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How To Make A Perfect Cup Of Tea

Professor Alan Mackie has put an end to the age-old debate of the ‘correct’ way to brew a cuppa in order to get the most flavour – but it’s a little controversial.

Although the amount of milk and sugar varies from person to person, we all tend to follow the same method – mug, teabag, then boiling water, followed by milk.

But apparently, we’ve been doing it wrong. An  expert says that pouring milk in first on top of the teabag is the secret to a perfect brew – especially if you have hard water.

Research conducted by INTU, a manufacturer of boiling water taps and Professor Alan Mackie, the head of Leeds University’s School Of Food Science & Nutrition, found that the minerals in hard water can stop flavour compounds from forming properly.

But pouring the milk in first, allows its proteins to lower the mineral content of the water and lock in the flavour.

The hardness of water, according to Healthline, is determined by the amount of calcium and magnesium it contains – higher levels of these and other minerals make water hard.

Professor Mackie explains: “Flavour by and large is produced by the different compounds in tea including tannins in particular.

“The more minerals present in the water the more difficult it is for these compounds to develop the flavour – resulting in the dull cuppas you get in hard water areas.

“Making tea the traditional way – steeping a bag in hot water before removing it and adding milk – results in the tannins turning into solids before they can develop the flavour properly.

“But, if the milk is added at the start of the steeping process then its proteins can bind to the tannins and other minerals in the water – preventing them from turning solid – which in turn gives you a far superior flavour.”

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Kaleidoscope

Chocolate Intact After 121 Years

A 121-year-old chocolate bar, from a batch commissioned by Queen Victoria for British troops fighting in South Africa, has been found in its original tin in the attic of an English manor.

The chocolate belonged to an English aristocrat who fought in the Second Boer War, Sir Henry Edward Paston-Bedingfield, and was found in his helmet case at his family’s ancestral home, 500-year-old Oxburgh Hall in Norfolk, eastern England.

“Although …you wouldn’t want it as your Easter treat, it is still complete and a remarkable find,” said Anna Forrest, Cultural Heritage Curator at the National Trust, a heritage charity that manages Oxburgh Hall.

The tin lid has a message in Victoria’s handwriting that says “I wish you a happy New Year” and the inscription “South Africa 1900”, as well as a portrait of the queen.

The National Trust said it believed Henry had kept the helmet and the chocolate together as mementoes of his participation in the war. The items were discovered among the belongings of his daughter Frances Greathead following her death aged 100 in 2020.

The Second Boer War, from 1899 and 1902, pitted British troops against the forces of two independent South African states run by the Boers, Afrikaans-speaking farmers, where huge gold and diamond deposits had been found.

Victoria commissioned 100,000 half-pound (226-gramme) bars to raise morale among the troops there.

Britain’s three main chocolate manufacturers at the time, Cadbury, Fry and Rowntree, were run by Quakers who opposed the war, so they refused to accept payment for the order and packaged the chocolate in unbranded tins.

However, the queen insisted the British soldiers should know that their treats had come from home, and the manufacturers relented and branded some of the chocolates, though not the tins.

While some tins survive, the National Trust said, it is extremely rare to trace one to its original owner, and rarer still to find the chocolate, as most recipients ate theirs.

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Kaleidoscope

Queen Elizabeth’s Husband For Burial, Saturday

The Duke of Edinburgh will be buried on Saturday, April 17 at Windsor Castle.

Prince Philip, husband of Queen Elizabeth II and  the Duke of Edinburgh passed on peacefully at Windsor Castle less than three months to his 100th birthday  and 73 years in marriage to the queen. 

The tragic news is a huge blow to the Queen, as the Duke is believed to be the backbone of the Royal Family.Just after midday, the Union Flag was lowered to half-mast outside Buckingham Palace and on public buildings across the UK as the world mourns his death.

Tributes have poured in from around the world for the hardest-working member of the Royal Family after seven decades of Royal service. Buckingham Palace said it will now “join with people around the world in mourning his loss”.

A statement from the Palace said: “It is with deep sorrow that Her Majesty The Queen has announced the death of her beloved husband, His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.

“His Royal Highness passed away peacefully this morning at Windsor Castle. Further announcements will made in due course. The Royal Family join with people around the world in mourning his loss.”

Announcing the news, the official Royal Family website was replaced with a single page and heartfelt tribute to the Duke.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson paid tribute and said “he helped to steer the Royal Family and the monarchy so that it remains an institution indisputably vital to the balance and happiness of our national life.”

Speaking from a podium in Downing Street, Mr Johnson said: “He was an environmentalist, and a champion of the natural world long before it was fashionable.

“With his Duke of Edinburgh awards scheme he shaped and inspired the lives of countless young people and at literally tens of thousands of events he fostered their hopes and encouraged their ambitions.

“We remember the duke for all of this and above all for his steadfast support for Her Majesty the Queen.Not just as her consort, by her side every day of her reign, but as her husband, her ‘strength and stay’, of more than 70 years.

