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Almat Adds Emir Of Katsina Cup To Trophy Chest

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Almat Adds Emir Of Katsina Cup To Trophy Chest

Maurice Ekpenyong and his compact Almat Group polo team at the weekend continued their recent run of success when they won the highly revered Emir of Katsina Cup at the 2018 Kaduna Centenary International Polo Tournament. The success in the competition held at the Murtala Mohammed Polo ground stretches their victory run this year to four.

The winning run, which started earlier in the year at the prestigious Niger Delta Polo festival in Port Harcourt with a sensational victory in the Governor Cup, has seen the team winning such heavyweight polo diadems like the Orphanage Cup in Keffi, The President Cup at 12-12 Polo Turf in Abuja and the unprecedented three back-to back General Hassan Katsina Cup victory.

This remarkable victory record of the Almat polo lords, inaugurated only five years ago at the serene Guards Polo Club in Asokoro, has already confirmed them as top contenders for Best Team of the Year award.

Rated outsiders by pundits in the Emir of Katsina Cup that pitted three Kaduna-based teams, Sublime, YY Kangimi, Barbados and two visiting teams, Kano Titans, Lagos A-Plus, debuting Ekpenyong and his champion squad had only their self belief to count on.

It ultimately proved to be the Centenary’s biggest surprise, as Almat Tigers, AlMalik Badamasi, Idris badamasi, Manuel Crespo and their patron, stunned Kaduna Sublime in their opening game and edged Lagos A-Plus in the semifinal to book a final ticket in the royal polo prize in the century old Kaduna polo carnival.

Their final game against pundits’ favourites, Kaduna YY Kangimi was the game changer, with Maurice and his warriors cruising to a comfortable 9-71/2 victory in a sensational campaign to fetch them the Emir of Katsina title on first attempt.

The fiesta was a highly competitive run of matches between the top-ranked teams and emerging polo powers on  knock-out basis.

“I think Ekpenyong and his Almat guys will  be a major champion within the next couple of years,” Bello Buba, the first Nigerian top rated player to win the Georgian Cup a record 18 times,  said. “It’s awesome to see him tearing it up here.”

Three back-to-back  cup victories has further confirmed Almat Group LCC squad as the Medium-goal team to beat in the Nigerian circuit.

Their patron, Ekpenyong, who earned a deserved handicap elevation by the polo ruling authority, is up there alone in the race for the New Patron of the Year award.

Other top winners in the epoch Centenary tournament that pitted over 40 top teams in the nine days international extravaganza include reigning Nigerian high-goal kings, Kaduna EL-Amin, who won their 15th Georgian Cup title, and Badakao who won the Imani Cup.

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Nigerian News

Kidnappers In Ondo State Kill One Of Their Victims

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Kidnappers In Ondo State Kill One Of Their Victims

Kidnappers in Ondo state are said to have killed one of their victims, a lecturer at the Rufus Giwa polytechnic in Owo, six days after they were abducted. Taiwo Akinyemi was reportedly killed on Sunday.

The suspected Fulani gunmen seized four persons, including the deceased, on the Akure-Owo expressway in Owo local government area last week.

They have released the three other victims who are staff members of the federal medical center, Owo.

The gunmen were reported to have tied the body of the fifty-two-year-old Akinyemi to a tree in bush where it was found. He was killed because his family could no pay their ransom demand on time.

Governor Rotimi Akeredolu joined lecturers and students of the polytechnic on Monday in a procession on campus as to respect and honor the late lecturer. Akeredolu described Akinyemi’s death as unfortunate.

Chris Olowolade, Chairman of the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Polytechnics, Rugipo chapter, said the kidnappers originally asked for a one hundred million Naira ransom which was reduced to seven million Naira after two days. The kidnappers later further reduced it to half a million Naira.

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Nigerian News

ASUU And Nigerian Government Reach Partial Agreement

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ASUU And Nigerian Government Reach Partial Agreement

Meanwhile, Labor Minister, Dr.Chris Ngige, has announced at a reconciliation meeting in Abuja that the government and the academic staff union of universities, ASUU, have reached a partial agreement. He says this should resolve the strike which started in early November.

The minister said they discussed issues related to agreements they had on shortfall in salaries of some federal universities’ workers and lecturers.  He said ASUU has submitted a list to the Accountant-General’s office, and the government has agreed that the presidential initiative on continuous auditing would cross-check that list by Wednesday.

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Nigerian News

SSANU To Embark On 3-Day Nationwide Protest

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SSANU To Embark On 3-Day Nationwide Protest

The Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities, SSANU, says it would embark on three-day nationwide protest beginning in a week.

Minister of Labor and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, announced that the federal government would secure eight billion Naira within five weeks to pay NASU’s joint action committee.

The Union’s public relations officer, Abdussobur Salaam says the protest is about the government’s non-implementation of an agreement it reached with the union.

The Non-Academic Staff Union of Universities, NASU, and the National Association of Academic Technologists, NAAT, had embarked on a nationwide strike in December last year. The action was suspended in march.

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