Congratulations, Madam Vice President

One day, it won’t be so momentous.One day, watching a woman raise her hand and take the oath of office as our vice president won’t make me cry.

One day, a Black and South Asian woman, a daughter of immigrants, serving at the highest levels of government won’t be so remarkable.

But not today.

Today, Kamala Harris is the first.

She will swear the oath on a Bible owned by Thurgood Marshall, the first Black justice on the U.S. Supreme Court.

She will be sworn in by Sonia Sotomayor, the first Latina justice on the U.S. Supreme Court.

“I may be the first,” Kamala says. “But I won’t be the last.”I’ve never been surer of that than today.

Congratulations, Madam Vice President.

From Sheryl Sandberg

‘FCMB MD is NOT the father of my children’- Moyo Thomas Reveals

Moyo, widow of Tunde Thomas, says she never told her husband that he was not the father of her children — contrary to the claims on social media.

Social media has been awash with claims in a petition that the children of Moyo, a former employee of First City Monument Bank (FCMB), were fathered by Adam Nuru, the bank’s managing director.

It was alleged that Moyo had informed her husband that she was leaving Nigeria for the United States with the kids — only to call him upon arrival that the children do not belong to him.

Thomas was said to have died as a result of trauma after learning of the incident.

Friends and family of Moyo had taken to social media to speak in her defence.

But in a statement in Friday, Moyo finally broke her silence on the matter.

In her statement, she denied ever telling her late husband that he was not the father of her children.

“I write in reference to all the allegations and accusations that have recently been making the rounds on the internet and various social media platforms. I have refrained from responding to this matter for various reasons, one of which is to preserve the memories of Tunde who departed to be with his maker on December 16, 2020. Memories, not only to me, but to his children, who are still young, and to everybody who had a relationship with him,” she said.

“Just like any marriage, Tunde and I had a lot of differences in our marriage, some of which even led to police intervention. But I remain committed to keeping only positive memories of him. No one can ever understand what transpired between us or what each of us experienced in the marriage; like they say, it is he who wears the shoes that knows where it pinches. In all of it, I never for once wished him bad. His untimely and sudden death is still a shock to me as it is to many others.

“On no occasion did I ever tell him he was not the father of our two children. It is therefore deliberate falsehood and certainly malicious to allege and insinuate that I informed him that the children are not his. The children still bear his name.  Only God knows why he died in an untimely period. It is not in my place, or anyone’s place to play God and talk with certainty as to the cause of his death, without proven medical facts.

“Despite our separation, we never allowed our differences affect the relationships we respectively have with the children. He still had conversations with the children like any father will, up until his sudden and unfortunate  death. It is quite sad and disheartening to see the pictures of these innocent children splashed all over the internet with very disparaging and weird comments.

“I do wish his family and friends the fortitude to bear the unfortunate loss and I ask that we all be allowed to grieve his loss in peace. He has now been laid to rest and we implore all and sundry  to please respect our privacy and allow those grieving his loss, including the children and I, to do so in peace.”

Nuru has since opted to go on leave as the bank investigates the allegations.

BLUETOOLZ understands that he has denied all allegations on the paternity claims.

Exclusive: How Feminist Coalition Started

Successful people always talk about launching projects and figuring out the fine details after. We hear this and usually never apply it, out of fear of failure. For the Feminist Coalition, we spent months planning our launch as a women’s rights advocacy group and yet our roll out was nothing we could have ever predicted.

It all started during a women-only party that Wine & Whine hosted for over 200 young Nigerian women in December 2019, where a friend pulled Damilola Odufuwa aside saying “this could be something more”. A few days later, Damilola proposed to Odunayo Eweniyi the need to create some form of grassroots movement that brought a community of women together to organise around the social, economic and political equality for Nigerian women in a more sustainable way.

While these conversations were ongoing, 2020 happened. COVID-19 came with an increase in gender-based violence in Nigeria and across the world. In June 2020 all Nigerian states declared a state of emergency over rape and gender-based violence and many concerned women, activists and organisations sparked online and offline protests and raised funds for victims and the need for immediate action grew even greater.

