The Rundown – 1.01.18

Jan 2 2018 BY Rachel Ayeh-Datey

It’s been a busy week. So much so that you probably haven’t had the time to catch up with everything going on in the world. Fortunately, (for you), we’ve got your back. Here’s what happened this week in the worlds of Politics, Technology, Sports, Music and World alongside a few other miscellaneous bits that caught our eye.



  • The Scottish National Party is calling on Labour to work with other opposition parties to keep Britain in the single market and customs union after Brexit. Its Commons leader Ian Blackford asked for help to stop the “catastrophic damage” of “extreme” Brexit. “It is time for MPs of all parties to put politics aside,” he said.
  • The White House has fired the members of the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA). The council, which still had 16 members, was completely dismissed with a letter sent through FedEx on Wednesday.

  • Shadow chancellor John McDonnell says the “alarming increase” in average household debt is set to continue over the next four years. Labour warned unsecured borrowing could exceed £19,000 per household by 2022. The prediction comes from Labour’s analysis of official data. It claims average household debt has risen from £10,921 in 2010 to £14,426 in 2017.
  • Rogue landlords are the target of new measures being considered by both the government and Labour. The government says landlords in England who want to rent a property to five or more people, from at least two different families, should be licensed. Under the plan, the maximum number of people who can occupy a room would be specified in the property’s licence. Meanwhile, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn says his party wants tenants to have more powers to avoid eviction.

  • US President Donald Trump has said he believes he will be treated “fairly” by the investigation into alleged Russian meddling in the US election. There has been tension between the White House and the inquiry and Mr Trump has had to deny planning to fire lead investigator Robert Mueller. Mr Trump again denied there had been any collusion with Russian officials.



  • South Korea has revealed it seized a Hong Kong-registered ship last month suspected of supplying oil to the North in breach of international sanctions. Officials said the Lighthouse Winmore had secretly transferred 600 tonnes of refined oil to a North Korean ship. A UN Security Council resolution bans ship-to-ship transfers of any goods destined for Pyongyang.

  • At least 41 people have been killed and more than 80 wounded in a suicide bomb attack in the Afghan capital, Kabul. A Shia cultural organisation was the target but the Afghan Voice news agency was also hit. So-called Islamic State said it was behind the attack.
  • The United Nations says two air strikes by the Saudi-led coalition fighting in Yemen’s civil war killed at least 68 civilians in a single day this week. Humanitarian co-ordinator Jamie McGoldrick said Tuesday’s first raid, on a busy market in Taiz province, left 54 people dead.
  • Four children were among 12 people killed in a fire at an apartment building in the Bronx borough of New York. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said the fire was the deadliest in the city for at least 25 years. The victims include a one-year-old child, he added. The cause of the fire, on Prospect Avenue, near Fordham University and the Bronx Zoo, is not yet clear. More than 160 firefighters helped bring the blaze under control.

  • UK stock markets climbed to new highs on the final day of trading for 2017. Both the FTSE 100 index of leading blue chip companies and the FTSE 250 reached new records at the close of trading. US stock markets have also hit new peaks over the year, helped by Donald Trump’s sweeping tax reforms.

  • Twelve people have died in twin attacks on Coptic Christians in the Helwan area south of Cairo, officials say. Ten people died when gunmen tried to storm a church south of Cairo, but were intercepted by police. About an hour later, a Coptic-owned shop in the same area was attacked, leaving two dead. More than 100 Christians have been killed in Egypt in the past year – most attacks claimed by the local branch of the so-called Islamic State group.

  • A massive late-night fire that broke out at a Mumbai complex has killed at least 15 people, officials said. The blaze erupted just after midnight at a building in the popular Kamala Mills restaurant and shopping compound. It engulfed the structure within 30 minutes, local media reported. More people have been injured in the blaze, with several being treated in hospital.

  • Anti-government demonstrators have taken to the streets of Iran for a second day, with protests being held in a number of cities. The protesters have been angered by rising prices and corruption.

  • Erica Garner, whose father Eric Garner died in 2014 after being put in a chokehold by police, has died at the age of 27.



