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OAP, Tosyn Bucknor has died aged 37

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Oluwatosin ‘Tosyn’ Bucknor, an on-air-personality with Inspiration FM, has died aged 37.

Bucknor was found dead by husband, Aurelien Boyer, when he arrived at home from work on Monday night.

Onome Obruthe, husband of her sister Funke Obruthe-Bucknor, confirmed the demise of the petite media personality.

“It is very sad,” he said when a call was put through to him Tuesday morning.

The media personality, a graduate of law from the University of Lagos, was born with sickle cell anaemia.

In November 2015, Bucknor and Aurélien Boyer had their traditional wedding surrounded by family and friends in Lagos.

Five months later, they had their white wedding in France, Boyer’s home country.

Segun Bucknor, her father who was a popular musician and journalist, died in 2017.

Tosyn, as she was popularly called, previously hosted the morning show at Top Radio FM.

She started her OAP duties with Tee-A at Eko FM. She was also an intern at Cool FM where she hosted the ‘Fun Hour Show’ on Saturdays.

Bucknor joined Top Radio after her youth service in 2009 as the only female handling a morning show.

Tosyn Bucknor was nominated for several awards including Future Awards, ELOY Awards, and Best of Nollywood.

TheCable

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#DidYouKnow Nigerians are the smartest people to walk the earth?

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Nigerians are smart, adaptation to hardship coupled with the intense ‘survival of the fittest’ situation we face due to a peculiarly high population density made us smart. We are undoubtedly the smartest people in the world.

Well, smartness is a mental state, a response to environmental conditions. Basically, smartness is an adaptation for tolerance, the capacity to endure continued subjection to the uniquely challenging Nigerian state made us who we are, smart! Adaptation definitely still occurs in humans, and at a different rate proportional to environmental factors.

In biology, adaptation has three related meanings. Firstly, it is the dynamic evolutionary process that fits organisms to their environment, enhancing their evolutionary fitness. Secondly, it is a state reached by the population during that process. Thirdly, it is a phenotypic or adaptive trait, with a functional role in each individual organism, that is maintained and has evolved through natural selection.

Generally, organisms face a succession of environmental challenges as they grow, and show adaptive plasticity as traits develop in response to the imposed conditions. Therefore, if this index does not exist already, I would state that the Gross Adaptive Plasticity (GAP) of a Nation is a measure of the smartness of a Nation: that’s what we are talking about here.

Consequently, this index is a direct reflection of the degree of enhanced evolutionary fitness, and it seems imperative that this factor correlates to population growth. The evidence of this can be attributed to the ever-increasing population of people in Nations with smart people.

It is projected that Nigeria will surpass the US population sometime around 2050 to hit 500m despite the prevailing circumstances. Yes, of course, the next generation of Nigerians would need to find ways to support this growth, by finding value in population growth. Certainly the smart once would thrive in the midst of this and even become smarter at surviving.

Thus all the peculiarities and unique challenges as Nigerians have allowed us to develop tolerance and resilience to varying environments across the world. The agility and swiftness towards this success facilitating adaptation is what we basically regard as smartness. Undoubtedly far more Nigerians tend to be on top of this than any other Nationality today.

Ultimately, smartness is a strength, and “that which does not kill us, makes us stronger.” – Friedrich Nietzsche

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PDP expresses confidence in Saraki

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The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Kwara State yesterday passed a vote of confidence in the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki. In a statement issued after its state executive meeting and made available to newsmen in Ilorin, the party assured Saraki of its continued support and all that he stood for.

Bukola Saraki

The statement, signed by the state Chairman of the party, Kola Shittu, assured Saraki that the party’s executive and members stood firmly behind him in all his struggles to liberate, emancipate and free the country from draconian and autocratic rule and also share in the pains of the present with him in all ramifications.

