The Rundown – 15.01.18

Jan 15 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.

 

Politics

  • Nicola Sturgeon has said she will be able to make a judgement on whether to hold a second referendum on Scottish independence by the end of this year. The first minister said her decision would be made when the shape of a deal between Britain and the European Union became clear in the autumn.

  • UKIP has suspended the girlfriend of party leader Henry Bolton after she apparently made racist remarks about Prince Harry’s fiancee Meghan Markle.

  • Conservative candidates will be suspended if they insult rivals, the new party chairman says. Brandon Lewis said a new code of conduct would require people standing for Parliament to “behave responsibly and show respect” to others. Mr Lewis urged Labour to sign up to the same guidelines as he vowed to improve the Tories’ digital campaigning operation.

  • Nigel Farage has had his MEP’s salary docked by £35,500 after claims he misspent EU funds. The ex-UKIP leader was investigated by the European Parliament over claims his office assistant had not been working on EU matters. Half of his salary has been withheld to recoup the money the Parliament says it is owed.

  • The government is doing everything possible to make sure rapist John Worboys stays in prison, Conservative party chairman Brandon Lewis has said. The former black cab driver was jailed in 2009 for assaults on 12 women in London but police believe he may have committed as many as 100 such attacks. The Parole Board has recommended he should be released and is “confident correct procedures were followed”. But the government is considering challenging that decision in court.

 

World

  • A young model has died after being found stabbed in a London street. Two men were arrested after the 25-year-old was discovered fatally wounded in Old Oak Road, East Acton on Thursday. Several fashion brands and a modelling agency have named the victim as Harry Uzoka. Friends and fans, including fellow models and a singer, have paid tribute to Mr Uzoka, describing him as an “inspiration to young black men”.

  • Residents and visitors in Hawaii have been recalling the shock of a false missile alarm, with many saying they thought they were going to die. The alert of an incoming ballistic missile was sent wrongly on Saturday morning by an emergency system worker. Victims of the ordeal spoke of hysteria and panicked evacuations. The false alarm sparked recriminations, with state officials apologising and President Donald Trump’s response called into question.

  • Panic broke out on a passenger jet when it skidded off the runway at a Turkish airport and plunged down the side of a cliff overlooking the sea. The Pegasus Airlines Boeing 737-800 with 168 passengers and crew had flown from Ankara and landed at Trabzon on the Black Sea coast late on Saturday. Everyone on board was evacuated safely, provincial governor Yucel Yavuz said. No injuries were reported.

  • Chelsea Manning, the former US intelligence analyst who was jailed for leaking classified documents, is seeking the Democratic Party nomination to run for the US senate in Maryland. In 2013 Manning was sentenced to 35 years after being found guilty of 20 charges, including espionage. But former US President Barack Obama commuted her sentence.
  • At least eight people have been killed and dozens more injured after a blast triggered a fire at a community centre in northern Portugal. The fire in Vila Nova da Rainha started when a heating boiler in the building exploded, the mayor said. More than 60 people were at the centre for an amateur card tournament or were watching football on TV. The fire reportedly ignited material in the roof and spread quickly, causing panic.The organisation representing African countries has demanded that US President Donald Trump apologise after he reportedly called nations on the continent “shitholes”. The African Union mission in Washington DC expressed its “shock, dismay and outrage” and said the Trump administration misunderstood Africans. The US leader made the alleged remark in a Thursday meeting on immigration. But Mr Trump has denied using the language reported.

 

 

Technology

  • Health data has provided crucial evidence at a trial in Germany, in which a refugee is accused of rape and murder. Apple’s Health App accurately records steps and has been pre-installed on the iPhone 6S and newer models. Data suggesting the suspect was climbing stairs could correlate to him dragging his victim down a riverbank and climbing back up, police said.
  • Snapchat’s redesign, which was rolled out at the end of last year, has not gone down well with users. The refreshed look pushed out in the UK, Australia and Canada has proved unpopular, with up to 83% of reviews on the App Store being negative. Many have complained that feeds are no longer chronological and are confusing. Some have contacted Snapchat support on Twitter to air frustrations and asking it to return to the previous version of the app.

