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Tinubu, ACN leaders storm Ondo for Akeredolu ONDO GUBER POLL

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COUNTDOWN TO

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DAYS TO GO

Vol. 2 N0. 461

FOUR YEARS AGO, IROKO (MIMIKO) CAME TO ME WEEPING. HE CAME WITH TWO OF MY BROTHERS, ROLLING ON THE GROUND. HE BEGGED US TO RESCUE HIM

NJC faults reappointment of Justice Adamu Jonathan has no role to play in Salami’s recall P.55

Mukhtar

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

N150

Gunmen kill 40 students in Adamawa Scores injured Security agencies on alert

AUGUSTINE MADU-WEST, A ZA MSUE AND OWOLABI ADENUSI

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t least 40 students of various institutions in Mubi, Adamawa State, were on Monday night killed in a prolonged shooting

TOP(L-R): Action Congress of Nigeria governorship candidate in Ondo State, Rotimi Akeredolu; his wife, Mercy; Osun State Governor, Rauf Aregbesola and the party’s National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, during a rally in Ikare-Akoko, Ondo State, yesterday. BELOW: Supporters at the rally.

spree by unknown gunmen. Reports said that the students of the Adamawa State University, Federal Polytechnic and School of Health Technology residing in the Wuro-Fatuji suburb, known for its high student population, were rounded up in the night and shot dead as they stood in lines outside CONTINUED ON PAGE 2>>

FG’s debts to hit $25.2bn in 2015, says DMO P.4

Independence Day broadcast:

Transparency International restates stand on Nigeria We got our report from newspaper, says Presidency

Flood: Beware of pythons, Lokoja residents warned

Minister disagrees with Okonjo-Iweala on budget 2012 performance

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GDP: Agric sector’s contributions may surpass N1.6trn

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P.6,31


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News

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Transparency International restates stand on Nigeria AYODELE OJO

DEPUTY EDITOR, POLITICS

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orld anti-corruption watchdog, T r a n s p a r e n cy International, TI, has debunked President Goodluck Jonathan’s claim that Nigeria was the second most improved country in the fight against graft. This is coming as the main opposition party, the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, called on the President to tender unreserved apology for making a false claim.

But the Presidency yesterday insisted that President Jonathan acted in good faith. The Presidency attempted to justify Jonathan’s position on Nigeria’s corruption rating, insisting that he relied on “notorious facts” published by a Nigerian newspaper. President Jonathan had on Monday in his Independence Day speech said: “In its latest report, Transparency International, TI, noted that Nigeria is the second most improved country in the effort to

curb corruption. “We will sustain the effort in this direction with an even stronger determination to strengthen the institutions that are statutorily entrusted with the task of ending this scourge.” However, TI said Jonathan’s claim was far from the truth. In an electronic message to National Mirror yesterday, TI through its Director, Africa Department, Chantal Uwimana, denied giving Nigeria a pass mark in the fight against corruption.

“Transparency International does not have a recent rating or report that places Nigeria as the second most improved country in the fight against corruption. “In the 2011 Corruption Perceptions Index, which measures perceived levels of public sector corruption, Nigeria scored 2.4 on a scale where 0 means highly corrupt and 10 means very clean. It was ranked 143 out of 183 countries,” she said. This means that Nigeria had actually fallen in the ranking as she was 134 out

President Goodluck Jonathan (right), receiving letter of credence from the Jamaican Ambassador to Nigeria, Mrs. Ann Scott, in Abuja, yesterday. PHOTO: NAN

of 183, a year earlier. Speaking with National Mirror, the Executive Director, Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre, CISLAC, and TI contact person in Nigeria, Auwal Ibrahim Musa, said the President’s claim was not in tandem with the reality. He said: “We were shocked to hear that, because Transparency International has never issued any report like that. You can go to the website of Transparency International and you will see that there is no such report. “I think that what happened is that when governments are desperate for acceptance and legitimacy, they always try to use legitimate and credible organisations. “What Transparency International has been able to do is to write to the Nigerian government, suggesting ways it can sustain the fight against corruption, and there was a meeting in Berlin, Germany, between the Nigerian ambassador and Transparency International on how to support Nigeria to improve on the fight against corruption. “That was what happened, and Transparency International in Nigeria

holds consultations with civil societies in the country on how to support the war against corruption. “So, on the statement by the President, it is unfortunate that his speech writers were not sound enough to know that it is not really a report coming from Transparency International because the organisation’s reports are readily available on its website and always accessible. “So, there is no report that Nigeria is the second most improved country in the fight against corruption. “What Transparency International has been doing is to encourage Nigeria to improve on its corruption situation, nothing more than that. The people who wrote the speech may have done that to embarrass Mr. President.” When asked if Nigeria was making progress with the war against corruption, Musa said: “Not at all. How can we say that there is an improvement in the fight against corruption when the President has failed to declare his assets openly? “There are so many anti-corruption measures that have not been taken by the government. For CONTINUED ON PAGE 5

Gunmen kill 40 students in Adamawa CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1

their hostels. According to some residents of Mubi, the shootings started about 11p.m. and lasted for more than one hour. Some of the victims were also stabbed to death. An official in the Information and Protocol Unit of the Federal Polytechnic, Mubi, who did not want his name mentioned, said that 26 students of the institution were among those killed in the attacks. But an eyewitness said that over 40 male corpses, mostly students, were reportedly counted in the Wuro-Fatuji area, while scores that sustained gunshot wounds were said to be in serious condition. It was learnt that the sporadic shootings kept residents of Mubi awake all night as many fled for their lives. Following the attacks, heads of the security agencies in the state, including

the army, police and the State Security Service, SSS, were seen trooping to Mubi yesterday with reinforcements to address the situation. The state Police Public Relations Officer, Ibrahim Mohammed, confirmed the incident and said 25 students were killed, out of which 19 were polytechnic students, three from the School of Health Technology, one ex-military man and another security man. He said that the police did not rule out students’ connivance and involvement in the gruesome killings. The PPRO explained that the nature of the killings was selective as houses were being pin- pointed and students selectively killed. Some reports suggested that the killing might be linked to student’s union election dispute, but other sources said the gunmen were insurgents. Monday’s killings came

barely one week after the Joint Task Force, JTF, uncovered bomb factories and arrested 156 suspected terrorists in Mubi. A resident said the 24hour curfew imposed in the area, which was later relaxed to 3p.m. to 6a.m., might have provided the leverage for the gunmen to unleash Monday night’s mayhem. The National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA, spokesman, Mr. Yushua Shuaib, confirmed the attack but did not give details on casualties. A resident, who did not want his name mentioned, said that the attackers came in military uniform and asked the students to line up and then call their names. Some were then shot dead and others stabbed with knives and their bodies lined outside the buildings. He said it was not clear why some were killed and

others spared. Some of those killed were Muslims and others Christians. “Everybody is scared,” he said. He added that students were now leaving the town, many with tree branches over their cars, a traditional sign of solidarity. Other Mubi residents said they heard gunfire for about two hours during the night and that those living near the hostel were also targeted. The authorities have imposed an indefinite curfew on the town and ordered residents to stay indoors. The university has also been temporarily closed. Meanwhile, security agencies in the country have stepped up their activities in the wake of Monday’s renewed threat by Boko Haram to launch attacks on traditional rulers and the families of security operatives. Entry into the premises of the Nigeria Police Force

headquarters in Abuja was highly restricted as those without any formal appointment were turned back. The Boko Haram Islamic sect had allegedly released a video, stating its resolve to attack government officials and their families. “This short message is for the leaders and it is to inform them that they will never know peace with these attacks on our members and they will see more trouble. “They have been arresting our women, especially wives of our members and in the last one week, seven wives of our members have been arrested and detained,” the sect had reportedly stated in the video. National Mirror learnt that the Nigeria Immigration Service, NIS, had before now forwarded the name of one of its men to “the appropriate quarters” for close monitoring and questioning on suspicion

that he might be working with a terrorist group in the country. An impeccable police source told our correspondent that the NIS was already working to unmask any of its officers and men who had links to any subversive group in the country. The source added that since the suicide bomb attack on the Force Headquarters in Abuja, security agencies in the country had scaled up efforts to track down any operative suspected to be working with violent gangs in the country. “The police are also looking inwards because as you know, even the President had earlier in the year disclosed that his government has been infiltrated by such elements. “So, this is an opportunity for Nigerians to avail us of any information on any security personnel that is CONTINUED ON PAGE 5


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

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Photo News

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Wednesday, October 3, 2012

L-R: Journalist and scholar, Mr. Taiwo Obe; Ekiti State Governor, Kayode Fayemi; Director, Centre for Leadership in Journalism, Pan-African University, Dr. Richard Ikiebe and Dean of School of Media and Communications, Dr. Vincent Ameh at the launch of Future Tense, An Experimental Book on Journalism in the Digital Age, at Pan African University, Victoria Island, Lagos, yesterday. PHOTO: ADENRELE NIYI

L-R: Representative of the Rivers State Governor, Hon. Dakuku Peterside; Former Ogun State Governor, Otunba Gbenga Daniel; author of the book and Editor, Nigerian Compass newspapers, Mr. Gabriel Akinadewo and Chairman, Western Publishing Company, Aare Kola Oyefeso, during the launching of the book: “Here Comes the Commander-in-Chief” in Lagos, yesterday. PHOTO: OLUFEMI AJASA

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

L-R: Member of the Senate Committee on Environment and Ecology, Sen. Boluwaji Kunlere; Chairman, Dr. Bukola Saraki; Rivers State Governor, Chibuike Amaechi and another member, Sen. Sadiq Yar’adua, during a courtesy visit to the governor in Port Harcourt, yesterday.

L-R: Country Director, Cogniko, Mr. Yemi Ibironke; Analyst/Researcher, Mr. Leke Oyerinde and Analyst, Mr. Bola Oyebo, during a media parley to formally launch the company in Nigeria in Lagos, yesterday.

National News

FG’s debts to hit $25.2bn by 2015 –DMO Reps insist Sanusi must defend medium-term framework

TORDUE SALEM ABUJA

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ederal Government’s debts may rise to $25bn by 2015, the Debt Management Office (DMO) disclosed this to the House of Representatives yesterday. The DMO made the disclosure at an interactive session with the House Joint Committee on Finance, Legislative Budget and Research, National Planning and Aid, Loans and Debt

Management scrutinising the 2013-2015 Medium Term Expenditure Framework and Fiscal Strategy (MTEFF) paper submitted by President Goodluck Jonathan. The figure totals the country’s foreign and domestic borrowings flowing from 2013-2015. DMO’s DirectorGeneral, Dr. Abraham Nwankwo, in his presentation on Nigeria’s overall debt profile and expected borrowing for 2013-2015 told the joint

panel that for 2012, Nigeria external debt is projected at $9, 021.53bn; 2013 ($12,165.10bn); 2014 ($14, 585bn) and 2015 ($16,765bn). A breakdown for domestic debt is projected at: 2012 ($6, 483.81bn); 2013 ($7,125.93bn); 2014 ($7,792.41bn) and 2015 ($8, 4441.86bn). At the meeting, Chairman House Committee on Legislative Budget and Research, Opeyemi Bamidele, queried the absence of a debt ceiling

and what it described as Nigeria’s “aggressive” borrowing from local and international sources, the federal lawmaker said the development has stifled chances for private business to access loans locally. Bamidele’s words: “We are now aggressively borrowing in such a manner that the private sector is now being stifled as the government is now the only big spender in the economy. The private sector cannot access funds domestically, they

Jonathan receives five new ambassadors ROTIMI FADEYI ABUJA

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resident Goodluck Jonathan yesterday told five new ambassadors to the country that Nigeria wants increased trade and economic activities with their countries. President Jonathan received the envoys, Mrs. L. Ann Scott from Jamaica, Ambassadors Hoand Ngoc Ho of Vietnam; Jean-

Marie Mowelle of Congo; Zsolt Maris of Hungary and Rolf Kristian Ree of Norway, at different audiences at the State House. ‘Nigerian citizens have been trading with the citizens of Congo, but this has been mostly informal. We should make this formal, so that our relationship will become even stronger’, he told Ambassador JeanMarie Mowelle of Congo. While receiving Ambas-

sador Hoand Ngoc Ho of Vietnam, President Jonathan said Nigeria has set a target of 2015 for self-sufficiency in rice production and urged him to work hard to increase the current $700 million trade between the two countries. The President said Nigeria has opened up its economy to private sector participation. He urged Norwegian businessmen to take ad-

vantage of the opportunities of this new posting, adding that both countries are already cooperating at global level such as the United Nations. The President noted the interest shown by Hungary in Nigeria’s gas, saying that he would like Jamaica to become observers in the Africa-South America Summit in order to further strengthen economic relations.

cannot create jobs. The DMO directorgeneral in his response to the lawmaker’s query on rising debts said, “Every country in the world borrows, even the most financially prudent countries like Germany and the US.” Besides, the House joint panel stopped the representatives of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, from making a presentation at the meeting, insisting that the CBN governor appear in person today by 10.00 am to defend the MTEFF paper. The panel insisted that any delay in the passage of the MTEFF should be blamed on the action or inaction of the CBN. Chairman, House Committee on Finance, House Committee on Finance, Hon. Abdumumini Jibrin, issued the directive. His words: “The CBN delegation, I think from your introduction, we have about two directors here and a couple of dep-

uty directors and some assistant directors. “As you are aware this is the most important document when it comes to issue of our national budget because this is where the budget parameters are discussed and approved by the National Assembly. “The role of the CBN in this process (MTEFF consideration) is very important and in our own opinion we believe that when dealing with issues like this we don’t expect anyone less than the governor to be present here, you’re also aware that the delay we are having or inability of the House to receive the President on Thursday is because we’ve not completed this work and specifically because of consultation like this with the agency. “On Thursday, the Central Bank delayed us and I think from Thursday till today we are being gracious to allocate you another day, we had expect that you would have done what you can to get the governor to attend.”


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

News

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Gunmen kill 40 students in Adamawa CONTINUED FROM PAGE 2

suspected to have any links with any violent sect in and outside the country,” the source said. He noted that the said officer was to be deployed in Maiduguri, Borno State, along with 50 of his colleagues who had just been trained by the Army in

counter-terrorism. The police source also explained the reported arrest of one Ahmed Grema Mohammed of the NIS, stressing that the suspect was not a top officer of the service. He, however, noted that Mohammed was found to have been involved in the killing of a senior NIS offi-

cial a few weeks ago in Yobe State. “That man (Mohammed) had been arrested some weeks back. It is not something very recent. He is on his second rank in the service. “An indigene of Yobe State, he was born in 1980 and he joined the NIS in November 2006 as an Immi-

gration Assistant III and he holds a Senior School Certificate. “It was until recently that he bagged his first promotion to the rank of Immigration Officer II and he may not even have exited the junior cadre before his retirement. “So, it is misleading to

L-R: Deputy National President, Nigerian Association of Chamber of Commerce, Industry Mines and Agriculture, Alhaji Mohammed Abubakar; National President, Dr. Herbert Ajayi; Vice-Chairman, Turkish–Nigeria in Business Council, Mr. Hakan Ozel and Commercial Counsellor, Turkish Embassy, Mr. Bulent Ferike, at Lagos Fashion 2012 International Exhibition in Lagos, yesterday.

refer to him in some reports as a top immigration officer,” said the source. Deputy Force Public Relations Officer, Frank Mba, could not be immediately contacted for comments as his phone lines were not reachable. In Kaduna State, National Mirror learnt that security agencies were mapping out strategies to curtail what had been perceived as new threat to the state by the sect. It was learnt that terrorists were already regrouping in the state, leading to security check points being reinforced across the state. “From intelligence reports, it has been confirmed that the terrorists are regrouping and we are equal to the task,” a security source said yesterday. Two terrorists were killed on Sunday at Gaskiya Layout in Zaria during a joint raid on a bomb factory by security forces. The Director, CounterTerrorism and CounterInsurgency, Training Headquarters, Jaji, Brig.-Gen.

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Tijani Kangbap Golali, said that thousands of troops had been trained, noting that the Army Special Troops were competent to deal with any situation. “We can’t take the whole credit because the Army are just one among the security agencies deployed in the field, we have SSS, civil police, Navy, Air Force among others. “Our trained special troops are there to collaborate and assist other professionals in the field. The quality of training we gave to our men, they are capable and ever competent to deal with any situation in the field as far as combating terrorism is concerned,” he maintained. Also, in Kano, security agents yesterday dismissed the threat by the sect, saying the security on ground is adequate enough to deal with any unpleasant situation. Spokesman of the military led Joint Task Force, JTF, Lt. Ikedichi Iweha, who spoke on the phone with CONTINUED ON PAGE 55

Transparency International restates stand on Nigeria CONTINUED FROM PAGE 2

example, the inauguration of the Public Procurement Council has not been done; the rule of law is not being complied with. “These are parts of the measures to know whether a country is complying with the corruption situation. “The electoral process is also part of it. If elections are still conducted in the way and manner that the people don’t have confidence in their outcome, there is no way that you can say that you are improving in the fight against corruption. “More importantly, you can see that more people are stealing and nothing is happening. You can see the people involved in the fuel subsidy walking free, nothing has happened to them, nobody has gone to jail. “In this situation, how can the government say that there is an improvement in the fight against corruption? So, as far as we are concerned, the fight against corruption is a continuous thing, it must continue and as we are now, the situation has not improved.

“We have to redouble efforts; Nigeria must prove beyond reasonable doubt that it is interested in fighting corruption by dealing with people who have already been indicted.” ACN has also asked President Jonathan to apologise “unreservedly” to Nigerians for misleading them on the alleged positive rating given to the country by the TI. The party’s National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, said in a statement issued in Lagos and made available to National Mirror yesterday that the demand for an apology from the President was as a result of the denial of the claim by TI. The party expressed shock and sadness that “the President of Africa’s most populous nation and the continent’s second largest economy” could make such a frivolous claim on an issue of global concern as corruption. It said in addition to apologising to Nigerians for the bogus claim, the President must immediately kick-start an investigation into the source of a

claim that has exposed his administration and the entire country to global ridicule. ACN said the wrong claim by the President, who was apparently trying to showcase the achievements of his administration in the fight against corruption, raised doubts about the authenticity of other claims by the President in the anniversary speech. The party added: “Among other claims, the President had said that real Gross Domestic Product, GDP, grew by 7.1 per cent on average; that his administration’s Investment Climate Reform Programme has helped to attract over N6.8trn local and foreign direct investment commitments, and that Nigeria is ranked first in the top five host economies for Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in Africa, accounting for over 20 per cent of total FDI flows into the continent. “Now that the President’s claim of positive rating for Nigeria in the anti-corruption fight has been debunked, it is logical for Nigerians to doubt the

truth in the other claims, and indeed in the entire speech. “This is very sad for the Jonathan administration because if the bond of trust between the government and its citizens is broken, the government’s credibility suffers and, without credibility, any government is not worth its name.” The party said if the President failed to act quickly to unearth the source of such a spurious claim and ensure it did not recur, he risked a bigger embarrassment from officials who might want to tweak facts and figures to justify their positions. “In the end, the responsibility for any inaccuracy in any speech by the President rests squarely on his shoulders,” it said. But in a statement issued by the Special Assistant to the President on New Media, Mr. Reno Omokri, the Presidency said Jonathan relied on the publication in a newspaper, BusinessDay, to make the statement. Omokri said President Jonathan acted in good

faith with the statement. “In conclusion, the President acted in good faith and his statement was based on notorious facts and are evidenced by recent breakthroughs in fighting corruption in the oil industry, where subsidy fraud suspects are already facing trial as well as in the agricultural sector where decades old corrupt practices in the fertiliser distribution network have been eradicated via the voucher system which cuts off the middle man,” he said. The statement reads: “Our attention has been drawn to reports from some opposition leaning media houses alleging that Mr. President made some false claims about Nigeria’s standing in this year’s Transparency International anticorruption rating. “As is the practice worldwide, we accept the premise that whatever is published in the media and goes unchallenged is the truth. “On this issue, the media published their synopsis of the most recent Transparency International report and BusinessDay, a well respected newspaper with a

bias for business reporting in a headline on September 12, 2012 with the title “FG’s anti-corruption initiative impacts Nigeria’s global perception” said “The survey on global corruption perceptions for 2011 versus 2012 showed that the third best improvement in the world was in Nigeria, with its score improving by 1.5 points”. “The above quoted comments were relied upon in coming to the conclusion that Mr. President honestly came to in good faith. To this day, Transparency International has not disputed the findings of BusinessDay. “For a section of the opposition, to now cast aspersions on the integrity of the President when he relied on notorious facts (anything published in the press and which remains unchallenged is a notorious fact) is proof positive of the now obvious fact that they lack ideas on how to move Nigeria forward and would rather snipe at efforts of the President to move the nation forward which any patriot would do.”


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Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Minister disagrees with Okonjo-Iweala on budget 2012 performance TORDUE SALEM ABUJA

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inister of Science and Technology, Prof. Ita Okon Bassey-Ewa, yesterday disagreed with Finance Minister, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, that the actual performance of the 2012 capital budget stood at 50 per cent. The minister said this during an oversight visit to the ministry by the House of Representatives Committee on Science and Technology chaired by

Hon. Abiodun Akinlade. He told the lawmakers that actual budget capital performance stood at 33 per cent contrary to Okonjo-Iweala’s claim. According to the minister, out of the N372.7m appropriated for the ministry’s capital budget, only N153m was released and cash backed by the Finance Ministry. According to him, this represents only 33 per cent of the budget and not the 50 per cent the finance minister claimed.

The committee observed that the amount earmarked for capital budget was too low compared to the amount voted for recurrent expenditure in the ministry. The committee also noted that only about 20 per cent of the ministry’s N1.45bn budget was voted for capital projects. It therefore called on the government to increase the capital budget in subsequent appropriations for the nation to meet its Vision 20:2020.

The Chairman of the committee, Akinlade, said: “What we can conclude from your remarks is that the finance minister has not been telling Nigerians the truth. This is because from your presentation, the finance minister has only succeeded in releasing about 31 per cent of the budget and not the 50 per cent she claimed. “The finance minister has not been fair to Nigerians. Even the releases made have not been cashbacked.”

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Flood kills 148 in 21 states –Red Cross

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he Head, Disaster Management, Nigerian Red Cross Society, NRCS, Mr. Umar Mairiga, said yesterday that 148 people had died as a result of flooding in 21 states of the federation. Mairiga told a news briefing in Abuja that 64,000 others had been rendered homeless by the floods, adding that about 10,000 victims had been targeted for assistance. He said that heavy rains in recent weeks had caused widespread destruction and forced many families into makeshift camps. According to him, an estimated 134,000 people had now been affected by the floods and that concern was growing about the spread of waterborne diseases such as cholera. He said: “We are targeting 10,000 people in 10 locations of Adamawa, Taraba, Kogi, Plateau, Katsina, Cross River, Jigawa, Kogi, Benue and Edo states.” Mairiga explained that in response to the worsening crisis, the Interna-

tional Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, IFRC, had launched an emergency appeal for funds. The decision, he said, was to aid the Nigerian Red Cross Society to assist 10,000 victims. He said that the funds so raised would support ongoing efforts by the society to provide victims with emergency shelter and other essential relief items. According to him, a Field Assessment and Coordination Team, FACT, and a Regional Disaster Response Team, RDRT, have been deployed to support the relief effort. Mairiga said that N33.5m had been provided from the IFRC’s Disaster Relief Emergency Fund to start the operation. He said: “The NRCS, with support from the IFRC and other partners, has been distributing food and non-food items, including mosquito nets, shelter tool kits, tarpaulins, hygiene kits and kitchen sets to affected families.

I’m ready for retirement, says Petinrin ISE-OLUWA IGE ABUJA

T L-R: Mrs. Francisca Emanuel, Chief Philip Asiodu and Brig.-Gen. Mobolaji Johnson (rtd), at the farewell and Afternoon of Tributes for late Professor Emmanuel Obot, the Executive Director of the Nigerian Conservation Foundation, in Lagos, yesterday.

Budget 2013: Why we won’t receive Jonathan tomorrow –Senate GEORGE OJI AND EMMANUEL ONANI, ABUJA

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ndications emerged yesterday why the Senate will not honour the planned reception of President Goodluck Jonathan to present the 2013 budget before a joint sitting of the National Assembly tomorrow. The Senate said unless it finished work on the consideration of the 2012-2015 Medium-Term Expenditure Framework, MTEF, and the Financial Strategy Paper, FSP, it would not be ready to receive the President. This came to the fore as the Senate began deliberation on the MTEF, which passed first reading and was committed to the Sen-

ate Joint Committees on Finance and Appropriation for further deliberations. The action of the Senate is in conformity with the provisions of sections 11, 12 and 13 of the Fiscal Responsibility Act 2007, which require that the National Assembly must first approve the MTEF, upon which the budget would be predicated. It is also in line with the position of the House of Representatives, which said it would not be around to host the President on the budget presentation. But unlike the Senate, the House based its inability to host Jonathan on the grounds that its members would be in their various constituencies to assess the level of the 2012 budget performance.

Jonathan had forwarded the MTEF and FSP to both chambers of the legislature on resumption from their annual vacation on September 18 for consideration and approval. The document articulated Federal Government’s revenue and spending plan as well as its policy objectives covering the period captured in the documents. Consideration on both documents began yesterday, through a motion sponsored by Senate Leader, Victor NdomaEgba. The upper chamber observed that the Federal Government, by the documents, was implementing a four-year capital project plan commencing in 2012, which would ensure that Nigeria left the “current

portfolio of ongoing projects”. It further noted that by the statutory documents, Jonathan was proposing “an acceleration of the diversification of the economy with the expectation that non-oil revenue will contribute a greater share of budget revenue compared to the current 30 per cent it contributes.” Jonathan, the lawmakers noted, “is in compliance with the provisions of the Fiscal Responsibility Act”. Upon exhaustive deliberation on the documents, Senate President, David Mark, referred the bill to the Joint Committee on Finance and National Planning, Economic Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, for further legislative work.

he Chief of Defence Staff, CDS, Air Chief Marshal Oluseyi Petinrin, declared yesterday that he was ready to bow out of service. Petinrin, who disclosed that he had put his house in order, said he was not bothered whether President Goodluck Jonathan extended his tenure or not. The CDS had served beyond the mandatory 35 years. He spoke at the commissioning of Defence Headquarters Transit Officers/ Men Quarters in Abuja. Uneasy calm and anxiety presently reign in all the military formations nation-wide over the impending appointment of new service chiefs since all the incumbent are either due for retirement as a result of age or years of service or for being in the same office for two years. This has become the tradition since the former President Olusegun Obasanjo left power. Military sources disclosed the invasion of the Presidential Villa by some powerful lobbyists scheming for their cronies to become the beneficiaries of the imminent mass

sack of the service chiefs even as Jonathan keeps what he wants to do close to his chest. Petinrin, who succeeded Air Chief Marshal Paul Dike, was due for retirement September last year but the President used his prerogative power to extend his tenure as it was the practice under Obasanjo. But from all indications, signals coming from the Presidency show there would be no more extension for him. Speaking at the commissioning, the CDS, who expressed his delight in the completion of the housing project, said he was ready to go as he had paid for the next phase of the project so that they would be completed when he eventually retired from office. In his brief remark, the Special Guest of Honour and the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, Senator Anyim Pius Anyim, commended the leadership of Petinrin for the loyalty, commitment and dedication to duty of the Armed Forces and asked the beneficiaries of the project to justify the need for the accommodation with the way they make use of them.


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

News

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

ECOWAS plans common law on HIV/AIDS MARCUS FATUNMOLE ABUJA

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he 15-member Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) may soon have a unified law on the management of HIV/ AIDS. High rate of prevalence index, discrimination and stigmatisation against people living with the virus have compelled the regional body to set up a committee with membership from West African Health Authority, ECOWAS Parliamentarians and the regional body’s Court of Justice

to provide a common law on the management of the virus and protect persons living with the disease. The committee is currently visiting member states to discuss with stakeholders the criteria for a minimum legal framework on HIV/AIDS to be approved by the ECOWAS Parliament. Meeting with Nigerian stakeholders in Abuja, Brima Kamanda, President, Human Rights Commission, ECOWAS Parliament and leader of the delegation said: “We are all aware of HIV/AIDS and the serious devastations it has had

on human lives all over the world. “It is so alarming that the ECOWAS body has decided that it should play key roles in trying to get zero positive action on this if it is possible. But before we get to that level, we are trying to minimise its spread and effects on human lives. “The West African Health Authority is charged with that responsibility. One of the initial things to do is to come up with a common legislation on HIV/AIDS which if adopted by all the 15 member states, will make the walk to achieving the goal eas-

ier because we will have a common policy and programme across the member states.” Key issues of the law, Kamanda noted, would be to make provision for addressing stigmatization and discrimination against people living with HIV and programmes and roles of government in controlling the virus. While expressing confidence in the effort, Director General, National Agency the Control of AIDS (NACA), Prof. John Idoko, said Nigeria was working towards achieving zero infection and tolerance for

discrimination and stigmatization, stressing that it was the right of anyone with the infection to be given access to treatment. The DG said the Agency would work with the National Assembly to ensure the Bill on Stigmatisation before it was passed into law. Executive Secretary of National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), Prof. Bem. Angwe, who was represented at the event by Mr. Abdulrahman Yakubu, said the commission had received about 50 complaints on stigmatisation and discrimination from people living with the virus.

Nigerian teachers most neglected –FG IJEOMA EZEIKE ABUJA

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he Federal Government yesterday admitted that teachers are the most neglected workers in the country. This is even as it said that the request by the Nigerian Union of Teachers (NUT) regarding the extension of their retirement age from 60 to 65 is on course, but must follow due process. Minister of Education, Prof Ruqayyatu Ahmed Rufa’I, spoke during a press conference to celebrate the 2012 World Teachers’ Day which has being scheduled for Friday and with the theme: “Take a Stand for Teachers.” Prof. Rufa’I said due process must be followed and higher authorities must be convinced before the 65years retirement request by teachers would take effect, adding that “the issue is in the pipeline”. The minister urged Nigerians to encourage teachers with motivation and training, regretting that most people took to teaching profession as a last resort.

Rufa’I

Minister of Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Senator Bala Mohammed (right) and Minister of State for FCT, Ms Olajumoke Akinjide, at a meeting with mandate secretaries, department and agencies of FCTA in Abuja, yesterday.

Nigeria not doing badly at 52, say Senators GEORGE OJI AND EMMANUEL ONANI ABUJA

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enators yesterday debated a motion on Nigeria’s 52nd Independence anniversary and came up with the conclusion that the country has done well. The senators, however, expressed optimism that Nigeria’s future looks great. The motion, which was sponsored by Senator Eta Inang (Akwa Ibom Northeast) and supported by all the other senators, came up with a resolution urging the federal, states and local governments and other relevant stakeholders to work harder to return Nigeria to the path of economic growth. The senators also resolved to congratulate President Goodluck Jonathan, the

government and people of Nigeria on the nation’s 52nd Independent anniversary. Senator Inang said: “Steadily, we are developing our domestic production capacity as an independent nation. We have, as a nation, become a big player in international affairs within the committee of nations.” He said that from May 29, 1999 till date, Nigeria has had the longest reign of democratic government in her political history. Senate President David Mark, however, disagreed with Senator Uche Chukwumerije who described Nigeria at 52 as a failed or failing state. Mark said: “There is no gainsaying that we are not where we would have loved to be, but certainly that is not to say that we have not made progress. I think that

we have made some considerable achievements and for that alone, we need to show gratitude to God. We need to pray and work hard because prayer alone will not solve the problem. “I think more than anything else, we just need political will to take our policies to logical conclusions whether it is at the executive level or legislative level or any other level. “I believe that unless we are determined to politically pursue the decision taken that would be of benefit to this country, we would still be where we are in another 10 to 20 years because the political will is lacking in so many areas.” Chukwumeriji cited the instances of Turkey, China, South Korea and other South-East Asian countries to argue that Nigeria is a failed state or on the verge

of failing state. He traced Nigeria’s backwardness to the twin issues of corruption and federal character principles.

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Immigration tackles fake recruitment syndicate OMEIZA AJAYI

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he Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) has vowed to arrest and prosecute those extorting members of the public and offering them fake recruitment letters. In a statement issued yesterday in Abuja, NIS spokesman, Joachim Olumba, decried the rate at which unemployed Nigerians continue to fall victims of such recruitment scam. Explaining that NIS is not currently involved in any recruitment exercise, Olumba said: “Of a truth, the NIS had, before now, approached the Federal Government to grant approval for the recruitment of a few qualified Nigerians, but that has not been granted. “It is very disheartening that after receiving large sums of money from helpless job-seekers, these fraudsters issue their victims with fake appointment letters. Some of these unfortunate victims have been arrested for presenting fake letters of appointment when they appear for documentation at the Headquarters of the NIS. “NIS is not undertaking any recruitment exercise presently and does not charge any fee whatsoever for recruitment. Hence, any purported claim about recruitment into the Service is only a deliberate design by some fraudsters to dupe gullible and desperate jobseekers.”

Cynthia Osokogu for burial on Friday

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he body of Cynthia Osokogu will be interred on Friday in a private ceremony, according to a statement by the family. Cynthia Cynthia, a postgraduate student of Nasarawa State University, Keffi, was allegedly killed by friends she met on the social media, Facebook, at a hotel in Festac, Lagos on July 22 and was billed to be buried on September 7 at Bebe, Ovia Agbor in Ika South Local Government Area of Delta State. But the burial could not take place as the po-

lice refused to release her body. But a statement signed by one of her brothers, Kenneth Uchechukwu Osokogu, stated that her body would now be committed to mother earth this Friday. The statement reads: “My family and I will hopefully lay our dear sister to rest by the Grace of God on the 5th of October, 2012 in a private family internment ceremony. “You will recall that we had a public service of songs and requiem mass in her honour in both events your support and concern we appreciate. “


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South West

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Alleged N4.2bn theft: ‘Atuche knew nothing about sale of Afribank shares’ FRANCIS FAMOROTI

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he former Managing Director of Bank PHB Asset Management firm, Mr. Benedict Omonuah, yesterday told an Ikeja High Court that the embattled ex-former Managing Director of the defunct Bank PHB, Mr. Francis Atuche, standing trial for an alleged theft of N4.2bn is not involved in the sale of

about 630 million units of shares of Afribank Plc. Testifying at the on-going trial yesterday, the witness exonerated Atuche of any involvement whatsoever in the sales of the bank’s shares held in trust for Cavernton Helicopters. Atuche is being charged with a one-count charge of alleged theft of N4.2bn alongside a former Director of the bank, Mr. Funmi Ademosu. According to the charge filed by the EFCC, both men were said to have conspired

to commit the criminal act while serving as directors of the defunct bank. Led in evidence by the counsel to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr. Sebastine Hon, SAN, Omonuah told Justice Adeniyi Onigbanjo that contrary to the charge preferred against Atuche, the defendant did not know anything concerning the transactions. Omonuah, a one-time Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Platinum Capital,

an affiliate of the bank, testified that the stockbroking firm only sold about 320 million units of shares worth about N8.7bn contrary to the claims of the EFCC that about 830 million units of shares were sold. The witness explained that the balance of about 510 million units of shares were still in the custody of the stockbroking arm of the bank due to the fact that the cheque purportedly issued by Standard Chartered Securities, which indicated

interest to buy them enbloc bounced when presented for clearing. Omonuah told the court that sometimes in September 2008, the company received instructions through the then Head of Credit Administration of the bank, Mr. Okorocha Azubuike, a certain disposal of about 830 million of Afribank shares held by four companies, Ojemai Investment, Cavernton Helicopters, Atlantic Engineering and Bayinder “in the best market share.”

He, however, added that the company eventually succeeded in disposing only about 320million units. Explaining how the proceeds were handled, the witness said the proceeds of the transaction were collected by Head of Credit Administration. He said that based on the advice received from him, cheques of N1.5bn; N2.3bn and N4.2bn respectively were issued in the names of Cavernton Helicopters, Ojemai Investment and Home Trust.

Court quashes criminal charge against Car Link boss

Lagos resumes airlift of Hajj pilgrims

WALE IGBINTADE

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MURITALA AYINLA

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Lagos High Court Judge, Justice Samuel Candide-Johnson, yesterday quashed a criminal suit filed by the Lagos State government against the Chairman of Car Link Limited, Mr. Bube Okorodudu. Ruling on a preliminary objection brought by Okorodudu’s lawyer, Chief Ladi Williams (SAN), Justice Candide-Johnson reprimanded the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP), Lagos State over the improper criminal charge filed against the Car Link boss. The court held that the dispute that led to the suit filed against Okorodudu was purely civil and not criminal in nature. Justice Candide-Johnson further stated that with all the reforms in the Lagos State judiciary, the Lagos DPP ought to be able to distinguish between what constitutes a civil or a criminal case. The court added that while not querying the prosecutory power of the DPP, the charge filed against Okorodudu constitutes an abuse of court process as they are oppressive and prejudicial. He said it was unjust to ascribe criminality to Okorodudu in the face of questionable evidence, adding that the absence of the DPP’s advice left him with no choice than to dismiss the charge. The judge held that the information constituted an abuse of court process, and therefore made an order “quashing the two-count charge.

L-R: Ogun State Deputy Governor, Prince Segun Adesegun; leader of a team of experts from Malaysia, Mr. Mohammed Hafiz; Ogun State Governor, Ibikunle Amosun; Mr. Alex Anderson and Mr. Lee Sek Chong, during a courtesy visit by the delegation to the Governor’s Office in Abeokuta, yesterday.

