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Madrid finally give up on Kylian Mbappé



Kylian Mbappé has never been bashful about admitting that it was a childhood dream to play for Real Madrid, but it appears like that dream will be deferred, for 10 months at least.

According to French outlets L’Equipe, RMC and Téléfoot, Real Madrid’s push to sign Mbappé this summer, before Tuesday’s transfer deadline, is off. Madrid, according to multiple reports, had two bids last week rebuffed by PSG, one of €160 million ($188 million) and another of €180 million ($212 million), in its attempt to pry the 22-year-old French star from the European club game’s version of the Dream Team. Mbappé’s contract expires at the end of this season, however, and as a result, Madrid could agree to a pre-contract with him in January and sign him on a free transfer next summer.

The timing of everything has been wild, to say the least. Mere weeks after PSG landed Lionel Messi on a free transfer from Barcelona to team him with Mbappé and Neymar in one of the most formidable front trios of all time, the piece with the brightest future—and the one with the greatest connection to Paris—had expressed his desire to not be a part of it at all, according to PSG sporting director Leonardo.

PSG’s attempts to extend Mbappé have been fruitless, with the player neglecting to follow in Neymar’s footsteps after the Brazilian extended his stay to 2025 in May. Club president Nasser Al-Khelaifi had remained adamant that Mbappé would absolutely be staying for the long term and would most certainly not be sold, and it appears that the latter half will be true. Whether that is good business is another issue entirely. Being able to effectively earn back what PSG paid Monaco to sign Mbappé in the first place, all for a player who has made it clear he wants out and is willing to run out his contract, would seem like a no-brainer from a bottom-line standpoint. But from a prestige perspective and considering the club’s Champions League–or-bust mentality, holding onto Mbappé for at least this season could prove worthwhile enough.

Despite all of the speculation swirling in recent days, Mbappé started for PSG on Sunday and scored both goals in a 2–0 win, looking not at all like a player who had one foot in the Spanish capital. The vaunted trio never played together, though, with Messi making his debut off the bench as a substitute for Neymar. With Mbappé set to stay, barring another 180 in this saga before the deadline hits, they’ll at least have the chance to show the world the possibilities when they do get the chance to all feature as a unit. Mbappé reported to France national team camp on Monday ahead of three World Cup qualifying matches, and in those games he’ll team with Karim Benzema. When camp is over, though, they’ll be going separate ways instead of sharing a trip back to Madrid.

If Mbappé is still 100% convinced that he’ll be making that trip to Madrid next summer instead, then all this development in the transfer soap opera does is delay the inevitable. But it does also give PSG four months to make its case to have Mbappé either extend his current deal or contemplate signing a new one next summer, and it also opens the door for other clubs to enter the sweepstakes. Regardless, Real Madrid can’t sign Mbappé to any pre-contract until the winter transfer window opens, so until then, the goalposts are moved a bit on a done deal for the star forward, who, along with Dortmund’s Erling Haaland, is considered to be one of the elite young talents in the world.

One could certainly question why Madrid, whose debt level and financial situation were used as reasoning by club president Florentino Pérez for his insistence on attempting to launch the Super League, would want to spend so much now (and precisely how it’s able to spend so much) for a player it could sign to a pre-contract and then add without a fee next summer—especially if the player was so solely focused on joining the club. Perhaps after two seasons without an incoming transfer and funds raised from the sales of Raphaël Varane, Martin Ødegaard, Achraf Hakimi and Sergio Reguilón, among others, Madrid felt it was positioned to pull off the blockbuster now and leave nothing to chance. Leonardo thought perhaps that the effort was a bit of a smokescreen, either to present the facade of a club whose financial woes aren’t so bad or as a show to Mbappé that the club gave its best attempt to add him when it never fully intended to.

“It seems like a strategy to try to get a ‘no’ from us, to show that they have tried everything and to wait for a year to get Mbappé for free,” he told RMC last week.

Real Madrid’s only other addition this summer was versatile defender David Alaba, who came from Bayern Munich on a free transfer (but whose leaked contract shows it was still a very costly move), and the club also offloaded longtime captain Sergio Ramos’s wages. Ramos, like Messi, joined PSG as part of an all-time summer class that has included Hakimi, Italy goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma and ex-Liverpool midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum.