The statement also thanked Governor Abdulfattah Ahmed for his administration’s giant stride in the various development programmes embarked upon since his assumption of office in 2011. It, however, urged him to continue his good work till the end of his tenure in May.
“The party hereby assures the general public that the Garin-Alimi Underpass, the UITH dual carriage way and the new state secretariat, among other projects already embarked upon by his Excellency, would be completed by the end of his tenure.

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Prominent Nigerian female curator, dies aged 56

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Bisi Silva, an adventurous curator who, with her own money, founded a nonprofit art gallery and education center in Lagos, Nigeria’s largest city, that has nurtured the growth and recognition of contemporary African artists, died on Feb. 12 in a hospital there. She was 56.

Her sister Joke Silva, an actress, said the cause was breast cancer.

Ms. Silva started the Center for Contemporary Art, Lagos in 2007 and made it a hub for bold and experimental sculpture, painting, photography and video and performance art that could ignite local and global interest.

She also curated exhibitions of African art around the world. One, in Helsinki, Finland, in 2011, featured the Nigerian photographer J. D. Okhai Ojeikere’s images of African women’s exotic hairstyles. (She turned that show into a book.) Others showed the work of the Ghanaian-born sculptor El Anatsui in Amsterdam and Johannesburg.

“I wouldn’t call her an African curator, but an international curator,” Hannah O’Leary, the head of modern and contemporary African art at Sotheby’s in London, said in a telephone interview. “She promoted African artists to the world and brought the international art world to Africa, and did it tirelessly. She never did the obvious: Her knowledge and vision were unrivaled.”

Ms. Silva felt that her mission was to change the way contemporary African art was being viewed from a Western perspective and to develop African artists in ways that their schools were not.

“The gaps in the art education system are jarring,” she told Frieze, an art and culture magazine, in 2017. While some West African nations like Nigeria had arts education programs, she called them “a colonial relic out of tune with present-day contextual, stylistic and intellectual realities.”

To fill the gaps, she created the Asiko Art School — actually a series of pop-up schools holding annual, monthlong educational gatherings in various African countries including Senegal, Ghana and Ethiopia, where artists, writers, historians, curators and teachers immersed themselves in seminars, workshops and exhibitions. The events gave Ms. Silva opportunities to evaluate artists’ work.

“Everyone had 15 minutes to present,” Antawan Byrd, who learned art curating under Ms. Silva at C.C.A. and is now assistant curator of photography at the Art Institute of Chicago, said by phone. “She’d be very critical. You had to defend your work and your research.”

Ms. Silva believed that her exhibitions, lectures, workshops, mentoring and educational programs made a positive impact in a short time.

“Twenty, 25 years ago, curators of contemporary art might have been completely and totally scared of going to ‘the Dark Continent,’ ” she told The New York Times in 2016. “Now it’s like, ‘Oh, Bisi, I want to go to Lagos, I want to go to Ghana.’ ”

Olabisi Obafunke Silva was born in Lagos on May 29, 1962. Her father, Chief Emmanuel Afolabi Silva, was a lawyer, and her mother, Charlotte Olamide Williams, was a civil servant with the Nigerian Railway.

After graduating from the University of Dijon in France, where she studied languages, she earned a master’s in curating contemporary art from the Royal College of Art in London. Her thesis examined the marginalization of black artists at exhibitions in England.

Ms. Silva returned to Lagos in 2002, inspired by her research but disappointed that she could not find an outlet for her vision of curating contemporary African art.

“Most of the galleries were commercial, and as far as I knew, there were no nonprofits,” she told Frieze. “Government institutions were moribund, and there was no place for young artists interested in experimenting with media other than painting and sculpture.”

She decided to start C.C.A, becoming its artistic director.

“There is no government funding for such initiatives,” she said in a lecture at the Block Museum of Art at Northwestern University in 2017. “If you want to do something, you have to do it yourself.”

