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FG owes oil marketers N140bn

President didn’t buy jet for Oritsejafor, says CAN

Banks shut credit lines EXCLUSIVE


Vol. 2 N0. 494


he non-payment of fuel subsidy arrears, amounting to over N140bn, has resulted in the virtual closure of bank credit lines to major and independent oil marketing

companies who need such funds to import petrol into the country. The situation, which has resulted in the Nigerian National Petroleum CorporaCONTINUED ON PAGE 5>>



Monday, November 19, 2012


No plan to remove fuel subsidy –Jonathan Yet to decide on 2015 Manitoba contract intact Govt won’t negotiate with Boko Haram Says First Lady still recuperating from illness


Fashola defends policies, blasts critics P.7 Northern govs to speak on PIB soon –Kwankwaso


resident Goodluck Jonathan yesterday disclosed that there was no plan by his administration to totally remove fuel subsidy now or in January 2013, saying he was misunderstood on the issue. Speaking yesterday on the third edition of the presidential media chat aired live nationwide, President Jonathan assured Nigerians that government would not remove fuel subsidy just as it happened on CONTINUED ON PAGE 2>>


Former President Olusegun Obasanjo (right) with Benue State Governor Gabriel Suswan at the Fidau prayer for the late Dr. Olusola Saraki at the Metropolitan Square, Ilorin, yesterday.


Agric agency engages 610,000 0 farmers for dry season farming Aganga urges Nigeria, S’Africa to strengthen economic growth in Africa



PDP not losing sleep over ACN, CPC merger –Metuh Alleged N44m fraud: CJ transfers Hembe, Ifeanyi’s case file

Free inside


Gunmen kill pastor in Maiduguri

P.4,13 P.51



Monday, November 19, 2012

National Mirror

No plan to remove fuel subsidy –Jonathan CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1

January 1, this year, saying the 2013 budget had already provided for fuel subsidy. “I did not say we are deregulating, already we have provision in the 2013 budget for subsidy, if we want to remove subsidy from January as you are afraid that another January is coming, we couldn’t have made provision but we have made provision from January,” the President said. Jonathan who was reacting to reports that Nigerians should brace up for total removal of fuel subsidy, saying that he was totally misunderstood. “Frankly speaking, I think I was totally misunderstood, in the statement I made. I received NIPSS, they submitted their report, normally it is a research work and they did their analysis and they say that in Canada, they have 16 refineries; in Nigeria, we have only four refineries.” Jonathan noted that it was discovered that the 16 refineries in Canada were privately owned with some regulations, stressing that total deregulation of the oil sector in the country still remains the solution to rapid investment in the industry, stressing that it would encourage private investors to the sector particularly in the area of building refineries.

2015 Presidency The President also said that he has not decided whether or not to contest in the 2015 general election because it was too early to take such decision, saying that Nigerians should wait till 2014 Jonathan said that the question of contesting for second term was one of the reasons that he advocated for single tenure His words: “I plead with journalists that it is too early to ask a sitting president whether he would contest election and this was one of the reasons we are advocating for single tenure because if the President tells you today that he is contesting, it would generate a lot of issues, if I say am not contesting, it will generate issues. “If I say am not contesting, some of my cabinet Ministers may even resign and go because most of them are qualified if not all of them qualify to contest

the position” “Four years is very short time for a person to make an impact, immediately he starts talking about election, he is unnecessarily heating the polity, give us time, before you ask whether Mr. President will contest or not, wait until 2014, give me some time to make sure myself and cabinet work, I don’t want to distract members of my cabinet.” He asked that Nigerians should give him and his team time to face the task of nation building before talking about 2015.

Constitution amendment President Jonathan also reiterated his belief in the ability of the National Assembly to fashion out an acceptable amendment to the 1999 Constitution, even as he said that it was the duty of the National Assembly that is empowered to handle the amendment. The President said he cannot teach the National Assembly their job on constitution review even if he supports a referendum. “It will not be proper for me now to begin to impose my ideas,” he added. He advised proponents of the sovereign national conference to liaise and partner with the National Assembly on constitution review. The President insisted that he can’t dictate to the National Assembly on the areas of the constitution that should be amended or decide for the lawmakers on the issue of referendum. He stated that the National Assembly is an independent body that would take decision on such matter, stressing that he could make some inputs only when the amendment comes to him for assent.

Boko Haram On the issue of insurgency in some states in the North and the proposed dialogue with the Boko Haram sect, President Jonathan said the Federal Government is at present not in any dialogue with the group. According to him, no one has come out claiming that that he is a member of the sect and ready for dialogue, saying that government cannot dialogue with faceless people. Jonathan disclosed that

L-R: Mr. Muhamed Kudu Abubakar of the Nigerian Television Authority; President Goodluck Jonathan and Editor, Saturday Mirror, Gbemi Olujobi, at the presidential media chat in Abuja, yesterday. PHOTO: STATE HOUSE.

the government was not negotiating or dialoging with the sect. He said that members of the Boko Haram Islamic sect are still wearing a mask, they have not come out for dialogue. He said the group is still operating under cover and there is no way the government will dialogue with Boko Haram when there is no face to parley with. “Government is at present not in any dialogue with Boko Haram. The group is still operating under cover, so there is no face to parley with,” Jonathan said, assuring that despite the daunting challenge of insecurity to his government, Nigeria’s future remains bright. His words: “The future of Nigeria is bright though we have security challenges in form of the Boko Haram and kidnapping in some states in the South. The future is bright, especially in the area of agriculture and I want to assure Nigerians that there would be no food scarcity due to the recent flood, as envisaged in some quarters. “We are empowering our farmers affected by the flood to produce more food. We are really moving as a nation. The foreign direct investment within a short period of recent has been very impressive. By the time we get to 2015, Nigerians will know that Jonathan and his team really meant well for this country.”

Lagos-Ibadan expressway contract On the problematic Lagos-Ibadan Expressway concession contract awarded to Bi-Courtney Highway Services Limited, President Jonathan indicated that the concession would likely be revoked as the company had not demonstrated capacity to imple-

ment the project. According to the president, “a final decision” is to be taken on the concession as it seems that the concessionaire is not on a position to do the project.” Pointing out that the expressway is the busiest road in Nigeria and a strategic link between the South and other parts of the country; he said the government “would not want to be held to ransom because of a transaction that was not properly done.”

Aviation sector The President said the government was going to organise a retreat to look at the problems of the aviation sector especially the airlines as several interventions appeared not to be working. According to the president, the aviation sector had been in the hands of private sector as it is the practice all over the world citing the example of British Airways, which he described as one of the most successful airlines in the world. He said that several airlines had been floated by private companies in Nigeria but many had collapsed over the years just as it was the case of the defunct national carrier, Nigeria Airways. He said the government had tried to help the airlines with interventions funds provided by the Central Bank of Nigeria and more recently with incentive such as the removal of taxes on aircraft and spare parts import yet they still had problems. We are going to do a retreat next year where we will invite experts and analyse the problems of the sector. Putting in money has not been working, so what is the problem? Is it management issue? We will have a retreat to look at all these.

On First Lady The president acknowledged that the First Lady, Dame Patience Jonathan had been ill and was still recuperating though; he insisted that she was “OK”. He said his wife attended church service with other family members this morning but was yet be very active as before.

Power sector The President also praised the appreciable progress so far made in the power sector. He said: “We are yet to get 24 hours of electricity in our cities but you will agree with me that difference is clear. We have moved from below 3,000 megawatts, we are now generating more than 5,000 megawatts, but we have the problem of evacuation because of weak infrastructure.”

Manitoba contract President Jonathan has said the Federal Government has not cancelled the contract deal on power with Manitoba as erroneously being speculated in the media, noting that there has been a misconception about the whole exercise, especially by the public. He added that a holistic approach has been accorded the energy sector having realised how critical it is to the nation’s development, pointing out that the government is on course to meet up with the nation’s demand by the middle of next year. His words: “Manitoba contract has not been revoked. There were some issues raised due to misunderstanding. In 2006 when it all started, Manitoba and others also bid. As of that time, it was the Bureau of Public Enterprise that handled the whole exercise. There was confusion and they placed procurement

on Manitoba as a consultant to manage our transmission. But with the law we have now, the due process law, it has painted that procurement differently. “It was just discovered that the process of privatisation did not follow the law strictly. Every country must keep to its law.” The president pointed out that ”we saw some loopholes that were not properly done and we say look, we should do it properly so that if we leave, after few years, nobody will come and ask you questions. We believe that we should rectify what was not properly done, therefore give the relevant section of government up to next Tuesday to get all things sorted out, so that if it requires my authorisation, l can do it. Let me assure you that we did not cancel the Manitoba contract.”

Heads of states and PHCH successor companies On the issue of the involvement of the former Heads of State, the president noted: “On the issue of the former heads of state, the former heads of state have to live, just like any other citizen. That you are a former head of state does not mean that you should go and sleep; you need business to survive. “But let me assure you that whether the person has been a former head of state or not, it would not affect the process. The privatisation that is going on is not only being handled by Nigerians alone. The World Bank is also involved. The former heads of state may probably have shares in the companies taking part in the bidding. I don’t think the whole company is owned by him. ”

Single term tenure proposal Speaking on the single CONTINUED ON PAGE 5>>

National Mirror

Monday, November 19, 2012



Photo News

Monday, November 19, 2012

L-R: President/Chairman, Chartered Institute of Bankers, Mr. Segun Aina; Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria, Mallam Lamido Sanusi and President, National Institute of Marketing of Nigeria, Chief Lugard Aimiuwu, at the 46th Annual Bankers’ Dinner in Lagos, at the weekend.

L-R: Ambassador, Institute of Hospitality for Sub-Saharan Africa; Mr. Trevor Ward (left) presenting certificate of fellowship to former Departmental Head, Nigerian Hotel and Catering School, Mrs. Adetokunbo Ajayi, during the First Chairman’s Dinner and Fellow’s Award Ceremony of the institute in Lagos at the weekend. PHOTO: OLUFEMI AJASA

National Mirror

L-R: Wife of former Oyo State Governor, Mrs. Oluwakemi Alao-Akala; Minister of Health, Professor Onyebuchi Chukwu; Chief Tony Anenih; former Information Minister, Mrs. Dora Akunyili and Chief Medical Officer of the University College Hospital (UCH), Ibadan, Prof. Temitope Alonge, during the commissioning of Chief Tony Anenih Geriatric Centre, UCH, Ibadan, at the weekend.

L-R: Director, Public Private Partnership, Federal Ministry of Works, Mr. Babatunde Ekunsumi; Chairman, Bi-Courtney Ltd, Dr. Wale Babalakin and Managing Director, Roughton Group, Dr. Bernard Obika, during the 4th Africa Public Private Partnership Conference in Abuja, on Thursday.

National News

Alleged N44m fraud: CJ transfers Hembe, Ifeanyi’s case file EMMANUEL ONANI ABUJA


here appears to be disquiet in the camps of the suspended Chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Capital Market, Hon. Herman Hembe, and his Deputy, Hon. Azubuogu Ifeanyi. There are indications that the Chief Judge, CJ, of the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, Justice Lawal Gummi, has transferred their case file to Justice Peter Kekemeke of Court 19, Apo. The implication of this development is that the criminal trial will start de novo (afresh), when it comes up on November 26, the same date the accused were scheduled to address the previous court presided over by Justice Abubakar Sadiq Umar, on their “no case submissions”. Having made separate submissions to counter the allegation by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, that they abused their privileges as chairman and deputy

chairman respectively, when they allegedly converted into personal about N600,000 being money allegedly released by the Securities and Exchange Commission, SEC, for them to travel to the Dominican Republic for a refresher conference in October 2011, counsel to the two men, Jibrin Okutepa (SAN) and Linda Ikpeazu, had made oral applications for extension of time within which to file and exchange written addresses in support of their no case submissions. The applications were not opposed by counsel to the anti-graft agency, Onjefu Obe, hence the adjournment till November 26 for adoption of addresses. However, an impeccable source confided in National Mirror that while this was going on, the EFCC sent a petition to Gummi, in which it expressed dissatisfaction with the proceedings and consequently asked for the case to be transferred to another judge. The highly-placed source, who craved anonymity, said: “The transfer of the case file is at the instance of the

EFCC. I think they are alleging bias or something close to that and you know in law, the most honourable thing to do in such circumstance is for the trial judge to hands off proceedings and remit the case file to the honourable Chief Judge for re-as-

signment. “I can confirm authoritatively that Justice Peter Kekemeke of Court 19, Apo has been assigned to hear the case de novo.” Hembe, through his counsel, Okutepa, had contended in his “no case

submission” that there is only one issue for determination which is, “whether from the totality of the evidence before this honourable court, the complainant has made out a prima facie case against the accused persons to answer.”

He submitted that “to ask the 1st accused person to enter into his defence will require him to prove his innocence,” saying “this is contrary to the presumption of innocence enshrined in S. 36 (5) of the 1999 Constitution as amended.”

NNPC exceeds gas-to-power target –GMD Says gas flare down by 15%



he Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation has exceeded its target for Gas-to-Power aspirations and is taking steps to grow the nation’s crude oil reserves to 40 billion barrels and daily crude oil production to four million barrels per day by 2020. This, according to NNPC Group Managing Director, GMD, Andrew Yakubu, is to ensure that a solid platform is laid for the rapid economic growth and development of the country. Yakubu made the disclosure during the 42nd Annual General Meeting, Conference and Exhibition

of the Nigerian Society of Chemical Engineers, NSCHE, with the theme: “Harnessing Water Resources for National Development,” in Abuja. The GMD noted that the strategic focus of the management under his watch was to ensure that between 70 and 80 per cent of gas produced in the country was channelled to power generation to achieve the robust ambition of stabilising electricity supply to Nigerians and to industries operating in the country. He said: “One of the strategic focuses we had when we came on board was to ensure that gas availability to power was met and I am glad to tell

you that as at today, we are in surplus of gas availability to power in line with the Federal Government’s power initiative.” Yakubu promised that NNPC would consolidate on gas to power and industry to boost economic activities in the country, adding that the aggressive commercial framework put in place by the Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke, had added impetus to the current arrangement. He said the gas aggregator and the other key commercial initiatives had helped in stimulating investment in the oil and gas sector of the economy. On gas flaring, the GMD disclosed that a lot of investments had been put in

place to ensure gas flare down, noting that as at today gas flare had been reduced to about 15 per cent. He added that export initiatives on gas had been stepped up, noting that plans were on to achieve zero gas flare. Yakubu commended the NSCHE for the capacity growth contributions to the NNPC workforce and the Nigerian society, adding its their impact on the petroleum sector was far-reaching. He described the theme of this year’s conference: “Harnessing Water Resources for National Development,” as apt and necessary, noting that there was a global paradigm shift from the use of fossil fuel to renewable energy.

National Mirror


Monday, November 19, 2012

FG owes oil marketers N140bn CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1

tion, NNPC, remaining the only importer of products, accounts for the persistent fuel scarcity across the nation as the corporation has not been able to bring in enough fuel in addition to grossly inadequate logistics infrastructure to distribute the products imported. There are fears that the situation could worsen as the Yuletide approaches and global demand for oil. Investigations showed that the oil companies have suspended participation in the third and fourth quarter import programmes due to uncertainties over payment of subsidy arrears and anticipated delays in payment of subsidy for imports due to stringent new conditions imposed by the Ministry of Finance for such payments following the massive corruption discovered in the administration of the fuel subsidy regime. The managing direc-

tor of one of the nation’s largest petrol companies who does not want his name mentioned disclosed to National Mirror at the weekend that they had to suspend imports due to paucity of funds. “If you have borrowed to import and you are not being paid, we cannot continue to incur more liabilities from the banks, it is as simple as that. The NNPC used to import 50 per cent of products, now it is the only importer and it is obvious that when other major players are out of the system, there will be problems,” he said. A tank farm owner in Port Harcourt, who is also a major receiver of import, said he had not done any business in the last four months despite being cleared by the Ministry of Finance. “My bankers have decided that the N900bn provision for fuel subsidy is

not enough and they think that if we import fuel now, we won’t’ get paid until next year, yet we hear that government will deregulate eventually. The situation is not very clear,” he said in a telephone interview yesterday. According to him, the subsidy liability generated so far this year had reached almost N2.7trn and most of this money would likely go to the NNPC, which is now the sole importer. “I don’t see the difference, if they pay the subsidy to us or to the NNPC. If government does not want to pay subsidy, it should deregulate the market and let us compete,” he added. The Executive Secretary of the Major Marketing Companies of Nigeria, MOMAN, Mr. Obafemi Olawore, who confirmed the development in a telephone interview over the weekend said: “About N140bn is being owed the major and in-

dependent marketers. This high level of indebtedness constrained them from raising loans to import products.” Olawore said the banks are not willing anymore to provide loans because there is no guarantee that marketers who face great difficulties in raising funds would soon be paid. The Senior Special Adviser to the Minister of Finance, Mr. Paul Nwabuikwu did not take calls or respond to messages over the weekend. But informed sources said the rigorous process of verifying claims has greatly affected regular payment of subsidy claims. In fact, it was learnt that since September, this year no claims have been paid to marketers who have made several trips to Abuja to resolve issues with the ministry. The General Manager in the Group Public Affairs Division of the NNPC, Dr.

Fire fighters at the scene of kerosene tanker explosion in Abuja, yesterday.

Omar Farouk, however, said: “We have enough petrol and other products to meet demand.” He said consumers; especially motorists should desist from panic buying as the present stocks can meet demand for several weeks. But marketers, whose officials queue for weeks at private jetties where the NNPC imported products are stored face distribution - related challenges in the process of taking the product from the jetties to their retail outlets. Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria, IPMAN, Mr. Mike Osatuyi, said: “We pay higher than required to lift the product from the jetties belong to members of Depot and Petroleum Products Marketers Association of Nigeria, DAPPMA. This constrained us them from selling at the controlled N97 per litre.” He said: “The regulatory agencies should be blamed for their inability to enforce and sanction operators interested in exploiting the masses.” The spokesman of NIPCO, Mr. Taofeek Lawal said: “The stocks are declining gradually because marketers depend on NNPC to meet the demand of consumers. If subsidy is paid as when due, they would be empowered to bring in more products.” He said: “The situation could worsen as we move closer to Christmas and New Year celebrations, characterized by increased movement of commuters from one part of the nation to another. According to him, “The increased movement would


call for more consumption of petrol and other products, particularly as power supply has not yet been stabilised in different parts of the nation.” The General Manager in the Group Public Affairs Division of the firm, Mr. Omar Farouk said the Corporation has commercial stocks of the products in different parts of the nation. He said: “Consumers, especially motorists should avoid panic buying as NNPC has sufficient quantity of petrol and other products in different parts of the nation.” Investigations showed that distribution has greatly been hampered as a result of pipeline vandalism. For instance, the attack of Arepo pipeline has greatly affected the distribution of petrol to many parts of the nation. A visit to Arepo over the weekend showed that members of the joint task force on vandalism were till guarding the facility, even though its operation remained shut. It was learnt that close policing of the area would culminate in putting appropriate measures in place for NNPC engineers to return for maintenance of the facility. The NNPC spokesman said: “We cannot move into the area for rehabilitation of the pipeline now. We would do so as soon as security agencies are ready to provide the required security backup for the work.” Spokesman of the Department of Petroleum Resources, DPR, Mr. Paul Osu did not take calls or responds to messages sent over the weekend.

No plan to remove fuel subsidy –Jonathan CONTINUED FROM PAGE 2

tenure proposal, President Jonathan said that the idea, which came from consultation with other political parties, was meant to reduce the tension generated by the second term syndrome in the polity, saying that he had to mellow down on the proposal when Nigerians reacted negatively to it.

Why PDP not winning recent elections On why the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)

has not been winning election in recent times, President Jonathan replied that the PDP is the party to beat yet in Nigeria, saying that the PDP is doing well and it’s not winning elections is good for the nation’s democracy. He said: “The PDP is doing well and that it is not winning elections is good for democracy. It would have been dangerous for our democracy if the PDP wins election in all the states. In the case of Ondo State, Olusegun

Mimiko was a member of the PDP. When he contested in 2007, his running mate was the state chairman of the PDP, so it was more of a PDP family affair.”

Corruption On corruption, President Jonathan said: “We have been fighting corruption frontally. We can make bold to say that we have combated corruption in the electoral system; we have also tackled corruption in the agriculture

sector, especially in the distribution of fertilisers to the local farmers.” Jonathan said: “If you keep money on a table where there are so many people and the money is disappearing, why not keep it in a shelve?” He added: “I can assure Nigerians and the global community that this government is fighting corruption frontally.” On poverty, he said: “I never promised to reduce poverty. I promised to create wealth.”

On corruption, which is seen as the greatest problem confronting the country, Jonathan said his administration was doing all in its power to tackle it, adding that no administration before his had put so much into combating corruption. He said: “The effort this government has put in in fighting corruption, I don’t think any other person has done that.” Speaking specifically on the corruption in the oil sector as revealed by

the probe of the disbursement of subsidy funds, Jonathan said the best way out was to ensure there was no money to be stolen. Jonathan explained that his government was making steady progress in power, agriculture, economy and the provision of employment, and tacking corruption in all areas while assuring Nigerians that his transformation agenda would start to yield fruits before he leaves office.


National News

Monday, November 19, 2012

National Mirror

Jonathan didn’t buy jet for Oritsejafor, says CAN


he Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) yesterday asked Nigerians to dismiss the insinuation that President Goodluck Jonathan bought a plane for its President, Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor, describing those peddling the rumour as evil minds. The association specifically fingered the

General Overseer of Latter Rain Bible Church, Pastor Tunde Bakare, in the orchestrated scheme to drag President Jonathan into the aircraft issue. The Public Relations Officer of the 19 Northern States of CAN and Abuja, Mr. Sunny Oibe, who made the clarification, was reacting to the

allegation by the Publicity Secretary of Congress of Progressive Change (CPC), Mr. Rotimi Fashakin, that the President bought an airplane for Oritsejafor because he “anointed” him for Christians. Oibe said: “First of all, the allegation is baseless, mischievous and orchestrated by the

evil minds to tarnish the soaring and good image of the President of CAN in the person of Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor. The reason for all these attacks on Oritsejafor is not because of the plane, but because he has been against Boko Haram and had suggested that Muhammadu Buhari should be arrested.

“That is why the CPC is attacking Pastor Oritsejafor, who was the only person who said Buhari should be arrested and in an ideal society, Buhari should be locked behind bars. It is because of all these that all of them are supporting Bakare to attack Pastor Ayo Oristsejafor. “I say authoritatively

that President Jonathan has never given a dime to Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor because he is too big to ask for money from any of these politicians. The people who are saying that Jonathan bought a plane for Oritsejafor were the same persons accusing him of not compromising on any national issue”.



President Goodluck Jonathan, at the Presidential Media Chat at the Presidential Villa in Abuja, yesterday.


Manitoba still TCN contractor –Investigation UDEME AKPAN


anitoba Hydro International of Canada remains the manager of Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), National Mirror can authoritatively reveal. Investigations revealed at the weekend that the firm’s much talked about $24 million contract was not terminated. The firm still plays its role as TCN contractor. A source close to the firm said: “We are still working because we have not yet received an official letter terminating the contract.” The Chairman of the Technical Committee of the National Council on Privatization, Mr. Atedo Peterside, exclusively told National Mirror that the contract was never cancelled. He said: Manitoba Hydro’s contract was never cancelled. The public should not confuse intent with actual action.” Peterside said it was unfortunate that some people are spreading rumours as far the termination of Manitoba contract is concerned.

Investigation showed that since the ‘intention’ to terminate the contract was announced last Wednesday, many stakeholders, including the Bureau of Public Enterprises, BPE and National Council on Privatisation, NCP have made efforts to explain the process that culminated in the appointment of the foreign firm to President Goodluck Jonathan and other authorities, including legislators. Consequently, President Jonathan, who is said to have partly based his de-

cision of the Bureau of Public Procurement, BPP allegation that BPE did not have the force of the law to ‘procure’ Manitoba to manage TCN for the government has backpedalled on the issue. A reliable Presidency source who preferred not to be named said: “There are indications that the government was misled to take that decision. We have the right to do what we did. Fortunately, many people, including legislators believe it is too late to fault the

process that led to the emergence of the firm.” He said: “It will be easy for the government to backpedal after all it has not yet issued a letter of contract termination to Manitoba. I can confirm to you that Manitoba has not yet been served any official letter to that effect.” Some stakeholders said there was a great need for the government to reconsider its decision because of the serious implications it could have on the nation’s power reforms.

Lagos LG: PDP ’ll reclaim its mandate – George OLAJIDE OMOJOLOMOJU


ormer Deputy National Chairman f the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Olabode George, has expressed the party’s determination to reclaim the mandate freely given to it by residents of Badagry Central and Ikoyi/ Obalende Local Council Development areas of Lagos State. George gave the hint in a statement entitled: “A wake up call on Lagosians,” where

he drew attention of the people to what he called the “brazen and blatant attempt by Bola Tinubu to pervert justice and subjugate the collective will of Lagosians to his own whim and caprices.” George said the result of the 2011 local government election in the state showed that the PDP candidate in Badagry Cetral LCDA, Tafa Dada, won the election, according to the result declared by the returning officer, who declared 7,355 votes in favour of Dada as against the votes cast for the Action Congress

of Nigeria (ACN) candidate, who polled 6,383, the result, he said, was video-taped and properly documented. He added: “Despite all this, Tinubu’s self-appointed Lagos State Independent Electoral Commission (LASIEC) overturned Dada’s victory without any justification and crudely awarded victory to the ACN candidate. Such daylight robberies would be replicated in Alimosho, Agboyi, Eredo, Ikoyi-Obalende, Somolu and several other local governments.”

s the Central Bank of Nigeria’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meets today and tomorrow to review the monetary policy stance, the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry has asked the CBN to relax its liquidity tightening stance to create conditions that would stimulate growth, boost economic activities and create jobs. The MPC had in September retained the benchmark Monetary Policy Rate (MPR) at 12 per cent, the banks’ Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR) at 12.0 per cent and the Net Open Position (NoP) at 1.0 per cent. According to the LCCI, the sustained monetary policy tightening might have effectively moderated

inflation and stabilised the exchange rate, but it is at the expense of stimulation of growth and employment generation. In a statement issued yesterday, the chamber’s President, Mr. Goodie Ibru, said that stimulating the economy at this time is crucial. The statement explained that the reduction in inflation rate to the year low of 11.3 per cent in September suggests two mutually inclusive effects, an effective monetary policy and declining domestic demand, weaker inventory and fragile growth prospect. “Lending rates have risen beyond the reach of many corporate and small businesses. Both prime and maximum lending rates have risen from 16.28 per cent and 23.13 per cent in March 2012 to 16.37 per cent and 24.67 per cent respectively.

Reps will pass PIB soon, says lawmaker TORDUE SALEM ABUJA


member of the House of Representatives Committee on Petroleum Resources (Upstream), Hon. Emmanuel Jime, yesterday assured stakeholders that the House would soon pass the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB). The lawmaker said with the collapse of the National Frontier Bill, which seeks oil exploration in the North into the PIB, the piece of legislation was “good to go”. He said: “The PIB will certainly be passed by the House, because I believe that the bill itself, besides two or three clauses that need amendments here and there, seeks to liberalise the sector for greater efficiency.” According to him, the

House also decided to consolidate PIB with the bill seeking to compel the Federal Government to explore oil in the North, to create a resource-wealth balance between the South and the North and to shore up the country’s revenue base. “The House also decided to consolidate the PIB with the National Frontier Bill which also seeks the exploration of oil in the North, and I think with that the House would certainly pass the bill soon.


National Mirror


Monday, November 19, 2012


Fashola defends administration’s policies, lashes out at FG, critics MURITALA AYINLA


agos State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, yesterday rendered an account of his stewardship to residents of the state with a stern defence of his administration’s policies, saying not everybody will be happy with the progress made.

FCTA issued 2,455 C-of-Os in 11 months –Minister

Fashola, who lashed out at his critics over some of his policies, including the celebration of his number of days in office, cited the example of the erratic power supply in Nigeria, saying that some Nigerians are smiling to the banks as a result of the nation’s inability to generate stable electricity. Fashola justified the introduction of Chinese language in public schools, the restriction on the operation of commercial motorcyclists and other policies that generated criticisms,

saying they are carefully thought out policies to better the lots of the generality of the public. Speaking during the occasion of his 2000 days in office held at the Blue Roof, LTV8, Agidingbi, Ikeja, the governor said it was normal for a section of the populace to criticise policies, even when majority of the people are appreciating the administration’s achievements. His words: “You can’t stop people from disagreeing with you. When there is pain, not everyone is sad be-

cause some people are benefiting from it and whenever there is progress not everyone will be happy about it.” The governor, who also came hard on the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)led Federal Government for what he termed “clueless policies,” said his administration has continued to make progress in its developmental initiatives. He lamented the inability of the Federal Government to tackle the problem of fuel scarcity and repair the Apapa-Oshodi Road. His words:”I thought

that it might interest you to know that their party at the national level has started a very unimaginative and poor imitation of our accounting process, by embarking on what they call a “Good Governance Road Show.” “Please keep an eye on them, because they may soon come to you to tell you what good governance is, as if you do not know. “I hope their Lagos chapter will remind them that you are queuing to buy fuel, that you cannot complete telephone conversations on


EFCC arrests ex-council chairman



he Federal Capital Territory Administration, FCTA, says it has completed all procedures and conveyed about 2,455 Certificates of Occupancy (C-of-Os) to bonafide property owners in the territory between January and now. FCT Minister, Senator Bala Mohammed, spoke at the weekend after a meeting with senior officials of the Abuja Geographic Information Systems (AGIS). According to him, within the same period, he has signed 727 C-of-Os of land whose owners have met “all the laid down criteria especially the mandatory payments of land charges.”



L-R: Lagos State Governor, Babatunde Fashola; his Deputy, Mrs. Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire and first civilian governor of Lagos State, Alhaji Lateef Jakande, during the rendering of account of stewardship by Governor Fashola to commemorate his 2000 Days in Office in Lagos, yesterday.

Constitution review process’ll transform Nigeria –Lawmaker TORDUE SALEM ABUJA


eputy Leader of the House of Representatives, Hon. Leo Ogor, has assured Nigerians that the on-going constitution review process will transform the country. The lawmaker called on Nigerians to continue to support the ongoing review process and cooperate with the House in making an organic and more democratic constitution. The deputy leader gave the advice at the weekend in a chat with journalists in Abuja. Ogor, who represents Isoko Federal Constituency said that the interest shown by Nigerians during the just concluded “Peoples Public Sessions” showed that the House of Representatives was right in taking the constitution review process to the people.

your phones anymore and that Apapa-Oshodi Road requires urgent attention. “But please remember to thank them for maintaining the 3rd Mainland Bridge. In spite of their party’s cluelessness and local cynism, we continue to make progress with our developmental initiatives.” The governor said the introduction of Mandarin otherwise known as Chinese language in all the public school curriculum was an economic decision owing to the country’s giant strides in global economy.

He said the leadership of the House and the Ad-hoc Committee on Constitution Review will do everything possible to authenticate the process and satisfy the yearnings of the people. Ogor, however, lamented that the town hall meetings have also become platforms for political detractors to launch unnecessary campaigns of calumny against legislators including himself. He debunked reports in some newspapers and online news media that the public session was marred by violence in Isoko Federal Constituency of Delta State. The media had reported that Ogor had a brawl with a youth leader during the town hall meeting held to get the views of the people on the review of the constitution. But Ogor said that at no time did he engage in any physical combat with anyone during the event or at his residence.

According to him, one Isaac Egbuwoku, the youth leader referred to in the online report had a disagreement with one of his (Ogor) political aides but the issue was resolved amicably by some eminent personalities at the scene. The lawmaker described the reports that linked him with an “imaginary fracas” as nothing but falsehood designed to tarnish his image. “The said publication was not only orchestrated to rubbish my image but to paint a negative impression of Leo Okuweh Ogor before the entire world. “Over the years, I have built a flawless reputation and a political career of integrity and credibility. I believe that this kind of publication is aimed at smearing my name and rising political profile, especially now that we are approaching another election period,” Ogor said.

Collective responsibility, solution to road crashes –FRSC OLUSEGUN KOIKI


he Chief Executive of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), Mr. Osita Chidoka, yesterday identified personal and collective responsibility as solution to road traffic crashes in the country. A statement signed by the Deputy Corps Public Education Officer, FRSC, Mr. Bisi Kazeem, said that Chidoka made the statement in Abuja at a service to mark this year’s African Road Safety Day and World Day of Remembrance for Road Crash Victims. According to the statement, the day is set aside in line with the decision of the African Union and the United Nation’s resolution to set aside the third Sunday of November every year as Road Safety Day to commiserate with road crash victims and to sensitise road users on the need


for improved consciousness on road safety. The corps marshal also outlined activities for this year’s programme such as prayers in Mosque and Churches nationwide, a marathon race, visitations to hospitals and a candle light procession in partnership with the Federal Ministries of Health and Transport. The statement read in part: “I want to enjoin road users to cultivate good road behaviuor to enable everyone to use the road without hitches and with the conviction of returning home to meet their loved ones in piece.”

he Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has arrested a billionaire ex-council chairman of Sabon Gari Local Government, Mr. Kasimu Abubakar. Abubakar was reportedly arrested by the operatives of the commission. The arrest, according to a statement by the spokesman of the commission, Mr. Wilson Uwujaren in Abuja, followed a petition alleging that the former council boss abused his office to enrich himself. Other allegations contained in the petition, according to the statement, included illegal acquisition of property worth billions of naira. In the course of investigating the allegations, EFCC said its operatives visited the council only to discover that the evidence that would have assisted the investigation had been destroyed in an inferno that gutted the council secretariat building, particularly the Treasury Department. The statement read in part: “However, in the course of executing a search warrant at the home of the suspect, several official documents belonging to the local government including, but not limited to original copies of payment schedule of the local government staff, tax clearance certificates and official files of the local government that are not suppose to be in his custody as an ex-official of the council, were recovered.”


South West

FUTA graduates 3,489 students, to celebrate 30th anniversary HAKEEM GBADAMOSI AKURE


bout 3,489 students of Federal University of Technology Akure (FUTA) will be awarded with various degrees at the 24th convocation ceremony of the institution while various developmental projects would be inaugurated to mark the 30th anniversary of the institution. Chairman of the committee in charge of the ceremony, Prof. Adedayo Fasakin, disclosed this while briefing journalists on the activities lined up for the convocation and anniversary. He said former Minister of Defence, Maj-Gen. T. Y Danjuma (rtd) and the Vice-Chancellor of University of Mines and Technology, Ghana, Prof. David Gyimah, would be decorated with honorary doctorate degrees of Management and Science respectively during the graduation ceremony coming up on November 24, 2012. Fasakin said 415 of the students would be awarded with diploma certificate, 1,960 with first degree, 738 with post-graduate diploma, 31 master degree and 41 doctorate degree.



overnor Rauf Aregbesola has appointed Justice Gloria Oladoke as the Acting Chief Judge of Osun State. The governor made the announcement in a statement issued yesterday in Osogbo, the state capital, by his Director of Communication and Strategy, Mr. Semiu Okanlawon. During the screening of Justice Adebola Ojo as the nominee of the government for the post of the CJ, members of the state House of Assembly asked the governor to appoint an Acting CJ for the state, pending the determination of the case against the Judicial Service Commission in which the House and the governor were joined. Okanlawon said the governor took the action pursuant to Section 271(4) of the 1999 Constitution.