“And it is to Her Majesty, and her family, that our nation’s thoughts must turn today.Because they have lost not just a much-loved and highly respected public figure, but a devoted husband and a proud and loving father, grandfather and, in recent years, great-grandfather.” 

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Buhari Greets Jonathan On 63rd Birthday

The President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), last Thursday, congratulated former President Goodluck Jonathan, on his 63rd birthday.

His congratulatory message was contained in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, titled ‘President Buhari greets former President Goodluck Jonathan on 63rd birthday’.

The statement read, “On behalf of the Federal Government and Nigerians in general, President Muhammadu Buhari warmly felicitates with former President Goodluck “Jonathan on his 63rd birthday, November 20, 2020, congratulating him for a life of service that has brought honour and goodwill to the country.

“The President notes, with appreciation, the peculiar and remarkable climb of the former president on Nigeria’s political ladder, and dedication that has kept him working most recently as ECOWAS envoy to bring peace to the Republic of Mali.

“As the former Nigerian President turns 63, President Buhari prays that the Almighty God will grant Dr Jonathan longer life, good health and more wisdom to keep serving the nation and humanity.

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Artificial Heart Gets Boost With Rocket Tech

A new artificial heart design powered by Chinese rocket technology is being tried on patients with weak hearts.

The trials were launched on September 13 by clinicians at the TEDA International Cardiovascular Hospital in North China’s Tianjin.

After being implanted into a 63-year-old male patient to replace his failed heart, the device has functioned as a pump to deliver blood to the whole body, significantly alleviating the symptoms of heart failure, said Liu Xiaocheng, researcher of the clinic program and head of the hospital.

Called HeartCon, the artificial heart weighs only 180 grams and is smaller than the size of a fist. It is an outcome of long-term cooperation between the hospital and the China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology, the country’s leading rocket maker.

Xu Jian, chief engineer of the project, said the artificial heart works like a rocket’s servomechanism, which is driven by a hydraulic pump.A servomechanism uses feedback to control an operation.

“The servomechanism on a rocket has higher requirements of speed and power, while the artificial heart demands more focus on safety and comfort as it is small and needs to be implanted,” Xu said.

Scientists began developing the artificial heart in 2009. They used magnetic and fluid levitation, which are used in rocket servo technology, to produce an implantable third-generation ventricular assistive device, a mechanical pump to support heart functions while causing less damage to patients’ blood than previous types.

Since the artificial heart uses a blood pump and needs electrical energy to generate power, it works on external batteries. Implanting an artificial heart requires a wire, thinner than a chopstick, to pass through the patient’s belly to connect the controller and external batteries.

Animal experiments started in 2013. A sheep with the artificial heart survived 120 days. Four years later, scientists implanted the HeartCons into six sheep and set a new record as one of them survived 180 days.In March 2019, two critically ill patients who had HeartCons implanted to extend their lives, survived.

There are at least 16 million people with failing hearts in China. For patients who are in advanced stages of heart failure, transplants are the only solution. However, transplants are limited by a lack of donors and many die while waiting.

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Queen Celebrates 73rd Anniversary

The Queen of England; Queen Elizabeth II, and her husband; Duke of Edinburgh, Prince Philip, marked  their 73rd wedding anniversary by releasing a photograph of them reading a card made by their great-grandchildren, Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis, The Guardian reports.

In perhaps a symbolic reference to their long marital union, the Queen chose to wear a chrysanthemum brooch, made from sapphires and diamonds set in platinum. She wore the same brooch in photographs taken on their honeymoon at Broadlands in Hampshire, and again in pictures taken to mark their diamond wedding in 2007.

On their golden wedding anniversary, she paid very personal tribute to Prince Philip in a speech at the Guildhall in London, in which she said: “He is someone who doesn’t take easily to compliments, but he has, quite simply, been my strength and stay all these years.”

The royal couple has spent much time apart since Philip, now 99, retired from public engagements in 2017, with him living largely on the Sandringham estate in Norfolk while she remained at Windsor Castle and Buckingham Palace. But during the pandemic lockdown, the couple have been bubbled together at Windsor Castle.

The colourful card, with a pop-out figure of 73, was one of several anniversary cards and letters sent by well-wishers to the couple, with a small pile shown on a nearby table.

The Queen, 94, was a 21-year-old princess when she married Lieutenant Philip Mountbatten on 20 November 1947. Their enduring relationship has lasted the longest of any British sovereign.

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Double Celebration For Eze-Ogba

...80th Birthday, 50 Years of Royalty

Its double celebration for the Ogba people and the Orashi region in River State as Oba Chukumela Nnam Obi II, the Eze Ogba of Ogbaland clocks 80 years and 50 years on the throne, joining the league of one of the longest reigning monarchs.

Oba Chukumela Nnam Obi II, a founding member of Conference of Traditional Rulers of Eastern States of Nigeria in 1985 was the National President of Traditional Rulers of Oil Mineral Producing Communities of Nigeria (TROMPCON) 1994-2000.

