Category: UK

Labour Calls For Investigation Into Allegations Against SARS

The UK Labour party is also calling for “independent investigations into the allegations against Nigeria’s SARS units, as well as military, security and policing forces responsible for attacks on protesters, that could lead to targeted Magnitsky-style sanctions against responsible individuals”, Osamor tweeted on Tuesday.

At a debate in parliament on Monday night, MPs pressed the government to adopt “individualised sanctions such as travel bans and asset freezes” against individuals accused of abuses.

After initially stating that Sars officers had not received UK support, the UK minister for Africa, James Duddridge, said the unit had received “strategic assistance” and training alongside personnel from the wider Nigerian police force as part of a programme that ran from 2016 to March this year.

Osamor, who heads the Commons all-party parliamentary group on Nigeria, said: “The government now needs to come clean and explain how and why that funding took place in the first place. They owe it to the many who have been killed by Sars units to explain who made the decision to fund those units and why.”

There were “serious concerns about the level of oversight attached to government funding in this area”, she added. “Amnesty International and several other international human rights organisations have been very clear that Sars have been directly involved in extrajudicial killings, torture and corruption. The UK government either knew that and decided it would fund Sars anyway or didn’t know where UK funding was going.”

A UK Foreign Office spokesperson said: “It is important that the police in Nigeria respect human rights. We have been working with Nigeria to support reforms to ensure this happens”.

Horror As University Students Are Given Used COVID Test Swabs

A number” of undergraduates were given used swabs, with some packaging reportedly containing names and addresses.

The University of Birmingham’s student newspaper, Redbrick, reported that “25 used test kits were handed to students”.

The mistake was made in Tiverton Road, Selly Oak, by staff taking part in Birmingham City Council’s drop and collect service yesterday Tuesday, October 13.


Dr Justin Varney, director of public health, today apologised for the mistake, saying a review of the process would take place.

He said it appeared only one of the tests had been opened, and none used, after staff reacted within minutes of realising the mistake.

He said a full forensic approach to investigating the incident was under way and students involved would be offered support.

But reports from students as seen on BBC news claim some students might have reused the contaminated swabs.

Speaking to BBC WM this morning, Wednesday, Dr Varney said: “The used kits look different from the unused kits so it is not clear why that was not picked up.

“The teams are trained and go through a training programme. Kits that have been used go into despatch boxes so it’s not clear what happened. Like any other organisation, when a mistake is made we look into it and that is what we are doing.



“We are going back to double check with the houses involved. Our job now is to be really clear with individual houses and approach this forensically.

“Our duty of care is to be absolutely crystal clear to check if anyone has been put at risk, have we got the right support for them, and make sure this kind of mistake cannot happen again and tighten the procedures further.

“Eleven thousand kits have been delivered through drop and collect to date, without problems.

“I am really sorry this mistake has happened. It is not what we wanted.

“It was picked up within minutes and acted on. We have seen that one set was opened, but the majority had not even opened the kit. We think the risk is very limited.”

“I hope people are not put off. This is an isolated error”.



16 Year Old Teenager Jailed For Life Over Fatal Newham Stabbing

A teenager convicted of the murder of schoolboy Baptista Adjei in Newham has been jailed.

On Friday, 25 September, 16-year-old Marvin Dyer, who can now be named following the lifting of reporting restrictions by the court, appeared at the Old Bailey where he was jailed for life, to serve a minimum of 16 years before being eligible to apply for parole.

Dyer and a second 16-year-old boy had previously appeared at the same court on Tuesday, 11 August where, following trial, Dyer was convicted of murder and wounding but the second boy was found not guilty on all counts and was released.

Two to three weeks before the murder, the victims, Baptista Adjei, aged 15, and his 15-year-old friend, had become involved in an online disagreement in a Snapchat group chat with the defendants, who were only vaguely known to them outside of the online forum having seen the boys around the Stratford area.

The interaction began as mutual banter, but eventually turned ugly.

The boys had begun by taunting each other, culminating in a brief online exchange; Dyer messaged Baptista saying “If you’ve got no bodies on your blade, leave the group chat.” Baptista had replied, “Shut up. You’ll be the first.”

This exchange continued between both victims and both defendants, ending with Dyer threatening to be outside the victim’s school waiting for them at 15:25hrs the following day.

He was not waiting for them when they finished school. Weeks later, on the day of murder, 10 October 2019, Baptista and his 15-year-old friend took the bus towards Stratford.

Officers investigating the murder reviewed CCTV footage captured aboard the bus and saw Dyer, then aged 15, board the bus at Stratford Broadway and calmly pull a balaclava over his face while wearing a blue latex glove.