Monday, November 19, 2012

National Mirror

Osun refutes $50,000 visa scandal report


sun State Government yesterday refuted a media report recently published by a national daily, alleging that a South West state in collaboration with some staff of Ukrainian Embassy and a tertiary institution were involved in a US$50,000 visa scandal. Speaking on behalf of the state government, Mr. Yinka Muyinwa, a solicitor to the government, said

though the media report did not mention Osun State, the evidence on ground showed that the target of the report was Osun State. He said: “Having studied the story we are of the belief that there was no other state government from the South West that the alleged story was referring to except Osun State, which has been having an existing cordial relationship between the Government

of Ukraine and Osun State Government, through an exchange of programme in education and other areas. “It was based on this understanding that the government sends her medical students to Ukraine to further their studies.” Muyinwa denied the involvement of the state government in the visa scam, saying “there was no time any official of the state government or its agent

was involved in any alleged $50,000 visa payment to any Ukrainian embassy official or its agent for the purposes of procuring visa either for her students or officials.” The state government noted that the report was an attempt to strain the cordial relationship existing between Osun State and the good people of Ukraine.” In a statement, Muyinwa described the story

as “unsubstantiated that has no basis in ethics of noble journalism, which demands for proper and balanced story before going to press.” “We hereby state that the alleged $50,000 bribery scandal is false and lack fair substance,” he noted. Muyinwa expressed surprise on how could “an existing programme which has been ongoing will now result to scandal, in which $50,000 was alleged to have exchanged hands between the officials of the state government and the embassy officials.”

Ajimobi promises to honour Lam Adesina KEMI OLAITAN IBADAN

O L-R: Children of the late Lam Adesina, Nike; Dr. Wasiu; his widow, Sarata and wife of Oyo State Governor, Mrs. Florence Ajimobi, at the eighth day fidau prayer for the late politician in Ibadan, yesterday.

FG asked to shun dialogue offer by Boko Haram KEMI OLAITAN IBADAN


he Nigerian Baptist Convention (NBC) has kicked against the proposed dialogue between the Federal Government and the Boko Haram Islamic sect, saying that members of the sect should be treated as criminals. NBC President, Rev. Olasupo Ayokunle, spoke at the weekend during an interactive session with journalists in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, warning

the Federal Government not to legitimize the sect and its wanton killings and attacks on churches. Ayokunle, however, wondered how the idea of dialogue with the sect came into being and described as admittance of failure on the part of the Federal Government its acceptance to dialogue with the religious fundamentalists. The cleric, who asked whether the Federal Government would dialogue with armed robbers, kid-

nappers and corrupt public officials as well as other criminals in the society, said it is unthinkable that the Boko Haram be singled out for dialogue. Ayokunle insisted that the government should tell Nigerians why it is not able to arrest the members of Boko Haram sect and deal with them decisively in accordance with the law, describing as injustice, annoying and unthinkable the unnecessary compromise by the advocate of dialogue between the gov-

ernment and the sect. He said: “Let the criminals face the maximum penalty for the offence committed and if dialogue is now seen as the solution to all criminal activities in the country, let it be inscribed in our constitution.” Ayokunle, however, lauded the Federal Government for what he described as pragmatic approach to the recent flood recorded in some parts of the country, urging that efforts should be intensified to prevent recurrence in future.

Fashola urged to reconsider stance on Okada ban OLAJIDE OMOJOLOMOJU


chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Lagos State and former Commissioner for Transport and Health, Segun Ogundimu, has called on Governor Babatunde Fashola to have a rethink over the ban on the operations of commercial motorcyclists. The medical doctorturned politician, who was also former chairman of Lagos State Water Cor-

poration and Petroleum Products Distribution and Monitoring Committee, spoke yesterday at a press conference held at the party secretariat in Ikeja. Ogundimu said the law relating to the activities of the commercial motorcyclists popularly called okada riders should not make the governor to lose sight of the necessity to protect the travelling public. He said: “When an aggressive mosquito lands on ‘the place,’ caution is necessary to get rid of the nuisance pest, else the force

will break ‘the place’ and the mosquito will escape.” Comparing the challenges of transportation during his time as transport commissioner with what obtains now, Ogundimu said the challenges included increasing population of ill-kitted and untrained okada operators, some of whom were graduates and non-indigenes, whose primary aim was to eke a living out of the yawning gap in the state’s supply of public transportation; increasing tendencies of operators to be

hired by negative groups to perpetrate nefarious activities state-wide, especially rendering services to people of questionable characters; active and outright participation of operators in armed and unarmed crime as being reported by security operatives; increasing violation of traffic laws e.g. riding against traffic with overloading; increasing road traffic accidents with serious orthopaedic consequences to outright death of one or both rider and passenger.

yo State Governor Abiola Ajimobi has promised to immortalise the former governor of the state, Alhaji Lam Adesina. Ajimobi spoke at the fidau prayer held for the late Adesina. The former governor died at a Lagos hospital penultimate Sunday after a protracted sickness. The Obafemi Awolowo Stadium, venue of the fidau prayer, was thronged by friends, family members, political associates and other eminent Nigerians. Among them were former Lagos State Governor, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu; the National Chairman of Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), Chief Bisi Akande; Governors Babatunde Fashola, Rauf Aregbesola, Ibikunle Amosun, Kayode Fayemi and Adams Oshiomhole of Lagos, Osun, Ogun, Ekiti and Edo states respectively; former President Olusegun Obasanjo; former Governors Omololu Olunloyo and Rasheed Ladoja; the Chief Judge of Oyo State, Justice Badejoko Adeniji and the Speaker of Oyo State House of Assembly, Mrs. Monsurat Sunmonu. Ajimobi said no honour done to the late Adesina was too much in view of his contribution to the growth and development of the state. He then announced the establishment of Lam Adesina Scholarship Endowment Fund through which scholarship would be given to brilliant, but indigent students in the state up till university level.

National Mirror

South West

Monday, November 19, 2012


We’ll protest proposed fuel price hike, says ASUU KEMI OLAITAN IBADAN


he Academic Staff Union of Nigerian Universities (ASUU), at the weekend, reiterated its determination to frustrate the proposed total removal of fuel subsidy by the Federal Government. President of the union, Dr. Nasir Fagge, made the declaration at a reception organised by the Dr Segun Ajiboye-led executive of the University of Ibadan chapter of the union.

The occasion was to celebrate the National Trustee of ASUU, Prof. Chukwuka Okonjo, father of the Coordinating Minister of the Economy, Dr. Ngozi OkonjoIweala, who was conferred with Doctor of Science (honoris causa) by the University of Ibadan. He said President Goodluck Jonathan might have been misinformed by the committees he set up by calling for the removal of subsidy when there is no subsidy being enjoyed by Nigerians. He said that statistics

available to the union showed that fuel ought to be sold at about N40, adding that the political class in the country seems to thrive better by impoverishing the masses. The ASUU boss said ASUU will work in collaboration with other civil society organisations and labour to fight against removal of subsidy, noting that it plans to use sensitisation, mass mobilisation and collaboration to fight what he described as an insensitive proposition. His words: “We are con-

vinced that that there is nothing like fuel subsidy in this country. The statistics are there to show. If we are going to go back to real pricing of fuel in this country, we should be selling petrol at about N40 per litre. “I can see that this government is hell bent on making life difficult and making people to suffer, we in ASUU will fight against this. We will be working with civil society organisations and labour to ensure that the proposal is not implemented.” Fagge said rather than

President Jonathan

inflicting more hardship on Nigerians, President Jonathan should stop shielding corrupt friends of government who are destroying the oil industry in the country.

He noted with sadness that rather than spending their lives behind bars for corruptly enriching themselves at the expense of the nation, “Corrupt friends of government are apprehended and later seen walking on the streets as free men and in some instances take up higher political appointments in the country. “We in ASUU are convinced that when there is an investigation and it is clear that somebody is found wanting, they must be brought to book to move our country forward.”

‘Why we banned junior LASTMA officials from arresting offenders’ MURITALA AYINLA


he General Manager of the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority, LASTMA, Engr. Babatunde Edu, yesterday said that the ban on junior officers of the organisation from arresting offenders was to instil discipline among the rank and file of the organization. The LASTMA boss, who was worried by the complaints of motorists in the state about the unethical conduct of some officers, said that 38 officers have been dismissed for various acts of misconduct, adding that some are currently being prosecuted in courts for collecting bribes and other unethical conducts. His words: “Over 50 of

them have just appeared before an administrative panel on issues of dereliction of duty, absent without leave and extortion while scores are slated for appearance before Personal Management Board (Discipline) before the month ends. “Therefore, to instil discipline in LASTMA, 38 officers have just been dismissed for various acts of misconduct; some are currently being prosecuted for collecting bribes.” To flush out bad eggs in the organisation, Edu added; “The Provost Marshal Department of LASTMA has been reorganised with the appointment of a new head, the deployment of additional staff and the provision of new logistics has been made to carry out effective monitoring of staff on duty.”

Ekiti varsity certificates to be embossed with picture, security features


ertificates to be issued by the Ekiti State University, Ado Ekiti, will henceforth carry the photographs of their recipients, as well as other security features. State Governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi, made this known in Ado Ekiti, at the weekend, during an interactive session/dinner hosted for students of tertiary institutions in the state as part of the activities marking the maiden edition of the International Students’ Day organised by the Ekiti axis of National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS). The governor said the introduction of the special security features became imperative in the bid to curb

cases of certificate forgery and impersonation that have been on the increase in recent times. Fayemi said no fewer than 200 names were sent to the university for authentication of certificate by the Government of Ogun State during the biometric capture carried out by the state. He said if the certificates had carried the photographs of the recipients, it would have made the authentication easier for them. While stressing that education remains the shortest route to poverty eradication, Governor Fayemi said his administration is committed to providing functional education by introducing life-changing skills in schools.

L-R: Managing Director, Momas Electricity Meters Manufacturing Company Limited, Mr. Lucas Scaraffiotti; Chairman, Mr. Kola Balogun and Minister of State for Power, Hajia Zainab Kuchi, during a courtesy visit to the company on Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, Olowotedo village in Ogun State, at the weekend. PHOTO: BAYOOR EWUOSO

Stop gas flaring, stakeholders tell FG SINA FADARE


takeholders on environment have called on the Federal Government to, as a matter of urgency, put a stop to gas flaring that has been illegally carried out by multinational corporations with impunity and the connivance of government agencies. This call was made at the weekend at the fifth annual environmental consulta-

tions programme organised by the Environmental Rights Action/Friends of the Earth (ERA/FOEN) in Lagos. The group said since 1984, gas flaring in the country has become an illegal business, adding that the court judgement delivered in 2005 reaffirmed this illegality. The two-day consultation, with the theme; “Corporate Accountability and the Environment,” observed that the practice

and principle of corporate social responsibility is a misnomer and an escape route for corporations, adding that rather than talking about corporate social responsibility, corporations should be held accountable and liable for their actions and inactions. The environment experts, who said the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) in its present form does not represent the interest of Nigerians, but that it is designed to serve the whims

SURE-P to engage 5,000 Ekiti youths –Committee ABIODUN NEJO ADO EKITI


o fewer than 5,000 youths from Ekiti State are to be employed under the Subsidy Reinvestment Programme (SURE-P), Chairman of the State Implementation Committee (SIC) of the programme, Hon Femi Akinyemi, has said.

Akinyemi said this at a meeting with Ekiti State stakeholders on SUREP at the weekend in Ado Ekiti that 3,000 youths would be employed before the end of the month, while another 2,000 would be employed next month. He said SURE-P was designed for the eradication of poverty, upliftment and the development in the state, adding that

the SIC was prepared to carry out the programme with zeal and vigour. Akinyemi’s words: “There is the Graduate Internship Scheme for our young graduates. There is also going to be the recruitment of 3,000 beneficiaries for the month of November 2012 while another 2,000 will be recruited in December 2012.”

and caprices of corporations and their allies within the ruling elite. The group therefore rejects the current version of the PIB and urges the National Assembly not only to receive inputs from Nigerians but to also ensure that such inputs are reflected in the final bill such that Nigerians can lay claim to the law when eventually passed. In a communiqué issued at the end of the two–day event and signed by the Executive Director, ERA/ FoEN, Mr. Nnimmo Bassey and the Chairman of the Communiqué drafting Committee, Mr. Chima Williams, the group called on government at all levels to be alive to its responsibilities and desist from ceding the sovereignty of the people to multinational corporations while urging the citizens to be vigilant. The group also urged Nigerians to organise and mobilise to push the corporations out of the captured spaces.


South East

Monday, November 19 2012

National Mirror

‘Ojukwu, Soludo cost PDP Anambra governorship’ OBIORA IFOH ABUJA


he Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has said that the death of the Ikemba Nnewi, Chief Emeka Odumegwu-Ojukwu, would create a smooth sail for it to the Anambra State Government House in 2014. PDP said since Chief Ojukwu, who it described as the major factor behind Mr. Peter Obi’s emergence

as the Anambra State governor is no longer alive, PDP would win the 2014 governorship election. Answering question from journalists at the weekend, the PDP National Deputy Secretary, Onwe Solomon Onwe, said that PDP was not celebrating the death of Ojukwu, but added that the party lost Anambra State to the All Progressives Grand Alliance (ANPP) during the last election because of

the influence of Ojukwu, who was the leader of the party. He said: “I don’t want to be quoted that maybe PDP is celebrating the death of Ojukwu; the issue is that the late Ojukwu stood behind Peter Obi in the last election and there is no Nigerian that can say that Ojukwu was not a serious factor, not only in the politics of South-East, but in the politics of the entire country. His support for

Peter Obi made his victory easier. “PDP is well rooted in Anambra State. If you conduct a free and fair election in Anambra State, PDP will win. There were factors that led PDP to lose the governorship election. “First of all is the late Ikemba Nnewi factor, he stood behind Peter Obi during the election and in the politics of the SouthEast nobody can underrate the Ikemba.

“The second factor was the issue surrounding the emergence of Charles Soludo as the PDP governorship candidate. There was no opportunity for primary, many candidates aspired, but the Ogbulafor-led National Working Committee of the PDP just picked Soludo to run for the governorship and many stakeholders did not like that and instead of working for the success of Soludo, some of them worked

against him underground. That was why the PDP lost the governorship in Anambra. But with what is on ground now, PDP is going to clinch the governorship seat in Anambra State in 2014. “Why we are saying that PDP will win the state in the next election is because of the reconciliation we are embarking on; we are going to reconcile all the aggrieved members of PDP in Anambra State.”

Okorocha not true Igbo leader, says MASSOB CHRIS NJOKU OWERRI


overnor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State is not a true Igbo leader, it was learnt at the weekend. The Movement for the Actualisation of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB) Director of Information, Mr. Uchenna Madu, said that Governor Okorocha would have been denied the governorship ticket of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), if the MASSOB leader, Chief Ralph Uwazuruike, had not brought him to the late Emeka OdumegwuOjukwu, the then leader of the party. He said Chief Uwazur-

uike presented Okorocha to Ojukwu even as Dim Ojukwu was not comfortable with him because he (Okorocha) was anti-Igbo Madu said: “When Chief Uwazuruike brought Okorocha to the late Ojukwu, the latter did not like him because of his anti-Igbo stance. “At that time, there was urgent need to replace the former Imo State Governor Ikedi Ohakim, who had brought fake treasonable charges against Chief Uwazuruike.” He said Ojukwu would not have accepted Okorocha as the governorship candidate of APGA, but Chief Uwazuruike pleaded on his behalf.

Anyim, Fashola ask mates to support nation’s democracy DENNIS AGBO ENUGU


he Secretary of Government of the Federation (SGF), Senator Anyim Puis Anyim and Lagos State Governor, Mr Babatunde Fashola, have urged their fellow 1988 classmates at the Nigeria Law School to support efforts aimed at protecting the nation’s democracy. In the same vein, the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister for Justice, Mr. Mohammed Bello Adoke, advised lawyers on ethics and discipline, asking them to contribute in repositioning the legal profession. Adoke urged lawyers to strive towards restoring the ethical values of the profession, maintaining that as barristers they are also fiduciaries, but must also assume duties to the court as ministers in the temple of justice. The trio spoke at the weekend during the 4th edition of the Nigeria Law School Class 88 re-union held in Enugu hosted by

Anyim. Anyim said the meeting was aimed at re-examining the performance of members of class 88 and redirect efforts towards ensuring that lawyers deploy their profession in entrenching democracy in Nigeria. Governor Fashola, who chaired the accession, advised his co-classmates to support aimed at building a better Nigeria. Delivering a lecture, Adoke said: “The practice where lawyers seek the attainment of Senior Advocates of Nigeria (SAN) for material acquisitions most be frowned at, while admission racketeering in universities should be fought to a standstill in order to ensure sanity in our society.”

Anambra State Governor Peter Obi addressing the people while flagging-off Okpuno Road construction, at the weekend

Zik’s virtues extolled at posthumous birthday OLAJIDE OMOJOLOMOJU


he first president of Nigeria, the late Nnamdi Azikiwe, has been eulogized as a man of peace and a nationalist who worked and fought for the unity of Nigeria. This was the contention of Debe Odumegwu-Ojukwu, the son of the late Ikemba Nnewi, Dim Chukwuemeka Odumegwu-Ojukwu, at the 2012 Zik Day, to commemorate the birthday of the late nationalist held at the weekend in Lagos. He said he felt proud chairing such an occasion

ing peace. Speaking on the occasion, former Deputy National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Olabode George, lamented that those who fought for the country’s independence would be chuckling in their graves today because this was not the Nigeria they envisaged. He said his fondest memories of the great Zik dated back to his teenage years when Dr. Azikiwe was campaigning in Lagos which drew crowds with an electrifying aura that befits a man of his status and eloquence.

ate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu. Contract for the 26 kilometer road was awarded to SETRACO construction company by the Federal Government at the cost of N11.6 billion. Senator Ekweremadu, who represents Enugu

West, said the project would be completed in 30 months. Ekweremadu recalled that he promised people of the Uduma and Nenwe communities during his pre-election campaigns that contract for the construction of the road would be awarded before the end of 2012.

Ekweremadu attracts N12bn road to constituency DENNIS AGBO ENUGU

T Anyim

and to be associated with the celebration of immortality because the great Owelle of Onitsha, Azikiwe, still lives on in the minds of the people even years after his demise. He stressed that the country’s independence from the colonialist won’t be complete without the mention of the late Zik for his patriotic and nationalistic tendencies. Debe, however, flayed the incessant terror attacks on innocent Nigerians by an insurgent group. He told those in power that sustainable development among the people and nation was the key to a last-

he Federal Government at the weekend flagged off construction of the Nenwe-Uduma Road in Enugu State. The project was facilitated by the Deputy Sen-

2014: Obi backs Anambra North CHARLES OKEKE AWKA


overnor Peter Obi has asked the people of Anambra North Senatorial District to present a credible candidate for the 2014 governorship election in the state. Obi said that he fully supports the wish of the Northern Senatorial District to produce the next Anambra State governor. Obi assured the people of the Northern Senatorial District of his support for their campaign to have the governorship zoned to them in 2014. He said his commitment to support their agitation was because of the promise he made to them while he was contesting. Obi said that it is fair and equitable that the senatorial district should produce the next governor, going by the fact that since the state was created over 20 years ago, the zone has not produced governor. He asked the people of the zone to bring out their best candidate for the governorship post.

National Mirror

South South

Monday, November 19, 2012


Flood: Yenagoa residents fumigate homes EMMA GBEMUDU YENAGOA

R Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly members in a group photograph with Governor Godswill Akpabio, during a courtesy call at the Government House in Uyo, recently.

Nigerians need people-friendly constitution –Oshiomhole SEBASTINE EBHUOMHAN BENIN


do State Governor, Adams Oshiomhole, has said that what Nigerians need is a people-oriented constitution that will protect their rights and enable them live in any part of the country. Speaking during an interactive session with members of the House of Representatives from the state and the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) caucus leaders at the Government

House in Benin City, the governor said the indigene and settler dichotomy, which divides the people, should be adequately addressed by the new constitution. According to him, “Edo people are energetic and enterprising and reside in all parts of the country. We should therefore work out a constitution that removes discrimination in all guises so that people are free to live and thrive wherever they choose to live in. “People cannot continue to be strangers in a place they choose to live and settle in.”

His words: “I want my children to inherit a nation united on a purpose and not on a configuration of ethnic divide.” He urged the lawmakers, as representatives of the people to be more reflective on the issue so as to arrive at decisions that will “serve the interests of our people and safeguard their welfare and well-being.” He urged the National Assembly to grab the opportunity of the ongoing efforts to amend the 1999 Constitution to ensure the outcome is geared towards

building a nation where every citizen has a stake and benefits from the rights and privileges available to all free people. Governor Oshiomhole said from his experience in the last election in Edo State, where he won across the 18 local government areas, the people will support their leaders if they provide the right direction, maintaining that the starting point to amending the constitution is to ask the question, ‘who is this democracy meant to work for, the elite or the masses?’

Amnesty trainees design voltage regulator OBIORA IFOH ABUJA


rainees under the Presidential Amnesty Programme for Niger Delta youths, at the weekend, recorded yet another feat in Ghana as they designed electrical equipment that regulates power voltage. Known as the magnetic box, it regulates low and high voltage with a builtin timer. The equipment was among several other products displayed by the trainees at a mini-exhibition programme at their graduation from the National Vocational Training Institute (NVTI) in Accra. One hundred and ninety eight delegates underwent training in Welding and Fabrication, Electrical Installation, Auto Mechanic, and Plumbing/

Pipe Fitting at five centres across the country. Speaking at the event, an elated Nigeria’s High Commissioner to Ghana, Ambassador Ademola Onafowokan, said the feat achieved by the trainees was “another milestone in Nigeria’s endeavour to create a pool of skilled individuals.” The envoy, who paid glowing tributes to the late President Umaru Yar’Adua for the amnesty initiative, said the graduates are living testimonies to the laudable vision of the Nigerian government. “President Goodluck Jonathan and other Nigerians are very proud of these youths who have demonstrated resilience and hard work,” the high commissioner said. He advised them to synergise and work together to become self-reliant entrepreneurs and employ-

ers of labour with the skills they have acquired. Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta/ Chairman, Presidential Amnesty Programme, Hon. Kingsley Kuku, in his remark, commended the trainees for their inven-

tion and innovativeness. His words: “Many youths in the Niger Delta did not believe in the amnesty offer but you did. Today, some of your former colleagues are also in various institutions in Nigeria and overseas”.

esidents of Yenagoa and its suburbs in Bayelsa State have embarked on the fumigation and cleaning of their homes to check the incidence of snakes and other dangerous reptiles even as the flood that had ravaged the state recently recedes. The situation has jerked up the price of fumigation materials and paints in the state capital. Investigation by National Mirror revealed that many residents have killed several snakes especially at Agudama-Epie, Akenfa, Igbogene, Swali and other communities in the state capital as a result of the flood. Also, residents in flooded apartments have been busy scooping out dirty and smelly water from

their apartments, as they washed them with detergents and germicides before fumigating them. An accountant in the employ of the state government, Ebie Williams, said he had thrown away his set of leather chairs destroyed by the flood in his three-bed flat apartment at Akenfa-Epie. The civil servant, who abandoned his home in the wake of the flood, also had his two refrigerators, books and other items damaged by the flood. A 70-year-old farmer and another flood victim in Agudama-Epie, Joe Michael, lamented that he had his thatch house destroyed by the flood. Michael had already commenced the building of another thatch house in the area, as he urged public-spirited individuals to come to his aid.

40 Law students get Magnus Abe’s financial support SAM OLUWALANA


he senator representing Rivers South-East Senatorial District, Senator Magnus Abe, has given financial support to no fewer than 40 newly accredited students for the Nigerian Law School from the district. Making the presentation in Port Harcourt, the senator restated his commitment to infrastructural and human capital development in the district. He said the nation de-

sires more lawyers to address the shortfall in crime and arbitration matters, a situation he observed must be explored to the advantage of law scholars from the district. “Nigeria need more lawyers, if we have a society where people are conscious of what lawyers do; where people pay lawyers for services rendered, you will find out that we don’t have enough; that society will come in the future and by then you will be positioned to take advantage of it”, he remarked.

Rivers begins closure of flood relief camps CHINEDUM EMEANA PORT HARCOURT


he Rivers State government has said that it will close its flood relief camps opened to provide succour for many people displaced by the recent ravaging flood that adversely affected four local government areas, displacing almost one million people. There are 26 such relief camps opened by the state government. Rivers State Special Du-

ties Commissioner and member of the State Flood Relief and Rehabilitation Committee, Hon. Emeka Nwogu, who announced this over the weekend, said the closure of the camps will take place in batches as the flood recedes and dries up in the affected communities. The commissioner, who spoke while receiving donated relief materials from Prime Medical Consultants led by Dr. Franca Ikimalo, its medical director, also announced that the

Gov. Amaechi

Rivers State government is planning for post-flood relief aimed at addressing the immediate needs and challenges of the displaced

flood victims in the four affected council areas of the state. The post-flood plan, the commissioner explained, would cater for the food, healthcare, sanitation and housing needs of the victims. He added that the state government has commenced talks on relief collaboration and urged multinationals, corporate organisations for support, as the magnitude of the flood and anticipated problems should not be left to government alone.



Monday, November 19, 2012

National Mirror

Obasanjo, Sambo, govs grace Saraki’s fidau in Ilorin Name Kwara Govt House after him –NMA



ormer President Olusegun Obasanjo, Vice-President Namadi Sambo and five state governors were at the fidau prayer for the repose of the soul of the late Dr. Olusola Saraki in Ilorin yesterday. The governors include Dr. Babangida Aliyu of Niger; Adams Oshiomhole of Edo; Gabriel Suswam of Benue; Idris Wada of Kogi and Seidu Dankingari of Kebbi States and former Governor Danjuma Goje of Gombe State. The Chief Imam of Ilorin, Alhaji Mohammed Bashir led four other cler-

ics to preach at the occasion. He admonished the children of the late politician and other leaders in Nigeria to emulate the life that Saraki lived. The Imam of Offa, Alhaji Nurudeen Hussein, whose preaching was quite touching, enjoined the children of the late politician to bury whatever might have been the differences among them as a mark of respect to their late father. Dr. Bukola Saraki, the first child of the deceased, in his remark, begged the people of Kwara State in general and Ilorin in particular to give them the same support given to their father to be able to sustain his legacies.

His words: “We give God all the glory for the worthy life of our late father. Those of us he left behind will carry on from where he ended. We shall continue in what he lived and died for. “Our father left behind a big political family, especially the women who never betrayed him. We saw many of them lamenting his exit, they should

not be afraid; we shall try our best to continue to take good care of them. But we must equally see all of them supporting us just as they supported our father.” Meanwhile, the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) has called on the government of Kwara State to rename the state Government House after Dr. Olusola Saraki, who died last week after a prolonged battle with cancer.

The association also called on his eldest son, Senator Bukola Saraki, to build a cancer diagnosis and treatment centre in his memory to serve as a panacea for reducing the burden of the disease in Nigeria; in the memory of the late statesman. These were contained in a condolence message made available by the group to National Mirror, yesterday and signed by its President, Dr. Osahon

Enabulele. The statement read in part: “Since hearing of his demise, members of the Nigerian Medical Association and indeed all medical and dental practitioners in Nigeria have not been able to hold back tears, for distinguished Senator Dr. Abubakar Olusola Saraki, was not only a very dear, forthright and purposeful colleague, he was a very significant member of the medical community.”

Boko Haram: Obasanjo is wrong –Monguno


lder statesman, Alhaji Shettima Ali Monguno at the weekend, disagreed with former President Olusegun Obasanjo over his recent comments on President Goodluck Jonathan’s response to corruption and the Boko Haram threat, noting that the former Nigerian leader was wide off the mark. Obasanjo had, during an occasion to mark the 40th anniversary on the pulpit of clergyman, Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor, criticised President Jonathan’s handling of government’s response to corruption and the murderous activities of the Boko Haram. The former President also faulted government’s approach in arresting the threat, insinuating that President Jonathan was weak. Obasanjo added that the present government missed an opportunity to solve the problem by not going tough on the insurgents at the early stage comparing the present approach of President Jonathan to his response to the killing of 19 soldiers in Odi in Rivers State. But Alhaji Monguno, speaking to journalists in Maiduguri, Borno State, faulted the former president, noting that he has no moral right to criticise his successors. His words: “Somebody who wanted to extend beyond the constitutional term, tried his very best to

extend but was rejected is now advising government to do the wrong thing.” The former minister of petroleum noted that his prescription of military action, the type he unleashed on Odi community would only compound the problem. “I do not agree with our former president that President Jonathan should use force, use the military to crush what they always call the Boko Haram,” Alhaji Monguno said, adding that though he was always careful of what he sees, hears or reads in the media, describing the president as weak does not even arise. He said even in the military, soldiers do not want to go to war unless it is absolutely necessary. He noted that even the world body, the United Nations does not believe in using force in situations like this and advised former President Obasanjo to have a second look at his military and political ways of life. Alhaji Monguno said rather than use force, President Jonathan should explore peaceful means of resolving the Boko Haram threat. “The President could come out and still employ the same tactics, which he and the late President Umaru Yar’Adua employed to solve the problem of the militants in the Niger delta then. He could employ the same method to the Boko Haram issue.”

L-R: Chairman of Dangote Group, Alhaji Aliko Dangote; Senator Bukola Saraki; Niger State Governor, Dr. Mu’azu Babangida Aliyu and Edo State Governor, Adams Oshiomhole, during the fida’u prayer for the late Dr. Olusola Saraki in Ilorin, at the weekend.

Yuguda to commission N9.7bn projects in Bauchi EZEKIEL TITUS BAUCHI


auchi State Governor, Isa Yuguda, is to commission two projects worth N9.7billion in his efforts at consolidating on the gains of democracy in tandem with his administration’s promise of ensuring sustainable development in the state. The projects are the Bauchi International Airport, rated as the fifth largest in the country and the Bauchi Modern Specialist Hospital worth

N7.9billion and N2billion respectively as work on the projects has reached 95 percent completion. Yuguda, who disclosed this through his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Ishola Micheal Adeyemi, during a visit to the projects’ sites in company of journalists said, government has already provide 70 per cent payment to all the contractors handling the projects to ensure timely completion. Among the projects ready for commissioning, the chief press secretary added, is the famous and

the only adult and non-formal education institute in the north located in Kangare, along Gombe Road in the state capital. The chief press secretary said the Federal Government has ordered for the commencement of cargo planes operation from Kano State when the international airport is finally put to use, saying one million people are expected to use the airport at a time with four to seven Boeing aircrafts. On the specialist hospital, Adeyemi said govern-

ment’s decided to award the contract even with the establishment of Abubakar Tafawa-Balewa Teaching Hospital (ABTU) by the Federal Government and its commitment to provide health services in the state.


We have no enemy, says Lawal’s family WOLE ADEDEJI ILORIN


he family of late governor of Kwara State, Mohammed Lawal, at the weekend in Ilorin, said they bear no grudge against anyone, neither do they see anybody as their enemy. Lawal’s immediate family said this at the sixth anniversary of his death which they marked with a special prayer session and lecture with invited Muslim clerics

in attendance. The late former governor and Dr. Olusola Saraki, who was his (Lawal’s) godfather and mentor disagreed later and the political battle that ensued became quite bloody in their life time and ironically, Saraki died on the very day the former’s death clocked six years. An Islamic cleric, Sheikh Habeebullahi Adam Al Ilory (son of Sheikh Adams El-ilory), who preached at the occasion counselled the family of late the Lawal

never to join partisan politics for now. The first son of the late governor, Hakeem, while speaking with journalists later said that his late father told members of the family that he had no enemy and admonished each and every one of them to also have none. The sixth year anniversary later became a reunion of the political followers of the late governor who thronged his home in their hundreds.

Prominent among them were the immediate past Chief Judge of the state, Justice Raliat Elelu Habeeb, Alhaji Alarape Salman (SAN), Justice Salihu Mohammed of the Sharia Court of Appeal, Dr. Amuda Aluko, Prof. Shehu Jimoh, a former member of the House of Representatives, Alhaji Yinusa Yahaya and Alhaji Razaq Lawal as well as members of the legislative house and state executive council during the tenure of the late former governor.

Monday, November 19, 2012

National Mirror



Fresh controversy trails state creation


PDP not losing sleep over ACN, CPC merger – Metuh • Blasts Tinubu over party’s ownership OBIORA IFOH ABUJA


head of the proposed merger of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) and Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has called on Nigerians to reject the merger of parties that are existing under the influence of an individual. The ruling party also stated that it is not losing

sleep over the arrangement, saying that the nation has moved beyond a democratic system where an individual controls the destiny of the whole nation. The PDP, in a statement made available to National Mirror yesterday by its National Publicity Secretary, Chief Olisa Metuh, noted that 2015 will not be decided by personal insults on those in elected offices nor won on the pages of newspapers, saying no amount of

attack on the President or the PDP will “shift our focus from delivering on our mandate.” The PDP further asked that ACN to resolve the sore question hanging around its one-man ownership as well as the CPC’s consistent trajectory of violence as raised in the party’s reaction to their merger deal, which it though described as good for democracy, instead of dressing up fiction as a historical facts or tak-

ing the usual descent to the gutter. Metuh reiterated that while the PDP is not losing sleep over the merger of the two opposition political parties since it is an exercise in democracy and since both parties cannot defeat PDP at elections, it is however not out of place to point out the major defects of the merger and why Nigerians will continue to reject it as an alternative. According to him, “the onus is entirely on these two parties to accept these

glaring facts and seek ways out of the situation or to continue with the delusion that the merger of brood of dictators which does not disguise its relish for the funeral train, is what Nigerians need at the moment.” PDP said that the ACN is entirely owned by Bola Tinubu and brooks no opposition to his dictates. “It is no secret that the governors of Lagos, Osun and Ekiti states as well as the woefully failed candidate of the party in the recent Ondo governorship election were Tinubu’s direct imposition. It is also a fact that Tinibu unilaterally chased out Opeyemi Bamidele who won the primaries for Ekiti Central Senatorial District and imposed his preferred candidate. Nigerians can still remember how Tinubu’s wife made her way to the Senate.” The PDP added that the comments of the cross section of Yoruba leaders on

the recent victory of the Labour Party in Ondo State against an earlier call by the ACN for regional integration as the pivot of its campaign is an unmasked rejection of the ambition of one man to lord over an entire region. The party asked: “Does the ACN have a constitution beyond what Tinubu dictates? For a start, Tinubu’s position as the leader of the party has no place in the constitution of the ACN yet the man usurps the functions of the party’s constitutional structures, rendering the officers redundant. The National Working Committee of the ACN which is supposed to meet every two months according to sections 7, 18a & c of its constitution has only met twice in February and August this year while the de facto NWC meetings hold daily at Boudillion, Lagos Court of Tinubu, the Emperor.”

...Dissociates from Mimiko HAKEEM GBADAMOSI AKURE

L-R: National Treasurer, Campaign for Democracy (CD), Bayo Obatugashe; Chairman, South-West, Obi Goodluck; President, Joe Okei-Odumakin; National Chairman, National Conscience Party (NCP), Tanko Yunusa and Secretary General, Solomon Sobade, during the Lagos State branch CD convention and State of the Nation Summit in Lagos at the weekend.

NCP announces 10-man shadow Federal Government TEMITOPE OGUNBANKE


orried by the state of insecurity and other problems in Nigeria, the National Conscience Party (NCP) yesterday announced a shadow government of 10 ministries to provide the people with alternative voice to the working of government. Addressing a world press conference in Lagos, the national chairman of of the party, Dr. Yunusa Tanko, said NCP is not comfortable with the trend in the country and that is why the party has deemed it fit to set up the 10-man shadow government. His words: “As a political party, we have resolved

to step up our struggle to win power for the Nigerian masses and release the people from perpetual bondage. We therefore announce a shadow government of 10 ministries to provide the people with alternative voice to the working of government. These 10 ministries shall take critical look at the proposed budget of 2013 as against our internal research to verify claims made by government to step up and the actual delivery of dividends of democracy to the people and what they use our collective wealth to do.” The ministries and the shadow ministers are; Ministry of Finance (Dr. Yunusa Tanko); Ministry of Works, Labour and pro-

ductivity (Comrade Ayodele Akele); Ministry of Women Affairs (Princess Funmi Adebola); Ministry of Youths and Person with Disability (Barrister Mohammed Fawehinmi); Ministry of Defence (Comrade Amitolu Shittu); Ministry of Agriculture (Comrade Suleman Mohammed); Ministry of Education (Dr. Isa A. Abdullahi); Ministry of Health (Comrade Peters Omoragbon); Ministry of Trade and Investment (Prince Goodluck Obi) and Ministry of Transport (Comrade Tochukwu Ikwesi). The shadow government is to be headed by the NCP National Chairman, Tanko, who expressed support for the convocation of national

conference in Nigeria. “We also support the convocation of the people constituted conference involving market women, bricklayers, okada riders, youth, men and women of impeccable character to discuss on how to move this country forward. “We are also convinced that corruption can only be eradicated when our leaders exemplify their action by being fair, equitable and just in their dealing with the people without reference to tribe, religion, sex, but based on credibility and good track record. We are ready to give the people the true government they deserve come 2015, but we demand that people be ready for that change,” he said.


he Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ondo State yesterday dissociated itself from a congratulatory message to the governor of the state, Olusegun Mimiko on his re-election as the state governor. The party in a statement signed by its Director of Publicity, Ayo Fadaka, said the message was aimed to ridicule the party in the state. Fadaka described the congratulatory message placed in a national newspaper as the handiwork of a group of mercenary politicians with no established pedigree in honour and commitment. He said the party will not be a part of that arrangement as they, the PDP in the state, has filed a petition at the Election Petitions Tribunal to challenge the victory of Mimiko in the last governorship election in the state.

