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Reps probe N220bn unremitted gas fund

APC plans violent overthrow of govt, says PDP

...fault Okonjo-Iweala on N24bn missing pension fund TORDUE SALEM AND WOLE OLADIMEJI

Tambuwal

Vol. 4 N0. 813

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he House of Representatives has given its Committee on Gas the mandate to investigate the alleged non-remittance

of N220bn accruing from the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas Limited, NLNG, to the Federation Account CONTINUED ON PAGE 5>>

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Senate raises alarm S over mass killings

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GEORGE OJI ABUJA

…Ekweremadu calls for decentralisation of police

enators yesterday raised the alarm over general insecurity across the country, likening the prevailing condition to a civil situation. The lawmakers lamented that human lives had become increasingly very cheap, impunity had become the norm, while killings and attacks on the lives of the citizens with daily CONTINUED ON PAGE 2>>

L-R: First Lady of Namibia, Madam Penehupifo Pohamba; President Goodluck Jonathan; President Hifikepunye Pohamba of Namibia and First Lady, Dame Patience Jonathan, during the arrival of President Jonathan in Windhoek, Namibia, yesterday. PHOTO: NAN

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Immigration tragedy: Job seekers sue FG, demand N528bn damages Victim yet to be identified in Niger State x

Gunmen shoot policeman at Lagos airport

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Three-quarters of confab delegates accredited –Secretary Bars use of offensive language

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National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Job seekers sue FG, demand N528bn damages ISE-OLUWA IGE, PRISCILLA DENNIS, DENNIS AGBO AND JAMES ABRAHAM

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ast Saturday’s tragic recruitment exercise into the Nigerian Immigration Service has taken a new dimension as four of the aggrieved applicants have instituted a class action suit against the Federal Government before a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja. They are seeking an order declaring the exercise as illegal and compelling Federal Government to pay N528, 271, 650,000 to all the applicants who participated in the test nationwide. The aggrieved applicants are Charles Ugwuonye, Friday Danlami, Chinedu Onwuka and Samson Ojo. The exercise, which became rowdy following illpreparations by the Interior Ministry ended in chaos and stampedes at various centres, causing deaths of at least 19 applicants nationwide with several dozens injured. Specifically, the applicants are seeking the court’s order to refund to each applicant that ap-

plied for the job the N1,000 collected from them and another N1m to each applicant who are still alive while N50m damages is awarded in favour of each of the families of those who died during the exercise. The plaintiffs brought the application under Sections 33, 34 and 44 of the 1999 Constitution (amended) and the equivalent articles of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Right Act. Joined as respondents in the suit are the Interior Minister, the Ministry of Interior, the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, the Nigerian Immigration Service and its ComptrollerGeneral, David Parradang. They had, among other things, asked the court to declare the recruitment illegal and restrain the NIS from spending the money realised from the exercise. They also want the court to declare that the conduct or the execution of the recruitment as illegal, unwarranted, in violation of the applicants’ fundamental rights to life, right to protection from inhuman and degrading treatment, right to dignity of the human person, right against

discrimination on the basis of the circumstances of birth and right against unlawful taking of the property of a person; under Sections 33, 34, 42 and 44 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999, (as amended), and the equivalent Articles of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights Act. The applicants had prayed for an order declaring that the respondents,

port back to the Senate. The senators also condemned the incessant killings occasioned by the simultaneous multiple attacks on communities and villages. Gemade, in his lead presentation of the motion, said the Senate was alarmed that in tracking such incidents within the middle belt area, more attacks had resulted into enormous loss of lives and property and had also caused thousands to flee their homes and abandon their farmlands sometimes at the peak of the farming season. In Plateau State, Gemade noted that between May 29, 2011 and January 31, 2012 alone there were 1,131 deaths reported. He said the relative peace and calm that had returned to the state for several months based on the collective resolve of the people to sustain the peace was sadly interrupted on November 26, 2013, by simultaneous attacks on four communities and villages of Tatu, Raw-

uru, Bok and Dorang, leaving 45 people dead including a family of seven -father, mother and five children, stressing that most of the poor victims were infants, children and women. He stated that these wellplanned and organised simultaneous attacks professionally unleashed on vulnerable villages came less than 48 hours after the Governor of Plateau State, Jonah Jang, publicly raised an alarm over the plot to attack the state beginning with the 2013 Christmas season. He noted that these serial attacks had persisted in the last two months, covering parts of Riyom, Barkin Ladi, Jos South, Mangu, Bokkos, Wase and Shendam Local Government Areas of Plateau State with massive destruction of lives on an average of five persons per day and properties worth hundreds of billions of naira comparable to the civil war years. He also noted that between the 21st of May 21,

particularly the Minister of Interior and the NIS Comptroller-General owed them the duty of honesty and candor regarding the true purpose and intention behind the recruitment. The court was also asked to declare that the respondents, particularly the Minister of Interior and the Comptroller-General had a duty to superintend the exercise in a safe and healthy manner with due consider-

ation to lives and wellbeing of those who applied for or participated in the recruitment. The applicants also want an order declaring that the NIS 2014 recruitment exercise was carried out in a manner that was motivated by greed and corrupt intentions and without any realistic plan to offer the applicants employment. Also, they want an order declaring that the respon-

dents do not have the power to appropriate any funds raised by them from the exercise, even if not otherwise illegal, but must remit such funds to the Federation Account. The applicants want court to grant an order of interim injunction restraining the respondents from spending any of the funds raised from the recruitment exercise and an order of perpetual injuncCONTINUED ON PAGE 4>>

L-R: Director-General, Nigerian Economic Summit Group, Mr. Frank Nweke Jr; Group Managing Director, UBA Plc, Mr. Phillips Oduoza; Minister of Education, Mr. Nyesom Wike and President, NESG, Mr. Foluso Phillips, at the 20th summit in Abuja yesterday.

Senate raises alarm over unending mass killings CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1

massacres were becoming more daring and horrific. The lawmakers expressed these concerns while contributing to a motion on the recent killings in Plateau, Benue and Kaduna states as well as other parts of the North Central zone of the country. The motion, which was entitled, “Recent attacks and killings in Plateau, Benue, Kaduna, and other parts of the Central Nigeria areas,” was jointly sponsored by Senators Barnabas Gemade (Benue North-East), George Akume (Benue North-West), Gyang Pwajok (Plateau North), Joshua Dariye (Plateau Central), Victor Lar (Plateau South) and Nenadi Esther Usman (Kaduna South). At the end of the general debate on the motion, the lawmakers resolved to mandate its committees on interior, security and intelligence, defence and army and police affairs to undertake a fact-finding mission of the affected areas and re-

2013 and March 6, 2014, villages such as Kuka, Magama, Karkashi, Bua, Baracks, Riwam Doka, Timshab and Yamu in Plateau South Senatorial Constituency came under vicious attacks with massive destruction of lives and property worth billions of naira. The lawmaker said the Senate was disturbed that these attacks also took place on January 5, 2014 at Shonong Village of Bachi District, the same area where Senator Dalyop Gyang Dantong lost his life in Riyom Local Government Area. Thirty four persons reportedly lost their lives and 13 injured. In the case of Kaduna, Gemade said the Senate was also worried that in Kaduna State, it had been rough for the people of Maroa and Attakad communities of Kaura Local Government Area and bordering Plateau State as about 40 people were killed in two separate raids including a soldier and policeman. According to him, the daring raid of

February 3, 2014, brought the total number of such invasions to 11 with about 100 deaths. At least, five villages in Mayit, Kirim, Danti, Zangang were razed and over 10,000 people displaced. “At least not less than 114 villagers were killed in the night of Friday, March 14, 2014; when heavily armed men entered three villages of Ugwar Sankwai, Ugwan Gata and Chenshyi of Kaduna State, gunning down residents burning down all the houses in sight.” According to him, “Survivors and eye- witnesses’ testimonies repeatedly raise allegations of duplicity or dereliction of duty by bad eggs within the security agancies and doubts as to the capacity of the agencies to provide the much-needed security by guaranteeing the right to protection and defending the defenceless regardless of religion or ethnicity, resulting into the gradual return of mutual suspicion amongst peace loving communities across ethnic and religious di-

vides.” Gemade stated that in Benue State such incessant attacks were carried out on communities in Guma, Gwer West, Makurdi, Agatu, Kwande, Logo and Katsina Ala local government areas, noting that in Ndzorov Ward of Guma Local Government Area, 21 reported deaths and N3bn worth of property were destroyed in villages such as Ahor Akuroko, Tse Akaahena, Tse Ormeagh, Tse Jija, Tse Bako, Tse Iorhon. This was also as the lawmaker explained that in Mbagwa and Nyiev wards 44 people were killed and over N5bn worth of property destroyed in Tse Kyuer, Tse Agbe, “Yogbo, Tse Kulayemen, Tse Ama, Kpanye, Agela, Uhembe Ikpev, Agahar, Gbor Gyo Ubii, Hule Zem, Shan Avungu, Bern Walu Shange, Akor, Gbayange, Chenge, and Ahoile. He stated that even more “ferocious” attacks were launched in the following villages in Gwer West LoCONTINUED ON PAGE 5


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Photo News

Friday, March 21, 2014

L-R: Deputy Regional Director, South-South, National Mirror, Alhaji Ganiyu Kayode Balogun Jr.; Rivers State Police Commissioner, Mr. Tunde Ogunsakin and Regional Director, South-South, Mr. Fidelis Owoamanam, during a visit to Ogunsakin in Port Harcourt, on Wednesday.

L-R: Head, Corporate Services Division, Nigerian Stock Exchange, Mr. Bola Adeeko; President/ CEO, Transnational Corporation of Nigeria Plc, Mr. Obinna Ufudo; Chief Executive Officer, NSE, Mr. Oscar Onyema; Minister of Power, Prof. Chinedu Nebo and Executive Director, Market Operations and Technology, NSE, Mr. Ade Bajomo at the bell ringing ceremony on the floor of exchange yesterday in Lagos.

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

L-R: Director, Government Relations, P&G Nigeria, Temitope Iluyemi; Head, Dentistry Division, Federal Ministry of Health, Dr. Bimpe Adebiyi and Brand Operations and Integration Manager, Oral B, Titi Adetunji, at the World Oral Health Day conference in Abuja, yesterday.

L-R: Senior Brand Manager, Nigerian Breweries Plc, Mr. Ita Bassey; artiste, Olamide; Brand Manager, Mr. Obabiyi Fagade; another artiste, Dr. Sid and Corporate Media & Brand PR Manager, Mr. Edem Vindah, during the Star Music Trek Artistes Sign on Party in Lagos.

National News

Three-quarters of confab delegates accredited –Secretary

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o fewer than 370 delegates to the ongoing National Conference have so far been accredited, the Conference Secretary, Dr Valerie Azinge, has said. Azinge said yesterday in Abuja that “about threequarter of the delegates have so far been accredited for the conference.” She said that all the delegates had not yet been accredited because they had been coming in trickles. The secretary expressed confidence that they would all be registered without any hitch. Azinge could not immediately confirm if there was any nomination yet from All Progressives Congress, APC, and All Progressive Grand Alliance, APGA. Mr. Akpandem James, the conference Assistant Secretary, Media and Communications, also said that the secretariat was yet to receive any letter from APC rejecting the party’s participation. “Officially, there are 492 accredited delegates to the

conference,” James said. According to him, the secretariat could not determine the status of APC’s participation as it were. He said that the secretariat accredited only the names of delegates sent from the Presidency. It will be recalled that APC had objected the timing of the conference and declared it would not participate as a political party. However, all the party’s state governors sent in nominees representing their states. Similarly, an APC chieftain, Chief Segun Osoba, is participating as a delegate of the Former Governors’ Forum. Meanwhile, some of the delegates have embarked on consultations with various stakeholders, to take positions ahead of the resumption of plenary on Monday. A cross section of the delegates representing various interest groups told NAN yesterday in Abuja that their consultations would ensure robust debates. Mr. Yinka Odumakin,

spokesman of the Afenifere Renewal Group, ARG, a panYoruba interest group, said that it was necessary for members to go back to the various stakeholders to collate their positions. “Different stakeholders are having different meetings. As we are resuming plenary on Monday, people are trying to find positions so that we can hit the ground running. “So, people are putting together secretariats, their support staff, their technical teams to back them up with facts and figures,” he said Dr Abiola Afolabi, Executive Director, Women Advocates Research and Documentation Centre, WARDC, said the centre had commenced consultation with stakeholders to include the view of the women when plenary resumed. According to her, the centre has commended consultations in all the six geopolitical zones, on various thematic areas. She said that recommendations from the consultations would be compiled

and submitted to the leadership of the conference to enhance the outcome of the exercise. Abdullahi Abdulmajeed, President of the National Youth Council of Nigeria, NYCN, said that the council had set up research teams to compile documents as they relate to youths. NYCN is the umbrella organisation for the Nigerian youths. “At the youth roundtable, the current state of the youth will be extensively analysed, with our aspirations and perception about the Nigerian project and our Nige-

rian dream well articulated. “At the end, a national youth development index will be produced from our findings with the goal of integrating it into the conference agenda,” he said. In another development, the Conference has barred delegates from using offensive and insulting languages during sittings at the plenary or in committees. It also barred delegates from assaulting or obstructing one another within the Conference Room or precincts of the Conference. These were contained in The National Confer-

ence Procedure Rules 2014 released yesterday and obtained by our correspondent in Abuja. The rules also warned delegates from assaulting or obstructing any officer of the Conference while in the execution of his duty. The rules said any delegate found wanting risks suspension for a maximum of 14 days. The rules provide that “No portion of these rules shall be suspended except by a vote of two-third majority of the delegates sitting and voting at the particular time.”

Job seekers sue FG, demand N528bn damages CONTINUED FROM PAGE 2

tion restraining the respondents from spending any of the funds raised from the recruitment exercise. Meanwhile, the Niger State government said yesterday that the corpse of the second person, a female, who died during the stampede at the venue of the test in the state was yet to be identified at the Minna General Hospital.

The Secretary to the State Government, Alhaji Saidu Idris Ndako, made the disclosure when he received the Minister of State for Agriculture, Hajia Asabe Ahmed, on behalf of Governor Babangida Aliyu during a condolence visit to the state. He, however, explained that efforts were being to locate the family of the deceased to claim the corpse. Ndako stated that be-

cause the victim died before reaching the hospital, her body was also not officially registered, especially, since she did not die on admission in the hospital. He said that two persons died during the stampede and the 14 others who sustained various degrees of injuries had all been treated and discharged, except one of the victims, who was still receiving medical attention.


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Reps probe N220bn unremitted gas fund CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1

from 2004 till date. The mandate followed a motion sponsored by Hon. Aminu Suleiman (APCKano) under Matters of Urgent Public Importance. He claimed that the NLNG had disobeyed and breached Section 162(1) of the 1999 Constitution by not remitting funds due to the government within the period under review. Section 162(1) of the 1999 Constitution as amended makes it mandatory for revenues collected by the Federal Government to be remitted into the Federation Account. According to the lawmaker, “Non-remittance of funds accruing to NLNG Bonny from 2004 till date has adversely affected the Federation Account to the detriment of federal, states and local governments. “The unpatriotic actions of those in charge of the NLNG Bonny from 2004 till date have resulted in loss of huge revenue that ought to be shared to all tiers of the government from the Federation Account for both recurrent and capital development. “The non-remittance of funds that accrued to NLNG Bonny to the Federation Account from 2004 till date has badly affected all critical sectors of the Nigerian economy and constitute an economic crime”. The motion was summarily referred to the Gas Resources Committee for necessary legislative actions without debate. The NLNG had recently said that the Federal Government is raking in over N220bn in corporate income tax annually from its activities. Speaking in Abuja on the occasion of the Nigeria’s Milestone 3,000th NLNG Cargo Export, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Babs Omotowa, noted that Rivers State Government and Bonny Local Government earn over N6bn per annum from personal income tax, PIT, and N88m yearly as tenement rate. “Nigeria now owns $14bn of assets on Bonny Island; the country has earned $13bn in dividends, another $11bn earned in feed gas sales revenue, over $10bn expenditure in local economy on goods, services and salaries of thousands of staff employed.

“Corporate income tax will exceed N220bn per annum, by far the highest in Nigeria and sub-Sahara Africa,” Omotowa said. Meanwhile, both the Coordinating Minister for the Economy and Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi OkonjoIweala, and members of the Public Accounts Committee of the House yesterday traded words over the alleged missing N24bn police pension fund. While the committee faulted the claim by the minister, she insisted that the money was not missing as being claimed by the lawmakers. The Chairman, House Committee on Public Accounts, Hon. Solomon Adeola Olamilekan, at the resumed hearing on the matter which was attended by the Director-General of Pension Transitional Arrangement Department, PTAD, Mrs. Nellie Mayshak, and her team; the representatives of the Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation and others, insisted that the N24bn was actually missing. The chairman, however, challenged the finance minister to a public debate over the matter, maintaining that she was either ignorant of the facts of the transactions or trying to mislead the nation. According the chairman, “We invited you people to appear before this honorable committee on this serious transactions involving tax payers’ money running to billions of naira and the new DG of Pension Transitional Arrangement Department was honest enough to say that she just took over and that there was no document to back up the disbursement of the N24bn. “We further requested for more documentation in order to get to the root of the matter only for the minister to come up with a press statement that the money was not missing. “We challenge her to a public debate where all the media houses will be present and will be on live on all television stations, so, Nigerians will know whether or not the N24bn was not missing. “All these documents being brandished around in defense of the missing N24bn are fraudulent, forged and fake which cannot stand the test of the time, they have

nothing to do with the missing money. “Come to think of it, the minister claimed that the money was kept in an account, in which bank and how much was the interest since it was kept in the bank? She also claimed that the money had been paid into the treasury, where is the official receipt issued to that effect?”

The committee resolved that the statements of account detailing the flows and outflows of the account in which the money was lodged at the First Bank of Nigeria Plc between 2009 and 2012 should be provided and these must be duly signed by the bank as its officials might be invited by the committee to give evidence on operations of the

account. The committee directed that all the relevant documents on the money to convince the committee that it was not missing should be brought before it on Wednesday. A Director in the Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation, Mr. Salau Suberu, had earlier told the committee that following

a directive that all unspent money should be returned to the treasury by December 31, there was a mop up on December 31, 2012 in the account of the police pension fund and that in the operation about N29bn was mopped up and that the amount was diverted to finance other capital projects, the claim which the committee dismissed.

L-R: Son of the late Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe, Bamidele; Oyo State Governor Abiola Ajimobi; former Speaker, House of Representatives, Hon. Aminu Masari; former Head of State, Gen. Muhammadu Buhari and Chairman, All Progressives Congress, Chief Bisi Akande, at Ibadan airport, shortly PHOTO: NAN after attending a lecture at the University of Ibadan, yesterday.

Senate raises alarm over unending mass killings CONTINUED FROM PAGE 2

cal Government; Sengev, Gbenda, Tongov, Tyouhater, Injaha, Nyamshi, with a death toll of 88 people and over Nlbn worth of property destroyed. “The most recent attacks in Gwer West and Guma local government areas also occurred on February 20 and 21, 2014 and left over 30 people dead, including a 70-year-old woman and an estimated 100,000 people sacked and displaced while the personal house of paramount ruler of the Tiv nation, Dr. Akawe Torkwula, was burnt down at Tse.” Gemade said the increasing sense of disconnection with local communities needed to be overcome and reduced by a reconsideration of the current military strategy because identity politics of the civilian domain was growing more divisive as the military was constantly relied upon to use deadly force to deal with local crimes or uprisings and trans- border attacks in most parts of Nigeria. The Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, who presided over the proceedings, called for the decentralisation of the Nigeria Police Force.

Ekweremadu said this would ensure effective security for the people as was obtainable in other federations of the world. He said that the present system of policing in Nigeria made it difficult for provision of effective security for the lives and property of the people. He said it was imperative for the Federal Government to consider the need for the creation of a well-coordinated and regulated police at the states and local government levels. “We run a federal system of government and it is completely unacceptable for us to have a federal system and for us to also have a centralised police. “We must be able to provide sufficient police personnel that should be at least be one policeman per 100 metres away. “And this can only be achieved if we decentralise our police, ensuring that we have state police and possibly local police that is wellcoordinated and regulated. “The time has come for us to reflect on this and see how we can provide efficient security for our people,” he said. Meanwhile, the Defence Headquarters said yesterday

that the current military offensive against Boko Haram insurgents in the North-East had yielded successes. Director, Defence Information, DDI, Maj.-Gen. Chris Olukolade, stated this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Maiduguri. He was speaking when he accompanied the Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Kenneth Minimah, and the Chief of Air Staff, Air ViceMarshal Adesola Amosu, on a routine visit to Maiduguri. “The military is operating in the Sambisa forest, in hills and other forests around. “The idea is to make sure that the insurgents do not have a camp where they can organise their crimes like before. “Unlike some months back, the insurgents are now on the run,’’ he said. Olukolade said that the attempted attack on Giwa Barracks, Maiduguri, by the insurgents was a sign of weakness. “You will observe that they have stopped soft spot attacks for some time now. “Most of the attacks now are daring, like the attempted barrack attacks, because they know that there time was up,” he said.

Olukolade said that the visit was to assess the troops’ operations in the campaign against insurgency. “The visit is to assess the operation of troops on the ground. They have always visited to see things on ground,” he said. On a date to end insurgency, Olukolade said: “We cannot set a target on ending terrorism in Nigeria because terrorism has a unique character.” “Terrorism is like armed robbery, prostitution and other crimes, which have been on for long time. “These cannot be wiped out completely in the society, but you can bring them down to the lowest level where they cannot affect social and economic life. “Our aim is to reduce terrorism to the lowest level where it will not be able to disrupt social and economic lives of the people.’’ Olukolade also faulted claims that some military commanders had failed to act on urgent information due to non-approval by their high command. “It is not true that commanders will have to wait for permission before acting on urgent information on terrorist attacks or movements.


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Friday March 21, 2014

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

No more kid gloves treatment for terrorism -Jonathan ROTIMI FADEYI ABUJA

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resident Goodluck Jonathan on Thursday said that the Federal Government would no longer treat the issue of terrorism with kid gloves. Speaking in Windhoek, Namibia, during bilateral talks with President Hifike-

punye Pohamba at the Conference Hall of the State House, Jonathan stated that the Federal Government had decided to be more forceful in curtailing the activities of the Boko Haram group that is unleashing terror in some states of the North-East. He solicited the support of his Namibian counterpart and other

leaders in stamping out terrorism globally. He said: “The issue of global terror is worrisome and in Nigeria, we believe that a terror attack on anywhere in the world is a terror attack on everyone. “It may be more in one country compare to the other, for instance, in the North Eastern parts of

Nigeria, three states out of 36 states, we are having incidence of terror. “Initially, we handled it with kid gloves, but now we have decided to be a little more forceful because we must thrash out these terror groups. “We must not allow it to continue to slow down economic growth in that part of the country.”

According to the president, “With the terror attacks in that part of the country, the rest of the country feel it because Nigerians live everywhere. “In these other parts, there is always the fear that if you do not tackle it, it will infiltrate in these other parts. “We will work together to ensure that terror attack is stamped out globally, and in Nigeria, we are committed.’’ While congratulating Pohamba and the people of Namibia on the occasion of the 24th independence anniversary of the country, he also expressed appreciation to his host for the support of his country to ensure the election of Nigeria as non-permanent member of the United Nations, UN.

He also called for the restructuring and democratisation of the UN Security Council whereby other continents, including Africa, are allowed to have membership. Jonathan stressed that Africa should be given at least two seats. “I also believe in your philosophy that, if by God’s grace, the UN Security Council will be restructured, that is, if the superpowers will allowed it to be restructured, Africa should be considered at least for two positions to represent the interest of African people,” he said. The president urged African leaders to promote intra-African trade for jobs creation and the development of the continent.

Mast collapses, kills 2, injures 3 in C’River

Members of staff of the Ministry of Water Resources and other stakeholders during a road walk to mark this year’s World Water Day celebration in Abuja, yesterday. PHOTO: ROTIMI OSASONA

Power: FG inaugurates privatisation monitoring panel

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he Federal Government on Thursday in Abuja inaugurated a committee to address issues arising from the privatisation of the nation’s power sector. The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Power, Mr. Godknows Igali, said this when he briefed State House correspondents on the outcome of a meeting of stakeholders in the power sector. He said the committee was inaugurated by Vice President Namadi Sambo on behalf of President

Goodluck Jonathan. “At the end of the very successful privatisation effort, obviously a number of issues will continue to come up. “What has happened today is that the Vice President on behalf of the President inaugurated a standing committee that will from time to time address issues that come up,” he said. Igali noted that the inauguration of the committee had become imperative in view of the fact that government monopoly on the pow-

er sector had been moved to the private sector. He said the committee would be looking into all technical and financial challenges facing the sector. He stated that the committee, which would be reporting directly to the Vice President, would be chaired by him, the permanent secretary. He said members of the committee were the Director-General of the Bureau for Public Enterprises, BPE, Chairman of Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, NERC, Chair-

man, Presidential Task Force on Power and representative of the Minister of Finance. Others were the Accountant-General of the Federation, two Special Advisers to the President in the office of the Vice President, bulk trader and other representatives of the distribution and generation companies. Igali gave the assurance that the committee would not interfere with the activities of the new owners of the Power Holding Company of Nigeria, PHCN successor companies.

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telecommunication mast erected in a residential area in Odukpani, near Calabar, Cross River State, has collapsed, killing two persons and injuring three others. The fallen mast also destroyed several houses on its path on March 19. Eyewitnesses told journalists on Thursday that 11-year-old Miss Lawrencia Asuquo and businessman, Adindu Fynecountry, from Abia State, died on the spot when struck by the mast. The mast, it was gathered, fell shortly after a brief stormy rain. Secretary of Odukpani Local Government Area, Mr. Eyet Eyibio, said: “We are yet to conduct a study of the situation. We will come out with a comprehensive report on the disaster.

“But I will describe the incident as quite unfortunate. “Relevant departments of the council will do a study of the disaster in concert with other agencies of government and the mast owners and take steps to forestall recurrence. “We will also plan a remedial measure that will help to ameliorate the plight of the victims.” Owners of the mast declined to comment but top sources in the company confirmed the incident, saying they had sent emissaries to the families of the victims. “This is to ensure that they have temporary palliative while awaiting instructions from the company’s headquarters in Lagos,” the source said.

APC plans violent overthrow of govt, says PDP OBIORA IFOH ABUJA

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he Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, on Thursday accused the All Progressives Congress, APC, of planning to forcefully overthrow the government of President Goodluck Jonathan. The party said it is alerting the nation that the ‘Plan B’ of the APC is to use insurgency to unleash un-

precedented mayhem when it loses the 2015 general election and forcefully take over power. The PDP, in a statement by its Publicity Secretary, Chief Olisa Metuh, said that it has evidence of meetings held outside the shores of the country in pursuit of the ignoble objective. Metuh, in the statement, said the unfortunate comparison of a democratically-elected government with

military governments in the past by the APC was a tacit acknowledgment that the opposition party was planning to take Nigeria back to dictatorship. “The APC has never left the nation in doubt of its preference. It wants a return to barefaced tyranny, to dictatorship as previously unleashed on the nation by a hue in its top leadership. “But Nigerians have

handed the party a shocker - we have crossed the Red Sea and shall never go back to Egypt,” the statement said. The PDP said it was a preposterous distortion of facts and history to compare the Jonathan presidency to either Gen. Yakubu Gowon or Gen. Sani Abacha, even though the three of them come from the minority ethnic group. According to the state-

ment, the two former heads of state were unelected and operated a purely undiluted military dictatorship that brooked no opposition. “Under the current administration of President Jonathan, the wheel of democracy, together with its immense benefits, has turned full circle, giving Nigerians all liberties, an opportunity that the opposition has unfortunately applied so indecently to

hurl all manner of abuses on the president,” it added. Restating that the plan of the APC is to destabilise the government and balkanise Nigeria, the PDP insisted that “the party had planned to use insurgency, which ranks high in its Janjaweed ideology to overthrow a democratically-elected government of President Jonathan, but has been put under an effective check.”


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Friday, March 21, 2014

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Court stops Edo teachers’ assessment SEBASTINE EBHUOMHAN BENIN

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he National Industrial Court of Nigeria, NIC, in Abuja Division has granted four secondary school teach-

ers an injunction stopping Edo State Government from conducting assessment test for public school teachers on Saturday, March 22, 2014. National Mirror reliably gathered that the

injunction via Suit No. NICN/BEN/07/2014 was obtained on Friday evening on the heels of a lecture Governor Adams Aliyu Oshiomhole delivered in Abuja, which dissected the rot in educa-

tion sector in Nigeria. The court papers that were exclusively made available to our correspondent listed the claimants as Messrs Okoekpen Emmanuel, Ebare Sunday, Bola Sunday and

Osayande Samuel. The defendants are: Edo State Government, Attorney-General of Edo State, Teachers’ Registration Council of Nigeria, Prof. Dennis Agbonlahor, Mrs. Yemi Keri (Head of Edo State Information and Communication Technology Agency), Head of Service of Edo State, Ministry of Basic Education of Edo State and Ministry of Higher Education of Edo State, in the above order of appearance. In his ruling, Court President, Justice B. A. Adejumo, said, “I have considered the balance of evidence and come to the conclusion that the claimants/applicants may suffer irreparable loses if this application is refused while the 1st defendant will have noth-

ing irreparable to lose if this application is granted. “The 1st defendant may still conduct the said competency test after the hearing and determination of the motion on notice herein. In view of all the above, it is my considered ruling that order is as prayed.” Justice Adejumo ordered that the status quo ante, as at March 20, be maintained and assigned the motion on notice to Justice Auwal Ibrahim to hear, with a directive that the substantive matter be tried in Enugu. In his reaction, counsel to the claimants/ applicants, Mr. Afolabi Olayiwola, hailed the judiciary for always being on the side of citizens that have nowhere to go for justice.

Katsina killings: Eight women deliver babies at victims’ camp Members of Concerned Electricity Consumers Protection Forum protesting over non-availability of crazy bills at Oke Ira, Ogba, Lagos, yesterday. PHOTO:NAN

Sylva, others foil EFCC’s attempt to re-arraign them ISE-OLUWA IGE ABUJA

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he Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, yesterday lost in its bid to re-arraign former governor of Bayelsa State, Chief Timpre Sylva and six others over conspiracy and involvement in alleged stealing of public fund totaling N19.2billion. The ex-governor, who has been in and out of court, and other accused persons in the matter yesterday brought separate applications challenging the jurisdiction of the high court to entertain the fraud case. They had contended that assuming without conceding that there was fraud, the alleged N19.2bn alleged proceeds of fraud unarguably belonged to the Bayelsa State Government, which factual circumstances clothed the high court in the state with the jurisdiction to hear the suit. They further argued that the issue of jurisdiction

constitutes a threshold matter which must be resolved before any further step, including arraignment, could take place. The other accused persons charged to stand trial in the case are Francis Okokuro , Gbenga Balogun, Samuel Ogbuku, Marlin Maritime Ltd, Eat Catering Services Ltd and Haloween Blue Construction and Logistics Ltd. Besides, one of the accused persons, Mr. Gbenga Balogun, has also filed another application seeking an order of the court disqualifying, Mr. Rotimi Jacobs, the private prosecutor, who has the fiat of the EFCC to prosecute the accused persons in the matter. Gbenga is contending that Jacobs (SAN) had involved himself in what he called professional misconduct by bringing an application to forfeit a property belonging to one of the accused persons in the case, when he was in knowledge of the same property being a subject of litigation in another suit.

He specifically alleged that both the EFCC and its private prosecutor had deliberately suppressed information about the property to deceive the court and obtain the order of forfeiture by fraud. However, the EFCC has already indicated intention to withdraw the ex parte application for the forfeiture of assets of Sylva. Meanwhile, the application was not moved as Justice Ahmed Mohammed adjourned the matter to May 16, for hearing of Gbenga’s motion. The motion dated 17th March, 2014, according to Mr. Chukwuma representing Gbenga in the case, was brought pursuant to rules 15(1) (2) (3) of the rules of professional conduct for legal practitioners 2007, and is seeking for, “an order of the court discontinuing the legal representation of learned counsel Rotimi Jacobs for the complainant as the prosecution in the matter. He also wants “a declaration that the conduct of the learned counsel, Rotimi

Jacobs, is in direct contravention of the rules of professional conduct for legal practitioners. Balogun is also praying the court for, “an order declining jurisdiction to entertain the ex parte application of the complainant dated March 10, 2014 with suit no. FHC/ABJ/ CS/188/14 as the court is functus officio. In a 13-paragraph affidavit in support of the motion on notice deposed to by Gbenga Balogun, he stated that the property at plot 1181, Thaba Tseka Crescent, off IBB Way, British Village, Wuse II, Abuja, belonging to Marlin Maritime Ltd, had been a subject of litigation in suit no FHC/ ABJ/CS/834/2012 before Court 7 of the Federal High Court, Abuja. He added that a copy of the court’s ruling dated July 11, 2013 was attached and marked as exhibit “A”, just as he disclosed that there were pending appeals at the Court of Appeal, Abuja in appeal no CA/A/413/2013.

JAMES DANJUMA KATSINA

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ight women that were displaced by the recent attack by gunmen in Katsina State have delivered babies at the Faskari Mode Primary School where they are camped. The attack, which left about 117 people dead, had also seen 1,915 community members displaced during the incident that had occurred within two days. The Transition Council Chairman of Faskari Local Government, Isiyaku Ahmad, disclosed this on Thursday when a committee set up by the state government to look into the attack, along with officials of National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA, visited the camp. Ahmad said the new-born babies and their mothers were in good health, adding that a more than 1,000 victims, including women and children, were camped in the school. He said the camp was being managed by Faskari Council Area, State Emergency Relief Agency, SEMA, NEMA, and other voluntary organisations like the Red Cross and religious groups. The Northwest Coordina-

tor of NEMA, Musa Illallah, said items donated by the agency included 400 bags of rice, 200 bags of maize, 800 pieces of blanket and another set of mats, as well as 600 pieces of cups. Illallah said other items donated were 500 pieces of mosquito nets, 200 pieces of mattresses, 800 pieces of clothing materials, as well as 600 pieces of buckets, spoons and plates each. In addition, he said 40 cartons of milk, 40 cartons of bounvita, 40 jerry cans of palm oil and another of vegetables oils, 15 bags of sugar, 40 cartons of tomato cans and 300 cartons of Indomie noodles were also donated to victims. Illalah said NEMA had supplied a water tanker to facilitate water supply at the camp, and that the agency’s delegation for distribution of the supporting materials was led by the Director of Relief and Rehabilitation, Mr. Edumezue Eze. In his address, the General Manager of SEMA, Suleiman Rawayau, said 117 persons were killed during the incidents, while 380 and 707 households were displaced from the affected communities in Sabuwa and Faskari local government areas.


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South West

UNILAG matriculates 3,548 DLI students

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he University of Lagos on Thursday matriculated 3,548 students of the institution’s Distance Learning Institute (DLI). The Vice-Chancellor of the institution, Prof. Rahamon Bello, at the occasion said that the 500-capacity E-Learning Resource Centre had been built as part of efforts to facilitate teaching and learning at the institute. Reports said that of the 6,360 candidates who applied for the programme for the 2012/2013 session to pursue various degree programmes only 3,548 were admitted. The newly matriculated students are to pursue studies in Business Administration, Accounting, Economics, Public Administration and Education/Mathematics among others. Bello said: “We have remained focused and committed to the philosophy and values of the founding fathers of this university since its inception in 1962/63.

“We are also committed to the current societal needs and global relevance. “The 500-capacity ELearning Resource Centre and the e-library had been incorporated into the library services of the institute. “These facilities are specifically designed and constructed to facilitate e-learning processes and procedures. “Rigorous efforts are also ongoing in writing, editing and reviewing all lecture modules with particular attention to quality of content and mode of delivery.” Bello said competent academic staff were being trained to inter-face with the students in a bid to reduce face-to-face interaction. He said the university is working towards consolidating its gains in Information and Communications Technology (ICT) through strategic partnership and collaboration at local and international levels.

Friday, March 21, 2014

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Gunmen shoot policeman at Lagos airport OLUSEGUN KOIKI

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police officer attached to the Hajj Camp of the Murtala Mohammed Airport, MMA, Lagos was yesterday shot at the Nigerian Aviation Handling Company, NAHCo, Plc area by unknown gunmen on a power bike. National Mirror learnt that the gunman had trailed the policeman who

was in mufti to the area before opening fire on him Reports said immediately the policeman was shot, the attackers fled in their power bike, living him in his pool of his blood. A source close to the scene of the incident said the officer was walking towards the access gate at the airport around 3:00pm when he was attacked. A medical doctor with the Port Health Public

Service one Dr. Alex-Okoh said she was actually inside an ambulance when the incident occurred and that she had to immediately pick up the victim in the ambulance to the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, LASUTH where he is currently receiving tratment. “I was inside an ambulance when I saw people running helter-skelter and when I came down from the ambulance, I saw a

man lying in his pool of blood. People were just looking at him, but I had to carry him inside the ambulance to LASUTH.” Okoh said. However, when our correspondent visited the Police Hajj camp, the officers on duty said they could not comment on the matter as the Divisional Police Officer, DPO, was not on seat. Also, the Divisional Crime Officer, DCO, was said to be out of office.

Group to monitor Ekiti governorship election

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re l i g i o u s - b a s e d Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) Mac-Corps Chaplaincy Nigeria, has signified its interest in monitoring the forthcoming June 21, governorship election in Ekiti State. Mac- Corps Chaplaincy Nigeria is an extension of Mission for Africa Chaplaincy International in Clinton, Mississippi, United States (U.S.), but with offices in the 36 states of the country and Abuja. According to the organisation commandant in Ekiti State, Pastor Francis Jimoh, he said his men will monitor the election in all the 16 Local Government Area of the state. Jimoh counseled politicians to play the game according to the rule, adding that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) should do everything possible to conduct a free and fair election. According to him, his organisation will formally

apply to INEC to be listed among the Independent Election Monitors for the forthcoming election.

L-R: Programme Coordinator, Eko Free Health Mission, Dr. Dolapo Fasawe; Special Adviser on Health to Lagos State Governor, Dr. Yewande Adeshina; Deputy Governor, Mrs. Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire; Governor Babatunde Fashola and Commissioner for Health, Dr. Jide Idris, during the inauguration of Eko Free Health Mission in Lagos, yesterday. PHOTO: NAN

Nigerians will resist subsidy removal, says Labour, Civil Society GBENGA OGUNBUFUNMI

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s the federal and state governments renewed clamour for the removal of fuel and kerosene subsidy, organised labour and civil society organizations in the country have kicked against the move, saying it will further impoverished the masses who are already emasculated by grinding poverty in the land. Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke, recently gave hint about government plan to remove subsidies on both products during a conference on Nigerian Oil and Gas in Abuja. She said the subsidies being paid to marketers by the Federal Government on imported Premium Motor

Spirit and Kerosene were no longer sustainable. Also, the Forum of Commissioners of Finance from the 36 states of the federation shortly after their last monthly Federation Account Allocation Committee’s meeting in Abuja, passed a resolution for the removal of fuel subsidy. Mr. Timothy Odaah, who is the Commissioner of Finance representing Ebonyi State at FAAC, said the resolution would be sent to the Nigerian Governors’ Forum for transmission to President Goodluck Jonathan. He described the payment of fuel subsidy as a scam against some states, especially the less industrialised ones as it had made “the rich to become richer while the poor are becoming poorer.”

Reacting to the new government campaign yesterday, President of the Trade Union Congress of Nigeria, Mr. Bobboi Bala Kaigama warned government against taken such step, saying the organised labour and the civil society would resist it. Kaigama said Nigeria is blessed with a pool of knowledgeable people who know what is good for the country adding that some people can’t just sit down in their offices and take decisions that would impose further hardship on citizens. He added that if they (government) have forgotten so soon the episode of the January1, 2012 when Nigerians were on the streets to protest such unpopular decision, the people will again remind them by matching on the street.