Image for post

There was a sense of disillusionment and anger about the treatment of women in Nigeria and an even greater urgency to do more.

So in July 2020, Damilola Odufuwa and Odunayo Eweniyi decided to kick off their idea to create a coalition of feminist women with a vision of a Nigeria where equality for all people is a reality in our laws and everyday lives. They approached other women who they considered exceptional leaders who were equally passionate about changing our country and the role of women in it.

Around this time, Ozzy Etomi was also thinking along the lines of how to make organising around women’s issue’s more sustainable and impactful for millions of women across the country, as opposed to the one on one cases that filtered their way to Twitter.

Image for post

According to Ozzy, when she read the introductory email from Odun, at that moment it clicked that this sort of organisation was what she had been looking for.

Many have wondered how the founding members were chosen; Odun and Dami had worked with many of the founding members through their individual activism and through Wine & Whine, and so they had a sense of not only their work ethic, but that they were committed to advocating for gender equality. In addition, they carefully selected women who possess strong skills and expertise across various sectors. The shortlist had women who had done work across grassroots community organising, tech, media, public health, non-profit, fintech, gender advocacy and more. Most importantly, they carefully chose women with similar views on feminism and who understood the urgency in the fight for women’s rights in Nigeria.

During the first call, it was quickly agreed that the mission of the Feminist Coalition is to champion equality for women in Nigerian society with a core focus on education, financial freedom and representation in public office.

So how on earth did we get involved in supporting the peaceful #EndSARS movement?

On October 9th, going through social media like everyone else we were upset at the violence unarmed citizens were facing at the hands of police, especially as that same day a woman was shot in the face by a police officer — and we believed that without structure, the protests could turn violent and women would be the most affected.

“What I also know though is that if we lose this SARS fight, women will be the biggest losers still”, Odunayo said to Dami when we debated if we should get involved in the October 2020 #EndSARS movement. The women in the group all agreed and we set a one hour meeting for 9pm WAT/ 8pm GMT on October 9th to strategise and organise.

Image for post

We’ve had monthly meetings since our inception in July 2020, but we had not started on any projects yet. We joke that this was a baptism by fire — We designed a logo, set up the website, got some copy assets together, set up our social media, set up the donation accounts, the request forms, the tracking sheets; Fem Co as it’s known today, was literally a reality overnight.

The meeting ended up running for 2 hours and the conclusion at the end was clear.
We would help crowdsource donations for the peaceful End SARS protests. Focusing on food, water, medical, legal aid etc. More details here (P.S. you need a VPN to access this)

The first night we announced the Feminist Coalition’s decision to play a supporting role in the #EndSARS protests, we started the pot with our own funds. As a group we made monthly donations to ensure we could tackle our women’s rights projects but as End SARS became our first project, we pulled some money into it. In a few hours after announcing our decision to support the movement we had ₦807,000 and by the next day (October 10th) we had received donations of over ₦5 million from well-meaning people who believed in the movement.

The support for the movement and the growth in donations was a shock to us. We had zero expectations. In fact, part of the reason we didn’t reveal the names of the founding members was because we know how feminism is perceived in Nigeria and we weren’t sure how much support we would get if our identities were known.

But Nigerians and well-meaning people around the world supported us and for a few days we all felt so proud of the collective passion and kindness Nigerians were displaying.

But a few days later, the reality of the country set in. We woke up to calls from well-meaning people letting us know we were being watched by security agencies and our phones had allegedly been bugged. We all left our homes to seek protection, scared, confused and wondering why a simple request for human rights was being treated as a national security threat.

This didn’t stop us. Many Nigerians were still offering their support and ‘decentralised’ was truly the word of the moment: Before Fem Co decided to support the movement, others were already on the ground providing food, medical support and more for innocent unarmed Nigerians exercising their constitutional rights to protest against police brutality. Our actions spurred more people on to independently help out wherever they could, providing support to fellow Nigerians.

It was a strange combination of feeling like we were making a huge impact, but also not nearly enough.