Fadaka said: “We state most unequivocally that the said advertisement was sponsored by the handlers of Dr Mimiko whose mindset is mainly primed on misinformation, generating disinformation and sustenance of falsehood all in a desperate attempt to paint a picture of a non-existent mass acceptance of a governor who stridently pursued an agenda in office to compromise the last election. “It is also important to state that the drama currently playing out in the Accord Party that made the leadership of that party to expel its candidate in the last election simply because he is challenging his unlawful exclusion by INEC is still the handiwork of Dr. Mimiko who is currently deceiving the leadership of that party of his intent to merge his Labour Party with them. “It is now established that he paid the Accord Party the sum of N150 million to make them expel their candidate,” Fadaka said.



The recent remarks by the Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, that the National Assembly cannot create additional states in the country has once again raised fresh challenges about the desirability, viability and possibility of state creation in Nigeria, writes GEORGE OJI.


hairman of the Constitution Review Committee (CRC) of the National Assembly and the Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu came under scathing criticisms from his colleague senators recently. His “sin” was that his open confession that the current exercise of constitution review process and indeed the 7th National Assembly cannot fulfill the demands of state agitators by creating additional states in Nigeria. Ekweremadu anchored his pessimism on the stringent provisions of section 8 of the 1999 constitution as amended, which specifies conditions to be met before any new state can be created in the country. He said the process of constitution amendment was so rigorous that all 109 senators and the 360 members of the House of Representatives are involved as well as all the members of the State Assemblies in the 36 states of the federation. Ekweremadu stated that it was based on the rigorous constitutional provision that he has always advised state agitators that the possibility of creating additional states in Nigeria is very slim. “I was in Enugu on Sunday where I met with my own constituents regarding the constitution amendment exercise and I made it clear to them that Nigerians are confusing things and that is why anyone can begin to expect that at the end of this exercise, somebody will come up to announce that states have been created. That is not going to happen because the constitution does not make such provisions. So, the issue of state creation is completely different from what we are doing because if you look at section 8 and section 9, there are two different issues,” the lawmaker said. Last week, Ekweremadu was confronted with the same issue by a reporter during an interactive session with Senate correspondents before the commencement of the zonal public hearings on the constitution review. The reporter expressed concerns that Ekweremadu and the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Emeka Ihedioha being chairman and deputy chairman respectively of the constitution review committee may be facing a hostile Igbo kinsmen if at the end of the day, they are not able to use their positions to ensure the creation of at least an additional state for the South-East. Ekweremadu in his response restated that, “It is something you don’t expect that at the end of the constitution amendment exercise, this committee or indeed the National Assembly will announce states that have been created, that is not going to happen. So, I don’t think that the South-East will expect either myself or any person to announce that they are going to get a state tomorrow or next tomorrow because that is not what the constitutions says.” But without knowing it, Ekweremadu

Monday, November 19, 2012






has inadvertently incurred the ire of a number of his colleagues who rode to political power, albeit, the National Assembly on the false assurances that they would influence the creation of additional states for their people. Take the case of the Senate President, David Mark, for example. During the campaign period in 2010, he consistently assured his Idoma kinsmen that if elected back to the Senate, he would use his position to ensure the creation of Apa State. Indeed, even if after he successfully emerged as a senator, Mark has consistently maintained the same position. During the reception in his honour by his people immediately after the 2011 elections, Mark reiterated the assurance when he stated: “If there is going to be only one state created in Nigeria today, you can be well assured that that state is going to be Apa State,” to which his people thunderously applauded. So, it was not surprising that Mark have had to come out strongly to continue to reassure Nigerians about the possibility of additional state creation in the country despite the fine and sincere arguments of his deputy on this issue.

Is state creation possible? With the uncanny optimism often exhibited by Nigerian politicians, if this question is posed to any typical politician, his or her obvious response would no doubt be a resounding yes. Mark for instance, typifies this class of politicians. He has consistently been a strong advocate of state creation. During the South West zonal public hearing on the constitution review, Mark reiterated his belief that state creation is one issue amongst many others that the National Assembly is better placed to achieve and will strive to fulfil. Even recently, when he was a guest of the Ogun State government at the OjudeOba Festival 2012 held in Ijebu-Ode, Mark did not only speak about the desirability of more states but also assured of its possibility. But if the truth must be told, under the present provisions of section 8 of the 1999

nance nearer to the people at the grassroots. This school of thought is in line with what Mark told the people of Ogun State during the Ojude-Oba festival two weeks ago, when he said that, “creation of additional states can only make government closer to the people contrary to the view being expressed in certain quarters that we do not need additional states in the federation.” Apart from the old Bendel State that was created from the former Western region in 1963, no civilian democratic government has been able to repeat the same feat till date. All the subsequent states that were created after 1963 in Nigeria were created by the military through military decrees. So, aside from bringing development and governance nearer the people, state creation also leads to job creation and manpower development.

Is state creation viable?



National Mirror



constitution, it will be very difficult, if not absolutely impossible to create new states in Nigeria. As Ekweremadu put it, creating a new state under the conditions that are precedent in the constitution now, will be akin to a carmel passing through the eye of a needle. Perhaps, the only possible way out of it will be as Ekweremadu suggested, first, to use the National Assembly, albeit, the current constitutional review mechanism to press members of the National Assembly and indeed, members of the State Houses of Assembly to come up with criteria that will be favourable to state creation by amending the provisions of section 8 of the constitution. If this is then achieved, the cumbersome process of state creation would have been addressed sufficiently so that the people can now begin to be hopeful about state creation.

Is state creation desirable? Of course, the obvious response to this is in the affirmative. Theoretically speaking, it is difficult to fault the reasoning that state creation brings development and gover-

This is one question that will attract as many divergent views as many responses. For instance, it is the general view of developmental experts that out of the 36 states that exists in Nigeria today, not perhaps more than five are viable, at least in terms of economic viability. Even at that, most of the states that may be classified as viable today are so because of their huge dependence on federal allocation and not necessarily through internal generated sources of survival. It is also a general belief that most of the states that fall under the category of unviable states today in the country are mainly states from the northern parts of the country. Earlier this year, for instance, Senator Olubunmi Adetunmbi from Ekiti State raised the alarm that many states in the country are insolvent. Following the debate on a motion by the lawmaker on the “State of bankruptcy of states,” and the damning facts exhibited by Olubunmi to back the motion, senators were torn between recommending the outright merger of existing states of the federation and the continued retention of the 36-state structure. To further his argument that many states were bankrupt, Olubunmi exhibited a study by the governors’ forum, which showed that the resource bases of the affected states were not coping with the states’ responsibilities. The report showed also that most states in a bid to address their resource gaps resorted into heavy domestic borrowing and commercial credits, resulting into their being indebted to many banks. In addition, the states are also exposed to the capital market where they raise bonds to do things that the appropriations from the federation account and from their internally generated revenues cannot handle. Against this background, many antagonists of state creation are of the position that instead of creating new and additional states, the existing ones, particularly those that are not economically viable should be merged to make them viable. But protagonists of state creation have always pushed for additional states not considering the factor of viability. Indeed, it is members of this school of thought that accounted for the 56 additional state demands that are now before the constitution review committee of the National Assembly. For members of this school of thought, the factor of political necessity, geographical contiguity, land mass, cultural homogeneity and other primordial considerations should receive precedence over economic viability.

National Mirror


Monday, November 19, 2012


Deregulation deceit and looming fuel price hike Roadmap SONI EHI

ASUELIMEN, 08023459055 (SMS ONLY)


he kingdom of heaven allows violence and only the violent takes it by force -Saint Mathew 11:12 The kingdom of heaven on earth means simply obeying rules to enjoy God’s natural resources first on earth’s temporary sojourn before returning home to heaven or hell as each individual chooses under a freewill. It appears it is only the petroleum cabal, made up of NNPC, PPPRA, Ministry of Petroleum and Presidency in collaboration with foot-soldiers marketers that muster the requisite violent force to expropriate this kingdom of heaven on earth, while the majority chooses to remain spectators. I had on August 27, forewarned that “Another cabal’s fuel price-hike campaign begins”, usually with contrived and orchestrated scarcity, which eventually gets the suffocated economy and people gasping for breath of life. A recap: “As fuel pricefixing deceit, masked as deregulation, was in the beginning 30 years ago, so it is today and may remain unchanged world without end. The tactics and strategies of Nigeria’s fuel cabal are predictable. The current artificial scarcity of petroleum

products in Abuja may be a prelude to an unholy scheme, which could gradually culminate into cowing the government to approve unjust price hike demand in January 2013. Surely, this would trigger public uproar, and thereafter some deaths and destruction of destruction. Before then, the cabal’s scarcity demons would have successfully toured the nooks and crannies of the federation, provoking public angst. As in the past, government officials and petroleum marketers will engage in vicious blame game, spewing all manner of excuses, mouthing fraudulent deregulation, touting elusive welfare palliatives, but never giving a report on previously promised remedies. Last week, the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), indicated that fuel price might go up because of current rise in crude oil price from $100 to $103 per barrel. It said this had shot up current subsidy on petrol from N72 to N75 per litre. I see this as a subtle push for a total removal of questionable subsidy regime”. Three months after, Presijo is proving my assumptions okay by saying last Thursday that fuel subsidy must go without tell the modalities to achieve it without hurting the people and economy. Before government takes us through avoidable circus of deceit, President Goodluck Jonathan must tell us the outcome of investigations into fuel subsidy mismanagement following last January’s paralysing protests nationwide. For a competent petroleum minister, will it take eternity to know the quantity of petroleum products consumed daily: 59 million or 33 million litres per day in or-

I SEE THIS AS A SUBTLE PUSH FOR A TOTAL REMOVAL OF QUESTIONABLE SUBSIDY REGIME der to accurately determine the quantity deserving subsidy? What quantity do four domestic refineries account for and what’s the probe outcome of roundtripping in which fuel from domestic refineries are falsely labeled imported in order to collect fraudulent subsidies? Said Yar’Adua: “We have an issue with the marketers. They don’t want deregulation. That government is even looking at it, they are not happy. They normally import about 40 per cent and NNPC imports the balance of 60 per cent. In addition, the stoppage of this importation has produced supply gap.... This deregulation is not about bringing hardship on Nigerians. But the subsidy does not reach the people it is intended. A very strong cartel is benefitting. Deregualtion will change the greatest institutional corruption we have in the history of the nation.” Well spoken, except that Yar’Adua did not have the political will to confront what he described as historic, greatest institutional corruption. In effect, Presijo cannot deceive anyone he is ignorant of the Presidency being hands in gloves with the cabal that has made God’s blessing a curse. However, Yar’Adua was not entirely cor-

rect that only marketers opposed genuine deregulation. The resident cabal in the Presidency fed him with wrong information deliberately to cover up their tracks and therefore perpetuate stranglehold that overwhelmed Babangida, Abdulsalami, Obasanjo and Yar’Adua. Why are foot-soldier marketers targeted only for arrest and prosecution for subsidy thefts and regulatory government officials are uninvestigated and untried and we expect to uproot corruption that has made Nigerians to hunger and thirst in the midst of plenty? Will the cabal that rubbished his former boss also defeat Presijo, an indigene of Bayelsa, which God used to bless Nigeria, via commercial oil first discovery in Oloibiri 53 years ago? I wrote in August thus, “Three years after Yar’Adua stopped subsidies on kerosene... the recent House of Representatives’ probe revealed that NNPC, CBN, Presidency, PPPRA, and Auditor General illegally approved and paid N350 billion illegal kerosene subsidy in 2011 alone, in spite of presidential prohibition”. Who shared the kerosene loot in Presidency? Mr. President and Madam Oil minister, Diezani Alison-Madueke, what is the position on kerosene in terms of subsidy? Incidentally, NNPC, which is more the sole supplier of kerosene, sold the bulk to fuel depot owners at inflated prices while they sold to retailers at over N100 per litre, according to Legislature’s investigations. Is the kerosene subsidy roguery that distressed Yar’Adua to death continuing under go-slow Presijo, as kerosene still sells at N130+ per litre in Ota, Ogun State and more in the hinterland?

Governors, thugs and Boko Haram OBINNA AKUKWE


ecently the Boko Haram gave conditions for ceasefire and talks with the Nigerian Government. According to their spokesman, Abu Ibn Abdulaziz, part of the conditions includes the arrest of former governor, Ali Modu Sheriff. A month ago, the JTF, said that a high profile Boko Haram commander, Shuaibu Moammed Bama, who has been on the wanted list was arrested in a serving Senator’s house. In his reaction, Senator Zanna, representing Borno Central replied that, “they did not arrest me in my house, rather when they did not find me; they arrested my children and put them in the hot sun while beating them. They asked whether they know Shuaibu Bama, and one of them answered yes. He then led them to where they arrested Shuaibu Bama”. Zanna had insinuated that Bama was arrested in Senator Sheriff ’s House and that it was a deliberate frame-up. But in his defence, Senator Sheriff accused Zanna of being a terrorist giving ‘’ his obvious involvement with Boko Haram, and his past antecedence, when people accused him of illegal arms importation”. It is obvious from these accusations and counter accusations, that these politicians know more about Boko Haram than people think. They have in the past sponsored armed terrorism against political opponents and the monster they created is now


HARAM EXISTS ALL OVER THE COUNTRY terrorizing the entire country. The recent upsurge in the activities of the Boko Haram, has elicited a lot of provocative views across the country. The heinous Christmas bombings in Suleija near Abuja, the killing of mourners in Mubi, and other provocations, point to impending civil war if government does not nip it in the bud. People erroneously accuse all Muslims of complicity in the activities of the sect, without knowing that the factor leading to the emergence exists all over the country. There is no doubt that the remote cause of the sect’s uprising has to do with ignorance, illiteracy, poverty and misuse of the privileges of western education by some northern elites. However, such impoverishment has been tolerated for more than half century of Nigeria’s Independence until the recent volatile reactions. The recent crisis is a reaction to the usual use and dump tendencies of Nigerian politicians. The former Governor of Borno State Senator Ali Modu Sheriff, recruited some members of the sect, armed and mobilized them as thugs to help him win re-election. The sect was promised a

lot of spoils if he is returned. Encouraged by that, they constituted themselves into a group known as “ECOMOG”,that specialized in unleashing mayhem on political opponents, especially of the ruling PDP and helped secure second term victory for Sheriff. The governor, like his colleagues all over the country, reneged on his promises. They were actually treated like lepers when the spoils of office were being distributed. The sect members saw those who did nothing to retain the status quo buying lands, building mansions, and going abroadfor holidays, while they were left to start life afresh. Of course, they reached the irrevocable conclusion that people who claim to have gone to school are all deceivers, thieves, looters, and betrayers. They then decided to fight western education with arms. Their campaign gained notoriety because they have excess arms obviously purchased with state funds. With these, they started a series of local attacks until fifth columnists infiltrated their ranks, gave them sophisticated trainings, funding and intelligence. What happened in Borno was the same among the other state governors. The only difference was that, either the ring leaders were settled at the expense of their followers or were intimidated and blackmailed into submission by security agencies of the various states. The use of armed intimidation against political opponents, the sponsor of various armed thugs and use of state apparatus to give them cover should be banned by the Federal Government. This kind of ille-

gality that birthed Boko Haram exists all over the country. The people in possession of arms turn into militants, insurgents, armed robbers, kidnappers and hired assassins. It was after the 2003 elections that arms flowed towards the Kogi axis and Lokoja –Okene road became a nightmare to travellers due to daily armed robbery attacks. After 2007 elections, Argungu- Birnin Kebbi road in Kebbi, Talata Mafara axis in Zamfara and Okigwe- Aba road in Abia State, Ajaokuta-Anyangba-Otukpa road in Kogi/ Benue states, became danger zones due to activities of dare-devil robbers. The Boko Haram leader could have turned his gang to armed robbers and hired assassins but he chose to give his members an ideological identification which later went out of control when infiltrators joined the ranks. President Jonathan should as a matter of urgency, stop state governors, ministers, Senators and politicians, irrespective of party affiliations from using thugs. This is to prevent the rise of another violent group capable of collaborating with Boko Haram to destroy Nigeria. Akukwe wrote from Lagos Send your views by mail or sms to PMB 10001, Ikoyi, or our Email: mail@ mirrorlagos@ or 08164966858 (SMS only). The Editor reserves the right to edit and reject views or photographs. Pseudonyms may be used but must be clearly marked as such.



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IMF’s warning against government’s reckless spending


or the umpteenth time and for all the right reasons, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), recently warned the Nigerian government against its persisting culture of profligacy buttressed by huge spendings, especially on nonproductive projects, against the backdrop of anticipated global headwinds due to the slowed economic recovery of the United States and Europe. The Fund’s Senior Resident representative in Nigeria, Scott Rogers, while presenting the ‘World Economic Outlook’ in Abuja, the nation’s capital, advised the Federal Government to take advantage of the current strong oil prices to strengthen the nation’s fiscal position by saving for the future in the face of grim prospects for early global economic recovery. “The global economic outlook remains uncertain. The global context has continued to witness slowing growth mostly marked in the advanced economies. The US housing prices remain depressed and that nation’s weak economy is impacting negatively on many countries of the world because the US is an export destination of many countries”, Rogers said. He stated that the prevailing depressing economic situation had impacted on export growth in Sub-Saharan Africa; and that the situation could be worse if America’s newly re-elected

TO BE FORE WARNED IS TO BE FORE ARMED; LEST THE FG BITES ITS FINGERS IN UTTER REGRET president, Barack Obama, failed to strike a deal with the US Congress by January to raise the country’s deficit ceiling. Should Obama fail to secure new deficit heights, it is projected that the US economy would go over what has been described as “fiscal cliff”, in other words, a situation where the government would be forced to raise taxes and cut expenditure across-the-board. The fear of the possible trend is that it could in turn lead to further weakening of or outright recession in the US, with serious implications for Nigeria in oil earnings. We agree with IMF’s wise counsel that the FG should prune down its expenditure, especially on recurrent items, on the basis of the unpredictable nature of oil prices. If heeded, the warning has the capacity to compel the FG to generate a fiscal surplus and build up reserves as buffer against low earnings while oil prices are still high. We recall that the Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister of the Economy, Ngozi

Okonjo-Iweala; as well as the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, had likewise canvassed the IMF position; but in their desperation for accruals from the Federation Account, state governors seem unappreciative of the dangers ahead; and have insisted on sharing proceeds drawn from the Excess Crude Account (ECA) at the slightest opportunity. For obvious self-serving excuses, the governors had also supported the contentious raising of the 2013 budget benchmark from $70 to $80 per barrel of crude. Saddening as it is unfortunate, the fact remains that despite the outrageous expenditure by the FG and states, and their penchant for internal and external borrowing; social services and infrastructure required to create jobs, reduce widespread unemployment, poverty and destitution, and improve the quality of lives of citizens, are still in huge deficit. Nonetheless, it is up to the FG to save for the rainy day to avert the doomsday foretold. We recall that the oil price shocks of 2008 resulted in a 25-30 percent devaluation of the naira and set the stage for huge loan defaults that culminated in the banking crisis that followed. Of note as well is the puzzle that the almost $60 billion reserves built during former Preside nt Olusegun Obasanjo’s civilian

era was squandered just a few months into the successive administration. Besides, there are endless leakages in the economy occasioned by monumental corrupt practices; with the quantity of crude lifted daily by oil majors still unknown, in addition to rampant oil theft; payment of subsidy for refined fuel not imported; huge sums spent on turn-around-maintenance of redundant national refineries; monumental frauds and wastages at the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and government’s inability to drastically cut recurrent expenditure and raise capital votes to be able to meaningfully tackle the chronic problem of infrastructure provisioning. It has equally become obvious that with the US now into oil export, the price of crude in the global market is bound to crumble, and when that happens, a global price crash will follow. That is why we insist on the sustenance of the Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF), with institutional safeguards to ensure proper disbursements strictly for priority national projects. The time to reverse government’s unrestrained profligacy and wasteful spending is now. To be forewarned is to be forearmed; lest the FG bites its fingers in utter regret.

ON THIS DAY November 19, 2010 The first of four explosions took place at the Pike River Mine in New Zealand; killing 29 people in the nation’s worst mining disaster since 1914. The Pike River Mine disaster was a coal mining accident that began on November 19, 2010 in the Pike River Mine, 46 kilometres (29 mi) northeast of Greymouth, in the West Coast Region of New Zealand’s South Island. A first explosion occurred in the mine at approximately 3:44 pm (NZDT, UTC+13).

November 19, 2002 The Greek oil tanker ‘Prestige’ split into two halves and sank off the coast of Galicia, releasing over 20 million US gallons (76,000 m³) of oil in the largest environmental disaster in Spanish and Portuguese history. The Prestige was a Liberian-owned oil tanker, operating under a Bahamian flag.The tragic incident happened off the coast of Galicia in Spain. The ship was built by Hitachi Shipbuilding and Engineering Company, Maizuru, Kyoto, Japan.

November 19, 1985 Cold War: In Geneva, former United States president Ronald Reagan; and Soviet Union ex- leader, Mikhail Gorbachev, met for the first time. The Cold War, often dated from 1947–1991, was a sustained state of political and military tension between the powers of the Western world, led by the US and its NATO allies, and the communist world, led by the former Soviet Union, its satellite states and allies. This began after the success of their temporary wartime alliance against Nazi Germany.

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power sector riddle The electricity reform programme appears to be on a cliff hanger as intrigues and high wire politics take centre stage, particularly with the management of the Transmission Company of Nigeria By Salami Semiu


or the major part of last week, particularly between Wednesday and Friday, key actors in the power sector were practically on each other’s jugular

and the catch line remains the three-year management concession contract won by the Canadian firm, Manitoba Hydro International (MHI) to manage the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN). After months of intrigues and dithering by the Federal

Government, the N3.79 billion ($24 million) management contract awarded to Manitoba Hydro International for the management of the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) was terminated, citing lack of due process in the award of the contract.

The Presidency in a statement signed by Dr. Reuben Abati, Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, said that the contract was cancelled with immediate effect because due process was not followed in the award of the contract. “The President would not want to compromise due process in anyway. I assure you that this does not in any way affect the ongoing privatisation of the power sector,” the statement said. Events leading to last Wednesday’s cancellation of the contract had been quite intriguing. For some weeks now, Business Courage gathered

that some powerful interests believed to be benefitting under the present arrangement have been strategising on the modalities to be adopted to frustrate the Manitoba/TCN deal. India’s Power Grid Corporation, one of the three firms originally shortlisted for the contract along with Manitoba Hydro and Electricity Supply Board of Ireland was believed to have enlisted the support of key government officials and other powerful individuals outside government to swap the deal in its favour. Sources say that Power Grid had previously written to BPE, alleging that Manitoba’s selection was done before the financial bids were


Zainab Kuchi, Minister of State for Power





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Cover that Eze, in his memo, informed the president that a management contract was distinct from a privatisation transaction or concession, and since the procurement of all Federal Government contracts, including those covering professional services are covered by the Public Procurement Act; the BPP should not have superintended the selection process. The BPP DG was also said to have picked holes in the contract, querying why the designated managing director was 57 years old, an age he was alleged to have considered too old, insisting that the contract be cancelled because the BPE had misled the NCP by procuring the management contractor. The BPE in response to the BPP’s allegation of mis-procuring the management contractor for TCN, explained that such interpretation by BPP of its actions was wrong in view of provisions in the extant laws, which backed its action. The BPE said that “The exclusive right of NCP to preside over the privatisation and sale of public assets was also recognised by the Public Procurement Act (2007) when it stated in Part X – Disposal of Public Property (Section 55) that ‘this section shall apply subject to the Public Enterprises (Privatisation and Commercialisation) Act 1999.’ “This implies that the powers that the BPP exercises do not extend to the BPE as the Act establishing the BPE’s processes had made it superior to that of BPP.” The privatisation agency opened, a decision they saw as not being in conformity with the rules set out by the BPE. Of the four firms that had expressed interest in managing TCN in 2007, Manitoba and Power Grid were the only two that had their bids prequalified when the process to select a management contractor for the transmission was restarted by the BPE in 2010. The Indian company contended that it had won the bid in a rigorous exercise conducted in 2007, which made it the preferred bidder for the transmission company. However, what appears to have helped the bid of the anti-Manitoba elements was the memo sent by the Bureau of Public Procurement (BPP), which for several weeks, had been pushed for the cancellation of the contract on the premise that it did not pass through due process as provided under the Public Procurement Act. BPP’s Director General, Engineer Emeka Eze, was said to have kicked against the appointment of Manitoba because a few material irregularities were said to have been noticed in the process that led to the company’s selection. Business Courage gathered

Namadi Sambo, Vice President


held further that “Our understanding of the above provision is that the powers of NCP to approve privatisation transactions have not been taken away by the BPP’s Act but rather, constitutes an exception to the jurisdiction where BPP can exercise such power.” It added that “We believe that the assertion in your letter that BPE should take its approval requests to Federal Executive Council (FEC) is wrong and not in accord with the extant laws of the land. It further means that BPP cannot confer or arrogate to itself any powers or authority not bestowed on it by the Act of parliament creating it, even when it is approached by whatever means to do so, as it will be acting ultra vires on its powers and therefore null and void its action”. The BPE said that the implication of BPP’s overreaching and interpretation of the BPP Act is that “all approvals given by NCP since June 2007 without recourse to BPP are wrong, null and void as it is ultra vires their powers and not just the Manitoba privatisation, the subject of your letter.” BPE explained that a management contract is a form of privatisation, like liquidation, concessions and others, and wondered why the BPP did not demand that it took the sale of generation and distribution companies unbundled from the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) to FEC for approval. However, to keen followers of the Manitoba/TCN contract saga, the event of last Wednes-

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Cover day would not come totally as a surprise. The handwriting, suggesting that the government either lacks the needed political will to push through the reform or was itself up to a mischief has been clear on the wall for some time now. The first sign of unclear commitment on the part of the government was the inability to execute a takeover of the TCN by Manitoba though since July 23 when the contract was signed, the company started drawing funds from the contract through the advance payment of commitment sum of N400 million ($2.5 million). Until President Goodluck pulled the brake last Wednesday, the stalled scheduled takeover of September 1 and the failure to name a supervisory board of about seven persons that will work alongside the incoming TCN expatriate firm’s management have given many sufficient reasons to doubt government’s commitment. If the power reform timetable had been followed; Manitoba Hydro International would have taken over the full management of the TCN by September 1, 2012, which would have kicked off the stabilisation and security of the national grid, reduction of electricity losses during transmission and staff reorientation as some of the key objectives of the contract. Under the contract, MHI will have on ground eight expatriate principal management officials who would be in charge of the offices of the Chief Operating Officer (COO) and directors of Transmission Service Provider, System Operations, Market Operations, Finance Director, ICT, National Control Centre and Human Resources and 30 associate Nigerian officials. The current Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) of TCN would become deputies to the eight expatriate MHI officers. After six months, the CEOs can be changed with other Nigerian senior executives by MHI, if they are not found to be assets to the full realisation of the specifics of the contract. To ensure a seamless transition from current leadership of TCN and incoming MHI executives, a workshop and briefing session between the new managers and the workers was held on July 26, 2012 to sensitise members of staff of TCN, allay their fears and secure their commitment to the execution of the contract agreement. Nigeria’s power reform roadmap is anchored on the establishment of an independent regulator for the sector (Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), setting up of the commercial framework for the sector (via cost reflective electricity tariffs) and the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Company (bulk trader), privatisation of Power Holding Company of Nigeria’s (PHCN) six successor

Bolanle Onagoruwa, Bureau of Public Enterprise, DG

generation companies and 11 PHCN successor distribution companies, and the continued strengthening of the fuel-topower segment. But sources said that some interest groups within the Ministry of Power are uncomfortable with certain aspects of the contract agreement, including the specification that the marketing director of the TCN under the contract would be an expatriate. They would rather prefer that a Nigerian is the occupant of the post as the office is “powerful” in terms of responsibilities of disbursing financial values in the TCN. As at the close of work last week, the exact position with regards to the Manitoba/TCN contract still remains hazy. The Abati’s statement, the magazine gathered that the principal actors are yet to be officially informed, though there are reports that those opposed to the deal are doing everything to frustrate the officials of Manitoba. For instance, it was learnt that the forces have gone ahead to dismantle communication facilities including the telephone lines of MHI at the headquarters of the PHCN, where the company shares offices with the TCN. Manitoba Hydro Industry’s Chief Executive Officer, Don Priestman said last week that the current situation has put his firm in a confused state. “Well, I heard about the cancellation of the contract through the media. There has been no form of communication. We are disappointed. We are here to do a job and we have not been given the authority we need. The transmission is essential in the privatisation process. If the privatisation process is to succeed, the transmission system is very important. And we have


the expertise and what it takes to do the job. We do not want to be caught between the conflicts between government organisations. We are still hopeful that common sense will prevail and we will be asked to do the job for which we came here. We are watching and waiting for what government is saying,” he said. Priestman said that the firm had a clear contract and was meant to be given delegation of authority, but that did not happen, stressing that “There are forces working against reforms of the power sector in Nigeria, as similar contract Manitoba in Kenya is working well.” Already, Business Courage gathered that those kicking against the MHI may have started pushing for “a management contractor” like Power Grid of India which sources say is prepared to toe the lines of those pushing its case. Those who consider the likes of Power Grid unsuitable for the job insisted last week that, being a government institution that manages a centralised market in India, the firm may not have the required experience in a market driven operation as envisaged in Nigeria. This is the issue of the 30day directive given to the Ministry of Power, not the BPE to organise a new management contract bidding process and get a winner. One source said: As at the close of work last Friday, it was not clear what the true position was as there are reports that the Presidency may have preferred to approach the issue more tactically in order not to give those whom presidency sources say are bent at stalling the power reform the opportunity to undermine the government. Though the president was said to have given the Power

Ministry 30 days to procure a new contractor for TCN, many people believe that the directive was a tall order that cannot be met. Besides, there are those who believe that the Ministry lacks the requisite experience to push through the assignment. National President of National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE) Mansur Musa, for instance, questioned the credibility of the Ministry of Power to conduct a thorough selection process for another management contractor within 30 days, saying that the ministry lacked the wherewithal to even attempt the process. A source who spoke under anonymity last week expressed the fears that the BPP was “inadvertently working with antiprivatisation forces in misleading the President in claiming a management contractor can be procured in 30 days. This may be a tall order. It is not as easy as it sounds. The most feasible period could be six months.” The source said that while the BPP complained that BPE shortlisted from its data base of world class management contractors, the fact that BPP has recommended to the President that a shortlist of five management contractors be undertaken, he says showed that the agency may be working towards a predetermined goal. “Again, the Ministry of Power, which is saddled with the job of conducting the bidding, has no experience of privatisation as the management contract is a form of privatisation. The BPE, despite its experience in privatisation spanning over two decades, still needed the expertise of foreign consultants. And check the records, BPE worked for over a year with British Power International, a reputable consultancy, as advisers in procur-

ing a management contractor. I think someone may be deliberately misleading Mr. President in order to halt any progress in ensuring regular supply of electricity in the foreseeable future,” he said. Already, industry operators are expressing fears that the termination of the contractor has the potential of jeopardising the power reform and privatisation programme, stressing that the government’s action could deter potential investors selected for the distribution and generation companies last month by NCP from going ahead with the transaction. “It has cast a cloud of uncertainty on the entire process,” said one preferred bidder, who did not want to be named, stressing that If this could happen to Manitoba, which has been frustrated every step of the way, what’s to stop the government from taking similar action when we invest our hard earned money in these assets. This is certainly shocking,” he said. An analyst familiar with the power sector reform in Nigeria, tsaid last week that if the Federal Government goes ahead to cancel the Manitoba contract, it would have two immediate implications on the power sector reform. “One, the World Bank will most certainly withdraw its Partial Risk Guarantee (PRG), which provides comfort to Independent Power Project developers that they will be paid, if they were to enter into power purchase agreements with bulk traders. “Secondly, we can all expect that the financing costs for the preferred bidders for Discos and Gencos will rise astronomically, as the risk premium goes through the roof in the midst of uncertainties created by the government.” BC

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News Ovia, Visafone boss donates N1bn to flood victims


he Chairman of Visafone Telecommunication, Jim Ovia has donated N1 billion to the flood relief fund launched last week by President Goodluck Jonathan. Besides, the former Managing Director of Zenith Bank promised that Visafone would set up emergency call centers across the country to curtail future natural disaster like flooding. The huge commitments made by Visafone was part of the on-going efforts at generating funds for the rehabilitation of victims of the recent flood disaster across the country. The Ovia’s N1 billion donation has effectively put the telecoms company at a vantage position as a corporate organisation that understands the concept of given back to the society and make Nigeria a better place for all. While imploring other corporate organizations not to be left out in the joint task of providing relief for the victims, Ovia said: “We have made our humble donation and we are still looking at other areas of assistance we can render. Plans are afoot towards setting up emergency call centres to mitigate the effect of future occurrence. Since it’s a natural occurrence, we may not be able to stop it but at least, lessen the effect on both the people and our environment through timely action which the call centers can facilitate.” It would be recalled that in response to the disaster, the Federal Government, as a stop-gap measure, announced the disbursement of N500 million to the highly impacted states, N300 million to the moderately impacted ones and N200 million to the least impacted states, to enable them cushion the effects of the flooding. Thereafter, it set up a 34-man Presidential Committee on Flood Relief and Rehabilitation co-chaired by Aliko Dangote and Olisa Agbakoba which organized in Abuja, a dinner to raise fund for the victims of the flooding during which over N11 billion was realized. Dangote was however the highest donor with a donation of N2.5 billion. Ovia said his donation was informed by the need to support government in the onerous task of resettling the affected citizen who are currently sheltered in different camps in the states. He explained that the victims having been displaced would be psychologically traumatized as a result of the untold misery and that it iwa the responsibility of fellow

Nigerians to help them in this time of need. According to him, millions of our compatriots are currently grappling with the reality of having lost their homes, farmlands and sources of livelihood to the flood and our natural instinct is for all to rally round them for succour and to alleviate their suffering. The Visafone founder pointed out that since the Federal Government had led the path towards the victims’ reintegration, it behoves on other well-meaning Nigerians to follow suit and contribute to the fund to help their kinsmen at this moment of discomfort. Meanwhile, the labour and the Organized Private Sector have commended the gesture of Visafone in partaking in the relief efforts describing it as a good development which should be emulated by other telecommunication companies. Henry Okechukwu of the cement sector of the Manufacturer Association of Nigeria (MAN) said the donation by Visafone would go a long way in assisting the Flood Relief Committee realize its mandate of providing succor to the victims. In his own comment, Tajudeen Abegunde of the Iron and Steel Union lauded Visafone as the only visible telecommunication company during the fund raising saying it only goes to show that Visafone has displayed unparallel patriotism as an indigenous company that is ready to positively affect the people and environment within which it operates. “It will be good if other telecom companies can follow Visafone’s example and donate generously to alleviate the pains of the victims of the flood disaster”, he stated.

