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New Hampshire Primary; Nationwide Strike in Nigeria; Consumer Electronics Show

Aired January 11, 2012 - 04:00:00   ET


CARL AZUZ, HOST, CNN STUDENT NEWS: A lot of folks here at CNN Center. We`re keeping tabs on New Hampshire`s presidential primary. But today, we also have stories for you from Africa and Alaska. Plus we`re getting you caught up on the latest tech trends.

I`m Carl Azuz. This is CNN Student News.

First up, it`s round two in the U.S. presidential primary season as the race for the Republican nomination moves to New Hampshire. Officials in the Granite State were predicting a possible record turnout for yesterday`s primary.


AZUZ (voice-over): Around 250,000 voters were expected to cast ballots. New Hampshire holds the nation`s first primary, but two small towns there really get a jump on things. Dixville Notch and Hart`s Location open their polls just after midnight, although they don`t have that many registered voters.

For example, in Dixville Notch, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney and former Utah Governor Jon Huntsman tied for first. They had two votes each. In Hart`s Location, Romney beat out U.S. Representative Ron Paul five votes to four.


AZUZ: As the results started to come in last night, CNN projected that former Governor Romney would win the contest. He was expected to come in first, so a big question was how the other Republican candidates would finish. CNN projected that Representative Paul would come in second, and former Governor Huntsman would come in third.


AZUZ (voice-over): If you`re looking for the full results from New Hampshire, you can get them from our website. Go to the "Spotlight" section at, and click on the CNN Election Center link.

We`ll have more on the New Hampshire primary in tomorrow`s show.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Today`s Shoutout goes out to Mr. Anderson`s and Ms. Eggers` social studies classes at Groves Academy in St. Louis Park, Minnesota.

What`s the term for financial aid that a government gives to people or groups? You know what to do. Is it a subsidy, commodity, dividend or share? You`ve got three seconds, go.

That government financial aid is called a subsidy. That`s your answer, and that`s your Shoutout.


AZUZ: Subsidies are designed to make products more affordable for people. The flip side is that if you remove a subsidy, the cost of the product will likely go up.


AZUZ (voice-over): That`s what`s happening in the African nation of Nigeria, where the government stopped giving out fuel subsidies. The price of fuel shot way up, leading many Nigerians to protest against the decision and to hold a nationwide strike.

Ralitsa Vassileva has more on what`s going on in Nigeria.

RALITSA VASSILEVA, CNN REPORTER (voice-over): The streets of Africa`s biggest oil producer exploded with anger Monday over the doubling of the price of gas following the removal of a popular subsidy. A nationwide strike brought the country to a standstill.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Speaking foreign language).

VASSILEVA (voice-over): And many took to the streets, demanding the government restore the subsidy, leading to violent clashes between protesters and police with some reports of injuries and death. But President Goodluck Jonathan told Nigerians the government needs to invest the money saved to build up the country`s crumbling infrastructure. Some international experts believe the measure will help Nigerian roads economy.

CHARLKIE ROBERTSON, CHIEF ECONOMIST, RENAISSANCE CAPITAL: If they`ve been prepared to try this petroleum subsidy removal, then perhaps they`re going to push forward electricity reform, too. If they do that, Nigerian growth, instead of being 7 or 8 percent a year, it could be up at 10 or 11 percent.

VASSILEVA (voice-over): But for most Nigerians living on $2 a day, the price of reform is unbearable. Since removing the gas subsidy on January the 1st, the price of petrol has doubled to about 80 cents a liter, driving up the cost of most basic goods and services. And most Nigerians believe the vanishing fuel subsidies will only end up lining the pockets of politicians, not securing their country`s future -- Ralitsa Vassileva, CNN, Atlanta.


AZUZ: Fuel is pretty expensive in Nome, Alaska, too. It sells for almost $6 a gallon there. Part of the reason is because it`s hard to get fuel into Nome. You can`t deliver it by land.


AZUZ (voice-over): The last major fuel shipment couldn`t get in by sea, either. There were heavy winter storms hammering Alaska`s west coast and made a delivery of fuel impossible.

So now they`re trying something that`s never been done before: supplying fuel to Nome through sea ice. The ship in front here is a Coast Guard icebreaker. It`s clearing a way for a Russian tanker ship.