  • Facebook is to change how its news feed works, making posts from businesses, brands and media less prominent. Instead, content that sparks conversations among family and friends who use the site will be emphasised, explained chief executive Mark Zuckerberg on his page. Organisations on Facebook may see the popularity of their posts decrease as a result, the firm acknowledged. The changes will take effect over the coming weeks.

  • China has shut down the Chinese websites of Marriott International for a week, after the firm listed Tibet and others as separate countries. The hotel group has apologised for the error and said it did not support separatist movements in China. Tibet, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau were listed as individual nations in an online survey sent to customers.

 

Music

  • Stormzy and his presenter girlfriend Maya Jama did their “first and only” couple’s interview with Vogue magazine this past week.
  • Dua Lipa leads the charge at this year’s Brit Awards with five nominations, including best album. The pop star, whose single New Rules was one of last year’s breakout hits, is also up for best female, best video, best single and breakthrough. The 22-year-old also makes Brits history. Until now, no female artist has ever received five nominations in a single year.

  • Jorja Smith has won the 2018 Critics Choice Award and received her award at the Brits Nominations launch where she also performed.

 

Sports

  • Britain’s Anthony Joshua will meet Joseph Parker in a world heavyweight unification fight in Cardiff in March. Joshua, 28, holds the IBF and WBA belts, while New Zealander Parker is the WBO champion. Cardiff’s Principality stadium – where Joshua successfully defended his titles against Carlos Takam in October – will host the bout.

  • Ex-England striker Emile Heskey says “racism was considered the norm” when he came through the football ranks. Chelsea are investigating claims of racism from the 1990s against former coaches Graham Rix and Gwyn Williams, while Newcastle United Under-23s coach Peter Beardsley has been accused of racism and bullying.  All three men deny the allegations.

  • Roger Federer says his age helps take the pressure off as he heads into the Australian Open tipped to win. The Swiss five-time champion won his first major title for five years with a stunning run in Melbourne last year. And with rivals Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal on their way back from injury, and Briton Andy Murray absent, Federer remains the man to beat.

 

Miscellaneous 

  • More than one in four UK students graduated from university with a first-class degree last year, data shows. The official figures from the Higher Education Statistics Agency show that the share of graduates with the highest possible result rose 44% in five years. The statistics may spark fresh debate on whether degrees are getting easier and if the ancient classification system is still fit for purpose. In 2012-13, the first year of higher fees, 18% got a first.

  • South African police have used rubber bullets to disperse a mob trashing H&M stores in and around Johannesburg, after the brand used a controversial picture of a black child. The protests were organised by the radical Economic Freedom Fighters’ party (EFF). H&M apologised several days ago for the image, which ran on its website. It featured a young black boy modelling a green hoodie with “coolest monkey in the jungle” written on it.

  • Sterling has jumped to its highest level against the US dollar since the Brexit vote. The surge to more than $1.37 came after Bloomberg reported that the Spanish and Dutch finance ministers had agreed to seek a Brexit deal that kept the UK as close to the EU as possible. Both countries denied the report but the currency continued to climb.

  • Actor Mark Wahlberg has donated $1.5m (£1m) to the Time’s Up legal defence fund. The move comes after it emerged that he was paid the sum to reshoot scenes for the film All The Money in the World. Wahlberg’s co-star Michelle Williams was reportedly paid only $80 a day in expenses for the extra work. Scenes had to be reshot after Kevin Spacey was removed from the completed film following the allegations of predatory sexual behaviour.

  • International students are worth £20bn to the UK economy, says a report from the Higher Education Policy Institute. The analysis says on top of tuition fees, their spending has become a major factor in supporting local economies. London alone gains £4.6bn – with Sheffield the biggest beneficiary in proportion to its economy.