The labour leader said the organised labour is not against privatisation or commercialisation, but that it must be done in a way that Nigerians are not at the receiving ends of such policy. “My advice is that if they refused to heed wise counsel, such policy would fail as Nigerians would hit the street once again.”Kaigama said. Also, human right activist and President Civil Right Congress (CHC) Shehu Sani, said Nigerians should give government the benefit of doubt since they have denied that there was plan to remove subsidy. Sani said if however, government decided to change gear and remove subsidy, then Nigerians would remind them of their promise.

The activist said what is going on now is lobby, the states want subsidy removed so that they can have a larger chunk of the cake to play with. He said that any government that is wise and sensitive to the plight of the masses would not succumb to such lobby more so at this period in time when the 2015 general election is around the corner. The activist added that it is laughable that Nigeria an oil exporting country remain a net importer of refined petroleum products, adding that with value added through refining Nigeria would derived additional benefits in terms of bye products for the local industry, improve its earning, conserve its scarce foreign exchange and create jobs for its people.


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Oral health becoming problematic -Traore SEKINAH LAWAL

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s Nigeria joins the rest of the world to mark the 2014 Oral Health Day on Thursday, experts have said that the issue is becoming a serious problem in Nigeria. Speaking during the media launch of ‘Project Smile’ on World Oral Health Day, an orthodontist, Dr. Amy Traore-Shumbusho, the initiator of the project, said that as a result of increase awareness about dental health, it has been discovered that more Nigerians are presenting varying degrees of dental flaws. According to her, today’s children will have more problems as a result of their diets full of sweet things. She said there is 300 per cent growth in dental flaws cases in the last one decade, based on the increase in the level of awareness on oral health. In what could be best described as a bigger and better platform opportunity for a free smile make over treatment to persons suffering stigma of flawed dentition, the project, she added, has been supported by Oral-B, an oral-healthcare brand from the stables of Procter & Gamble as

major sponsor of the 2014 edition. The initiative which seeks to impact the lives of those individuals unlucky to be affected by dental flaws that has had them stigmatised all their lives, is being redesigned to allow more contestants to stand the chance of being beneficiaries of the free smile make over programme worth millions of naira. She explained that the decision to partner with Oral-B as the major sponsor and Medplus was a strategic move to synergise efforts at making more Nigerians live in comfort, especially those who have flawed dentition but cannot afford the treatment programme. Also speaking at the event, Brand Operations and Integrations Manager, Oral-B, Afolarin Ojo, said the offer to partner on Project Smile came on the heels of ‘Oral-B Sharing Smiles’ campaign, a communitybased initiative designed to reach out to disadvantaged communities that cannot afford dental care products and consultation with dentists. He said the project has a denominator which is identified in view of FDI World Dental Federation theme for World Oral Health Day 2014- ‘Celebrating Healthy Smiles’.

Senator alleges police clampdown on opposition ABIODUN NEJO ADO EKITI

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ormer senator, Ayo Arise, has appealed to President Goodluck Jonathan and the Inspector-General of Police, IGP, Alhaji Muhammed Abubakar, to intervene in an alleged police clampdown on members of the opposition in Ekiti State. Arise, a Peoples’ Democratic Party, PDP chieftain, who represented Ekiti North Senatorial District between 2007 and 2011, accused the police in the state of doing the bidding of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC government, expressing fears that such portended danger and insecurity for members of the public. The former lawmaker, who spoke yesterday against the backdrop of

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Friday, March 21, 2014

the arrest of two of his aides over alleged trumped up charges by the government officials over the justconcluded continuous voter registration exercise in the state, accused the police of bias in the handling of the case. He lamented that the two aides were detained and charged to court by the police over what he described as spurious allegation from a state government official The aides were charged for allegedly attacking the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC office in Oye-Ekiti last Sunday during the exercise. He said: “It was curious that the police could go ahead and lock my aides up when they were the ones that complained that a government official was trying to manipulate the process.

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Fashola orders arrest of people who urinate, defecate in public FRANCIS SUBERU

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agos State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, on Thursday ordered officials of the Kick Against Indiscipline, KAI, to arrest persons who urinate or defecate in the public. Fashola gave the order at the commissioning/ inspection of Eko Free Health Mission at the Ojodu Local Council Development Area, LCDA. According to Fashola, the act of urinating in public places constitutes environmental pollution and contravenes the state’s environmental laws, as it posed great environmental and health hazards to the citizenry. The governor, who expressed concern about the

flagrant manner in which some residents urinate in public, said he sighted about five persons engaging in the act while driving through Shomolu and Ogba area on Thursday. He said: “If all of us can imbibe better habit at the home level, at the community level, and at the state and local government level, we would reduce the incident of poor health and sickness. From Shomolu to Ogba, a drive of less than 30 minutes, I saw about five residents urinating in public. “This is a violation of our sanitation law and I am using this opportunity to ask men and women of KAI to move out en masse and prosecute those who violate this law. It is unsanitary, unclean and it must stop. It is easier to contract

diseases in an unclean environment.” Fashola also urged Lagosians to shun unhealthy practices and adopt a healthy lifestyle, saying that environmental pollution contributes to illhealth. He said, “The biggest doctor you can have is prevention. If we all can imbibe better habits, it will reduce the incidence of ill-health. Citizens must be ready to take responsibility for their own healthcare to live a healthy life. If we chose to be cleaner than we are now, we would have a healthy environment than we have right now.” The governor said the free health mission was government’s way of showing its commitment to grassroots healthcare, assuring residents that

“this is what I will continue to do until the last day of my tenure.” He said since the commencement of the mission in the area on Monday, about 17,213 persons had been attended to by the health personnel deployed by the State Ministry of Health. He listed cases of hypertension, diabetes, tooth extraction, eye defects, hernia, counseling on reproductive health, HIV/ AIDS as some of the interventions provided to residents during the mission. Fashola said the mission couldn’t have been possible without the taxes paid by residents of the state, adding that it forms the commonwealth through which government could respond to the social needs of the people.

Ondo court sentences three to death HAKEEM GBADAMOSI AKURE

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high court sitting in Akure, Ondo State on Thursday sentenced three men to death by hanging over the kidnapping and murder of an 18-month-old infant identified as Rachael Akingboye. The condemned men are Olusegun Obaro, Jonah Lase and Theophilus Friday. Delivering his judgement, Justice Olusegun Odusola said the first and second accused persons were guilty of kidnapping and murder, while the third accused person was only found guilty of murder. According to the charge sheet, the three accused were brought under twocount charge of kidnapping and murdering Akingboye “contrary to and punishable under Section 3 of the Ondo State AntiKidnapping and Abduction Law 2010 and murder, contrary to Section 316 and punishable under Section 319 of the Criminal Code Laws of Ondo State”. They were said to have kidnapped the infant from her parent’s house at night at Ikorigho area in Igbokoda on June 17, 2011. The accused were said to have dumped the lifeless

body of the baby near her parent’s residence after removing the little girl’s right

portions of her eye, ear, breast and scalp. The three accused, while

appearing before the court, however, pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Death is knocking on your door ... Pastor tells

Mercy Johnson begs movie marketers for mercy

Tragedy befalls Saka

Yvonne Nelson, Nadia Buari

Celebrity

Niger Delta will produce another Agbani Is Juliet Ibrahim still Darego –Lynda Magada married? John Dumelo, Rukky Sanda dating ?

Cynthia Morgan crucified

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10

South East

Friday, March 21, 2014

Stay away from Imo, govt warns ‘Zionist Biafra’ CHRIS NJOKU OWERRI

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ollowing threat by a group calling itself Zionist Biafra to storm Owerri the Imo State capital and hoist the Biafran flag at the Government House, security has been beefed up in and around the state capital and the entire state. Reports yesterday said the state government has taken adequate security measures to protect lives

and properties of the people. The leadership of the Zionist Biafra last week admitted being responsible for the attack at the Government House, Enugu, with a vow that their next target would be Owerri, the Imo state capital. Speaking yesterday in Owerri, Senior Special Assistant to Governor Rochas Okorocha on Media, Sam Onwuemeodo said that it has taken ex-

ception to the threat, and has also moved to nip the threat in the bud. “All the security agencies in the state have been alerted of this threat, and they will work in together with other agencies of government to ensure that peace in the state is not threatened by any group,” he said. According to Onwuemeodo “Imo State is one of the most peaceful state in the federation and the government of Owelle

Rochas Okorocha will continue to ensure that the state remain peaceful.” The state government warned that it would be suicidal for the group to try the Enugu incident in Imo State. Meanwhile, visitors to the seat of government in Owerri and the state in general have been advised to cooperate with security personnel to ensure that the state is peaceful.

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Brace up, Obiano tasks contractors handling govt jobs CHARLES OKEKE AWKA

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nambra State Governor Chief Willie Obiano yesterday warned contractors handling government projects to brace up and ensure that all contracts are completed on schedule. The governor warned that any contractor found to be doing shoddy jobs will be penalised. Addressing contractors and consultants involved in various projects being executed by the state government at the Conference Hall of Government House, Awka, yesterday, Obiano said he will not hesitate to terminate any non -performing contract adding that his relationship with those doing government jobs is going to be based strictly on

performance and not on the popular basis of business as usual. “We will be checking the quality of your work and as long as you are doing your job as agreed, you won’t have problems with us, and for people doing designs for us, we want the best quality in terms of your design”, Obiano stressed. The governor who added that government wants value for money said his policy is that no contractor that does his job creditably will be sacked. He stated that the government is going to sit down and discuss with the contractors on the actual delivery dates of their various ongoing projects and that government is ready to fulfill its obligations as long as contractors deliver based on terms of agreement.

No compensation for owners of illegal structures -Imo govt

T L-R: Abia State Commissioner for Women Affairs, Mrs. Nne Nwaejike; Consultant, Ministry of Foreign Affairs Mr. Tajudeen Jinadu and Enugu State Commander, National Drug Law Enforcement Agency , Mr. Anthony Ohanyere, during the ministry’s workshop on illicit drug trafficking in Enugu, yesterday. PHOTO: NAN

2015: Group endorses Nweke for Senate DENNIS AGBO ENUGU

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he Nkanu Peoples Forum, NPF, has endorsed the Director General of the Nigeria Economic Summit Group, NESG, and former Minister for Information, Mr. Frank Nweke Jnr, for the Enugu East Senatorial District in 2015. Rising from its 2014 first quarter meeting in Agbani, the group said Nweke Jnr meets their criteria for the caliber of a senator required to represent the zone in 2015. President of NPF, Chief Jerry Okoh, said the group after a thorough assessment of Nkanu sons and daughters, zeroed in on

Nweke Jnr for his experience in national and international affairs, economic and cultural values of Nkanu clan. Okoh said that the group is of the opinion that the zone in the past six and a half years has had ineffective representation in the senate and can no longer field representatives that lack grasp of what the people want from their legislators. He added that Nweke Jnr has done Nkanu people proud in all his past national assignments, especially in his present job as DG of NESG, adding that if allowed to go to the senate, he would make articulate contributions in the national assembly.

His words: “After the general meeting of Nkanu Peoples Forum in the first quarter, the house resolved to endorse the former minister for Information, Mr. Frank Nweke jnr for the position of a senator come 2015 general elections. “We reasoned that Nweke is somebody who does not stir controversy and has proved himself worthy of understanding our values, aspirations and desires especially as it relates to our political challenges. We believe that he understands our pulse, knowing that Nkanu land has not had its fair share in national allocation of resources and we have confidence that he will genuinely lobby to attract

some of these lacking infrastructure to our zone. “Some of these lacking infrastructure include safe drinking water, access roads, electricity in our hinterlands, human empowerment through job opportunities, modern agriculture and many more. “We therefore call the people of Enugu East Senatorial zone to help actualise our desires by voting for Frank Nweke jnr, particularly members of his political party, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, who would first have to sponsor him through their party. We stand as sureties that he will not disappoint the zone.” The statement reads.

he General Manager of Owerri Capital Development Authority, Mr Chima Anozie, on Thursday said government would not compensate owners of illegal structures demolished in the state capital. Anozie told the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN in Owerri that there was need for developers to make relevant consultations before erecting building in the state capital. He ask developers to submit building plans to the agency before embarking on the construction, adding that government would soon move against houses built on designated open spaces and drainage channels. Anozie said the agency followed due process in demolition of houses by serving their owners with court orders through court bailiffs, saying the agency would continue to obtain court orders before demolishing any illegal structures. He also announced plans to set up “farmers’ markets” in the suburbs of Owerri to enable resi-

dents to trade with ease, adding that such markets would reduce streets trading and called on the people to support the government in its ideas. “Owerri is a city with beautiful planning, but people have violated the plan due to selfishness. “A lot of houses were built on the sanitary system, which is the primary cause of flooding in most areas. “Government cannot sit back and watch such people disorganise the system, but will move to stop such illegal activities,’’ Anozie said. He also promised that the government would partner with various banks in the state for the maintenance of the open spaces.

Okorocha


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Insurgency, threat to polio eradication, says Uduaghan

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elta State Governor, Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan, has identified the activities of Boko Haram members as a potential threat against the eradication of polio in in the country. He, therefore, called for vigilance from states where there was no incidence of polio virus. The governor stated this in Sapele during the 2014 First Quarter Polio Eradication/Sensitication Campaign in Delta State. According to him, Nigeria ranks among Afghanistan and Pakistan as countries that still have cases of polio in the world/ He, however, explained that while the two countries had crises related to war, the activities of Boko Haram members in Nigeria were hampering the total eradication of the polio virus and making Nigerians to migrate to safer states. Uduaghan noted that no incidence of polio had been witnessed in Delta State for the past five years

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Friday, March 21 , 2014

and called for vigilance to ensure that children were immunised against the dreaded disease. “Today, there is crisis in some parts of the North, so there will be tendency that people might migrate to this part of the country, this is why we must be vigilant. “Crisis does not help anybody, we must avoid trouble, anywhere there is war, there is displacement,” the governor said. He urged the citizens to ensure that their environment was clean to check the spread of diseases and charged all stakeholders to pay more attention to routine immunisation for their children. The Commissioner for Health, Dr. Joseph Otumara, stated that the sensitisation campaign was a strategy aimed at improving the polio vaccination coverage of children aged between 0 and 59 months in the collective effort towards the eradication of the crippling Poliomyelitis infection.

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Education commissioners lament rising school dropouts RICHARD NDOMA CALABAR

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he Forum for States Commissioners for Education in Nigeria has decried the rate of out-of-school pupils in the North-East due to the activities of the dreaded Boko Haram sect. The forum raised the alarm yesterday in Calabar in a communiqué issued at the end of their meeting. It said that there was the need for the Federal Government to protect education in parts of the country. The education commis-

sioners stated that they were deeply concerned over the fate of education in the North-East and called on stakeholders to rise up to the challenges. According to the communiqué signed by Chairman of the forum, Prof. Offiong Offiong, who is also the Commissioner for Education in Cross River State maintained that the zone currently had the highest number of out-of-school children in the country. It condemned the gruesome murder of students and teachers of the Federal Government College, Buni-

Yadi in Yobe State by the terrorists group. Part of the communiqué reads: “The forum assessed the state of education across the country and expressed deep concern at the fate of education in the North-East geo-political zone. “It particularly condemned in totality the gruesome murder of several pupils and teachers of the Federal Government College, Buni- Yadi, Yobe State, by the suspected Boko Haram terrorists group. “It particularly urged all stakeholders in Nigeria to rise and protect education

in the country, particularly in the North-East in the face of Boko Haram insurgency.’’ The communiqué added that the situation might escalate in the zone if necessary steps were not taken urgently. The forum also appealed to all stakeholders to work towards resolving the current face-off between the Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics, the College of Education Academic Staff Union and the Federal Governmen for “academic activities can resume accordingly.”

Man disappears with two sister’s children RICHARD NDOMA CALABAR

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he Criminal Investigation Department, CID, in Calabar, Cross River State, is battling to unravel the mystery behind the sudden disappearance of two children said to have been kidnapped by their uncle. Promise Charles Eyo (5) and Goodluck Charles Eyo (3) were said to be playing outside their home at No. 93, Esierebom Street, Calabar South Local Government Area, when they allegedly disappeared and had since not been found. The mother of the missing kids, Mrs. Uduak Charles Eyo (38), an indigene of Ndiya Ikot Offiong

in Akwa Ibom State, who narrated the incident to our correspondent, stated that on March 6, about 10a.m., she was taking her bathe while her brother, Ukeme and one “Papa” were sitting outside where her children were playing. She said that after she had finished taking her bathe, she looked around for them and thought they might have gone out of the compound to play or gone out with their uncle. When Eyo waited for hours without sighting her children, she became apprehensive and tried to call her brother whose telephone lines had been switched off.

Delta State Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan administering polio vaccine on one of the children during the first quarter of the 2014 polio eradication campaign in Sapele, yesterday.

...Oshiomhole blames rot on poor leadership

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do State Governor Adams Oshiomhole has blamed the rot in the education sector on poor leadership. He said Nigerian leaders must act with courage, conviction and be decisive to stem the rot in the sector.

Kidnapped Bayelsa commissioner’s sister regains freedom EMMA GBEMUDU YENAGOA

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arely one week after her abduction by gunmen, Mrs. Joyce Ebua, elder sister to the Bayelsa State Commissioner for Sports, Mitema Obodor, was released yesterday. Sixty years old Ebua was said to have been released by her captors about

12.30 a.m. at a location in the state from where she was conveyed home. Investigation by our correspondent revealed that ransom was paid to effect her release, but a relation of the Obodors, who did not want his name mentioned, claimed no ransom was paid. The victim was kidnapped by some gunmen at her Oloibiri residence

in Ogbia Local Government Area of the state about 8.55p.m. on March 13. The commissioner, who was visibly elated, confirmed the release of his sister and said no ransom was paid to secure her freedom. Obodor said some officials of the State Security Service, SSS, supported in setting free Ebua.

Oshiomhole was the guest speaker yesterday at the 20th National Economic Summit in Abuja with the theme, “Leadership and ownership in Nigerian education in focus”. He said: “Leadership is about courage, about conviction and being able to act. We do need our political leadership to go back to the basics and not the symbolism we currently witness. “At the heart of the question is the issue of leadership. From the 50s to the 60s, Nigeria produced the best brains. I think as the quality of the Nigerian leadership deteriorated from the days of the military up to the moment that we got our priorities wrong that

we began to see the kind of wrath that characterised our schools. “The way forward is for us leaders to go back to the basics and ask ourselves what are the issues. “There was a time in this country when students threatened to shut down their schools and the authorities had to engage them not to boycott classes. “We have moved from that era to one in which our universities were shut for over six months and it was not an issue. The response of the Nigerian elite is to find privatised solution to the problem. “If we don’t have fuel in the country for six months, Abuja will not be at peace

and Edo will not be at peace, but polytechnics have been shut for over six months and it is not featuring in this discussion.” The governor said returning to the basics would mean checking the quality of the teachers impart knowledge, stressing that “In Edo State, we have built beautiful schools far more attractive than the private schools, but the missing link is the quality of teachers. “And to know who is a teacher, we must do assessment test for everybody tutor in the classroom. And there are challenges and that is where leadership comes in. “Somebody said to me


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North

Friday, March 21, 2014

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Security tops northern agenda at confab

•Govs summon meeting OMEIZA AJAYI AND PRISCILLA DENNIS MINNA

T

he Arewa Consultative Forum ACF has told northern delegates to the National Conference to prioritise the issue of insecurity at the confab. The conference had adjourned on Tuesday after meeting for two hours and is set to reconvene for plenary next Monday. Chairman of ACF and former Inspector-General of Police, Alhaji Ibrahim Coomasie, stated the position of the north yesterday at the end of a one-day retreat organised for delegates of northern extraction.

According to him, participants resolved to prioritise security challenges in the north, especially the threat posed by the Boko Haram sect. He said: “We have brought in people who are experts in their various fields to come and talk to us about these issues in the conference.” On his part, Senator John Shagaya said the north has to present a strong front on the issue of insecurity in the region. “We are here to share our experiences and history. Our position will help the leadership of the conference and assist in canvassing objectively issues that will be good for Nigeria.

“We will discuss issues like the security challenges in the country and, of course, devolution of power and corruption in high places that is going on unchecked”, said Shagaya. The Assistant Secretary, Media and Communications at the conference, James Akpandem, yesterday said the secretariat has released the draft rules of procedure and given same to delegates. He said the delegates are expected to study the draft rules and ratify or amend it when they reconvene on Monday. Meanwhile, the Northern State Governors’ Forum, NSGF, has fixed an emergency meeting for Tuesday,

March 25, 2014 in Abuja, the nation’s capital. Chairman of NSGF and Governor of Niger State, Dr Mu’azu Babangida Aliyu, in a statement signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Danladi Ndayebo, said top on the agenda of the meeting is the security situation in the region and the ongoing National Conference. Thirteen governors, who met with the United States government officials and representatives of Norway and Denmark at the United States Peace Institute last Tuesday, the NSGF, added, would brief the forum on the progress made in its search for solutions to the security challenges confronting the region. The 13-man NSGF delegation, according to Aliyu’s

spokesman, would later brief the larger house on the forum’s collaboration with the US Norway and Denmark governments at 10am next Tuesday at the Niger State Governor’s Lodge in Abuja. The forum explained that the reinvigoration of U.S attention on the North, economic investment opportunities in the region, security

and challenges of private investments in the North, were the highlights of the governors’ meeting with the US officials. The statement added: “The 19 northern governors will also meet with members to the ongoing National Conference from the North to finetune the region’s position at the talk shop.

Kwara evacuates students from UNIMAID WOLE ADEDEJI ILORIN

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he Kwara State Government on Thursday dispatched a delegation to Maiduguri, the Borno State capital, to evacuate its students at the University of Maiduguri over the mounting cases of insurgency. The Commissioner for Information, Prince Tunji Moronfoye who made this known to newsmen, said the delegation left Ilorin for Maiduguri on Wednesday morning. The delegation, according to him, was provided with enough logistics to enable it evacuate the students with ease and at

once. He added that the delegation and the students would be expected back in Ilorin immediately. It was learnt that the students had earlier sent an S.O.S (distress call) via text messages to the state government through government officials They expressed fears over their safety, following massive attacks on Maiduguri last weekend. The text message, according to sources, read: “Maiduguri is under attack. 15 explosions were heard this morning. We are picking bullets in the hostel. Please, we need your immediate help. We need to be evacuated.

One killed, another missing in Plateau clash JAMES ABRAHAM JOS Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Kenneth Minimah (middle) consoling an injured soldier at the Maimalari Military Clinic during an unscheduled visit to Maiduguri, on Wednesday. PHOTO: NAN

FG tasks frontline states on funding of GGW OLUFEMI ADEOSUN ABUJA

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n order fast-track the implementation of Great Green Wall Sahara project, the Federal Government has appealed to the governors of the eleven frontline states to provide additional funding for the programme. President Goodluck Jonathan had in 2010 approved N10billion for the implementation of the programme which is aimed at fighting desertification in eleven frontline states in the North. Apart from that, the federal government also recently approved training of forest guards for effective monitoring and protection of the programme. The programme, which

has implementation time frame of three years, also involves the establishment of a greenbelt covering 1,500km from Dandi Arewa Local Government Area of Kebbi State to Marte in Borno State. The frontline states are Kebbi, Sokoto, Zamfara, Katsina, Jigawa, Yobe, Adamawa, Gombe, Kano, Bauchi and Borno. However, speaking at a meeting with the commissioners of environment in the eleven frontline states, Environment Minister, Mrs. Laurencia Mallam, stated that the programme would only achieve the desired results if the governors of the affected states key into it and fulfill their financial obligation it. She said, “It is on record that the funds now avail-

able for the programme have been provided by the Federal Government. “It is therefore pertinent that states key in with new and additional funds so as to improve programme funding. We must also explore synergy in our field interventions to save cost and ensure greater service delivery.” Given update on the GGW programme, the minister added that the National Council on Shelterbelt and Afforestation, under the chairmanship of the Vice President, Arc. Namadi Sambo, had not only provided the needed leadership to drive it, but had also come up with far reaching strategies for implementation. She also cited the composition of the Programme Implementation Unit to fast

track the realisation of the programme as a demonstration of the commitment of the federal government to the successful implementation of the programme. “Another critical institution is the Programme Implementation Unit (PIU) put in place to fast track the realisation of the programme. The Unit serves as local and international window for the programme and with our support, it will further enhance collaboration and participation of key stakeholders,” she added. Also speaking at the meeting the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Mr. Taye Haruna, noted that the GGW programme is key to the transformation agenda of the present administration.

O

ne person was confirmed killed and another missing on Thursday in a clash between Pai and Shiwer communities in Pankshin and Kanke Local Government Areas of Plateau State. Over 20 houses were also set ablaze during the combat. Secretary of Shiwer Development Association, SDA, Austin Gozuk, who

confirmed the incident in Jos yesterday, narrated the events that led to the ugly incident to journalists. He said: “Some armed youth from Pai community set out to Jinjing village in Shiwer and started cutting timber. “When the residents of Jingjing sought explanation on their conduct, youths from Pai attacked them, set the entire village ablaze and killed one of the inhabitants, while another person is missing.”

Group lauds Amaechi over empowerment programme OTHMAN SALIHU KANO

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he Northern Youth Movement, NYM, has commended the Rivers State Governor, Mr. Chibuike Amaechi, over the inclusion of northerners resident in the state in his empowerment programmes. A communiqué jointly signed by president and secretary of the movement, Jamilu Abdullahi and

Aminu Maitama respectively, after a meeting of its national executive held in Kano on Thursday, described the Rivers State governor as a detribalised Nigerian leader whose foot-steps are worthy of emulation. It read: “We use this opportunity to express our gratitude to His Excellency, Governor Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers State, for his kind gesture towards our people, particularly the youths resident in his state.”


Friday, March 21, 2014

2015: PDP now poised to win Ondo – Okunfolami

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Politics

Defection: I never betrayed Al-Makura –Nasarawa deputy gov

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Adeyeye seeks suspension of primary ABIODUN NEJO ADO EKITI

A

Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, governorship aspirant in Ekiti State, Prince Adedayo Adeyeye, has appealed to President Goodluck Jonathan to direct the suspension of the primary for the election of the party’s 2014 governorship candidate billed for Saturday over alleged manipulations that dogged the ward congresses held in the state on Wednesday. Adeyeye, who lamented that the ward congresses were marred by hijack of electoral ma-

terials, manipulation of lists of electoral officials and delegates and complicity by the PDP National Ward Congresses Committee, said such intervention was necessary to save the party from “imminent collapse.” He said at a press conference yesterday with the theme: ‘Time to Save Ekiti PDP from Destruction’, that “we urge Mr President to intervene in the Ekiti matter and direct the suspension of Saturday’s primary election, pending the resolution of all complaints emanating from the manipulated ward congresses”.

This was as tension continued to mount at the PDP state secretariat over the crisis, thuggery and confusion that trailed the conduct of the ward congresses on Wednesday. Adeyeye hinged his appeal to Jonathan and other well-meaning PDP leaders on the fact that “we have committed our time, energy and resources to the PDP and it will be painful to us to have all that we have laboured for destroyed on the altar of an individual’s desperate ambition (aided and supported by a discredited money-bag) to be the party’s candidate even when he knows that he stands

13

no chance of winning the election. He alleged that the PDP National Ward Congresses Committee colluded with former governor, Ayo Fayose, an aspirant by using doctored lists of local governments and wards electoral officers and as well manipulating the names of the delegates that emerged in areas where the exercise held and did not hold. Adeyeye said: “The results that we have, which are also with INEC, police, SSS and our party officials clearly show that we had majority of the delegates and anything contrary to the original

results, will be rejected. “It is our position that if we must participate in Saturday’s primary election, the authentic list of delegates elected in the 11 local governments where the ward congress was held must be used. “Also, fresh congress must be held in Ado, Emure, Gbonyin, Ise/ Orun and Ikere LGs where the Congress did not hold on Wednesday. Anything other than this will simply mean that the primary will be held with Fayose as the sole aspirant and we will wait and see what happens thereafter.” However, Fayose said “the allegations by Adeyeye are not correct. He was only speaking from position of defeat even

before the Saturday’s primary.” Fayose’s media aide, Mr Idowu Adelusi, who said the allegations were baseless, accused Adeyeye and members of his consensus club of being responsible for the thugs that besieged the PDP state secretariat on Wednesday to prevent the ward delegate congress from holding.

Group lists panacea to free, fair poll ABIODUN NEJO ADO EKITI

A Some members of the All Progressives Congress and Labour Party in the Oshodi Isolo Area of Lagos defected to the PDP, yesterday.

Adeleke declares for Osun guber race BOLADALE BAMIGBOLA OSOGBO

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he first executive governor of Osun State, Senator Isiaka Adeleke yesterday formally declared his intention to contest August 9 governorship election in the state on the platform of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP. Adeleke first came to prominence in Osun politics when he was elected governor in 1992 on the platform of the defunct Social Democratic Party, SDP, and left office in 1993 when the third republic was truncated. Addressing the crowd of

supporters that thronged the PDP state secretariat, Gbongan Road, Osogbo, the state capital, to witness his collection of Expression of Intention form to contest PDP primaries, Adeleke said he was compelled into the race by some leaders of the party, noting that he was initially not interested in the race, but for several emissaries from within PDP family in the state and outside, who believe the party needs him to post a good outing in the forthcoming election. Denying the allegation that he had not been a financial member of PDP

since leaving office as senator in 2011, Adeleke said that he spent a substantial amount to mobilise for PDP during the recently concluded Continuous Voters Registration exercise in his senatorial district and debunked speculation that he was in the race to cause crisis and scuttle PDP chances in the governorship poll, saying those “ leaders of our party that forced me into this race will ensure whoever is angry is prevailed upon as only a united PDP can wrestle power from APC in this state”. He pledged to right the wrongs perpetuated by the

present administration if he was fielded by his party and eventually wins the election, assuring of a transparent government that will ensure active population are gainfully employed through agriculture.

socio-economic group in Ekiti State, the Igbimo Ure Ekiti, IUE, has charged the political class in the state to steer clear of violence before, during and after the June 21 governorship election in the state and as well discourage do-or-die politics. The group also called on stakeholders in the process, including the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, police and the State Security Services, SSS, to do all things necessary “to ensure a totally transparent, free, fair and credible election in the state.” Its President, Prince Julius Adelusi-Adeluyi, said in Ado Ekiti yesterday as part of activities to round off the group’s three-day meetings with the stakeholders that the parties and candidates involved should make the campaign issue-based in

an atmosphere of peace and cordiality. Adelusi-Adeluyi appealed to politicians “not to make our youth (employed or unemployed) political thugs and cannon folder during the process of the election,” adding that “it must be realised that to destroy these youth physically or psychologically is tantamount to destroying the future of the state.” The former Health Minister, who said the group would ensure orientation and sensitisation of all concerned, appealed to the leaders of the political parties “to restrain their political engineers and contractors to allow Ekiti electorate to elect their own governor.” The group is planning to organise a confab with all stakeholders in the election in April, when all the parties would have selected their candidates as a forum where they can resolve to have a healthy peaceful election.


14

Politics

Elder Martins Okunfolami, a former director of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN and Resident Electoral Commissioner, REC of Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, is a staunch chieftain and financier of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in Ondo State. He tells OLAJIDE OMOJOLOMOJU in this interview why the PDP will win Ondo In 2015/2016 and why he is running for the Ondo South senatorial seat. Excerpts: 2015 is around the corner, what are your political aspirations for the coming elections? My political aspiration is to serve my people, my state and the country in the Senate. It has been too quiet in that sector; going through pages of newspapers; you hardly know people from Ondo State represent us at the Senate. On air, we see and hear people from other states and if you cannot talk, I don’t know how you can advance the desires and yearnings of your people. I have been trained over the years, after spending 35 years in Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, five years in the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC as a Resident Electoral Commission, REC, I think God has prepared me for the great task to give my people adequate representation at the Senate. I want to see how I can collaborate with other members in the National Assembly to bring meaningful development to Ondo State. During the time of the late Olusegun Agagu, we were witnesses to how he brought development to Ondo State. Ondo State is an oil producing state. I have travelled round Nigeria and the world and I have seen even places where they don’t have additional 13 percent revenue, how they are making their people happy through meaningful development like housing projects, road networks, provision of airport and so many things like that. In the past, the PDP in Ondo State has not been cohesive, which was one of the reasons for its performance in the 2012 gubernatorial elections, but now the seems to be getting it right. How do you see this development? Thank you for the observation. First of all I want to use this opportunity to thank our leaders in the South_West for bringing us together and particularly, I want to thank our leaders in Ondo State, people like Chief Akintodu, Professor Olu Agbi and Barr. Jimoh Ibrahim, in particular, for the great effort they are making to refocus PDP in the state. These people are spending their times, efforts and resources to make sure we are together and to God be the glory the reconciliation has been achieved, those who were angry are now peacified. And like Seven Up will say: the difference is clearer now between the PDP in Ondo

Friday, March 21, 2014

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

PDP now poised to win Ondo –Okunfolami •Lauds Jimoh Ibrahim, Agbi, others

State in 2015 to the water ways projects, you will see the numbers of people that would have been engaged in water transportation from Igbekun, Okitipupa and other places to Lagos and back. Right now, all our boys now are okada riders and I don’t know how somebody will ride okada at the age of 60 and if we don’t do something meaningful now in the area of youth empowerment, there will be trouble. PDP will tackle the youth empowerment in Ondo State in 2015. How would you assess the administration of Oluseguun Mimiko in Ondo State? As a child of God, I hardly condemn, but the truth must also be said at all times. With all the money we are getting in that place, we are not getting reciprocal developmental dividends that should come to us. I want to compare our state as an oil producing state to states like Akwa Ibom, Rivers and Edo, our neighbour; they should be competing in development efforts, road networks and all that, but the government has not done enough for us. The reason we have to take our mandate back. PDP owns Ondo State. All those who are there today were in PDP, we want to ask them to come back so that we can join hands together to move our state forward.

Okunfolami

GOD HAS PREPARED ME FOR THE GREAT TASK TO GIVE MY PEOPLE ADEQUATE

REPRESENTATION AT THE SENATE. I WANT TO SEE HOW I CAN COLLABORATE WITH OTHER MEMBERS IN THE NATIONAL ASSEMBLY TO BRING MEANINGFUL

DEVELOPMENT TO ONDO STATE

and other parties. One of the things I have done now to show to people that PDP is back, is the provision of our party flags to be fling in all our secretariats. I have brought back the awareness to the people that the PDP is back stronger and is firing from all cylinders. To our foot soldiers, I am telling them that the troop commanders are back to direct them in proper focus. What should Ondo people expect from PDP in 2015? First of all what we expect from the

people is to vote massively for the PDP in 2015. Expectation is a two-way affair. What they should expect is that all abandoned projects in the past six years will get a face-lift. Our educational system, abandoned road projects, especially, roads leading to the Atlantic Ocean from Mobokoda to Igbonla and Mahin will be resurfaced and extended further. Our water ways has been abandoned for so long. My first trip to Lagos was by water ways. I entered the boat at Okitipupa, the next morning I was in Lagos. I will direct the minds of our government in Ondo

What is your assessment of the administration of President Goodluck Jonathan? The man is trying. His transformation effort in this country is paying off. I believed life is lived in seasons; this is our season of dryness, our season where the Northern wind is still blowing harmattan and dust all over Nigeria, very shortly, the South-Western wind will blow coolness. The man is trying tremendously. All he needs is the cooperation and support of Nigerians to take us to our Promised Land. Even in the face of the security challenges we are facing, he is giving it his best shot and very soon, I am convinced that we will overcome. Our road network is better than what it used to be. The railway resuscitation project is going on, by the time it is finished, the dividends will be there for all of us to enjoy. Look at the current National Conference that he has put in place to hearken to the aspirations and yearnings of Nigerians. It takes courage to do that. Do you foresee National Conference proffering solutions to the problems facing this country? Well, to a large extent I say yes, the problems facing Nigeria, some are deep rooted. Look at the indigeneship problem it has been a loss. In other places when you are in a place for five or ten years, you can contest and win election but here we are still tracing our root to where we come from apart from Lagos State that is liberal in leading, they hope to indigeneship of a thing. When somebody is in position today he would wants to use his poCONTINUED ON PAGE 15


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Politics

Friday, March 21, 2014

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Why I’m contesting for Senate -Okunfolami CONTINUED FROM PAGE 14

sition to benefit his own people. Let’s also hope that the problem of how to share our revenue and bake a bigger cake will be discussed; whether the presidential system is ok for us or we go back to parliamentary system where only those who are voted in will be used as ministers or those who earn the support of their people will be used as ministers. They should provide for those who are qualified to make rules for us and decide for us and not people who throw money around and win election sitting on the ignorance and poverty of our people. As an insider, who was in INEC for five years, looking at what happened in

the Ondo, Edo and Anambra elections respectively, do you think INEC is well prepared to give Nigeria free, fair and credible elections in 2015? I had the opportunity of working in so many states, when I heard some things in some states, it baffles me. Some of these things are beyond what I can comment on. I conducted election in Plateau State; I didn’t stay that long in Edo State, I conducted election in Kebbi State and bye-elections in Oyo State. It was in one of my elections that the loser went to the media before result was out to announce that INEC conducted fair election and he lost but he was happy that he was in the race, he didn’t just chicken out for the PDP man. So, am confident that they can do it but

let our politicians leave them alone. Lastly, what message of hope do you have for your people in Ondo South senatorial district? It is a lot of hope in the offing. Now they know better, they have seen it and they can compare what it was and what it is now. They know that the money that is in somebody’s pocket doesn’t tar the roads, it doesn’t make boreholes for the people, it doesn’t sand fill the swamps for people to inhabit, so, what I am demanding from them is their courageously support and votes for the PDP. We look forward to serve them and make life meaningful to them once again by delivering to them real dividends of democracy.

Okunfolami

NCYF honours Northern icons, blames Nigeria’s woes on bad leadership EZEKIEL TITUS BAUCHI

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he Northern Youth Consultative Forum, NYCF, has awarded its illustrious sons, following their contribution to the development of the region, even as it said bad leadership was responsible for Nige-

ria’s problems. The Board of Trustees, BoT chairman of the NYCF, Dr. Isiaku Garba, said this yesterday at the NYCF 12th annual Public Lecture / Awards Investiture and launching of peace and security campaign. The forum said that bad leadership has

turned democracy anti clockwise instead of effective development, resulting to poor infrastructures, collapse of social amenities and gross mis-management. Among the awardees were: Hon. Yakubu Dogara, the member, representing Dass/Bogoro/ Tafawa-Balewa federal

constituency at the National Assembly, Mallam Ali Wakili, former Chief Justice of Nigeria, CJN, Justice Kastina-Alu Dr.Mohammed Sani Bello and Alhaji Bello Mohammed Ahmed. Garba added that the selection of the awardees was base on their contributions to soci-

etal development, especially youths and women development, which is a major concern in the Northern region. Regretting that absence of critical skill necessary to propel and protect the Northern region, when compared to the days of late Sir Abubakar Tafawa-Balewa, Sir Ahmadu Bello, Sardauna Sokoto, is a major constraint, Garba said that lack of quality leadership had created wide gap in understanding the problems of youth’s restiveness and those in government

thereby leading to the current insecurity challenges in the region. Speaking on behalf of Hon. Dogara, Hon. Hankali Moses, who received the award on his behalf, expressed satisfaction for award, describing it as a good omen to the people of the constituency. He challenges the NYCF to do all it could to put an end to the current security challenges that bedevils the Northern region and play its role in ensuring good governance under the present democracy.

Lawmaker calls on more women to embrace politics EBERE NDUKWU

C Chairman, Peoples Democratic Movement, Jigawa, Alhaji Sule Maina (right) collecting his membership card at Fake Ward in PHOTO: NAN Kiyawa Local Government Area of the state, yesterday.

