Tag Archives: Chile

Abubakar heads to Chile as Dodo emerges Buhari’s new ADC.

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Customarily, the ADC attends to the personal needs of the president and other matters regarding his functions as head of state and commander-in-chief of the armed forces.

President Muhammadu Buhari has accepted the nomination of Lt. Col. Yusuf Dodo as his Aide-De-Camp (ADC).

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Noble Reporters Media learnt that the appointment of Dodo followed the nomination of Buhari’s out-going ADC, Col. Mohammed Abubakar to attend a five-month course in Santiago, Chile from March 8 to July 30.

The course is a prerequisite for Abubakar’s next promotion to the rank of brigadier-general, expected to be carried out in the last quarter of this year.

Abubakar will by the end of February be the longest serving ADC to a civilian president, having served in that position for almost six years.

He is also the second longest serving ADC in the history of the Nigerian armed forces after late Col. Walbe, who served Gen. Yakubu Gowon for nine years.

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NoRM learnt that the 48-year-old ADC, who has served in various army units and formations within and outside Nigeria at different capacities recommended his successor by nominating three seasoned and trustworthy army officers to Buhari.

The president picked Dodo, an Academy Adjutant of Nigerian Defence Academy.

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Dodo is to under-study Abubakar for three weeks to learn the ropes of his new assignment, a presidential source told NoRM‘s known correspondent.

The office of ADC to the president statutorily provides security and protects the president and his family in conjunction with other security agencies.

Officers, who are nominated to be ADC to the president must be loyal, have high morale standard, impeccable character and have courage and be knowledgeable.

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The presidency source described Abubakar as a tested and experienced commander, instructor, security manager and a talented investigator.

The new ADC was born on March 28, 1973 at Wusasa in Zaria.

”His father is from Kano State and his mother is from Edo State. He has an impressive educational background,” the source added.

Abubakar attended the Nigerian Military School, Zaria from 1985 to 1990, where he developed early leadership skills.

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The new ADC, a fellow of the Nigerian Army Resource Centre, is married to Hajiya Fatima Musa Daura. He is blessed with children.

The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu, when contacted confirmed the appointment of the new ADC.

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#Newsworthy

Beirut explosions: Chilean team sense ‘signs of life’ beneath rubble of building after month

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Chile rescue team says it has found signs someone may still be alive beneath the rubble of a collapsed building.


A Chilean rescue team said it detected signs of life underneath the rubble of a building that collapsed in the massive explosion that tore through Beirut one month ago.

A member of the TOPOS CHILE rescue team told Noble Reporters Media‘s known Media that, using a scanning machine, it discovered signs of a pulse and breathing near the ground floor of the collapsed building.

He said it most likely belonged to a child, adding that the team also found the presence of at least one body.

TOPOS CHILE rescue team member told Al Jazeera that they had discovered signs of a pulse and breathing near the ground floor of the collapsed building using a sensitive scanning machine [Timour Azhari/Al Jazeera]

The August 4 explosion, that killed 191 people and injured more than 6,000, destroyed much of Lebanon’s capital.

The Chilean team had been visiting streets in the capital as part of a mission to secure buildings before the reconstruction phase when one of their search dogs ran towards a building and alerted them of human presence, Akram Nehme, member of the Achrafieh 2020 NGO that helped bring TOPOS CHILE to Beirut, told Noble Reporters Media‘s known Media.

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Edward Bitar, a member of NGO Live Love Lebanon working with TOPOS CHILE in Lebanon, said they had detected 18 breath cycles per minute emanating from under the rubble using the sensor.

“We are trying to keep hopes low. If someone is found, it would be a miracle,” said Bitar.

TOPOS CHILE often heads to disaster zones, including to Japan’s Fukushima region in 2011 when a nuclear reactor exploded.

The August 4 explosion that killed 191 people and injured more than 6,000 destroyed much of Lebanon’s capital [Timour Azhari/Al Jazeera]

In 2010, it helped rescue a man in Haiti after he spent 27 days in the rubble caused by an earthquake.

Looking for life
Bitar said the owner of the building had attested to the fact that no one was inside.

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But a number of people on the scene said they had alerted security forces of the smell of decomposition emanating from the building in the days after the blast, adding that security forces did not search the rubble.

Official search-and-rescue efforts have long-since been called off.

Thursday’s volunteer-led effort started in the morning and continued into the night. The team removed the rubble of the building – stone by stone – with help from Lebanese climbers, firefighters and civil defence.

Rescue workers repeatedly silenced the large crowd to enable their sensor to probe for signs of life, leading an eerie silence to fall over the street.

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For many Lebanese, Thursday’s volunteer-led efforts are just the latest example of state failure, both in the lead-up to the explosion – caused by 2,750 tonnes of ammonium nitrate haphazardly stored at the Beirut port for almost seven years – and in the explosion’s aftermath.

On Thursday, a month after the explosion, Lebanon’s army announced it found 4.35 tonnes of ammonium nitrate near the entrance to Beirut port.

The military said army experts were called in for an inspection and found the dangerous chemical in four containers stored near the port.

“Honestly this is why we all walk around believing something else is gonna blow us up. Their incompetence is stunning,” Lebanese activist Bissan Fakih said in a tweet, referring to the country’s political class


#Newsworthy…

Just in: Number of unemployed Chileans surge.

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Unemployment in Chile has reached a new record high of 13.1 percent, the national statistics institute said Friday.

Unemployment rose by 5.6 percentage points in the rolling May-July quarter compared to the same period in 2019.