Opposition leader criticises Fayemi over councils’ funds ABIODUN NEJO ADO EKITI

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ormer Afenifere spokesman and a Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship aspirant in Ekiti State, Prince Dayo Adeyeye, has described as laughable, the passage by the state House of Assembly of the 2012 budget of the 16 councils in September. Adeyeye, in a statement by his campaign outfit, Prince Dayo Adeyeye Movement (PAAM), said the budget had exposed the gover-

nor’s act of using councils’ funds amounting to about N1bn on renovation of schools, describing such as criminal. The statement by PAAM Director-General, Hon. Bisi Kolawole, alleged that in the “Local Councils 2012 Budget that Fayemi got the House of Assembly to pass last week Tuesday, over N1bn was included as the councils’ contribution to the renovation of some secondary schools’ buildings while N1.2bn and N1.9bn were allocated as the councils’ contribution to the

payment of the Social Security Scheme for the elderly and also payment for 100 Vigilante Peace Corps respectively.” Kolawole’s words: “Fayemi must tell Ekiti people what the state funds and that of the State Universal Education Board (SUBEB) are being used for if local councils are now the ones funding the renovation of secondary schools’ buildings.” But, the state government denied spending local government funds on other things, saying it rather sup-

First African Church frowns at insecurity

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he First African Church Mission Inc has asked President Goodluck Jonathan, to as a matter of urgency, address issues of insecurity in Nigeria, to avoid further loss of lives. At the annual general conference of the church held recently in Okitipupa, Ondo State, the church

condemned in totality the incessant destruction of lives and property in some parts of Nigeria, particularly in the north as a result of the Boko Haram menace. The conference, however, commended the administration since its assumption of office and prayed for peace to reign in Nige-

ria. In a release signed by the Secretary of the General Council of the Church, Bro. Nwachukwu Asonye, the 121st annual conference ratified, among other things, the new dioceses and archdioceses that were created by an act of the general conference as part of the church’s restructur-

ported the councils when the need arose rather than taking their funds. Information Commissioner, Hon. Funminiyi Afuye, who described the allegations as spurious and mischievous, said: “This is not the best way to start a campaign.” Afuye charged the aspirant to get his fact straight from the state House of Assembly or find out the truth about the finances of the state government with the aid of the Freedom of Information Law in the state. ing and reorganisation exercises which took effect from April 1, 2012. Also ratified was the constitution amendment done in Benin, Edo State in 2009. The conference also endorsed the dissolution of the 2009-2012 elected executive of the general council, whose tenure expired on September 30, 2012 in line with the church’s constitution.

he Lagos State Muslims’ Pilgrims Welfare Board, yesterday commenced the airlifting of pilgrims to the holy land of Mecca and Medina in Saudi Arabia. The exercise commenced after a week-long row between Nigeria and Saudi Arabia over Muharams (male guardians) for female pilgrims. Speaking at the flag off ceremony, Commissioner for Home Affairs and Culture, Alhaji Oyinlomo Danmole, said the decision was informed by the expiration of the 48-hour stoppage of this year’s Hajj operation by the Federal Government. The commissioner commended the 520 pilgrims, who made the first trip for the good conduct displayed by them. He said series of orientation programmes and a oneday seminar was organised by the board before the trip to the holy land. On the issue of male companion for female pilgrims, he assured that the attached male and female pilgrims would know themselves before embarking on the journey. Also speaking on the deported pilgrims, the National Missioner of Ansar-Ud-Deen Society of Nigeria, Sheikh AbdulRahaman Ahmad, described the row as routine, adding that the matter would be amicably resolved. His words: “I think the issue is routine and I believe it’s going to be resolved. In all fairness, there has been a requirement of the Saudi authorities for the people intending to perform hajj or Umrah that a woman must be accompanied.”


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

South West

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Ajimobi reinstates 1,499 sacked workers KEMI OLAITAN IBADAN

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yo State Governor, Abiola Ajimobi, yesterday reinstated 1,499 of the 3,000 workers who were sacked recently from the state civil service. The offences of the sacked workers ranged from falsification of academic certificates, age and personal data, having outstanding disciplinary cases against them and those categorised as nonexisting staff, popularly

called the ghost workers. The decision to reinstate the workers, reached at the weekly State Executive Council meeting in Ibadan yesterday, was based on the recommendations of the panel constituted by the governor to review their cases. All the reinstated workers would be paid their salaries during the period in full. About 357 workers, who were not cleared by the panel would, however, be compulsorily retired from civil service on their pres-

ent grade levels. The 13-man panel, headed by the state Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Adebayo Ojo, had based its recommendations that some of those found wanting of age falsification be reinstated on some facts which it brought to government’s attention. The immediate past government in the state had engaged the services of a consultant - Captain Consulting - to audit workers in the state, with the lat-

ter using certain criteria for determining those who had falsified their ages. One of the criteria was the assumption that every pupil would have been admitted to primary school in the 1960s and 1970s at the minimum age of six years and would sit for the Primary School Leaving Certificate at the age of 12 years, among other considerations. But the Ojo-led panel observed that some of the children of educated parents or brilliant ones of indigent parents often en-

joyed double promotion in their academics. Besides, it also noted that some pupils in 1960s and 1970s got enrolled to start school at ages four and five, either because of the influence of their educated or elite parents, or dearth of children of enrolment age in their locality. The panel also based its recommendations on the appeal by the governor that it should be very liberal, considerate and humane in carrying out its assignment.

Lack of planning key to LGs’ failure –Aregbesola WALE FOLARIN OSOGBO

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overnor Rauf Aregbesola of Osun State has identified the absence of a Master Plan of Action, MPA, for local govern-

ment administration as one of the factors militating against meaningful development in the 774 councils in the country. He said without a people-oriented working document for local governments, the councils would

not achieve any meaningful development, while it would also become difficult to assess their performance. Consequently, the governor directed that budgetary provision for grassroots development be

made in the 2013 estimates of the state and local governments. Aregbesola made the declaration yesterday at Iloko-Ijesa, venue of a twoday workshop on the preparation and development of MPA for the councils in the state. He said: “Government is of the opinion that for the state to achieve a success of her six-point transformation agenda and the Millennium Development Goals, MDGS, the need to formulate and develop a tool for governance at the grassroots becomes imperative. “I am very optimistic that apart from making Osun State the only state in the whole federation

that has given focus to her local governments through the MPA, the success of this initiative will go a long way to provide avenue for assessing the performance of every administration at the local government level.” Speaking at the workshop, the Special Adviser to the governor on Rural and Community Development, Mr. Kunle Ige, said through the MPA, his office had set the platform for improved governance at the local government level. He said the Participatory Rural Appraisal techniques, which would be used to produce the MPA, would give opportunity to every stakeholder to participate actively.

Fayemi’s wife decries rate of accidents involving school children ABIODUN NEJO ADO EKITI L-R: Wife of Ekiti State Governor, Mrs. Bisi Fayemi; Chairman, Medical Advisory Committee, Ekiti State University Teaching Hospital, Ado-Ekiti, Dr. Deji Ajayi and Chief Medical Director, Dr. Patrick Adegun, during the governor’s wife presentation of gifts to the patients to mark Nigeria’s 52nd Independence Anniversary, yesterday.

Ekiti: Only 350 qualify for Hajj –Pilgrims Board ABIODUN NEJO ADO EKITI

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he Chairman of Ekiti State Muslims Welfare Board, Alhaji Ganiyu Olowoyo, has disclosed that only 350 intending pilgrims qualified from the state to participate in this year’s Hajj in Saudi Arabia. Olowoyo said yesterday at the send-forth ceremony for the 2012 pilgrims from the state that the figure was arrived at after disqualifying those who failed to satisfy basic conditions to participate in the exercise. He said: “Let me em-

phasise here that there is no room in Ekiti State for dubious characters wishing to go on Hajj at all costs. Hence, the board was strict in its scrutiny of the characters and backgrounds of all applicants.” This was as the Secretary to the State Government, SSG, Alhaji Ganiyu Owolabi, urged the intending pilgrims to be of good conduct in the Holy Land. Owolabi, who represented Governor Kayodfe Fayemi, said the Muslims should respect the law and operate only within permitted precincts, while participating in all pre-

scribed rituals. He described the exercise as a great religious duty they were about to perform, saying: “You are all aware that there are religious procedures to follow as you carry out the Hajj rites in order to attract Allah’s blessings. My advice is that you should strictly adhere to these procedures.” The SSG assured them that government had put in place measures to remove the usual but avoidable encumbrances in the performance of their religious duties, as he urged them to pray for the state and Nigeria.

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ife of the Ekiti State governor, Mrs. Bisi Fayemi, has bemoaned the high rate of accidents involving school children in the state. The governor’s wife, who attributed the development to reckless driving on the part of motorists, sought strict penalties against any road users who knock down school children. She spoke yesterday while presenting gift items to children on admission at the Children’s Ward of the Ekiti State University Teaching Hospital, Ado-Ekiti, as part of activities marking Nigeria’s 52nd Independence Anniversary. Fayemi urged mothers to be vigilant and ensure that they personally look after their wards rather

than leave them in the hands of babysitters. She said: “Road users have to be very careful when children are to cross the roads. We will ensure that we gear up efforts towards ensuring that reckless road user, who knocks down any child on the road, is made to face the wrath of law.” The governor’s wife praised the management and personnel of the teaching hospital for their diligence and commitment to best medical practices in the face of constraints, especially shortage of funds. Of particular reference is one Tayo Omotoso, a 15-year-old boy, who was on admission at the hospital because of the fracture he suffered on his leg when he was knocked down by a moving truck.

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Ogun Assembly passes Amosun’s bond bill FEMI OYEWESO ABEOKUTA

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gun State House of Assembly yesterday passed the executive bill sent to it by Governor Ibikunle Amosun, seeking to raise loans to finance various developmental projects in the state. The passage of the bill, entitled: “A bill for law to provide for the raising of loans through issuance of bonds, notes and other securities and for connected purposes,” was enrolled in the House Order number 21/OG/2012 by the lawmakers. The bill was, however, passed following the 21 amendments of the appropriate sections, particularly clauses 10 and 11, sub-sections 1 and 3 of the bill as demanded by the stakeholders during the public hearing conducted by the House about two weeks ago. The amendments now make it mandatory for the governor to make recourse to the Assembly as well as get the lawmakers’ approval for obtaining the loan each time the need for such arises. Aside the bond bill, which has generated heated debate in the state in recent times, the House also passed another bill for a law to “impose tax on goods and services consumed in hotels, restaurants and event centres in the Ogun State and other matters incidental thereto and therewith”. Addressing the lawmakers on the floor of the House yesterday, the Chairman of the House Committee on Finance and Appropriations, Hon. Olusola Bankole, who moved the motion for the passage of the bills, said he was doing so following the amendments already carried out on the executive bill which was referred to his committee. Stakeholders in the state had cautioned the lawmakers that some parts of the bill should be amended to reserve the constitutional power of the legislature at the public hearing on the bill, which was chaired by Bankole.


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South East

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Imo LG chairmen barred from Independence Day anniversary CHRIS NJOKU OWERRI

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he 27 local government secretariats of Imo State were on the Independence Day anniversary put under lock and key to prevent the council chairmen from performing the annual event. The chairmen were locked out of the secretariats by policemen following the alleged directives by the state government. The chairmen, who arrived at the headquarters of their respective council secretariats to perform the

anniversary parade, were prevented from entering the premises by armed policemen who locked up the gates and dispersed pupils who had turned out for the ceremony. The situation, which nearly resulted to physical confrontation between the chairmen and the Divisional Police Officers (DPOs), was attributed to the ongoing crisis between the state governor, Chief Rochas Okorocha, and the council chairmen. Addressing journalists yesterday in Owerri, the Imo State Secretary of

the All Local Government of Nigeria (ALGON) and Chairman of Ngor-Okpala council, Hon. Enyinna Onuegbu, said: “When I arrived at my council secretariat to perform the annual anniversary parade, I met the gate under lock and key and when I asked why the gate was locked, the policemen, who claimed they were posted to stop people from gaining entrance into the premises, said they

were directed to lock the premises.” Onuegbu said that after several hours of argument with the policemen, the gate was opened. He said: “The policemen said that the DPO instructed them to lock the gate and when I called him, he said he was directed to take over the premises to ensure that there was no anniversary parade, but he opened it for me when I insisted that

I was going into my office”. But the Imo State Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Vitalis Onugu, denied that such instruction was given by the command, adding that the police were not directed to prevent anybody from gaining entrance into the secretariats for the anniversary parade. The state Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Chinedu Offor, asked: “Why are the chair-

men giving the impression that they are still in the council while their term had expired on August 8, 2012. Court has declared that it has no jurisdiction to elongate their tenure”. The Special Assistant to the Governor on Media, Mr. Ebere Uzuokwa, said that the chairmen have no business in the secretariats, saying: “They should desist from overheating the polity and allow peace to reign.”

Enugu Assembly passes water corporation amendment bill

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he Enugu State House of Assembly passed a bill yesterday for the amendment of the state’s Water Corporation Law. The passage of the bill followed the presentation of report on the public hearing held on it by the Chairman of the Joint Committee on Water resources and Judiciary, Hon. Ikechukwu Ezeugwu. Speaking after the passage, the House Speaker, Hon. Eugene Odo, urged the Committee on Water Resources to liaise with relevant ministries and agencies to sensitise residents with respect to the implementation of the bill. Odo said that this became necessary so that residents would not be taken unaware during the implementation of the law. He said: “The whole essence of this bill has been to increase the tariff of water boreholes; be it industrial, private and one founded on companies,

with the effect of making sure that most water used in Enugu State are properly sterilised and undergo supervision from time to time. “And in doing that, those private operators, those people who own these establishments ought to pay some token. “We want to plead and request the implementing agencies to, before the implementation of this law or perhaps before the governor assents to it, to carry out a sensitisation campaign among all the 24 constituencies in Enugu State to make sure that people are fully embraced with the spirit and intension of this bill.”

Enugu State Governor Sullivan Chime

Anambra State Governor Peter Obi (right) and the Primate of the Church of Nigeria Anglican Communion, Archbishop Nicholas Okoh, during the dedication of St. Peter’s Anglican Church in Mbutu, Aboh Mbaise and 80th thanksgiving service for the mother of House of Representatives’ Deputy Speaker, Hon. Emeka Ihedioha, in Anambra State, recently.

Flood: Obi offers Governor’s Lodge as relief camp

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overnor Peter Obi of Anambra State has directed the Secretary to the State Government, Mr. Oseloka Obaze, to turn the Governor’s Lodge in Onitsha into a camp for flood victims, if necessary. Obi issued the directive yesterday in Onitsha following the massive flooding in five local government areas in the state. The governor had cancelled his trip to Mexico

and the Independence Day ceremonies because of the emergency. Obi received complaints of inadequate accommodation during a tour of some public buildings used to shelter the victims at Omunwa Egboka Primary School, behind the Basilica of the Most Holy Trinity. He said government would continue to feed and provide assistance for the victims, considering that they were faced with a nat-

ural disaster which was not of their own making. He said: “Few weeks ago, governors of the SouthEast sent money to Haiti to help them rebuild their country after the earthquake of 2010. “If we could do it to them, we must do more for our people that elected us to serve them.” Obi assured the people that government would always support them at all times, including their re-

habilitation after the floods had subsides. He warned all those handling relief materials to deploy them appropriately or face the wrath of God. The governor also called on the church, individuals, local and international organisations to assist the state in any way they could. Obi promised to provide security for the camps and described the development as “Anambra’s turbulent moment.”

‘Soil erosion threatens our water supply’

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oil erosion has put water supply to Enugu State in jeopardy, a senior official has said. The Managing Director of the Enugu State Water Corporation, Mr. Obrien Ofordu, told journalists yesterday in Enugu that the situation had gone beyond the control of the corporation.

Ofordu, who is also the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Water Supply, said the menace was threatening pipes supplying water to Enugu from the Oji River Water Scheme. He said the erosion had washed off the soil in many parts of the 44-km pipeline, thereby exposing the pipes.

He said the Oji River project was capable of pumping 100 cubic metres of water to Enugu city daily, explaining that that was enough to satisfy the water needs of most parts of the state capital. The managing director said the corporation was also in the process of reviving the

Ajali Water Scheme while exploring the possibility of building a new one in Awhum to augment supplies from Oji River. He said the major problem faced by the corporation, apart from the erosion menace, was power supply, which he said diminished most of its efforts.

Ofordu said: “If we can get up to 20 hours of power supply daily, I bet you that the water problem in Enugu will be a thing of the past in due course. “We have challenges of vandalism and erosion washing off our pipes in Enugu city, but our major worry is inadequate power supply. We

have the bigger problem of erosion in our trunk line from Oji River, though.” He said the corporation had the responsibility to supply water to only urban areas, while the Enugu Rural Water and Sanitation Authority (ERUWASA) had the responsibility for rural water supply


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

South South

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Two children die in Bayelsa flood •Red Cross evacuates 3,000 victims in Delta

EMMA GBEMUDU YENAGOA

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he last has not been heard of the flooding ravaging communities in Bayelsa State as two children have been killed by the flood that submerged Ekeremor town. The death of the children has kept residents of the community in a mournful mood. Special Adviser on Emergency and Relief Matters to the Governor, Mrs. Faith Opene, confirmed the death of the children to National Mirror, describing the incident as sad and unfortunate. Governor Seriake Dick-

son yesterday began an assessment tour of the flooded communities in the six local governments to ascertain the extent of the situation. Worst hit by the disaster were communities in Ekeremor local government of the state. Investigation revealed that about 270 communities were submerged by the flood, thereby rendering the victims homeless. It was learnt that the secretariat of Sagbama Local Government Area was also submerged by the flood as workers evacuated their valuables from the building. A resident of Sagbama town, who did not want his name mentioned,

urged the government to come the aid of the victims. The resident, who is one of the victims, said that the government was yet to establish a temporary relief camp to accommodate several families that were displaced by the flood. But Mrs. Opene said the government had established a relief camp at Sagbama town and working out modalities to set up some in other areas. She said: “There is a relief camp in Sagbama. Others are ongoing. Foodstuffs, drugs and mattresses, blankets and buckets have been distributed to victims. These items will make them manage the sit-

uations. It is the worst that I have seen so far. People are really suffering, farmlands are destroyed. We don’t know what will happen to us next year, there will be starvation in the state. “The whole Bayelsa State is covered with flood, apart from Brass and Nembe local governments. Every community is flooded. All the six local governments are affected .Yenagoa, Sagbama, Ekeremor,Kolokuma/Opokuma and Ogbia, Southern Ijaw local governments are flooded. As a state, we are trying to do the little we can.” Mrs. Opene appealed to the Federal Government come to the aid of the victims by finding solution to the flood problem in the

state. She said: “After now, the expert should go into the creeks and see what they can do so that next year, we don’t experience this kind of situation. We need a lasting solution. Some places need dredging and embankment.” Meanwhile, over 3,000 flood victims in Delta State have been relocated to temporary camps by the Nigerian Red Cross Society. The Red Cross Society Secretary, Mr. Francis Agarivbie, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) yesterday in Asaba that the victims were resettled at three camps established by the state government in Asaba, Ashaka and Osisa in the Ndokwa East Local Government Area . He said the Asaba camp accommodated over 2,000 persons, Ashaka 800; while Osisa provided home for about 500 victims. Agarivbie said that the Asaba camp was becoming too congested, adding it would soon be upgraded to accommodate more victims. He commended the state

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government for providing relief materials, including blankets, mattresses, standby generators and food for the victims. Agarivbie appealed to the state government to provide the organisation with more boats and buses, adding that more persons were still trapped in the affected communities. “We still need more boats and buses to urgently evacuate the flood victims who are still trapped in the various communities,” he said. It will be recalled that the disaster, which occurred on September 24 in some communities across the state, destroyed residential homes and rendered hundreds of people homeless. The affected communities included Oko-Amakom, Oko-Anala, OkoOgbele and Power-line in the Oshimili South Local Government Area of the state. Other communities affected were Aboh, in the Ndokwa East Local Government Area, Benekuku, Ase, Asaba-Ase, and Okpai in Ndokwa East.

1,000 displaced as disaster sacks Rivers communities CHINEDUM EMEANA PORT HARCOURT

M Relief materials being taken by canoe to some affected communities in Edo State.

Lazy readers have no business in governance –Amaechi TERH AGBEDEH

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ivers State Governor Chibuike Amaechi has said those who do not read should have no business in governance. He was speaking through his representative, Dagogo Peterside, who is the Chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Petroleum Downstream at the launch of the book: Here Comes the Commander in Chief written by Mr. Gabriel Akinadewo at Sheraton Hotel, Ikeja, Lagos, yesterday. Akinadewo is the editor of The Nigerian Compass Ne

wspapers. Amaechi said: “Those who don’t read have no business in governance. We have challenges in government in Nigeria today because we don’t have intellectuals in government. Many intellectuals shy away from entering government.” He said that politics is not for those who can’t do well in other areas and that it should be powered by ideas, knowledge and, by extension, governance should be driven by knowledge. “If not, we will remain a Third World nation that we are and will be unable to move to a first world nation. We are endowed, but we are not making progress because our leaders don’t read

and they don’t have anything to do with knowledge. “As a people, we are not going to make progress that way and that is why the contributions of people like Akinadewo and other persons in society, who can afford to generate ideas, ridicule those who keep our commonwealth in their private estate should be celebrated. “We must wake up and begin to hold our leaders accountable. We must begin to question the actions of our leaders who hold power in trust for all of us. It is not their private estate, it is our commonwealth and they must account to all of us. So, Gabriel, you have done very well, we associate with you

and we will always be proud to associate with you,” the governor said, adding: Akinadewo is part of the last generation of real scholars in journalism, an outstanding scholar and that if he were in the academia he would have been a professor.” Before Amaechi’s speech, Akogun Tola Adeniyi gave the keynote address, which he titled: “The Journalist as Writer.” Editor of The Guardian, Debo Adesina, gave a succinct review of the book and the 80-year-old Ayo Adebanjo lamented the depths journalism in Nigeria has sank to from its glory days of the June 12 struggle by the National Democratic Coalition (NADECO).

any communities have been submerged by flood in Rivers State as over 1,000 residents vacated their homes. The flooding was caused by the overflowing of Orashi River. Communities most hit are those in Mbiama, Akinima local governments and four others in Joinkrama council. All the communities in Ahoada-West Local Government Area were also hit. Ndoni in Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni Local Government was also over-run by the flood yesterday. During a visit to some of the affected communities in Ahoada West Local Government Area yesterday morning, farmers were seen hurriedly harvesting their cassava and yams, apparently to prevent the crops from being lost to the disaster. Residents were also seen vacating their homes to avoid being caught up in the surging flood. Meanwhile, Governor

Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi has promised to visit the affected communities tomorrow to assess the situation. The governor made the promise when he received members of the Senate Committee on Environment and Ecology who visited the oil spill sites in the state. Reacting to the disaster, the state Commissioner for the Environment, Dr. Nyema Weli, urged the authorities of the affected local governments to officially notify the state government. Weli said: “I have asked the Permanent Secretary why nothing was heard about the flood in communities in AhoadaWest Local Government Area. As we were coming to this place, I was wondering where people are staying since water have taken over their houses. I am not aware of this situation before now.” He promised to meet with the local government chairmen and representatives of the state House of Assembly so as to find solution to the challenge.


12

North

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

FRSC officer, wife, two kids, die in auto crash

• Seven others too PRISCILLA DENNIS MINNA

T

ragedy struck yesterday in Niger State when 11 peole died in an auto crash involving a commercial vehicle and a truck at Farin-Doki Junction on the Minna -Suleja Road. Those who died in the accident included an official of the Federal Road Safety Commission, FRSC, Paul Jacob, his wife and

two children. Jacob was newly transferred to the New Wuse FRSC Command. It was learnt that the accident occurred at the junction when the truck ran into the commercial vehicle conveying passengers from Minna to Suleja. It crushed the vehicle and 11 of the passengers. It was also learnt that while the 11 people died on the spot, two of the passengers survived and are

currently receiving medical attention at the Paikoro General Hospital. A breakdown of the number of those who died shows five male, three female and three children made up of two girls and a boy. Confirming the incident, the state FRSC Sector Commander, David Usman, said the official of the commission, who died in the accident, was recently posted to the New Wuse Command but went to Minna to pick his wife,

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Tapgun, Sango, others return to PDP in Plateau

who had just given birth to their second child. He said: “Paul Jacob was our staff and among the 11 that died. He came to Minna to pick his wife and children to his new place of posting when the accident happened.” Usman added that immediately the accident occurred, it was reported at the Farin-Doki police out post while the survivors were taken to the Paikoro Police Station from there they were rushed to the hospital.

F

ormer Plateau State Governor, Fidelis Tapgun, and former Sports Minister, Damishi Sango yesterday returned to the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, after walking out of the party two years ago. The two men were among 50 former top shots of the PDP that left the party, when they failed to secure its ticket to contest the governorship poll last year. Tapgun and Sango, according to the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, initially joined the Labour Party, LP, but moved again to the All Nigeria Peoples Party, ANPP, when Governor Jonah Jang’s then deputy, Mrs. Pauline Tallen, grabbed the LP ticket. Sango, in a speech in Jos, where he was received by Jang and the PDP state Chairman, Haruna Dabin, said he had remained a troubled man throughout his days outside the PDP. He said: “My conscience has kept pricking

me and now that I am back to the fold, I shall have some peace of mind.’’ Sango said he was returning to the PDP with a lot of his supporters, including his deputy governorship candidate in the 2011 general elections and former Speaker, Plateau State House of Assembly, Mike Dapialong, and another former Speaker, Mr. George Daika. He called on others like him, who left the PDP last year, to return to the fold and build a strong and united front. Receiving the members, Jang advised them to strive to be assets to the fold, noting that the PDP was a strong force that could not be pushed away. The governor enjoined them to go back to their constituencies and do a formal registration as members of the party, and warned them against causing any trouble to the party. He said: “You should try to contribute to the success of the party at all levels.’’

UITH promotes routine check-up to reduce health

T Intending pilgrims boarding a plane to Saudi Arabia for the 2012 Hajj at Yola International Airport, yesterday.

PHOTO: NAN

Flood: Beware of killer pythons, NIWA warns Lokoja residents

T

he National Inland Waterways Authority, NIWA, has called the attention of the residents of Lokoja in Kogi State to the presence of big pythons in communities along the bank of the River Niger. In a newsletter issued in Lokoja yesterday, the organisation said that large pythons and other dangerous reptiles had been washed off the bank of the river, following the recent flooding disaster in some parts of the state. “In fact, large pythons have already been washed off the banks of River Niger following the flooding,’’ the organisation said. NIWA said it based its

warnings on what environmentalists and marine experts said. It warned people affected by the flooding to be careful in their attempt to recover their homes and personal effects, washed away by the flood. To drive home its warning, NIWA attached a picture of one large python, killed at the bank of the river by some of its officials. The warning came at a time when it became noticeable that flood was receding and people were going back to their submerged houses to recover their property. It was, however, learnt that some of the victims were apprehensive that

pythons and other dan- cue team, comprising Nagerous reptiles might tional Emergency Manhave found new abodes in agement Agency, NEMA, Red Cross, Kogi State their houses. In Kpat, Adankolo, Ga- Emergency Management dumo, Kabawa and oth- Agency, KOSEMA, and er affected areas, some officials of the Kogi State residents confirmed the Ministry of Environment influx of pythons, croco- to rescue flood victims at diles, snakes and other Ibaji. reptiles in the communities. In the newsletter, NIWA also disclosed that it provided seven boats, jackets and other materials that were deployed for the rescue of trapped flood victims at Ibaji Local Government Area and other parts of the state. The newsletter said the Managing Director of NIWA, Alhaji Aminu Yar‘dua, joined the res- Kogi State Governor, Idris Wada

he University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital, UITH, said it would continue to reduce health cost by promoting the culture of routine medical check-up in the state. A Consultant Gynaecologist at the hospital, Prof. Abdulwahab Johnson, said this yesterday in Ilorin while speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria NAN. Johnson explained that the rising cost of health was one of the major hindrances facing Nigerians. He said: “Cost is a consideration and I believe that the University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital and public-spirited individuals like Yusuf Ali, who donated the Advance Trauma Centre to the hospital, are doing everything to reduce cost. “The cost will be nothing compared to what would be charged when you go abroad for equivalent tests.’’ According to him, the culture of check-up is desirable, but uncommon in

Nigeria owing to the absence of necessary facilities in most of the hospitals in the country. Johnson noted that providing necessary facilities in hospitals and reducing cost would encourage the culture of routine checkup among Nigerians. He said: “Not everybody has the means of jumping into the next jet to fly to Harley Street, to New York or other cities abroad to check the essentials. “But even then it must be said and loudly too that there are still things we can do here like checking your blood pressure, blood sugar and for people at risks there are certain parameters in the blood.”. Johnson also said cervical cancer in women as well as prostatic cancer and blood cancer in men were also areas of concern requiring check-up. He said there were risk factors such as family history that would require frequent check-up for Mammogram and other investigations.


Wednesday, October 3, 2012

We’ve made giant strides, giant mistakes, says Okorotie

14

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13

Politics

Power reform: The untold story of Nnaji’s resignation

15

Tinubu, ACN leaders storm Ondo for Akeredolu COUNTDOWN TO

ONDO GUBER POLL October 20, 2012

17

DAYS TO GO

OJO OYEWAMIDE AKURE

F

ormer Lagos State governor and national leader of the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, yesterday urged Ondo State citizens to vote for Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN), the party’s candidate in the October 20 governorship election in the state. He said Governor Olusegun Mimiko had not done anything meaningful for the people of the state in the last three years to deserve a second term in office. Tinubu spoke at a rally in Ikare-Akoko, where other leaders of the party, including its National Chairman, Bisi Akande; Osun State Governor, Rauf Aregbesola; former governor of Ogun State, Olusegun Osoba and Ekiti State Governor, Kayode Fayemi, drummed support for Akeredolu. Tinubu said: “Today, you have seen our candidate. You have seen someone

who called himself Olusegun Mimiko. The judgement of God has come. This is a vote for the liberation of the Yoruba race. “We don’t say anybody should not stay alone in the bush. This Iroko (Mimiko) will live alone in the bush. I urge you to sweep away poverty, sweep away hunger, and sweep away lack of water.” Recalling how he assisted Mimiko to retrieve his mandate in 2009, Tinubu said: “Four years ago, Iroko came to me weeping. He came with two of my brothers, rolling on the ground. He begged us to rescue him. “We don’t like the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). They just stole our votes then. We said no. Yoruba will not allow that. We are not betrayers. We fought the battle. Aregbesola was fighting his own. We fought in Ekiti, Edo and Ogun. “I gave Mimiko money and everything that he needed to fight the battle. We took his case overseas. The white people collected money from us. Do you think white men will do anything for free? But he is now saying that we did nothing for him. When he was afraid to come to Ondo State, we gave him a bullet-proof car. The Holy Bible says in Psalm 17 verse 13 that if you reward good with evil, evil will not depart from your house. I

want you to use your votes to judge the case.” The former governor berated Mimiko over his disposition to the idea of the Yoruba integration agenda, saying: “He wants to remove the people of Ondo State from Afenifere. “Look at how Lagos has been developed. If we come together, we can build a refinery. The refinery can produce hundreds of thousands of jobs. You must liberate yourselves.” While warning the police against partisanship, Tinubu added that members of ACN in Ondo State were being arrested and detained indiscriminately.

He said: “I salute you policemen, but you should be careful. Stop being partisan; I know that some of you are good. I am from a police family and I don’t want to denigrate you. You have been arresting and detaining members of our party. Don’t force us to react. When you force us to react, it will be suicidal. “When you are being paid from our consolidated account, we will not tolerate the indiscriminate arrest and detention of our members any longer. We have a peaceful rally here today. After we leave, we don’t want to hear about any negative story.”

Osoba, said: “Our party took its root from Chief Obafemi Awolowo. When ‘Demo Party’ rigged election in 2003, only Lagos survived. We stood as warriors and took back Ekiti, Osun, Oyo, Ogun and Edo.” At the rally, Aregbesola said: “This Iroko will wither away. “On poll day, wake up early. Let our mothers wake up early. Cook for your household. After that, take your bath and dress well. Prepare to face the electoral marauders. You men, prepare for the electoral duty. “After voting, you women can go, but men should wait behind. Give your bloc

L-R: National Chairman, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Bamanga Tukur; Vice-President Namadi Sambo and PDP gubernatorial candidate, Olusola Oke, at the presidential flag-off rally for the PDP candidate in Akure, yesterday.

Sambo, PDP leaders solicit support for Oke HAKEEM GBADAMOSI AKURE

M

embers and supporters of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ondo State yesterday defied the heavy down pour in the capital city, Akure to welcome Vice-President Namadi Sambo and other leaders of the party who stormed the state capital for the presidential flag-off campaign for the October 20 governorship election in the state. All the leaders of the

party who attended the rally solicited support for the party’s candidate, Olusola Oke, with a promise to make Ondo region its unshine again Speaking at the rally, the Vice President, Sambo called for the people’s support and urged them to deliver the state to the party in the election. Sambo assured the people of the state of peaceful election that will be free of rancour saying: “The President believes in one man, one vote, a free and fair election like the one we ex-

vote to ACN. Hew the Iroko tree. “Mimiko cannot enjoy second term because he is an advocate of one term in office.” Akeredolu noted that “Mimiko prayed for one term for Adefarati. It was answered. He prayed for one term for Agagu, it was answered. Now, we are praying that he should only spend one term. The prayer will be answered.” He said women and youth development would be one of his cardinal programmes, assuring that he would definitely provide 30,000 jobs for youths in the state.

perienced in Edo State and I assure you this election will not be an exception.” The National Chairman of the party, Bamanga Tukur said he was impressed with the people’s turnout despite the down pour, adding that one of his promises when he assumed office was to bring back into the fold, all aggrieved members of the party, adding that with the return of aggrieved members of PDP in the Sunshine State, the party has exhibited its willingness to takeover of the state in the October 20

governorship election. His words: “Ondo State people are fighters, fighters of freedom and fighters of their rights, even the rain could not hinder them for giving support to our candidate. It shows no obstacles can hamper Oke’s success in this election.” Former governor of Osun State and the National Secretary of the PDP, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola, assured the people of the state that Oke will bring back the good days, promising that the party’s standard bearer will de-

liver the people of the state from slavery. Assuring that Oke’s administration will be a continuation of Olusegun Agagu’s regime during which democracy dividends were delivered at the doorsteps of the masses, Oyinlola added that many of the projects initiated by Agagu, which have been abandoned by the present administration would be completed. Agagu congratulated the people of the state saying “a new dawn is here again.”

He said: “We are here today to celebrate victory, that same key we used to open door of prosperity is still with us and we are assuring you that the sun will shine again in our state. “All the masses-oriented projects initiated by us will be completed; the Omotosho project, Owena multipurpose dam project, the Olokola free trade zone project and the Akure stadium will all be completed in the first few months of government, if you support us with your votes in this election.”


14

Politics

Chief Thompson Okorotie, a Second Republic Chief Whip in the old Rivers State House of Assembly, believes that the three major tribes in the country have been the problems since independence. He told EMMA GBEMUDU that Nigeria deserves to roll out the drums at 52, because she has achieved a lot. Excerpts:

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

We’ve made giant strides, giant mistakes, says Okorotie to the extent that its rural areas are developed. If we have electricity, housing, water in the rural areas, there won’t be migrations. The migration from rural to urban areas is collapsing urban facilities. There again, it is leadership problem. Another area is tribalism and nepotism. The three big tribes are the major problems to this country. Because for some time, the control of the resources of the country, to the detriment of the other tribes, who are more than 250 in Nigeria, have been in the hands of the three major tribes. Why should only three tribes dominate it because they are at the top of the political class when independence was given by Britain? It is that ripple effect which created lack of confidence of the other tribes in these three.

How would you describe your experience of Nigeria at independence in 1960? At independence in 1960, I remembered vividly that was the year I came to Lagos from my hometown, Ekeremor in Bayelsa State and the euphoria was hilarious. The excitement was such that all of us as young men then knew that independence had come when they were dropping the Union Jack and raising the Nigerian flag. It was a historic moment and then we had cause to believe that with independence, we can now govern ourselves and do certain things that only the expatriates were doing for us. What were you doing at independence? I just finished school, came to Lagos and was searching for a job. What is your take on Nigeria at 52? I would say that the country has made giant strides. She has also made giant mistakes and for the country that is so populous, it is not easy to rule very populous country, especially when it has been difficult over time to develop the right type of leadership, it has not been easy. The major problem of the country has been leadership and the giant strides that we have made show that there is a huge amount of strength that the country has. There is a great deal of manpower that the country has. God has endowed this country with a lot of goodness. The country is also endowed with so many resources; even many of the resources have not scratched the surface. The giant strides are in many directions. The explosion and revolution in education that has expanded the frontiers of our manpower bank, even though the rapid development has lowered the standards, but at independence, we had only the University of Ibadan. Today, we are talking of not less than 40 state-owned universities in Nigeria. The country has also seen the emergence of private universities that are now showing new standards and qualitative education that has posed a challenged to the state and federal universities. Do you think the nation deserves to roll out drums in celebrations? Yes, I believe it deserves to roll out the drums in celebration, for one main reason that it has survived. You liken it to the life of a man; when you are alive, you have cause to thank God and when you are not there, it means God has a purpose for you. We have shown leadership in Africa, we have shown leadership, even in the world. Take peace keeping for instance; it is on record that Nigerian Generals have been favoured to lead peace keeping missions in different parts of the world. We are there at the United Nations. A son of ours, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari, has been Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nation for years. In the area of science, Nigeria ranks among the best in the world. For the first time, God also love this country, it has been under the oppressive environment of the big three tribes. We have produced a minority as President; the first President as a scientist, to have ruled the country. In two years, he is doing his best despite the challenges. We have so many reasons to roll out the drums. What sort of independence do we have as a nation; is it political or economic? I’m told that what we have from the beginning was political independence. That is why our independence is still dependent on developed countries even till now.

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Okorotie

Until there is economic independence, we have not reckoned among the comity of nations in the world. Therefore, the strides towards economic independence that are being undertaken by different governments culminate in what is happening now. For example, in the area of food security, Nigeria has cassava, let that be a major component in our bread. You will want to know the amount of foreign exchange that would be saved from it. These are some of the parameters that would give us economic independence. Something is being done about rice and cocoa. The power sector is being revamped by the Federal Government, if the plan goes very well and if distribution companies’ unbundle plan is successful, you will then see that perhaps, our economic development will make our political independence more real. What do you think is responsible for the nation’s underdevelopment? Underdevelopment is in the eyes of the beholder. There are areas, even, which we are over-developed. If we say underdevelopment alone, I do not agree because in this country, the citizens have a responsibility to have faith in the country and wish the country well. Otherwise, you will be shooting yourself in the foot. But, there is underdevelopment in a number of areas. The factors are not just one. There are several factors. In the rural areas, for an example, we have a local government system that has virtually collapsed. Yet, that is supposed to be the nearest government to the people. The country is developed

THE THREE BIG TRIBES ARE THE MAJOR PROBLEMS TO THIS COUNTRY.