The two could get to Nome as early as tomorrow. The tanker is carrying more than a million gallons of fuel. Right now Nome has enough to last through March, but officials were worried that if they waited until then, it might be even more difficult to make the delivery through the ice.


AZUZ: From the largest U.S. state, we`re heading to the second biggest now. Texas has been suffering through a severe drought. In fact, experts say 2011 was the driest year ever for Texas. But earlier this week, parts of the state suffered from the opposite type of severe weather.


AZUZ (voice-over): Huge storms and at least two confirmed tornadoes hit the Houston area. Some spots got up to six inches of rain. You can see the effects this had on the roads. Cars got stuck in the water. Hundreds of drivers were stranded by flash floods.

Fire departments were called out to rescue some of them, but in some areas, the water was actually too high for the emergency vehicles.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is this legit? Ohms are units of measurement that are found in the field of electronics. Totally true. An ohm is a unit of electrical resistance.


AZUZ: So ohms apply to pretty much all of the products on display at the International Consumer Electronics Show. The CES convention is happening this week in Las Vegas, Nevada. It`s usually a big draw in the tech world, but some folks are starting to question the convention`s importance. Dan Simon gives us a preview of this year`s event.


DAN SIMON, CNN REPORTER: We are in the heart of the convention center, where you`ll find more than 30 football fields of gadgetry. And here`s a taste of what you`ll see.

As always, televisions make the boldest statement at the show, and this year you`ll see more of what are called OLED televisions. These are ultra-thin and offer the best picture on the market. And pretty much every TV you see has 3-D functionality and connects to the Internet.

To appreciate just how difficult it is to put on this show, just come outside and check out all the crates. This is the stuff from Mitsubishi right here. Behind us are the crates from Microsoft. And this is just a tiny fraction of the overall amount of equipment here in Las Vegas.

One of the big themes of the show is seeing all the accessories for smartphones and tablets. This is one of the more unusual contraptions we`ve seen. This turns your iPad into a guitar. This is a product from Ion that will retail for $99 when it comes out this summer. And it teaches you how to play the guitar.

Panasonic is trying to give us a sense as to what cars might look like in the future. This is not a video game, but a vision to make driving safer and easier.

People may think of CES really as a place to unveil TVs and computers, but it`s really a lot more than that. It`s really for any product that requires batteries or electricity and is available to consumers. We are at the Inada booth. And as you may have guessed, they sell massage chairs.

In computers this year, it`s all about ultrabooks, thin, powerful laptops with long battery life. Virtually every computer maker is coming out with their own version.

Companies like Google and Apple don`t come to CES. Instead, they hold their own events throughout the year. Microsoft has decided to go that route, and says this will be its last year at the show, which has some wondering whether CES is losing its clout.

BRIAN COOLEY, CNET: The big companies don`t want to be on this show`s schedule, to say, OK, early January every year, we have to have the big product for the year. But I haven`t seen one new product that is a thing that we`ve never seen before, a behavior we`ve never seen before, and that`s what everyone looks for. And this show gets a knock when it doesn`t have one of those.

SIMON: But for smaller companies and startups, CES is still perceived as a must. Xybotyx is making its debut this year, and it makes a product that turns your iPhone into a robot.

DANIEL MCSHAN, XYBOTYX: Well, we`re just interested in being here and getting exposure, and I think, you know, the less other products` announcements there are, the better off for us.

SIMON: Despite the changes in the industry, CES still remains a very powerful draw, with more than 2,700 companies coming to the event -- Dan Simon, CNN, Las Vegas.


AZUZ: All right. Before we go, we have for you the latest round of man versus beast --


AZUZ (voice-over): -- the staring contest. Three-year-old Sophia (ph) went face to face with this lion at a New Zealand zoo. Unfortunately, she started the contest during his feeding time, and it looks like he wants to add her to the menu.

Look at Sophia (ph), though. She barely flinched, and she never backed away from the glass. It might be that Sophia`s superior staring skills scared him, although if the lion gets intimidated by a three-year old, we guess he`s just a fraidy cat.


AZUZ: Or maybe he was made that she was hogging his attention because, after all, he`s probably used to being the "mane" event. Thankfully, we have video. Otherwise, if we told you a little girl stood up to the king of the jungle, you`d think we were "lion."

We`ll be back tomorrow with more CNN Student News. See you then.