Image for post

Over the week of October 11th 2020, we spent all our days working on different parts of Fem Co — from running our social media, to checking DMs to verify protests, paying bills and setting up a network of lawyers. We worked with other organisations like End SARS Response, Legal Aid Network, Food Coven etc. We were exhausted, juggling full-time jobs, motherhood, family and the paranoia of being targeted by security agencies.

Obbie recalls the seemingly endless overnight phone calls and the early morning statement reviews, the fear, the anxiety, the many glasses of wineIn the thick of it, we were all barely getting any sleep. Odun remembers sleeping about 2 hours a night because like all of us, she was now juggling two jobs — she still had a fintech company to run and suddenly Fem Co had become this fully formed organisation overnight. But juggling roles always means someone will be let down and Tito felt she had to choose: her company or her Fem Co sisters. There was no time, strength or emotional bandwidth to equally support both. For Layo, it meant taking on Fem Co as a second full-time job, sleeping at 5am most days and up by 7:30 again. Laila knew it was her duty as a journalist to cover the protests to the fullest extent and she wasn’t going to let anything stop her from achieving that. But she also had a duty to directly help peaceful protesters and doing both simultaneously was much harder than she thought it could possibly be.

Karo talks about starting and ending everyday with a phone in hand, even making food while on calls with the group, and still having to show up to other parts of her life. For her, Fakhrriyyah and Ire, being abroad, somewhat safe, made them feel guilty as they worried about the safety of the other women in Fem Co and also felt there was a limit to how much support they could offer.

But this didn’t only affect us, it affected our loved ones too. For Dami, seeing her close family members panic every time she picked up her phone or relayed a new update to them was extremely heartbreaking. Jola had to fight off feelings of crippling paranoia and anxiety, so as not to panic her parents. Ozzy recalls times when she thought in horror she may never see her son again.

The fear and exhaustion went into overdrive on October 13th 2020. But we had started and people were counting on us. We realised restrictions had been placed on the Nigerian bank accounts we were using and our payment link with Flutterwave was deactivated — it went into ‘maintenance mode’ and never came back up. Many people who had donated to us or received donations from us have also alleged and complained of restrictions placed on their accounts by certain banks. This forced us to move to decentralised payment platforms and only accept donations in Bitcoin using BTC Pay.

People often ask us, why bitcoin? As a group of tech-savvy women, some who work in the crypto industry, across fintech and also invest in crypto assets, bitcoin was a no-brainer. It came naturally to us because of the many use cases & advantages: remittance, cross-border payments, privacy and transparency to name a few.

Initially, we thought this would slow donations down in great volume. However, with a simple tweet of support and a retweet from Jack Dorsey, we believe we were able to encourage donors to both learn more about cryptocurrencies and continue donating. Thank you Jack. Not only have you supported us, but all young Nigerians who are pained and aggrieved yet awakened and determined to hold our leaders accountable. You lent your voice to the cause and stood with us, encouraging many to feel validated and heard.

While the support from global figures was encouraging, we had our fair share of trolls on Twitter — men determined to spread misinformation about who we are and what we stand for. You know who they are, you saw their vitriol. We strongly believe being called cultists, witches, insurgents, lipstick terrorists and being blamed for sponsored violence (when ALL our efforts were focused on the peace and safety of all Nigerians) was not only damaging, but dangerous. This put our safety at risk and encouraged the intimidation and bullying we endured for weeks from various authorities. We are a women’s rights advocacy group and our mission and vision are clearly visible on our website.

(P.S. our website is still blocked on a number of networks across Nigeria and is inaccessible without a VPN).

Image for post

We remained anonymous until October 17th because of the valid concerns for our safety. However we felt we were safer in the public eye and by remaining open and transparent as always. But even revealing our names came with a lot of drama and career losses for some founding members. Since October 22nd, the day we put out our last statement around the End SARS movement, some private organisations (who were very supportive prior to October 20th) have cancelled work events with founding members and their respective women-focused NGOs because of association with End SARS & Fem Co. Ayodeji described it as feeling as though fighting injustice was a crime in itself. She experienced being bullied by organisations she was affiliated with, with demands that she desist any engagement with Fem Co.

