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Oil theft: Shell threatens to shut down operations

N’Assembly begins public hearing on appointments in aviation sector P.7

…says Nigeria is in crisis


nglo-Dutch oil giant, Shell Petroleum Development Company, SPDC, has threatened to shut down


Vol. 3 N0. 569

its operations in some parts of Rivers and Bayelsa states over “an unprecedented upsurge” in CONTINUED ON PAGE 5>>


Monday, March 4, 2013


Commissioner of police shot dead



he Kwara State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Chinweike Asadu, has been shot dead by unknown persons in his hometown, Amorji-Nike, Enugu State. Asadu was killed on Saturday night by gunmen. A statement from the Enugu State ComCONTINUED ON PAGE 2>>

...orderly, driver on danger list

20 Boko Haram members, soldier killed in Borno P.2

Queen Elizabeth hospitalised Scottish Cardinal admits sexual misconduct P.50

Fear grips residents as hoodlums vandalise oil pipeline in Ibadan




Customers owe PHCN N12bn in Lagos

2015: North in fresh plot against Jonathan

…Sambo leads pro-President camp

Customs subverts Destination Inspection scheme – Group



Free ree inside d

Pregnant woman beaten to death





Monday, March 4, 2013

National Mirror

20 Boko Haram members, soldier killed in fresh attacks INUSA NDAHI AND AZA MSUE


t least 20 Boko Haram members, one soldier and some civilians died yesterday during an attack on military barracks in Monguno village, about 200 kilometres away from Maiduguri, the Borno State capital. The village is also a border town with Chad Republic. The attackers had earlier invaded Baderi village in Marte Local Government Area, killing the village head, Lawan Kafu, 65. The hoodlums were said to have stormed the village in five SUV on Saturday night before proceeding to Monguno. A reliable source who did not want his name mentioned confirmed that one soldier and several of the attackers believed to be Boko Haram were killed in a shootout. A Joint Task Force, JTF, source told newsmen in Maiduguri, after their emergency deployment to the site of the attack, that many women and children

of the rank and file residing in the barracks were killed in the attack. But the JTF spokesman, Lt.-Col. Sagir Musa, in a statement yesterday confirmed that 20 of the Boko Haram members were killed as soldiers repelled the attack. He, however, did not indi-

cate the casualty on the side of the soldiers. Musa added that apart from killing some of the suspects, security agencies recovered arms and ammunition, including seven Kalashnikov rifles, 10 units of Rocket Propelled Grenades, RPG, and two RPG tubes. The statement reads in

part: “Information available to the Joint Task Force, Operation Restore Order, indicated that some Boko Haram terrorists attempted to attack a military barracks at Monguno, Monguno Local Government Area, Borno State, about 5a.m. on Sunday, March 3, 2013. “The attack was repelled

by the FOB’s and JTF troops on the outskirts of the barracks. The encounter led to the death of 20 Boko Haram terrorists, three vehicles and eight motorcycles belonging to the hoodlums were destroyed. “Arms and ammunition recovered in the clash include seven Kalashnikov rifles, 10

President Goodluck Jonathan with participants at the Nigeria-Cote d’Ivoire Business Forum in Abidjan at the weekend.

rocket propelled grenades, two RPG tubes, large quantities of assorted ammunition and eight assorted magazines.” In a related development, the JTF also yesterday arrested two top Boko Haram commanders allegedly responsible for the MaiduCONTINUED ON PAGE 5>>


Insecurity: Commissioner of police shot dead CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1

mand’s spokesman, Mr. Ebere Amaraizu, said the police commissioner was gunned down as he was about to enter his residence at 9:45 p.m. He said the police officer was rushed to National Orthopaedic Hospital, Enugu, where he was confirmed dead and that the police had launched a manhunt for the killers. More revelations have, however, emerged on how Asadu was assassinated. The spokesman of the family, Mr. Felix Asadu, told National Mirror that the CP was shot along with his orderly and driver who are receiving treatment at the hospital in Enugu. “We were told that the people who shot him were in a bus and confirmed that he was dead before they left. The commuter bus was loaded of armed men,” he said quoting an eyewitness. The shooting took place 50 metres away from his house. The CP was said to have gone to drop off a friend, identified as a barrister, with

his driver and orderly and while returning home, he was trailed to the spot that they opened fire on him. A resident of AmorjiNike, who lives close to the scene of the incident, told one of our correspondents that he had noticed an unusual police presence in a Nissan jeep and another Hilux van in the evening before the incident took place. The CP’s orderly and driver, identified as Aloh Olaniyi and Oliver Omeh, were said to have sustained serious bullet injuries. The attackers reportedly took away the rifle of the orderly after he was shot on the chest, stomach, hands and leg while the driver was shot on both legs. When our correspondent visited the residence of the deceased yesterday, relations and other sympathizers were seen discussing the killing in low tones and grieving over the incident. The new Enugu State Police Commissioner, Mr. Tonye Ebitibituwa, has paid a condolence visit to the family of the deceased.

The gunmen were said to have shot sporadically killing the CP and wounded the two policemen before they escaped. The police high command yesterday vowed to bring his killers to book. Deputy Force Public Relations Officer, Frank Mba, said that the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar, had directed the Enugu State Commissioner of Police, Ebitibituwa, and the anti-robbery squad to fish out the perpetrators of the crime. “The Inspector General of Police, IGP Mohammed Abubakar describes the murder of CP Chinwike Asadu as unfortunate and sends the condolence of the Nigeria Police to the family. Those who murdered the CP have murdered sleep and they will not find rest or peace until they are brought to book. “The IGP has directed the Enugu State and the anti-robbery squad to swing into action. We’ll work round the clock to ensure

that this crime is solved and solved correctly,” Mba said. Activities were at a standstill at Kwara State Police Command and Police Officers’ Mess in IIorin following the assassination. A correspondent of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), who went round Ilorin yesterday, reports that the command and other police formations were like ghost towns. At the command and other formations visited by NAN, officers and men were seen discussing the demise of the police chief. Some top police officers in some of the formations and officers’ mess were in tears while others were too dazed to utter a word. Some of the officers, who spoke to NAN but refused to give their names, described the death of the commissioner as `a big tragedy’ to the command and the entire police force “We have lost a fine gentleman and hardworking officer,” they said. Meanwhile, Kwara

State Governor, Abdulfatah Ahmed, has described as shocking and unfortunate the death of Asadu. Ahmed, in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Abdulwahab Oba, described the death of Asadu as a huge loss not only to the police but Kwara State security apparatus in particular. He said the late CP exhibited a high sense of discipline and professionalism in the course of duty in Kwara State. The governor noted that it was particularly painful that Asadu had become another index in the annals of the growing national insecurity, adding that it had become expedient for Nigerians to find an enduring solution to the national malaise of insecurity. Ahmed, who also described Asadu as a quintessential police officer, prayed God to grant the family, the rank and file of the police in the state and the Nigeria Police Force the fortitude to bear the loss. The state Police Head-

quarters in Ilorin was in mourning mood yesterday as officers and men were seen discussing in groups and in hush tone. None of them was willing to talk to newsmen just as the state Police Public Relations Officer, Mr. Olufemi Fabode, was not available for comment. A chieftain of the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, in the state, Mohammed Dele Belgore (SAN), has called on the security agencies to launch an immediate manhunt for the killers of the police commissioner. Condoling with police authorities and Asadu’s family, Belgore said the assassination again exposed the spate of insecurity and declining respect for human lives across the country and called on the authorities to stem the tide. “We condole with the police authorities and family and friends of the late Asadu who was until his killing on Saturday night in Enugu, his home state,” Belgore said in a statement by his media aide, Rafiu Ajakaye.”

National Mirror

Monday, March 4, 2013


Photo News


Monday, March 4, 2013

National Mirror

L-R: Editor, National Mirror, Mr. Seyi Fasugba; Oyo State Governor, Abiola Ajimobi; Managing Director/Editor-in-Chief, National Mirror and new Vice President, West, Nigerian Guild of Editors(NGE), Mr. Steve Ayorinde; Editor, Sunday Mirror, Mr. Bolaji Tunji and Editor, Saturday Mirror, Ms. Gbemi Olujobi, during the presentation of the book, For Law, For Country: Conversation with the Bar and the Bench to the governor in Ibadan at the weekend.

L-R: Former President, NGE, Mr. Gbenga Adefaye; Special Adviser to Oyo State Governor on Information, Mr. Gbolagade Busari; newly elected President of NGE, Mr. Femi Adesina and Oyo State Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Mr. Taiwo Otegbeye, at the National Convention of the guild in Ibadan, at the weekend.

L-R: Managing Director, Diamond Communications, Mr. Lanre Idowu; Associate Publisher, Entertainment Express and Sunday Express, Mr. Dimgba Igwe and Publisher, Mr. Mike Awoyinfa at the NGE Convention in Ibadan.

Chairman of the electoral committee of the NGE convention, Malam Mohammed Haruna (left) and Publisher, The Source, Dame Comfort Obi (OON). PHOTOS: YINKA ADEPARUSI

National News

Mark, govs, others felicitate with Adesina, NGE GEORGE OJI, ABIODUN NEJO AND KEMI OLAITAN


enate President, Senator David Mark, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Public Affairs, Dr. Doyin Okupe, Governors Ibikunle Amosun, Kayode Fayemi and Peter Obi of Ogun, Ekiti and Anambra States respectively, yesterday congratulated the newly elected President of the Nigerian Guild of Editor, NGE, Mr. Femi Adesina and tasked the new executives to continue to uphold the sanctity of the profession. They made this known in separate statements yesterday. Mark, in his congratulatory message to the 49th President of the NGE and other executive members, said journalism as a profession has played a very pioneering role in protecting our nascent democratic process. He commended the election that produced Adesina, saying it was a display of fairness and genuineness while urging the new presi-

dent to see his emergence as a challenge to give back from his wealth of experience to the growth of journalism. The senate president commended the immediate past president of the body, Mr. Gbenga Adefaye, for giving his best to the profession. Mark said Adefaye would be remembered for a peaceful tenure. “His tenure witnessed immense transformation in the association.” Okupe described the election of Adesina as a major landmark in the annals of the journalism profession. In a congratulatory message made available to journalists in Ibadan, he said the new NGE president represents some of the finest breed, who has demonstrated clarity of vision and high ethical standards in the media. He said it was not surprising that Adesina has been deemed fit to assume the leadership of the Guild at such an auspicious moment in the history of Nigeria’s socio-political develop-

ment. Okupe while noting the heroic roles which Nigerian journalists have played in enthroning and sustaining democratic values, especially in the last 14 years, he admonished Adesina to work more on enhancing balanced reportage and promotion of national values through the media. Amosun in a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Media, Mrs.

Funmi Wakama, described Adesina as “a consummate journalist, who has over the years adhered to the tenets of the pen profession.” Amosun urged the new executive to continue to promote peaceful coexistence among Nigerians and “uphold the responsibility and accountability of the government to the people” in line with Section 22 of the 1999 Constitution. Fayemi described the

peaceful, transparent and credible election of the Guild as a good example of how electoral process should be.He congratulated Adesina on his election. The governor urged Adesina to see his emergence as an opportunity to make history by using his position to contribute to efforts to deepen democracy, accountability and good governance in the country. In a statement by his

Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Olayinka Oyebode, Governor Fayemi expressed confidence in the ability of the new NGE president, who he described as “a respected journalist and celebrated writer,” to lead the NGE to greater heights. Fayemi urged Adesina “to build on the success recorded by the outgoing executive led by another excellent journalist, Mr. Gbenga Adefaye.”

2012 budget: 50% of Health Ministry’s funds unutilized –Rep TORDUE SALEM ABUJA


hairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Health, Hon. Ndudi Godwin Elumelu, (PDP-Delta), yesterday said billions of naira in releases made to the Ministry of Health are lying idle in the ministry. Elumelu, who made the disclosure at a press briefing yesterday, said 45 to 50 percent of the releases made to the Ministry of Health, were neither utilised nor returned to the

Federation Account as prescribed in the Fiscal Responsibility Act. “About 45 to 50 percent of the releases to the Health Ministry in the 2012 budget were not utilised by the ministry and these funds have not been returned to the Federation Account,” he disclosed. The lawmaker expressed disappointment at the poor accounting standards of the Health Ministry and disclosed his committee’s resolve to strengthen oversight on the ministry. “We are going to contin-

ue to monitor the expenditure of funds to ascertain if what the ministry is doing with the releases to it and the amount unspent or remitted to the federation account.” He regretted that; “From inception, the ministry has always dodged coming to give us answers on how they have been spending our money. The ministry is not accountable.” He said the committee was expecting a bill from the National Food and Drugs Administration and Control, NAFDAC, seeking

death penalty for fake drug peddlers. He said the bill though desirable, was yet to be presented before the National Assembly for consideration. Elumelu concluded that the committee was at the moment working on the National Health Insurance Scheme bill, to free the scheme from providing basic health care to Nigerians. The chairman insisted that the NHIS was initially designed to regulate the health sector and not to provide health care.

National Mirror


Monday, March 4, 2013

2015: North in fresh plot against Jonathan SOLA ADEBAYO AND AZA MSUE XXXX


resh facts emerged yesterday that Northern leaders have embarked on “Operation stop President Goodluck Jonathan at all cost,” following an Abuja High Court ruling that he is free to contest the 2015 presidential election. This is even as controversy continued to trail the statement credited to the Niger State Governor, Dr. Babangida Aliyu, that President Jonathan signed an agreement to serve only one term. National Mirror gathered that powerful northern elites were uncomfortable with the judge-

ment of the court and had vowed to adopt new strategies, including instituting another case against the President. A reliable source told our correspondent that series of meetings had commenced among pro- and anti-Jonathan camps in the region for safe landing. It was gathered that the anti-Jonathan camp had reached out to former President Ibrahim Babangida, while the pro-government group, coordinated by VicePresident Namadi Sambo, who is battling to retain his position in 2015, received briefs from his foot soldiers during the special convocation of the Ahmadu Bello University, ABU, in Zaria at

the weekend. National Mirror gathered that the Jonathan/ Sambo 2011 campaign office located near NEPA roundabout in Kaduna and recently renovated had become haven of meetings by the pro-government camp after last Friday’s court ruling. It was learnt that other groups had also sent emissaries to former VicePresident Atiku Abubakar; the Niger State governor and Chairman, Northern States Governors Forum, NSGF, Aliyu, who revealed the single term agreement between President Jonathan and the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, governors among other prominent

northerners on how the region would clinch the 2015 presidency. Another source, who did not want his name mentioned, said the North might consider the All Progressive Congress, APC, as the platform to actualise their dream. “We are watching; a majority of northerners may defect to APC if what happened in 2011 PDP primaries repeat itself. “Some governors in the North are just buying time, because it seems PDP has endorsed President Jonathan for 2015,” the source told one of our correspondents. However, the Arewa Consultative Forum, ACF, had CONTINUED ON PAGE 6>>

L R: Senior Partner, KPMG Nigeria, Mr. Seyi Bickersteth; Global Chairman, KPMG, Mr. Michael Andrews and Partner, KPMG Nigeria, Mr. Joseph Tegbe at a news conference by the company’s executives in Lagos at the weekend. PHOTO: AYO OLESIN

Oil theft: Shell threatens to shut down operations CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1

illegal oil bunkering and vandalism. But the Joint Task Force, JTF, said it had no knowledge of the claim. SPDC Managing Director, Mr. Mutiu Sunmonu, told journalists at the company’s headquarters in Port Harcourt at the weekend that the situation in the past few weeks was alarming and that the company was losing about 60,000 barrels to the criminals daily. He also took a swipe at the security agents responsible for securing pipelines and oil installations, charging them to step up their anti-theft operations for the war against vandals to have any meaningful impact. “The issue of crude oil theft, like I have always maintained, is a very dangerous phenomenon. “The reason I am addressing this

media interview is because we have now witnessed a significant upsurge in the activities of crude oil thieves. “The situation in the last few weeks is unprecedented. The volume being stolen is the highest in the last three years; over 60, 000 barrels per day from Shell alone. So, that for me is a great concern,” he said. Sunmonu was also worried about the level of sophistication the perpetrators now employed in their nefarious activities. He said: “The other important point for me is the fact that over time, this whole crime has got a lot more sophisticated and you could see that the perpetrators are now setting up barges building yards, they are setting up storage facilities, they are setting up tank farms for storing the crude, prior to shipping out.

“So, if you look at all of these, it is very clear to me that this is not just an act by desperate individuals trying to make a living. This certainly is a well funded criminal activity, probably involving international syndicates. “I really want to put it to you that we are in a crisis. We are in a crisis as a country because this is something that is beyond the capacity of any individual company or beyond the capacity of a country to solve.” He advised all stakeholders to join hands to combat the menace. “We really need concerted efforts nationally, locally and internationally to actually get this under control. “It’s really going to cause a big devastation, but I’m really worry about crude oil theft. “Frankly speaking, my worry is not about the econo-

my per se, the economy itself is huge, but I worry more about the devastation for the people of Niger Delta, the destruction it will cause to the social and environmental aspect of the people of the Delta and to Nigeria as a whole. “So, I really want to enjoin the press to join in this campaign; I really want to make the point that we are in a crisis and I cannot, as the Managing Director of SPDC, in all good conscience, just continue to put my head in the sand. “This is really getting to the crunch I must say, it is getting to the crunch that rather than allow people to continue to attack my pipeline and devastate the environment, I may actually consider shutting in the pipeline completely. “So, it is getting to that crunch point and I hope that CONTINUED ON PAGE 6>>


20 Boko Haram members, soldier killed in fresh attacks CONTINUED FROM PAGE 2

guri multiple bomb blasts of last Thursday when the All Progressive Congress, APC, governors were holding their meeting at Government House. The arrested suspects are undergoing interrogations in JTF custody. Meanwhile, the Boko Haram sect has denied any dialogue involving its members and the Federal Government. The group’s self-acclaimed leader, Abubakar Shekau, said in a new video released yesterday. His translated message reads: “May the peace and blessings of Allah be upon you all. This is an important message to all. “There is this wicked rumour making the rounds that we have dialogued with the government of Nigeria which led to a ceasefire on our part. “We have also heard how some of our operations and attacks are being credited to criminals. As such, the security agents have been killing our armed members in the name of criminals. “We have seen how our members who were out on holy mission are being attacked and killed with the label of criminals. “We are telling the world that whoever kills any of our members in the name of being criminals would surely be avenged unless such person repents now. “We are stating it categorically that we are not in any dialogue or ceasefire agreement with anyone. And we have never asked anybody in the name Abdulazeez to represent me, Abubakar Shekau, the leader of this movement. “I swear by Allah that Abdulazeez or whatever he calls himself did not get any authority from me to represent me in any capacity. I do not know him. And if we peradventure encounter Abulazeez and his group, I swear by Allah we are going to meet them with the grave judgement that Allah has prescribed for their likes in the holy book. “I want the world to know that we have no dialogue with government. “I have on several occasions attempted to pass this message across via the Internet and Youtube and we later realised that some

agents of government kept removing our messages from the net and preventing its online publication so that our messages will not be heard. They know that if the world hears our position on this fake dialogue, their efforts of deceit would be exposed. “We are also sending this strong message to the people of Yobe, Borno, Bauchi, Kano, Kaduna, Taraba, Adamawa, and any state that whoever kills any of our members should await a grave retaliation from us. “God knows that we don’t kill unjustly except those that conspired against us or those that directly fight us or the government that is waging war upon Allah and His Prophet. We will continue to wage war against them until we succeed in establishing an Islamic state in Nigeria. “This message is prepared by me and targeted towards clarifying the issue of ceasefire. We have never had any dialogue with anyone. How would we have had dialogue with the government when our members are being killed and detained in cells, both women and children? “Do you call this dialogue? That is not dialogue or truce in Islam. In Islam, there are conditions prescribed for us to go into dialogue and there are also situations in which we cannot go into dialogue. What we are doing now is what is prescribed for us by Allah and his holy prophet. We are workers in the vineyard of Allah. “We are not out to cause destructions, but correct the ills of the society. And Allah is more powerful than all, and He has the might. Allah will surely assist us to victory. This is my message to you. If you have not heard from me all this while, now my message should have reached you all.” But the Arewa Consultative Forum, ACF, at the weekend pleaded with Shekau and his group to lay down their weapons for peace. The apex northern sociopolitical organisation in a text message to National Mirror in Kaduna by its National Publicity Secretary, Mr. Anthony Sani, said that threat of violence would never solve grievances, advising the sect to follow the path of honour and embrace dialogue.



Monday, March 4, 2013

National Mirror

Constitution: Reps seek input from Nigerians in Diaspora TORDUE SALEM ABUJA


he Chairman, Constitution Review Committee and the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Emeka Ihedioha, has appealed to Nigerians in the Diaspora to be part

of the ongoing process to amend the constitution. Ihedioha said his review panel took the exercise to the United Kingdom, as part of the “drive for an allinclusive and participatory process of amending the constitution”. He said Nigerians in the Diaspora engaged him and

other members of the National Assembly on issues for amendment. Delivering a keynote address at a Chatham House programme tagged; “The Review of Nigeria’s 1999 Constitution: Diaspora Consultation.” The deputy speaker, who spoke in London, accord-

ing to a statement signed by his Press Secretary, Mr. Oke Epia, said: “Nigerians in the Diaspora must make their views count in the constitution amendment process. “The business of amending Nigeria’s constitution is serious and fundamental to our democracy and con-

sequently needs the full involvement and participation of all Nigerians. “Nigerians living abroad had sent in memoranda on some areas they want amended. “The issue of voting right for Nigerians in the Diaspora was of keen interest in their submissions.” On the earlier public sessions held in 360 federal constituencies, Ihedioha said: “In the history of constitution making in Nigeria, this is the first time that Nigerians at the grassroots have been involved in the process, as the committee felt that the best way to achieve credibility and

transparency for the process was to involve critical stakeholders in the exercise.” The deputy speaker also said that “action on the constitution review will be fast tracked once the collated results of the public sessions have been presented and this will begin with consideration of draft bills of the proposed amendments. “Members of the House have independently sponsored several private members bills that have scaled second reading and referred to the Committee on Constitution Review for legislative action.”

Oil theft: Shell threatens to shut down operations CONTINUED FROM PAGE 5

L-R: Akwa Ibom State Governor Godswill Akpabio; President Goodluck Jonathan; his wife, Patience; wife of the Senate President, Mrs. Helen Mark; Nollywood actor, Chinedu Ikedieze and President, Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, Chief Kola Jamodu, during a dinner for the Nollywood in Lagos, at the weekend. PHOTO: STATES HOUSE

2015: North in fresh plot against Jonathan CONTINUED FROM PAGE 5

earlier said the battle against President Jonathan’s ambition in 2015 had just begun even with the court victory. ACF spokesman, Mr. Anthony Sani, had insisted that the case against Jonathan would be taken to the Supreme Court for interpretation. He said: “You should know that is not the end of the court process. Don’t you know that litigant will make sure they exhaust the court processes as laid down by the law? “You will recall it was the Supreme Court which ruled that the period served by the six governors before their reruns must count. “Left to the high court and appeal court, such period should not count and those governors who had reruns should serve more than the maximum of eight years. So, let us wait until the court processes are exhausted.” Also, a pan-northern youth group, the Arewa Youth Forum, AYF, said it had concluded arrangement to file a fresh suit against President Jonathan. AYF National President, Alhaji Gambo Gunjugu, said: “I told you before, it was like a magic. I spoke with National Mirror on

Thursday over this case that the plaintiff is a stooge of President Jonathan and it is a game. “Surprisingly, an Abuja High Court ruled in favour of President Jonathan on Friday. Arewa youth will go ahead with their case in court.” Meanwhile, the Ijaw National Congress, INC, the socio-cultural organisation for the Ijaw speaking ethnic nationality, and a repentant exmilitant commander, Chief Government Ekpemukpolo, alias Tompolo, have challenged Governor Aliyu to make the agreement signed by President Jonathan to serve only one term public. Aliyu had stirred controversy while featuring on Liberty Radio (91.7) recently when he said President Jonathan signed an undertaken with the PDP governors in 2011 that he would not seek re-election in 2015. But Jonathan’s kinsmen yesterday asked Aliyu to make a copy of the agreement available to the public. INC’s Acting National President, Chief Joshua Benaimasia, told National Mirror on the phone yesterday that the onus rested on Aliyu to substantiate his claim by producing a copy of the agreement. Benaimasia said only verifiable copy of the agree-

ment could proof that President Jonathan would be acting in breach of the undertaken if he sought to renew his mandate in 2015. He said: “Babangida Aliyu owes it a duty to make the agreement Jonathan signed that he is not going to seek re-election in 2015 public. It is only such document that can portray Jonathan as a person who is not honouring his words if he decides to seek re-election in 2015. “Maybe the time is not ripe but we need a document to show that Jonathan would be acting in breach of such agreement if he decides to run for the presidency of the country in 2015. “The truth is that everybody has a right to aspire for the highest political office in the country. Jonathan too is free to run unless he has mortgaged that right to other people that he cannot run again. “But the question is why the issue of agreement coming up now since Jonathan has not told anybody that he is going to run in 2015? He has not said that he is contesting but I will like to sight the document like other Nigerians.” Tompolo, also in an interview with National Mirror, said that he was not convinced that Jonathan signed

any undertaken sacrificing his right to seek re-election. He also challenged Aliyu to publish such agreement if it existed. The ex-fighter, who spoke through his Media Assistant, Mr. Paul Bebenimibo, insisted that President Jonathan did not have the right to sign any agreement over his re-election in 2015. Tompolo said: “I don’t think President Jonathan actually signed any agreement as claimed by Aliyu. “I challenge the governor to make such agreement public if he is in possession of a copy. President Jonathan has no right to sign any document on behalf of the people who gave him the mandate. “The revelation by the governor is even a non-issue. Even if Jonathan had signed any agreement in 2011, it is a non-issue. Such agreement is not binding on Jonathan. The agreement has become irrelevant with the prevailing circumstances in the country. “Jonathan was not elected by the PDP governors, he was elected by Nigerians. Mr. President only signed a pact with Nigerians in 2011 and only Nigerians are in the best position to renew his mandate upon satisfactory performance,” the exfighter added.

every hand will really join us in actually getting this under control. “It’s this whole NCTL area, Kakrama, Awoba; that is really where we have seen a lot of it. Well, I am just telling you, for you to appreciate how serious the situation is. This is very serious. “If you overfly and you see how much oil is being thrown into the environment, you will understand the import of my statement. This is beyond communities, this is well funded and the operators are heavily armed gangs. “What type of collaboration with communities will help you against people carrying guns, people who are very well armed? It is a reality that we have to face. You can’t even put the poor boys in the communities at risk, you can’t. “The JTF need to step up their game. Well, if you look at what happened between July and August and November and probably December last year, we saw a significant drop in the amount of crude oil that is being stolen. But in January and February this year, it has gone back up. “So that is a challenge for the JTF to also look into. I mean let’s not underestimate the cleverness of the people who are perpetrating this act and I have always said with 6, 000 km network of flow line and pipeline, even if you throw the entire Nigerian Army into the creeks, it is not going to solve the problem. “So, I am sure these guys are monitoring what is going on, they are moving to areas

of resistance. So, it is a combination of things, but certainly we have seen that when the JTF really went after it, we got results,” he said. However, the JTF, through its Media Coordinator, Lt.Col. Clement Nwachukwu, denied knowledge of the existence of storage facilities and barges building yards by oil thieves. He reiterated the commitment of the formation to the eradication of the menace posed by oil thieves and pipeline vandals even as he wondered why the oil firm would tackle this on the pages of newspapers. “The Joint Task Force, Operation Pulo Shield, is fighting a good fight in combating the hydra- headed menace of oil theft in the Niger Delta, this is evident in the number of successful interceptions and arrests that we have made, not only in the immediate past year (2012) but even in the two months that we have spent in the new year. “Last year alone, 7, 585 anti-illegal bunkering patrols were conducted. A total of 18 vessels, 1, 945 suspects were arrested while 4,349 illegal crude oil distilleries were destroyed. “Also destroyed were 133 barges, 1,215 open wooden boats (Cotonu boats), 187 oil theft tanker trucks, 178 illegally distilled fuel dumps as well as 5,574 surface tanks. “In addition, 36,504 drums of distilled petroleum products, 638 pumping machines and 326 outboard engines were seized and scuttled. We have just transited into the third month of year 2013 and the JTF is not relenting,” he said.

National Mirror


Monday, March 4, 2013


Investors focusing on Nigeria, other high growth economies, says KPMG AYO OLESIN


nternational investors are now looking in the direction of Nigeria and other high growth economies as slow growth in Europe and the United States forced them to seek returns elsewhere. Global Chairman of consulting group, KPMG, Mr. Michael Andrews, who said this during his working visit to Nigeria at the weekend, said international investors were looking for new markets as CEOs of global companies come under increasing pressure to deliver growth and profitabilily.

He said that the reliance on the BRICS economies comprising Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa has been found to be misplaced and attention was now shifting to the MINT economies comprising Malaysia, Indonesia, Nigeria and Turkey. He however said that to benefit from such global capital flows, Nigeria would need tosustain the growth of its middle class, ensure stability in the regulatory environment and transparency in government business. Andrews, who noted out that there were immense opportunities in areas such as agriculture, energy, consum-

er goods and financial services however pointed out that access to capital was a factor in the success of a growing economy. He said that while the international capital market had a big appetite for companies with exposure to high growth economies, Nigeria needed to put in place the required infrastructure for growth including power, roads, railways and ports facilities. The KPMG boss also stressed the need for Nigeria to derisk the economy by diversifying away from oil especially with the development of shale gas reserves in

theUnited States that has resulted in a decline in energy imports from Nigeria. Also speaking at the event, Senior Partner, KPMG Nigeria, Mr. Seyi Bickerstheth, said the ongoing privatisation programme must be sustained despite opposition from vested interests. He said the only way for Nigeria to make progress was for government to allow the private sector to take control of key areas such as power pointing out that government had shown over the years that it did not have the answer to the energy crisis. He insisted that the power sector privatisation had been

transparent and the bidding process fair stressing that Nigeria will have problems if the process was derailed. Bickerstheth said the Nigerians needed to focus on the goals of economic reforms including the development of the small and medium enterprises, growth of the middleclass pointing out that the window of opportunity given to the country on account of high oil prices was getting narrower. He insisted that the econ-

NASS holds public hearing on appointments in aviation sector today OLUSEGUN KOIKI


L-R: Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Jide Idris; Chairman Ayobo Ipaja Local Council Development Area, Mr. Shakiru Yusuf; Governor Babatunde Fashola and Coordinator of Eko Free Health Mission, Dr. Dolapo Fasawe, at the National Immunisation Plus Days in Ayobo area of Lagos, at the weekend. PHOTO: OLUFEMI AJASA

omy could not continue to thrive in a situation where the focus was just oil revenue and how to share it. Commenting on efforts to revamp the aviation industry, Bickerstheth insisted that direct intervention by way of aircraft acquisition for domestic operators would not work. According to him, the way forward is for government to provide good incentives for investors, while the regulator environment must be sound.

he National Assembly will today in Abuja begin public hearing on the recent controversial appointments made by the Minister of Aviation, Princess Stella Oduah. National Mirror learnt that the public hearing was at the instance of the committee on aviation to allow those aggrieved with the appointments present their positions. It will be recalled that Oduah, in the last quarter of 2012, disengaged, engaged and redeployed some key personnel in all the agencies with the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN). The exercise, however, pitched the minister against

unions in the aviation sector, claiming that it had ethnic colouration. One of the union leaders, who did not want his name mentioned, said that the essence of the public hearing was to enable members of the National Assembly look into the allegations of breach of Nigeria’s federal character leveled against the minister. The union leader said that the National Assembly is expected to come up with a white paper after the public hearing. According to the source, some former FAAN workers, who alleged that they were sacked based on ethnic cleansing, appeared last Wednesday before the Senate Committee on Ethics to present their case.

NUEE wants FG to speed up Ijesa chiefs berate Alowa over comment on Aromolaran regularisation of casual workers K O EMI



nother crisis is imminent in the power sector as electricity workers at the weekend threatened to “take their destiny in their hands” if by March 15, 2013, the Federal Government fails to conclude the biometrics exercise for the regularisation of casuals. Addressing journalists shortly after the National Executive Council (NEC) meeting in Abuja, the General Secretary, National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE), Mr. Joe Ajaero, demanded that the committee winds up its activities for the regularisation of casuals by March 15, 2013. The workers also expressed worry over alleged Federal Government’s misinformation of Nigerians over the payment of staff emoluments in the power sector.

The Federal Government recently approved for payment N384 billion as benefits and entitlements to disengaged staff of Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN), but the workers described the announcement as deceitful and a propaganda as the consultant (Alexander Forbes) which was engaged to calculate the benefits was yet to submit its report. Ajaero alleged that the government presented fictitious figures as staff terminal benefit, adding that both the technical committee constituted by the government and the consultant, Alexander Forbes, were yet to submit their report. He said: “The NEC-in-session condemns the delay in completing the biometric reconciliation committee’s assignment which should have been concluded within two weeks of its inauguration.




raditional title holders and chiefs in Ijesaland were yesterday enraged over a statement credited to the Alowa of Ilowa, Oba Adebukola Alli, alleging that the Owa Obokun of Ijesaland, Oba Adekunle Aromolaran, has a hand in his ordeal. Oba Alli, who is currently standing trial in a case of rape in an Osun State High Court sitting in Osogbo, during proceedings told the court that Oba Aromolaran may be one of the brain behind his alleged rape charge against a 23- year- old member of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) because the Owa Obokun had a misunderstanding with his (Olowa) late father when he was alive. But reacting to the Alowa’s statement, the Lorunyin of Ijesha, Chief Ayo

Oba Aromolaran

Agbede, condemned the comment in Ibadan after a meeting convened by concerned indigenes of Ijesaland. He described the Alowa as a drowning man who is looking for anything to hold-on to. Chief Agbede said: “The Alowa of Ilowa is a drowning man; you know a drowning man will be looking for anything to hold-on to, even a straw can be a lifeline to a drowning man. The Owa Obokun of Ijesaland, Oba Gabriel Adekunle Aromolaran, is a first class monarch, known all over the

world and can never have time for such frivolities. “I want, on behalf of all the chiefs under Oba Aromolaran and people in Ijesaland, sound a note of warning to Bukola Alli that he should retract the statement, which he published in Alaroye newspaper concerning the paramount ruler of Ijesaland within seven days or face fresh legal war and the wrath of Ijesa people . “The lady that was raped had made statement to the police which had been presented in the court. Alowa’s crime has attracted attention of all women group and activists like National Association of Women journalists (NAWOJ), Group against Women Battery, so I don’t know why he is now trying to hang-on flimsy excuses that cannot help his case. “The questions we want him to answer are: did Owa Obokun sent the lady to him because he claimed in his statement that the lady was

his girl friend over a long period of times before the incidence, did Owa Obokun asked him to take an innocent girl of 23 to Osun grove, from there to his house in Osogbo where he allegedly raped her?”. An Ibadan based business magnate, Olatunde Oginni, who could not hide his anger while speaking with journalists after the Ibadan meeting, said the Ijesa people would no longer tolerate affront or insult on their supreme head. He said: “Our Kabiyesi, Oba Adekunle Aromolaran’s image is larger than life and we would not allow any disgruntle element to rubbish the institution called Owa Obokun. Youths, students, market women, even members of road transport workers and other categories of people in Ijesaland are ready to defend the name of their respected monarch with the last drop of their blood.


South West

Monday, March 4, 2013

National Mirror

Tender Board: Ogun Assembly may suspend three members FEMI OYEWESO ABEOKUTA


L-R: Osun State Governor Rauf Aregbesola (left) and General Officer Commanding 2nd Mechanised Division, Nigerian Army, Ibadan, Major General Ahmed Jubril, during a visit to the governor in Osogbo, at the weekend.