OLAJIDE OMOJOLOMOJU

S

ome members of the All Progressives Congress, APC, and Labour Party, LP, in the Oshodi/Isolo Local Government Area of Lagos yesterday defected to the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP. A statement issued and signed by the PDP state Publicity Secretary, Taofeek Gani said that the defectors, numbering over 700, officially denounced their membership of the APC and LP at a sensitisation get-together organised by the PDP in the area. Speaking at the event,

APC, LP members defect to PDP in Lagos leaders of the defectors, Hon. Tunde Elegbede and Chief Segun Agbabiaka, said that their decision to the PDP was due to some undemocratic practices in their former parties. Agbabiaka said: “2015 is around the corner and already we are being told who will represent us even when the primaries have not been held. “There is so much we are grieved about especially, with the 2015 elections by the corner. “We need a platform that will give a level playing

ground to all members.” In his speech, the Lagos State chairman of the PDP, Chief Tunji Shelle, assured the defectors that they would be treated equally with other members. “Anyone of you with intentions to contest the 2015 polls will get a level playing ground as others members you meet in the party,” Shelle said. Shelle however announced that a PDP-led government in Lagos State would review some policies it considered absurd by the present administration.

“For instance, we will review the policy on sand filling of the Atlantic Ocean. There are so many problems to be tackled in Lagos State including traffic and interior road networks. “Housing has remained a great challenge in the state which we intend to tackle headlong,” he said. The occasion was rounded off with distribution of materials for empowerment such as: barbers clippers, cooking stoves, GSM handsets, and cartons of Indomie noodles, among others.

hairman of Lagos State House of Assembly Finance Committee, Hon (Mrs) Funmi Tejuoso, has called on more women in Lagos and Nigeria to join politics. Tejuoso made this call at “One Day Speaker’s Corner,” a programme organised by Lagos State Gender Advocacy Team, LASGAT, supported by State Accountability and Voice Initiative, SAVI, the Department for International Development, DFID, and Save the Children International, organised to commemorate the 2014 International Women’s Day, and held at LTV compound, Lateef Jakande road, Agidingbi, Lagos. Speaking on the team, “Inspiring Change: More Women in Politics and Decision-Making in

Lagos State,” Tejuoso said: “Women have gone through a lot; in every affairs of life, the woman has always had the shorter end of the stick. We should go and tell our women friends that what a woman cannot do, can never be done. “I encourage more women to join politics but you cannot go into politics without being prepared. Those who want to join politics must prepare for battle. Don’t try to be a man, be a woman and let the men know that what you cannot do as a woman can never be done.” She advised women to ensure they make use of the free education in primary and secondary school, under the leadership of Governor Babatunde Fashola in Lagos to train their female children in school as nobody can join politics without being educated.


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Editorial

Friday, March 21, 2014

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

All the Facts, All the Sides A PUBLICATION OF GLOBAL MEDIA MIRROR LTD BARRISTER JIMOH IBRAHIM, OFR „ PUBLISHER

KAFILAT OGBARA

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MANAGING DIRECTOR/CEO

BANKOLE MAKINDE

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DEPUTY MD/CEO

SEYI FASUGBA

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DAILY EDITOR

GBEMI OLUJOBI

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SATURDAY EDITOR

KAYODE FASUA

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ACTING EDITOR, SUNDAY

AYO OLESIN

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GENERAL EDITOR

BEN MEMULETIWON

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GENERAL EDITOR

DOZIE OKEBALAMA

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COORDINATOR, EDITORIAL BOARD

CALLISTUS OKE

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EDITORIAL PAGE EDITOR

ISE-OLUWA IGE

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ABUJA BUREAU CHIEF

FIDELIS LEMCHI OWOAMANAM

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REGIONAL DIRECTOR, S/SOUTH

KING ODODORU

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HEAD, GRAPHICS

Invasion of Enugu Government House O n Saturday, March 8, 2014, members of an obviously furious group that wanted to settle scores with Governor Sullivan Chime demonstrated reckless audacity by invading the Enugu State Government House. Reports said the armed men, numbering about 50, took their battle to the Government House at about 4.30am. Some of them scaled the high perimeter fence in the premises, all with the intention of attacking the governor, before they were successfully repelled by security operatives manning the complex. One of the attackers was shot dead in the process, according to reports; and among the items recovered from them were two big banners bearing the symbol of the ‘Republic of Biafra’, 34 assorted flags, including those belonging to the defunct Republic of Biafra, Britain, United States and Israel, one big bag containing charms, eight machetes and a saw, among others. The closest to the impunity of March 8 in Enugu would be the July 10, 2003 abduction of the then sitting governor of Anambra State, Dr. Chris Ngige, now a senator, which was masterminded by his political ‘godfather’, Chief Chris Uba, and coordinated by the late Raphael Ige, an Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIG).

Chief Uba’s supporters, we recall, also allegedly engaged the security details of Governor Ngige in a shoot-out later on December 12, 2003 at both the Michael Okpara Square and at the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) South East Zonal Congress in Enugu; and on November 29, 2004, Ngige survived an assassination attempt. But if Ngige’s predicament was state-sponsored; Chime’s was probably not. But gradually, such acts of impunity are gaining grounds. Recall also that on March 3, 2004, armed men viciously attacked the convoy of former Governor George Akume of Benue State. His friend who was in the vehicle with him, a former Managing Director of Nigeria Airways, Andrew Agom, was killed alongside one mobile police sergeant in the convoy. Akume, also a member of the ruling PDP, was travelling from his base in Makurdi to Abuja when his convoy was confronted by suspected bandits along the Lafia-Akwanga road in the neighbouring Nasarawa State in broad daylight. Akume’s successor, Governor Gabriel Suswam, a few days ago, equally escaped death by a whisker when his convoy was ambushed by suspected Fulani herdsmen who exchanged gunfire with his security aides at Tee-Akanyi Village in the Guma Local Government Area

WE WARN THAT NO COUNTRY

CAN THRIVE ON

IMPUNITY, BECAUSE IT UNDERMINES NATIONAL VALUES AND THREATENS PUBLIC INSTITUTIONS AND CONSTITUTED AUTHORITIES of the state. Suswam and his entourage had gone on an assessment tour of communities that were recently invaded by these herders on the Daudu-Gbajimba road. The invaders had sacked about 64 villages in the area and killed scores of people. The Governor of Borno State, Kashim Shettima; and his Adamawa State counterpart, Murtala Nyako, suffered similar fate not too long ago, though members of the Boko Haram militant sect were suspected to be responsible for their plight. Back in 2008, unknown gunmen likewise attacked the convoy of Governor Theodore Orji of Abia State on the Aba-Port Harcourt highway. Nigerians have been witnesses to the macabre dance between pro-Rotimi Amaechi and pro-Goodluck Jonathan fellows in Rivers State.

ON THIS DAY March 21, 1960 Apartheid: Massacre in Sharpeville, South Africa: The police in South Africa opened fire on a group of unarmed black South African demonstrators, killing 69 and wounding 180. Sources disagree as to the behaviour of the crowd; some claimed the crowd was peaceful, while others said it hurled stones at the police, and that the shooting started when the demonstrators started advancing toward the fence around a police station.

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March 21, 1980 United States’ President Jimmy Carter announced America’s boycott of the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow to protest the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. The Soviet war in Afghanistan lasted nine years from December 1979 to February 1989. Part of the Cold War, it was fought between Soviet-led Afghan forces against multi-national insurgent groups called the mujahideen, which had the support of, Pakistan, China, US, United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia, etc.

With these serial ugly incidents, it may be right to say that Nigeria has joined the league of countries where angry citizens resort to self-help; such attacks also audaciously erode the state monopoly of the means of coercion. Indeed, it does seem intelligence gathering by the security agencies has collapsed, no matter the nature of excuses they may table in response to the embarrassing spectacle. The police in Enugu State claimed the Movement for the Actualisation of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB) was responsible for the assault. But a group that called itself Biafra Zionist Movement (BZM), led by one Barrister Benjamin Onwuka, accepted responsibility for the rough act in a press conference in the same Enugu. Yet nothing tangible, to public knowledge, has been done to rein in the group and its leadership. It’s tragic! We warn that no country can thrive on impunity, because it undermines national values and threatens public institutions and constituted authorities. The security agencies should wake up from their slumber. Thorough investigation of those who desecrated Enugu State Government House should be carried out, and the culprits penalized for their anarchic act. Allowing the nation to slide into the state of nature is unacceptable.

x March 21, 2000 Pope John Paul II made his first ever pontifical visit to Israel. Pope John Paul II sometimes called Blessed John Paul or John Paul the Great, (born Karol Jozef Wojtyła May 18, 1920 – April 2, 2005), was Pope from October 16, 1978 to his death in 2005. He was the second longest-serving pope in history and, as a Pole, the first non-Italian since Pope Adrian VI, who died in 1523.


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Delta 2015: Power shift or credible leadership? BOBSON GBINIJE

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he inability of our leaders, past and present, to practise the Aristotelian concept of the pursuit of the greatest good for the largest number, has given rise to structural distrust, mistrust and fears. The people now believe that the only way development can come to their areas is when their kinsmen are in power. This has given rise to the clamour for power shift, which some political analysts see as one of the inhibitors to pure democracy. Nigeria is a nation formed as a result of the agglomeration of different heterogeneous groups of people. But after our independence in 1960 the Hausa/Fulanis took over the reins of leadership from the British and went through their northernisation policy to entrench a very complex northern stranglehold in all the nation’s institutions of coercion - Army, Police, Navy, Air Force etc. The presidency became their exclusive preserve. It was this transparent and lucid injustice that gives rise to the “power shift” clamour in Nigeria. The wrangling and farrago gained on immense political intensity, indeed, push came to shove. Today, in Delta State the power shift syndrome has attained an unthinkable political crescendo, so much that it is already setting the stage for a great political

mélange in 2015. The Aniomas, Ijaws, Isokos, Urhobos etc are already strategizing. Delta State is a melting pot. It is a mini Nigeria with 25 local government areas and over eight ethnic groups. The Urhobo ethnic group, in terms of demographic data, constitutes about 51.4 per cent of the state. It has had two democratically elected governors since the creation of the state- Chief Felix Ibru and Chief James Onanafe Ibori; and yet the people are clamouring for an Urhobo governor in 2015.The question arises, for how long will the Urhobo ethnic group continue to hold on to the governorship position in Delta State? Is the governorship position the exclusive preserve and birth right of the Urhobo people? Will other ethnic groups, exclusive of the Itsekeris, continue to be political underdogs in Delta State because the Urhobos are in vast majority? Will there be peace, progress and tranquility under such a system. The answer, without slips of prolixity, is a resounding and outright capital NO. One of the tragedies of power is in its ambrosial insatiability. When you are at an advantage you want to consolidate your hold on to power with peremptory magistracy, but when you are at a disadvantage you vociferously assert your rights to that position. This instinctual edacity and natural desire to hold on to power has continued to be a troubling idiosyncrasy of man.

WE WILL NOT ALL BE CALLING FOR POWER SHIFT IF WE HAVE LEADERS WHO ARE

CREDIBLE, PATRIOTIC AND ALTRUISTIC But there must be a balancing through political synchronization aimed at ensuring equity through adequate representational participation in the wheels of governance. Are the Urhobos in a political dilemma over power shift? Will power now shift to the Delta Central Senatorial District to the North or Southern Senatorial districts? Was there an amicably agreed functional formula to that effect amongst the political parties? It will, however, be tantamount to political escapism and despotism for the Urhobos to say that politics is a game of numbers only, and that the minorities should have their say and let the majority have their way. This will definitely be a recipe for chaos and a fundamental and sacrilegious desecration of the inviolable pantheons of democracy. The concept and practice of majoritarian rule does not mean the dominance of the polity by tribal, clannish and parochial intents; it is the prevalence of enlightened

votes cast in the passing of bills in democratic settings to ensure that the ballot and not the bullet holds sway. This is consistent with the fundamental proposition of Marxian dialectics that “all boundaries in nature and society are conventional and mobile, that there is not a single phenomenon which cannot, under certain conditions, be transformed to its opposite”. The minorities in Delta State deserve equity. But those who go to equity must come with clean hands. Are these minority groups making up the Delta North and Delta South Senatorial districts ready with the right caliber of leaders that will carry Deltans along? Are they prepared for leadership albatross? Are they aware that the Delta Central Senatorial District where the Urhobos dominate, although they cut across virtually all the senatorial districts, have only had two slots at the governorship - one truncated by a military coup and the other had eight years? Is not too early for power shift in delta state? Is it the power shift that is critically crucial for Delta State now or credible leadership? We will not all be calling for power shift if we have leaders who are credible, patriotic and altruistic. When Deltans, Nigerians and nay Africans see credibility in their leaders, they will not bother about who is their leader. Chief Gbinije, founder of Mandate Against Poverty, wrote from Warri, Delta State.

A state’s welfare triumphalism ADEREMI IDOWU

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he primary objective of a good government is to impact positively on its citizenry through policies and programmes that would have direct bearing on their day-to-day living. Those great men and women that brought about a welfare society must have thought completely out of the box in favour of those within the society that are really struggling to make ends meet in areas that are as basic but essential to human existence and dignity, such as food, housing, health and education. I was privileged a few weeks ago to experience a gathering of experts at the Parliament Building, United Kingdom, where deliberations were centred on Home -Grown School Feeding for primary school children and challenges some nations, most especially in Africa and some emerging economies, are facing in putting food on the tables for these leaders of tomorrow. Eminently seated with these world renowned technocrats from the World Bank, World Food Programme, African Union, Members of Parliament and other professionals around the globe was this familiar face in his usual “white dashiki” apparel, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, governor of State of Osun, who jolted and shocked his foreign audience not only with his presentation but most importantly with the content, implementation and outcomes of his government O’MEALS programme. There and then, his was the good reference point by all the participants of what

THE PRIMARY OBJECTIVE OF A GOOD GOVERNMENT IS TO IMPACT POSITIVELY ON ITS CITIZENRY THROUGH POLICIES AND PROGRAMMES THAT WOULD HAVE DIRECT

BEARING ON THEIR DAYTO-DAY LIVING

a welfare programme should be both in delivery and achievable set goals of alleviating hunger while supporting education, nutritional heath, economic development and empowerment at the local/ community level. Questions propping through my mind during and after the session were implicit and explicit tangible economic benefits in Osun State and why such opportunities are not being embraced by other states and the Federal Government? If a state that easily fits as one of the poorest in terms of federal revenue allocation could boldly feed 252,793 pupils on a daily basis (Monday to Friday) on nutritious menu that includes fish, egg, chicken, meat, juice/ fruits and carbohydrates (all locally produced and processed), what could that figure of beneficiaries be across the 36 states plus the Federal Capital Territory? As a guess estimate, Nigeria could have helped over seven million school children out of hunger and into healthy, happy

learning future leaders. This to me is what a welfare-caring society should do. Not only that, what about job creation and business opportunities this kind of O’MEALS provide that could also be replicated in the 36 states in my beloved country? Osun state, through this global laudable programme, has created 3,100 professional chefs (caterers); 462 fish farmers; 1,000 pink cocoyam farmers, all within the state economy. That alone could have injected a total 250, 000 self-employed people into Nigerian economy with a likely multiplier effect in sundries or allied trades and businesses. One has not added the 15,000 whole chicken and 35 heads of cattle per school week into this calculation. When the history of a welfare state is finally written in not too distant future, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola’s name will be written in gold. He is the man who has transformed technology (Opon Imo) to a local, accessible and available companion of Osun State secondary school students. He is the same governor that is making school attendance an upward swing with a 24 percent increase in school enrolment within a period of less than a year and feeding primary school pupils with nutritious menu. Last year, I read online from my base in the United Kingdom that Senator Uche Chukwumerije, a Peoples Democratic Party representative in the upper chamber of the National Assembly was in Osun, and his recipe to Nigeria’s education quagmire was a replication of the new initiatives that are changing infrastructure and personnel of the education sector. These

are said to be yielding bountiful results as indicated in the geometric rise in the better results now being recorded by school children in the public examinations. Chukwumerije’s confession, to me, is the insight required by the PDP-led Federal Government to examine the Osun example towards solving many of the emergent problems bedeviling Nigeria and Nigerians. I doubt if Nigeria’s Bureau of Statistics has any reliable figure on the number of deaths recorded in the last one month. But the avalanche of reports from home suggests Nigeria looks like a terribly wartorn zone where what happens in the next minutes tragically is anybody’s guess. The gory killing of sleeping students in college hostels; the sacking of villages in Kaduna, Katsina, Plateau, Bauchi, Yobe states, to mention just a few, put my country at its precipice. This orgy of violence stems, no doubt, from the failure of the system. But it must be stated point-blank that where hunger, ignorance, injustice subsist for a long time, the fabric of the society is stretched beyond its capacity and the carnage being witnessed today is the result of the snap of the social order. Idowu, a Housing and Management Consultant, lives in London and wrote through remidowu@yahoo.co.uk. Send your views by mail or sms to PMB 10001, Ikoyi, or our Email: mail@ nationalmirroronline.net mirrorlagos@ yahoo.com or 08164966858 (SMS only). The Editor reserves the right to edit and reject views or photographs. Pseudonyms may be used but must be clearly marked as such.


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Friday, March 21, 2014

EFCC and its 117 convictions I I’m exile bound

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ays prior to the 1999 general elections, General Theophilus Yakubu Danjuma (retd) declared he would go on exile if Chief Olusegun Obasanjo did not win the presidential election of that year. Of course, the former military head of state won. The rest is now history. Reechoing Gneral Danjum now, I declare that I will go on hunger strike if President Goodluck Jonathan is not nominated as the presidential candidate of PDP for the 2015 presidential election, and go on exile if he does not win the 2015 contest. Chukwuma Dioka, Imo State.

n a country where corruption is seen as the norms of the day, a tradition and way of life, no meaningful development can be achieved. Corruption seems to have pervaded every sector of Nigeria system vis-à-vis our moral and social life. The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) despite all odds has given hope to Nigerians in its fight against the malaise, especially with its recent record of 117 convictions in 2013. Despite the numerous challenges faced by the Commission in prosecuting cases, the rise in the number of convictions shows that any obstacle

is surmountable. Of the 533 cases filed within the year, it is worthy of note that the Commission was able to secure 117. This to me is commendable effort. However, it is hoped that the Commission will not rest on its oars in 2014. It is also expected that it will bite harder by securing more convictions, especially of public officials who have looted the country’s commonwealth and holding our nation hostage through corruption. They enjoy their loot from the public’s treasury with their families and generations yet unborn. An instance is that of the son of the current governor of Jigawa State

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, Aminu Sule Lamido who was arrested at the Mallam Aminu Kano Airport and prosecuted and convicted for money laundering by the Commission. Sadly too, these so called public officials who guzzle the nation’s funds take advantage of some constitutional loopholes to frustrate trials in court. They do not only frustrate trials, they also try all within their power to cripple the anti-graft agencies in an attempt to make them toothless bulldog and a puppet in the hands of the elite. If the truth must be told the fight against corruption in this country must not be left in the hands of the anti-

graft agencies alone. It should be a collective fight. Our laws need to be strengthened in a way that corrupt people will be made to face stiffer penalties. The EFCC Act needs to be amended to make the Commission independent. The judiciary needs to step up efforts towards ensuring quick dispensation of justice. Above all, against the backdrop of the public saying that EFCC is grossly underfunded, the anti-graft agency should be adequately funded for it to be able to fight corruption to a standstill. Ngozi Alexander (08051764050), Maraba, Nasarawa State.

Let us debate subsidy removal

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part from the usual insecurity news that takes the front pages of our national newspapers, one compelling news read last week was the concurrence of the 36 state governments on the imperative of the removal of petroleum products subsidy. I know many of many compatriots will cry blue murder on reading about the position of their governors on an emotive issue like oil subsidy. I believe the time has really come for all of us to come to terms with our prevailing economic reality. For this reason therefore, let there be a stakeholders conference on this all important issue. Let the pro subsidy and anti-subsidy coalitions present their arguments and let Nigerians be the final judge of an economic pill that may portend lethal consequences for their wellbeing and the overhaul economic health of the nation. Doris Ayeni, Abuja

Time for vigilance

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call on the nation’s security agencies to be on red alert as the national conference begins in Abuja. Converged in one place is an assemblage of some of the best crop of statesmen that we have. Though they may be from different cultural backgrounds and are thus in a way local statesmen, these are men that have strong followership and so, their security must be paramount. The Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar, has not really walked the talk on his plan to end the Boko Haram-induced insurgency in the North on assumption. He has the most difficult assignment at hand now that our leaders are gathered in Abuja. He should throw security cordon round the venue of the conference and assignment well tested marksmen to all the delegates and those driving the bureaucracy process. Audu Bamaiyi, Lokoja, Kogi State.

Letters to the Editor

WAITING GAME: Buyers waiting in anticipation as a filling station refuse to sell fuel on Awolowo Road, Ikoyi, Lagos. PHOTO:ADEMOLA AKINLABI

Avoiding another national jamboree

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n Monday week, the much touted national conference was inaugurated amidst protestations by ethnic nationalities left out of the Great Debate. The anomic Niger Delta region raised the most strident voices of exclusion as Uhrhobo, Itsekiri, Ijaw rued their perceived voicelessness or low representation. I think President Goodluck Jonathan would have now been better educated on the dynamics of the configuration

of the Nigerian state –an amalgam of over 300 ethnic nationalities! It is apparent that the Federal Government did not take this into consideration when it was compiling the list of delegates to the conference. A more meaningful approach would have been nomination of leaders of ethnic nationalities. However, the flaws could still be rectified. But the most challenging task now would be how to direct the conference to more rewarding engagement. The con-

ference secretariat and the appointed chairpersons have the responsibility to tune down language of hate, hegemonic grandstandings and unprofitable demagoguery. There must be no attempt to drown the voice of the minority. The walk out spectre that defined the warped mindsets of our people during the 2005 exercise should be avoided. I pray for Nigeria at this trying time. Comrade Andrew Salami, Benin City.

Awo-Idemiri loses a worthy leader

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ir, permit me to use your highly esteemed medium to announce the passing to the highest glory of High Chief Alfonsus Onyejiaku Okosiosi 1 of Awo- Idemiri, Ugbo Oyanuba 1, Osu Local Government Area of Imo State. His death occurred on Friday February 28, 2014 at the age of 75. A grassroots mobiliser, High Chief Onyejiaku, the father of DPP director, Barrister Faustina Onjinka and Mr

Emeka Onyejiake ( CEO, E4GLANX) among other children, was one of the longest serving National President of Awo-Idemiri Development Union. He held office for 25 years and his superlative accomplishments won him a national award for rural development under the General Ibrahim Babangida regime. A highly respected community leader and a peer of the late Ikemba Nnewi, Dim Emeka Odumegwu

Ojukwu, his death has thrown the people of Awo Idemili into mour ning. All sons and daughters of the Autonomous Community of Imo State are gearing up to give the husband of Mrs Theresa Onyejiake and Mrs Gloria Onyejiaku, a befitting burial. He has left indelible marks of progress and development in the community. Miss Ezinwanne, Onitsha, Anambra State

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Acholonu

n era ended in Nigerian literature and arts two days ago with the death of veteran author and Afro-centric historian, Catherine Acholonu, better known for many of her provocative books and researches. Her death at a period when Nigeria is about to begin a dialogue for genuine nationhood comes across as a symbolic curtain call to her over many years in studious investigative writing and gender advocacy which was dedicated to demystifying the myth that the white race is more superior to Blackman civilisation through such books as the ‘Oladah Equiano’ and her recent award winning, ‘The Gram Code of African Adam’ (2005) among others. Mourning her passage, members of the Nigeria literary community have highlighted her rare faculty, gift and tenacity to tread where others are afraid. They also noted her penchant for veering into new researches no matter the challenge which many of her contemporaries seemed to have ignored In their tributes, experts also noted her exemplary commitment to her works as a creative writer per excellence, despite being a woman and coming from a very humble background, noting that even recently, the cerebral scholar, released an award winning provocative novel, The Gram Code of African Adam, which claimed that historical Adam could have been a Blackman and an African. Acholonu, the former senior special assistant to President Olusegun Obasanjo on arts and culture and several winner of several global literary awards died on Tuesday in Imo State. A brief message online disclosed that the scholar and cultural activist has been battling with a cancer related illness for long now. Her condi-

tion however deteriorated and she was taken to various hospitals for treatment, all to no avail. It was after several efforts to treat her failed that she gave up. Commenting on the development, former Dean of the Faculty of Arts, University of Nigeria Nsukka, (UNN) Prof. Damien Opata, described Acholonu’s death as a great loss as it ends an epoch in genre one of the vocal women writing that dwells on intensive research. Prof. Opata notes: “To me Acholonu is an icon. It will be very difficult to have someone who will have the kind boldness she always has when it comes to researches. Acholonu’s scholarship was dedicated to an avid quest for demystifying the notion that black and woman are sub-human race. More importantly, she also canvassed for an egalitarian society as she regular urged that justice and fair play be the foundation of the Nigerian nationhood. Hence, her death at a time when the nation is trying to dialogue and address many of the fundamental problems comes at a critical time when her ideology is germane.’’ Traditional ruler of Igboukwu kingdom, Aguata, Anambra State ,Igwe Martin Eze who is currently working with Acholonu on a project of Igboland equally appraised her thus: “The death of the erudite professor was a big loss, not only for Igboland but for the entire nation and blackrace.” Igwe Martins noted that after her studies overseas, Acholonu had returned home to identify with her people. And since then, she has remained a voice and icon. He regretted that Acholonu did not live long to reap the benefits of her labour. ‘‘She was a woman who used her talent to project Blackman viewpoint both at home and abroad,’’ Acholonu was born in Orlu to the family of Chief Lazarus Olumba. She attended secondary schools in Orlu before becoming

the first African woman to gain a master’s degree (1977) and a Ph.D. (1987) from the University of Düsseldorf, Germany. She authored over 16 books, many of which are used in secondary schools and universities in Nigeria, and in African Studies Departments in USA and Europe. Her works and projects have enjoyed the collaboration and the support of United States Information Service (USIS), the British Council, and the Rockefeller Foundation and in 1989 she was invited to tour educational institutions in USA, lecturing on her works under the United States International Visitor’s Program. In 1990 Catherine Acholonu was honored with the Fulbright Scholar in Residency award by the US government, during which she lectured at four colleges of the Westchester Consortium for International studies, NY, USA. Part of her work has taken her into the wider sphere of sustainable development. In 1986 she was the only Nigerian, and one of only two Africans, to participate in the United Nations Expert Group Meeting on “Women, Population and Sustainable Development: the Road to Rio, Cairo and Beijing”, which was organised jointly by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), the Division for the Advancement of Women, and the Division for Sustainable Development. This took place in the Dominican Republic, and focused on the mainstreaming of gender into the Plans of Action of the UN world conferences of Rio, Beijing and Cairo. She was recently appointed African Renaissance Ambassador by the African Renaissance Conference with head quarters in the Republic of Benin, and Nigeria’s sole representative at the global Forum of Arts and Culture for the Implementation of the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNFAC).

Arty News

AGOZINO AGOZINO

Inside FCT P. 24-25

Tribute as renowned art scholar, Acholonu dies

P. 32, 33

16 PAGES OF ARTS, REVIEWS, LIFESTYLE AND BUZZ TO START YOUR WEEKEND

Critics P. 22-23

VOL. 4 No. 827

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Battle Scars at Goethe Institut

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agic Wand Publishers will be bringing their author, Uzor Ngoladi for a book reading session at the Terra Kulture in Victoria Island, Lagos. Ngoladi, is the author of ‘Toxic Eucharist’ being currently promoted by Magic Wand Publishers. The event will not be about book reading and signing alone, as other side attractions like comedy, dance and drama sketches will also be available. Magic Wand will also at the event avail book deals to one thousand authors who are supposed to come to the venue with three chapters of their fictional works for on-the-spot assessment. It kicks off at 2pm on Saturday, March 22.

Toxic Eucharist

he exhibition by photographer Yetunde Babaeko and Xperspective, a group of female photographers titled: “Battle Scars”, which opened on March 8, will continue till the 29th at Goethe-Institut, Lagos. The first of a kind photo exhibition is to create awareness about breast cancer. The exhibition, which started with a one-minute silence in memory of Pa J.D Okhai Ojeikere, a legendary photographer, who was buried on the same day, drew guests ranging from photographers to art and health enthusiasts and the general public.

Mirror Mongers

Toxic Eucharist comes to Terra Kulture

P. 26

WEEKEND STARTERS


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Artman In The House

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Friday, March 21, 2014

Soyinka taught me discipline, Combining filmmaking with fashion may seem daunting but for Charles Anyabuike, it is fun; especially if it is driven by passion. This has yielded a lot of positive results in the form of movies and of course, a fashion line that constantly showcases works on runways in far-flung cities. He talks about his art and life in this interview with NGOZI EMEDOLIBE. Excerpts: How has life been with you? First of all, I have to say it’s a real pleasure speaking with you again after so many years. Life has been good; I have learnt more about life, experienced more, matured more and I have learnt to focus only on the really important things. The really important things being: God first, family and then my craft and my brand. Would it be proper to assume that you have quit film making on a permanent basis? It would not be proper to say I have quit film making for good, one cannot run away from his shadow. Entertainment is my life, making movies is a big aspect of entertainment. Drama is the only aspect of the numerous things I do which I actually studied in a university and got a degree in, so I cannot jettison that because of any setbacks. I only took a break from filmmaking to give attention to other more rewarding activities until such a time when certain indices are in place. How soon should the fans expect you? Of course, I shall be back making films someday. It may not be in Nollywood, I have the knowledge and the ability to make movies anywhere I find convenient and rewarding. As a rule, I don’t like to confine myself to borders set by others. But at the moment, if I have to make another movie, it will be a Hollywood movie. The only project on the cards is a production I am discussing with Obi Emelonye and Osita Iheme. It’s a script I wrote years ago and a script I have much faith in. Having worked with Obi Emelonye in the past and seeing how far he has come in directing, it’s only natural we do something again. Is the break you are observing out of bitterness?

In United Arab Emirates

I wouldn’t say the bitter experience was felt by me alone. I am sure you have noticed that many of us (pioneer movie makers) also took a break and are engaged in other aspects of entertainment. At the stage when the marketers in Idumota felt they had become producers because they were bankrolling the productions, they could get some untrained production hands to write scripts for them, get some continuity chaps to direct for them, the industry spiraled downwards, as you are well aware of. At the end everyone lost. Where are those marketers today? Those of us who are professionals will always keep our head above water in whatever we decide to do, and we are doing quite well. I commend those who have stuck it out and are making quality movies for the cinema, bypassing the shylock marketers who wrecked the industry. As a child, did you envisage a career in the creative world? Definitely, I always knew that whatever else I would be engaged in; I would never stray far from the arts and entertainment. That’s what gives me fulfillment, creating beauty out of the seeming disorder in nature.

Charles Kay

Your movie, The Incarnate was quite popular in those days….how much of a success commercially was it? Thanks to people like you, The Incarnate was quite popular and well-received. I even picked up a couple of awards for that including the Anthill Africana awards. Commercially it was moderately successful, at least the marketer, Contech is still my friend today which means both of us smiled to the bank. But with what I know now, I could have made much more money out of it.

distribution processes in Nollywood, you wish changed? Definitely yes! Production wise, there’s little that I would change, because I felt I did a thorough job. Distribution wise, oh, yes, there’s so much I would have done differently. Do you know a web-based company in New York was selling my movie online? I mean the video cassette? Somebody sold them the rights. I even took the case to Copyright Commission but you know how these things are. After a while, I had to cut my losses and move on.

Are there aspects of the production and

You scripted ‘Picture of a General’ ‘Who’s Next’ What determines the kind of subject you treat in films? I didn’t script ‘Who’s Next’ although I worked with Obi Emelonye on that production. But yes, I scripted and produced a lot of blockbusters including Picture of a General, The Incarnate, Human Cargo, Kill the Minister, Ocean of Love, etc. My subject is usually determined by real events happening around me, real people, real experiences. I try to mould it into a form of art, and I throw in a lesson or two for the viewer to learn while being entertained. Which other areas or themes do you wish Nigerian filmmakers should concentrate on? I wouldn’t want any filmmaker to deviate from the theme he or she feels comfortable with, whether it’s a historical work or a futuristic fantasy, or a contemporary theme. But more work should go into the plot, characterisation and other aspects that make a great film.

FACT FILE •

Hails from Owerri, Imo State

Married to Ronnie Anyabuike and blessed with two kids, Chubie and Kimberly

Studied Theatre Arts at the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife, Osun State

Behind films like ‘Ocean of Love’, ‘The Incarnate’,( which won Anthill Africana Awards), ‘Kill the Minister’, ‘Human Cargo’ and ‘Picture of a General’; and owns the Afro-Lux fashion chain

Unwinds with football matches

Favourite vacation spot is California, USA

Fancies SUVs by Mercedes Benz

How did studying Theatre Arts at the Obafemi Awolowo University shape your craft? Obafemi Awolowo University Ile-Ife defined me as an artiste. Prior to Ife, the arts were just a hobby, an interest. But after passing through the four walls of Ife, and having Uncle Wole Soyinka lecture me in my first year was a very deep experience that taught me discipline, focus and professionalism. It was a pity the Prof had to leave Ife after receiving his Nobel Prize. But we kept benefitting from the legacies he left with lecturers like Chuck Mike and others. Can you reflect on some aspects of filmmaking in Nollywood that are not part of


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Artman In The House

Friday, March 21, 2014

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professionalism –Charles Kay

With family

what you were taught in school? First of all, we were not really taught filmmaking at Ife, though we all took a course in that. It was more of drama, stage production, script writing, production management, etc. But that was enough preparation for us to delve into Nollywood seamlessly at the beginning. Of course, one keeps updating his knowledge and developing oneself regardless of whatever activity one is engaged in. What’s your impression of the new order in Nollywood? Of course, Nollywood has changed. We are no longer seeing forty films released every week. The real professionals who remain are making higher quality movies are taking the movies to the cinemas, which is how it should have been done in the first place. The quacks have resorted to making soft-porn to make ends meet. Can you share what more changes you desire in the industry? I would like to see proper legislation in order to check quacks in the industry. I would like to see more people invest in cin-

With Samson Siasia

ema chains as that is the main channel of distribution, before the CDs and DVDs. What fires your imagination in fashion? The funny thing is that the fashion has always been there. At Ife, I had a boy-band, a musical group called ‘The Shades’. We played gigs on campus and I always had a fashion show on the side. Doing my NYSC at Kano TV, I was designing attires for a lot of people. While actively engaged in making movies, I always had the fashion thing going. My imagination in fashion is something that was thrust upon me. I find myself creating pieces that always stand out and are unique. I thank God for that. What is your definition of a well-dressed African? A well-dressed African is no different from a well-dressed Indian or European. We wear their suit and tie; they can also wear our tunics if they are well-made. In my fashion, I have tried not to confine myself to any particular style or culture. Africans wear my products. Chinese do. Americans do. There may be African elements in my creations but the designs are ultimately universal in scope. How is the Afro-Street collection doing?

My new collection is tagged Afro-Lux Collection because there’s more luxury in terms of fabrics and design. As of now only my exclusive clients have access to the collection. I have not supplied the stores yet until after the series of shows I have lined up. You had an exhibition in Dubai…what was the reception like? My Dubai exhibition at the Sun and Sands Hotel was awesome, beyond my expectations. If my designs were accepted in a place that is fast becoming the fashion hub of the world, then I am greatly encouraged. I always say fashion is show-business. As such, there is the show and there is the business. You must pay attention to both. At the end of the day, the question is how many people around the world are wearing your designs? That is the business. Who is on your list of clients in Nigeria? Oh no, my clientele here in Nigeria would not find that funny. That’s why it’s exclusive. But when the mass line rolls out, I would want everyone to be a client. Getting personal…You changed your profile on Facebook to ‘complicated marital

status’. What does that mean? It means I am married but living apart from my wife. We are very close though, a close family, the kids, my wife and I. Have you ever thought of costuming in movies? Costuming in movies has never crossed my mind, there’s a great difference between fashion designing and costuming in movies. Do you share the concern that films in Igbo language are not being given adequate attention? As an Igbo man in entertainment, of course I am greatly concerned about the dwindling fortunes of Igbo language. It’s our duty as people involved in culture and the arts to ensure that the language does not become extinct. But it’s also the responsibility of every Igbo parent to ensure that their kids learn Igbo. What is next up your sleeves in terms of entertainment? Right now I am fully engaged in promoting my fashion brand around the world. When that is done and the label is up and running, I would do some writing; fiction and non-fiction. I am not getting younger, so I have to take things one at a time. You have been defending the PDP on the social media…is that part of your duties lately? Goodluck Jonathan is my president and I would not be part of those who hurl insults on him on social media. I have not met him at close range though I know one or two people who work with him. I am not working for him, but considering the constraints he is working under, I think he is doing fairly well. Could you rate the President in terms of promoting Nigerian arts? I wouldn’t say GEJ has done much for the arts, but that’s probably because the arts do not have a common and organised front to state their case. I know he has done wonderfully well for sports, because they are organised. We should organise ourselves in arts as well.

His first film

On the set of Who’s Next


Critics

22

Book

Friday, March 21, 2014

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Americanah: Exploring the depth of There are some novels that tell a great story and others that make you change the way you look at the world. Adichie’s ‘Americanah’ is a book that manages to do both. ELIZABETH DAY

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t is ostensibly a love story – the tale of childhood sweethearts at school in Nigeria whose lives take different paths when they seek their fortunes in America and England – but it is also a brilliant dissection of modern attitudes to race, spanning three continents and touching on issues of identity, loss and loneliness. This is Adichie’s third and most ambitious novel – her first, ‘Purple Hibiscus’, was longlisted for the Booker Prize and her second, ‘Half a Yellow Sun’, won the Orange prize. A highly acclaimed 2009 collection of short stories, ‘The Thing Around Your Neck’, cemented her position as one of the most promising African writers of her generation. She was awarded a prestigious MacArthur “Genius” grant and in 2010, the New Yorker featured her in its list of the 20 best authors under the age of 40. So a lot is expected of her. Gratifyingly, ‘Americanah’ does not disappoint. It tells the story of Ifemelu, a spirited young girl with strong opinions, and her teenage boyfriend, Obinze, who grow up with romanticised notions of the west, shaped by the literature of Graham Greene, Mark Twain and James Baldwin. When Ifemelu is presented with an opportunity to continue her postgraduate studies in Philadelphia, she takes it. Some years later, Obinze, too, goes in search of a better life, but to Britain.

It is at this point that Adichie really begins to flex her muscles as a novelist: the sense of dislocation felt by both characters in two countries with wholly different histories and class structures is expertly rendered. She has an extraordinary eye for the telling nuance of social interaction within a particular kind of liberal elite. In England, Obinze struggles to get hold of the ever-elusive national security number that will enable him to work legally. The newspapers are full of stories about schools “swamped” by immigrant children and politicians’ attempts to clamp down on asylum seekers. Against this backdrop, he is invited to a smug Islington lunch party by Emenike, a former classmate in Nigeria, who has married a high-flying solicitor. The food is served on self-consciously “ethnic” plates brought back from a holiday in India and Obinze is left wondering whether Emenike has become a person “who believed that something was beautiful because it was handmade by poor people in a foreign country, or whether he had simply learned to pretend so”. The polite conversation skates over race and the idea of foreignness, with each guest trying to outdo the next with their earnest political correctness. Adichie skewers their self-satisfaction with lethal accuracy. They “understood the fleeing from war, from the kind of poverty that crushed human souls”, she writes. “They would not understand why people like him, who were raised well-fed and watered but mired in dissatisfaction, conditioned from birth to look towards somewhere else… were now resolved to do dangerous things, illegal things, so as to leave, none of them starving, or raped, or from burned villages, but merely hungry for choice and certainty.” In America, Ifemelu also finds it difficult to get part-time work. She gets turned away from menial jobs as a waitress, bartender or cashier. Her fellow students speak to her with painful slowness, as if she cannot comprehend basic English. In class, she is singled out as someone who will intuitively un-

Film

Lekki Wives: A mirror at the quest to Blessing Egbe focuses her lens on the make-it-quick tendency associated with present day wives. How well has she done it? TOBI OSIGWE

I

t was the twentieth century GermanAmerican writer, Edith Hamilton that opines; the way a nation goes reflects in their art and drama. What she meant by this is, the foibles, follies, thinking and behavioural pattern of a particular nation at a particular time or cultural movement is wholly reflected in their art or drama. Inadvertently what this means is, if you want to know how the South-Africans, Ghanaians, Americans or Nigerians behave look at their art. Art in this context cuts across music, films, fashion, poetry, sculptural works, etc. If the above saying is generally accepted then there is no gainsaying that our film as Nigerian’s is a reflection of who we are as a nation. On this back-

drop, I believe Blessing Egbe’s new flick, ‘Lekki Wives’, is a splendid and blunt portrayal of the wealth madness at all cost syndrome which has become endemic and contagious in us as a nation. In the film or drama series as one might choose to classify it, we see married ladies all out to do anything to move into the Lekki highbrow, maintain the suave and nouveau riche lifestyle, mingle and associate with the ‘timbers and calibers’ of the society at the detriment of their family. Presently, the family institution which is supposed to be the bastion of our society is regrettably on a speedy reverse gear heading into the Atlantic Ocean, a film mirroring this anathema is not only timely but instructive. If there is one glaring thematic message of this film it is; evil corruption erodes fecundity of the family. In these days of unhealthy competition among friends and families one should be extremely careful with the kind of friend she keeps. Any friend, group, club or clique that keeps rubbing it in that you are not like the Jones is a total no-no. It is obvious via the lens of the film that the ‘Lekki Wives’; Cleo, Miranda, Uju, Peace and Lovette, had no

HOWEVER, THERE ARE SOME FEW DOWN POINTS LIKE EVERY HUMAN ART IN THE SEASON. THE CHALLENGE OF BALANCING CHARACTERS IN ENSEMBLE FILMS REARED ITS HEAD.

