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World Tour: Fire in the Philippines

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WORLD Radio - World Tour: Fire in the Philippines

Plus news from Nigeria, Colombia, Moldova, and India


Smoke billows from the still smoldering Manila Central Post Office as a fire hits in Manila, Philippines, early Monday, May 22, 2023. AP Photo/Aaron Favila

MARY REICHARD, HOST: Coming up next on The World and Everything in It: World Tour with Onize Ohikere.

ONIZE OHIKERE, REPORTER: Nigeria oil refinery - We begin today’s global news roundup here in Nigeria.

SOUND: [Commissioning]

Nigeria’s outgoing President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday commissioned Africa’s biggest single-train oil refinery in the commercial hub of Lagos state.

Nigerian businessman Aliko Dangote built the $19 billion refinery that also includes a fertilizer plant, power station, and deep seaport.

He says it should help meet the country’s demands and also scale up exports.

ALIKO DANGOTE: We have built a refinery with a capacity to process 650,000 barrels per day, plus 900,000 metric tonnes of polypropylene in a single train which is the largest build ever.

Nigeria is a top oil producer but still imports refined petroleum products for use.

Several refineries have shut down over oil theft, structural neglect, and pipeline vandalism.

The newly-launched plant is expected to begin operations in July.

Colombia children — We head over to Colombia where authorities are still searching for four missing children.

SOUND: [Soldiers]

The children were on board a single-engine propeller plane with their mother, a guide, and the pilot when it crashed over three weeks ago in the Amazon jungle.

Colombian troops found the wrecked plane last week along with the bodies of the three adults. Indigenous community members have joined in the search.

AUDIO: [Speaking Spanish]

This Indigenous man says he believes they can still find the children inside the jungle.

A Colombian special police command has also dropped flyers from helicopters with a message for the children.

Moldova rally — We head over to Moldova.

AUDIO: [Crowds chanting]

Tens of thousands of Moldovans gathered in the capital of Chisinau on Sunday to support the country’s bid to join the European Union.

They waved EU flags, sang, and chanted.

Moldova is sandwiched between Ukraine and Romania. The country became a candidate for the EU last June, four months after Russia invaded Ukraine. Moldova hopes to join the bloc by 2030.

AUDIO: [Speaking Romanian]

Moldovan President Maia Sandu saying an EU membership will guarantee Moldova’s security and peace.

The Eastern European nation will host the European Political Community Summit next month.

India heat wave — Next, to India.

SOUND: [Street noises]

Residents across the country are battling sweltering weather conditions, with the temperature rising to 113 degrees Fahrenheit in some regions.

The India Meteorological Department issued new heatwave warnings on Monday for several areas, including the capital New Delhi.

Soma Sen Roy is with the India Meteorological Department.

SOMA SEN ROY: So that is a very dehydrating condition. Again, heat wave is a very silent killer.

Authorities in states like West Bengal shut down schools.

Forecasters expect light rain and cloudy weather later in the week.

Philippines Fire — We close today in the Philippines, where a massive blaze tore through a historic post office in the capital city.

SOUND: [Emergency response]

Firefighters brought the flames under control on Monday, more than seven hours after the fire began.

Authorities said it started in the basement of the five-story building. Investigators are looking into what started the fire.

The Manila Central Post Office features high columns and a traditional neoclassical architecture. The national landmark was first built in 1926, and later reconstructed in 1946 after it suffered damage during World War II.

That’s it for this week’s World Tour. Reporting for WORLD, I’m Onize Ohikere in Abuja, Nigeria.


WORLD Radio transcripts are created on a rush deadline. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of WORLD Radio programming is the audio record.

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