Day: June 8, 2017

TRAFALGAR SQUARE EVACUATED FOLLOWING DISCOVERY OF SUSPICIOUS ITEM

Trafalgar Square was evacuated following the discovery of a “suspicious item” this afternoon.

Armed police cordoned off the area and Charing Cross Tube Station was also closed.

Scotland Yard said officers had been called to the scene at 2.40pm

The suspect item was found on Duncannon Street, which is next to St Martin -in-the-Fields church.

Metropolitan Police said that the incident is “not being treated as terrorist related at this time” and no injuries have been reported.

Shortly afterwards they were stood down and the police cordon lifted.

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MISSING TEENAGER CALLS HIS MUM AND RETURNS HOME AFTER SEEING HIS PICTURE ON BGT’S MISSING PEOPLE CHIOR

A boy who had been missing from his home in Dartford for over a month came home after he saw his picture on Britain’s Got Talent.

Adrian Nyanja was last seen on April 26 and his family and police had issued numerous pleas to help find him.

None of his family knew where the 13-year-old was, until his mum received a phone call from her missing son.

READ: Mum’s desperate plea for missing teenager to come back home

Adrian’s face had appeared on the stage as part of a performance by the Missing People Choir on May 2.

Clare Cook, co-founder of the Missing People Choir, said: “We are delighted to announce that a 13 year old missing child who we appealed for on Britain’s Got Talent during the Missing People Choir’s performance saw his appeal and called his mum.

“He is now home safe and well.”

NJANYA

The Choir has been fundraising for the charity Missing People since their first audition for the show in April and have so far raised nearly £7,000.

Their fundraising campaign is still open for donations through their JustGiving page or you can support them by texting the word FIND to 70660.

TVC TO ENJOY MULTIMILLION DOLLAR INVESTMENT INJECTION BY AMERICAN NETWORK CBS

The management of American broadcasting network Continental Broadcasting Services (CBS) has announced their commitment to inject multi-million dollar investments in the television and radio businesses aimed at improving the viewing and listening experience of its esteemed audience.

The investment objectives also include shooting the stations to a pole-position in the media industry rankings, thus making them the first choice for advertisers in Nigeria.

The investment which is being said to be In line with its ongoing restructuring, will cut across CBS three major properties which are: TVC Entertainment; TVC News and Radio Continental.

Making the announcement on Wednesday, the Chief Executive Officer, Continental Broadcasting Services, Mr. Andrew Hanlon said viewers, listeners and advertisers on the channels should be ready for exciting times as the execution of the plan commence with immediate effect.

“I am delighted to confirm today that substantial investments will be made in programming and content across our TV and radio stations to improve viewers and advertisers’ appeal in the CBS Group offering.

“This will involve a substantial spend on technology and transmission equipment. The plan, which was recently approved by the CBS Board, will also lead to improved general working conditions for our 350 staff who will be at the heart of everything we do,” Hanlon said.

Hanlon further added that “as Nigeria steadily recovers from its economic recession, investments in critical sectors like this will definitely serve as bedrock for expediting the objectives of the government and effectively revive the economy”.

 

AISHA BUHARI RETURNS TO ABUJA WITH WORDS OF ASSURANCE FROM THE PRESIDENT

The first Lady and wife of Nigeria’s president, Aisha Buhari has returned from London where she had gone to visit her husband, President Muhammadu Buhari who has been abroad for a follow-up medical treatment since May 7.

Aisha Buhari arrived the Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport, Abuja on Tuesday Morning with words of appreciation and request from Buhari to Nigerians.

She conveyed the appreciation of President Muhammadu Buhari to Nigerians over their constant prayers and said he would soon return to the country. Mrs. Buhari’s spokesperson, Suleiman Haruna, in a statement said the First Lady, on arrival, conveyed the appreciation of President Buhari to Nigerians.

 

The First Lady told Nigerians that President Buhari is recuperating fine and that the president thanked Nigerians and especially the Acting President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo for keeping faith in the All Progressives Congress, APC, party as well as for their prayers for his recovery thus far.

Mrs. Buhari also said that the President solicits the continued support and cooperation of Nigerians with the Acting President Osinbajo to actualize the promises made during APC campaigns as contained in the party’s manifesto so that the promised change to Nigerians will be attained to the last letter.

President  Buhari left Nigeria on May 7 for medical treatment for the second time in recent months.

RING BOUGHT FOR A TENNER AT CAR BOOT SALE SELLS FOR OVER HALF A MILLION AT AUCTION

A diamond ring which was purchased at a car boot sale for £10 has been sold for £656,750 at auction.