MOST

TIMES WE TEND TO SEE MORE OF A PARTICULAR CHARACTER AT THE DETRIMENT OF ANOTHER business being friends in the first place. The characterisation of the five friends is brilliant from the desperate and go-getter character of Lovette who abandoned her middle class husband to join the millionaires club, to Cleo who was married off to a rich Alhaji so her family can kiss bye bye to poverty. Miranda, a bi-sexual who abandons her wheel-chaired husband in the care of house helps, or is it Peace who cannot draw a line between her religious beliefs and her husband need to my favourite character Uju. Uju is your typical Naija babe who cannot be intimidated by her friends’ status and she is desperate to join the big league though careful to hide that she is not in the big league already.

If you are tired of seeing known faces in Nigerian films then ‘Lekki Wives’ will be an interesting watch for you. Save for Adaora Ukoh, other actresses were purely upcoming. And did they deliver? Men, they aced it. Katherine Obiang, Frank Edoho’s ex-wife gave a good account of her character, Uju. Keira Hewatch who was in ‘Two Brides and a Maid’ also upped her game. While the duo of the sassy and delectable Kiki Omeili and Chinonso Young wrote their name with gold on account of their performance in this flick. The duo is new screen goddesses to watch out for in coming years. However, there are some few down points like every human art in the season. The challenge of balancing charac-


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Critics

Friday, March 21, 2014

childhood fantasies ADICHIE IS PARTICULARLY GOOD AT EXPOSING THE CONTRADICTORY EBB AND FLOW OF

AMERICA’S PAINFUL ATTEMPTS TO RECONCILE ITSELF WITH ITS RECENT PAST derstand the plight of African Americans because of some half-formed belief in a nebulous, shared “black” consciousness. Adichie is particularly good at exposing the contradictory ebb and flow of America’s painful attempts to reconcile itself with its recent past, when segregation still persisted in the south. She does so with a wryness and insight that never imposes itself on the flow of the story but which challenges the reader’s assumptions with each carefully crafted sentence. There is the blond, well-heeled Kimberley who means well but says every black woman she sees is “beautiful”, despite aesthetic evidence to the contrary. When Ifemelu buys a vintage 1960s dress on eBay she realises that when the original owner would have worn it, black Americans would not have been allowed to vote. “And maybe,” Ifemelu notes, “the original owner was one of those women, in the famous sepia photographs, standing by in hordes outside schools shouting ‘Ape!’ at

young black children because they did not want them to go to school with their young white children.” Eventually, Ifemelu starts blogging about her experiences. Adichie captures the tone of internet chatter with precision – at once both breezy and sporadically furious – and the blogposts add an extra dimension to the plot, allowing the reader to see how Ifemelu sees herself and how she wishes to present herself to the outside world. A recurring theme of the blogs is the politics of black hair – how women are expected to relax their natural curls with toxic chemicals or weave in bits of someone else’s hair in order to conform to comfortable white norms. In fact, much of the novel is written in flashback, as Ifemelu has her hair braided in a New Jersey salon in preparation for going home to Nigeria after 15 years in America, during which she has witnessed Barack Obama’s election victory. The final section of the book follows Ifemelu’s return and her reunion with Obinze who is, by now, married to someone else. It is to Adichie’s immense credit that such a sprawling, epic book remains so tightly structured. There are, perhaps, one too many of Ifemelu’s blogposts and a few extra scenes here and there that could have been cut, but part of Americanah’s appeal is its immense, uncontained and beating heart. You can feel Adichie’s passion and belief pumping beneath every paragraph. Americanah is a deeply felt book, written with equal parts lyricism and erudition. More than that, it is an important book – and yet one that never lets its importance weigh down the need to tell a truly gripping human story. •Day writes for Guardian of London.

Music

23

Time for dancehall

The fact that he is treading the dancehall path makes 9Quest different from the rest. NGOZI EMEDOLIBE

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or Ebuka Philip Chinweze, who goes by the stage name 9Quest, it is obvious that he would be counting on his understanding of the psyche of his audience. This is typical of his 11-track album. Sifting through the works making it in the Nigerian music scene, it is obvious that the lyrics must be recognisable (with sing-along refrains) and the rhythm must be laced with danceable beats; that is what 9Quest has done with this album that is titled, Shake it Down Low. As the title of the album suggests, it is positioned as a club hit that will keep audiences on their toes. Why does 9Quest feel this is what he needs to sway Nigerian music lovers at this time? It is likely going to be found in an in-depth research he has done about the music industry and his experience in India where he is being trained on media enterprise at the Institute of Television and Film Studies in New Delhi. The album, which is a dancehall flavor, interestingly has infusions of hip-hop, street rap, afro beats and even the Indian rhythm. With the waves Nigerian beats are making in Indian clubs, where the popular ‘Naija flavour’, is making inroads it is likely that 9Quest is also targeting the Indian market. Perhaps this has informed why the music will be released in India, South Africa and Nigeria simultaneously. It also informed the array of producers the artiste worked with in actualising this

dream. For the entire album, listeners will hear inputs from Sound Steve, who produced Shake It Down Low with mixing by Evo. Big Mouth, a South African producer, produced the track DJ My Dealer. The song, Choice, which has deep Indian flavour was done by a group of producers and sound engineers at the Bayana Tree Productions studio. Another beautiful aspect of the new album is the mixture of languages both local and international brought to play in the songs. Although 9Quest is from Anambra State where Igbo is spoken widely, his songs have infusions of many languages in Nigeria. Shake it Down Low, has Yoruba, Edo and some Northern dialects in it, which is a good appeal for the various ethnic linings in Nigeria. Songs like DJ My Dealer, not only has South African beats but also the language. While 9Quest has tried to have a collage of appealing attributes about his forthcoming album, one aspect he needs to work on is his voice. For someone who wants to leave memorable traits, he needs to have worked on his voice to leave the desired impact. But his attitude to this may be seen in the genre of music he is propagating-dancehall. He has so many examples to cite in consoling himself, which includes the Shaba Ranks and the Buju Bantons of this world. Bringing Shake it Down Low to the audience will however require an articulate visual interpretation, that will drive his message home. Working with Nollywood Network Services, a fledging production outfit will help in realising this. While so much have been put in place to receive this album, the ultimate decision on how successful it becomes lies with the audience.

be rich ters in ensemble films reared its head. Most times we tend to see more of a particular character at the detriment of another. More so, on a personal note, I believe the characters of Cleo and Miranda do not have deep dramatic goals. For the fact that Cleo has succeeded to smuggle in her boyfriend into her matrimonial home her need becomes immediately satisfied, no other intriguing quest from her part was plotted in save for when this shenanigan act will be discovered. Having said this, I think it’s noteworthy to say, Blessing has broken new grounds with this episodic film style and I believe that this is another major plus for the new Nollywood. Most of our beloved TV drama series have not been released in DVD but here is a new series released straight to the viewers without being first aired on terrestrial television stations. I believe it took her a lot of courage to take this step and I presume that soon episodic films like this will follow suit. Finally, if you are tired of the commedia dell’arte in the name of film from our Asaba filmmakers, then you will be happy watching this thrilling and innovative film from one of the most ambitious

Lekki Wives

and creative filmmaker in Nollywood. If you are looking for a way to unwind the weekend with friends and family then this drama series is definitely your best bet. If you are looking for a film that is

instructive and as well entertaining then ‘Lekki Wives’ is the hook. Leo Tolstoy the novelist said “arts communicate felt experiences not knowledge”. I dare say unequivocally, ‘Lekki Wives’ has suc-

ceeded in communicating real life happenings in our present society. •Tobi Osigwe, writes reviews and articles for reputable multi-media platforms.


24

Inside FCT

Friday, March 21, 2014

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Reclaiming swampy terrains for golf THE AREA POPULARLY KNOWN WITH THE OFFENSIVE ODOUR,

JOEL AJAYI ABUJA

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ons of the rich and well-to-do in the Federal Capital Territory are set to adopt a new strategy in mastering the game with their new moves to create golf courts in swampy and dumpsites as part of their efforts to build skills outside the big golf clubs that are never empty as their parents continue to engage one another in the age-long battle for the best amongst equals. Indeed, these youths who are still in schools have moved in droves to some locations, particularly a dirty swamp in Arochukwu Street beside FMG Garden, and turned it into a mini golf court now called Parkland Golf Resort Club. The area popularly known as the best spot, with the offensive odour in the area, is now wearing a neater look due to the aesthetic and other face-lifting endeavours of one of the game’s enthusiasts whose passion both for sports and recreation is well known to lovers of golf in the FCT. The Golf Restore Club commissioned recently by Senate President Senator David Mark who was represented by President of Nigeria Golf Federation Dr. Peter Deshi noted that the Parkland Golf Club will offer golfers in the FCT and its environs the opportunity to play game and relax in a serene environment. Mark said: “The aim and objectives of this is to promote sports through Golf as well as making it one of the sports that would help the country attains her vision 20:2020. We are planning to make the golf available in every neighborhood in Abuja. Our target is to improve the environment and we are determined to take the golf to every Nigerian door step.” According to the Principal Promoter of the new Golf Club, Mohammed Bello, who integrates work with play in a natural green environment, disclosed that, the re-

IS NOW WEARING A NEATER LOOK DUE TO THE AESTHETIC ENDEAVOURS OF THE ENTHUSIASTS.

Parkland Golf Club opening

sort cannot compare itself with the prestigious IBB Golf Club; but it offers what the older club lacks. “I have been nursing the dream since 2007. We had to go through all the procedures of development con-

trol to get approval and authorization to build a golf course. That took a lot of time. The Mini Golf Court is the first of it is kinds in FCT, where no few than 100 golf courses would be offered for young and those who have passion for the game. Today, the once stinking, disgusting and un-inviting wasteland has been deliberately transformed to a sport and event centre which has been already hosted local and foreign visitor for purpose of playing golf. And it is available for the sports and recreational needs of the entire family, friends, employees and larger community where they can meet, socialize, recreate, and have fun. Membership of the golf club is open to private, family and corporate categories.” One of the residents in the area who was visibly excited, Alhaji Saliu Husseini commended the principal promoter of the new golf club “We are very grateful to God for our architect who in his interest rescued this area from the unpleasant odour and the other entire dangerous animal that abode in this area. This area was ‘no-go’ area when night comes; I don’t know that this portion of land which was no more than a bushy wasteland, smelling behind our house, a land that has been abused through the uncontrolled dumping of refuse can look attractive like this; besides its aesthetic structure has beautified this area. With this I can come here, relax with my family after the stressful day work.”

Houses destroyed by blasts

Rock Blasts: Residents protest neglect by Chinese OMEIZA AJAYI

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ngry residents of Garam community are now locked in a compensation battle with a foreign company, Chinese Civil Engineering Construction Company (CCECC) handling the Abuja-Kaduna railway project. Garam is a suburb of Bwari Area Council of FCT but located in Tafa Local Government of Niger state. Workers of the company were recently stopped from working by the angry mob numbering over 50 who were protesting the destruction of their houses due to the quarry ac-

tivities of the company. Residents of the area had mobilised themselves to the construction site on Saturday morning decrying what they said was the insensitivity with which the company is handling the issue of compensation due to them. They blocked all the entry and exit points to different sites of the company in the locality with rocks forcing workers comprising Nigerians and Chinese to abandon work for the day. Some of the company’s trucks that had arrived at the sites very early were also prevented from going in or out. The aggrieved residents said their properties were damaged by a twin rock

blast carried out by the company last month while constructing the railway. ‘Inside FCT’ observed that the blast had left many houses shattered while some suffered serious structural damages following which the company’s Public Relations Manager, Aminu Mohammed appealed to the affected properties that CCECC would take responsibility for the blast and compensate all the victims adequately. The first blast took place on January 20 while the second blast was carried out on February 28. However, one week after taken stock of the damages, residents said they have been waiting on the company to fulfill

its promises, lamenting that the onset of rainfall has now made living in those damaged houses very uncomfortable. While the protest lasted, the company’s Personnel Manager, Davids Oladokun who addressed the protesters apologised on behalf of the company for the damages and discomfort the blasts have brought to them. He gave assurance that the company had already started work on all the stock of damages taken with the view to giving adequate compensation to the victims. Oladokun who said he shared in the grief of the victims pleaded with them to exercise patience for the company to reach out to them on Sunday even as he


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Inside FCT

Friday, March 21, 2014

Karu market

25

Bulldozers at work

Karu market demolition exposed us to more hardship –Traders Four months after the Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC) demolished Karu market, the traders are still lamenting. Gloria Usman reports.

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ith the demolition of Karu market by the Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC), more people have been thrown into the already saturated labour market. Many others have also been exposed to untold hardship without anyone thinking of the alternative way of helping to relocate them. Some of the victims of the demolition exercise, who spoke with ‘Inside FCT’ described their situation as helpless. “I am already stranded because there is nowhere to go. Since the demolition exercise took place, i have been running round looking for another shop but I could not get one.” He called on government to help relocate them so that they can continue their lives. One of the traders simply identified as Eze Christian, who sells slippers, said the only source of his livelihood had been taken away. “I started business three months before the market was demolished and now I don’t know where to start from

again. I rented the place for N48,000. This government cannot provide jobs for us and the only source we have to get our daily bread has been destroyed”. A taxi driver, Ade Samuel Ogundele, also said that the demolition has affected his business badly. Pain is not far from that as he said, “we have problems.” He said he is pained that the market was demolished because that is where he makes greater percentage of the money he earns daily. “We can hardly find passengers here now with this demolition exercise. Our business has collapsed; we cannot get even N1000 or N500 per day. Since morning, I have been here waiting but no passengers to carry because of the effect of the demolition. We want the government to help but looking at the present situation; even, if the market is rebuilt, if you don’t have money, you can’t get a shop because a lot of people with money are already buying the shops that are yet to be completed now”. The treasurer of the Karu Market Association, Monday Pankshin, said goods worth millions of naira is in ruins in the market. According to him, “thank God you met me under the sun sitting under my umbrella. Since the demolition took place, I have had no shop to display my wares. Before the demolition, I used to go to market with N500,000 or N700,000 to buy goods but now, I cannot even go to market since the

demolition. I’m just managing my life. Before Christmas, I was hospitalised and doctors advised that I should not stay under the sun again but the truth is that if I do not sell under the sun, where will I stay?” He said the makeshift shop they are selling in the market now goes for N300,000 to N500,000 without receipt. “The contractor had promised us before the demolition that they will resettle us to where we can sell our goods but none of the promises was fulfilled. I tell you if there is any trader selling in the temporary place he must have bought the place at an exorbitant price. Even the one that we got with allocation paper was demolished without our consent. The situation has affected not only my life but that of all the entire traders in Karu. You can see how I am sweating and how people are standing under the sun. Many of us are still at home because they don’t know what to do. Now I use my phone to call most of my customers and when they come they will reject my goods saying that they are dusty; so they don’t want to buy things from us again”. Monday stated. The traders decided against going to court to stop the demolition exercise because they felt the case will drag longer than necessary in court. “We are tired of court issue; we want justice from God because they don’t have respect for court orders again. The situa-

company advised against violence conduct during the demonstration. Unfortunately, the situation nearly degenerated not long after the Personnel Manager’s departure from the scene of demonstration as a detachment of the Nigerian Army attached to the site office of the company arrived in a Hilux Toyota van. On the instruction of the heavily armed soldiers, all the roads earlier barricaded by the protesters were opened. They had come to the scene on the invitation of a Chinese national who was earlier denied exit by the protesters. This led to a hot argument during which a digital camera belonging to one

tion in Nigerian court is not for the poor. We were fighting for relocation, we ran to court as our last option for the poor but things turn out the other way”, he also said. Another trader, Ajiya said traders in the market worked very hard to make the market what it became today. “We are the pillar and builders of this market. We bought the land and we built it by ourselves and not that we rented the place. The shops are for us and it is our property; I don’t think they can just take it like that and suffer us without any compensation or relocation. The suffering is too much, even a goat cannot be treated the way we were treated”. ‘Inside FCT’ learnt that there is a shop built beside the warehouse that is going for N3million without receipt. “All they do here is to collect money and share amongst themselves”, the source said. Some of the traders, who do not want their names in print said many people have left the city after the demolition because they had nothing doing again. Some have even, lost their lives as a result of the shock they suffered after the exercise. “One of our traders, who retired and used his entitlement to set up a business for himself and his wife no longer, has anything they are doing. I would have died of heart attack” the trader said.

NOW I USE MY PHONE TO CALL

of the protesters, Christian Asogwo was smashed by one of the security personnel while one of the protesters’ spokespersons, Kunle Olasanmi was whisked away by the soldiers. Olasanmi, a journalist with Leadership Newspaper and whose house was badly damaged, was also manhandled by the soldiers who reportedly acted on the instruction of the Chinese national. One of the victims of the rock blasts, Joe Joseph whose house was damaged by rocks sent away by the blast lamented that he and his family members could no longer reside in the house as it is no longer habitable. “See, my roof has been shattered, look

at those two big holes at the base of my house created by the rocks that hit the house. Since rain has started, it has become difficult for us to live in this house” he said. According to Ismaila Adamu who also has serious structural damaged insisted that the foundation of his house which tremor from the two blasts has shaken must be taken care of by the company as part of compensation. Among those whose houses were shattered by the incident are three journalists: Adelanwa Bamgboye of Daily Trust, Kunle Olasanmi of Leadership and Yekeen Nurudeen of New Telegraph.

MOST OF MY CUSTOMERS AND WHEN THEY COME THEY WILL REJECT MY GOODS SAYING THAT THEY ARE

DUSTY; SO THEY

DON’T WANT TO BUY THINGS FROM US AGAIN


Mirror Mongers

26

Friday, March 21, 2014

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Biola Ige, defines her headache

After the tragic job test…

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Biola Ige

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Alagbole, Ogun State

Ogun State: Men in reflectors

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omething is being done around the country to address the unemployment rate? That is why some of the states now have their traffic control units, working alongside the police in some major cities at least to reduce the army of youths without jobs in the name of controlling traffic. In Lagos, they are called LASTMA (Lagos State Transport Management

who are not empowered by law, but ‘emboldened by the lack of it’. Every morning while the residents are facing the gridlock, these emergency men who could be identified from their ‘reflecting vests’ stand at the bad spots, arresting motorists. If you are wondering what they do with them, they drive them to their office located at Akute garage where the matter is settled, once the victim will ‘cough out some money’. The buzz, gathered by MM is that TRACE does not know them.

Agency) and in Ogun State they are called TRACE (Traffic Compliance and Enforcement Corps). Well, let us leave how well they have been working and pay attention to what their presence is engendering: the past two months have been hectic for residents of Alagbole and Akute, one of the neighbouring suburbs of Ogun State, owing to the road construction going on there. This development which has imposed untold hardship on the residents is also creating a new kind of ‘emergency officers’,

ast week, MM talked about Muna Obiekwe, Biola Ige and their photo, which went viral online. While Muna has kept mum about the issue, but Biola Ige, whom MM gathered has been having a battle with her boyfriend over the role has answered those worrying her life with text messages and phone calls over the role. She said: “I was going to remain silent on the photo being displayed on the internet however I realise that I need to set the record straight for my family, friends and fans who I love and respect. The photo in question was taking (sic) from the set of a movie called ‘Pregnant Hawkers’ in which I played a hawk-

er who was in a romantic situation with a man (The actor in the photo). The photo circulating the internet right now is the photo from a scene in the movie and nothing more. IF you watched the movie you will see that there is nothing to this movie other than the fact that I was playing a role! I am an actress, it is a profession that I love and will continue to enjoy. I am required to play all sorts of roles. Whoever maliciously leaked this photo to make it appear to be something else has simply given me some great publicity! Thank you. I look forward to acting more movies, and playing more roles to entertain you.” Some mothers do have them indeed.

t will take a while before the ripples raised by the job test by the Nigeria Immigration Service settles. Of course, the Minister of Interior, Abba Moro, has cleared the air that he is not going to resign. According to him, the tragedy has presented a challenge which he would stay back and ‘deal with’. Many will agree or disagree with him, but what appears worrisome about the matter is the fate of those who managed to stay alive after the examination. A certain Osuoha Dorothy, who wrote the exam last Saturday had hardly finished when her answer sheet found its way into the hands of a market woman who used it to wrap pepper in the market. Only imagination can tell what happened to the other answer sheets. The picture of Osuoha’s answer sheet brought home by someone has already gone viral online.

Have you been to Diete Spiff Stadium, Port Harcourt?

N Rotimi-Amaechi

ment headed by Rotimi Amaechi has been around the country over issues of mis-governance at the centre, something bad is happening under their noses at the Alfred Diete Spiff Stadium in Port Har-

igerians love sports a great deal but it appears only those who actually indulge in it really know the state of disrepair of the facilities at hand. While the Rivers State Govern-

court. The stadium is an ugly shade of its original state. From the gymnasium to the boxing ring and even the VIP stand, everywhere smacks of utter neglect. MM gathered it is the duty

of the Rives State Stadia Management Authority to maintain the place, but the buzz is that the parastatal has been wailing over the lack of funds to carry out those minor repairs required there.

Job test paper

NGOZI OKONJO-IWEALA Series of measures have been proffered as the solution to the endemic nature of corruption in Nigeria. Minister of Finance and Co-ordinating Minister of the Economy, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala added her voice to the issue: How do you solve the problem of corruption?

W Okonjo-Iweala

ell, you know with that, there are no easy answers. But there’s one thing I want to say and repeat. No one can fight corruption for Nigerians except Nigerians. Everyone has to be committed from the top to the bottom to fight it. And I think there are two key things that need to be done all along, and it’s not just in Nigeria. It’s in many developing countries that you need to do this. But in our country, you need to, coupled with – by all means pursue those who are corrupt, punish them, you know, make sure there’s no impunity. But that has to be coupled with something which doesn’t get as much attention, which is building institutions. It’s unglamorous; it’s work that takes time, but we have to do it. We have to put it in place.


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Friday, March 21, 2014 Jumada Al-Awwal 20 1435 A.H.

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Call to Worship On the authority of Anas bin Malik, the servant of the Messenger of All, the prophet said: “None of you [truly] believes until he wishes for his brother what he wishes for himself.” RELATED BY BUKHARI AND MUSLIM

Leadership corruption in Islam

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asulullah (SAW) said: “Allah does not punish the individuals for the sins of the community until they see the evil spreading among themselves, and while they have the power to stop it, do not do so.” (Ahmad) Ibn Taimiyyah said: “This is why those who are in authority are of two groups: the scholars and the rulers. If they are upright, the people will be upright; if they are corrupt, the people will be corrupt.” Allah says: “And O my people! Give full measure and weight in justice and reduce not the things that are due to the people, and do not commit mischief in the land, causing corruption.” (Surah Hud 11:85) Allah also says: “And incline not toward those who do wrong, lest the Fire should touch you, and you have no protectors other than Allâh, nor you would then be helped.” (Surah Hud 11:113) Be Firm yet Just with a Corrupt Muslim Allah says: “O you who believe! Stand out firmly for Allâh and be just witnesses and let not the enmity and hatred of others make you avoid justice. Be just: that is nearer to piety, and fear Allâh. Verily, Allâh is Well Acquainted with what you do.” (Surah Ma’idah 5:8) When the fitnah occurred in the time of ‘Uthman (RA), some of the people said to Usamah ibn Zaid , “Will you not speak to Uthman?” he replied: “You think that I will not talk to him without letting you

know about it (also). Indeed, I will certainly talk to him regarding that which concerns me and him without initiating a matter which I do not love to be the first to initiate.” Duty of a Muslim to Give Sincere Advice to the Corrupt Ruler “The master of martyrs (sayyid alshuhadaa) is Hamza, and a man who stands up to a tyrant ruler and gives him nasiha (advice). And so the ruler kills him.” Allah commanded the Muslims to enjoin good and deny evil, and made it a duty upon them to do so. Allah said; “Let it be from among you a group who call to the good, enjoin good and deny evil.” Allah also said: “You have been the best nation (Ummah) brought to the people, because you enjoin good and deny evil.” (Musnad of Ahmad) Saying Of The Pious People Abdullah ibn Mas’ood (RA) used to say: “Whoever aids an oppressor or taught him an argument to nullify the right of an ordinary Muslims, has drawn upon himself the anger of Allah.” Allah says: “If the HYPOCRITES, and those in whose hearts is a disease (evil desire for ADULTERY, etc.), and those who spread FALSE NEWS among the people in Al¬Madinah, cease not, We shall certainly let you OVERPOWER them, then they will not be able to stay in it as your neighbours but a little while. Accursed, wherever found, they shall be seized and killed with a (terrible) slaughter.” (Surah Ahzaab 33:60-61)

L-R: Sarkin Yakin of Bwari, FCT, Sheik Ibrahim Yusuf; Chief Imam of Kogo, FCT, Alhaji Yusuf Ahmad; representative of Chief Imam of Bwari Area Council, FCT, Alhaji Ijushan Usman and Pastor Abraham Ahpei, during the 3rd Northern Region Jalsa Tarbiyah (Moral Training Conference) at Ahmadiyya Central Mosque, Abuja, recently.

Where exactly are we heading?

MURIC petitions FG on violation of Muslims’ rights at Passport Office

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Hadith of the Day

Rasulullah (SAW) continued to say : “By Allah you have to enjoin good and forbid evil, and hold against the hand of the unjust ruler and force him on the truth strongly, or you have to limit him to the truth”. By this evidence, which is the hadith commenting on the verse, Allah has prohibited us from remaining silent against the evil, and He commanded us to remove it. Abdullah ibn Abu Awfa narrates Rasulullah (SAW) said, “Allah is with the Qadi as long as he is not tyrannical, but when he is, He departs from him and the Devil attaches himself to him.”(Tirmidhi) Fighting A Corrupt Muslim Ruler If an Imam or Amir is corrupted he should first be given a call to submission in private, or possibly in public if his evil deeds were done in public. If he does not turn away from his evil deeds, he should be overthrown or removed from position. However, in the process of removing him from position, he should not be physically fought, such as waging war with weapons. This is because the ruler is still Muslim, and the Muslims are not to attack or kill another Muslim. If, however, the Muslim leader or ruler completely abandons his salaat, he nullifies his Islam and can be fought if necessary. (However, to prove this, it would take an Islamic court or similar situation in which the person could defend themselves against all accusations). Umm Salamah (RA) narrated Rasulullah (SAW) said: “In the near future there will be Amirs (rulers) and you will like their good deeds and dislike their bad deeds. One who sees through their bad deeds (and tries to prevent their repetition by his hand or through his speech), is absolved from blame, but one who hates their bad deeds (in the heart of his heart, being unable to prevent their recurrence by his hand or his tongue), and is (also) safe (so far as Allah’s wrath is concerned). But one who approves of their bad deeds and imitates them is spiritually ruined.” People

asked (Rasulullah (SAW)): “Shouldn’t we fight against them?” Rasulullah (SAW) replied: “No, as long as they say their prayers.” (Sahih Muslim) Rulers Will Be Held Accountable To Allah Abu Hurairah (RA) narrated Rasulullah (SAW) said: “The Israelis used to be ruled and guided by prophets: Whenever a prophet died, another would take over his place. There will be no prophet after me, but there will be Caliphs who will increase in number.” The people asked: “O Allah’s Apostle! What do you order us (to do)?” Rasulullah (SAW) said, “Obey the one who will be given the pledge of allegiance first. Fulfill their (i.e. the Caliphs) rights, for Allah will ask them about (any shortcoming) in ruling those Allah has put under their guardianship.” (Al-Bukhari) Rasulullah (SAW) said: “If any ruler having the authority to rule Muslim subjects dies while he is deceiving them, Allah will forbid Paradise for him.” (AlBukhari) Allah says: “And whoever earns sin, he earns it only against himself. And Allah is Ever All-Knowing, All Wise.” (Surah Nisaa 4:111) Ma’qil narrated “I heard Rasulullah (SAW) saying: “Any man whom Allah has given the authority of ruling some people and he does not look after them in an honest manner, will never feel even the smell of Paradise.”(Sahih Muslim) Allah says:

Rationalism now overtakes God’s messages

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Call to Worship

Jumada Al-Awwal 20 1435 A.H. Friday, March 21, 2014

Where exactly are we heading? T he Muslims today have become prisoners not only in their homes but in their hearts. They misrepresent Islam and still expect Allah (SWT) to grant them caliphacy. They are corrupt like any other person. They also engage in sinful acts like others but still supplicate and expect that it be answered! One is worried why the Muslim enclaves are the most troubled and war ravaged, the causes are inside our stylistic Islam. As individuals, we are grossly and generally ignorant of the mission of Islam. In our outward practices, we are influenced by people’s expectations. As groups,

AL-FATIH-ULQUAREEB

MESSAGE with

SHEIKH

ADANGBA

e-mail: ustazadangbe@yahoo.com

O

ye who believe! Spend of the good things that you have earned, and of what we produced for you from the earth; and seek not what is bad to spend out of it when you would not take it yourselves except that you connive at it. “And you know that Allah is SelfSufficient, praiseworthy” (Q2:267). Abu Hurairah relates that he heard the Holy Prophet narrated the following; Allah having determined to try a leper, a bald man and a blind man from among the Bani Israeli. He sent an Angel to them. The angel came to the leper and asked him: what is it that you would like best? He said: A good complexion and a clear skin and to remove my affliction on account of which people shun me. The angel passed his hands over him and his affliction left him and he acquired a good complexion. Then the angel asked him: what property would you like best? The man said: Camels. He was given a she-camel ten months pregnant and the Angel said; May Allah blesses it for thee. Then the Angel came to the bald man and asked him; what is it that you would like best? He said

be it associations, states or countries, most leaders emerge by opportunism or hypocritical structures only to act against the general interest of the Muslims. The imposed few appropriate most of the resources for personal aggrandizement and misappropriate same to support enemies against other Muslims. All these happen like tragedy. The killings in Egypt stages Mursi and his supporters as villains or victims, while the so-called general Sisi and all individuals and countries, Muslims and nonMuslims who aid him as heroes. But Allah (SWT) is fully aware of the double standard of the West and

hypocrisy of most Muslim countries. The settings in Syria and Palestine are super-tragedy. It is difficult to quantify the loss of lives and destructions. The whole world is watching in silence because it is apparently Muslims versus Muslims. The more their blood flow, the better for the world! This drama has been acted in Iraq and Afghanistan that they now sing their dirge that the dead are celebrating the living for the unabated carnage. The drama is likely to be replayed in the lands where Muslims live or are in majority. It is very likely too that that they will be helpless because

Beware of Allah’s trial! lively hair and removal of the affliction on account of which people avoid me. The Angel passed his hands over him and his affliction was removed and he acquired lovely hair. Then the Angel asked him; what property would you like best? He said “that Allah may restore my sight so that I may see people. The angel passed his hands over his eyes and Allah restored his sight. Then, the angel asked him, what property would you like best? The man said; Goats, He was given a she goat which was carrying a kid. The animals multiplied greatly, so that one had a valley full of camels, the other a valley full of cattles and the third a valley full of goats. Thereafter, the angel came in his guise to the leper and said. I am a poor man bereft of all resources in the course of my journey save Allah. I beg you in the name of Allah who has given you a good complexion and a good skin and great wealth to furnish me with camel that might help me to reach the end of my journey. The man said; I have many obligations. The angel said; I seem to recognize you. Were you not a leper, shunned by people and enriched by Allah? The man said my wealth is inherited through generations. The angel said; if you are lying, may Allah restore you to the condition in which you were. Then he came to the bald

man in his old guise and said to him, the same as he has said to the leper and received a reply similar to the one he had received from the leper. To this one also he said: if you are lying, may Allah restore you to the condition in which you were. The Angel came to the blind man in his old guise and said to him. I am a poor man on a journey. My resources have all given out and I cannot reach the end of my journey save with the help of Allah. I beg you in the name of Him who has restored your sight to you to give me a goat that might prove of help to me in reaching the end of my journey. The man said; indeed I was blind and Allah restored my sight to me. Then take what you will and leave what you will, I shall not constrain you in any way in respect of whatever you may wish to take in the name of Allah the lord of honour and glory. The angel said keep all you have! All the three of you were being tried. Allah is, indeed, pleased with thee and His wrath with thy compassions. This tradition was reported by duo of Imam Bukhar and Muslim. But the importance of this Hadith is that, we should be humble and trustworthy and at no point in life should we forget our root (background). The divine trial can come anytime and in any form. We should not fail this trial at any point in our life.

of their individual and group failures as true servants of Allah (SWT). Our Prophet (SAW) has forewarned when he said: “Shortly some nations will fall upon you just as hungry people pounce on a dish of food and the Almighty Allah will remove your fear from the hearts of your enemies and “wahn” will overpower your mind”. A Companion asked the Prophet, “shall we be small in number at that time?” The Prophet replied. “No, in fact, your number will be very large but you will resemble straw which is washed away by floods. Then another Companion inquired.” O Messenger

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USTAZ

A. ZAFARAN e-mail: zatabumuneeb@yahoo.com of God! What does “wahn” mean? “The Prophet replied, love of this world and hatred of death” So, we can see, we love the world, we love money, we fear death and yet we are dying like chickens or mosquitoes. Other Muslims yet to be afflicted with these tragic dramas should await their time as the enemies are not leaving any stone unturned to finish up with us. The massive Islamaphobia as we see today is her-

alding a looming future. It is grafting stigma on Islam and casting fears in the Muslims to be fundamental about their faith. Everywhere you go, there is fear of being tagged as Boko Haram, alqaeda, bin Laden, Maitesaine, fundamentalist, terrorist and many other coinages in the offing. Muslims are indeed at the cross road. Dr. Zafaran is the Director, Vanguards Academy

Preparation for death E verything that has a beginning must surely have an end. Death is the end of all things that are created by Almighty Allah. After death, there will be judgement. Belief in the judgement’s day is compulsory on all Muslims. It is the day in which Allah will resurrect all of mankind who had ever lived on the earth to judge them by their deeds and assign for them paradise (Jannah) or the hellfire (Jahannam). On this day, there will be a separation of the righteous and damned. During divine judgement, it is believed that each person’s Book of Deeds, in which every small and great thing is recorded, will be read. Throughout judgement, the underlying principle is of perfect, divine and merciful justice. Even the smallest acts will not be ignored. Chapter 99, verses 8 - 9 of the holy Qur’an says that; “Then shall anyone who has done an atom’s weight of good shall see it. And anyone who has done an atom’s weight of evil, shall see it”. Also, no one knows when the judgement’s day will be, not even the Prophet Muhammed (SAW) or Angel Jibreel (Gabriel), as mentioned in a narration in which the Angel asked Prophet Muhammed (SAW) when the Hour was, and the Prophet replied: “The person being asked has as much knowledge about this as the one asking.” Having known that death

will come when it is least expected, this piece will try to explain the needed preparation towards it. First and foremost, every Muslim must observe Solat, the five times daily prayers at the appointed time. The prayer cannot be said at the same time; they create a sort of rhythm which structures the day thus: Fajr- After dawn but before sunrise; Duhr- early afternoon till late afternoon; Asr- late afternoon prayer till sunset; Maghrib- just after sunset and Isha- late evening till late at night. The holy Qur’an says that it is the observance of Solat that will be driving away the faithful from evil things and move them closer to Allah by doing good things. More so, Solat and good behaviour are like twins in Islam. This is the more reason why people are enjoined to ensure that they die as Muslims. Chapter 2, verse 132 of the holy Qur’an delves on this extensively. Anybody who deliberately fails to observe Solat as at when due means such a fellow has walked away from the blessings of Allah no matter his good behaviour in the soci-

ety. Such a fellow will be one of the occupiers of hell fire on the judgement’s day. The highest authority is God; Allah is His name and He is the Almighty, the Creator of the universe. None is worthy of worship except Him alone. Chapter 2, verses 22 – 23 of the glorious Qur’an says “O ye men, worship your Lord Who created you and those who were before you, that you may become righteous; Who made the earth a bed for you, and the heaven a roof, and caused water to come down from the clouds and therewith brought forth fruits for your sustenance. Set not up, therefore, equals to Allah, while you know”. The Holy Qur’an’s fundamental message is the importance of focusing and shaping one’s life on Allah’s will only. Qur’an ordains deeds rather than words, and constantly reminds mankind to see beyond this earthly life. It will be in the interest of all to follow His dictates strictly having known that this Almighty is in charge of our destinies. Finally, the best preparation is to follow the dictates of the Almighty Allah as enshrined in the holy Qur’an and the Sunnah of Prophet Muhamed (SAW) as contained in the Hadith. Sheikh Abdul Ganiyy Umar Arikunkewu is the Founder/National Chief Missioner of Jublatu Rohfatu Llahi Islamic Society of Nigeria (JUBFAT)


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SEKINAH L AWAL

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he Muslim Rights Concern, MURIC, has petitioned the Deputy Controller-General, Passport, against the violation of Allah-given and fundamental human rights of Muslims in passport offices in southern Nigeria. In a letter dated 17th March, 2014 and signed by the Director and Secretary of MURIC respectively, Prof. Ishaq Akintola and Alhaji Shehu Tijani, MURIC drew attention to many ugly incidents of wanton encroachment

Call to Worship

Friday, March 21, 2014 Jumada Al-Awwal 20 1435 A.H.

MURIC petitions FG on violation of Muslims’ rights at Passport Office on Allah-given and fundamental rights of Muslims who apply for international passports in passport offices, particularly in Southern Nigeria where Immigration officials engage in regular stereotyping of Muslims. According to the petition, officers intimidate Muslims particularly at the point of taking pictures in the following ways; Muslim males are ordered to remove their caps, Imams

are coerced into removing their turbans, bearded Muslims are compelled to shave or trim their beards, Muslim women are made to remove their hijabs and Hijab-wearing Muslim women are ordered to draw their hijab backwards to reveal their ears. Whereas, such stereotyping does not occur anywhere in the North. “This is paradoxical since we run one and the same constitution. We are tempted

to ask what the hypocrisy is about and why are Muslims free in the North but slaves in the South and why must immigration officials don garbs of apartheid? Who are the religious fanatics discriminating against Muslims in the immigrations department? Are Muslims not entitled to international passports in Nigeria? Must a Muslim be robbed of his religious identity before he can get one?”

Students of Isabatudeen Girls Grammar School, Orita Bashorun, Ibadan during the 21st memorial anniversary of the founder of Isabatudeen Girls Grammar School, and Book Launch for the late Alhaja Humuani Alaga held in the school premises recently.

