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GTBank, British Council Unveil First Outdoor Sculpture by Yinka Shonibare in Lagos

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Africa’s foremost financial institution, Guaranty Trust Bank Plc, has partnered the British Council, the UK’s international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities, to sponsor the installation of the Wind Sculpture VI by renowned British-Nigerian artist, Yinka Shonibare MBE in Ndubuisi Kanu Park, Ikeja, Lagos.

 

The installation of the Wind Sculpture VI will be the first time that Shonibare’s work has gone on public display in Nigeria. The fibreglass artwork, six metres high by three metres wide, forms part of a series of important large-scale works that marked a new departure for Yinka Shonibare by working in fibre-glass and steel. Using these materials, Shonibare investigates the shifting movement of wind passing through fabric and through these grand sculptures, he encapsulates the sheer volume of wind three-dimensionally with exquisite dynamism. As part of the unveiling of the sculpture, Shonibare will give a talk to students and attend a screening of his work at the site of the installation.

 

Yinka Shonibare is a Nigerian-British artist renowned for his exploration of the issues of race and class through the media of painting, sculpture, photography and film. His trademark material is the brightly coloured ‘African’ batik fabric and one of his most famous works is ‘Nelson’s Ship in a Bottle,’ which, in May 2010, was unveiled on the Fourth Plinth in Trafalgar Square, London with the support of GTBank. In 2013, the Bank also supported Yinka’s Wind Sculpture “FABRIC–ATION,” one of his largest and most comprehensive exhibitions.

 

The Bank’s support for the installation of the Wind Sculpture VI is the latest of its sustained efforts to promote African and Africa-inspired arts locally and internationally. It closely follows the Bank’s launch, in September, of ART635, a foremost online repository of African artworks and the leading platform for the promotion of indigenous artists across the continent. Arts is one of the four pillars of GTBank’s Corporate Social Responsibility policy and the Bank’s support for Arts over the years ranges from collecting art work from Nigerian artists,  to partnering institutions to promote the value of African Art in Africa and the international markets through project-lead initiatives.

 

Commenting on the Bank’s unveiling of the Wind Sculpture VI, Mr Segun Agbaje, the Managing Director of Guaranty Trust Bank plc, said; “With its bright colours of traditional African fabrics, Yinka’s Wind Sculpture VI reflects the creativity of an artist who is incredibly proud of his African heritage. As a proudly African and Truly International Bank and an ardent supporter of Art, we are delighted to co-sponsor the exhibition of this magnificent work of Art and we hope it will intrigue and inspire everyone who views it.”

 

GTBank has consistently played a leading role in Africa’s banking industry. The Bank is regarded by industry watchers as one of the best run financial institutions across its subsidiary countries and serves as a role model within the financial service industry due to its bias for world class corporate governance standards, excellent service quality and innovation.

 

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Just In: President Tinubu approves N70,000 minimum wage

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President Bola Tinubu has approved N70,000 as the new minimum wage for Nigerian workers with a promise to review the national minimum wage law every three years.

 

More details later…

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Gov. Zulum Clarifies Son’s Purported Killing Of Chinese National At Indian Nightclub

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The Borno State Governor, Babagana Zulum, has denied reports alleging that one of the sons has been arrested and sentenced to prison for the murder of some Indian citizens.

Reports has it that there were unverified rumours, especially on social media platforms, alleging that the first son of the governor, Umar Zulum Umara, killed the Chinese national during a fight at an Indian nightclub.

However, the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on New Media, Abdurrahman Ahmed Bundi, dismissed the reports in a statement on Wednesday.

According to him, no son of the governor was arrested or charged with any crime.

The statement read, “attention of the Borno State Governor’s Media Unit has been drawn to rumours circulating that the son of the Borno State Governor has been arrested for the alleged murder of some Indian citizens.

“This misinformation was published in an online blog, Nairaland, titled “Son of Borno State Governor Murders Someone In India—Politics.” The blog claimed that the Governor also travelled to India, attempting to use diplomatic status to resolve the matter.

“It is on record that Governor Babagana Zulum was on a one-month vacation in Saudi Arabia for the 2024 Hajj and later travelled to Egypt to attend the annual ASUWAN forum conference in Cairo.

“The Media Unit would like to clarify and set the record straight that Nairaland and other online blogs have mischievously spread defamatory content without any speck of truth.

“We hereby warned Nairaland and all those who have spread the false information to pull down this misinformation from its website and platforms within the next 24 hours and offer an unreserved apology to Governor Zulum, his son, and the entire family, or risk legal action. The Governor shall also not hesitate to take legal action against any media outlet that continues to publicise this defamatory information on its platform.

“We would like to inform the public that none of Governor’s Zulum’s son was either arrested or charged with any crime, or involved in any unlawful activities anywhere.

“We urge the public to exercise caution when consuming and sharing information, particularly when it comes from unverified sources and blogs instead of credible media outlets.

“We enjoin all media organisations to engage in responsible journalism of truth and factual verification while recognising the potential harm and psychological trauma the spread of false information might have caused to the Governor’s family.”

 

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Over 600,000 Nigerians sought asylum abroad under Buhari – Report

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Over 600,000 Nigerians filed for asylum in other countries between 2016 and 2023, which were years under the administration of former President Muhammadu Buhari.

Buhari was President from 2015 to 2023 and handed over to President Bola Tinubu who was sworn in on May 29, 2023, after winning in the general elections the same year.

According to a report released on Wednesday, July 17, 2024, by Statisense, a data collection organisation, of a total of 664,384 in eight years, 355,792 persons sought asylum between 2016 and 2019 while 308,592 sought asylum between 2020 and 2023.

On a year-by-year basis, 66,862 sought asylum in 2016, 91,924 in 2017, 84,624 (2018), 112,382 (2019), 73,233 (2020), 83,105 (2021), 83,402 (2022), and 68,852 in 2023.

The figures indicate a surge from the past years, as Statisense noted that within 12 years – 2004 to 2015 – only 204,791 Nigerians filed for asylum in other countries.

In total, 869,175 Nigerians filed for asylum in the last 20 years, notably from 2004 to 2023.

The report was posted on the organisation’s X.com handle @StatiSense, citing the United Nations Refugee Agency.

In another report shared by the organisation on Wednesday, it was stated that the Republic of Niger topped countries with the most Nigerian refugees in 2023 with about 200,497 Nigerians and a total of 1,268,464 Nigerian refugees between 2015 and 2023.

Niger, a border country, shares proximity with Nigeria’s north, where residents battle a spate of insecurity in the region ranging from banditry, terrorism and herdsmen-farmers crisis.

Another report also revealed that Nigerians topped the list of African countries who sought asylum in Canada in 2023 with about 10,111 asylum seekers followed by Kenya with 1,345.  It stated that 1,345 Nigerians however sought asylum in the United Kingdom and 5,136 in the United States of America.

Source: The Punch

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