The impact of this work on our mental health has been tremendous. As a group, we had a therapy session and each founding member recounted their fears over the month of October — struggle sleeping, anxiety, depression, anger. We were completely exhausted and devastated by the events following October 20th. Seeing so many people affected — family members lost, medical needs, people being arrested etc.

This is why although the recognition our organisation has received in such a short time has been remarkable, it’s also bittersweet. It’s great that we grew in such a short time and that our work is being recognised, but what started out feeling inspiring quickly spiralled to nationwide horror with the unfortunate violence in which many lives were lost, and that leaves a hollow feeling.

But we feel the Feminist Coalition and all Nigerian women who supported the movement against police brutality, have probably made one of the strongest cases in recent Nigerian history of why women deserve to be represented at all levels of leadership. We work hard, and we get the work done. Most of us were doing this while still working our full-time jobs, some while running companies, and also caring for our families.It just lends credence to the fact that women are still very much an underestimated and under rewarded asset both globally, and specifically in our society.

We always joke that Feminist Coalition has sanitized the word feminism for Nigerians. Kiki Mordi recently tweeted“2020 was the year the word feminist was on the front pages of mainstream Nigerian newspapers and it wasn’t an insult.” and we all agree. Ire Aderinokun knew we wanted to incorporate the fist in our logo, which has become a symbol for fighting for justice, with something to symbolise the fact that we are a women’s rights organisation. But when she designed the logo, we never expected to see so many men having the female symbol as their avatars and on t-shirts on the street, and women who were previously scared to associate with feminism embracing it proudly. It was really quite a moment for us.

Image for post

Since our October 22nd statement, we have done exactly what we said we would: donated funds for medical to End SARS Response (₦20,114,087.25), mental health to #EndSARSMentalHealthSupport (₦6,121,678.73) and allocated funds to the Legal Aid Network (₦15,741,459.59). We spent months researching and have now successfully donated ₦500,000 each to ~70 victims of police brutality and the families of the deceased, totalling almost ₦35 million. Our target is 80 victims before the end of the year (with a total of over ₦40 million disbursed). We will not be releasing their names for their safety. We also funded a memorial video for the many innocent people who lost their lives to police brutality. RIP to our fallen heroes.

We remain focused on our mission to champion equality for women in Nigerian society and on December 16th, we organised a food drive in Lagos, Nigeria: providing bags of food for 1000 women and their families. We provided bags filled with rice, sachet tomatoes, whole chickens, maggi, salt, face masks (donated to us by C.E.E Industries LTD) and bottles of cooking oil. The entire project — food for 1000 families, transportation, bags etc — amounted to almost ₦8 million and was possible through our personal donations and people who have donated to the work Fem Co is doing specifically for women (and outside of End SARS).

What if I Want to Die! Tems Protests Detention In Uganda

A video wherein Tems, Nigerian R&B vocalist, could be seen turning down pleas to eat amid her ongoing trial in Uganda has surfaced online and gone viral. 

The ‘For Broken Ears‘ singer was arrested alongside Omah Lay, her Nigerian colleague, over their involvement in an unauthorised concert that held on Saturday night in Ddungu Resort in Munyonyo, Kampala City.

The pair were thereafter remanded in police custody alongside four Ugandans after they were arraigned before a court.

In the now-viral video, which appeared to have been taken inside the courtroom, a woman could be seen pleading with Tems to eat.

But the Nigerian singer, who seemed unhappy with the ongoing ordeal, replied that she would not eat any food.

Not satisfied, the woman appeared to have lectured the singer on the dangers of starving herself.

Tems, whose real name is Temilade Openiyi, however, maintained her earlier stance, noting that she can decide what to do with her body.

https://twitter.com/iveinzell/status/1338552338391429121?s=20

The development comes after Omah Lay also cried out in a Twitter rage, alleging that he has not been given a fair hearing.

Abike Dabiri-Erewa, the chairman of the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM), had earlier assured that efforts are ongoing to ensure the two singers regain freedom.

