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20-Yrs Old Medical Student Divine Great, Emerge Winner Of ‘YOUCANSING’ Season 2

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A 20-year old medical student from the University of Calabar, Divine Great, has emerged as the winner of ‘YOUCANSING’, a music show in Abuja. 

It will be recalled that the YOUCANSING music show Season 2 started on Oct.

3 with over 200 applicants from all over the country who tried to get into the show. 

While speaking, the host of the show Richmond Atu-Johnson, on Monday revealed that out of the over 200 contestants, only 96 made it to the live show. 

“The show celebrated Nigeria’s 61st independence as contestants were made to sing a song celebrating Nigeria at 61. 

“The show had four stages and seven contestants made it to the penultimate stage. 

“Divine Great, a 20-year-old medical student from the University of Calabar emerged the winner, beating both MarySavio Okundo from Ebonyi State and Petra Alare who finished as the first and second runners up respectively. 

“Divine Great won the N5 million prize money, while the runners-up received Music Contract deals from Cityhill Records, one of the partners of the Youcansing Show as well as Full music scholarship training at Cityhill Music Academy,” he said.

An elated Great expressed that she was very grateful to her mother who was both her greatest inspiration and her manager, adding that she supported her every step of the way to be a part of the show. 

“I am not a fan of Facebook, but the day I decided to go online, I saw the advert and showed my mum who then advised and encouraged me to participate in the show. 

“At first, I wondered how I was going to cope with the show, especially with my studies which were very demanding and took most of my time. 

“However, with my mum’s support I was able to pull through with all the challenges that came with the show and I am so glad that all my efforts paid off at the end of the day,” she said. 

Great also expressed her gratitude to the organizers of the show for the opportunity to showcase her talent as well as her mum and to all her friends and fans who voted for her during the course of the show. 

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Nigeria, US Sign Cultural Pack To Reduce Illicit Trafficking of Ancient Arts

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Joel Ajayi 

The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has expressed the optimism that the Cultural Property Implementation Act (CPIA) Agreement, which was signed by Nigeria and the United States of America on Thursday, will reduce the pillage of Nigeria’s ancient arts.

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The Minister expressed the optimism when he signed a Memorandum of Understanding on the CPIA with the US Ambassador to Nigeria, Mary Beth Leonard, in the presence of the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Geoffrey Onyeama, in Abuja.

According to him, this legislation was enacted by the United States to restrict the importation into the US of archeological materials ranging in date from 1500 B.C. to A.D. 1770 as well as ethnological materials including those associated with royal activity, religious activity, etc. from nations that have entered into the kind of bilateral initiative that we are signing here with the United States today. 

Alhaji Mohammed said on the basis of the agreement, Nigerian antiquities being imported into the United States without the requisite Export Permit will be seized at the border of the United States and returned to Nigeria without the arduous and costly task of going through the labyrinth of judicial and diplomatic processes.

“We are optimistic that this agreement will reduce the pillage of our irreplaceable archeological and ethnological materials, as the market for these materials is being shut in the United States against illicit traffickers.

“The agreement will last for an initial period of five years. If it works well, as we anticipate it will, it shall be renewed for a longer term. We implore other friendly nations to take a cue from the United States of America and join us in finding means to prevent the illegal importation of our antiquities into their countries,” he said.

The Minister said the signing of the MoU became necessary because, despite all efforts by the Ministry of Information and Culture and the National Commission for Museums and Monuments, with the assistance of law enforcement agencies, to prevent illicit export of the nation’s archeological and ethnological materials, widespread looting and illicit excavation of these materials still continue.

He said the stolen artifacts are mostly smuggled to Europe, the United States of America and other places for the benefit of art collectors.

The Minister, who thanked the Government of the United States, in particular the Embassy of the United States in Nigeria, for making the MoU possible, said the Nigerian Government looks forward to a diligent implementation of the landmark agreement, so it can become a game changer in the nation’s efforts to prevent the looting of its priceless ancient works of art.

In her remarks, the US Ambassador to Nigeria, Beth Leonard, said the agreement is aimed at preserving, restoring and protecting Nigeria’s cultural heritage.

“In Nigeria, over the past decade, the U.S Mission has partnered with the Nigerian government and state institutions to preserve cultural landmarks and sites through projects worth over one million dollars and funded by the U.S. Ambassador’s Fund for Cultural Preservation.

“Just last November, I signed a grant award to digitally survey the Busanyin Shrine located within the Osun Osogbo Sacred Grove. That $125,000 grant will help document a series of shrines within the Grove and provide training to local professionals in digital tools and cultural heritage management,” she said.

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