He served as the pioneer Pro-chancellor and Chairman of the Governing Council of Federal University of Technology, Owerri Imo State (FUTO) 1980-1984 and was appointed Chancellor of Federal University of Technology (FUTA), Akure, Ondo State 1992-2001.

The Oba served as Chairman of Rivers State Council of Traditional Rulers 1972-1979, 1994-1996 and 2007-2009 respectively and was nominated by the Federal Government to serve in vision 2010 between 1996 and 1997 and also at the National Council of Nigeria Vision 1997-1998.

He served as a member of the International Committee on Chieftaincy and Royalty as Nigeria’s representative for FESTAC, 1974-1998, and is a patron of several national and international organizations.

Oba Chukumela Nnam Obi II, born on November 23, 1940, ascended the Eze Ogba throne on 19th December, 1970 and was presented with the Staff of Office by the Military Governor, Commander Alfred Papapriye Diete-Spiff now Amanyanabo of Twon Brass in Bayelsa State.

Meanwhile Senator George Thompson Sekibo has congratulated Oba Chukumela Nnam Obi II on the celebrations.

The Senator said the 80th birthday is very unique as it ushers the Oba into a new vista of royalty marking his 50th year on the throne.

He said both events are epochal as they were coming at a time of great concern for national peace, security, development and prosperity, – four issues that have defined his monarchy.

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KaleidoscopeNews

Comedian Leads Protest In Ejigbo

Ejigbo LCDA chairman, Hon. Monsuru Bello Obe, appealed to the youths protesting against the Special Anti-Robbery Squad of the police today (Wednesday), assuring that federal and state governments are working together to address their demands.

Addressing the protesters led by Otoloorin Kehinde Peters also known as Kenny Black in Ejigbo, the chairman advised them to conduct their activity peacefully. He was represented by the Secretary to the Local Government, Mr. Paul Fregene. 

 Speaking on their behalf, Kenny Black said the atrocities of the SARS personnel were getting out of hand because they infringed on the fundamental human rights of citizens, adding that the protesters joined the protest to ensure that their voice in Ejigbo was heard.

Responding, Fregene urged them to conduct their protest in a peaceful manner so as to maintain law and order, cautioning them not to allow those with sinister motives to hijack the situation. 

The council chairman further implored the protesters to go about their lawful businesses as the authorities from the federal government has announced the disbandment of SARS division of the Nigeria Police. Ejigbo LCDA chairman, Hon. Monsuru Bello Obe, appealed to the youths protesting against the Special Anti-Robbery Squad of the police today (Wednesday), assuring that federal and state governments are working together to address their demands.

Addressing the protesters led by Otoloorin Kehinde Peters also known as Kenny Black in Ejigbo, the chairman advised them to conduct their activity peacefully. He was represented by the Secretary to the Local Government, Mr. Paul Fregene. 

 Speaking on their behalf, Kenny Black said the atrocities of the SARS personnel were getting out of hand because they infringed on the fundamental human rights of citizens, adding that the protesters joined the protest to ensure that their voice in Ejigbo was heard.

Responding, Fregene urged them to conduct their protest in a peaceful manner so as to maintain law and order, cautioning them not to allow those with sinister motives to hijack the situation. 

The council chairman further implored the protesters to go about their lawful businesses as the authorities from the federal government has announced the disbandment of SARS division of the Nigeria Police.

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KaleidoscopeNews

Thugs Attack Protesters In Lagos

Armed thugs yesterday disrupted a protest against police brutality and extortion in Lagos State. The thugs, who arrived at the planned venue of the protest at Alausa, caused a commotion in the area.

A commuter, who witnessed the disruption, Adebimpe, said, “Some of the protesters are here already with some of us waiting for a bus. When the bus arrived, we were about to enter when we suddenly saw some men with knives and sticks running towards us.We all ran to safety. I was later told that they are after #EndSARS protesters.”

There have been protests in most parts of the country since Wednesday last week by Nigerians, mostly youths, who called for disbanding of SARS, accusing the police squad of corruption, high-handedness and harassment

On Sunday, the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, disbanded the squad and on Tuesday, he set up the Special Weapons and Tactics Team to replace the disbanded SARS.

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Adeboye Endorses Protests

Pastor Enoch Adeboye, has endorsed the #EndSARS protests rocking the nation. Adeboye said this in a tweet on Wednesday evening.

The respected cleric tweeted, “Our daughters will not be able to prophesy and young men will not see visions if we don’t keep them alive. “I support the youths in this peaceful protest as they “speak up” to #EndPoliceBrutality #EndSARS #ENDSWAT.”

 Adeboye, who is a mentor to Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, had earlier in the year embarked on a protest against the killings in several parts of the country.

He had two weeks ago called for restructuring the country, a move which was criticised by the Presidency. Thousands of youths have been protesting against the extrajudicial killings by policemen perpetrated mostly by men of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad.

The protests have continued despite the disbanding of SARS. About 10 persons have been killed in the protests according to rights group, Amnesty International.

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