Source: TheCableng

Clearance to Die

Let me tell you guys one small story. I have a small what’s app group called the Duke’s Sales Hub. It brings together young people who are interested in Sales. We discuss sales and its challenges in an economy where the exchange rate is as volatile as a scorned mistresses’ heartbeat. One of the most vibrant young men on the group who is organising an Award ceremony this December posted a picture of himself and Femi Adeshina on the group and spoilt it by saying ‘I admire him’.

The attacks were immediate. He was pilloried. People forgot the fact that for such a young lad without the usual connections’ having the Presidency listening to him was such a remarkable thing.They verbally slapped him in a way and manner that if it was physical he would be a permanent resident at the Igbobi Hospital by now.

He ran to me for cover and I gave him the killer blow. I said ‘ bro I think this person you are admiring has wiped off any good he has done in his past career with the things that is happening now’. With this, he just collapsed and apologised and removed the picture. Right now, he is struggling with the group to regain his credibility as members have vowed not to attend his show.

Such is the low ebb that the people of Nigeria are taking this administration and its errant officials. And with statements like these, you will begin not to blame the people.

Are this people mad? Please forgive me. Who makes that kind of statement even when drunk from the juices of a diseased prostitute’s decayed tunnel. Who wakes up and in his right senses to utter such gory and imbecilic statement in the face of such a dastardly and wanton destruction of lives especially  with the administration’s seeming helplessness.

This is why I had said in the recent past that the only thing we can do right now is to hunker down and wait till 2023 since any attempt at protesting will now be taken as an attempt at regime change.

Funny abi, the Boko Haram overlords and the bandits taking lives at will and destroying infrastructure and the rest are not doing regime change o, it is the people who will just be standing and raising their voices and hands in tears, plea and supplication that are now enemies of state.

Make we just siddon, cover our heads with rags and wait till 2023, he no too far again.

Na wa.

Words by Duke of Shomolu

Its A Boy ! Bluetoolz Media Congratulates Ooni of Ife

We at Bluetoolz Media extend our hearty congratulations!!! to His Royal Majesty, The Ooni of Ile-Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi and his wife, Olori Moronke Naomi Silekunola who both welcomed a son.

The excited father took to his official Instagram page to share the good news, also stating that both mother and child are doing well. He said,

To God be the glory great things he has done. Hearty congratulations to the entire House of Oduduwa and Olori Silekunola who today birthed a Prince to the Royal throne of Oduduwa. Mother and child are doing well to the glory of God Almighty.

Twitter Disrupts With New Feature! “Fleets” I See How To Use

Twitter has joined other platforms like Snapchat, Facebook, and Instagram on the ephemeral sharing train as it introduces “Fleet”.

They’re basically photos, videos and texts you can post on Twitter but they’re not actual tweets. Fleets live for 24 hours and disappear. Yeah, just like stories.

According to Twitter, it believes this will encourage more people especially new users who hardly tweet, to express their thoughts more freely.

Users might not want to tweet more “casual thoughts,” so maybe they’ll Fleet them:

Those new to Twitter found Fleets to be an easier way to share what’s on their mind. Because they disappear from view after a day, Fleets helped people feel more comfortable sharing personal and casual thoughts, opinions, and feelings. These are early findings from our tests and we’re excited to learn more about how Fleets are used by you.

How does it work? According to Fast Company

1. Tap the “Share” icon at the bottom on a tweet.

2. Select “Share in Fleet.”

3. Add whatever you want—text, photos, videos, emojis, etc.

4. If you choose to, customize your background and text.

Cashmore Empowers more Nigerians to earn Millions From Their Recharge

 
This was made known during the launch of the multi-level networking and Value Added Services (VAS) earning platform. The Executive Director, CashMore, Caroline Omotosho expressed her excitement as she recounted the limitless possibilities CashMore holds for Nigerians. In her words: “CashMore represents a deeper significance to show Nigerians that each of their actions counts. The platform provides individuals with the opportunity to collectively build wealth and attain financial freedom at their own pace.” 