Fear grips residents as hoodlums vandalise NNPC pipeline in Ibadan KEMI OLAITAN IBADAN


ear gripped residents of Oluode and Alafara areas in Ido Local Government Area of Oyo State at the weekend as some hoodlums vandalised NNPC major pipeline in the areas with thousands of litres of petrol spilled all over their surroundings. The mostly affected by the inflammable liquid are farmlands, water and some parts of residential areas where petrol was found flowing on the surface of the ground. The entire community was, however, placed on the

alert by the NNPC officials and the local government with warning to hunters to stay away to avoid fire incident. The situation created anxiety among the residents as policemen were seen condoning off the affected areas. Sources said that hoodlums dug and drilled the NNPC pipeline in search of petrol on Saturday, adding that as some residents discovered a few tankers and other equipment brought by the vandals to load the inflammable liquid, they alerted leaders in the community. But before they could

mobilise security agents to the area, the vandals had fled, leaving open the broken pipeline and thereby caused the liquid to spill into the surface of the ground. It was gathered that no arrest has so far been made by the police in connection with the illegal act. During a visit by National Mirror to the area, security agents, NNPC officials and men of the Oyo State Fire Service were seen keeping watch in the affected area. Chairman of Ido Local Government Area, Prof. Adeniyi Olowofela, described the activities of the

vandals as shocking and worrisome. He said the incident, which occurred late Friday night and Saturday morning, was being attended to by the NNPC technical crew from the Ibadan Depot. Olowofela urged the residents not to ignite fire near the affected areas to avoid disaster. An official of the NNPC, who would not want his name in print, described the act as disturbing, saying: “With this, it means we are in trouble in this country as criminals are now operating in the open area like what we are witnessing here.”

he Ogun State House of Assembly may suspend three of its members following their opposition to the composition of House’s Tender Board. Sources told National Mirror at the weekend that leadership of the Assembly had concluded plans to suspend the “rebellious” members. It was also reliably gathered that the decision to suspend the three lawmakers was taken at a meeting held at the residence of a chieftain of the ruling Action Congress Nigeria (ACN) in the state. During the emergency meeting which did not last long, it was concluded that the three members, who were believed to be leading the opposition camp within

Pope’s successor not likely from Africa –Cleric FEMI OYEWESO ABEOKUTA


mid speculations that an African may succeed Pope Benedict XVI who graciously bowed out few days ago as Pope, the Vatican Ambassador to Nigeria, Most Rev Augustine Kasujja, has ruled out the possibility of Africa producing Pope’s successor by any influence.

‘Ogun Customs command generated N5.3bn last year’ FEMI OYEWESO ABEOKUTA


he Ogun State Command of the Nigeria Customs Service generated N5.32 billion last year. The Comptroller of Customs in the state, Ademuyiwa Dosumu, said at the weekend at Idiroko Area Command that the success followed the Customs’ anti-smuggling campaign, which he said was well received by the neighbouring and host communities. Dosunmu hinted that the command recorded N568.4 million in January as against N381.8 million recorded in the same period in 2012. He described the success as unprecedented in the

history of the command despite being the most volatile and crisis-prone border area in the country. In the anti-smuggling efforts of the command, the Comptroller said about 1,084 seizures with Duty Paid Value (DPV) of N694 million were also made. The seizures, according to him, included vehicles, rice, frozen poultry products, second-hand shoes and clothes, textile materials, cannabis sativa, vegetable oil and a bulldozer excavator. Dosunmu said: “Since I assumed office on September 5, 2012 as the Area Controller of this command, I was able to connect and partner with the traditional institutions, youths and community leaders of the

Comptroller-General of Customs, Abdullahi Dikko Inde

border communities. “This relationship has been well-managed. Attacks on officers by smugglers and youths from these communities have drastically reduced because youths have become informants to our operation officers. This has boosted our revenue collection occasioned by the

intensified anti-smuggling campaign. “In 2012, the command posted a remarkable revenue collection of N5, 316,329,645.02 as against N3, 677,214,589.47 recorded in 2011. This is a cumulative difference of N1.7 billion recorded in 2012. “In January, this year alone, the command generated N568, 371,344.48 as against N381, 753,378.66 recorded in the same period in 2012. This is remarkable as this mark of revenue collection has never been attained in the command.” Dosunmu, however, advised the smugglers to invest their energy and money in legitimate businesses, stressing that the Customs Service has facilitated the operation of free

the Assembly, should be suspended. The members are Hon. Remmy Hazzan, Hon. Adijat Adeleye-Oladapo and the House Minority Leader, Hon. Job Akintan. Hassan and Akintan were said to have walked out on the House Speaker during a rowdy plenary session last Thursday. National Mirror further gathered that personalities who were at the meeting where the decision to suspend the three lawmakers was taken were the Senior Special Adviser to the Governor on Political matters, Hon. Tunji Egbetokun, Hon. Yinka Mafe and Hon. Olakunle Oluomo, among others. It will be recalled that the House of Assembly was recently polarized along pro and anti-Governor Ibikunle Amosun’s camps.

trade zones which he said has the capacity to generate over 5,000 jobs for the unemployed. He said the command stopped the smugglers from their illegitimate business by explaining to them the implication of such activity. Dosunmu said: “Their complaints are that they have no other job order than to go into smuggling and I told them we have free trade zone. Customs has been able to facilitate the establishment and operation of free trade zone. “Free Trade zone alone has the capacity to generate over 5,000 jobs within Ogun State alone, a lot of the factories have commenced operation there.”

Rev. Kasujja, who is on Apostolic visit to Catholic Diocese of Abeokuta, spoke yesterday at the Sacred Heart Catholic Church College, Oke Ilewo, Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital. He said that Pope’s successor could only emerge through divine guidance and not by any other influence or lobby as being speculated in some quarters. The cleric stressed that the Catholic’s doctrine regarding whoever occupies certain position, particularly as it concerns taking over from the Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, lies with Holy Spirit as has always been resolved through the Cannon Law and as such, nobody should be unnecessarily optimistic of either an African, Asian or American is going to be Pope. Rev. Kasujja’s declaration was coming against the backdrop of speculations that the 64 years-old Ghanaian Cardinal Peter Turkson has been marked as one of the early front runners and likely successor of Pope Benedicts XVI. But Kasujja said: “To be a Pope, Bishop or Priest, the emergence is not according to human perception or thought or because you are good looking or black or you are white, but whoever the Holy Spirit appoints”.

National Mirror



ragedy struck in Ede, Osun State, at the weekend, when a middle-aged pregnant woman, Lateefat Odediran, was allegedly beaten to death by her neighbour, Tawakalitu Musibau. The ugly incident, which happened in Ibala area of the town, threw residents of the area into mourning. National Mirror investigation revealed that the suspect is now being interrogated at the state police command over the callous act. Reports also said the incident occurred over a minor issue

South West

Monday, March 4, 2013

Pregnant woman beaten to death •Another hangs self in Modakeke

that later resulted into an argument between the duo. The ensuing altercation led to a fight with the suspect, Tawakalitu, beating to death the deceased, Lateefat. While confirming the incident at the weekend, Osun State Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, Mrs. Folasade Odoro, said the case had been reported and that; “Presently, the police are exploring means of unravelling the circumstances that led to the death of Lateefat, who was said to be eight months preg-

nant and who died due to the injuries she sustained. “The suspect, whose name was given as Tawakalitu Musibau, reportedly beat the victim mercilessly, not minding her condition, following an issue that resulted into an argument. “Besides, efforts by those who were at the scene to rescue Lateefat, who died 40 minutes after she was rushed to a private hospital in Ede from Tawakalitu, proved abortive.” Odoro assured that the police would get to the root

of the matter as the suspect is now being interrogated. Meanwhile, a 20-year-old girl, Oladunni Ayodeji, was said to have committed suicide in Oke-Obutu area of Modakeke in the state. In a press statement by the state PPRO, Folasade Odoro, the police were still trying to unravel the reasons why a young girl of 20 would want to take her own life. Residents of the area were also said to be at a loss about the incident. “The police, under the su-

pervision of Modakeke Divisional Police Officer, have commenced investigation to unravel the mystery behind his sudden death. No mark of violence was seen on the corpse that was met hanged from a ceiling fan. “A suicide note was recovered at the scene, where the deceased, before her death, wrote a note to her mother, asking her to take care of her only son.” Her corpse has been moved to the Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospital, Ile-Ife. Meanwhile, investigation

Ekiti 2014: Governorship aspirant woos teachers

continues into the case continues. Also, many people in Ikire, the headquarters of Irewole Local Government Area of Osun State were recently thrown into mourning when the news of the death of one Adekunle Monsuru Oni, broke out in the community. Upon hearing the news of the sudden death of the 30-year-old man, many residents of the town, especially people living very close to Amukuku area of the town, rushed down to the area to to find out what really happened.

Ajimobi declares war on child killer diseases




contender for the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, ticket ahead of the 2014 governorship election in Ekiti State, Senator Gbenga Aluko, has said that primary and secondary school teachers in the state will not pay tax if he becomes governor. Aluko said that would be part of his policies to encourage teachers in view of their important role in modeling the younger ones for a better tomorrow. The former senator spoke at the weekend at the PDP zonal and state secretariats at Ikere and Ado Ekiti respectively, while expressing his intent to contest for the party’s ticket for next year’s governorship elections. Aluko, son of the late economist, Prof. Sam Aluko, said he had what it takes to wrestle power from the ruling Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, in the state. This, he said, was complemented by the fact that it was the turn of his South senatorial district to produce the next governor of the state in view of the fact that the remaining two zones had each had a shot at the office twice. The PDP aspirant, who said he would use the experience he had garnered over the years as a senator and industrialist to turn the state around in all sectors of the economy, called on his party members to shelve their differences and work towards victory in the election. He said: “As a full and committed member of the PDP, I call on all members to let us work together as a family to achieve our common goal of winning the 2014 election.”


L-R: Ekiti State Governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi; Secretary to the State Government, Alhaji Ganiyu Owolabi; President, Ekiti State Elders’ Forum, Chief Babatola Olora and Catholic Bishop of Ekiti Diocese, Most Rev. Felix Ajakaye, during the official launch of the state’s Elders’ Advisory Forum in Ado-Ekiti, at the weekend.

No going back on Ladipo clean up –Fashola MURITA AYINLA


agos State Governor Babatunde Fashola, yesterday inspected the shut Auto Spare-parts Market, Ladipo, in Mushin Local Government Area of the state, declaring that the government would reopen it once the traders spearhead a clean-up exercise. The governor added that the traders must also sign an undertaken that they would not trade take on the road or the edges of the canal. The market was shut in the early hours of Monday, following repeated warnings and visits by the Commissioner for Environment, Mr. Tunji Bello and the Chairman of the Taskforce on Environmental and Special Offences, CSP Bayo Sulaiman, which were not heeded. However, the governor’s visit to the market followed pleas by the traders and the leadership of the Igbo Council in the state, led by Professor Anya O. Anya, who

visited the State House, Ikeja last Monday to present the new council members to the governor. Though no trading was going on when the governor visited, evidence of the environmental degradation, which led to the closure could be found on the damaged roads in the area, disused piles of spare parts and the shanties used for trading on the sides of the canal. Speaking to newsmen after the inspection during which he also addressed leaders of the traders, Governor Fashola, who described the state of the market and its environs as “massive degradation of a section of Lagos”, however, said the good thing in the visit was that the traders had seen the lack of caution in their deed and were ready to make amends. “It is a massive degradation of a section of Lagos and this is not acceptable. People should not carry on like this. But what is, perhaps, worthy of note, is that those who are

involved have seen the error of what they have done and are ready to work with us to clean-up, and I have said here that they must take the lead,” the governor said. Speaking particularly about the canal in the market blocked by refuse from the traders, Fashola said: “The canal poses a lot of danger and we are expecting heavy rains. I don’t want to come back here to pick any dead body. We built the canal and we must make it work by not trading on it and not dumping refuse in it. “People told me that they picked engine parts, spareparts and other things from the canal. It must stop.” The governor said that there is now an agreement between the traders and the government to work together to clean up the place and continue with the business there. Earlier, while addressing the leadership of the market, led by its President General, Comrade Ikechukwu Animalu, Governor Fashola made

it clear to them that before government would reopen the market, the traders must clean-up the place and put strategies in place to ensure that there would be no trading on the roads in the area and no reversal to the old situation that led to its closure. He directed the traders to work with the Mushin Local Government authorities to effect the clean-up and sanitation of the market. Responding, Animalu, agreed that the environmental situation at the market was bad and apologised on behalf of the traders, pledging that he would lead them to clean it up as well as ensure that there would be no more trading either on the road or on the canal. Animalu, who said he came into office last year, also pledged that the traders would henceforth maintain high level of environmental sanitation in the market including keeping the canal clean and free of any materials that could block the free flow of rain water.

yo State Governor, Abiola Ajimobi, has declared that his administration would not relent in its efforts at kicking out child killer diseases until such no longer pose any threat to children in the state. The governor made this declaration at the flag-off of another round of National Immunisation Plus Days, NIPDs, at the Ibadan NorthWest Local Government Council, Onireke, Ibadan at the week-end. He also said that his government would continue to mobilise the resources of the state for effective and accessible immunisation services in all the nooks and crannies of the state. To demonstrate his government’s resolve in making the state polio-free, Governor Ajimobi directed all his special advisers, senior special assistants and special assistants to commence the monitoring of immunisation towards ensuring the well-being of the citizenry. He said that government was looking beyond the campaign strategy to strengthen the routine immunisation services to reduce child morbidity and mortality in the state. The governor called on all stakeholders and development partners to continue to collaborate with government in achieving this goal. Governor Ajimobi said his administration has entered a “new phase of rapprochement, networking and interfacing” with development partners and organisations for the people of the state, especially children, who must be protected from polio and other child killer diseases.


South East

Monday, March 4, 2013

National Mirror

APC, best thing to happen to Nigeria –PDP chieftain GEORGE OPARA ABIA


founding member of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in Abia State, Prince Benjamin Apugo, has commended the formation of the All Progressives Congress, APC, by leading opposition parties. Apugo said with the emergence of APC, the PDP “will have to work

hard to survive as a political party”. He described the formation of the APC as “one of the greatest good things that have happened to the nation’s political development,” adding that it would bring greater unity to the country. Apugo, a member of PDP’s Board of Trustees, BoT, also condemned the way his party was being run now.

He was particularly miffed at the way founding fathers and elders who used their resources to form and nurture the party have been relegated to the background. The PDP BoT member also condemned the enormous power governors elected on the party’s platform are wielding, which he said was conferred on them by former President Olesugun Obasanjo.

Apugo also rejected the formation of the PDP’s Governors’ Forum, saying the leadership was dividing the party with such action. According to him, the leadership of PDP no longer runs the party based on its constitution. He said: “The coming together of the opposition to form APC is one of the greatest things that have happened to political development of the nation.

“For people from different political parties to come together as one; it is for the unity of the country. “These people who sat together and took the decision are leaders. Bola Tinubu is a leader, he was a former governor and his people respect him. Muhammadu Buhari is a leader, he was a former head of state; his people respect him. Leaders are born, they are not made. That is why I

doff my hat for them.” On whether the new party poses threat to the PDP, he said his party must wake up and get its acts together else it would soon be out of power. He added: “I don’t like the word threat. It is a political party. It is not threatening anything. But from the look of things, PDP will have to work very hard to survive as a political party before talking of retaining power.

Enugu: Virgin Mary statue raises concern among Parishioners DENNIS AGBO ENUGU


L-R: Anambra State Governor Peter Obi; Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu and the Vice-Chancellor, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Prof. Boniface Egboka, at the 2013 annual lecture of the university in Awka, at the weekend.

Colleague kills Imo Security Network member CHRIS NJOKU OWERRI


member of the Imo Security Network in Ezeogba Emekuku, Owerri North Local Government, Peter Uche Urekwe, has been shot dead by a colleague (names withheld) in a worrisome circumstance. Urekwe, 39, who hailed from Egbelu Obibe community in Owerri North council, met his untimely death while on duty. He was said to have left his house on that fateful day to meet his colleagues at the

Ezeagba home of their unit commander, identified as Ifeanyi. The victim was standing beside the team’s patrol vehicle discussing with others when suddenly a colleague’s gun was accidentally fired and scattered Urekwe’s right leg. The incident occurred about 10am. Urekwe was rushed to a private hospital in the area where he later died owing to what doctors referred to as “loss of excessive blood.” It was learnt that the suspect and another member of the group have been ar-

rested and detained by at the homicide department of the State Police Command. When contacted, the state Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, DSP Vitalis Onugu, confirmed the incident, adding that investigation was going on to unravel the true cause of the matter. Meanwhile, the incident has generated mixed reactions as members of the victim’s family are insinuating that their son was killed in cold blood. It was learnt that the family members’ suspicion

was strengthened by the fact that since the incident happened “no official had visited the family.” Also, youths of the victim’s community are spoiling for action. The angry youths were said to have complained that the late Urekwe had always complained to them about threats to his life by a member of the unit. Although a source close to the Security Network unit in the area denied any misunderstanding among the members that could lead to the killing of another member.

Enugu banks record hitch-free year -CBN


report by the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, has indicated that banks in Enugu State did not record any hitch in 2012. Presenting the report at the Enugu Bankers’ Dinner and Awards ceremony, the CBN Branch Controller, Mr. Patrick Okonkwor, thanked the Bankers’ Committee

in the state for a hitch-free banking year. Okonkwor said the year in review was both challenging and exciting for bankers in the state but that the CBN still relished “high level of transparency and good governance” to handle all issues through the Bankers’ Committee. He said that one of the

challenges was the increasing sophistication of bank customers in their dealings and relationships with their banks. Okonkwor also said that the year was exciting for the good returns from new products rolled out. He said: “In line with global best practices, the CBN will continue to drive the

banking sector reform with initiatives that will make banking environment more friendly and inclusive.” According to the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, four money-deposit banks and one micro finance bank won awards during the ceremony which also featured a lecture in stress management.

he statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary placed in the living room of 20-year-old Brother Chima Madukwe, at AmorjiNike, in Enugu East Local Government Area, was said to have shed tears of blood yesterday. The blood was said to have dropped on the table on which the statue was placed. A similar incident occurred last Wednesday at the grotto of Assumption Catholic Parish, Nkwo-Nike, close to Madukwe’s house. When National Mirror visited Madukwe’s house, where the blood was still fresh on the statue, the painter, Mr. Gabriel Okoh, who reported the church incident when he went to paint the grotto, was coincidently present at Ndukwe’s compound. He said the Virgin Mary statue in Madukwe’s living room had been shedding tears of blood, adding that the man had been praying to the Blessed Mary to make the incident happen in public so that people could believe the mystery taking place in his house.

Though Madukwe refused to talk to our correspondent, his mother said he was an OND graduate of the Institute of Management and Technology, IMT, Enugu, adding that he had been performing healings, seeing visions and had dedicated himself to God. Though the Enugu Catholic Diocese yesterday dismissed the incident in the church, Okoh said it was real. He said: “On Wednesday, I went to paint the grotto and statue because the paint was fading and I used to paint it from time to time. When I opened the place for a girl to clean it up before I start painting, she rushed out, telling me that blood was coming out from the eyes of the statue. “As that was happening, the Parish Reverend Father was passing by and we called his attention to it. We all ran into the church and people gathered and started praying. “Madukwe was also there because he had been praying for that to happen in public. He said the statue in his house had bled sometime ago but when the catechist came, he washed the blood with water but before he did that some people had taken pictures with their phones.”

PPA mobilising supporters ahead 2015 –Chairman


he Progressive Peoples’ Alliance, PPA, said yesterday that the current ward verification exercise in Abia State was to mobilise its supporters ahead of 2015 general elections. The state PPA Chairman, Chief Emeka Okafor, said this when he led members of the State Working Committee on a verification visit to 19 wards in Arochukwu Local Government. He said: “As a grassroots party, we believe that PPA would produce the next

governors of states in the South-East zone, especially Abia State in 2015 because of emerging political factors. “For instance, PPA is one of the parties currently adjudged to be the most peaceful across Nigeria because we do not have any crisis. “We believe that with such advantage and more effort, PPA will surprise many in 2015 general elections.’’ Okafor urged the local leadership of the party to open its doors for people willing to register with the party.

National Mirror

South South

Monday, March 4, 2013

Landslide destroys eight houses in Bayelsa community EMMA GBEMUDU YENAGOA


landslide at the weekend destroyed eight homes at Okoloba community, Kolokuma/Opokuma Local Government area of Bayelsa State, thereby raising tension in the area. National Mirror learnt that the incident occurred at about 6.00am last Saturday when some of the local folks had gone to farm and fishing expedition. A 69-year-old retired military personnel also had his home destroyed by the landslide.

However, no life was lost in the incident, but there were fears that more houses may be consumed by the landslide. The traditional ruler of the community, Chief Orumobiri Woyergikuro, in an interview with National Mirror at the weekend, blamed the landslide on the alleged refusal of the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, to compel the execution of work on the Shore Protection Project awarded to a dredging firm in 2008. Woyegikuro alleged that the failure of the NDDC and Dredging At-

lantic to execute the work was costing the community some losses estimated to be in millions of naira. His words: “For five years, the company has refused to commence work on the shore protection work that would have helped the community. We are tired. If they will work here, all they will do is to close the swamp before commencement of shore protection work.” When contacted, an official of Dredging Atlantic, Port Harcourt, Alex Ogieva, told our correspondent that the legal suit against the firm by some members



political group based in Port Harcourt, The Rivers Patriot, has condemned alleged plan by people it described as ‘Abuja people’ who he said are conniving with a minister from the state to employ the statecontrolled anti-graft body, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, to intimidate and arrest state government officials on trumped-up charges. It will be recalled that Governor Amaechi, during a recent public outing, said anti-graft agencies that include EFCC and ICPC, have only been after those who are opposed to those in power. “EFCC and ICPC only goes after those who are against those in power, if you are not against them, you can steal as much as possible and get away with it,” he had told his audience recently at the second annual Claude Ake Memorial Lecture in Port Harcourt. In a statement signed by the President/Secretary of


The Rivers Patriot, Sarima Sotonye West, the group warns those planning such move to desist from it and warned that its members and other indigenes of likeminds would not watch and allow such plans to succeed in the state. The statement reads in part: “Our attention has been drawn to an undercover plot orchestrated by some anti-Rivers State, Abuja-based politicians to connive with a serving minister from the state to unleash security agencies, especially the Economic and Finical Crimes Commission, EFCC, to harass, intimidate and arrest officers of the Rivers State Government. “The said plot to be executed by the EFCC was to be hatched between now and April 2013, when the EFCC will invade the state and forcefully impound sensitive state documents with the intent to bring trump up charges/allegations against the state government and its officials with a view to arraigning them for ‘kangaroo’ trials.” “The EFCC should not allow enemies of Rivers State to drag its integrity and corporate reputation in the mud to score cheap political points. “Our dear Rivers State is peaceful and the government, under the leadership of Governor Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi and other members of his team, has neither committed any economic crime nor financial

fraud that would warrant EFCC’s invasion. “Governor Amaechi has fast-tracked development of the state in human capacity building and infrastructural development in fulfillment of his vision and mission of a new Rivers State. “Even the National Chairman of the People Democratic Party, PDP, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, during his visit to the state was amazed by Governor Amaechi’s development strides, describing him as a transformational leader who is “the best for the state. “In the same vein, the Federal Government sponsored Good Governance Tour, led by the Minister of information, Labaran Maku, described Governor Amaechi as a great performer, based on his peopleoriented projects. “Let it be clear that Rivers people know who the real enemies of the state are and cannot stand akimbo to watch them destroy the state in order to massage their selfish ego. Thus, any invasion of ministries, departments and agencies of Rivers State government or the arrest of officials by ‘political’ EFCC or any antigraft agency is unacceptable.” The Rivers patriot hereby states unequivocally that; “It shall mobilise the good people of Rivers State against all forms of external oppressions. It shall also employ all lawful means to defend the integrity of the

Ex-militants protest over missing leader, detained members acceptable to the group. EMMA GBEMUDU YENAGOA

of the community over the demand for N50million compensation for dredged sand was causing a delay in the project which stopped since in 2009. He added: “Some people that claimed to be land owners took the company to court. They claimed that the sand used was not free and wanted the sum of over N50million.We decided to go with them to court, while we moved all equipment to Sabageria end for the job. We are on site in the Sabageria end and the shoreline work is going on as scheduled.”

Group warns against planned EFCC invasion


state and stoutly resist any attempt by any individual or group of persons who nefariously plan to decimate the relative peace and stability enjoyed by Rivers citizens.”


o fewer than 100 ex-militants under the auspices of the “Third Phase Amnesty,” yesterday staged a peaceful protest in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, demanding the release of 250 of their members detained last weekend by the state police command. The ex-militants also declared its leader, Keithy Sese, missing, noting that his whereabouts was unknown, as they expressed fears that Sese may have been arrested or killed by the authorities. Sese reportedly left home last Saturday in his car to drop one of his followers but never returned home and has not been seen by his group and family members. Spokesman for the exmilitants, Commander Solo, who spoke with journalists during the protest, said the group was sad that they were allotted only 10 slots by the inter-agency security outfit documenting ex-militants in the state, describing it as un-

Solo demanded for a review of the slots, because according to him, Sese has many followers that fought in the creeks and eventually surrendered arms to embrace the amnesty programme. He recalled that Noumukeme was the first exmilitant leader to embrace amnesty after surrendering arms to the Federal Government. Some of the inscriptions on their placards read; “We want to see our leader, dead or alive because we have fought a war;” “FG amnesty document us, we have fought a war with JTF and embraced amnesty;” “Our leader, Keithy Sese, please tell FG to document us” and “Real fighters are not documented.” The placard-carrying ex-militants warned of the consequences of returning to the creeks if their demands were not met by the federal authorities documenting the ex-militants.

TENDER NOTICE CENTRAL BANK OF NIGERIA ON BEHALF OF DMO NIGERIAN TREASURY BILLS Notice is hereby given by the Central Bank of Nigeria on behalf of DMO that the Federal Government of Nigeria Treasury Bills of 91, 182 and 364-day tenors amounting to N32,970,708,000, N40,000,000,000 and N67,119,374,000 respectively would be issued by Dutch auction on Thursday, March 07, 2013. All Money Market Dealers should submit bids through the CBN TEMENOS INTERNET BANKING between 9.00a.m and 11.00 a.m. on Wednesday, March 06, 2013. Each bid must be in multiple of N1,000 subject to a minimum of N10,000. Authorized Money Market Dealers are allowed to submit multiple bids. A bid may be for authorized Money Market Dealers own account, Non Money Market Dealers or interested members of the public. The result of the auction would be announced by 11.30 a.m. on Wednesday, March 06, 2013. The Bank reserves the right to reject any bid. Allotment letters would be issued for successful bids on Thursday, March 07, 2013, while payment for successful bids should be made to your account with the Central Bank of Nigeria not later than 11.00 a.m. on Thursday, March 07, 2013. The Bank reserves the right to vary the amount on offer in line with market realities prevailing as at the period of auction of the Nigerian Treasury bills. GOVERNMENT SECURITIES OFFICE CENTRAL BANK OF NIGERIA ABUJA.



Monday, March 4, 2013

National Mirror

Students’ killing: Hold Nasarawa govt, varsity responsible –Groups MARCUS FATUNMOLE ABUJA


he Society for Water and Sanitation, NEWSAN, and Water and Sanitation Media Network, WASH Media Network, have blamed the authorities of Nasarawa State University and the government for the killing of four students of the institution last week. The students were alleg-

edly shot by security operatives while protesting lingering water scarcity in the university. In a statement signed by the Chairman of NEWSAN, Babatope Babalobi, and the National Coordinator, Leo Atakpu, the groups said provision of water would have prevented the ugly situation. The statement reads in part: “NEWSAN and the WASH Media Network be-

UNIMAID inaugurates over 50 projects •Babalakin seeks varsity councils’ commitment


he Pro-Chancellor of the University of Maiduguri, UNIMAID, Dr. Wale Babalakin, has sought the commitment and dedication of members of University Governing Councils to ensure significant success despite scarce resources. Babalakin, who is also the Chairman of the Committee of Pro-Chancellors of Federal Universities, made the call at the weekend while inaugurating over 50 projects, including the first ever School of Pharmacy in the NorthEast, which were initiated and completed during his tenure as the pro-chancellor and chairman of the UNIMAID Governing Council. Congratulating the Federal Government on what he described as “its vision

in implementing the University Act, which enabled the Governing Council of each university to appoint all the principal officers, thus placing the success of the university squarely in the hands of the council,” Babalakin said the inauguration of the projects confirmed the thought process and wish of President Goodluck Jonathan that universities, henceforth, should demonstrate the ability to run their own affairs and improve revenue. He observed that the achievement of the council was “not a product of abundance, as we have no money. Rather, our achievement is premised on a total commitment of council and management to the frugal expenditure and protection of every resource”.

lieve this tragic occurrence would have been avoided if the students had access to safe water supplies within the campus. “The authorities of Nasarawa State University, Keffi, and the Nasarawa State Government should therefore accept full responsibility for this loss of innocent lives.” The organisations therefore called on Federal and State Ministries of Education, including authorities of higher educational institutions in Nigeria to ensure there is adequate access to safe water and sanitation services on campuses, as a



overnor Ibrahim Gaidam of Yobe State has refuted claims that he travelled abroad for medical attention. Gaidam said he was “hale and hearty” before he left for Saudi Arabia for the Lesser Hajj and later London to meet with the Vice-Chancellor of Bukar Abba Ibrahim University, BAIU, Prof. Musa Alabe, on the training of 11 lecturers at the Bradford University, United Kingdom. Speaking on the British Broadcasting Corporation, BBC, special Hausa Service programme, at the weekend; the governor said that contrary to the speculations that he left the country for medical attention, he was not ill.

He said: “When I travelled to Saudi Arabia for the Lesser Hajj, it coincided with the sending of 11 teaching staff of BAIU for training at the Bradford University, London; and the university authorities wanted me to be there (London) and among the teachers to be trained by the university. “Since I have never been to these European countries, I took the opportunity and decided to travel to London on the invitation of the vice-chancellor of the university.” Gaidam described those who were not wishing him well as the enemies of progress in the state. “Whoever wishes me evil and the non-progress of the state will definitely boomerang and fall on the evil wishers of the state and its citizens,” he

Government has assured students of the university that it would ensure the killers were fished out soon. The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Youth and Students Affairs, Comrade Jude Imagwe, while addressing protesting students at the weekend, said government was sad over the incident and would ensure that such would never occur again in the nation’s institutions of learning. He said: “I sincerely wish to convey the President’s condolence to the families of the deceased students, the management of the university and to all Nigerian

students. “This is an unfortunate situation. Just as you are pained, the Presidency is equally pained and bereaved and through this incident, we are going to have justice brought to the Nigerian students’ community.” According to him, the President had directed his office, the Minister of Education and the Executive Secretary of the National Universities Commission, NUC, to find solution to the cause of the crisis; stressing that fund had been approved for immediate provision of boreholes in the university.

Borno State Governor Kashim Shettima (left) interacting with youths engaged by the government to produce interlock blocks in Magumeri, PHOTO: NAN yesterday.

I had no foreign medical treatment –Gaidam INUSA NDAHI

step towards making them conducive for learning. The groups added: “NEWSAN and the WASH Media Network notes deplorable state of water and sanitation facilities in almost all tertiary institutions in Nigeria, as students bath and defecate in the open. “The Federal Government should declare a state of emergency in the water and sanitation sector, and implement its commitments made at various high level meetings to increase access to safe water and sanitation services for Nigerians.” Meanwhile, the Federal

added. The governor said as soon as the Memorandum of Understating, MoU, between the Yobe State Government and Bradford University was signed on the training of the lecturers, he would return to Nigeria to continue serving the people. On the alleged relocation of some top government officials and members of Yobe State House of Assembly to Abuja and Kano to operate because of insecurity, Gaidam said: “My deputy, the Secretary to the State Government, Head of Service, HOS, and all the 24-member House of Assembly, including principal and other top government officials are in Damaturu, the state capital, performing their duties, without being absent, not even for a single day or week.”

Iran group: Berende not a terrorist –Family WOLE ADEDEJI ILORIN


elatives of a suspected terrorist arrested in Ilorin, Kwara State, Mallam Abdullahi Berende, has denied the claim by the State Security Service, SSS, that he had confessed to committing the crime. Addressing journalists at the weekend, the 100-year-old Pa Jimoh Amosa and Yakubu Berende, head of the Abdullahi family compound in Idi Ape, Ilorin, said there was no time the suspect, linked to a Republic of Iran terrorist group, owned up to the crime, particularly when he appeared last in the Kuje Magistrates’ Court in Abuja. Rather, they argued that Berende was ordered

to be charged before a Federal High Court that had jurisdiction over the matter otherwise the court would be forced to set him free. Besides, they challenged the SSS to let the whole world hear directly from Berende or the recorded video of the said confession be made public. Speaking on the person of the suspect, Pa Amosa and Yakubu said Berende was a complete gentleman and an Islamic scholar who had his well grounded Islamic education in Iran where he excelled as the best West African student in the Iranian University. He was said to have applied to the University of Ilorin where he had his Master’s Degree programme to lecture in Islamic Studies Depart-

ment but denied the opportunity for reasons not yet known to them. They argued that Berende’s present travail was more political being a member of the opposition party in Kwara State whose case was made worse by a leader of the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, who, according to them, has recently become the suspect’s sworn enemy. Berende’s family members told journalists that after his arrest on December 17, 2012 by the SSS and after making many trips to the Ilorin office of the Service to confirm his whereabouts, they were told that a chieftain of ACN was the one who wrote a petition against him, accusing him of being a terrorist.

Monday, March 4, 2013

National Mirror



Jonathan: Securing eligibility from temple of justice


ACN commends APC govs, slams FG over visit to Borno SINA FADARE


he Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) has commended the All Progressive Congress (APC) governors for visiting Borno State last week, accusing President Goodluck Jonathan of failing to show leadership by not visiting the troubled state. The party stated that the visit by the governors was a courageous and compassionate action to boost the country’s unity. The party in a statement issued yesterday by its National Publicity Secretary, Lai Mohammed, noted that by their action, the governors have reassured the people of Borno and Yobe states that they will always be with them in the face of daunting challenges confronting them, particularly on the issue of the Boko Haram crisis. ACN said that the visit has also exposed the baseless fears of those at the helm of affairs at the centre, who have hitherto failed to show that the Boko Haram crisis is not just a problem

of a section of the country but a national problem. Mohammed said: “There can be no better assurance of solidarity and support for the beleaguered people of the states affected by the Boko Haram crisis than to see leaders from various parts of the country walking – without donning bullet proof vests and helmets – on the open streets of a city that has been described as the epicentre of the Boko Haram insurgency. “It does not mean the crisis does not exist, but it sends a strong signal to the insurgents that they have only succeeded in cowing a very few, not all Nigerians, and that indeed under a purposeful APC government the conflict will in no time become history.” The party cautioned the Peoples Democratic partyled government and particularly, President Goodluck Jonathan that “No part of Nigeria should be a no-go area, especially for the President and the Commander-in-Chief.’’ It added: “Part of the reason this needless Boko Haram crisis has festered

Ogun Forum issues 7-day ultimatum to PDP counsel FEMI OYEWESO ABEOKUTA


he youths wing of the Ogun State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has issued a sevenday ultimatum to the lead counsel of the party, Mr. J.K. Gadzama to tender unreserved apology for misleading the party to uphold the rulings of the retired Justice Charles Archibong against the subsisting order of the Appeal Court which directed a stay of execution. The youths under the aegis of Ogun PDP Progressive Youth Forum (OPPYF) also threatened to report Gadzama to the Legal Practitioners’ Ethics and Privileges Committee of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) should he fail to tender the apology within

the next seven days. Rising from its meeting held in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital, yesterday where the group met to review recent happening in the party, the forum accused Gadzama of deliberately misleading the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party by withdrawing all the court cases when he knew that there is a subsisting order of the Appeal Court issued on June 26, 2012 against the party. At the end of the meeting, the youths unanimously rejected the dissolution of the South-West executive committee as well as that of the Ogun State chapter of the party under Senator Dipo Odujinrin, stressing “that it contravenes the order of the Appeal Court made in Suit No. CA/L/38m/12.”

is that the President in particular has failed to show leadership. By staying away from the affected parts of the country since the crisis started in 2009 for fear of his personal safety, and also receding behind the safe walls of the Aso Rock fortress to celebrate independence anniversaries, the President has unwittingly emboldened the anarchists who have killed and maimed thousands.” The party argued that

“when presidents in other lands defy terrorists, it is not that they don’t care about their own safety, but that they simply want their compatriots to know that whatever fate befalls them is shared by their leaders.” The party said the FG’s failed attempt to scuttle the trip to Borno is a reflection that it is perpetually driven by fear, either as it concerns Boko Haram or the coming together of progressive forc-

es like the APC. ACN pointed out that the PDP-led government has been uncomfortable about the prospect of the emergence of the APC, adding that, that was why they labelled a yet-to-be formed party as a cult. “They have denigrated the group, playing on its acronym. They have put over a dozen of their state governors and the legislators under security watch for fear

they may escape to the APC. “They have forgotten that in a democracy such as ours, freedom of association is guaranteed by the constitution. They have forgotten that our country is drifting and needs to be saved by people of like minds who are ready and willing to jettison personal ambition for the general good, not those who are driven by blind ambition, personal considerations and myopic tendencies,’’ the party said.

L-R: Minority Leader, Imo State House of Assembly, Hon. Ngosi Pat Ekeji; Deputy Speaker, House of Representatives, Hon Emeka Ihedioha; PDP Chairman, Aboh Mbaise LGA, Mr. Charles Ikwu; PDP Ward Chairman, Mbutu, Mr. Peter Apuamadi and Dr. Celestine Njoku at the presentation of PDP membership card to Njoku at Mbutu, at the weekend.