BECAUSE FOR SOME

TIME, THE CONTROL OF THE

RESOURCES OF THE COUNTRY... HAVE BEEN IN THE HANDS OF THE THREE MAJOR TRIBES

Have we utilised our potential as a nation? No, far from it. We have not utilised our potential or we have not achieved our potential. But, the potential are what we can become. It is in the future. You can’t utilise them; you can only achieve them. What do we do to get there? I said earlier that a lot of our natural resources are still untapped. I refer to coffee. This is because of military incursion into governance, instead of minding their professional duty of securing the territorial integrity of Nigeria. That has been one of the problems of country. When there is democracy, there is development; the worst democracy is better than the best military administration. When the military left and the civilian came in, because they do not know when the military will strike again, they tend to amass wealth. Even though it is not a normal thing to do, but it is because of the type of people we have been producing. Before independence, it was the British colonial administration, the British was developing their country from our resources. They were developing their country while the agitation was ongoing. They were running the Queen’s government in Nigeria. There is even no need to talk about them. They came mainly to look for resources and that was why you see the UAC group. They had this Bible on one hand and they had the economic instrument on the other hand. So, they were mainly interested in making sure that they pillage our resources. That was why some monarchs like King Jaja of Opobo, King Numa of Itsekiri were taken away by the British. What was security like in Nigeria at independence? Security is a very big problem in the country today. It is the number one challenge that government has. The other is religious fanaticism. So, security has become a problem now because tolerance at some point seems to have gone on leave. Tolerance from both Christians and Muslims in some parts of this country has taken flight that it is seem to be only a Nigerian way. It is a big problem and security has become complicated. It is ignorance that causes some of these security problems. For someone to say that western education is a curse, is worrisome. Security before and at independence, you know our population then. It was quite small, it has grown so much. If there is no corresponding improvement in the training and retraining and the equipment of security forces, then there will be a disconnect. Security is at its worst ebb now, but in the last few months things are getting better. Oil has become the mainstay of the economy unlike in the past when agriculture served as the backbone of the economy. How do you view this development? It is part of the leadership problem that we have had. We should look inwards and develop our resources and add value to them. We allow our natural resources to be exported in a raw form. Palm oil for example was taken from here to Malaysia and Malaysia is today one of the strongest economies in the world.


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Politics

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

15

Nigeria needs responsible leaders – Danmusa Abubakar Mamman Danmusa was Second Republic Deputy Senate President, Speaker of the defunct Kaduna State House of Assembly, a chieftain of the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), and a legal practitioner. It was during his tenure that Balarabe Musa was impeached as governor of Kaduna State; he also spearheaded a students’ riot in his early days which made the then Emir of Katsina expel him from the state. He speaks with JAMES DANJUMA on Nigeria’s independence anniversary among several issues. Excerpts: What was your experience like in 1960 when Nigeria got her independence and thereafter? In 1960, I was in my second year at the Teachers’ College, as a student and really, it was a very exciting moment. As a student, I was excited that our people will be taking over from the British. So, in those days, our core values were intact and it was a very colourful and responsible celebration. Everybody was happy that the British were gone. That was a golden age for Nigerians when things were going very well; whether one likes it or not, our problems started with the military coup of January 15, 1966. Even at independence, there were several problems, like the former West where there was the Action Group crisis which started at the Jos Action Group convention which led to the declaration of a state of emergency and appointment of an administrator in the person of Dr. Adekoyejo Majekodunmi. So, during those days, there was so much violence as people’s properties were destroyed and some people were set ablaze. Then, the former West was called the Wild Wild West. In addition, there was this Tiv riot problem in the central part of Nigeria. So, those were the problems confronting Nigeria at the time. It was not surprising though as a newly independent country. Some disgruntled elements of Igbo extraction took advantage of the situation and staged a coup. This culminated into a civil war because many high military officers from the North were killed and there was another counter coup on July 29, 1966 when Theophilus Danjuma was a Major. After the civil war, there was reconstruction, reconciliation and so on going on; there were institutions that were functioning very well; education, go to universities like ABU, Ife, Nsukka, they were compared with any university in the world. But because of the military administration and their not being accountable to anyone, many young military officers found themselves in positions they were not ready for. So, corruption escalated and this brought us to where we are today. I compare where we are today with the situation the Brazilian people found themselves in South America in the early 60s and 70s. It was not a surprise for the country to have a coup every month; they were so unstable and the military was engaged in corruption. So, what we are seeing now should not make us lose hope as its developmental stages which we are passing through. What is important, really for me, is to try and have ordinary people to become organised and to have responsible leadership in politics. With responsible leadership, the most important thing is to reorient the feeling and behaviour of the people, for the people to imbibe the culture of discipline, hard work and perseverance. If you establish this, then you come to the issue of qualitative education. So, it will not be out of place to vote substantial sums of money to send the brightest

ance but my conscience said I should not take the money, so I returned the money to the treasury and I got my receipt. People elected me, I did not give them a kobo; I have no right to take this money when they are still drinking water from the pond like cattle. What do you think is responsible for the state of underdevelopment in the country? Leadership; no quality leadership. For example, when the federation of Malaysia and Singapore broke up, Lee Kuan Yee became the prime minister of Singapore. Singapore had no resources, but they had a good leader; with a good leader and a vision, with able lieutenants, he was able to transform Singapore to a modern society that it is today. So, we can still do the same; hope is not lost, but you have to have a visionary leader, responsible, tested and who is ready to takeover, not who is imposed; not a person who has never thought of becoming a president or a governor, but he was imposed. So, you see, he had no vision of how to go about it. But if you have that vision, you assemble talented people who would help you.

Danmusa

students abroad to get qualitative education in key areas. These children, if they come back, would be the foundation of modern Nigeria because they acquired necessary education and skills; this is what happened in China. Is there much difference in the country’s leadership today with what we had at independence? It’s like comparing a very small spring with an ocean. Can it be compared? Now, there is so much impunity, almost all our institutions have been destroyed. And what the leadership care for is selfish interest. Not to talk of the First Republic where their concern was not money. There are very few here in the North, one or two ministers, who were in government and also are starting to do business. But they are in the minority. They devoted themselves to serving their people that is why with meagre resources, they were able to establish so many institutions which are still our pride; ABU, textile industries, roads, and what have you. Even the Second Republic which was accused of corruption, you just cannot compare it with what is obtainable today. Because as a Speaker, I was only being paid N1,000 monthly as salary. When I was there, they passed a law for constituency allowance. I was paid the allow-

SPEAKER, I WAS ONLY BEING PAID N1,000 MONTHLY AS SALARY... I WAS PAID AS A

THE ALLOWANCE BUT MY

I SHOULD NOT TAKE THE MONEY, SO I

CONSCIENCE SAID

RETURNED THE MONEY TO THE TREASURY AND RECEIPT

I GOT MY

How about the security situation? First and foremost, you have to do justice to all manner of people. You must have responsible leadership that cares for the well-being of the people. Not somebody who accumulates the wealth of the people. Also, there is need for the reorientation of the people, because we are so disoriented; people believe that through easy money, you can be rich. Yes, you may be rich, but you cannot be productive and you cannot be making much impact on society with your easy money. Now, those privileged do not seem to care about anybody; there is hate, bitterness among even brothers. Once we can return the core values, and when you have a leader with a vision, certainly our problems will be addressed. What we are going through is a temporary self-imposed problem. Some people are saying it is America that is trying to destabilise Nigeria so that they can fulfil their statement that the country will disintegrate by 2015. It’s because they know most of us are not thinking people. They are not God, they were British colonies, but they revolted and they are the USA of today; so why not us? Let us reject what they say, and begin again. But the important issues are responsible leadership and justice, which are now lacking. And I think it is very important for us to be conscious of the way youths are out of jobs. Looking at the federal structure in the country, would you say there is need for the system to be corrected? For me, I support going back to the parliamentary system; it’s easier and it’s very cheap. If a leader misbehaves, it’s not a long process before he is removed in the parliamentary system; it’s only a vote of no confidence that is passed by parliament and he is removed. So also, the number of members would drastically be reduced. So, if there is the way to serve the people, to move the country forward, the amount of money you are going to save would help in salvaging this country. Do you see Nigeria remaining one with the quest for autonomy by the various components? Well, individuals or tribes or ethnic nationalities are free to express their desire; it’s a democracy. I think what they are doing is akin to what was obtainable in the First Republic. They had regional governments with their own flags, and what have you. So, it is not a secession bid to me, so to say, but you know always there are some opportunists who would use the opportunity to create problem like this person from Ogoni; he alone declared Ogoni land as an independent part of Nigeria. You know, that is stupid, because in places where people do this, they ought to be an armed organised gang who are ready to assert themselves, but in this type of situation there is none.


16

Editorial

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

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

T

STEVE AYORINDE

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MD/EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

YELE AKINROLABU

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ED OPERATIONS

SEYI FASUGBA

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DAILY EDITOR

BOLAJI TUNJI

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SUNDAY EDITOR

GBEMI OLUJOBI

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SATURDAY EDITOR

LANRE OYETADE

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GENERAL EDITOR

DOZIE OKEBALAMA

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COORDINATOR, EDITORIAL BOARD

ADESOYE ADEKOYA

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CONTROLLER, PRODUCTION

CALLISTUS OKE

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EDITORIAL PAGE EDITOR

ISE-OLUWA IGE

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ABUJA BUREAU CHIEF

KAYODE BALOGUN JNR

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SM, STRATEGIC DEVELOPMENT

FRANK OBOH

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HEAD, GRAPHICS

Delayed justice and buck-passing by CJN

he Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Aloma Mariam Mukhtar, recently challenged the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Mohammed Adoke, to demonstrate the political will to prosecute high profile cases in the country. Speaking recently at the occasion that marked the commencement of the 2012/13 legal year, which also witnessed the inauguration of 125 new Senior Advocates of Nigeria (SANs) at the nation’s Supreme Court in Abuja, Mukhtar, in addition, advised state governors to stop treating the judiciary as an appendage of the executive arm of government. It seems obvious that the CJN’s public buck-passing was in response to the barrage of criticisms trailing the judiciary as the main culprit in the protracted delay and lethargy that have become the hallmarks of the prosecution of graft and high profile cases. The CJN said the “Constitution provides that the Office of the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, as the Chief Law Officer of the Federation, has the power to institute, undertake, take over, continue or discontinue criminal proceedings before the courts of law in Nigeria in respect of offences created under the Act of the National Assembly. It therefore follows that the court cannot on its own prosecute criminal cases; there must be willingness of all prosecuting agencies to prosecute cases brought before

our courts, especially high profile cases of corruption and all others”. She added that the large number of cases awaiting trial, in addition to some other embarrassing trends associated with the nation’s criminal justice system should be blamed on all the operators in the system and not just on the courts alone. The foregoing revelations couldn’t have come at a better time. Nigerians have repeatedly and in unambiguous terms, expressed their disgust, frustration and disappointment at the pace and manner the Federal Government and the judiciary handle sensitive high profile cases in the country. Politicians and high ranking public officers accused of large scale corruption and stealing of public funds have turned the country’s courts to their sanctuaries. At best, the country has experienced a very poor record of successful prosecution of high profile cases by the courts. The routine ritual remains the levying of accusations against suspects, arraignments, pleadings and applications for bail, and then the cases are adjourned sine die; followed by natural death. Foreign countries, especially the United Kingdom and the United States, seem to have shown more interest in apprehending and bringing to book thieving Nigerian public officials. On several occasions while she was still in office, for instance, the former Chairman of the Econom-

THE JUDICIARY HAS REMAINED CASTRATED AND CAN SCARCELY COME OUT WITH ANY COURAGEOUS JUDGMENT THAT CAN REALLY DETER PUBLIC SECTOR THIEVES ic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mrs. Farida waziri, expressed her frustration at the slow pace of dispensing justice at the courts. It is for the same reason that many Nigerians support the establishment of special courts to fast-track the prosecution of high profile corruption cases especially. Incidentally, such calls seem not impressive to the Mukhtar-led judiciary. There is really the need to weep for the Nigerian judiciary and, indeed, the executive arm of government led by President Goodluck Jonathan over the glaring rot in the country’s justice delivery system. Although the President appeared committed to taming corrupt practices, and had voiced his support for special courts to handle high profile cases of corruption and other crimes, there seems a paradoxical disconnect between the presidential zeal and

the conduct of the Office of the AGF and Minister of Justice. Not long ago, some suspects docked by the EFCC over the N1.07 trillion fuel subsidy frauds were let off the hook, reportedly based on shoddy investigations and orders from the AGF’s office. It is quite worrisome that despite the FG’s grandstanding on its anti-graft campaign, the judiciary has remained castrated and can scarcely come out with any courageous judgment that can really deter public sector thieves. The unimpressive performance of the FG and the judiciary, beyond buck-passing, has turned the justice delivery system in the country to a laughing stock before the international community. The verdict of a recent United States’ “Department of State Country Report” on Nigeria placed its finger on the problem when it said: “There was a widespread perception that judges were easily bribed and that litigants could not rely on the courts to render impartial judgments. Citizens encountered long delays and alleged requests from judicial officials for bribes to expedite cases or obtain favourable rulings.” Out of the 46,000 inmates whom officials said were in Nigerian prisons about three years ago, 30,000 were said to be awaiting trial while only 16,000 were convicted. The trend has not changed till date. When will the FG initiate the required measures direly needed to overcome these challenges?

ON THIS DAY October 3, 2008

October 3, 1995

The Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 for the United States’ financial system was signed by President George Bush. The Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 is a law enacted in response to the subprime mortgage crisis authorizing the United States Secretary of the Treasury to spend up to $700 billion to purchase distressed assets, especially mortgage-backed securities, and supply cash directly to US banks.

O. J. Simpson was acquitted of the murders of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman. Orenthal James “O. J.” Simpson (born July 9, 1947), nicknamed “The Juice”, is a retired American college track athlete, college and professional football player. After retiring from professional football, Simpson had a successful career as a football broadcaster and actor. In 1995, he was acquitted of the murder of Nicole Brown Simpson, his second estranged wife and her friend, Ronald Goldman.

October 3, 1990 Re-unification of Germany: The German reunification was the process in 1990 in which the German Democratic Republic (GDR/East Germany) joined the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG/West Germany), and when Berlin reunited into a single city, as provided by its then Grundgesetz Constitution, Article 23. East German citizens became part of the European Community, which later became the European Union.


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Views

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

17

Re: A case against unicameral legislature PUBLIC DOMAIN

DELE

SETEOLU

deleseteolu@nationalmirroronline.net (08033137577 SMS only)

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had written for the abolition of bicameral legislature and adoption of unicameral legislative system in this column of 5th September edition of this newspaper. I had argued that the bicameral legislature increased the cost of government, aided proliferation of state institutions and promoted inefficient legislation. My article elicited the reaction of a respected colleague on the Editorial Board of this newspaper, Mr. Callistus Oke. In his column of the 10th of last month he tried to establish the thesis that the patronage system was the major bane of Nigeria’s presidential system. Mr. Oke averred that the bi-cameral legislature is a common and important feature of federalism. He argued that a federation must necessarily have a bicameral legislature and insisted that the idea of a second legislative chamber was to make it a restraining voice against the exuberance of a youthful lower house. He submitted that the substance and vision of government rather than its structure, determines its cost. The bicameral legislature is not necessarily a feature of a federal system. The defin-

ing principles of the federal system are the division of power between the centre and federating units, the co-ordinate status of the centre and units, and the importance of arbiter located in the judicial organ to mediate disputes on the exercise of their constitutional powers. In other words, a federation may choose a unicameral legislature to reflect its historical experience, political reality, and economic strength. To this extent, the Nigerian federation may choose to abandon the bi-cameral for unicameral legislative system. It is imperative to note that the British political system runs a bicameral legislature despite its unitary political arrangement. The British historical specificities had informed the choice of bicameral legislature. The House of Representatives in Nigeria has been more progressive than exuberant. The lower chamber has been more outspoken than the Senate on critical national issues. The Senate has shown conservative character and more amenable to the influence of the Presidency. We cannot deny that there are professionals, distinguished characters in the House of Representatives. Nigerians have been exposed to healthy and quality debates in the House. The minority parties, especially the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), has been articulate, eloquent and provides quality alternative views. The reference to John Dickinson on the weight of property suggests the essentially materialist character of the Senate. The Nigerian Senate is largely populated by compradors and cronies of the state who are often reluctant to challenge the state actors

THE SUBSTANCE AND STRUCTURE OF A POLITICAL SYSTEM SHOULD BE UNDERSTOOD IN A MUTUALLY REINFORCING SENSE in the executive organ. I do not understand the attraction of equal representation in Senate, which is not hinged on the effective involvement of the populace in the senatorial districts. The senatorial districts are often large to the extent that representation and participation of the people is hindered. The senators are rarely known to build senatorial offices, and are often elected on the basis of minority votes. Besides, the National Assembly has passed more motions than bills; this can be partly explained in terms of the delays that are linked to bicameral legislature. We need a unicameral legislature with fuller size to expeditiously deal with the country’s developmental challenges. It is problematic to differentiate the substance and structure of a political system. In fact, it is superfluous to differentiate substance and structure. The substance and structure of a political system should be understood in a mutually reinforcing sense. The structure of a political system will necessarily reflect on its substance. The structure and substance are therefore, critical to

assessing the social or political cost of a political system. I canvassed for unicameral legislature in the context of the imperative of alternative ideas on how to manage the country’s political economy. The argument for a unicameral legislature does not pretend to address other national issues. The size and quality of Nigeria’s bureaucracy, the settler and indigeneship question, state creation, the nature of local government system, security question, fiscal federalism and the character of political system should be understood and evaluated in the context of Nigeria’s national question. We chose to emphasize the political system to highlight its dynamics and implications for Nigeria’s political economy. I did not argue for unicameral legislature against the backdrop of the high cost of governance. I had differentiated between the cost of government and governance. The bicameral legislature increases the cost of government. Governance should be understood in terms of power relations among state actors or locus of power and the capacity to expropriate and appropriate state resources to offset deficits in health, education, social infrastructure, etc. Governance deficit in Nigeria therefore, are evident in the collapse of health institutions, moribund nature of schools, poor and dilapidated road and rail systems, increasing violence, killing, bombing and kidnapping, food shortage and energy crisis than the size and financial cost of the three organs of government.

The limit of freedom of expression NA-ALLAH MOHAMMED ZAGGA Continued from last week

I

n December 1992, the demolition of Babri Mosque in India by Hindu fanatics resulted in sectarian violence that claimed more than two thousand lives in major Indian cities such as Mumbai, Delhi and Hyderabad. The location of the mosque on a site the Hindu said their god (Rama) lies buried for more than 400 years was provocative. Despite appeals by government to the Hindus to let the subsisting court case on the issue be determined, they ignored the advice and destroyed the mosque. Such is the consequence of letting the flames of hatred overwhelm reason. Between 2010 and 2011, Pastor Terry Jones caused tension and riots in the US when he threatened to publicly burn copies of the Holy Qur’an. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, the Vatican and the commander of the U.S. Forces in Afghanistan, General David Peatreus, had all appealed to him to retreat from his action. General Paetreus particularly warned the Pastor that his action could put American troops in harm’s way. When Jones called off his threat, the whole world heaved a sigh of relief. In November 1995, a young Jewish extremist, Yigal Amir, assassinated the former Israeli Prime Minister, Yitzhak Rabin for making peace with the Palestinians under the 1993 Oslo Accord. One Jewish fanatic was quoted as saying that Rabin’s death as a Jew was unfortunate, but his death as the

PROTESTS SHOULD BE LED BY RESPONSIBLE LEADERS SO THAT SUCH PEACEFUL DEMONSTRATIONS ARE NOT HIJACKED BY HOODLUMS TO LOOT AND KILL “friend of our enemy is welcomed.” Intolerance either in the form of religion, race, nationality, ethnicity or ideology is a harmful force. There are, however, cases where violent reactions erupted from the actions of individuals acting innocently or ignorantly without necessarily meaning any harm. A case in point was that of Miss Isioma Daniel at ThisDay newspaper. She sparked off Muslim protests when she wrote on her entertainment page that Prophet Muhammad would have chosen a wife from the beautiful women who came to Nigeria in 2002 to participate in the Miss World Beauty pageant. She probably thought of spicing her page with humour, but little did she realize that she was walking through a minefield. Her comments led to the burning of Kaduna office of ThisDay. The publisher, Nduka Obaigbena, moved swiftly to contain the crisis. He wrote a well-worded editorial apologizing to Muslim readers and

that his newspaper meant no disrespect to any group of believers. She was forced to go into exile to protect her life. Her seeming insensitivity could stem from naivety Miss Isioma’s issue is, however, remarkably different from Sam Bacile. While Isioma was a victim of poor judgement that of Bacile was that of deliberate mischief and provocation. His purpose clearly was to push the adrenaline of Muslims to violent levels. Unlike Miss Daniel, who was too young to appreciate the fact that she was fiddling with a bomb in her hands, Bacile’s mission was intended to make Muslims fly off the handle. Unfortunately, but not unexpectedly, he had achieved the objective of provoking Muslim anger. What is the worth of the film on Prophet Muhammad considering the needless death and destruction it had caused in its wake, including the tragic death Mr. Stevens? He had only provided the pretext for other people with different agenda to unleash terror on innocent people, who never offended them. The 2002 Miss World contest would have proceeded smoothly but for the unfortunate error committed by Miss Daniel. In fact, the event was abruptly cancelled as a result of her tactless comments. But then how do you justify the action of miscreants that hijacked the peaceful protests to loot and kill? The Prophet Muhammad would not have been pleased with looting in his name. When leaders organize peaceful protests, which are legitimate, it is almost always difficult to control the behavior of their followers or the outcome. In the wake of the 2006

cartoon riots, Igbo shops were looted and churches set ablaze, even when Christian leaders never supported the blaspheme against Muhammad. Why should the offence committed by an extremist in Denmark be visited on innocent people in Nigeria? There are millions of Christians who never derive any joy from the defamation of the memory of Muhammad. Therefore, protests should be led by responsible leaders so that such peaceful demonstrations are not hijacked by hoodlums to loot and kill. There is always the danger of ruffians infiltrating the ranks of peaceful demonstrators, especially in countries like Nigeria with its high level volatility. It is, however, a big relief that the federal and northern state governments had moved fast enough to stem demonstrations in the country in the wake of the latest blaspheme controversy, which originated from America. We should not let the misguided actions of renegade elements elsewhere set us against each other Concluded Zagga, muhazagga@yahoo.com, a writer on current issues, is an Abujabased journalist 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.


18

Mail Mirror

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Take care of Nigeria’s flag designer

N

igeria is not good to Pa Akinkumi, the man who designed the green-whitegreen Nigerian flag. I

was shocked to read in the National Mirror of October 1 that the man is living in squalor in his house tucked somewhere

in Ibadan. I wish the man lives long to enjoy the fruits of his labour, but I’m sure the government will be running to take

What Jimoh Ibrahim’s critics must know

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want to hail our vibrant senators for taking the bull by the horn and calling on President Jonathan to appeal the judgement on Bakassi. With this effort, the senators have given us hope that they care and are ready to protect the good people and territorial integrity of Nigeria. Naturally, Bakassi people are our blood brothers, why should we ‘sell’ them to another

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W

Kudos, Gov Fashola

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Anyim, respect State of Osun

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f the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Anyim Pius Anyim does not like the change in name, he should take the government and people of The State of Osun to court to reverse it. He (Anyim) should stop being jealous and face reality and respect the wish of the people of The State of the Living Spring. He should go to court to challenge it and stop pepper soup joint talks. In the alternative, can advise his state governor to go the way of Osun. Oranmiyan Omoluabi, kare re! Hon. Dipo Okeyomi, Osogbo, Osun state

Johnson Kayode Olaniyi, Ibadan, Oyo state

country? God bless the Senate for doing what is right to us. The Senators, by this act have proven to us that our votes for them are not wasted. We want to re-possess our land before appealing. We love Bakassi our land and our people because they are our brothers. Emmanuel Thony, Port Harcourt, Rivers State

…Still on Bakassi

Barr Rex Onobrakpeya, Lagos

Ridwan Ishola, Surulere,

can appreciate it?

Repossess Bakassi now!

am amazed at the level of criticism of Barrister Jimoh Ibrahim, a young man with so much energy and foresight who took the bull by the horn to thread even where angels feared to thread. I worked closely with him when we had our chambers on Akowonjo Road in Lagos and made a success of all we did together. I just think it is the Nigerian syndrome of pull him down.

irst of all, I give thanks to almighty God for presenting our governor Babatunde Raji Fashola (SAN) as a special gift to us here in Lagos and also in the world. I read the story in your newspaper where he sponsored and trained students on vocational courses during the long vacation. As the saying goes, devil finds work for idle hands. He has done absolutely well in his office. With these encouraging words of mine, I will also like to say a big thank you and Jazakum Laahu Khaira (Amen). May Allahu bless him and his family as well.

care of his burial expenses if the old man should pass on now. Why can’t the government take care of him now that he

INSEPARABLE: The drumer and his talking drum

PHOTO: BAYOOR EWUOSO

Our forgotten heroes

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read the article titled: The lamentation of Nigeria’s flag designer in your October 1 edition and I will like to re-title it as: Pa Akinkunmi; The most forgotten Nigerian hero. His case is a direct reflection of the fact that the Labour of our past heroes are already in vain. Pa Akinkunmi and the man that composed

our National Anthem are legends and heroes and should have been recognized as reflection of our valued national icons. While they still live, they truly deserve national awards and social care, ranging from financial to psychological interventions at their old age. Also naming streets and other statutory structures after

them can never be out of place. Please, I sincerely join my voice with other well meaning Nigerians to solicit to both Mr. President and Pa Akinkunmi’s state governor to intervene in his condition in ensuring that he truly reflects the value icon that our National Flag depicts. Ikumokonu John, Asaba Delta State

Again, Reps reject 2013 budget from President

T

he article where the reps members are threatening to reject the 2013 budget from Mr. President really tickled me. But if you ask me, the House of Representatives is misplacing its priorities. Most Nige-

rians see the threat as a big joke by the House of Reps members. The Reps should put their corrupt house in order first before over-sighting others. For example, the Mr. Integrity, Farouk Lawan’s bribery case, is that not

Letters to the Editor

a shame to the house? And what is happening to the case, anyway? To be swept under the carpet as usual and life goes on… Ikedon, Benin City, Edo State

here were the National Assembly members when Obansanjo handed over many towns and villages in Borno, Adamawa and Cross-River states to Cameroun? Were they sleeping then? Why blaming President Jonathan now? Remember Jonathan was a Deputy Governor when the judgement of Bakassi was passed; and a Governor when Obasanjo handed over Bakassi and the rest to Cameroun. Some of the people talking aloud now were serving members of the National Assembly then, but for the fear of Obasanjo, they failed to raise their voice for Obasanjor to hear. Why now? Why is the National Assembly talking about Bakassi only? Is Bakassi the only place handed over to Cameroun? What about other villages in Borno and Adamawa states? Are they not part of Nigeria? We are disappointed in Senator Ningafor forgetting other places where he comes from, that were handed over to Cameroun.

Nigerian artists are great

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totally agree with the fact that Nigerian artists are the mirror of this nation. What we are, what we do is what the nation is. We are the true reflection of the society. Nigerian artists are, no doubt, some of the greatest in the world. Ayeola Ayodeji ( w w w. a y e o l a . c o m , www.awizzy.net)

Aminu Maiwada Zaria, (aminu_maiwada@yahoo.com) Olodi Apapa – Lagos

Try failed leaders

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he ECOWAS Speaker has made a good suggestion by seeking more powers for the body to try coup plotters and terrorists. But there should equally be a regional court that would be trying politicians who undermine the votes of the electorate by rigging elections. Such court should also try leaders who fail their countries after their terms in office. With courts that would try dishonest politicians and failed leaders, there may be no need for a special court for coup plotters after all, bad governance usually causes coups. Abdul Yusuf, Ilorin, Kwara State

Don’t blame Nigerian soldiers

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ow!! Nice story! I mean the story where the British Special Forces blamed Nigerian soldiers for a failed rescue attempt of a british citizens from terrorists. It is just that I don’t believe it. Typically, when units collaborate, plans are agreed up front and jointly. What did the SBS say when the idea of barging in with an APC was approved? Very simple, what is happening here; it is a case of blaming whoever is not around to defend himself ! Ozed, Manchester, UK

Send your letters or mails to PMB 10001, Ikoyi, or our Email: mirrorlagos@yahoo.com and info@nationalmirroronline.net or, 07033375481, 08035640907 (SMS only). The Editor reserves the right to edit and reject letters or photographs. Psuedonyms may be used, but must be clearly marked as such.


Wednesday, October 3, 2012

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

19

Health & Wellbeing ‘Nigeria has 70 percent of world’s polio cases’

Nigeria’s health indices still

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Walk for your heart!

... Expert advocates lifestyle modification as GSK leads World Heart Day walk in Lagos SAM EFERARO

T

he need to adopt a healthy lifestyle to protect the heart against Cardiovascular diseases came to the fort again as Nigerians joined the rest of the world to mark the 2012 World Heart Day last Saturday. Cardiovascular diseases are the world’s largest killers, claiming 17.3 million lives a year, almost half of which are women. Risk factors for heart disease and stroke include raised blood pressure, cholesterol and glucose levels; smoking, obesity and physical inactivity. Speaking during a 4 km walk organised in Lagos by multinational pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline, a Consultant Endocrinologist/Diabetologist with the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, LASUTH, Dr. Anthonia Ogbera re-emphasised the need for Nigerians to take responsibility for their own heart health and wellbeing so as to reduce the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases. In a lecture titled “Roadmap to Achieving Optimal Cardiovascular Health”, Ogbera stated that the world’s population is experiencing a surge in non communicable diseases of which heart diseases top the list. According to her, cardiovascular or heart disease which is a “life style” related disease was not only a leading cause of death in both men and women, but has also become a major cause of death throughout the world. Dr Ogbera who is also the Head of Diabetes Centre, Department of Medicine, LASUTH, described heart disease as any disorder of the cardiovascular system, that is, the heart and blood vessels, which affects the heart’s ability to function normally. “Heart diseases are well established as a leading contributor to ill health and death in countries in low-income and middle-income countries (LMIC) like Nigeria. Heart disease is a major cause for heart attack (myocardial infarction), heart failure, stroke, sudden cardiac arrest (SCA), and ischemia (reduced blood flow). Heart attacks are not discriminatory and can affect the rich and the poor alike.” The Diabetologist however noted that heart diseases are life-style related, which could be effectively managed with a healthy life-style. “We have fantastic but costly drugs and medical interventions to treat these diseases but on the other, we seem to have lost sight of every day fundamentals of healthy living including nutrition, physical activity and stress management which could prevent

(L-R) GSK Commercial development Manager, Africa, Mr. Jide Adeosun and Managing Director, GSK Consumer Plc, Mr. Chidi Okoro leading participants at the “Walk for a Healthy Heart” 4 kilometre walk in Lagos to mark the World Heart Day.

these diseases from occurring. The good news is that these preventive measures are cheap, readily accessible and affordable.” The scientist listed some of the causes of heart diseases as ageing,gender, family history, smoking, poor diet, high blood pressure, high blood cholesterol levels, physical inactivity, high stress, poor hygiene, among others. She however, advised those with high cholesterol, high blood pressure, or diabetes, to lower risk for heart disease by always have their cholesterol checked, monitor their blood pressure, and closely monitor their blood sugar levels. “On this all important day of celebrating the World Heart Day, we call on individuals to take action for their own heart health and wellbeing, including giving up smoking and tobacco use, eating healthily and exercis-

ing regularly. We call on individuals to take responsibility to engage with appropriate healthcare professionals to discuss their heart health.” In partnership with the World Health Organization (WHO), the World Heart Federation organizes awareness events on the World Heart Day in more than a 100 countries - including health checks, organized walks, runs and fitness sessions; public talks, stage shows, scientific forums, exhibitions, concerts, carnivals and sports tournaments. Earlier in a statement, GlaxoSmithKline Commercial Development Manager, Africa, Jide Adeosun said the event, “Walk for a Healthy Heart”, was organised to raise awareness on the risk of cardiovascular diseases as well as the need for people to cultivate the habit of a healthy life-style. The theme for this year’s World Heart Day is “One World, One Home, One Heart” and it focuses on increasing awareness of Cardiovascular Disease (CVD) among women and children.

Dr. Ogbera

Moderate physical activities to consider • 4 hours or more a week of walking, cycling or light gardening, not including time spent commuting to or from work. • Walking or cycling for 30 minutes or more as part of the daily commuting to work.

• An active work day with much standing, walking, lifting, or other heavy manual labor. • 3 hours or more per week of vigorous physical activity such running, jogging, skiing or swimming during leisure time.


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Health & Wellbeing

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

How to prevent stigmatization of people living with HIV F

amilies affected by HIV may need income support and social welfare services to help them take care of sick family members and children. Families should be guided and assisted in accessing these services. Families provide the ‘first line’ response for protecting, caring for and supporting children infected with or affected by HIV. Families and relatives absorb almost all the costs involved in caring for these children. Families are generally recognized as the best source of the loving care, protection and support that children need. Mothers, fathers or other primary caregivers infected with HIV need support to live longer. Prolonging their lives and keeping them healthy helps to keep a family together. The majority of children who have lost one or both parents are living in families that are often stretched economically and in need of support. Caregivers tend to be female, including some who are children themselves and many who are elderly, such as grandmothers. Partnerships involving the government and community or non-governmental or faith-based organizations can provide support to improve the economic situation of families affected by HIV. Support might include access to microcredit, low-interest bank loans and social grants.

No child or adult living with or affected by HIV should ever be stigmatized

How to access income support, such as social grants and social welfare services, should be clearly detailed in national guidelines. These should be well communicated, understood and administered at the local level. Information provided by families when applying for social grants and services should be kept confidential. As part of the social welfare services, health-care providers should make sure that HIV-positive children and adults from the same family can obtain treatment and

support in the same health facility. This helps conserve the family’s time, energy and resources. Social welfare services, with support from community and non-governmental and faith-based organizations, should help parents and other caregivers develop the skills needed to care for children affected by or infected with HIV. If the child is HIV-positive, the caregivers need help to: learn about the HIV infection

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

know how to care for and support the child, including ensuring adherence to an ART regimen reduce their fear of contracting HIV from the child know how to protect themselves when caring for the child understand and respond to the emotional needs of the child. A child who has lost a parent, other caregiver or sibling because of AIDS needs psychosocial support from his or her family and possibly counselling to work through the trauma and grief. A parent or other caregiver may need support to understand the stages of a child’s grief relative to his or her age, as well as appropriate psychosocial responses. Parents living with HIV should make sure that each of their children has a birth certificate. Parents should make a will to establish 1) who will be the guardians of their children and 2) if they have money land or livestock how these assets will be distributed. If the children are old enough to understand, they should be involved in these deliberations with their parents. 9. No child or adult living with or affected by HIV should ever be stigmatized or discriminated against. Parents, teachers and leaders have a key role to play in HIV education and prevention and in reducing fear, stigma and discrimination. Educating children, families and communities about HIV is an essential way to help reduce fear, stigma and discrimination against the child and his or her family living with or affected by HIV, as well as the child’s own fears and self-stigma. Children, parents, other family members, teachers, community and faithbased organizations, local leaders and authorities, and the government have a significant role to play in HIV education and prevention and in reducing fear, isolation, stigma and discrimination.

SCIENCE Lower-poverty neighborhood boosts physical and mental health Mothers’ nutrition before pregnancy may

M

oving from a high-poverty to lower-poverty neighborhood spurs long-term gains in the physical and mental health of low-income adults, as well as a substantial increase in their happiness, despite not improving economic self-sufficiency, according to a new study published in the Sept. 20 issue of Science by researchers at the University of Chicago and partners at other institutions. Although moving into less disadvantaged neighborhoods did not raise incomes for the families that moved, these families experienced important gains in well-being in other ways. Moving from a high-poverty neighborhood to one with a poverty rate 13 percentage points lower increased the happiness of low-income adults by an amount equivalent to the gains caused by a $13,000 rise in family income. Using data from a large-scale randomized social experiment called Moving to Opportunity, the authors found that neighborhood income segregation had a greater impact than neighborhood racial segregation in shaping the outcomes of adults in the study. “This finding is important, in part, because racial segregation has been trending down since 1970, but income segregation has gone

up steadily since then,” said lead author Jens Ludwig, the McCormick Foundation Professor of Social Service Administration, Law and Public Policy at UChicago and director of the University of Chicago Crime Lab. “So the problem of adverse neighborhood effects on low-income families seems to be getting worse, rather than better, over time.” Another implication of the study is that looking at the growth over time in inequality with respect to family income -- a key focus of much of the inequality discussion -- understates the growth in inequality of well-being. Focusing on income inequality ignores the negative effects on poor families from growing residential segregation by economic status. The researchers estimate that the drop in happiness of low-income adults due to growing residential income segregation since 1970 is large enough to offset the full income growth for low-income Americans over the past four decades. “Focusing just on trends in income inequality over time in the U.S., while ignoring the growth of income segregation over time, understates the trends towards greater inequality in well-being in America,” Ludwig said.

alter function of children’s genes

E

veryone knows that what mom eats when pregnant makes a huge difference in the health of her child. Now, new research in mice suggests that what she ate before pregnancy might be important too. According to a new research report published online in The FASEB Journal, what a group of female mice ate -- before pregnancy -- chemically altered their DNA and these changes were passed to her offspring. These DNA alterations, called “epigenetic” changes, drastically affected the pups’ metabolism of many essential fatty acids. These results could have a profound impact on future research for diabetes, obesity, cancer, and immune disorders. “As parents, we have to understand better that our responsibilities to our children are not only of a social, economical, or educational nature, but that our own biological status can contribute to the fate of our children, and this effect can be long-lasting,” said Mihai Niculescu, M.D., Ph.D., study author from Nutrition Research Institute at the University of North Carolina at

Chapel Hill, in Chapel Hill, N.C. “My hope is that, along with many other scientists, we will reveal this tight biological relationship between us as parents, and our children, and how we can improve the lives of our children using our own biological machinery.”


