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Court dismisses suit against Akingbola, berates prosecution team

FORMER Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Intercontinental Bank Plc (now Access Bank), Dr. Erastus Akingbola, yesterday secured a major judicial victory in his ongoing trial at the Federal High Court, Lagos over financial improprie…

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AkingbolaFORMER Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Intercontinental Bank Plc (now Access Bank), Dr. Erastus Akingbola, yesterday secured a major judicial victory in his ongoing trial at the Federal High Court, Lagos over financial impropriety as the court yesterday discharged him of the 26-count amended charges preferred against him by the Federal Government.

Apart from discharging him of the charges, the court also dismissed the charges and barred the prosecution from appearing before the court or another judge of the Federal High Court over the matter on what the court termed ‘serious and professional incompetence’ of the prosecution team made up of five Senior Advocates of Nigeria (SAN).

In a dramatic turn of event at Courtroom Seven, the venue of the proceedings, the trial Judge, Justice Charles Archibong, directed the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Mohammed Adoke (SAN) to disband/sack/debrief the current prosecution team, comprising five SANs and their respective firms from handling the matter for serious abuse of court process and incompetence in their prosecution of the charges against Akingbola.

According to the judge, the prosecution team is ‘a drain on the public purse, a fact the AGF should be mindful of now if he was not before.’

“This prosecution team has chosen to pursue a campaign to scandalise the court, which amounts to serious and professional incompetence in the prosecution of the accused.

“This prosecution team or any part of it shall not be given further audience in this court in relation to the charges against the accused either before this presiding judge or any other judge of the Federal High Court, for the reason, I have given in the foregoing.

“Furthermore I take judicial notice that the accused herein is presently facing charges before the Lagos High Court emanating from his tenure as the managing director and chief executive officer of the Intercontinental Bank Plc, the AGF may wish to regain control of this process and his untrammelled right to prosecute the accused in another charge, he chooses before any appropriate court, as he can of course do so at any time of his choosing.

“Meanwhile, the prosecuting team presently employed is indulging in professional incompetence to the extreme had been unmindful of the accused right to have the case against him clearly stated. They have been dismissive of his right to a ‘speedy’ trial, which in reality should be the credible procedure.

“I therefore dismiss the charges amended or otherwise for this incompetence and abusive prosecuting team. I discharge the accused accordingly and leave the AGF to consider his options.

“This enrolled order shall be served to the AGF and the prosecution team.

“I shall be referring the conduct of the learned senior advocates that led the prosecuting team to the Legal Practitioners Privileges Committee (LPPC) for further consideration and determination of the issues raised.

“The record of this proceedings shall be forwarded to the AGF and the LPPC and this proceedings is at its end,” the court ruled.

Before freeing Akingbola of the charges, the court had earlier in its ruling allowed the prosecution to amend the charges even though it was contested by Chief Felix Fagbohungbe (SAN) counsel to Akingbola on the ground that the prosecution was employing a piece meal approach in its prosecution of the charges.

The court had urged Akingbola to take his plea on the new charge, before Chief Godwin Obla for the prosecution decided to urge the court to take the application for stay of proceedings pending appeal to the court’s earlier decision.

But the drama ensued when the court allowed Obla to move the application for a stay, only for him to ask for adjournment, which he said will enable him compile the record of the appeal, the prosecution filed on February 7, 2012.

Infuriated by this application, Justice Archibong said the prosecution team was incompetent and abusing the court process.

The judge also noted that prosecution were not willing to commence the trial, hence the several applications they are bringing to court at the detriment of the accused right for speedy trial and dismissed the charge.

The prosecution had amended their charge against Akingbola up till three times, before the same judge.

They had even petitioned the judge to the NJC, alleging bias while the current president of the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA) had at one of the sittings walked out on the judge over the ruling of the court.

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The Contribution of Sports Betting to the Economy of Nigeria

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Most of us have grown up with gambling lore that left us petrified to our core. Gambling ruins lives, gives rise to financial and legal problems.

This is all that we have grown up learning. However, this is only partly true and must not be taken too seriously. Sure, gambling has its disadvantages and evils.

However, the activity, in its entirety, is not addictive. It is what humans make out of it. Human beings give up self-control and spiral into a bottomless pit of despair due to that.