The cushion-shaped jewel was expected to fetch up to £350,000 when it went under the hammer at Sotheby’s in London, but in the end was snapped up for close to twice that amount.

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TYPICAL CAR BOOT SALE MARKET

Named the “Tenner”diamond, the ring was originally purchased in the 1980s from a car boot sale.

The 26.27 carat diamond is thought to have been cut in the 19th Century but its history and how it arrived at the sale is unknown..

The owner of the ring had bought it as a costume jewel and worn it daily, before being told by a jeweller of its substantial value.

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Ring sold at auction for over half a million pounds

It is thought the stone is from the 19th century, when diamonds were not cut to show off their brilliance like today’s gems.

This results in an appearance slightly duller and deeper than modern diamonds, which could explain why the ring’s true value was ignored for so long.

It was recently confirmed by the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) as a genuine diamond.

UK GOES TO THE POLL TO CHOOSE NEW LEADERSHIP FOR THE NEXT 5 YEARS

Voting in the UK general election is under way at more than 40,000 polling stations across the country.

Polls opened at 07:00 BST on Thursday, with counting starting once voting ends at 22:00 BST.

A total of 650 Westminster MPs will be elected, with about 46.9 million people registered to vote.

That is up from the last general election, in 2015, when there were 46.4 million registered voters.

Some votes have already been cast, through postal voting, which accounted for 16.4% of the total electorate at the 2015 general election. People with an undelivered postal vote can still deliver it by hand to their local polling station.

Overall turnout in 2015, when the Conservatives won 331 out of 650 seats, was 66.4%, up from 2010.

Most polling stations are in schools, community centres and parish halls, but pubs, a launderette and a school bus have been used in the past.

Police have increased security at polling stations, including patrols by armed officers in some areas, following the recent terror attacks.

A handful of seats are expected to be declared by midnight, with the final results expected on Friday afternoon.

Unusually, no local elections are taking place at the same time, so results might come through earlier than in recent general elections.

In 2015 the first seat to declare was Houghton and Sunderland South, at 22:48 BST.

To form a majority in the House of Commons one party must win 326 seats – in 2015 a Conservative majority was not confirmed until 13:34 BST.

A woman and her dog outside a polling station

The weather forecast is for some rain in south-west England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales on Thursday, with south-east England remaining cloudy and dry.

Polls close at 22:00 BST, but officials say anyone in a polling station queue at this time should be able to cast their vote.

The BBC’s main election programme, fronted by David Dimbleby, starts at 21:55 BST, with live coverage from scores of counts.

Dimbleby, fronting his 10th election night broadcast, will be joined by Mishal Husain, Emily Maitlis, Jeremy Vine.

David Dimbleby

Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland will have their own overnight programmes but will join Huw Edwards from 07:00 BST on 9 June.

On the radio, an overnight broadcast by BBC Radio 4 will be hosted by Jim Naughtie and Carolyn Quinn.

On BBC Radio 5 live, the overnight show will be hosted by Stephen Nolan and Emma Barnett.

Full coverage of the results as they come in will be on the BBC politics online live page and front page scorecard, with all the big breaking stories from around the country and analysis by correspondents

 

What you need to know about the election:

If you are on the electoral register, you should have received a polling card through the post which has your name, polling number and the address of your polling station printed on it.

Polling stations are usually set up in public buildings such as schools, community centres and village halls near where you live.

If you have not received a polling card but think you should have, contact your local authority’s election office.

If you have lost your polling card, the office will be able to tell you where your polling station is.

To find the contact details of your local office, enter your postcode on the About My Vote website.

Do I need to take my polling card with me?

A church in Teesside, England

No. The polling card is for your information only, but taking it to the polling station can speed up the process.

Can I go to any polling station?

No. You must vote at the polling station to which you have been assigned.

Any voter who has not had a chance to post their postal vote (if they have asked for one) can still take it to their polling station.

What do I do when I get to the polling station?

When you arrive, staff will take your details and cross off your name on their checklist. In Northern Ireland, staff will also ask for a form of photographic ID.

How to vote graphic

What happens next?

You will be given a ballot paper listing candidates and parties you can vote for. It will be printed on special paper or feature an official mark or number to combat fraud.

Then I vote?

Yes. Take the ballot paper to one of the booths, which are screened to ensure secrecy.

Each polling booth should include sharpened pencils, attached to string long enough to accommodate both right and left-handed voters. You can use you own pen or pencil if you prefer.

Read the ballot paper carefully before you vote.

How do I vote?

Put an X in the box next to the name of the person you want to vote for. If you mark any more boxes, your paper will be invalid.

Hand writing on ballot paper

Can I put a smiley face instead?