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Health & Wellbeing

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

21

Nigeria’s health indices still unacceptable –NMA President The President of the Nigerian Medical Associationn (NMA), Dr. Osahon Enabulele, in this interview with TOBORE OVUORIE, reviews Nigeria’s healthcare delivery system since independence 52 years ago and concludes that the nation ought to have fared better. According to him, Nigeria’s healthcare is still struggling due to factors ranging from poor governance, political instability to monumental corruption in all sectors. Excerpts. How will you assess the nation’s healthcare delivery system in the last 52 years? One can confidently say that in the last 52 years, Nigeria’s healthcare delivery system like other sectors has witnessed good and bad times. Indeed, at the enunciation of the first National Health Development Plan in 1960, it was the expectation that before the 21st century Nigeria would have achieved Universal Health Coverage with all Nigerians having access to quality healthcare. Sadly, many factors, particularly poor governance, political instability, politicization of the health sector, worsening poverty and monumental corruption in the polity, have conspired against the realization of this laudable objective. Though Nigeria’s health indices remain unacceptably poor, there is a strong hope that with the laudable initiatives of the current Minister of Health, Prof. Onyebuchi C.O. Chukwu, backed by renewed commitment to health and good governance by all levels of government, as well as visible and constructive support of all stakeholders, Nigeria’s healthcare delivery system can be repositioned to meet the health and development needs of Nigeria and Nigerians. How will you rate Nigeria’s health system in Africa? Considering the fact that Nigeria is believed to be the giant of Africa with enormous resources (tangible and intangible), it is worrisome that Nigeria’s health system is still struggling with those of less endowed countries, including some war-torn countries. For instance, Nigeria is still struggling with some war-torn countries in Africa for the gold medal in polio on account of Nigeria’s inability to eradicate poliomyelitis. Nigeria’s health indices are evidently poorer than those of most other African countries, including Ghana, South Africa, and Kenya. This explains why Nigeria was ranked 187th out of 191 member countries by the World Health Organization in 2000. However, I am not oblivious of some improvements in Nigeria’s health indices reflected in the results of recent health surveys. These improvements which are credited to the policy initiatives and practical commitment of the current Ministers of Health, include improvements in the Maternal Mortality Ratio from its 2003 figure of 800/100, 000 live births to the current figure of 545/100,000 live births. Similarly, the Infant Mortality Rate is said to have improved from its 2003 figure of 100/1000 live births to 75/1000 live births, while

FOR INSTANCE, NIGERIA IS STILL STRUGGLING WITH SOME WAR-TORN

COUNTRIES IN

AFRICA

FOR THE GOLD MEDAL IN POLIO ON ACCOUNT OF

NIGERIA’S INABILITY TO ERADICATE POLIOMYELITIS Under-five Mortality Rate is said to have improved from its 2003 figure of 201/1000 live births to 157/1000 live births. What will you consider as our major challenges over the years? The challenges are protean, but the major ones include: (1) Poor governance at all levels of government; (2) Evident lack of political commitment to health by most governments in Nigeria; (3) Poor constitutional and legal framework for health in Nigeria, particularly the absence of a National Health Act that clearly defines the roles and responsibilities of the Local, State and Federal Governments with respect to the three levels of healthcare; as well as the roles and responsibilities of healthcare professionals; (4) Corruption and inefficient utilization of healthcare resources; (5) Poor funding and budgetary provisions for health; (5) Poor Human Resource Development Plans and Reward System in the health sector, including poor remuneration, working conditions and motivation of the health workforce; as well as inequitable distribution of the health workforce; (6) Poverty and absence of Universal Health Coverage for all Nigerians; (7) Inadequate involvement of health professional associations and communities in the planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of health policies, programs and projects; (8) Weak coordination, integration and implementation of health policies, programs and projects; (9) Poor data base, e-Health and Health Management Information System; (10) Conflicting professional regulatory laws/Acts in the health sector; (11) Absence of a Health

Dr. Enabulele

Service Commission; In your opinion, what will you describe as our outstanding achievement in this sector over the years? The achievements are both tangible and intangible. The fact that most of the public and private hospitals in the health sector have survived the travails and systemic decay of the Nigerian society unlike most other government parastatals is an achievement in itself. Another achievement can be seen in the improvements recorded in some of Nigeria’s health indices (Infant Mortality Rate, Under-5 Mortality Rate, Maternal Mortality Ratio, e.t.c.) as reflected by recent health surveys. Of course, one cannot forget the tremendous milestones

CONSIDERING THE FACT THAT NIGERIA IS BELIEVED TO BE THE GIANT OF

AFRICA

WITH ENORMOUS

RESOURCES (TANGIBLE AND INTANGIBLE), IT IS WORRISOME THAT

NIGERIA’S HEALTH SYSTEM IS STILL STRUGGLING

recorded in the 80’s and early 90’s with the general improvements recorded in the health sector during those periods, particularly in the strengthening of Primary Health Care in Nigeria. Could we have fared better? Certainly yes. There is never an end to progress and development, hence the popular saying that ‘Change is the only constant phenomenon known to mankind’. Can you project into the next 10-20 years, where do you think this sector will be? With sincere commitment to electoral reforms in Nigeria and enthronement of credible, committed and people-centred leadership at all levels of government; I am sanguine that if the current efforts are sustained Nigeria’s health system should compare favourably with that of other developed countries in the next 20 years. Are there indications that we will be able to take our place in the comity of nations as far as healthcare delivery is concerned? Yes, with the improvements shown in some, health indices by recent health surveys there seems to be a silver lining in the cloud. All that is needed is sustained commitment to good governance and participatory leadership, as well as transparent and constructive support by all stakeholders.


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Wednesday, October 3, 2012

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

National Research Fund underway –Health Minister TUNBOSUN OGUNDARE

T

he Minister of Health, Prof. Onyebuchi Chukwu, has disclosed that the Federal Government had concluded plans to establish a National Research Fund to be dedicated strictly to research purposes on issues of public importance in the country. He said a committee had already been set up to work

out modalities in the management of the proposed fund in a sustainable manner by successive governments. The minister stated this in Lagos during his working visit to the Nigerian Institute of Medical Research (NIMR), Yaba, recently. According to him, the fund would be for major sectors of the economy, including health with priority attention on issues that will impact positively on

the lives of Nigerians. minister applauded NIMR’s efforts so far, saying he was highly impressed with the level of its contribution so far to national response on health related issues. “But that does not to say there is no room for improvement. The institute will have to strengthen its response preparedness to disease control and management, especially malaria, being one of the major health issues of global

importance,” he said. While assuring NIMR of an increment in its budgetary allocation in the next fiscal year, Onyebuchi urged workers of the institute to continue to work as a team for improved service delivery. He disclosed that four areas in the health sector, including the National Institute of Pharmaceutical Research and Development (NIPRD), NIMR, the newly established Nigerian Cen-

tre for Disease Control and Department of Public Health would strengthen their collaboration efforts in terms of research with a view to further moving the sector forward. In his welcome address, the Director-General of the institute, Prof. Innocent Ujah, promised that the institute would not renege in its contributory efforts to the growth and development of the health sector.

MDGs: Nigeria gets 15m euros boost TOBORE OVUORIE

I

n a bid to help speedy actualization of United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals Four and Five, the Unilever Foundation has made a 15 million Euros commitment for the next three years. This is geared towards supporting Save the Children’s biggest ever global campaign, EVERY ONE, which is aimed at eradicating mortality among children and mothers in Nigeria and four other countries. In Nigeria, the Unilever Foundation will support Save the Children’s work to improve the lives of mothers and their babies in Jigawa and Lagos through quality care and support at the time of birth and immediate post-partum period. The partnership will help to build the capacity of health workers to provide quality services and appropriate care to mothers and their babies and improve access to quality mother and newborn healthcare services in hard-to-reach areas. Explaining the partnership, Chief Executive of Unilever, Paul Polman, said: “Our partnership with Save the Children will deliver transformational change that will impact millions of lives around the world. Today, over 6.9 million children die before their fifth birthday each year – that’s one child every four seconds”. “We have an ambition to double the size of our business

whilst reducing our environmental footprint and increasing our social impact; looking after the future generations is an intrinsic part of our vision, and it is also our responsibility.” Speaking, Deputy Chief Executive, Save the Children International, Janti Soeripto, said: “Unilever’s support will bring us a step closer to ensuring that a health worker is within reach of every child, life-saving vaccines are available for all, and children have enough as well as the right food to grow up healthy. Combining our global reach and joint ambition we can achieve long-lasting change for the world’s most vulnerable children.” He further explained that the partnership would involve improving access to health workers and life-saving vaccines, and ensuring children in need are reached with high-impact health and nutrition programmes. “It will also provide a platform to catalyse a global movement and generate the public and political will for a global breakthrough on child survival. The partnership encompasses programme funding, consumer outreach, causerelated marketing and employee engagement; and will focus on the priority countries of Nigeria and other benefiting countries. The Unilever Foundation will be helping Save the Children reach over 2 million children and their mothers by 2015.

Children of Sought After Foundation Lagos, getting set for free medical examinations on October 1.

‘Nigeria has 70 percent of world’s polio cases’ JAMES DANJUMA KATSINA

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igeria has 70 percent of the world’s polio cases with Katsina State having recorded 22 cases, the highest so far among several states in the country that had cases of polio this year. Executive Director, National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), Dr. Ado Muhammad, who stated this recently in the state, lamented that there was a hundred percent increase in the number of polio cases this year than was recorded in 2011 across the country. Dr. Muhammed was in the state along with 19 traditional rulers or representatives for the Northern

Diarrhoea kills more than 3.5 million children before age 5

N

o fewer than 3.5 million children die before their fifth birthday in Nigeria as a result of diarrhoea and pneumonia. This makes the country the second nation, after India, with the highest child mortality as a result the two childhood diseases. This was made known in Lagos as part of the annual initiative to defeating diarrhoea by

Lifebuoy health soap from the stable of Unilever Nigeria Plc. This year’s campaign was tagged: “Help a child reach the age of five, one Nigeria against Diarrhoea”. Speaking during the announcement at Temple School at Ilupeju, Lagos, Managing Director, Unilever Plc, Thabo Mabe, said Unilever created the handwashing platform to drive

awareness of an inexpensive habit of handwashing that will drastically reduce occurrence of diarrhoea and other related sicknesses. This will greatly reduce infant mortality rate among children under five years. “As part of our goals this year, Unilever will be celebrating children who reach the age of five around the country; we will continue from our milestones

Traditional Rulers Committee meeting on Routine Immunisation and Primary Health Care Delivery. Represented by an official of the agency, Mustapha Mahmud, the executive director called on stakeholders in the state to double efforts towards eradicating polio, in order not to make the state become an epicenter of the disease. He however assured of efforts being made by the President Goodluck Jonathan-led administration to ensure a polio-free country, and called on the states on states of not to rest on their oars in battling to stop cases of polio in their domains. He commended stakeholders for working at eradicating the disease, adding that traditional

rulers were selected to be at the forefront of the polio eradication campaign in combating polio due to their role model status and contact channel for community area dwellers. Chairman of the northern traditional rulers committee on routine immunisation and primary health care delivery, Kyari Umar El-kanemi, said the committee was set up by the Sultan of Sokoto in 2009 as a way of finding lasting solution to polio and other childkiller diseases. El-kanemi, who doubles as the Shehu of Pama in Borno State, said the traditional rulers would work to ensure a polio-free north by 2013, and that they would continue to share experiences till affected states overcome the disease.

last year with which we plan to achieve over seven million pledges this year; deployment of handwashing points to the various schools selected due to the 10 million Naira donated last year by Unilever,” he added. In her keynote address, Dr. Christina Campbell, National President, Medical Women’s Association of Nigeria, remarked that the initiative was targeted at shoring up the health of children and getting them to imbibe the

habit so their lives could be prolonged. Campbell, who noted that the initiative was timely, added that it was given more teeth through the reliable assistance provided by Unilever. “For five years, the Handwashing Day has been celebrated all over the world because we know children, especially in the developed world, don’t have the opportunity to live up to the age of five to become brilliant leaders of tomorrow.


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Wednesday, October 3, 2012

23

Arts Lounge

I’m having a good time in Russia – Dejarvuh

Expressions of love in art form

26

25 NIGERIA @52

‘Joyful noise, lively screen restore glow for the arts’ TERH AGBEDEH

T

he late culture icon, Ambassador Segun Olusola, had stated in an interview granted National Mirror, that Nigeria is work in progress. The same can be said of the country’s film, music and television, 52 years after independence that took place on October 1, 1960. But long before independence, a film tradition had already evolved beginning with, as the records indicate, the first film show in August 1903 in Lagos. It was a silent film brought by Balboa and Company, a Spanish firm, which toured West Africa that year. It was the first of many films to be shown in the country. This tradition blossomed with the beaming of audiovisual signals on Saturday night, October 31, 1959, from the Western Nigeria Television (WNTV) located at Agodi, Ibadan in present-day Oyo State. It was the birth of television in Africa and entertainment would never be the same again. Some of the pioneering practitioners in Nigeria’s film industry confess to having stimulated their appetite for film production from watching the early films that were sometimes a mere parody of the colonised or instruments of propaganda by the colonialists. Seventy-one-year-old Eddie Ugbomah, for instance, said he decided to become a filmmaker when, only in primary six, he had gone to the premiere of Ben Hur at Glover Memorial Hall in Lagos reputed to be the first place films were shown in the country. This was a year before independence and the lead actor, Charlton Heston, who also played Moses in The Ten Commandments, had attended the event. “Heston stood up and reprimanded Nigeria, saying it was a pity a country as big as this with independence next door, did not have a movie industry. I was hurt, I was so angry I shouted ‘Oyibo, you’ll never come to Nigeria again because I’m going to be a filmmaker’,” Ugbomah reminisced. In the case of Adegboyega Sosummi, the Olowu of Owu Kingdom in Ogun State, who played a pivotal role in the production of the popular television series, Village Headmaster, the attraction to filmmaking came with performances from the travelling theatre practitioners like Hubert Ogunde. However, he recalled, it was his many holidays at a tender age in the Yaba

PIONEERING PRACTITIONERS IN

NIGERIA’S FILM

INDUSTRY CONFESS TO HAVING STIMULATED THEIR APPETITE FOR FILM PRODUCTION FROM WATCHING THE EARLY FILMS area of Lagos that exposed him to the magic of movies at Casino Cinema. “Every time I had the opportunity of watching the screen, I thought it was magic because all day long, we saw the wall just standing there and at night, we saw people talking and walking on it, I said this was magic, I was fascinated. I just loved the (Hubert) Ogunde’s organised theatre. So, I wanted to be one of the magicians, who were doing this, which was better than the stage, I didn’t call it screen, but wall,” he said. The missionaries who had accompanied the colonialists also went round remote villages showing films with the intent to convert the ‘natives’. This culminated in the creation of a Film Censors Board (FCB) in 1933 to censor and classify films just before they were released. It is on record that following the establishment of the board, films like: The Primitive, Primitive Man, Dixie and Buffalo Bill, to mention a few, could be viewed, while Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Clive of India, The Isle of Forgotten

Sins and Home of Frankenstein were not to be seen. But as Oba Sosummi pointed out, the contributions of practitioners of the Yoruba Travelling Theatre, of which Ogunde, among others were a part, to the Nigerian movie industry, cannot be overemphasised. They had taken the theatre to the people and entertained vast and diverse audiences while drawing their income from stage shows, television shows, waxing their music and plays on discs, by printing their plays as photo-plays and as literature. These veterans, who had excellent theatrical skills transferred to the making of film on celluloid format. Some of the early filmmakers include Ogunde, said to have founded the first professional theatre company in Nigeria in 1945 known as Ogunde Concert Party. There was also Moses Olaiya Adejumo (Baba Sala), Ola Balogun, Eddie Ugbomah and Adeyemi Afolayan a.k.a Ade Love (father of banker-turned filmmaker, Kunle Afolayan), among others. Such early works include: Kongi’s Harvest (1971), Alpha (1972), Bull Frog in the Sunlight (1974), Amadi (1975), Ajani Ogun (1975), Muzik Man (1976), Bisi, Daughter of the River (1977), Ija Ominira (1978), Aiye (1979), Kadara (1980), Jaiyesimi (1980) Efunsetan Aniwura (1981), Cry Independence (1981), Ija Orogun (1982) and Owo L’agba (1982). Less than two years after WNTV came onboard, the Eastern region followed with another television channel, Eastern Nigerian Television (ENTV) Enugu in 1960 and by the 1980s, television broadcasting had become very popular with every state

Kuti

Ogunde

CONTINUED ON PAGE 24 Olaiya

Uwaifo

Ugboma


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Arts Lounge

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

‘Joyful noise, lively screen restore glow for the arts’ CONTINUED FROM PAGE 23 having a station and this played a very important role in the development of the film industry. Not only did television provide a platform to train those who would become practitioners, it also encouraged local content productions, which was also circulated on video. It was, therefore, second nature for the industry to develop along those lines. This led to the birth of Nollywood in 1992 with the release of Living in Bondage from the stable of Nek Video Links owned by Kenneth Nnebue. “Kenneth wanted to sell his cassette and make money, I wanted to produce something out of nothing and before you know it, Living in Bondage became a super hit that everybody was talking about. It became a cross cultural phenomenon that you can say it’s the only global brand that is indigenous,” Okey Ogunjiofor, who also played Paulo’s role in that film, recalled. Living in Bondage happened at the same time the broadcasting sector was deregulated in 1992. Privately-owned television stations like the Africa Independent Television (AIT) were now broadcasting for 24 hours daily as against the norm of starting from 4.00 p.m. and closing at midnight. With the increase came stiffer competition and television stations became conscious that they should offer more interesting programmes. Several television stations were to begin broadcasts. Such stations like: Silverbird, Channels, Galaxy Television, Murhi Television (MITV); and most recently Television Continental (TVC) and ONTV, needed to have content. Considering that the Nigerian Broadcasting Commission (NBC), which regulates broadcasting, insisted on 40/60 per cent foreign to local contents ratio for the broadcast media that later became 30/70 per cent, the earlier generation of practitioners in the industry made an effort to respect this with the creation of memorable television serials and original local programmes that excited the public. These days, most of the Nollywood films find their way to the screen, as well as music videos by Nigerian musicians. Like film and television, Nigerian music, too has been homegrown from the days before independence when highlife sounded from the many clubs in Lagos and other cities, to the present-day when Femi Kuti has been nominated for Grammy three times and Nigerian musicians are known all over the world. The Nigerian music industry, said to be one of the fastest growing in the world, has continued to have prominence even beyond the African continent where many of its young practitioners are household names. Although the industry had big names like the late Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, Ebenezer Obey, Rex Lawson, Ambrose Campbell, Bala Miller, Orlando JuliusEkemode, Sikiru Ayinde Barrister, Victor Uwaifo, Bongos Ikwue and King Sunny Ade, among others, it could be said to have lacked the kind of acceptance in the international market it enjoys today. The last decade has seen Nigerian music acts leave an indelible mark on the world map of music. More and more international musicians are making Nigeria not just

Davido (L) with Wizkid

NIGERIAN MUSIC INDUSTRY, SAID TO BE ONE OF THE FASTEST GROWING

IN THE WORLD, HAS CONTINUED TO HAVE PROMINENCE EVEN BEYOND THE Olusola

a place to come to for concerts but also where to make album sales. R. Kelly, one of the biggest musicians the world has known, for instance, now has representation in Nigeria with sales of his album to boot. Beyonce, Chris Brown, Akon, Kenny G have also been here. World Music Award winner, Femi Kuti, who turned 50 this year, Dapo Daniel Oyebanjo a.k.a. D’Banj, the twins Peter and Paul Okoye otherwise known as PSquare and Innocent Idibia (2face) have all featured international artistes on their albums or have been featured by such Alist artistes. Aside these musicians, there have been countless others like Ayodeji Ibrahim Balogun (Wizkid), Bez Idakula, Tiwa Savage, Jude Abaga (M.I), among many others. Not only have they had collaborations abroad, they have also won notable international awards like NEA awards, Channel O Awards, MTV African Music Awards, BET awards, KORA awards and many more. Nigerian music is having such a good time that the 85-year-old Fatai Rolling Dollar, has succeeded in staging a comeback after once dominating West Africa with his agidigbo version of highlife. With two albums already in his kitty, he now performs to packed venues. More young people are aspiring to be musicians than ever before. Television may have played a vital role in the making and spread of Nigerian films, but Nigerian music got a big boost with the liberalisation of telecommunications in the country and access to the

AFRICAN

CONTINENT Internet. Sponsorship of music concerts by corporate organisations has also put the Nigerian musician on a high pedestal. The triumphs mentioned speak well, but it has not been all rosy for entertainment in Nigeria as there have been challenges that continue to stand in the way of progress. Chief among them is intellectual piracy theft of which practitioners have always pointed the accusing finger at some criminals at Alaba International Market. In a recent visit to the Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Umar Manko, Chairman of the Coalition of Nollywood Guilds and Associations (CONGA), Bond Emeruwa, had urged the commissioner to set up a unit to fight piracy, saying it is top on the list of the challenges Nigerian filmmakers face. “We have come to identify the headquarters of this criminal act to be the Alaba International Market. We know the culprits, we have apprehended them several times, but they have often slipped away because we lack the power of enforcement of the existing laws against piracy,” he said. One challenge that television has continued to have over the years is that of technological, development. As the late Olusola put it in an interview when television turned 50 in Nigeria in 2009, without technology it looks as if television has not achieved much. “It (television) survived deregulation, but, unfortunately, it has not survived in the area

of technological development. Designing our own equipment and ensuring that the technology of television broadcasting has been homegrown,” he had said. Indeed, Nigerian broadcasting station can hardly keep up with technological advancement with the rest of the world, both because they cannot afford the huge sum of money involved in procuring technical equipment and lack trained manpower. Content is another challenge and many a critic has said it is an area in which television stations need to wake up and urgently, too. Most television stations, rather than commission programmes, depend on private producers to provide them content for which they sell airtime. Perhaps that is why very few programmes on Nigerian television are engaging. Some stations turn to Nollywood for content to fill up the empty programme schedule while Nigerian music takes over the airwaves from midnight. This may be good for Nollywood and Nigerian music, but is certainly not good for professionalism in television stations which pundits have said there is hardly one; either public or private owned that is a model of professional and organisational excellence. Worse still, government-owned stations are seen as instruments of propaganda in the hands of government. Broadcasting veterans have complained about the declining quality of presenters on television citing poor elocution, grammatical blunders and a lacklustre performance on air. This leaves one with the conclusion that television has grown but has failed to develop. But, there are those who say that funding has been the bane of entertainment in Nigeria. Which is why in 2010, President Goodluck Jonathan announced a $200 million intervention fund for the entertainment industry. But those funds are yet to be assessed by those who really need them. To produce content, after all, costs money. Almost all the television stations in Nigeria, broadcast mostly foreign materials they acquired cheaply backed up with only a small percentage of local content. Nigerian viewers also have to make do with poor imitations of foreign content presented as local content particularly in the form of reality shows that have no basis in the Nigerian culture. Adebambo Adewopo, one-time directorgeneral of the Nigerian Copyright Commission (NCC) had said, “the quality and content of broadcast is central to cultural regimentation, societal integration, religious harmony, education, public enlightenment, peace and security.” Television stations are also yet to move the broadcast media from analogue to digital broadcasting although a presidential committee is in place to ensure that broadcast media meet a June 2012 target - three years ahead of the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) deadline. In the last 52 years however, television, film and music have made significant strides in Nigeria and only when the entertainment industry is able to overcome some of these challenges will the practitioners beat their chests and truly say that they are making progress.


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Arts Lounge

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

ARTISTE UNCENSORED

I’m having a good time in Russia – Dejarvuh

Ayodeji Oladele, better known as Dejarvuh, a stage name he adopted thanks to his friends, is a post graduate student of Informatics at the Novosibirsk State Technical University in Russia. To take his word for it, he is also a fine musician who has performed at many events in Russia, including the Miss Europa Awards held in Novosibirsk. TERH AGBEDEH

D

ejavuh’s song, ‘DJ Keep Playing that Song’ is currently enjoying massive airplay in the Siberian capital and his album titled: Dejarvuh in Dejarvoodo is almost ready. Marketing the album is one of the reasons he is in the country. “It’s going to be a feel of different kinds of music”, he said, when he paid a visit to the National Mirror’s corporate headquarters on the Marina in Lagos. Dejarvuh added that a couple of songs in the forthcoming album are flavoured with Pidgin English, Hausa, Yoruba and Russian languages. There are also classic RnB tracks, “it’s very interesting and a good balance for anyone who likes contemporary music”. Ask the artiste who said his style of music is hip-hop, rap and RnB flavoured with the local dialect why he had to go all the way to Russia to pursue an education and his response is a simple one. “My idea is that travelling is also part of education. So, I have seen Europe and the west of Africa, I have seen some other parts of the world, but there are places I have never been to”, he said. While growing up, Dejarvuh said he used to hear a lot of stereotypes about Russia, including stories that Russians don’t like going to church because of the cold weather and so the priest has to promise to serve vodka after service to encourage them to come. From experience, he has discovered that this and the talk that Russians are racists, among other negative things, are not true. “They are very friendly, and travelling there is the only way I could break those stereotypes; if you don’t go to see for yourself, then you will never know what the truth is. It is a good time for me, a new experience”, he said. But do the Russians like to party the way Nigerians do? The answer is yes, “I think everybody likes to party, but I still tell my friends that Africans are more at it than any other person. It’s strange to them that when we have naming ceremonies it’s a big party; we have over 300 guests at weddings and it was a shock to them”.

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MIDWEEK JUMP

Shnit Film Fest debuts in Lagos

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eginning today and closing on October 7, nearly 300 carefully selected short films will be screened in 10 cities during the 10th edition of Shnit International Short Film Festival. The cities are Bern, Cape Town, Cologne and Vienna. Others are Singapore, San Jose, and for the first time this year, Lagos, San Francisco and Cairo, Auckland. The festival, which will, however, begin tomorrow in Lagos, is organised in Nigeria by Da Rocque Koncept in collaboration with the National Association of Nigerian Theatre Arts Practitioners (NANTAP). The films will screen at Royal Roots Studios in Ikeja and Freedom Park, Broad

Street. Shnit was founded in 2003 in Bern and is now rapidly expanding across the world as a multi-day, multi-city short film festival. A premier venue for the exhibition and promotion of short film, Shnit is an exceptional event with a unique concept – a transnational film festival simultaneously taking place in 10 playground cities on five continents worldwide. The international competition includes five award categories with cash prizes of $110,000. The jury for the festival, directed by Omewiri-Pius Peter C., comprises Victor Okhai, who runs InShort Film festival and NANTAP President, Greg Odutayo.

This Lagos...A Canvas opens at Nike Art Gallery

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yerinde Olotu’s fifth solo exhibition, This Lagos...A Canvas, which started on Monday, October 1, will be on throughout the week at Nike Art Gallery, Ikate Round About, Lekki. The exhibition will have Oyerinde Olo-

Lagos, Jo’burg share literary views

Dejarvuh

EVERYBODY LIKES TO PARTY BUT

Two Nigerian two South African writers in discourse

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STILL TELL MY

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FRIENDS THAT

AFRICANS ARE MORE AT IT THAN ANY OTHER PERSON Dejarvuh, who has been to the U.K. twice, France once and most of the neighbouring West African countries, said that besides the extreme weather Russia is known for, people are relatively the same everywhere. “But we have different cultures, different stereotypes and ways of thinking. Nigerians can be easygoing, but over there, people mind their business. I don’t know why, perhaps because that is their lifestyle. But they can be really nice people; they are interesting and fun to be with, too”. The upcoming musician, who could not speak a word of Russian when he arrived there to begin studies, is now fluent in the official language. He said he learnt how to speak the language in the university programme that teaches new students the language. However, since English is a global language,

tu’s works, as well as those of his friends and associates that captured the life and structural changes in the city of Lagos. Several art personalities like Yemisi Shyllon, Sammy Olagbaju and Rasheed Gbadamosi are attending the event.

the university also teaches courses in English. “This is very interesting and an advantage for me, I speak Russian quite well. In the university we have both mediums; English learning and Russian, so it’s an advantage for me. I can say to an extent that I’m international because I speak a language other than English”, he said. Dejarvuh loves music so much that his future plans include taking his music to the next level and also studying for another post graduate degree at the Russian university. “I still have plans to further my studies. I think education is a good thing and one should have as much as can be gotten. You are dead when you stop learning. I hope to bag another post graduate degree maybe in Business Administration,” he said.

t will be two days of literature and poetry, beginning today as two leading African cities - Lagos and Johannesburg-create a forum for diverse cultural exchange at the Federal Palace Hotel, Victoria Island and the Freedom Park, Broad Street. South African writers, Siphiwo Mahala and Kgebetli Moele and two Nigerian writers Toni Kan and Jumoke Verissimo (each of whom are award winners), are scheduled to feature at the literary fest of a fusion showcase platform known as “A Tale of Two African Cities-Nigeria South Africa Week 2012”, taking place in Lagos between October 3 and 6. This initiative by Inspiro Productions and the South African High Commission in Nigeria is fashioned out to connect both countries in the culture, tourism, lifestyle, business and music realm. It will explore music, art, jazz, fashion, literature, food and wine by creating platforms for exchange, which will open

Verissimo

Mahala

up insights into both cultures, their heart beats and dynamism. The two-day literary fest programme will have an Authors Conversation on the day one, while the second day is a Poetry Reading/Performance session. The authors’ conversation is a session of reading of excerpts from published works, and conversations among the four writers, dwelling on themes of their respective cities. The poetry session/ wine tasting will have five Nigerian poets drawn from Lagos who will take turns to read poems on the theme of the city.


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Arts Lounge

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Young readers explore Nigeria at 52

FAR AND NEAR

JERRY A DESEWO

S Shonibare’s ‘The Swing’, 2001

Expressions of love in art form A DENRELE NIYI

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n an unprecedented collaboration, arts institutions in three cities and on two continents come together to explore the changing modes and meanings of love in today’s global society, as seen by more than two dozen contemporary artists from Africa and a select few of their counterparts from Europe and America. From October 2012 through April 2013, the Centre for Contemporary Art, Lagos, Nigeria; The Pulitzer Foundation for the Arts in St. Louis, Missouri, USA and the Menil Collection in Houston, USA will each offer distinct but related presentations of “The Progress of Love”, with a comprehensive schedule of related events and a major publication documenting the exhibition as a whole. The three concurrent presentations that make up “The Progress of Love” constitute a narrative arc, embracing love as an ideal, love as a lived experience and love as something lost. “The Progress of Love” at the Menil Collection (December 2, 2012 to March 17, 2013) reveals how artists in Africa today are questioning, reflecting and challenging received images and norms of love—sexual, familial, friendly, communal—as derived both

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from traditional culture and Western influences. The way these aspirations and expectations about love play out in the real world—between and among partners, friends, and families—is the theme of “The Progress of Love” at the Centre for Contemporary Art, Lagos, which will present a series of performative exhibitions, performances and film screenings from October 13, 2012 to January 27, 2013. “The End of Love” is the theme of The Progress of Love at The Pulitzer Foundation for the Arts, November 16, 2012 to April 20, 2013. According to Kristina Van Dyke, former curator for collections and research at the Menil Collection and now the director of The Pulitzer Foundation for the Arts, one of the points of origin of the three-part exhibition—and the inspiration for its title—is a body of sculptural installations by British-Nigerian artist, Yinka Shonibare (born 1962) based on paintings by Jean-Honoré Fragonard. In these works, the artist dressed headless mannequins in “African” garb in place of Fragonard’s courtly 18th-century European figures to suggest the ways in which Africa was implicitly present in a burgeoning leisure class’s concepts of love. The Progress of Love is co-organised by Van Dyke and Silva.

tudents of FCT Secondary Schools have joined the rest of the nation in celebrating the nation’s 52nd Independence Anniversary. More than 10 secondary schools gathered on Friday, September 28 for a special reading session under the auspices of the Explorers Club, one of Abuja’s foremost book and readers’ club, to commemorate the nation’s Independence. Tagged ‘The Nigerian Story’, the event held at the Government Secondary School, Tundunwada, had both students and guests exploring Nigeria’s several decades-long history. Selected readers included Emmanuel Alex, a blind boy, who wowed the audience with his brilliance as he personally translated his own portion of reading into brail and read so flawlessly to the audience’s admiration. A leadership parade, representing every leader whohas ruled this nation, from Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe to Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, with the exception of course, of Chief Ernest Shonekan, the then Head of the Interim National Government, was put up by the host school.

Piracy: Police raid book warehouses NWABUEZE O KONKWO ONITSHA

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extbook sellers at Onitsha Main Market have been thrown into utter confusion following the consistent raiding of some of their warehouses located outside the market which are allegedly used for pirated authors’ and publishers’ works. The raid which involved combined efforts of the police and book publishers might not be unconnected with reported cases of piracy by the main market’s textbook sellers. Sources said the book sellers are notorious for sponsoring and abating illegal reproduction of creative works of literature which has robbed authors

Speaking at the event, Director of the FCT Secondary Education Board, Mrs. Yelwa Fatima Baba-Ari commended the organisers, especially Dr. Jerry Agada Foundation for the initiative. She went on to charge students to embrace reading; “life is not complete without reading. The only route to success is reading, reading and reading; Tthere is no other alternative”, she stated. Barrister D.C. Uwaezuoke, Director Basics and Secondary School who represented the Honourable Minister of State, Chief Nyesom Wike revealed that being part of the reading session had done him a great deal of good. “Reading is a necessary exercise, not just for those who seek wisdom but as a confirmed therapy against depression”, he said. Earlier on, the founder and chairman of the Dr. Jerry Agada Foundation and former Minister of State for Education under the late Umaru Musa Yar’adua administration, Dr. Jerry Anthony Agada reiterated his commitment to promoting academic excellence through reading. “I am an example of what reading can do to anyone. To become a champion in life, to become a leader who is worth its while and to become the signpost of excellence, you must read!. and publishers of legitimate income. The latest casualty was recorded last Tuesday at Bida Road near Onitsha main market where pirated books worth about N50m were recovered from five persons who confirmed that the books were not theirs, but were acting on the instruction of their masters in the biggest market in West Africa. The combined team of policemen from Onitsha Area command, publishers and officials from the Nigerian Copyright Commission (NCC), Enugu had a hectic time while trying to load the books which contained about 12 titles into two trucks while passers-by and traders at the nearby shops watched in disbelief. The affected pirated titles, most of which are in Igbo Language said to be in high demand, included Oja Dufuo Dike, by Elites Publishers; Aturu Ga Epu Mpi, Onye Kpara nku Ahuhu and Homeless Child by New Generation Publishers; Anu Gbaa Ajo Oso by Format Publishers and Ihe Agwo Muru published by Matag Publishers, among others.

Kelani wins Silicon Valley film award

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oremost African filmmaker, Tunde Kelani, has been announced the recipient of the prestigious 2012 Africa Reel Award at the Silicon Valley African Film Festival (SVAFF), California, USA. The Africa Reel Award is presented to a filmmaker of African origin whose body of work represents excellence in the art of film but more importantly a filmmaker who has through such body of work shown a dogged commitment to uplifting the Spirit of Africa. In a congratulatory letter sent to the multiple award-winning filmmaker and signed by the Festival Director, Chike C. Nwoffiah, Kelani is recog-

nised for his unrivalled commitment to promoting his cultural heritage in his works. “I am delighted that this year’s award will be given to you in recognition of your many years of commitment to uplifting our people through your films. As is our practice, we have submitted your name to the California State House of Assembly where the Assembly member for our district (Assembly member Paul Fong) will secure a Certificate of Recognition for you from the California State Legislature”. In celebration of Kelani, his latest effort, MAAMi, starring awardwinning actor, Funke Akindele will

be shown as the centre piece film of the festival on Saturday, October, 13 followed by a post-screening conversation. Not less than 36 feature-length, short-length and animation films from 16 African countries will be showcased. The festival also enriches cultural landscape by providing a forum for a better understanding and appreciation of Africa and Africans through moving images. Kelani will be presented the prestigious award at a colourful ceremony to take place on Sunday, October 14 in the bowel of the Tateuchi Hall of the Community School of Music and Arts, Mountain View, California, USA.

Kelani carries Ayomide Abati (child actor in MAAMi) on location


Wednesday, October 3, 2012

We want to defend Champions League –Cech 29

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27

Sport

I have put the past behind me and I am resolved to help the Lions regain some lost pride –Cameroun’s captain, Samuel Eto’o

Chipolopolo to camp in Jo’burg AFOLABI GAMBARI

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Joyous moment like this is around the corner for Nigeria, according to Ghana legend, Anthony Yeboah

Eagles ‘ll overrun Lone Star–Yeboah AFOLABI GAMBARI

WITH AGENCY REPORT

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ormer Black Stars striker, Anthony Yeboah, believes Nigeria will edge Liberia to the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations finals ticket as both sides prepare to battle in Calabar on October 13. Nigeria failed to qualify for the last finals hosted by Gabon and Equatorial Guinea early this year, but according Yeboah, the Eagles will not disappoint for the second consecutive time.

“I am convinced the Eagles will get it right and make it to South Africa,” Yeboah said in Abuja at the weekend, according to MTNFootball.com. Yeboah, who was a member of Ghana’s silver-medal winning team at the 1992 Nations Cup in Senegal, however conceded that some African powerhouses are struggling to qualify for the tournament. ‘’It is unfortunate that Nigeria, Ghana, Egypt and Cameroon have slowed down in their football development efforts, giving other Af-

Pienaar quits S/Africa

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afana Bafana captain, Steven Pienaar, yesterday made a shocking decision to retire from international football. The Everton midfielder said the retirement was with immediate effect. A statement by South Africa Football Association (SAFA) CEO, Robin Peterson, acknowledged Pienaar’s decision, saying the player had indicated that his body could no longer carry the burden of national assignment after clocking ten years of international career. In his reaction, however, Bafana Coach, Gordon Igesund, said although he respected Pienaar’s decision, he would he re-admit him to the national team if he changes his mind.

Pienaar

rican countries the opportunity to take over from them in competitive football,” he lamented. Meanwhile, Super Eagles team doctor, Ibrahim Gyaran, has said that injured Kano Pillars duo of Papa Idris and Gabriel Reuben, who were released from the camp on Monday, will be back stronger for subsequent games ahead of the Afcon finals in South Africa. “We have taken only a precautionary measure which will bear fruitful dividends at the end of the day,” Gyaran explained yesterday.

efending champion of the African Cup of Nations, Zambia, will arrive in Johannesburg, South Africa on October 7 to begin camping ahead of the South Africa 2013 final round second leg qualifier with the Cranes of Uganda in Kampala on October 13. Zambia prevailed 1-0 over Uganda when both sides met at the Levi Mwanawasa Stadium, Ndola on September 8, but the reigning African king knows that the slim win had put it on a tight rope enroute South Africa. Spokesman for the Football Association of Zambia (FAZ), Erick O. Mwanza, told National Mirror yesterday that the Chipolopolo would fine strategy in Johannesburg from where the team would depart for Kampala on October 11. “We are all thinking along the same line, that is, go to Kampala and get the result that we need to be in South Africa,” Mwanza said. FAZ had complained to CAF a fortnight ago about the poor state of the National Stadium Kampala venue of the impending match based on reports from its emissaries, but the Ugandan authorities had reacted immediately, insisting that the Zambian complaints were misplaced. Zambia, whose football has been on the rise after winning the 2012 Nations Cup hosted by Gabon and Equatorial Guinea, has a compact team made of mainly players based in Africa while a few others play in England and China.

Zambia captain, Katongo

ZIFA dangles dollars on Warriors

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arriors of Zimbabwe players will each receive $10,000 if they qualify for next year’s Africa Cup of Nations finals in South Africa, according to Zimbabwe Football Association (ZIFA). The financially crippled association announced yesterday that indigenous company Mbada Diamonds had facilitated the incentive ahead of the second leg of the final qualifying match away to Angola on October 14. Zimbabwe leads 3-1 from the first leg and needs to avoid defeat or lose by a single goal margin to reach the Afcon finals scheduled for next January. ZIFA President, Cuthbert Dube, said a marketing committee had been man-

dated to raise to raise $500,000 for the Warriors in anticipation of qualification, with the members comprising top executives from Mbada Diamonds, BancABC, CBZ and other institutions that had identified with the country’s football with a view to shoring up its dwindling fortune caused by match-fixing scandal and acute shortage of funds. Zimbabwe qualified for its first ever African Cup of Nations finals in 2004 under coach Sunday Chidzambwa before making it to the 2006 finals with Charles Mhlauri who finished off a campaign started by current coach, Rahman Gumbo, who is now assisted by former Warriors captain, Peter Ndlovu.