Gambling, when indulged in appropriately, does no harm. In fact, it is one of the biggest industries and contributes significantly to the global economy.

The moot point of this article is to have a look at the betting industry of Nigeria. While we do that, we shall also examine how much the industry contributes to the economy of the nation.

Therefore, let us now have a look at the industry and venture a few important points throughout
the article.

How Does the Betting Industry of Nigeria Look Like?

The gambling industry of Nigeria resides in the areas of gray. One cannot look at it in either black or white.

Gambling activities are considered illegal in Nigeria, with the exception of a few. And betting on sports happens to be one of those exceptions.

Online gambling in Nigeria is allowed only on offshore-owned and operated casinos. Locally operated casinos are not allowed to function in the land.

Now speaking of betting, one must note that the betting industry happens to be a key player in Nigeria’s economy. There are over fifty functional and legal betting sites in Nigeria.

As we mentioned before, betting is entirely legal, unlike online gambling. All those who want to gamble on sites like Usafriendlypokersites.com can do so with the use of VPNs.

Nigerians are incredibly passionate as a people about their sports. That is why the idea of making money by betting on their favorite sports has a lot of appeal.

With about 200 million people in the country, the betting industry has found a solid footing in the market. It has been estimated that over the last few decades, Nigeria has grown to become the second-largest betting market in South Africa.

Over 60 million people find entertainment through online betting sites in South Africa. Therefore, one can understand, going by the statistics that Nigeria has evolved over the last few years when it comes to betting.

Reasons for this Massive Growth in the Popularity of Online Betting:

One of the primary reasons for this massive popularity in online betting is the increase in technological innovations.

Nigeria, over the past few years, has seen technological expansion and super-fast connectivity. Almost everyone has access to smartphones now.

This is what makes it so easy for people of every age group to bet online. The constraints that the nation had in technology and connectivity are no longer an issue.

It is estimated that in the next few years, the country shall see more such innovations and expansion. This will, therefore, act further as a catalyst to the growth of the online betting industry.

The Government is Now Tightening the Noose around Online Betting to Raise Revenue:

As we already mentioned a few times before that Nigeria had strict laws related to online gambling.

The government also did not pay much attention to the betting industry. However, things have changed now and shall change further down the line.

The Nigerian government is now formulating some strict laws so that it could pull the revenue from betting into the coffers.

This is also one of the most significant reasons for the growth in Nigeria’s economy. Online betting is a lucrative industry, and we can already deduce that from we discussed.

With the government paying more attention to the industry, crime rates can be reduced, and better revenue can be raised.

If anything, the involvement of the Nigerian government shall only serve as a fresh change. Plus, with a better structure in the betting industry, more people can find jobs and livelihood.

Wrapping It Up:

We can see how the online betting industry of Nigeria has become one of the chief contributors
to its economy.

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Sporty.com – The Ultimate App For Sports Fans!

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For all those sports fans out there who are tired of following sports news that you do not find relevant, Sporty Group has come out with the perfect solution to this problem – Sporty.com is the ultimate sports app for all sports fans! Sporty gives access to the world’s best sports content with zero cost and zero ads. The app is available on the Google Play Store for free. Fans around the world can access the latest sports news on their handheld devices anytime and get live updates on matches.

Sporty.com offers a lot of features that can be leveraged by those who are sports enthusiasts. Here are the standout features of the newly launched application that has access to the world’s best sports content. 

  • Latest Sports News (SportyNews)

Get access to all the hot articles and video news in the world of sport at the tip of your fingers through Sporty. This news can be completely customized as per one’s liking. Pick your favourite sports, leagues and teams, all in one place, to be the first to know everything or just pick the option of “Popular” news. 

  • Live Scores and Exclusive Videos (SportyTV)

Sporty.com provides live scores of all the sports around the world, including an additional choice where one can filter out scores of just their favourites, whether it would be league scores or team scores. 

  • Game Stats (SportyLive)

Analyze every game in detail through this feature on Sporty. Get the most comprehensive data on any match through the app with match facts, team line-ups, minute-by-minute analysis and tracking, competition trees, live league tables and formations.

  • Chat System (SportyChat)

Chat and share sports talk on Sporty with other users and friends! An incredibly unique feature on offer indeed, which can help you stay updated and also share banter with friends on the go.

Get Sporty, Live Sporty as you Follow, Like, Share, Watch & Chat on Sporty.com!