CashMore is a Virtual Top-up (VTU), data and utility payments (VAS) provider offering everyone the chance to earn passive income from recharge, transactions and referrals. On CashMore, users earn between 4% – 0.35% on every transaction and that of their referrals. 
Abegunde Adeogo, a Network Leader described CashMore.ng as easy and trusted. He stated that: “All the questions I had in mind coming to this launch have been answered, I love the intelligence that went into the CashMore platform and I commend the management. It is easy to use and for me, any platform that is easy as this can be trusted”. 

The Group Head, CashMore and VAS also iterated that: “In a country with over 100 million active sims and about 50% of the population are urban dwellers, Nigerians make daily unsuspecting transactions in millions, empowering the banks and telecoms companies. That is why CashMore is here to spread the wealth and give Nigerians a fighting chance towards their financial freedom.” CashMore is a product of CapitalSage, an integrated digital financial service group, providing people-driven empowerment and inclusive solutions for individuals and businesses for sustainable value and wealth creation in Africa.


Unlike any other platform, CashMore.ng is powered by robust technology and partners, allowing millions of Nigerians to earn daily while they make instant airtime and data top-up, Pay-TV subscription and utility bill payments. Visit www.cashmore.ng to start earning, also click here to download the CashMore App on Google Playstore.
Instagram: @Cashmore_Nigeria
Twitter: @Cashmore_NG 
Facebook: CashMore 

Alleged Hacking Of DSTV, GoTV: Good Use Of PR

Some Nigerians on social media have been making claims that systems belonging to Multichoice PayTV platforms, DStv and GOtv, were hacked on Sunday October 18.

Many on Twitter claimed that some hackers who simply identified themselves as ‘Anonymous’ were behind it.

‘Anonymous’ became popular on Twitter recently, claiming responsibility for the hack of the social media accounts and websites of some government agencies as part of its support for the #EndSARS protests in Nigeria.

TheCable had earlier reported how the group had hacked the Twitter account of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) as well as the website of the Nigeria Police Force..

Before now, the number of DStv and GOtv channels accessible to users is determined by the package one is subscribed to.

However, all channels available on the platforms were available to customers irrespective of their subscription status or bouquet.

As a followup to this DSTV trended massively on twitter with mixed reactions.

When contacted on Sunday, DStv told TheCable that the development is due to an “upgrade in its billing, payment and self-service platforms”.

“Dear customer, please be informed that we are currently carrying out an upgrade or our systems, hence our billing, payment and self-service platforms are all unavailable at the moment,” it said.

“Regular business operations would resume tomorrow, October 19, 2020. Thank you for choosing DStv.”

Checks on DStv’s website also revealed that there was a notification informing users that its systems would be subjected to an upgrade between 11pm on October 17 to 4pm on October 19.

Over and above, it was a win-win for DSTV as it was a subtle use of good public relations.

Ndigbo To The World: Okonjo-Iweala On Final Shortlist For WTO DG

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, former minister of finance, says she is yet to be declared director-general of the World Trade Organisation (WTO).

The final shortlist for the office of the WTO DG was released by the trade body on Thursday.

Okonjo-Iweala and Yoo Myung-hee, former South Korean minister of trade, are the two final candidates for the top position in WTO.

Whoever emerges between the duo will become the first female WTO DG since the organisation was set up 25 years ago.

Following the announcement of Okonjo-Iweala as a final contestant for the role, information has been spreading on several platforms across social media that she has been declared winner.

But in a statement, Paul Nwabuikwu, Okonjo-Iweala’s media adviser, said the ex-minister has not been declared winner.

Nwabuikwu said the race is ongoing, adding that a winner will be announced in two to three weeks.

“The race for the WTO director-general is still very much on. Contrary to inaccurate information released online by an unidentified source, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala is yet to be declared winner,” The statement reads.

“As announced by WTO, the former managing director of the World Bank and South Korea’s Yoo Myung-hee are the final two contestants left in the race.

“The winner should be announced in two to three weeks. That remains the correct position.

“Dr Okonjo-Iweala is appreciative and energised by the enthusiastic support of Nigerians. And she is urging all to keep praying until the final whistle.”