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Sport

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

UCL Special… UCL Special… UCL Spec

Diaby blow for Gunners

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rsenal’s midfielder, Abou Diaby, has been ruled out for three weeks with a thigh injury. The French midfielder suffered the injury in the Gunners’ 2-1 defeat against Chelsea on Saturday and was forced off in the first-half. Diaby adds to Arsene Wenger’s injury worries, with the Frenchman sweating on the fitness of Mikel Arteta and Wojciech Szczesny facing a further three weeks out. “We are pleased with Wilshere, but we will take it slowly. He is exceptionally happy. Szczesny will be two or three weeks still,” Wenger said yesterday as the Gunners prepared to face Olympiakos in the Champions League tonight. Wenger is however boosted by the performance of new boy Santi Cazorla and praised the display of Kieran Gibbs ahead of tonight’s clash “We are over the moon with Santi. He is not only an exceptional player, but a great person,” Wenger added, stressing, “Gibbs has found stability. I am very happy with his performances.”

Still only 30 years of age, Chelsea goalkeeper, P time with the London club, little wonder he is ra ‘keeper, who also aims high for his country Cze What are your thoughts on Chelsea’s season so far? I think it’s not been too bad! It’s good to start by taking points right from the off, especially as we’ve also not conceded in most of our games. That shows we have a good defensive cohesion and that’s obviously very pleasing for me as the goalkeeper. What’s a shame is that we were totally outplayed in the European Super Cup game in Monaco. We have a team that was built to win trophies and we weren’t able to do that against Atletico Madrid, who deserved their victory.

Yaya Toure

Toure targets Dortmund’s scalp

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anchester City midmid fielder ,Yaya Toure, believes the Premier League champion can win the Champions League this season, as it prepares for its first home game tonight against Borussia Dortmund. The former Barcelona midfielder, who won the competition with the Catalan giants in 2009, said that with other former winners in their squad such as Maicon, Carlos Tévez and Mario Balotelli, the Eastlands side has the experience to go all the way. “I have that experience and it is good to have big players like Maicon and Balotelli. It is not easy to win the Champions League,” the 29-year-old said. “Here the club just wants to be in the second round and we

know we have to improve bebe cause we have a very good team and with a team like this we can go very far in the competition.” After City’s opening group game 3-2 defeat against Real Madrid in the Bernabeu, Toure has called on his side to improve defensively if they are to qualify from the group. “We are playing our first game at home and we want to show the fans we made a mistake in Madrid. We have a tough game against Dortmund,” he added. “Of course we need to improve when you play against a tough team like Madrid, we need to improve in defensive situations. We have to go beyond that and do better. Most important we have to do our job and get a result.”

What do you think Chelsea’s main strengths are this season? We have a different team with lots of new recruits. As players, they’re more technically gifted than physical. Because of that, our style has evolved and we’re trying to bring more dynamism to our attacking moves thanks to the talented players we have further forward. So far, Eden Hazard’s arrival has done us a lot of good. He’s quickly built an understanding with the players around him, like Juan Mata and Oscar, and it’s really pleasing to see a player come in from another league and adapt so quickly.

Abou Diaby

Essien hails La Liga

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eal Madrid midfielder, Michael Essien, has sensationally declared that the Spanish La Liga is the most competitive league in the world and superior to the English Premier League. The 29-year-old, who moved to the Santiago Bernabeu on a season-long loan deal on transfer deadline day from Chelsea, made his La Liga debut last Monday and lasted the entire duration in the 2-0 win at Rayo Vallecano before playing a

Michael Essien

Is it also a sign of Chelsea’s rude health that your new recruits have been able to make themselves at home so quickly?

key role in Sunday’s clash against Deportivo La Coruna. “The Spanish League is one of the most important and toughest Leagues in Europe,” Essien said yesterday. “Many people speak of the Premier League as the best, but the Spanish League is more fun. You play more football and you score more goals. “The fans enjoy it. I am really looking forward to having a great season and to defending our title.”

Yes, that’s true. Bu very united squad for ing that time the new diately felt like they b well aware that the tea than individuals, and always made very we for more than eight y ever seen players w tough here, and who cause of that.

With all the usual susp strong starts, are you e open Premier League I think this season w an exciting one for of teams have streng United have started volved in the title race City FC, who want to while we’ll be right b Arsenal too, who are p ing goals while looki If they continue like dangerous. Then the who want to play wel place. In my opinion, as exciting as last sea know right up until th title and who’d be rele very interesting again

Has winning the Cham en Chelsea even mor It gave us a huge and a lot more peace was a trophy that the win for a long time. W to lift that magnificen tion now is to defend riencing such a fanta have one aim: to expe

You were one of the h not least when you s ben’s penalty in extra Definitely. It was


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Sport

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

ial…

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PSG banks on Ibra

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We want to defend Champions League –Cech

ith Zlatan Ibrahimovic scoring freely, and a defense that is increasingly hard to breach, Paris Saint-Germain’s confidence is high ahead of tonight’s tough trip to Porto in the Champions League. PSG has won its past five games to move up to second place in the French league, with Ibrahimovic scoring six goals during that spell, and the defense conceding just two. Carlo Ancelotti’s PSG has not played a team of Porto’s caliber this season and faces its first big test against the Portuguese champion, although its defenders will no doubt be relieved that striker Hulk no longer plays for the club. Dynamo Kiev, which has recruited Oleg Blokhin from the Ukraine national team as its new coach, hosts Dinamo Zagreb in Group A’s other match, with both teams getting back to winning ways at the weekend after losing their previous two games. Victory against Porto would put PSG well on the way to the knockout stages and raise expectations even higher after an outlay of over £150m on new players the offseason.

Petr Cech, has won every title going during his nked among the best in the world. The lanky ch Republic, spoke to FIFA.com

ut Chelsea has had a r a long time, and durwcomers have immebelonged. Everyone’s am is more important d the new players are elcome. I’ve been here years and I’ve hardly who thought life was o couldn’t adapt be-

pects having made expecting a very title race? will be very close and the supporters. Lots gthened. Manchester well and will be ine, as will Manchester o defend their crown, ack up there. There’s playing well and scoring solid at the back. e that, they’ll be very ere are other teams ll and get a European , it looks as if it’ll be ason, when we didn’t he end who’d win the egated. It’s going to be n this year.

mpions League givre mental strength? amount of pleasure e of mind, because it e club were trying to We were finally able nt cup and our ambiour title. After expeastic feeling, we only erience it again.

heroes of the final, aved Arjen Roba time… a moment everyone

Having appeared at the 2006 FIFA World Cup, how do you see your role towards the younger players during the qualifying campaign? I’m one of the most experienced players now because at the moment I’m the most capped member of the squad, plus I have all the experience I’ve gained at Chelsea, the reigning European champions. I’m there to share all that knowledge with the younger players to help them feel at ease and to show them the road to success. Are you aiming to continue beyond the 2014 FIFA World Cup and have you fixed yourself any sort of retirement date? If I can carry on for five, six or seven years, I will.

Taekwondo: CIV, Niger due in Abuja AFOLABI GAMBARI

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will remember, and me more than anyone. It was one of the turning points of the final because they could have won it if they’d scored then. That save allowed us to keep hoping and to keep going until the shoot-out. And we all know what happened after that. As you have now won every title going with Chelsea, what are your ambitions with your national team? I won the European U-21 Championship in 2002, when we beat France in the final. I’m very proud of that and I dream of one day doing the same with the senior team. I still have a lot of regrets when I think back to the EURO semifinal we lost to Greece in 2004, because we had an exceptional side that could have gone all the way. Two generations of players have left since then and we’re currently rebuilding. Given that, it was an achievement just to qualify for the most recent EURO, and it was very satisfying to reach the quarter-finals. We can think of that performance as a first step forward, with our goal being to qualify for the 2014 World Cup.

Chika Chukwumerije (in blue helmet) during a past contest

Zlatan Ibrahimovic

thletes from Cote d’Ivoire and Niger Republic are among hundreds of participants expected at the 1st Chika Chukwumerije Sports Foundation (CCSF) International Taekwondo Open Championships scheduled for this week in Abuja. Organized by the Chika Chukwumerije Sports Foundation, the tournament is one of the initiatives geared towards helping Nigeria and West Africa to consistently produce Olympic champions. The tournament holds at Sheraton Hotel and Towers on October 4 to 7 with a N2.8m total prize money for successful competitors. Kano, Lagos, Edo, Delta, Rivers, Cross Rivers, Ondo, Oyo, Nasarawa, Bauchi, Imo, Bay-

elsa, Kebbi, Plateau, Benue and Niger states and Abuja, as well as teams from the Nigeria Police, Airforce, Immigration, Custom and Civil Defence will also participate. The foundation said in a statement that believes that the lack of constant exposure to world class tournaments, training camps, equipment and training methodologies had weakened the resolve of athletes from Nigeria and West Africa to excel at meets, saying that that the championship is aimed at accelerating the performance of national and regional athletes at global sporting events. Meanwhile, a pre-tournament programme for kids will be held in Abuja prior to the main tournament, with the top eight kids in each age category earning the available 64 slots for the kiddies’ event in the CCSF International Taekwondo Open.

Navy to develop water sports IFEANYI EDUZOR

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he Flag Officer Commanding, Western Naval Command, Rear Admiral Amin Ikeoda, says the Nigerian Navy will use its annual Independence race organized by the Navy Sailing Club, to launch the country to water sports, even as he has noted that Nigeria cannot win laurels at international competitions unless lesser sports are given prominence. Ikeoda, who spoke at the independence race held at Navy Town,Ojo, Lagos, said the Navy was poised to ensure that such sports as swimming, kayak, rowing and yachting were developed to win medals for the country at both the Commonwealth

and Olympic Games respectively. “There is the need for the country to give other sports prominence as is done to football because that is the only way to develop sport in the country,” he said. “Nigerian Navy is systematically developing swimming, kayak and other water sports so as to produce future champions,” the commander added. Flagging off the race, the Commodore of the club, Babatunde Ajayi, noted that this year’s race is different from previous editions as it was aimed at grassroots development of water sports while appealing to corporate organizations to partner the club to develop its jetty, water front, tavern and club house. The race, organized to celebrate

Nigeria’s 52nd independence anniversary, involved competitions for U-4, U-5, U-8 and U-12 boys and girls as well as male and female adult races in swimming and kayak. Winners of the various categories were also presented with different prizes at the end of the competition.

Sports Minister, Abdullahi


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Sport

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Nigeria N ig Premier League with

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Cricket

IIKENWA NNABUOGOR ikenwa.nnabuogor@gmail.com

NPL Team of 2011/12 season National Mirror runs the rule on the players that made the NPL Team of the season. IKENWA NNABUOGOR checks them out... Azubike Egwuekwe – Warri Wolves The towering centre back continued to distinguish himself at the rear for disappointing Warri Wolves last season. Whenever he was not at on duty for the Super Eagles for which he has seemed to command a regular, he was busy keeping strikers busy for the whole 90 minutes. His big frame also helped stand him out from the pack. Tough and a bit raw in marking but proved when he could get a job done in each game. Perhaps, a move to Europe beckons following his consistent showing for the Super Eagles.

Gabriel Ruben

Goal Theophilus Afelokhai - Kano Pillars The Pillars keeper has risen meteorically since he switched from Nasarawa United few seasons ago, to become one of the best keepers in the local league. The former school boy international played a significant role in the league title conquest, keeping things safe between the sticks for the Kano-based side for almost all the league games. Little wonder, he was rewarded with a Super Eagles invite by coach Stephen Keshi. Defence Nnamso Edo – Akwa United One cannot but admire the ease with the young full back roved on the wings for the giant-killing NPL new comers. You cannot also fault his staying power and the recovery rate enroute to his defensive duties which he discharged with passion. He was one of the reasons Akwa United maintained the NPL League status, finishing in the 12th place on the log. Mutiu Adegoke – 3SC The former Enyimba left couldn’t have asked for a better way to announce his comeback in the league with his mouthwatering displays for the Oluyole Warriors this past season after a rather tentative outing for Dolphins two seasons ago. Adegoke bestrode the left wing of the Ibadan-based side in his trademark fashion which also included netting his fair share of goals. Adegoke helped inspire the Warriors from a disappointing start which also saw the 1998 league champions swim for the better part of the first round in the relegation waters. His deft dead ball situations touches were also admirable, reminiscent of his glory days at Enyimba.

James Okwuosa – Rangers He has finally secured a club abroad but his sterling performances in the heart of defence for Rangers certainly stood him out and eventually occasioned the move abroad. Tall, strong, bullish and skilful, the former Lobi Stars defender was arguably the best defender in the past season. His absence with few games remaining as a result of his trial at Ajax Cape Town in South Africa, may have worked against the Fly-

James Okwuosa

Turkish clubs and could be signing the dotted lines for a club overseas. Gabriel Rueben – Kano Pillars Rueben’s midfield mastery caught the eyes of Eagles coach Keshi who wasted no time in handing him a regular shirt in his team. The former Enyimba star propelled the impressive Pillars team from the midfield as his passes and vision made things happen. He was not left out in his opportunities at goals, as his fair share of goals completed a superb season for the youngster. It will be a matter of time before a deal in Europe beckons. He was almost on the verge of signing for Belgian side, KAA Gent, though. Attack Sibi Gwar – Niger Tornadoes It was not surprising this young striker emerged the top scorer with 17 goals last season, as he previously knocked on the door for the league’s top scorer’s prize.

David Tyavkase

in the past season by a mile. The rejuvenated old war horse proved his worth in the middle of the park for the Federation Cup finalists. He continued to tease the opponents’ defence with his telling passes, dribbling runs and dead ball acts as Lobi Stars were in the three-horse race for the league title with Pillars and Rangers, with the latter claiming the title as the race went to the wire. Tyavkase’s immense contribution to the league and Federation Cup race for Lobi, were also well documented. Soccer watchers continue to wonder why Keshi keeps excluding him from the Eagles’ list. Gomo Onduku – Sharks The U-20 star was the mainstay in the Sharks team that showed early promise in the season but ended up in the seventh place. Onduku was invited to the U-20 on the back of his impressive displays for the Port Harcourt side but failed to make the final cut to the U-20 World Cup staged in Colombia last year. He has been linked to

ing Antelopes in their bid to win the league title since 1984. He has since settled down for a new life at newly-promoted Chippa United on loan from Ajax Cape Town with he inked a three-year contract last summer. Midfield Philip Asuquo – 3SC This revelation had a great season with 3SC and got an instant reward as Keshi extended an Eagles invite. Asuquo conducted the orchestra in the 3SC midfield with relative ease. His superb ball control was noteworthy, little wonder, the hitherto sinking Oluyole Warriors benefitted from his passes for the goals and wins that helped them stay up. David Tyavkase – Lobi Stars He could win the best midfielder’s award Sibi Gwar

Mutiu Adegoke

The former Enyimba striker averaged a goal in two games as he continued to harass defences. He would probably have erased Jude Aneke’s 20-goal record had he not travelled to Israel to attend a trial. He missed four games on a trot but still managed to emerge top scorer. He’s now on the wish list of top clubs like Pillars, Enyimba and Sunshine Stars. He could still be on his way to Europe. Tony Okpotu – Lobi Stars The young, enterprising striker stood out in the Lobi Stars’ attack as he kept defenders on their toes for 90 minutes season long. His 11-goal return last season was commendable. Keshi didn’t waste time in handing him a well deserved invite. Should he remain in the NPL next season, Okpotu could be the next real big thing in the local scene.


Wednesday, October 3, 2012

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

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Business & Finance Incentive system in Nigeria is to get close power Political Economist and Social Commentator, Pat Utomi

We are putting structures in place to make sure that the Export Expansion Grant is not abused in the future. THE MINISTER OF TRADE AND INVESTMENT, OLUSEGUN AGANGA

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Agric sector’s contributions to GDP may surpass N11.6trn TOLA AKINMUTIMI ABUJA

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here are strong indications that sundry initiatives of the Federal Government aimed at enhancing Agricultural sector’s contributions to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) may raise the sector’s current base contributions higher than the about N11.59 trillion recorded in 2011. Although the overall GDP growth rate dropped to 6.28 per cent at the end of Q2, 2012 up from the 7.61 per cent in the comparative period of 2011, available statistics on the GDP’s product-by-product contributions at the end of June this year showed that agricultural sector’s contributions would surpass last year’s mark in view of the improved growth potentials of the crop production segment of the sector. According to the Q1Q2, 2012 GDP estimated current base prices just published by the National Bureau of Statistics, cumulative agricultural sec-

tor’s contributions for the six-month period stood at N5.09trn compared with the N4.94trn of the corresponding period of last year. This represents about N155.54bn higher output. The crop production activities which in past two years have remained the largest contributor to the GDP rate when analysed on non-oil product-by-product basis, rose to N4.7trnas

at Q2, 2012, compared with the N4.32trn in the six month period ended June 2011. The Q2, 2012 value represent about represents about 25 per cent of the GDP compared with Crude oil’s N7.61trn or 40.17 per cent of the GDP current base value. Agricultural sector’s total current base prices of N5.09trn or 28.67 per cent. Investigations by Na-

tional Mirror on the increasing value of the Agricultural Sector to the country’s GDP showed that a combination of factors, including a friendly climate characterised by adequate rainfall across the states, improved power supply, stability of the naira exchange rate, improved fiscal policy regime and funding by both the government and develop-

ment agencies like the World Bank, European Union, private investors, amongst others, account for the rising profile of the sector in the GDP figures. Despite the bright prospects of the agricultural sector’s performance, especially when experiences have shown over the years that its contributions to the GDP are always better in the latter part of each year with bumper harvests of crops, analysts are however wary of the likely negative implications of the ravaging floods across farmlands in middle and northern belts of the country.

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LAGOS: 01-8446073, 08094331171, 08023133084, 08034019884 ABUJA: 08033020395, 08036321014

Air Nigeria International (Lagos - London) Los- LGW (VK293): Tue, Thurs, Fri & Sat 11.55pm LGW-Los (VK292): Wed, Fri, Sat & Sun 10.50am

Arik Air Los-Abj: 07:15, 09:15, 10:20, 15:20, 16:20, 16:50, 18:45 (Mon-Fri/Sat/Sun) Abj-Los: 07:15, 09:40, 10:20, 12:15, 15:15, 16:15, 17:10, (Mon-Fri/Sat); 12:15, 15:15, 16:15 (Sun) Los-PH: 07:15, 11:40, 14:00, 16:10, 17:15, (Mon-Fri) 07:30, 11:40, 15:50 (Sat) 11:50, 3:50, 17:05 (Sun) Abj-PH: 07:15, 11:20, 15:30 (Mon-Fri) 07:15, 16:00 (Sat) 13:10, 16:00, (Sun) PH-Abj: 08:45, 12:50, 17:00 (Mon-Fri) 08:45, 17:30 (Sat) 14:40, 17:30 (Sun) Abj-Ben: 08:00, 12:10 (Mon-Fri/Sat) 08:55, 12:10 (Sun) Ben-Abj: 09:55, 13:30 (Mon-Fri/Sat) 10:50, 13:30 (Sun)

Aero Contractors

L-R: Representative of the Head of Civil Service of the Federation, Mr. James Obiegbi and President, Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators of Nigeria, Mr. Olatunde Busari, during the ICSAN’s 36th Annual Conference with the theme: Investing and Sustaining Business in Nigeria: Issues of Governance in Abuja, yesterday,

Naira falls against dollar as CBN skips auction

igeria’s naira retreated against the dollar after strengthening last week as the central bank didn’t hold a currency auction because of a public holiday.

FLIGHT SCHEDULE

The currency of Africa’s biggest oil producer slipped as much as 0.2 percent to 157.55 per dollar and traded at 157.27 as of 2:13 p.m. in Lagos. The currency gained 0.3 per cent last week as the Central Bank of Nigeria sold $450 million in its regular Monday and Wednesday auctions, the largest amount in seven

weeks. Yesterday’s auction wasn’t held as markets were closed to celebrate Nigeria’s 52nd year of independence. The naira has added 3.2 percent this year, the best performer in Africa, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The currency’s rally before this week was due to “sufficient” dollar supply by the central bank,

Mixed reactions trail restructuring in aviation industry

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Ecobank Transnational Inc. analysts, led by PaulHarry Aithnard in Paris, wrote in an e-mailed note to clients today. “The naira outlook remains uncertain” because of strong import demand and a “structural imbalance between dollar supply and demand.” The West African nation relies on imports to

meet more than 70 percent of domestic fuel needs because of a lack of refining capacity, according to the Petroleum Ministry. The yield on Nigeria’s 16.39 percent domestic bonds due January 2022 increased 11 basis points to 12.82 percent, according to Sept. 28 data on the Financial Markets Dealers Association website.

Los-Abj: 06:50, 13:30, 16:30, 19:45 (Mon-Fri/Sat/Sun) 12:30 (Sun) 16:45 (Sat). Abj-Los: 07:30, 13:00, 19:00 (Mon-Fri/ Sat) 10:30, 14:30, 19:30 (Sun) 18.30 (Sat) Los-Ben: 07:45, 11:00, 15:30, (Mon-Fri/Sat/ Sun) 12:30 (Sun) 15:30 (Mon-Fri/Sat/Sun) Ben-Los: 09:15, 12:30, 17:00 (Mon-Fri/ Sat/Sun) 17:00 (Sat), 14:00 (Sun) EXCHANGE RATES WAUA

234.6271

USD

155.84

CHF

159.2642

SDR

235.0535

CFA

0.2924

GBP

244.1701

EURO

191.3715

OIL / GAS FUTURES ICE BRENT

$123.39

-0.78

NYMEX

$108.45

-0.11

OPEC BASKET

$122.86

+1.16

NATURAL GAS

$2.83

-0.03

NCAA advices airport users to direct complaints to office

From land to the sea: Oil industry in transition

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Business Finance

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Mixed reactions trail restructuring in aviation industry OLUSEGUN KOIKI

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takeholders and professionals in the Nigerian aviation industry yesterday expressed divergent views on the ongoing restructuring exercise in the sector spearheaded by the minister of aviation, Princess Stella Oduah. While some see the current redeployment and appointment in the sector as a step in the right direction, others claimed the exercise was vindictive, lacked professionalism and tailored with ethnic colouration. At the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) and the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) yesterday, most of the workers were in pensive mood as they were not sure of those that would be affected by the ongoing exercise before the end of the week. National Mirror observed that some of the staffers gathered in groups discussing in low tones the latest tsunami that is sweeping the agencies. While those yet to be issued letters were keenly

L-R: Director, Kaizen, Mr. Chijioke Dozie, Chief Executive Officer, Oando Marketing Plc, Mr. Yomi Awobokun, Head Commercial, Mrs. Dunni Ajayi; Non-Fuel Revenue Manager,Mrs. Eshema Ojo and Director, Kaizen, Mr. Ngozi Dozie, during the launch of Oando Marketing’s TrippMart retail stores at Oando Service Station, Fola Agoro, Lagos, yesterday.

awaiting theirs, others who have been issued letters were seen moving their items from their office. An unconfirmed report said that two directors offices,’ who were yet to be issued either sacking or redeployment letters were locked in NCAA due to the ongoing restructuring, but our cor-

Job creation, best panacea against poverty – WB Report L ANRE OYETADE

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n developing countries, jobs are a cornerstone of development, with a pay off far beyond income alone. They are critical for reducing poverty, making cities work, and providing youth with alternatives to violence, says a new World Bank report. According to The World Development Report 2013: Jobs, it is instructive to note the role of strong private sector-led growth in creating jobs and how jobs that do the most for development can spur a virtuous cycle. The report finds that poverty falls as people work their way out of hardship and as jobs empower women to invest more in their children. “Efficiency increases as workers get better at what they do, as more productive jobs appear, and as less productive ones disappear. Societies flourish as jobs foster diversity and provide alternatives to conflict. “A good job can change a person’s life, and the right jobs can transform entire societies. Governments need to move jobs to centre stage to promote prosperity and fight poverty,” the World Bank Group President, Jim Yong Kim said. “It’s critical that governments

work well with the private sector, which accounts for 90 per cent of all jobs. Therefore, we need to find the best ways to help small firms and farms grow. Jobs equal hope. Jobs equal peace. Jobs can make fragile countries become stable”, he added. The report’s authors highlight how jobs with the greatest development payoffs are those that raise incomes, make cities function better, connect the economy to global markets, protect the environment, and give people a stake in their societies. “Jobs are the best insurance against poverty and vulnerability,” says Kaushik Basu, World Bank Chief Economist and Sr. Vice President, “Governments play a vital enabling role by creating a business environment that enhances the demand for labour.” The global economic crisis and other recent events have raised employment issues to the centre of the development dialogue. The WDR authors, who processed over 800 surveys and censuses to arrive at their findings, estimate that worldwide, more than three billion people are working, but nearly half work in farming, small household enterprises, or in casual or seasonal day labour, where safety nets are modest or sometimes non-existent and earnings are often meagre.

respondent could not ascertain the reason for locking up of the offices. FAAN had, yesterday through a press statement announced the restructuring of the organisation in line with the transformation agenda of the Federal Government.

FAAN said the restructuring includes the establishment of three new directorates and the collapsing of one, bringing the total number of directorates in the parastatal to nine. A statement signed by the Managing Director, FAAN, Mr. George

Uriesi stated that the erstwhile Directorate of Environment has been collapsed into a department and will be headed by a General Manager, under the Directorate of Airport Operations, while the three new Directorates are Projects, Legal Services and Cargo Development. The nine Directorates of FAAN according to the statement are Directorate of Airport Operations, which is to be headed by Mr. Henry Omeogu, Directorate of Finance and Accounts headed by Mr Austin Tadafera, Directorate of Human Resources and Administration headed by Hajia Salamatu Umar-Eluma. Others are Directorate of Legal Services headed by Mr. Mark Jacobs, Directorate of Commercial and Business Development headed by Dr. Adeniyi Balogun, Directorate of Maintenance and Engineering headed by Mr Olufemi Ogunode, Directorate of Projects headed by Engr. Saleh Dunoma, Directorate of Security Services headed by Sir Wendell Ogunedo and Directorate of Cargo Development headed by Mr. Uche Ofulue.

DPR threatens to shut filling stations selling petrol above N97 per litre

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he Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) on Tuesday threatened to shut down any petrol station caught selling fuel above the pump price of N97 per litre. Mr. Gbenga Koku, Zonal Controller of the agency, issued the threat in a telephone interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos. He said that the agency’s surveillance teams were currently monitoring activities at various petrol stations across the state. “It is illegality to sell petrol above pump price of N97 per litre. Any filling station caught engaging in such activities will be shut down completely. “Our surveillance teams have set out since morning to investigate activities at filling stations and

depots,’’ he said. Koku said that any station sealed for short changing members of the public would remain closed until such operators purged themselves of the offence and received a clean bill of health from DPR. According to him, DPR usually seals petrol stations for either selling above the pump price or under dispensing fuel to members of the public. Koku urged Nigerians to be proactive and always report to the agency noticeable sharp practices by operators at petrol stations. He assured Nigerians of the commitment of the DPR in responding to cases of alleged illegalities brought to the attention of the department. NAN, however, reports that some petrol stations in Ikorodu,

Agege, Mushin and Somolu areas of Lagos State are selling petrol at between N110 to N120 per litre. Some petrol stations in Victoria Island and Ikoyi are, however, selling at N97 per litre. Mr Adeyemi Adetunji, a civil servant in Lagos, said the scarcity of the patrol noticed at the weekend had abated. “It took me more than seven hours to buy petrol in this station on Saturday, but thank God I got it within three minutes today,” he said He urged government find a lasting solution to the recurring scarcity of petroleum products. Samson Idowu, a taxi driver in Lagos, said that the inability to create an enduring petroleum products supply chain over the years was regrettable.

ActionAid bemoans poverty level in Nigeria TOLA AKINMUTIMI ABUJA

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ctionAid Nigeria, a nongovernmental organisation, has identified the level of poverty in the country as the most potent threat to national security and demanded from the Nigerian government the need to prioritise povertyalleviating programmes since Nigerians deserve to begin to feel the impact of governance in a much improved way. The NGO, in a statement issued at the weekend and signed by its Policy Advocacy and Campaigns Manager, Mr. Tunde Aremu, in

commemoration of Nigeria’s 52 years of independence, pointed out that the country, which has one of the greatest potential of becoming a leading economy in the world, is yet to attain the dream many Nigerians had at independence 52 years ago. It stated further that the month of October was the most significant month in the history of the Nigeria nation. The month had for several years signified for many Nigerians the period of celebration of freedom from foreign rule and a rekindling of hope of a virile nation with capacity for taking care of her citizens.

ActionAid Country Director, Dr. Hussaini Abdu, noted however that Nigeria could still achieve her potential with focused planning and a pro-people agenda”. He explained: “Not many nations have such space, blue and green, as Nigeria. Its creeks, waterways, rivers, streams and arable land are such that without mineral resources the country would remain one of the most solvent nations in the world. The nation’s potential to be one of the biggest economies in the world is further enhanced with its large deposits of solid mineral resources, almost all of them at the high commercial quality.


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

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Business Finance

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

NCAA advices airport users to direct complaints to office

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he Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) on Tuesday advised passengers and other airport users to direct any complaint about the services at the airports to its office. Special Assistant, Media to the NCAA Director-General, Mr. Sam Adurogboye, said this in a telephone interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja. He said the organisation had established Consumer Protection Directorates (CPD) in all the domestic airports whereby people could table any form of cheating by the airlines or other airport authorities. Adurogboye added that the airport users could lay any form of complaint ranging from loss of baggage, flight delays and cancellation, refusal of refund of

unused tickets money by airline and other related accusations to the NCAA before it could be addressed. Some passengers, who spoke with NAN, expressed disappointment at the way Air Nigeria failed to refund their ticket money after the airline was closed down and threatened to sue the airline if NCAA refused to intervene. Some international passengers also told NAN that some of the airlines both on the domestic and international routes delayed for days before their luggage were released. An airline official, who refused to give his name, told NAN that an air ticket was valued for a period of one year, adding that airlines could not refund passengers ticket money except the airline was out of service or could no longer

function. Adurogboye, while reacting to the rate at which passengers complained about Air Nigeria and some other airlines refusal to refund unused tickets money, said the organisation would penalise the airlines if complaints were appropriately channelled. “NCAA cannot push any airline to pay, the affected passengers have to first approach the airlines that refused to refund their money before they can be penalised. “We have offices at the entire airport across the country where people can lodge any type of complaints with our CPD either verbally or in written form and then the NCAA officials would collect their particulars and summon the airline.

L-R: Managing Director, BD Consult, Mr. Tola Bademosi; Managing Director/CEO, Dufil Prima Foods Plc, Mr. Deepak Singhal and Head of Marketing, Mr. Manpreet Singh, at a media briefing for the launch of Indomie Super Millionaire Promo in Lagos, yesterday.

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Union laments closure of 850 companies in sector MESHACK IDEHEN

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orkers in the chemical and non-metallic products sector in the country have said that the Federal Government was responsible for the poor state of the country’s economy, and for the closure of 850 companies in the sector. Lamenting what has become the fate of companies in the sector to journalists on Monday, the National President of the National Union of Chemical, Footwear, Rubber, Leather and Non-Metallic Products Employees (NUCFRLANMPE), Mr. Boniface Isok, told Na-

tional Mirror that manufacturing companies have all closed shops, while those still in business are now operating below production capacity. Isok said even the few factories that are in operation find it difficult to sustain production as the Federal Government have continued to allowed the importation of all kinds of goods into Nigeria, thereby turning the country into a dumping ground of some sort. He said the adverse effect of this action is that the masses are jobless and at the same time, Nigeria is very busy boosting the economy of other countries by creating employment opportunities in those countries.

Consumers thrilled at the 2012 Arthur Guinness Day Celebration

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uinness Nigeria Plc gave its consumers a lot to cheer recently as the company celebrates the 2012 Arthur Guinness Day. The event which is a global event to celebrate the founder of the Guinness brand is celebrated world wide as a way of commemorating the great vision of Arthur Guinness. The event which took place at the Le Mango restaurant and bar in GRA Ikeja was graced by celebrities and top dignitaries. According to the Managing Director/Chief Executive, Guinness Nigeria Plc, Mr. Seni Adetu, the Arthur Guinness Day on the calendar of the company is as important as the Guinness brand its self. “It is no doubt that for over 253 years a brand like Guinness has transcend all the challenges of a product life circle and now we are still celebrating the vision of its founder. It simply shows that it was a good concept in the first

place. Today, we celebrate greatness and vision of a great man Arthur Guinness”, Seni said. Also, the Marketing Director, Guinness Nigeria Plc, Mr. Austin Ufomba thanked their numerous consumers in Nigeria who have continued to patronize Guinness products over the years. “Today’s celebration of the Arthur Guinness Day is not only about Guinness but also our numerous consumers who have stuck by our quality brands since Guinness debuted in Nigeria as a company. The electrifying atmosphere we have here shows the love that our consumers have for the brand and we so much appreciate them. We enjoined our consumers in Nigeria to continue to enjoy Guinness Foreign Extra Stout amongst other quality products from the stable of Guinness Nigeria as we promise them improved quality which has been maintained since 1759” Ufomba said.

Unity Bank is market leader in e-payment drives - Interswitch 11 Ships with 130,402 tonnes of cargoes TOLA AKINMUTIMI ABUJA

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ith the first of its kind launching of a hybrid of MasterCard products last Thursday in Abuja, Unity Bank Plc has been described as one of the most innovative epayment products and services banks in the country. Giving the verdict at the occasion where the bank formally launched the MasterCard Verve, Prepaid MasterCard and Holy Trip MasterCard which were delivered to complement the services of its old verve card in the market, the Director of Payment Infrastructure and Processing at Interswitch, Mr Akeem Lawal, noted that though the bank was not the first bank to embrace electronic banking but that its innovativeness and huge investments on IT infrastructure, manpower

and other resources crucial to efficiency of service delivery had positioned it as a leader in the epayment segment of the market. “The launching of the MasterCard variants has further positioned Unity Bank as a frontline player in the electronic payment system in Nigeria. Though the bank was not one of the first to embrace electronic payment but by its commitment to improved service delivery agenda it has become one of the most innovative and frontline player in the segment of the market today. “We are very proud to be associated with the bank as it moves further in its drive to run its services on most secured technologies and according to the principles of global best practices”, Lawal said. In his remarks, the Bank’s Executive Director Central, Tanko Mohammed, who represented

the Managing Director, Alhaji Ado Wanka, said the launching of the products was aimed at giving the bank a leading edge in the e-payment segment of the banking industry, adding that the cards are among other initiatives being pursued to support the country in its current efforts to achieve FSS 2020 broad policy objectives. He explained: “It is to give our customers the opportunity to follow the global trend where transactions have gone electronic; it will give our customers the opportunity to transact business through electronic channels instead of the use of cash”. According to him, in view of the innovative product development strategies of the bank, it has recently been globally recognised by becoming a member of the league of Mastercard Principal Members Bank worldwide.

expected in PH – NPA

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leven ships carrying 130,402 tonnes of goods are expected to arrive in Port Harcourt Port between by October 4. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the port’s shipping position released by the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) on Tuesday, in Port Harcourt, showed that no ship was listed for export in the same period. According to the report, six of the ships are laden with petroleum products; three, bulk cement; and one each with bulk wheat and general cargoes. It listed those carrying petroleum products as MT Treasure, 5,000 tonnes of Kerosene; MT Sea Grace, 5,000 tonnes of Kerosene, and MT Sea Pioneer, 5,000 tonnes of Kerosene.

Other ships with petroleum products are: MT Biskra, 4,500 tonnes of bitumen; MT Wappen Von Berlin, 8,000 tonnes of Tallow oil (waste oil for industrial oil), and MT Mor Prosperity, 1000 tonnes of low purpose fuel oil. The report listed the ships expected with bulk cement as MV Gloriana, 25,200 tonnes; MV Eagle Strait, 25,000 tonnes, and MV Genco Marine, 32,804 tonnes. On general cargoes, it said that two ships, MV George and MV Xenia, were expected with 11,550 tonnes of wheat and 7348.02 tonnes respectively. Five ships carrying bagged rice and fish, anchored at the Fairway Buoy, Bonny, were awaiting clearance to sail into Port Harcourt with their cargoes, the report said


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

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Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Energy Week

udemea@rocketmail.com 07031546994

From land to the sea: Oil industry in transition Bonga platform

UDEME AKPAN looks at the Nigerian oil industry’s transition through the years from its concentration on land and swamp operations to the ultra-deep offshore regions and the increasing focus on gas.