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What Is The Entourage Effect?

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The cannabis plant holds complexities beyond what we currently understand. Researchers know that the primary psychoactive compound in cannabis is tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). In addition to THC, there are a myriad of other cannabinoids and terpenes that science has less of an understanding about. The entourage effect is a theory that the other compounds from cannabis, including cannabidiol (CBD) commonly found in hemp flower and a range of compounds that are not well-known to most consumers, alter the psychoactive effect of the plant. It’s this effect that many believe is the true reason CBD hemp flower in its raw form is such an effective therapy. Online companies such as Cannaflower exclusively sell only hemp flower for this very reason, it tends to be the most potent form of delivering CBD because of the entourage effect.

Why The Entourage Effect is Important

Here’s why the entourage effect is potentially important: CBD and other cannabis compounds could mitigate the psychotic effects of THC, reducing its negative impact on the body and making it more useful therapeutically. Conversely and complementing this, the micro doses of THC that are contained in hemp flower might be necessary to fully appreciate the benefits of the CBD. This means that THC, CBD and all of the other compounds in cannabis may have the greatest beneficial effects with the least side effects when used in combination.

Researchers have also found that there are a range of terpenes – or volatile oily compounds – in the hemp flower and other Cannabis sativa plant varieties. Many of them are reported to have specific therapeutic effects. Terpenes may actually be at least partially responsible for the overall mood of a specific cannabis flower. They have not all been studied for pharmacological effects, however.

Research On The Entourage Effect

Today’s uses of cannabis products for medical purposes, including CBD hemp flower products, may only be scratching the surface of the plant’s usefulness. Smoking or vaporizing the cannabis plant introduces hundreds of compounds into the body, many with specific effects and potential benefits that are not completely understood. It seems likely that these compounds may interact in ways that are not understood either.

Research has shown some allegorical evidence to indicate complex interactions. A 2010 study, for example, showed that when cancer patients were given a combination of THC and CBD, they had less pain than those who were given THC alone. This study and most others have not taken into consideration the many other cannabinoids that were present in the combined treatment, including CBC, CBN and aromatic terpenes.

The entourage effect theory has been described in a review of studies written by pharmacologist and neurologist Dr. Ethan Russo, a longtime researcher of cannabis compounds. He detailed the benefits of certain cannabis compounds and described potential complementary or synergistic effects of these compounds.

Russo found, for example, that CDG and CBD have been shown to inhibit MRSA staph infections, but questioned in his research how they might work even better when combined with pinene, a specific terpene. He also asked if certain terpenes could increase the ability of the other compounds to permeate the skin.

THC, CBD and these other terpenes in combination could work together to better help induce sleep or address inflammation and pain than THC alone or only THC and CBD with no other compounds.

Other potential synergies Russo noted in his research include these:

  • Pinene, a pine-scented terpene, could help prevent memory issues associated with THC.
  • Caryophyllene, a peppery terpene, could help treat addiction when used along with CBD.
  • Limonene, a citrusy compound, might work alongside CBD to help reduce anxiety.
  • The cannabinoid CBN could cause beneficial sedation when used with THC.

The entourage effect is a theory that’s only partially proven, but additional research is likely as consumers learn about the possibilities and become more interested in concrete evidence.

Not All Products Are Alike

Not all cannabis products on the market can provide the benefits of the entourage effect. That’s because synergistic compounds are often refined out of them as they are purified and prepared for consumers. This is intentional and often done for compliance purposes, but it may prove to be a bad idea for some therapeutic uses.

Hemp flower and other cannabis flower products contain the widest array of terpenes and cannabinoids because they are raw products. Still, some extracts also contain a variety of these compounds. Such products are called full-spectrum or broad-spectrum cannabis extracts and can include vape cartridges, ingestible capsules, dabs and more.

Refined cannabis products that don’t contain the full spectrum of compounds are called isolates and may contact only THC or CBD. These single-compound products still provide powerful medicinal benefits that shouldn’t be overlooked, but the greatest potential may lie with broad-spectrum products. Many isolates and broad spectrum products may simply fall short in providing the full benefits of therapy because components of the whole plant’s compounds have been removed.

While more research is needed, the implications of the entourage effect are clear: The cannabis plant holds many secrets that researchers have not yet uncovered.

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