Compensate families of dead immigration job seekers -MURIC AISHA TITILAYO

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n view of the loopholes in the planning and execution of the immigration recruitment exercise which resulted in the death of some of the applicants and left several others injured, the Muslim Rights Concern, MURIC, has called for an immediate compensation for the families of the victims, a public apology to the families of the victims and the rest of Nigerians and a repeat of the exercise to be done online as soon as possible. MURIC noted in a statement signed by its Director, Prof. Ishaq Akintola, that there is no gainsaying the fact that overcrowding was responsible for the calamity. “The authorities obviously underestimated the unemployment monster ravaging the Nigerian society, particularly young

graduates. Also partly responsible for the tragedy was the absence of crowdcontrol mechanisms.” Also, MURIC expressed its surprise that the authorities chose to return Nigeria to the Stone Age by assembling thousands of easily excited young Nigerians to venues which could not contain them. “For instance, about 100,000 job-seekers were packed like sardine inside the National Stadium, Abuja whose capacity is just 65,000. The whole exercise would have gone hitchfree if applicants had been engaged online.” Nonetheless, MURIC added that while it apportioned blame to those directly in charge of the operation, it also appreciated the fact that their intention, which was to adopt utmost transparency in recruiting staff for the department of immigration, was good. “Unfortunately

good intention alone is not good enough, meticulous planning is vital to success in such an exercise. With enough foresight, this tragic incident would have been avoided.” MURIC said. MURIC, however, consoled the families of the victims and prayed that Allah will grant them the courage to bear the loss as well as the wherewithal to cushion the economic effect of the death of their young ones and bread-winners.

“In particular, our hearts go to the loved ones of those pregnant women. We feel their pains and share in their frustration.”

ZAKAT IS 2.5% OF YOUR TOTAL WEALTH KNOWN AS NISAB AFTER HAVING FULFILLED ALL

OBLIGATIONS,

PAY YOUR ZAKAT

MURIC stated that these violations are, to say the least, provocative, illegal and unconstitutional. “They are threats to peace, law and order. Refusal to allow a Muslim to dress in Islamic fashion for the purpose of collecting an international passport constitutes a breach of Section 38 (i) & (ii) of the 1999 Nigerian Constitution. Nigeria is a signatory to the African Union Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights which proclaims in Article 4, Clause 1 & 2 that “Human beings are inviolable. Every human being shall be entitled to respect for his life and the integrity of his person. Ditto for the provisions of Article 18 of the United Nations Charter and Articles 9 and 14 of the European Treaty of Human Rights and Articles 18 and 19 of the Treaty of Civil and Political Rights which criminalise religious profiling.” Although there have been several cases of victimization of Muslims in Immigration offices in Southern Nigeria, four of such petitions and complaints were presented as evidences. It was revealed that a Muslim sister who applied for passport at Ikoyi office on Wednesday 12th March, 2014 was compelled to remove her hijab. A female member of MURIC who resides in South Africa was also forced to pull back her hijab to show her ears when she applied for the renewal of her passport. Just a few days ago, immigration officials in Ikeja, Lagos, instructed all Muslim female applicants for passports to ensure that those wearing hijab must show their ears. “This is an aberration because the ears of Muslim women must remain under their hijabs. Nigeria

Baby Lateefat requires heart surgery!

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n spite of her frailty, she could manage to utter her needs as she would say “I need money”. Indeed, 3 year old Nursery one pupil Lateefat Ogunleye needs money as she needs the sum of N2.7million for an open heart surgery in India. She was diagnosed as having a hole in her tender heart at the Lagos State

General hospital, Odan, Lagos in August 2013. According to her Mother, Mrs. Aisha Ogunleye , they cannot afford the amount required for her surgery and as such would require financial assistance from kind-hearted Nigerians. But her unemployed father and private school teacher mother couldn’t help her situation as they are

financially handicapped reason they are calling on good spirited Nigerians to help keep their only child, Lateefat alive. Send your donations to: Account Name: Ogunleye Aisha (08029525692) Account Number: First Bank 3069507220

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has witnessed too many religious crises with its attendant heavy toll in human and material losses. Yet these conflicts are avoidable if only Nigerians can satisfy all righteousness and do the needful in their individual places of work. We express the fear that religious crisis will not end in this country unless something is done urgently to halt the drift of the Nigerian community into another apartheid South Africa whereby Muslims replace blacks.” “While reiterating that MURIC opposes violence in all its ramifications, we assert our avowed duty to use every legitimate means (including litigation and civil actions) to stop the flagrant abuse of the Allahgiven and fundamental rights of Nigerian Muslims and wanton denigration of the Muslim identity.” The body then called on the top echelon of the immigration offices to use their good office to redress all wrongs and straighten all imbalances in such a way that it becomes unnecessary to take further action after this petition. MURIC is an Islamic human rights organization which believes that all human rights are first guaranteed by the Supreme Creator, Allah, before homo sapiens sought to incorporate them in man-made laws. Any infringement on the right of man is therefore a sin before Almighty Allah and a violation of the laws made by men. As a major mechanism in our operations, we open dialogue with institutions, employers and agencies in order to intervene on behalf of aggrieved Muslims. This has often doused tension in Nigeria and reduced the incidence of violence.


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Call to Worship

Jumada Al-Awwal 20 1435 A.H. Friday, March 21, 2014

Every Friday with

Khalifatul

Job-seekers’ death: Create job opportunities -NSCIA tells FG AISHA TITILAYO

Ahmadiyya

Rationalism now overtakes F God’s messages

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he spiritual head of the Druze community in Israel, Sheikh Moafaq Tarif said: ‘We have strong relations and close ties with all sects and religions in the Holy Land, the cradle of faith and the home and place of the spiritual journey of all the Prophets. The Holy Qur’an states: ‘O mankind, we have created from a male and a female; and We have made you into clans and tribes that you may recognise one another. Verily, the most honourable among you, is he who is the most righteous among you. Surely, Allah is All-Knowing, All-Aware.’ (49:14) I am really grateful to His Holiness, the head of the worldwide Ahmadiyya Community and its members for this invitation and I am congratulating you for this impressive conference of world religions which is a part of the Ahmadiyya Muslims’ UK centenary celebrations. As Druze community we established very strong ties with the Ahmadiyya Muslim community in the Holy Land. Let us join our hands in denouncing violence and aggression in all its forms and sow the seeds of love by developing peace not only in the East but all over the world.’ Archbishop Kevin McDonald represented the Catholic Church. He said: ‘I am both honoured and grateful for the opportunity to speak on behalf of the Catholic Church at this conference of world religions organised by the Ahmadiyya community in your this centenary year. It is a sign of the times that a gathering like this should take place and it is a reason to be grateful for the times in which we live.’ He read out a message from Cardinal Peter Turkson, president of the Pontifical Council for Peace and Justice:. ‘I am grateful for the opportunity to direct my prayerful greeting to the centenary conference of the Ahmadiyya Muslim community especially as representatives of different faiths gather to consider peace.’ Rabbi Prof. Daniel Sperber, represented the Chief Rabbi of Israel. He said: ‘We live in a society where materialism is seen as a positive value of the highest order and where the gap between the haves and the have-nots has reached terrifying proportions. In the name of progress and comfort we are depleting the world of its natural resources polluting our fresh water assets, destroying our forests and I hardly need to continue this litany of ecological maladies. We live in a world riven with political and religious strife and turmoil. The name of God and His messages are trampled underfoot in the name of rationalism and political convenience.’ The Rabbi said everyone should get together and work against these aspects. Hazrat Khalifatul Masih remarked that he hoped these thoughts were also

WE LIVE IN A SOCIETY WHERE MATERIALISM IS SEEN AS A POSITIVE VALUE OF THE HIGHEST ORDER AND WHERE THE GAP BETWEEN THE HAVES AND

THE HAVE-NOTS HAS REACHED TERRIFYING PROPORTIONS appreciated by the head of their country and were also related to him. High Commissioner of Ghana read out a message from the President of Ghana. The message said that the event once again reminds us that God sent His beloved Prophets in this world who gave their message to people of all races without discrimination that mankind should live peacefully and in mutual harmony. He said that a Peace Council has been established in Ghana and the country has religious tolerance where everyone has representation. Baroness Warsi said: ‘It is an honour to speak before such an illustrious audience in such prestigious surrounding here at the conference of world religions. It is a testament to the openness and the pragmatism and the humility of the Ahmadiyya community that your flagship global event today is not just about celebrating your own faith but you are celebrating all faiths. You only have to look around Britain to see the huge contribution Ahmadiyya community is making in all walks of life especially in relation to charity and especially in relation to social action…It has clearly been an important moment for so many faiths to come up here and express their solidarity to each other and their solidarity and commitment to inter-faith work and it has been a privilege for me to be part of that.’ TO BE CONTINUED NEXTWEEK

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ollowing last weekend’s tragedy occasioned by the unfortunate recruitment exercise organized by the Ministry of Internal Affairs on behalf of Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS) causing the sudden death of about 20 applicants, the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs, NSCIA, has called on the Federal Government to avert future occurrence of such tragedies by living up to its responsibility and ventilate the environment for massive job creation for the purpose of peace and tranquility in the land. The body made the appeal in a press release signed by the Chairman, Media Committee of NSCIA, Alhaji Femi Abbas. According to NSCIA, with or without any investigation, into the imme-

diate and remote causes of that tragedy, it is apparent that corruption played a prominent role as usual. “The real tragedy in this is not the incident alone but also in the inconsequential lip service that would be emotionally paid to it through the passing of bulk while the families of the victims keep mourning in endless agony. It is unbelievably amazing that the same youths who had been compelled to serve their fatherland through the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) could be lured to premature death so cheaply in a country where employment ought to be a right rather than a privilege.” It further stated that the NSCIA had severally called on the authorities at federal and state levels to work towards elimination of corruption in the land as a way of ventilating security and peace. “But

rather than this, the evil monster called corruption keeps rearing its ugly head as it spreads its tentacle to the detriment of the nation and the future of our youths through the evil machination of those who should be responsible for its elimination. “As we mourn some vital questions become pertinent: Is it true that the recruitment exercise had earlier been put on hold by the National Assembly on suspicion of irregularities? Is it true that all the invited candidates were scheduled for screening on one and the same day without adequate security arrangement for their safety? The NSCIA sympathised with the relatives of the victims while joining their relatives spiritually in mourning and in praying the Almighty Allah to grant them the necessary fortitude with which to bear the agony.

National President, The Companion, Barr. Musbau Oyefeso and the immediate past president, Alhaji Tunde Popoola at the annual conference of the Criterion held in Lagos, recently.

L-R: The bride’s mother, Mrs. Basirat Folake Yusuf and the bride’s father, Mr. Olatunji Dawodu during the walimatul Nikaah of their daughter, Moriam Motunrayo Dawodu and her husband Mr. Abdul-Afeez Ajibola Popoola at Memorable Event centre, Alausa-Ikeja, Lagos, recently.


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People In The Mirror

Friday, March 21, 2014

31

Faces at Gidi Music Festival 2014 It was a day-long event of music, fun, laughter, and famous faces. Here are some scenes of the event.

Sheyi Shay

Efya

Chidinma

Sika Osei

Jesse Jagz

DJ Caise

Phyno thrilling the crowd

Tiwa Savage

Lynxxx and DJ Obi

Lynxxx

Dr Sid and Ice Prince

DJ Cuppy

Zainab Balogun and Ebuka Obi Uchendu

Naeto C

Dr SId, Denrele Edun and a guest

Lekki Wives goes to United Kingdom

The train of Lekki Wives has moved to United Kingdom, where members of cast and crew of the film were received by fans at the ballroom of the Hilton Hotel, Deansgate, Manchester. Olamide performed at the event.

Adaorah Ukoh

Blessing Egbe

Keira Hewatch, Katherine Obiang, Kiki Omeili, Blessing Egbe, Adaorah Ukoh

Katherine Obiang

Guests at the event

Keira Hewatch

Kiki Omeili

Olamide


32

Arty News

Friday, March 21, 2014

M.E.G.A 2014: Frontline gospel award opens entries

Highlife star, Onyenmacha recreates hospitality

E

L

ate Chief Stephen Osita Osadebe’s musical son, Prince Chijoke Mbanefo a.k.a Onyenmacha has started to reap the fruits of his creative efforts. Like some wise acts, he has plunged huge part of his financial gains into the hospitality concern with the acquisition of a multi-million naira gigantic hotel, on an expansive acre of land planted at the toll gate plaza, on the bustling LagosBadagry Expressway. When we visited there, the celebrated act was busy supervising everywhere in preparation for the formal opening of the Onyenrnacha International Suites which he maintains will re-define hospitality in terms of modern amenities, standard delicacies and prompt services. The eye- popping edifice will be officially opened on April 4th, 2014. It will be declared opened by the Speaker, Federal House of Representatives, Hon. Aminu Tambuwal. It is expected to be a three day carnival that will linger for a while in the memories of guests. The highlife star also pledged to use the hotel as a formal platform to boost the career of his colleagues who need a place to perform regularly.

Onyenmacha

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Slick

Slick’s new work features General Pype

S

teven Iyere, known by his stage name as Slick Joe, is one of the rare gems in the Nigeria music industry devoted to churning out outstanding and timeless music. His sound is commercially different as he combines sweet melody with sensational vibes. He is a phenomenon, a prodigy, remarkable with an exceptional personality that radiates love, humility, happiness, persistence, charismatic, and fun loving. He recently released a rhythm and blues dancehall tune, ‘Commander,’ and its video, featuring General Pype. The video, directed and shot by Remote Pictures (Tosin Igho) is rocking the airwaves around Nigeria and beyond. Slick Joe, blessed with dashing looks and a GQ dress sense, is back stronger and ready to capture the music industry. He is currently working on his self titled solo album, and already has some singles online such as: Addicted, Sweet-loving and Mercy. The prolific and versatile song writer with great sense of tonality is a soulful crooner who loves to play cupid with his songs. He showed his love for music at a very tender age. In fact, he started learning the rudiments of music while in primary school. Born on October 13, 1989, the Edo State indigene is blessed with a beautiful and well trained voice. A precocious child, by the time he was in Primary five, he could play the recorder excellently. He made progress in his study of music by joining his secondary school choir. From there, he started learning to control his voice, perfecting his texture and range. He also picked up the clarinet and at this he became so good he was dubbed “Clarinet”. Finding more outlets to express his musical talent, Slick Joe started composing his own songs. Most of his compositions were special Sunday renditions by his church choir. Most drew so much applause that his mind was made up to pursue music as a career. The graduate of Psychology from Covenant University started recording songs and performing while in the University.

Slick Joe performed in a lot of shows while in the university and at one of such occasions, he was recognised by Prof Aize Obayan, the then Vice Chancellor of Covenant University who tagged his performance as ‘slick,’ thereafter, he adopted it as a stage name. While at the University, Slick Joe worked with different producers likes of Nay Palm, Dr. Frabz, Spells, Puff Tee, Buster Keys, Magic Fingers, Ex o, Dell B, to mention a few. He also played key role in writing, composing and arranging songs for different college occasions and university functions. Slick Joe, whose style has been compared by many to Usher, by many more to R Kelly and still by some to Craig David, considers himself as an R&B act. In his words: “Music is a part of me. Music is an avenue for me to express the various experiences that I have felt. The feelings could be love or heartbreak, joy or sorrow, loss or glory and of course fun!”

Gospel band at MEGA 2013

ntries can now be submitted for the 2014 edition of the Music and Entertainment Gospel Awards, MEGA (Awards), the Awards Secretariat has revealed. Monday, March 17, 2014 is the kick-off date for interested Nigerian artistes to send in their works for the second edition of Nigeria’s premier gospel music award ceremony. The focus of MEGA screeners and judges will be strictly on original works released and (or) published between May 1, 2013 and April30, 2014. “We therefore encourage Nigerian record and film production companies, labels and copyright owners to promptly submit their recordings, music videos and movies that fall within the eligibility period stated above. The procedures are simple: send a request for a free Entry form to (megawards2013@gmail.com); you shall receive entry package including data form, full list of award categories and general criteria for relevant categories and genres to aid you. Return the filled form and attach your works in mp3 (for audio) and YouTube (for video) (full length video shall be by physical submission). In all cases, you may wish to submit in person. Physical submission shall be received at the MEGA (Awards Secretariat), at Ogba”, a source at the Secretariat said. It will be recalled that the maiden Music and Entertainment Gospel Awards, MEGA was held on Friday, November 9, 2013 at the high-brow “The Haven” (GRA, Ikeja, Lagos). It was successfully headlined by ace comedian, Ali Baba, alongside many top stars like Bimbo Manuel, Iretiola Doyle, Yemi Solade, Yetunde Fosudo, Yemi Sodimu and Feyikemi NiyiOlayinka amongst others.


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Arty News

Friday, March 21, 2014

33

Hao Ge: Nigerian music star in China NGOZI EMEDOLIBE

N

igeria has more than oil to export to other continents of the world. Had it not been for a New York Times’ article, which chronicled the life and stardom being enjoyed by Hao Ge, a Nigerian musician (previously named Emmanuel Uwechue) in Beijing, little would anyone imagine, he has his roots in Nigeria? It’s not as if Hao Ge’s journey in China could be traced to many decades past; he only immigrated to China in 2002, with the assistance of a Chinese friend, Li Yayu, who had been working in Nigeria at the time. But when it was time for Li Yayu to leave in 2001, to run a hotel in one of the popular provinces of China, he asked Emmanuel if he would like to join him. For the young Uwechue ( he was 23 years old then) it sounded like a wonderful opportunity, because his passion has always been to do music, in spite of the fact that he had obtained an engineering degree from a university in Nigeria. His brush with music had instinctively been horned by

Hao Ge performing

his role as a member of the choir at House on the Rock Pentecostal Church in Lagos, headed by Paul Adefarasin. According to Uwechue, who is really thankful that the opportunity was timely, ‘my father almost disowned me. He thought I was throwing my life away.’

With his fan base reportedly shooting into hundred s of millions of people especially within the children and middle aged women age bracket, Uwechue who has a mastery of Mandarin and also sings in it, is increasingly becoming the toast of Chinese dance halls.

He has also been getting rave media reviews on account of this. “The African Who Searches for His Dream in China,” read the headline atop a 2006 article about Mr. Uwechue on QQ.com, a popular social networking site in China. Articles by the state-run Xinhua news

agency and in the web-based magazine Sina Entertainment, as well as a television documentary, have similarly chronicled his unusual story. Mr. Uwechue even appears on bus ads: “Good Song Comes From Good Wine,” reads an advertisement for the Guan Gong Fang company, which signed him to represent its brand of wine. Uwechue is not the first foreigner to have made a name for himself in China, but he is the first African to have reached widespread success there. Some music industry experts in China credit part of his fame to the close economic and cultural ties — including friendship and exchange programs and other joint ventures — that have long existed between China and some African countries. “This is not just about Hao Ge,” said Long Hu, a music producer and talent scout in Beijing who cultivates young musical talent. “It’s about China and Africa.” Speculations are rife that with the way his image is soaring in China, he would soon clinch acting roles in the movies being made in Beijing.

When Dreams Fall Apart basks in sponsorship

I

DL has further reinforced its position to encourage the quintessential ‘Spirit of Naija’ by sponsoring **When Dreams Fall Apart**, a Nigerian movie. Produced by Chico Ejiro, the movie premiered recently in Lagos. Nollywood stars were there to witness what many of them called a new dawn in the movie industry. A satirical drama on the life of a young girl who goes through lots of challenges but finally makes it in life, which is the resilient spirit that never dies nor gives up. The main character, played by ace actor Uche Jombo endures several twists and turns in life. Speaking on the reason for the partnership, the Brand Manager, Veleta Fruit Wine, Chioma Alonge noted that “this is not just another movie; it is a movie with a message”. “It is a message from IDL to Nigerians. We say ‘Never give up, never throw in the towel, and as Lupita Nyong’O said in her acceptance speech at the 2014 Oscar awards for Best Supporting Actress for her role in the movie **12 Years a Slave** said in her speech is exactly what we have and will continue to say; ‘Whoever you are, your dreams are valid’, never throw in the towel. Indeed the emotions displayed on the face of the audience after watching the movie actually depicted that the

Aretha Franklin at BET Honours

BET Honours celebrates Mandela’s legacy

E Chinda, Ejiro and Chioma Alonge at the premiere

message had indeed been passed across,” she said. Speaking on IDL’s indelible commitment to the true Nigerian spirit, the company’s Head of Marketing, Innocent Oboh, said they are committed to championing the true Nigerian spirit. “The Nigerian spirit never dies; the spirit of Naija is one that keeps going, no matter the challenges and trials. This Spirit is what has kept Nigeria and it is what will continue to take us to greater endeavours. It is this spirit that IDL continues to support in different industries in

the Nigerian economy, especially sports, movie, music and entertainment industry in general,” he said. Chico Ejiro commended IDL for continuing to blaze the trail in the wines and spirits market. “They have indeed been key to growing the Nollywood industry. They are one company I respect in Nigeria that gives back in huge gestures to support and build the movie industry,” he said. Those who came included: Zeb Ejiro, Segun Arinze, Fred Amata, Saint Obi, Monalisa Chinda, Ibinabo Fiberesima and a host of others.

ntertainment channel, BET celebrated the inspiring legacy of Nelson Mandela in a soulful tribute by Aretha Franklin at the BET Honours. Taped at the BET Honours 2014 in Washington, D.C, the tribute to the late President of South Africa was led by the queen of soul, Aretha Franklin, as she delivered a heartfelt rendition of the Sam Cooke classic “A Change is Going to Come”, in front of a series of giant images of Madiba. The tribute was preceded by a moving video montage that quoted Mandela’s own words, spoken by a host of stars from Beyoncé to Forrest Whittaker, Berry Gordy,

Miguel, Smokey Robinson, Russell Simmons, Jermaine Jackson, Idris Elba and many more. Mbuso, Zindzi and Bambatha Mandela attended the event as guests of honour to receive the award on behalf of the Mandela family. Commenting on this, Alex Okosi, Senior Vice President, Viacom International Media Networks (VIMN) Africa said: “The outpouring of love and affection for Nelson Mandela has been incredible and a true testament to his greatness and impact on society. We are thrilled and proud that Madiba’s enduring legacy has been recognised on this global platform.”


34

Escape

Friday, March 21, 2014

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

The magic of New Orleans GAVIN MCOWAN

I

t’s unusually cold and wet on my first evening in New Orleans. In the gathering dark I’m lost and just a little scared as I cycle around the empty streets of the rundown Tremé district, looking for the Candlelight Lounge. Finally I see a man carrying a bass drum into a small building and realise I’ve found the legendary music club. I follow him in and within two minutes my fears are blown away by The Abney Effect, a funky jazz band led by trumpeter Mario Abney, who are – if you’ll excuse the jazz speak – ripping the joint up. I’m here to meet Bob (“I’ll be the guy in the white hat”), leader of the It’s All About The Music bike ride, a Facebook group that meets on Tuesday nights to tours gigs all over the city. Bob, who moonlights as DJ Old Man River on New Orleans’ WWOZ radio station, tells me to grab a bowl of crab gumbo, laid on free to all tonight’s customers. I’ve barely had a spoonful of the spicy Cajun soup before the smiling waitress pulls me to my feet. “Gotta come dance, baby! I got your partner right here,” she says, leading me towards an unsuspecting woman. Like most Englishmen, I need a healthy intake of alcohol before joining in with such merriment (it’s not even 6pm) but the band is so damn funky my feet start dancing all by themselves. I’m keen to stay for the second set but Bob says it’s time to meet the rest of the group of cyclists in Congo Square (the birthplace of jazz) in Louis Armstrong Park. Tonight’s gathering is smaller than usual because of the rain, but thanks to the sound system strapped to Bob’s bike and the case of beer on the back of someone else’s, we’ve got a little party on wheels going on. And everyone is so friendly I

A barbecue restaurant in Bywater

Panoramic view of New Orleans

already feel like one of the gang. (Anyone with a bicycle is welcome to ride with the group, and there’s no charge.) Our next stop is an acoustic set by indiefolk band Hurray for the Riff Raff at Euclid Records, a shop next to the levee on the corner of Desire Street – immortalised by Tennessee Williams’ Streetcar – in the Bywater neighbourhood. The store is packed with rare and affordable vinyl, and young hipsters who have come to hear one of the city’s most talkedabout new bands. It’s so full I can’t even see them, but within minutes the soulful bewitching voice of singer- songwriter Alynda Lee Segarra has me close to tears. (And by the end of the week, after I’ve begged for a ticket to her sold-out show, bought the new CD and the concert poster, I realise I’m smitten.) As we head to our last gig of the night on Frenchmen Street, the rain is so heavy it feels like we’re cycling through a Louisiana swamp – and I’m loving it. We pay the $5 charge (the first of the evening) and pile into the DBA club to catch the legendary Tremé Brass Band bang out jazz standards. The set is not as fresh as the first two acts we’ve seen but – like everyone else in this town it seems – man, can they play. By the end of the night I’m drunk, soaked to the skin and already head over heels for New Orleans. In one night I’ve seen a large swath of this compact, bikeable city, visiting three neighbourhoods that represent its past, present and future. Tremé was not only the birthplace of jazz but is the oldest AfricanAmerican neighbourhood in the US, where free people of colour worked and owned property decades before the end of slavery. Sadly the Candlelight Lounge is the last remaining club in a once-thriving musi-

cal neighbourhood. The Frenchmen Street area east of here (not to be confused with the touristy French Quarter) is the jumping musical heart of the city right now. On any night of the week you’ll find worldclass jazz, blues and funk for $10 or less at clubs such as Snug Harbor, the Spotted Cat and the Blue Nile – some of the best musicians have weekly residencies. Further east again, the Bywater is the neighbourhood most synonymous with post-Katrina gentrification. Of course, there’s nothing new about falling in love with New Orleans. Its easy charm and magical mix of cultures have been beguiling visitors almost since the day the French founded it in 1718. But postKatrina (a phrase that is now part of the lexicon), a new wave of outsiders have been seduced by the city, while New Orleanians, many of whom were forced to live in exile for months or even years, have come to love and appreciate it more than ever – like getting a second chance with a beautiful lover you’ve taken for granted all those years. This city has always been a magnet for artists, musicians and writers, but its pull now seems stronger than ever. Among the many who have recently brought properties in the Bywater, a virtual no-go area preKatrina, are model and pop star Solange Knowles (Beyoncé’s little sister). Thanks to tax breaks the state of Louisiana is now an attractive alternative to Hollywood and some film-makers, including Court 13, the collective that made Beasts of the Southern Wild, about a Mississippi delta community cut off by a levee, relocated here permanently. Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt (a genuine local hero after pumping millions of dollars of his own money into a rebuilding programme) have a house in the French Quarter.

Hurray for the Riff Raff performing

According to some locals, including Bob, who has lived in Louisiana nearly all his life, there is a flipside to this: “I had to leave the Bywater because so many hipsters are too cool to say good morning – and that ain’t the New Orleans way [expletives deleted, most of them prefixing the word hipster].” There’s a much-quoted story about a New Yorker suing a New Orleans restaurant because his gumbo was too spicy. This was actually an internet hoax, but to me places like the Satsuma Cafe, Bywater’s hipster hub, serving kale juice and organic soups, do feel more like Brooklyn or Shoreditch than New Orleans. But there is no denying that the city has been re-energised and cleaned up. The week I’m there, Ray Nagin, the mayor during Katrina, is found guilty on 20 counts of bribery and corruption. As Bob puts it: “While this city was on its knees after the hurricane, that [multiple expletive] was sitting on his ass in the Caribbean on a holiday paid for by kickbacks.” Nagin was the first New Orleans mayor to stand trial for public corruption, so the decision was a real landmark. One sector benefiting from the revival is the restaurant trade. This corner of Louisiana is home to the only cuisine truly born in the US – a rich mix of rustic Cajun, sophisticated Creole (itself a blend of French, Spanish, German and Italian), Caribbean and African influences. Mark Twain said: “New Orleans food is as delicious as the less criminal forms of sin”, and the city has always been proud of its culinary history. There are now more restaurants than ever, even though the population of the city is still not back to pre-Katrina levels. Donald Link, one of the city’s leading chefs, tells me: “They have fantastic restaurants in New York, Chicago and San Francisco, but


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Escape

Friday, March 21, 2014

35

FACT FILE ON NEW ORLEAN

if you closed your eyes you might not know which of those cities you were eating in.” You could never say that about New Orleanian cuisine, which is clearly one Link thinks is worth fighting for. When Katrina struck he was in the process of setting up two new restaurants, and friends advised him to take the insurance money and run. He did the opposite, forging a security pass so he could return to the city only a week after the hurricane, when the place was still deserted, and start rebuilding Since then he hasn’t looked back, now owning five restaurants, including Cochon in the Warehouse District, which serves sophisticated versions of the southern-Cajun dishes he grew up with. Cochon (which in Louisiana means roast pork: they serve it with cabbage and plenty of crackling) specialises in nose-to-tail pig dishes, including Link’s signature spicy sausages. For one of the best restaurants in town it is pleasingly down to earth – the music loud, prices fairly reasonable. If you can’t get a table, the annex, Cochon Butcher, is a “swine bar and deli”, offering sandwiches of pork belly, oyster and bacon or the fantastic muffuletta. The latter is a sarnie invented by Italian immigrants to New Orleans: layered with mortadella, salami, mozzarella, ham and provolone, it will do you in for the day. Yes, it’s all about the hog here, but the cooking is so good they even make Brussels sprouts taste sexy – flash-fried and dressed with olive oil and red chilli. Like many people I speak to, Link is adamant that the city is in much better shape than before Katrina. “You’ve heard of the Big Easy?” he says. “Well a lot of that is just bullshit that stood for corruption and laziness. That’s changing now, partly because people are bringing a new energy with them.”

The Candlelight Lounge

One New Orleans native who did just that is Neal Bodenheimer. While many people were forced to leave the city to rebuild their lives after Katrina, Bodenheimer, a mixologist who had been working at highend bars in New York, felt a call to return and do his bit for his devastated hometown. With two associates, he opened the Cure cocktail bar on Freret Street in Uptown, in 2009. Every bar in New Orleans does cocktails – there’s even an annual cocktail festival attended by bartenders from around the world – but until Cure there was nowhere that applied such microscopic attention to detail (one of the barmen even has a cocktail manifesto). The Ramos gin fizz I tried was like boozy lime soufflé, so delicious I scraped the glass clean with my finger to finish off the creamy whipped egg white. Cure is housed in a beautiful former fire station with exposed brick walls and an entire back wall lined with hundreds of bottles of all shapes and colours, backlit and rising towards the high ceiling like an altar to drinking. When the bar opened, the surrounding area had almost been abandoned. “People said we were a little crazy to open here but it was the only place we could afford,” says Bodenheimer. The leap of faith has proved successful and Freret Street is today buzzing with restaurants and businesses, thanks largely to Cure’s pioneering success. The owners have just opened a restaurant, Cane and Table, in a dilapidated, atmospheric building in the French Quarter, which specialises in rum (obviously there are cocktails) and Caribbean-inspired sharing plates. It’s sophisticated drinking food really, and as I’m several cocktails in to the evening when I arrive, dishes like the yummy crispy rum ribs, coated in rice flour and fried, really hit the spot.

It is all about the Music

Musicians in Frenchmen Street

New Orleans bike tour is popular

Country:

United States

State:

Louisiana

Founded:

1718

Mayor:

Mitch Landrieu

Demonym: New Orleanian

Time zone: CST (UTC-6)


Friday, March 21, 2014

36

4

2014 Toyota

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Mirror Drive

•New generation SUV retains rugged looks

OLUSEGUN KOIKI

T

he 2014 4Runner is sort of a tribute to Japanese styling circa 1973; the new look Toyota said is “muscular” and “chiselled,” with “edgier smoked headlamps for a more forceful look.” This is, startlingly, the sixth generation for Toyota’s mid-size SUV, which began essentially as a pickup with a camper top and evolved into a rugged, useful sport-Utility vehicle with little pretense. Thankfully for 4Runner fans, that has not changed. As one of the few remaining body-on-frame SUVs, the 4Runner’s general goodness speaks to how refined that comparatively ancient architecture can be when properly conceived, sort of how some of the modern pushrod V-8 engines remind us that they were pretty solid technology, too. The 4.0-litre V-6 SUV is rated at 270 horsepower at 5600 rpm, with 278 lb-ft of torque at 4400 rpm. The ECT-i transmission is the same five-speed automatic Toyota has used for years in both rear- and fourwheel-drive models. The powertrain has a slightly dated, industrial feel, but it does the job reasonably well and manages decent fuel economy on regular gas. The EPA estimates come in at 17/23 mpg city/ highway for rear-drive models and 17/22 mpg for the 4x4. The ride is surprisingly smooth and quiet, with a hint of chassis shake and shiver over big bumps and railroad crossings. The steering is more precise than one would expect; the brakes are a tad touchy at the top of the pedal travel but offer linear response afterward. Without

scrounging around unun nderneath, one would uld ul d be hard pressed to teses-tify that this is a bodyyon-frame vehicle from m driving dynamics cs alone. Inside, how nice ce you want your 4Runun nner to be depends on on how much you are are r interested in paying. y ng yi ng. There are three models: ode dellsss:: the base SR5, the Trail rai a l (it (iit comes as a 4x4 only), ), and an nd the upscale Limited. The SR5 is utilitarian riian n but but ut hardly stripped, as many ma any ny of of the materials have been bee e n upeen upgraded, including the he quality qual qu alit al ity it y of leather covering the th he steerstee st eerring wheel. The 20144 4Runner 4 gets plenty of new interior i i technology even at this level, with the Entune Audio Plus system that has a 6.1-inch high-resolution screen with a backup camera, a good stereo with CD and SiriusXM capability and HD Radio and data, and improved voice recognition. The Trail’s upholstery is either fabric or SofTex synthetic leather, the front seats are power-operated, and the Entune audio gets a few more features, including navigation and Gracenote. On the Limited, the upholstery turns to perforated leather, with heated and ventilated front seats. Entune is further upgraded by JBL with 15 speakers and an amplifier. In all three models, the instruments and the controls are well placed, and the seats are comfortable front and rear. Optional third-row seating is best for kids or adults who absolutely refuse to wait for the next bus. There are eight standard airbags. The four-wheel-drive system still offers a transfer case, and

y o u can get ca c an ge et part-time four-wheel drive mode driv dr ive e or a ffull-time ullll--ti time me m ode od e wi with th a locking differential. l ki centre ce t diff differential ti l Th The 4Runner is sure-footed off-road, and standard downhill assist control was helpful on muddy hills, and likely would be in the snow, too. Rear-drive models come with “Auto LSD,” which has no association with Timothy Leary and everything to do with an automatic limited-slip differential. Wheel sizes range from 17 inches on the SR5 to 20-inchers on the Limited. If you like your SUVs slightly old-school, it is easy to recommend the 2014 4Runner, a comfortable, viceless, off-roadable, and, if history is properly suggestive, dependable vehicle.

Handling and ride A double-wishbone independent front suspension, combined with a variable-flow rack and pinion steering, help give the 4Runner precise control on demanding roads. Coil springs over gas shocks are used at all four wheels for a comfortable ride and controlled handling. The four-link rear suspension minimises axle hop and assures

smooth a ssm moo ooth tth h ride seat rid ri ide de ffor or rear rea earr se eat at passenpas asse senngers. g ge rs.. rs Limited grade comes The Th e Li Limi mite ted d gr grad ad de co come mess standard stan st anda dard rd with wit ith h an X-REAS X-R -REA EAS S sussuspension i ssystem stem t thatt ffurther th th improves performance, comfort and control. X-REAS automatically adjusts the damping force of shocks when driving over bumpy surfaces, or when cornering. The system uses a centre control absorber to cross-link shocks on opposite corners of the vehicle, substantially reducing pitch and yaw by offsetting opposing inputs. With X-REAS the 4Runner corners flatter, smoother, and handles choppy pavement more easily.

4x4 capability designed-in The 4Runner SR5 and Trail 4x4 models have a two-speed part-time four-wheel-drive system with neutral position. The 4Runner Limited is equipped with a full-time, four-wheel-drive system with a locking center differential and a three-mode, centre console-mounted switch. The A-TRAC traction control system is standard equipment on all 4x4 models. The system can distribute driving force to any one wheel in contact with the ground, making terrain irregu-

larities a n d slipp e r y patches transparent to the driver. An electroniclocking rear differential is s t a n d a rd on the Trail grade. The Trail grade offers Toyota’s Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System (KDSS) as an option. KDSS significantly improves terrain-following ability by dynamically disconnecting stabiliser bars to allow for more axle travel, and better suspension articulation in slow, difficult terrain. Toyota’s Crawl Control (CRAWL) feature is standard on the Trail grade. The system helps maintain an appropriate speed to keep the vehicle under control and minimizes the load on drivetrain and suspension components. With the transfer


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

OLUSEGUN KOIKI

T

he popular distributor of Volkswagen Automobile products in Nigeria, Volkswagen Centre said it has unveiled some of the state-of-theart commercial vehicles in the company. Some of the products according to an online statement signed by the media consultant to the auto company in Nige-

ria include Amarok, Caddy, Multivan, Transporter and the 30-seater Crafter bus. The statement stated that Volkswagen commercial vehicles (Utes) are a replica of the passenger cars and SUV models, but are fortified with technically advanced engines that deliver more power and less fuel consumption. The statement quoted the Sales and Marketing, Head, S Volkswagen Centre, Mr. ManVolkswa ag Daryanani as saying that the ish Dary ya company has constantly imauto com m proved on o its commercial range an edge over competo give them th h titions. Daryanani statFor instance, iin that ed tha at the Amarok pick-up is particularly good to compa ar pete with other vehicles pe p

O

ne of the leading automobile companies in the country, Hyundai Motors Nigeria is partnering First Bank for sales offer, which will enable more aspiring customers to acquire some of its latest brands in the country. The auto company tagged the offer ‘Always first with Hyundai’ and say the process of acquiring its latest brands is with seamless transaction, which it says starts from as low as N47, 000 monthly incase shiftt ed into low low range, CRAWL regulates engine speed and output p t (along ( g with braking force), to propel the vehicle forward or in reverse at one of the five driver-selectable low-speed settings. This allows the driver to maintain focus while steering over rough level ground or steep grades, without having to also modulate the throttle or brake pedals.

Exterior All 4Runner grades feature rugged bumpers and wide fender flares. Aluminum alloy wheels are 17-inches in diameter on SR5 and Trail grades and 20 inches on the Limited, and include a full size spare. The front end’s square fender flares meld with a muscular profile that links with a beefy rear bumper and back door. In addition to its distinctive grille, the SR5 grade also features overfenders to help tackle inclement weather and off-road conditions. A roof rack comes standard.

Mirror Drive

Friday, March 21, 2014

Comfort A bright, briig highly visible instrument strumen nt panel houses speedometer, tachometer, voltage, fuel and d coolant temperature gauges, plus a combination metre that offers multiple functions. An Eco-Driving feedback system allows the driver to monitor fuel consumption in real time. On 4Runner Trail, an overhead console within easy reach organizes the off-road control switches into one location. A compass indicator and outside temperature display add functionality. A manual air conditioning system is standard on SR5 and Trail grades; the Limited features an automatic dual zone climate control system.

Versatility Fold-flat second-row rear seats provide a level load floor in the 4Runner, and it is not necessary to remove the headrests to fold the seats flat. The available third-row seat is split 50/50 and folds flat, as well. The seats can be folded from the side, or at the rear, using separate onetouch levers. With this new arrangement, more cargo space is available without removing seats, and longer items can be conveniently carried.

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Mirror Drive

Volkswagen Centre unveils new products in its category. He stated that the Amarok is built on a platform at the Pacheco

factory in Buenos Aires, this German engineered Amarok gets a classy, aggressive interpretation

of the VW grille, a six-speed manual gearbox, low-range transfer box, permanent four-wheel drive, locking centre and rear differentials as well as the latest direct-injection twin-turbo 2.0-litre petrol engine that delivers 118kw (160bhp), while the diesel 4WD delivers 90kw (122bhp) with traction/stability control. With a pair of turbochargers, the VW Amarok TDI420 he said delivers quick performance, good fuel efficiency and strong towing capability with low cost of maintenance due to longer service intervals (10, 000kms or six months).