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hen Nigeria made an oil find at Oloibiri, Bayelsa State in 1956, barely four years to its independence, there was no clear indication that it would soon become a major oil and gas exploration and production nation. The reasons were not farfetched. First, it took about 48 years of search, which was intercepted by conflicts, especially the First and Second World wars to make the find. Second, this long search probably gave the impression that it would take more years to record another find. Contrary to such expectation, the nation was to witness one major find after another within a relatively short period of time. For instance, Mobil Exploration Nigeria recorded a find in 1964 and went on to start production from its Idoho field before the civil war. Mobil was not alone. Chevron found oil at the Escravos Bay in 1963 before putting the field into production in 1965. More than that, Elf that started drilling at Obagi in 1962 delved into production in 1966. Before long, Agip and Texaco that made major finds also started to produce commercial oil in the Niger

Delta, thus, enabling the nation to exDelta thus ex port 2.0 million barrels per day (bpd) in 1972. Available data showed that by 1979, the export level had risen to 2.4 million bpd. What factors accounted for the seeming oil revolution? The Chairman and Managing Director of International Energy Services Limited, Dr. Diran Fawibe attributed it to a combination of factors. First, he attributed it to the ability of the government to extend exploratory rights, previously enjoyed by Shell alone to other firms. Second, he maintained that oil and gas producing firms were curious to invest in the fertile industry. Third, the timely establishment of the Nigerian National Oil Corporation (NNOC), the forerunner of the present Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation in 1971 was also a major factor, particularly as

it enabled the Federal Government to make more impact in the industry. As Fawibe puts it: “Before the creation of NNPC, the government did not play active roles in the industry. It seemed to have been satisfied with regulating the activities of the multinationals and collecting royalties. But the advent of the Corporation made it possible for it to expand and deepen the practical involvement of the nation in the industry.” Investigations showed that the adventure would probably not have been realised as early as it was without the encouragement of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), which the nation became a frontline member in the 1971. It was the cartel that made it clear to Nigeria, Algeria, Angola, Ecuador, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Libya, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Venezuela that they should begin to play active roles in order to derive maximum benefits for their nations. No doubt it documented that its mission is to coordinate and unify the pe-

CONTRARY TO SUCH EXPECTATION, THE NATION WAS TO WITNESS ONE MAJOR FIND AFTER ANOTHER WITHIN A RELATIVELY SHORT PERIOD OF TIME

troleum policies of its member countries and ensure the stabilisation of oil markets in order to secure an efficient, economic and regular supply of petroleum to consumers, a steady income to producers and a fair return on capital for those investing in the petroleum industry. Encouraged by the cartel, the NNPC started to play active roles in the petroleum industry. For instance, it acquired stakes and sealed major agreements with multinationals, including the NNPC/Shell/Agip/Elf, NNPC/Mobil, NNPC/Chevron, NNPC/Elf and NNPC/ Agip/Phillips Joint Ventures. Under the arrangement, NNPC owns an average of 43 percent equity while the multinationals control 57 percent equity. Funds are contributed in the ratio of equity ownership for implementation of projects and programmes. On completion, crude oil and gas are lifted based on the same ratio. Besides, there are other forms of agreements such as the Joint Operating Agreement, Production Sharing Contract, Service Contract and the Sole Risk Contract. The agreements stipulated other terms of business between investors and the NNPC. For instance, under the Service Contract, it is the duty of the operators to finance exploration, development and production. Output is lifted on agreed terms. The contract is terminated after five years without any cost CONTINUED ON PAGE 36


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National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

From land to the sea: Oil industry in transition

Jonathan

CONTINUED FROM PAGE 35 implication to the NNPC if no oil find is made. Under the Sole Risk Contract, which is meant for indigenous firms, the firms bear the cost of the business and pay petroleum profit tax to the government. With the execution of these agreements and other measures, oil firms have over the years been encouraged to invest, thus, assisting to build the nation’s oil and gas reserves. The reserves now stand at over 37 billion barrels and 187 trillion standard cubic feet respectively. The nation has also moved from onshore (land) to offshore (water) and deep offshore in search for petroleum. An authoritative source documented that: “By expanding to deep water drilling the possible sources for finding new oil reserves is expanded. Through the introduction of deep water drilling 50per cent more oil is extracted than before the new forms of retrieving the oil. In Nigeria, the deepwater sector still has a large avenue to expand and develop. The amount of oil extracted from Nigeria is expected to expand from 15,000 bbl/d (2,400 m3/d) in 2003 to 1.27 Mbbl/d (202,000 m3/d) in 2010.” It stated that: “Deepwater drilling for oil is especially attractive to oil companies because the Nigerian government has very little share in these activities and it is more difficult for the government to regulate the offshore activities of the companies. Also, the deepwater extraction plants are less disturbed by local militant attacks, seizures due to civil conflicts, and sabotage. These advancements offer more resources and alternatives to extract the oil from the Niger Delta, with hopefully less conflict than the operations on land.” The nation did not limit itself to exploration and production. It also delved into refining and marketing of petroleum products. This dated back to 1959 when government commissioned a survey to justify the project. In 1963, the construction of the old Port Harcourt plant started. The plant which capacity was later expanded from 35,000 bpd to 60,000 bpd was commissioned in 1965 to refine various products. The quantity refined was insufficient for the nation. Due to shortages, the government set up the Oputa Commission to examine the issues at stake and make appropriate recommendations. It was the adoption of its recommendation that culminated in the establishment of other plants in Kaduna and Warri with initial 35,000 bpd each. The capacities of the two refineries were lat-

Yakubu

Alison-Madueke

MORE EFFORTS SHOULD BE MADE TO STIMULATE THE SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT OF HOST COMMUNITIES NOT ONLY THROUGH THE PROVISION OF PALLIATIVES BUT ALSO INCREASED PARTICIPATION er expanded to 110,000 bpd and 125,000 bpd respectively. The expansion, targeted at enabling the nation to meet rising demand was insufficient as shortages continued. This compelled work on the new 150,000 bpd Port Harcourt plant, thus raising the nation’s refining capacity from 295,000 bpd to 445,000 bpd. With the increased capacity, government officials thought that a permanent solution would have been found. But it was mistaken. The shortages continued mainly as a result of some reasons, especially irregular maintenance, lack of funds and accidents. Determined to solve the challenge, the government granted new licences to private investors to construct new refineries. The projects that are presently at different stages have not been completed because of some problems, especially lack of funds and inconsistent policies. The nation has not only focused on oil. Efforts have been made to develop its gas resource. In recent years, the nation has embarked on major gas projects of global significance in order to maximise earnings from gas, a greater part of which was flared in the past. Some of the projects, including the Escravos Gas Project, the Liquefied Natural Gas Project, the West African Gas Project and the Industrial Gas Utilisation Project have already come on stream. Several others aimed at harnessing the nation’s gas have either been developed or presently being executed in different parts of the nation. This raises hope that although gas flaring may not end in a short term, it would eventually become a reality in a long term if adequate efforts are made to accomplish it. Meanwhile, experts have faulted the content of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB), targeted at assisting to improve the state of the environment. The members observed that the environmental laws as enshrined in the PIB are weak and capable of not making much impact on the environment it is meant to address. For instance, they maintained that: “Asking operators in consultation with the Ministry of Environment to come up with an environmental plan does

not deal with questions of the gaps between the policies and practices which has been the problem. For instance, the UNEP report on Ogoni found out that Shell breached its own environmental guidelines as well as those set by government.” Furthermore, it noted that: “The provision relating to gas flares gives by one hand and takes from the other. After banning gas flaring from end of this year, it creates room for exceptions to be granted by the minister. That is not effectively different from what is happening under the current regime. It turns gas flaring into discretionary permitgranting. Environmental justice advocates believe that the gas ban should be absolute. They also insist that operating companies should not only be made to get insurance covers to cover cases of environmental disasters arising from their operations and this should be a condition precedent to the operation of any license.” The Bill is not only required to impact positively on the environment but also others, especially local content at least for a reason. Indigenous participation and utilisation of local resources are still low in the industry. The implementation of the Nigerian Content Act which came into effect on 22nd of April, 2010 following the signing of the Bill into law by President Goodluck Jonathan has assisted to boost local content, particularly through the instrumentality of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board. The board seeks to realise the aspiration of the Federal Government of Nigeria to increase indigenous participation in the oil and gas industry, build local capacity, create linkages to other sectors of the national economy and boost industry contributions to the growth of our National Gross Domestic Product. For instance, history was made in the Nigerian oil and gas industry on Thursday, when Cameron Offshore Systems Nigeria unveiled the first made in Nigeria Subsea Christmas Tree at the Onne Oil and Gas Free Zone. The event marked a major achievement in

Olorunshola

the drive for Nigerian Content implementation as the Christmas Tree was designed in Nigeria; the frames fabricated at Globestar yard in Warri while critical value add activities such as radiography, painting, production of anodes were also procured from within Nigeria. The Subsea Christmas Tree which was manufactured for Total Usan’s subsea development project offshore Nigeria was assembled and tested at Cameron Base Onne. Speaking at the event, the Executive Secretary, Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board, Engr. Ernest Nwapa, described the Christmas Tree as belonging to the top of technology ecosystem, adding that the accomplishment was a statement for the maturing of the Nigerian supply chain. He remarked that the implementation of the Nigerian Content Act had started to achieve Federal Government’s aspiration of transforming the oil and gas sector from an importer of over 95 per cent of the industry needs a few years ago to one that manufactures inputs used in the industry and other sectors of the national economy. Nwapa also noted that the industry which used to create millions of jobs in foreign economies had begun to generate jobs for Nigerians through the development of facilities in-country where work are being executed while indigenes of host communities were becoming active participants in the activities of the industry, thereby creating growth in knowledge, wealth and general wellbeing. He commended Intels Nigeria Limited-the management of the Onne Oil and Gas Free Zone for the support it lent to the assembling of the Subsea Christmas Tree, noting that huge investments in infrastructure and facilities are being made in the zone to support the growth of work load the industry must place in Nigeria under the Nigerian Content Act. He expressed hope that new jobs will justify the investments and provide the impetus to replicate similar facilities in other parts of the country. Besides local content, more efforts should be made to stimulate the sustainable development of host communities not only through the provision of palliatives but also increased participation. It is expected that such increased involvement would assist to reduce communal crises in Niger Delta, thereby creating conducive atmosphere for operations, targeted at increased exploration, production and export of oil and gas in the nation.


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Energy Week

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

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OPEC daily basket price stands at $108.21 per barrel

T

he price of Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) basket of 12 crudes stood at 108.21 dollars a barrel on Thursday, compared with $106.84 the previous day, according to OPEC Secretariat calculations. The new OPEC Reference Basket of Crudes (ORB) is made up of the following: Saharan Blend (Algeria), Girassol (Angola), Oriente (Ecuador), Iran Heavy (Islamic Republic of Iran), Basra Light (Iraq), Kuwait Export (Kuwait), Es Sider (Libya), Bonny Light (Nigeria), Qatar Marine (Qatar), Arab Light (Saudi Arabia), Murban (UAE) and Merey (Venezuela). Crude oil prices rose on Friday, with Brent gaining nearly 15 percent in the third quarter, while expiring frontmonth United States gasoline futures rocketed late to rally 19 cents a gallon. Brent and U.S. crude price trajectories were choppy in end-of-quarter trading as uncertainty about Spain’s economy ahead of a ratings agency review weighed on the euro and stock markets after oil and equities rallied in the previous session on Spain’s budget reforms. Brent rebounded to a 14.9 percent gain for the third quarter, following a steep 20.4 percent second-quarter drop. U.S. crude rose 8.5 percent in the quarter after slumping 17.5 percent in the second quarter. Maintenance-related curbs to North Sea output, Middle East turmoil and Iran’s dispute with the West over Tehran’s nuclear program helped lift oil prices in the quarter. Adding support were measures taken by the U.S., Japanese and European central banks to address sputtering global economic growth. Friday’s seesaw trading followed the previous session’s strong gains after Spain announced a 2013 crisis budget based mostly on spending cuts and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu drew a “red line” for Iran’s nuclear program in a speech at the U.N. “The bounce was a bit overdone,” said Mike Wittner, the global head of oil research at Societe Generale in New York. Brent November crude rose 38 cents to settle at $112.39 a barrel, swinging from $111.52 to $113.40. The big quarterly gain came despite Brent posting a 1.9 percent loss for September. U.S. November crude pushed up 34

Oil vessel

cents, or 6.29 percent, higher to go off the board at $3.3420 a gallon. The rise, which extended a rally that tacked on nearly 40 cents onto the contract this week, was likely due to one market participant being caught short ahead of the expiry and having to buy from an illiquid market ahead of the close. “The November contract didn’t make it up more than 2.5 cents, so it looks like they had somebody got caught (short) and they squeezed them really, really hard,” said Gene McGillian, analyst at Tradition Energy in Stamford, Connecticut. He noted that volume was very thin in the expiring October contract and that RBOB contracts trading in later months where there was more liquidity did not match the gains seen in the front-month contract.

cents to settle at $92.19 a barrel, in choppy trade ranging from $91.40 to $92.71. The quarterly gain by U.S. crude survived a 4.4 percent slump in September. Money managers cut their net long U.S. crude futures and options positions in the week to Sept. 25, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission said on Friday. Moody’s rating agency is due to review Spain’s sovereign rating by the end of the month, and caution ahead of Friday’s bank stress test results weighed on the euro and U.S. stocks and pulled crude back from early gains. Brent initially was lifted by trading sources saying that a sixth North Sea Forties cargo had been delayed from October loading dates as maintenance took longer than expected. U.S. front-month October RBOB gasoline surged as much as 28 cents heading into the session close in very thin trade. It settled 19.77

Source: Oilprice.com

India increases demand for Qua Iboe crude

N

igeria’s largest crude stream, Qua Iboe is being supported by robust demand from India, which has boosted its value this week, traders said on Friday. “It’s strong. Indian demand seems to have come back, at least for Qua, although this can’t be said of all of the Nigerian grades,” said a West African crude trader.

Many Angolan cargoes for November have traded, although cargoes of grades including Dalia, Pazflor and Girassol were said to be lingering due to a lull in buying interest from big Chinese buyers. “I get the impression the Chinese are holding back a bit,” the trader said. Opinion varied on the grade’s value. One trader said he was offered the Source: Bloomberg

Energy & Oil Prices OIL ($/bbl) Nymex Crude Future Dated Brent Spot WTI Cushing Spot

PRICE*

CHANGE

% CHANGE

TIME

92.74 111.47 92.66

0.81 1.06 1.03

0.88% 0.96% 1.12%

11:20 11:30 09:03

OIL (¢/gal) Nymex Heating Oil Future Nymex RBOB Gasoline Future

PRICE*

CHANGE

% CHANGE

TIME

311.83 295.66

1.96 3.90

0.63% 1.34%

11:19 11:17

2.88 2.82 2.96

0.04 0.02 0.16

1.45% 0.71% 5.71%

11:19 09/24 09/24

PRICE*

CHANGE

% CHANGE

TIME

23.34 30.33 32.18

-1.35 0.48 2.70

-5.47% 1.61% 9.16%

09/24 09/24 09/21

NATURAL GAS ($/MMBtu) Nymex Henry Hub Future Henry Hub Spot New York City Gate Spot

ELECTRICITY ($/megawatt hour) Mid-Columbia, firm on-peak, spot Palo Verde, firm on-peak, spot BLOOMBERG, FIRM ON-PEAK, DAY AHEAD SPOT/ERCOT HOUSTON

grade at dated plus $2.60, while another pegged the market closer to between $2.60 and $2.80, in line with figures heard on Thursday. Around 40 of the 52 cargoes due to load in November have been sold, traders said. While Cabinda is sold out, demand has been lower for other grades such as Pazflor, Dalia and Girassol. Girassol: Three cargoes remaining in November and assessed at dated plus 20-30 cents. Dalia: Also three cargoes left. Offered at around dated minus 60 cents, and valued at around dated minus 80 cents, compared with around dated minus 10 cents for October-loading crude. Pazflor: Offered at dated minus 70 cents, and expected by one trader to be sold closer to dated minus $1.00. Petral, the Singapore-based trading arm of Indonesian state oil company Pertamina, has tendered to buy light, sweet crude for loading in November, traders said. End-October barrels could be delivered into the tender, they added. India’s BPCL also has a tender running that closes soon, traders said.


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Natural gas Natural gas is a mixture of several hydrocarbon gases, including methane (between 70% and 90%), ethane, propane, butane and pentane, as well as carbon dioxide, nitrogen and hydrogen sulphide. The composition of natural gas can vary widely, depending on the gas field. Natural gas is referred to as “wet” when hydrocarbons other than methane are present, “dry” when it is almost pure methane and “sour when it contains significant amounts of hydrogen sulphide. Does the IEA analyse the gas market? Yes. The IEA publishes regular medium- and longer-term analysis of the outlook for gas markets, based on the extensive data that it collects on consumption, production, trade and prices. The longer-term analysis, currently to 2035, is included in the annual World Energy Outlook (WEO), which contains detailed projections and analysis broken down by fuel, sector and country. In response to supply and demand factors increasingly pointing to a future in which natural gas plays a greater role in the global energy mix, a special WEO report was published in 2011 on the prospects for natural gas, which addressed the question “Are we entering a golden age of gas?”. This report examines the key factors that could result in a more prominent role for natural gas in the global energy mix, and the implications for other fuels, energy security and climate change. The report presents a scenario in which global use of gas rises by more than 50% from 2010 levels and accounts for more than one-quarter of global energy demand by 2035. However, it also strikes a cautious note on the climate benefits of such an expansion, noting that an increased share of gas in the global energy mix is far from enough on its own to put the world on a carbon emissions path consistent with a global temperature rise of no more than 2°C. A second special report will be released in May 2012 looking at the environmental impact of unconventional gas production, including an analysis of the “Golden Rules” needed to support a potential “Golden Age of Gas”. There is also a detailed annual report on gas, called the Medium-Term Gas Market Report that analyses the latest trends in global gas markets, examines investments trends in different parts of the gas value chain, and provides supply and demand forecasts over the upcoming five years. The report also looks in detail at the development of liquefied natural gas (LNG) trade, prices and unconventional gas. How much gas is consumed worldwide? Global gas demand was estimated at 3 284 billion cubic metres (bcm) in 2010, up 7.4% from 2009 levels. Gas demand has increased by around 800 bcm over the last decade, or 2.7% per year. Gas has a 21% share in the global primary energy mix, behind oil and coal. For comparison, 50 billion cubic meters (bcm) of natural gas is roughly equivalent to 7% of the US’s consumption in 2010, or France’s entire annual consumption in 2010. In terms of volume, 50 bcm could fill roughly 20 million Olympic swimming pools. Which countries are the largest consumers and producers? The United States, Russia, Iran and China are the world’s largest consumers of gas. The largest producers are Russia, the United States, Canada and Iran. How much gas is there in the world? Analysts mostly tend to refer to proven gas reserves, i.e. volumes that have been discovered and can be produced economically with existing technology at current gas prices. Worldwide proven gas reserves are estimated at around 190 trillion cubic metres (tcm) or about 60 times current annual global gas production. However, recoverable gas resources, i.e. volumes that analysts are confident will be discovered or technology developed to produce them, are much larger, with recoverable conventional resources estimated at around 400 tcm. Recoverable unconventional resources are of a similar size. Altogether, this would last around 250 years, based on current rates of gas consumption. How is consumption and production of gas measured? Worldwide, many different units are used by countries, which sometimes make it difficult to reconcile data. At the IEA, natural gas statistics are given in billion cubic metres (for volume), and in Terajoules CONTINUED ON PAGE 40

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Nigeria to export four cargoes of Usan UDEME AKPAN WITH AGENCY REPORT

N

igeria has concluded plans to export four cargoes of Usan crude oil in November, unchanged from October, this year. Bloomberg confirmed that the country will ship 3.8 million barrels of the grade, or 126,667 barrels a day, in November, the schedule showed. Loading programs are monthly schedules of crude shipments compiled by field operators to allow buyers and sellers to plan their supply and trading activities. The Usan development comprises a Floating Production Storage and Offloading (FPSO) vessel designed to process 180,000 barrels per day and with a crude storage capacity of 2 million barrels. Traders said API gravity of Usan is about 30 and the sulphur content is 0.26 percent, making it medium-sweet crude with relatively high acidity. The Usan field is located approximately 62 miles (100 kilometers) off the coast of the Niger Delta in water depths of about 2,400 feet. The project will utilise a floating production, storage and offloading (FPSO) vessel with a storage capacity of two million barrels of oil and a maximum total daily production capacity of 180,000 barrels of crude oil.

FG to increase offshore interest to 73 per cent

N

igeria has concluded plans to increase its share of offshore oil profits because of “prevailing realities” in the industry, Petroleum Minister Diezani Alison-Madueke said. The Petroleum Industry Bill, which was sent to Parliament in July, proposes to boost the government’s share to 73 percent from 61 percent, Alison-Madueke said recently in an e-mailed statement from the capital, Abuja. “The proposed increase of government take to about 73 percent is not only competitive but considerate when we look at the scale of other entities around the world,” she said, citing Norway, Indonesia and Angola as examples. Previous terms introduced in 1993 were based on an oil price of $20 a barrel, and are no longer realistic because “crude prices have been on the upward swing,” she said. The bill, which seeks to reform the way the oil industry of Africa’s top producer is regulated and funded, was initially introduced to parliament more than three years ago. Lawmakers were unable to pass it before the end of the last legislative session in May 2011. Energy companies including Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSA), Chevron Corporation (CVX), Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM), Total SA (FP) and Eni SpA (ENI) said in a joint presentation to lawmakers in 2009 that the proposed tax increases would make exploration “uneconomical.” They pump more than 90 percent of the country’s oil through ventures with state-owned Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation. Meanwhile, Shell said the bill will make projects unviable. Taxes on deep offshore oil projects proposed by Nigeria are “competitive and considerate”, its oil minister said, rejecting complaints by foreign oil majors that the levies are too high. Shell Nigeria Managing Director, Mutiu Sunmonu warned this week that tax terms in a landmark Nigerian oil bill are so uncompetitive they risk rendering offshore oil and gas projects unviable, and could badly stifle investment. Exxon, the second biggest offshore operator in Nigeria, has said it could not invest in more deepwater projects if the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) passes in its current form. If Nigeria is to maintain current oil reserve levels and achieve ambitions of higher production, it will be dependent on offshore development because the onshore Niger Delta has already been extensively explored over the last 50 years.

Oil rig

Meanwhile, Brent crude fell below $112 per barrel on Monday, reflecting investor concerns a shaky global economy may hurt oil demand following fresh evidence of weakness in China and Japan as well as

NEITI calls for recovery of UDEME AKPAN

T

he Chairman of Nigeria Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (NEITI), Ledum Mitee, has called on relevant government agencies responsible for custody and management of extractive resources revenue to take practical steps to recover the sum of $9.8090 billion, representing outstanding recoverable funds due to the federation account from oil and gas companies operating in the country. Speaking at NEITI Stakeholders Forum on PIB in Lagos, Mitee explained that this huge amount which is equivalent to $1.3 trillion at the current exchange rate is huge enough to wipe out the current fiscal deficit in this year’s federal budget; “the above stated potential revenue loss due from under assessment/ under payments has remained outstanding not just out of the refusal of the companies and covered entities to pay but also, if not more by the fact, that the concerned government agencies have not made sufficient efforts to recover the funds which the country desperately needs especially at this time”. The NEITI Chair gave assurance that for the Board under his leadership to translate NEITI objectives into visible impacts in the life of citizens, the revenue accruing to governments as revealed by NEITI Audits reports have to be recovered and paid to the coffers of the Federation. He noted that; “The profound significance of the NEITI process in this regard arises from the salient highlights from the said audit reports. The Reports, for instance, reveal that the Federal government earned a total sum of $269 billion from the oil sector within the period 1999-2008. Within this period, $92 billion was received from oil-specific taxes, the sum of $5 billion from non-oil specific taxes from oil companies whilst $172 billion was received from sales of government equity crude”. He expressed concerned that in spite of efforts by NEITI in providing important information and data on who gets what and how in the oil and gas sector, the Audit Reports have not been fully utilised to optimize revenue generation and utilisation for national development over the years. Mitee identified the PIB as an important legal framework that must be used to address all institutional lapses, financial loopholes and fiscal inadequacies in the oil and gas sector operations and management.


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Energy Week

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

39

crude in November SPDC shuts pipeline over oil theft, fire persistent worries about the debt-saddled euro zone. Reuters stated that the drop, also fueled by a stronger dollar, comes after the crude benchmark closed out the third quarter with its biggest three-month gain in 1-1/2 years, buoyed by supply risks in the Middle East and efforts among global central banks to stimulate flagging economies. It maintained that: “But manufacturing data out of China that offered more evidence of a seventh straight quarter of slowing economic growth in the world’s No. 2 oil user put demand prospects back in doubt. Japan’s tankan survey, which pointed to a worsening mood among businessmen, added to the sour tone.” “Investors are focusing on demand indicators being weaker than expected,” said Natalie Rampono, a commodity strategist with ANZ in Melbourne. China’s weak manufacturing activity, Japan’s tankan survey and social unrest in debthit Spain “point to downside pressure in the near term” for oil prices, Rampono said. Front month Brent futures had fallen 51 cents to $111.88 per barrel by 0630 GMT, while U.S. crude futures dropped 67 cents to $91.53.

$9.8bn from firms

STORIES: UDEME AKPAN

T

he Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria (SPDC) operated Joint venture has shut the 28inch Bomu – Bonny Trunkline after discovering a fire on it recently. A burning vessel, thought to be involved in the theft of crude oil from the line, was sighted near the incident site, close to Okololunch community in the Eastern Niger Delta. The line conveys crude oil to Bonny Terminal. Confirming this in a press statement, the firm stated that the production of about 150,000 barrels of oil per day has been stalled. Shell’s Vice President for Health, Safety, Environment & Corporate Affairs, Sub-Saharan Africa, Mr. Tony Attah is said to have remarked that: “This incident clearly demonstrates the scale of the oil theft problem which, alongside the hundreds of illegal refineries in the Delta, is having such a profound effect on the people, communities and the environment.” He said: “Until these activities are brought to a halt there will be no improvement in the environmental situation.” A helicopter overfly showed the vessel engulfed in raging flames and thick smoke. SPDC is mobilising to fight the fire, investigate the cause and carry out repairs. The Bomu - Bonny trunkline is part of the Trans Niger Pipeline, which itself has been repeatedly targeted by crude thieves. Last year, sabotage and crude oil theft were also the cause of 11,806 barrels spilled from SPDC facilities in 118 incidents. The partly attributed the incessant attacks to poverty and unemployment in the Niger Delta. The firm documented in its briefing notes that: “The majority of the over 30 million people living there remain poor and unemployment is high. Unrest has grown. Frustrated by the lack of benefits from oil production, communities have targeted the operations of energy companies, including the Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited (SPDC) demanding better public services and a greater share of government revenues.” It stated that the unrest has turned into a worrying criminal movement, which feeds on massive thefts of crude oil.

Heavily armed and well-organised groups attack oil and gas facilities in the delta, shut down operations, kidnap staff and sabotage pipelines. Shell maintained that: “Rival gangs and ethnic groups have clashed violently in several of the delta’s towns. Barges take stolen oil to tankers waiting offshore for export. There is also a massive illegal refining business based on stolen crude oil. All these have reduced the amount of oil SPDC is producing, created environmental and social problems from oil spills and reduced government revenue that could be used to develop infrastructure and services.” It stated that in 2011, authorities arrested 145 people and seized among others 18 tankers, 22 vehicles, 16 barges, and 35 locally made boats. These almost certainly represent a small fraction of the true scale of the problem. The firm remarked that: “In early 2006, a series of attacks forced SPDC to shut down most of its operations in the western delta. As a result of these and other attacks, Nigeria has lost a substantial amount of its oil production. In September 2007, SPDC began restarting its western delta operations. Work is ongoing, though security problems continue. The threat to people working in oil and gas operations in the delta remains high.”

Sunmonu

Fuel supply may improve as Integrated Oil reopens

Mittee

“Realising, however, the key role of the oil sector in the development of our country and the felt need to reform the industry in a manner that is transparent and of benefit to all Nigerians, we have decided to organise this forum to initiate, promote and generate views from all the stakeholders in the oil and gas sector so as to fashion out an informed and balanced intervention during the impending National Assembly hearings on the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB). “We have thus brought experts and key stakeholders in the sector to stimulate quality debate and enrich the contents of the Bill through suggestions, advise, experience and information sharing”, he concluded. He expressed delight on the interest so far demonstrated by the National Assembly in the NEITI process and the Petroleum Industry Bill. The Executive Secretary of NEITI, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed described NEITI’s interest in the PIB as fundamental; “We in NEITI believe that the Bill must emerge as a law that respects fair competition, efficiency, professionalism, openness and prudent resource management while promoting investor interests. NEITI also thinks that financial, physical and governance issues provisions in the PIB should be such that citizens of Nigeria will feel the impact of the natural resources in their country”.

F

uel supply may be boosted as Integrated Oil and Gas Limited which the Federal Government had sealed for weeks has reopened for business. The firm that has the former Minister of the Interior, Captain Emmanuel Iheanacho as its chairman was sealed by NIMASA over its alleged links with the hijack of a Panama flagged tanker vessel, MT Anuket Emerald. The vessel was hijacked offshore Togo where the pirates allegedly trans-shipped about 3,000 metric tonnes of Automotive Gas Oil (AGO) into another vessel, MT Grace. The Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) had traced the alleged stolen product to the company and subsequent arrest of the former Minister. The company was opened over the weekend following the intervention of many interest groups, including the Jetties and Petroleum Tank Farm Owners Association of Nigeria (JEPTFON) The Executive Secretary of the Association who confirmed the opening of the premises in a telephone interview said: “We have been putting pressure for the opening of the premises. We have happy that the government has deemed it necessary to open it so that the company can resume operations.” He said: “The opening is very important now that efforts are being made to eliminate fuel shortage in the country. We hope that the efforts of our members would go a long way to helping the nation to eliminate the scarcity.” In the statement signed by NIMASA‘s Head of Corporate Affairs; Hajia Lami Tumaka, it was disclosed that the Executive Management of the Agency resolved to unseal the storage facility indicating the conclusion

of preliminary investigations of the Agency and security operatives. However, the NIMASA spokesperson maintained that ‘tank 7’ of the tank farm will remain sealed pending the conclusion of investigations by the agency and other law enforcement operatives. The alleged stolen products were traced to ‘tank 7’ of the tank farm where MT Grace had reportedly discharged the products for onward commercial sale. NIMASA said: “following further investigations by the Agency and security operatives, two persons in connection with the operations of MT Grace are to be referred to the Police who will declare them wanted and continue with investigations.” Integrated Oil & Gas Limited was incorporated in1998 as a spin-off from its parent company, Genesis Worldwide Shipping (GWS), the ship owning/vessel chartering arm of the corporate group, to offer an integrated, one-stop shop to consumers in the downstream sector of the Nigerian Petroleum marketing industry. The firm has grown to be one of the largest and most respected names in the petroleum marketing industry, with over a decade years of experience in developing, operating and maintaining first class facilities and providing first class services to consumers. Integrated Oil & Gas Ltd. is a privately owned indigenous company, a leader in the provision of refined petroluem products, including Automotive Gas Oil (AGO), Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) and Dual Purpose Kerosene (DPK), an operator of a State-of-the-Art storage facility, operators of several Gas/Petrol Station outlets, operators of a fleet of ground handling petroleum tankers as well as ocean-going tanker vessels with the aim of delivering products and services at more affordable prices.


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Energy Week

What is natural gas? CONTINUED FROM PAGE 38 (for energy). Worldwide, units such as kilowatt hours (kWh), kilocalories (kcal), Million British Thermal Units (MBtu or MMbtu), therms (th), million tonnes of oil equivalent (mtoe), billion cubic feet (bcf) or billion cubic feet per day (bcf/d) are used. Data on liquefied natural gas is given in tonnes or in bcm. It is worth noting that one cubic metre of LNG has much more energy than one cubic metre of gas at atmospheric pressure, due to the different physical states (i.e. one is in gaseous form, and one is a liquid). What is LNG? Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG), is natural gas that has been liquefied for transport (often by ship and sometimes by truck). Depending on its exact composition, natural gas becomes liquid at approximately -162°C at atmospheric pressure. This liquefied state enables the natural gas to be shrunk to 1/600th of its original volume. To be transported, natural gas is first liquefied in a LNG liquefaction plant. This requires all heavier hydrocarbons to be removed from the natural gas, which leaves only pure methane. Then it is transported in specialised LNG carriers. The largest LNG carrier, called Q-Max, can transport 264 000 m3 of LNG (or around 0.15 bcm). Finally LNG is re-gasified. LNG trade represented around 300 bcm, or 9% of global gas demand in 2010. Who are the largest producers and consumers of LNG? The largest producer of LNG is Qatar, whose liquefaction capacity is roughly one-quarter of global LNG liquefaction capacity as of mid-2011. Qatar saw a massive expansion of its capacity, which has increased by 63 bcm since early 2009 to reach 105 bcm. Indonesia, Malaysia, Australia and Algeria are also significant LNG exporters. Russia and Yemen began exporting in 2009, and Peru in 2010. Angola is expected to start exporting in 2012, and Papua New Guinea in 2014. Australia is set to become the second largest LNG exporter behind Qatar by 2016 – six projects are currently committed or under construction, representing 60 bcm of new capacity. What are unconventional sources of gas? Unconventional sources of gas are trapped underground by impermeable rocks, such as coal, sandstone and shale. There are three types of unconventional gas: shale gas (found in shale deposits); coal bed methane, or CBM also known as coal seam gas (CSG) in Australia (extracted from coal beds); and, tight gas (trapped underground in impermeable rock formations). How is unconventional gas produced? While different techniques are applied, depending on the type of gas being extracted, one common method is hydraulic fracturing (also known as fracking): a well is drilled, and large volumes of water (mixed with some sand and chemicals) are injected underground under high pressure to create cracks in the rock which remain open. This frees the trapped gas allowing it to flow into the well bore so it can be produced. Another key technology is horizontal drilling which enables the well to penetrate significantly more rock in this gas bearing strata, increasing the chances of gas being able to flow into the well. Source: IEA

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

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World needs more energy production – El-Badri

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he Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), has called on operators and others to invest in commercial energy production because of expected rise in global population. The Secretary General of the cartel, Mr. Abdalla Salem El-Badri remarked at the German Council on Foreign Relations in Berlin, Germany over the weekend that: “The world population is expected to reach more than 8.6 billion by 2035, an increase of over 1.6 billion from today’s level. To put this into perspective, the world will add more than a combined India and the United States to its population in just over 20 years.” El-Badri who believed that the global economy will rebound in the longer term, calling for increased oil consumption also said: “With around three billion people living on less than two dollars 50 cents per day, 1.4 billion people having no access to electricity and some 2.7 billion relying on biomass for their basic needs, there is huge potential for socioeconomic development.” The Secretary General said that the world energy demand is set to grow to more than 50 per cent higher than it was in 2010. He said: “To meet this challenge, we need a stable and predictable market. We need to focus on the efficient and sustainable development of all energies. We need to appreciate just what each energy source can offer to this future. And we need to allow producers and investors to make sure future energy demand can be met.” El-Badri said in OPEC’s World Oil Outlook 2011, all energies witness growth, although overall shares shift over time. According to him, fossil fuels, accounting for 87per cent of the world’s energy supply - will still contribute 82per cent by 2035, stressing that oil will retain the largest share for most of the period to 2035, although its overall share

El-Badri

falls from 34per cent to 28per cent. This, he said will remain central to growth in many areas of the global economy, especially the transportation sector. Coal’s share remains similar to today, at around 29per cent, whereas gas increases from 23per cent to 25per cent. The Secretary General said: “In terms of non-fossil fuels, renewable energy grows fast. But as it starts from a low base, its share will still be only 3per cent by 2035. Hydropower will increase only a little, to 3per cent by 2035. Nuclear power will also witness some expansion, although prospects have been affected by events in Fukushima. It is seen as having only a 6per cent share in 2035.” He said in OPEC’s World Oil Outlook 2011, demand for oil is expected to increase by close to 23 million barrels a day over the period 2010-2035, reaching almost 110 million barrels a day by 2035. This is driven mainly by developing Asia, which is home to 80per cent of the oil demand growth over this period. In contrast, the OECD region actually wit-

nesses a fall. El-Badri said: “To meet this oil demand growth, resources are clearly sufficient. Improved technology and enhanced recovery have over the years increased the resource base to levels well above past expectations. And today we are seeing significant new resources and supplies.” He said stakeholders need to continually develop technologies in all spheres of the oil industry, and employ highcalibre people to utilise these to explore for oil in new frontier areas, which are often in remoter, harsher and deeper locations. The Secretary General remarked that operators also need management who has the guts to take risks, because this is the name of the game in the oil industry. He said:”For producers, it is critical to have a better understanding of demand side developments, particularly policies that discriminate against oil. If not, it can lead to investment uncertainty, and in turn, future market instability.”

Chevron awarded deepwater interest offshore

Oil vessel

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hevron (SL) Limited, a subsidiary of Chevron Corporation has been awarded participation in two deepwater blocks located offshore Sierra Leone. “We are very pleased to have the opportunity to participate in the Republic of Sierra Leone’s deepwater exploration efforts,” said Chevron Vice Chairman George Kirkland.

“We have a strong presence in the region, and this new play will capitalise on our global deepwater experience and exploration capabilities.” The two blocks, SL-08A and SL-08B, have been combined into one concession and are located between 75 and 110 miles (120 and 180 km) southwest of the capital of Free-

town and cover a combined area of about 2,100 square miles (5,500 sq. km). The new blocks have average water depths ranging approximately 4,900 to 9,800 feet (1,500 to 3,000 m). “We have a strong regional interest in the geology, and we look forward to applying our technical expertise to this emerging trend,” said Ali Moshiri, president, Chevron Africa and Latin America Exploration and Production. Under the award, Chevron (SL) Ltd. will be operator with a 55 percent interest, along with Noble Energy, Inc. (30 percent) and Odye (SL) Ltd. (15 percent). This is before a Sierra Leone National Oil Company optional back-in of 15 percent at final investment decision. Chevron is one of the world’s leading integrated energy companies, with subsidiaries that conduct business worldwide. The company is involved in virtually every facet of the energy industry. Chevron explores for, produces and transports crude oil and natural gas; refines, markets and distributes transportation fuels and lubricants; manufactures and sells petrochemical products; generates power and produces geothermal energy; provides energy efficiency solutions; and develops the energy resources of the future, including biofuels.