Post-election violence: CPC accuses Jonathan of using Lemu panel to indict Buhari OBIORA IFOH ABUJA


he Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) has accused President Goodluck Jonathan of using members of Lemu Panel to indict its leader, Gen Muhammadu Buhari and the party rather than solve the puzzle behind the post-2011 general elections mayhem. CPC claimed that the Jonathan government did not really intend to unearth the truth about the violence but sought to use eminent Nigerians in the panel as pawns to indict the party and its leader. In a statement by the party’s spokesperson, Rotimi Fashakin, the CPC said that the Jonathan administration, being the greatest beneficiary of the anoma-

lous electoral system in 2011, is unwilling to make fundamental changes that will truly give sovereignty to the Nigerian people. According to the statement, “the PDP will be unwilling to support any sustainable, expeditious trial of electoral offences because electoral manipulations and infractions have become the reason for its tenacious hold on political power in these 13 years. “As a party, we call on the Nigerian people to demand the implementation of this report without any further delay. It is in so doing that true democratic values shall be deepened in the Nigerian polity.” CPC added: “In May, 2012 – more than seven months after submission of Lemu report, the PDP-led Federal Government (with much

fanfare) adopted the establishment of special electoral offences’ tribunal as part of the implementation of the Lemu panel. “It is more than nine months after the release of the white paper, and there is absolutely nothing to show that this very important endeavour is being pursued with pertinacious vigour.” Asking if there is any hope for the implementation of report of the Lemu Panel the party recalled that sequel to the post-election violence that erupted in some parts of Northern Nigeria after the 2011 general elections, the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) made spirited efforts to demonise CPC and Buhari. The Federal Government had on May 11, 2011 constituted a panel of a group of 22 eminent Nigerians to investigate the

cause of the post-election violence. The panel submitted its report to the government on October 10, 2011 containing far-reaching recommendations. The party stated that while the Lemu committee was still sitting, the police authority declared at a public forum that “no fewer than 5,356 people were arrested during and after the April 2011 general elections in the country for electoral offences. Out of the number, 2,341 were arrested before the polls and 3,015 for post-election violence.” “What has happened to those apprehended by the police for perpetrating this heinous crime against humanity? Left off the hook? Remanded in police custody? Being prosecuted in a court of law? Nigerians need to know,” Fashakin said.



Monday, March 4, 2013

National Mirror

Jonathan: Securing eligibility from temple of justice THE 1ST DEFENDANT

President Goodluck Jonathan last Thursday won a major victory in his re-election bid as a court ruled that he is eligible to contest the 2015 presidency, writes EMMANUEL ONANI.





ithout doubt, Friday March 1, will go down in de annals of history, as one of the most memorable and remarkable days in the life of President Goodluck Jonathan as well as the political development of the Nigerian state. On the said day, Justice Mudashiru Oniyangi of the Federal Capital Territory High Court, delivered a judgement that ultimately unveiled the likely presidential ambition of Jonathan come 2015, enriched the nation’s jurisprudence, while at the same time, put paid to the dialectical arguments in some quarters that the President is not eligible to seek re-election. More than anything, proponents of this school of thought had argued so fiercely that the President’s rumoured presidential ambition had been foreclosed by virtue of the provisions of Sections 135 (2) and 137 (1) (b) of the 1999 (as amended). They argued so passionately that Jonathan had taken both oath of office and oath of allegiance twice and so had exhausted the grace that abound in the section to the effect that, a person elected to the office of President swears to an oath for a single, though renewable term of four years. In their reasoning, the oath Jonathan took on May 6, 2010, following the demise of Umaru Musa Yar ‘Adua and that of May 29, 2011 meant that his tenure will expire on May 28, 2015. Besides, there were some who contended that side-by-side with the constitutionality or otherwise of a possible Jonathan presidency in 2015, lied an alleged single-term pact he was said to have struck with some governors of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for power to return to a particular section of the country. While this debate raged and the polity enveloped in utter confusion and mixed apprehension, the Presidency reacted with loud silence, while permutations and conjectures continued to assume a life of their own. And, like a deus ex machina, Justice Oniyangi struck a cord, reconciling emotion and sentiment with law and constitutionality. It was like a volcanic eruption, especially for the “die-hard”.

The suit A card-carrying member of the PDP from Zuba Ward in Gwagwalada Area Council of Abuja, Mr. Cyriachus Njoku, had approached an FCT High Court praying it to nip President Jonathan’s rumoured 2015 presidential ambition in the bud. The plaintiff with membership card number 1622735 had hinged his argument on the fact that Jonathan was serving his second term in office. Listed as 1st, 2nd and 3rd Defendants were President Jonathan, the PDP and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC). The electoral commission did not file any response. In an originating summons commenced on March 19, 2012, Njoku had, through his



counsel, Osuagwu Ugochukwu posed two questions for the determination of the court, to wit: “Whether Section 135 (2) of the constitution, which specifies a period of four years in office for the President, is only available or applicable to a person elected on the basis of an actual election or includes one in which a person assumes the position of President by operation of law as in the case of Dr. Goodluck Jonathan. “Whether Section 137 (1) (b) of the 1999 Constitution, which provides that a person shall not be qualified for election to the office of President if he has been elected to such office at any two previous elections apply to the first defendant (Jonathan), who first took an Oath of Office as substantive President on May 6, 2010 and took a second Oath of Office as President on May 29, last year.” It will be recalled that the same PDP faithful had in 2010 attempted to stop Jonathan from running in 2011, saying that would be contrary to Article7.2(c) of the party’s constitution on zoning formula. In two separate notices of preliminary objection, however, the 1st and 2nd defendants urged the trial court to dismiss the suit, which they described as “frivolous and highly vexatious”. Counsel to President Jonathan, Mr. A. Okeanya-Inneh (SAN), had prayed the court to hold that Njoku failed woefully to disclose any cause of action to justify his case. Both Okeanya-Inneh and PDP’s counsel, Mr. E. Y Kwon further argued that the plaintiff, who has since indicated his intention to proceed on appeal, lacked the locus standi to institute the suit. To that extent, he invited the court to dismiss the suit in its entirety, for lack of merit and lack of jurisdiction on its part. In his 15-paragraph counter affidavit, Jonathan maintained that he was doing his constitutionally-backed first term of four years. He explained that it was, indeed, the late President Yar’Adua who contested and


won the 2007 presidential poll, adding that on May 6, 2010, and as then Vice President, he was inaugurated, in line with the constitution, to complete the life of that administration. Rising in defence of its own, the PDP told the court that “President Jonathan’s status and position is formidably backed by the 1999 Constitution. The constitution of Nigeria only makes provisions for a president to contest for not more than two terms of four years each. The constitution recognizes the President’s tenure of office to be four years”.

The judgement In the judgement that lasted over 45 minutes, Oniyangi held that, President Jonathan was doing his first term of four years, having stood for election to the position of president in 2011. He discountenanced the claim that Jonathan had taken the oath of office and oath of allegiance twice; the first being on May 6, 2010, upon the passing on of late President Yar ‘Adua, and the second on May 29, 2011. According to the trial judge, the 2010 oath-taking was not a fall-out of an election, but a culmination of the “Doctrine of Necessity” enacted by the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. To that extent, therefore, the court said that that oath does not fall within the meaning and contemplation of extant laws. Specifically, Oniyangi held that the combined provisions of Sections 135 (2) and 137 (1) (b) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), were not meant to be read in isolation of other legislations, stressing that where the law is clear and unambiguous, it should be given literary interpretation. He clarified further that the above provisions could only apply if the May 2010 oath-taking was consequent upon an election, so properly called, adding, however that, where an exceptional circumstance is foisted, as in the instant case, a person can take oath more than twice. Clearly, the judge stated that Jonathan did not contest election in 2007, but was only the vice presidential candidate, which role, he noted, was eloquently stated in the constitution. Sections 135 (2) and 137 (1) (b) stipulate that a person can only be elected as president for a single, though, renewable term of four years and that he is eligible to swear to an oath of office and allegiance not more than twice. However, the court emphasised that where “exceptional” circumstances arise, a person can take oath more than twice. In that wise, the court declared that

President Jonathan can aspire to contest the 2015 presidential poll on the platform of the PDP or any other party platform, for that matter. The court went further to hold that the PDP was at liberty to offer its ticket to Jonathan, in the event that he decides to contest and he wins the party primary. For the avoidance of any “mischief”, the court stressed seriously that its judgement was neither an explicit nor implicit endorsement of an automatic ticket from the PDP. Consequently, the court resolved all the issues raised in favour of Jonathan and the PDP. It held that the plaintiff failed to “disclose any cause of action” to warrant the grant of his reliefs. This is even as the court further stated that the plaintiff “lacks the locus standi to institute the suit “and where the plaintiff lacks the locus standi, the court lacks the jurisdiction to entertain the suit.” “Section 87 (1) of the Electoral Act imposes on a political party the duty to conduct primaries for aspirants to all elective positions. From the foregoing, it becomes clear that no person can emerge a candidate until his political party has conducted primary election. “This, therefore, clears the air that the mere fact that the plaintiff is pursuing an ambition does not confer on him the sole right to contest? The 1st defendant (Dr. Jonathan) never contested the 2007 election as the candidate of the PDP - the role of the Vice President is clearly spelt out in section 51(b) of the 1999 Constitution as amended,” the court declared. “After the death of President Yar’Adua, there was no bye-election, he was merely asked to assume the position, and then sworn in. He did not occupy the position after any election; he was made to assume the office for the uncompleted tenure of four years of President Yar’Adua,” the court stated. Pointedly, the court declared that, “The 1st defendant is on his first term of four years, if he so wishes, he can seek the mandate of a political party to contest the presidential election come 2015. “To avoid mischief, this court is not saying that he is the anointed candidate come 2015 of the PDP or any other political party but that he can seek for the sponsorship of his political party or any other political party of his choice. “The 1st defendant is not running his second term, he is on his first term. “Section 137(1) (b) is only applicable to a person that was elected, and it is not applicable to a person who assumes office like the 1st defendant to complete the uncompleted tenure of President Yar’Adua. “The tenure of office of President Goodluck Jonathan did not commence on May 6, 2010, but on May 29, 2011...” Reacting to the verdict, the leadership of the PDP said it was victory for the democracy in Nigeria. The National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Chief Olisa Metuh, has applauded the ruling.”The import of this judgement is that it is now left for the PDP as a party and Nigerians to decide, through legitimate processes, whether or not to return President Jonathan to the Presidency in 2015 if he indicates interest.”

National Mirror


Monday, March 4, 2013


Our ‘come and destroy’ politics I DO NOT KNOW HeartBeat




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There is no greater service than to POLITICS serve your fellow men. There is no greater contribution than to help the weak. There is no greater satisfaction than to lar imagination is that you have to deploy ‘dirty weapons’ to win elections, and once have done it well - Walter Reuther you are in power, the dirty game continues. I once asked a born again Christian brothfriend called over the weekend to inform me he was warming up for er who was invited to be a Personal Assis2015. When I pressed further for tant to a local government chairman how he elaboration, he told me his people were would marry his Christian ethics with the mounting pressure on him to contest for dictates of Nigerian politics. “Brother, I go election into his state’s House of Assembly try”, was his answer. When I met him many years later, his story was that of regret. He in the next general elections. I pity him! He is a jolly nice fellow who gave me the load down of how far Nigerians cannot hurt a fly. Going into politics? He would go to get political power. With what he told me, I approached a pashas missed his calling. I kept my observator and asked if he would encourage any tion to myself. Please, I mean no insult. Filthy, crooked, of his flock to go into politics. After much dishonest and corrupt people have found hesitation he faced me and quoted Proverbs their way into politics. They are the ones 11:14, which says that, “where there is no that have given politics a bad name, which leadership the people fall, a nation will fall is the reason it is perceived as a dirty game. if it has no guidance”! According to him Within the Nigerian context, dirty is too the involvement of genuine and serious ‘nice’ a word to describe politics. The popu- Christians in politics would enlighten the



he strident warnings about a likely apocalypse and numerous advocacies for the convocation of a sovereign national conference are suggestive of the genuine concern of the callers for the sustainability of Nigeria. We must appreciate our problems did not just begin. Things began falling apart not long after independence on October 1, 1960. Before the centre caved in, many disenchanted groups including some Young Turks in the military; the press and members of the academia who were already witnesses to regime change in some parts of Africa, were afflicted with the twin diseases of evolutionary impatience and rabid revolutionary consciousness. The result was the coup d’état of January 15, 1966 that saw the assassination of key political figures and top echelon of the military in Lagos, Ibadan and Kaduna. The details of that plot have been captured in different versions of memoirs. Before 1960, the constituents of Nigeria were not decided on what future to craft for the nation. We are still at it, more than 52 years after independence. Nigeria’s cultural diversity and geographical vastness are usually cited as reasons why it would be impossible to forge one country. I disagree with that notion largely because diversity is not inherently problematic. What come as a challenge are the intentions and sagacity of managers and stakeholders of a diverse political entity. In all diverse polities, there is always the minority question. Because of the peculiarity of comparative disadvantage of the minorities, the cry of marginalisation is always prevalent among them. The

consciences of the people around him like a light unto darkness and this will deter bad conduct. Though, I was persuaded by the logic and lucidity of his deposition, I was not sold on the practicability. I kept my reservations to myself. I do not think it is possible for one just man or woman to sufficiently influence the disposition of the many to politics, which in the popular imagination, is a call to come and chop. I do not know how one just man or woman could stop the do or die approach of Nigerians to politics, and how a Mr. Clean and God fearing man could wean politicians from the pilfering syndrome that is eating at the heart of the nation like cancer. That is not to say I have not come across some decent politicians, even in this dispensation. You only have to look at the track record of a leader, particularly in the area of infrastructure provisioning and his life style to know how much of public funds available is leaked out of the coffer. Dr Kenneth Kaunda, the former Zambia leader, once glorified this call to service made possible by active participation in politics when in a reaction to the description of politics as a dirty game, he responded: Why politics, which deals with people’s lives, nations’ destinies, be a dirty game. His own generation of politicians was the clean type whose call for public service was altruistically motivated.

We once had that glorious and edifying culture of impeccable public service in this country where the dictum there could be no greater calling than public service was tested and proven. That was the golden era of Nigerian politics, and it spanned the first and second republics. Dismiss the demonisation of our first generation politicians by the military and their apologists. Compared to the situation that we have now, Awo, Ahmadu Bello, Zik, Abubakar Tafawa Balewa et al are saintly figures. By way of illustration, the five governors of Chief Obafemi Awolowo-led Unity Party of Nigeria (UPN) were immensely focused on and concerned with the implementation of the four cardinal programmes of the party - free education at all levels, free medical services, integrated rural development, and full and gainful employment. They did their best lifting the people using these programmes. I know there is no perfect system anywhere, so we could give allowance to certain acts of indiscretion of theirs. But they do not compare to the brazen impunity we now have. I do know that Pa Michael Adekunle Ajasin, the then governor of Ondo State, added no single private building to the only one he had in Owo before he became governor. The same is true of the other four governors in LOOBO states – Lagos, Ogun, Ondo, Bendel and Oyo states. To be continued.

That Nigeria may endure real and quantitative weakness of the minorities and their insignificant demographics always lengthen their distance from the power centre of the polity. So, it is not uncommon that the minority question becomes a big issue in a pluralistic polity. The enduring challenge in such a polity therefore, is how to ensure distributive justice and equity so that no group, no matter how insignificant is its strength and number, is excluded from its socio-economic and political scheme of things. This is a real policy challenge, the solution of which lies in putting in place a very robust and effective affirmative action contents in the constitution. Beyond ensuring distributive justice and equity through affirmative action, however, is the need to ensure the primacy of rule of law in the diverse polities. The compromise or the breach of the rule of law in most instances is at the detriment of the minorities who often lack the voice and the strength to challenge their denials and deprivations in the larger political context. Again, what protections and guarantees exist to prevent the abridgement of the rights and privileges of the minorities by the majority is another policy challenge. The first option to burrow through this miasma is the instrumentality of the rule of law. Inherent in the primacy of the rule of law therefore, is the institutionalisation of good governance. Here, we begin to raise questions on how fundamental and strong are our national objectives and directive principles of state policies as contained in the ground norm of the nation? How participatory is our political




OF MARGINALISATION IS ALWAYS PREVALENT AMONG THEM and decision making process? What are the pillars of transparency and accountability? What are the constitutional protections and guarantees for the constitution itself, its interpreters, executors and enforcers? What is the substance of immunity and immunity waivers in that constitution? The answers to these questions are germane to incorporating elements of good governance in any polity, the deliverables of which would manifest in the promotion of political and democratic pluralism, building strong and effective regulatory institutions and mechanisms, ensuring distributive justice and equity in the allocation of state offices and resources, and sustaining socio-cultural and religious diversity. Under this environment, it will be possible for all to seek equal opportunities for access to power. It will be possible to live

Mirror of the moment ABDUL-WAREES SOLANKE, 08090585723 (SMS only)

anywhere in Nigeria as a Nigerian and not as an indigene of a part of Nigeria. But the ultimate policy challenge for the government of the day is facilitating nationwide infrastructural development and diversifying the nation’s economy to the extent that every Nigerian can live anywhere and work anywhere without resorting to political opportunism or adopting economic rapist mentality of treasury looting, or stuffing the throat with a selfish bite on the national cake. With development policies, we should be able to trust, depend on and optimize our chances and dreams. The collective challenge for Nigeria is what framework do we institutionalise that will create disincentives for political jobbers, but empower true patriots to work for national development and cohesion and consequently build the New Nigeria of our dream? That Nigeria may endure, we must resolve to rebuild a nation. Solanke,, is Head, Voice of Nigeria Training School, Ikorodu, Lagos



Monday, March 4, 2013

National Mirror

All the Facts, All the Sides All the Facts, All the Sides




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Cleansing the nation’s judiciary

ast month signposted the much-awaited revolution in the nation’s judiciary when the National Judicial Council (NJC), made a strong case for the immediate compulsory retirement of Justice Charles Archibong of the Federal High Court, Lagos and Justice Thomas Naron of the Plateau State High Court on ethical grounds. It also constituted a fact-finding committee to investigate allegations against Justice Abubakar Talba of the FCT High Court, over his judgment in the corruption case against an assistant director in the Police Pension Office, John Abubakar Yusuf. It is gladdening that President Goodluck Jonathan has promptly approved the immediate sack of Justice Archibong. We expect Governor Jonas Jang of Plateau State to similarly act on Justice Naron. More importantly, the fact-finding committee on the allegations against Justice Talba should do justice to the assignment. The issues involved in these three cases have been in the public domain for quite some time and they have confirmed the well acknowledged rot in the nation’s judiciary. Justice Archibong was investigated and found guilty of, among other offences, dismissing grievous charges against an accused person without taking his plea and refusing to release certi-



HAVE HAD LESS THAN SALUTARY EFFECTS ON THEIR INTEGRITY AND QUALITY OF THEIR JUDGEMENTS fied true copy of his ruling to the prosecuting lawyers. For Justice Naron, his case was that of an unholy relationship with the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), when he presided over the first Osun State Gubernatorial Electoral Petition Tribunal in 2008. On Justice Talba, his handling of the police pension scam, caused quite a stir as his ruling was seen as a slap on the wrist. Concerns over the ugly situation in the judiciary became heightened during the current democratic dispensation. The involvement of judges in the nation’s electoral process either as chairmen and members of election petitions tribunals or sitting on the appeal of such cases is said to have had less than salutary effects on their integrity. There were swirls of corruption allegations against some of them, and some of their

controversial judgements also did not help matters. The immediate past Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Dahiru Musdapher, during the opening of the special session of the Supreme Court to commemorate the start of the 2011/2012 legal year, confirmed this popular assumption when he remarked: “Since the judiciary exists for the benefit of the society, then, the essential verdict regarding our performance must be from that which we sit to serve. As it stands, it appears that the society we serve is not entirely satisfied with our performance.” At the same forum, the then National President of the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA), Joseph Bodunrin Daudu, SAN, provided a corroborating opinion when he said that there was “a growing perception backed up by empirical evidence that justice is purchasable and it has been purchased on several occasions in Nigeria… The public is not only dissatisfied with the performance of the judiciary, it is also entirely upset with the quality of judicial verdicts and the integrity of some of the men and women who serve in the judiciary”. Such stated positions as above should sufficiently jolt the conscience of those in the position to make amends to save the nation from moral demise. A decadent

judiciary is the strongest evidence that a polity is both decaying and moving towards self-destruct. This is because if justice is purchasable, people will resort to self help, and anarchy will set in. This is why the bold move by NJC is commendable and timely. However, the more serious work to do is to embark on a holistic cleansing of the judiciary Aegean’s stable. The current rot is deep and has spread like terminal cancer. The second leg of the surgery needed is to get the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) to identify its members working in cahoots with corrupt judges and debar them. There are still many of Justice Naron-Barrister Kunle Kalejaiye type of unethical alliance. They should be located and removed from the system. The Chief Justice of the Federation, Justice Mariam Aloma Mukhtar, has proved that only a reform from the top would achieve the needed objective. Her iron-cast resolve to reinvent and reposition the judiciary is delivering results. She should sustain the reform momentum and to succeed, she needs the cooperation of all the stakeholders and Nigerians in general. Finally, all the judges and lawyers in the country must be put on the radar and their conducts monitored round-the-clock. Any manifestation of untoward conduct should be dealt with.

ON THIS DAY March 4, 2007 Iran has arrested more than 32 women protesters outside one of Tehran’s courthouses. The protesters were complaining about the five women on trial for organizing a protest against laws they say are discriminatory. These five were charged with endangering national security, propaganda against the state and taking part in an illegal gathering. Human Rights Watch, has urged an end to their prosecution.

March 4, 1962 A total of 111 people riding aboard the British DC-7C airliner had lost their lives when it crashed into a jungle swamp at Douala, Cameroon. This tragedy occurred a little over a mile past the takeoff runway in Lourenço Marques (now Maputo) in Mozambique. The bodies of the victims, most of them British and South African tourists, were buried in a common grave.

February 4, 1954 The U.S. Secretary of State, John Foster Dulles, had stated a warning about communism around the world. He mentioned the possibility of it spreading to the Western Hemisphere. One of the main focuses was the leftist government of Guatemala. Dwight D. Eisenhower was also convinced of the spread of communism in this area, and took the stand that it should be eliminated.

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The budget on the Nigeria’s budget comes under intense searchlight as analysts proffer reasons why the country has persistently failed to meet the international minimum standards of budget transparency and accountability tests Jonathan signed appropriation bill

By Tola Akinmutimi (Abuja)


ast week, after several weeks of brickbats and tantrum between the executive and the legislative arms of government, President Goodluck Jonathan signed the 2013 Appropriation Bill into law. Signed uncharacteristically behind closed-doors and with the Finance Minister, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala yet to present the budget breakdown days after the budget was allegedly signed, many Nigerians have continued to express doubt and serious reservations whether what was signed was indeed the 2013 budget or a sort of Memorandum of Understanding between the Presidency and the National Assembly. Sadly, incidences of not too transparent manner with which Nigeria has consistently treated its budgeting process have continued to draw the ire of many discerning analysts, including the international community.

Particularly, since the coming of democratic rule in 1999, Nigeria has been consistently chastised for its failure to meet the minimum standard in budget transparency and accountability. Despite oaths of office and yearly declarations by presidents, state governors and local government chairmen to judiciously and transparently manage national resources for the full benefits of Nigerians, experiences on the management of the nation’s huge natural endowments and revenues accruing from their exploitations have shown clearly that such declarations are mere political statements. Today, an increasing number of Nigerians have become more impoverished than they were a few years ago as devastating pangs of poverty and other socio-economic vices continue to hold down millions of Nigerians below the poverty level. Yet, the political leaders and their public service collaborators continue to squander provisions in yearly budgets for

self-serving politically-motivated projects and programmes. For instance, available figures over the past few years indicated poor capital budgets performance while recurrent budgets, which account for over 70 per cent of the budgets, have consistently achieved full implementation and sometimes, provided supplementary supports. As at the end of December 2012, the total utilisation of capital budget stood at 65 per cent, a level attained after prolonged months of agitations by all stakeholders. However, beyond the statistical figures being churned out on yearly basis is the major challenge of late and shrouded implementation of the budgets, an ugly phenomenon that has turned most capital budgets to mere financial statements. More worrisome is the abandonment of the people in the budgetary processes, a fundamental flaw that has exacerbated the level of corruption and other forms of fiscal indiscipline in budgets. With pervasive corruption in the land, most budgets have

failed as fiscal instruments to improve the citizens’ welfare just as recent reports continue to show clearly that Nigeria is sinking further down the abyss of fiscal indiscipline and lack of accountability as the years roll by. According to the just published 2012 Open Budget Index (OBI) Survey by the International Budgets Partnership (IBP) covering of over 100 countries, it was observed that consistently in the last four surveys (2006, 2008, 2010, 2012), Nigeria has remained in the category of countries releasing scanty budget information as well as falling into the lowest category

with an Open Budget Index (OBI) score of less than 20 per cent. The survey also reflected that Nigeria’s transparency has been falling over the period despite claims by the Federal Government of its commitment to transparency and accountability in budget implementation. For instance, Nigeria’s rating in the OBI fell from 20 points in 2006 to 16 per cent in 2012 on a scale of 100 points, compared to Ghana’s 50 points and South Africa’s 90 points. In 2006, Nigeria’s OBI was 19 points in 2008 and 18 points in 2010. Other highlights of the OBS in relation to Nigeria’s budget





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public radar

David Mark, Senate President


transparency indicated that the legislature scored 76 points in terms of its access to research and analytical capacity, amendment powers, powers to approve and shift funds and involvement in budget process prior to executive budget proposal. In the area of oversight audit institutions, it was also reported that Nigeria scored 67 points for having an independent Office of the Auditor General based on security office, adequacy and independence of funding, employment of staff and appropriate legislation. The report came against the background of serious concern by many analysts, particularly highly respected Nigerians whose penchant for discipline and accountability is unassailable as well as civil society groups, who believe government was not doing enough to block the leakages in budgets as well as prosecuting corrupt officials. In addition, they have also continued to raise their voices against the lopsided structure of the budgets which, over the

years, has been tilted in favour of recurrent expenditures. For instance, at a book presentation titled ‘Reforming the Unreformable: Lessons from Nigeria’ authored by the Coordinating Minister for the Economy, Dr. Okonjo-Iweala, sometime last year, former Secretary General of the Commonwealth, Emeka Anyaoku, expressed worries over the lopsidedness of the nation’s budget structure which, he noted, would not help in the drive for sustainable development of the economy Anyaoku canvassed for an urgent overhaul of the current over-bloated government architecture in order to ensure political stability and sustainable growth of the country in the years ahead. Anyaoku, who advocated the structural adjustment of the yearly budgets in favour of more capital provisioning, pointed out that there was no way the current structure of government would promote sustainable development in so far the larger quantum of available funds are committed to non-productive

item heads, particularly avoidable overhead expenditures that have remained drain pipes to the nation’s resources over the past years. “My view of the country’s chances of realising its rightfully desired development and development objectives would be greatly enhanced if the country adopts a major restructuring of its present governance architecture. I do not believe for example that we can succeed if we don’t reduce significantly the level of expenditure on recurrent expenditure, which at the moment is averaging 74 per cent which I gather that the budget for the next year hopes to reduce to something like 68 per cent. “When you look around the world and particularly, you look around developing countries that started the same stage as we did, you will find that their expenditure on recurrent heads have been far less than what we have been spending. Because what we have been spending on recurrent budget has left us and continues to leave us with too little for capital development

which we need,’’ Anyaoku said. Despite the concern in many quarters about wastage and lack of accountability in the budget system, Okonjo-Iweala had last October re-assured Nigerians of government’s commitment to transparency and accountability in public finance by ensuring that the 2012 budget is being managed in a way that protects and enhances the best interests of the country. Responding to concerns raised in some quarters on the capital budget particularly, the Coordinating Minister for the Economy stated that transparency and prudence remain the key priorities of the Federal Government in the management of the 2012 budget. “Our objective is to achieve both higher budget implementation and better management of the country’s resources. We will not toy with public resources because they belong to all Nigerians,” she assured. However, it is against the backdrop of critically analysing the 2012 OBI Survey and many other issues concerning yearly

budget processes and implementation, that scores of analysts converged on Abuja last Tuesday at a one-day roundtable organised by ActionAid Nigeria, in partnership with Budget Transparency Networks and relevant government establishments on ‘Budget Transparency: Nigeria’s Compliance to International Standards’. The forum, which had in attendance, representatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Zero Corruption Coalition, Freedom of Information Coalition, amongst others specifically discussed Nigeria’s challenges on how to improve the country’s compliance to international standards on budget transparency, enhance participation of civil society in budget processes as well as a strong oversight function by the legislature and Office of the Auditor General of the Federation. Deputy Country Director of ActionAid Nigeria, Ifeoma Charles-Monwuba, while declaring open the forum cited the secrecy rocking the operation and administration of NNPC in which records and activities especially of revenue generation and expenditures are kept out of the reach of the oversight institutions and citizens, as a clear proof that the nation’s public finance still lacks elements of transparency. Presenting the findings of the survey, ActionAid Nigeria Governance Coordinator, Esther Agbon, gave insights into purpose of Open Budget (OB) and implications for Nigeria, adding that open budget “exposes corruption and waste and improves efficiency and effectiveness in public spending, helps match national resources with national priorities; and helps governments secure cheaper international credit and improve debt management” She listed other benefits of OBS as capable of helping governments to build trust with their citizens and also giving citizens voice and dignity and enhancing their participation in the budget processes. In his contributions, Coordinator of Citizens Wealth Platform, Barrister Eze Onyekpere,

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Cover noted that despite the volumes of legislation that are expected to promote transparency and accountability in public finance at all tiers of government, most of the existing laws are not enforced by governments ostensibly in their efforts to encourage corruption in the system. Onyekpere noted further that Nigeria is not lacking in laws neither policies nor oversight institutions but weak implementation which, he said, had given rise to sustained and increased corruption with impunity and colossal waste of resources in all levels of government businesses and activities. He therefore insisted that continuous pressure on the government with sustained momentum over long period of time will yield desired result and bring about responsive governance. “What we have seen is that, there is no commitment on the part of the leadership to promote transparency in yearly budgets. It is not that we don’t have the laws but what has been happening is their reluctance to enforce them. For instance, we have the Public Procurement Act, we have the Fiscal Responsibility Act as well as NEITI Act which ordinarily should help in entrenching discipline in budget implementation. There is also the Professor Dotun Phillips Committee’s report on Budget Processes which has not been taken into consideration in the preparation of the budget. Yes, we have the National Assembly Budget and Research Office (NABRO) but not a legislature with strong research and analytical capacity. The Budget Office exists without an enabling law backing its operations. Also, the report may have an idea that Nigeria has a powerful Office of the Auditor General but the reality shows that we don’t have an Auditor General with a power to ensure the implementation of its audited reports,” Onyekwere said. Commenting on how the problem of corruption can be addressed in the budget, the representative of United Nations Office in Drug and Crimes (UNODC), Dr. Femi Ladapo, noted that corruption has continued to thrive in the system due to failure of Nigerians, especially the civil society to use available anti-corruption tools to trace how capital funds are being disbursed. Ladapo advocated new strategic approaches as well as technical capacity by the CSOs in their budget monitoring and evaluation engagements which

Aminu Tambuwa, Speaker, House of Reps

will enable them to track capital allocations to MDAs. “There is need for research and sectoral strategies in order to help track capital disbursements to all relevant agencies. Tracking of the capital can be used to interrogate the level of corruption based on the two anti-corruption pillars of transparency and accountability. The question is: how far have the civil society and the people used the tools of anticorruption like the Freedom of Information Act to engage governments in the anti-corruption war? We also need to see improved coordination among civil society organisations and other stakeholders so that they can complement each others’ efforts as well as appropriate channelling of information on budgets to governments and the people in such a way that will facilitate feedback. The language must be such that is understandable to the ordinary Nigerians and not too technical in order to involve them in the budget engagement processes,” Ladapo said At the end of the brainstorming sessions, the forum proposed 8-point recommendations which participants considered imperative for imple-

mentation in order to improve Nigeria’s budget transparency and accountability ratings in the years ahead. Specifically, the participants agreed that government should ensure the budget reflects the needs and aspirations of the people by holding public hearings to disseminate information and gather citizens views on budget policies and that the National Assembly should establish a time frame for passing the budget by establishing a budget law. In addition, participants also observed that over the review period, the federal and state governments do not adhere to any particular time frame in presenting or passing the budget. Similarly, they advocated regular publication of audit reports by the Auditor General Office and that the Accountant General should use existing powers to hold defaulters accountable; involvement of the public at all stages of the budgeting process by the legislature and that donor agencies should ensure civil society groups are actively involved in all transactions of government. It was also agreed that international donor partners should

ensure that their transactions with Nigeria are transparent and well published while civil society was admonished to research and strengthen its capacity and that of the grass roots to participate in all stages of the budget process. The stakeholders, while believing that the Open Budget Index for Nigeria would improve tremendously and thus fostering equitable distribution of resources by matching national resources to national priorities, recommended that civil society should work together across sectors to demand greater transparency from government, and also take opportunity of the formal spaces provided for public participation. A week before the OBS 2012 was published, a similar oneday Engagement on Budget Oversight, Reporting and Documentation forum was organised by the Civil Society Legislative Advisory Centre (CISLAC) with support from Federal Public Administration Reform Programme Nigeria (FEPAR Nigeria) to appraise the level of citizens involvement in budgets with a view to making it more participatory and transparent. Speaking at the forum, the Chairman of the House Committee on Finance, Hon. Abdulmumini Jubril and his Appropriation Committee counterpart, Hon. John Enoh, noted that the National Assembly and the CSOs need to work together to develop mutual frameworks that would help in effective discussions, monitoring and evaluation of performance of yearly budgets. This, the legislators pointed out, would create the information channels that would enable stakeholders to effectively measure the performance of capital budgets in terms of their impacts on the grassroots and provide the two-way communication channels for improved involvement in the budgetary processes on yearly basis. The Finance Committee Chairman, who was represented by Dr. Usman Mohammed, described the interactive session as healthy for National Assembly-CSOs collaboration towards improved national budgets performance. “This event provides an opportunity for us to hear from the CSOs and know how best to improve our activities for a more effective budgeting. In democracy, the idea is to have transparency at all levels of government. We have been looking forward to dialoguing with the CSOs on fiscal policy legisla-

tion and implementation in our efforts to achieve better performance of the budgets. “The results of some of our efforts to ensure effective implementation and monitoring of capital budgets can be seen in recent remittances by agencies of unspent allocations in the budgets. This is one of the results of our monitoring and other oversight carried out on the operations of the MDAs. So, we foresee a situation where we can work together with the CSOs to improve the current level of capital budget performance,” he added In his brief remarks, the representative of the Appropriation Committee Chairman, Makwe Eric, spoke in a similar tone, saying that “any arrangement that will make the National Assembly work together with the CSOs in order to achieve improved performance of yearly budgets deserve all stakeholders’ support. So, coming here is a demonstration of National Assembly’s readiness to achieve this.” Speaking on the importance of the forum in capacity building among key stakeholders interested in ensuring improved performance of yearly budgets, CISLAC representative, Kolawole Banwo, explained that the Centre organised the engagement forum to “see how we can develop a template with which the civil society as they engage the legislators can report budget issues in a manner that the legislators will find useful. “We know that civil society does a lot of budget work and the legislators play critical roles in the budgetary processes. There is need to do the collaboration and that can be done when there is exchange of information. “By the way the National Assembly operates and the way civil society operates, sometimes civil society can come with so many beautiful reports with key information but if they are not expressed in a way the Assembly will find useful, the information would not be fed into the budget process. So, this meeting is to see how we can reach a unanimous understanding on how that information can be presented to the Assembly and they will find it useful,” Banwo added. As stakeholders continue to rally for a more transparent fiscal regime, the big question that is agitating the minds of many analysts is: Can President Jonathan muster the political courage required to instil fiscal discipline in the budgets and deal decisively with economic predators in the land? BC

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L-R Adefemi Adewusi, e-Business Group, Sterling Bank Plc; Mohammed Rabiu, Chairman, Nigerian Union of Journalist (NUJ), Kaduna State; Ahmed Abubakar Bello, Chairman, Dynatech Solutions System Limited and Kikelomo Kuponiyi, Group Head, Retail Lending at the partnership agreement between Sterling Bank and Dynatech held recently in Kaduna

Customs subverts Destination Inspection scheme – Group By Francis Ezem


hree months to the expiration of the extended Destination Inspection contract entered between the Federal Government and the four service providers, freight forwarders under the aegis of Association of Registered Forwarders have said that the Nigeria Customs Service has constituted the greatest obstacle to the success of the scheme. The government had on December 31, 2012 announced a six-month extension of the seven-year contract, which was supposed to expire at the end of last year due to visible lapses on the part of the service. Under the seven-year Build, Own and Operate contract, the service providers comprising of Cotecna, SGS and Global Scan are to provide Computerised Risk Management System for all imported goods into the country in addition to scanning services. National president of the association, Dr. Frank Ukor, who spoke in an interview, disclosed that the main

Abdullahi Dikko, CG of Customs Service

objective of the DI scheme, which is to enhance efficiency in cargo delivery and thus facilitate trade, is being subverted by some deliberate actions of operatives of the service. According to him, depending on the risk associated with a given consignment, the systems automatically routes the consignment to red, which is 100 percent physical inspection, green, which is scanning and yellow, which is partly scanning and partly inspection, but regretted that the service now routes every consignment to physical examination. He disclosed that before now, most corporate importers, most of which are members of Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, have their consignments go through the scanning channel because of their high level of compliance are now licking their wounds because after scanning, most of their consignments are subjected to another round of physical inspection under one disguise of the other. “These days, it is not advisable for your goods to enter green channel because it is the beginning of your problem. The intention of Destination Inspection is that when it enters the green channel, you take delivery immediately but today, if it enters green, that is the beginning of your problem.”, he said. “This is because Customs will tell you there is an image we saw in the scanned consignment and so you have to position it for physical examination”, he further lamented. The direct implication of this is that the consignment would bow be positioned for physical examination under which the content would be offloaded and examined one after the other while

the consignment gathers demurrage and rent charges on the part of the terminal operators. It was also gathered that the beneficiaries of these delays remain the terminal operator, who is paid more money as rent as well as the officers and men of the service as well as other operatives of the security agencies that participate in physical examination of the cargo. I tell you what Customs is doing is illegal because if a consignment enters green, it should be released. “These days people will want their consignments to enter red so that they go through physical examination once and for all. The scanners were installed so that it would be easier but customs and terminal operators are sabotaging it because it pays the officers to do physical examination because of kickback while terminal operators make money from rent and demurrage charges”, he said. He narrated a pathetic case at the Port Multi-Services Terminal Limited located at the Tin Island Port, where a containerized car as scanned and customs claimed there was an unclear image and after physical inspection, the unclear image was discovered to be a carton containing the jacks and some tools for the car, which took one week for the examination to be done.