Hyundai Motors, First Bank partner on sales offer stallment. Some of the brands on offer include the i10, Accent, Elantra, Sonata, iX35 and Santa-Fe. To enable interested customers acquire any of its brands on offer, such a client would only contribute 10 per cent equity and would thereafter e n j o y up to 48 months tenor at designated

equal monthly installments. The Head, Sales and Marketing, Hyundai Motors

Nigeria Limited, Mr. Jatin Nadkarni told auto journalists in Lagos that the auto company decided to partner with the bank in order to enable its desiring clients p u r chase some of its latest brands on offer.

MAINTENANCE AINTENANCE TIPS

Changing of car ignition switch

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ocated on either the dash or the steering column, the ignition switch serves several functions, including activating the starter solenoid and engaging the ignition system, as well as routing current to accessories, such as the radio. An ignition switch that has failed may result in any of the following symptoms: the engine will not crank or start, the engine will not shut off after the ignition key is turned off, or the starter does not disengage when the key is returned to “run.” Changing an ignition switch is usually a straightforward job–sometimes the hardest part is just getting to it. The first thing a car user needs to do is to remove the steering column housing by removing the screws that hold it on then prying it off. Next, remove the fasteners that hold the steering column to the dash. Drop the column down and

detach the wiring harness connected to the ignition switch. The wiring harness is usually located on top of and about halfway down the steering column. Test the ignition switch now that you have it exposed by touching the test light. The test light should glow only when the key is turned to the “start” position. Repeat this step with the test light, touching it to the “run” terminal. Make sure that the light does not glow at all, when touching any terminal, while the key is in the “off” position. If the switch passes the test, you know that your problem lies elsewhere. Also, change the switch if it fails the test. Remove the small nuts or screws that secure the ignition

switch to the steering column. Take out the faulty switch and install a new one in the same position as the old one. Make sure the holes are lined up; otherwise, the switch will not work with the fasteners. Then, secure the new switch by screwing or bolting the switch into place with the fasteners previously removed. Attach the wiring harness, then put the steering column in its upright position and replace its housing after restoring the fasteners previously removed. Remove the tumbler, or lock mechanism, after removing the dash, by locating the small screws on the underside of the dash. Remove the screws with a screwdriver and pry the dash off, being careful to keep it intact. Insert a small piece of wire into the hole built into the tumbler and exposed after removal of the dash. With the wire inserted, turn the key. The tumbler should just pull out. Disconnect the wires leading to the ignition switch, replace the existing switch with the new switch, attach the wires and replace the tumbler and dash. Install the tumbler first then put the dash back in its original place in the reverse order of removal.


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Cocktail

Friday, March 21, 2014

News anchors dive under desk during earthquake

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pair of news anchors at KTLA in Los Angeles did the old “duck and cover” routine when their studio started shaking on the air on Monday morning. The earthquake, reportedly a 4.4 and centered six miles north of Beverly Hills, didn’t cause any immediate damage or injuries. Still, as the video shows, it was clearly felt in KTLA’s Hollywood studios. Early morning TV viewers saw anchors Megan Henderson and Chris Schauble sense something is amiss. Schauble interrupts Hen-

derson, points up and says, “Earthquake! We’re having an earthquake!” They then hide under the news desk like two students during a Cold War nuclear missile drill while the shaky camera focuses on a suddenly abandoned studio. The scene was reminiscent of Kent Shocknek’s onair freakout during a 1987 quake in southern California. Then at KNBC in Los Angeles, Shocknek dove under his desk and in doing so earned himself the nickname “Kent Shockwave.”

Fuel delivery mess up causes major car problems

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delivery company mistakenly filled Manchester Mart & Gas’ diesel tanks with unleaded gasoline and the unleaded tanks with diesel fuel. As reported by WMUR News 9, the accident by delivery company, Abenaqui Carriers, caused headaches, stalled cars, and expensive repair bills. From March 16th at 1:30 p.m. to March 17th at 8 a.m., customers at the New Hampshire gas station were unwittingly filling their car

tanks with the wrong fuel. One of those customers, Catherine Whittle, told the station, “This morning, I backed out of the driveway, or backed out of the garage and in the driveway the car died immediately.” Whittle said. Gerald Cloutier, a mechanic at JCS Auto Sales garage near the gas station was repairing a car that mistakenly filled up at the Mart & Gas with diesel. “It could contaminate the O2 sensors, it could contaminate the catalytic converters,” said Cloutier.

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Oddities

Satanist group vows to turn church co-founder gay in the afterlife

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s the co-founder of the Westboro Baptist Church lies on his deathbed, the same Satanic organization that promised to turn Rev. Fred Phelps’ mother gay after her death is planning on doing the same to the WBC leader when he crosses over to the other side. When Catherine Johnston died in July, members of the New York-based Satanic Temple traveled to Mississippi to perform a “Pink Mass” ceremony at her grave to turn her “gay forever.” After the ceremony, Satanic Temple spokesperson Lucien Greaves said he would preside over a Pink Mass for Phelps as well. “As I have made a promise to a dying man, I fully intend to do my very best to see it through, and the pomp and circumstance of this Pink Mass will surely far, far exceed that of the original event in Meridian,

Mississippi,” Greaves said. “As I write this, Fred Phelps is now in the process of doing probably the one thing that he’ll ever do for which he will have my gratitude: He is dying.” The WBC, famous for funeral picketing, does not

plan to hold a funeral for Phelps when he dies. “I’ve learned that my father, Fred Phelps, Sr., pastor of the ‘God Hates Fags’ Westboro Baptist Church, was ex-communicated from the ‘church’ back in August of 2013,”

his estranged son, Nathan Phelps, wrote on Facebook. “He is now on the edge of death at Midland Hospice house in Topeka, Kansas.” Fred Phelps was born in Meridian, Miss., in 1929. He is 84.

Two members from the Westboro Baptist Church of Topeka, Kansas, begin their chants on a street corner in St. Charles, Missouri as those disagreeing with their views, walk down the street to greet them. PHOTO: UPI


Friday, March 21, 2014

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Business Maritime New Cabotage waiver guidelines heighten stakeholders’ expectations

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More than 10 years after the Federal Government enacted the Coastal and Inland Shipping Act, 2003 primarily to boost indigenous participation and curtail foreign domination; these objectives are far from being realised. However, the recent release of new guidelines on the administration of waiver has heightened expectations on the part of stakeholders. FRANCIS EZEM reports.

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hen the Coastal and Inland Shipping Cabotage, Act 2003, was passed, the future looked so bright and promising because the legislation, which is protectionist in nature, had more than enough provisions that would ensure adequate protection of indigenous operators. About 10 years after, the level of despondency and hopelessness on the part of indigenous operators seems worse than what it was before the passage of the Act. Fashioned after the Jones Act of the United States, the act seeks to promote the participation of Nigerian shipping firms in the highly-foreign dominated shipping business, particularly in the coastal and inland region, which is believed to be less technical and capital intensive. The Act was built on three pillars, which includes that the vessels to be used in the regional trade must be built in Nigeria, owned and crewed by Nigerians. The third pillar was the creation of the Cabotage Vessel Financing Fund CVFF, which is derived from two percent deductions from every contract awarded under the regime. The intention was that while operators ganare experience, the fund will provided the need capital for them to acquire vessels. The legislation however provided for a waiver clause which stipulates that in situations where indigenous operators lack the capacity to render certain services, foreign operators should be allowed to provide the service to forestall any possible vacuum. Regrettably, 10 years after, the status quo has remained as foreigners still hold sway to the detriment of the Nigerian operators. Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency NIMASA, Mr. Patrick Akpobolokemi, shares this view when he admitted that there had been challenges in the enforcement of the Act over the years. He however expressed optimism that the draft guidelines will remove such challenges and make it more enforceable. This rather ugly development has been partly blamed on the abuse of the waiver clause, as it has been alleged that Ministerial waivers have been granted foreign operators for services that ordinarily be rendered by Nigerian operators, which has for 10 years defeated the main essence of the Cabotage legislation. It was against this background that recent moves by the government to review the the waiver administration under the act seems to rekindle the hope of many Nigerians that the Cabotage regime may start working albeit so late. Minister of Transport, Mallam Idris Umar, who released the new guidelines

Umar

Akpobolokemi

IF WE CONTINUE TO GRANT WAIVERS THE WAY WE DO NOW, WE WILL NEVER GO ANY WHERE. WAIVERS HAVE BEEN GRANTED ON NON-SPECIALISED VESSELS. WHEN AN APPLICATION IS MADE, ASK THE INDIGENOUS FIRMS IF THEY COULD PROVIDE THE VESSEL BEFORE THE WAIVER IS GRANTED to stakeholders at a forum in Lagos last month to get their inputs, told the stakeholders that the new guidelines had become necessary in order to usher in a new strength into the Cabotage regime in the country. While also admitted that the implementation of the Cabotage regime in Nigeria has been characterised by scores of challenges over the years, the Minister noted that this prompted the painstaking efforts by the Ministry to prepare a fresh policy document that would enhance the enforcement of the Act. He said: “This forum has become necessary to call the attention of the stakeholders to rub minds on the new draft policy guidelines with a view to producing an acceptable policy framework for the implementation of the Cabotage policy to the benefit of Nigerian citizens. According to him, the decision to seek stakeholders’ input into the new guidelines was also informed by the need to carry them along in the formulation of the new policy document to make for a more robust policy that will impact positively on the indigenous operators and also to forestall the mistakes of the past. “One of the new and salient changes in the draft policy document is the review on the deduction of the two percent levy under the CVFF, which now makes it mandatory for the vessels operating in the coastal

trade to take Nigerian cadets on board their vessels in addition to the payment of the mandatory two percent levy. It was gathered that the inclusion of this new requirement had become necessary to check the difficulties faced by Nigerian cadets in completing their 12-month mandatory sea time training as prescribed the International Maritime Organisation’s Convention on Standards of Training, Certificate and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW) 1978, Under the new guidelines foreign vessels wishing to participate in the coastal trade are expected to collect a Cabotage Waiver Form CW 1, from the Cabotage Services Depart of NIMASA and on completion, return same to the department at least 60 days prior to the arrival of the vessel in respect of which the waiver administration is being made. Investigations also showed that the 60-day requirement, which is not contained in the old guideline is designed to forestall a situation whereby some foreign vessels would have been lifting cargo with the coastal region even before seeking to be granted a waiver. The new guidelines also require the Cabotage Services department of NIMASA to within 48 hours of receipt of the application cause a note of Cabotage waiver to be published in the Website of the agency so as to enable stakeholders raise any objection

within seven days after which the Minister may consider the application. This draft document after the stakeholders input is expected to be forwarded to the National Assembly to pave way for the amendment. Secretary General of the Nigerian Ship Owners Association NISA, Captain Niyi Labinjo, while commending the minister on the review, however noted that in most Cabotage jurisdictions, stakeholders are made integral part of the waiver granting processes. According to him, in countries like India, Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia, when a foreign ship owner asks for a waiver, the application is shown to the indigenous shipping firms to ascertain whether they have the vessels in respect of which the foreign firm is seeking a waiver. While citing section 34 of the Cabotage Act, which provides that waivers can only be granted in respect of vessels that cannot be provided by the indigenous shipping firms, he regretted that waiver had in the past been granted in respect of anchor handler and tanker ships, which are also on the fleet of the indigenous shipping firms. “Let us be part of the waiver granting system because you are giving out our jobs as specified under the Cabotage Act”, he insisted. He also said that the practice elsewhere is for the government agencies in charge of the waiver granting processes to ask the indigenous shipping firms to furnish them with relevant information within a time limit say; 72 hours as to whether they have the vessel in respect of which waiver is being applied. Dada also expressed fears that foreign shipping firms might continue to dominate shipping activities even within the coastal and inland region if the relevant authorities continue to handle waiver applications the way they are doing currently. “If we continue to grant waivers the way we do now, we will never go any where. Waivers have been granted on non-specialised vessels. When an application is made, ask the indigenous firms if they could provide the vessel before the waiver is granted”, he also said. “Waiver is a relief valve not the act itself but we are making it look as if waiver is more than the act. I am alarmed by the kind of vessels that are granted waivers because waivers ought to be granted for specialised vessels not on the fleet of indigenous operators”, he also argued. Experts believe that in as much as Nigeria cannot build vessels for now as provided in the act, extreme caution should be exercised before granting waivers so that the Cabotage may achieve the desired goals.


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Business Maritime

Friday, March 21, 2014

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Nigerian Navy promises to deal with oil thieves, pirates STORIES: FRANCIS EZEM

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he Nigerian Navy has said that it will stop at nothing at fighting the increasing illegalities on Nigeria’s territorial waters such as oil theft, sea piracy and armed robbery as well as illegal fishing activities that pervade the nation’s maritime domain, especially in the recent past. The Eastern Naval Command of the Service had earlier in week arrested four Chinese nationals and also seized their vessels for fishing illegally on the nation’s territorial waters as well as entering the country without relevant immigration documents. This is sequel to the donation of three patrol boats by the Nigerian Ports Authority, which consist of one 32-metre OCEA boat, christened NNS Dorina (P101) and two other 17-metre MANTA boats named NNS Torie (P258) and NNS Egede (P259), which are fitted with unique operational features and capacities, estimated to have cost N4bn. Flag Officer Commanding the Western Naval Command, Admiral S.I. Alade, who spoke in an interview, disclosed that the coming of the boats came a time the service was in a dire need of them to help it intensify its anti-piracy anti- sea robbery campaign. According to him, in addition to utilizing the boats maximally, the service is

The three patrol boats donated to Nigerian Navy by Nigerian Ports Authority

currently holding talks with NPA and the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, on the possibility of establishing a Forward Operational Base FOB at Takwa Bay, which will also boost its fight against criminality on the nation’s waters. “The gesture of NPA in donating the vessels came at a time we mostly needed them and this is quite commendable. We will put them to good use for the purposes for which they are meant and that is fighting all forms of illegalities on the nation’s territorial waters”, he also said.

Duty slash: 300,000 tonnes of rice arrive at Lagos Ports

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ice importers in Nigeria may have resumed another round of massive importation of the commodity in anticipation that the Federal Government may slash the 110 per levy and duty imposed on it to discourage its consumption. Meanwhile the government seems to be in a serious dilemma as to whether to slash the duty, which had fuelled massive smuggling of the commodity through the land borders. Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala had penultimate week, hinted that the government might reduce the duty imposed on the commodity because neighbouring West African countries cashed in on the policy in Nigeria to slash the duty payable on the commodity in their countries. Statistics released by the Nigerian Ports Authority in its official shipping position shows that 12 ships laden with a total of 267, 139 metric tonnes of the commodity are set to be discharged in different terminals in Lagos. Customs sources however hinted that the manifest of the 12 ships are yet to be sent to the relevant commands of the service, an indication that the vessels may not berth in Nigeria after all. Details of the shipping position show that a ship called Haci Ali Sari laden with 11, 700 metric tonnes of while MV Hector and MVStar Capella are also to discharge 29, 145 and 30, 000 metric tonnes of the commodity respectively at ENL Terminal, Apapa.

Also to discharge rice are Wariya Naree is expected to discharge a total of 32, 950.259 metric tonnes of the cargo even as Aqua Runner and Silveretta are to discharge 208, 000 and 24, 000 metric tonnes respectively at ENL Terminal. Other vessels discharging include MV Quest laden with 20, 000 metric tonnes, MV Aelos to discharge a total of 25,000 metric tonnes while MV Lakehakone, MV Maraki and MV Atlantic Trade are to discharge 22, 000, 20, 000 and 14, 000 metric tonnes apiece. . Okonjo-Iweala had disclosed that the government may slash the high duty and levy, having observed that it is not achieving the desired objectives, adding that no responsible government would allow such a policy even when it is not addressing the specific issues it was designed to address. She regretted that neighbouring West African countries took undue advantage of the fiscal policy by slashing the duty on the same commodity, thus paving way for importers to smuggle the commodity through the land borders. For instance, it was gathered that the Republic of Bening slashed the duty on rice from 30 per cent to seven per cent while Cameroon slashed duty on the commodity to less than five per cent, thus making it tempting to importers to import through at low duty rates and smuggle them in through the land borders.

He noted that the donation of the boats marks another milestone in the collaborative efforts of the Nigerian Navy and NPA in the quest to keep the maritime space safe and secure for economic activities to thrive. It was gathered that the three vessels might be deployed to the Lagos axis of the nation’s waters, which is however subject to the approval of the Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral U.O. Jubrin. On the maintenance of the boats, the Western Naval Command-boss noted that the command already has many of those OCEA boats, which makes their maintenance easier, adding that the manufacturers can always be invited for their maintenance if need be. Alade, who however declined to disclose how many of such vessels on its fleet currently, noted that the service has many of them and also need even many

more of them as they cannot be too much on the fleet. Managing Director of NPA, Mallam Habib Abdullahi, had while presenting the boats officially, said the donation was in line with the authority’s determination to collaborate and partner other relevant government agencies to secure the nation’s territorial waters both in shore and offshore. According to him, the boats which were built in South Africa, will help augment the fleet of the service especially in the areas of search and rescue operations within the nation’s water fronts. “I am certain and confident that the Nigerian Navy will make good use of these patrol boats for the purposes thy are meant for, especially considering the colossal amount of money expended to procure them from the meager resources of the authority”, Abdullahi also said.

Eurotunnel profit sparks decline in RORO ferry operations

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uch happening at Groupe Eurotunnel this week after the cross channel link announced its annual financial results for 2013 with profits tripling to €101 million, aided by a €81 deferred tax asset and increased passenger numbers, but also whilst managing to carry 1.4 million freight trucks throughout the year. The controversial RoRo MyFerryLink service operated after the demise of SeaFrance showed an operating loss however of €22 million. Meanwhile the groups Carbon Trust Certification has been retained after the success of three main projects. Firstly the figures, healthy revenues of €1,092 billion showed a 12 per cent increase with an EBITDA of €449 million led to the proposal of a €0.15 dividend for shareholders (up €0.03 from 2012). The Eurotunnel Group’s pre-tax profit for 2013 was €20 million, down €7 million on last year, but boosted to €101 million by that net tax credit, resulting mainly from the initial recognition of a deferred tax asset, of €81 million. The cost of servicing debt was up €4 million against 2012 to €269 million. The renewal of subsidiary GB Railfreight’s five year contract with Network Rail for transport of maintenance materials, plus the contract for the transport of more than a million tonnes of spoil for the

Crossrail project which will open in 2018, boosted the rail freight outlook along with the success of other Europorte activities which added 16 per cent to the previous year’s revenue figures for the sector. Controversy still surrounds the future of MyFerryLink which Eurotunnel feels still has a place in the cross channel market. A decision from the Competition Commission is expected in May 2014 whether to allow the service to continue in the face of strong opposition from other ferry operators. The operator carried 326,000 trucks in 2013 and around 316,000 cars boosting revenues for the full year to €74 million, basically from a standing start but still recorded a €22 million loss. The history of this dispute can be accessed via the News Search facility, just type in MyFerryLink. In other tunnel news Groupe Eurotunnel retained its Carbon Trust Certification by the independent British organisation Carbon Trust for its policy and achievements in carbon footprint reduction for the period 2011 to 2012. This certification comprises the Channel Tunnel and all its railway subsidiaries (GB Railfreight, Europorte France, Europorte Proximite, Eurotunnel Channel, Europorte Services, Socorail). Within 3 months, all 15 Passenger Shuttles will display the Carbon Trust logo.


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Business News

Friday, March 21, 2014

41

SON, stakeholders to review cement standards FRANCIS EZEM

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trong indications emerged that the Standards Organisation of Nigeria SON and relevant public and private sector stakeholders in the building and construction industry in Nigeria are set to review the standards for building materials and other civil engineering works, especially cement This is sequel to the convening of an all- stakeholders’ forum on cement standards in Lagos by the organisation in which major stakeholders covering both manufacturers and regulatory agencies were in attendance. Prominent among these stakeholders include the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria MAN, the Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria COREN, . Cement Manufacturers Asso-

ciation of Nigeria CIMAN, and the Nigerian Building and Road Research Institute NBRRI, Also in attendance at the meeting were some cement manufacturing companies such as Lafarge Wampco and Dangote Cement and Ibeto Cement Company respectively even as the Raw Materials Research and Development Council RMRDC, was also in attendance. DirectorGeneral of the organisation, Nigeria’s apex standards bureau, Dr Joseph Odumodu, who addressed the stakeholders, said the convening of the forum was necessitated by the urgent need to take another look at both the quality and application of cement in the building industry in Nigeria. According to him, one of the ways to checkmate the increasing cases of collapse of buildings collapses and all the associated

NACCIMA calls for good business ethics, best practises

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he Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture, NACCIMA, has called for good business ethics and best practises that would guarantee sustainable national economic development. NACCIMA President, Alhaji Mohammed Abubakar, made the call yesterday in Abuja at the inauguration of Nigeria’s Centenary Trade Fair. Abubakar, who also served as chairman of the occasion, was represented by the National Vice President of NACCIMA, Mr Billy Gillis-Harry. He said that the much-expected transformation of the national economy would only be realised through the adoption of good business ethics and best practices in both the public and private sectors. The NACCIMA boss also described the theme of the fair, “Celebrating Creative Industrial Excellence in Production and Innovation through Unity in Diversity,’’ as timely and relevant to the country’s centenary celebration. “The issue of creative industrial excellence in production and innovation cannot be overemphasised in the developmental process of any nation. “Nigeria has abundant human resources that are highly skilful, creative and innovative in their different endeavours. “Therefore, as we celebrate our 100 years of unity, it will not be out of place to celebrate our entrepreneurs’ creative industrial excellence and innovations since 1914 till date, which have contributed

to bring us this far,’’ he said. The NACCIMA president urged governments at all levels to invest more in infrastructural development, so as to enhance the country’s global market competitiveness. He lauded the President Goodluck Jonathan administration for its commitment to the transformation of the economy, and pledged the support of the nation’s chamber of commerce movement. Abubakar commended the Abuja Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture, ABUCCIMA, for organising the fair, and expressed the hope that both visitors and exhibitors would ``have profitable and rewarding business interactions’’. In his welcome address, the president of ABUCCIMA, Mr Solomon Nyagba, also stressed the need for the sustenance and strengthening of public and private sector partnerships. He said that the partnerships would boost the innovative capacity of companies, as well as broaden and strengthen the nation’s industrial sector. Nyagba said that the fair aimed at showcasing made-in-Nigeria goods and services, especially in key areas of industrial and manufacturing sectors of the economy. “The fair is aimed at showcasing the huge strides Nigeria has made as a nation in the scientific, technological and industrial spheres. “It is also meant to showcase the vast and varied agricultural, mineral and other national resources available in our economy,’’ he said.

costs was to take a closer look at the quality and application of these building materials. “Although there are standards currently in operation in the country with reference with a range of products, the challenge is that people do not know what they buy”, Odumodu insisted.

He also said that most of the time, people in the building industry including experts merely ask for cement, without bothering what brand and what quality they are buying, arguing that this problem is made worse by the fact that many operators in the building construction indus-

try are not educated.. He therefore insisted that standards is a global issue and of critical importance for which there should be no compromise adding that this understanding is uppermost in the efforts to ensure only safe and certified products are sold in the country.

L-R: Lagos State Commissioner for Housing, Mr. Bosun Jeje; Chairman Central Organising Committee, Ehingbeti 2014/Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget, Mr. Ben Akabueze; Commissioner for Agriculture and Cooperatives, Mr. Gbolahan Lawal and Senior Special Assistant on Media to the Governor, Mr. Akeem Bello, during the media conference on Ehingbeti 2014 in Lagos, on Wednesday. Photo: ADEMOLA AKINLABI

FRANCIS EZEM

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early five years after the Federal Executive Council FEC, under former President Olusegun Obasanjo gave approval for the establishment of another maritime training institution to be called Maritime Academy of Nigeria, Badagry, Lagos, the academy is yet to takeoff due to uncertainties over the six-acre proposed site of the academy. The then Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency NIMASA, Dr. Ade Dosunmu, who championed the establishment of the new academy had also convinced former President Olusegun Obasanjo to give his presidential approval. Current Director General of the agency, Mr. Patrick Akpo-

‘We forfeited Maritime Academy proposed Lagos site to ASCON’ bolokemi, who recently played host to members of the Senate Committee on Marine Transport during an oversight function visit, lamented that more than five years after the government gave its nod to the project, the agency is yet to commence construction work on the six acres of land allocated for the project. It was also gathered that the agency had following the approval committed huge sums of money on the clearing of the bush in addition to other preliminary processes and documentations before the actual commencement of the constructions works. According to the DG, shortly after the end of the Obasanjo-government, the Administrative Staff

College of Nigeria ASCON, which was then asked to cede part of its fallow land for academy reclaimed the entire land, thus making it impossible for construction work to commence. Akpobolokemi, who briefed the Senators on efforts of the agency at building human capacity, especially in the area of training seafarers, noted that one of the challenges faced by the agency was its inability to access the piece of land for the academy more than five years after the approval. “ASCON denied us access to the land and so we have been made the forfeit the parcel of land approved by the government of former President Olusegun Obasanjo”, the NIMASA boss lamented.

what has happened today is that the Vice President, on behalf of Mr President, inaugurated a standing committee that will from time to time address issues that come up.’’ Igali noted that the inauguration had become imperative because government monopoly over the power sector had now been moved to the private sector. He said the committee would be looking into all technical and financial challenges facing the power sector. He said that the committee, which would be reporting directly to the Vice President, would be

chaired by himself. Igali said other members of the committee included DirectorGeneral of the Bureau for Public Enterprises, BPE, Chairman of Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, NERC, Chairman, Presidential Task Force on Power and representative of the Minister of Finance. Others are Accountant-General of the Federation, two special advisers to the president in the office of the Vice President, Bulk Trader and other representatives of the distribution and generation companies.

FG inaugurates monitoring committee on power privatisation

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he Federal Government yesterday in Abuja inaugurated a committee to address issues arising from the privatisation of the nation’s power sector. Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Power, Mr. Godknows Igali, said the committee was inaugurated by Vice President Namadi Sambo on behalf of President Goodluck Jonathan. ‘‘At the end of the very successful privatisation effort, obviously a number of issues will continue to come up. ‘‘Issues positive and some issues are those of concern. So,


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Business News

KUNLE AZEEZ

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he Central Bank of Nigeria has once again mandated the E-Payment Providers Association of Nigeria, E-PPAN, to sensitise and mobilise the grassroots in the Southweastern state of Ondo, Ekiti, Oyo and Osun States on the cashless initiative going nationwide by July 1, 2014. In a statement, E-PPAN said the mobilisation will include series of interactive sessions with nonorganised markets, trade associations, market leaders, tertiary Institutions and other stakeholders. It said that the sensitiation exercise for the South West will flag off in Ondo State on the 24th of March through to the 19th of April 2014. “If the greater percentage of Nigeria’s population embraces the alternative forms of payment, the move to transform payment life style will be far-reaching.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Cashless: CBN asks E-PPAN to mobilise grassroots in South west This will ultimately bring more of the money in circulation into the banking sector, lowering bank costs and improving the transmission of monetary policy,” the statement said. E-PPAN has been involved in the advocacy of electronic payment amongst the grassroots since the onset of the cashless initiative in 2011 which piloted in Lagos State. E-PPAN also carried out the sensitization in the five states in the second phase of the initiative including the FCT Abuja. According to E-PPAN, “The experiences garnered during all these engagements has been very expository and has formed the basis of its enlightenment message

as it moves into Ondo, Ekiti, Oyo and Osun states.” During the advocacy campaign, E-PPAN said it will promote the use of alternative channels to cash with emphasis on mobile payment. “The mobile phone is one device most of the people in the grassroots already own. The Association will teach them how to use this device for payment and expose the advantages and benefits of the cashless initiative,” it stated. Other channels such as the Point of Sales, internet banking, electronic transfer and so on, will also be introduced so that they will have the opportunity to make informed decision on what best suits

L-R: Brand Communication Manager, Oral B, Mr. Tomiwa Ajewole; Initiator, Project Smile, Dr. Amy Traora-Shumbusho and Brand Operation/ Integration Manager, Oral B, Mr. Ojo Folarin, during the Project Smile 2014 Media Launch in Lagos, yesterday.

PTDF tasks oil companies on local content

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etroleum Technology Development Fund, PTDF, has urged International Oil Companies, IOCs, to key into the Federal Government’s capacity development programme in Nigeria’s oil and gas sector. The Executive Secretary of PTDF, Dr Oluwole Oluleye, made the call at the ongoing Nigeria Oil and Gas Conference in Abuja yesterday in a paper was entitled; ``Developing Human Capacity to enable Full Nigerian Content Implementation’’. Oluleye explained that the PTDF was the agency of government charged with the responsibility of developing human capacity in the Nigerian oil and gas industry. “We have been efficiently doing that but this will be more effective if other industry players collaborate with us,” he said. He noted that PTDF had trained

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a lot of Nigerians that needed to be engaged by the industry, and stressed the need for the IOCs to key into the efforts of the agency in capacity development. According to him, there is also the need for stakeholders to absorb and integrate those trained into the workforce. “If we keep building capacity that is not engaged in the industry, particularly in the Niger Delta region, we will continue to face the problem of youth restiveness in host communities resulting in revenue losses.’’ He said that a database of all PTDF scholars, including their areas of specialisations, was being put together for delivery to the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board. This, Oluleye said, was for the purpose of facilitating their engagement by international oil companies.

He said PTDF had committed huge investments in upgrading and developing oil and gas-related institutions in the country in its bid to address the challenges of Human Capital Development in the sector. He said, PTDF being a member of the Post Amnesty Rehabilitation Committee, had introduced specialised training programmes, adding that hundreds of youths were currently pursuing undergraduate studies in Malaysia, China and Norway. According to him, others are undergoing vocational training such as helicopter piloting and air surveillance in South Africa. The aim, he said, was to develop their intellectual base and technical capabilities by attracting international certifications after their training in order to be accepted globally.

their businesses and life style. According to E-PPAN, “This exercise is imperative because the non-organized markets, trade associations, market leaders are very important entities in the economic value chain due to the large volume of cash transactions that they carry out on a daily basis.

“This and many more will be the backbone of the sensitisation and mobilisation exercise as the Association with its team comprising of the Central Bank officials, Mobile Payment Operators, banks representative, Papyment Terminal Servic0e Providers and so on.”

Association wants telecom operators to compensate subscribers for poor services

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he President, National Association of Telecom Subscribers, Chief Deolu Ogunbanjo, yesterday in Abuja urged the Federal Government to compel telecom operators to compensate subscribers directly for poor services. Ogunbanjo told the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, that government should enact a law which would force operators to improve their services or pay some compensation. He said the Federal Government, through the Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, could compel the operators to pay a direct compensation of not less than N10, 000 to each subscriber. The association president said until such a law was put in place, subscribers would continue to suffer in the hands of the GSM operators. “The operators are falling short of standards, but the regulatory body has the power to enforce them to pay N10, 000 soft fine

to each subscriber, instead of asking them to pay the money to the government. “The NCC thought the only way telecom operators could improve their services was by penalising them and asking them to pay into government purse. “However, we prefer that they pay the soft fines directly to each subscriber. “The NCC directed the Blackberry Company to give six days of free subscription to users when there was network outage and the company complied. The same can be done to GSM operators,’’ Ogunbanjo said. NAN reports that the NCC spokesman, Mr Reuben Muoka, had earlier told NAN that fines imposed on telecoms operators for rendering poor services were being paid into the government treasury. Muoka said the law governing the commission made it unlawful to pay any fund charged as penalty to individuals.

Maize farmers want law to guarantee GESS continuity

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aize Farmers Association of Nigeria, MFAN, yesterday called for the enactment of law that will guarantee the continuity of the Federal Government’s Gross Enhancement Support Scheme, GESS. The Coordinator of the association in the Northwest, Alhaji Bello Abubakar, made the call in Funtua, during the distribution of free farming inputs to members. Abubakar, who is also the association’s chairman in Katsina State, said the call was necessary in view of the importance of the scheme and its support to farmers across the country. He noted that the law would ensure the sustainability of the scheme and encourage mass production of food production and industrial raw materials. “GESS assists farmers with quality seed, fertiliser and other farming inputs as well as educates

farmers on modern farming techniques and marketing of their products,’’ Bello said. According to him, members of the association members in Funtua had been given for free, 300 pieces of sprayers and 5, 180 Hermetic treated bags for the 2013/2014 dry season farming. Abubakar said the bags would facilitate safe produce storage, while the sprayers would be used to keep the crops from infestation by insects. He explained that 82.3 and 85.3 metric tones of improved maize seed was sold to farmers at subsidised prices in 2012 and 2013 respectively. He thanked the federal government for introducing the scheme, and urged farmers to reciprocate the efforts through increased investment in the agricultural sector.


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Business News

Friday, March 21, 2014

NLNG pays N220bn tax on 2013 profit UDEME AKPAN

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he Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas, NLNG has paid N220bn as tax to the government in 2013, thus making it the highest payer in the nation. The NLNG stated yesterday at this year’s Nigerian Oil and Gas Conference in Abuja that it declared 2013 tax profile of N220bn last year. Managing Director, Mr. Babs Omotowa, informed journalists at the launch of the company’s university support programme that the company has commercialised over four trillion cubic feet, 4 tcf of natural gas to lead Nigeria’s aspiration for flare reduction at oil production sites in the country. He said the N2bn it has donated for development of engineering education in six federal universities in the country would also be the biggest single direct intervention in the education sector to build a better Nigeria. Omotowa, who could not pro-

vide details of the company’s financial remittances to the Federation Account citing requirements of declaring financial reports said however that over 70 per cent of the company’s total revenues flow into the federation account to provide funding support to government’s annual budgets. The Managing Director of Chevron Nigeria Limited, Mr. Andrew Fawthrop, “said, Nigeria has world-class gas resource having about 184 trillion cubic feet of gas with further significant upgrade. It has been said that the volume of natural gas reserves in the country could grow as high as 600 with the commencement of focused gas exploration which is the reason Nigeria is often described as a gas province with drops of oil in it. He stated that the country is ranked among the top 10 gas reserves in the world but produces only 4.5bn scf per day of gas. Fawthrop stated, “There is increasing demand for domestic gas which is a good develop-

ment. From all indications, Nigeria is still on the first step of the gas development ladder. He said one key development that has the potential to take the gas sector to the next level is the Federal Government’s strategic gas framework. “The gas Master plan is Nigeria’s first major attempt to articulate a holistic framework for its gas and it seeks to link the industry with the domestic economy. He also said that historically, domestic sales of gas have been modest while the key demand sector has been power, particularly as there is currently limited industrial use and no residential or commercial demand. According to him, “This three-pronged framework puts gas-to-power at the core, but also plans for a gas based industrial growth which will in turn drive further growth of power demand as well as high-value export. He stated that for this next level to be actualised there has to be more significant uptake in gas through LNG processing and gas conversion to LPG and GTL.

FG tasks govs of 11 states on funding of GGW OLUFEMI ADEOSUN ABUJA

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n order fast-track the implementation of Great Green Wall Sahara project, the Federal Government has appealed to the governors of the 11 frontline states to provide additional funding for the programme. President Goodluck Jonathan had in 2010 approved N10bn for the implementation of the programme which is aimed at fighting desertification in 11 frontline states in the North. Apart from that, the federal government also recently approved training of forest guards for effective monitoring and protection of the programme. The programme which has implementation time frame of three years also involves the establishment of a greenbelt covering 1,500km from Dandi Arewa Local Government Area of Kebbi State

Cashless policy will boost states’ internal revenue generation –CBN

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he Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, yesterday said that its cashless policy would boost internal revenue generation capacity of states in the country. The CBN Controller in Jos, Mr Mathias Kura, said this at a meeting of the bank’s officials with members of Plateau State Executive Council in Jos. Kura said that the internal revenue gains to Plateau and other states would increase with the implementation of the cashless policy. “We first introduced this cashless policy in Lagos State and later in six other states and one of its immediate benefits is the sig-

nificant increase in their internal revenue generation,” he said. He said that the policy was intended to reduce the cost of money in circulation around the country. According to him, the government spent more than N140.5 billion on printing of notes, movement and storage of currencies in 2012. Karu said that Nigeria was far behind in electronic banking as many countries had advanced in the policy and stressed the need for citizens to adopt the cashless practice in all transactions. He said that the policy would be introduced in more states by July, but denied that there was

a plan by CBN to totally stop the use of cash for businesses. Karu said that the aim of introducing the cashless policy was to increase electronic banking transactions and reduce cash withdrawal through the banks. Responding, Mr Francis Bot, Chief of Staff to the Gov. Jonah Jang, said cashless policy was welcomed, but advised CBN to ensure that basic banking infrastructure were established before full implementation of the policy. Bot assured that the state government would work progressively with other sectors of the economy to ensure that Plateau benefitted from the policy.

to Marte of Borno State. The frontline states are Kebbi, Sokoto, Zamfara, Katsina, Jigawa, Yobe, Adamawa, Gombe, Kano, Bauchi and Borno. However, speaking at a meeting with the Commissioners of Environment in the eleven frontline states, the Environment Minister Mrs. Laurencia Mallam stated that the programme would only achieve the desired results if the governors of the affected states key into it and fulfil their financial obligation it. She said, “It is on record that the funds now available for the programme have been provided by the Federal Government5. “It is therefore pertinent that states key in with new and additional funds so as to improve programme funding. We must also explore synergy in our field interventions to save cost and ensure greater service delivery.”

USTDA, Honeywell sign N84.8m gas project deal

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L-R: Head, Insurance and Risk Management, Abuja Leasing Company Limited, Mr. Abdullahi Ismaila; Legacy Account Manager, Mr. Idris Rabiu; Small Medium Enterprises Manager, Dr Anthony Onwuha and Group Head, Human Resources, Ms Ejiro Esiri during the Money Solutions Seminar on Small Medium Enterprises in Abuja yesterday Photo: ROTIMI OSASONA

43

he United States Trade and Development Agency, USTDA, and Honeywell Group yesterday signed a $514,000,about N84.8m, grant agreement, to develop a gas-based industrial project in Nigeria. With the signing of the agreement at the U.S.Consul-General’s residence in Lagos, USTDA would be contributing $257,000 (about N39.84m) to the $257,000 already set aside by Honeywell, to evaluate and develop plans for the project. The U.S. Deputy Chief of Mission in Nigeria, Mrs Maria Brewer, who signed on behalf of her government, said the gesture was

to support the Honeywell Group in its execution of the project in Nigeria. “This grant is to assist the Honeywell Group, a Nigerian-based company, in its plan to construct a gas-based industrial complex in Nigeria. “With this USTDA’s assistance, Honeywell Group will be able to complete a study to evaluate the chemical outputs from various types of facilities. “The study will also provide a market survey on current demand of different chemical outputs and identify key training requirements for facility employees,’’ she said.

U.S. fines Toyota $1.2bn for defrauding consumers

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apanese car giant, Toyota, is required to pay 1.2 billion dollars for defrauding consumers in the fall of 2009 and early 2010. The U.S. Justice Department announced the agreement reached with Toyota yesterday. Under the agreement, Toyota admitted on Wednesday that it misled U.S. consumers by concealing and making deceptive statements about two safety issues which caused a type of unintended acceleration. “Rather than promptly disclosing and correcting safety issues about which they were aware, Toyota made misleading public statements to consumers and gave inaccurate facts to Members of Congress’’, said Attorney General

Eric Holder. Holder added that if any part of the automobile turns out to have safety issues, the car company had a duty to be up front about them, to fix them quickly, and to immediately tell the truth about the problem and its scope. Besides huge penalty, an independent monitor will be imposed on Toyota to review and assess policies, practices and procedures relating to Toyota’s safety-related public statements and reporting obligations. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said Wednesday’s penalties send “a powerful message’’ to all manufacturers to follow the U.S. recall requirements or they will suffer “serious consequences.’’


