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Hundreds of Taxi Drivers Protest Against Uber

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Hundreds of taxi drivers on Monday blocked downtown Warsaw in protest over a Polish draft law they see as favourable to ride-sharing app Uber as well as over US support for the American firm.

Traditional cab operators argue that the Uber app and others like it represent unfair competition because their drivers can dodge the rules and restrictions that regulate regular taxis.

“My current income is a third lower than two years ago” because of competition from Uber, Warsaw taxi driver Marek said, preferring not to give his last name.

“What we’re asking for is fairness: that all (cab operators) be required to be licenced, have a taximeter, that they all pay taxes in the countries where they work and social security contributions too, that they pass exams like us,” he told AFP.

The draft legislation, which would regulate the activity of ride-sharing firms and has already been approved by the government, notably states that a mobile telephone app can replace the taximeter.

The protesters blocked one of the Polish capital’s main streets, stopping before the prime minister’s office, then the US embassy and finally the ministry of entrepreneurship.

Their representatives notably denounced a letter sent to the Polish government by US ambassador to Warsaw Georgette Mosbacher.

According to portions of the letter leaked to the local media, Mosbacher allegedly threatened to freeze US investments in Poland if Uber were to encounter trouble in the EU member.

The cab drivers are notably calling on the Polish government to abandon the draft law and introduce a new law that would protect traditional taxi operators.

Some protesters tossed fake money in the air. The “uberdollar” banknotes were adorned with the likeness of Mosbacher.

The spokesman for the ministry of infrastructure, which prepared the transport draft law, called the cab driver protest unfounded, saying the legislation will ensure a level playing field for all cab operators.

(AFP)

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Metro

Lady Slumps, Dies While Celebrating Birthday in Benue

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Family and friends of a make-up artist, Deborah Tushimah, are mourning her sudden death, which occurred while she was celebrating her birthday at the Hampton Mews Hotel in Makurdi, Benue State, on Sunday.

PUNCH Metro gathered that Deborah was having a nice time with her guests at the party before tragedy struck.

It was learnt that Deborah started feeling uneasy while dancing and suddenly slumped and started vomiting blood.

A footage of the party, which has been trending online, showed Deborah in company with her friends before the tragic incident happened.

The deceased was seen in the footage showing her friends some of the gifts she received from well-wishers.

The party atmosphere was filled with excitement as the guests and the celebrant danced to the tune being dished out by a saxophonist.

In a post on Instagram by gossipmillnaija, a source alleged that one of the birthday gifts, an iPhone 11, was responsible for Deborah’s death, stating, “She was poisoned at her birthday party.

“She was gifted iPhone 11 too. It’s obvious one of the girls she calls friends is behind it. While dancing, she slumped and started vomiting blood then died. It happened in Markudi, Benue State. Stupid envy and jealousy.”

Reacting on her Instagram handle, @prinasblend__empire, alleged that the ‘killer’ was among those celebrating with her in the footage and advised people to be cautious about eating at social functions.

“Chaiiiii fear people, during your parties alwazdont eat wt the public, have a food u reserved for urslf so after the party u eat and drink, becareful out there and one of those shouting there is the killer, wow,” she wrote.

However, one Hannah Silas, who claimed to have spoken with a member of deceased’s family, stated through her social media handle, @hannahSilas_, that the family had refuted the claim that Deborah died because of an iPhone 11, adding that there was also no confirmation that she was poisoned.

In a chat between Hannah and the family member, Deborah was said to have been nursing a heart problem without the knowledge of her parents and had collapsed on three separate occasions before the birthday party.

The chat read in part, “Later on, we discovered that she has a heart problem that makes her faint, and she have been fainting for some time but neither dad nor mum knew about that. The one that happened the early hours of today was the 4th, and she couldn’t make it.

“Like seriously, I don’t know when it started, I was also confused about the death, no illness, then just like that, but she had that heart problem for some time nw according to the feedback, but was silent to the parents.”

Commiserating with the family, @mabglams wrote, “This is really heartbreaking. May her soul Rest In Peace in Jesus name. Amen.”