Agric agency engages 610,000 farmers for dry season farming


he Sokoto Rima River Basin Development Authority (SRRBDA) has engaged 610,000 farmers at its Talata Mafara irrigation site in Zamfara to boost dry season farming. The Managing Director of SRRBDA, Halidu Yusuf, stated this at the Talata Mafara irrigation site last week during the launch of wheat production and the 2012/2013 dry season operations for the year. He said the launch was the outcome of a two-year transformation programme of the authority towards the eradication of poverty and increased food production for the wellbeing of the people.

L-R: Chairman of Visafone Telecommunications, Jim Ovia discussing with the President of Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote at the fund raising dinner for the flood victims, held in Aso Rock Villa, Abuja, last week

Yusuf recalled that the project cultivated 11,000 hectares in 2011 and produced a large quantity of rice and wheat through double farming, which had encouraged the project to invest more for the year. He said other food crops, such as cowpea, sweet potato, maize and beans would be cultivated on the land in the current season through triple cropping by farming communities in Mafara, Maradun and Bakura local government areas. He said the authority had accepted to train 50 youths, sent by the Federal Government, in improved wheat production during the season. He appealed to the Federal Government to continue to buy more farming equipment, herbicides and other implements to ensure sustainability of the scheme and ensure increased agricultural production. Similarly, the Federal Ministry of Water Resources has said that 11, 000 hectares of land would be utilised at the Bakolori Irrigation project in Zamfara for dry season operation. It was learnt that the irrigation scheme has the potential of irrigating 23,000 hectares while only 4,000 hectares were utilised in 2011. The Minister of Water Resources, Sarah Ochekpe, made this known at the launching of wheat production and the flag of 2012/2013 dry season farming on Thursday in Talata Mafara, Zamfara State. Ochekpe said that the objective of the event was to encourage farmers to take advantage of irrigation projects to boost food production in the country. “We still have 12,000 hectares still left to be developed; many more can come on board, the launching p of the project shows that Nigeria has a lot of potential to create jobs

Governor Abdul Aziz Abubakar

through irrigation. “We want to sustain this development for some couple of years until we are able to put the whole 23,000 hectares into use. “Even a lot of youths out there thinking there are no jobs, can take the opportunity of the irrigation schemes to go into farming and empower themselves. According to her, the Federal Government is giving emphasis to wheat and rice production to reduce the importation of such crops. The minister said: “I am aware that one of the major complaints of the wheat farmers is market for their produce. “ I would like to assure them that government has machinery that they are encouraged to produce more by ensuring there will not be glut. “Government in conjunction with the private enterprises in the spirit of Public Private Partnership will be involved in improving the value chain of these crops’’. The event, she said was part of the Federal Government’s effort to boost food production in order to mitigate some of the food shortage that might occur due to the recent flooding in parts

of the country. In his address, Gov Abdul-Aziz Abubakar of Zamfara said that as part of agricultural initiatives, his administration introduced a special irrigation scheme in 2011. Under the programme, the governor said that 1,000 tube wells and wash bores as well as 1,000 water pumps for irrigation farming had been provided. He said the programme had been specially designed to target vast array of peasant farming communities across the state with a view to making dry season farming rewarding. “Based on the report we have received so far, the pilot projects has been overwhelmingly successful. “The Beauty of this programme is that all the required inputs, seeds, seedlings, fertilisers and agro chemicals were given to farmers on loan. “Repayment would be made through raising of improved seedlings of economic trees that would be planted to address the menace of desert encroachment and generate income to the farmers’’ he added. The governor thanked the Federal Government for allocating three rice mills to the state, noting that the state government had indentified three sites of five hectares each for the project. Also speaking, Halidu Yusuf, the Managing Director, Sokoto Rima River Development Authority, said the office was expected to revitalise and cultivate twice or thrice the size presently cultivated. “With the re-introduction of wheat production, maize, sweet potatoes, cowpea and other vegetables, we are putting a road map towards doubling and in some cases tripling cropping in the project. “Thereby, engaging over 610,000 people in the three local governments hosting the

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News project. He, however, solicited more support on seeds and other farms inputs such as fertilizers, insecticides, herbicides and additional farm machinery. The highlight of the event was the distribution of wheat seeds to some selected farmers.


Ochekpe tasks farmers on dry season farming


arah Ochekpe, the Minister of Water Resources, has urged farmers to embrace dry season farming to boost food production in the country. Ochekpe gave the advice in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Ilorin. She said that the government had set aside sufficient funds to boost agricultural production for the dry season. ``Nigerians should not only rely on farming during the rainy season but explore other opportunities. ``People are doing farming on a small scale but we want more people to be involved in this dry season farming. ``That way, we are also creating more jobs, getting many people busy,’’ she said. The minister also said that the government would soon launch dry season farming in Katsina, Maiduguri and Bakolori, Zamfara. ``We are working on that because President Goodluck Jonathan had informed Nigerians that we would embark on the transformation of the Agricultural sector,’’ she said. The minister also said that reservoirs built in various parts of the country were aimed at boosting fish production and irrigation farming.

DANA Steel workers protest mass sack, exploitation


orkers of DANA Steel Company, Katsina, last week protested what they called ‘``mass sacking and exploitation” by management.

The spokesman for the workers, Peter Obi, told newsmen in Katsina that the union and management of the company had met in Lagos the previous week and agreed on issues relating to staff retrenchment and retirement age. Obi said during the meeting, the management promised that it would not retrench any worker. ``But to our surprise, just within four days, more than 30 workers were sacked for unknown reasons, and they have families to take care of.’’ He said that some of the sacked workers were later given contract appointment, and placed on flat salary scale, irrespective of their qualifications and working experience.” ‘’We want our head office and the world to know that this is what is happening in the company. “They don’t recognise certificate and they treat us like slaves; this only happens to Nigerians working in the company.’’ Obi alleged that recently, machines of the company cut off the hands of two workers and injured five others, but the management failed to cater for their medical treatment. ‘’We will not resume normal work until the company recalls all the sacked workers and treat us like human beings.” Reacting to the allegations, the company’s Human Resources Manager, Alhaji Abdussalam Kabir, said the organisation did not victimize any worker. ``There must be reason for sacking a worker and I don’t need to explain this.” Kabir also said that the management had never violated any agreement and would discuss with the union’s representatives to solve the matter amicably.

Aganga urges Nigeria, S.Africa to strengthen economic growth in Africa


lusegun Aganga, the Minister of Trade and Investment, has urged Nigeria

and South Africa to take advantage of the window of opportunities available in their economies to strengthen economic growth on the continent. Aganga who stated this at a dinner dialogue organised by the Nigeria Consulate in South Africa and cohosted by Financial Times and Brand South Africa in Johannesburg, said that the two countries must not allow the opportunities to pass without being exploited for the benefit of their citizens and for the people in the continent.. ``Nigeria and South Africa have the fastest economic growth in the continent, if Africa must take advantage of the current global economic meltdown to boost growth in the africa, then the two countries need to work together. ``The two countries have to complement each other in area of comparative advantage. There is no countries that can develop its economy without industrialisation, South Africa is the leader in Africa in that area. ``But Nigeria has the advantage in area of market and raw material over many countries, Nigeria has the largest population in Africa, an investment in Nigeria is a gateway into the ECOWAS with about 300 million population, Nigeria is a market nobody can ignore, Aganga said. He said that Nigeria is no longer interested in investors coming into the country to export raw material out of the country. ``What we want are investors setting up industry and manufacturing plants in the country, to help provide employment for our youths and ever growing population. ``Nigeria is discussing with South Africa on ways to collaborate in setting up automobile plants in Nigeria. There are opportunities in mining, not for exportation alone, but for mining of the mineral for processing and production,’’ Aganga said. He said that there were untapped potentials in the agricultural sector, saying, `` Nigeria is blessed with 84 million of acre of land, where everything and anything can grow. But the agriculture sector of our economy is not fully tapped. ``We want investors in the agriculture sector not only in the area of planting and harvesting of agriculture product, but also in area of food processing and storage, this is an area where South Africa can come in, because they are well ahead of other Africa countries in food processing and storage. ``There are also business


opportunities in oil and gas, Nigeria is the largest producer of oil and gas in the continent and investment opportunities in that sector is open,’’ Aganga said. He said Nigeria can also learn from South Africa in service and infrastructure development. Aganga said the Nigerian government has put in place economy policies to encourage foreign investment. ``Nigeria government as provided incentives to foreign investors to come and invest in the country. ``Part of the new policy is 48 hours company registration, 100 per cent foreign ownership, generous corporate tax holiday and repatriation of profit and dividend through legal means. ``Also stability of exchange rate for a long time is part of government economic policies to encourage foreign investment,’’ Aganga said. Amb. Olugbenga Ashiru, Nigerian Foreign Affairs minister represented by Amb. Sonni Yusuf, Nigerian High Commissioner in South Africa, said South African business community should take advantage of liberalisation of visa requirement to visit Nigeria. ``There have been a deliberate policy to liberalise visa requirements into Nigeria. in this regard, a policy of three years multiple entry visa has been approved, while in extreme cases, visa can could be issued at points of entry to genuine business people. ``Also all our foreign mission are mandated to streamline issuance of visas within 48 hours, to businessmen and women,’’ Ashiru said. He, however, call on South Africa government to reciprocate the Nigeria government visa policy to encourage friendly business relationship between the two countries.

Nigerian Consul-General, Okey Emuchay said the dialogue was a follow up to the agreement reached between Nigeria and South Africa during the Bi-National Commission held in Cape Town in May. ``Nigeria is a huge country with lot of opportunities; I call on South Africa investors to tap into the incentives given by Nigerian government to foreign investors and invest in the Nigerian economy. ``There is need for regular dialogue between the two countries to engage each other and strengthen the much needed trust and collaboration towards building stronger economic relationship, ‘’ Emuchay said. Chief Executive Officer of Nigeria-South Africa Chamber of Commerce, Dianne Games, in her remarks, said Nigeria and South Africa have lot to gain from each other. She, however, emphasised the need for trust, cordial economic and political relationship between the two countries.

Lucky Amiwero, President, NCMDLCA

Govt urged to make port operations less expensive


takeholders in the Maritime sector have urged the Federal Government to formulate policies that would make operations in Nigerian ports less expensive. The stakeholders, who made the call in separate interviews with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos, said that the measure would rank Nigeria among the best 20 nations in the world by 2020. Emeka Apara, Director of Publicity, National Council of Managing Director of Licensed Customs Agents, said that it was not about making policies but ensuring that the policies were implemented. ``Trade is a thing that has to do with cost and that is why companies all over the world are looking for where they can get the lowest costs and when they get it, they tend to patronise that place.

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News ``If a country is operating under a policy that is low, then the cost of production will drop and when it drops, it will make you have a bigger market and the bigger market is the competition which everybody and the nation want to key into. ``We are talking about maritime trade and trade is about the goods getting to the people at the most minimal cost and most importers at present have found that in our neighbouring ports,’’ he said Uchu Block, the General Secretary, National Council of Managing Directors of Licensed Customs Agents, said that the high cost of doing business in the Nigerian ports did not augur well for the nation’s economy. ``I have done business in some other ports and I found our ports most expensive. You find that you are being charged for services not rendered,’’ Block said. He said that before the Common External Tariff (CET) was introduced, the charges at the ports were very fair and reasonable because of the waivers granted by government. Block urged the government to be proactive and put a regulator in the port to check the arbitrary charges imposed on importers by the concessionaires. Inua Mohammed, former President, Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents (ANLCA), said that the Destination Inspection scheme was not working due to high cost of operations in Nigerian ports and too many documentation. Increase Uche, Secretary General, National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF), said because of the arbitrary charges at the ports, most importers abandoned their cargoes. Uche said the concessionaires had taken the opportunity of the absence of a commercial regulator to increase the terminal handling charges. ``The government should appoint a commercial regulator to regulate the activities of the concessionaires and service providers at the ports to stop arbitrary charges’’, he said.

Nigerian Ports can compete with Singapore, Dubai seaports, says NPA Stories by Francis Ezem


he Nigerian Ports Authority has said that if given the needed support and cooperation it deserves, the

Federal Government is willing and able to transform the nation’s seaports and make them compete favourably with other efficient seaports in the world including those of Singapore and Dubai. The government had six years ago concluded a reform of the seaports, which entailed stripping NPA of its cargo handling functions, which were taken over by private terminal operators as part of measures to be efficient and competitive. Newly appointed managing director of the authority, who spoke during a visit to the Tin Can Island Ports Complex, Lagos last week said that Nigerian ports are strategically located and can compete favourably with the Ports of Dubai, Singapore and other modern ports across the globe if the effort of the government in making the ports a Hub in the sub-region is complemented by other stakeholders. Meanwhile, the authority has extended the lease agreement of two terminals Ports and Cargo Terminals extended from 10 to 15 years and Tin Can Island Container Terminal extended from 15 to 20 years. According to him, government will continue to diligently perform its functions under the port concession agreement, which are geared towards making the ports efficient and competitive with their peers all over the world, will also transform the ports to destination in the continent of Africa. The managing director in assessing the performance of the terminal operators noted that some of them have done very well especially in the areas of infrastructure development and acquisition of the necessary plants and equipment, but noted that there is room for improvement. “Some of them have fulfilled some of the agreement they signed with the Federal Government before the ports were concessioned to them, many of them have invested several billions of naira to boost cargo clearance at the ports”, he admitted. Abdullahi, who was accompanied by the top management team of the authority including the executive directors, said he Hathiramani, MD, Danathe Steel was happy that terminal operators have developed the ports to an enviable height, saying he decided to visit the ports in order to identify some challenges facing the ports with a view to proffering solutions. According to him, the new management came on board about three months ago but that they decided to allow the two new executive

was what brought about the extension. For the TICT, there are certain areas that would have gone to it in line with the concession which we could not, that was one of the reasons”, he said emphatically.

You can’t sustain Destination Inspection, stakeholders tell Customs



directors, who were appointed from outside the system to have a little knowledge of the workings of the port system so that the visit would be meaningful to them. He however frowned at the indiscriminate parking of trucks at the access roads of the various terminals, which he said limits the capacity of the ports and also impede the free movement of trucks and other equipment within the ports. The NPA-boss said he was on assignment at the authority to transform the seaports and make them efficient and therefore enlisted the support and cooperation of his colleagues, which he said were critical to the success of his mission at NPA. Port manager of the complex, Ephraim Efioita, had in the course of the visit disclosed that the period of concession for some terminals have been extended, but was however silent on the role of the Bureau of Public Enterprise in the extension exercise. According to him, the extension was given after an agreement was reached with the concessionaires over portions of concession areas that NPA was still occupying, which were supposed to be occupied by the concessionaires in line with the concession agreement. “TICT was extended from 15 to 20 years, while Port and Cargo was extended from 10 to 15 years, at the time the concession was conceived, there are certain portions that are presently occupied by NPA that were actually meant to be given to the concessionaires”, he said. It was gathered that the decision of the authority to extend the lease period follows it inability to vacate the TICP administrative building and some other areas, which had been concessioned. “We had to sit down with the concessionaires to arrive at certain agreements. That

ess than two months to the expiration of the Destination Inspection contract entered into by the Federal Government with five service holders, stakeholders have expressed serious doubts over the ability of the Nigeria Customs Service to take over the scheme in line with the contract agreement. The Federal Ministry of Finance had following the suspension of the PreShipment Inspection scheme, which was fraught with several irregularities entered into a seven- year Build, Own, Operate and Transfer contract with the five DI service providers, which include, Cotecna Destination Inspection Limited, Global Scan Systems, SGS and Webb Fountain. Under the contract, the service providers are to provider Computerised Risk Management System for all imported goods through the air, seaports and land borders, provide scanning services and also train an agreed number of officers of Customs to take over the scheme at the expiration of the contract on December 31, 2012. Meanwhile stakeholders, who spoke at a one-day seminar, which held in Lagos on the theme: Destination Inspection: Which Way Forward after December, organised by Maritime Reporters Association of Nigeria, observed that less than two months to end of the deal, nothing on ground shows that Customs has the least capability to take over and sustain the scheme. Chairman of the occasion, Otunba Kunle Folarin, observed that the silent disposition being maintained currently by the Federal Government and other relevant agencies including Customs was worrisome and might spell doom for the system. Foralin, who is the chairman of Nigerian Seafarers’ Welfare Board, observed that as an import dependent nation, the DI scheme is critical to the Nigerian economy since more than 85 percent of imported goods come through the seaports. While going through the memory lane, he observed

that PSI inspection scheme, which was introduced some time in 1979, was designed to check malpractices such as foreign exchange scams like over-valuation etc, slow cargo processes, among others, regretting that such vices have now been replaced with undervaluation, over-invoicing and outright smuggling, among others. “From all indications, there seems to be a disconnect somewhere between Customs and the service providers, as it appears they treat each other with suspicion, a development that requires that the government must look at the system again in any case where the contract is to be extended or the service providers would be asked to go”, he noted. Former national president of Association of Nigerian Licensed Customs Agents, Inua Mohammed, while speaking at the event, observed that seven years into the contract, the port cargo clearing systems is still fraught with so many documentations, characterised poor mode of payments, which impede the success of the DI scheme. “Elsewhere, goods leave the ports in six hours but that has not been possible with the Nigerian system despite the series of reforms done on the Customs”, he observed. “ I think it would be very dangerous for the government to allow the service t take over the DI scheme totally now because most of the officers and men that would man the systems have motives that run contrary to that of the government, and that might be very dangerous for now”, he warned. “An officer being posted from Maiduguri for instance to Apapa for instance has a mind frame and has given himself a target of how much he would make in the short period he would work there and so it might spell doom to ask such officer to man the scanner”, he noted further. Meanwhile national secretary of the National Associational Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders, Increase Uche, who took a swipe at some of the service providers, noted that the Risk Assessment Report generated by the service providers are most of the time ignored by the service. He noted that despite the training being given to some officers and men of the service, most of them have failed to utilise them, adding that there are scores of officers that are not computer litrate and so submitted that Nigeria’s economy would be at great risk if such officers are allowed to handle strategic cargo clearing processes. President of MARAN had

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News said. Obot further said that the inspection and investigation would ascertain the actual quantity of crude discharged in the spill. NAN learnt that more than 500 oil spill response workers were deployed to clean up the spill site.


earlier in his welcome address observed that cargo dwell time which stands at an average of 24 days in most Nigeria’s seaports remains the highest in Sub-Sahara Africa. According to him, the implication of high dwell time of cargo is increased cost of doing business at the ports, adding that corruption and bureaucratic bottlenecks are still preponderant in ports, which is a major reason for the high cost of doing business. “There is need therefore to simplify processes associated with cargo clearance. We also need to increase automation of our processes in order to reduce human contacts”, he submitted.

NOSDRA assesses impact of oil spill in Ibeno


ational Oil Spills Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA) has said that the environmental impact assessment of the Nov. 9, spill from the Qua Iboe oil fields, near Ibeno, Akwa Ibom was ongoing. Mobil Producing Nigeria (MPN), operator of the Qua Iboe oil fields, had reported that a spill from its offshore facilities discharged some 200 barrels into the Atlantic Ocean. The spill, which occurred at the company’s offshore platforms, reportedly sipped into the Atlantic coastline on Nov. 11. Irvin Obot, Zonal Director, NOSDRA, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), that the agency was conducting the exercise with officials of the oil firm, community representatives and other stakeholders. ``The joint inspection and investigation exercise is in progress, we are visiting and inspecting the coastline to ascertain the level of impact on the shoreline, so far, we have finished with Ibeno. ``We are still going to visit Esit Eket, Ikot Abasi, Eastern Obollo and Mbo to verify reports that the spill had stretched to those places,” Obot

SON appoints four firms to ensure best practices in offshore goods


he Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON), has appointed four Independent Accredited Firms (IAF) for accreditation of imported goods in line with the global best practices. Dr Joseph Odumodu, the Director General of the organisation announced this during the signing of agreement between the SON and the firms last Friday in Lagos. Odumodu said that SON appointed the new IAFs ``to tackle the influx of substandard goods into the country.’’ He underscored the importance of the new appointment as it conformed to the SON Conformity Assessment Programme (SONCAP). He described SONCAP as a flagship programme of the organisation. According to him, the SONCAP is in charge of regulatory activities of the organisation, critical to its campaign of zero tolerance on substandard products. ``We have successfully created necessary background for the stoppage of substandard products in the country and expectations of Nigerians have been heightened. ``Nigerians are eager to see the adherence to the zero tolerance slogans against substandard products and we cannot afford to disappoint them. ``It is the same way that the expectation is high from the government to ensure that the country is rid of substandard products to ensure employment generation and wealth creation,’’ he said. Odumodu urged the IAFs to strive toward desirable achievements of SONCAP by ensuring thorough inspection of imported goods. He said that SON would begin to issue the SONCAP certificate to goods coming into the country. The director general listed two of the accredited firms to include the Intertek International Ltd., and Cotecna Trade Services. ``They have the technical competence to deliver the best service to Nigerians,’’ Odumodu

said. Mathieu Delorme, the Chief Operating Officer of the Cotecna Trade Services, assured Nigerians of excellent performance in monitoring imported goods.

Ekiti to establish all season irrigation farming, grazing reserve


kiti State Government has said that it will soon establish an all season irrigation farm and grazing reserves in the state. Ganiyu Owolabi, Secretary to the State Government made this known at an Agric forum in Ado Ekiti on Friday. He explained that the new initiative was part of efforts by government to boost food security and create employment. Owolabi said that the government had already prepared a large expanse of farm land around Oke Ako for the project. He said that the zeal and passion displayed by Ekiti farmers of old had disappeared among the youths. He stressed that the present administration had made up its mind to make farming attractive once again to new generation of young farmers. ``We are embarking on all these in order to resuscitate the enthusiasm for farming that Ekiti people were known for,’’ the SSG said. Owolabi, however, emphasised the need for proper mentoring and guidance of the new generation farmers by the old ones. He added that government needed all the support it could get to achieve its aim of turning the state to a food basket. He called on corporate bod-

ies to support government’s effort at achieving economic emancipation of youths in the state.

of electronic banking channels that are customer-centric and technologically advanced,” he said.

Western Union to open new business opportunities for SMEs

Further commenting on the launch, Aida Diarra, Vice President North, Central and West Africa, Western Union, stated that, “The inclusion of Account Based Money Transfer systems reinforces our relationship with Ecobank. This also demonstrates Western Union’s continual commitment to providing reliable and convenient worldclass money transfer services”. The Group Executive Director, Domestic Bank of ETI, Mr. Patrick Akinwuntan, said “Leveraging technology to take banking to the people by providing convenient, reliable and affordable financial products and services is a key part of Ecobank’s strategy, therefore we are pleased to be partnering with Western Union to be the first to offer such an innovative and convenient banking service to our customers. Linus Adaba, Group Remittance Manager, Ecobank noted that the financial services industry is a major driver of Africa’s economic growth, particularly as international migration continues to expand, fuelling the global remittances market. He said that Ecobank and Western Union play a pivotal role by moving money across the continent in innovative and cost-effective ways. “Ecobank Retail Banking intends to offer the Western Union ABMT service in more than 2,600 Agent locations across its footprint of 31 countries in the coming months. The new electronic service launch is an extension of the two companies’ successful collaboration across Africa, “ he added. BC

Johnson Okanlawon


estern Union has showed its willingness to open business opportunities for small business owner to compete abroad for every consumer with financial needs. Western Union Senior Vice President, Middle East and Africa Mr. Jean Claude Farah stated this on Friday during the Western Union Ecobank launch of Account Based Money Transfer(ABMT) in Lagos. According to him, Western Union Vision is to be the premier financial provider for undeserved consumers and businesses. He said, “Making our services more convenient and accessible to our customers is a worthy goal, but for us, it’s much more than that. We are a mission-driven brand. We have a higher purpose”. He noted that African diaspora today consist of approximately 30 million adults, who send around 40 billion dollars annually to their families and communities back home. “Last year this accounted for an average of 2.3 per cent Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in Africa and in some markets this was as high as 10-20 per cent. “Western Union is pleased to strengthen this mutually productive and beneficial relationship with the inclusion

L-R: Group Head, Liability Product, Sterling Bank Plc, John Akingbade; Manager, National Lottery Commission, Ita Calix ; Brand Management and Communications, Kate Edoho and CEO, Advalue, Branding, Marketing,Communications, Charles Monwuba, at the 4th draw of the onging Sterling Bank Saver’s Promo, held in Lagos last Friday

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A shrewd investor At separate times, he occupied vantage positions in two of Nigeria’s top banks. First at United Bank for Africa as Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer for 10 years and later as Chairman of First Bank of Nigeria Plc for another ten years. This is the story of Dr. Umaru Abdul Mutallab, a chartered accountant, banker, investor and co-founder cum Chairman, Board of Directors, Jaiz Bank International Plc, Nigeria’s first Islamic bank. A discerning investor and board room guru, the 72- year- old retired banker has investments that cut across sectors like construction, oil and gas, textiles amongst others. By Bamidele Obafemi


r. Umaru Abdul Mutallab, a Fellow of both the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (FCCA) and the Institute of Chartered Accountant of Nigeria (FCA), is one of the longest serving chairmen of the board of directors of First Bank of Nigeria Plc, where he served for 10 years. The Katsina-born banker and a onetime Minister of Economic Development, was born in Katsina town, Katsina State, North-West Nigeria on December 15, 1939. He attended the popular Barewa College, Zaria, Kaduna State, before proceeding to Accra, Ghana to complete his secondary education at Achimota College. He attended the South West London College where he studied accounting. Abdul Mutallab started his working career with Fuller Jenks Beecroft & Co in London in 1965 as a Management Accountant. After his sojourn in the United Kingdom, he returned to Nigeria to take up a higher responsibility as Chief Accountant/Acting General Manager, Defence Industries Corporation in Kaduna. He was also the Financial Controller of the company. Dr. Abdul Mutallab later rose to become the General Manager, New Nigeria Development Company Limited (NNDC) from 1968 to 1975. In 1975, he was appointed as Federal Commissioner (i.e. Minister) for Economic Development and Reconstruction and was re-assigned to the Federal Ministry of Cooperatives and Supply in 1976. Effectively, Mutallab was a member of the Federal Executive Council from 1976 to 1978 and his public service career was cut short following a call to duty in the corporate sector of the economy. At age 50, he left government to serve as Executive Vice Chairman/ Managing Director, United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc, a position he held for 10 years before he left the scene in 1988. Meanwhile Abdul Mutallab’s exit from the banking industry was temporary as he returned 11 years later as chairman of First Bank of Nigeria Plc. At First Bank, Dr. Abdul Mutallab as chairman, along with his colleagues on the board, steered the ship of the bank for 10 years, between 1999 and 2009. He was a major stabilising factor for First Bank as he carefully guided the bank through the period of reMutallab

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Business Courage

capitalisation when it recorded a landslide success, raising over N500 billion from the capital market in 2007 through a hybrid offer. The offer, popularly called “The Big Offer”, set an unprecedented landmark with a subscription in excess of 750 per cent, and was lauded as the biggest and most successful in the history of public offers in Nigeria. The bank’s epochmaking achievement was again reinforced when it became the first quoted company in Nigeria to achieve the feat of hitting the trillion naira mark in market capitalisation, the clearest evidence of the market’s estimation of its worth. Till date, and despite the downturn in the stock market, the bank remains the most capitalised stock on the floor of The Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE). Part of the achievements recorded by FirstBank during the time of Abdul Mutallab as chairman includes the establishment of a wholly owned banking subsidiary in the United Kingdom in 2002. That move made the bank, the first Nigerian bank to own a full-fledged bank in the United Kingdom as it is under the regulation of Financial Services Authority. In 2007, FBN Bank (UK) obtained authorization to set up its Paris office to serve as a marketing base to service francophone West Africa. First Bank also has Representative Offices in Johannesburg, South Africa and Beijing, China, established in 2004 and 2009 respectively. Business Courage was told that with the bank’s global reach through its operations in the United Kingdom, France, South Africa, and China, it provides prospective investors wishing to explore the vast business opportunities that abound in Nigeria, an internationally competitive world-class brand and a credible financial partner. Beside giving the bank a global focus during his tenure, Abdul Mutallab promoted the principles of good corporate governance, himself being said to adhere strictly to issues of integrity. Financial experts have said First Bank’s corporate governance practice remains at the industry’s leading-edge. The bank’s continuing commitment to strong corporate governance and improved disclosure levels in the reporting of its financials was reinforced in November 2008 when it won The Nigerian Stock Exchange Quoted Company of the Year Award. The bank also emerged joint winner of the NSE’s President’s Merit Award for the banking sector “for the presentation, quality and depth of its annual report and accounts for the year 2007”. In further evidence of the bank’s strength, a foundation which many believed was laid

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Besides banking, Dr. Abdul Mutallab widely described as one of Africa’s wealthiest personality, has a vast interest in the construction industry

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during Abdul Mutallab’s leadership, two foremost international risk-rating agencies, Standard and Poor’s (S&P) and Fitch, at different periods rated the bank highly. Standard and Poor’s assigned the bank a long term rating of “BB-“ and “B” short term rating, which mirrors the country’s “BB” (long term) and “B” (short term) ratings by the same agency, against the backdrop of the global economic meltdown. The agency noted that “The ratings on First Bank were supported by the bank’s good market position, adequate capitalization and moderated financial performance”. Fitch assigned the Bank “B+” (long term) and “B” (short term), while it also affirmed the Bank’s “A+” and “F1” (nga) national long-term and short-term ratings for the past seven (7) years respectively up to 2009.

Global Credit Rating Company Limited, a Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) licensed rating agency also assigned the bank national longterm and short-term ratings of “A” and “A1+” respectively, with positive outlook, as in the two previous years; while Agusto & Co, a national credit rating agency, in 2009 assigned it “Aa+”, with stable outlook, same as the previous year, noting that “Our rating is justified by the Bank’s strong brand, stable and experienced management team, strong capital base, strong industry position, a strong liquidity profile supported by a country-wide branch network, good asset quality and a good earnings profile”. First Bank has been the winner of the “Best Bank in Nigeria”, “Best Trade Finance Bank in Nigeria”, and “Best

Foreign Exchange Bank in Nigeria” awarded by the US-based Global Finance magazine for five consecutive years. These are in addition to receiving NSE Award of Excellence as the Quoted Company of the Year 2007, and award for the best presentation, quality and depth of Annual Report and Accounts for the Year 2007, to mention a just a few. In November 2009, just before the exit of Abdul Mutallab from the board of First Bank,

the bank was awarded “Best Bank in Nigeria” by the EMEA Finance Magazine. It would be recalled that the bank’s Century II Enterprise Transformation Project peaked in 2004; five years after Abdul Mutallab took over the reins of the affairs of its board. The board led by Mutallab had reportedly tasked Bisi Onasanya, current Group Managing Director who was then in charge of the project with the mandate to manage what is acknowledged today as the most critical phase

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Monday, November 19, 2012

It is interesting to know that at the point when he was exiting the Board of First Bank as chairman in 2009, he was the second largest single shareholder in the bank with over 340 million units of shares


of the bank’s early transformation, to ensure continuous competitiveness. With a good record of performance and technologydriven operations, First Bank of Nigeria Plc, undisputedly, towers above competitions in Nigeria’s sometimes complex and dynamic financial services industry. “This enviable position was not achieved by shortcuts. It was a result of carefully crafted and vigorously pursued transformational initiatives that seek to position the bank, not just as a national banking icon, but also an international player”, a source familiar with the bank disclosed. The transformation agenda which debuted in 1996 with the theme “Century II Business Transformation Project” was to reposition the brand to enable it align with the constantly changing features of the modern day market place. That project was revalidated in 2001 with the theme, “Century II – The New Frontier”. In 2004, the transformation peaked with the unveiling a new corporate identity and logo, which signalled its readiness to redefine its process, service delivery, product offerings and human capital development. Interestingly, Onasanya believes strongly that embarking on that journey was worthwhile. Looking back now, he says the transformation efforts encouraged and supported by Abdul Mutallab had yielded radical improvements in service delivery and renewal of trust by all classes of customers of the bank, adding that the results of the robust trans-

formation were evident in the bank’s standing as a symbol of trust, stability and superior performance in the financial services sector. Besides banking, Dr. Abdul Mutallab widely described as one of Africa’s wealthiest personality, has a vast interest in the construction industry. He is the chairman of Impresit Bakolori (Nigeria) Limited, a construction company which is popular in the Northern part of Nigeria. Impresit Bakolori is an associated company of IMPREGILO S.P.A, an Italian construction firm of long standing and was founded in the 1980s. In alliance with IMPREGILO, Impresit Bakolori have handled and still handles high level construction projects for most state governments in the northern region. For instance, the company handled the aqueduct extension project in Sokoto State, north-west Nigeria between 1986 and 1989. A few other projects which Abdul Mutallab has influenced for Impresit Bakolori include the Niger State aqueduct located in Suleja. The project was designed and constructed by the CIBA Consortium formed by IMPREGILO S.p.A. The project involved two contracts, one for the construction of the dam and ancillary works and the second for the treatment plant and distribution network. The small dam has a concrete spillway and an intake tower connected by pipelines to the pumping station. The water treatment plant has 50,000 m³/ day maximum capacity. The water distribution sys-

tem includes 20 km of transmission mains and 84.5 km of distribution mains; two concrete service tanks of 4,000 m³ capacity and one concrete service tank of 10,000 m³ capacity. Similarly, the Jibiya irrigation project which Impresit Bakolori concluded for the Katsina State government in 1992 was equally a proof of the strength of Abdul Mutallab in his territory. The Jibiya reclamation project is located in Katsina State, on the border with the Republic of Niger. It is part of the social development programme for the Sokoto-Rima basin. The dam includes an ungated concrete spillway and an intake tower for irrigation purpose. “The reservoir has a capacity of 142 million m3 as a barrier against the encroaching desert and to supply drinking water to the town of Jibiya and neighbouring villages. An irrigation system over 3,500 ha, consisting of a pumping station, two regulating reservoirs, about 200 km of canals and over 100 km of drainage channels. A road network of 160 km completes the system infrastructure. A drinking water supply system serving 200,000 people. After treatment, the reservoir water is distributed through 70 km of steel pipes of varying diameters”, Bakolori disclosed. Most recently, Dr. Abdul Mutallab and a team of investors put an end to the long time controversy about the introduction of Islamic banking in Nigeria, when Jaiz Bank Plc was quietly commissioned to commence operations on Friday, January 6, 2011 in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT). Jaiz’s eventual emergence follows repeated failures in the past to begin operations more than five years after it launched itself into the public consciousness to raise funds from the capital market. The bank was actually incorporated on April 1, 2003 as a public limited liability company with an authorised share capital of N2.5 bil-

lion. But sources close to the bank claimed that it is yet to reflect the influence of the master banker as it allegedly rolled out its operations in haste, not leaving room for a thorough strategic planning expected from the board and management. As at January 2012, according a report, there was only two banking product offerings. They are simply corporate and individual current account while other offerings such as internet banking and saving accounts, among others were said to be on hold. Meanwhile, Business Courage investigations show that Jaiz may really not yet be fully prepared for business as it has no website where customers can easily interface with it. The initial shortcomings notwithstanding, Jaiz, according to inside sources, intends to operate as a full fledge bank, operating children’s account, fixed deposit account as well as offer a range of services including internet banking and ATMs among others. Dr. Mutallab, a Fellow Institute of the International Bankers Association of the United States (FIBA) and Fellow Institute of Bankers of Nigeria, holds the Nigeria National Honour of the Commander of the Order of the Niger (CON) and the Italian National Honour of Commander of the Order of Merit. He was awarded a Honourary Doctorate Degree by the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife. He is the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Penman Pensions Limited. In the past, Mutallab had also served on the boards of several companies such as Arewa Textiles Limited, NEPA, NACB, NCC, Nigeria Agip Oil, and the Cement Company of Northern Nigeria [CCNN]. He was Chairman, Business Support Group of the Vision 2020:20. Dr.Umaru Abdul Mutallab represents different things to different people. The Times of London, in 2009, said Mutallab was “one of the richest men in Africa”. The New York Times towed the same line when it re-

ported that he was “among Nigeria’s richest and most prominent men”. The Telegraphs in its own account said Mutallab was one of Nigeria’s most prominent bankers while The Guardian took him to be “one of the country’s most respected businessmen”. However, the enviable track record which Abdul Mutallab had built over the years was almost tarnished by the action of one of his sixteen children, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab who attempted to detonate plastic explosives aboard Northwest Airlines Flight 253 on December 25, 2009. Farouk, upon graduation in London where he studied mechanical engineering, returned to Nigeria and informed his father that he intended to undertake a master’s degree programme in Cairo, Egypt. But having been aware of his son`s extreme religious views, Umar Abdul Mutallab and his family rebuffed his request to study in Egypt, the home town of Ayman al-Zawahiri and chose Dubai instead. However, weeks after arriving in Dubai, Umaru Farouk sent words home to his family that he was relocating to Yemen, an Al Qaeda stronghold, where he allegedly received some training on explosives and IED`s. But the septuagenarian was exonerated from being an accomplice in the terrorism crime by the American government because he took a proactive step in alerting both the US and Nigerian government that his son was up to a mischief. The United States government represented by Senator John Kerry, a U.S. Congress man amid the crisis which shook the world of Dr. Umaru Abdul Mutallab to its very foundation, still described him as ‘heroic’. The U.S. applauded the father of the jailed terrorist thus: “Mr. Abdulmutallab acted in a heroic fashion by informing U.S. authorities of his concerns about his son’s whereabouts and activities and by seeking to disrupt what he believed could have been a dangerous situation,” the letter from Kerry, DMass., said. Hence, he was accorded a rare privilege to appear before the U.S. Congress to discuss his experience with his son and to provide his recommendations on the process by which he worked with U.S. authorities. Though, Dr. Abdul Mutallab is retired from active service, his investments in all the companies where he has interests continue to yield sumptuous returns for him. It is interesting to know that at the point when he was exiting the Board of First Bank as chairman in 2009, he was the second largest single shareholder in the bank with over 340 million units of shares. BC

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National Mirror


A teenage

infopreneur Bamidele Onibalusi, 18, is one of Nigeria’s fast rising internet entrepreneur who earns a living through blogging and writing. He runs as Managing Director/ CEO. His passion is to show as many young Nigerians as possible how not to depend on government, corporations or even their parents for a living, as he believes the only way to live a fulfilled life is by embracing entrepreneurship. Onibalusi hopes to become a computer scientist one day Onibalusi

By Bamidele Obafemi


amidele Onibalusi, simply known as Oni in the internet world, stumbled on his present business, an online information marketing through blogging and writing. His adventure into the world of infopreneurs begun three years ago when he learnt he could make money online. “I was a big Bill Gates fan then, due to the fact that he was the richest man in the world and his success was largely due to working with computers. I wanted to be like him; I wanted to be rich, to have the kind of lifestyle I want without working for anybody, so I was so excited when I first heard about the concept of making money online,” he said in a recent interview. Having discovered his passion, Oni was ready to give it all it takes to become very successful in the online business as his ambition from the onset was clear- ‘to become a very wealthy infopreneur’. To begin the long journey into greatness, Oni disclosed that he invested about 20 hours at a stretch creating his first website. And having come up with what he considered an exciting creation, he had hoped to see the money rolling in almost immediately as he started to write and create contents to attract clients. But that would not happen in spite of his excitements and great hopes. Yet, being a dogged internet

entrepreneur, he was ready to go back to the drawing board to review his strategies after a seemingly futile effort in the first three months of starting the business. In a bid to discover what was wrong with his style, Oni started reading various blogs and articles about how to make money online, and it was then that he discovered an article by Steve Pavlina. “It was an article that changed everything”, he said. “The article made me realize how blogging works, and, most importantly, it also made me realize the importance of giving free value without expecting anything in return. That was when I discovered blogging and writing online, and that was when everything changed. Bill Gates was a big inspiration in terms of mentality, but Steve Pavlina gave me the kick I needed to get started” he added. However, after discovering the secrets of becoming a successful blogger and writer as shared by his business mentor, a myriad of challenges still stirred Oni in the face, but one after the other, he cleared them out of his way, as he was bent on achieving success at all cost. Perhaps, the most threatening of the challenges that stood on his way was the need to be connected online almost 24 hours of the day in an environment where electricity and internet connection still remain a

big issue. But Oni, being a diehard entrepreneur who would not take no for an answer, simply entered into a partnership with a cafe owner in his area who offered him free access to the computer and internet since he lacked the financial wherewithal to acquire a com-

puter and internet facility at the start-up stage. “My mother is a widow with six children, so burdening her with a “new” business that I’m the only one who believes will work won’t cut it. I was a little bit familiar with how computers work then, and I was into hacking and net-

working, so I started offering my skills as a freelancer locally, and to individuals that needed help with their computers; this made it easy for me to get money for hosting and maintaining my blog. I also participated in a few online contests to fund my business”, he recollected.