  • WhatsApp will stop working on older smartphones from 1 January 2018 as the company pulls support for older operating systems. Explaining the move to pull support, WhatsApp said that when it was founded in 2009 the mobile landscape was very different.
  • Twitter has shut down a crowd-sourced effort to expose fake accounts posting racist messages on the social network. The Imposter Buster bot automatically replied to tweets posted by fake accounts, to warn other people. However, Twitter suspended the bot after a large number of “spam complaints” were filed against it.

  • Apple has apologised after facing criticism for admitting it deliberately slows down some ageing iPhone models. The company now says it will replace batteries for less and will issue software in 2018 so customers can monitor their phone’s battery health. Some customers had long suspected the company slowed older iPhones to encourage customers to upgrade. Apple admitted slowing some phones with ageing batteries but said it was to “prolong the life” of the devices.

  • The YouTube app has been removed from Amazon’s Fire TV devices four days earlier than expected, as a dispute between Amazon and Google continues. Fire TV devices now encourage people to use the YouTube website in a web browser instead. Google had warned it would remove the YouTube app from Fire TV devices on 1 January.



  • Charlamagne Tha God teased a special recap of 2017 last week, alongside former Everday Struggle co-host Joe Budden. The This Year Was Dope/Trash show aired on Boxing Day) via REVOLT. High praise went to the likes of SZA, Jay Z, and Cardi B. While Nicki Minaj’s loss to Remy Ma made her the butt of many jokes on the show.
  • Jay-Z shared a sneak peek at the new music video for his track ‘Family Feud’, which stars Beyoncé. The full version of the video for the song premiered on Tidal.
  • SZA celebrated her first No. 1 on Billboard‘s Hot R&B Songs chart with The Weekend. The music video for The Weekend, directed by Solange, dropped this past week. The video received mixed reactions as there was no direct storyline within the video and some felt that the video was a poor representation of the anthemic song.



  • England and Liverpool youngster Rhian Brewster says he has experienced racial abuse on the pitch since he was 12. The 17-year-old striker says he has been targeted five times and that there were two other incidents aimed at his team-mates.
  • Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp says the “last thing” he thinks about when signing a player is the price. The Reds are to sign Virgil van Dijk from Southampton in a £75m deal on 1 January in a fee which is a world record for a defender.

  • Former world number one Novak Djokovic has postponed his long-awaited comeback because of an elbow injury. The 12-time Grand Slam winner has not played since July’s Wimbledon quarter-final and was expected to face Roberto Bautista Agut at the Mubadala World Tennis Championship on Friday.

  • Winger Wilfried Zaha will not leave Crystal Palace during the January transfer window, according to manager Roy Hodgson. His comments come a few days after he stated that the 25-year-old could be lured away from Selhurst Park if a big offer is received.



  • Hospitals in England made a record £174m last year in charging for parking, an investigation has found. The figure for 2016-17 was 6% up on the previous financial year, data collected by the Press Association under the Freedom of Information Act showed. The figures also showed a growing amount of revenue being made from fines – up by a third to £950,000.
  • The Miss America group is seeking the help of former pageant winners and directors, after a scandal over vulgar emails disparaging contestants. In the emails, published by the Huffington Post, pageant officials made degrading remarks about past winners’ appearance, intellect, and sex lives. Executive director Sam Haskell, president Josh Randle, and other board members resigned over the scandal. Now the group is contacting former Miss Americas to help find new leaders.

  • The UK has achieved its greenest year ever in terms of how the nation’s electricity is generated, National Grid figures reveal. The rise of renewable energy helped break 13 clean energy records in 2017.

  • Learning a language will be a new year’s resolution for about one in five Britons in 2018, a survey suggests. About one in three said they intend to learn at least some key phrases. Spanish was the most popular language among 2,109 UK adults questioned by Populus for the British Council.

  • Drunk tanks may have to become the norm in towns and cities to keep “selfish” revellers out of A&E, the head of the NHS in England says. Simon Stevens said he would be closely monitoring how the mobile units cope on New Year’s Eve before deciding whether they should become a regular feature. Drunk tanks provide a safe place for those who have over-indulged to be checked over and sleep it off.