As Baptista and his friend made their way down the stairs of the bus, they were caught completely unaware. He stabbed them both with a 10” combat knife.

Dyer was seen to hold on to the handrail and in an attack that lasts just nine seconds, inflicted two fatal wounds on Baptista before turning his attention to Baptista’s friend inflicting further wounds

Baptista was stabbed twice in the chest. The blade punctured his lung and his heart. Not realising the severity of his injuries, he ran off, making it as far as Stratford Centre before collapsing.

Despite the efforts of medics, Baptista died from his injuries at the scene at 15:49hrs.

Baptista’s friend was stabbed once in the arm and once in the leg, he was taken to an east London hospital by the London Ambulance Service where he remained for almost a week following the incident. He has since made a full recovery.

A murder investigation was launched led by Detective Inspector Chris Soole of the Met’s Specialist Crime Command.

Word of the murder spread quickly on social media and throughout the community.


On 11 October 2019, members of Marvin Dyer’s family, who had themselves heard the rumours, confronted him. He admitted the attack on both victims and was subsequently presented to police at Forest Gate police station by his mother.

On 12 October 2019, he was charged with Baptista’s murder, grievous bodily harm with intent in relation to the second 15-year-old victim and two counts of possession of an offensive weapon. He was remanded in custody to await trial and subsequently, sentencing.

Detective Sergeant Suzanne Soren said: “It is sad and concerning that such extreme violence was used to resolve such minor conflict – nothing more than name calling.

“The sentence handed down today will not bring back Baptista. His loved ones will not be healed by the knowledge that justice has been served. They will remember and miss him every day in the years to come.

“Similarly, Marvin Dyer’s family’s lives have been changed forever, their only comfort being that they did the right thing in holding him to account and presenting him to police.

“My thoughts are with everyone touched by this most tragic and needless of incidents and I hope that anyone involved in knife crime and violence takes something from this outcome – nothing is worth the price that will be paid for murder and ultimately, that price is paid not only by the perpetrator and the victim, but also their families.”

In a victim impact statement Baptista’s Mother said: “We can never get over Baptista’s death but we hope, and I pray, that with time the constant pain that we feel subsides.

“Ours and Baptista’s plans were always that he would finish school and move on to higher education, get married and if he was blessed, to have children and make me a grandmother.

“His dreams, together with mine, will never happen because he was taken from us in such a cruel way.”

£28m Funding Released By UK Government For Recruitment Of Overseas Nurses

Funding worth £28m is being made available in England to quickly “accelerate” the recruitment of nurses from overseas, following a period of inactivity due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Half of the money is dedicated to supporting the arrival to the country of nurses who have already been appointed from abroad.

The other half is to fund a “significant expansion” of future overseas nurse recruitment for the remainder of 2020-21.

The plans were outlined in a letter seen by Nursing Times from chief nursing officer for England, Ruth May, to regional directors of nursing across the country.

The outbreak of Covid-19 had led to the majority of international nurse recruitment activity being paused.

In the letter, Ms May said these “markets” were now beginning to reopen, with some nurses having travelled from abroad to the UK to join the NHS in recent weeks.

There is, therefore, a real opportunity to accelerate the recruitment and arrival of international nurses,” she said.

There are currently more than 6,500 international nurses recruited waiting to come to England.

Ms May said a £14m financial package was being made available to help get these nurses into the NHS.

Examples given for what the money could be spent on included flights, quarantine periods, accommodation and training to prepare nurses to join the Nursing and Midwifery Council register.

A further £14m is being offered to help trusts recruit additional international nurses in 2020-21.

Trusts are being encouraged to take a collaborative approach by partnering up with neighbour organisations and working “at scale to recruit, induct and provide pastoral support”.

The money is also intended to help trusts “develop a new pipeline of overseas nurses and diversify the intake of nurses from a range of countries”.

Read also: Free visa extension for overseas nurses supporting Covid-19 response

The NHS People Plan has underlined our ongoing commitment to international nurse recruitment,” said Ms May in the letter.

“I, therefore, ask that you, directors of nursing, review and ramp up your international recruitment plans and activity in the next few weeks and also ensure you have an effective plan to get those overseas nurses that you have already appointed to the UK in the coming weeks and months.”


In addition, as part of the wider international recruitment programme, Ms May said a new English language “offer” would be put in place this year to help overseas nurses working in healthcare support worker (HSCW) roles in the UK achieve NMC nurse registration.

While Ms May flagged the need to follow ethical recruitment practices, concerns have still be raised about the implications of raiding other countries for nurses at the time of a global pandemic.