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Wednesday, October 3, 2012

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NIGERIA @ 52

Executive Discourse

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Incentive system in Nigeria is What are your thoughts in terms of the direction we have been coming from and where we are going? I believe that the possibility for Nigeria remains tremendous. We have been challenged, we have stumbled on several occasions, but you know, it is not about how many times you fall; it is about how may time you get up. I believe that the Nigerian spirit is a resilient spirit and it is a spirit that is ready to get up again. My personal view is that Nigeria will rise up again. I’m confident that Nigeria will rise again. Where do I get this confidence? First, because I believe that, throughout history, countries that had been written off had surprised the world and bounced back. That was not mean to say that country should seek to be written off so that they can hopefully bounce back. However, there are several examples that I like to give people. In the late 40s, early 50s, leading US and Asian economists wrote off the possibility Japan’s ascendancy as a major economic power. One particular one that I have, who was particularly well known and a leading Asian economic expert at a time, Prof Edwin Rick Keller, dismissed the possibility of Japan becoming a major economic power. Indonesia was next to suffer that fate in the 60s. A leading economist in the book ‘Asian Drama’ said Indonesia was stuck in intrinsic stagnation and the prospect of Indonesia, making progress was pretty dim. What did Indonesia do? What did Japan do? Japan took its bright young minds abroad to get to understand what was happening in the West. At the end of the World War II, a fascinating alliance was crafted between business and government significantly that led to the construction of Japan Incorporated. At the centre of that drive was a government agency called Ministry of International Trade and Industry, MITI. I often referred to it as ‘mystical MITI.’ For many years, of course literally it was not a written law; ascendancy in public life in Japan was to go from being Minister of MITI to being Prime Minister. MITI led the construction of the Japanese miracle. In the case Indonesia, there was a General called Surhato, who frustrated, put together a group of young, at the time, bright Indonesia economists, who, for some interesting coincidence, were mainly PhDs from out of University of California, in Berkeley. The group was called the ‘Berkeley Mafia’. And out of that was constructed a Rick Keller’s regime but ideas drove they way it responded to challenges. There is clearly a difference between Indonesia’s response to oil boom, because it is also a oil-producing country, and the Nigeria’s response to oil boom. Nigeria built an LNG train before Indonesia. Nigeria was still struggling with its first LNG train when Indonesia has build seven. So, human progress is about mind over matter, about ideas, about people working together. In countries that are making progress in Africa like Ghana. It is an intellectual class as in their leadership. But in Nigeria you talk about ideas, the next thing they tell you is that what you are saying is theory. So, that anti-intellectual orientation depresses Nigerians, especially as people look and see that things are not currently working in Nigeria, but I think it will change. And if we, as thinking people, can all work together, we can give our country a new direction. Looking at the recent GDP figures we see some growth but there are still no jobs which is paradox really - the so-called jobless growth economy, how do we get to this path and can we get out? Again, it is a matter of the politics. The World Bank did the study which was published as book “Putting Nigeria to Work.” In that book, they established that concept of a jobless growth economy. If you remember, it was advertised in Nigerian newspapers and it was a quote by me that was used as the Lead of the advert. Africa is on the growth trajectory. Half of the world’s 10 fastest growing

Prof Pat Utomi, political economist and social commentator speaks on the dangers of the failure of the political class to provide the right leadership, diversify the economy away from oil and rising debt. He spoke with Deputy Editor, AYO OLESIN

Utomi

MOST PEOPLE WHO MADE MONEY IN NIGERIA ARE NOT THE MOST ENERGETIC, ENTREPRENEURIAL, HARDWORKING IDEAS PEOPLE. MOST PEOPLE WHO MADE MONEY IN NIGERIA MADE IT BECAUSE OF ACCESS TO POWER economies are from Africa. As Europe, stumbles, America adjusts, and the Asia appears to be slowing down somewhat, some of the growth is coming from Africa. Nigeria is there. But what does this growth really mean. Unfortunately, we are not paying enough attention to the importance of national character and the consequence for investment flows and therefore, of sustained significant growth. When the Chinese announced $1bn investment in Nigeria and there is song and dance in Abuja, look across the papers properly, they just announced $30bn investment in Angola. So, there is problem of Nigeria’s national character and the political class has not been able to deal with this. There is a problem of income distribution in our society, a real disincentive for economic action that would sustain real growth. Most people who made money in Nigeria are not the most energetic, entrepreneurial, hardworking ideas people. Most people who made money in Nigeria made it because of access to power. So, the incentive system in Nigeria is to seek to be near power rather than seeks to create wealth. That is not sustainable. So, this growth numbers they have talked about would eventually be reversed and the economy will be referred to as recursive economy: two steps forwards, four steps backwards and that is what Nigeria has been, sadly, because ultimately, value shapes human progress and the kind of value that the leadership has been identified with has not been the kind of

value that sustains progress. And we call our leaders all sorts of names, they are thieves; they are greedy. But I think the so-called greed is not driven by abnormal human appetite for more; it is driven by ignorance. A person who does not know how these things function, it is acting in their best self -interest when they think ‘this is my turn, this my opportunity, let me accumulate’. Of course, this thing is a disease. Your conscience become seared, you just continue to dip your hands into everything, put it where it will not be useful for the country because they are afraid of people knowing you have it where it is not reproducing itself. Such is the tragedy of Nigeria, being the biggest destination for private jets in the world, on per capita basis. Something needs to be done about it by bringing tax policies that will discourage people from owning such things. Because if you can invest the money properly, create jobs for the people, they would make themselves even more comfortable. The worst part is that you have someone who will have up to two. For one person to have one aircraft is, first of all, a terrible waste of money, because these aircraft has not be in the air as you just land, you refuel and one person has to pay for it. It is really about elite consciousness that Nigeria is a recursive economy and the GINI index, the co-efficient of income distribution. If GINI co-efficient keeps growing, it is likely going to lead to anarchy.


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Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Executive Discourse

NIGERIA @ 52

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to get close to power –Utomi One other issue that we see really is the problem of civil service, which is today is seen as a big drag on the economy. What do you think about this? There is no question about that. I just feel that the civil service needs to be completely re-organised, re-motivated in a different direction. Development of the public service in terms of training needs to be re-thought. One of the pieces of counsel that I was privileged to offer a man who was just elected President in 1999 was that the top priority was to re-invent the civil service that he destroyed. And he said no problem. ‘Professor Adedeji would do that, who would bring people to come and do seminar for the civil servants’ and I wondered if he ever understood what we were talking about was a big time challenge for public service and it remains a problem. Nigeria can’t get to where it‘s going with the current orientation of the public service, not necessarily because people there are bad people or whatever. The value has been so perverted and corrupted. When you raise the issues that they have become so corrupt and all of that, you will see then pointing to those who are struggling to eat and there are many of them who are struggling to eat. So, it is a matter of position they get to that increases the desire to take care of tomorrow and all of that. The abuse in the civil service and level of goal misplacement is unbelievable. But even more damaging than their desire to make money is their lack of capacity. The people in the civil service, who have the responsibility to make decisions running into tens of billions of naira, who if they ruin private business, you won’t allow to make N100,000 decision. I am not joking. I am being honest; I am not trying to be sarcastic or insulting. It is just the truth. Nobody developed them through the years. A man went from one position to one position and now he is permanent secretary. But really, if he was to run his own business, if he makes two to three decisions, the business will collapse but now he has to make decisions on billions of naira on behalf of you and me. You spoke earlier about capital flows and there is a lot of emphasis nowadays about getting Foreign Direct Investment. What about the local iinvestors? Maybe foreign investors won’t even go to where local investors don’t go because the local investors are the ones, who show confidence, they know the environment. And if they are not willing to take risks, how can a foreigner come from some where and jump in? So, the way you bring foreign investors is to make local investors very happy. You alienate the man who has come in and you think the next man will come in. It does not happen that way and every day we are alienating people. Let take a look at the oil and gas sector, the oil industry is leaving Nigeria and those who lead Nigerian don’t seem to realise it. They are shutting down quietly and nicely. Shell is shutting down all its onshore operations. They are selling off their estate in Warri; they are selling off their estate in Port Harcourt and all of that. In normal countries, politicians would be holding debates from morning g till night to ask why are they shutting down, what incentives we can give you to stay. Instead, our politicians are trying to scramble after who will be the first to buy off Shell’s properties. It shows something is wrong with these people. They are not greedy; they are stupid. If they were not stupid, they will know that their children will suffer from it. But gradually, Shell is going. Total used to be a highly-praised oil company. Total too is looking to investing in East Africa, gradually leaving Nigeria too. You can see everybody is leaving Nigeria one by one. Yet, we have this monster that is called the superintending body over oil and gas in Nigeria from the Ministry of Petroleum through to NNPC. Oh my God. I don’t know how we got here. The PIB is there but we don’t know why it has spent

THE OIL INDUSTRY IS LEAVING NIGERIA AND THOSE WHO LEAD

NIGERIAN DON’T SEEM TO REALISE IT. THEY ARE SHUTTING DOWN QUIETLY AND NICELY. SHELL IS SHUTTING DOWN ALL ITS ONSHORE OPERATIONS almost seven years in the parliament without having been passed into law? It is because of all kinds of small petty interests are not looking at what stakeholders are most keen on to make Nigerian make progress. What is my own short-term personal interest? That is what they are all playing on. The world is looking away from oil because of the kind of research going on the alternative uses. I was in Bangladesh earlier this year. They don’t buy PMS. Nobody uses petrol in Bangladesh. As a national policy, their cars run on gas. Natural gas and this applies to all the cars in Bangladesh. They don’t have petrol stations, they have gas refill stations. In Brazil, all the cars in Brazil today run on some form of alcohol. In the early days I used to joke, about 20 years ago in Brazil that you could get drunk from walking on there because there is so much gas in the air with the whole city smelling like alcohol. Today, the technology has been perfected. Today, Brazil is now a leader in that area and all over Brazil today, most of the vehicles are hybrid or running purely on alcohol. So, two things will happened 30 years from now, we would either wake up to find out that either oil is gone completely or we wake up to realise that the world has moved on from fossil fuels. So, we have seen what has happened in Arab countries like Dubai. We should be thinking on how to move away from this oil to their things. One other issue that is a bit worrisome too is the rising debt. Although we are told that debt to GDP ratio is still low comparatively but slowly but steadily, Nigeria’s debts are rising again. Are we concocting a debt crisis for the future generation?

We are using the same kind of language that was used when General Obasanjo sent the General J.O. Oluleye, then Federal Minister for Finance, to go out in search of jumbo loans in 1976-77. They claimed then that Nigeria was grossly under-borrowed. That was the language of the time using all kind of languages like debt to GDP ratio and blah blah blah. A lot of people won’t fear debt if it is for productive investment in which you can earn to pay all the debts in the currency in which you have borrowed the money. So, with the rising debt profile, what is the infrastructure you are seeing on ground? I don’t see much. Look at what we spend on power. Yes, it is improving and everybody is getting excited but you are still hear my generator making noise. As a country, we have already invested enough in power, since Obasanjo came to power in 1999, to make sure that West Africa has light 24/7. And you still hear my generator and everybody is excited that there is improvement. That shows how much they have devalued our mind that we are so grateful for anything that looks like progress. And if you say this is not optimum, they response you get is that you like complaining too much. So, you keep quite since you are not the only man in town and all of us play this funny game. So, the last debt, I think we resolved it, is still a travesty in my view. I think this country has been done a great disservice by taking that windfall, instead of pumping it into infrastructure and turning the country around; you dash it to people, who did not think they would get the money back. And we would come back to them that we are borrowing again. I think our children will sit there one day and curse us.


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Global Business

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

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RBA cuts rate to 3.25% as mining-driven growth wanes

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ustralia’s central bank resumed cutting its benchmark interest rate to revive demand outside of a resource boom that may crest at a lower level than previously expected, sending the nation’s currency to a three-week low. Governor Glenn Stevens and his board lowered the overnight cash-rate target by a quarter percentage point to 3.25 percent, the Reserve Bank of Australia said in a statement in Sydney yesterday. The decision to end a three-meeting pause was predicted by nine of 28 economists surveyed by Bloomberg News, while the majority had forecast no change. “The peak in resource investment is likely to occur next year, and may be at a lower level than earlier expected,” Stevens said. “As this peak approaches it will be important that the forecast strengthening in some other components of demand starts to occur.” Stevens’s gloomier outlook marked a reversal for a central bank governor who said after a June speech that he felt the need to do some “cheerleading” on the economy to rebut vocal pessimists. The RBA chief today signaled weaker growth

Glenn

at home and abroad, reflected in lower prices for the nation’s key exports of iron ore and coal, as Europe’s fiscal crisis weighs on global growth. “The RBA has rejoined other central banks around the world in what is becoming an increasingly coordinated policy response to anemic growth,” said Jarrod Kerr, director of Australia rates strategy

Global factory weakness spreads as debt crisis persists

Brown

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anufacturing from Europe to China contracted in September as the euro region’s fiscal crisis eroded investor confidence and clouded global growth prospects. A gauge of manufacturing in the 17-nation euro region was at 46.1, above an initial estimate of 46 on Sept. 20, Markit Economics in London said today. A reading below 50 indicates contraction. A Chinese

factory index was at 49.8 for September, a statistics bureau report showed. In the United States, manufacturing unexpectedly returned to growth last month. Economies around the globe are cooling as European governments toughen spending cuts to restore investor confidence as the region’s economic slump deepens. Euro-area unemployment held at a record 11.4 percent in August and Japan’s Tankan index of large manufacturers’ confidence dropped to minus 3 for the past quarter, two reports showed yesterday. “Europe is still a big problem out there, you’re seeing weaker global growth in general,” said Scott Brown, chief economist at Raymond James Financial Inc. in St. Petersburg, Florida. “A lot of firms doing business in Europe are reporting weaker results, a lot more caution.” U.S. stocks rose after the Institute for Supply Management said its factory index rose to 51.5 in September from 49.6 a month earlier. Economists in a Bloomberg survey projected a reading of 49.7, according to the median of 76 forecasts.

Extra scrutiny of bank of Japan pledged by economy chief

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apan’s new Economy Minister, Seiji Maehara pledged a closer watch over the central bank to ensure it meets a 1 percent inflation goal, adding that purchases of foreign bonds may be a powerful tool for easing. “Now I am in this position, I will scrutinize even more strictly” the Bank of Japan’s efforts to achieve its target, Maehara, told reporters in Tokyo Monday. If the bank’s actions are insufficient, Maehara will do more than “just talk,” he said. Newly-appointed Finance Minister, Koriki Jojima, said that central bank purchases of foreign bonds are an issue that “requires cautious handling and consideration,” suggesting he may have less enthusiasm for the idea. He also said the government will “take bold actions against the currency’s

excessive moves if necessary,” echoing comments used by predecessor Jun Azumi to signal that intervention in currency markets remains an option. Investors and analysts are looking for clues to any policy shifts after Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda reshuffled his cabinet ahead of an election that may come as early as this year. In the case of Jojima, the nation’s fifth finance chief in three years and a newcomer to the cabinet, limited financial expertise may increase his reliance on ministry bureaucrats and lessen his own input. “We know almost nothing about his economic or financial policies,” said Junko Nishioka, chief economist at RBS Securities Japan Ltd. in Tokyo. “He likely will follow the Ministry of Finance’s stance of intervening if necessary.”

at Credit Suisse Group AG in Singapore. “We continue to forecast further easing in this cycle.” Traders are pricing in a 60 percent chance of another quarter-point reduction next month, according to swaps data compiled by Bloomberg. That would match the 50-year low of 3 percent at the height of the 2008-2009 global financial

crisis. The so-called Aussie dropped after the decision, trading at $1.0309 at 5:31 p.m. in Sydney, compared with $1.0365 before the announcement. It touched $1.0292, the lowest since September 7. In his statement, Stevens said the move to add to rate reductions he made in May and June reflects signs of weakness in the labor market, subdued inflation and a “modest” expansion in the U.S. economy. “Growth in China has also slowed, and uncertainty about near-term prospects is greater than it was some months ago,” Stevens said. “Key commodity prices for Australia remain significantly lower than earlier in the year, even though some have regained some ground in recent weeks.” The Australian dollar came within 5 U.S. cents of a record high last month as the U.S. Federal Reserve and the European Central Bank announced plans for open-ended asset purchases to stave off economic stagnation, while China pledged increased spending on infrastructure.

World Bank says 600 million new jobs needed

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he global economy will need to have created 600 million new jobs between 2005 and 2020 to absorb young people entering the work force, spur development, empower women and prevent unrest, the World Bank said. In its World Development Report released yesterday, the bank said jobs should be at the top of governments’ agendas less than two years after the lack of employment opportunities helped fuel the uprisings that toppled leaders in Egypt and Tunisia. The effects extend beyond the economic sphere, making job creation a cornerstone to development, the report said. “Demographic shifts, technological progress, and the lasting effects of the international financial crisis are reshaping the employment landscape in countries around the world,” World Bank President Jim Yong Kim said in a foreword to the report. “Countries that successfully adapt to these changes and meet their jobs challenges can achieve dramatic gains in living standards, productivity growth, and more cohesive societies.” After weathering the worst economic downturn since World War II, many countries have yet to return to pre-crisis levels of employment just as global expansion slows. Governments have a role to play in identifying the jobs that most suit their needs and giving the private sector the incentives to invest, according to the report. The bank said that by 2020, there will be a need for 600 million more jobs than in 2005, mainly for Asia and sub-Saharan Africa. The U.S. Census Bureau estimates the current world population at a little more than 7 billion people. The impact that jobs have on countries’ development is familiar to Francois Locoh-Donou, who opened Cajou Espoir, Togo’s first cashew nuts processing company, eight years ago. His plant in the northern town of Tchamba,

Kim

which exports to the U.S. and Europe, employs 350 people, most of whom are women. “Before the plant, a lot of women from that region would leave Togo to go to Nigeria to find work, Locoh-Donou, who lives in Washington and is an executive at a telecom-equipment company, said in a phone interview. “Today, they stay in Tchamba and they support their family,” which has helped improve school attendance, he said. “Jobs can shape the vision people have of themselves and how they relate to others. That can have a positive effect, for instance, when work is a place for employees to interact with people of different genders or ethnicities. It can also be negative when employment is not available,” the World Bank said. “Youth may turn to gangs to compensate for the absence of identity and belonging that a job might provide,” according to the World Bank report.


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outh Korea’s inflation accelerated the most in three months in September after typhoons damaged crops and a holiday boosted demand for food, according to a report nine days before the central bank decides interest rates. Consumer prices increased 2 percent from a year earlier after a 1.2 percent gain in August, Statistics Korea said today in Gwacheon, south of Seoul. The median estimate in a Bloomberg News survey of 12 economists was for a 1.8 percent gain. Prices rose 0.7 percent from August. The Bank of Korea will decide on Oct. 11 whether to cut interest rates for the second time this year to counter growth risks posed by Europe’s debt crisis and a slowdown in China. South Korea’s exports fell for a third month in September and industrial production dropped more than expected in August. “The economy saw higher food prices due to two storms” and shopping ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday, or Chuseok, said Wai Ho Leong, a Singapore-based economist at Barclays Plc. “Growth is the overriding concern and we expect the central bank to cut by 25 basis points on

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Korea consumer prices rise 2% from year earlier on storms

creased 5.9 percent, according to today’s statement. Core consumer prices, which exclude oil and agricultural products, advanced 1.4 percent from a year earlier.

The won weakened 0.2 percent to 1,113.25 per dollar yesterday in Seoul, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The Kospi stock index rose 0.1 percent. The International Monetary Fund on September 21 reduced its 2012 growth forecast for South Korea to 3 percent from a June estimate of 3.25 percent. At the same time, the IMF said Asia’s fourthlargest economy has “sufficient policy space” to respond to downside risks. The finance ministry announced 5.9 trillion won ($5.3 billion) of spending and tax relief last month to boost growth, adding to 8.5 trillion won of support measures in June. South Korea has been hit by storms this summer including typhoon Sanba last month, which forced tens of thousands of people to evacuate. Typhoons Bolaven and Tembin struck in August.

the conclusions of Friedman and Anna Schwartz, whose 1963 book, “A Monetary History of the United States, 1867-1960,” said the Depression was triggered by monetary tightening and the collapse of the banking system, Bernanke said. “We were aggressive early on, we didn’t allow the fact that interest rates were very low to fool us into thinking that monetary policy was as accommodative as it needed

to be, and we were aggressive, as you know, in trying to prevent the collapse of the banking system,” Bernanke said. “Those are all things that Friedman would have supported.” Bernanke’s reference to Friedman aligns with decades of his research into monetary policy during the Depression. He once called a proper understanding of the Great Depression “the Holy Grail of macroeconomics.”

Consumer prices increased 2 percent from a year earlier after a 1.2 percent gain in August

October. 11.” An index measuring prices of fresh foods rose 8.6 percent in September from a year ago, while public utility costs in-

Bernanke spurns slump prospect as he defends bond buying

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Global Business

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

hairman Ben S. Bernanke defended the Federal Reserve’s unprecedented bond buying in his first comments since the Fed renewed the purchases last month, saying the programme will spur growth, cut unemployment, help savers and support the dollar. The central bank will sustain record stimulus even after the expansion gains strength, and policy makers don’t expect the economy to remain weak through 2015, Bernanke said yesterday in a speech in Indianapolis. The U.S. probably won’t fall back into a recession even with growth too weak to reduce a jobless rate stuck above 8 percent since February 2009, he said in response to an audience question. “We expect the economy to continue to grow,” Bernanke said to the Economic Club of Indiana. “Our concern is not really a recession. Our concern is that growth will continue but at a pace that’s insufficient to put people back to work.” Bernanke Bernanke, stood behind his unconventional policies by saying the late Nobel foreign currency markets, Bernanke said. Prize-winning economist Milton Friedman The dollar “is about where it was before the “would have supported what we are doing.” crisis,” and pursuing maximum employThe Federal Open Market Committee said ment and low and stable inflation will make last month it will keep the main interest rate the U.S. currency attractive, he said. Also, Fed easing, including the zero-internear zero until at least mid-2015 and buy $40 billion of mortgage debt a month in a third est-rate policy, will help savers by fueling the round of quantitative easing until the labor expansion, Bernanke said. “Only a strong economy can create higher asset values and market shows “sustained improvement.” “We expect that a highly accommodative sustainably good returns for savers.” Bernanke, a scholar of the Great Depresstance of monetary policy will remain appropriate for a considerable time after the sion, has deployed the most aggressive moneconomy strengthens,” Bernanke said in etary policies since the Fed’s founding nearthe speech. Still, policy makers’ forecast for ly a century ago as he battled the financial the main interest rate “doesn’t mean that crisis, helped pull the nation out of the worst we expect the economy to be weak through” recession since the 1930s and sought to keep the expansion going. mid-2015, Bernanke said. Bernanke expanded the balance sheet to While payrolls are expanding, economic growth of 1.5 percent to 2 percent “is not fast $2.8 trillion from around $877 billion in Auenough to lower the unemployment rate” gust 2007. He also changed the composition because it only keeps up with the number of the Fed’s balance sheet, purchasing mortof new entrants into the labor force, he said. gage- backed securities to help lower yields Central bank policies to boost growth for housing finance. The Fed has taken “very much to heart” should not damage the value of the dollar on


Capital Market

46

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

First Bank, others join market makers’ basket tomorrow VTB eyes Nigeria’s equity market JOHNSON OKANLAWON

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he Nigerian Stock Exchange has said that it will increase the number of stocks in the basket of market makers by nine others from tommorow. The market makers commenced operation on the Exchange September 18 with 16 stocks. A statement from the Exchange yesterday said that First Bank Plc, Access Bank Plc, Academy Press Plc, Custodian and Allied Insurance Plc, Dangote Sugar Plc, Union Bank Plc, NASCON Plc, Nestle Nigeria Plc and

AIICO Insurance Plc will join the basket. The statement explained that the increase is in line with the promise made by the Exchange that all the stocks that are trading above par value will be added to the market making programme over a period of six months. The Chief Executive Officer of the NSE, Mr Oscar Onyema, had assured stakeholders that the introduction of market making would help drive liquidity in the marketplace to the benefit of retail investors, institutional investors and the broker dealer community.

He also said that it will improve the price discovery process and thus reflects the true value of companies. Onyema said, “I believe you will agree with me that the market is in for better times with the introduction of the market making, securities lending and short selling initiatives. Let us collectively give it all the support it needs, especially during the six month rollout period”. Meanhwile, VTB Capital, an investment-banking arm of Russia’s second-biggest bank, said it is hoping to invest in the Nigerian capital market. “In Africa there aren’t that many developed equity markets, but we’re

ASI rises 0.04% in bullish trading JOHNSON OKANLAWON

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he appetite for equities rose further on the Nigerian Stock Exchange yesterday, as more investors took advantage of the relatively low prices of stocks. The rally lifted the All-Share Index by 0.04 per cent to close at 26,023.10 points, compared to the increase of 1.17 per cent recorded on Friday to close at 26,011.64 points. Market capitalisation gained N3.65bn to close at N8.29trn, lower than the appreciation of

N95.9bn recorded on Friday to close at N8.28trn. Three sectoral indices closed positive, as the NSE 30-Index increased by 0.49 per cent to close at 1,225.31 points, while the banking index rose by 3.05 per cent to close at 410.11 points. The oil and gas index appreciated by 0.96 per cent to close at 161.49 points, while consumer goods index dropped by 0.19 per cent to close at 2,230.20 points. The insurance index lost 1.79 per cent to close at 133.63 points, while the Lotus Islamic index shed 1.46 per cent to close at 1,558.00 points.

Guaranty Trust Bank Plc led the gainers’ table with N1.83 or 9.56 per cent to close at N20.98 per share, followed by DN Meyer Plc with 10 kobo or 9.43 per cent to close at N1.16 per share. International Breweries Plc gained N1.02 or 7.86 per cent to close at N14.00 per share, while Oando Plc appreciated by 58 kobo or five per cent to close at N12.18 per share. Glaxosmithkline Plc rose by N1.80 or five per cent to close at N37.80 per share. On the flip side, PZ Cussons Plc dipped by N1.30 or 5.14 per cent to close at N24.00 per

looking at Nigeria for equity trading and a few other markets,” the Chief Executive Officer for the Middle East and Africa of the bank, Mr. Makram Abboud, told Bloomberg yesterday. Abboud in an interview at an investment conference organised by the company in Moscow, added, “We’re almost ready to start trading Saudi, which was the only remaining market in the Middle East.” He said that the bank has offices in Angola and Dubai in the United Arab Emirates and it will limit the size of its equity sales team in the Middle East until the market recovers and liquidity increases. share, while Arbico Plc depreciated by 49 kobo or 4.96 per cent to close at N9.39 per share. Eterna Oil Plc fell 12 kobo or 4.96 per cent to close at N2.30 per share, while RT Briscoe Plc declined by nine kobo or 4.84 per cent to close at N1.77 per share. Mansard Plc dropped by nine kobo or 4.62 per cent to close at N1.86 per share. Transaction volume in equities rose by 23.2 per cent, as a total of 362.16 million shares worth N2.59bn were exchanged in 4,991 deals, compared 293.93 million shares worth N2.91bn traded in 4,446 deals on Friday.

Wall Street equities traders face worst year since 2006

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all Street banks’ equities-trading units aren’t getting much relief from the strongest stock rally since 2009, as sinking volume and already thin margins threaten to make their annual performance the worst in six years. Third-quarter equities-trading revenue probably fell 14 per cent from the same period in 2011, the fifth straight drop of more than eight per cent, according to estimates by Kian Abouhossein, a JPMorgan Chase and Company analyst. Full-year revenue at

the five largest United States investment banks may be the lowest since 2006, UBS AG’s Brennan Hawken wrote in a September 19 in a note to clients. Equities trading, which generated $40bn for the nine largest global investment banks last year, has been an attractive business because capital requirements aren’t as strict as those threatening fixedincome returns.Lower volumes have damped that optimism as investors remain skeptical about the global economy, which may lead to job cuts. “It’s already a busi-

ness that was being run on quite thin margins,” said Richard Staite, an analyst at Atlantic Equities LLP in London. “Now you need to see more banks dropping out. The marginal players will have to or are already looking at these business lines and whether there is any justification for remaining in them.” Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc said in January it was exiting cash equities, the trading of common shares on public exchanges, and failed to find a buyer for its European unit. Citigroup Incorporation and London-based

Barclays Plc, which have the smallest market shares among the nine investment banks, lost ground over the year ended June 30, while Goldman Sachs Group Incorporation and New York-based Morgan Stanley, the biggest, gained. Equities, which account for about a quarter of total trading and i nve s t m e n t - b a n k i n g revenue, includes commissions and gains from buying and selling stocks, futures, options and other equity derivatives, as well as fees and interest income from providing services and lending to hedge funds.

NIBOR QUOTES 28 SEPTEMBER & 2 OCTOBER 2012 20.00 19.00 18.00 17.00 16.00 15.00 14.00 13.00 12.00 11.00 10.00 9.00 8.00 7.00 6.00 5.00

28-Sep-12

2-Oct-12

Market indicators Market indicators

All-Share Index 7,490,286 points All-Share Index 22,191.14 points Market capitalisation 23,531.63 trillion Market capitalisation 7,084 trillion

Stock Updates GAINERS COMPANY

OPENING

CLOSING

CHANGE

GUARANTY

19.15

20.98

1.83

% CHANGE 9.56

DNMEYER

1.06

1.16

0.10

9.43

INTBREW

12.98

14.00

1.02

7.86

OANDO

11.60

12.18

0.58

5.00

GLAXOSMITH

36.00

37.80

1.80

5.00

LIVESTOCK

1.61

1.69

0.08

4.97

VITAFOAM

3.06

3.21

0.15

4.90

DIAMONDBNK

3.45

3.61

0.16

4.64

CUTIX

2.21

2.31

0.10

4.52

NEIMETH

1.15

1.20

0.05

4.35

CHANGE

% CHANGE -5.14

LOSERS COMPANY

OPENING

CLOSING

PZ

25.30

24.00

1.30

ARBICO

9.88

9.39

0.49

-4.96

ETERNA

2.42

2.30

0.12

-4.96

RTBRISCOE

1.86

1.77

0.09

-4.84

MANSARD

1.95

1.86

0.09

-4.62

CONTINSURE

0.71

0.68

0.03

-4.23

UTC

0.79

0.76

0.03

-3.80

FCMB

3.20

3.08

0.12

-3.75

AIICO

0.57

0.55

0.02

-3.51

HONYFLOUR

2.28

2.20

0.08

-3.51

Primary Market Auction TENOR

AMOUNT (N’mn)

RATE (%)

DATE

91-Day

21,838.51

14.09

27-Sep-12

182-Day

20,000

15.50

27-Sep-12

364 -Day

-

-

-

Open Market Operations TENOR

AMOUNT (N’mn)

RATE (%)

DATE

178Days

34,470.71

14.08

4-Oct-12

118-Day

50,282.86

14.08

4-Oct-12

Wholesale Dutch Auction System AMOUNT OFFERED

MARKET DEMAND

AMOUNT SOLD

DATE

$200m

N/A

$126m

26-Sep-12

$180m

N/A

$147m

24-Sep-12


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Capital Market

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

47

Stock exchange daily equities summary Equities as at October 2, 2012 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)


Cocktail

48

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

FOR YOUR SUCCESS

WITH DR. DEJI FOLUTILE

Today's Tonic (14) The greatest part of our happiness or misery depends on our dispositions and not on our circumstances. **Martha Washington *** We Decide How Happy We Want To Be! No one can make you happy outside yourself. The machine for happiness is within everyone. We will live a life of sadness, frustrations and depression if we give our power to be happy to someone else. We are happy in life based on what we see in different circumstances that surrounds us. There is a quote of Frederick Langbridge which says, “Two men look out through the same bars; one sees the mud and one the stars. “ The fact of life is simply that we decide how happy we want to be. The power is NEVER given to anyone outside us to make us happy. When we throw the power to be happy away to someone else, we are not only punishing ourselves, we are also oppressing that person! TEL 08104942999 E-MAIL deji.folutile@gmail.com Follow me @TwitterOWOTIDE

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Oddities

Man shoots Czech president with airsoft-gun

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n an eerie scene captured on video, Czech President Vaclav Klaus is approached by an armed assailant and shot in the arm. However, the attacker, who was dressed in camouflage, was carrying an “airsoft” gun that fires only harmless, plastic shells. Airsoft guns are replicas of actual firearms, bearing a striking similarity to the real thing. They have become a popular alternative to paintball for recreational purposes. You can even buy airsoft guns modelled after firearms used in science-fiction films

such as “Aliens.” “You really did not manage this well,” Klaus, 71, reportedly told his bodyguards, in what may be the understatement of the year, as reported by local television station Nova. In the video, the attacker simply walks up to Klaus and shoots him in the arm without anyone apparently taking

notice. Klaus gives him a confused, stern look before turning back to the crowd he was greeting. He was reportedly taken to the hospital after the incident but suffered only minor bruises after the incident. Even if his intentions were not lethal, the attacker apparently had a political message, saying the Czech government was “blind and

deaf to the laments of the people,” before being taken away by police. However, the most interesting aspect of the aftermath may be that the attacker, who described himself as a 26-year-old communist sympathizer, was able to give an interview to the station before police apprehended him.

Genetically engineered cow produces anti-allergy milk

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esearchers in New Zealand have genetically engineered a cow to produce milk with very little of a protein that causes an allergic reaction in some children. They hope the technique, which uses a process called RNA interference that reduces the activity of certain genes without eliminating it completely, can be used to control other traits in livestock.

With mothers breastfeeding less, cows’ milk is an increasing source of protein for babies, but the different composition of cows’ milk can cause an allergic reaction. “In developed countries, 2-3 percent of infants are allergic to cows’ milk proteins in the rst year of life,” the researchers said in a paper published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Anower Jabed and col-

leagues at the New Zealand government-run AgResearch company said their genetically modified cow produced milk with a 96 percent reduction in the protein beta-lactoglobulin (BLG), a component known to cause allergic reactions. While there are dairy industry processes that can reduce the allergenic potential of normal milk, they are expensive and can result in a bitter taste.

Czech President Vaclav Klaus (centre)as he is shot by an airsoft pistol.

PHOTO: YOUTUBE


Wednesday, October 3, 2012

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

49

Community Mirror Experts caution against unvaccinated dogs

“We must continue to work together, confidently and faithfully to ensure that our country’s potential are realized to the fullest.” PRESIDENT GOODLUCK JONATHAN

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One killed, another injured as robbers attack estate FRANCIS SUBERU

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here was pandemonium at Abule Onigbagbo Estate, Ikeja Lagos yesterday as policemen and a four-man gang of armed robbers engaged themselves in gun duel leading to the death of one of the robbers, even as a Man-O-War security operative, identified as Michael Ekueme, sustained severe gunshot injury. The robbers had just robbed some people in the area and were escaping when police officers attached to the Rapid Response Squad, RRS, waylaid them, leading to a gun duel. One of the gang members was killed while the other three escaped. It was learnt that the robbers who stormed the area early hours of Tuesday morning, came through Mobolaji Bank Anthony Way and attacked a house on Sogunle Street, where residents of the building were robbed of valuables worth millions of naira including, wrist watches, laptops, cash, jewelleries, clothes and other materials. An occupant of the house who simply identified himself as Omololu, said the robbers came with bags with which they carted away their loot. According to him: “Around 7:30am, about four men knocked on the gate and told the security

guard they wanted to see my wife. They didn’t know her exact name, so, they said they wanted to see the house girl. They told the security guard the name of the house girl so he (the security guard) then called on the house girl. On getting to the gate, the house girl opened it and the suspects entered.

“The robbers tied up the security guard and then entered the main building. They were specific, they knew where my wife worked and also asked for specific items. The robbers operated unhindered for a long time and even sat down, relaxed and drank wine. “One of the robbers then carried

Motorcyclists riding on the kerb demarcating the Ikorodu Expressway at Ojota, Lagos.

Lagos justifies interaction between legislators and MDA’S MURITALA AYINLA

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he Lagos State Government has justified the frequent interactive sessions between its lawmakers and head of Ministries, Departments and Agencies, MDA’s, saying it is to check corruption in governance. The Special Assistant to Governor Babatunde Fashola on Political and Legislative Power Bureau, Musiliu Folami, said the state government had commenced staff audit in various local government councils to detect ghost workers. Speaking with Community Mirror during an interactive session with members of various House Committees and Head of Ministries and Agencies, Folami said

one of the bags filled with laptops, phones, money, shoes, jewellery and other items and took it outside” “The culprit that was carrying the bag was not armed, so the security guard was able to arrest him. However, when the other robbers saw that their colleague had been arrested, they started shooting into

the government is determined to deliver the dividends of democracy through cordial relationship between the agencies and committees’ in the House of Assembly. He said: “The interactive session between House committees and heads of MDAs will avail the representative of the two arms of government the opportunity to have mutual relationship. It will also help the committees carry out their oversight functions. Instead of inviting these people to the House, the meetings will help resolve differences so they don’t wash their dirty linens in full glare of the media.” He attributed the developmental strides in Lagos to cordial relationship between the executive and legislature, saying the meet-

ing is primarily to enhance budget performance. He advised Lagosians to continue to abide by the laws made by the state government, adding that they are geared at making life better for them. It would be recalled that the House of Assembly indicted 30 Ministries and Agencies for failing to update Fixed Assets Register, FAR, as well as unretired payment vouchers, even as the lawmakers discovered discrepancies on the pay roll of some of them. This was contained in a resolution of the Lagos State House of Assembly (LAHA), following the presentation of the accounts of the state government for 2010 by the Public Accounts Committee.

the air to scare off residents. In the process, the Man O War official was shot”, he said. As police officers and the robbers exchanged gun fire, bystanders and motorists were said to have ran for dear life, causing pandemonium in the neighbourhood.

PHOTO:ADEMOLA AKINLABI

Uduaghan commissions tricycles in Asaba

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elta State Governor, Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan has commissioned 1,250 tricycles, warning against interference with the distribution to commercial motorcycle operators. Uduaghan stressed that the tricycles were meant for commercial operations, even as he called on politicians not to use them for political patronage. His words: ‘’I like to appeal to the political class not to interfere in the distribution of these tricycles. Do not use it to settle your boys, as they are strictly for the Okada riders transiting to tricycles’’. The governor who said the tricycles were subsidized to 70 percent from N400,000 to N150, 000 warned operators of the tricycles to restrict themselves

to routes approved for them. Uduaghan stated that the introduction is meant to gradually phase out commercial motorcycles as part of measures to ensure safety in the transport sector and security in the state. He noted that Okada usage has done more harm than good in the area of security challenge, even as he explained that the present efforts which will commence from Asaba, Warri and Effurun and later extended to all urban centres of the state. He said: ‘’we are improving the transport sector and, very soon, more commercial buses and boats will be commissioned. I assure you, we will not relax until things are better for our people.’’


50

Community Mirror

Wednesday, Octobr 3, 2012

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Experts caution against unvaccinated dogs MARCUS FATUNMOLE ABUJA

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igerians have been warned of the need to vaccinate domestic pets such as dogs and cats as a way of safeguarding public health against rabies. Rabies is a fatal disease that can spread to humans through bites, broken skin or scratches from infected wild domestic animals, most com-

monly dogs. Children, who usually play with unvaccinated dogs and cats, stand the risk of contracting rabies, especially when saliva from affected pets contacts their mucous membrane. While cautioning people against the deadly disease at this year’s Rabies Day in Abuja, the Minister of Health, Prof. Onyebuchi Chukwu, called on Nigerians to vaccinate

Traditional ruler debunks bunkering allegation FRANCIS SUBERU

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is Royal Highness, the Olu of Arepo, Oba Solomon Atanda Oyebi, has debunked allegations that he aided oil bunkering, even as he denied his purported arrest by security operatives. There have been rumours that the monarch was arrested and questioned for alleged role in the vandalism of oil pipelines belonging to the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, and the killing of three company staff. Speaking in his palace, the monarch said, he only read the allegations in the papers, saying it is not only baseless but lacks any no iota of truth. He said: “I was not arrested by any security

agency and never committed any offence. All the stories about my arrest are wicked lies.” The Olu of Arepo, noted that the area where oil bunkering was taking place and where the deaths of NNPC staff occurred are not within Arepo, saying the community only shares borders with villages where such acts of sabotage are being perpetrated. “The village is known as Oke-Ijebu Elepete in Ikorodu, Lagos State. But, whenever the vandals want to siphon oil, they come from the sea and go back through it. I am at a loss as to why Arepo is always mentioned anytime comments on oil bunkering are made. I urge the NNPC to carry out proper investigations to find out those perpetrating the act, rather than accusing my community, he said.”