Onolememen who spoke while commissioning the office in Abuja at the weekend, said that a team of local engineers who were trained both in Europe and America had been deplored to man the department. According to him, apart from saving N500 million which the ministry spent yearly by contracting roads and bridges designs to consultants, the department would also serve as a training ground for budding architects and engineers in the country. He said,” In those days, we used to have department of highway,planning and design, but unfortunately we do not have a design studio. Now we are happy to bequeath to the ministry a brand new design studio with the state of the earth software for roads and bridges design. “Before now, we have had the constraints of contracting our design works to consultants, which usually cost us about N500 million. However, the establishment of a design office in the ministry will not only save the whopping amount of money for the Federal Government, it will also serve as a training ground for a number of young Nigerians.” On what the ministry would do with the N500 million expected to be saved, the minister stated that it would further be ploughed back to road construction. Meanwhile, the minister restated the determination of the present administration to open up the country’s major road to boost economic activities. He explained that he had embarked on a number ground swell reforms aimed at creating a process of sustainable road development and maintenance. Onolememen noted that freeing Nigerian road sector from all associated encumbrances was part of the present administration’s transformation agenda, stressing that Nigerians would have every course to smile by the time all the ongoing projects across the six geopolitical zone of the country are completed.

FG to save N500m through new highway design office


he Minister of Works, Arc. Mike Onolememen has said that the establishment of highway design for roads and bridges in the ministry would save N500 million for the Federal Government



National Museum is underfunded, says DG


he Director General, National Commission for Museum and Monument, Yusuf Abdallah, said in Kaduna on Friday that the commission has been unable to discharge its duties effectively due to underfunding. Abdallah, said at an interactive session with staff of the commission that efforts were however being made to secure more funds from the Federal Government. “ We hope that as things are going now the government will appreciate the contribution of culture to the development of the country and make more funds available for institutions such as ours.’’ The DG said the commission had designed plans to give museums in the country a new look and make them centres of learning. “We are working within available resources to reposition the museums to serve as resource centres for research and other academic works.’’ Abdallah appealed to the staff to be more committed to duty and design ways to attract more visitors to the museums and other historical centres across the state. He called on the general public to patronise the museums and other national monuments, which he described as ``the repository of the heritage and culture of the people’’. “The facilities provided are for your enjoyment and also for education and enlightenment. ``It is a place we learn about our history and develop our sense of patriotism and pride as a nation.” He solicited the support of institutions and wealthy individuals to make the museums and monuments across the country more attractive to Nigerians and foreigners alike.

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Dankwambo, Gombe State governor

Gombe will meet MDGs on safe drinking water – GM


ombe State government has assured that it will meet the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)’s objective to provide safe drinking water and basic sanitation to half of the population before 2015. Isa Mohammed, the General Manager of Gombe State Water Board, who stated this in Bauchi during the inauguration of Bauchi State Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Policy, said that ``We have a short-term solution; part of the solution is that all bore holes are undergoing reticulation and about 70 per cent of the bore holes are functional and undergoing repairs. ``By October 2013, all the work will be completed and by 2014 everywhere will be getting water; so, we hope that we will meet the MDGs goals by the year 2015. In Gombe, we have a treatment plant that was constructed, completed and inaugurated in 2006. The treatment plant is one of the best in Africa,” Mohammed stated. ``The treatment plant was designed to discharge about 50 million cubic of water every day, and there was provision for future expansion because of the expected increase in population; it will be expanded by 70,000 cubic litres per day. ``We now discharge between 20,000 to 30,000 cubic litres per day because there is no adequate reticulation in Gombe, most of the reticulation was done about 40 to 50 years ago,’’ he said. He said that epileptic power supply constituted about 80 per cent of the problem. ``But with the inception of the new government, the problem of reticulation has been taken care of as it has awarded contract for reticulation of Gombe town. The reticulation exercise will also cover areas such as Kwame and Gadan Boju where we drilled 600 metres without getting water,’’ he said.

Mohammed said the contract was awarded at the cost of N4.2 billion, with pipelines covering a distance of 150 km, adding that work on the project had attained about 70 per cent completion. ``If power supply stabilises, enough water will be pumped to Gombe township and all the villages and local governments areas along 40km distance from the treatment plant will benefit from the project.’’ He assured that the state government is very committed in providing water, and apart from the main one in Gombe there are other water schemes like the MDG project in Kumo; we have one in Dukku and other places.’’ Mohammed said another water scheme - Gombe State 2nd Regional Water Supply – had been planned for five local government areas in Gombe South and Central zones. He said water would be treated in Balanga Dam, in Balanga Local Government Area, and would supply water to Balanga, Talasse, Tula, Billiri, Kaltungo, Shongom in Gombe South up to Kumo in Akko Local Government Area. He said that feasibility work and design had been completed and submitted to the state government. He added that procurement process would commence soon for the award of contract to solve the problem of water in the southern and central parts of the state. The manager described the general distribution network as fair, stating that old pipelines were undergoing reticulation in Gombe. Mohammed added that plans were on for extension to cover the new areas, adding that asbestos pipes were undergoing replacement in the state, noting that the WHO abolished the use because they are “cancerous”.

Abdulfatah Ahmed, Kwara State governor

Kwara residents travel to Ekiti for bank transactions


esidents of Omu-Aran in Kwara now travel to neighbouring states for bank transactions due to the closure of commercial banks in the last three weeks.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that banks in Omu-Aran shut their doors to customers following a text message reportedly sent to a bank manager informing him of plans to rob his bank. The situation was further compounded as banks in neighbouring Offa render skeletal services due to the recent communal clash in the area. The two new generation banks in neighbouring Oro town had also been shut due to a recent robbery incident. Investigation by NAN showed that residents of OmuAran now travel to Ilorin, the Kwara capital, and Ekiti state to transact business. Moses Oyewole, the Business Manager of Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) in the district, said that the situation had negatively affected the company’s target. ``Majority of our customers have capitalised on the unfortunate development and refused to pay their bills. They laid the blame on their inability to get money from the bank as the excuse for not paying their bills. We have no choice than to exercise a little patience, ” he said. Bisi Salami, the Director of Mucenty Hotels, Omu-Aran, also decried the continued closure of banks, saying it had led to low patronage of hotels in the town. ``The continued closure of the banks has seriously affected our business, especially as regards patronage. We are only hopeful that the situation will soon be over,” he said. Ayodele Olatunji, the Police Area Commander in OmuAran, told NAN that his command had put in place effective security strategies to combat any threat. Olatunji said that the command had received reinforcement from the state headquarters and had assured the banks to ignore the threat and open for business. Most of the commercial banks located on Aperan Way had remained closed since February 5.

AMCON appoints receiver/manager for Fiogret’s assets


he Asset Management of Nigeria (AMCON) has appointed Kunle Ogunba (SAN) as receiver /manager over “the entire undertakings, stocks, goodwill, plant and machinery, moveable and fixed assets,” of Fiogret Limited. It said its decision to appoint as the receiver of Fiogret assets was in line with a deed of mortgage debenture

dated February 1, 2008 registered at the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC). AMCON said the deed of appointment of the receiver dated November 2, 2012 has equally been registered with the CAC. It listed some of the company’s properties now in possession of the receiver/ manager to include 43, Norman Williams Street, off Awolowo Road, Ikoyi, Lagos; Plots 230-234 Ikorodu, OwutuIkorodu, Lagos; Plot 15 Layi Ajayi Bembe Street, Parkview Estate, Ikoyi, Lagos; Etete Road, off Benin-Sapele Road, Benin City and East West Road, Rumuokwurush Obio/ Akpo Local Government Area, Rivers State. AMCON, in an advertorial dated March 1, 2013 and signed by Ogunba, urged all debtors to Fiogret to pay directly to the receiver/ manager. The company’s creditors are also to send proof of claims to Ogunba within 14 days of the publication of the advertorial in newspapers. It urged all banks and other financial institutions currently in custody of deposits, cash and other assets of Fiogret to continue to hold them until the receiver/manager issues further instructions “in accordance with the preemptive orders of court in suit: FHC/L/CS/63/2013 pending within the bossom of the Federal High Court, Lagos division. “All holders of such deposits should contact the receiver/manager, stating the balance and where secured facilities are granted, the type of security attached should be disclosed,” AMCON said.

Over two million persons will be connected to internet in 2013 - ITU


he International Telecommunication Union (ITU) has estimated that 2.7 billion people, representing 39 per cent of the world’s population, would be using the Internet by the end of 2013. Dr Hamadoun Toure, the Secretary-General ITU, said this in a statement he issued on the ``The World in 2013: ICT Facts and Figures’’ report. The report also said Internet access would remain limited in the developing world, with only 31 per cent of the population forecasted to be online at the end of 2013. It said the 31 per cent online connection in the developing countries was low, when compared with the estimated 77 per cent in the


developed world. ``Europe will remain the world’s most connected region with 75 per cent Internet penetration, outpacing Asia and the Pacific (32 per cent) and Africa (16 per cent),’’ the report added. The report indicated that the household Internet penetration, often considered the most important measure of Internet access, would continue to rise. ITU estimated that by the end of 2013, 41 per cent of the world’s households would be connected to the Internet. ``Over the past four years, household access has grown fastest in Africa, with an annual growth rate of 27 per cent. But despite a positive general trend, 90 per cent of the 1.1 billion households around the world that are still unconnected are in the developing world,’’ the ITU said. The new figures showed strong sustained demand for Information and Communication Technology (ICT) services, with uptake spurred by a steady fall in the price of broadband Internet. It predicted that there would soon be as many mobile-cellular subscriptions as people inhabiting the planet, with the figure set to be higher than seven billion early in 2014. ITU reported that more than half of all mobile subscriptions were now in Asia, which remains the powerhouse of market growth. It said that by the end of 2013, overall mobile penetration rates would have reached 96 per cent globally, with 128 per cent in the developed world, and 89 per cent in developing countries. The report indicated that with many markets saturated, and penetration at over 100 per cent in four of the six ITU world regions, mobile-cellular uptake is already slowing substantially. According to the report, growth rates are falling to their lowest levels, ever in both the developed and developing worlds.

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Gates Foundation appoints first country rep to Nigeria

strengthening routine childhood immunisation programmes, improving access to safe, timely, and appropriate treatment of childhood diseases, and achieving polio eradication. Others are assisting smallholder farmers to increase food production, through improved agricultural tools and strategies, ensuring that women are empowered to seek healthcare during and after pregnancy and have access to family health services and improving access to water and sanitation facilities and expanding the provision of financial services for the poor.


he Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, an NGO, has appointed Dr. Mairo Mandara as Country Representative to Nigeria. This was contained in a statement signed by James Whittington, Senior Communications Officer, Africa and Middle East and made available to newsmen in Abuja on Friday. The statement said Mandara is a consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist, and has extensive knowledge of public health systems, managing maternal and child health programs in Nigeria. Laurie Lee, the Foundation’s Director for Africa said “we are delighted to have Mandara join the team at an incredibly important time for our work in Nigeria. Her knowledge, experience and expertise will be hugely valuable in helping to improve people’s health and reducing poverty. ’’ It added that Mandara had her medical training at the University of Jos, and practiced at the Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital in Zaria, between 2005 and 2010. According to the statement, Mandara was a Senior Country Adviser in Nigeria to the David and Lucile Packard Foundation and worked as the Nigeriabased Health Systems Adviser for the Earth Institute at New York’s Columbia University. In her reaction to the appointment, Mandara said: “I’m excited to be joining the Foundation and am looking forward to working with local partners in Nigeria to help deliver improved health and economic opportunities for the poor’’. The Bill and Belinda Gates Foundation seeks to research, develop and implement lowcost innovations for health and development to help all people lead healthy and productive lives. The Foundation’s focus areas in Nigeria includes,

Lyel Imoke, Cross Rivers State governor

Cross River seeks affordable credit schemes for civil servants


he Cross River Head of Service, Mary-Theresa Ikwen, has urged the Cross River Co-operative Credit/ Savings Association Limited to ensure that workers’ welfare schemes are cheap and affordable. Ikwen gave the charge when she received the Board of Directors of the association on Friday in Calabar. ``You have to sensitise the workers on the products your association intends to make available to them. Welfare schemes such as car loan, car refurbishing loan, catfish programme, among others, currently exist in Cross River,’’ she advised the directors. Ikwen also advised the board members to liaise with the State Welfare Department on existing schemes to avoid a duplication of products. She said the state government was conscious of the need to improve the wellbeing of its workers. The Chairman, Board of Directors of the association, Peniel Bassey, said cooperative societies were the vehicles for economic growth and development globally. He said the new association was an idea brought up by the presidents of the various cooperative bodies in the state,

which was to form a Credit/ Savings Apex Co-operative. ``The aim is to curb most of the financial problems of thrift and credit societies,’’ Bassey said. He said the association intended to establish a microfinance co-operative bank which would meet the credit needs of the affiliated societies.

LG to train 1,000 youth in computer, vocational studies


amaldeen Bashua, the Chairman, Lagos Island East Local Council Development Area, has said the council planned to assist 1,000 youth with computer training and vocational studies Bashua said in Lagos that the training would be in line with the Lagos State Government’s 2013 transformation agenda. ``Gov. Babatunde Fashola has tasked all the local government chairmen on youth, women empowerment and poverty alleviation programmes, `` he said. He said that the programme was part of the state’s transformation agenda in 2013 to ensure peace, law and orderliness. ``There would be peace in a nation when the youth and people of the community are engaged in one activity or the other, `` he said. Bashua said that his administration had been working in line with the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and some other government agencies in training youths on skills acquisition programmes. He said that some of the skills acquisition programmes include computer training, shoe-making, beads and bagmaking, fashion designing and others. Bashua said that his administration would not relent in trying to achieve the government’s transformation agenda.


Zone, Chris Akamnonu has said that consumers are owing the organisation N12 billion. Akamnonu who spoke in Lagos at the weekend enjoined the defaulters to settle their bills to enable the organisation serve them better and avoid unpleasant consequences of refusing to pay debt. The chief executive also threatened to sanction customers that by-pass prepaid metres within the area. Akamnonu said the warning became necessary following discovery of some sharp practises associated with the installation of prepaid metres in the area. He said that plans were on-going in the unit to fish out consumers who had bypassed the pre-paid metres, adding that consumers found guilty of the offence would be made to face the law. ‘We will not hesitate to sanction and prosecute anybody found involved in such act. Some customers are in the habit of by-passing pre-paid metres to avoid paying their bills,’’ he said. Akamnonu also commended consumers in the zone for their support in the protection of PHCN installations in the area. ``As I talk to you about 85,026 pre-paid metres were installed from November 2010 to December 2013,’’ he said, even as he said that the zone recorded about 480 cases of vandalised pre-paid metres within the period under review, adding that the vandals had been brought to book. He, however, urged consumers to remain steadfast in the protection of power installations, saying PHCN was doing its best to ensure improved power supply to the zone.

the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), to work closely with youths to fight the use of illicit drugs. The Director of YISHDA, Joseph Yaba, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Friday in Abuja that the use of illicit drugs could lead to health and psychological problems by affecting the brain, heart and other vital organs of the body. He observed that peer group influence and emotional depression were some reasons responsible for people indulging in the use of illicit drugs, saying if not curbed early could result to addiction. “NDLEA has a lot of work to do by involving youth organisations; youth development experts because these are people who have direct contact with young people at the grassroots, who use illicit drugs. NDLEA should make sure that young people are involved in decision making that has to do with them. There should be a partnership between young people and the law enforcement agency, to make sure that issues of young people using illicit drugs are curbed,” he said. He said that it would always be difficult to stop people from using hard drugs once they became addicted to them. “It is very hard to stop taking drugs, because stopping can cause withdrawal symptoms such as throwing up, sweating and shaking. Taking of illicit drugs can also affect a person’s performance in school, sports and other activities. It is often difficult to think clearly and make good decisions; taking of illicit drug can hurt, people can do dangerous things to themselves or others, when they use drugs,” he said. He advised the youth to shun illicit drugs and always engage in productive ventures. YISHDA is a nongovernmental organisation that was established to inspire and educate young people to grow through capacity building. BC

NGO urges NDLEA to work closely with Fashola youths to fight illicit Customers owe PHCN drug use N12bn in Lagos he Youth Initiative for


he Chief Executive Officer, Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN), Ikeja


Sustainable Human Development in Africa (YISHDA), has urged


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Global News too aggressive in defending its rights. Apple won a major intellectual property case against Samsung in California last year where a jury awarded it $1.05 billion (£650m) in damages. However, the American company has also had its share of legal failures including Tokyo District Court rejecting its claim that Samsung had infringed a patent detailing a way for smartphones to synch music with computers. Jacob

Samsung loses Japan iPhone battle


amsung has failed to secure a iPhone ban in Japan in its latest patent fight with Apple. The Galaxy smartphone maker had claimed Apple had infringed the rights to one of its 3G technologies. The South Korean firm has pursued dozens of claims against its rival in courts across the globe, but has only succeeded in a minority of the cases. It coincides with news that Samsung’s lawyers are being aided in a separate case by a former London-based judge. At the Court of Appeal last year, Sir Robin Jacob and two other judges reviewed an earlier ruling which had ordered Apple to publish a notice in UK newspapers and on its website saying that Samsung had not infringed its design rights. The panel upheld the original judgement and then later supported Samsung’s follow-up complaint that the way Apple phrased its notice was “misleading”, instructing the firm to rewrite it. “I hope that the lack of integrity involved in this incident is entirely atypical of Apple,” Sir Robin wrote in his judgement. Sir Robin - who is also a law professor at University College London (UCL) - is now acting as a consultant to a law firm helping Samsung defend itself against a patent infringement complaint filed in the US by network equipment provider Ericsson. The Japanese case dates back to 2011 when Samsung filed a claim that Apple had use one of its data transmission techniques without paying a licence fee. Apple had counterclaimed that Samsung had no right to the technology and therefore did not deserve a fee. Samsung has filed more than two dozen clams that Apple has infringed its patents over recent years. But according to consultant Florian Mueller - who follows the sector - it has only been successful three times: twice in South Korea and once in the Netherlands. Its actions have, however, prompted investigations by South Korean, US and European regulators over allegations that it has been


S. Africa’s posts record high trade deficit in January


outh Africa’s trade deficit widened to a record in January as imports of machinery, electrical appliances and mineral products soared, the South African Revenue Service has said. The trade gap expanded to R24.53 billion in January, from R2.7 billion in December, more than double analysts’ forecasts. Exports fell by 10.9 per cent over the previous month while imports increased by 24.5 per cent, Sars said. Economists surveyed by Reuters last week expected a trade gap of R11.75 billion. The data is volatile and often difficult to predict. “The increased trade deficit...was due to increased imports of machinery and electrical appliances, mineral products, base metals, chemical products, plastics and rubber, textile and textile articles, and original equipment components,” SARS said. “Exports decreased in precious and semi-precious metals, machinery and electronics, vehicles, vessels and aircraft.” The weak trade data increases the pressure on the government, which is grappling with a widening current account and fiscal deficits and sluggish growth. Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan said in his three-year budget on Wednesday that the current account deficit would average 6.2 per cent over the next three years. The budget gap for the financial year beginning in April is expected to widen slightly to 4.6 per cent from the 4.5 per

cent previously forecast. A larger current account deficit will be negative for the rand, which weakened against the dollar after the trade data was released.

Zimplats in storm over empowerment deal


implats, the Zimbabwean subsidiary of Impala Platinum Holdings, is heading for a collision course with that country’s government after it refused to pay consultancy fees for a controversial $1 billion indigenisation deal. According to reports, the Zimbabwean government through the National Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Board (NIEEB) reportedly wrote a letter to Zimplats on February 13, asking the company to pay Brainworks US$16.7 million “representing advisory fees for the provision of advisory services to the government of Zimbabwe and the (NIEEB) in the implementation of the Zimplats indigenisation plan.” Zimplats in turn wrote back on February 22, advising the NIEEB that it is not in a position to honour the payment on the basis that Brainworks was engaged by the NIEEB and was acting for and advising the NIEEB/the government in the negotiations. In the letters, Implats and Zimplats said Brainworks Capital’s $17 million fee was the responsibility of the Zimbabwe government and the National Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Board (NIEEB) which engaged the firm. also picked up the story, quoting Zimplats as saying paying Brainworks’ fees would also likely be a breach of corporate governance standards. “We believe you are aware that technically, the company cannot pay one shareholder costs without extending the same to other shareholders as that can be misconstrued as a dividend payment,” the Zimplats CEO wrote in his letter to the NIEEB. The latest revelations are part of a storm that has been brewing in Zimbabwe amid allegations that the ongoing empowerment deals were not done above board. The engagement of Brainworks on the Zimplats deal is said to have been done without following proper procedures. According to Zimbabwean laws, any government transaction above $300 000 has to go to tender but Brainworks Capital was awarded the multi-million dollar tender verbally. The country’s State Procurement Board, which awards tenders of this magnitude, is not even aware of the deal between Brainworks


and NIEEB. MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai also questioned the deal, calling for a parliamentary investigation into the country’s indigenisation programme. Tsvangirai said he was concerned about allegations of gross irregularities, and claims only a few individuals are profiting from the deals. Finance Minister Tendai Biti also vowed to investigate indigenisation agreements reached with various foreign companies. According to Bloomberg, Biti said some of the agreements may have to be referred to parliament for approval. The controversy surrounding the deal has resulting in it being christened NIEEBgate, as is it is said to be akin to the Watergate scandal that led to Richard Nixon’s resignation in 1974.

Mark Bly

BP admits limitations oil disaster internal probe


BP executive has admitted that an internal probe he led into the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster “had limitations’. Mark Bly told a New Orleans court that the investigation did not consider the role of budgetary pressures from senior management in causing the accident. A BP policy that investigations look at systematic failures by management was waived when the probe was initiated three days after the 2010 spill. The trial will decide how much of the cost of the disaster BP must bear. The civil lawsuit was

brought against the UK oil firm - as well as other companies involved in the accident, including rig-owner Transocean and cement-provider Halliburton - by the US Justice of Department and the US states affected by the oil slick. The plaintiffs claim that BP put profits before safety, and the oil leak happened because drilling was rushed due to pressure from management to cut costs. A lawyer for the plaintiffs, Paul Sterbcow, noted in court that the Macondo project had already overrun by $60 million and was a month behind schedule, with each additional day adding another $1 million to costs. The BP executive, who headed the company’s safety and operational risk department, said that he and then-chief executive Tony Hayward decided to exclude a broader “systematic evaluation” from the scope of the investigation. “We’re tasked with getting the answer as quickly as we could, and trying to get to a position where we felt we could make good recommendations,” he said. “Having done that, we did have the option to try to go further, but at that point in time, given the limitation that we’ve touched on, it would have been very, very difficult to do that.” Bly, who has since been promoted to BP’s executive committee, said he planned to retire in the next two months. The investigation did discover that BP’s rig supervisors and crew members from Transocean had not carried out a crucial safety test properly, missing an important early warning that the pressure was too high and the well was about to rupture. The Macondo explosion killed 11 men and released an estimated four million barrels of oil into the Gulf over 84 days. The two BP site leaders at the well - Robert Kaluza and Donald Vidrine - have been indicted on manslaughter charges in the US for their alleged role in misinterpreting the test results. The trial is intended to allocate blame and costs between the various companies involved, and to determine the degree of negligence involved - something that will determine the total amount of costs that must be paid. If BP loses, it could face a huge fine, despite having already agreed in 2012 to pay $4.5 billion (£2.9bn) to settle criminal charges. An unfavourable trial verdict could see the firm liable for the biggest civil fine in history, of up to $17.6 billion. It has also paid out $7.8 billion in a settlement with people and businesses affected BC

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Maverick His present status did not come on a platter of gold. They were attained through cheer determination, courage, never-saydie and the typical can-do spirit of most Nigerian entrepreneurs. He did not come from a rich family background. In fact, he along with his other 16 siblings had to engage in street hawking to augment the little their parents could afford. That is the summary of the beginning of Tajudeen Afolabi Adeola, the self-made man, who braced the odds to rise from point zero to attain fame and wealth; building multinational institutions that are today considered the first among equals By Semiu Salami


orn in January 1954 to a bank clerk father and petty trading mother, Tajudeen Afolabi Adeola was clearly not born with the proverbial Silver spoon. As the fifth in a large household of 17 children, it was obvious that the earnings of Fola’s parents could not in any way provide the basic necessities of life for the large family. So, right from infancy, he was exposed to the world of survival of the fittest. He had had to learn how to do some little businesses to help the family. In fact, Fola along with his brothers had to hawk wares on the streets of Lagos, the proceeds of which were pulled together to take care of their educational needs. However, despite the initial shortcomings, Fola’s father never lost sight of the need to inculcate the values of hard work and integrity in the children, the attributes which later came in handy as Fola and some of his siblings later in life began to climb to the Continued on pg A10


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Business Courage

top of the ladder of success in the corporate world. The young Afolabi started his education at St Paul’s School, Breadfruit, Lagos and then proceeded to the Methodist Boys High School (MBHS), also within the Lagos metropolis for his secondary education. At MBHS, Fola’s innate qualities began to manifest as he not only passed through the school but left his footprints as his name is among the 46 most outstanding students on the school’s Hall of Fame. After his secondary education, Fola proceeded to Yaba College of Technology to read Accountancy and graduated in 1975. An exceedingly brilliant individual, Fola became a chartered accountant five years after graduation following an intensive training he got under Deloitte, Haskins and Sells and D.O. Dafinone& Company (both Chartered Accountants), where he had variously worked. From the accounting firms, Fola joined the defunct NAL Merchant Bank as manager between 1982-1986 from where he moved to Continental Merchant Bank Limited between 1986-1990 and rose to become the bank’s deputy general manager and divisional head, financial services division. After about 15 years in paid employment, Fola Adeola took a life changing decision that was to later transform both his person and career and register his name among the great and mighty, both in Nigeria and on the global business plane. Along with his bosom friend, the late Tayo Aderinokun, Fola consummated his vision and dream of owning a bank with the establishment of Guaranty Trust Bank in 1990. At the age of 36, coming from the position of a Deputy General Manager and divisional head, financial services division of CMB, Fola became the pioneer Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Guaranty Trust Bank Plc, perhaps, the youngest to attain such a lofty height then. However, long before the birth of Guaranty Trust Bank, Fola had nursed the ambition to build a strong institution, whose corporate ideals and philosophy would revolve around integrity, professionalism and enduring corporate strategies, the ideals which essentially were the products of his limitless exposure he garnered in his career advancement pursuits. After graduating from Yaba College of Technology and working under various notable accounting firms, Fola received professional development training at renowned institutions worldwide including Harvard Business School, INSEAD, and the International Institute for Management Development in Switzerland.

With these exposures and the desire to create an institution that will clearly set him apart from his poor background, Fola put everything into the making of GTBank. However, while the process of the formation of what is today’s GTBank was still in the works, Fola and Tayo decided to have a business partnership, and experimental endeavour so to speak, when they pulled resources together to establish a barbing salon, named Finishing Touches in the high brow Ikoyi area of Lagos in 1986. The decision of the duo was born out of the desire to exploit a yearning gap which the absence of a barbing salon in Ikoyi and environs provided. At that time, Business Courage learnt that the closest salon to the highbrow area which provides comfortable abode to some of Nigeria’s upscale citizens and some highly upwardly mobile middle class corporate executives was somewhere on the mainland. The implication of this is that Ikoyi residents have to journey down to Surulere or Yaba on the mainland before they could get a decent barbing salon. More importantly, what spurred the idea of owning a salon in Ikoyi was the rather shocking experience he had on one of his barber scouting trips when a ghastly accident occured on the Eko Bridge. “The only thing that came to my mind was whether the victim of that accident was also on his way to the barbers! I decided we would put barbers in Ikoyi. The only person I knew that would entertain such a fanciful thought was Tayo Aderinokun. We both dipped into our pockets, and thus Finishing Touches Barbing Salon was born, ” he noted. Till date, the salon has remained in business but it is no longer owned by the duo of Fola and Tayo as they long sold it out following the acquisition and commencement of GTBank. From the beginning of his tenure at Guaranty Trust, Adeola had sought to build an institution that would outlast him and one that would be reputed for strong corporate governance, including carefully laid out succession plans. For twelve years, Fola, ably assisted by his friend and soul mate, late Aderinokun, redefined banking practice and made it a strong financial supermarket, revered locally and internationally for its strict adherence to professionalism, corporate governance and best practices. It was in this spirit that Fola, after 12 successful years at the helm of affairs, stepped down in what is today regarded as the best corporate transition in Nigeria. Today, about 10 years after his exit from the bank, GTBank has not only continued to wax strong, it has remained

Monday, March 4, 2013

a numero uno in the annals of financial services delivery in the country. The bank, over the years, has grown to become one of Nigeria’s foremost financial institutions with vast business outlays spanning Anglophone West Africa and the United Kingdom. The bank presently has an asset base of over N1 trillion, shareholders’ funds of over N190 billion and employs over 5,000 people in Nigeria, Gambia, Ghana, Liberia, Sierra Leone and the United Kingdom. Fola and his partner were able to build a bank that has a corporate banking bias and strong service culture that have enabled it record consistent year on year growth in clientele base and key financial indices since its inception in 1990. Its operational style, personnel conduct and service delivery models are built on eight core principles aptly dubbed; The Orange Rules in line with the bank’s vibrant orange corporate colour. In September 1996, barely five years after it was founded, the bank, under Fola Adeola and ably assisted by late Aderinokun became a publicly quoted company and won the Nigerian Stock Exchange President’s Merit award that same year and subsequently for seven years from 2000 to 2009. In February 2002, just before Fola disengaged from the bank, GTBank was granted a universal banking license and later appointed a settlement bank by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in 2003. Two years after Fola’s exit, the bank undertook its second share offering in 2004 and successfully raised over N11 billion from Nigerian investors

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to expand its operations and favourably compete with other global financial institutions. This development ensured that the bank was satisfactorily poised to meet the N25 billion minimum capital base for banks introduced by the Central Bank of Nigeria in 2005. In the post-consolidation era, GTBank made a strategic decision to actively pursue retail banking and a major rebranding exercise followed in June 2005, which saw the bank emerge with improved service offerings, an aggressive expansion strategy and its vibrant orange identity. In 2007, the bank entered the history books as the first Nigerian financial Institution to undertake a $350 million regulation Eurobond issue and a $750 million Global Depositary Receipts (GDR)

Offer. The listing of the GDRs on the London Stock Exchange, LSE in July that year made the bank the first Nigerian company and African bank to be listed on the main market of the LSE. In December 2009, Guaranty Trust Bank successfully completed the first tranche of its $200 million corporate bond targeted at increasing the depth of its operations in West Africa and Europe in the next couple of years. There is no doubt that Fola Adeola left a rich culture tied to eight guiding principles called the Orange Rules; Simplicity, Professionalism, Service, Friendliness, Excellence, Trustworthiness, Social Responsibility and Innovation. Its value system is hinged on professionalism, ethics, integrity, and superior customer service. It maintains

For twelve years, Fola, ably assisted by his friend and soul mate, late Aderinokun redefined banking practice and made it a strong financial supermarket, revered locally and internationally for its strict adherence to professionalism, corporate governance and best practices

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‘ Adeola

a culture of excellence and goes to great lengths to actualize the popular phrase; The Customer Is King and thus delivers to its customers at all times. The bank operates a very competitive environment, where people can learn its corporate culture and apply themselves in all they do. Employees are addressed by their first names from entry level through to the Managing Director as there is no “Sirs or Madams”. In addition, it operates an open door policy to foster a feeling of equality amongst staff and ensure everyone is accessible at all times. The unparallel service delivery platform of the bank whose foundation was laid by Fola Adeola has paid off for the bank in a way that cannot be quantified as every customer testimonial about GTBank has continued to draw a great deal of business to the bank. The bank has also evolved over the past 20 years to become one of Africa’s leading banks with a unique reputation for service quality, innovation and excellent customer service; with significant footprints in all countries in Anglophone West Africa (Nigeria, Ghana, Gambia, Sierra Leone, Liberia) and the United Kingdom, and its sights firmly set on Francophone West Africa, it is poised to become the dominant player in the African continent. But then, Fola’s entrepreneurial passion did not start and end with GTBank. Another of his major contributions to the growth of entrepreneurship in Nigerian, particularly since he retired from GTBank in 2002 is the FATE Foundation, a non-profit, private sector led organisation,

dedicated to encouraging the creation of wealth through entrepreneurship, using an innovative mix of training, mentoring, loan support and consulting to support young Nigerians. FATE Foundation was founded in 2000, following his one-year sabbatical at the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies in Kuru, Jos, Nigeria, where he carried out research on economic development and job creation policies. Fola, who has never been a lone ranger in the achievement of his goals shared the dream of FATE Foundation with selected well meaning Nigerians for support for the lofty ambition. Naturally for endeavours like this, the late Tayo was Fola’s immediate confidant but the scope was expanded to include other eminent persons. The impetus behind FATE stemmed from a strong concern for the high level of unemployment and poverty in the country. FATE’s philosophy is based on the commitment to assist Nigerian youths, establish and grow successful businesses by equipping them with the tools, skills, networks and financing required for this task. Indeed, FATE’s mission is to foster wealth creation by promoting Business and Entrepreneurial development among Nigerian Youths. The vision behind this is to foster the growth and establishment of over 1,000 businesses by 2005 and 5,000 businesses by 2015. These businesses will lead to the creation of employment for at least 50,000 Nigerians by 2015. Since FATE’s inception, it has worked and continues to

work with global corporations, institutions, and organisations. It has along with these, also received tremendous support from public-spirited individuals. Fola, a boardroom maverick, is a corporate player that no serious corporate organisation wants to ignore. He is on the board of quite a number of companies that operates within and outside the Nigerian economy. For instance, he is the chairman of the Main One Cable Company Limited currently building an open access submarine cable system that will span 14,000 kilometres and will provide international and internet connectivity to countries on the Atlantic Coast from Portugal to South Africa, connecting these countries with each other and with the rest of the world. Fola has served as the chairman of a range of institutions including UTC, Asset & Resource Management Company Limited, ARM, Eterna Oil, Tafsan Breweries (board member), and Credit Registry Services, Omatek Computers Limited and Socketworks Limited. He is also the chairman, board of directors of Lotus Capital, a full-service, ethical investment management boutique specializing in Shari’ah compliant asset management, private wealth management and financial advisory services. Lotus Capital was founded in June 2004 with the specific objective of meeting the investment needs of ethical individuals, businesses, and organisations across West Africa. Lotus Capital is duly registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) as Fund Managers, Corporate Investment Advisers