Management Principles

Practices that kill employees prodtuctivity


ffective leaders set their teams up for success. This requires that they avoid any management practices that could potentially kill employee productivity. Inept leadership styles come in all flavours, from the disorganized or forgetful boss to the extreme micromanager. Here are five practices that are guaranteed to sink your workers’ efficiency — and the alternatives to supercharge it. Fear mongering Fear is a powerful motivator, but managers who regularly threaten job security and employees’ livelihood run the risk of paralyzing their team. Employees who are afraid to lose their job may bow under pressure, waste company time looking for jobs “just in case” or gossip with co-workers — all activities that kill morale and decrease productivity. Instead, cultivate a culture centred on trust, respect and engagement. Such a work environment encourages growth, learning from one’s mistakes and effective communication. Engaged workers who aren’t afraid of being fired can relax and focus on doing their best work. Similarly, disengaged workers can destroy team morale from within. Calling employees out in public Managers should praise publicly and counsel privately. Criticizing a team member in front of his peers is embarrassing for him; it also has an awkward, de-motivating effect on his co-workers, who may now be fearful to make a mistake. If you need to counsel an employee, do so in a way that won’t attract attention or distract others. This is especially important in offices with glass-walled meeting rooms or open floor plans, where it’s easy for others to see and hear sensitive meetings. When I worked in an open-plan office, I’d initiate all one-on-one “development” meetings with an instant message or a short email that explained why I wanted to speak with the team member. Then I’d approach the employee and say something like, “Hey, let’s go take a walk. Will you be free in 10 minutes?” We’d then head to a nearby park, where we could speak freely. Because the company had cultivated a culture of trust, feedback and engagement, employees learned to look forward to these

National Mirror

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ThebuddingEntrepreneurs Meanwhile, getting people to trust him enough to patronise the products he is offering them online turned out to be another big obstacle he had to surmount before the business would thrive. This is because of the perception of the global community about Nigeria especially as it relates to doing business online. But that again, he was able to put behind him by choosing to be consistent in the value he offers, and by leveraging the brand and platform of other successful bloggers to grow his business. Marketing, being a major problem every entrepreneur especially infopreneurs face in business, Oni was able to overcome it by writing guest posts for popular blogs in his niche. Yet, he had to write as much as 270 guest posts before his business began to take off. “It was around then that I got my first client, and that I started to notice significant increase in my traffic. The problem with my approach then was that my guest posts were focused mostly on smaller blogs, and I had little to no SEO knowledge so I didn’t maximize my guest posts”, he confessed. Today, in spite of the initial challenges and a stifling operating environment in the country, Oni says the tide has turned, as

he has finally discovered the secret of making money almost effortlessly in the business. T h o u g h making money is very dear to him, the youngster acknowledges that life does not start and end with generating cash. Therefore, one of the things he does to give back to his immediate community is to offer assistance by teaching people how to also make money from the internet business. This is how he puts it: “I have a passion for helping people, and the majority of my income comes from client work. In fact, even when I sometimes mentor people offline, I do it for free. I believe that the more you give, the more you get. Also, it is not that I have no plans to charge. Everything is a matter of time, and I believe now isn’t the right time to charge; I’m still taking my time to under-

“walks” as opportunities to improve. Avoiding project ownership Managers who hold the strings in every regard aren’t leaders — they’re tyrants. Employees who are mere pawns can quickly become disengaged; they have little incentive to go above and beyond in any particular task. Employees who have ownership over a project are emotionally vested in its success. That small measure of recognition builds accountability. An employee who is the point person for a project may go above and beyond to coordinate his teammates, meet project deadlines and communicate their progress with you. Ignoring top performers What practices separate your peak performers from your average performers? Ineffective leaders micromanage top performers or ignore their prowess altogether, essentially getting in their way or de-motivating them. Good managers recognize and acknowledge high-performance workers. Give these team members responsibilities that best leverage their skills. Meet with these individuals and ask what tools they need to do their very best work. Try to understand their work processes and how they may differ from the rest of your team. Running ineffective meetings Managers love meetings because it enables them to catch up on projects and disseminate instructions to key team members all at once. Many employees hate meetings because they’re poorly managed, irrelevant to their work responsibilities or held at a time of day that isn’t conducive to a long attention span. This disconnects between managers’ needs to stay “in the loop” and employees’ distaste for meetings can add up to energy lulls and decreased productivity. In an office setting primed for productivity, every leader would intuitively know how to manage their teams to peak efficiency. By avoiding these management practices, managers will be five steps closer to that optimal environment. BC

Personal Finance Keeping family business running smoothly


any home-based and other small- or even mediumsized businesses are family-owned and operated. And while there are certainly a whole host of perks to working closely with the ones you love the most, the dynamics in the family-owned operation can pose their own unique set of challenges. Here are some tips to mitigate or even prevent any negative fallout that could be a direct result of your business being a family-run operation:

Communication Communicate often, regularly and with a set agenda. It’s far too easy to get side-tracked talking about more personal family matters and avoid in-depth and strategic business-related discussions. Carve out time on a regular basis to talk about nothing but business in a structured way.

stand the real problems writers face online, and I’ll be happy to charge when I have something worth paying for”. Above all, he said his greatest joy as an entrepreneur is the freedom he enjoys. Meanwhile his focus at the moment is to generate more valuable contents that will help drive more traffic to his blog. “One article I’m writing right now will take at least 30 hours to complete, and I type at around 70 words per minute; it’s content like this that I want to focus on, and that I believe can impact my brand”, he enthused. Being an entrepreneur driven by passion for what he does, Oni, in spite of his abhorrence for routines would leave no stone unturned to achieve his goals once he has set them. “I hate routines, and that has been a problem for me. I’ve tried it several times to create a schedule to follow, but it makes it impossible for me to get anything done. My typical day is so erratic, and I don’t think I have a “working day”. I can work for a whole week sometimes, and the next week might be spent watching movies. Usually, I start my day by checking my emails, and I sometimes start the day by writing when I’m on a deadline. I spend an average of 40 hours working in a week, and it can be as much as 80 hours depending on my mood” he said. But while Oni hopes to concentrate on his blog in the short term, his long term plan is to become a computer scientist. He said his plan is to replicate what one of his mentors; Bill Gates did with Microsoft in the field of computing. BC

Keep business and home separate In keeping with the prior point, business belongs at the office and personal matters belong at home. Never the twain shall meet. Keep document The failure to document in writing what has been agreed upon between family members who are in business together is probably the number one most costly mistake family business owners make. There is no place for “trust me” or “I’m insulted” when it comes to business. You must clearly define the terms of any business relationship in writing, family or not. If things get tricky, hire an outside facilitator. Hire a pro to help you settle your differences sooner rather than later. It’s a heck of a lot cheaper than ending up in a court room. Invest in training and professional development Although a business owner can certainly pass along much of his/her wisdom to the next generation, there’s always room for your staff, whether they are family or not, to improve their management, administrative and other business-related skills. As a bonus, they’ll probably come back with a thing or two to teach you too. Hold family members accountable Family members must be treated the same way you’d treat a non-family member in business; they must be held accountable for their actions or lack thereof. This is critical if you want to lessen the possibility of resentment within your organization. Foster inherited professional and personal alliances Introduce your key personal and professional contacts to your successors and foster those relationships wherever and whenever possible. Know that a good idea is a good idea Don’t be too proud to accept a good idea when you hear one or to change the way you do things when it’s the right thing to do, even if the idea or suggestion comes from a family member who is younger or with whom there may be some rivalry. Worry about fair, not equal Pay and compensation among family members should be based on fair market value, not some misplaced commitment to everything being equal. Fair is not always equal, and equal is not always fair. Formalize a succession plan Your business succession plan is every bit as important as your personal estate planning. Failing to plan for the future of your business means you’re really okay if it eventually collapses. The question is, “Are you?”



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National Mirror

Good riddance to telecom promos? Mixed reactions trail the directive banning telecoms promos and lotteries in the country as a result of persistent poor quality of service. But it’s yet to be seen if this alone would bring about better quality of service to the telecoms industry By Adejuwon Osunnuyi


he ban on existing and approved telecommunication companies’ promotions and lotteries last week by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), no doubt, might have come to many Nigerian telephone subscribers as a welcome development. In the last few months, making a telephone call successfully for most subscribers has been like a camel passing through the needle’s eye, as most subscribers are daily faced with the challenges of dropped calls, call diversion, weak call signals to activate calls, poor voice clarity, delay in SMS delivery, among others. The general belief is that these difficulties are the consequences of the various exciting, innovative and sometimes hard to believe promos and lotteries rolled out by the telecos. For instance, while the December period which is known for rash of promos is yet to come, determined to win more subscribers, most of the operators have since August, been on rampage with the introduction of various promos including an out of the ordinary 500 per cent bonus offer amidst low call tariff. Aside offering free bonus credit for subscribers to make calls, leading telecommunications company in the country, MTN, for instance, came up with what it termed the biggest promo in town with the promise of an aeroplane with a price tag of N64 million worth as a star prize. However, with the low tariff and free credit offered, the condition had been that subscribers must make use of the 500 per cent bonus on the calls before midnight. Hence, with such midnight expiration, the offer had encouraged more people to make calls, either necessary or not in order to get such daily bonus. The attendant effect of this, many believed, has been a worsened service quality since the capacity on ground cannot accommodate the surge in daily traffic. This is believed to have aggravated incidences of the unconnected calls, dropped calls, call diversion, weak call signals to activate calls, poor voice clarity and delay in SMS delivery. MTN’s Chief Technical Officer (CTO), Karl Toriola himself admitted that with the lowered tariff, subscribers tends to make more calls. “When you reduce tariff,

depending on the elasticity, and the appeal to the customers, you find that people may make a lot more calls than they previously had, under a higher tariff regime. This drives significantly more traffic on the network and as a consequence, if the traffic is more rapid than what was forecasted, it could lead to congestion on the network,” Toriola said. If this is true, then it becomes obvious that the telecoms regulator might not have been wrong in its decision stopping the telecos from embarking on promotions that either increase subscribers’ minutes or add to the subscriber base as they might have accommodated more than they can carry. Notably, since the free calls saga began, the monthly subscriber base has been moving up geometrically. For instance, at the end of August, the country’s mobile telephone subscriber base hit a record 105.2 million from 103.4 million active telephone lines recorded in July. In August alone, it means over 1.8 million new lines were added. While the total connected lines increased to 141.2 million in that month, the NCC data showed that GSM companies such as MTN, Globacom, Airtel and Etisalat attracted most of the new subscriptions between January and August, while the Code Division


Multiple Access (CDMA) operators such as Visafone, Multi-Links, Starcomms and ZoomMobile continued to witness month-onmonth decline in combined subscriber base. According to the NCC data, while active mobile subscriptions on the GSM networks increased from 91 million in January to 101.4 million at the end of August; the CDMA operators’ subscriber base shrank from 4.4 million to 3.3 million during the eight-month period. The GSM active subscriptions, which stood at 91 million in January, 2012,

increased to 92 million in February and 94.5 million at the end of March. The subscriptions continued the upward growth trend, reaching 96.6 million in April and 97.5 million in May. Interestingly, last month, as the promos thickened, the subscriber base increased further with about 2.1 million additions. The additional lines which represented a two per cent increase for the month of October pushed the total active telephone lines to 107.3 million. With the alarming rate of subscriber base. Hence, it was not surprising when Minister of Communication Technology, Omobola Johnson first gave a warning, threatening to stop all promotions that tend to increase the subscriber base of telecommunications operators in the country. According to her, the decision to curtail the rate at which the firms embark on promotions was borne out of the discovery that such promotions put stress on their base stations. “In the coming days, the Nigerian Communication Commission would curtail or stop all promotions that either increase subscribers minutes or add to the subscriber base that are causing additional congestion on the network,” she had said. While the government, the minister said, would again review the quality of service by the operators next month, she added that any network operator found wanting would be sanctioned. And true to the minister’s threat, Tony Ojobo, Director of

Public Affairs of NCC stated that the commission had verified that the various promotional sales campaigns by the telecom operators had led to network congestions, and contributed greatly to the poor QoS experienced in the country. Ojobo noted that the Commission had carefully evaluated the complaints received especially against the backdrop of sustaining the integrity of the networks, the general interest of the consumers, the socio-economic impact of these promotions on operators and other relevant stakeholders. Announcing that the ban covers all proposed and approved promotions and lotteries on which it has given approval further to the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) entered into with the National Lottery Regulatory Commission (NLRC), Ojobo noted, “The Commission is also mindful of its statutory responsibilities to protect and promote the interest of consumers against unfair practices, promote fair competition in the industry by protecting operators from misuse of market power and anti-competitive/unfair practices by other operators.” While the ban is said to be with immediate effect and shall continue to remain in force until such a time as may be determined by the Commission, affected in this latest ban are: Globacom Ltd (operators of Glo Mobile), MTN, Intercellular Nigeria Plc, Visafone, Etisalat, Airtel and Multilinks. To Ojobo, the Commission

National Mirror

had taken into cognizance the implications of its actions as the decisions were taken in the interest of consumers as it observed that these promotions have increased the number of minutes available to subscribers for use within a limited period of time thereby creating congestion in the networks as subscribers try to use up the available minutes within the stipulated time. “That on-net call was now being offered by operators at tariffs well below the prevailing interconnect rates thereby introducing anti-competitive practices and behaviour. Termination of calls was becoming increasingly difficult from one network to another and overall consumer experience on the networks has become very poor, thereby making it extremely difficult for subscribers to make calls successfully,” Ojobo said. Expectedly, many Nigerians have applauded the decision of the Commission. For instance, President, National Association of Telecommunications Subscribers (NATCOMS), Deolu Ogunbanjo noted that the move would freeup the network and stop current congestion of the networks. Ogunbanjo said that stopping the promotions would compel telecom operators to upgrade their services to meet up with their promotions. “By this decision, telecom operators will want to expedite action to improve on their networks, knowing that their promotions always attract more subscribers into their various networks. All these promotions here and there are also affecting the quality of service; it’s a good decision that the Federal Government has taken. Let us see if the stoppage will have positive effect on the quality of service and if operators want to continue to give back to subscribers, they must first focus on quality of service to subscribers,” he said. Ogunbanjo said that sales promotions are good if the issue of quality of service is addressed, adding that operators should first improve on their networks before continuing with the promotions. Dr. Emmanuel Ekuwem, President, Teledom Group, said that the decision could not have come at a right time. Wondering why despite poor quality of service to subscribers, telcos are still engaging in promotions, Ekuwem noted, “Looking at it hypothetically, if 10 million subscribers in the country play a promo per SMS at the rate of N100, that equals to N1 billion. Every other thing put into consideration, if such operator, let’s say, deducts N3 million for logistics from the N1 billion, it shows that per SMS they have gained N7 million,” he reasoned. An industry analyst who didn’t want his name in print submitted however believes that, “Perhaps the situation would have been better if it had been one or two of the operators engaging in the promo; at least, Nigerians subscribers, most of who use more than one network would have opted for the alternative, if one gets worse. Unfortunately, in the spirit of competition, all the operators are

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in it, thus, leaving the entire networks in a mess of poor service.” “And now that that the service is even getting worse, if the operators pretend not to know that the incessant promos are aggravating the problem, then, the regulator, whose duty it is to ensure that the people get value for their money should call the operators to order. Of what value is a free call credit that cannot make one successful call till it expires? Of what benefit is a cheap tariff plan, when you cannot make the important call at the time it matters? Quality, rather than quantity should be the focus for the industry,” he emphasised. But it is obvious that many subscribers would lose opportunity of free calls. Like Ogunbanjo rightly observed, “Telecom promotions have in one way or the other reduced tariffs across the networks and that has encouraged subscribers to enjoy talking freely.” Complying with the directives, Globacom last week sent out SMS to its numerous customers informing them of the NCC’s action. “Dear Customer, in line with NCC directive to all GSM operators, the following GLO promotional offers have been suspended; Text4Millions Season 3, Triple Instant Bonus, Made for life & 500 per cent usage bonus. Any inconvenience is highly regretted. Rule your world” In the same vein, Akinwale Goodluck, MTN’s Corporate Service Executive speaking with our correspondent at the presentation of the winner of its aeroplane star prize in the just concluded MTN Ultimate wonder promo, affirmed the suspension of all MTN’s promos in line with NCC’s directive. “We have to obey the laws and the regulator. For instance, the regulator has imposed an embargo on promos that have minutes of use on the network. That is ongoing. But this promo of the aeroplane was unaffected, because this promo had ended before that directive was issued,” he said. While the promo might have been suspended with the belief that quality of service will improve, investigations carried out by Business Courage last week revealed that it may not yet be Uhuru. For instance, as at the time of filling this reports, many are still experiencing incessant

dropped calls, weak call signals to activate calls, poor voice clarity as well as delay in SMS delivery. Giving credence to why poor service might still continue for a while, most operators believe problems of equipment vandalism, fibre cuts and lately flooding needed to be addressed as they remain major causes of the poor quality service. Minister of Communication Technology seems to be in agreement with the operators. While she partly blamed the current poor service on the firms’ lack of investment in expansion, modernisation and upgrade of their infrastructure to cope with the demand for voice, data and SMS services, she also affirmed that the recent attacks on base stations in North-East and flooding in parts of the South might have contributed to poor service delivery by telecoms companies. For instance, MTN Nigeria recently said its network modernisation being implemented as a part of its $1.3 billion capital expenditure budget is being challenged by the flood disaster and the increasing wave of insecurity in some parts of the country. The operator, while appealing for understanding from its customers and other key stakeholders as it continues its network upgrade said the pace of work has been considerably challenged by the spate of insecurity coupled with the unprecedented flooding being experienced in many parts of the country. The network optimization exercise affects over 4,000 base stations out of over 10,000 across the country. In at least 13 states, flooding has created additional logistic impediments such that the pace of the ongoing network modernization efforts has slowed down. The upgrade began in July and it is expected to cover the entire country and was originally expected to span a period of nine months. Its objectives are to considerably enhance capacity on the MTN network and improve service quality. Under the project, which is being implemented by a combined team of MTN engineers and technical partners that include Ericsson, Huawei and ZTE, key network components are being swapped with the latest upgrades in the industry. In addition, current power systems are being replaced with hybrid power systems which are more environmentfriendly. With these barrages of challenges, it is very clear that that good quality of service might not be expected in the nearest future as Goodluck said, “There are lots of environment issues affecting good quality of service in the country. While operators are working, the government is working, the regulator is working, if all these things come together, by then we would see significant appreciation in the quality of service.” But the question remains, how soon? BC


How to check if someone is using your Wi-Fi


here are many reasons why you would want to check if an unauthorized party is using your wireless network. It may be that you’re experiencing a slower than normal Internet connection or you simply don’t want anyone getting a free ride while you pay the bill. Of course, there are also security and legal implications if he uses your connection for piracy or other illicit activities. Whatever the case, it’s better to stay on the safe side. Many may have already taken some basic precautions when setting up their wireless network and know their way around troubleshooting these issues. This brief guide is aimed mostly at novice users in need a hand to find out if, indeed, their Wi-Fi is being stolen.

Check the devices associated with your router The first thing you need to do is login to your router’s administrative console by typing its IP address directly into the browser address bar -- typically or depending on which router you have. If you don’t know your router’s default address check out this guide or simply go to the command prompt (Start > Run/ Search for cmd) and enter ipconfig. The address you need should be next to Default Gateway under your Local Area Connection. Alternatively, if you are on a Mac, you can find the default address by going to Network under System Preferences. It should be listed right next to “Router:” if you are using Ethernet, or by clicking on “Advanced…” and heading to the “TCP/IP” tab if you are using Wi-Fi. Next, point your browser to that address and enter your login details -- if you haven’t changed the default settings, it should be a combination of “admin” and “password” or blank fields. Here’s a default username and password list (PDF) you might find useful, but we recommend you change this afterwards. Once inside your router’s administrative console,look for a section related to connected devices or wireless status. In the old DIR-655 from D-Link it’s available under Status > Wireless but you’ll find it as “Attached Devices” in Netgear routers, under DHCP Clients Table on Linksys routers, “Device List” if you are using the Tomato firmware, and so on. DHCP client list examples on D-Link and Linksys routers This should provide a table with the IP, MAC address and other details of every device currently connected to the router. Check that list against your gear to find any intruders. You can find out the MAC/IP address of your computers by going to the Command Prompt again and entering ‘ipconfig /all’. The MAC address will be shown as the physical address. I’ll let you figure it out for mobile devices like smartphones and media players since I can’t possibly list all options. Taking action The best and simplest solution is to set up a strong password using WPA2 or WPA -- WEP is very easy to crack so avoid that if possible. There are some other methods you can use to beef up security, like switching off the SSID broadcast (which prevents it from advertising the name of your network to nearby Wi-Fi devices) or setup a filter for allowed or blocked devices by MAC address. It won’t stop the most determined intruder but it will slow him down. That should be more than enough for most users but if you need to actually track down who’s been breaking into your network it’s possible to pinpoint his physical location using a tool called MoocherHunter. You’ll need to burn a Live CD to boot your laptop with and walk around to track down unauthorized wireless clients. According to the program’s description, it detects traffic sent across the network and can find the source within 2 meters accuracy. Needless to say, we’re not suggesting you take matters into your own hands, but it might come in handy if someone is getting you in trouble with authorities using your network for illegal purposes -- or simply to have a cool story to tell. BC

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Business Courage

HP, Microsoft, others bag RIMA award

cam ventures, and Deliz Global Concept Ltd.

Stories by Adejuwon Osunnuyi

SkyVision to invest more in Africa


ewlett-Packard company, an American multinational information technology corporation which provides products, technologies, software, solutions and services to consumers, small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) and large enterprises, including customers in the government, health and education sectors has emerged winner of Project of the Year Award at the 8th edition of Records and Information Management Awareness Conference, Awards and Exposition (RIMAC and RIMA Awards 2012) held in Lagos recently. Also, recognised as the Product of the Year was Microsoft’s SharePoint. Microsoft SharePoint is a Web application platform developed by Microsoft. First launched in 2001, SharePoint has historically been associated with intranet content management and document management, but recent versions have significantly broader capabilities. The Records and Information Management Awareness Conference, Awards and Exposition (RIMAC and RIMA Awards) annual events are organized by the Records and Information Management Awareness Foundation (RIMA), a non-profit NGO that seek to promote proper management and security of records and information in Nigeria and Africa. The event with the Theme: “Freedom of Information: Enhancing democratic engagement, building confidence in government institutions and strengthening credibility and effectiveness” had in attendance representatives of both the Hon. Minister of Information, Labaran Maku and the Lagos State Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Aderemi Ibirogba. The 2012 event addressed major issues surrounding the implementation of the FOIA in Nigeria with emphasis on how it could augment democratic engagement, building confidence and strengthening credibility and effectiveness in government institutions. The 2012 exhibition also had in attendance, leading information management, security and technology solution providers and agencies like First Bank of Nigeria, Petrodata Management Services Ltd, Havilah Merchant, MZ Consulting, Busicon Nigeria Limited, Rabonni Tech. Ltd, Docudata Custodian Services Ltd, Templeton Business Consulting, Golden Scepter Ltd, Meniko South Africa, Ke-

Monday, November 19, 2012

staff. SkyVision is also leveraging Afinis’extensive knowledge in corporate market segments, particularly in Oil & Gas, mining and financial services.


kyVision Global Networks Ltd, a leading global provider of IP connectivity over satellite and fibre optic systems, has announced that it will continue expanding its local presence across Africa. Following an intense strategic process, it became clear that in order for SkyVision to keep its position as a major African player offering services specifically designed for the rapidly developing African markets, it will also need to enhance its local presence in key African markets. The company’s CEO, Ben Sira stated: “It was clear from day one that if SkyVision was to enhance its market leadership in Africa, the company would have to expand its strong and reliable local presence. I am proud to say that we have made a major leap in this direction over the past year and will continue to do so moving forward into 2013.” One of the steps taken to make this happen was to establish a local office and teleport in South Africa. SkyVision South Africa is positioned in a prime tactical position to respond to South African businesses requiring high quality communication services over fibre, wireless and satellite to Africa and from Africa. SkyVision’s new iDirect hub in Johannesburg supports the latest iDX 3.1 iDirect release, and takes full advantage of the Amos 5 satellite with its broad coverage of southern and subSaharan Africa both on C Band and Ku Band. SkyVision has also recently initiated a major expansion into Western Africa with the acquisition of Afinis. This purchase is a natural move for SkyVision and ensures the effective delivery of comprehensive services to new and expanding markets in Francophone Africa. Afinis is seamlessly integrating into SkyVision’s corporate identity in terms of services provided, overall coverage, local presence, and the professional quality of the


National Mirror

market segments,” Oparah further explained.

Cashless: Stakeholders seek e-fraud reporting centre Stories by Kunle Azeez



Airtel digs deeper into promotion of Nigerian culture


n its effort at promoting the Nigerian culture, Airtel Nigeria has emerged the headline sponsor of this year’s edition of the Ahiajioku Festival which takes place in Owerri, the Imo State capital, from November 22-23, 2012. Ahiajioku Festival, the single most important intellectual and cultural festival among the Igbos, is an annual event that attracts the best and brightest academic and cultural aficionados from the continent and the black Diaspora. With the theme, Equity and Justice in Igbo Jurisprudence in the Nigerian Polity (Okezue Ogbu Ala), Professor Uba Nnabue, Dean Faculty of Law, Imo State University, is expected to be the guest lecturer of this year’s edition of the Festival. Over the years, the festival has gained prominence and international recognition in intellectual circles attracting renowned scholars and pathbreaking intellectuals like Chinua Achebe who was the Guest Lecturer at the 2009 edition of the lecture series. Speaking on Airtel’s sponsorship, the Director of Communications and CSR, Emeka Oparah, explained that Airtel is determined to provide the critical intervention that helps to build and sustain bridges of friendship across cultural and geographical boundaries in Nigeria. “The aspirations of Ahiajioku Festival are similar to the basic idea behind our ‘Best Friends theme campaign’ through which Airtel hopes to fuel friendships and partnerships that will lead to the emergence of a better Nigeria of our dreams. We can only pursue scholarly excellence and cultural renaissance in a friendly climate. Airtel fuels friendships with our bouquet of revolutionary products that speaks to the needs of diverse

he Central Bank of Nigeria has been urged to set up an information repository centre for the systematic reporting of all fraudulent activities as part of strategic measure to tackle electronic fraud in the country’s nascent cashless economy. This recommendation was contained in communiqué issued at the end of the third Annual Payments Systems and Fraud Conference for West Africa, organised by the Electronic Payment Providers Association of Nigeria in conjunction with the Nigeria Electronic fraud forum (NeFF), in Lagos recently. The communiqué signed by the Executive Secretary and Chief Executive Officer of E-PPAN, Onajite Regha, said there should be a structure and process to capture data and information on all types of commercial fraudulent activities which will be strategically shared for statistics purposes. This, the communiqué said, can help with forecast of electronic payment fraud trends and protect the industry. It also advocated that there should be consistent knowledge sessions such as workshops, trainings for all arms of the security agencies involved in the investigation and prosecution of electronic fraud; that the industry should embark on an industry wide awareness campaign on electronic fraud; and that the industry should establish a process of employee background checks for all employments in the financial industry. The stakeholders, in the communiqué, also advocated the need for West Africa operators to engage in collaboration with international and local agencies to develop effective strategic responses to prevention and investigation of efrauds and also to keep abreast with international fraud trends and global best practices. “The industry should organise themselves into advocacy pressure groups for the speedy passage of all necessary bills to give a legal framework to electronic payment,” he said. In the course of deliberations and knowledge exchange at the conference, the stakeholders at the conference observed had observed that there was no clear or accurate data on the extent of electronic fraud being perpetrated on the Nigerian Payments System; and that there was a knowl-

edge gap in the process and procedure for prosecution in electronic fraud. They also noted that security agencies such as the police, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, the judiciary and law makers did not have adequate knowledge on the processes of electronic payment, to help them understand the trends of fraud and help them better prepare for their roles in e-fraud investigation and prosecution.

