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A Group of Men are Being Accused of Treason for Stealing the Nigerian Senate's Ceremonial Mace

They are said to have been led by a suspended member of the senate.

UPDATE 4/19: BBC Africa reports that the mace was found this morning under a flyover in Abuja. According to police "a patriotic passer-by saw it and alerted officers." The incident will lead to a "beefing up" of security at the embassy, says the police chief.

Continue for yesterday's story:

Just when you thought African politics couldn't get any crazier today, this happens:

A group of intruders stormed the Nigerian National Embassy on Wednesday morning and stole the ceremonial mace, reports BBC Africa. The incident is being called and act of "treason" by Nigerian authorities.

It caused a chaotic scene in the chambers this morning as men were seen fleeing with the staff.



"This action is an act of treason, as it is an attempt to overthrow a branch of the federal government of Nigeria by force, and it must be treated as such," said senate spokesman Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi.

He accused senator Ovie Omo-Agege—who was recently suspended over comments he made during a debate on eloectoral reformof leading the armed group that stole the staff. Omo-Agege was immediately arrested following the incident. A video from the Guardian shows the exact moment when the staff was taken.

Though it is said that the senate cannot convene without the present of the staff, a source from the senate told OkayAfrica that members continued their session with a replacement mace put in place.

The All Progressive Congress (APC) led by President Buhari, also gave a statement regarding the incident. "APC hereby condemns this action and views it as an attack on our democracy and a desecration of the hallowed institution of the National Assembly," it read. "We therefore call on security agencies to take all necessary actions to recover the stolen mace and ensure that the perpetrators and their sponsors are brought to justice."

According to another report by BBC Africa, the Nigerian police force has been given 24 hours to find and retrieve the stolen mace.

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Photo: Single cover art courtesy of Emerald East

Rema Welcomes 2021 With New Single 'Bounce'

The Don Jazzy produced track reminds us of why the Nigerian singer-songwriter is topping charts.

Nigerian golden boy Rema took his time on deciding how to start of 2021—and we're glad he did.

The afropop hitmaker is out with his first project of the year, "Bounce", after stunning fans with word of an upcoming album, and the cooks in this kitchen have not disappointed.

Keeping it in the Mavin Records family, legendary producer Don Jazzy sprinkles his magic on the track, while undoubtedly motivating the young singer-songwriter to be his best self. And with this track being like nothing we've heard from Rema before, one could say Jazzy succeeded. "Bounce", fast-paced and fierce, is a love song dedicated to bewitchingly beautiful and blessed bottoms. The candid declaration and hip shaking beat are a force duo and we can't help but love it.

Of the single and collaboration with head honcho Don Jazzy, Rema says, "This record was inspired by the luscious and magnificent body of the African woman. Furthermore, I'm really excited about this tune because it's my first single with the legendary Don Jazzy."

Honestly, when you start the year off with a banger, you get to make songs about butts.

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Photo courtesy of Mariama Diallo

Interview: Sincerely Ria Is Giving Guinean Fashion Its Flowers

And designer Mariama Diallo's NYFW debut celebrates the vibrancy and uniqueness of Guinea and its Fulani culture.

Guinea-born supermodel, actress, and activist Mariama Diallo is a face you've likely seen all over social media.

With modelling campaigns with the likes of Savage x Fenty by Rihanna, Kim Kardashian's KKW Beauty, and features in Vogue, Marie Claire, NYLON magazines, the model is commanding her space in the industry and making her way centerstage. And, Mariama's strong online presence and following has certainly made her a popular member of the global village too.

With the aforementioned achievements under her belt, the 28-year-old supermodel presented herself as an eager and excited talent within the fashion industry. Now, Mariama's talents and ambitions have attracted her to a role behind the scenes. And showing the power of intention, the role has already taken her to places she only dreamed of prior.

Debuting as the fashion designer of self-financed fashion line Sincerely Ria at this year's New York Fashion Week is but a peek into what the model has to show of herself and share with the world.

The new collection, The Oshun, celebrates not only female beauty and the many ways that it manifests itself but also the magic of womanhood. Named after Oshun, the African goddess of femininity, fertility, beauty, and love, the collection is wrapped within the warmth and divinity of its namesake. The brand follows an ethos of inclusivity, community, and the power behind being beautiful because you have decided to be. Challenging the notion that beauty is always to be accompanied by pain, Mariama and Sincerely Ria are celebrating the rejection of beauty and body standards and expectations.

The Oshun line is a nod to the opulence of Mariama's African heritage and Guinea's Fulani culture, with special attention to the use of brilliant colors, exciting designs, and stunning silhouettes. Motivated to be seen and to captivate, the emphasis on Black beauty within the clothing is certainly translated beautifully, however, stylistically available to all. Uniqueness is welcomed and encouraged. And like Mariama says herself, "You deserve to celebrate yourself unapologetically."

The line debuted at New York Fashion Week, very appropriately, on Valentine's Day of this year and love certainly was the theme. Already boasting a following of over 8,000, the brand's instagram account has shown nothing short of praise and excitement for what we've seen from Mariama, and for what's to come.

We spoke with the Guinean supermodel about the journey to Fashion Week and her love for and emphasis on community and shared experiences.

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(Youtube)

The 5 Best East African Songs of the Month (February)

Featuring Rayvanny, Siverstone Barz x Victoria Kimani, Spice Diana x Fik Fameica, and more.

The month of love featured an array of incredible releases from East Africa's pop royalty as well as promising newcomers.

Follow our East African Grooves playlist on Spotify and Apple Music.

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Focalistic Shares Visuals For ‘Ke Star (Remix)’ Featuring Vigro Deep and Davido

Watch the music video for 'Ke Star (Remix)' by Focalistic, Vigro Deep and Davido.