When contacted, the state Police Public Relations Officer, DSP Catherine Anene, said Deborah’s corpse had been deposited in the mortuary for autopsy, adding that the command had commenced investigation to determine the cause of death.

Anene said, “On Sunday, July 5, 2020, around 9.30am, information was received that Miss Deborah Tushima suddenly collapsed around 2am at the Hampton Mews Hotel, while dancing in the midst of her friends, who attended her birthday party that was secretly organised.

“She was rushed to the Madonna Hospital, Markudi, for treatment and was pronounced dead shortly. Her corpse has been deposited in a mortuary. Investigation into the cause of death is in progress.”

When asked about the speculation that Deborah was poisoned, the PPRO stated, “We cannot know that from just looking at the corpse; that will be revealed through a post-mortem examination.”

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Infidelity: Man Stabs Lover, Commits Suicide

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An official of the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority, Emmanuel Mekuri, has allegedly committed suicide after stabbing his live-in lover, Patricia Ogunshola, during an argument at their place of residence in Araromi, Morogbo area of the state.

PUNCH Metro gathered that an argument on infidelity ensued between them, which degenerated into a physical combat.

Out of annoyance, Emmanuel allegedly got hold of a knife and used it to stab Patricia in her right thigh and when the attack became unbearable, she reportedly fled the house.

Thereafter, Emmanuel allegedly stabbed himself in the stomach.

The state Police Public Relations Officer, Bala Elkana, said an alarm raised by Patricia’s daughter drew neighbours’ attention to the incident and the police were contacted, adding that when policemen got to the house, Emmanuel’s remains were found and the knife used in perpetrating the crime was also recovered.

He stated that Patricia was taken to hospital for treatment, while Emmanuel’s corpse was evacuated and deposited in a mortuary for autopsy.

Elkana said, “On July 5, 2020, around 1pm, the Morogbo Police Station received a distress call from the Zoo area in Araromi that one Emmanuel Mekuri, 47, a LASTMA personnel, stabbed his lover, Patricia Ogunshola, 37, on her right thigh, with a Jack knife. An alarm was raised by the 13-year-old daughter of the woman, who she had from a previous marriage, which drew the attention of neighbours to the scene.

“In her statement, the girl stated that the deceased person, whom she referred to as her stepfather, made further attempts to stab her mother in the head but she quickly ran out of the room. She reported that he subsequently stabbed himself in the stomach, with his intestines gushing out and he died on the spot.

“On arrival at the scene, homicide detectives preserved the crime scene and rushed the injured woman to hospital for medical attention. She is currently in a stable condition. The corpse of the deceased person was evacuated to the mortuary for autopsy. A blood-stained knife was recovered from the scene.

“Preliminary investigation revealed that the couple started cohabiting in February 2020, but they were not legally married.”

Elkana said the state Commissioner of Police, Hakeem Odumosu, had ordered the immediate transfer of the case to the State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department, Panti, Yaba, for discreet investigation

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Police Arrest Ogun Pastor Who Raped 12-Year-Old Girl in Uncompleted Building

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A 54-year-old pastor, Niyi Omowodun, has been arrested by the Ogun State Police Command for defiling a 12-year-old girl in an uncompleted building.

The suspect, who is a pastor at Helmet of Life International Church, reportedly committed the offence at Ejigun Agbede Itele Ota, in the Ado-odo Local Government Area of the state

He was said to have dragged the 12-year-girl, who was sent on an errand, to an uncompleted building in the area and had unlawful carnal knowledge of her.

The Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Abimbola Oyeyemi, disclosed this in a statement on Wednesday.

Oyeyemi explained that the suspect was arrested on Monday following a complaint by the father of the victim.

The  PPRO said, “The man explained that while he was at his work place, he received a call from one of his neighbours that her daughter had been sexually abused by the suspect and that the said neighbour caught the man in the act.

“Upon the report, the DPO, Itele Division, Monday Unuigbe, detailed his detectives to go after the man, and he was subsequently arrested.

“On interrogation, the suspect, who claimed to be a pastor at Helmet of Life International Church, confessed having an unlawful carnal knowledge of the little girl.

The PPRO added that the suspect claimed that he was tempted to commit the offence because he had separated with his wife since 2016.

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