TAA offers update on NCC’s broadband expansion project


elecoms Answers Associates (TAA), a consulting firm appointed by the Nigerian Communications Commission to drive the Broadband Expansion Programme (BBExPro) for the country, has provided new update on the activities that should be expected by participating companies in the scheme. According to the Program Leader, BBExPro, Titi OmoEttu, a workshop, which is going to be the forerunner of activities planned for the scheme is the first and very important assembly of the participating firms. He said the participating firms will be represented by delegates, noting, however, that a participating firm may send more than one delegate to the Workshop. The Broadband Expansion Programme (BBExPro), which TAA conceived based on results of several study and summit works done so far on the subject. The programme will help in the mobilisation of players who will participate in the accelerated spread of broadband internet infrastructure and services across Nigeria. For several years, TAA has built a track record for critical study of the industry and used research results to shape industry focus via conferences, summits and training. The journey to this final stage of the programme started in 2010 with Broadband for Nigeria (BB4NG), through broadband investment summit in 2011 and now BBExPro. Omo-Ettu, the immediate past President, Association of Teelcoms Companies of Nigeria, while providing the new update, said the objectives of the workshop are to share information on how the BbExPro will run and to receive a publication titled Nigeria’s Broadband Expansion programme 2013 purposely published as a networking document for all players of the Nigerian communication technology industry. BC

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Business Courage A17 33

Monday, November 19, 2012

Reflections with Semiu Salamii 07043280449 sms only

Another crisis beckons


ong before now, the signs that the Federal Government was up to something with regards to the downstream sector of the oil industry have been very clear. Unlike the January 1, 2012 hike in pump price of petroleum products which caught many unawares, the impending raise from the current price of N97 does not look like the one that would probably shock many. The handwritings have been too clear in the past few months. Besides, many have envisaged that given the way the Federal Government was frustrated to back down on the January 1, 2012 full deregulation, it won’t be long enough before the issue was revisited. In the past few months, many states across the country have had to contend with acute fuel scarcity, where long queues, reminiscent of the dark old days become common feature at few of the filling stations dispensing the product. Abuja, the seat of government was the first casualty as motorists spent hours unending scavenging for the Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), popularly known as Petrol. Gradually, the anguish spread to other parts of the country with Lagos, Nigeria’s

commercial hub having more than its fair share of what has been tagged petragony. Unfortunately, the scarcity that hits Lagos and most states in the South West and some parts in the East was traced to the vandalisation of the Arepo pipeline. To worsen the situation, three engineers with the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation who were fixing the damaged pipelines were also killed. About three months after, the problem has refused to abate. The most interesting part of the story is that, even as the long queues persist, with more and more filling stations getting the product, only a handful of them sell this product at the official pump price of N97 per litre. In fact, with the exception of few major oil companies that dispense PMS at N97 per litre, more than 75 per cent others sell between N110 and N150 per litre. Black market operators sometimes sell a litre for between N250 and N400 depending on the location. While all these were going on, the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), a subsidiary of the NNPC, whose traditional responsibility is to monitor and ensure compliance with industry standards and regulation was either overwhelmed or it

simply acquiesced, a case of official complicity. In fact, it was the reluctance of the DPR and other agency of government to stem the arbitrary hike in pump price of PMS that first raised my suspicion that, something was about to happen. This was the more reason why President Goodluck Jonathan’s pronouncement last Thursday at a meeting with students of the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies in Abuja that total fuel subsidy removal was a must didn’t really surprised me. President Jonathan stated that only total removal of subsidy on petroleum products would attract investors to the oil sector and end the importation of fuel, throwing up the worn out argument that fuel subsidy is a drain on national resources, which Nigeria cannot afford and that deregulation will attract more investors into the sector especially investments in new refineries. The President indeed blamed the lack of investments in refineries and the fuel shortages on the failure to fully implement the deregulation of the sector. If the government goes ahead to imple-

ment total deregulation, it is certain that the Jonathan administration would have to brace up for another season of nationwide strikes, reminiscences of the one that practically paralysed key parts of the country for one week early this year. Already, the labour unions as well as the civil society groups, the masterminds of the last massive one-week strike have warned that the unrest that will follow any such action could be at best imagined. The union are arguing that the current spate of fuel scarcity is contrived to force Nigerians to accept subsidy removal, stressing that government should focus on tackling corruption in the sector instead of inflicting pain. There are more than enough reasons to believe this. For now, no one can say with exactitude, what Nigerians reactions to another round of subsidy removal would be but what looks plausible is the fact that government’s failure to institutionalise structures and framework for full sector liberalisation may hinder its ability to get key stakeholders to buy into the deregulation agenda. Besides, the fact that almost one year after, the government still shows no clear signs of its commitment to flush out sleaze in the oil sector may make a fresh argument for full deregulation a hard sell. Is Nigeria set for another long drawn fuel subsidy battle? BC


Oil stocks misfortunes: Can MRS still deliver on its promises? By Festus Okoromadu


s the year draws to a close, many investors in the Nigerian capital market may have started taking stocks of their personal performance during the year. As it is the case with every venture, it is either head or tail. That is, you either win or lose. But when losses are recorded across a particular sector, it then becomes unique, raising concern as to what prospect such a sector holds for investors in the future. Available statistics from the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) indicate that prior to 2012; one sub-sector that had remained the toast of investors is the petroleum product marketing. The reason been that, it was a sector where investors are almost certain of getting one return or the other on their equity at the end of the year. Investors were sure of getting plum dividend rewards or price appreciation on their stocks. Hitherto, almost all the stocks in this sub-sector were assumed to belong to the blue chip category, because of their financial performance as well as value creation for shareholders. But this is fast becoming history and this to a large extent, proves how dynamic the capital market is as well as how sensitive it can respond to information. The year 2012 will go down as a year when all the stocks in this subsector recorded price depreciation and a good number of operators possibly posting loss by year-end. This perspective was unveiled by a performance analysis carried out on 193 listed equities on the Daily Official List of the NSE last week. The report simply indicated that investors who bought equities in this subsector at the beginning of the year may be counting their losses now. The analysis shows that all the equities listed in the petroleum market sub-sector recorded price depreciation from the price they commenced the year to date. Using Monday, November 12, 2012 as the closing date as against the opening price stocks of companies listed in the subsector traded at the commencement of the year, it was observed that all

expect one recorded price depreciation. Those whose share prices fell during the period include Afroil, MRS, Oando, Conoil, Total, Forte Oil, Eterna Oil, and Mobil. However, Beco claimed an exception as its share price remained static at the nominal price of 50 kobo throughout the period. The value of losses incurred calculated in percentage, Afroil Plc shed the highest weight. At the inception of the year, the stock sold for N20.71, Dantata thanks to the technical suspension it was placed on, but as at the date used for this analysis, it has depleted to 0.34 kobo following the lifting of the suspension, indicating a 98.36 per cent price loss year-to-date. This made the stock the leader in the losers’ chat in the oil subsector as well as among the 193 equities reviewed. The condition of equity was further complicated recently when the NSE slated it for delisting due to its inability to meet post listing requirements. It terms of price depreciation among equities in the subsector, MRS comes next as it declined by 50.59 per cent to close at N29.15 per share down from N59. Trailing MRS is Oando with a 47.32 per cent price cut to N11.80 from N22.40. Conoil and Total followed suit at a price depreciation of 43.33 and 33.39 per cent respectively, their share prices having declined to N17.85, and N125 from N31.50 and N188.10 respectively. In terms of ranking, Forte Oil Plc (former AP Plc) came next, having lost 19.83 per cent of its initial share price of N11.60 to fall to its current market price of N9.30, while Mobil Oil recorded 14.12 per cent loss to trade at N115 per share on the day used for the analysis compared with N133.91, the price at which it commenced trading in the year. The share price of Eterna Oil recorded the least depreciation with its share price reducing by 11.29 per cent to N2.75 from N3.10.

To further complicate the situation of investors who bought shares of these companies, a few of the companies have started posting losses in their quarterly financial accounts, thereby heightening the fear that their share price may continue to decline. A case at hand is MRS Oil Nigeria Plc. The company’s third quarter accounts for the period ended September 30, 2012 clearly reveals that the industry is passing through tough time and the much anticipated respite is still far away. Clearly, the result runs contrary to the views expressed by Sayyu Dantata, Chairman, Board of Directors of the company earlier in the year when he indicated that there are rays of hope when he spoke to shareholders during the company’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) at the Federal Palace Hotel, Lagos. Reviewing company’s performance in 2011 at that meeting, Dantata said, “With all pleasure, I make bold to say that our company performed creditably well in spite of the unfavourable economic impact emanating from local and global challenges. This impressive performance index is a direct testimonial of the purposeful management and committed workforce that our company - MRS Oil Nigeria Plc – has in place”. Perhaps the purposeful management and committed staff have been overwhelmed by recent developments in the market place. The account for the third quarter showed a reduction in sales as turnover declined by 1.13 per cent to N52.54 billion from N53.14 billion in the similar period of 2011. Worst still, the company recorded a loss before tax and after tax of N36 million during the period, unlike in the corresponding period of 2011 when a profit before and after tax of N570

million and N81 million respectively was posted. Consequently, Earnings per Share (EPS) has turned negative, to (0.09kobo) as against 0.19 kobo in similar period of 2011. It will be recalled that the company was benevolent enough to reward shareholders with a dividend of 0.70 kobo per share for the 2011 financial when its EPS was 0.97 kobo, thus reducing the attractiveness of the stock to prospective investors whose desire is to make quick gains. Furthermore, the current report to some extent negates Dantata’s proposition to shareholders as to what they should expect by year end. Forecasting on the company’s outlook for the year at the last AGM, he had said that “It is envisaged that the 2012 will, much like 2011, bring forth new challenges that will enhance and expand the scope of our business activities, albeit positively”. In order to deliver the positive results the chairman said, “We will meet the challenges in the industry head-on and build on our unique and entrenched Pan African roots while leveraging on our present position and strength within MRS Group”. He went ahead to assure shareholders of the board’s determination on what he called beneficial value for them. His words, “On our part, we have resolved to continue to create beneficial shareholders value through the delivery of profitable business results”. These certainly will have to be a long term objective. The table seem to have turned mid way. These promises will for now remain what they are made to be, “dreams”. However, the question demanding answer now is, how long will shareholders continue to count their losses in the hitherto blue chip stocks? It is certainly not within the current financial year. Nevertheless, shareholders of MRS Oil can take solace in the fact that, the capital market will always have its ups and down seasons. Perhaps, when the ongoing probes and investigations in the Nigerian petroleum industries are over, things will begin to look up again. BC

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Monday, November 19, 2012

National Mirror

Behind d Wheels This page is open to sponsorship

2013 Highlander, a mid-size cros T

he Toyota Highlander and Highlander Hybrid offer additional value for 2013 with more standard equipment, new option packages and audio systems. A new Highlander Plus model grade replaces the former Tech Package and adds numerous popular features, including a rear back-up camera. The 2013 Highlander and Highlander Hybrid models feature changes to standard and optional multi-media technology for 2013, with Display Audio made standard on Highlander, SE and Highlander Plus grades; the Highlander Hybrid now includes as standard Display Audio with Navigation and the Entune™ multimedia package. Assembled at Toyota’s Motor Manufacturing Princeton, Ind., facility, the Highlander is a three-row crossover that offers a choice between four-cylinder and V6 power, front-wheel drive (FWD) and full-time four-wheel drive (4WD). The Highlander Hybrid provides an exceptional blend of performance and fuel economy. All Highlander Hybrid models are equipped with fourwheel-drive with intelligence (4WD-i) and are available in Hybrid and Limited grades. The 2013 Highlander is available in Highlander, new Highlander Plus, SE and Limited grades with either front-wheel drive (FWD) or full-time fourwheel-drive (4WD). A 270-horsepower, 3.5-liter V6 is standard on the SE and Limited grades and available for the others. Fulltime four-wheel drive is available on all V6 grades. Performance and Efficiency The Toyota Highlander offers three distinct levels of performance. A 2.7-liter four-cylinder engine, standard for Highlander and Highlander Plus, produces 187 horsepower at 5,800 RPM and 186 lb.-ft. of peak torque at 4,100 RPM and offers an EPAestimated 25 MPG rating in highway driving. The engine is equipped with a variable intake manifold and dual VariableValve Timing with intelligence (VVT-i), which controls phasing on both the intake and exhaust camshafts to optimize torque and fuel efficiency. The 2.7-liter engine is teamed exclusively with a six-speed electronically controlled automatic transmission. The available 3.5-liter V6 (standard on SE and Limited) produces 270 horsepower at 6,200 RPM and 248 lb.-ft. of torque at 4,700 RPM. The V6 is also equipped with dual VVT-i and a variable intake manifold.

The Toyota Highlander is a mid-size sport utility vehicle, engineered with Toyota’s legendary quality and designed to stand out. A smooth performer, the Highlander also boasts of progressive safety technologies and a spacious, flexible interior that seats seven in comfort; an available flip-up rear lift gate window provides quick access to the cargo area

A five-speed, electronically controlled automatic transmission (ECT) offers selectable manual sequential shifting. The Highlander Hybrid model’s Hybrid Synergy Drive system pairs a 3.5-liter V6 gasoline engine with a high-torque electric drive motor-generator for total system output of 280 net horsepower. The 4WD Highlander Hybrid uniquely generates rear-wheel power with a separate electric motor that provides additional drive torque on demand. Thus, the Highlander Hybrid 4WD-i system does not require power-transfer gearing or a driveshaft from the front. The system electronically varies front and rear torque distribution depending on traction conditions. Activating an EV-mode switch located on the front centre console allows the driver to operate strictly in electric-mode under certain conditions for a limited distance at low speeds, or in some stop-and-go driving conditions. An ECON drivemode switch activates a throttlecontrol program that adjusts the throttle response during acceleration, enhancing fuel economy. The Hybrid System Indicator in

the instrument gauge panel provides the driver with a guideline to help optimize fuel consumption. Handling and Ride The Toyota Highlander continues to build on its strength of delivering one of the most capable, smooth and quiet rides in the segment. Four-wheel independent suspension is via MacPherson struts in front and a dual-link strut rear suspension system. Highlander, SE and Highlander Plus grades are equipped with standard 17inch alloy wheels with 245/65 R17 tires; the Limited features standard 19-inch alloy wheels with 245/55 R19 tires. A direct tire-pressure-monitoring system is designed to alert the driver if pressure in a tire drops to critical levels. Active Safety Highlander comes standard with Toyota’s Star Safety System, which integrates operation of enhanced Vehicle Stability Control (VSC), Traction Control (TRAC), Electric Power Steering (EPS) and the anti-lock brake system (ABS) with Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD),

Brake Assist (BA), and Smart Stop Technology (SST). Enhanced VSC helps the driver maintain control by automatically adjusting engine output and braking force at each wheel under certain conditions, while also providing steering assistance in the appropriate direction through EPS. Gasoline Highlander models are also equipped with a straight-line steering feature. When varying traction causes ABS to apply different left/right braking force, the system can apply steering torque to help offset left/right pull. The Highlander Hybrid employs the advanced Vehicle Dynamics Integrated Management (VDIM) system. VDIM is designed to enhance handling, traction and braking systems that normally react to vehicle driving conditions by anticipating tire slippage before a skid, slide, or wheel spin occurs and helps to make corrections in a smooth, progressive way. In addition to integrating all of the Highlander’s dynamic control systems (VSC, TRAC, BA, EPS, EBD and ABS), the VDIM system also employs powerful proprietary software to integrate the Electronic

Throttle Control with intelligence (ETC-i) and Electronically Controlled Brakes (ECB). All Highlander models incorporate a corner-braking feature. Harnessing the integration of the vehicle’s dynamic control systems, this feature limits brake pressure on inside wheels during cornering to help enhance control through the turn. Standard on all models, Hill Start Assist Control (HAC) helps prevent the vehicle from rolling backward from a stop by applying braking pressure for approximately two seconds. Downhill Assist Control (DAC) is standard equipment on all Highlander gasoline 4WD models. The DAC feature is designed to maintain a constant speed and maintain handling and steering control by reducing wheel lock under braking even at slow speeds on slippery descents. The V6 package, enabling up to 5,000-pound maximum towing capacity, is now standard on all V6 models. The four-cylinder tow package has been discontinued. Comfort and Convenience All Highlander models fea-

National Mirror

Business Courage A19 35

Monday, November 19, 2012

Behind d Wheels This page is open to sponsorship

sover SUV

ture a standard 50/50 split thirdrow seat and rear climate control. Generous standard features on


the Highlander grade include front and rear air conditioning; eightway adjustable driver’s seat; power

door locks and windows with driver’s window jam protection and auto-up/down feature; manual tilt and telescopic steering wheel; cruise control; multi-function keyless entry system; UV-reduction windshield and rear privacy glass; digital clock; conversation mirror; illuminated entry system; scheduled maintenance indicator light; full-size spare tire and more The new-for-2013 Highlander Plus grade equips this popular crossover with a 3.5-inch Multi-Information Display that includes a clock, outside temperature, warning messages, and cruise information such as average fuel economy, average speed, distance to empty, current fuel economy, and trip timer. The rear back-up camera displays in the 6.1-inch audio head unit. The front and secondrow seats get easy-clean fabric, and the driver’s seat adds power lumbar adjustment. Additions that enhance interior comfort include dual extendable sun visors and second-row reading lamps. For greater versatility, the Highlander Plus model grade is equipped with black roof rails and a lift-up glass hatch. The cargo area gains one-touch fold-flat levers for the second row, and a cargo area cover is included. Metallic accents are used on the steering wheel and interior door handles. Outside, the Highlander Plus features standard fog lamps, and a standard engine immobilizer adds to vehicle security. BC

Toyota to recall 2.8 million vehicles worldwide


month after announcing its biggest single recall ever, Toyota has revealed some new quality problems that will force it to make safety-related repairs on another 2.8 million vehicles – including its high-profile Prius hybrid models. The news could deliver a further blow to the Japanese giant’s image. It also puts Toyota in a position where it again is vying with Japanese rival, Honda for the dubious distinction of having the most vehicles of any manufacturer recalled in the this year. The newest recall is the result of a water pump problem and a steering shaft defect. These can result in steering problems with a variety of Toyota products using the components. The maker commonly shares parts on numerous models to reduce costs – but that approach risks the possibility of creating widespread recalls if there’s a problem. In this case, two problems may exist on the same vehicle. The steering shaft defect is involved in the recall of 1.51 million vehicles in Japan and another vehicles sold in other parts of the world and among the most notable models impacted are the compact Corolla and the Prius, the world’s most popular hybrid. About 670,000 of those vehicles were sold in the U.S. between the 2000 and 2009 model-years. About 620,000 of those vehicles also may be equipped with the defective water pump. That list includes not only the Prius but four other hybrid models, Toyota confirms. Vehicles that may need both parts repaired were sold between 2001 and 2010 in Japan and from 2003 to 2011 in the U.S. and other overseas markets. Meanwhile, another 10,000 Toyota vehicles are be-

ing recalled solely due to the defective water pump. The new recall comes as a significant setback for Toyota and for a variety of reasons. Just a month ago the maker – which is on track to again be the world’s best-selling auto manufacturer – announced its biggest recall ever. A total of 7.43 million vehicles were involved, more than a third of those in the U.S., also making it the largest recall in the world for the past 16 years. With about 3.2 million vehicles involved in just these two safety repair campaigns, Toyota is now chasing Honda as the most recalled manufacturer in the U.S. The smaller maker earned that unwanted distinction last year but Toyota was top of the list in 2010, primarily as a result of the millions of vehicles that were involved in the so-called “unintended acceleration” scandal that led corporate CEO Akio Toyoda to tearfully testify before the U.S. Congress. What’s potentially problematic about the latest recalls is the fact that it includes products sold as recently as the 2011 model-year, after President Toyoda began his much-ballyhooed push to correct Toyota’s quality issues. Despite the potential tarnishing of its safety image, Toyota continues to rack up sales, with the maker forecasting it will near the milestone 10 million mark for the current fiscal year, which ends on march 31. That led to a tripling of earnings during the most recent quarter. But Toyota does face other problems, notably a boycott in the booming Chinese market that recently les the maker to slightly cut its overall sales forecast for the year. BC

Why cars jerk when changing gears


riving a car with a manual transmission can be tricky. Drivers learning how to drive a stick shift could end up with an unpleasant ride if they poorly execute the transition between gears, causing the car to jerk forward or backward. However, understanding how your car works could help smooth your drive. The key is timing. Basic Controls A manual car has three pedals: one on the far right to control the gas, a break in the middle and the clutch on the far left. The gear shifter, usually in the middle console, allows you to change gears. All of these pieces are involved in initially moving the car, speeding it up and slowing it down. To get the car moving forward, you must push down the clutch, shift into first gear and gradually let off the clutch, while alternately pushing down on the gas pedal. Shifting between gears requires a similar, but less touchy process. You release the gas pedal, push down on the clutch, shift the gear shifter, and then release the clutch. You can then give the engine more gas. What the clutch does To understand why your car is jerking between gears, you should understand what the clutch in your vehicle does. Basically, it provides the transition between a constantly spinning engine and your wheels, which may or may not be spinning. Engaging the clutch, which occurs when your foot is off the corresponding petal, allows the clutch plate to make contact with the spinning flywheel of the engine and transfer that torque through the transmission to the wheels. Disengaging the clutch when your foot pushes on the petal releases that pressure from the clutch plate, at which point you can shift without the gears grinding together. Understanding RPMs In the few moments while you disengage the clutch, shift gears, engage the clutch and reapply the gas, your engine revolutions per minute have dropped. If you have an RPM meter on your car dashboard, you can watch this occur. Your car will jerk if the RPMs don’t immediately match up with the speed your car is going at the new gear. In order to avoid the jerking, you must create the smoothest transition between the torques of the engine to your wheels. Shifting from first to second gear is the most susceptible to that telltale jerk. This is because the difference in gear size ratio between the two gears is the greatest, requiring a greater precision in timing to execute smoothly. Perfecting the timing You can tell whether your RPMs are falling too fast or too slow by how the car jerks. If it slows suddenly, sending your body forward, the RPMs were too low. You should try shifting faster or applying a bit of gas to bring the RPMs back up. If the car surges forward, pushing you back, the RPMs were too high. Try waiting longer for the RPMs to fall more before letting go of the clutch. Slipping the clutch, allowing for some friction between the clutch plate and flywheel, also might help. The more practice shifting between gears, the easier it will be. Automatic cars If your automatic car is jerking while changing gears, you have maintenance rather than an operation problem. Check the transmission fluid levels. If that doesn’t help, something could be wrong with your transmission itself. Your mechanic could diagnose the specific problem. BC

A20 36

Business Courage

Linkage Assurance aborts merger deal; seek shareholders approval for fresh capital By Festus Okoromadu


here are indications that the Board of Directors of Linkage Assurance Plc may have succumbed to the request of the shareholders of the company to quit the proposed merger with Cornerstone Insurance Plc. The board has therefore fashioned a recapitalization programme aimed at raising fresh capital to resuscitate the ailing company. According to a notice of an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) sent to the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) last week, the board is proposing the issuance of about 2,897,207,843 ordinary shares from the authorised share capital of the company, through a Special Placing, at a price of 50kobo each. Directors of the company also requested that they be authorised to raise the desired capital, either through the issuance of bonds, medium term notes or other instruments such as obtaining loans, as well as the determination of the terms and conditions subject to regulatory approval. The decision to recapitalise the company came on the heels of shareholders rejection of a proposal to merger with Cornerstone Insurance at a ratio of 30:70 in favour of the latter. The merger plan met a stiff resistance from the shareholders of Linkage Assurance at the company’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) a few weeks ago. Prior to the AGM, both companies had notified the authority of the NSE in September of their intentions to merge the two entities into one. Part of the notification sent to the NSE then read, “The merger will thus, result in the transfer of all assets, liabilities and undertakings, including real properties and intellectual property rights of Linkage Insurance Plc to Cornerstone Insurance Plc, and the cancellation of the issued shares of Linkage Insurance Plc). Accordingly, shareholders of the Linkage Insurance will be entitled to 30

Wiggle, MD, Linkage Assurance Plc

per cent shareholding of Post-Merger Cornerstone Insurance Plc. During the AGM which came ahead of a proposed court ordered meeting meant to get shareholders approval for the merger, they (the shareholders) told the board that they would resist the move, describing it as unnecessary. As a solution, they (shareholders) advised that the board should come up with a Rights Issue; pursue and recover its N1billion trapped with the Nigerian Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) and admit an estimated N1.7billion currently in escrow account said to have been offered by the Bayelsa State Government to secure a majority holding in the company. The chairman of the board, Babatunde Fatai-Williams was reported to have assured the shareholders that the board will give considerations to their demand. “The board have received the message from shareholders and would go back and consider it appropriately”. The current move is believed to be part of the response to the shareholders decision. It is therefore obvious that the merger has finally been cancelled. BC

By Tayo Adeleke


Seriki, MD, Omatek Ventures Plc

that spans between 12 and 24 months. It will be recalled that Omatek got funding instruments from offshore and local partners amounting to over N1billion turnover in 2011, from not just its existing computer products but also from its newly innovative products, such as the 24-hour solar/ inverter/battery hybrid solutions that were being sold to schools, offices and homes. BC

National Mirror

Deregulation dilemma


Omatek ventures grows profit by 308 per cent matek Ventures Plc last week, reported a N187 million profit for its unaudited second quarter financial period ended June 31 2012. Based on the results released to the Nigeria’s Stock Exchange, Profit After Tax (PAT) in the review period moved from N46 million in 2011 to N187 million in 2012, indicating a growth of 308 per cent or N141 million. Gross profit also increased from N210 million in 2011 to N341 million as at half year 2012; representing 62.4 per cent increase. Turnover as well grew by 88.9 per cent to N1.12 billion in 2012 from N595 million in 2011. Details of the results shows total assets increased by 11.5 per cent to N9.29 billion while total liabilities closed at N3.4 billion represent 29 per cent growth from N2.64 billion in 2011. The performance could be traced to the company’s recent initiatives in term of expanding its product line. The company recently came up with various initiatives such as the Omatek Express, a consumer scheme designed to assist Nigerians own computers through a convenient payment plan

Monday, November 19, 2012

fter months of crippling fuel shortages across the nation, President Goodluck Jonathan though it wise to revisit the vexing issue of the deregulation of the downstream oil sector, proclaiming at a meeting last week with students of the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies that oil subsidy must go. The familiar argument is that fuel subsidy is a drain on national resources, which Nigeria cannot afford and that deregulation will attract more investors into the sector especially investments in new refineries. The President indeed blamed the lack of investments in refineries and the fuel shortages on the failure to fully implement the deregulation of the sector. Of course the labour unions have threatened fire and brimstone if the subsidy is removed. The Nigeria Labour Congress, which along with other civil society groups spearheaded a massive one-week strike cum protests in January following the removal of fuel subsidy and subsequent doubling of fuel prices, said the unrest that will follow any such action could be at best imagined. The union repeated its argument that the fuel scarcity was largely contrived to force Nigerians to accept subsidy removal and that government should focus on tackling corruption in the sector instead of inflicting pain on Nigerians as we approach the Yuletide. Let me say right away that I am in support of full liberalisation of the oil downstream but the conditions must be right. The subsidy problem arose simply because of inadequate refining capacity in country so Nigeria has to virtually outsource refining to other more sensible countries while trying to keep prices at levels that would have prevailed if all fuel consumed was refined locally, given that shipping costs, duty, taxes and sundry levies imposed on imported fuel would have been eliminated from the cost profile of refined products. However, the simple reason why the government cannot get other stakeholders to buy into its deregulation agenda is that it has failed to convince us about the benefits and more importantly it has not yet emplaced the structures and framework for full sector liberalisation in which the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation will no longer play the role of regulator cum competitor as well its consistency in sending confusing signals about which direction it really wants to go. Taking on the refinery issue, if government was bent on liberalising the sector, why is it investing more money in the plants instead of simply selling them to private players? Dangote and co had bought the refineries in 2007 as Obasanjo was about leaving office.

The vested interests feeding fat on the confusion therein misled the late President Umaru Yar’Adua in cancelling the sale. I would have bet my right eye that those plants would have been up and running at full steam with others already built if that myopic decision was not taken. The subsidy funds being pocketed by criminal elements in the oil sector would have been better managed if the local refineries were allocated crude at a discount, in short the subsidy will be deployed at the production and not consumption level, which makes more sense and we would not be battling with the hundreds of “illegal refineries” being fed by stolen oil in the Niger Delta. Again, very few will buy government’s deregulation argument now given the revelations of massive corruption in the various probes of the oil sector that have been conducted this year. What is clear is that a few privileged Nigerians including businessmen, officials of the Ministry of Petroleum and the NNPC have cornered the sector and looted public funds in more ways than one, yet we do not see any signs that any serious punishment awaits them. Indeed, we are being told that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission is already negotiating the charges with some of the accused persons including the son of the Chairman of the ruling People’s Democratic Party. It is easy to predict that these characters will only get a slap on the wrist eventually, while other lesser Nigerians get slammed for years in jail for stealing mobile phones. Jonathan’s problem is about not demonstrating the required seriousness in reforming the oil sector. Most of the recommendations of the sundry probe panels are already contained in the Petroleum Industry Bill now being debated before the National Assembly and he should wait until it is passed into law before pressing on with deregulation. One understands that huge funds go into subsidy, but the current situation where only the NNPC imports fuel as a result of the inability of major marketers to obtain credit lines due to uncertainties in getting subsidy payments down the line, only means that the NNPC is getting the subsidy. The government should end this artificial scarcity by allowing credible players to return to the import programme instead of imposing a virtual blanket ban on importers by discrediting them, when it knows that the NNPC lacks capacity to feed the entire system. Nigerians are already paying well above the official N97 per litre of petrol even in Lagos, and they will pay more eventually, but deregulation must not be imposed by way of blackmail. It must be by consensus. BC

National Mirror

Business Courage

Monday, November 19, 2012

A21 37

Tourist Company Plc struggles to stay afloat as profit nosedives By Festus Okoromadu


ourist Company of Nigeria Plc, owners of Federal Palace Hotel & Casino, has recorded a marginal improvement in turnover as well as a reduction in losses incurred in its financial account for the first quarter ended September 30, 2012. The hospitality company posted a turnover of N866 million in the first quarter of 2012, compared with N808 million in similar period of 2011 representing 7.1 per cent increase in sales. The increase in sales indicates improvement in trading activity even in the face of escalating competition. However, bottom-line remains negative as the company continues to post losses. The account for the quarter shows a loss after taxation of N197 million as against N283 million in 2011, representing 30.38 per cent growth. The company’s auditors, PKF Professional Services had earlier in the year drawn shareholders attention to the persistent losses posted by the company in addition to its negative working capital. Expressing its concern over the precarious financial situation of the company, the auditors only highlighted the issues for shareholders considerations but stated that her opinion was not qualified. “We draw attention to note 2 to the financial statements which describes the persistent

Ibru, Chairman, Tourist Company Plc

losses sustained and the negative working capital position. Our opinion is not qualified in respect of these matters”, PKF warned. According to the Auditors, the company’s financial account for was prepared as a going concern basis. The company had posted a loss after taxation of N522 million for the year ended June 30, 2012 as against N1.37 billion posted in the 18 months ended June 30, 2011. During the year in review, it sustained a working capital deficiency of N546 million compared to N803 million in 2011. These developments, the auditor noted, raise potential concern about the company’s ability to continue as a going concern, but stressed that the company’s liabilities are due to related parties. The directors were reported

Geo Fluids to list on NSE By Tayo Adeleke


aving gotten s h a r e h o l d e r s ’ endorsement for the listing of its shares on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) during its last Annual General Meeting (AGM) in August this year, the management of Geo Fluids Plc is set to list the company’s shares. According to a release from the NSE Friday last week, the company’s listing will be by way of introduction on Friday November 24, 2012. This will give its shareholders opportunity to trade their shares on the floor of the Exchange immediately after the exercise. Geo-Fluids, a company operating in the Oil and Gas Services sub-sector of the Nigerian economy between May and June 2008, raised N12 billion from the investing public through a Private Placement (PP). In raising the N12 billion, Geo-Fluids offered to investors by way of Placement 2.4 billion Ordinary Shares of 50 Kobo

each at N5.00 per share. Geo Fluids Plc is a wholly indigenous drilling mud, work-over, chemical supply, engineering and marketing company incorporated in Nigeria in 1994. The highlight of the financial position of the company for the period ended December 31, 2011, showed an enhanced recovery from a consolidated loss before profit of N118.6 million and loss after tax of N210.3 million in the year 2010 to a profit before tax of N116.8 million, while consolidated profit after tax stood at N15.2 million in 2011. Other performance measuring indices revealed that overall turnover increased from N2.1 billion in 2010 to N3.0 billion in 2011, representing an increase of 35 per cent. Balance sheet figures for property, plant and machinery which went from barely N4.8 billion to N9.7 billion represented more than 100 per cent growth in tangible long

to have expressed confident that the company’s shareholders and lenders will continue to provide the necessary support it. The auditors stated that it was therefore appropriate to prepare the financial statements on the going concern basis. Despite the little improvement recorded in the profit and loss account in the first quarter results, there are no indications that the financial statement has improved. As the deficient working capital rose to N558 million from N546 million, similarly borrowings increased to N7.48 billion from N7.39 billion while non-current liability grew to N1.76 billion from N1.68 billion. On the other hand non-current assets depleted to N9.931billion from N10.03 billion. Meanwhile, the chairman of the company, Goodie Ibru, has attributed the precarious situation of the company to increase in competition in the industry. Addressing shareholders at the annual general meeting held in Lagos recently, Goodie said: “Competition within the hospitality industry in the Victoria Island/Ikoyi/Lekki axis is set to escalate, as more international branded hotels currently under construction commenced trading”. He as well noted that “Federal Palace’s Casino is expected to continue to experience competition from unlicensed Casinos”. BC term assets of the company with a corresponding appreciation of shareholders fund from N5.4 billion to N5.43 billion in 2011. On the company’s outlook, the company’s Managing Director, Dr. Ala Ibanibo, said the company was in the final stages of discussion with foreign partners in order to aid the injection of fresh funds of over $100m into the various functional business units of the Group over the next one year. Ibanibo explained further, “The measure is meant to deepen our pockets to take advantage of the huge business opportunity coming our way and also position Geo-Fluids as a formidable and foremost player in the sub-sector. Consequently, your company has been restructured into four distinct companies with between three to four business units centres each. This is meant to ensure greater efficiency in the deployment of resources within the group and also create an internal integration designed to ensure robustness in revenue and profit base” BC

Market Indicators for Week Ended 16-11-12 All-Share Index 26,400.94 points Market Capitalisation N8,413,189,709,023.95 Stock Updates GAINERS COMPANY
















































Inter-Bank Rates TENOR

RATE%(PREV) 08-Nov-2012

RATE%(CURR) 15-Nov-2012


10.5000 – 12.7500

10.5000 – 11.5000


10.2500 – 12.9300

10.2500 – 13.1000

Primary Market Auction TENOR 91-Days

AMOUNT (N’mn) 32,057.31

RATE (%) 12.75

DATE 07-Nov-12









Open Market Operation TENOR




RATE (%) 13.95

DATE 09-Nov-12









Wholesale Dutch Auction System AMOUNT OFFERED











A22 38

Business Courage

Monday, November 19, 2012

National Mirror

Julius Berger: Diversifying to boost future earnings By Tayo Adeleke


inancial analysis carried out on Julius Berger Nigeria Plc has revealed an average performance in its finance in the last nine months of 2012. The company recorded a marginal growth in majority of its measuring indices with revenue of N137.5 billion in 2012 as against the N130.2 billion recorded in 2011. What’s New? Julius Berger Nigeria Plc has been trying to diversify its business. It has established PrimeTech Design and Engineering Nigeria Limited for the provisions of design and engineering support services to the company. It has also incorporated another subsidiary, Julius Berger Medical Services Limited (JBMSL), as a health care provider for the operation of medical service centres, hospitals and all forms of medical and health care services. Recently, German construction giant, Bilfinger Berger, has outlined plans to sell 90 per cent of its investment in its Nigerian business, Julius Berger International (JBI) to Julius Berger Nigeria (JBN) by the end of 2012. JBI consists of the engineering and services activities of Bilfinger Berger Nigeria. The strategy will initially see 60 per cent of JBI acquired by JBN, with a further 30 per cent bought by the end of the year. JBN itself is 39.9 per cent owned by Bilfinger Berger and the deal to consolidate JBI within the company is part of Bilfinger’s wider strategy of edging out of Nigeria by ultimately selling its stake in JBN. Financial Performance The construction giant recorded an impressive earning growth in its third quarter results. The unaudited third quarter 2012 result shows that the company posted N137.5 billion turnover, an increase of N7.3 billion compared with N130.17 billion in the corresponding period of 2011. Gross profit moved from N31.24 billion in 2011 to N31.45 billion in the review period. The company was able to manage its cost effectively during the period as operating expenses declined from the third

quarter 2011 figure by 2.29 per cent to N22.88 billion from N23.37 billion in 2011. Consequently, this translates into an improved bottom line indices during the period. JBN Profit before Tax (PBT) increased significantly by 10.76 per cent between 2011 and 2012 to N7.5 billion from N6.77 billion. The tax provision which decreased by 7.9 per cent in the review period to N3.71 billion from N4.03 billion resulted in the Profit after Tax of N3.79 billion, up from N2.74 billion in 2011, a growth of 38.27 per cent. JBN plc is targeting N175 billion incomes by December 2012. The company’s latest forecast shows that cost of sales will increase to N138.6 billion against N134 billion in 2011 while Profit after tax projection is N5.250 billion compared with N4.9 billion in financial year ended December 2011. Julius Berger’s earning per share forecast is 438 kobo. Financial analysts believe that the projection is achievable based on current run rate.

meet up with its financial obligation as at when due during the period under review. As at nine months period ended September 2012, the monetary value of the company’s readily available assets (current assets) are almost equal its short term debt obligations as the current ratio dropped from 1.38:1 to 1.04:1 in 2012. The illiquidity position is also reflected in its quick ratio which declined sharply from 1.16:1 in 2011 to 0.83 in 2012. Trade debtors closed at N62.73 billion from N58.26 billion in 2011 while trade creditor stood at N49.65 billion. Thus, the company’s debtors made payment within 167 days (trade debtors) while it took the company 170 days to pays its creditors. The short term borrowing grew by 58 per cent to N26.38 billion from N16.72 billion in 2011. Working capital dropped significantly to N3.48 billion from N26.92 billion. This is understandable as bulk of its capital might have been channelled to various ongoing construction projects.

Profitability Ratio JBN recorded a mixed performance in its profitability ratios indices. Return on Equity closed at 34.42 per cent, represent marginal increase of 0.01 basis points from 34.10 per cent. The Profit before Tax (PBT) margin in the third quarter of 2012 increased over the third quarter of 2011. The PBT margin increased to 5.45 per cent in third quarter, 2012 from 5.20 percent as at third quarter of 2011. Profit margin currently stands at 2.75 per cent up from 2.10 per cent in the corresponding third quarter period of 2011. The result also revealed that the percentage of turnover, PBT, and PAT in the third quarter of 2011 to the full year audited turnover, pre-tax profit and profit after tax for the period ended December, 2011 are: 82.14 per cent, 72.53 per cent and 77.82 per cent respectively.