In February 2002, just before Fola disengaged from the bank, GTBank was granted a universal banking license and later appointed a settlement bank by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in 2003

and Issuing House. Lotus Capital is a Nigerian pioneer in this emerging financial niche with a unique equitable interest-free solution. Interest-free financial services primarily known as “Islamic Finance” is the world’s fastest growing financial sector with over $200 billion in assets worldwide growing at 15-20 per cent per annum. He is also the Chairman of Cardinal Stone Capital, a full service financial institution which arranged a N10 billion debt investment in Sterling Bank Plc. The firm began operations in June 2008 and is currently registered by the Nigerian Securities and Exchange Commission to operate as an Issuing House, Fund Manager and Broker/Dealer. The firm’s activities are carried out across five business units - Asset Management, Investment Banking, Principal Investments, Securities Trading and the Business Support Group. He is on the advisory board of The Kathryn Hauwa Hoomkwap Foundation, a not-for-profit foundation set up to continue the work of the late Kathryn Hauwa Hoomkwap, with the goal of supporting projects in the five major areas of Kathryn’s work thus: youth development, good governance; women issues; family and society as well as inter-religious dialogue. A council member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria, ICAN, and Institute of Directors of Nigeria (IOD), Adeola served as member of former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair’s Commission for Africa between 2004 and 2005. He served until 2006 as a member of Global Advisory Committee on Philanthropy at the World Economic Forum, attended the HRH the Duke of Edinburgh’s Commonwealth Study Conference in the UK and was invited to join 24 other business leaders for the Aspen Institute ISIB Annual Business Leaders Dialogue in Aspen, Colorado. In the public sector,

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Adeola served as the pioneer Chairman of National Pensions Commission and was a member of both the National Awards Committee and the Solid Minerals Committee. He also chaired the Lagos State Disaster Relief Committee, which was created following the January 27, 2002 bomb blast tragedy in Lagos. He was appointed a member of the Governing Council of Lagos State University in November 2004 and the Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago-Iwoye, Ogun State until January 2011 and was the Chairman of Ogun State Development Trust Fund Committee. With over twenty papers presented oi various countries on a wide range of topics, Adeola has also obtained degrees from the London School of Accountancy, the International Institute for Management Development (IEP), the Lagos Business School (CEP) and the Harvard Business School (OPM). In 1999, Fola was awarded membership of the National Institute of Policy and Strategic Studies. The number of firsts and achievement he has recorded in the field of business, Fola has on three different occasions unsuccessfully failed to translate his economic success into massive political gains. He contested for the Ogun Central Senatorial district ticket under the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, but lost the ticket to Iyabo ObasanjoBello, daughter of the former President Olusegun Obasanjo and also lost his bid to become Nigeria’s vice president in the 2011 presidential election when he contested as running mate to Nuhu Ribadu, former head of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), under the platform of the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN. Clearly, Fola Adeola has a towering status in Nigeria’s corporate landscape and for many years to come, there appears to be no end to the number of feats which the banker turned corporate maverick will achieve. BC

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Driven by

provides 10,000 women around the world with a business and management education which is done in partnership with the Enterprise Development Centre (EDC). Through the initiative, which has also helped many Nigerian women entrepreneurs, Patricia was able to properly hone her skill and improve her business strategies.

passion She virtually has the world on her hands. Having come from a highly successful parentage and married to the family of one of Nigeria’s nouve riches, her desire to venture into entrepreneurship was certainly not propelled by any sense of desperation. It was a strong desire to fulfil a lifelong ambition to be a successful entrepreneur. This is the story of Patricia Ojora, lawyer and founder, chief executive officer, PromoPrint Ventures Limited By Semiu Salami


atricia Ojora, wife of Dapo Ojora, son of the scion of the influential Ojora royal family and boardroom icon, can be said to be one of the many Nigerian women who break barriers by juggling many roles. Though she read law, Patricia’s ambition had always been to run her own business. After her law degree from the University of London, she returned to Nigeria to attend the Nigerian Law School after which she briefly worked as a lawyer. Indeed, she tried her hands in a few business ideas but Patricia’s entrepreneurial endeavour started on a three-fold. She operated a transport business, ran a party supplies company and later, a games arcade. She ran the game arcades for two years, solely from funds provided by her parents before she formed PromoPrint. However, her entry into the printing business through PromoPrints has its root in some activities she was involved in as a trained lawyer. Because of her background, Patricia was involved in Livestream, a charity, non-governmental organisation, established to raise money for children with heart conditions. At Lifestream, one of her responsibilities was sourcing branded T-shirts for the organisation’s events and in the course of that assignment; Patricia was able to discover a part of Lagos where the items

could be sourced from. She was so involved that within a short period, even without prior knowledge of how it works, she virtually became a consultant with many people reaching out to her on how to get the items. “With my direct supervision, quality checks, and the expertise of the makers, the T-shirts turned out very nice. Several people liked the products and started asking me for help with theirs,” she revealed in a recent interview As it turned out, that assignment was to later become a major attraction and business interest for her, especially as steady stream of orders were already flowing in. As someone with a good business sense, Patricia quickly cashed in on this and decided to focus her attention on running the business. She started out with little supplies from friends and family members and was using other peoples’ machines. However, as she got engrossed in the business, she was compelled to go for her own equipment since she had no control over the entire process from order to delivery. From the money she made from her previous business endeavour, she acquired the printing machines for the business and today, PromoPrint boasts of some of the best modern printing machines suited for its kind of business. She started off from home but later acquired an office and a factory from where she currently operates from, thus lead-


ing to the creation of PromoPrints Ventures Limited. From T-Shirt making, PromoPrint graduated into an outfit that specialises in the manufacturing and branding of gift items such as shirts, caps, bags, and other corporate give-

aways. What has, perhaps helped her in the course of her entrepreneurial development despite starting off with little experience, was her participation in the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Women Initiative. The initiative

Business Challenges Patricia encountered essentially, the same challenges faced by many businesses operating in the country like electricity, high rental cost, human capital as well as government policies and laws, especially on importation and taxation. Interestingly, however, one major strategy which she adopted and which stands her out is unusual attitude of treating her competitors as companions through which she share business ideas and difficulties with and in return, get useful trade secrets and hints there from. “I found out that discussing my business problems with other people really helps. Usually, there will always be someone with a solution. I have also learnt that collaborating sometimes with your competitors rather than confronting them helps. We can share tips, sources etc and when we have a crisis; another can wade in and assist. It’s strange because the very next day you are bidding for the same jobs. But no man is an island; we all need help in one shape or form,” she said.

Management Principles

Rules for effective change management


hange management entails thoughtful planning and sensitive implementation, and above all, consultation with, and involvement of, the people affected by the changes. If you force change on people normally problems arise. Change must be realistic, achievable and measurable. These aspects are especially relevant to managing personal change. Before starting organizational change, ask yourself: What do we want to achieve with this change, why, and how will we know that the change has been achieved? Who is affected by this change, and how will they react to it? How much of this change can we achieve ourselves, and what parts of the change do we need help with? These aspects also relate strongly to the management of personal as well as organizational change. *Do not ‘sell’ change to people as a way of accelerating ‘agreement’ and implementation. ‘Selling’ change to people is not a sustainable strategy for success, unless your aim is to be bitten on the bum at some time in the future when you least expect it. When people listen to a management high-up ‘selling’ them a change, decent diligent folk will generally smile and appear to accede, but quietly within them, there is no buy-in. And that’s just the amenable types - the other more recalcitrant types will be well on the way to making their own particular transition from gamekeepers to poachers. Instead, change needs to be understood and managed in a way that people can cope effectively with it. Change can be unsettling, so the manager logically needs to be a settling influence. *Check that people affected by the change agree with, or at least understand, the need for change, and have a chance to decide how the change will be managed, and to be involved in the planning and implementation of the change. Use face-to-face communications to handle sensitive aspects of organisational change management. Encourage your managers to communicate face-to-face with their people too if they are helping you manage an organizational change. Email and written notices are extremely weak at conveying and developing understanding. If you think that you need to make a change quickly, probe the reasons - is the urgency real? Will the effects of agreeing a more sensible time-frame really be more disastrous than presiding over a

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Mentor Patricia believes strongly that mentoring remains a necessity and in her case, her biggest mentor was her father, who according to her tried a few professions before finding his true calling as a doctor. “He was an inspiration to many but I admired his business sense. He was a self-made man who foresaw the decline in the health industry years before it happened. He opened one of the first private clinics in Nigeria. He was even mocked in the papers but he had a head-start on most and built on his vision, which still stands today,” she said. Patricia also admitted having many other mentors from all walks of life but above all, one other distinctive feature about her is her determination

to learn from anyone, no matter how lowly such person(s) may be. “People unknowingly make an impression on you and guide you on your entrepreneurial journey, one of the biggest pushes I had was from a former employee of mine, who refused to let me think small,” she admitted. Reflections Looking back, if Patricia were to start all over again, she would probably have injected equity capital very early and built up the business twice as fast to gain a large share of the market. As she later admitted, waiting for the mythical moment when cash flow will grow a business is usually a lengthy process. Lessons and sacrifices Her rich background notwithstanding, one critical les-

disastrous change? Quick change prevents proper consultation and involvement, which leads to difficulties that take time to resolve. For complex changes, refer to the process of project management, and ensure that you augment this with consultative communications to agree and gain support for the reasons for the change. Involving and informing people also creates opportunities for others to participate in planning and implementing the changes, which lightens your burden, spreads the organisational load, and creates a sense of ownership and familiarity among the people affected. For organizational change that entails new actions, objectives and processes for a group or team of people, use workshops to achieve understanding, involvement, plans, measurable aims, actions and commitment. Encourage your management team to use workshops with their people too if they are helping you to manage the change. You should even apply these principles to very tough change like making people redundant, closures and integrating merged or acquired organizations. Bad news needs even more careful management than routine change. Hiding behind memos and middle managers will make matters worse. Consulting with people, and helping them to understand does not weaken your position - it strengthens it. Leaders who fail to consult and involve their people in managing bad news are perceived as weak and lacking in integrity. Treat people with humanity and respect and they will reciprocate. Be mindful that the chief insecurity of most staff is change itself. Senior managers and directors responsible for managing organizational change do not, as a rule, fear change - they generally thrive on it. So, remember that your people do not relish change, they find it deeply disturbing and threatening. Your people’s fear of change is as great as your own fear of failure. BC

son which upcoming entrepreneurs can learn from Patricia Ojora is her frugality when it comes to business finances. “I refused to spend anything on myself, any extra money I have goes straight into the business. My time has also been sacrificed because growing any business in Nigeria involves a lot of sleepless nights, as the buck stops with you. I am okay with sacrifices; it makes you a more disciplined and focused person. I believe one’s integrity is the only thing that should never be sacrificed,” she said. Critical success factor Patricia believes that the critical personal attributes required to be a successful entrepreneur remain individual’s strength of character, belief in God, a belief in yourself and in what you do. She believes that for anyone to be a successful entrepreneur, such person must have passion for what he/she does; the sense to know when you are derailing and therefore need help; the humility to learn from your mistakes and the strength to rise up again after the few inevitable failures. Role juggling For most women entrepreneurs, the task of combining business management with domestic shores and family responsibility could be very daring. Patricia even admits the fact that running her own business is hard work but her family she says, always comes first. “I am a hands-on wife and mother. Regardless of my business, I do school runs, attend PTA meetings and duties and do my charity work. I do tire myself out but one of my biggest phobias is being idle. I have now got to the point that I can cut down on my office hours. My kids sometimes come to the office, do some tasks and get paid as Goodies,” she said. Though she admit that role juggling may be very cumbersome, she however advise women entrepreneurs to “Stick it out, it’s going to be hard if you want to do it well but the fulfillment in your achievements will outweigh the sacrifices. Ignore the profiling that comes with a woman working hard. Keep learning and trying to improve yourself, we are capable of so much, don’t limit yourself. Do your best in all you do, the rest is up to God.” For now, PromoPrint is doing very well and despite the fact that Promoprint, like most firms in Nigeria generates its own electricity and supply its own water, Patricia has been able to build a thriving firm. In the past year, the firm has experienced nearly a 100 per cent revenue growth, and the growth has naturally compelled a consideration for another location to support future expansion. BC

Personal Finance How to create a winning business idea


eveloping large or small business ideas is a matter of creating a vision, leveraging your strengths and determining what the market needs. These three steps should get you started.

Create a vision Close your eyes for a few minutes and conjure up a detailed image of what you want your life to look like in five years. Be as specific as possible. Where do you live? How do you spend your days? What kind of work do you do? Do you work alone or with other people? Who are you surrounded by? What do you do when you aren’t working? Don’t limit yourself to these questions; create a vivid vision of yourself, touching on things that are important to you. These are all personal issues that will impact the type of business you pursue - being a city or country person; wanting to travel or sit at your computer; liking to meet people or work on the phone. This activity will help you create a foundation for choosing from small business ideas, making business decisions, and setting clear goals. It is best to do this exercise with someone else and share your vision. If you can’t, write it down to make your vision more concrete. Determine what you’re good at and what you like to do It’s often useful to look inside yourself to figure out what you like and dislike, and where your talents lie. It’s one thing to come up with a winning business idea. It’s another to come up with one that fits your skill set and interests you. Your business has to keep you excited so you can thrive over the long haul. One of the best ways to do this is to make three separate lists: List 1: What you’re good at Everyone is good at something and many skills can be the foundation for a business. You might be naturally organized or have a knack for fixing things. You may be so used to your skills that they don’t immediately come to mind, so assemble this list by observing yourself for a few weeks with an eye out for your aptitudes and by asking people who know you well for their impressions of what you excel at. List 2: Skills you’ve acquired over the years Whether or not you’ve worked in a conventional environment, you no doubt have accumulated many. Write down all the work responsibilities you’ve had; think about the varied tasks you know how to complete. Make sure this list is complete – there should be at least 10 distinct items. List 3: Things you like to do List the things you enjoy doing. This may not be as easy as it sounds. This list should be at least 10 items long. Stretch beyond your hobbies and interests that spring to mind immediately. If you’re stymied, ask people who have known you for a long time – particularly people who knew you as a kid – what they have seen you doing when you’re happiest. Keep these three lists in an accessible place for several weeks, and when small business ideas come to you, jot them down in the proper category. Ask people who know you well for their input or to help you jog your memory. Figure out what the market needs So far, you’ve been looking inward to come up with your business idea. Now, it’s time to look outward to discover an unfilled need that you can meet with your product or service. There are plenty of “Top 10” or “Hot New” business lists out there. These may stimulate some ideas, but the best business ideas will come from you and will be based on who you are and what the market is looking for. So, while you’re doing your soul searching and list making, put up your antenna and look out for business opportunities. BC Adapted from content excerpted from the American Express® OPEN Small Business Network BC

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Beware of these phones As the urge to join the increasing league of mobile phone users rages, Nigerian markets are increasingly becoming dumping ground for fake and counterfeit phones, not minding the economic and health implications


ast week, Dr. Eugene Juwah, the Executive Vice Chairman, Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) disclosed that 60 per cent of mobile telephones sold in the country are fake. Juwah said on the basis of trend it is almost impossible to retrieve any stolen mobile phone in the country. Juwah said most of the phones in the country are poor quality mobile phones imported from China which makes it very difficult to technically locate them when they are stolen. A major difficulty in tracing such phone he said, is partly due to the multiple manufacturing identity numbers assigned on them. He explained that a stolen phone can only be bared through an equipment identity registry that guarantees access to its location. But with over 60 per cent fake mobile phones circulating in the country, if an attempt is made to bar any stolen phone, it would technically affect more than five million phones at a time because of the multiple manufacturing identity number of these phones, he noted. “Technically in Nigeria, it is almost impossible to bar stolen phones because over 60 per cent of these phones are from China; the phones are fake and have the same equipment identity number, the way you actually enforce the baring of stolen phone is through a database registry called equipment identity number registry where each phone has a unique registered identity number that allows anyone access to bar the phone from making calls,” he stated. Juwah also said that the NCC had earlier attempted to bar stolen mobile phones but the exercise failed due to the challenges associated wiith phones in the country. He absolved the NCC from

the technical problem that mobile users in the country are currently experiencing due to the activities of fake phone users. “Don’t blame the NCC for this issue, the point at which it enters Nigeria should be blamed more because the type of approved phones NCC has are in the custody of border control. And this is where we think exactly the blame lies,” he noted. Nokia’s Vice President, West and Central Africa, James Rutherfoord, also decried the preponderance of fake and substandard phones in the country, lamenting that it has become a ‘big monster that has become difficult to tame’. Rutherfoord who spoke on the sidelines of the global launch of some of Nokia’s latest devices in Lagos recently

added that the firm was, however, collaborating with the mobile service providers and the relevant agencies to curb the menace, adding that the firm will step up campaign aimed at educating its customers in the country. “Presence of fake mobile phones is a big problem in Nigeria but we have employed

How to identify fake phones


ounterfeit mobile phone manufacturers imitate all facets of a phone’s appearance to make them appear genuine. The phones outer shell and screen, the printed logos and branding, the packaging and the included accessories can all be copied, making it difficult to identify whether a phone is fake or genuine. When possible, it is always preferable to buy a phone through a registered retailer or reseller who can vouch for a phones authenticity. Yet with the prevalence of internet shopping and auction websites this may not be an option. Here are a few simple tips to help you identify whether a phone is genuine or fake: Know the phone It is important to do a little research before buying a new phone. You should only buy a phone made by a trusted manufacturer. Before committing to a purchase, you should know the phones specific model number, available colours, features, what software and hardware comes included and what warranty is offered with the product. Information about a specific model of phone can be found on the manufacturer’s website or through a registered retailer. Once you have this information, it will make the job of identifying a fake much easier. Appearance On first glance, a counterfeit phone may appear identical to a genuine model. On closer comparison, you may be able to identify some obvious differences between a genuine and a fake such as: the colour, location of buttons, size or spelling of the brand name. Some fakes are less obvious. Counterfeiters are able to mimic design details down to minute details making it difficult to tell if

multi-pronged approach to it. One is to educate the consumer on all our materials. We put our warrant stickers on it and also give them a care line where they can send SMS to check if their phone is fake or not. We educate our partners and our dealers in the market. We have also, on more than one occasion, trained them and show

them on how to differentiate the fake and the genuine from the pack. So we have a number of initiatives against fake products in the market,” he said. According to him, the only security agency it is partnering with is the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), the agency responsible for checking the goods that come to the country

a phone is genuine. If you are able to view the product in person, you may be able to notice a difference in weight, screen size, location of buttons and battery, quality of printing and paint finish, added or missing functions, quality control stickers and holograms and an overall lack of quality. Features Counterfeit phones can have differing features to genuine models, such as dual SIM cards, analogue TV etc. Check the model number and technical specifications of the genuine phone you wish to buy and ensure they match what is being offered. Counterfeit phones also often appear to offer features that are either just not there or that are not as they are said to be. For example, built in cameras might be said to be 8 Megapixel when they are not - or offer GPS when they don’t. Counterfeit phones may also differ from a genuine in colour availability, memory capacity, camera megapixels, screen quality and operating system. It is important to compare technical features to ensure the phone is genuine. Warranty All genuine mobile phone manufacturers offer a limited warranty that covers the handset, software and accessories. Most genuine phones are covered for one year from the date of purchase by the original owner. Many registered sellers will offer an additional warranty. Registered manufacturers and sellers also offer customer support and servicing of damaged products. Black market phones rarely come with a warranty or offer customer support and servicing of damaged products.

National Mirror


from abroad. “We don’t really have partnership with security agents. The agency to work with is the customs to help check the (inflow of the) devices into the country. So, we feel that is the point at which we need to work. On the other hand, we are working with the operators to try and see what they can do about fake devices on their network because (poor service too have been traced to fake phones),” he said. He added that the firm was also collaborating with the Federal Government, through the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) to fight the menace through the registration of mobile devices in the country. “We also trying to collaborate with government, specifically with the NCC on the registration of all devices in Ni-

Business Courage A15 31

Monday, March 4, 2013

geria,” he said. Indeed, the sale of substandard mobile phones has become a flourishing business in most popular markets and handset sales outlet in the country In-spite of the efforts made by government agencies like the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) to combat counterfeiting in Nigeria, the business appears to have taken a foothold to the detriment of consumers, manufacturers and government alike. The result of a recent research carried out by the Business Software Alliance (BSA) and the International Data Corporation (IDC) disclosed that Nigeria lost more than N19.8 million to software counterfeiting in 2009, and also recently, Microsoft, the global giant in software development, stated

It is important to keep the receipt for any phone you purchase so that you can make a warranty claim if the product is faulty. It is also beneficial to keep all proof of purchase in case you have bought a fake so that you can notify the relevant authorities. Functionality Black market phones are made from sub-standard and cheap components and often run on second rate or pirated operating systems. Counterfeiters use cheap older generation chipsets, which may offer the same functionality as a genuine model but at far slower processing speeds. If you have unknowingly purchased a fake phone, you will realise very quickly once you turn it on. Processing speeds are often much slower, operating systems have missing features and the phone may not be compatible with affiliated software and applications. IMEI number Every genuine mobile phone has a serial number to register it to a carrier network. This number is called the International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI) number. The IMEI number can be used to verify the legitimacy of a phone. Often counterfeit models won’t have an IMEI number or use a fake one. If you are viewing the phone in person then you can find the IMEI number on the products packaging, under the phones battery or by pressing *#06# on the phone. If you are not viewing the phone in person, then you should ask the retailer for the phones IMEI number. To check the legitimacy of a phones IMEI number and any information regarding country of production, manufacturer and model type, you can use this tool. BC

that consumers and companies spend millions of dollars each year on counterfeit copies, financing scammers who threaten the integrity of the software industry. Nokia has identified Asia as one of the main origin of fake phones. In China, they are locally known as “shanzai” or black market cell phones, and ‘Shanzai’ is a local term used to mean copied of faked products. The ever growing ‘shanzai’ market has responded quickly to the needs of the mobile users by quickly manufacturing fake version of all the new models. The top models, which have been faked, include Nokia E86, Nokia N95, Nokia 8800, Nokia E91, Nokia E69 and also Nokia N87. Like the originals, they come meticulously packed with a charger, headphones and an instruction manual. The only and the major difference is that these phones come without a warranty, cluttered and clunky software difficult to operate and low quality batteries which may explode anytime. The fake versions do not adhere to any safety standards of the industry. The global brands have been warning mobile users about the dangers of buying a fake model. In China, recently a 45 year old man was severely injured as his fake mobile phone exploded violently causing serious burns. In the telecom market, apart from the loss of valuable income through the purchase of substandard mobile phones and their frequent replacement by consumers, experts say there is a growing concern that the result of highly hazardous emissions from fake mobile phones may soon begin to manifest. Counterfeit mobile phones are low in quality and do not meet safety standards, and in some situation, the radiation from them is beyond the permissible limits and can cause serious damage to the health of consumers. Scientific study on the levels of radio frequency emissions from mobile devices indicated that several sophisticated looking fake and cheap phones in the market emit high levels of radiation, far higher than what is globally accepted as safe. Apart from the health hazards that consumers of counterfeit products are exposed to, they are usually not subjected to any regulatory authority and thereby not made in conformity to relevant standards and specifications. The countries where those phones are sold also lose lots of revenue since they would evade legitimate sources of government revenues like duties and taxes. Also employment opportunities are lost as genuine producers and employers of labour are hindered from attaining economies of scale and as a result forced to shut down on many occasions. BC


How to conserve your Smartphone battery


pple, BlackBerry, Samsung and other global brands have come up with smartphones equipped with powerful mobile operating systems such as Google’s Android, Nokia’s Symbian, Apple’s iOS, etc, that allows users to play games, listen to mp3s, snap pictures, have access to the Net and even stream videos. Given their diverse range of capabilities and multi-functionality running on a mobile (as in on-the-go) platform, it’s no wonder that battery life has always been a concern for developers, manufacturers and the users themselves. On average, most smartphone batteries last between one and two days before being completely depleted, and in need of a recharge. Here are some essential tips on how you can conserve your smartphone’s battery. *Turn off vibrations Vibrations are great for notifying you about incoming calls or messages when you’re in places where it’s necessary to keep the phone silent. In places where it doesn’t matter, it will be better for you to use your ringtone as notification if you want to keep your smartphones on longer. *Dim your screen This affects battery life drastically. It’s obvious that dimming your screen will reduce your smartphone’s power consumption since we all have to activate the screen whenever we use our phones. If our screen is brightly lit up every couple of minutes when we check our emails and such, it eventually will zap battery juice. Auto-brightness setting enables the smartphone to adjust the brightness to its optimal level for reading while conserving battery life. On the other hand though, you may consider tuning the level permanently to the dimmest level that you can still read under without straining your eyes. Doing so may do wonders to your battery life in the long run. *Shorten screen timeout In the same manner, if you wish to minimize the power consumption of your smartphone of the screen display, you ought to consider shortening the screen timeout. This decides how long the screen will remain lit after you finish interacting with it. * Switching off when inactive Although it is true that turning on your phone consumes more power than unlocking your phone, switching it off for a couple of hours can save more battery than leaving it on sleep or inactive mode. If you know you’re not going to touch your phone for an extended period of time, such as when you’re attending a meeting or sleeping, you can actually cut down a significant amount of energy consumption if you simply switch it off. *Close unnecessary apps Some of us open app after app and don’t bother to close them even after we no longer need to use them. This multitasking capability is a common feature of smartphones, but it is also a main reason why battery life gets drained away easily. The worst thing is that you’re losing battery juice when you are not even using them. Leaving them open will leave your battery at half-bar in no time. *Disable GPS Certain apps eat up more battery juice than others, particularly apps which utilize the GPS system to track your location. Your smartphone has a GPS unit that allows the sending and receiving of signals to and from satellites to determine your exact location, which is integral for some apps to work, for example, map-based apps like Google Maps or to check-in on Facebook. When left running in the background, some of these apps may continue to send and receive signals. It takes a lot out of your battery to continuously do that, even if you aren’t aware of it. Hence, you should ensure that those particular apps are closed when you really don’t need them. *No Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, 3G/4G when not in use Energy is consumed whenever your smartphone searches for signals, Wi-Fi, 3G or Bluetooth etc. When the reception is poor, the phone will continue scanning to attain a good connection. Repeated searches for these signals can easily make your battery level drop a notch. BC

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Business Courage


Airtel Africa partners UN Women


omen farmers in the East and Horn of Africa region are poised to benefit from practical informationsharing tools via Airtel’s mobile networks. This follows a memorandum of understanding signed between the UN Women (The United Nations entity for gender equality and the empowerment of women) and Airtel Africa. As per the MoU, UN Women will identify the farmers to be covered under this initiative, whilst Airtel will package and deliver the appropriate mobile solutions to support their livelihoods and enhance their efficiency. Commenting on the partnership, Andre Beyers, the Chief Marketing Officer of Airtel Africa said: “The empowerment of women is essential to economic development, especially in rural and agricultural economies. We are pleased to partner with UN Women and contribute to their agenda of gender equality and empowerment of women by leveraging the possibilities mobile telephony has to offer.” Under the agreement, Airtel Africa will establish a Farmer’s Information System, which will enable women farmers to access real time information related to weather, changes to the policy environment (such as taxation and regulation), available support services; as well as other areas. In addition, Airtel will also offer Internet protocol messaging services and closed user groups. Mobile connectivity gives rural communities access to education, banking facilities and opportunities to increase trade. By connecting rural communities through its mobile networks, Airtel aims to create positive community impact, greater social interaction and opportunities for

economic development. Christine Musisi, UN Women’s Regional Programme Director for the East and Horn of Africa, said: “This exciting new partnership will use the power of mobile telecommunications to engage and empower women in rural and urban areas. Working with Airtel, UN Women can reach entrepreneurs faster, through communications platforms as they already own mobile phones. Increasingly, both the public and private sectors recognize that empowering women is smart economics, and that women must be brought to the heart of Africa’s development. We will work closely with Airtel to train women so that they, their families, and the region can reap the benefits of this opportunity.” The two-year partnership between Airtel and UN WOMEN aims at building the skills, capabilities and resources of women entrepreneurs. Women provide approximately 70 percent of agricultural labour and produce 90 per cent of all food, yet do not always share equally in the economic benefits of the industry. Airtel and UN Women are dedicated to helping women farmers enhance their productive capacity and international competitiveness in the countries where they jointly operate. Airtel believes that entrepreneurship and the development of the private sector are essential to achieving economic development and poverty eradication. Under this agreement, Airtel will also co-finance initiatives and projects promoting the empowerment of women and the girl child.

O2 launches app to challenge Skype


2 has launched an app which allows users make and receive phone calls and texts via a tablet, computer or smartphone. Tu Go is available for Android, Apple’s iOS

Ronan Dunne, O2 Boss

Monday, March 4, 2013

devices and Windows 7 PCs but limited to “pay monthly” subscribers - so excludes corporate accounts. Tu Go deducts charges from the user’s existing call minutes allowance, unlike Skype and other chat apps which involve the purchase of credit. Analysts suggest this billing innovation could prove disruptive. O2’s owner Telefonica has experimented with Voip (voice over internet protocol) tech before with its Tu Me app which was launched in 2012 with limited success. However, the earlier program required both parties in the conversation to be using the software, while Tu Go only needs the caller to have launched the app. Tu Go has been available through Apple’s iOS store since October last year, but had previously restricted its functions to about 1,000 testers. It works over wi-fi or 3G/4G data connections. The cost is the same as if the user had made a normal call through their O2 mobile. The aim is to free people from being tied to a single handset, said product manager Caroline Dundas. O2 is responding to competition from Microsoft’s Skype unit and other Voip services “Customers can now take their mobile number wherever they like, even away from their mobiles,” she said. Users can be logged into the service on up to five devices at once - meaning all will ring if they receive a call - including handsets using Sim cards associated with different networks and internet enabled gadgets such as iPods. Dundas likened the service to the way email developed. “In the early days you could only access email from the machine it was installed on but then web mail came along and that allowed you to access messages from any device,” she said. The effort represents the telecom industry’s latest attempt to tackle competition

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from Skype and other thirdparty Voip services. These typically do not charge for app-to-app calls, but do require the user to buy credit if they want to call or send a text to a standard mobile or landline number. BT already offers its own service - SmartTalk - offering its residential customers the ability to make calls on their smartphone for the same price as if they were using their landline. Orange and T-Mobile are also finishing work on their own facility which they plan to roll out later this year, But the scale of the threat was highlighted earlier last week when the chairman of China Mobile - the world’s largest telecom carrier - said his firm was now more concerned about the challenge posed by Microsoft’s Skype and Tencent’s WeChat services than it was about competition from China’s rival mobile networks.

Etisalat launches new Tariff Plan


tisalat Nigeria has launched a new tariff plan known as Easyday. The new tariff plan enables subscribers on its easy starter and easy cliq packages to enjoy lower tariffs based on their daily spend. The Easyday tariff plan which is available to Etisalat’s existing and prospective subscribers is activated once the subscriber reaches a certain threshold, allowing customers on the package to get low tariffs to make all their national calls for the rest of the day. New subscribers can activate and enjoy the new tariff plan, by buying either an easycliq or easy starter line, and then opting-into the Easy day plan to get lower call tariffs daily. For existing subscribers using the easycliq or easystarter packages, all they need to do is simply migrate to the new tariff plan. New and existing subscribers can opt in by dialing *239*1#. Etisalat’s Chief Commercial Officer, Wael Ammar said “This is a unique tariff plan based on regressive billing such that when you have used up to a particular amount in a day, your call cost per second is instantly lowered. Once you opt-in to easy day, your tariff drops first to 40k/sec to all networks. Once a subscriber then spends N50 in a day, either on calls, SMS or PAYG data, all subsequent calls will be charged at 20k/sec for the rest of the day ” he said. Ammar said it was the product of months of intensive consumer research. “As a customer-centric brand, we


are always in tune with the desires of our customers, and will always go the extra mile to make sure that these desires are met,” he said.

Facebook to showcase new look for newsfeed


acebook Inc will unveil a new look for its popular “newsfeed” this week, the latest move by the Web company to revamp key elements of its 1-billion member social network. Facebook will showcase the newsfeed makeover at a media event on March 7 at its Menlo Park, California headquarters, the company said in an emailed invitation sent to reporters on Friday. The event will be Facebook’s second high-profile product event this year, following the rollout of its social search feature in January. Shares of Facebook, the world’s No.1 social network, were up 20 cents at $27.45 in midday trading on Friday. BC

Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook founder

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Monday, March 4, 2013

LSE eyes more Nigerian firms listing T

he London Stock Exchange (LSE), expects an increase in new listings from African companies this year as businesses in the continent’s fast-growing economies seek to attract foreign investors. London, which has seen a general drop off in listing activity over the past few years due to the global financial crisis, expects companies from countries including Chad, Mozambique, Nigeria and Kenya could go public on its markets. “Africa is a very big focus for us in terms of future opportunity,” Ibukun Adebayo, the LSE’s Head of Equity Primary Markets for Africa, Middle East and South Asia, said, adding that “You will see Africa have its fair share among this year’s listings.” Improving equity markets -- the UK’s FTSE100 blue-chip index is up by about 7.6 per cent this year -- and lower volatility are helping to entice companies, while Africa’s attractive growth prospects are drawing in investors seeking an alternative to the moribund returns on offer in the developed world.

Adebayo expects the new African listings to be a mixture of firms joining its junior Alternative Investment Market (AIM), favoured by small but fast-growing companies, as well as its main market. London is known as a hub for natural resources companies and has previously attracted African firms from this sector. While it expects this to continue, Adebayo said interest was widening, including companies in sectors such as financial and consumer. The LSE is already home to 96 companies whose main operations are in Sub Saharan-Africa, including 23 which have shares listed on its main market. Companies domiciled in Africa have raised more than $15.3 billion globally from initial public offerings (IPOs) over the last 10 years, according to Thomson Reuters data, almost $3 billion of which was raised in London. Many more companies which are incorporated outside of Africa, but have

their main operations on the continent, have also raised money in London. “Where it makes sense is if the business is an international business which simply has a base in Africa, or for companies operating in an area or sector which is better understood in London where the company could realise a better valuation, such as natural resources or infrastructure,” he said. President of Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote in May last year had said that he was aiming to list his $11 billion cement company, Dangote Cement in London by the third quarter of 2013, while Kenya’s Equity Bank is also among companies considering overseas listing. The LSE has been on a push to secure links with exchanges in emerging economies and has been involved in helping to develop the stock exchange and capital markets infrastructure in resourcerich Mongolia. It is now hoping to do a similar thing in Angola. “There are a lot of private sector

companies that need access to capital beyond just using the banks,” said Adebayo, highlighting areas such as real estate, oil services, and consumer sectors like telecommunications. Investment bankers have also flagged Africa as a likely source of listings activity this year. According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Sub-Saharan Africa is the world’s second-fastest growing region after developing Asia, with growth of around 5.8 percent forecast this year, compared to just 1 percent in the UK. African investment funds have grown nearly five times in value over the past six years. Beyond natural resources, favoured investment plays now include banking stocks, particularly in Nigeria, as a growing middle class leads to more demand for financial services. Telecoms and pharmaceuticals are also popular. Global private equity companies have also been showing an increasing interest in investing in Africa, with large buyout houses like Carlyle setting up offices there. “Everything that one would want to see in place is certainly in place,” Adebayo said. BC

Fidelity Bank finances 1.2bn production capacity aluminum can factory


idelity Bank Plc said it is financing the multi-million naira aluminium can project in Aba, Abia State. The factory which is expected to be ready soon, will take off with an initial production capacity of 1.2 billion cans per annum. This clearly surpasses the Agbara Can Manufacturing Factory that took off with an initial production capacity of 600 million cans per year, thus making the new plant the largest aluminium can factory in Africa. Managing Director/CEO, Fidelity Bank Plc, Reginald Ihejiahi who made the disclosure explained that the financing options adopted by the bank were largely driven by its commitment and faith in the development of the Nigerian economy. “We are a bank operating in an emerging market and we believe that the industrial sector remains the heart of banking in

such markets.” Ihejiahi, whose bank also financed the Agbara Can Manufacturing factory that was constructed by GZ Industries further explained that as an institution in business purely for commercial reasons, the bank is mandated to report to its shareholders,. This implies that the bank should have steady streams of income at the end of the year, and therefore, should carefully select the projects it would sponsor at any given time as part of its commitment to the development of the economy. He added that Fidelity Bank was achieving this by putting together capital, business advisory and personnel to drive the process. “When we opened Agbara Can manufacturing factory constructed by GZ Industries and which was commissioned







2010, it started with 600 million cans per annum, but the second phase of its development took its production to 900 million cans and later to 1.2 billion. However, the Aba Can manufacturing company which is nearing completion will take off from the first day with 1.2 billion production capacity and we believe that with this pace, Nigeria will soon be selfsufficient in aluminium can production.” Ihejiahi said that the facility offers enormous opportunity for job creation and other economic benefits to the citizens of the country. “The Aba Can factory is expected to service the breweries and beverage companies in the South East and South South parts of the country, and by extension, other parts of Nigeria. We are also not ruling out export opportunities to West African and other African countries because of the size of the factory,” he said. BC

The Stock Market last week


turnover of 2.280 billion shares worth N24.633 billion in 28,170 deals were transacted last week on the floor of The Exchange in contrast to a total of 2.482 billion shares valued at N22.815 billion that exchanged hands the previous week in 32,471 deals. The Financial Services sector was the most active during the week, contributing 67.70 per cent, 58.52 per cent and 55.59 per cent to the total equity turnover volume, value and number of trades respectively in 1.543 billion shares valued at N14.417 billion exchanged hands by investors in 15,660 deals. The Conglomerates sector followed TOP 10 PRICE GAINERS: Company PRESCO PLC CONOIL PLC ASHAKA CEM PLC LAFARGE WAPCO PLC. OKOMU OIL PALM PLC. OANDO PLC NCR (NIGERIA) PLC. ZENITH BANK PLC UNILEVER NIGERIA PLC. DN MEYER PLC.