Nursing Times

Is Tom Hardy The New Bond?

Hollywood star Tom Hardy will be taking over the James Bond role as Daniel Craig’s successor, according to reports.

Although the news has not been officially confirmed, reports claim the casting decision has been made and adds that the public announcement is expected either towards the end of 2020 or in early 2021.

The source now offers that the announcement may still come out this year, or if No Time To Die gets delayed again, in early 2021.

“I heard about this news back in June,” tweeted the source. “At that point, Hardy’s casting wasn’t official but he had been auditioning and was basically locked into the role. It’s similar to how Craig said that he got the role of Bond and then months later it was officially announced.”

As noted, Tom Hardy has been rumored for a while by the UK tabloid sites, but the scooper says now it’s a done deal. Hardy was also listed as a top contender to play the new James Bond by various bookmakers. 

46-year-old Idris Elba has been one of the hot favourites to replace Daniel Craig as James Bond. The competition included the likes of Richard Madden, Tom Hiddleston and of course Tom Hardy, all of whom are often asked if they’d like to play 007 next.

Elba opened up last year on the prospect of taking up the Licence to Kill, being honest that he’d love to if asked but doesn’t want to be judged by his skin colour. Speaking with Vanity Fair, Elba said: “James Bond is a hugely coveted, iconic, beloved character, that takes audiences on this massive escapism journey

Horror As Dog Attacks And Kills 12 Day Old Baby

Two people have been arrested after a dog fatally attacked a 12-day-old baby boy in Doncaster.

South Yorkshire police force said it was called to an address in Welfare Road in Woodlands, Doncaster, at around 3.30pm on Sunday following reports that a dog had attacked a child.

On arrival at the property, emergency services discovered a 12-day-old baby boy had been bitten by a dog and suffered serious injuries. The child was taken to hospital, but sadly died a short time later.

A 35-year-old man and a 27-year-old woman have been arrested on suspicion of gross negligence manslaughter, with both bailed while officers’ inquiries continue.

In a statement, the police said “A 35-year-old man and a 27-year-old woman have been arrested on suspicion of gross negligence manslaughter. They have now been bailed while inquiries continue.

“The dog has been removed from the address.”

At Last, Black Businesses Can Join The Mainstream Market

I came across the post by Dawn from Black Economics UK on a Facebook platform we both belong to. The post was directed at black owned businesses who would wish to feature their goods in John Lewis stores and I went “Yessss, at last”!! A great opportunity for African and Black owned businesses to sell their products directly to the upmarket, mainstream audience.

Thanks to the persistence of Aurora James who called on brands, including Net-a-Porter, Target, and Whole Foods, to sign the 15 percent pledge, a commitment to buying 15 percent of their goods from Black-owned businesses.

This came after the mass Black Lives Matter protests that proceeded the George Floyd murder in the United States. It is believed that Black people which include mixed raced blacks form a modestly estimated 7 – 10% of the entire UK population, and that number whatever the real figure is, is growing daily thanks to immigration and growing families.

Rhinestone T-shirts by Lyrically Inspired
Cosmetics brand by JoebolExquisites

The time has come for the presence of the Black economy to be represented and seen in the mainstream commerce. Previously, black goods and services were underground, home based enterprises directed mostly at people within the immediate community. And most marketing strategies by many Black owned businesses are targeted to the Black or African segment of the wider community.

Diva by Keni

And it is usually erroneously assumed that such goods are second rate, unprofessional and of a lesser quality. But this cannot be any further from the truth. For example, I personally know a lot of Nigerian entrepreneurs in London, Liverpool and Manchester who produce high quality items that can be featured in any store and compete with any producers anywhere in the world.

Fashion by KaftTrendz
Skincare by Dazzlin Daizi

There are several highly talented and driven individuals with personally produced and branded cosmetics lines, shoe designers, human hair producers and fashion designers and now, within the Black Community. All of them can have their products featured on top stores shelves or on major online stores such as :
Shopify Store
Woo Commerce Store

Currently, there are calls for interested entrepreneurs to take up shelf spaces on a pop-up, trial basis for their products at John Lewis stores in shopping centres all over Britain.


From 12th October to 19th October, interested and approved businesses can take up 1 week trial spaces to sell their products in shopping centres with high footfall.

The space would be a Pop up Store for one week at a cost of £300+vat per week. Or price could be cheaper if you share a space with another business. Products can be Fashion, Cosmetics, Art, Furnishings, Toys, Food (pre-packaged).

Interested, businesses please contact Dawn on 07960 932 860, drop an email to