Plc, one of the largely traded stocks for today, closed at N0.55, losing 5.17%.

United Capital Group closed the top 5 losers with a 1.96% loss to close at N2.

Published in Business
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal Party held onto power in a closely fought general election on Monday.
 
But the party triumphed as a weakened minority government.
 
Television projections declared the Liberals winners or leading in 157 of the nation’s 338 electoral districts, versus 121 for his main rival Andrew Scheer and the Conservatives, after polling stations across six time zones closed.
 
As early as Tuesday, Trudeau will have to form an alliance or formal coalition with one or more smaller parties in order to govern.
 
The first test of his future government will follow in the subsequent weeks with a speech to parliament outlining his legislative priorities and a confidence vote.
 
The 47-year-old former school teacher dominated Canadian politics over the four years of his first term, but faced a grilling during the 40-day election campaign, which was described as one of the nastiest in Canadian history.
 
His golden boy image has been damaged by ethics lapses in the handling of the bribery prosecution of engineering giant SNC-Lavalin, while the emergence of old photographs of him in blackface makeup rocked his campaign.
 
Scheer, meanwhile, only two years after winning the leadership of his party, struggled to win over Canadians with his bland minivan-driving dad persona and a throwback to the thrifty policies of past Tory administrations.
 
His Conservatives had stood alone among all of the parties in pledging austerity measures to return to a balanced budget within five years.
 
Surging social democrats and resuscitated Quebec separatists also appeared to have chipped away at Liberal support.
 
The Bloc Quebecois came back from a ruinous 2015 election result, tapping into lingering Quebec nationalism to take 32 seats, while the New Democratic Party (NDP) won 25 seats, according to projections.
 
“Trudeau has really lost his halo. It’s pretty tarnished,” commented Lois Welsh, 77, in Regina, disappointed over the Liberal win.
 
Michel Mercer in Montreal said he voted for the Liberals, but only to keep the Tories at bay.
 
“I would have voted NDP but I didn’t want to see the Conservatives in power,” he told AFP.
 
Some 27.4 million Canadians were eligible to vote in the election, and a large turnout was expected but that won’t be confirmed until Tuesday morning.
 
During the campaign, Trudeau evoked the bogeymen of past and current Tory parties fostering “politics of fear and division” while Scheer called the prime minister a “compulsive liar,” “a phony and a fraud.”
 
Outside polling stations, Canadians told AFP they had wished for a more positive campaign focused on issues.
 
“I deplored the cheap shots during the campaign. I think we’re better than that,” said Andree Legault in Montreal.
 
Trudeau had warned against Scheer’s pledged rollback of environmental protections, including a federal carbon tax that discourages the use of large amounts of fossil fuels.
 
The pair exchanged barbs while attack ads and misinformation multiplied.
 
At one rally, the prime minister wore a bulletproof vest due to security fears.
 
Scheer had lamented that Canadians “cannot afford” a Liberal government propped up by the third-place New Democratic Party (NDP).
 
NDP leader Jagmeet Singh, a leftist former criminal defense lawyer, is the first non-white leader of a federal political party in Canada, and will likely emerge as kingmaker.
 
Late in the campaign, Scheer was shaken over revelations of his US dual citizenship and allegations that his party hired a communications firm to “destroy” the upstart People’s Party, led by former Conservative foreign minister Maxime Bernier.
 
The Green Party, hopeful for a breakout, managed to add only one seat, bringing its tally to three.
 
Published in World
Japan’s new Emperor Naruhito on Tuesday completed his ascension to the ancient Chrysanthemum throne in a solemn, ritual-bound ceremony performed before hundreds of dignitaries in the Imperial Palace.
 
“I hereby declare my enthronement at home and abroad,” Naruhito said from inside an elaborately adorned structure housing his throne, with his wife Empress Masako alongside him standing before her own throne.
 
A powerful typhoon that hit Japan earlier this month, killing dozens, forced the cancellation of a huge parade, but the rest of the day’s events went ahead with the pomp and tradition of a dynasty that claims more than 2,000 years of history.
 
The royal family filed into the palace’s Pine Room dressed in heavy robes, with the women sporting sculpted wigs topped with golden headpieces.
 
Set in the centre of the room were the two structures housing the thrones, draped with purple curtains that were ceremonially opened to reveal the royal couple standing within.
 
Oxford educated Naruhito wore an outfit topped with a voluminous copper robe and a rarely seen black headpiece, while Masako wore a multi-layered kimono, trailed by attendants to help her move in the weighty outfit.
 
The ceremony was conducted largely in silence, with only drums and gongs sounding. Some 2,000 guests, including foreign dignitaries and royalty, stood at the sound of a deep drum beat before the proclamation began.
 
“I hereby pledge that I will always pray for the happiness of Japanese people and world peace and, by standing by the Japanese people, I will fulfil my duty as the symbol of Japan and of the unity of the people of Japan,” added Naruhito.
 
“We, the people of Japan, will respect your highness the emperor as the symbol of the state and of the unity of the Japanese people,” Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told the emperor, before exclaiming “Banzai!” or “Long live the emperor” three times.
 
Naruhito officially assumed his duties as emperor on May 1, the day after his father became the first Japanese monarch to abdicate in two centuries.
 
But the transition was not complete until his new role was officially proclaimed.
 
Naruhito began the day by “reporting” the proclamation to deities and his ancestors in the ancient royal dynasty, wearing a voluminous white robe and a rarely seen black hat complete with a tail extending up 60cm (two feet) at the back of his head.
 
And a series of banquets will be held from the evening for guests ranging from Britain’s Prince Charles to South Korean Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon.
 
Published in World
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