NIMET commends Lagos State MURITALA AYINLA

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he Lagos State Government has been commended for taking proactive steps in warning residents on implications of rainfall predictions, as well as the numerous efforts to prevent flooding in the state. The Director General of Nigerian Metrological Agency (NIMET), Dr. Anthony Anuforom, stated this during an interactive session with state governors and stakeholders on state of the Nigerian environment at Abuja. Anuforom, observed that while the Lagos State Government took the warnings seriously, some others ignored the predictions, leading to grave consequences

for them and the citizens. He recalled that NIMET specifically wrote to some state governments from August 3rd- 6th about some noticed soil moisture saturation that could lead to serious flooding, unfortunately they never took it seriously. While reacting to the massive flooding experienced across the country, the Director of Programmes, Organization for better Environment, Dr. Leke Ayileke, commended NIMET for its early warnings and predictions, even as he was full of praises for the Lagos State Ministry of the Environment, for its numerous advocacy programmes, which have helped reduced the incidences of flooding in the state.

their pets at least once in two years, as a way to protect the public against the virus. Represented by the Permanent Secretary in the ministry, Mrs. Fatima Bamidele, the Minister noted that more than 55,000 people die globally from the disease, while Africa accounts for 44 percent of these deaths. Currently, there is no effective treatment for rabies; however it is a vaccine-preventable dis-

ease. Studies have shown that rabies is endemic in Nigeria and this is compounded by the fact that, the country has a large population of dogs.” Speaking at the event, Prof. A. B. Ogunkoya of the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, who

had spent 35 years studying rabies around the world, said the country is helpless because nobody is in charge of rabies control and eradication. According to him, nobody has the knowledge of how many people die from the disease every year. Also, a Chief Consul-

tant Epidemiologist, Dr. Akin Oyemakinde, observed that “There are safe and effective vaccines available for persons bitten by rabies infested animals. Once rabies is established, there is nothing that can be done except intensive care support. To date, only two persons with proven rabies have survived.


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

North

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Kwara Poly screens 33, 000 candidates for 10, 000 slots WOLE ADEDEJI ILORIN

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bout 33, 000 candidates are to take part in the admission screening exercise to be conducted by the Kwara State Polytechnic for the 2012/2013 academic session. However, less than 10, 000 candidates may be of-

fered places out of this figure. Deputy Rector of the Polytechnic, Mr. James Ajiboye, who is the chairman of the screening exercise made this known to journalists after commissioning the pure water factory of the institution yesterday. He pleaded with the candidates coming for the

exercise to conduct themselves, pointing out that the polytechnic has put machineries in place to deal with any unruly candidate. He said the screening exercise would be conducted at the two campuses of the institution in Ilorin. Also, because of the security situation in the country, he said a thorough

arrangements had been put in place to ward off people of questionable character who have no established business from the venues. He said, the pure water factory will be operated as a strict business venture entrusted in the hands of a ventures committee given a grant that they will account for with time after declaring profits.

Gombe State Commissioner for Agriculture, Alhaji Dahiru Buba-Biri (right), presenting a sprayer to a poultry dealer in Gombe to control avian influenza in the state, yesterday. PHOTO: NAN

SUBEB closes four private schools for illegal operation

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he Katsina State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) has closed down four private nursery/primary schools in the state for non-compliance with government’s laid down rules and regulations. Executive Chairman of the board, Alhaji Suleiman Dikko, disclosed this in Katsina yesterday in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN). He said three of the schools, Usulil Talbiyatul Badiwiya, Unity Science Primary School and Tahfiz Academy, were closed down in Katsina metropolis while Maryamu Ajiri Nursery/Primary School was closed down in Dutsinma. “The closure of these schools followed the discovery that they were not complying with the stipulated guidelines for their operations. “They were operating illegally and some of them were located in

unhealthy environment, hence the decision to close them down,” he added. The chairman, who expressed displeasure at the proliferation of illegal schools in the state, warned that with effect from the 2012/2013 academic session, no private nursery/primary school should operate from a temporary site. He also directed Education Secretaries (ES) in the 34 local government areas of the state to ensure that no new private school operated from a temporary site in their respective areas. Dikko also warned proprietors of private schools to ensure strict compliance with registration procedures to avoid embarrassment. He also advised parents and other stakeholders to support and cooperate with the board in order to provide qualitative education for their children.

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Electoral body shuts door against Bauchi ANPP HENRY IYORKASE MAKURDI

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he Chairman of the Benue State Independent Electoral Commission (BSIEC), Prof. Philip Ahire, has sanctioned the All Nigerian Peoples Party (ANPP) for violating the submission deadline of forms for participation in the forthcoming councils’ poll in the state. Prof. Ahire while briefing journalists at the BSIEC headquarters yesterday in Makurdi, declared that awareness had earlier been created by the commission to the 19 political parties that indicated the desire to participate in the November 24 local government elections and each of the stakeholders was properly briefed of the Electoral Law 2012. He said after the guidelines were distributed and he said he also instructed that the commission would not exceed September 19 as the submission deadline for political parties participating in the elections. He said few days after the deadline expired, the

ANPP came with their form of intent, which the commission resisted. He said he would under no condition be cajoled by anybody to renege and cut corners to favour a particular person or party, pledging that the commission under his leadership would ensure fair and credible election that would stand the test of time. The BSIEC boss asserted that a number of ad-hoc staff has already been trained to man election duties, pointing out that the officials would be neutral in the conduct and discharge of their duties. He revealed that elections’ results would be announced at the collation ward as soon as all the processes are concluded and reminded that anyone thinking of manipulating of results in favour a particular political party is just wasting his or her time. According to the BSIEC chairman; “We are going to prove the doubting Thomases wrong by conducting a free and fair election that would shock everybody and be made a reference point in the annals of the state.”

Ex-Gov Doma sues for peace in Nasarawa IGBAWASE UKUMBA LAFIA

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he immediate past governor of Nasarawa State, Aliyu Akwe-Doma, has urged the people of Nasarawa State to unite and work in harmony with other ethnic nationalities in the country. According to him, “This would serve as a panacea for the development of the state and Nigeria.” The former governor stated this in Lafia, the state capital, in his good-

will message on the occasion of the 52nd independence anniversary of Nigeria and 16th anniversary of the creation of Nasarawa State. He cautioned that for the country to continue to exist as a cooperate entity; all ethnic groups must accept one another as members of one family. His words: “I enjoin the different ethnic groups in the state and in the Diaspora to strive and face the challenges of modern Nigeria, through education as well as full participa-

tion in the political development of the country.” Doma cautioned his people not to sit on the fence, but should be active players in the evolution of a modern Nigeria. He further challenged his people within the state and in the Diaspora to come back home and contribute meaningfully to the socio-economic development of the state and indeed Nigeria. He, however, decried that some people are busy deploying various tactics and intrigues to distort the

dreams of the founding fathers of the state by sowing seeds of discord and animosity where none existed. Accordingly, he said; “It is therefore pertinent to urge all our people to be wary of our enemies and detractors, who do not wish us well.” Consequently, Doma charged the people of the state “to put in their best to fight against the evil machinations of the state’s enemy by remaining steadfast and committed to the collective aspirations upon which Nasarawa State was founded.”

Good governance media tour kicks off in Kwara WOLE ADEDEJI ILORIN

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he National Good Governance Media Tour organised by the Federal Ministry of Information and Communication aimed at assessing all tiers of government kicked off in Kwara State yesterday. Minister of Information and Communication, Mr. Labaran Maku, who led two

other ministers on the tour told the Kwara State Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed, during a courtesy call that many Nigerians don’t know the effect because they were not made to know. He said the decision to embark on the project was taken at an enlarged meeting of Federal Executive Council (FEC) and the state governors which Governor Ahmed was made to announce to the State House

press corps. He said the tour will help discover and highlight the potentials of the states. He said it was also for both the federal and state governments to partner and develop as well as know the level of developmental works each state has recorded. Also, Maku said the tour will assess the federal railway reform on the Lagos-Ilorin-Kano express rail ser-

vice; the Ilorin-Ogbomosho highway; the Kwara Aviation College, promising that the Federal Government was ready to partner states on all identified people-oriented projects. In his remark, Governor Ahmed said there was a need for stronger collective effort between the states and the Federal Government aimed at sustaining and improving the nation’s economy.


52

Health & Wellbeing

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

FG to improve access to MNCH commodities

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he Federal Government has disclosed its determination at improving access to essential Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (MNCH) commodities in order to ensure a successful implementation of the ``saving one million live programme’’. Dr Muhammad Pate, Minister of State for Health, said this in Abuja recently during the national maternal, newborn, child health commodities availability conference. ``We have set an ambitious goal of saving one million lives through the deployment of cost effective interventions. ``The scaling up of access to essential maternal, newborn, child health commodities and improving logistics and supply chain systems in the country

are key drivers for the successful implementation of saving one million live programme.” Pate said for the MNCH component, a new approach had been developed through the SURE-P MCH programme to include supply and demand side interventions. He said the supply intervention comprised a full complement of skilled health workers, essential maternal and child health commodities, equipment and refurbishment of facilities. On the demand side, Conditional Cash Transfers (CCT) have been introduced through the programme by using cash incentive to encourage the use of antenatal care, skilled birth delivery, post-natal and family planning services at the prima-

ry health care facilities. Pate said MCH interventions had the potential to save up to 662,900 lives, of which were 16,800 maternal lives, 180,800 neonatal lives, 465, 300 posts neonatal and child lives by 2015. He said for the logistics and supply chain component, a total of up to 4,300 facilities across the country would be reached in the pilot phase of the programme. Pate said the government was determined to identify the root causes of commodity stock outs and better understand consumption patterns, quantities of commodities required and funding arrangement. The minister said in addition to the annual commitment of three million dollars for the procurement of reproductive

Managing Director, Unilever Nigeria Plc, Thabo Mabe, helping 5-year Old Tofe Olawepo of Temple School in washing his Hand, at the Lifebuoy 2012 Global Hand Washing Day Kick-Off Campaign Tagged: ‘Help a Child Reach the Age of Five … One Nigeria Against Diarrhea’, held in Lagos recently.

Let’s decentralize Health Insurance Scheme –Lagos Health Commissisoner SEKINAH L AWAL

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ollowing the last Health Sector Development Partners’ Forum (HSDPF), for the purpose of owning and taking leadership for effective coordination of key partners in the health sector, the Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Jide Idris, has called on Federal Government to decentralize the Health Insurance Scheme in order to achieve its aims and objectives. Speaking recently at the second 2012 forum, Dr. Idris said it was necessary to fully engage partners working in the state so as to put resources together to address a common goal.

“We want partners to key into our plan rather than work on at cross purposes. This informed the establishment of the Partners’ Forum.” He said expectations at the meeting was the harmonisation process which would ensure that all interventions, for both development partners and MDAs are result-oriented and aligned to the Lagos State Strategic Health Development Plan 2010-2015. Idris noted that Lagos has huge private sector system that has not been tapped. He commended collaborative efforts of all the partners. Also speaking, the Special Adviser to Gov. Babatunde Fashola on Health, Dr. Yewande

Adesina revealed that the state was engaging in local research instead of using just that of WHO, UNICEF and others in order to actually understand what is really needed at the grassroots. “This will give us better coordination, integration and be more focused and result-oriented as it increases access by patients even at the very hard- -to-reach rural and riverine areas.” She called for the support and cooperation of the Religious and Traditional leaders as well as the Traditional Birth Attendants. “We are scaling-up to training the Traditional Birth Attendants in detecting risks in pregnancy and labour issues and know when to refer,” she said.

health commodities, additional 8.35 million had been added for the next four years. In her speech, Mrs Victoria Akyeampong, UNFPA Representative, said the saving one million lives initiative contributed to the UN Secretary General’s global strategy for women and children’s health. Akyeampong said the global strategy highlighted the need to address inequities experienced by women and children around the world in accessing quality health services.

She said through the strategy, the UN Secretary General advocated strongly for universal access to basic health care for all women and children. ``At the country level, we are pleased to note that the Nigerian home-grown saving one million lives initiative had in itself identified equitable availability of essential lifesaving medicines at service delivery points as one of the critical enablers to accelerating improvement in health outcomes.”

NAFDAC destroys N28.6m unwholesome products

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he National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), Oyo State, has destroyed regulated products worth N28, 674, 750. The destruction took place at the agency’s Shagamu dump site in Ogun State recently. According to a press statement from NAFDAC signed by the Public Relations Officer (PRO) Southwest Zone, Ibadan, Osiyemi Adegboyega, the items destroyed at the site included drugs, cosmetics, medical devices, herbal medicines, food and chemicals which were seized during regulatory activities carried out within Oyo State between October 2009 and August 2012. According to the state unit head, Benjamin Haruna, who led the exercise, the fake, substan-

dard and unwholesome products were seized from drug hawkers, pharmaceutical companies, supermarkets, water factories, open markets and those that were voluntarily submitted for destruction. The statement reads: “The agency hereby warns the general public to be wary of spurious regulated products which they consume as this may lead to cancer, lack of required nutrients in the consumption of harmful products. If you are not sure of the wholesomeness of any product, report such to the nearest NAFDAC office. “Consumers must always watch out for the manufacturing date, expiry date on the product, batch number and the manufacturer’s address.”

Sudden death: Clergy advocates regular exercise for prevention TOBORE OVUORIE

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orried by the alarming cases of sudden deaths by Nigerians as a result of overweight and other heart-related ailments, Parish Priest of St. Michael’s Catholic Church, Obalende, Lagos, Very Rev. Msgr Gabriel Osu, has called for Nigerians’ participation in regular outdoor exercises as a way of enjoying healthier lives. Addressing newsmen during a recent Walk for Life campaign embarked upon by his parish as part of activities marking their forthcoming harvest, the clergyman who is also the Director of Social Communications, Catholic Archdiocese of Lagos, said the alarming spate of sudden deaths in the country would be greatly reduced if Nigerians make it a habit to spare time to embark on regular ex-

ercises and other keep-fit programmes. “We are using this Walk for Life campaign to tell Nigerians to be more involved in exercises. It is said that all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. Unfortunately, many of us are so involved in the daily rat race of what to eat and drink that we seldom find time to exercise and take care of ourselves. This is wrong. “A healthy body is a healthy mind. Health is wealth. If you make all the money and have no good health to enjoy it, then it is of no use. We must try to adopt healthy lifestyles so that we can live longer and more fulfilled life,” Osu said. The Walk for Life Campaign saw hundreds of enthusiastic parishioners of St. Michaels in their sporting wears engaged in a long walk across the streets of Obalende and its environ to burn off the steam after a hectic week of activities.


Wednesday, October 3, 2012

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

53

World News

Iran’s President calls Netanyahu’s bomb prop childish

54

PAUL ARHEWE

WITH AGENCY REPORTS

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llied African troops have taken full control of Kismayo in Somalia, the last stronghold of Islamist rebels who have been fighting against the country’s internationally-backed government, a Kenyan military official said yesterday, in a report from Associated Press. Remnants of the militants, known as al-Shabaab, executed seven civilians who did not support them in the southern part of Kismayo on Monday, the Kenyan military said. Kenya Defence Forces and the Somali National Army are now patrolling the streets of Kismayo, Kenyan military spokesman Maj. Emmanuel Chirchir said through Twitter. He said that the troops had secured the city’s central police station and the new airport. He said military aircraft will start landing there. Meanwhile, African Union troops and tanks’ entry to the former al Shabaab stronghold of Kismayo was welcomed by a blast, which the al Qaeda-linked militants who have fled the Somali port signalled their intention to fight back. The government said the explosion caused no casualties, but the incident pointed to al Shabaab’s capacity to hit back with guerrilla strikes and bombings in both Kismayu and neighbouring Kenya, whose troops led the assault on the town.

“We’ve laid the foundations of 21st century socialism and today we launch, well, the second cycle. We’ll launch the second socialist cycle, from 2013 to 2019, with much more strength.” – Venezuelan President, Hugo Chavez

‘African troops now control Kismayo in Somalia’ Residents and a government spokesman described a loud blast aimed at Somali soldiers patrolling Kismayu’s dusty streets, but the rebels said they had detonated a bomb at a building housing Somali troops, “killing many”. “The bomb was planted inside a district administration office building,” al Shabaab spokesman Sheikh Abdiasis Abu Musab said, warning of more attacks. “This is only an introduction to

the forthcoming explosions.” Kenyan troops invaded the southern Somali city of Kismayo early Friday, and al-Qaida-linked al-Shabaab announced soon after that their forces were leaving the lucrative port town. After years of bloody streetby-street warfare, African Union troops from Uganda and Burundi pushed al-Shabaab out of Somalia’s capital of Mogadishu in August 2011. The AU troops have

since taken over towns outside of Mogadishu as well. Kenyan forces invaded Somalia late last year, and have been moving slowly toward Kismayo. The once-powerful al-Shabaab spent years defending its Mogadishu territory, but since being forced out it has chosen to retreat from towns when challenged by African Union forces or Ethiopian troops who moved into western Somalia earlier this year.

Kenyan soldiers serving with the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) are seen in Saa’moja, around 7km north-west of the port city of Kismayo, in southern Somalia on Monday. PHOTO: AP

Amnesty urges Egypt to tackle legacy of abuse

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mnesty International yesterday took Egypt’s new president to task for failing to address the “bloody legacy” of abuses by security forces committed under military rule after the fall of Hosni Mubarak, which continue even after the establishment of the country’s first freely elected government. The group urged President Mohammed Morsi to hold the military accountable for the killing, torture and sexual abuse of protesters during the 18 months when the generals held power after Mubarak’s February 2011 ouster. It also said Morsi should rein in police forces, which it said still use excessive force to deal with protests and have tortured detainees. It called for the government to allow U.N. experts to investigate and assess how to deal

with the problems. Unless there is a clear political will to confront this and to provide the families of the victims with truth and justice, things are not going to change,” Hassiba Hadj Sahraoui, deputy director for Amnesty’s Middle East and

North Africa Program, told The Associated Press. “For the moment police officers, soldiers are confident that they can commit violations with impunity without ever having to answer for any of their acts,” she said.

Egyptian army soldiers, background, arresting a woman protester during clashes near Cairo’s downtown Tahrir Square, Egypt last year. PHOTO: AP

Two extensive reports released by the London-based human rights group in Cairo on Tuesday detailed cases of rights abuses by the army and police, focusing on six separate incidents of crackdowns on protests that killed at least 120 people. Amnesty said thousands of protesters were injured or maimed — with documented cases of loss of eyesight — during the crackdowns, and that detainees were tortured in custody. Most of the crackdowns took place during the post-Mubarak period of rule by a council of generals, during which soldiers had a major role in keeping security inside the country. The military has largely backed down from that role ever since Morsi, of the Muslim Brotherhood, was inaugurated at the end of June as the new president

WORLD BULLETIN Nigerian Ambassador hosts independence reception in Korea Nigerian Ambassador to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Nwofe Alexander Monday hosted a reception to mark the 52nd anniversary of the independence of Nigeria. Present there on invitation were the Korean Foreign Minister Pak Ui Chun, Vice-Minister of Foreign Trade Ri Myong San, Vice-Chairman of the Committee for Cultural Relations with Foreign Countries So Ho Won, officials concerned and diplomatic envoys of various countries and representatives of the international organizations here. Staff members of the Nigerian embassy in the Asian country were present during the event. The Nigerian ambassador said in his speech that the two countries have positively cooperated with each other in the international arena since the establishment of diplomatic ties. The friendly relations between the two countries have further developed, he noted, adding that the Nigerian people fully support the struggle of the Korean people for achieving the peaceful reunification of the country. Pak Ui Chun in his speech referred to the great successes made by the Nigerian people in the work for the independent development and prosperity of the country.

Crowd in Tunisia backs raped woman outside court A woman allegedly raped by police in Tunisia has been questioned by a judge who will decide whether to prosecute her for “indecency” with her fiance. Outside the courthouse in Tunis, hundreds of people voiced support for the 27-year-old woman, whose case has been headline news in Tunisia. Her supporters say the “indecency” claims are aimed at persuading her to drop her accusation against the police. Some fear the ruling Islamist Ennahda party wants to weaken women’s rights. The accused woman, who covered her face as she left the courthouse, said three policemen had stopped her on 3 September while she was in a car with her fiance, and two of them went on to rape her. The policemen deny that, saying she was engaged in immoral behaviour with her fiance. The policemen, awaiting trial, face heavy jail terms or even a death sentence if found guilty. The woman’s fiancé has been accused of indecency, like her, and he too covered his face to conceal his identity.


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World News

WORLD BULLETIN White House confirms cyber attack The White House has acknowledged an attempt to infiltrate its computer system, but says it thwarted the effort and that no classified networks were threatened. White House spokesperson Jay Carney told reporters the White House is equipped with mitigation measures that identified the attack, isolated it and prevented its spread. He said there was no indication that any data was removed. “There are distinctions between those networks that contain classified information and those that don’t, and the attack was against an unclassified network,” Carney said. Carney described the attack as “spear-phishing” and said such efforts against government computer systems are “not infrequent.” Carney spoke in Henderson, Nevada, where president Barack Obama is preparing for his first debate against rival Mitt Romney on Wednesday.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Iran’s President calls Netanyahu’s bomb prop childish I ran’s president sneered yesterday at Israeli’s presentation at the United Nations last week, calling the cartoonstyle drawing of a bomb held up by Prime Minister Benjamin

Netanyahu “childish and primitive.” Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said the Israeli’s drawing of a red line to urge swifter international action against Iran’s nuclear

Chinese Premier gets UN medal for increasing food production Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao was yesterday presented with a top United Nations award for his efforts to increase food production, contributing significantly to reducing the number of people around the world suffering from extreme poverty. “Let me give you one number that illustrates the magnitude of this contribution,” the DirectorGeneral of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), José Graziano da Silva, said in presenting the agency’s highest award, the Agricola Medal, to Mr. Wen at a ceremony in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, attended by 150 senior Government officials, representatives of Chinese farmers and academia. “The number of poor in the world fell from 2.3 billion in 1990 to 1.5 billion in 2008, a reduction of 34.1 per cent. A world without China would have progressed much more slowly.

Pope’s butler pleads innocent to theft charge Pope Benedict XVI’s onetime butler declared yesterday he was innocent of a charge of aggravated theft of the pope’s private correspondence, but acknowledged he photocopied the papers and said he feels guilty that he betrayed the trust of the pontiff he loves like a father. Paolo Gabriele took the stand Tuesday in a Vatican courtroom to defend himself against accusations of his role in one of the most damaging scandals of Benedict’s pontificate. Prosecutors say Gabriele stole papal letters and documents alleging power struggles and corruption inside the Vatican and leaked them to a journalist in an unprecedented papal security breach. Gabriele faces four years in prison if he is found guilty, although most Vatican watchers expect he will receive a papal pardon if he is convicted.

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu showing an illustration as he describes his concerns over Iran’s nuclear ambitions during his address to the 67th session of the UN General Assembly at U.N. headquarters recently. PHOTO: AP

program was an intellectual insult to U.N. dignitaries. “Red line, white line, black line and the like is for children. This is the level of this guy’s character,” Ahmadinejad said at a news conference in Tehran. “It was a primitive drawing, an insult to the audience ... it was a very ugly behaviour.” The Iranian president used the packed press conference to accuse Netanyahu of being a war-monger, saying of him: “Whoever talks of war is retarded.” At his speech last week before the U.N. General Assembly, Netanyahu flashed the diagram of a bomb with a lighted fuse to illustrate progress Iran has made in its nuclear program, saying the country was approaching a threshold Israel could not tolerate. Netanyahu’s prop was quickly dubbed “Bibi’s bomb” after his nickname. Israel considers a nucleararmed Iran to be an existential threat, citing Iranian denials of the Holocaust, its calls for Israel’s destruction, its development of missiles capable of striking the Jewish state and its support

for hostile Arab militant groups. Netanyahu has repeatedly argued that time is running out to stop Iran from becoming a nuclear power and that the threat of force must be seriously considered. Israeli leaders have issued a series of warnings in recent weeks suggesting that if Iran’s uranium enrichment program continues it may soon stage a unilateral military strike. Israel and the U.S. have accused Iran of using its civilian nuclear program as a cover to develop nuclear weapons. Iran has denied the charges, saying its program is peaceful and geared toward generating electricity and medical radioisotopes to treat cancer patients. President Barack Obama has vowed to prevent Iran from becoming a nuclear power but has rejected Netanyahu’s demands for setting an ultimatum — or red line — past which the U.S. would attack. His administration has urgently sought to hold off Israeli military action, which would likely result in the U.S. being pulled into a conflict and cause region-wide mayhem on the eve of American elections.

Georgia’s president concedes defeat in poll

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eorgian President Mikheil Saakashvili conceded yesterday that his ruling party had lost an election to a coalition led by billionaire Bidzina Ivanishvili, increasing the chances of a peaceful transfer of power in the former Soviet republic. Ivanishvili said he was confident of becoming prime minister as partial results put his six-party Georgian Dream on course to win Monday’s parliamentary election. Ivanishvili’s supporters streamed through Tbilisi’s streets after polls closed on Monday, waving flags and sounding

car horns in celebration even though Saakashvili’s United National Movement (UNM) had initially claimed victory. “According to preliminary results, it is clear that Georgian Dream obtained a majority in this election,” Saakashvili, 44, said in a televised address in which he finally conceded defeat on behalf of his party. “This means that the parliamentary majority should set up a new government, and as president, in accordance with the constitution, I will do everything to make their work comfortable, so that the parliament can choose a chairman of the

parliament as well as set up a new government.” The election could mark the first peaceful transfer of power between rival parties since the Caucasus country won independence when the Soviet Union broke up in 1991. Any instability in the nation of 4.5 million would worry the West because it is a conduit for Caspian Sea energy supplies to Europe and has a strategic location on the Black Sea between former Soviet master Russia and Iran, Turkey and central Asia. Saakashvili will remain president until his term expires

Over 300,000 flee Syria to neighbouring countries – UN

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ore than 300,000 Syrians have fled to neighbouring countries, the United Nations refugee agency said yesterday, with numbers tripling over the past three months. “The continuing rapid growth in refugee numbers underscores the urgency of last week’s revised Syria regional response plan seeking $487.9 million in support of up to 710,000 Syrian refugees in neighbouring countries by the end of this year,” the spokesperson for the Office of the High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), Adrian Edwards, told reporters in Geneva. “The generosity and hospital-

ity shown by these countries as they struggle to cope with growing numbers of refugees make it essential that the international community provide as much support as possible. Many refugees and the communities hosting them are already running out of resources.” According to UNHCR, a total of 311,500 Syrians are currently registered or awaiting registration as refugees in Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey and Iraq. Mr. Edwards warned that humanitarian agencies now face a race against time with the onset of winter temperatures across the region as many refugees are living in tents, and underscored

the need to put a plan in place over the next 10 weeks. “In Jordan, for example, where thousands are living in tents, the average low temperature between mid-November and midMarch is two degrees Celsius. A winterization plan is being developed, but it too requires support and funding,” he said. Some 65 per cent of Syrian refugees currently receiving or seeking assistance in Jordan are in urban areas, while the remaining 35 per cent are in the new camp at Za’atri and other smaller facilities. Since it opened just two months ago, Za’atri has received more than 30,000 people.

Saakashvili

next year but governing the country could be much more difficult as he will no longer have a compliant parliament and the prime minister is likely to be his 56-year-old rival, Ivanishvili. The U.S.-educated Saakashvili won praise for curbing corruption and implementing economic reforms, but he led Georgia into a disastrous five-day war with Russia over two breakaway regions in 2008. Opponents say he has monopolized power, mistreated opponents and trampled on rights and freedoms. Saakashvili says the Georgian Dream coalition would move Georgia away from the West and back into Moscow’s orbit, and has suggested Ivanishvili is doing the bidding of the Kremlin after making his money in Russia.


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News

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

55

NJC faults reappointment of Justice Adamu ISE-OLUWA IGE ABUJA

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he National Judicial Council, NJC, yesterday described the continued stay in office by Justice Dalhatu Adamu as the acting President of the Court of Appeal as illegal and unconstitutional. The council, which made the declaration before a Federal High Court sitting

in Abuja, also said that President Goodluck Jonathan had no constitutional role to play in the recall of the suspended President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Ayo Salami. NJC was reacting to a suit instituted against President Jonathan by 11 human rights activists, challenging the continued suspension of Justice Salami from office.

It, however, agreed with the activists that the President had no role to play in the recall of the embattled Appeal Court president. NJC is a creation of Section 153 of the 1999 Constitution with statutory powers to hire, fire and suspend erring judicial officers from office. The council is contending that the President can only play a role where it is

planning to either hire or fire an erring judicial officer. It insisted that the power to recall the suspended Salami solely and exclusively belonged to NJC without recourse to any other person outside the council, including the President. The NJC, therefore, explained that Justice Adamu could not be re-appointed by President Jonathan after

the expiration of the three months in office without the recommendation of the council, stressing that the continued stay in office by Justice Adamu be voided. The human rights activists had dragged President Jonathan and the NJC before the Federal High Court in Abuja, seeking an order of mandamus to compel them to recall Justice Salami. The activists, including four lawyers, also applied for an order compelling Justice Adamu to immediately vacate office, having been illegally re-appointed beyond three months by President Jonathan. In the suit, the human rights activists, who are members of the Centre for the Promotion of Arbitration, asked the Federal High Court to order the NJC to implement the report of the Justice Mariam Aloma Muhktar panel, which rec-

ommended the reinstatement of Justice Salami after a thorough investigation into the circumstances that led to his suspension. Other defendants in the suit are the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice; Justice Salami and Justice Adamu. But the NJC, in a clear departure from its earlier position, asked Justice Adamu Bello to give judgement in favour of the activists that Salami be reinstated without any recourse to the power or authority of anybody, including the President. The council also agreed that the re-appointment of Justice Adamu was illegal and should be voided. Justice Bello has, however, ordered parties in the suit to file and exchange their written addresses and fixed December 4 for adoption.

Gunmen kill 40 students in Adamawa CONTINUED FROM PAGE 5

Some of the students killed in Mubi.

Pollution: Senate may sanction oil firms CHINEDUM EMEANA PORT HARCOURT

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he Senate may soon prescribe heavy sanctions against oil companies whose exploration activities contribute to the severe pollution being experienced in the Niger Delta. This may be the major focus of the report of the Senate Committee on Environment and Ecology, which has been visiting oil spill sites in the area since October 1, 2012. Chair man of the committee, Senator Bukola Saraki, said this yesterday when the lawmakers paid a courtesy visit to the Rivers State Gover nor, Mr. Chibuike Amaechi, yesterday. The committee had visited several communities in Ogoni and other places in the state affected by oil spills. Saraki decried a

situation where oil companies operating in the country caused pollution, destroying far mlands and threatening the well-being of communities without being sanctioned “and only told to do remediation.” The senator noted that oil firms, instead of making genuine efforts to do remediation of oil spill affected environment, only deceived the people by tipping sands over the spill sites to cover up the top soil and create the impression that radiation had taken place. He said: “We went on today to look at sites at Ejama Ebubu (Ogoniland) where we found that there were still oil deep in the soil. “This is after decades of so-called no more exploration or oil activities. What was being done was that soil and sand was just being tipped and no proper remediation was going on. “I think it was really more of deception

when people go there you will think that the place is being addressed, but no proper remediation are not being done.” The Shell Petroleum Development Company was chased out by the communities of Ogoniland from drilling crude following accusations of environmental pollution and insensitivity by the firm. “The Senate will call oil companies to account and take responsibilities for their actions. We want things to change, because it has taken a lot of patience on the part of the people affected,” he said. Saraki said that the amendment to National Oil Spill Detection and Response Act, NOSDRA, which had gone through the second reading in the Senate, when passed into law, would spell out the penalties on oil spill and remediation steps. “When there is an oil spill, the hope of what to eat for the next day, week,

month or even a year is completely obliterated. “These communities rely heavily on subsistence fish farming and agriculture. “The impact is always systemic and expensive. The importance to be attached to dealing with oil spill apart from helping to conserve our resource and manage the environment lies more in protecting our people’s lives and their livelihood.” Amaechi, while thanking the committee for the visit, said that Rivers communities affected by the oil pollution were no impressed by visiting from Abuja without any action from the Federal Government. The governor added that the Federal Government should de-silt the River Niger, saying the neglect of the Rivers for which Nigeria was named after, was the cause of the flooding being experienced in the country.

one of our correspondents said there is no cause for alarm, adding that members of the public should go about their normal businesses without fear. The JTF image maker further said the military will respond to any threat to peace, “but for now, there is nothing to worry about, we have never relaxed as we have always been on top of the situation. We do not need to tell anyone how we intend to deal with this situation, there is nothing to worry about”. Similarly, the state Commissioner of Police, Ibrahim Idris said his command is always adjusting and readjusting its security strategies base on prevailing circumstance. “We have always been on the alert and never relaxed, efforts are redoubled on daily basis and we review our operations so there is no cause for alarm as we have already beefed up security in and around Kano with the required personnel and weaponry.” The Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, Kano chapter, Bishop Ransom Bello, however expressed concern over the fresh threat, which to

him should be taken seriously by the government and its agent, especially with the disclosure by the sect that there was no dialogue with the authorities. “All along, we were made to understand that dialogue between government and the sect is in progress, with this threat, it’s now obvious that there is no dialogue in any form, so this threat should not be dismissed with the wave of hand neither should the silence of the gunmen be taking for granted”. The Bishop, who is the General Overseer of Calvary Life Assembly, pleaded with the security agents to improve the security structure on ground so as not to be taken unawares. “Government should also step up efforts to protect the wives of government officials who appear to be the next Boko Haram target.” The leadership of the sect had, in a video message released on Monday, threatened more attacks and abduction of wives of top government functionaries while accusing government of insincerity over the issue of dialogue with the sect.


WORLD RECORD

Longest bench made from wood Vol. 02 No. 461

N150

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

The longest wooden bench measured 653.02 m (2,142 ft 5.4 in) and was built by Mikio Tanaka (Japan), Mayor of Nanto City and President of Inami International Wooden Sculpture Camp. The bench was constructed in front of the Inami Zuisenji Temple in Nanto City, Toyama, Japan, on 28 August 2011.

Before the fire next time

Continued from last week

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he strike NUPENG had was, in real fact, to ensure the economy is not overburdened with higher unemployment. We still recall that NLC has consistently called for the prosecution of those indicted by the House of Representatives soon after the Farouk Lawal-led committee on oil subsidy payment submitted its report. The NLC made presentations to the committee during its sittings. The thrust of all its presentations was proper investigation, prosecution and appropriate punishment to everyone indicted. By the way, we need to be reminded that the Farouk committee and indeed all the post-subsidy removal committees constituted either by the federal legislature or the executive were all direct products of agitations by the NLC and its allies. So, how could anyone assume the same NLC would agitate for the freeing of oil subsidy thieves,

STOP USING MONEY TO BUY VOTES, INEC WARNS POLITICIANS –NEWS

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defiant Michael Schumacher yesterday insisted that his motivation is completely intact, despite last week’s announcement that he has been dropped for the 2013 season by Mercedes. To compound Schumacher’s current misery, he faces

Guest Columnist

Denja

Yaqub

majority of whom are yet to be arrested? Interestingly, Ijeoma also accused the leadership and members of the National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE) of sabotage at the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN). To Ijeoma, the union’s consistent agitation for a probe into the disappearance of the workers’ pension funds constituted an act of sabotage. And now that an FG panel has traced part of the pension fund to a bank in London, Ijeoma is yet to retract herself on her false conclusions. From the “resignation” of Prof. Bart Nnaji to the discovery of the missing pension funds, the union and its members have proved to be patriots and not saboteurs, as claimed by Ijeoma. The labour movement will continue to agitate against subsidy removal because that is the only way a badly managed country can be propelled towards the path of a strong economy, petroleum being a critical driving force. While you can dismiss Ijeoma as a conservative writer, one cannot wish off Dr. Jibrin Ibrahim, who is close to the movement. In an article titled: “Is the Fuel Subsidy Cabal Too Powerful?” Jibrin alleged that the marketers or those he called “mega thieves”, paid NUPENG to call the strike under reference. He went further to claim that NLC “chickened out” of the struggle against subsidy removal. We can’t make progress in any situation where everyone is assumed to have a price. Does NUPENG need funding from the marketers before they stand up for their

WE CAN’T MAKE PROGRESS IN ANY SITUATION WHERE EVERYONE IS ASSUMED TO HAVE A PRICE members’ interests? Jubrin should have taken his time to look at the demands of the union. Were their demands protective of any “mega thieves”? All the five demands made by the union were all in the interest of members of the union, the industry where they have a stake, and the entire country. It is imperative we are factual when alleging compromise under the influence of financial inducement. It is a lazy way to destroy people and organizations; and clearly, Jubrin’s write up is loathed with this intention. He should know that no trade union anywhere in the world will ever call a strike that will not end on the negotiation table. And that’s what the NLC and TUC did in January 2012. That strike had specific demands and those demands were subjected to several painstaking negotiations at the end of which the price of petrol was unilaterally reduced from N141 to N97 per litre even when negotiations were still on. That was a clear blackmail on the part of government because should the strike continue, the movement risked losing followership. The trade unions know the limit of a strike

and Jubrin should know this. If there were threats to massively murder protesters, are we organizationally prepared to sustain mass action or even a strike? If anyone should be accused of chickening out, it should be the likes of Jubrin, who was either relaxing in the comfort of his office at the Centre for Democracy and Development or riding in his air-conditioned car behind the protesters mainly for the purpose of taking photographs of protesters, which eventually got to donor agencies from the comfort of what they call “situation room”. And let us face the brutal fact, most of the “organizations” we refer to as civil society organisations (CSOs) are not. They are mere one person, media driven “organisations” preferably referred to as MONGO, the acronym for My Own Non-Governmental Organisation, or DINGO (Donor Initiated Non Governmental Organisation). Some are even GINGO (Government Initiated Non Government Organisations). These “organizations” are loud in the media, particularly the social media. They prefer the comfort of their offices, if any, than attending meetings or mobilizing for popular protests. They have the “best” analyses when it comes to polemics on social revolution, but too far from the mass of our people to understand what it takes to get people on to the streets for mass protests. These categories of activists are the ones who will accuse the labour movement of chickening out of the January 2012 actions. Such persons and CSOs can’t be found in LASCO, where serious mass organizations in the Joint Action Front, exist. We challenge Dr. Jibrin Ibrahim to give proofs that he mobilized anyone for the January protests. The January protests opened a new beginning in our collective struggle, and before the fire next time, we need to understand clearly what we collectively desire and with whom we need to place our trust. Concluded Yaqub, an Assistant Secretary with the Nigeria Labour Congress, wrote from Abuja

Sport Extra

F1: Schumacher vows to remain competitive a ten-place grid penalty at this weekend’s Japanese GP after ramming Jean-Eric Vergne out at Singapore. But the veteran remains adamant that there will be no letting up in his efforts at

a circuit he considers one of the best on the calendar. “The news of last week has not affected me negatively, especially because Suzuka is one of the season’s highlights for me,”

Schumacher said. “Logically, it would also be nice to achieve a sporting highlight this weekend, although my chances are of course very limited,” he added.

It’s believed that Schumacher has been offered a management role with Mercedes for next season, while Sauber has moved to secure his services to replace McLarenbound Sergio Perez.

Michael Schumacher

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Wednesday, October 3, 2012  

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