Open 21.85 23.10 22.80 66.10 52.36 14.00 17.58 20.51 49.50 2.20

Close 25.53 25.20 24.38 67.50 53.55 14.98 18.45 21.10 50.00 2.66

with a turnover volume of 275.094 million shares worth N554.361 billion in 1,530 deals contributing 12.07 per cent, 2.25 per cent and 5.43 per cent to the total equity turnover volume, value and number of deals respectively. The Consumer Goods sector came third with a turnover volume of 138.015 million shares worth N7.719 billion in 4,820 deals. Trading in the top three equities namely Transnational Corporation of Nigeria Plc, FBN Holdings Plc and Zenith Bank Plc (measured by turnover volume) accounted for 642.568 million shares worth N8.085 billion in 5,325 deals contributing 28.19 per cent, 32.82

Gain (N) 3.68 2.10 1.58 1.40 1.19 0.98 0.87 0.59 0.50 0.46

% Change 16.84 9.09 6.93 2.12 2.27 7.00 4.95 2.88 1.01 20.91

per cent and 18.90 per cent to the total equity turnover volume, value and deals respectively. Also traded during the week were 2,681 units of NewGold Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) valued at N6.562 million exchanged hands in eight deals in contrast to a total of 193 units valued at N471,970 transacted last week in four deals. In addition, 1,887 units of FGN bonds valued at N2.314 million were traded during the week in 20 deals in contrast to 16,050 units valued at N19.339 million transacted last week in 66 deals. However, there were no transactions in the State/Local Government Bonds and


Open 160.00 166.00 890.00 37.05 130.00 29.00 16.00 77.00 10.22 5.20

Close 147.99 161.50 886.00 35.50 128.50 27.55 14.90 76.13 9.50 4.69

Loss (N) -12.01 -4.50 -4.00 -1.55 -1.50 -1.45 -1.10 -0.87 0.72 -0.51

% Change -7.51 -2.71 -0.45 -4.18 -1.15 -5.00 -6.88 -1.13 7.05 -9.81

Corporate Bonds/Debentures sectors. See details below Index Movement The NSE All-Share Index depreciated by 711.88 basis points or 2.10 per cent to close on Friday at 33,183.20. Also, the market capitalization of the listed equities depreciated by the same margin to close at N10.618 trillion. The Bloomberg NSE Banking and Bloomberg NSE Oil/Gas appreciated by 0.63 per cent and 1.83 per cent respectively. While Bloomberg NSE 30, Bloomberg NSE Consumer Goods, Bloomberg NSE Insurance and NSE Lotus II depreciated by 1.89 per cent, 1.26 per cent, 3.59 per cent and 1.97 per cent respectively. The table below summarizes the movements in the NSE indices Summary of Price Changes A review of the equity price movements indicated that 38 equities gained while 46 equities recorded price declines and 113 equities remained constant. When compared with the preceding week, 38 equities gained while 55 equities recorded price declines and 104 equities remained constant. BC

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Monday, March 4, 2013

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2013 Honda Accord: A new level o T

he ninth-generation Accord is a stunning combination of style and sophistication. Not only do the Accord Sedan and Coupe sport dynamic new exterior and interior designs, they also show off a host of new technologies. Completely redesigned for 2013, the all-new Honda Accord provides a host of powertrain, engineering, electronic and safety firsts combined with Honda’s trademark visibility and smart design. Available in four model choices, including the EX-L V6 with a completely new interior, the 2013 Accord line-up includes Sedan and Coupe models powered by four-cylinder, V-6 and hybrid powertrains, and teamed to manual, automatic and continuously variable transmission (CVT) options. Honda has taken high tech, high performance and high style to the next level. The ninth-generation Accord is the most luxurious Accord yet, while still retaining its hallmark value. New technology abounds from bumper to bumper, inside to outside, and both the sedan and coupe have a bolder style than ever before. The Accord delivers a spacious and luxurious passenger cabin wrapped in an upscale, sophisticated body style that will stand the test of time. Beyond the beautiful exterior, it was truly designed around the needs of the driver and passengers alike. Smart interior packaging allows for cargo space in both the Accord Sedan and the Coupe, while the overall exterior lengths are noticeably shortened, contributing to a sportier driving character and easier parking. An expansive greenhouse and generous rear-seat area provide excellent levels of visibility and comfort for the driver and all passengers. Advanced Technology Honda has changed the way you interact with your Accord and connect with your friends. The new Accord introduces HondaLink™, a cloud-based system that connects you to Bluetooth ® Streaming Audio, Pandora ® internet radio, SMS text message function and all your favourite digital music content without hassling with your mobile phone. HondaLink™ featuring Aha™ compatibility gives you access to personalized restaurant searches, Facebook audio feeds, audio books

and more via the audio system m interface and voice recognition.. Providing greater peace of mind for the driver, the 2013 Accord comes with ingenious new safety features, such as Lane Departure Warning (LDW) and Forward Collision Warning (FCW). Plus, the available next generation of Honda’s ACE™ body structure helps enhance frontal crash performance. s The 2013 Accord Sedan is t. the most efficient Accord yet. Four-cylinder models with the e continuously variable transmisssion (CVT) are rated at 36 mpg highway, while V-6 models are rated at 34 mpg highway. And, to keep your trips to the pump as painless as possible, all Accord models run on regular, unleaded gasoline. The 2013 Accord is the first Accord to feature Eco Assist™, Honda’s revolutionary, fuel-efficiency technology. Eco Assist™ has two components that work together to help you get more miles from each fill-up, the ECON button and the efficiency coaching bars. Exterior Styling The 2013 Accord’s styling is exhilarating, sophisticated and premium. Starting in the front, a bold new grille imparts a distinctive and dynamic tension that complements the powerful look of the hood’s multiple styling lines. Deeply sculpted character line flows through the door handles and flares upward toward the rear of the vehicle to further convey a sense of dy-

namism and sporty attitude. In the back, the inward slope where the fenders taper into the trunk and C-pillars is designed to convey a powerful, athletic stance from the rear. Powertrain As in previous generations, two gasoline engines are available on the 2013 Honda Accord Sedan and Coupe. These include a new Earth Dreams 2.4-litre 4-cylinder and a new Earth Dreams 3.5-liter V-6 with revised VTEC + VCM functions. The base 173-horsepower (hp) 4-cylinder engine is coupled to an efficient 5-speed automatic transmission. Meanwhile, Accord V-6 models feature a 276-horsepower 3.5-liter engine coupled to a 6-speed automatic transmission. Body Crisply styled and aerodynamically efficient, the 2013 Accord Sedan and Coupe body designs are the most sophisticated in Accord history. The

2013 Accord unit-body uses 55.8 per cent high-tensile steel, an extremely high grade that have never before been used in any Accord. This contributes to higher body rigidity and reduced weight, which directly benefits ride and handling, interior quietness, performance and efficiency and long-term durability. With its contoured bodysides, the Sedan’s exterior design is sleek, bold and decisive, while the Coupe’s design is rakish, taut and athletic. Extensive use of under-covers improves aerodynamics for increased fuel efficiency, while other advances include available LED headlights, DRLs and brake lights, mirror-mounted turn signals. Chassis Literally, every aspect of the Accord’s chassis was reviewed or redesigned to create the best possible driving experience. The new Accord is quieter and more responsive on city streets,

smoother and more composed on the highway, and even more faithful to the driver’s wishes on winding roads. New features for Accord include a MacPherson strut front suspension, a steel and aluminium front sub frame and electric power steering (EPS). Standard Active Noise Control (ANC) and Active Sound Control (ASC) on both 4-cylinder and V-6 models counteract engine noise, particularly at high rpm. The lightweight MacPherson strut front suspension improves ride and handling qualities while also reducing interior noise, vibration and harshness (NVH). The new aluminium and steel front sub frame reduces weight and, in conjunction with the new independent multi-link rear suspension, further reduces NVH. Careful aerodynamic tailoring of the under body and suspension systems provides additional noise reductions. The new EPS setup uses an electric motor to assist the rack-and-pinion steering rather

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Business Courage A19 35

Monday, March 4, 2013

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f sophistication

Autocare How to choose auto parts online


here are several advantages in buying auto parts online. Firstly, you get lot more choices in terms of price and quality. Secondly, the exact auto part that you are looking for may not be available in your local store, while there are many e-commerce stores to choose from that deal with the sale of auto parts. Finally, you would be spending lot of time travelling to get a component you need from a brick-andmortar shop. This can be completely avoided when you shop online. Here are some tips for choosing auto parts online. Know your vehicle’s model and make Most automobiles have several variants, and each of these variants has auto components that are different. For example, even if make and model are the same between two cars, the different versions would mean that at least, a few components being used are different. It would be advisable to study the user manual well before embarking on any online purchase.

than the hydraulic assist of the previous Accord. The result is reduced steering effort and fuel consumption, with improved precision, feel and stability. Interior Like every Accord before it, the ninth-generation embraces a customer focus from the inside out. Smart interior packaging allows for increased passenger and cargo space in the sedan and the coupe, while the overall exterior lengths are shortened, contributing to a sportier driving character and easier parking. An expansive and roomy cabin and generous rear seating area provide excellent levels of visibility and comfort for the driver and all passengers. A completely new interior provides a level of luxury and craftsmanship never before seen in the Accord. For the Sedan models, available Beige cloth or leather interior combines welcoming comfort with an impressive range of available technologies. Exclusively avail-

able on 3.5 EX Sport grade is the Black leather interiors. And available exclusive on 3.5 EX Coupe is two tone leather seat Black and White, like a Panda. Standard features include redesigned seating and simplified controls and instrumentation. Even the leather steering wheel (available from EX grade onwards) has been specially crafted with chain stitch that gives a comfortable and smooth feel. Compared to the previous edition, both the 2013 Accord Sedan and Coupe offer spacious accommodations for five passengers, and a roomy trunk with a flatter load floor for greater utility. Although the Accord’s length has decreased by 60 mm and the wheelbase is 25 mm shorter, key interior dimensions grow. Rear leg room increases over 32 mm, both front and rear shoulder room increase, and trunk space is up over 22 litres. Altogether, the interior is remarkably quiet, stylish and upscale, with highquality materials, exemplary fit and finish, and advanced seat-

ing comfort and ergonomics. Contemporary onboard electronics help the Accord driver seamlessly interface with the latest generation of compatible personal mobile electronics. Standard features on all Accords include a bright, fullcolour 8-inch (diagonal) ‘intelligent’ Multi-Information Display (i-MID). Available on EX grade and above is Bluetooth HandsFreeLink phone interface. New available touchscreen panel, Navigation System with optional Arabic display, multi-angle rear view camera are some of the advanced features available on new Accord. Safety The 2013 Accord Sedan and Coupe offer the greatest range of active and passive safety features in Honda history. Collision safety engineering includes the updated Advanced Compatibility Engineering (ACE) body structure, which improves occupant protection and crash compatibility in frontal collisions, and the most extensive use of high-strength steel in Accord history. The Accord’s impact-absorbing front body design can even help attenuate energy in the event of a frontal collision with a pedestrian. Passive-safety features include six airbags, including dual-stage, multiple-threshold front airbags, front side airbags, and side curtain airbags. New SmartVent side airbags reduce the risk of excessive airbag deployment force and eliminate the need for the Accord’s previous Occupant Position Detection System (OPDS). BC

Knowledge of automotive terminologies For a layperson, the various terms for auto components used may be confusing .It pays to clarify with an expert or using the internet, failing which the entire transaction may become a waste of time and money. Understanding the components of the automobile and the various roles that they play would be extremely useful to anyone interested in online shopping. Unavailable parts It is quite possible that some parts that you are looking for is not available in market early years of launching a vehicle’s launching. In that case, the only option is to look for a dealer who has these parts. Normally the components become available in the aftermarket once the automobile is on the road for a few years. Specifications check All automotive components have very clear specifications. In case you purchase a wrong component, which may be just a little different from your actual requirement, you are left with a big headache of replacing the same with the right one. In that case, you would have to be dependent on the returns policy of the particular website and also the waiting time could be significant. Unbranded auto parts Some components that can be purchased need not be from original auto parts manufacturers. These are also called generic parts and work with different automobiles. When you are purchasing generic parts, do look out for elements like warranty and also the track record to ensure that you get the best value for your money. Review and ratings One thing that is a must while purchasing online is to search the internet for reviews and ratings of the online auto parts dealer. It would be preferable to find out how other customers have used the products and services of the online dealer and who have the same make and model as yours. This would give you a true sense if you are making a correct choice. Automotive discussion forums There are several automotive forums on the internet, comprising car lovers who can give a lot of useful tips and suggestions on car maintenance. It is also a great place to find out about the parts you want and where you can buy them at a competitive price BC

A20 36

Business Courage

Sterling Bank launches new customer friendly product


n line with the bank’s objective of making its services available to everyone in the country irrespective of socio-economic status and in conformity with the new Know Your Customer (KYC) regulations set out by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN); Sterling Bank has announced its Kia Kia Account for all to enjoy. KIA KIA account according to a statement from the bank, gives people in the low income bracket such as artisans and other unbanked people in the country easy and instant access to top class banking services as offered by Sterling Bank. The account is distinguished by the immense ease and convenience associated with its opening process as it can be opened on the spot even without the customer being physically present at the branch with little or no Know Your Customer (KYC) documentation required. The KYC requirement for the lower end of the population has always been a challenge as experienced with opening an account. Sterling KIA – KIA account affords the customers the opportunity to open an account without hassles, which implies that prospective customers can

Yemi Adeola, Sterling Bank boss

complete their savings account opening process and start running the account instantly by filling a simple form onsite at branches or online. Customers can open a Sterling KIA KIA account with zero balance and there is no minimum balance requirement on the account once it starts to operate. As with most savings accounts, only the account holder can make withdrawals on the account; but deposits by third parties are allowed. Holders of the Sterling KiaKia Account are able to transfer money to other accounts within and outside Sterling Bank in Nigeria. BC



the implementation of developmental projects across the country. Adding that, the government of Delta State is hopeful that the existing strong and cordial relationship between Guinness and Delta State would be further strengthened by the sitting of Guinness Brewery in the state in the near future. Similarly, while welcoming the management of Guinness Nigeria to his palace, the Dein of Agbor, Dr. Benjamin Ikenchuku, commended the corporation for donating a mini-water works to the Oza Nogogo community. “We appreciate Guinness Nigeria Plc for all their efforts in bringing development to our community through the donation of a mini-water works to Oza Nogogo community as part of its Water of Life programme. We hope that Guinness would do more to uplift our community”. He prayed for Guinness Nigeria to grow from strength to strength, and also urged the corporation to beam its light on other areas of need of the people and embark on more development projects in the community. BC

National Mirror

Okonjo Iweala’s empty statistics


Delta lauds Guinness, seeks more investment he Managing Director of the nation’s leading producer and distributor of beverage products, Guinness Nigeria Plc, Seni Adetu has underscored the need for corporations to align business practices with societal needs and expectations as this will drive sustainable development in the country. This was made known during a courtesy visit to the Governor of Delta State Government, Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan, and to the Dein of Agbor, His Royal Highness, Dr. Benjamin Ikechukwu. Adetu said, “While it is important to make profit and give returns to shareholders, it also a vital part of a company’s operations to give back to the society through sustainable development projects which uplift the fortunes of the society. Guinness Nigeria gives back to the society with the knowledge of stakeholders’ wants and needs to ensure sustainability and long-term value delivery”. He said this philosophy is at the core of development projects implemented by Guinness Nigeria across the country. The Governor represented by his Deputy, Professor Amos Utuala described Guinness Nigeria as a committed partner in sustainable development and commended the company for executing projects that meet the needs of Nigerians such as the Water of Life Project donated to the Oza Nogogo community, in Agbor, Delta State. Lauding the project, Professor Utuala called on multinational corporations in Nigeria to emulate Guinness Nigeria Plc by ensuring excellence in delivery corporate social responsibility projects. He also commended Guinness for its immense contributions to the economy through tax payments, provision of direct and indirect employment to thousands of Nigerians as well as

Monday, March 4, 2013

ast week, the Coordinating Minister of the Economy, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, was forced to take on critics of the administration with respect to the way the economy was being run as well as the alleged mismanagement of the excess crude account, insisting along the line that all is well. The minister was apparently responding to a recent barrage of criticism from different fronts including a broadside from the former United States President Bill Clinton, who had carpeted the nation’s leaders was wasting oil revenues through the years; claims by former Minister and Vice President of the World bank, Mrs Oby Ezekwesili that the immediate past and present administration had squandered excess crude account saving as well as the regular knocks from various groups and opposition parties who do not see anything good in the government’s policies and programmes. At a time this current government seems to be making appreciable progress in implementing much needed reform in the power sector, renewing infrastructure in the aviation industry, charting a new path for the agricultural sector and completing financial sector reforms, the minister was not ready to take such bashing lying low. So she resorted to her usual tactics reeling out statistics and figures to show that Nigeria’s economy was not weak or collapsing as claimed but is indeed strong and buoyant and is one of the few that is growing amid a global economy on the brink of another recession, going by improvement recorded in basic economic indices. According to Okonjo-Iweala, in posts on social media and in paid adverts in the newspapers, “Inflation is now down to single-digit at nine per cent in January 2013, compared with 12.6 per cent in January 2012. The exchange rate has been relatively stable, and the fiscal deficit at just under two per cent of GDP is on a downward trajectory, and below our threshold of three per cent of GDP,” she said. She pointed out also that national debt is at a sustainable level at about 19.4 per cent of GDP. Overall, GDP growth for 2012 was 6.5 per cent, and projected at 6.75 per cent for 2013, compared with the projected global growth of 3.5 per cent. These figures she observed have been independently noted and validated by international ratings agencies such as Fitch, Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s which have upgraded the country’s economic outlook, even as other countries are being downgraded. The fact of the matter however is that these statistics have very little bearing with the quality of life in Nigeria in terms of poverty alleviation or job creation, which is why the minister

was unable to say even in her effusive posting just how many jobs have been created to match the GDP growth figures and all the rest. The true measure of economic growth and prosperity in any economy is the level of disposable income of citizens. Most Nigerians will insist that with national employment rate hovering around 20 per cent and half of youths aged between 15 and 24 totally jobless, the GDP growth statistics remain meaningless. However, the statistics point to the potential of even further stronger growth that could come with the expansion of the income base to support domestic consumption. The government has made some commitments to addressing the huge unemployment crisis and promised to create about three million jobs over the next five years or so, but that is nothing really new. Creating jobs is a function of policy and the environment. The expectation has been that Nigeria, with her huge resources and the largest internal market in Africa would be a natural case for job creation but this has not happened largely due to the suffocating atmosphere that businesses have to operate, which has slowed the rate of growth of new business and stultified the capacity of existing industries especially in the small and medium enterprise segment to expand. Indeed, the frequent government policy somersaults, acute power shortage, a near primitive transportation infrastructure, poor access to credit, extortionate tax system, lack of a structured support system for entrepreneurship and a poor contract enforcement mechanism has made genuine entrepreneurship in Nigeria a harrowing experience with the failure rate of startups rather high. Yet the government is betting on the private sector to deliver on its job growth promise. The question to ask perhaps is: Are there genuine efforts to help the small and medium enterprises access to credit, business skills acquisition, tax breaks and other incentives that should stimulate business. The Chinese economy is being sustained by about 10 million small business and scores of very large ones, what is wrong with us? The spate of violence across the nation is largely driven by hopelessness among the youth exacerbated by the inadequate investments in the security apparatus, especially the police. The good intentions of the government are noted but the people want to see changes right away. Okonjo-Iweala herself acknowledged the rising inequality in the polity and should not expect us to sing hallelujah just yet. BC

National Mirror

Business Courage

Monday, March 4, 2013

A21 37

Jaiz Bank’s share capital rises to N11bn


he Jaiz Bank Plc last Friday said that its share capital has risen to N11 billion from the initial N5 billion when it started operation in January 2011. The Managing Director, Mohammed Bintube said this at the ongoing 34th Kaduna International Trade fair. Represented by Hassan Usman, the General Manager, Business Development, Bintube said work was in progress to upgrade the bank’s licence to allow it operate branches in all the states of the federation. He said that 25 new branches of the bank would be opened this year, with 10 of them coming on stream before the end this financial quarter. ``The bank was built on


strong fundamental principles of high ethics, fairness, objectivity and transparency. Jaiz offers financing of products and services like other conventional banks

except of course, these are devoid of interest. Our services are available to all irrespective of race or religion and it is about building partnership for mutual interest,’’ he said. BC

Neimeth grows turnover by 22.7 per cent, as profit dips


eimeth Pharmaceuticals Plc, one of the leading drug companies in the country, disclosed last Friday in Lagos that it recorded a turnover growth of 22.7 per cent for the year ending December 2012. The company in its audited eighteen months financial results ending September 2012 presented to the Nigeria Stock Exchange said that turnover grew from N1.899 billion in the corresponding year 2011 to N2.330 billion in the year under review, while Gross Profit rose by 17.6 per cent to stand at N1.302 billion in 2012 as against N1.107 billion recorded in 2011. It added that the operating profit dropped by 80 per cent from N241.136 million in

Orjiakor, Chairman, Neimeth

the previous year of 2011 to N48.184 million in 2012, adding that Profit/(loss) before taxation stood at N87.508

million in the year under review when compared with N123.436 million recorded in 2011, this representing a decline of 29.1 per cent. The statement further said that taxation also rose to N18.204 million in the year under review as against N10.359 million recorded in 2011, this representing 75.7 per cent growth. The company further said that its profit/(loss) after taxation dropped by 38.7 per cent to N69.304 million as against the corresponding year of 2011 were it recorded N113.077 million, adding that the company’s fixed assets rose slightly by 2.2 per cent to stand at N402.981 million when compared with N394.163 million it recorded in 2012. BC

NSE’s market capitalisation increases by N35bn


ctivities on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) last Friday maintained an upward trend as the market capitalisation appreciated by N35 billion. The market capitalisation, which opened at N10.58 trillion rose by 0.33 per cent to close at N10.62 trillion. This is due to price appreciation by blue chips. Also, the All-Share Index increased by 108.05 basis points or 0.33 per cent to close at 33,183.19 as against the 33,075.14 posted on Thursday. Dangote Cement topped the gainers’ chart with N1.97 to close at N147.99 per share. It was followed by UACN with a gain of N1.50 to close at N50, while Ashaka Cement appreciated by N1.38 to close at N24.38 per share. Conoil rose by N1.20 to close

Onyema, DG, NSE

at N25.20 while Oando gained N1.09 to close at N14.98 per share. On the other hand, NewGold topped the losers’ chart by N58 to close at N2,414 per unit. Nigerian Breweries came

second with a loss of N3.50 to close at N161.50 while Nestle lost N2 to close at N886 per share. Air Service lost 52k to close at N4.69 while National Salt dropped 27k to close at N9.21 per share. In all, investors bought and sold 469.35 million shares worth N3.08 billion traded in 5,042 deals. This is against a total of 411.26 million shares valued N7.59 billion traded in 5,682 deals on Thursday. Hallmark Insurance emerged the most traded stock, accounting for 120 million shares worth N60 million. It was trailed by Transcorp with 73.68 million shares worth N109.73 million while Access Bank accounted for 30.76 million valued N359.85 million. BC

Market Indicators for Week Ended 01-03-13 All-Share Index 33,183.20 points Market Capitalisation N10,618,383,173,096.95 Stock Updates GAINERS COMPANY
















































Inter-Bank Rates TENOR

RATE%(PREV) 22-Feb-2013

RATE%(CURR) 01-Mar-2013


10.2500 – 11.7500

11.0000 – 12.0000


10.0000 – 12.1500

11.0000 – 12.2500

Primary Market Auction TENOR 91-Days

AMOUNT (N’mn) 42057.31

RATE (%) 10.32

DATE 22-Feb-13









Open Market Operation TENOR


RATE (%)














Wholesale Dutch Auction System AMOUNT OFFERED











A22 38

Business Courage

Monday, March 4, 2013

National Mirror

Nestle Nigeria Plc: Building investment strength on business expansion By Tayo Adeleke


inancial x-ray on the audited financial report of Nestle Nigeria Plc for period ended December 2012 showed an upward performance, suggesting that the company’s management is doing well to earn more income for the company. The summary of the results revealed increased performance over the financial year ended December 2011. Breakdown of the full year audited report shows that top indices improved over previous year while bottom line indices nosedived from the previous year’s performance. However, the company’s assets is healthy, having increased significantly during the period as a result of current investment of N5.4 billion ultra modern distribution centre in Agbara, Ogun State. In the recent years, the management of the company did massive investments in facilities and equipment and has so far, spent over N24 billion on the company various facilities.

Business Strategies Nestle Nigeria Plc inaugurated a N5.4 billion ultra modern distribution centre in Agbara, Ogun State, the investment which its Managing Director, Martin Woolnough, said will further strengthen Nigeria’s role as the largest manufacturing operation of Nestle in the West and Central African region. He said the factory had witnessed infrastructure upgrades since 2010, including

Nestle Financial Data

the N4.56 billion Milo material handling facility; N4.13 billion cereals processing line expansion; N3.6 billion trigeneration power plant, N3.26 billion integrated malt extract plant; N1.8 billion cereals milling plant; and N1.48 billion Milo fourth vacuum band dryer. “The new state-of-theart distribution centre reflects more than just an important investment to broaden our nutrition, health and wellness business platform, it illustrates also our commitment to the growth of Nigerian economy,” Woolnough said. Performance The audited financial year ended December 31, 2012 of Nestle Nigeria Plc, shows that its top line indices improved steadily for the third consecutive year. Gross earnings grew from N98 billion in 2011 to N116.71 billion in 2012, the turnover or revenue for the review period increased by 19 per cent. The increase in revenue could be traced to the company’s investment in business expansion in the recent times. The cost cutting strategies of Nestle are working well, resulting in good profitability. Gross profit moved by 24 per cent in 2011 to N50.2 billion in 20112. Profit before Tax (PBT) increased by 37.64 per cent between 2011 and 2012 to N25 billion from N18.2 billion. Profit after Tax was N21.14 billion, up from N16.5 billion in 2011, representing an increase of 28 per cent.






Cost of sales



Gross Profit



Profit Before Taxation



Profit After Taxation



Operating Expenses



Shareholders fund



Current Asset



Current Liabilities



Fixed Assets



Current Assets-stocks



Trade Debtors



Trade Creditors



Return on Equity(%)



Gross profit Margin(%)



Profit Margin(%)



Pre tax Profit Margin(%)



Current Ratio



Quick Ratio





Profitability Ratios

Liquidity Ratios

Debtors(No of days) Debtors(No of days)



Creditors(No of days)



Martin Woolnough, Managing Director, Nestle Nigeria Plc

Profitability Ratios/Earnings Return on equity (ROE) which reveals how much profit a company earned in comparison to the total amount of shareholder equity found on the balance sheet stood at 61.83 per cent. Both gross profit margin and PBT margin in 2012 increased over the 2011 figures. Gross profit margin moved to 42.99 per cent, from 41.44 per cent while profit before tax margin grew by 2.88 basis points to 21.46 per cent. The company’s total cost as a percentage of gross earnings stood at 57.11 per cent, down from 58.66 per cent recorded in the corresponding period of 2011. PAT margin currently stands at 18.11 per cent, up

from 16.84 per cent in the corresponding period of 2011. The overall results indicate that the current year’s performance is better than the previous year’s. Liquidity Ratios One area that the management of Nestle Nigeria needs to improve on is its assets quality. This is because both current and quick ratios fall short of common rule of thumb. The current ratio which expresses the relative relationship between current assets and current liabilities stood at 1.05:1 in 2012 compared with 0.90:1 in 2011. A rule of thumb suggests that a 2:1 ratio is ordinarily

satisfactory. Similarly, quick ratio (acid -test ratio) which measures the debt-paying ability of a company also shows that the company would not be able to meet its financial obligation as at when due. Quick ratios stood at 0.70:1, up from 0.50:1 figure recorded in 2011 and 1.5:1 minimum value for a company with strong assets base. A cursory look at the balance sheet position in 2012 compared with the position as at 2011 shows that the company’s fixed assets recorded an increase. This is due to its recent investment in capital asset to boost its business expansion project. Fixed assets increased by 12.98 per cent to N62.16 billion from N55 billion in 2011. Cash and bank balances increased from N1.1 billion in financial year 2011, to record N3.81 billion 2012. Working capital grew from a deficit of N2.6 billion in 2011 to a positive figure of N1.18 billion in 2012. Stocks decreased by 11 per cent to N8.8 billion from N9.9 billion in the previous period while trade debtors increased by 23 per cent to N13.46 billion from N10.98 billion, while trade creditors increased by 31 per cent to N19 billion in 2012 from N14.5 billion in comparable period in 2011. Current asset moved from N22.2 billion in 2011 to N26.36 billion while current liabilities stood at N25.18 billion in 2012. The company did not make bank over draft in the review period but its short term borrowing inched up by 30 per cent to N3.5 billion in 2012 from N2.66 billion in 2011. Total assets hit N88.96 billion in 2012 while shareholders’ fund closed at N34.19 billion. Future Analysts believe that demand for Nestle Nigeria products remain strong in spite of economic downturn and decline in consumer purchasing power. However, high production cost, caused by rising energy, power and packaging costs is putting pressure on profit margin in the industry. Meanwhile, the expansion project embarked on by the management of Nestle Nigeria Plc is expected to generate more revenue in future. There is also the need for the management to find ways to recover its burgeoning debt which put pressure on earnings BC

National Mirror

Business Courage A23 39

Monday, March 4, 2013

STOCKWATCH Stock Exchange weekly equities summary as at Friday, Mar 01, 2013 SECURITY



NOTE NT=Not Traded on 01-03-13






MOV. (%)


1 989 780 17 746 443 490

0.64 34.01 16.15

0.50 14.53 6.40

2 200 000 000 476 955 000 1 000 000 000

0.10 6.73 2.75

N/A -13.11 -5.20

0.56 61.63 26.93




60 000 000




833 288



1 199 549 736




NT NT 784 655 NT 658 853

2.54 7.60 8.82 8.28 42.50

0.74 5.81 5.32 5.52 28.70

2 191 895 983 963 900 300 389 151 408 821 666 666 1 600 720 323

0.08 0.24 0.00 0.35 6.89


2.00 NT 1.27 NT 50.00


26.00 95.49

14.09 95.49

148 500 000 196 876 000

0.00 4.50




7.97 14.46

2.46 14.46

920 573 765 125 000 000

0.00 0.00



60 337 3 946

62.26 8.69

21.55 3.01

1 200 000 000 20 000 000

4.93 4.73

-18.18 N/A

66.00 10.07

NT 1 246 500

7.28 20.15

7.28 8.82

1 375 000 000

0.00 1.66


NT 16.35


100.00 50.00

97.00 50.00

20 000 000 250 019 781

11.75 0.75



200 000



4 772 528 415




14 000 NT 247 222 607 849 NT 948 498 NT

4.63 0.68 265.00 12.83 3.20 138.85 0.97

2.23 0.68 186.00 5.23 1.61 72.50 0.93

900 000 000 272 160 000 1 474 925 519 2 112 914 681 562 000 000 7 562 562 340 126 000 000

0.00 0.03 9.46 0.25 0.00 5.08 0.00

N/A N/A -94.86 N/A N/A -1.52 N/A

4.15 NT 290.00 23.75 NT 163.99 NT

10 645



640 590 362




NT 263 635 18 270 925 132 399 6 354 690 NT NT 538 855 NT 367 691 NT

0.50 19.90 16.20 95.00 6.60 2.70 43.96 6.70 5.66 0.88 4.22

0.50 4.15 3.64 52.50 1.91 1.00 20.41 3.86 5.66 0.50 4.22

2 000 000 000 5 000 000 000 12 000 000 000 1 879 210 666 7 930 197 658 3 722 493 620 178 200 000

0.00 0.00 0.91 3.79 0.51 0.00 2.50 1.07 0.08 1.13 0.00

N/A 4.33 -4.28 -2.07 -2.59 N/A N/A -4.06 N/A -8.24 N/A

NT 9.01 8.41 77.74 3.09 NT 20.25 9.60 NT 0.85 NT

40 000 000 1 233 375 004 360 000 000

2 280 121 56 334

29.20 684.00

9.15 367.83

3 129 188 160 792 656 250

1.35 25.43

-4.77 6.08

37.28 835.23

NT NT 1 077 355 NT

15.58 42.66 6.75 3.67

10.03 34.39 3.01 2.66

63 360 000 819 000 000 300 000 001

3.90 1.61 0.54 0.00

N/A N/A -6.10 N/A

NT NT 4.10 NT

183 695 69 804

43.50 41.60

22.07 22.56

3 176 381 636 3 783 296 250

0.70 1.44

0.37 1.01

40.25 49.50




843 284 027




30 756 483 3 671 067 3 032 020 6 661 640 4 970 876 19 941 849 10 897 389 6 269 311 10 177 553 1 201 556 27 338 006 922 750 11 872 876

11.70 9.27 17.05 3.20 8.30 20.30 10.17 2.91 5.21 10.07 1.92 1.75 21.10

4.76 2.01 9.97 1.14 3.04 11.64 2.73 0.97 1.64 1.96 0.50 0.50 11.70

17 888 251 479 14 475 243 105 9 873 614 567 28 974 797 023 16 271 192 202 29 146 482 209 13 219 334 676 12 563 091 545 32 334 693 693 13 509 726 273 33 675 576 085 12 821 249 880 31 396 493 790

1.42 0.90 2.81 0.43 0.60 2.10 0.71 0.54 0.67 0.00 0.00 0.00 2.09

0.00 1.11 1.30 -0.62 -2.95 -1.51 -0.16 -3.93 4.42 6.50 0.00 -22.88 0.48

11.70 7.21 13.82 3.20 5.08 25.21 6.13 2.80 7.69 9.39 0.95 1.53 21.00

NT 30 938 870 NT NT 3 958 181 NT 2 225 416 NT NT NT NT NT 8 115 248 NT 27 809 NT NT 743 600 NT 11 942 400 NT NT 37 748 630 NT 250 000 NT NT NT NT NT

0.50 1.01 0.64 0.50 1.20 0.50 3.51 0.50 0.69 0.50 0.50 0.80 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.61 0.50 1.93 0.50 0.66 1.11 0.50 2.35 0.50 0.52 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50

0.50 0.50 0.61 0.50 0.61 0.50 1.31 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.95 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.50

20 585 000 000 7 809 391 256 211 626 000 6 000 000 000 10 372 624 157 8 820 010 363 5 100 846 808 8 847 298 420 4 549 947 000 3 827 485 380 720 000 000 5 061 804 000 6 420 427 449 28 000 000 000 7 323 313 227 3 437 330 500 4 083 713 569 10 000 000 000 7 998 705 336 5 332 830 881 5 649 693 923 5 003 506 791 2 508 315 436 6 668 750 000 5 203 757 266 6 141 087 609 8 493 173 450 2 581 733 505 13 000 000 000 16 000 000 000

0.00 0.05 0.00 0.05 0.14 0.02 0.28 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.02 0.00 0.00 0.03 0.16 0.01 0.37 0.02 0.04 0.06 0.04 0.09 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.02 0.00

N/A 0.00 N/A N/A 0.00 0.00 0.00 N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 0.00 N/A N/A N/A 0.00 -17.69 N/A -10.53 N/A N/A #VALUE! N/A 0.00 N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A

NT 1.05 NT NT 1.07 0.72 2.35 0.50 NT NT NT 1.13 0.50 NT 0.50 NT NT 2.60 NT 0.95 NT NT 0.91 NT 0.55 NT 0.50 0.50 NT NT

NT 10

6.00 1.15

0.00 1.00

NT NT 5 000 1

1.51 0.50 0.50 0.99

1.33 0.50 0.50 0.50

4 200 000 000 8 679 148 676 13 175 732 404 7 812 500 000

0.03 0.02 0.00 0.00


1.50 0.50 0.50 NT

NT NT 24 214 505 NT NT 4 770 464 2 743 188

0.61 2.02 17.01 0.15 552.20 0.66 11.38

0.50 2.02 8.50 0.15 555.20 0.50 6.40

3 778 005 975 1 333 333 333 32 632 084 358 5 880 000 2 500 000 3 608 657 661 18 750 000 000