The five signings, along with the permanent addition of Danilo Pereira following his loan spell, were made in hopes of securing the club’s first Champions League title. Losing Mbappé wouldn’t have necessarily derailed those hopes; PSG is plenty deep. But it certainly would have taken some of the shimmer off the summer as well as delivering a hit to the club’s collective ego, to have Madrid steal its shining light.

This summer has featured some of the most landscape-altering moves the sport has seen in some time, especially in such volume. But one involving Mbappé, the transcendent star who famously had his boyhood bedroom walls plastered with posters of Cristiano Ronaldo during his time at Real Madrid, evidently will not be transpiring. Whether he winds up going next summer remains to be seen.

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Inaugural Anambra State Union Football Tournament Triumphs Amidst Adversity



On the 6th of August 2023, a monumental event took place at St Michel, Terminus, Douala, marking the commencement of the First Edition of the Anambra State Union Football Tournament. Under the stewardship of Sir Emeka Uzoka, Chairman of the Anambra State Union, this tournament emerged as a testament to unity, sportsmanship, and the indomitable spirit of the Anambra community.

The opening ceremony set the stage for what would become an unforgettable showcase of camaraderie and competitive fervor. A true celebration of tradition and athleticism, the tournament kicked off with a Veteran Match at 2:00 pm. The clash between Aguata Local Government Union and Nnewi Local Government Union resulted in a gripping encounter, with Aguata securing victory with a 2-0 score line.

Distinguished figures graced the event with their presence, adding prestige to the occasion. Among them was Mr. Oliva Ochi, Consul 1 at the Consulate General Douala, representing the esteemed Consul General, H.E. Amb. (Mrs.) Efe A. Clark-Omeru. The honorable gathering was further enriched by the participation of key personalities, including: Hon. BIC Okwujiaku, President of the Nigerian Community Douala, HRH Eze Jonathan T. Onyenagubor, Eze Gburugburu 1 of Ohanaeze Ndi Igbo, Cameroon, Sir, Lovinus Ezeh, Vice President, Nigerian Community Douala, Chief Alex Nwoye, Vice President 2, Nigerian Community Douala,  Chief Uche Obiekwe, Patron of the Nigerian Community Douala, Chief Innocent Obiorah Odoh, Patron Anambra State Union, Chairmen of Imo and Enugu States Union, Esteemed members of the Anambra State Union,

The event also extended its reach to include esteemed guests from Douala and beyond.

In recognition of the paramount importance of safety and well-being, the organizers ensured the presence of dedicated medical health and security personnel, assuring attendees a secure environment throughout the event.

Despite the inclement weather characterized by heavy rain, the unyielding spirit of the Anambra community remained unshaken. A testament to their passion for football and unity, a remarkable number of attendees braved the elements, converging to witness the unfolding of history on the lush fields of St Michel, Terminus.

The inaugural Anambra State Union Football Tournament stands as an embodiment of shared values, intercommunity collaboration, and the timeless appeal of sport. This event not only etched a significant mark on the sporting calendar but also served as a reminder of the resilience and unity that define the Anambra community. As the tournament concluded its first chapter, it left in its wake a legacy of camaraderie, sporting excellence, and the promise of more remarkable editions to come.

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Buhari, Tinubu, Nigerian Diplomat, Lawal Bappah, Honoured by a Coalition of Lawyers in Cameroon



The Coalition of Willing Lawyers (CoW) in Cameroon had on Friday, 12th May, 2023 honoured President Muhammadu Buhari, the President-elect Bola Ahmed Tinubu and Consul General (CG) of Nigeria to North West and South West Regions of Republic of Cameroon, Amb. Lawal Bappah, mni, for enhancing a peaceful relationship between the people of the Federal Repubic of Nigeria and the Republic of Cameroon living in the North West and South West Regions of Cameroon. The CoW applauded the Consul General for constantly educating Nigerian nationals in the Northwest and Southwest Regions of Cameroon about their civic responsibilities to the country they reside in; to be law-abiding and also for his laudable role in the repatriation to Nigeria of aged, sick and stranded Nigerians as well as ex Nigerian prisoners in Cameroon.

Amb. Lawal Bappah was honoured by the President of the Coalition, Barrister John Kamani, who said the Consul General has been part of developmental activities in Buea, the Capital of the South West Region of Cameroon; especially in sustaining a wonderful rapport with the South West Region Governor’s Office in Buea and other relevant local and traditional authorities.

Speaking further at the memorable occasion, the President of the coalition specifically eulogized the CG for ensuring that Nigerians who are arbitrarily arrested and detained are released and in extreme cases, benefit from legal assistance.