Her cutting-edge shows at C.C.A. included “The Progress of Love,” which explored love through performance work by Jelili Atiku of Nigeria and Wura-Natasha Ogunji of the United States, and installations by Temitayo Ogunbiyi of Nigeria and the United States and Valerie Oka of Ivory Coast; “Identity: An Imagined State,” which looked at African identity in videos by artists from Africa and South America; and “Like a Virgin … ,” an exploration of women’s bodies, sexuality and identities by Lucy Azubuike, a Nigerian sculptor, and Zanele Muholi, a South African photographer.

“Virgin” was “a divisive show,” Ms. Silva said in an interview in 2017 with Pulse.com, a Ghanaian news website. “There were a lot of objections to Muholi’s photographs of her menstrual blood.”

In addition to Joke Silva, she is survived by two other sisters, Olajumoke Dawodu and Ojuolape Silva; and two brothers, Olabiyi Silva and Bolaji Oladunjoye. She considered her 13 nieces and nephews her children.

Ms. Silva had a particular expertise in organizing photography exhibitions and in creating a library of visual arts at C.C.A.

Oluremi C. Onabanjo, a scholar of African arts, wrote in Aperture magazine after Ms. Silva’s death that her influence on photography “will be writ large, emphasized in bold.”

Citing the vast range of work that radiated from C.C.A., Ms. Onabanjo wrote that “her remarkable vision and indefatigable spirit instigated tectonic shifts in editorial, curatorial and institutional frameworks in Nigeria and across the African continent.”

NYT

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Rivers: Army faults assassination allegation levelled against top military officer

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The Nigerian Army has debunked an allegation leveled against the General Officer Commanding (GOC) 6 Division of the Nigerian Army, Major General Jamil Sarham by Governor Nyelsome Wike of Rivers State that the GOC planned to assassinate him.

Nyesom Wike, Governor of Rives State

In a statement issued in Abuja by the spokesman of the Army, Colonel Sagir Musa, the Army maintained that governor Wike deployed a smear campaign against the GOC.

Colonel Musa said: “The Nigerian Army (NA) wishes to respond to the bogus and unsubstantiated allegations being peddled by the Governor of Rivers State, Mr Nyesom Wike. Some of his rancorous claims were that the General Officer Commanding (GOC) 6 Division, Maj Gen Jamil Sarham purportedly sent troops to cordon off his residence prior to the rescheduled General Elections on the 15th of February 2019.

“The Governor further went on to allege an assassination attempt on his life which he claimed was orchestrated by the GOC 6 Division.

“The NA is appalled that a Governor who should epitomize leadership and good example in all senses could descend so low to employ smear campaign against the person of a GOC whose only responsibility amongst other things, – is about the safety and security of lives and properties in his Area of Responsibility.

“The NA does not train assassins as such the institution or her personnel cannot be involved in sending assassins to murder a state Governor as alleged by Gov Nyesom Wike.

“It is indeed no secret to the military authorities that Governor Wike has on various occasions made attempts to compromise the integrity of the GOC 6 Division.

‘Having failed, despites series of overtures and monetary pledges of millions of dollars, both in person and from cronies, it is no surprise that the frustrated Governor has resorted to this appalling campaign of calumny. One would have thought that the resolute and uncompromising stance of Maj Gen Jamil Sarham in the face of several kinds of mouth-watering inducements would have earned him a commendation from any conscientious leader.

“Alas, this was not the case from the embittered governor of Rivers State but rather, these slanderous allegations.

“Despite these unsubstantiated ramblings however, the NA has deemed it fit to clear the air by letting Governor Wike and the general public at large, know that it would not be dragged into any form of political gerrymandering concocted for the furtherance of any person’s interest or notoriety.

“As a noble institution, the NA is apolitical, neutral and would not compromise its constitutional roles under any guise. Additionally, the NA would like to give Governor Wike the benefit of doubt, to within 7 days, bring forth evidence that can substantiate the bogus claims, or he could as well, save face and keep his peace.”

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