Assets Quality Julius Berger’s balance sheet shows a strong assets base in the review period. Fixed assets had 5.6 per cent increase to close at N58.33 billion from N55.25 billion in 2011 and up from N55.49 billion recorded as at financial year ended December 2011. The company made a strategic investment within the third quarter of ongoing financial year as investment accounted for N7.32 billion compared with N213.99 million in 2011 represents 3322 per cent growth. Receivable and financial assets was N32.91 billion,

Liquidity Ratio JBN’s liquidity ratios show weak performance between 2011 and 2012. This implies that the company could not

Julius Berger Plc; Financial Data

Muhammed Nurudeen Imam, JBN Plc Chairman

up by 41 per cent from N23.27 billion posted in 2011 while deferred tax assets closed at N3.37 billion. These entire figures helped the company to boost its total assets for the period. Total asset climb to N186.54 billion in within nine month in 2012 from N177.3 billion achieved in 2011. Investment Ratios In light of the company’s increased earnings in 2011, shareholders of Julius Berger Nigeria Plc got increased dividend of 240 Kobo (N2.40), resulting in a total gross dividend payment of N2.88 billion. It will be recalled that the dividend for the 2010 was 200 Kobo per each ordinary share. The Nigerian Stock Exchange share valuation of the company 2012 =N=(‘Nm)

2011 =N=(‘Nm)




Cost of sales



Gross Profit



Profit Before Taxation



Profit After Taxation



Total Assets



Shareholders fund



Working Capital



Current Asset



Current Liabilities



Fixed Assets



Current Assets-stocks



Trade Debtors



Trade Creditors



Sales Growth(%)



PAT Growth (%)



Cost of sales (growth)



Profitability Ratios Return on Equity(%)



Gross profit Margin (%)



Profit Margin(%)



Pretax Margin (%)



Current Ratio



Quick Ratio



Debtors(No of days)



Creditors(No of days)



Liquidity Ratios

as at beginning of July 2012 was N27.63 per share, which is higher than the quotation price of N27.5 per share at the end of September 2012. This implies that the share price of JBN dropped by 0.36 per cent in the third quarter 2012 compare to 20 per cent growth attained by NSE in the same quarter. This reduction in the company’s stock value did not reflect the overall trend across all sectors, especially in the third quarter of 2012. Prospects The management of JBN has assured its stakeholders of better return on their investments in years ahead. According to Mohammed Nuruddeen Imam, Chairman Julius Berger Nigeria plc “I can assure you that the Board, Management and staff are working in your best interest at each and every turn. Together we will continue on our journey into the future of our great company and in order to provide you exceptional returns, we will continuously analyze our strategies and where necessary, adjust our objectives based on the business environment”. The company recently clinched the contract to rehabilitate the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Parliament Building in Abuja. This is expected to boost financials by the end of the year. Meanwhile, analysts remain positive on the company in view of the ongoing restructuring programme, which could result in even more significant cost savings. Specifically, the company is expected to witness consolidation of earnings, following the gradual divestment of Bilfinger Berger, and the streamlining of the company’s businesses. BC

National Mirror

Business Courage A23 39

Monday, November 19, 2012

STOCKWATCH Stock Exchange weekly equities summary as at Friday, Nov 16, 2012 SECURITY



NOTE NT=Not Traded on 16-11-12






MOV. (%)


NT 716 864 732

0.64 34.01 16.15

0.50 14.53 6.40

2 200 000 000 476 955 000 1 000 000 000

0.00 8.23 1.69

N/A -1.45 3.21

NT 34.50 14.00




60 000 000




124 248



1 199 549 736




10 000 NT NT NT 85 574

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

0.21 0.30 0.00 0.35 7.03

0.00 N/A N/A N/A N/A

1.29 NT NT NT 40.22


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



264 288 NT

62.26 8.69

21.55 3.01

1 200 000 000 20 000 000

4.11 3.66

-4.93 N/A

30.61 NT

NT 104 664

7.28 20.15

7.28 8.82

1 375 000 000

0.00 1.66

N/A 5.09

NT 11.40


100.00 50.00

97.00 50.00

20 000 000 250 019 781

11.75 0.75


100.00 NT

6 500



4 772 528 415




NT NT 152 425 537 500 NT 1 043 265 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 12.04 0.07 0.00 5.21 0.00

N/A N/A -4.96 N/A N/A 0.89 N/A

NT NT 265.00 12.75 NT 134.30 NT

38 394



640 590 362




NT 266 323 1 573 856 276 544 900 216 NT 51 685 1 093 501 NT 82 200 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 0.59 3.60 0.36 0.00 1.20 0.81 0.16 1.13 0.00

N/A -0.51 0.00 0.00 -3.10 N/A N/A 6.94 N/A -4.29 N/A

NT 7.85 5.45 63.02 2.26 1.00 20.41 6.05 NT 0.70 NT

40 000 000 1 233 375 004 360 000 000

222 671 81 160

29.20 684.00

9.15 367.83

3 129 188 160 792 656 250

1.24 21.21

5.67 -5.03

24.50 632.33

NT NT 311 337 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 -5.13 N/A

NT NT 3.90 NT

170 887 496 742

43.50 41.60

22.07 22.56

3 176 381 636 3 783 296 250

0.51 1.32

1.67 0.00

27.61 41.60




843 284 027




5 578 396 16 857 350 1 552 270 12 001 895 8 244 958 1 658 424 6 802 397 606 244 NT 2 755 766 4 841 258 445 421 5 056 038 2 695 003 7 706 545

11.10 9.27 17.05 3.20 17.01 8.30 20.30 10.17 11.38 2.91 5.21 10.07 1.92 1.75 18.20

4.76 2.01 9.97 1.14 8.50 3.04 11.64 2.73 6.40 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 32 632 084 358 16 271 192 202 29 146 482 209 13 219 334 676 18 750 000 000 12 563 091 545 32 334 693 693 13 509 726 273 33 675 576 085 12 821 249 880 31 396 493 790

0.63 0.00 2.61 0.19 1.37 0.60 0.59 0.39 0.54 0.43 0.01 2.20 0.00 1.34 1.41

-1.15 -0.74 0.09 4.31 -4.96 0.93 -1.00 -0.49 #VALUE! -1.28 -3.81 -4.13 0.00 -7.41 1.13

8.66 4.08 11.00 2.09 15.94 3.22 20.10 4.07 NT 1.56 4.99 8.00 0.53 0.54 17.75

NT 1 460 801 NT NT 15 568 NT 613 530 NT NT NT NT 1 852 926 NT NT 150 000 NT 1 541 134 545 000 NT 10 630 512 NT NT 312 029 NT 30 000 220 000 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 0.09 0.00 0.06 0.10 0.01 0.27 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.06 0.00 0.02 0.02 0.10 0.00 0.08 0.10 0.25 0.01 0.02 0.11 0.03 0.10 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.01 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 6.25 N/A -7.41 N/A N/A -3.85 N/A 0.00 N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A

0.50 0.58 NT NT 0.80 NT 1.29 NT NT NT NT NT NT NT 0.50 NT 0.50 1.76 NT 0.54 0.50 NT 0.52 NT 0.50 0.50 0.50 NT NT NT



NT NT 15 000 000 NT

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 0.10 0.00 0.00


1.37 0.50 0.50 NT

1 100 000 NT NT NT 300

0.61 2.02 0.15 552.20 0.66

0.50 2.02 0.15 555.20 0.50

3 778 005 975 1 333 333 333 5 880 000 2 500 000 3 608 657 661

0.00 0.00 0.00 12.68 0.05


0.50 NT NT NT 0.50

1 000



498 600 908







3 553 138 528







152 178 750




200 3 318 477 64 408 59 422

1.45 3.20 39.00 5.61

0.50 0.76 19.30 1.62

486 473 856 1 500 000 000 956 701 192 980 000 000

0.19 0.27 2.41 0.21

0.00 1.90 -2.48 -8.75

1.32 1.05 41.89 1.60

N/A=Not Avialable









MOV. (%)


146 382 NT NT

1.96 12.91 4.28

0.76 8.59 3.50

1 925 717 268 153 786 012 100 000 000

0.09 0.00 0.00

-3.92 N/A N/A

1.02 NT 2.73

5 000



2 960 000 000







2 941 789 472







4 966 666 668




109 105 NT

18.28 3.59

13.12 2.41

108 000 000 492 825 600

1.82 0.00


13.09 NT

3 000 NT

0.50 4.97

0.50 4.04

4 620 600 000 4 200 000 000

0.00 0.00


0.50 NT




6 878 478 096





2.25 3.50 0.50

0.00 2.46 0.50

4 400 000 000 4 893 594 400

0.00 0.00 0.00


NT 2.25 NT

NT 553 654 184 628 25 750 520 602 145 966 NT NT NT 81 569 100 000 20 000 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 1.60 0.15 1.76 1.83 8.01 0.00 0.00 0.00 1.74 0.16 0.39 0.00

N/A 4.94 0.12 -4.99 -7.44 -1.18 N/A N/A N/A 0.77 N/A N/A N/A

NT 18.00 8.40 29.84 5.51 122.50 NT NT NT 57.51 1.98 3.71 NT

NT 50 000 NT NT

2.00 2.50 0.73 2.58

2.00 1.33 0.50 2.58

510 396 608 2 220 000 000 15 000 000

0.03 0.11 0.00 0.00

N/A -1.30 N/A N/A

2.00 1.54 NT NT

NT NT NT NT 3 232 756 NT NT

3.98 6.91

3.98 2.19

25 000 000 683 974 528

0.00 0.15


15.03 3.60 1.86 0.63

13.28 1.60 1.05 0.63

42 640 000 6 215 000 000 240 000 000 199 066 550

0.90 0.22 0.30 0.00

N/A 1.54 N/A N/A

NT NT 10.50 NT 1.95 NT NT


8.69 0.14

8.26 0.14

265 409 280 2 918 000

0.00 0.00



68 189



393 120 000





7.75 12.39

7.75 10.55

75 600 000 100 000 000

0.00 0.13


NT 10.55




4 058 989 226





3.22 1.38

3.22 1.38

50 000 000 220 000 000

0.04 0.00



3 550 089



6 262 701 716




943 218



2 262 711 568




NT 39 092 848 129 662 188 410 28 367 5 534 1 000 88 166

20.71 0.70 41.89 5.59 28.69 163.50 72.00 240.00

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 5.98 0.88 0.00 13.06 4.08 11.22

N/A N/A -4.99 -6.45 -2.11 0.00 N/A 0.00

NT 0.50 17.85 1.86 9.50 115.00 29.15 125.00

150 000



4 035 497 307










224 871



980 294 400




513 055 NT

3.67 6.40

2.11 3.28

589 496 310 198 819 763

0.63 0.26

-2.83 N/A

3.18 NT

10 000



865 808 912







3 211 627 907




NT 406 200 NT 5 771 971

8.00 2.59 4.76 1.82

3.00 1.16 4.31 0.50

1 548 780 000 2 078 796 396 1 772 884 297 25 813 998 283

0.18 0.92 0.00 0.22

N/A -3.88 N/A -2.00

NT 1.03 NT 1.00

2 000



8 000 000 000




NT 111 620 NT 251 960

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

N/A N/A N/A -8.97

NT 2.00 NT 4.57




1 507 000 000





5.15 1.88

4.90 0.80

236 699 511 5 631 539 736

0.00 0.03



171 000 209 585

2.78 11.75

1.54 5.15

634 000 000 1 230 468 750

0.38 0.81

N/A 0.70

2.50 5.71




45 000 000




11 000



201 885 335







30 000 000







24 898 850




NT 500



125 005 250



NT 1.63




6 650 000




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



20 000 000





194 700 000



NT NT 2.76


2 706

2 422


2 638.00


Monday, November 19, 2012

National Mirror

Monday, November 19, 2012

National Mirror


Law & Justice

“On no account should courts of law be hungry or have gluttony for jurisdiction.” JUSTICE NIKI TOBI, RETIRED JUSTICE, SUPREME COURT OF NIGERIA

Jombo-Ofo: CJN Mukhtar in whirlwind of controversies Lawyers no longer observe rules of professional ethics –Yusuf Ali 42

Justice Mukhtar

How community lost bid to stop Ooni’s royalties’ rights 46

The drama that was initiated in the judicial landscape on November 5, 2012 by the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Aloma Mukhtar, when she refused to swear-in Justice Ifeoma Jombo-Ofo as a Justice of Court of Appeal, has continued to generate severe criticisms in annals of judiciary appointments in the country. Assistant Head, Judiciary Desk, KAYODE KETEFE, explores the issue.

A Exit of Kayode Eso, judicial colossus 45

n unprecedented thing happened in the Nigerian Judiciary sector on November 5, 2012, when the incumbent Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Aloma Mukhtar, refused to swear-in Justice Ifeoma Jombo-Ofo alongside 11 other jurists into the Court of Appeal. The discretion of the CJN to exclude Jombo-Ofo was rested on the assumption that she was ineligible by virtue of her being nominated by a state which is not, Anambra, her state of origin but a state of origin of her husband, (Abia) Justice Jombo-Ofo was, until the latest development, the Chief Judge of Abia State. A group which was discontent about her

President Goodluck Jonathan

IF THE CJN’S ACTION IS SUSTAINED, THE SANCTITY OF MARRIAGE WILL BE DESTROYED emergence as a Justice in the Court of Appeal had sent a petition to protest her nomination to Justice Mukhtar, urging the CJN not to swear-in Justice Jombo-Ofo on the grounds of the alleged irregularity in using the slot reserved for “another state” (Abia) when, in fact, she hails from Anambra. The CJN, surprisingly acted on the petition while apparently basing her discretion not to swear-in Jombo-Ofo on the provisions of the Federal Character Commission Act which states that a woman’s state of origin shall be the guiding consideration in making appointment, rather than the state of origin of her husband. The Nigerian Senate waded into the matter within 24 hours and recommended to the CJN, on November 6, 2012, that she should swear-in the excluded judge as a Justice of the Court of Appeal “without further delay” In condemnation of the measure, the Senate President, Senator David Mark, had said “if the CJN’s action is sustained, the sanctity of marriage will be destroyed. I believe we want to encourage professional women to maintain their profession and keep their marriage.

“If allowed it will compel professional women in Nigeria to choose between their professions and their marriages, “which will not encourage family life in this country. “This will make us think twice about the emphasis on indigeneship and place of origin. If you are resident in a place why can’t you take appointment there? But particularly on this issue, I think it is just a mistake and that the mistake will be corrected.” The advisory directive to the CJN has not been obeyed at the time of writing this piece. However, National Mirror learnt that Justice Mukhtar has summoned an emergency meeting of the National Judicial Council, (NJC), to decide the fate of JomboOfo against the background of severe criticisms trailing her exclusion from swearing-in ceremony and in the light of the Senate’s recommendation. Under Item 1 of the Part Two of the Federal Character Commission Act, it is provided thus “A married woman shall continue to lay claim to her State of origin for the purpose of implementation of the federal character formulae at the national level.” However, section 42 of the 1999 Constitution provides that “A citizen of Nigeria of a particular community, ethnic group, place of origin, sex, religion or political opinion shall not, by reason only that he is such a person:(a) be subjected either expressly by, or in the practical application of, any law in force in Nigeria or any executive or administrative CONTINUED ON PAGE 44


Law & Justice

Monday, November 19, 2012

National Mirror

Lawyers no longer observe rules Mallam Yusuf Olaolu Ali is an Ilorinbased lawyer. He was conferred with the exalted rank of Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) in 1997. As the principal partner in the law firm of Yusuf O. Ali & Co, Ghalib Chambers, he also engages in extensive law practice in Abuja and Lagos. In this interview with WALE IGBINTADE, he speaks on the allegation of corruption in the judiciary and the ethics of the legal profession, among other issues. Excerpts. The Attorney-General of the Federation, Mr. Mohammed Bello Adoke, alleged sometimes ago that some senior lawyers often engaged in ‘’sharp practices”. What is your take on this allegation? Well, there is no smoke without fire, I will be the first to admit to you that ethical standard in the profession has really fallen and I will also be the first to agree with you that all is not well in terms of the observance of the rules of professional ethics amongst all cadres of lawyers. But, I see that allegation in the context of calling attention to the fact that all is not well at the topmost echelon of the profession. The position itself, the Senior Advocate of Nigeria is not only a position of honour; it is also a position in which you are supposed to be a good example to other people, lawyers and non-lawyers. I think we should thank the Attorney-General for calling the attention to it. Because if you want to know a fish that is bad, once the head is rotten, the whole body is gone and the body of Senior Advocates is the head of the profession. It must remain wholesome at all times. Last month, Nigeria celebrated her 52nd independence anniversary, what are the prospects and challenges of the judiciary? The challenges of the judiciary in the last 52 years have been one of lack of adequate facilities to work with. There is erosion of the rule of law by the executive, especially during the times of election in the last 52 years. The military ruled for a period of more than 30 years. Observance and the upholding of the rights of the citizens, especially during the period of military rule, were at zero level. The quality of persons who get appointed to the Bench over the years has gone down. In the past, it was certain members of the Bench would invite people they thought were outstanding in the legal practice to come and join the Bench. Now, unfortunately, we have situations where people apply and people lobby for these positions. Those are the challenges. Of course, the challenges of the inadequacy of division of infrastructure, inadequacy of funds for the judiciary are also there. Challenges of not providing enough for the judiciary and starving them unnecessarily of their tools of trade. A good library, a good and comfortable chambers for the Judges, Internet facilities, IT compliance in the judiciary, all these are goals that ought to have been attained during this period, but most of them have not been attained. These are the challenges. However, all is not dark, there is light at the end of the tunnel. I was privileged to be present at the opening of the new legal year of our judiciary here, at the valedictory of our out-gone Chief Judge and we could see that there are some snippets of hope in terms of efforts being made by the government to install recording machines and other gadgets that can fast track justice delivery. I think the prospects are quite high, especially if all the stakeholders are up and doing. As I am talking to you, I am aware that there are proposals to increase the age of entrance to the Bench, at the High Court, the Court of Appeal and the apex court so

Ali (SAN)


that there is maturity and experience in the level of the output. I think the judiciary has bright prospects if we follow through all the indices that are available. Not long ago, the House of Representatives passed a resolution against the proposed policy on the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to introduce N5, 000 note. What is the position of the law, does the CBN need approval of the National Assembly to introduce the new note? As far as I know, there is no such requirement under the CBN Act. The only approval the CBN needs for such policy is the President approval. But having said that, Vox Populi Vox Dei (the voice of the people is the voice of God), what the CBN needs to do is to mount an extensive enlightenment campaign both for the members of the National Assembly and ordinary Nigerians as to the economic benefits of the introduction of the note. I think many people don’t really understand reason for the introduction of a new currency. I see what is happening as a call on the CBN to justify the introduction. Don’t forget that we are in a democracy and rightly or wrongly, the majority must have their way. So as it is now, majority of Nigerians, either due to the fact that they don’t really understand what is involved or they are not convinced so far about the arguments put forward, either way the CBN needs to do more to allay the fears of majority of the people that the introduction will lead to negative development in our economy.

Do you see Nigeria as a true federation? The problem we have is that we have a skewed federal system of government in Nigeria. I stand to be corrected, Nigeria is the only federation I know where at the end of the month, people assemble at the centre to distribute money like hand-outs or meal tickets to States. In real federal states, the States generate money and they contribute to the centre, based on an agreed proportion of funds. What happens in the United States, for example, is that, Federal Government of United States relies on taxes, taxing things that come from the States, in terms of resources. I think that our over-reliance on petroleum has made everybody to become economically lazy, people are not looking at Nigeria where they can really generate funds and that is why, as I am talking to you today, of the 36 States, I am not sure without sharing the federation account, anyone of them can survive to pay salaries. That is a misfortune and that is what defeats the argument of those that say they want additional states because these States are not economically viable. So, if you create additional states, you are just creating additional bureaucracy and a drain on the resources of the country in terms of payment of salaries for new numbers of governors, new numbers of members of the house of assembly. I think the governors have their reasons why they say they want to go to court. But I think the interest of Nigerians should all be paramount to all parties. What is best for Nigeria should be the concern of our leaders at all levels. The issue of N2.4 billion bribe allegedly offered by the former governor of Delta State, Chief James Ibori to the EFCC is still in court. Who do you think owns the money, the State or the Federal Government? Nigeria is an interesting country, you are talking

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.neta

Law & Justice

Monday, November 19, 2012


of professional ethics –Yusuf Ali about the money that it was said to be a bribe. Has it being proven that the money was from the purse of Delta State? Because there are basic questions you must answer, who owns the money, really? So, you have to determine the owner of the money before it can be for somebody. You cannot rely on the rule of the tongue, if truly the money belongs to the Delta State oh! They are entitled to have it, but if it is proven that the money did not belong to the Delta State government or Federal Government, it belongs to an individual, then let the individual come and explain his or her sources of income. If he or she is able to establish that it was his legitimate earning, but if none of the parties can prove its ownership, no individual or corporate body comes to say something, then the money should go to the federation account. That is an income for the Federal Government, not the Federal Government at the centre no, it should go to the federation account, it belongs to all Nigerians, that is what I am saying. The wife of the President, Dame Patience Jonathan, was reported to have been represented by a federal Minister at a book launch. Constitutionally, can she delegate such duty to a Minister? Constitutionally, there is no constitutional provision for the wife of the President or the wife of Governor, but there is constitutional provision for the appointment of Minister. Our president may be someone who is not married. I think the answer to your question is obvious. The constitution does not create the office of the wife of the President, but the constitution creates the office of a Minister. I think the answer is clear. There is controversy over the action of some States, which recently launched new Coat of Arms in their respective States. What is your take on the issue? We have our own Coat of Arms in this (Kwara State; Osun State has its own, so also Lagos State has. Sometimes, things that should not become issues, we promote them because we don’t have sufficient things to occupy us positively. Even if your family wants, let them launch their own Coat of Arms, as long as they are not declaring a dissension or disintegration. Some of these things we promote them out of the ordinary. I don’t see anything fantastic about it, which is the truth. Any State that wants to have Coat of arms, let them have it. The Coat of Arms is a symbol of identification. It is just like the plate number. All the states of the federation have their own. Kwara, (State of Harmony), Sokoto State, (State of the Caliphate). I see it as a means of identification; let us face some more serious things, challenges of infrastructure, of electricity, of health, of good roads. Let’s talk about these things. As a senior member of the Bar, how do you feel about the allegations of corrupt practices in the judiciary? I feel bad, but you see, Nigerians are very interesting, we just like allegations. People say these things sometimes to malign other people, sometimes libel other people. Please, anybody who has concrete evidence of corruption in the judiciary, can they please come forward? Go to security agencies, let them even come to the Nigerian Bar Association and buttress their allegation. I think we should rise above allegations. Nigerians like allegations, they just like allegations. It appears we have many fertile minds of allegations for imagination because, in the process, they will destroy other peoples’ good names. I am not saying that the judiciary is made up of angels, but don’t paint everybody with the brush of shame when you don’t have facts to support the allegations. I want to appeal to the Nigeria Press to assist us, if somebody comes forward and say so and so person is corrupt, once he or she doesn’t have the proof, don’t even publish it, because other people’s names, good names sometimes are de-



stroyed based on allegations. Because Nigerians are bad losers in anything, be it sports, be it court cases, anybody who loses a court matter must, first of all, raise allegation of corruption against the Judge. My take is that if people think somebody is corrupt on the Bench, let them come forward, let them be forthcoming. If they don’t want to go to the police, then let them come to the leadership of the Nigerian Bar Association and they will see that action will be taken.

Because of the prevailing high rate of corruption among elected officials, many of your colleagues have called for the removal of section 308 of the 1999 Constitution, which deals with the immunity clause in the constitution. Do you share their view? Let me say this one, it is so easy to point accusing fingers, I am not holding fort for the elected officials, it is a matter of common knowledge that there are lots of unwholesome things going on, but who in Nigeria is upright? Directly or indirectly, we all aid and abet corruption. If your brother is a Minister today, things that you are not entitled to, you will demand them from him, that is corruption. Your child does not score the minimum mark in JAMB and post JAMB, but because the Vice-Chancellor or the Registrar is your friend, you will influence your child to be taken instead of those who are better qualified at the same examination, that is corruption. Corruption is taking benefit of something of which you are not entitled lawfully. It could be social, it could be economic, it could be financial. My take is, if we want to fight corruption, let us be holistic about it. I don’t subscribe to the theory that it is only the leaders that have problem, the followers in Nigeria are worse than their leaders. All societies that are upright, such uprightness is dictated by the led. They will insist Mr. Governor, Mr. President you can’t do this because it is immoral. But, Nigerians don’t do that. If the President is from X tribe, he can never, ever be wrong as far as his tribe is concerned in Nigeria. All other tribes, all other people believe, oh, the man is evil, his own people, quote and unquote, will say oh, he is an angel. There is no patriotism even in our approach to national issues. So, even on the issue of corruption, our approach is selective. A governor will be said to be corrupt as long as he doesn’t come from a particular part of the state, his own people will believe that the man is upright. If we want to fight corruption, let all of us re-dedicate ourselves. I have said it several times that in proven cases of corruption, such people should be executed. As far as I can tell you, we have gone to the level where we should ask public officials to come and account for what they have and that is why we said let there be public declaration of assets so that people can verify. In a society where people do anticipatory declaration of assets, things they don’t have when they assume office, they declare it in advance, because they think they will be able to cover it. So if we want to fight corruption, let’s fight corruption, some of these things are too cosmetics. The National Judicial Council (NJC) has asked the President to re-instate the President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Ayo Isa Salami. But up till now, it has not been done. How do you view this issue? I have said it, the excuse given by the Federal Government was that look, there are court cases. But you see, I’ve also made the point elsewhere that government must be consistent. When the NJC took the initial decision of suspending his Lordship, there were court cases; the Presidency, at that time, accepted the recommendation to suspend the man. Now that the same NJC is saying look, it was a mistake, don’t suspend him anymore, reinstate him. I think the path of honour for the Federal Government is to follow the recommendation otherwise, that is why people are reading meanings to the stance of the Federal Government, that maybe there is more than what the eyes could see in what is involved. I think to be able to preach consistency and transparency, the Federal Government should just go ahead and carry out the wishes of the NJC because we all knew there were court cases when the matter was on and there are still court cases when the NJC made its recommendation. That is the way I see it.


Law & Justice

Monday, November 19, 2012

National Mirror

‘Mukhtar’s action is discriminatory, unconstitutional’ CONTINUED FROM PAGE 41


action of the government, to disabilities or restrictions to which citizens of Nigeria of other communities, ethnic groups, places of origin, sex, religions, or political opinions are not made subject; or (b) be accorded either expressly by, or in the practical application of, any law in force in Nigeria or any such executive or administrative action, any privilege or advantage that is not accorded to citizens of Nigeria of other communities, ethnic groups, places of origin, sex, religions, or political opinions. (2) No citizen of Nigeria shall be subjected to any disability or deprivation merely by reason of the circumstances of his birth.” With the non-discrimination provisions in the constitution quoted above, it would appear that the operations of the clause in the Federal Character Commission Act would cease to have effect in the light of the supremacy of the constitution which is enshrined under the section 1 of the 1999 Constitution. Nonetheless, the issue is made more complicated by virtue of subsection 3 to the section 42 of the constitution, quoted above, which recognises circumstances under which some apparently discriminatory actions may be justified. The said subsection provides thus “3) Nothing in subsection (1) of this section shall invalidate any law by reason only that the law imposes restrictions with respect to the appointment of any person to any office under the State or as a member of the armed forces of the Federation or member of the Nigeria Police Forces or to an office in the service of a body, corporate established directly by any law in force in Nigeria.” Whether or not the proviso to section 42 may be rightly invoked to justify the CJN’s action on Jombo-Ofo remains controversial. Be that as it may, a deluge of criticisms has traced the CJN’s decision with many lawyers describing the action as strange, uncalled for and illegal. Truly, this is not the first time that a female jurist would use the slot allocated for her husband’s state to get judicial appointment. As a matter of fact, two justices of the Supreme Court, Justice Mary Odili and Justice Olufunmilola Adekeye, who retired from the Apex court recently, are from Imo and Ondo States respectively. They had used the slots of the states of their husbands, Rivers and Ekiti respectively, to get to the Supreme Court without any objection being raised against their candidacy. Lawyers have also condemned the CJN’s act as discriminatory and a violation of Jombo-Ofo’s constitutional rights not to be discriminated against. This said non-discriminatory clause, lawyers said, should have preponderated over the provisions of the Federal Character Commission Act which is a lesser law to the 1999 Constitution in the light supremacy clause enshrined


JUSTICE JOMBO-OFO HERSELF CAN GO TO COURT TO ENFORCE HER FUNDAMENTAL RIGHT NOT TO BE DISCRIMINATED AGAINST in section 1 of the constitution. The said section 1 (1) and (3) states that “This Constitution is supreme and its provisions shall have binding force on the authorities and persons throughout the Federal Republic of Nigeria. “If any other law is inconsistent with the provisions of this Constitution, this Constitution shall prevail, and that other law shall, to the extent of the inconsistency, be void.” The lawyers also believe that the subsection (3) of the section 42 quoted above could not justify the CJN’s action. National Mirror sought the views of some lawyers on this development, especially against the background of Senate’s recommendation that the CJN should jettison her objection and swear-in the jurist as well as the question of legality of the decision not to swear-in Jombo-Ofo in the first place. In his own view, Chief Mike Ozekhome (SAN), said “The directive of the National Assembly is merely advisory in nature. It has no legal force and, therefore, cannot be legally enforceable. It is not an Act of parliament. “However, Justice Jombo-Ofo herself can go to court to enforce her fundamental right not to be discriminated against. Only she, Jombo-Ofo has the locus to challenge the decision not to swear her in at the court. “Having said that, I think the decision not swear her in by the CJN was very wrong, very backward, retrogressive, unjust and unconstitutional. It cannot be justified on any grounds. “In Nigeria, we use patrilinear system and not matrilineal. Patrilinear system allows women to have entitlement in their husbands’ place. It would be very unfair to women if this practice is sustained” Chief Ganiyu Adetola-Kazeem (SAN) said, “The Senate can only advice; they cannot compel the Judiciary, which is another arm of government. So, on this issue, the Senate cannot mandate the CJN to swear-in the judge.” In his reaction, Mr. Femi Falana (SAN), said, “The decision can be challenged in court because the judge had fulfilled all the procedure. The NJC had given its nod and the President had approved it. That means the appointment is already made. “Even if any petition was pending, she should have been sworn-in first while the petition is examined later if it has merit. “Under the provision of section 42 of the 1999 Constitution, it is wrong to discriminate against any person on the basis of sex, place of birth etc. The law under which the CJN acted is called Federal Character


Commission Act, which provides that a woman’s state of birth and not her husband’s state should be used as basis of appointment. “But since the Constitution is superior to the Federal Character Commission Act, Justice Jombo-Ofo can go to court to challenge the decision on the grounds that it is not constitutional.” The Immediate past NBA Chairman, Ikeja branch, Mr. Adebamigbe Omole said, “The Senate’s directive is advisory, if it is not obeyed, it cannot be enforced by legal means. But of course, the judge herself can go to court to contest the decision. “Having said that, Let me state what is done to Justice Jombo-Ofo is nothing, but injustice, and one did not expect such a thing from the CJN, Justice Mukhtar, who herself is a woman. “The case of a woman using her husband’s state to get judicial appointment is not new. It happened in the case of Justice Olufunmilayo Adekeye, who is from Ondo, but used the slot of Ekiti State to get appointment to the Supreme Court. “The same thing happened in the case of Justice Mary Odili who is now at the Supreme Court. She used the slot of Rivers State which is her husband’s state to get appointed to the Supreme Court. So the decision of the CJN was not right” A Lagos-based lawyer, Mr. Yahaya Oladeji, said “It is very wrong in the first place for the CJN to refuse to swear-in Jombo-Ofo, that is technical error from the legal perspective because swearing-in is a mere ceremony. Look at the provision of section 238 (2) of the 1999 Constitution, it states thus: “The appointment of a person to the office of President of the Court of Appeal shall be made by the President on the recommendation of the National Judicial Council subject to confirmation of such appointment by the Senate.” Going by this provision, the substantive thing is the recommendation by the NJC and the endorsement by the President both of which procedures she had undergone. So, she is already a judge of the Court of Appeal in the eyes of the law. The CJN should just heed the call of the Senate now and swear-in Jombo-Ofo. The Executive Director of Legal Defence and Assistance Project, Mr. Chino Obiagwu, in a statement, said “LEDAP is concerned that the decision was arbitrary and unfair, and inconsistent with previous instances in which a number of female justices have been appointed, promoted or elevated on slots from their states of marriage rather than states of birth. “LEDAP is worried that such practice of denying married women judicial appointments because of their state of marriage negates the principles of fairness and would be detrimental to women in judicial service. It is contrary to the entire values of marriage and of the Nigeria society.”

National Mirror

Law & Justice

Monday, November 19, 2012


Exit of Kayode Eso, judicial colossus two children, a daughter , Funmilayo, and a son, Arc. Olumide Eso. The jurist was born in 1925 and he retired from the Bench in December 1990. Eso had to his credit some publications namely; The Mystery Gunman - written by Eso himself. This is about the trial of Wole Soyinka, the Nobel Laureate. During the Western Region crisis, he was alleged to have broken into a radio station and forced the operators on duty to replace the Premier’s recorded message with his own. The case was assigned to Justice Eso. Another book, Kayode Eso-The Making of a Judge was written by the duo of Prof. Festus Ade Ajayi and Prof. Yemi Akinseye-George.

