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Nigeria: former vice president Atiku visits America in the heat of campaign.

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Atiku Abubakar, a former vice-president of Nigeria on Thursday flew to the United States of America for the first time in a long while.

His inability to travel to the US was reportedly due to a federal summons for his arrest in a corruption case that dates years back to when he was in government.

It is his first time in the US after twelve year visa ban, local media portals reported.



The issue has in recent months surface as a campaign issue ahead of February 16 presidential elections with incumbent Muhammadu Buhari vying for a second and final term.

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Atiku who leads the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, is seen as the main challenger to Buhari in a crowded field of over 70 aspirants.

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He said in a tweet that he was in Washington D.C. to hold talks with US government officials and to engage with Nigerians living in the area as well as members of the business community.

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24 Hours Across Africa

Russian: President Putin eases access to citizenship for east Ukraine residents.

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Source: Reuters

Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed an order simplifying the procedure for obtaining a Russian passport for residents of the rebel-controlled Donetsk and Luhansk regions of eastern Ukraine, the Kremlin said on Wednesday.

Separatist rebellions broke out against Ukrainian rule in both regions in 2014. Moscow provided military help for the separatists, according to evidence gathered by Reuters, though Russian officials have denied providing material support.

Large swathes of the two regions are now under the de facto control of the Moscow-backed rebels, while Kiev says it is determined to re-assert its control, a position backed by most Western countries.

There was no immediate reaction from Kiev to Putin’s order. Ukrainian officials are likely to react angrily to any indication Moscow is drawing the rebel regions closer into its own orbit.

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Machester Derby – Epl’s Most important Match of the Season

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The Manchester derby today is arguably the most important match of the season as it will determine the comfort of Liverpool on the league table or the come back of Manchester City on top, while it also may determine the place of United in the European leagues next season.

Meanwhile, Manchester City have won five of their last seven Premier League fixtures at Old Trafford (D1, L1), having triumphed in only one of the first 14 visits. A seventh away win for City would be a new Premier League record for overall wins at Old Trafford by a visiting club

Manchester United have Luke Shaw available after suspension but Phil Jones limped off during the defeat at Everton and is not expected to be fit.

Ander Herrera, who has been out for four weeks with a thigh injury, was not part of the squad which arrived at the team hotel on Tuesday.

Manchester City midfielder Kevin De Bruyne will miss out after sustaining a hamstring problem last weekend.

Claudio Bravo is City’s only other injury absentee

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