The Electoral Commission says the best way to make sure your vote is counted is to mark an X in a box. But a smiley face or anything which is interpreted by a returning officer as an expression of preference “must not be rejected if the voter’s intention is clear”, its guidance to Returning Officers says.

What do I do with my marked ballot paper?

Fold the ballot paper so others cannot see your choice and post it in the ballot box.

Casting a voteImage copyrightGETTY IMAGES

What if I make a mistake?

Don’t worry. You can get your ballot paper reissued, so long as you have not put it in the ballot box.

Can I spoil my ballot paper?

Yes. The verification of the used, unused and spoilt ballot papers is a legal requirement. Some people spoil their votes as a means of registering their democratic right to express a view, but not vote for any of the candidates.

I have got a disability. Can I get help?

Polling station in a caravanImage copyrightTHINKSTOCK

Yes, everyone has the right to request assistance to mark their ballot paper. You can do this by asking the presiding officer to mark the paper for you. Or bring a close family member who is over 18, or someone who is eligible to vote at the election, such as a support worker, with you.

If you have a visual impairment, you can ask for a special voting device that allows you to vote on your own in secret. A large print version of the ballot paper should also be clearly displayed in the polling station.

Returning officers must also consider accessibility requirements when planning for an election, and polling stations are selected in consultation with local disability groups so that wheelchair ramps and disabled parking spaces are available.

If a voter cannot enter the polling station because of a physical disability, the presiding officer may take the ballot paper to the elector.

voting o

 

I have a learning disability. Can I get help?

Yes. If you need help, call the Electoral Commission’s public information line on 0333 103 1928.

A dedicated helpline for anyone with a learning disability who has questions about casting their vote, or experiences any difficulties in doing so, has also been set up by Mencap, a partner of the Electoral Commission.

The helpline is also available to the families and carers of people with learning disabilities, and to polling station staff. The number is 020 7696 5588.

What if I cannot get to a polling station?

Tattooed arm casts vote in ballot boxImage copyrightGETTY IMAGES

If you are suddenly incapacitated or taken ill on polling day, you can apply for an emergency proxy up until 17:00 BST on the day.

I forgot to register, can I vote?

No. You cannot vote unless you are on the electoral register.

Is it compulsory to vote?

No, people cannot be forced to vote.

When will I know the result?

The votes will start to be counted as soon as the polls close at 22:00 BST. Constituencies will start to declare within the first few hours of the vote, with a large number expected between 03:00 BST on Friday and 05:00 BST. It is difficult to predict when a new government will be formed, and depends on how close the election is.

 

BBC NEWS

INCIDENTS OF RACE HATE CRIMES IN LONDON ON THE INCREASE SINCE LONDON BRIDGE ATTACK

Hate crime and particularly Islamophobic incidents have increased dramatically in London in the wake of the London Bridge attack, crime statistics show.

Sadiq Khan, the Mayor of London, has warned that police will take a zero-tolerance approach to hate crime after the spike in incidents in the capital.

SADIQ kHAN

The figures come after hateful graffiti stating “terrorise your own country” was daubed on an Islamic community centre in Sutton over the weekend.

Provisional statistics for June 6 show there were 54 racist incidents reported to police, up 40 per cent compared to the daily average of 38 for the year so far.

The figures for Islamophobic incidents on the same day has rocketed, increasing by 500% from an average of 3.5 a day this year up to 20.

The figures represent the highest daily level of Islamophobic incidents in 2017 to date, more than there were in the wake of the 2015 Paris attacks or the 2013 killing of Lee Rigby.

According to the Met, 25 people have been arrested for suspected hate crimes since Saturday.

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Mr Khan has called on people across London to report any hate crimes of any kind to police.

“One of the greatest things about London is our defiant unity in the face of adversity – and that will not change in the aftermath of this horrific attack,” he said.

“Just as the police will do everything possible to root out extremism from our city, so we will take a zero-tolerance approach to hate crime.

If you witness a hate crime please report it to the police. If you commit a hate crime, you face arrest.

“I’m calling on all Londoners to pull together, and send a clear message around the world that our city will never be divided by these hideous individuals who seek to harm us and destroy our way of life.

“London will never be cowed or divided by terrorism.”

Chief Superintendent Dave Stringer, the Met’s head of community engagement, said dedicated officers have made contact with local places of worship to encourage them and their congregations to report any hate crimes.

He said: “Since Saturday evening’s attacks, we have increased the number of officers on the streets and in communities to reassure local people that they are able to go about their daily lives in peace and without fear of harassment or intimidation.”

You can report a hate crime online via the Metropolitan Police website here. Otherwise, you can dial 101 or 999 if it is an emergency.