0.00 0.00 3.03 0.00 12.65 0.00 0.87

N/A N/A 0.46 N/A N/A N/A -13.33

NT 2.02 19.71 NT NT 1.20 15.00




498 600 908




386 456



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0.00 0.44 2.62 0.20

26.87 0.00 -12.94 9.05

1.34 1.70 55.09 2.32

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0.01 0.07

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MOV. (%)

3 331 460 NT NT

1.96 12.91 4.28

0.76 8.59 3.50

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0.09 0.00 0.00

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2 960 000 000







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4 966 666 668




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0.50 4.97

0.50 4.04

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0.00 0.04


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0.00 2.46 0.50

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NT 3 220 251 309 824 370 148 1 737 334 969 966 NT NT 19 427 73 689 NT NT NT

3.32 30.00 12.57 43.98 15.49 132.51 3.51 0.75 0.99 56.50 3.36 5.28 13.40

2.86 9.10 7.27 14.50 4.20 95.00 0.93 0.50 0.91 37.00 0.52 2.27 10.93

260 000 000 2 239 453 125 217 367 585 560 000 000 1 241 548 285 15 494 019 668 242 908 200 2 109 928 275 513 696 000 3 001 600 004 792 914 256 400 000 000 75 000 000

0.00 2.14 1.09 2.28 1.47 8.33 0.00 0.00 0.00 4.10 0.26 0.23 0.00

N/A -0.16 -20.17 0.55 -6.75 2.06 N/A N/A N/A -2.17 N/A N/A N/A

NT 24.42 11.90 36.10 11.85 145.00 NT NT 0.78 69.00 NT 4.75 NT

NT 477 526 NT NT

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510 396 608 2 220 000 000 15 000 000

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NT 1.67 NT NT

NT NT 1 000 NT 2 717 101 NT NT

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3.98 2.19 9.53 13.28 1.60 1.05 0.63


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0.00 0.05 0.05 0.90 0.24 0.22 0.00

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NT NT 9.51 NT 2.55 NT NT


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20.71 0.50 19.61 2.12 9.12 111.51 32.29 125.00

125 487 475 3 716 976 579 693 952 117 1 249 162 828 1 080 280 628 300 496 051 253 988 672 339 521 837

0.00 0.00 0.47 0.61 0.00 6.11 3.62 14.63

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NT 0.50 23.10 4.49 14.26 125.97 29.00 137.01




4 035 497 307










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0.18 0.92 0.00 0.22

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6.27 0.96 NT 1.95

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3.68 8.00 2.92 6.82

1.64 1.94 2.78 3.09

403 200 000 771 450 000 425 641 111

0.14 0.29 0.01 0.50

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2.55 2.25 NT 4.96

336 709



1 507 000 000





5.15 1.88

4.90 0.80

236 699 511 5 631 539 736

0.00 0.03



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0.38 0.81

N/A -2.47

5.76 8.10




45 000 000




11 000



201 885 335







30 000 000







24 898 850




NT 500



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NT 20 000 NT NT

0.21 0.50 0.31 0.63

0.21 0.50 0.31 0.63

24 200 000 5 857 500 000 15 000 000 98 600 000

0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00


NT 0.50 NT NT

NT NT 16 000



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2 706

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Monday, March 4, 2013

National Mirror

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Monday, March 4, 2013

National Mirror


Law & Justice

“The courts should always be very cautious in not allowing technicalities to be used in perpetrating injustice.” JUSTICE DAHIRU MUSDAPHER, FORMER CHIEF JUSTICE OF NIGERIA

When stringent bail terms become punishment Lack of integrity makes some judges favour highest bidders –Esan 42

Chief Judge, Federal High Court, Justice Ibrahim Auta

Part-time judge, inmate in amorous sexual relationship 45

Why S’Court nullified Alakenneelect’s nomination 46


reedom of movement is a constitutional right. Accordingly, nobody should be intentionally deprived of his freedom except upon the order of a court in expiation of some crime the person must have committed. This is the position of the law in the entire civilised world. Thus, if a person is being prosecuted for any alleged crime, the issue of bail immediately comes to fore since the person is adjudged innocent until he or she is proven guilty. When a judge makes pronouncement on bail, whether or not the accused person will be able to enjoy this constitutional right depends on his or her ability to fulfill the bail conditions. Investigation has showed that majority of those being held in the Nigerian prisons as awaiting trial inmates are those who have been granted bail, but could not perfect them and therefore lose their constitutional rights. Assessing the issue, a legal scholar, Dr. Akin Ibidapo-Obe, in his book,’’ Bail Process and Human Rights in Nigeria, “stated: “In Nigeria, access to bail implies the ability to pay for the services of a lawyer, to hire a surety, and invariably to “grease the palms” of court registrar and security personnel having custody of the suspect. If what is needed to ease his bail is not available to a suspect, then he is sent back to prison to await the day when he can afford it.” A retired Justice of the Supreme Court, Justice Chukwudifu Oputa, in his book; “Human rights in the Political and legal Culture of Nigeria, lends credence to this argument thus, “It is the powerful, the rich and the dominant class that seem to have all the rights, while the only right left to the poor, the weak and downtrodden

Chief Judge, Lagos State, Justice Ayotunde Phillips

The onerous bail conditions being imposed on defendants in criminal matters have often cast doubts about the willingness of the court to set the accused persons free temporarily. KAYODE KETEFE, Assistant Head, Judiciary highlights the views of some lawyers on the issue. seems to be their right to suffer in silence” Yet, in spite of the above, a citizen’s freedom is guaranteed under section 35(1) of the 1999 Constitution which provides inter-alia “Every person shall be entitled to his personal liberty and no person shall be deprived of such liberty save in the following cases and in accordance with a procedure permitted by law “This immunity from unlawful detention may be lost under conditions stipulated as the exceptions to the general provision set out in Section 35(1) (c) of the constitution. Generally, the law gives the judicial officers, (judges and magistrates) discretion to grant bail



to accused persons. Be that as it may, offences that carry capital punishment, like murder and treason are deemed not bailable under the law, but majority of offences which bring the accused before our law courts are bailable. The law also stipulates omnibus guidelines for exercising the discretion to grant bail. For example, both the Criminal Procedure Act (applicable in Southern Nigeria), the Criminal Procedure Code (applicable in Northern Nigeria) , stipulate the grounds as criteria that may be considered in granting bail. The conditions being given for bail as evident in plethora of decided cases in Nigeria today may include “bail being granted in the sum of specific money which value is often dictated by the severity of the alleged offences; production of a surety or two who would enter into bond in the like sum. At times, the sureties too, are required to deposit their international passports with the prosecuting agency like the EFCC or the Registrar of court; the surety or sureties must produce three years tax clearance certificates, one of the sureties must be a level 14 (or at times level 17) officer or a Permanent Secretary in the Federal (or state) Civil Service; the sureties must have landed property in choicest areas CONTINUED ON PAGE 44


Law & Justice

Monday, March 4, 2013

National Mirror

Lack of integrity makes some judges favour highest bidders –Esan Chief Makanjuola Esan is an Ibadan-based Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN). He is also a former Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice in Ondo and Ekiti states. In this interview with WALE IGBINTADE, he speaks on the quality of judges, professional ethics among lawyers and other issues.


What is your assessment of the Judiciary last year and what are the prospects for the third arm of government in 2013? Well, by and large, the judiciary has performed its functions very well, determining issues coming before it in 2012 and I believe it will continue to perform well those functions in 2013. There are problems here and there because there are cases which the public expect to be determined expeditiously but which dragged on and on and they are calling for expeditious determination of cases but one cannot ascribe the fault to the judiciary alone. We have instances where lawyers deliberately delay some cases and there are others where through no fault of theirs, Judges are not able to complete cases as fast as it is expected by the public. But by and large, the judiciary has performed its functions well and we hope it will continue in that way in the year 2013. What is your take on the quality of judgements being churned out from our appellate courts? Well, the judgements are based on what the law is and the Court of Appeal has tried to deliver judgements to the best of their ability but if they were always right then there won’t be any need for the Supreme Court. Where their judgements are not right

IF A JUDGE HAS NO INTEGRITY EVEN IF HE KNOWS THE LAW, HE WILL BEND THE RULES in the views of parties affected, then they go to the Supreme Court to have the final decision. But when the Supreme Court decides then that is the final decision whether it is erroneous in the eyes of the public or in the eyes of the litigants, there is nowhere you can go and so the Supreme Court is always right to that extent. It is only God that can review its judgements. They have handled the cases before them fairly well and when the Court of Appeal is wrong, the Supreme Court has always corrected it and when it is right the Supreme Court will uphold its judgements. But, it appears that the cases that go to the Supreme Court are now too many and that is rendering the Supreme Court to appear inefficient in handling cases. Cases are kept there for so long, not because they are not working but because the volumes of cases before them are so much that the public are disgusted that they don’t determine cases fast enough. It has been suggested that not all the cases that the constitution gives the Supreme Court should go there. It should

be cases that have fundamental issues of constituconstitu tional importance. But almost all cases that start in the High Court now end in the Supreme Court. There may be the need to review the constitution such that certain cases do not go to the Supreme Court. I think that will assist in narrowing the scope of cases that end in the Supreme Court and make them efficient. It has been suggested in one proposed reform some two years ago that there are some cases that shouldn’t go to the Supreme Court, it should end at the Court of Appeal, I think if that is exploited may be the Supreme Court will have more time to devote itself to the few cases that get there and the criticism about the delay in cases there will be minimal. But by and large, they are trying their best. We now have a situation where, the number of Justices in the Supreme Court are increased such that it is possible to have two, three panels sitting on the same day and with more Justices at the Supreme Court, it should be possible to have an appeal from Court of Appeal to the Supreme Court to have judgement within two years now. We can see that is why the public is complaining about the long delay. I think there is something that can be done. One, increase the strength of the Supreme Court and two, reduce the scope of cases that get there. Aside from the knowledge of law, what other qualities should appellate court Justices possess? Well, it is not only appellate court Justices, I think all Judges should have basic as you say, knowledge of the law, sufficient knowledge to deal with the cases before them. Although, as you know, lawyers play vital role in guiding the courts as to what decision they should take. Lawyers address the courts for both sides and the quality of advocacy also affects the quality of the judgement. When lawyers assist the Judge with legal authorities on where the case should go, he sits down at the recess of his chamber to analyze what they have submitted and do his own independent research, so when you say knowledge yes, that is how it should be. But more fundamental issue is integrity. If a Judge has no integrity even if he knows the law, he will bend the rules in favour of certain parties for certain considerations that are not based on the law and that is more dangerous than lack of the knowledge of the law. Lack of knowledge of the law can be corrected on appeal but I have heard of certain Judges without integrity who are capable of writing two judgements and delivering the one in favour of the higher bidder. It has been said that a Judge should be sober, very sober. Sobriety of a Judge involves this: There are Judges who will not listen to counsel and evidence but in their over zealousness will be interpreting proceedings and in doing that they frustrate lawyers and litigants. A Judge should be sober, listen patiently to the submissions and then do what he wants to do with the submission. So integrity is very important. These are apart from the basic knowledge of the law. What is the constitutional implication of the lingering absence of a state Governor who failed to hand-over properly to his deputy? The constitutional provisions appear not to be clear enough to give sufficient guidelines as to what to do. The constitution says that when the two- third of the executive council which means commissioners and in some cases special advisers, they are the people working with the Governor, if they know that he is not healthy enough to continue to function, two- third of them can pass a resolution that he is

National Mirror

Monday, March 4, 2013

are sick. They start by saying they are on vacation but it is now apparent that they are not on vacation. I think we need clarifications on the provisions as to how long you can be away like that before your post can be declared vacant by the House. Some of your colleagues at the Bar are worried about the breach of the professional ethics, what is your view on this? Well, all of us are worried that lawyers behave as if there is no regulations, as if there is no provision regulating their conducts. But there is provision in the law. There is also the committee charged with the discipline of lawyers. Those people are doing their best. But in the first place, it requires a complainant to bring to the disciplinary committee that this lawyer has committed an offence. Without that, the Bar disciplinary committee cannot just take it up. Those of us who are lawyers owe a duty to bring to the appropriate authority conducts unbecoming of lawyers. It is a combination of the functions of all of us and I think people are disillusioned that some lawyers behave as if there is no law or as if they are above the law but it is important that cases of indiscipline at the Bar should be brought to the appropriate quarters. The appropriate body should also meet more often to consider petitions brought to their attention on conduct of lawyers. It is not right that a lawyer through their greed should collect money on behalf of their clients and don’t pay it over. These are things that are happening now and we read about it in the papers. There is the criminal aspect of breach of trust which the EFCC or the Police can prosecute but there is also the indiscipline aspect which can be considered by the Bar disciplinary committee and may result in the removal of their names from the roll of lawyers or temporary suspension depending on the gravity. I think we need to sit up and repair the image of the Bar in the eyes of the public. It is a serious situation.


TO JUSTICE IS NOT EXORBITANT, FEES ARE LOW AND JUDGEMENTS ARE DELIVERED QUICKLY not healthy enough, that he is unfit and after that resolution, a panel of medical experts including his own personal physician, five medical experts will look into it and decide whether he is fit to continue to function. If the panel says that he is not fit, that is sent to the speaker who will authorise the publication in the gazette that he is not fit and he is removed from office, not being fit to continue. But there is another situation when he on his own decides to go on leave or he is going to be absent, he has a duty to inform the speaker that he is going and his deputy will be acting. But there are situations where they go without telling anybody or even handing over to their deputies. The law says if within 21 days after he leaves, he doesn’t communicate to the House, then the Speaker can cause the House to take a resolution that the deputy should act but unfortunately, the constitution doesn’t provide for how long can that be. So we have people who are away for several months and the work of government is suffering and in some cases people are calling for impeachment. What is the way out? I think we need the clarification of the constitution in that regard to say that if he is away for six months, he should be considered to have relinquished his post or the House shall review the situation and take a decision on his impeachment. It is left in vacuum now there is no number of months he can do that. I know there are few states where Governors are away on health ground but they don’t even declare that they

Can you compare the standard of practice when you began as a lawyer to what is obtainable today? Well, there is no doubt that standards are falling because if you tell a junior to write letters on behalf of clients, there are some sentences you have to restructure and re-write. It is not just correcting it. Knowledge of English language is very vital to this trade and this knowledge is getting lower and lower all over. Lawyers are part of the society. It has been suggested at a time that people who wish to practice law should first have a degree in some other disciplines and maturity will then come in and then the basic knowledge which he or she has gained from another discipline will come in. It is neither here nor there. Many people can’t afford that luxury in Nigeria where people don’t even have money to send their children to the university and from there to the Law school. There are people who finished in the universities and have to wait for some time before they can collect forms to go to Law school. So, maybe that is why we cannot say yes, you have to first of all go and get a degree before you can read law but certainly, the standards are not the same. They are being taught in the Law School just the same thing that we were taught when we were there. But, how much does a person grasp of what he or she is being taught when the foundation in the secondary and primary schools are very weak? It appears that your basic knowledge is what you acquire in the secondary school, people cannot start teaching you English in the university when you are reading law but they still introduce some courses in English enough to make very good lawyers. It is not that the standard is too bad but you have asked for a comparison of the time I became a lawyer and I know that it is not the same, it is lower now and it will continue to be so unless we improve our system of education generally, not just law, it is in all spheres. What is the Nigeria of your dream? The Nigeria of my dream is a place where every village will have pipe-borne water, every village should

Law & Justice


have pipe-borne water to use and not places where people still go to the brooks in the rural area and their elites rely on borehole everywhere. The Nigeria of my dream would be one where the access to justice is not exorbitant, fees are low and judgements are delivered quickly so those are core areas of our lives that I wish could be improved so that we can say we had a Nigeria we all thought of in 1960 as a Nigeria of our dream. A Nigeria of my dream is a place where education is free to some extent, where at least the regular school sessions are observed. When I was going to the university, I was on study leave from my job and I knew when I would come back. My first university, I went in October and I came back in June or July to resume work. When I went to Ife to read law, I took study leave and I knew when I would drop my pen and I knew the day I would start my work in the university and I came back to my job the second day I dropped my pen because already the programmes were never disturbed. When I got back to my job, I took control of my duties. Now you cannot predict when anybody will finish degree programme in any of the federal universities so people are now taking their children to private universities but how many Nigerians can afford private university education? The Nigeria of my dream will be where education will be regular and students can go to school for their academic session lasting nine months and know that at the end of nine months they are out of the place. If you go for a career of three or four years in university, you will know that the programme will end in four years that is the Nigeria of my dream. In the health sector, it is unfortunate that people go to hospitals which are merely prescribing drugs, no medicine. The health sector of my dream will be one where health is free for all those lowly paid workers who cannot afford health fees in the private clinics. The health sectors should be rejuvenated and drugs should be available, doctors should be available, doctors would be leaving Nigeria to go and work in Saudi Arabia, London, everywhere, it is the conditions of the clinics, not just the conditions of service but the conditions of the clinics that frustrate our doctors to travel abroad. I was in Liberty stadium, Ibadan representing Ekiti Scout in the 1960 celebration. I know what we were looking forward to. We were told that we would not be suffering for anything after we have gotten independent. Certainly, it is not being fulfilled and I pray that God will assist us so that we can have a Nigeria if not totally in accordance with the Nigeria of our dreams, near the ideals we were looking forward to.


Law & Justice

Monday, March 4, 2013

National Mirror

Judges should impose liberal bail conditions –Lawyers



CONTINUED FROM PAGE 41 of the city, (if in Lagos, areas like Ikoyi, Lekki and Victoria Island, if in Abuja areas like Maitama, Asokoro, might be stipulated) the surety. There have also been instances where one or more of the sureties are required to be traditional rulers! Example of bail granted in recent times included the case of the former Managing Director of Intercontinental Bank, (now Access Bank), Erastus Akingbola. He was granted bail in the sum of N100 million and further required to produce a surety who would enter into bond in the like sum. The surety is required to be resident in Lagos and also to own landed property in the state. The surety was asked to produce current tax clearance certificate from the Lagos State Government. Akingbola was also barred from travelling abroad while asked to deposit international passports and other travelling documents with the court Registrar.

Besides, he was ordered to report to the EFCC’s office every first working day of the month till the court rules otherwise. Yet, he met all these conditions and was granted bail. Similarly, following the arraignment of Abdullahi, Alao, son of business mogul, Alhaji Azeez Arisekola-Alao and politician, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur’s son, Mahmud along with their co-defendants for fuel subsidy scam, the Ikeja High Court granted them bail on onerous terms. The defendants were remanded in custody pending the fulfillment of their bail terms. Some lawyers who spoke with the National Mirror said while the imposition of excessive bail terms on the defendants was not justifiable, the defendants, however, are at liberty to apply to court for the review of the onerous bail conditions. The President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Mr. Okey Wali (SAN), expressed dissatisfaction with the harsh stance of some judicial officers (judges and magistrates) on the issue of bail.

Oguntade’s legacies on the Bench FRANCIS FAMOROTI

KNOW YOUR RIGHTS TIPS ON HOW TO SECURE BAIL POLICE BAIL •Where a suspect is in police custody, the suspects’ lawyer or his relative may apply for bail in writing to the police officer in charge of the station. •The lawyer or relative should arrange a surety who will be required to enter into a bond with a passport photograph. COURT BAIL



ustice George Adesola Oguntade is one of the justices who made impact on the higher Bench in the last two decades. To say that he was one of the revered minds on the Bench of the Supreme Court is not an over-statement. His understanding of the law and the adjudicatory process manifested in his judgements, some of which, are reference points to lawyers and law students alike. By his incisive and analytical pronouncements, Oguntade had contributed to the development of jurisprudence in the country. Among the cases he handled on the higher Bench is Action Congress v. INEC (2007) 12 NWLR (Pt 10) 48, 222 where he was a lone voice and he delivered a minority judgement on the unlawful exclusion of the former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar from the list of contestants. Also, Rotimi Amaechi.v. INEC, where he held that ‘’in the eyes of the law, Amaechi’s name earlier sent to INEC was never removed or withdrawn’’. To Oguntade, Amaechi and not Celestine Omehia remained the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP’s) candidate for the governorship election in Rivers State in 2007. Another case in which Oguntade’s judicial sagacity was put to test was the case of AG Federation .V. ANPP (2008) 15 NWLR (Pt 844) AT 600. It was an issue of the interpretation of section 182(1)(b) of the 1999 Constitution relating to the bid of four governors’ re-election. The jurist was also on the panel that reinstated the former Oyo State Governor, Rashidi Ladoja into office in the case of Inakoju.v. Adeleke (2007) 4 NWLR (Pt 1025) 427 AT 710. Similarly, his pronouncement in the case dealing with whether or not serving governors enjoy immunity from investigation was elucidating. Oguntade held that section 308 of the 1999 Constitution did not shield or protect the persons covered under section 308(3) from police investigation. Rather, he declared that the governors could still be investigated after leaving office.

He said “Well, you know bail is a constitutional right and when you grant bail conditions that make it impossible for the person to perfect, you have, as it were, taken away that constitutional right from the person. I believe that judges should give such bail conditions as would ensure that the man comes to stand his trial. If somebody is brought to the court and the judge says bring a Permanent Secretary in the Federal Civil Service, or bring somebody with a landed property in Abuja, that is not what it takes to make somebody face his or her trial”. Chief Ladi Rotimi-Williams (SAN) said: “I think the conditions of bail given by our courts are oftentimes onerous and very difficult to meet, a situation making it difficult for many poor people to enjoy bail. “It is as if bail is meant for only rich people. How else do you see a situation where the judge says you should go and bring a surety with landed property worth N250 million or N300 million and which must be situated in Victoria Island, or Lekki in Lagos or Maitama or Asokoro in Abuja?” “The focus in granting bail should be just to ensure how the accused would be brought to trial and not to punish the accused” The head of the Penal Reforms Section of the Civil Liberties Organisation, (CLO) Mr. Princewill Akpakpan, also said “bail is at the discretion of the court, but this discretion must be exercised judicially and judiciously in conformity with the laid-down criteria. What determines the conditions of bail at times is the material placed before the court.’’

•A suspect who has been refused bail by the police can apply to the Magistrate or High Court for bail by filing the motion for bail. •Application for bail where an accused person has been brought to court is normally made orally where he is represented by a lawyer. •In rare instances, the court will ask the applicant or his lawyer to file a summons for bail. •Once a bail is granted by the court, the accused person should fulfill the bail conditions, which usually include the production of a surety or sureties. •Any person who is a surety may apply to the court to be discharged. Oguntade

For Oguntade, March 10, 2010 was the crowning glory of a chequered judicial career that spanned four decades. It was the day he bowed out of the apex court Bench and specifically from the country’s highest judicial body on attaining the mandatory retirement age of 70. Hence, his friends and associates had converged to extol his virtues. Shortly after his retirement, Oguntade, was obviously not tired as the Nigerian Insurers’ Association (NIA) appointed him to chair its Customer Complaint Bureau for the industry’s policyholders.

Bail is surety taken by a person duly authorised for the appearance at a certain day and place to answer and be justified by law. A Bail bond is a document executed in order to secure the release of an individual in custody of the law. The surety forfeits his security in the event the defendant fails to appear as required at court dates.

National Mirror

Monday, March 4, 2013

Part-time judge, inmate in amorous sexual relationship

Law & Justice


Events The Nigeria Bar Association (NBA), held its National Executive Committee in Makurdi, Benue State recently. Below are participants at the meeting.



northern Indiana lawyer who is also a part-time judge faces disciplinary charges on accusations that she had an inappropriate relationship with a client while she was his public defender. According to Associated Press, the Indiana Commission on Judicial Qualifications has accused Logansport attorney, Lisa Traylor-Wolff with engaging in “sexual relations” with a client, violating the rules of professional conduct of an attorney and of violating the code of judicial conduct. Traylor-Wolff declined to comment on the charges. She is a 1982 graduate of Ball State University. The charges alleged that she kissed her client three times at the Miami Correctional Facility and correctional officers there saw them “engaged in excessive fondling over the clothing.” Traylor-Wolff has 20 days to respond. The Indiana Supreme Court will then appoint three masters to conduct a public hearing. The commission also alleges that Traylor-Wolff, who is currently em-

Traylor Wolff

United States ployed by Leeman Law Office, continued the sexual relationship throughout her client’s appeal process. The Indianapolis Star has more: “Only the five members of the Supreme Court can determine what, if any, allegations are true,” the statement says. Traylor-Wolff did not ask to be re-certified as a senior judge in 2013, according to the statement. It says she faces three charges of violating the Code of Judicial Conduct: Judge Traylor-Wolff violated rules of professional conduct which prohibits a lawyer from having sexual relations with a client; which prohibit a lawyer from representing a client if there is a significant risk that the representation will be materially limited by a personal interest of the lawyer; and which requires a judge to promote confidence in the integrity of the judiciary and to avoid impropriety.”

Members of the Lawyers in the Media (LIM), visited the Kano State Attorney

L-R: The President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Mr. Okey Wali SAN, Mrs. Funke Adekoya, SAN and President of the Commonwealth Lawyers Association, (CLA) . Mrs. Boma Ozobia at the NBA National Executive Committee, (NEC) meeting in Markurdi, Benue State recently.

L-R Justice, Court of Appeal, Justice Amina Adamu-Augie, the General Secretary, NBA, Mr. Emeka Obegolu and Mr. Dele Adesina SAN, during the opening ceremony of the NEC meeting.

General, Mr. Mailki Umar in Kano State recently.

L-R : A member of Lawyers in the Media (LIM), Mr. Adelanwa Bamigboye, Chairman, LIM, Mr. Charles Odenigbo, Kano State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Maliki Kuliya Umar and another LIM member, Mr. Adam Adedimeji during a visit to the state Attorney General recently.

Kano State Attorney General, Mr. Maliki Umar (fifth right) in a group photograph with the members of Lawyers in the Media ( LIM) and members of the Outdoor Advertising Association of Nigeria (OAAN), during a visit to the AG recently.

Benue State Governor, Mr. Gabriel Suswam and the NBA President, Okey Wali (SAN).

Cross- section of members of NBA NEC at the opening ceremony in Makurdi.


Law & Justice

Monday, March 4, 2013

National Mirror

Why S’Court nullified Alakenne-elect’s nomination The chieftaincy tussle over the filling of the stool of Alakenne of Ikenne, Ogun State was resolved by the Supreme Court about 23 years ago. In its verdict, the apex court dismissed the appeal seeking to validate the selection of Prince Ademolu Odeneye as the Alakenne-elect. FRANCIS FAMOROTI, Head, Judiciary writes.


kenne in Remo division of Ogun State has produced many eminent citizens, notably the late sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, the late renowned lawyer, Mr. Kehinde Sofola, his younger brother, Idowu among others. Sometimes in the mid-1980s however, the town was embroiled in chieftaincy row over the Alakenne stool. At the centre of the tussle were Prince Ademolu Odeneye and Prince David Efunuga, both rival contestants along with two others, who sought to occupy the Alakenne stool. On July 26, 1985, Odeneye however became the choice of the kingmakers of Obara ruling House of Ikenne as the Alakenneelect from the list of four names nominated for the vacant stool of the chieftaincy title. Aggrieved by the choice, Efunuga, who equally had an interest in the stool, challenged the decision of the kingmakers. He subsequently filed a suit at the Sagamu High Court on July 29, 1985, claiming among others, a declaration that the purported nomination of four candidates for the vacant stool of Alakenne of Ikenne Chieftaincy at a meeting of the Obara Ruling House held on July 18, 1985, was contrary to the provisions of the Alakenne of Ikenne Chieftaincy Declaration of 1958,and was null, void and of no effect. He faulted the procedure adopted by the kingmakers and the nomination made at the meeting of July 18, 1985 on the ground that it was contrary to the Alakenne of Ikenne Chieftaincy Declaration of 1958. He also asked for an order directing the Chief Executive of the ljebu-Remo Local Government to issue a fresh notice inviting fresh nomination of “a candidate” to fill the vacant stool of the Alakenne of Ikenne Chieftaincy in accordance with paragraph (v) of the Provisions of the Alakenne of Ikenne Chieftaincy Declaration 1958. Cited as co-defendants in the writ of summons are, the Head of Obara Ruling House (first defendant) who presided at the meeting of the ruling House, which invited nomination of candidates, and the Attorney-General of the State, named as second defendant. Others were the Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs as third defendant and the Chief Executive of the ljebu-Remo Local Government as the fourth defendant. It was later that Prince Odeneye became the fifth defendant when his motion to be joined as a party was granted. Parties filed and exchanged pleadings and written addressees were made by their respective attorneys.

Alakenne of Ikenne, Oba Adeyinka Onakade

FAMOUS CASES In his judgement on November 28, 1986, Justice Sonoiki declared that the Alakenne of Ikenne Chieftaincy Declaration 1958 was not inconsistent with sections 4, 14 and 15 of the Chief’s Law Cap.20, accordingly, the purported nomination of four candidates for the vacant stool of Alakenne of Ikenne Chieftaincy at the meeting of the Obara Ruling House on July 18, 1985 was contrary to the provisions of the Chieftaincy Declaration 1958, and was consequently null and void. The judge ruled that Efunuga being one of the four candidates nominated on July 18, 1985, had sufficient interest in filling of the vacant stool of Alakenne of Ikenne, which could be adversely affected if he was denied the right to bring this action. Odeneye and other defendants appealed against the decision to the Court of Appeal. Again, they lost at the appellate court, which affirmed the decision of the trial court. Specifically, on April 18, 1988, the Court of Appeal, Ibadan Division, dismissed the appeal of the defendants/appellants against the judgement of the Sagamu High Court. Odeneye as the only appellant further lodged a notice of appeal at the Supreme Court. The panel of justices that heard the matter are; Justices Andrew Otutu Obaseki , Muhammadu Lawal Uwais, Adolphus

Justice Belgore

Godwin Karibi-Whyte, Salihu Modibbo Alfa Belgore and Phillip Nnaemeka-Agu. The lawyers were Chief Kehinde Onafowokan (SAN) for the appellant and Chief. G.O.K Ajayi (SAN) for the respondent. In the lead judgement delivered by Justice Karibi-Whyte on December 14, 1990, the apex court upheld the decision of the Appeal Court. Justice Karibi-Whyte said it was common ground that Obara ruling house to which both Odeneye and Efunuga belonged should nominate candidate for the filing of the vacant stool. On the issue of Efunuga’s locus standi to institute the action, the apex court said it ‘’agreed entirety with the court below and the submission of Chief G.O.K. Ajayi, S.A.N. that the averments in the pleadings disclose not only that respondent is a member of the Obara Ruling House, whose turn it is to produce a candidate to fill the vacant stool of Alakenne of Ikenne, but that he not only participated at the meeting for the selection of the candidate for nomination. The apex court said the respondent therefore had sufficient interest in ensuring compliance with the law relied upon for the filling of the vacancy in which he was interested. Justice Karibi-Whyte held that ‘’the subject matter of attack by the respondent is the procedure followed in the selection and appointment of Alakenne of Ikenne. There is clearly no doubt that the respondent had locus standi to question the procedure followed in the purported filling of the vacant stool of the Alakenne of Ikenne and to seek for a declaration as to its validity. The learned trial Judge was right to so declare and the court below to affirm the decision.’’ The apex court further said the words of the declaration of Customary Law relating to the Alakenne of Ikenne Chieftaincy, that is Exhibit “A”, are clear, plain and unambiguous.’’



IKENNE CHIEFTAINCY DECLARATION OF 1985 ‘’If given their literal meaning, the Obara Ruling House is required at a family meeting summoned by its Head to provide a qualified candidate for the Kingmakers. The nominee will be presented to the Oliwo and the Kingmakers for acceptance. ‘’It seems to me that where the candidate chosen at a family meeting summoned by the head of the family is presented to the Kingmakers for acceptance is qualified to be so presented, acceptance by the Kingmakers is a fait accompli. They cannot refuse to appoint. – Hence, where more than one candidate is presented to the Kingmakers, even if they are all qualified, the procedure is a contravention of Exhibit “A “contrary to the customary law for the filling of the vacant stool of Alakenne.’’ The Declared Customary law in accordance with Exhibit “A” is that ONLY ONE CANDIDATE shall be nominated at the family meeting to be presented by the ruling family whose turn is to provide a candidate. ‘’ Accordingly, the apex court held that Odeneye’s appeal failed and it was dismissed. It declared that ‘’the judgement of the Court of Appeal dated the 18th April. 1988 affirming the judgement of the trial judge dated 28/I 1/86 is hereby affirmed. ’’ The other four justices concurred with the lead judgement.

National Mirror


Monday, March 4, 2013


Police arrest 11 teachers for disturbing public peace EZEKIEL TITUS BAUCHI


he Bauchi State Police Command has arrested no fewer than 11 officials of the Academic Staff Union of Secondary Schools (ASSUS) in Azare Headquarters of Katagum Local Government Area of the state for public disturbance. It will be recalled that teachers in Bauchi State

recently embarked on an indefinite strike over the suspension of their allowance by the state government. Confirming the arrest of the ASSUS officials at the weekend, the Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Mr. Hassan Mohammed Auyo, said: “They were arrested after they attempted to disrupt the activities of National Examination Council (NECO) officials, who are

not members of ASSUS. The NECO officials came to Bauchi State for official assignments. “Since the ASSUS officials, who are also teachers, disrupted the activities of the NECO officials, we have no choice than to arrest them and investigate the matter. “During investigation, we discovered that they have committed an offence and we took them

to court and the court remanded them in prison custody. The matter now is at the discretion of the court.” However, ASSUS Chairman in the state, Mr. Abdullahi Ningi, condemned the arrest. Ningi told journalists that five members of the union were initially invited by the police and on getting to the police station, they were arrested and detained.

He said after several hours, six other members went to the police station to find out what went wrong with their colleagues. The six others, according to him, were also detained by the police. All the 11 ASSUS members were, however, taken to the State Criminal Investigation Department (SCID). Ningi said that the embattled officials were

taken to the Magistrate’s Court, but the presiding magistrates were not on seat after which they were remanded in prison custody. He said the union’s members would not participate in the West African Examination Council (WAEC), National Business and Technical Examination Board (NABTEB) and NECO except if state government listens to their demands.

Nasarawa tasks parents on routine immunisation IGBAWASE UKUMBA LAFIA


he Nasarawa State Government has urged parents to bring out their children for the routine immunisation exercise currently going on across the state. Similarly, stakeholders and all local government areas have been directed to embrace the exercise to ensure that communities, the state and the nation at large become polio-free. The state deputy governor, Mr. Dameshi Barau Luka, who is the state Chairman

of the Task Force on Routine Immunization and Polio Eradication, made the call at the weekend in a broadcast to announce the commencement of the exercise. The deputy governor said: “In particular, the world is in the process of totally eradicating the debilitating killer disease, poliomyelitis. “Nigeria, alongside Afganistan and Pakistan are the only remaining reservoirs of the wild polio virus as Nasarawa State recently had two outbreaks of the disease in Doma in November 2012 and in Keana in January 2013.”

Lawmaker seeks more assistance for flood victims JAMES ABRAHAM JOS


member of the Plateau State House of Assembly, Hon. Rindap Ponmak, has called for more assistance to victims of last year’s flood in the state. The lawmaker, who represents Langtang North Central, at the weekend expressed concern over what he called delay in the distribution of relief materials meant for the flood victims. He expressed regret that more than five months after the flood, most of the victims were yet to recover from the losses they suffered, a development which he said is causing social and economic unrest among the people. Ponmak said: “I was moved to tears when I visited some of the areas affected by last year’s flood in the state. Apart from the victims from my constituency, I discovered that many of the victims in other local government areas were still displaced. “Thousands are still homeless. Our peo-

ple are finding it difficult in terms movement owing to the bridges and other public infrastructure destroyed by the flood. Farm lands, which were washed away, are still in ruins. “And with another rainy reason fast approaching, I don’t know what will happen. And that is why I want to call on the government and other public spirited individuals to come to the victim’s aid so as to alleviate their suffering.” It will be recalled that no fewer than 38 communities in nine local government areas of Plateau State were affected by the flood. Many people were killed and property worth several millions of naira were destroyed by the flood.

Gov. Jonah Jang

Bauchi State Deputy Governor, Mr. Sagir Saleh (left), presenting an award to Chairman, Northern States Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture, Alhaji Sanusi Maijama’a, during a reception held in honour of the chairman in Bauchi, at the weekend.