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Friday, March 21, 2014

Food security key to national security, economic growth –Adesina TOLA AKINMUTIMI ABUJA

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he Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, has described food security as one of the potent tools for fighting socioeconomic challenges in the country, saying that the current Agricultural Transformation Agenda (ATA) was aimed at addressing food challenges, creating jobs and wealth through its various crop value chains. Adesina stated this on Tuesday in Abuja when he received a 27-member team of officers of the Zimbabwe National Defence College on a study tour of the country. Represented by the Minister of State for Agriculture, Mrs. Asabe Asmau Ahmed, the Minister disclosed that the current administration recognized the threat posed by millions unemployed and idle youths to national security if they do not have access to gainful em-

ployment hence the use of ATA as a logical platform for addressing the unemployment challenge, considering Nigeria’s vast arable land, water and other agriculturesupporting resources. Adesina explained further that the ATA was designed in 2011 to decisively tackle hunger and extreme poverty, as well as create jobs and wealth through agriculture with the objective of adding 20 million metric tons to national food output by 2015. He specifically identified the Growth Enhancement Support (GES), which enabled Nigeria add about 15 metric tons to the national food output, about 78 per cent of the target of 20 million metric tons target, as a major component of the ATA. Earlier, the Permanent Secretary, Mrs. Ibukun Odusote, told the visitors that the Ministry with its agencies remained the repository of expertise in agriculture and rural development in Nigeria, in-

cluding several research institutes involved in developing high-yield varieties of crops for the country’s vast ecological zones and national drive to transform the agricultural sector She pointed out that such expertise enabled the ministry to turn the 2012 flooding of about 20 States in the country into an opportunity for dry season farming, an initiative that in turn placed Nigerian farmers in good position to now undertake cropping in both the wet and dry seasons, and by so doing raising Nigeria’s annual agricultural output. The leader of the Zimbabwe National Defence College team, Air Vice Marshall Michael Moyo, said the team, which arrived Nigeria on Monday came to understudy how government organs function generally, and how their regular programmes and activities contribute to tackling national security issues, as part of its training.

A banana plantation in Edo State

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‘Dry season farmers to receive facilities to boost production’

Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Adeshina

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he Federal Ministry of Water Resources on Wednesday said efforts were in top gear towards ensuring the 2014 dry season farming had the needed facilities to boost food production. Mr. Benson Ajisegiri, the Head of Water Reform Unit in the ministry, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, in Abuja. “Dry season farming is about irrigation and if the irrigation facilities are not good, we cannot be talking about dry season farming. “Part of the thing we are doing about the public, private partnership, PPP, is to enhance the dry season farming especially in the North. “Most of the irrigation facilities will be further developed and enhanced so that there could be dry season farming effectively in action. According to him, 10 irrigational facilities would be concessioned through the Public Private Partnership in 2014. “The Public Private Partner-

ship, PPP, of the Federal Ministry of Water Resources is on course. “Many agencies that we feel can help us in the development of the PPP for the water sector we have networked with. “We have put in place appropriate framework. “We have been able to network with agencies that we think will be able to help us such as the Nigeria Advisory Infrastructure Facility, International Finance Corporation ,IFC, and the World Bank. “This year, we have developed a set of 10 projects that we intend to put into the PPP market in collaboration with the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission, ICRC. “Most of them are irrigation projects that hitherto had not been performing in the states that we are using our dams. “Quite a number are dam projects and then also water supply projects; one of them more especially is the Gurara Irrigation Project. “The Gurara Irrigation Project we have developed the base document now, which we call the `Outline Business Case’ that we are going to use to concession it in the course of the year. “That document has just been given to the ICRC for its comments and “no objections” for us to move to the procurement phase.” NAN recalls that President Goodluck Jonathan had in January approved the disbursement of N14bn for the expansion of 2014 dry season farming in the country. Furthermore, the Federal Government promised to institute pivot irrigation systems in 10 different locations in the country, in a bid to boost agricultural activities and ensure food security.

100,000 farmers get FG’s high-yield sorghum seeds JAMES DANJUMA KATSINA

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bout 100,000 farmers from 13 states of the federation have benefited from federal government’s distribution of 500 metric tons of improved high- yield sorghum seeds. The seeds were distributed in 2013 to the benefiting farmers under the Sorghum Value Chain programme. The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development,

Mrs. Ibukun Odushote, stated this on Wednesday in Katsina at a workshop on processing and utilisation of sorghum novel fortified high energy food for family nourishment. Odushote was represented by state Director, Agricultural Transformation Agenda, Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Abdu Aminu. She identified states where farmers befitted from the sorghum distribution to include Adamawa, Bauchi, Borno, Gombe, Jigawa, Kano, Katsina

and Kaduna. Others were Nasarawa, Sokoto, Taraba, Yobe and Zamfara. She said the Sorghum Transformation Value Chain programme was aimed at improving nourishment and ensuring food security in the affected states. “There is great level of stunting due to severe malnutrition in these states; the programme is therefore geared toward eradicating malnutrition and stunted growth among children.”

Odushote said 50 women participants were selected for the training who would also train other people at community level in their respective local government areas across the state. She said the workshop would also assist to maximise sorghum production in the state and the country at large, and that same would help create wealth and jobs to women and youths. The desk officer, sorghum value chain, Mr. Opara George said the programme was also

targeted at school feeding with participants from the state’s ministry of education. George, represented by Mr Telta Naphtali, urged participants to educate other women at home in their communities what they have learnt during the workshop. One of the participants, Ramatu Abdullahi commended the federal government for the training and assured to train others and put into practice what she had acquired during the workshop.


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Capital Market

Friday, March 21, 2014

45

Gencos, Discos may be listed on NSE by 2017 –Minister JOHNSON OKANLAWON

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he power Generation Companies (Gencos) and Distribution Companies (Discos) may make their shares available to the Nigeria public by the year 2017. The Minister of Power, Prof. Chinedu Nebo said this in Lagos yesterday during a courtesy visit to the Nigerian Stock Exchange. He pointed out that the Federal Government may review the initial agreement of five years for successor companies to list their share on the Exchange to three years. He said, “I don’t see

why five years was agreed for these companies to go public. Be that as it may, with the things on ground today, we are encouraging a dialogue between the successor companies, and the government of Nigeria, especially the National Council on Privatisation, to see if these five years can be negotiated downward. “Within the next two and a half years, we want to see them listing on the Exchange because we believe that the most veritable way of getting finance they need to expand and give much better services to the people will be by going to the stock market.” He said that government has entered into an

agreement with buyers to make sure that Nigerian benefit from the privatized companies. He affirmed that government is already encouraging them to list on the Exchange, “It is time bound, but we are trying to see if something can be done legally to remove that time restraint so that they can go sooner to the stock market,” he said. According to him, the government is already addressing some of the issues, particularly finance needed for expansion and consolidation. “That is where the stock market is very critical and government has even organized a global financing summit that at-

tracted more than 350 non Nigerians, just about a month ago. “So, government is working on that. Other constraints have to do with generating of more power because the more power you generate, the more power is sold, the more money is made by the generation companies, the transmission company and the distribution companies,” Nebo said. He noted that government needs to generate more power and the challenge is the issue of gas, which he said the government is working very hard to make sure that at the end of this year, there will be availability of gas.

Source: NSE

Source: FMDA

Market indicators All-Share Index 37,308.60 points Market capitalisation 12.10 trillion

Equities rise 0.5% as Guaranty Trust Bank leads gainers JOHNSON OKANLAWON

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rading in equities closed on bullish note on the Nigerian Stock Exchange yesterday, halting four days of sell-offs in the market. The All Share Index appreciated by 0.46 per cent to 37,308.60 points, as against the 0.37 per cent recorded the preceding day to close at 37,136.60 points. Market capitalisation appreciated N55bn to close at N11.98trn, in contrast to the decrease of N44bn recorded the preceding day

to close at N11.93trn. Guaranty Trust Bank Plc led the gainers’ table with N1.90 or 8.23 per cent to close at N25.00 per share, followed by Oando Plc with 69 kobo or 4.97 per cent to close at N14.56 per share. Honeywell Flour Mills Plc appreciated 17 kobo or 4.89 per cent to close at N3.65 per share, while FCMB Plc added 15 kobo or 4.84 per cent to close at N3.25 per share. Cutix Plc was up eight kobo or 4.82 per cent to close at N1.74 per share. Conversely, Cadbury Nigeria Plc shed N7.40 or

8.67 per cent to close at N78.00 per share, while NAHCO Plc dropped 27 kobo or 5.40 per cent to close at N4.73 per share. PZ Cussons Plc declined N1.70 or five eper cent to close at N32.30 per share, while UACN Plc fell N23.10 or five per cent to close at N58.90 per share. AG Leventis Plc dipped seven kobo or 4.96 per cent to close at N1.34 per share. A total of 320.3 million shares valued at N3.76bn were traded in 5,005 deals. Meanwhile, Guaranty Trust Bank expects to increase loans by 15 to 20 per cent this year after growth

of 29 per cent last year as it seeks opportunities in telecom, oil and gas and manufacturing. The Chief Executive Officer of the bank, Mr. Segun Agbaje said at a conference call yesterday in Lagos that foreign currency lending to the power and oil and gas sectors drove loan growth last year, though low yields on dollar-based loans cut margins. Agbaje said he expected return on equity to grow in excess of 25 per cent this year, compared with 29.3 per cent in 2013.

Factory data lifts stocks, JPMorgan near 14-year high

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nited States stocks rose yesterday, boosted by a read on factory activity that was much stronger than expected, which offset the prospect of an earlier-thanexpected rate hike Wall Street opened lower, but reversed course after the Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank said its business activity index rose far more than expected in March, rebounding after a contraction in February. In another positive report, jobless claims rose less than expected in the latest week. The data shows that fundamentals are getting stronger every day, and that strength is getting firmer, said Frank Davis, director

of sales and trading at LEK Securities in New York. Financial shares, which are tied to the pace of economic growth, were among Thursday’s biggest gainers, with the S&P financial sector index up 1.7 per cent. JPMorgan Chase and Company gained 3.5 per cent to $60.32, rising above $60 for the first time since April 2000, while Citigroup Incorporation shot up 2.6 per cent to $50.22. AT andT Incorporation ranked among the top percentage gainers in both the Dow and the S&P 500, rising 2.5 per cent to $33.78. In her first press conference as chair of the Federal Reserve, Janet Yellen on Wednesday indicated that the first increase in inter-

est rates could come in the first half of next year. She estimated the considerable period between the end of the Fed’s stimulus and its first rate increase at possibly six months. Analysts widely expected a hike in the second half of 2015. “We’re trying to decipher her timeframe and get ahead of it,” Davis said. “While we didn’t make any drastic changes to our positions as a result of what she said, we have a tight watch on her to figure out how she’ll play her hand.” The Dow Jones industrial average gained 107.66 points, or 0.66 per cent, to 16,329.83 points, while the Standard and Poor’s 500 In-

dex advanced 10.63 points, or 0.57 per cent, to 1,871.40 points. The Nasdaq Composite Index rose 15.10 points, or 0.35 per cent, to 4,322.71 points The S&P 500 is within 1 percent of its record closing high, but volume has been anemic on positive market days, suggesting limited conviction behind the move. According to the latest Reuters poll of analysts, the S&P 500 is expected to end 2014 at 1,950, less than 5 percent above current levels. Volume is expected to surge on Friday as options expiration takes place alongside multiple index rebalances.

Stock Updates GAINERS COMPANY

OPENING

CLOSING

CHANGE

GUARANTY

23.10

25.00

1.90

% CHANGE 8.23

OANDO

13.87

14.56

0.69

4.97

HONYFLOUR

3.48

3.65

0.17

4.89

FCMB

3.10

3.25

0.15

4.84

CUTIX

1.66

1.74

0.08

4.82

REDSTAREX

4.28

4.47

0.19

4.44

UBA

6.70

6.99

0.29

4.33

PRESTIGE

0.56

0.58

0.02

3.57

ROYALEX

0.59

0.61

0.02

3.39

VITAFOAM

3.98

4.11

0.13

3.27

CHANGE

% CHANGE

LOSERS COMPANY

OPENING

CLOSING

CADBURY

85.40

78.00

-7.40

-8.67

NAHCO

5.00

4.73

-0.27

-5.40

PZ

34.00

32.30

-1.70

-5.00

UACN

62.00

58.90

-3.10

-5.00

AGLEVENT

1.41

1.34

-0.07

-4.96

PORTPAINT

4.64

4.41

-0.23

-4.96

LIVESTOCK

3.55

3.38

-0.17

-4.79

TRANSEXPR

2.75

2.62

-0.13

-4.73

MANSARD

2.14

2.04

-0.10

-4.67

LEARNAFRCA

1.72

1.64

-0.08

-4.65

Primary Market Auction TENOR

AMOUNT (N’mn)

RATE (%)

DATE

91-Day

22,057.31

11.50

07-Nov-13

182-Day

30,000.00

11.59

07-Nov-13

182-Day

47,786.39

13.05

07-Nov-13

Open Market Operations TENOR

AMOUNT (N’mn)

RATE (%)

DATE

178-Day

86,709.13

12.35

07-Nov-13

175-Day

95,368.69

12.35

07-Nov-13

-

-

-

-

Wholesale Dutch Auction System AMOUNT OFFERED

MARKET DEMAND

AMOUNT SOLD

DATE

$350m

N/A

$343m

04-Nov-13

$400m

N/A

$399m

30-Oct-13


46

Capital Market

Friday, March 21, 2014

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Stock exchange daily equities summary Equities as at March 20, 2014 1st Tier Securities

1st Tier Securities Sector

Company name

No Of Deals

Quotation(N)

Quantity Traded

Value of Shares(N)

Sector

Company name

No Of Deals

Quotation(N)

Quantity Traded

Value of Shares(N)


Friday, March 21, 2014

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

47

Community Mirror You also have a role to play as traditional rulers, because we are all under your,rule. is why When the come comeThat to come e I invited youChris because we need to collaborate in finding a lastingwill solution tothis thisMinistry. problem. everybody sit up in . Rev. Okotie, speaking on the state of the nation

49

HON MINISTER FOR PETROLEUM RESOURCES,ALIISON MADUEKEE KADUNA STATE GOVERNOR, MUKHTAR RAMALAN YERO

Siblings murder brother over estate FRANCIS SUBERU

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wo siblings identified as Abdulfatai and Shakiru have been arrested by police from the Homicide section of the State Criminal Investigation Department, SCID, Panti, Yaba, Lagos for the murder of their elder brother, Yusuf Osun, over their father’s property. It was gathered that Yu-

suf 25, was brutally murdered after he allegedly refused to sign an agreement to sell their late father’s house at Satellite Town area of the state. They were said to have lived together at House 3C, Mobil Estate, Satellite Town, Lagos before they allegedly killed their brother for constituting a stumbling block to their plans to sell the house. Community Mirror learnt that the suspects

allegedly conspired and strangled their elder brother while cutting him with machete to conceal the criminal act. The brothers were said to have being at loggerheads over the property after their father died. Yusuf who was opposed to selling the property incurred the wrath of Abdulfatai and Shakiru, who allegedly wanted it sold and the money shared after they negotiated with a

buyer for purchase of the four-bedroom duplex for N17 million. They decided to kill Yusuf after the buyer insisted that the three sign an agreement as required in such transaction. It was gathered that after all entreaty failed to get Yusuf to sign the agreement, they engaged in a fight before they allegedly killed him to pave way for the sales. Yusuf was said to have

opposed the idea to sell the house in order not to render their mother who is still alive homeless. The bubble burst when a neighbour who witnessed the act reported

the matter to the Satellite Town Division police. The suspects were arrested and after preliminary investigation, transferred to the SCID for further investigations.

Birth attendant arrested for death of pregnant woman OJO OYEWAMIDE AKURE

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traditional birth attendant in Ondo, Doris Oyewole, has been arrested for allegedly causing the death of a pregnant woman. It was learnt the deceased spent two days in a home run by Doris before being rushed to a hospital where she later gave up the ghost. The deceased was reportedly brought to the hospital when she was in a state of coma because her womb was said to have been tampered with. Special Assistant to Governor Olusegun Mimiko on Maternal Death Reduction, Mrs Funmilola Oluwadare,

said the suspect has confessed to the crime, even as she has been detained for further interrogation. Oluwadare condemned the act, adding that the government had earlier met with traditional birth attendants early this year and warned that they desist from delivering babies, even as it promised to empower them to venture into other profitable businesses of their choice. The Commissioner for Health, Dr Dayo Adeyanju, said the government is set to implement a report on confidential enquiry into maternal deaths, assuring that it would leave no stone unturned to see that maternal deaths are eradicated in the state.

Youths protest power outage in Ekiti ABIODUN NEJO ADO EKITI Traditional dancers performing at a Turbaning ceremony in Gimbiyan Mwari Sabon Makaranta village in Bogoro Local Government Area of Bauchi on Saturday. PHOTO: NAN

Alleged shop racketeering rocks Alimosho council

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shop sale racketeering involving millions of naira is currently causing disaffection in the Alimosho Local Government Council of Lagos State. The local government chairman, the developer and some council employees allegedly breached sale agreements on more than 50 lock-up shops in the Rauf Aregbesola Market at Iyana-Ipaja. Community Mirror learnt that trouble began when the developer, represented by Mr. Adegboroye

Oluporoku, got the consent of the council to increase the price of the shops to N1.2m from N600, 000. While some shop owners believe they are being asked to pay more for the shops allegedly allotted free of charge to some council officials and market leaders, others said it was a desperate move to repay those who could not get allocations of shops they paid for. They alleged that more people paid for few shops that were available. One of the shop owners, Mr. David Okpekpe, alleged

that the developer and local government chairman, including some officials swindled him of N1.2m being money he paid for shop 3 at Rauf Aregbesola Market, Iyana-Ipaja, Lagos. ‘’Last two years, I paid for a shop from the developer, who gave me key to shop 3. The shops were sold for N600, 000 each. After some days, the developer and some local government officials came at different times asking us to pay extra N100, 000. Later, they shut the shops of those unable to pay the new in-

crease. “The local government chairman came and intervened and instructed we pay N1.2m to the developer. At that time, I had already paid N1.1m. I therefore paid up N1.2m they asked for. But surprisingly, the local government gave the allocation paper for the shop to another person. One day, one Mr. Ipaye came and told me to vacate the shop as it belongs to him. He showed me the allocation paper allegedly given to him by the local government.

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pparently unable to bear power outage that has lasted for two months, youths of Ikere Ekiti, the headquarters of Ikere Council Area of Ekiti State have staged a protest,even as they called for the immediate restoration of electricity in the town. The youths, who barricaded the major roads leading to Ado Ekiti and Akure, the Ondo State capital, shut down economic and commercial activities in the town. The protesters lamented that there they have been without electricity since January this year, saying the situation has made life difficult and unbearable for them.

“The Benin Electricity Distribution Company, BEDC, has thrown the town in total darkness and no one knows when power will be restored. And this is what provoked the youths into protest action”, a protester said. However, a BEDC official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said electricity consumers in the town owed the organisation over N30million and that its officials are always assaulted by persons in the community whenever they went out to recover bills. Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, in Ekiti State, Mr. Victor Babayemi, said: “We heard of the protest and quickly deployed our personnel to ensure it does not get out of hand.


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Transition

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Pa V.K.C Nkamuke

he death has been announced of Mr. V.K.C Nkamuke whose demise took place on March 3, 2014 after a brief illness at the age of 77 years. CHANGE OF NAME

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OWOEYE: Formerly known and addressed as Owoeye Modupe F. A., now wish to be known and address as Mrs. Oguntade Modupe F. A. All former documents remain valid. General public take note.

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UDEH: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Udeh Ogochukwu Linda, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Okoye Ogochukwu Linda. All former documents remain valid. NYSC and general public take note.

NWOSU: Formerly known and addressed as Nwosu Okechukwu Kingsley, now wish to be known and addressed as Ohanele Okechukwu Kingsley. All former documents remain valid. General public take note.

CHANGE OF NAME

CHANGE OF NAME

This is to notify the general public that the Original Certificate Of Occupancy with Registered No. 9 at Page 9 in Volume 2007AA dated on 15th day of September, 2007 at Land Registry Alausa, Ikeja, Lagos of property along Ikosi Road, Ketu – Kosofe Area of Lagos State belonging to Mrs. Aderanti Adunni Coker is missing. The general public, please take note.

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IKWUEGBU:Formerly known and addressed as Miss Ikwuegbu Chioma Elizabeth, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Ezeani Chioma Elizabeth. All former documents remain valid. Federal Ministry of Education and general public take note.

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AJADI: Formerly known and addressed as Ajadi Adijat Adeola, now wish to be known and addressed as Adelabu Adijat Adeola. All former documents remain valid. General public take note.

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OJADI: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Ojadi Anthonia Ruphina Obannaya, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Ikwunne Ruphina Obannaya. All former documents remain valid. General public take note.

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OBOBI AJAH: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Obobi Ajah Eunice, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Obasi Emmanuel .O. Eunice. All former documents remain valid. general public take note.

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ONAGA: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Onaga Ngozika Nnenna, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Igwe Ngozika Nnenna. All former documents remain valid. General public take note.

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KOKERE: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Kokere Ayodele Khadijat now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Yusuf Ayodele Khadijat .All former documents remain valid. NYSC and The general public take note.

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UGWUARUA: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Evelyn Ugwuarua Obioma, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Evelyn Nwanna Obioma. All former documents remain valid. The general public take note.

PUBLIC NOTICE

HOLY OF HOLIES MINISTRY

The general public is hereby notified that the above-named ministry has applied to the Corporate Affairs Commission Abuja for registration under part “C” of the Companies and Allied Matters Act, 2004.

THE TRUSTEES ARE: 1. Rev. Ephraim Sarkolun Ibu 2. Rev. Miriam Wangu Ibu 3. Mr. Fidelis Memberga Igbanongo 4. Mr. Agwaza Gbum 5. Mrs. Winifred Mbasaren Ibu

- President - Member - Member - Member

- Secretary

THE AIMS AND OBJECTIVES: 1. To preach the gospel of Jesus Christ. 2. To undertake and promote missionary and evangelism in Nigeria and abroad. 3. To undertake, promote and sponsor the education and welfare of orphans and the less privileged children. Any objection to the registration should be forwarded to the Registrar-general, Corporate Affairs Commission, Plot 420 Tigris Crescent, Off Aguiyi Ironsi Street P.M.B 198 Maitama, Abuja within 28 days from the date of publication.

SIGNED: REV EPHRAIM SARKOLUN IBU

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EZEAKA:Formerly known and addressed as Miss Ezeaka Lucia Oluchukwu, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Nwankwo Lucia Oluchukwu. All former documents remain valid. General public take note.

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This is to inform the general public of loss of land document Reg as No 21/21/1362 C of O and Deed of Assignment Reg as 72/72/1423 of plot 939 plot 939 Independent Layout Enugu got lost. If found contact the Ministry of lands and Urban Development Enugu.

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OKORONKWO: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Ogechukwu Confidence Okoronkwo, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Ogechukwu Confidence Isebor. All former documents remain valid. General public should please take note.

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IWUCHUKWU:Formerly known and addressed as Miss Iwuchukwu Jacinta Chinyere, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Tabansi Jacinta Chinyere. All former documents remain valid. General public take note.

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OKONKWO: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Okonkwo Justina Ijeoma, now wish to be known and address as Mrs Ndinechi Justina Ijeoma. All former documents remain valid. General public to take note.

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ABIAKAM: Formerly known and address as Miss Abiakam Mary Nneka, now wish to be known and address as Mrs Eze Abiakam Nneka. All former documents remain valid. General public to take note.

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NLAIYA: Formerly known and addressed ass Nlaiya Kafayat Adunni now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Ahmed Kafayat Adunni. All former documents remain valid. General public take note.

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ONYEBUOLISE: Formerly known and adressed as Miss. Florence Onyebuolise. now wish to be known and adressed as Mrs Alfred Udomoh Florence. All former documents remain valid. General public to please take note.

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APESI: Formerly known and addressed as Apesi Taiwo Sofela now wish to be known and addressed as Shofela Olufemi Taiwo. All former documents remain valid. General public take note.

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OKPALA:Formerly known and addressed as Miss Okpala Marinda Obianuju, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Agu Marinda Obianuju. All former documents remain valid. General public take note.

OGBONNA: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Ogbonna Emmanuela Anulika, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Iheanacho Emmanuela Anulika. All former documents remain valid. UNEC, NYSC and general public take note

CHANGE OF NAME

Late Nkamuke was born into the Nkamuke family of Imeoha, Mgbidi autonomous community of Imo State on March 3, 1937. Late Nkamuke was a re-

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I, Formerly known and referred to as Fabusuyi, Omotolani Omowunmi, wish to be referred to as Deji-Akintola, Omotolani Omowunmi. All former documents remain valid. Sterling bank and general public please take note.

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Friday, March 21, 2014

nowned furniture maker and a devout and courage Christian who was also a community leader. He is survived by children, brothers and many relations. CHANGE OF NAME

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NJOKU: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Victoria Ahunna Njoku, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs. Victoria Ahunna Opara. All former documents remain valid. State School of Nursing Warri Delta State, Edo State School of Midwifery BeninCity, Nursing and Midwifery Council of Nigeria and general public take note.

UME: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Ume Augustina .M, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Nwangene Augustina Maduakonam. All former documents remain valid. General public take note.

OSENI: Formerly known and addressed as Mrs. Oseni Olubukola Olasumbo, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs. Onifade-Oladapo Olubukola Olasumbo, All former documents remain valid. UK Embassy, USA Embassy and general public take note.

AJIBOLA: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Ajibola Temitayo Ifeolu, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Bakare Temitayo Ifeolu. All fomer document remain valid Ekiti. West Local Government Aramoko Ekiti and general public take note.

UWAKWE:Formerly known and addressed as Miss Uwakwe Oluchukwu Jacinta, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Okeke Oluchukwu Jacinta. All former documents remain valid. General public take note.

ABOGUNRIN: Formerly known and addressed as ABOGUNRIN Olanrewaju Salimonu, now wish to be known and addressed as Aboluwarin Olanrewaju Solomon. All former documents remain valid. General public take note

PUBLIC NOTICE GRACE CHRISTIAN FOUNDATION FAMILY CHURCH

Notice is hereby given to the general public that the above named Ministry has applied to the Corporate Affairs Commission, Abuja for registration under Part ‘ C ‘ of the Companies and Allied Matters Act, 1990

THE TRUSTEES ARE: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

George Nebechi Aguworumba Frank Nebechi Janeth Nwatu Emmanuel Nnamani Collins Agu

- Gen.Overseer

THE AIMS AND OBJECTIVES:

1. To preach the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. 2. To reach out and affect for Christ the youths and the society at large that will bring national transformation.

SPACE FOR SALE CHANGE OF NAME

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NWOSU: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Nwosu Lawretta Nkechi, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs. Okanume Lawretta Nkechi. All former documents remain valid. All former documents remain valid. General public take note. NEBO: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Nebo Veronica .I, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Ude Veronica .I. All former documents remain valid. Enugu State Universal Basic Education Board and general public take note.

OLUO: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Oluo Ogechi Mariagorretti, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Olua Ogechi Marriagorretti. All former documents remain valid. NYSC and general public take note.

IBRAHIM: Formerly known and addressed as Miss. Ibrahim Taiwo Adijat, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs. DanmegoroAbdulGafar Khadijat Taiwo. All fomer document remain valid The general public take note. EZEANYANASO:Formerly known and addressed as Miss Ezeanyanaso Rita Chizoba, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Ezekoye Rita Chizoba. All former documents remain valid. Federal polytechnic Oko and general public take note. ASESINA: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Adesina Idowu Sofiyat, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Aliu Idowu Sofiyat. All former documents remain valid. NYSC and General public take note.

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EZE: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Eze Uche Dorothy, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Nnamani Uche Dorothy. All former documents remain valid. General public take note.

ODO: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Odo Judith Amaoge, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Okeke Judith Amaoge. All former documents remain valid. NYSC and general public take note.

Formerly known and addressed as Aladabiyyah School of Arabic Studies, now wish to be known and addressed as Qalat Ath-thaqafah Al-Arabiyyah Al-islamiyyah. All former documents remain valid. Union Bank of Nigeria Plc and public note. OFFODILE: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Offodile Ogenna Agatha, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Umeh Ogenna Agatha. All fomer document remain valid The general public take note.

ADEBAYO: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Adebayo Odunola Ruth, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Ajibua Odunola Ruth. All former documents remain valid and general public should take note.

FAPOHUNDA: Formerly known and addressed as Miss. Kuroghobogha Ronke Fapohunda, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs.Orutugu Kuroghobogha. All former documents remain valid.Niger Delta Television, Yenagoa and general public take note.

PUBLIC NOTICE ENDTIME REVIVAL BREAKTHROUGH MINISTRY Notice is hereby given to the general public that the above named Ministry has applied to the Corporate Affairs Commission, Abuja for registration under Part ‘ C ‘ of the Companies and Allied Matters Act, 1990

THE TRUSTEES ARE: 1. Rev. (Dr.) Abiodun Ademilua 2. Pastor (Mrs.) Oluwatoyin Ademilua 3. Pastor Abe Williams Oluwadamilare 4. Engineer Ademiluwa Oluwafemi Joseph 5. Evang. Ademilua Samuel Glory THE AIMS AND OBJECTIVES: 1. To preach the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.

- President/G.O - Member - Secretary - Treasurer - Member

Any objection to the registration should be forwarded to the Registrar-General, Corporate Affairs Commission, Plot 420 Tigris Crescent, Off Aguiyi Ironsi Street, Maitama, Abuja within 28 days of this publication.

Any objection to the registration should be forwarded to the Registrar-General, Corporate Affairs Commission, Plot 420 Tigris Crescent, Off Aguiyi Ironsi Street, Maitama, Abuja within 28 days of this publication.

SIGNED: TRUSTEES

SIGNED: TRUSTEES

PUBLIC NOTICE FOUNTAIN HEAD FRIENDS CLUB OF NIGERIA

PUBLIC NOTICE LIBRA ECONOMIC EMPOWERMENT AND DEVELOPMENT FOUNDATION.

The general public is hereby notified that the above named association is seeking for registration under part c of the Companies and Allied Matters Act No.1 of 1990.

THE TRUSTEES ARE:

1. Eze Ifeanyi Ben 2. Ekeagu Wilson Adichie 3. Ude Matthew 4. Ucha Ikechukwu Emmanuel 5. Ibegbu Chukwuemeka

- Founder - President - Vice President - Secretary - Member

THE AIMS AND OBJECTIVES:

1. To promote the welfare of members and assist members in the event of sickness, accident, disability and economic distress. 2. To make periodic contributions for the advancement and promotion of charity 3. To promote love, peace and unity among members and Nigerians in general. Any objection to the registration should be forwarded to the Registrar-general, Corporate Affairs Commission, Plot 420 Tigris Crescent, Off Aguiyi Ironsi Street P.M.B 198 Maitama, Abuja within 28 days from the date of publication.

SIGNED: EDWIN U. MADUBUOFU (SOLICITOR) 42, ALLI STREET, TINUBU SQUARE, LAGOS.

The general public is hereby notified that the above named foundation has applied to the Corporate Affairs Commission for registration under part C of the Companies and Allied Matters Act 2004.

THE TRUSTEES ARE: 1. Pastor John Olusoga Fasan 2. Pastor (Mrs) Jumoke Fasan 3. Mr. Ayorinde Fasan 4. Miss Joy Fasan

THE AIMS AND OBJECTIVES: 1. To enhance grassroot development. 2. To empower the less privilege. 3. To encourage communal living through joint effort.

Any objection to this registration should be forwarded to the Registrar General Corporate Affairs Commission, plot 420, Tigris Crescent Off Aguiyi Irosi Street, Maitama Abuja within 28 days of this publication.

SIGNED: SAMUEL FOLORUNSO ESQ AKINS & AKINS SOLICITORS, ONDO.


Friday, March 21, 2014

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

49

World News

Russia places sanctions on US lawmakers, top officers

Obama can’t let himself be taken by the Miami lobby. I call on the United States to take it easy. They’re taking President Obama to an abyss and he’s going to end up crashing.

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–Venezuela’s President, Nicolas Maduro

Mali’s former coup leader starts hunger strike over detention

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he leader of a military coup that plunged Mali into chaos two years ago and allowed Islamists to seize its desert north has started a hunger strike to protest against the conditions of his detention, legal and military sources said yesterday. General Amadou Sanogo was arrested and charged with complicity in kidnapping last November with regard to the disappearance during the 2012 coup of dozens of paratroopers loyal to toppled President Amadou Toumani Toure. Authorities have discovered 30 bodies, some of them in military uniforms, in mass graves near the headquarters of the coup leaders at the military barracks in the town of Kati, just outside the capital Bamako. Sanogo is protesting over his transfer to the lakeside town of Selingue, 150 km (90 miles) south of Bamako. His lawyer said this had left him cut off from his family and legal advisers, deprived him of medical care and placed him in danger. “He is going to observe a hunger strike and also to abstain from medical treatment,” Harouna Toure told Reuters. A military source close to the general confirmed that he had begun a hunger strike on Wednesday. Selingue, which lies near the border with Guinea and is the site of one of Mali’s largest hydroelectric dams, is a popular tourist destination in the West African country. Thirty-two Malian soldiers arrested with Sanogo in November have been released after they began a hunger strike in January to protest against the conditions of their detention. While the 2012 coup drew international condemnation, it was welcomed by many ordinary Malians who were tired of years of widespread graft and political deadlock. Sanogo himself was popular with many Malians, though subsequent allegations of rights abuses and graft under the junta have dented his reputation. The government of President Ibrahima Boubacar Keita, elected last August, is under pressure to

Coup leader Captain Amadou Sanogo attends a ceremony as former parliament speaker Dioncounda Traore (unseen) is sworn in as Mali’s interim president in 2012. Photo: Reuters

restore the state’s authority over the army and to root out pockets of remaining Islamist rebels in the north. A French-led military intervention last year helped

break the Islamists’ grip over the desert region. General Yamoussa Camara, a former defence minister during the military rule, and three other

senior junta officials were arrested in February in connection with the investigation. They are being held in separate locations around Mali.

‘Pistorius to sell South African house to pay lawyers’

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outh African Paralympic athlete Oscar Pistorius is to sell his house in order to fund the legal costs of his murder trial, his lawyer has said. He denies murdering his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine’s Day last year, saying he shot her by mistake. Lawyer Brian Webber said the ongoing trial was going to last longer than the three weeks expected. He said Mr Pistorius had not returned to the house in a gated

Pistorius

estate in the capital, Pretoria, since the shooting. “Mr Pistorius cannot contemplate ever returning to live there again,” the South African Press Association (Sapa) quotes Webber as saying. “Despite the fact that the house was handed back to Pistorius by the authorities more than a year ago, a decision was taken to keep the house sealed until after the trial,” he said. Court papers filed last year

during the double amputee’s bail application show the house in the Silverwoods Estate was valued at about 5m rand ($457,000; £277,000), Sapa reports. His murder trial, which is already in its third week, has adjourned until Monday when the prosecution is expected to call five more witnesses before the defence puts forwards its case. The prosecution said Pistorius intentionally shot Steenkamp - a model, reality TV celebrity and law graduate - after an argument. But the athlete says he believed his girlfriend was in bed and that an intruder had entered the bathroom when he shot at the toilet door in the early hours of 14 February 2013. If found guilty, the 27-yearold - a national sporting hero and double amputee dubbed the “blade runner” because of the prosthetic limbs he wears to race - could face life imprisonment.

WORLD BULLETIN

S’Sudan rebels, government claim oil town as talks delayed South Sudanese rebels and government troops both said they controlled the capital of an oil-producing state on Thursday after days of fighting, as another attempt to resume peace talks in neighbouring Ethiopia fell through. Presidential spokesman Ateny Wek Ateny said the town of Malakal, on the White Nile near oilfields in the north of the country, had been shattered by fighting but that its recapture marked a strategically important win. A rebel spokesman said fighters allied to former vice president Riek Machar had made a tactical retreat from Malakal on Wednesday evening as the town came under heavy bombardment. But he said the rebels waged a new offensive on Thursday.

Ivory Coast to send Goude to The Hague court

Ivory Coast will send Charles Ble Goude, a former youth leader and close ally of ex-President Laurent Gbagbo, to the International Criminal Court where he is wanted on charges of crimes against humanity, the justice minister said yesterday. The ICC, based in The Hague, Netherlands, said in October it had issued an arrest warrant for Ble Goude, who headed the notorious Young Patriots street militia during Gbagbo’s presidency, for his alleged role in violence following a disputed 2010 general election. “The cabinet has agreed to send Ble Goude to the International Criminal Court,” Gnenema Mamadou Coulibaly told reporters. “We are going to study how to quickly execute this decision.”

Zuma’s refurbished home: South Africa’s DA lays criminal charges South Africa’s main opposition party has laid corruption charges against the president over the use of state money to improve his private rural residence. The move follows a report by South Africa’s top corruption fighter accusing President Jacob Zuma of unethical conduct over the upgrade. The changes to Zuma’s private home, including a pool and cattle enclosure, cost taxpayers about $23m (£13.8m). Police are now obliged to investigate the Democratic Alliance’s complaint. It will then be passed on to the National Prosecuting Authority which will decide whether there is a formal case to answer.


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World News

WORLD BULLETIN Mandela family launches wine collection in Netherlands Nelson Mandela’s oldest daughter Makaziwe and a granddaughter yesterday launched their wine collection in the Netherlands, hoping the world-famous branding will help them conquer the European market. Called the “Thembu Collection” after Mandela’s tribe of Xhosa-speaking people, the House of Mandela winery’s products mark the Mandela family’s first commercial venture, Makaziwe Mandela told journalists at a launch in Amsterdam. “As a family we always wanted to tell the story of the House of Mandela. It’s not only about my father, but also where he came from and where our roots are,” Makaziwe said. The wines, which are already available in South Africa and other parts of the world, sell at a recommended price of 5.49 euros ($7.66) in the Netherlands and come in four varieties, two red and two white. There’s an unassuming Pinotage, made from a uniquely South African grape first produced in the 1920s when Pinot Noir was crossed with cinsaut.

Argentina accuses US, UK of hypocrisy over Crimea

Argentina’s president said yesterday that the U.S. and Britain displayed double standards with their positions on Crimea and the Falkland Islands, undermining efforts to preserve Ukraine’s territorial integrity. During a speech in Paris, Cristina Fernandez compared the referendum in the Black Sea peninsula next to Russia to last year’s referendum by Falkland Islanders to remain a British territory. The southern Atlantic islands are known in Spanish as the “Islas Malvinas” and Argentina insists that Britain usurped them 180 years ago. “Something that is fundamental for preserving world peace, for respecting international law, is to not have a double standard when it is time to make decisions. You can’t be in favor of territorial integrity in Crimea and against territorial integrity with the Malvinas in Argentina,” Fernandez said. While most Latin American nations support Argentina’s position on the islands, citizens of the Falkland Islands Government voted by 99.8 percent to remain British.

‘Nine killed in Turkey train crash’

At least nine people have been killed after a passenger train crashed into a minibus carrying people to work in Turkey, local media say. The accident happened at a level crossing near the Mediterranean port city of Mersin. It appeared all the dead - and a further five people who were injured - had been aboard the bus, and that train passengers were not hurt. Local media suggested the level crossing barrier may have been open. Basri Guzeloglu, the local governor, said the cause of the accident would be investigated. The minibus was carrying the workers to an industrial zone on the edge of Mersin when it was hit. Video footage showed the destroyed minibus lying by the side of the railway line and emergency services trying to reach the victims.