The statistics institute said it was the highest figure since 2010 when the body changed its calculation method.

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That means that more than a million people are out of work, leaving 8.1 million employed after the loss of 1.8 million jobs over the last year.

However, the unemployment figure doesn’t take into account the 760,000 people that took advantage of a government initiative launched in March to protect jobs affected by the coronavirus pandemic by allowing the temporary suspension of contracts and access to unemployment insurance.

The institute said that taking into consideration those unemployed, those on the government scheme, and those not looking for work but able to, then the number of people out of employment rises to 30 percent of the potential workforce.

Truck drivers protest by cutting off highway 5 in Pillanlelbun, Temuco, Chile on August 27, 2020.
MARIO QUILODRAN / AFP

“These are the most severe figures… that we’ve had in the history of our country,” said Labor Minister Maria Jose Zaldivar.

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The institute said that of those still employed, a third have reported a drop in their income.

“The numbers speak for themselves and show why this has to be the priority,” said Finance Minister Ignacio Briones, while asking Congress to approve laws that would reactivate the economy by creating jobs.

Chile is one of the worst-affected countries in Latin America by the coronavirus, with 400,000 cases and close to 15,000 deaths.

The Central Bank expects the economy to shrink by 7.5 percent in 2020.


#Newsworthy…

COVID-19: Chile record 1st death.


An 83-year-old woman has became Chile’s first victim of the coronavirus pandemic, health authorities said Saturday.

Health Minister Jaime Manalich earlier in the day said that 103 new cases had been reported in the last 24 hours, taking the total to over 500.


In Latin America, only Brazil has registered more cases.

Of Chile’s cases, 33 have been hospitalized and 359 are in the capital Santiago, Manalich said.


While the government has advised people to stay indoors, no official quarantine measures have been announced.

Even so, the streets of Santiago have been largely deserted, and the now traditional Friday evening anti-government protests that began in October have attracted few demonstrators.


However seaside resorts in central Chile, around 100 kilometers from Santiago, have been full of people, causing concern among authorities.

Some local mayors have closed their towns to outsiders.

On Wednesday, President Sebastian Pinera declared a “state of catastrophe,” and the next day Congress voted to delay from April to October a referendum on changing the country’s dictatorship-era constitution.

Earlier this week Pinera closed Chile’s borders to foreigners.


#Newsworthy…

COVID-19: Chile, Peru shut borders.


Chile and Peru announced a total closure of their borders on Monday while Latin America’s largest airline said it was reducing operations by 70 percent as the region scrambled to stem the rapidly-spreading coronavirus pandemic.

Latin America has registered more than 800 cases and seven deaths, according to an AFP count, after the Dominican Republic became the latest nation to report a fatality.

“We’ve decided to close all our country’s terrestrial, maritime and aerial borders for the transit of foreigners,” said Chile’s President Sebastian Pinera.

The announcement came as Chile revealed on Monday its number of coronavirus cases had more than doubled since Sunday to 155.

Peru followed suit soon afterwards with President Martin Vizcarra announcing a two-week border closure from midnight, while Colombia announced it would close its borders until May 30.

Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay and Paraguay confirmed partial border closures. Paraguay also imposed overnight curfews.

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro announced late Monday that his country would enter “collective quarantine.”

Latam Airlines said it was reducing operations by 70 percent, just four days after already cutting back by 30 percent.

“If these unprecedented travel restrictions increase… we’re not ruling out being forced to decrease our operations even more,” said the airline’s vice-president Roberto Alvo.

Mexico President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador bucked the trend, saying he would not ban public gatherings or stop greeting people with “hugs” until public health officials said otherwise.

– Stocks tumble –

Chile rolled out a number of coronavirus control measures as the central bank slashed interest rates by 75 basis points to 1.0 percent.

The move failed to stop the Santiago stock exchange closing down 14 percent, its worst fall in three decades.

Regional stocks were battered as the Sao Paulo exchange lost almost 14 percent, Buenos Aires fell nearly 10 percent and Colombia plummeted more than 15 percent.

Brazil’s currency fell below $0.20 for the first time ever, prompting an emergency government investment of almost 150 billion reals ($27.5 billion) into the economy.

Chile’s closed borders caused a problem for a quarantined cruise ship in the country’s deep south.

More than 200 passengers and crew aboard the Silver Explorer in the remote port of Caleta Tortel are in lockdown after six people tested positive for coronavirus.

Health authorities want to evacuate the other passengers back to their home countries, but may need special permission.

– Cuba helping Nicaragua –

Cuba said it was allowing a British cruise ship to dock despite five people on board testing positive for COVID-19 and nearly 40 others in isolation with flu-like symptoms.

“We are working around the clock to arrange evacuation flights from Cuba to the UK as soon as possible for passengers on the Braemar cruise ship,” a British foreign ministry spokesman said.

Cuba is also sending specialist doctors to Nicaragua to help the central American country treat COVID-19 patients.

Ecuador, which has seen 58 cases and two deaths, banned tourists from the Galapagos Islands on Monday while authorities in Rio de Janeiro used megaphones to order people at the beach to go home.

Rio’s Flamengo football club, the reigning Copa Libertadores champions, revealed that their Portuguese coach Jorge Jesus is the latest sports star to have tested positive for the virus.

The city’s famous Christ the Redeemer statue was also closed to the public.

Honduras announced a week-long lockdown to prevent people from going to work, using public transport or taking part in religious activities.

The Argentine government announced work exemptions for public and private employees of non-essential sectors, as well as parents with school-age children.


#Newsworthy…