Presenting the Legal and Leadership Award to Amb. Lawal Bappah, Barrister Kamani urged him to continue with the commitment he had shown since his assumption of office in October 2021and to remain focused and duty conscious. He stated that Amb. Bappah is always ready to receive distressed Nigerians in his office and even Cameroonians who need consular services and assistance.

In his response, the Consul General thanked the lawyers for the award and promised to do more in the interest of serving Nigerians in Cameroon.

In continuity, he said: “This is an award for hard work. It is highly motivational and I assure you that I remain committed to deepening the already cordial relationship between the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the Republic of Cameroon ».

Thereafter, he dedicated the award to his colleagues, staff of the Consulate General of Nigeria, Buea and all others that had been supportive. Ambassador Lawal Bappah expressed readiness to continue to collaborate with the coalition of lawyers. He said he was delighted by every single moment of the occasion.

The coalition of lawyers also presented awards of good leadership to the outgoing President of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari and the President-eElect, Bola Ahmed Tinubu for his good work of turning Lagos State to a mega city in Africa when he was the Governor of the State.

Present at the occasion were Presidents of the various Nigerian Communities under the Consul General’s areas of jurisdiction and other dignitaries.

The Buea-based Consul General of Nigeria to the North West and South West Regions of Cameroon recently embarked on a Consular tour to communities in Bakassi Peninsula. The communities visited by the Nigerian envoy included Kombo Itindi, Idabato and Bekumu where more than 80% of the people living there are Nigerians.

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Nigerian Community praises Consul General Clark-Omeru over resolving Resident Permit issues in Cameroon



Consul General Clark-Omeru hosts Nigeria Community

…urges them to be law abiding citizens in host country

The Consul-General of Nigeria to Douala, the Republic of Cameroon, Ambassador (HRM) Queen Efe A. Clark-Omeru has hosted the Nigerian community in the Littoral Region for the second time to show appreciation for relentless services rendering to Nigeria nationals residing in the region of the host country.

It could be recalled that the executive of the Nigerian community paid courtesy visit to the Consulate General in May 2022 to express their maximum appreciation to the Mission who has been helpful in resolving pressing issues with the host country.

According to her speech, the CG welcomed the Nigerian Community executives led by the President, Honourable B.I.C Okwujiaku and provided details of the Consulate progress with the host country over pending issues concerning Nigerian residents in the region.

« It is my pleasure to welcome you to this event of New Year visit/wishes to me and the Consulate, » the statement reads.

« Since my arrival in June 2021, and with the presentation of my Exequatur which I assured you that the Consulate would not rest its oars by ensuring  that the issue of molestation  will be a thing of past in the history country. The Consulate has met several times with the officials of the immigration of the host country with particular reference to resident permit, exit Visa and the matter was resolved amicably as the immigration rights accorded to members of Central African Economic and Monetary Community (CEMAC)

region is also accorded to Nigeria due to the already subsisting bilateral relations between the two brotherly countries. »
The Nigeria CG also highlighted the issues of non-issuance of Resident permits which is a great challenge to Nigerian residents in the Littoral region as it is contrary to it immigration law.

« The issue of non-issuance of Resident Permit has attracted my attention, on that basis, I directed my officers on 10th February 2023, accompanied by the president and some executive members of the Nigerian community to meet with new Commissioner  EMI-immigration Madame Gertrude Bikok and the matter was also resolved due to the subsisting bilateral relations between the two countries.

The Consul General was excited to proudly commend the Nigeria community over their successful business activities which were satisfied by the host authorities. But urges her compatriots to be more tolerance of each other and remain law abiding to the host country.

In responding to the CG’s speech, the President of the Nigeria Community, Honourable B.I.C Okwujiaku heaps praise on the first female Consul General in Douala for her breath of peace among Nigerians in the region.

« Last year, we came to say thank you for the ones you have done. We have come again to further demonstrate our joy for your constant support, caring and motherly advise and solidarity  to us as your fellow compatriots in Cameroon, » he said.

« History will record it that as the first female Consul General in Douala. Nigerians have benefited from your good leadership and skills of work, » he added.

Also appreciating the CG is Eminent philanthropist, HRH Eze Thomas .J. Onyengubo, Eze Gburugburu 1 of Ohanaeze Ndi Igbo in Cameroon, who also urged the Nigerian community members to remain united and be law abiding to the host country.

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