Friday, March 21, 2014

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Russia places sanctions on US lawmakers, top officers T

he Russian government yesterday retaliated sanctions for expanded U.S. sanctions by freezing the assets of a select handful of high-profile Americans and banning them from travel inside Russia. Russian announced sanctions on nine Americans – three top White House aides, three Republicans and three Democrats in Congress. Meanwhile, Russia’s lower house of parliament yesterday overwhelmingly approved a treaty to annex Crimea from Ukraine, leaving just one legal obstacle for the Black Sea peninsula to cross before it is formally absorbed by Moscow. Only one deputy in the State Duma voted against the treaty, and the Federation Council upper house is expected to complete ratification on Friday, signed by President Vladimir Putin and Crimean leaders on Tuesday. The State Duma chamber stood for the national anthem after the vote, approved by 443 deputies in an almost full chamber . “From now on, and forever, the Republic of Crimea and Sevastopol will be in the Russian Federation,” pro-Kremlin lawmaker Leonid Slutsky said in an address before the vote. The Crimean port city of Sevastopol is home to the Russian Black Sea Fleet. Russian forces are now in control of the peninsula, which has an ethnic Russian majority and voted for union with Russia on Sunday. Here’s an early response from a spokesman for Republican House Speaker John Boehner on

Russian President Vladimir Putin gestures after signing a treaty to incorporate Crimea into Russia in the Kremlin in Moscow, on Tuesday. Photo: AP

Twitter to Dan Pfeiffer, a senior adviser to President Obama, for making the list: Some of the lawmakers on the list had a quick public reaction to the news and expressed defiance — which is not hard to do when you likely have neither assets in Russia nor plans to travel there. The other Americans on Russia’s list of people to block included Deputy National Security Adviser for International Economic Affairs Caroline Atkinson, Deputy National Security Adviser for Strategic Communications Ben Rhodes, Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Republican Senator Dan Coats of Indiana, and Democratic Senator Mary Landrieu of Louisiana. “While I’m disappointed that I won’t be able to go on vacation with my family in Siberia this summer, I am honoured to be on this list,” Coats said. “Putin’s recent aggres-

sion is unacceptable, and America must join with our European allies to isolate and punish Russia. I will continue to lead efforts on Capitol Hill to bring Putin to his senses.” “Being sanctioned by President Putin is a badge of honor,” Landrieu said. “It will not stop me from using my power as chair of the Energy Committee to promote America as an energy superpower and help increase energy exports around the world.” “And it most certainly will not stop me from advocating for orphans in Russia and around the world,” she added. Coats and Landrieu are the chair and ranking member, respectively, of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security. The list appeared to show that Russia agreed with German Chancellor Angela Merkel that the scheduled Group of Eight

Australia plane searchers probe debris

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ustralia is investigating two objects seen on satellite images that could potentially be linked to the missing Malaysia Airlines plane, officials say. A Norwegian ship joined

planes from Australia, New Zealand and the US in searching the area 2,500km (1,550 miles) from Perth. As night fell, the air search ended for the day, with teams saying bad weather conditions

The St Petersburg, a Norwegian merchant ship, was the first vessel to reach the area

had hampered their efforts. Flight MH370 was carrying 239 people when it disappeared on 8 March. It was flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing when it lost contact with air traffic controllers and disappeared from radar. At a news conference on Thursday, Malaysian Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein described the possible sighting of debris on satellite images as a “credible lead”. The largest object appeared to be 24m in size, authorities said, but warned they could be unrelated to the plane. A number of sightings of possible debris have been investigated since the plane went missing but so far none have proved to be linked.

summit in Sochi, Russia, was dead. Rhodes, Pfeiffer, and Atkinson would likely have made the trip with Obama. The Russian sanctions resembled the first round of American measures targeting prominent Russians backing Putin’s annexation of Crimea, which drew a similarly mocking response in Moscow. Russia’s measures did not affect anyone at the Pentagon, or any businesses with economic interests in Russia. But the new round of American sanctions broadened the field considerably, reaching into Putin’s inner circle and for the first time affecting an institution, a bank. Obama further warned that the United States would go after entire sectors of Russia’s economy if Putin pushes ahead in Ukraine, perhaps by trying to carve a slice of eastern Ukraine off the rest of the country. Prime Minister Tony Abbott announced the latest discovery based on satellite images taken on 16 March. “The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (Amsa) has received information based on satellite information of objects possibly related to the search,” Mr Abbott told parliament. “Following specialist analysis of this satellite imagery, two possible objects related to the search have been identified.” Two Australian Orion aircraft searching the area on Thursday were joined later by aircraft from the US and New Zealand. Amsa said the aircraft had covered an area of 23,000km² (14,000 square miles) but confirmed that they had found no debris. It said the search would resume on Friday.


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

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Friday, March 21, 2014

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NEMA warns residents of flood prone areas PRISCILLA DENNIS MINNA

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he National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) has warned communities in Niger state, living along flood prone areas of River Kaduna and River Niger to take steps to avoid flood which has been predicted by the Nigeria Meteorological Agency, NIMET,. It said the warning be-

came necessary as Niger state would not only be affected by flood as a result of the rains, but also due to the presence of the nations’ 3 main dams of Shiroro, Kainji and Jebba in the state. Giving the warning, the NEMA zonal Coordinator for Niger and Kwara states, Mr. Sluka Lugard Bijimi during the distribution of relief materials to 34 fire victims’ fami-

lies in Minna, explained that when the water spill ways are opened, it makes the people of the affected areas vulnerable to flood disaster, hence the need for adequate preparation so as not be caught unprepared during the period. In order to guide against floods and its devastating effect on people, Bijimi said that a stakeholders meeting will be convened by NEMA in

partnership with NIMET and the media in order to sensitize the people on the prediction to avoid any catastrophe. The NEMA zonal coordinator also revealed that the 34 families on its list being compensated by the federal government were victims, whose houses or shops were razed down by fire in the last four months after assessment of their loss by the agency.

While, condemning the increasing rate of fire outbreaks, he urged beneficiaries not to sell any of the relief materials given to them in the open market as the federal government would not take it likely with any one that

No LG election in crises areas, says NASIEC IGBAWASE UKUMBA LAFIA.

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L-R: Rev. Emeka Obi; Vice Chairman, Adamawa Muslim Council, Imam Salihu Umar and State Chairman, Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, Rev. Moses Taparki,during a news conference on peaceful coexistence organised by the Nigeria Inter-Religious Council in Yola, yesterday. PHOTO: NAN

Fuel supply improves in kaduna

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he long queues at filling stations in Kaduna are gradually easing off due to improvement in the supply of petrol, the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports. A cross-section of motorists told NAN on thursday that most petrol stations had supplies and were selling at the government approved pump price of N97 per litre. NAN reports, however, that black market opera-

tors are still exploiting the situation, with some selling a four-litre gallon at N600, down from about N900 a week ago. Mr Garba Mohammad, a motorist, said most of those on queue hardly spend an hour before getting the commodity unlike in the past when ``you spend the whole day without assurance of getting the commodity’’. Another motorist, Ishaku Haruna, who was seen driving out of one of the stations said he was on the queue

``for only about 30 minutes’’. NAN reports also that in spite of the improvement in supply some filling station operators said they had not received any supply for over a week. A manager in one of the filling stations, Thomas Ishaku, told NAN that his station had no fuel for almost one week. A black market operator Yusuf Mohammed operating around the NUJ secretariat in Kaduna said “patronage of road side fuel

market has reduced due to improvement in fuel supply.” According to him, the profit he makes two weeks back has reduced from N80,000 daily to less than N30,000. Alhaji Kabir Umar, the President, Petroleum Dealers Association of Nigeria (PEDAN) told NAN on phone that the fuel supply situation had improved, but called for sustained supply to end the current hardship faced by Nigerians.

Youth corps cautioned against electoral fraud OTHMAN SALIHU KANO

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he National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) has urged corps members to shun any form of electoral fraud ahead of the 2015 general elections. The call was made when a delegation of the scheme’s national governing board yesterday visited the

Kano State permanent orientation camp in Karaye Local Government Area.. The 2014 batch A corps members are at present observing the three weeks orientation course. The Vice Chancellor of Usman Dan Fodio University, Sokoto, Isquwa Arabo, who led the delegation on behalf of the Chairman, National Governing Board , asked

the corps members to be honest and patriotic, so as to complement stakeholders efforts in conducting free, fair and credible elections. Arabo disclosed that the scheme is making effort to get funds for entrepreneurship programmes for members after their service year and also for provision of vocational skills ac-

quisition programme and N1, 500 transportation allowance among others. In his remarks, the State NYSC Coordinator, Abdulrasheed, commended the state government for its unprecedented support for the welfare of corps members and described the ongoing camp activities as impressive.

does so. Relief materials distributed to the victims of fire incidents are 100 bundles of roofing sheets, 60 bags of nails, 150 pieces of wax print wrappers, food items and blankets, among others.

he Nasarawa State Independent Electoral Commission, NASIEC, yesterday said it will not send electoral materials to polling units deserted as a result of the ongoing crises in the state. Chairman of the state electoral body, Dr. Salau Modibbo, said this at a press conference in Lafia, the state capital, in preparation for the conduct of the local government election scheduled for this Saturday.The commission’s decision is a result of complaints from particular interest groups from Awe local government and Ekye development areas. According to the electoral boss, “by our findings, the number of polling units deserted is not enough to warrant stopping elections in such ar-

eas.” Modibbo reiterated that the results elections of the election will be declared at polling units, wards and local government. “Here we mean, the result of the councillors’ election will be declared by the ward returning officer and that of the chairman will be declared by the local government returning officer,” he said. Meanwhile, the Nasarawa state police command said there will be restriction of movement in and out of the state as from midnight of the eve of the election while movement from one town to the other or between and within wards in the state will equally be restricted. The Nasarawa state police commissioner, Idris Ibrahim, stated this at a press briefing in Lafia, adding that markets, shops and business centres will be closed during the voting period.

Catholic priest condemns incessant strikes in education sector HENRY IYORKASE MAKURDI

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ormer chairman of the Benue State Christians Pilgrims Welfare Board and president, Fidei Institute, Very Rev Fr. Chris Utov has identified incessant industrial action in the nation’s educational sector as one of the major impediment responsible for poor performances by students in higher institutions in the country. Fr. Utov made this disclosure yesterday in a chat with National Mirror in Gboko, Benue state and expressed the view that teachers and all involved in the educa-

tion system must show interest in the system so as to make it attractive and enhance the learning process. The clergy who is also an educationist decried the situation whereby those in the academic abandoned their career to seek elective offices because it does not auger well for the future of the youths and education at large. While calling for training and retraining even for the teachers he noted that even some teachers are ill equipped to impact the knowledge to students such that some school leavers cannot defend their grades both in WASSCE and NECO.


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Friday, March 21, 2014

CHANGE OF NAME

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CONFIRMATION OF NAME

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AJIBOYE: Formerly known and addressed as Ajiboye Doyin, now wish to be known and addressed as Adebisi Doyin. All former documents remain valid. General pulic take note.

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OGUNLEYE: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Joy Seun Ogunleye, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Joy Seun Edozie. All former documents remain valid. General pulic take note.

OGUNIRAN: formerly known and addressed as Simon Olutoba Ogunniran, now wish to be known and addressed as Simon Olutoba Akinkunmi. All former documents remain valid.General public take note

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This is to notify the general public that the Original DEED OF INDENTURE with Registered No. 21 at Page 21 in Volume 1370 dated on 26th day of October, 1971 at Land Registry Alausa, Ikeja, Lagos of property at 18, Adebayo Mokuolu Street, Anthony Village, Lagos State belonging to Mrs. Olufunmilayo Omolara Okulaja is missing. The general public, please take note.

ARIMIYAU: Formerly known and addressed as Arimiyau Onagun Mariyatu Abosuaih, now wish to be known and addressed as Hajia Mariatu Iliasu. All former documents remain valid. General public take note.

SAMSON:Formerly known and addressed as Miss Samson Olufunke Oluwaseun, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Shodiya Olufunke Oluwaseun. All former documents remain valid. General public take note ESHOFONIE: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Mercy Eseoghene Eshofonie, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs. Mercy Eseoghene Wakwe. All former documents remain valid. General public take note.

This is to confirm that I, Abah Ameh Victor is the same and one person as Abah Ajenu Simon as indicated in my voter’s card and company’s identity card respectively. All documents bearing these names remain valid. Arksego Nigeria Limited, Access Bank Plc and general public should please take note.

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Formerly known and addressed as Enaregha Doutimi Rita, now wish to be known and addressed as Miss. Blessing Queen Dorothy. All former documents remain valid. General public please take note. SHODIYA: Formerly known and addressed as Shodiya Damilola Femi, now wish to be known and addressed as Shodiya Dammylola Femi. All former documents remains valid.General public take note ARIRAN: Formerly known and addressed as Ibrahim Alaba Ariran, now wish to be known and addressed as Ibrahim Olashile Balogun. All former documents remain valid. General public take note.

LOSS OF DOCUMENT

This is to inform the general public that the original Certificate of Occupancy (C of O) my Landed Property registered as No.62 at page 62 in volume 116 at Federal Lands Registry, Ikoyi, Lagos and my retired Army officers Identity card are declared missing. All efforts made to trace the missing documents prove abortive. If found please kindly return to the nearest Police Station or Lt Col. Charles Udemba (Rtd) 34, Child Avenue, Apapa, Lagos. 0803728011

THE TRUSTEES ARE:

1. James Graham-Chairman 2. Topman Francis Ayebaraghoemi 3. Olawefa Disiye John -Sec. 4. Simpson Anigbo 5. Yoyce James Graham 6. Temple Bomoemi Abraham

THE AIMS AND OBJECTIVES: 1. To promote peace and unity in the society 2. To act and operate as apex body b/w host communities and operating companies within our region. 3. To carry out public education,peace/conflict resolution services. Any objection to the registration should be forwarded to the registrar-general, Corporate Affairs Commission, Plot 420 Tigris Crescent, Off Aguiyi Ironsi Street P.M.B 198 Maitama, Abuja within 28 days from the date of publication.

SIGNED: CHAIRMAN.

PUBLIC NOTICE THE SUCCESSFUL BROTHERS CLUB, ESIE

This is to inform the general public that the above named club has applied for registration to Corporate Affairs Commission under Part C of the Companies and Allied Matters Act No.1 of 1990.

THE TRUSTEES ARE: 1. Iranloye Matthew Adebayo 2. Abolarin Timothy Shola 3. Bamigboye Segun Joseph 4. Oyeniyi Ademola Michael 5. Afolabi David Awolowo 6. Alawode Olusesan Taiwo

THE AIMS AND OBJECTIVES: To promote and sustain unity and progress within the community and its environ. Any objection to the registration should be forwarded to the registrar-general, Corporate Affairs Commission, Plot 420 Tigris Crescent, Off Aguiyi Ironsi Street P.M.B 198 Maitama, Abuja within 28 days from the date of publication.

SIGNED: BY SECRETARY

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USMAN: Formerly known and addressed as Usman Omowunm Mayowa, but now wishes to be known and addressed as Patinvoh Omowunmi Mayowa. All former documents remain valid. General public take note.

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BANKOLE: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Modupe Bolanle Bankole, now wish to be known and adressed as Mrs Mary Modupe Oyegbami. All former documents remain valid. General pulic take note.

MONEHIN: Formerly known and addressed as Miss. Monehin Oluwabukola Adeola, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs. Oluwabukola Paul-Ajide. All former documents remain valid. General public please take note.

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OSAGIE: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Catherine Itua Osagie, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Catherine Itua Okogun. All former documents remain valid. General public should lease take note.

KEHINDE: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Kehinde Busayo Mary, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Akinwunmi Busayo Mary.All former documents remain valid General public take note.

RAJI: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Raji Marian Oluwaseyi, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Joel Marian Oluwaseyi. All former documents remain valid. General public take note

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I formerly known and addressed as Onwusiakwe Chidinma, now wish to be known and addressed as Onwusiakwe Chidinma Sandra. All former documents remain valid. The general public should please take note.

This is to confirm that the person Maduka Chibuzo Joshua is the same person as Uzokwe Chibuzo Joshua. All former documents remain valid, Federal Ministry of Education, Federal Scholarship Board Abuja and the general public should please take note.

PUBLIC NOTICE LIVE COAL AND FIRE GOSPEL MISSION

This is to inform the general public that the above named mission has applied for registration to Corporate Affairs Commission under Part C of the Companies and Allied Matters Act No.1 of 1990.

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OJO: Formerly known as Miss Ojo Janet Olufunmilola, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs. Adeleke Janet Olufunmilola. All former documents remain valid. Ekiti State University (EKSU), Oyo State College of Education, Oyo and the general public take note.

CHANGE OF NAME

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AJIBOYE: Formerly known and addressed as Ajiboye Ramota Alaba, now wish to be known and addressed as Adebisi Ramota Alaba. All former documents remain valid. General pulic take note.

JOHNSON: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Rasheedat Adeola Johnson, now to be known and addressed as Mrs Rasheedat Adeola Ogundimu. All Former documents remain valid. General public take note.

AJOSE: Formerly known and addressed as Miss. Mojisola Abolade Ajose, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs. Mojisola Abolade Aderibigbe. All former documents remain valid. General public take note.

Formerly known and addressed as Miss Oyeneye Funke, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs. Alagbe Funke Oyeneye. All document bearing my former name remain valid. Ministry of Environment and general public should please take note.

NOSIRU: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Nosiru Falilat Omolaso, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Bamgbola Falilat Omolaso. All former documents remain valid. General public take note.

UYOVBISERE: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Vivian Uyovbisere, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Vivian Omoukaro. All former documents remain valid. The general public should please take note.

OHWOFASA: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Okezi Ohwofasa, now wish to be known and addressed as Miss Okezi Okwigbedi. All former documents remain valid. The general public should please take note.

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AKINREMI: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Akinremi Waliat Olanike ,now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Liafeez Waliat Olanike. All former documents remain valid. General public take note.

OSINEYE: Formerly known and addressed as Miss Osineye Rosemary Oluwakemi, now wish to be known and addressed as Mrs Ogunnubi Rosemary Oluwakemi. All former documents remain valid. General public take note.

PUBLIC NOTICE

NNAYE LADI FOUNDATION

This to inform the general public that the above name foundation has applied to the Corporate Affairs Commission for registration Under Part ‘C’ of Companies and Allied Matters Act No.1 of 1990

THE TRUSTEES ARE:

THE TRUSTEES ARE:

THE AIMS AND OBJECTIVES:

THE AIMS AND OBJECTIVES: 1. Working together with the community to uplift the living standard of the less privilege and 2. Develop the community through self help projects

1. Pst. Justina Amabenemoere Paibi 2. Dr Kosioma E. Owede 3.Mr. Godfrey Obiriki 4.Pst. Peter Mezeh 5. Dr Kenneth Okiongbo 6. Pst. Kaizer John

- General Overseer/ Founding Pastor. - Secretary. - Treasurer - Member - Member. - Member.

1. To preach the gospel of our Lord Jesus to every creature. 2. To create awareness and to prepare saints and warn sinners about the rapture and the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ. Any objection to the registration should be forwarded to the registrar-general, Corporate Affairs Commission, Plot 420 Tigris Crescent, Off Aguiyi Ironsi Street P.M.B 198 Maitama, Abuja within 28 days from the date of publication.

SIGNED: PST. JUSTINA AMABENEMOERE PAIBI GENERAL OVERSEER/FOUNDER PASTOR

1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Mr. Samuel Gukut Mr. Solomon Tsok Mr. John Gad Mr. Ishaya Kwashi Mr. Danjuma Gad

- Chairman - Secretary - Treasurer - Member - Member

Any objection to the registration should be forwarded to the Registrar-General corporate Affairs Commission, Crescent, Aguiyi Ironsi Street, Maitama Abuja within twenty eight (28) day of this publication

SIGNED: SAMUEL GUKUT

PUBLIC NOTICE

PUBLIC NOTICE IZON OIL AND GAS HOST DEVELOPMENT FOUNDATION

This is to inform the general public that the above named foundation has applied for registration to Corporate Affairs Commission under Part C of the Companies and Allied Matters Act No.1 of 1990.

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JOHNSON: Formerly known and addressed as Mr Johnson Ade Ajayi, now wish to be knonw and adddfressed as Mr Johannu Ade Ajayi Isenijo. All former documents remain valid. General public should please take note.

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That I, Mr. Stephen Abiodun Olawunmi is the current owner of a building situate and lying at Plot 3, Block 258, Oke Afa, Isolo, Lagos State. That the said property was bought from one Mr. Francis O. Adegoke. All the relevant and necessary documents got lost in transit and all efforts to recover the said documents proved abortive. General public and authority concerned should please take note.

CHANGE OF NAME

OGUNDEJI: Formerly known and addressed as Ogundeji Abiodun Isaac, now wish to be known and addressed as Ayandeji Abiodun Isaac. all former documents remain valid. General public take note

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

INSPIRATION CHRISTIAN CENTRE

The general public is hereby notified that the above named organisation has applied to the Corporate Affairs Commission, Abuja for registration under Part ‘C’ of The Companies and Allied Matters Act No. 1 of 1990.

THE TRUSTEES ARE: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Dr. Gbenga Adebayo Barrister ‘Funmi Adebayo Mr. Francis Mojoyinola Barrister Olajumoke Joyce Barrister Godwin Amadi

- Chairman - Vice-Chairman - Member - Member - Secretary

THE AIMS AND OBJECTIVES:

1. To propagate the glorious gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. 2. To empower men and women to live in dominion and above sin and oppression 3. To impact the world through the wisdom and power of God

Any objection to this registration should be forwarded to The Registrar General Corporate Affairs Commission, Plot 420, Tigris Crescent, Off Aguiyi Ironsi Street, Maitama P.M.B 198, Garki Abuja within 28 days of this publication.

SIGNED: GODWIN AMADI SEMPER FIDELIS ATTORNEYS & SOLICITORS (080356225678)

PUBLIC NOTICE

ADEBAYO AND ATINUKE ODUYEMI FOUNDATION

This is to inform the General public that the named foundation has applied to the Corporate Affairs Commission for Registration under PART C of the Companies and Allied Matters Act, 2004.

THE TRUSTEES ARE: 1. Mrs.Popoola Bolarinwa Christiana. 2. Dr.Dedeke Aderonke Adewunmi. 3. Dr.Akinyemi Oluwaseun Oladapo.

THE AIMS AND OBJECTIVES:

1.To engage in poverty alleviation and intervention programs. 2.To support the education of less privilege children in the society. 3.To improve the health of the people in the rural area of Nigeria. 4.To reach out to mentally & physically challenged persons including less privileged children and widows. 5.To provide healthcare services to the less privilege and widows. 6.To support widows in our society. 7. Humanitarian.

Any objection to the Registration should be forwarded to the Registrar-General, Corporate Affairs Commission, Wuze, Zone 5, Abuja within 28 days of this publication.

SIGNED: FIRST BETHEL SOLICITORS, AGO TAYLOR, IBADAN. OMONIYI ODEYEMI ESQ B.ED (HONS); LLB (HONS); BL; MPP (IB); AMNIM; MCLA.

PUBLIC NOTICE

INITIATIVE FOR COMMUNITY HEALTH AND SUSTAINABLE SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT

This is to inform the general public that the above named organization has applied to the Corporate Affairs Commission Abuja for registration under Part ‘C’of the Companies and Allied Matters Act 1990.

THE TRUSTEES ARE: 1. Ayanfeoluwa Faith 2. Ajayeoba Samuel Olatunde 3. Bolarinwa Tosin Abimbola 4. Fatunmbi Bayo Segun 5. Prophet Akinrinwa Joseph 6. Lawrence Makanjuola Ajaiyeoba

President Vice President Secretary Adviser

THE AIMS AND OBJECTIVES: 1. To advocate for sustainable community development through organized community effort and synergy. Any objection to the registration should be forwarded to the Registrar-General, Corporate Affairs Commission, Plot 420, Tigris Crescent, off Aguiyi Ironsi Street, Maitama, Abuja, within 28 days of this publication.

SIGNED: TRUSTEES


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

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Friday March 21, 2014

Sport Ameobi seeks transfer lifeline

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I think the situation with the Bafana Bafana is not as bad as people may want to think it is –Former South Africa international, Aaron Mokoena

Flamingoes will make World Cup final – Coach …Kanu pledges Mexico defeat EVEREST ONYEWUCHI

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lamingoes’ coach, Bala Nikyu, has expressed optimism that his team will make the final of the ongoing FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup in Costa Rica, after coming from behind to defeat Colombia 2-1 on Wednesday night and book a place in the last eight. Nikyu, who described the encounter as tough, however commended his players’ response to ensure victory. “It was a great match. Normally, in

tournaments like this, everyone’s aim is simply to survive. And that’s what that game was like, a battle for survival. I must commend the players’ response,” he said at the post match press conference. Nikyu restated the Flamingoes’ desire to reaching their first ever final at the U-17 Women’s World Cup, while admitting that his players were overwhelmed by their first victory over China. “We’re hoping to keep going; the competition doesn’t end in the next

Fla amingoe min i goe goes sa att thei heirr trai trainin ning g in Cos sta Ric Rica a yest esterd erd day y

round. We would like to reach the final, and why not lift the trophy?” Similarly, Flamingoes assistant captain, Uchenna Kanu, has urged Nigerians to expect outright victory against Mexico on Sunday (early Monday morning) in their final Group D game. Kanu is Nigeria’s leading goal scorer as the Flamingoes await Mexico at the La Sabana Stadium in San Jose. “I’m expecting victory against Mexico, though I don’t know how the game will turn out, but I’m sure we will win the match,” she assured Nigerians.

Results Colombia 1 2 Nigeria Mexico 4 0 China New Zealand 0 3 Spain Paraguay 0 10 Japan

Danagogo lauds team

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he Minister of Sports/ Chairman of the National Sports Commission (NSC) Dr. Tammy Danagogo, yesterday congratulated the Flamingoes for their qualification for the quarterfinals of the ongoing FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup in Costa Rica. In a statement issued by the NSC, Danagogo, who stayed awake to watch the Nigerian girls beat Columbia 2-1, said, “On behalf of our President, Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, the NSC and an appreciative nation, I congratulate our players, the technical crew and the NFF on this fantastic achievement.”

League: Clubs make case for Giwa, Nembe JOEL AJAYI ABUJA

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hairmen of the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) clubs yesterday directed the League Management Company (LMC) to readmit Giwa FC of Jos and Nembe City of Bayelsa to the 2013/14 league season. The directive came after a harmonisa-

tion meeting of the Club Owners which ended in the early hours of yesterday, in Abuja. A letter to that effect was forwarded to the LMC for immediate action. National Mirror gathered that the directive was to avert court contempt after a Jos Federal High Court had ordered the LMC to halt the league pending the inclusion of Giwa FC. It was also to prevent the court from

declaring the LMC illegal following its latest injunction. The club representatives noted that the reason for the exclusion of Giwa had become pointless since the players have accepted to collect the N70, 000 salary proposed by the club. Chairman of Nembe City, Victor Baribote, told newsmen that his club was ready to participate in the league.

“Nembe City played in the last season and was not relegated; Giwa was confirmed and promoted to the Premier league at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Warri. “So there is no way we will not be part of the league. I know people were worried or get agitated because it’s about two weeks that Nembe and Giwa have not been part of the league.”


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Sports

Friday March 21, 2014

Bale shuns UCL draws, eyes Clasico

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Barca cools Messi’s contract talks

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eal Madrid winger, Gareth Bale, says he does not have a preference who his club will play in the UEFA Champions League quarter-finals ahead of tomorrow’s draw. Madrid eased into the last eight on Tuesday night after a 3-1 home win over Schalke completed a 9-2 aggregate thrashing of the Bundesliga side. “I think every team in the quarter-finals is a potential cup-winner,” Bale said. “I’m not sure there’s an actual favourite to have. We’ll be looking at the draw and looking forward to it.” Madrid next faces Barcelona in El Clasico on Sunday and the result could play a decisive role in the destination of La Liga. “I think confidence is obviBale ously a massive thing. The team is playing well and everything is coming together nicely for the whole team.,” Bale added. “We just need to keep performing very well, keep working hard and hopefully the rewards are there at the end. “Barcelona have very good players, but we are focused on our game and on our team because we also have very good players.”

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he board of Spanish club has insisted there is no concern over Lionel Messi’s new contract talks. The likes of Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City have been linked with possible world-record bids for the Argentine, but Vice President Javier Faus is not concerned. “We are in permanent

contact with Messi’s father, Jorge, and we are talking about all aspects of this improvement of his contract, they are conversations that Barca President Josep Maria Bartomeu is having directly with the player’s father. “Barcelona fans should not worry, we are all convinced that Leo will retire in Barca’s shirt.”

Rijkaard calls time on coaching

Miami Masters: Federer faces slippery opponent

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orld number seven, Roger Federer, will face a tricky opening tie at the Sony Open Tennis in Miami, with bighitting Ivo Karlovic laying ambush in the second round. Fifth seed Karlovic received a bye into the next round and ensured he will join Federer on court by beating French qualifier Paul-Henri Mathieu 7-6 (7-3) 7-6 (7-5) in his opening match. Jeremy Chardy also battled through to the second round with a 7-5 3-6 7-6 (7-5) victory over Juan Monaco of Argentina. Chardy’s reward for his progress is a match-up with second seed Novak Djokovic, who won in Indian Wells last weekend. Teymuraz Gabashvili will also face one of the top seeds in his next match. A meeting with David Ferrer is on the cards after the Russian won his openinground clash against Marcel Granollers 6-4 6-3. Former world number Nikolay Davydenko saw his challenge end at the first hurdle with a straight-sets defeat to Adrian Mannarino, but Radek Stepanek impressed in a 6-3 6-0 rout of German Daniel Brands.

Federer

Messi

Rijikaard

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ormer Barcelona coach, Frank Rijkaard, has announced that he is stepping away from management, saying he doesn’t see himself in another coaching job. “As things stand, I will not work again as a coach. I have no intention of coaching at 60 years of age,” the former Dutch international said yesterday. “I am grateful for everything I’ve got, but I prefer to do other things.” Rijkaard, 51, said he would, however, remain in football. “I want to see football games and chat but will not continue on the field under pressure.”


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Sports

Friday March 21, 2014

Ameobi seeks transfer lifeline

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Zenith basketball dunks off JOEL AJAYI ABUJA

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he first phase of the Zenith Bank women’s basketball league will kick off in Abuja tomorrow. 16 teams are drawn in two groups made up of eight teams. The second phase holds in Ilorin, Kwara State and begins in the first week of May while Lagos will host the play-offs with the best eight teams at a date to be determined later. Meanwhile, the President of Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF), Alhaji Tijani Umar, has said that the NBBF has entered into a new three-year deal with Zenith Bank valued at N90 million redeemable in yearly installments. “The deal is a good omen for basketball development in Nigeria,” Umar said. “We are trying to continue in our drive to give basketball a lift by entering into meaningful discussion with potential sponsors who are willing to partner with us,” he added. “All this goes to show that there is a very big prospect in the country’s basketball and we need to take progressive steps one after the other.”

uper Eagles fringe striker, Shola Ameobi, looks likely to leave Newcastle United at the end of the season due to lack of game time. The Nigerian forward has only started 10 matches for the Magpies in the League this season and looks unlikely to have his contract which expires at the end of the season renewed.. “It’s frustrating for me, but I just have to bid my time,” Ameobi said yesterday. “I’ve loved my time in Newcastle, no more so than when I’m playing. I know the manager picks a team he thinks can win. “We have to respect that as a player, but it doesn’t stop it being frustrating. “Hopefully, I can help the team in these last nine games and get us as high as we can.”

Utaka lifts Beijing Guoan

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ut-of-favour Super Eagles striker, Peter Utaka, yesterday scored for Beijing Guoan to go top of the Asian Champions League with a 2-1 win over Central Coast Mariner. Utaka gave Guoan a 2-0 lead which would prove the match winner in the 63rd minute. The Nigeria international has now scored three goals in as many matches in the Asian Champions League. Guoan leads Group F with five points from three games.

Utaka

Edo, Delta set for RCCG fiesta

Umar Amoebi

IFEANYI EDUZOR

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rrangement has been concluded by Region 13 of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG) for the hosting of its Mini-Regional Sports Fiesta scheduled for April 26 to30 in four centres across Edo and Delta States. The sports fiesta tagged “Overflowing Sports for Life 2014” will feature seven sporting activities namely chess, boxing, football, scrabble, table tennis, track and field events as well as wrestling. According to the Regional Sports Coordinator, Pastor Felix Afe Johnson, preparation for the festival has reached advanced stage even as he assured that all the fifteen provinces in the region in the two states of Edo and Delta will participate in the five day event. “We are fully prepared by the grace of God; our preparation is about eighty percent completion so everything is at stake,” Johnson said yesterday. “Since the aim of the sports fiesta in the ministry is evangelism, we want to bring everybody especially the youths to Christ which is our major target.

Heineken Sharethesofa campaign hits target

Adeboye

“The venues acquired for hosting this fiesta are situated in Benin City and Warri respectively. In Benin we are using Paragon Group of Schools, Etete GRA, and Police training school sports ground, Ogida while the Delta axis will hold at DSC Primary School, DSC Township, Orhiuwhrun, and College of Education, Edjeba Warri. Johnson further stated that chess, scrabble and table tennis would hold at the Indoor Sports Hall of Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium while the boxing event is slated for National Sports Commission (NSC), gymnasium, Etete with the track and field event featuring 100m senior boys, relay race and others will hold at the Ogbe Stadium.

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AFOLABI GAMBARI

record 101 million people were reached globally with 14.2 million from Nigeria alone in the recent Heineken Sharethesofa digital campaign held in Lagos. The digital activation is part of the activities lined up to create memorable experience for consumers and football fans globally during the Meet the Trophy campaign which ended in Lagos last week. Heineken had undertaken the digital campaign where football fans across the globe Sharethesofa with Ruud Gullit, a winner of the UEFA European Championship and Super Cup and coach, as well as Ballon d’Or winner. Gullit, who twitted live with football fans globally from the Heineken House in Lagos during the Round of 16 games between Barcelona and Manchester City and Paris St Germaine and Bayern Leverkusen, also ran commentary and gave insight on the matches while answering fans’ questions. Senior Brand Manager, Heineken, Ngozi Nkwoji, disclosed that Sharethesofa enabled fans to interact with football stars the hashtag. “Heineken strives to ignite fans conversa-

tions,” Nkwoji said. “This year’s UEFA Champions League Trophy Tour brings football fans around the world closer to action in an unexpected and surprising way enabling them to interact with Heineken and the tournament. As we get closer to the final, we will continue to engage with fans by offering legendary brand experiences.” The Champions league is the most prestigious club platform for international football stars and their clubs. With over 150 million TV viewers watching live coverage of the UEFA Champions League in 220 countries and territories every match week, the premier sporting event has become global and fits perfectly with the Heineken brand consumed in almost Gullit every country in the world.


WORLD RECORD

Most Viewed Sci Fi Animation Show

Vol. 04 No. 813

Friday, March 21, 2014

N150

The popular CGI series, Star Wars: The Clone Wars averaged a viewership of 4 million at its launch on Cartoon Network.

Prison or breeding ground for hardened criminals?

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t is now a notorious fact that prisons in Nigeria are more of breeding ground for hardened criminals than a reformatory institution. When about the last quarter of 2012, a pipeline vandalism suspect, Kabiru Akinsanya, was arrested by the police in Takwa Bay, Lagos, where a Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) pipeline was ruptured, Kabiru, an ex-inmate of Kirikiri Prison, opened up thus: “Shortly after I was released from prison, where I spent two years, my friends told me to join them in the business (pipeline vandalism)…”. Another ex- Kirikiri Prison ‘graduate’ and a suspected car thief, Obinna Victor, said recently that he and one Fred Solomon formed their gang while serving their jail terms. “In prison, everyone was connecting and discussing how to join robbery gangs…” Victor was quoted as saying. This seems the true situation nationwide.

FRIDAY WITH Dozie Okebalama

dozieokeama@yahoo.co.uk 08164966858 (SMS only) When sometime in 2012, Governor Theodore Ahamefule Orji of Abia State donated some items to the Prisons Service in the state, the Comptroller of Prisons out there, Mrs. Kate Ononye, did say that the deplorable condition of prisons in the country was the reason most inmates become hardened criminals after serving out their terms. She said most of the inmates sleep on bare floor due to inadequate beddings, and under leaking roofs. “The role of the prisons is to serve as a reformatory, but it is no longer so”, she lamented. However, the eyesore extends beyond prisons churning out vicious criminals. Such conditions as Ononye identified, when added to the common experience that inmates are not well fed because of poor funding or the pilfering of food items meant for prisoners by warders, have contributed in no small measure to restiveness that often leads to jail breaks. In early 2012, a jail break struck Nigerian Prisons at Koton-Karfe on the Lokoja-Abuja road. About 119 inmates said to be among 120 persons awaiting trial in the complex, bolted away. Consequently, the Minister of Interior, Abba Moro, constituted a five-man committee headed by John Odah to investigate the incident, establish the extent of damages and loss of lives and make recommendations to prevent future attacks. The committee was, in addition, asked to examine areas of the Prisons Service in deficit and suggest how best to improve on them. In the report Odah and his team submitted to the minister later that year, the committee said: “There is no way you will be able to make

THE DINGY PRISON ENVIRONMENTS NOW IN VOGUE, IF NOT IMPROVED UPON,

WILL CONTINUE TO PRODUCE PRISONERS NOT COMMITTED TO LEARNING VOCATIONAL SKILLS any reform on the character of an individual through the (Nigerian) prison system… Instead, what we have and will continue to have is that if we have somebody that has a deviant behaviour, by the time the person spends three months in the prison, he will come out more hardened than he went to the place”. Why? You may ask. The committee said the primary problem was prison congestion. “Our prisons are housing more than a triple number of inmates than they were built for”, the committee said. It stressed that the direct cause of the congestion was the slow pace in the trial of inmates; and that awaiting trial persons account for more than 90 percent of the prison population. Indeed, the Interior Minister was once quoted as saying in recent times that out of the 51,004 persons under incarceration in the country, 33,731 were awaiting trial and not provided for in

the daily paltry N150 feeding allowance set aside for each serving prisoner. Another report said a total of 52,754 persons were in prison nationwide, out of which over 34,000 or roughly the 90 percent the Odah committee talked about, were awaiting trial. Under such a circumstance, and with poor funding and the lacklustre attitude of most public servants to work, who would care about the prisoner? Year-in-year-out, critics, observers and even government officials identify prison congestion as the major obstacle hindering the nation from running a decent prison system. But all end up as mere rhetoric. While receiving the Odah Committee report, for instance, the Interior Minister was quoted as saying that the Federal Government would act on it; and not sweep it under the carpet like others before it. That has been the usual refrain. Presently, the FG is said to be considering the privatisation of Nigerian Prisons, perhaps to make it decent and well-run, an indication that the government is bent on abdicating virtually all its strategic responsibilities to the people. Indeed, in time to come, the privatisation of government itself might be contemplated, just because of the cavalier attitude and failings of those entrusted with governance. But one’s thinking is that the FG should withdraw the management of the nation’s prisons from the exclusive legislative list in the Constitution, since it can no longer cope, and transfer same to the concurrent list, so that states that are capable can build their own prisons and manage their prisoners. States with good leaders can make a difference under such a setting. But even at that, squarely addressing the knotty problem of awaiting trial persons, instead of the mere tokenism of setting prisoners free on ceremonial days, is one sore point the authorities should face as a matter of priority. Besides, the dingy prison environment now in vogue, if not improved upon, will continue to produce prisoners not committed to learning vocational skills that will enable them to integrate easily into the society, earn a decent living and carry on with their lives when they are out of prison. Note: This column will be on break for one month from today.

Sport Extra

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oronto FC new striker, Jermain Defoe, has said his chances of making England squad to Brazil 2014 World Cup remains bright, despite quitting the English Premier League. “I just need to play and

Brazil 2014: My Three Lions chance intact intact–Defoe –Defoe score goals,” Defoe said yesterday. “To get on a World Cup squad you have to be playing. Throughout my career people know I’ve scored a lot of goals. I think that’s all I can do.”

Defoe recognised the wealth of talent awaiting England in the World Cup, even as he demonstrated confidence in his country’s abilities to excel. “Obviously Brazil are a

threat and are a great footballing nation and I think everyone knows that. Spain are another great side and they win tournaments for fun. “I think England have a great chance there’s a great

mix between the experienced players and the young players. It’s going to be hard for the manager to pick 23 players because there are so many good players these days.”

Defoe

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FRIDAY MARCH 21 2014  

SENATE RAISES ALARM OVER MASS KILLINGS

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