Kogi CJ pardons seven prison inmates

•NSCDC prosecutes seven pipeline vandals WALE IBRAHIM LOKOJA


o fewer than six prison inmates awaiting trial have regained their freedom as the Chief Judge of Kogi State, Justice Nasir Ajanah, released them unconditionally at the weekend. Justice Ajanah also granted one other bail as part of measures initiated for this year’s decongestion of prisons One of the lucky inmates is Abubakar Tijani, who was facing trial for receiving stolen property. The others are Isiaka Usman, Abdul Usman, Bashiru Musa, Abdulazeez Mohammed and Ismaila Shaibu, who were all charged with disturbance of public peace and mischief. Justice Ajanah, who granted the inmates the unconditional release at weekend in Ankpa in Kogi East Senatorial District, said that fundamental rights of individual must be taken into

consideration in administration of criminal justice. He said that the prison decongestion was to ensure that nobody was illegally and unconstitutionally detained. The judge said: “Justice demands nobody should be unjustly detained, even for a day.’’ Justice Ajanah urged stakeholders in the administration of justice to ensure that criminal cases were heard timely to avoid unnecessary delay. The Chief Judge noted that no criminal case at any given time especially the cases of those in detention should be adjourned for more than two weeks to ensure speedy trial. He said: ‘’Before ordering the detention of anybody on the account of any offence alleged against that person, you must be convinced that there are sufficient materials for you to act on before you order such detention and be sure that it is a very serious

offence.’’ Justice Ajanah, who had earlier visited Dekina Prisons where he reviewed the warrants of seven awaiting trial inmates, commended law enforcement agencies and the officers and men of the prisons service for the low crime rate in the area. Earlier, the Officer-incharge of Dekina Prison, Mr Okwute James, drew the attention of the Chief Judge to the dilapidated condition of the prison cells and solicited the government intervention. Also, the officer in Charge of Ankpa Prison, Mr Monday Tebu, told the Chief Judge about the logistic problem confronting the prison, saying the facility, which was serving three local government areas, had one vehicle to convey inmates to courts. Meanwhile, the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) said that it had arrested and prosecuted seven persons caught for vandalising pipeline in the

state NSCDC Acting Commandant, Mr. Oguntuashe Kingsley, who spoke at the 2013 International Civil Defence Organisation (ICDO) celebration held in Lokoja, the Kogi State capital, said that the function of the agency was to protect infrastructure and other public property. Kingsley said NSCDC had reduced the spate of vandalism, especially of oil pipelines, attributing the success to the surveillance, arrest and prosecution of offenders. He, however, warned those operating illegal security outfit and those still engaging in pipeline vandalism in the state to desist from the act, saying: “NSCDC is determine to protect Kogi State against all illegal activities.” The commandant pointed out that despite the achievement recorded, the state command of NSCDC is still facing major challenges as it lacked adequate equipment and logistics, enough personnel as well as office accommodation at both the state and local government levels.


Monday, March 4, 2013

National Mirror

Community Mirror ““The security, peace and progress we aspire for ourselves and our families are not attainable if the majority remain locked in the traps of ignorance and poverty” FORMER MINISTER OF DEFENCE,GEN. THEOPHILOUS DANJUMA(RTD)

Mentally ill woman regains sanity, 20 years after OJO OYEWAMIDE AKURE


prominent lunatic in Ondo town, Olaolu Akinbileje, has suddenly regained sanity after 20 years of mental illness. Akinbileje, was said to have left a refuse dump that had for long been her abode on Enuowa Street for Oke-Ayadi Street to scavenge for food when she suddenly regained her senses.

An eyewitness told Community Mirror that the woman, who was popularly known as ‘Lati-lati’ and who usually wore rags, was engrossed in the search for food when the ‘miracle’ occurred. It was learnt that a female resident, Yemisi Ajetunmobi, had noticed the sudden change in Akinbileje’s behaviour and engaged her in a dialogue during which it was discovered that the woman had recovered her sanity, as she was speaking and conversing ra-

tionally. The news of her recovery reportedly spread, leading to a deluge of curious people into the area to catch a glimpse of the woman. While a cleric was invited to pray for Akinbileje, some residents fetched water for her to bathe and others provided new dresses to replace the rags she wore. She was later taken to the palace of Osemawe of Ondo where her relatives and a young woman,

who claimed to be Akinbilije’s daughter, came to see her. Speaking with Community Mirror, Akinbuluje described her recovery as miraculous, saying she could not recollect the exact time her mental illness started just as she thanked God for her recovery. Pastor Joseph Oladipo, who was said to have prayed for the woman, described the incident as a miracule, stressing the need for everyone to have faith in God.


Uzere residents petition over crisis AMOUR UDEMUDE ASABA


Some children trying to rescue household properties following the demolition of shanties at Ijora Badia recently.


Lagos lawmakers call for worship centres at relief camps MURITALA AYINLA


he Lagos State House of Assembly has called for the construction of worship centres at refugee camps, for the spiritual and psychological needs of displaced and traumatised victims. The lawmakers also called for adequate funding of the relief camps, just as it commended the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency,LASEMA, and other stakeholders for offering vocational skills to victims of Oko-Baba fire in Agbowa Relief Camp. Speaking during the visit of lawmakers to the refugee camp

as part of their oversight function, chairman of House Committee on Special Duties, Hon. Ipoola Omisoore, called for refurbishment of the commandant’s office and that of LASEMA General Manger to enable them discharge their duties to the victims. He affirmed that the state emergency management outfit needs regular and adequate funding to effectively carry out the task required of them, since their duty is to counsel the oppressed and depressed. He said: “If their offices are like this then, what will they do to the internally displaced victims they are taking care of ? If the camp commandant office

is shabby, unkempt and poorly furnished, can such official address the complaints of displaced victims on welfare? Omisoore, reiterated that construction of worship places in the camps would afford those displaced to seek help from God, considering that Nigerians are religious people who believe only God can alleviate their pains. “Government should consider constructing mosque and church in the camp, so that people can have places to go and cry to God to alleviate their pains.” Also speaking after taking lawmakers around the camp facilities, LASEMA General

Manager, Dr. Femi Oke-Osanyintolu, said the agency had collaborated with other stakeholders to train the displaced victims in vocations such as bead making, catering, pomade/cream and soap making, tie and dye and others. He reiterated that the Governor Babatunde Fashola is passionate about the welfare of the displaced, saying what the agency needed had been provided. “The internally displaced victims of Oko-Baba fire in the camp can attest to the care being given to them,even as the educational needs of their children have been taken over by the Ministry of Education”, Osanyintolu said.

s the crisis in Uzere, Isoko South Local Government Area of Delta State has escalated, the kingdom has petitioned the Assistant Inspector General of Police, AIG, in charge of Zone 5, Saliu Argungu Hashimu, over the invasion last week by some gunmen leading to the gruesome murder of one Mr. Omojele Idolor. In a petition of February 25, 2013, titled “Gruesome Murder of Mr. Omojele Idolor and Other Matters Incidental Thereto” signed by Barrister P.A. Oboreh on behalf of Idions and Iletus, representatives of Uweye community, and addressed to the AIG, they accused the Divisional Police Officer, DPO, and the Divisional Crime Officer, DCO, in charge of the council of instigating the crisis. “The relative peace enjoyed by people of Uzere kingdom after the harbingers of death invaded the kingdom on 29th November, 2011 has again been truncated by blood thirsty aggressors who will stop at nothing to carry out their self seeking desires which are detrimental to the wellbeing of our people.” According to the petitioners, the crisis that claimed the life of Idolor was as a result of a lake leased for N.5million and N100, 000 which was shared to each of the three sub-quarters and the balance of N200, 000 was kept in the central purse of the quarter,as this did not go down well with persons described as disgruntled elements.

Monday, March 4, 2013

National Mirror


World News

Queen Elizabeth hospitalised


‘There must be a willingness on all sides to make meaningful compromises on the issues that matter most to all of the Egyptian people.” UNITED STATES SECRETARY OF STATE, JOHN KERRY

Al-Qaeda commander Belmokhtar is alive –Militant group PAUL ARHEWE



lgerian al Qaeda commander Mokhtar Belmokhtar, reported killed by Chadian troops, is alive, a monitoring service that tracks online militant forums reported a contributor as saying yesterday. An unidentified participant in militant website discussions said in a message posted on several forums that Belmoktar was “alive and well and leading the battles himself ”, the U.S.-based SITE service reported. The message said Belmokhtar, the presumed mastermind behind a hostage-taking at an Algerian gas plant in January, would soon issue a message confirming the news, SITE reported. The death of Belmokhtar, nicknamed ‘the uncatchable’, has been reported several times

in the past. On Saturday, Chad said its forces had killed him in the same part of Mali that they had killed Adelhamid Abou Zeid, al Qaeda’s other senior field commander in the Sahara, a few days previously. The killing of Belmokhtar and Abou Zeid, if confirmed, would eliminate al Qaeda’s leadership in Mali and raise questions over the fate of seven French hostages thought to be held by the group in the country. Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) has pledged to avenge a French assault on its fighters in Mali, which Paris said it launched to prevent its former colony becoming a launchpad for wider al Qaeda attacks. The online participant did not indicate how he learned of Belmoktar’s status, SITE reported. Ahrar Press, an independent Arabic media organization, also reported that a source in Bel-


moktar’s group denied claims of his death, SITE reported. Meanwhile, A French soldier has died in some of the most intense fighting thus far in the seven-week-old military campaign to push back a jihadist advance in Mali, officials said Sunday. Parachutist Corporal Cedric Charenton was killed Saturday night in an assault in the Adrar

Egypt: Mubarak to face new trial next month


gypt’s ousted President Hosni Mubarak will face a new trial next month on charges related to the killings of hundreds of protesters during the revolution that forced him from power, a court ruled yesterday. Mubarak and his former interior minister were each sentenced in June to life in prison for failing to prevent the killing of demonstrators during the 18-day uprising in 2011 that ended his 29-year rule. In January, an appeals court overturned the sentences and ordered a retrial, raising public anger over what was seen as a shoddy prosecution in the first case. Critics wanted Mubarak convicted and sentenced to death for directly ordering the brutal crackdown, which killed nearly 900 people. The retrial, beginning April 13, is likely to intensify an already tense political atmosphere in Egypt, still reeling from a turbulent transition. It is due to start just over

a week before the beginning of Egypt’s parliamentary elections, which have deeply polarized the country. Two years on, Cairo’s Tahrir Square — the epicenter of protests during the uprising against Mubarak — remains a volatile hub for Egyptians to vent their anger. Police failed to clear protesters from the square yesterday, and instead the crowds who have had a sit-in there for the past three months burned two police vehicles near the famed Egyptian Museum there. Mubarak’s successor Mohammed Morsi and his gov-

ernment argue that parliamentary elections will help put the country on the right track, enabling him and the legislature to tackle a deteriorating economy. Morsi met with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry in Cairo for more than two hours on Sunday, a day after the top American diplomat met six opposition figures out of 11 who were invited. Those who did not attend said they declined to meet Kerry because of Washington’s insistence that all Egyptians take part in next month’s elections.

Mubarak, laying on a gurney inside a barred cage in the police academy courthouse in Cairo, Egypt, Last year. PHOTO: AP

des Ifoghas mountains along the Algerian border, where the jihadists have retrenched as French troops have swept through the country’s north. He is the third troop to die since France began its intervention to dislodge the al-Qaidalinked militants on Jan. 11. The 26-year-old had already served in Afghanistan, Gabon and New Caledonia.

West Africa records impressive economic growth in 2012


est Africa achieved an economic growth rate of 6.9 percent in 2012, which is more than double the global rate and an increase over the 5.9 per cent recorded by the region in the preceding year, the President of the ECOWAS Commission, Kadré Désiré Ouédraogo, has said. The figures which compare favourably with the 5.3 per cent for sub-Saharan Africa and 4.5 per cent for Africa over the same period, were driven mainly by good rainfall and positive developments in the mining and petroleum sectors, the President said in his annual report to regional leaders at their just-ended 42nd Ordinary summit at Cote d’Ivoire’s administrative capital, Yamoussoukro. “In spite of the global slowdown, regional growth remained robust with a growth estimated at 6.9 per cent,” the President said in the report which covered various aspects of the organisation’s activities and programmes for the year under review. Of the 15 ECOWAS countries, Sierra Leone recorded the highest economic growth rate of 18.3 per cent compared to expected rate of 8 per cent for Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Liberia and Niger, while Mali recorded a recession.

WORLD BULLETIN Kenyan police on alert for poll violence Five years after more than 1,000 people were killed in election-related violence, Kenyans yesterday will begin casting votes in a nationwide election seen as the country’s most important — and complicated — in its 50-year history. Clerics across Kenya gave sermons dedicated to peace on Sunday, and urged the country to prove wrong the “prophets of doom” who predict violence. A barrier to a peaceful vote is that the country faces so many potential triggers of violence. The police issued an alert late yesterday that criminals were planning to dress in police uniforms and disrupt voting in some locations. In addition, intelligence on the Somali-Kenya border indicated Somali militants planned to launch attacks on the polls; a secessionist group on the coast is threatening attacks; the tribes of the top two presidential candidates have a long history of tense relations; and 47 new governor races are being held, increasing the chances of electoral problems at the local level. Perhaps most importantly, Uhuru Kenyatta, one of two top candidates for president, faces charges at the International Criminal Court for orchestrating the 2007-08 postelection violence. If he wins, the U.S. and Europe could scale back relations with Kenya, and Kenyatta may have to spend a significant portion of his presidency at The Hague.

Somali woman cleared in false rape case A court in Somalia has dropped charges against a woman who was given a jail sentence after alleging she was raped by security forces. She and a journalist who interviewed her were convicted a month ago by a Mogadishu judge on charges of offending state institutions. The appeal court said the woman would be freed but the journalist who did not report the story would stay in jail. Abdiaziz Abdinur Ibrahim, 25, had his sentence cut to six months. The case prompted an outcry last month from human rights groups and journalists, who said it was politically motivated. UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said he was “deeply disappointed”. Both the woman and the journalist were originally given one-year jail terms, but the trial judge said the woman would not be imprisoned for six months as she was caring for a baby. She had reported the alleged rape at a police station in Mogadishu and prosecutors alleged she and others had been paid by Abdinur to lie. She was convicted after the judge cited disputed medical evidence saying she had not been raped.


World News

Monday, March 4, 2013

National Mirror

Queen Elizabeth hospitalised


he Queen has been hospital as a precaution, while she was assessed for symptoms of gastroenteritis, Buckingham Palace said. The 86-year-old monarch has been taken to King Edward VII Hospital in London, a palace spokesman said. All official engagements for this week, including the Queen’s trip

Assad accuses US, Britain of supporting terrorism


ore than 200 Syrian soldiers and opposition fighters died in the eight-day battle for a police academy near the embattled northern city of Aleppo, activists said Sunday as President Bashar Assad lashed out at the West for sending aid to those trying to oust him. The Britain-based antiregime group The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the rebels seized control of the police academy in Khan al-Asal, west of Aleppo, after entering the sprawling government complex with tanks they captured from Assad’s troops in previous battles. Rami Abdul-Rahman, the Observatory’s director, said at least 120 soldiers from Assad’s forces and at least 80 rebels were killed in the fighting outside Aleppo Syria’s largest city.

US releasing millions in aid to Egypt –Kerry


.S. Secretary of State John Kerry yesterday rewarded Egypt for President Mohammed Morsi’s pledges of political and economic reforms by releasing $250 million in American aid to support the country’s “future as a democracy.” Yet Kerry also served notice that the Obama administration will kept close watch on how Morsi, who came to power in June as Egypt’s first freely elected president, honours his commitment. “The path to that future has clearly been difficult and much work remains,” Kerry said in a statement after wrapping up two days of meetings in Egypt, a deeply divided country in the wake of the revolution that ousted long time President Hosni Mubarak.

to Rome, will be either cancelled or postponed. The Queen was driven to hospital by private car yesterday, and the palace said she was “in good spirits”. She had earlier carried out a medal presentation at Windsor Palace, where she has been resting over the weekend. The symptoms of gastroenteritis — vomiting and diarrhea — usually pass after one or two days, although they can be more severe in older or otherwise vulnerable people. Dehydration is a common complication. The illness was first announced Friday, and Elizabeth had to cancel a visit Swansea, Wales, on Saturday to present leeks — a national symbol —

Queen Elizabeth II

to soldiers of the Royal Welsh Regiment in honor of Wales’ national day, St. David’s Day. She instead spent the day trying to recover at Windsor Castle, but appears to have had trouble kicking the bug. A doctor not involved in the queen’s treatment

said that if medical officials determined she had lost too much fluid, she could be rehydrated intravenously. “I suspect that she’s being assessed and that it’ll be a relatively uncomplicated treatment,” Dr. Chaand Nagpaul told

Sky News television. “It is very much about ensuring that the body receives the fluid it needs.” A spokesman for the Queen said she was in “good health”, besides the symptoms of gastroenteritis. He said: “This is a precautionary measure. “She was not taken into hospital immediately after feeling the symptoms. This is simply to enable doctors to better assess her.” I think it is important to stress that we should not get this out of proportion. This is, as the palace says, a precautionary measure for assessment. She has clearly got a nasty stomach bug. However, she did fulfil one commitment this

morning - presenting a long-service medal at Windsor before being taken by private car to hospital. Clearly, this stomach bug hasn’t just cleared up over the last couple of days, so the doctors will not want to take any risks. The word from the palace is that she’s in good spirits. I would imagine she may well have gone to hospital slightly unwillingly - her inclination is not to make a fuss. She, I’m sure, never wants to miss engagements, or let people down, but a stomach bug does not respect who you are. The BBC’s royal correspondent says the Queen will remain in hospital under observation for about two days.

Scottish Cardinal O’Brien admits sexual misconduct


ardinal Keith O’Brien has admitted that his sexual conduct has at times “fallen beneath the standards expected of me”. In a statement, he apologised and asked forgiveness from those he had “offended”. He also apologised to the Catholic Church, and to the people of Scotland. The cardinal resigned last Monday after three priests and a former priest made allegations of improper behaviour against him. Cardinal O’Brien had been Britain’s most senior

Roman Catholic cleric when he stood down as the Archbishop of St Andrews and Edinburgh. At the time, he said he would not take part in the election for a successor to Pope Benedict. To those I have offended, I apologise and ask forgiveness. To the Catholic Church and people of Scotland, I also apologise” The statement issued through the Roman Catholic Church in Scotland read: “In recent days certain allegations which have been made against me have become public. Initially, their anonymous

and non-specific nature led me to contest them. “However, I wish to take this opportunity to admit that there have been times that my sexual conduct has fallen below the standards expected of me as a priest, archbishop and cardinal. “To those I have offended, I apologise and ask forgiveness. To the Catholic Church and people of Scotland, I also apologise. “I will now spend the rest of my life in retirement. I will play no further part in the public life of the Catholic Church in Scotland.” The cardinal - who ini-

Iran using nuclear talks to buy time for bomb –Netanyahu


enewed international efforts to negotiate curbs on Iran’s disputed nuclear program have backfired by giving it more time to work on building a bomb, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said yesterday. His remarks on the inconclusive February 26-27 meeting between Iran and six world powers signalled impatience by Israel, which has threatened to launch pre-emptive war on its arch-foe, possibly in the coming months, if it deems diplomacy a dead end. Senior U.S. diplomat Wendy Sherman flew in

to brief Israel about the Kazakh-hosted talks, in which Tehran, which denies seeking nuclear arms, was offered modest relief from sanctions in return for halting mid-level uranium enrichment. There was no breakthrough. The sides will reconvene in Almaty on April 5-6 after holding technical talks in Istanbul. “My impression from these talks is that the only thing that is gained from them is a buying of time, and through this time-buying Iran intends to continue enriching nuclear material for an atomic bomb

and is indeed getting closer to this goal,” Netanyahu told his cabinet in remarks aired by Israeli media. Extrapolating from U.N. reports on Iran’s enrichment of uranium to 20 percent fissile purity, a short technical step from weapons-grade, Netanyahu has set a mid-2013 “red line” for denying the Islamic republic the fuel needed for a first bomb. Iranian media reported on Sunday the country was building around 3,000 new advanced enrichment centrifuges, a development that could accelerate the nuclear project.


tially said he was taking legal advice when the allegations against him were made public - had been due to retire later this month when he turned 75. The former priest and three current priests from the diocese of St

Andrews and Edinburgh complained to the Pope’s representative to Britain, Archbishop Antonio Mennini, in early February about what they alleged had been inappropriate behaviour towards them in the 1980s.

Bomb blast kills 25 in Pakistan


t least 25 people have been killed by a bomb explosion in the Pakistani city of Karachi, police say. The blast in the mainly Shia Muslim area of Abbas town destroyed several buildings and set others on fire. Some reports spoke of a second explosion. Rescuers have been struggling to reach people thought to be trapped under the rubble. Pakistan’s Shia minority are the target of frequent sectarian attacks from Sunni militant groups. The explosion sent a huge column of smoke into the sky above Karachi and caused a power cut in part of the city. Residents have been

using car headlights to help rescuers search for survivors, local media reports said. More than 50 people were injured, and there are fears the number of dead will rise. Pakistan’s main political and religious leaders rushed to condemn the attack - the latest to target the Shia minority. Last month nearly 90 people were killed in a bomb attack on a Shia area in the south western city of Quetta. Some relatives of the victims there initially refused to bury their dead in protest at what they said was the failure of the authorities to protect their community from attack.

Monday, March 4, 2013

National Mirror



My recent pairing with President Obama lifted me so much I can’t wait for another pairing

Omeruo rates Kenya match



Police Games begin with FG’s pledge SAM OLUWALANA PORT HARCOURT


resident Goodluck Jonathan says the federal government will continue to motivate sportsmen and women in the country towards achieving greater height in sports development. Jonathan, who gave the assurance in Port Harcourt yesterday at the opening ceremony of the 10th Biennial Police Games, also praised the Nigeria Police Force as a front runner in sports development in the country. “This is evident in the Police sporting products like the only individual Nigerian Olympic gold medalist, Chioma Ajunwa, the former world heavyweight boxing champion, Samuel Peters, and many others,” the president said. Represented by the Sports Minister, Mallam Bolaji Abdulahi, Jonathan urged competitors at the games to be disciplined, focused and play by the rules “These games will also lead to the emergence of excellent sporting talents and create awareness in sports development in the country,” he assured. Chief Host and the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar, thanked President Jonathan for making the event a success.

Ajimobi rewards Paralympic, NSF heroes


overnor Abiola Ajimobi over the weekend gave a total of N53, 800, 000 to the Oyo State representatives at the EKO 2012 National Sports Festival. At a ceremony graced by members of the state executive council, officials of the Ministry of Youth and Sports and the State Sports Council as well as other sports lovers in the state and held inside the Lekan Salami Stadium Ibadan, Governor Ajimobi presented cheques to the victorious Team Oyo that include paralympics gold medalist, Yakubu Adesokan. Adesokan was presented with a cheque for N4million and a hajj slot while his coach got N2 million. Each of the gold medalists at the Eko 2012 also got N750, 000, while silver and bronze medalists collected N500, 000 and N350, 000 respectively. Governor Ajimobi congratulated the athletes for what he called their brilliant performances at the paralympics and the sports festival, saying they did the state proud. “Government will continue to reward excellence as a means of motivating sports men and women, and developing the sports sector in the state,” Ajimobi remarked.

Super Eagles pose before an AFCON 2013 match in South Africa.

Brazil 2014: Botswana ref for Nigeria, Kenya clash


IFA has appointed Botswanan referee, Joshua Bondo, to take charge of this month’s 2014 World Cup qualifying match between the Super Eagles and the Harambee Stars of Kenya, slated for the U. J. Esuene Stadium, Calabar on March 23.

The 35-year-old Bondo, who has been an international referee since 2007, will be assisted by compatriots Meshack Medupi, Moemedi Monakwane and Kutlwano Leso. Medupi, 37, has been an international assistant referee since 2005 while Monakwane, 36, has served in the same po-

sition for three years. Leso, who is also 36, has been an international referee since 2010. FIFA also appointed Cameroonian Richard MbakuFonjah as the referee assessor while the renowned Alhaji Omar Sey of The Gambia, a former FIFA refer-

ee, will serve as Match Commissioner. Nigeria aims to pick up three points against the Kenyans in Calabar to solidify their leadership of Group F of the African series for the 2014 FIFA World Cup finals, which will take place in Brazil next year summer.

T/tennis: Ojo, Ajala clinch Adeboye prizes YEMI OLUS


ndo State player, Onaolapo Ojo, and Funmi Ajala of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) have emerged champions in the maiden Pastor Enoch Adeboye U-20 Table Tennis Championship which ended at the Redemption Camp along Lagos/Ibadan Expressway over the weekend.

Ojo defeated fellow Ondo State player, Akinwale Fagbamila, 4-2 in the boys final while Olajide Omotayo of the NSCDC and Ahmed Bello of Rivers State finished in joint third place. An upset was recorded in the girl’s category as unseeded Ajala out stroked number two seed Fatimo Kazeem of the Nigeria Police Force. Kazeem had earlier beaten Funke Hassan of Lagos State in the semis while another Lagos

State player, Ayo Udoh, also finished in third position. An overwhelmed Ojo, who spoke to National Mirror after his feat, attributed his triumph to confidence. “The competition was quite tough and very competitive,” he said “A lot of players are coming up so it was no mean feat beating them. Right now I will get myself some new equipment to improve in my training because another

event comes up next month in Lagos. I want to train very hard and aim high to prove my mettle as a senior player as well,” he added. About 21 states and Abuja were represented by 88 boys 66 girls at the weeklong event which saw winners of the boys’ and girls’ singles cart away N1.5million each while first runners-up won N1million each as each of the four semifinalists also got N250, 000.



Monday, March 4, 2013

Muntari targets Euro glory

Returnee Imenger commits to Lobi



x-Trelleborgs FF striker, Barnabas Imenger, has said he hopes to use his experience in Sweden to help Lobi Stars win the League. Imenger, whose loan spell with the Swedish division one side ended last December, has teamed up with Lobi Stars after efforts to return to Europe failed. “I am happy to be back. I had a wonderful six months in Sweden and hopefully all the experience garnered from there I will translate to Lobi to help them win the league,” the player, who was handed jersey 21 upon return to Lobi last week, told yesterday. Meanwhile, Lobi Stars, who will represent the country in the CAF Confederation Cup this year, have signed several other players for the 2012/2013 season including Jude Ebitogwa, Ifeanyi Iyam(Sunshine Stars), Danladi Isah (Heartland), Osas Aighbe, Benedict Atule (Niger Tornadoes). Others are Samuel Irolo (Jigawa Golden Stars), Chidozie Johnson (Enyimba), Ikenna Paul (Rangers), Orji Jacob, Victor John, Kingsley Chimezie, Stephen Eze, Yanmar Moses, Udoh Moses and Abanyi Aondongu (Lobi Stars Feeders)


National Mirror

Kenneth Omeruo (in white shirt) thwarting Zambian, striker, Emmanuel Mayuka, during their AFCON 2013 group match

Omeruo rates Kenya match



uper Eagles’ defender, Kenneth Omeruo, has said that the World Cup 2014 qualifier against Harambee Stars of Kenya on March 23 is as important as the Africa Cup of Nations final encounter with the Stallions of Burkina Faso. The continental match is scheduled for the UJ Esuene Stadium, Calabar. Omeruo, who spoke with National Mirror yesterday from his base in Holland, contended that the AFCON success had put the Eagles on what he called elevat-

ed platform and the team could no longer afford to perform less. “It is a fact that the burden of being African champions would demand a lot from us as we meet the Kenyans and I think we must be at our best in the match,” he said. “In addition, any team in this round of the qualifiers can beat any team and I think the opposition is also guided by this reality. “Essentially, I am expecting a tough match against Kenya because as much as we are currently topping Group F and want to consolidate, they too would fight to get out of the table bottom that they are occupying at the moment.”

Asked if the virtual restart being witnessed by the Harambee Stars with the recent appointment of Adel Amrouche as coach would have adverse effect on Kenya’s fortune, Omeruo, who has since regained his spot at ADO Den Haag after his AFCON exploit, said: “The resolve of the players would determine the outcome of the match, the coach is only there to guide and motivate.” The 19-year-old utility player, however, expressed hope that the Eagles would soar above the Harambee Stars. “We are aware of the expectation of Nigerians and we will not disappoint,” he assured.

hana midfielder, Sulley Muntari, believes AC Milan can defy all odds to conquer Europe this term. The 28-year-old scored the second in Milan’s incredible 2-0 win over Barcelona to give the Italians a real chance of edging out the acclaimed best team in the world. Muhtari who was part of the Inter side the beat the Spanish giants en route to their Champions League triumph in the 2009/10 season says the Rossoneri can do same this term. ‘’I still think about the game against Barcelona at San Siro but now we must concentrate on the league (game against Lazio) and then focus on going to Spain for the next leg,’’ he said yesterday. ‘’I do not think that the age of Barca is over because it is a team with many champions. ‘’Can we win the Champions League? Anything is possible and we certainly want to try and achieve this.’’ The Ghana international,who has hit a rich vein of form since returning from a lengthy injury layoff, is however still angry over the 1-1 draw with rival Inter last weekend. Europe Results EPL Tottenham








Newcastle Utd




Stoke City


West Ham Utd

Southampton 1-2







West Brom




La-Liga Granada

1 - 2 Mallorca


0 - 0 Valladolid

‘NPFL to issue transfer certificates’


L-R: Representative of the Chief of the Defence Staff, Commodre A. Da Costa; wife of cup donor and Director, Pace Setters Schools, Mrs. Kate Imansuagbon; Guest of Honour and wife of Nassarawa State Governor, Hajiya Mero Almakura; cup donor, Barr. Ken Imansuagbon and Director, Grassroots Sports Development, National Sports Commission, Al-Hassan Yakmut, at the closing ceremony of the 2013 Kenneth Imansuagbon Cup for FCT Schools, won by Government Secondary School, Gwarimpa, at the weekend.

member of the Interim Committee of the Nigerian Professional Football League (NPFL), Mike Idoko, has said that the body would henceforth issue certificates for the transfer of players. Idoko disclosed this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Akure, on the controversy over which club owns Super Eagles’ player, Sunday Mba. Rangers International FC of Enugu, Warri Wolves and Dolphins FC of Port Harcourt are engaged in an ownership tussle of the AFCON revelation, Mba and goalkeeper Chigozie Agbim. He said the certificate would prevent the future occurrence of clubs’ tussling over ownership of players, adding that it

would serve as evidence of ownership of any player. Idoko said the certificate would also make for easy transfer of players during any transfer window. ``We want to issue a local transfer certificate without which players cannot be transferred from one club to the other,” he said. He explained that it was the NPFL board that kept records of players’ movements in the transfer market, adding that it was part of the board’s reference to also look after players’ welfare and to act in due time to protect their careers. The Interim Management Committee of the Nigeria Premier League last week ruled that Warri Wolves owned both players.

National Mirror

Monday, March 4, 2013




Monday, March 4, 2013

I miss football – Emenike


outh Africa 2013 Africa Cup of Nations top goal scorer, Emmanuel Emenike, has disclosed with regrets that he misses the game as he remains sidelined by a long-term hamstring injury. “I miss football. Football is part of me and I always want to play,” Emenike told MTNFootball. com on phone from his base in Russia. The second round of the Russian Premier League will resume next Sunday with Emenike’s Spartak home to closest rivals, Terek Grosny. Both teams are on 32 points after 19 matches with fifth-placed Spartak only ahead on goals’ difference. Emenike, who fired four goals at the recent AFCON, missed the final against Burkina Faso after he suffered the injury in Nigeria’s semi-final match against Mali in Durban. The medical team at

Spartak say he could be out for as a long as two months, which could well rule him out of a 2014 World Cup qualifier at home to Kenya later this month. Emenike rubbished a media report that he has since returned to action. “I am yet to return to action, but I am only focusing on good recovery from the injury. I want to get back to my best form for my great club who have stood by me,” he added.


National Mirror

National Mirror


Monday, March 4, 2013


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Most hot air balloons to cross the English Channel Vol. 03 No. 569



Monday, March 4, 2013

The most hot air balloons to cross the English Channel is 49 and was organised by Palletways (UK) on 7 April 2011. The group took off from Lydden Hill Race Circuit, Dover, UK and landed at Calais Airport, France.

Now that the Pope has bowed out

ope Benedict XVI, the cerebral but conservative German Pope of the Roman Catholic Church and Bishop of Rome Catholic, ceased to answer to those titles since Thursday February 28. Since he made public his intention early in February many commentators, especially those who have an axe to grind with the papacy in particular and the Christian faith in general, have come up with many wild theories as to why the Pope had to resign. The explanation in his notice of resignation to the effect that he was physically incapacitated to continue was not convincing enough to these skeptics. One of these bashers and pugilists, A.H. Wilson who in his recent essay published in Newsweek magazine, tried to make dis-


orld number five, Rafael Nadal, has confirmed he may have to pull out of this month’s Indian Wells Masters because of his fragile knees. But he still intends to travel to California and he has denied reports that

Guest Columnist paraging comments bordering on the age and origin of Popes. As Wilson, in the said article attests to, the Pope is both ‘God’s Rottweiller’ and the people’s shepherd. This means that age and place of origin of the Pope are extremely irrelevant in matters that concern religion and the fate of humans in their continual quest for the meaning of existence and salvation. The world is terribly in turmoil and most of the gains and values heralded by modernity are vanishing with such rapidity that it appears humanity is being swept away. In such a world, a Pope immersed in conservative values opposed to rampaging liberalist values and conjectures is a necessary development to nudge humanity to the path charted by the Almighty. There is no doubting the fact that secular idiocies and wanton inanities have crowded Christendom even to the point of dictating and directing its trajectory, blurring the boundary between the sacred and the profane. Many Christian faiths, especially the Pentecostal wing engage in all kinds of gambits to be relevant in a world that has lost its meaning and edifying ramparts. Prosperity proselytizing is the order of the day as those who are in dire need of eking out bare existence in a world that is dominated by exploiters of the highest order are deceived and abandoned. Both the poor and those in quest of attention and position, are in most cases, conned by these new church owners and preachers, employing all kinds of tools in the process. Indeed, the state of hopelessness and the accompanying angst and ennui present hu-



RIGHTEOUSNESS AND HOLINESS manity with many challenges and options. These options must be guided and directed by reason and forthrightness. It is instructive to note that the western church is thoroughly embroiled in crises of immense proportions. In the name of liberalism and human rights those who are entrusted with the responsibility of attending to the spiritual needs of the people have taken it upon themselves to ravish the same people and their souls with reckless abandon. The Church of England, in cahoots with some of its American counterparts, has in the name of liberalism condoned same-sex marriages even amongst the priestly caste. For years, the former Prelate of the Church of Nigeria, Anglican Communion, Archbishop Peter Akinola with other African Anglican bishops, fought a bitter war with the leadership of the Church of England and its willing allies over their acceptance of degrading and dehumanizing lifestyles that question the core of Christian ethical values. Many priests in the West have been accused of be-

ing pedophiles. The strong allegation of a gay network inside the Vatican is making its rounds alongside wild allegations of financial impropriety. What crystallizes from the above is that the universal Church is divided along two lines – the liberals who indulge in all sorts of activities that are not in tandem with God’s wish and will for mankind and conservatives that insist that the mission of Christ on earth as dictated by God should not be trifled with in the name of excessive human right promotion. The resolution of the disagreement between these two forces has serious ramifications and implications for Christendom and the entire world. It will amount to naïve thinking to assume that the conservatives will have their way without a serious fight. It is in recognition of the above that whoever takes over from Pope Benedict XVI should be one who must at all times not give in to the liberals who are bent on enshrining a free-for all etiquette that only satisfies human beings and their desires at the expense of the well-cherished injunction of God. The ways of God are not determined by the mundane and capricious fancies of men, but by righteousness and holiness. Since Pope Benedict XVI retired last Thursday, it is incumbent on the Conclave of Cardinals to elect a man as pious and conservative as the retired Pope. Age and the hemisphere that one comes from should not be among the criteria for choosing the next Pope. After all, the cardinals are led by the Holy Spirit and their choice is a product of divine directive and support. What remains paramount to the church of God is the capacity to nourish the body and the spirit of the faithful. Perhaps, the new Pope should be made to accelerate these reforms started by the retired Pope. Dr. Uwasomba,, is of the Department of English, OAU, Ile-Ife

Sport Extra

Indian Wells: Nadal thinks pull out he would head home after competing in this week’s event in Acapulco, in order to save himself for the European clay court season. Nadal, who won in In-

dian Wells in 2007 and 2009, is also undecided about playing in the Key Biscane event, which takes place the following week. “I really intend to go

to Indian Wells,” Nadal said yesterday, stressing, “This is the truth because I love this tournament and the priority is to play. “But if I don’t feel comfortable playing and de-

cide to wait to play on the hard courts, that’s how it will be and I’ll rest for the clay-court season in Europe. I am just happy that I am going inNFF thePresident, Aminu Maigari right direction. Rafael Nadal

Printed and Published by Global Media Mirror Ltd: Head Office: Mirror House, 155/161 Broad Street, Lagos Tel: 07027107407, Abuja Office: NICON Insurance House, Second Floor, Central Business District Area, Abuja Tel: 08070428249, Advert hotline: 01-8446073, Email: Editor: SEYI FASUGBA. All correspondence to PMB 10001, Marina, Lagos. Printed simultaneously in Lagos, Abuja and Ondo State. ISSN 0794-232X.

Monday, March 4, 2013  
Monday, March 4, 2013  

* Insecurity: Commissioner of police shot dead ...orderly, driver on danger list * 2015: North in fresh plot against Jonathan …Sambo...