The demise of eminent jurist, Justice Kayode Eso, last Friday evokes memories of his life and times on the Bench. FRANCIS FAMOROTI, Ag. Head, Judiciary writes.


he exit of retired Supreme Court Justice Kayode Eso, last Friday, is a loss to the legal profession. In his 12 years of sojourn on the Apex court Bench, he bestrode the court like a colossus. Within the legal circles, he was greatly venerated as the most courageous judge who ever sat on the Bench of the Supreme Court. The late jurist was also one of the greatest analytical minds that ever adorned the Apex court. While on the Bench, he was both a monument and a model. Eso’s immense experience at the Bar, the public service and on the Bench spanned a total time frame of 46 years. Justice Eso was usually called ‘The Denning of our time’ ‘because of his uncanny analysis of the law and for being an unrepentant advocate of undiluted justice for every man, woman and child. Eso attended Ilesha Grammar School, Ilesha regarded as one the Ionian Group of Schools at that time. He later studied Law at the Trinity College, Dublin (TCD) . The double degrees of BA, LL.B in one stretch proved a great attraction in preference to London, to which he had also been offered admission. After his return from overseas, he had a short spell in Ibadan, but soon became disillusioned with the sharp practices of some lawyers and their political entanglements. He decided to move his base to Jos where he established a flourishing law firm. His old friend, Abdul Fatai Dabiri, joined him to set up the law firm of Eso & Dabiri, Law and Equity Chambers. Eso suddenly abandoned the lucrative practice in Jos and later joined the Civil Service as a salary earner. He moved first to Ibadan and then to Lagos. He was first appointed a Protocol Officer In the Ministry of External Affairs in Lagos and on his third day in the service as a protocol officer he resigned his appointment. He then returned to Ibadan, joined the Ministry of Justice and was appointed Senior Crown Counsel Grade 11. He later became Principal Crown Counsel. In every role he found himself, he maintained a principled commitment to the rule of law and justice, rather than loyalty to any political authority or group. Eso was appointed a Judge of the High Court of Western Region in 1965 directly from the post of Legal Draftsman. To Eso, a judge was subject only to the law and to his own conscience. He was a one-time Acting President,

Eso through the cases

Late Justice Eso



70 OF



WERE CONCURRING JUDGMENTS AND FOUR WERE DISSENTING JUDGMENTS Western State Court of Appeal. In his nine years as an appellate judge, he brought qualities of equity, fairness and maintenance of integrity of the judiciary to bear. Eso joined the Supreme Court in 1978 during the military era. This was the period when there was a calculated attempt to humiliate the Supreme Court and erode its authority and bastardise its independence. His membership of the Apex court and the cases before the

court soon departed from the restrictive pro-executive concept of some of his colleagues. He belonged to the realist school of jurisprudence which sees law as a veritable instrument of social change. In all, he delivered 464 considered and reported judgements, 70 of them were lead judgements, 390 were concurring judgments and four were dissenting judgements. There were many cases in which Eso displayed his knack for judicial courage, single-mindedness and progressive interpretation of the law. While on the Bench, he was noted for bold and imaginative decisions in the mould of Thurgood Marshall of the US Supreme Court for his dogged and uncompromising dedication to the pursuit of justice, and creative and purposeful interpretation of the law, referred to as judicial activism. Eso headed a panel to sanitise the judiciary. The Eso panel was set up on December 29, 1993 and its report and recommendations gave a comprehensive blueprint for the restoration of the lost glory of the Judiciary. Eso married his heartthrob, Helen Aina (nee Agidee) on January 16, 1954 and the marriage is blessed with

In Awolowo-v-Shagari (1979) ISCI, one of the most controversial judgements ever given in this country. Justice Eso of the seven justices wrote the only dissenting opinion in which he held that ‘’at least 2/3 of 19 states could only be 13 and not 122/3’’. The dissenting opinion speaks volumes of his independence and fearlessness. He stood doggedly with the truth and that stance for truth continued unabated until his retirement. In Nwobodo-v-Onoh (1984),which was another election petition case, he similarly dissented from the majority of the Supreme Court justices. In Ojukwu-v-Military Governor of Lagos State (1986) INWLR (Part 18), Justice Eso read the lead judgement in which the Supreme Court dismissed the myth about the infallibility of a military government. Justice Eso declared that the forceful seizure of Ojukwu’s property when a case in respect of it was pending in the Court was a demonstration of executive lawlessness and an attempt ‘’ to infuse timidity into the court and operate sabotage of the cherished rule of law’’. In Garba-v-Federal Civil Service Commission (1988) INWLR (Part 71) 499 he states thus: ‘’The Rule of law knows no fear, it is never cowed down; it can only be silenced. But once the only arm that can silence it does not silence it, it must be accepted in full confidence to be able to justify its existence’’’. In Fawehinmi-v-Akilu (1987) NWLR (Part 67) 797, Eso canvassed a broader view of locus standi and thereby exhibited his boldness in upholding the rule of law. He also had cause to handle a number of human rights cases notably; Adeyemi-v-AG Oyo State (1987) INWLR (part 53) 678 Garba & ors -v-Univ of Maiduguri (1986) INWLR (part 18) 550 Prof Olaniyan & ors -v- UniLag (1985) 2 NWLR (part 9 pg 599 Fawehinmi-v- LPDC (1985) 2 NWLR (part 7) 300 Akinfe-v- The State (1988) 3 NWLR (Part 85) 729. Ransome-Kutiv- AG . Fed (1985) 2 NWLR (pt 6) 211.


Law & Justice

Monday, November 19, 2012

National Mirror

How community lost bid to stop Ooni’s royalties’ rights


ba Adesoji Tadeniawo Aderemi was a Nigerian political figure and the Ooni of Ife who reigned in the ancient town from 1930 till 1980. The Ooni also served as the governor of Western Region, Nigeria, between 1960 and 1967. During the colonial era, the Ooni gained a considerable amount of power due to the colonial policy of indirect rule and belonged to the status of a first class Oba among traditional rulers in Yoruba land. The Ooni, with the consent of the leading Yoruba political leaders used his position to close the gaps of exploitation of divisional differences among Yorubas and tried fervently to rally the Yoruba towards a common goal. Sometimes in the early 1960s, Baale Adedire and other members of Ife community had dragged the Caretaker Committee of Ife Divisional Council and Aderawos Timber Company Limited to an Ibadan High Court over a concession deed made in 1954. At that time, the Ooni of Ife, apart from being the head of Ife Divisional Council, also had substantial interests in the timber company. In the statement of claim, Adedire and others claimed against the timber company, among others, an order to set aside a Deed of Concession dated 6th January, 1954 between the Ife District Native Authority and the company. They also asked for an account of all profits derived by the timber company from the concession and an order to pay the sum found due into the Ife Divisional Council Treasury, and an injunction to restrain the firm from further exploiting the concession. Adedire and others contended that they were members of the Ife Community and sued as such and as taxpayers. They further alleged that the forest area, the subject-matter of the concession, was the communal property of the Ife community which was held in trust for the community by the Ife District Native Authority, whose successor was the first defendant; and that Sir Adesoji Aderemi, the Ooni of Ife, was, at the material time, the trustee of Ife communal lands and a principal shareholder of the appellant company. Adedire and others said that the Ooni, with his council, signed the concession on behalf of the Ife District Native Authority and as “the traditional authority on behalf of the communal owners of the land”. They said the monarch acted in a dual capacity as Ooni of Ife and as a major shareholder in the company, and that the Concession Deed ought to be set aside on the ground that the Ooni’s interest as shareholder conflicted with his duty as trustee of communal lands. The timber company and its shareholders, in their defence, claimed that the claim was barred by section 62 of the Native Authority Ordinance (Cap. 140) and/or by section 242 of the Local Government Law 1957. The company denied the allegations of Adedire and others and claimed that the conces-

About 50 years ago, the Federal Supreme Court declared that Baale Adedire and Ife Community lacked the power to checkmate the expanding economic influence of the late Ooni of Ife, Sir. Adesoji Aderemi. FRANCIS FAMOROTI, Ag. Head, Judiciary writes.

Late Ooni of Ife, Oba Aderemi


FAMOUS CASES sion was duly made under the powers vested in the Native Authority by law. Justice Kester dismissed Adedire’s claim. He held that Adedire and the community had failed to prove their right to bring the action. Besides, the court held that the Ooni of Ife was not a trustee in respect of the Forest Reserve and, therefore, no question of his acting in a dual capacity arose. It declared further that the concession was a valid deed and that the claim was statute-barred. On appeal, the Federal Supreme Court reversed the decision of Kester J. The three Justices of the Supreme Court who sat on the panel were, Lord

CONCESSSION DEED Moris, Lord Hodson, and Lord Guest, who delivered the judgement of the court. In the judgement delivered on July 28, 1963 in suit No. P.E. No. 33 of 1963, the court held that Adedire and others had a locus standi entitling them to bring the action. The court also held that the Ooni of Ife acted in a dual capacity in relation to the concession, in that he was in a fiduciary position as Ooni of Ife and a major shareholder in the appellant company and that the concession deed should, on this ground, be set aside and that the action was not statutebarred. There followed an order by the Federal Supreme Court setting

aside the Deed of Concession and otherwise in terms of the respondent’s claim.’’ Apart from elaborate general considerations made by their Lordships, the court considered that there was great force in the observations of Kester J. to this effect. “Who are the communal owners?’ Although the plaintiffs claimed as members of the ‘Ife Community’ there is no evidence before the Court as to what constitutes this community. The identity of the ‘communal owners’ is not clear or certain. ‘’Apart from the first plaintiff, there is no evidence about who the other plaintiffs are. No evidence whatever about their identities. Paragraph 1 of the statement of claim was denied by the defendants. In the circumstances, therefore, I am unable to hold that the words ‘communal owners’ in Exhibit ‘A’ refer to the unidentified class of persons described as ‘lfe Community’ which the plaintiffs claim they belong and by which right they have brought this action.” Lord Guest said there was no satisfactory proof that the first plaintiff, as a native of Ife community, had a locus standi to sue. The court acknowledged that the locus standi of the respondents was supported in the Federal Supreme Court by a reference to the evidence of the first plaintiff who said his family name was Ogunleye and that he was the head of that family which still hunted in the Forest Reserve. The only basis for the respondents’ title as a member of the Ogunleye family must be contained in the Second Schedule to the Ife Native Authority Forest Reserve Order 1941 as amended by the Ife District Native Authority Forest Reserve (Amendment) Order 1953, whereby the Ogunleye family’s rights to reside, farm, hunt and fish are reserved. According to the verdict, their Lordships have therefore reached the conclusion that the respondents have not established their locus standi to bring this action to set aside the concession deed. It follows that it is unnecessary for their Lordships to consider the remaining points, namely whether there was a fiduciary duty owed by the Ooni of Ife to the Ife community or whether the claim was statute barred, matters upon which they express no opinion. The justices, therefore, said the logical result of their conclusions would be to allow the appeal and restore the judgement of Kester J. dismissing the action. Their Lordships, therefore, humbly advised Her Majesty that the appeal be allowed, the judgement of the Federal Supreme Court set aside with costs and the judgment of Kester J. restored.

National Mirror

Law & Justice

Monday, November 19, 2012


Case for sport business legislation OLA OLATAWURA

T Shittu

The judge never knew I was a new wig –Wahab Shittu


t my first day in court I was eager to make impression. It was before the current Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Aloma Mukhtar, who was then a judge of the High Court in Kano. I was assigned a brief filed by A.B. Mahmud SAN who was then the Head of the civil litigation in the Kano State Ministry of Justice. I announced my ap-

pearance and did the best I could to articulate my case without fear. That was not because of any super intelligence on my part I was just determined to do well and I was courageous. Even go-

ing by the confidence with which I spoke she did not suspect I was a new wig. My advice to upcoming lawyers is that they should not be lacking in courage to express their views. This is because if you allow yourself to be overwhelmed by fear; that is self-defeatist in nature. The greatest strength of the lawyer is advocacy and courage is part of the art of advocacy.

Bar Jokes

Legal dispute


Lawyer runs a stop sign and gets pulled over by a Sheriff’s Deputy. He thinks that he is smarter than the Deputy because he is sure that he has a better education. He decides to prove this to himself and have some fun at the deputy’s expense........... Deputy says, “License and registration, please.” Lawyer says, “What for?” Deputy says, “You didn’t come to a complete stop at the stop sign” Lawyer says, “I slowed down, and no one was coming.” Deputy says, “You still didn’t come to a complete stop. License and registration, please.”

Lawyer says, “What’s the difference?” Deputy says, “The difference is, you have to come to a complete stop, that’s the law. License and registration, please!” Lawyer says, “If you can show me the legal difference between slow down and stop, I’ll give you my license and registration and you give me the ticket, if not you let me go and no ticket.” Deputy says, “Exit your vehicle, sir.” At this point, the Deputy takes out his nightstick and starts beating the ever-loving crap out of the Lawyer and says: “DO YOU WANT ME TO STOP OR JUST SLOW DOWN?”

Generous lawyer


ne day a lawyer was riding in his limousine when he saw a guy eating grass. He told the driver to stop. He got out and asked him, “Why are you eating grass?” The man replied, “I’m so poor, I can’t afford anything thing to eat.” So the lawyer said, “Poor guy, come back to my house.” The guy says, “But I have

a wife and three kids.” The lawyer told him to bring them along. When they were all in the car, the poor man said, “Thanks for taking us back to your house; it is so kind of you.” The lawyer replied, “You’re going to love it there... the grass is a foot tall!” Culled from Bar Jokes.Com

he embarrassing status of Nigeria’s sporting prowess and administration in the comity of nations reached the lowest point possible with the outcome of the London Olympics 2012. With a population of over 120 million consisting of some of the most naturally virile individuals and races, the country’s individual sportsmen and teams in the last decade have been putting on a no-show in major sporting events, particularly in ‘national sport’ categories. Clearly things are wrong in a lot of places. If President Jonathan wants to transform Nigeria’s sport sector, the opportunity has been given to him on platter of gold. Sport is now an important contributor to the development of economic and social relations. It is evident what Muhammed Ali, Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods, Usain Bolt, and Barcelona FC and Real Madrid FC have done for their countries in Nigeria alone, not to mention the globe. The usual causes generally fingered for the national disgrace are no doubt correct, though some seem to be declining in relevance, and many most times exaggerated or misdiagnosed. The funding of sport is of the latter category. While government spending has either been criticised as too little or too late, the basis and framework for an alternative private financial contribution to the development and organisation of sport has not been appreciated. Substantial sustainable private long term investment and financing of sport related activities is the key to success on the sporting field. What inhibits this is the lack of a focused regulatory framework. Since 2006, the author has been arguing for such a regime, as part of a revolutionary shake-up of the sport sector. Resistance has come from beneficiaries




of the present malformed system, mostly ‘old school’ methodologists, beneficiaries of the skewed operating system, quacks and corrupt practitioners in various sport related fields. Why should an Act be promoted? Sport is a huge global business. It contributes up to 3 per cent of European Union GDP and significantly combines with other entertainment sectors to contribute 20 per cent of US’ GDP. Nigeria is a potential leader in growing a sport industry in Africa and beyond. Research estimates show that the development of the football sub-sector can generate at least $200million per annum to the economy. However, the legal framework for the peculiarities of private sport finance and investment industry does not exist. To develop the Nigerian sport industry, generate employment, prevent abuse, incompetence, corruption, monopoly, financial handicap, and uncertain reliance on government, an Act is imperative. It is necessary that a special or focused Act is enacted to tap its potentials in Nigeria. The current general legal framework does not support a systemic or coherent development of sport or sustainable massive private investment. Only big corporations and high risk takers can comfortably invest in sport. A dedicated sport business legislation will ensure certainty, provide rights

necessary for sport investors that are not fully addressed or currently available in Nigerian law, provide enforceable duties on states, local government, sport administrators and investors, protect sport persons, promote professionalism and management, and prevent abuse of power and intrusion by government. The legitimate roles and powers of FG and state Government will be fully defined in accordance with a Sport Policy. The economic global meltdown supports the review of government funding, reprioritisation, and down grading, while justifying an effective legal investment framework for massive private sector activity and participation in sustainable sport development and industry. The argument that predominant government control and funding of sport is imperative as a means of national unity and public relations is now over – exaggerated and even counter- productive. Finally, it will be a testimony to the world that Nigeria is serious about promoting and protecting sport business and stakeholders. Sport Promotion and Protection of Investment Act The public and private status of sport administration and organisation has generally been unsettled. Ordinarily, as a constitutional policy, government cannot exercise predominant control – as it is- of sport. See section 16 (1) and (2), CFRN 1999. Ironically, most regimes that government rely on do not exist, having been repealed. The National Sport Commission NSC Act 1971 has been repealed since 2004. The lacuna makes it difficult to enforce due process and other statutes. To be continued next week Dr. Olatawura, a senior partner in Goldmann Lagos Transnational Lawyers writes from Abuja.

Role of judiciary in combating corruption in Nigeria MATTHEW BURKAA Continued from October 31


t is not in doubt that the nature of the office and functions of a judge call for a very high sense of duty, probity, integrity and transparency, as such any Judge so appointed without possessing the above fundamental qualities is no doubt bound to be a clog and obstacle to justice. As someone would sayFor,- a Judge with little or no learning can be a most dangerous clogs in the administration of justice.” (iv) Incorruptibility of the Bench: A corrupt bench can only worsen the fight against corrup-

tion. For the Judiciary to position itself properly against the fight against corruption it must first purge itself of corruption. It will be a very sad day indeed for the court which is seen as the bastion of hope of the common man to stand as an “accused” in the fight against corruption. This indeed will signify the end of everything. (v) The prosecuting agencies must provide proper training for prosecutors of corruption cases. (vi) The courts must be properly equipped with modern facilities to be able to fast-track the determination of corruption related cases and indeed understand the modus operandi of persons accused of cases of corruption. CONCLUSION

The fight against corruption as stated earlier is a collective one and all hands must indeed be on deck in order to ensure a corruptfree Nigeria. The court which is final arbiter in our criminal Justice system but be well-positioned and prepared both intellectually and otherwise to handle the great challenge posed by the ever changing dynamics and face of corruption. It must first purge and cleanse itself of all forms of corruption and discharge its duties without fear or favour. Concluded Burkaa, a counsel in the law firm of Tayo Oyetibo & Co, Barristers and Solicitors delivered this paper recently at the SERAP Media Roundatable in Lagos .



Monday, November 19, 2012



Today's Tonic (45) “When one door of happiness closes, another opens but often we look so long at the closed door that we don’t see the one that has been opened for us.” –Helen Keller Worries and anxieties has the power to blind us to the opportunities that abounds around us. Once I was looking for 700,000 naira to do a particular business and was almost at the verge of taking loans when my eyes were opened to a long time investment that I once did which miraculous turned to millions of naira. As a matter of fact the document was under my reading all the time and I didn’t know! Let’s keep our eyes open. When one door closes millions are wide open somewhere. I believe this implicitly! Someone says many look but only few see! TEL 08104942999 E-MAIL Follow me @TwitterOWOTIDE

Drug defendant asks judge for one more joint


judge’s offer to allow an Ohio drug defendant the chance to stay out of prison if he’d give up marijuana might have just gone up in smoke. Hamilton County Common Pleas Judge Melba Marsh says she was astonished by the response from 19-yearold Damaine Mitchell on Wednesday. The Cincinnati Enquirer reported

Thursday that Mitchell told the judge he likes smoking weed and staying off it so he could stay out of prison would be “a challenge.” He told the judge he could try to quit but made a request: Could he “at least get one more joint in?” The judge quickly said no. She wants Mitchell back in court next week before she decides what to do with his trafficking case.

National Mirror


Police arrest man with mobile office in car


orget texting while driving. German police say they nabbed a driver who had wired his Ford station wagon with an entire mobile office. Saarland state police said Friday the 35-year-old man was pulled over for doing 130 kph (80 mph) in a 100 kph zone while passing a truck Monday. Built on a wooden frame on his passenger seat they found a laptop on a docking station tilted for easy driver access, a printer, router, wireless internet stick, WLAN antenna, and an inverter to power it all. A navigation system and cellphone mounted to the windshield completed the array. Since there was no evidence he used the office while moving, he got away with a 120 ($153) speeding ticket and a possible fine for having unsecured items in his car.

The vehicle with its interior wired up like a mobile office.


Monday, November 19, 2012

National Mirror


World News

Obama defends Israel, warns against escalating Gaza crisis

“Sending weapons to Syrian rebels will threaten regional stability and increase the risk of terrorism.”





t least five people were killed when a grenade tore through a minibus in Nairobi’s Somali-dominated Eastleigh neighbourhood on Sunday, a Reuters witness and police said. “I saw bodies ripped apart,” the Reuters photographer said. The force of the explosion tore apart the vehicle’s roof and seats and shattered the window of a nearby cafe. Two other cars were damaged, the photographer said. Kenya has suffered a string of deadly attacks in its capital Nairobi, the southern port city of Mombasa as well as the eastern garrison town of Garissa over the past year. The attacks have been blamed on Somali militants and their sympathizers in retaliation for Kenya’s decision to send troops into Somalia last year to drive out al Qaedalinked militants which Nairobi has blamed for attacks on its territory. African Union peacekeepers, led by Kenyan forces, drove al Shabaab militants out of their last major urban stronghold of Kismayu in southern Somalia seven weeks ago. Nairobi regional police commander Moses Ombati said the grenade had been thrown into the minibus, commonly re-


At least five killed in Kenya grenade attack


Ballot count continues in Sierra Leone, after peaceful poll Long lines of voters have braved the heat in Sierra Leone to choose a new government to bring prosperity to the poor West African nation a decade after a devastating civil war. Despite a few glitches such as some polling booths opening late on Saturday, observers praised the peaceful process as voters patiently waited to cast ballots for a new president, lawmakers and local government. Polls closed late on Saturday night and ballot counting continued yesterday with citizens sitting around radios listening to provisional results filtering through from individual polling stations across the country. It is the third time Sierra Leone has voted since the end of its 11year civil war in 2002, and the stakes are high in what is seen as a tight race between incumbent President Ernest Koroma, 59, and his main challenger, Julius Maada Bio, 48.

DR Congo rebels seize another town Residents looking at the wreckage of the mini-bus (matatu) after it was hit by an explosion in Nairobi Photo: Reuters

ferred to as matatus in Kenya. Ombati confirmed five people had been killed, while the Kenya Red Cross said on its Twitter account that seven people had died and 24 people had been taken to hospital. There was no immediate

claim of responsibility for the attack. In July, masked assailants launched simultaneous gun and grenade attacks on two churches in Garissa, killing at least 17 people. Armed cattle raiders killed

at least 32 Kenyan police officers in a military-style ambush last weekend. That attack exposed how ill-equipped Kenya’s police force is, at a time when they are facing new challenges, including a presidential election next March.

Egypt installs new Coptic pope he Coptic Orthodox church staged a ceremony rich in ritual on Sunday to install its pope, Tawadros II, who Christians hope will guide them through the new, Islamist-led Egypt. The 60-year-old pope was picked on November 4 and the ceremony on Sunday filled with incense, elaborate robes and chanting marked his formal ascendance as the 118th leader of the church. Coptic Christians, whose church predates the arrival of Islam in Egypt, make up a tenth of Egypt’s 83 million people. Many fear their community, the biggest Christian group in the Middle East which has long complained of discrimination, will be squeezed to the sidelines of society under Islamists now ruling


the Muslim-majority nation. “We chose him because he is man who is obedient to God,” said Bishop Bakhomious, who was pope in the interim period after Shenouda III died aged 88 in March after four decades in office. “God had listened to our prayers and did not wish to leave us orphans for long,” he added, as priests and bishops prayed for the new pope, dressing him in lavish embroidered vestments. In the final stages, a red and gold mitre was placed on his head before he sat on a throne. The bearded and bespectacled pope trained as pharmacist before being ordained. President Mohamed Mursi, propelled to power by the Muslim Brotherhood, did not attend the ceremony in the cathedral in Cairo’s Abbasiya district to the

Rebels in the Democratic Republic of Congo have seized another town after clashing with government troops backed by UN peacekeepers’ helicopters. The M23 fighters are said to be in a place called Monigi, 4km from Goma, increasing fears that they are advancing towards the oil-rich region’s main city with the aim of capturing it. The rebels said on Sunday that they have reached the “door” of Goma. “We’re at the door... we are not in the city of Goma. It’s not our ambition to take Goma. Nevertheless if (President Joseph) Kabila’s army attacks us, we will pursue the enemy until it is repelled very far from Goma,” Vianney Kazarama, a rebel spokesman, told the AFP news agency.

Mozambique’s national airline workers embark on strike Pope Tawadros II, attending his enthronement ceremony at St. Mark Cathedral in Abbasiya, Cairo, yesterday Photo; Reuters

dismay of some Christians who said it undermined his claim to be a leader for all Egyptians. But he sent his prime minister, Hisham Kandil. Other officials and dignitaries also attended. Tawadros II faces challenges delivering on the hopes of his flock. He told Reuters at a desert monastery west of Cairo a day after his was picked that the church

would oppose any new constitution that only met Muslim concerns. Liberals, moderate Muslims and Islamists are tussling over the shape of the constitution and extent of Islamic references in the document. A group of technical advisers quit the assembly drawing it up on Saturday, saying their voices were not being heard.

Pilots and crew members at Mozambique’s national airline have gone on strike, grounding the carrier. Linhas Aerrreas de Mocambique Ltd. flights out of Mozambique’s capital Maputo had been stopped Sunday by the strike. Workers told journalists that they wanted higher wages and better working conditions. Joao de Abreu, an official with the state-owned airline, said that negotiations were ongoing to end the strike. He said international flights to Kenya, Tanzania and Zimbabwe had been cancelled over the strike.


World News

Monday, November 19, 2012

India holds funeral for Hindu extremist leader


undreds of thousands of grieving supporters thronged the streets of Mumbai yesterday for the funeral of Bal Thackeray, a Hindu extremist leader linked to waves of mob violence against Muslims and migrant workers in India. Nearly 20,000 policemen were on hand because of the violent history of the group. The mourners, however, remained calm and orderly as the body of Thackeray was cremated at Shivaji park where he had made political debut by addressing his first public rally 46 years ago. His son and successor, Uddhav Thackeray, lit the funeral pyre amid chants of “Thackeray is immortal” by the supporters, some of whom wept.

L-R: President Obama and Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra holding a joint press conference at the Government House in Bangkok, Thailand, yesterday. Photo: AP

Obama defends Israel, warns against escalating Gaza crisis


resident Barack Obama said yesterday an incursion by Israel’s forces into the Gaza Strip could only deepen its death toll, cautioning against an escalation even as he defended the Jewish state’s right to defend itself. Obama also warned Palestinians the crisis could crush peace hopes for years.

“Israel has every right to expect that it does not have missiles fired into its territory,” Obama said at the start of a three-nation tour in Asia. “If that can be accomplished without a ramping up of military activity in Gaza, that’s preferable,” he said. “It’s not just preferable for the people of Gaza. It’s also

preferable for Israelis, because if Israeli troops are in Gaza, they’re much more at risk of incurring fatalities or being wounded.” Obama’s comments came as Israel’s campaign against Hamas militants in Gaza blasted into its fifth day. Israel is at a crossroads of whether to launch a ground invasion or pursue Egyptianled truce efforts. Obama sought to defend the U.S. ally’s rights while pushing for a halt in the violence.

National Mirror

National Mirror


Monday, November 19, 2012


Gunmen kill pastor in Maiduguri

Northern governors to speak on PIB soon –Kwankwaso





s the killings on the streets of Maiduguri, the Borno state capital continue unabated, gunmen yesterday morning invaded the resident of a retired Pastor of COCIN church in Polo ward, Revd Ilaisha Kabura, and shot him dead in the presence of his family

members. Revd Kabura, 70, National Mirror learnt, was shot by his assailants at about 8:am while preparing to set out for Sunday service. An eye witness, who did not want his name mentioned, said that the two gunmen were sighted in front of Revd Kabura’s family house before they fired several shots at him. He said initially when he sighted the gunmen,

he thought they were visitors to the victim, but heard sounds of gunshots a few minutes later. The witness added that men of the Joint Task Force (JTF) arrived at the scene later to convey the body of the deceased to an undisclosed hospital in Maiduguri metropolis. Confirming the incident in a telephone interview, the Police

Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Gideon Jubrin, said: “Some gunmen suspected to be members of the Boko Haram sect yesterday morning trailed Revd Ilaisha Kabura and shot him dead while preparing to attend Sunday service.” He said no arrests had been made, but assuring that security agent would apprehend the killers.

Borno State Governor, Kashim Shettima (middle) inaugurating the construction of 750 houses for flood victims in Damassak, yesterday. PHOTO: NAN



ano State Governor Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso has said that governors of the 19 Northern states will soon come up with a position on the proposed Petroleum Industrial Bill (PIB). The bill is before the National Assembly. Kwankwaso spoke yesterday at the commissioning of the Serbian General Consulate office in Kano, where Farouk Adamu Aliyu was made Honourary Consul General by the Republic of Serbia. He said the governors would ponder on the proposed bill to ensure it benefits the region. Governor Kwankwaso said: “We will soon come together on a round table to make our stand known on the PIB and very many other sundry matters.” He said that as a former member of the House of Representatives and a former Minister of Defence, his vast knowledge on what was shared among oil producing states was staggering and did not require any additional money or advantage to the affected states. He said in this context,

many states, especially those from the SouthSouth are ahead of North in terms of incomes from the Federation Account, adding: “This means that some are getting richer while others are getting poorer by the day and their people wallowing in devastating poverty. “We in the North are keenly watching and we will not allow our region to be plunged into yet another uncertain future. We will do all we could to make sure that there is equity and sense of belonging to every citizen.” While commenting on the opening of the Serbian Consulate office in Kano, the governor said that the office would be used for the benefit of both Nigeria and Serbia. He described the new honorary Consular General, Alhaji Faruk Adamu Aliyu, as a man of honour and integrity. Former Heads of State General Muhammad Buhari and General Abdussalami Abubakar also commended the appointment of Farouk Adamu Aliyu, describing it as deserving because of his immense leadership qualities and good conduct.

Wada urged to constitute Senator sponsors free cleft, palate surgery in Nasarawa I U inter-religious council GBAWASE



he Kogi State Council of Ulamau has called on Governor Idris Wada to constitute the state chapter of the Nigeria Interreligious Affairs Council (NIREC) in order to foster peaceful co-existence among the adherents of various religions. The Kogi State executive secretary of the Islamic association, Justice Abdulkarim Aruwa, made the call yesterday during the celebration of this year’s Islamic calendar in Lokoja.


He said though the state had been witnessing relative peace among followers of major religious groups, but to ensure the sustenance of the situation, a mechanism should be put in place to ensure the continuity through constant dialogue. Justice Aruwa, who commended the state governor for promoting religious tolerance in his effort to provide good governance for the people, equally urged him to warn his aides and appointees against corrupt practices. He said: “We Muslims in Kogi State appreciate your commitment to peace and good governance, but we want you to muster courage to tell your appointees to shun all forms of evil and corruption.” Earlier, Governor Wada told the gathering that his administration would ensure the sustainability of peace and security in the state.




enator Abdullahi Adamu representing Nasarawa West Senatorial District in the Senate has sponsored a non-governmental organisation, Cleft Care Foundation, to carry out a free cleft and palate surgery on indigent patients in his senatorial district. About 22 indigent patients have so far had surgical operations on their cleft and palate ailments, while 60 more indigent patients have been listed for similar operations.

Addressing the indigent patients at the weekend during the exercise at the Federal Medical Centre (FMC) in Keffi, Senator Adamu said the exercise would soon be extended to Lafia, the state capital, as well as the Nasarawa North Senatorial District. He said: “For sustainability of the exercise, I will approach the management of the Keffi Federal Medical Centre to provide a space in the hospital to enable me construct a permanent centre for the free cleft and palate surgery for indigent patients with-

in and outside the shores of Nasarawa State.” Adamu, however, encouraged persons who are suffering from the ailment not to be ashamed of their deformity where ever they found themselves. The former governor, however, commended the Director of the Cleft Care Foundation, Dr. Saidu Bello, for prevailing on him to sponsor the exercise. Chief Medical Director of the Keffi Federal Medical Centre, Dr. Joshua Gyan, applauded the efforts of the senator particularly in building the maternity and

Tears as slain Kano lawmaker is buried AUGUSTINE MADU-WEST KANO


he body of Hon Ibrahim Garko, a member of Kano State House of Assembly shot dead on Saturday night by some gunmen, was laid to rest in the early hours of yesterday in his Garko home. The body of the Peoples

Democratic Party (PDP) lawmaker was buried amidst tears, anger and anguish from his associates and family members. The police said Garko was shot dead by gunmen, who also wounded his friend, one Abdullahi Danladi, a member of staff of Kano State Ministry of Rural Development.

Danladi was with Garko when the gunmen struck. Family sources hinted that the incident was the third time the gunmen would attempt the life of the former lawmaker. There was also no record with the police to indicate that such a high government functionary was being trailed by gunmen.

antenatal/gyneacology wards of the hospital. A patient’s mother, Mrs. Rita Eze, appreciated the senator’s gesture, which according to her, “has rescued her daughter from the jaws of cleft ailment.”


Garko was, however, attacked at Yanhawaki, near AY Rimi Filling Station by gunmen who rode on motorcycle. The Kano State Commissioner of Police, who confirmed the incident, said the injure friend had been taken to the hospital for treatment. The body of slain lawmaker was buried at about 10:am yesterday in Garko.


Monday, November 19, 2012

National Mirror

Community Mirror “We are strategising to make sure that robbery cases in Lagos and Ogun are reduced to barest minimum, if not totally eradicated.” AIG IN CHARGE OF ZONE II, MAMMAN TSAFE


he Kuduru community in Bwari Area Council of the FCT, has decried the lack of medical facility in the area. Community Mirror gathered that the only health centre in the village was inaugurated on May 16, 2011 and was yet to begin operations. The Community Leader, Mr Peter Ade, said the people trekked several kilometres to get medical attention at Bwari General Hospital. It was also revealed that people

Kuduru residents bemoan lack of medical facility

usually spend more than an hour to get medical attention, as result of which many lives have been lost. He said the health centre is in a state of abandonment. According to him: “The clinic has been there

since early last year and since it is not in use, lizards and snakes have made it their home, while the whole building is over grown with weeds.’’ Ade, who is also a business man,

Flooded street on Bale Road in Orile Iganmu in Lagos.

blamed the area council administration for neglecting the centre; even as he suggested that it could assist by equipping the health centre with some basic drugs for the people.


Traditional ruler tasks LG on poor infrastructure FRANCIS SUBERU


he traditional ruler of Lisa town, High Chief Najeem Oladele Odugbemi, has appealed to the Chairman, Ifo Local Government Council, Hon. Oluwole Enilolobo, to include the community in the scheme of developmental projects. Speaking during a courtesy call on the Chairman, Chief Odugbemi lamented the poor infrastructural development especially the roads leading to his community, noting that the only visible government project is the memorial arcade built in honour of those who died in the Bellview

airline crash on October 22, 2005. He urged the Chairman not to renege on his campaign promises as Lisa community voted massively during the last election. The traditional ruler urged the Chairman to pay an official visit to Lisa in order to have a firsthand assessment of the developmental needs of the community especially in the area of education. “The only school serving Lisa community and its environ is the Community High School, Oluke and the school is filled to capacity with the government doing little or nothing to assist them in renovating the classrooms”. He called on the Local Government Chairman to live up to expectations in alleviating the sufferings

of Lisa community. He said: “After the plane crash, an arcade was built in memory of the victims of the plane crash. The road that leads to Ijoko from Lisa was also constructed, the then government of Ogun State in collaboration with the Local Government promised to turn the memorial arcade into a tourist destination that would receive a boost from the government. “They promised that social amenities like potable water, health care delivery, etc that would make life more meaningful will be provided by the then government, but to our utter surprise no meaningful progress has taken place as far as the government’s promise was concerned. All we recorded in the past years was a total neglect of the com-

munity’’. According to him, ‘’the Lisa-Ijoko road that was constructed after the incident is now in a very sorry state, as we speak Lisa will soon be cut off from other towns and villages that make up Ifo Local Government if something urgent is not done to put the road back in better shape’’. “As a result of the neglect; we decided to take our destiny in our hands by embarking on self-help development projects. As at date, we have been able to put in place a model market to promote the economic activities of the community and its environ, a police station is also near completion in Lisa, a health centre that will take care of health delivery in the community will also be completed soon’’.

The security man at the centre, Mr. Danjuma Ali told journalists that the place had become haven for reptiles as they roamed around unhindered. “I intend to see the council chairman for some money to cut the grass, I cannot stay here with snakes around,” he said. Mr Samuel Agbor, who owns a block industry adjacent to the centre, said that the last time an official of the council visited the health centre was in February. He claimed that the official was there to take stock of items allegedly stolen from the facility after it was burgled. Agbor also said that security guards attached to the block industry had foiled many attempted burglaries at the abandoned health centre; urging the local council to equip it so as to start offering medical services to residents. The councl’s Head of Health, Dr Goji Sunday, said that provisions had been made in the 2012 budget for equipment, drugs and medical personnel to the centre. He said efforts are on to replace some fittings that were vandalised at the centre. Goji pledged to visit the four health facilities under the Bwari Area Council at Ushafa, Shere, Kawu and Igu, to assess the problems so as to effectively activate them for the benefit of residents.

In his reply, the Chairman, Hon. Oluwole promised to pay a visit and support the effort of the community, stressing that his administration will soon mark its 100 days in office with the commissioning of two developmental projects in Ibaragun and Omitoro towns. He stated that funding possess major challenge but the administration will do its best to build the road, even as he noted that five of the six wards comprising Ifo Local Government passes through this Ijoko road. “We have a duty to ensure there is good road for our people and we will do our best”. He urged Lisa community to have a functional representative in the CDC, noting that his administration has earmarked 30 different vocational centres for youths in his 100 days in office.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Osaze returns with bang, as Musa nets 55 eighth goal

National Mirror



I think we can still go through to the Champions League knock-out stage. We have to believe in God –Man City’s midfielder, Yaya Toure

Eko 2012: Oyo targets top three


yo State Commissioner for Youth and Sports Development, Mr. Adedapo Lam-Adeshina, has challenged Team Oyo to do the state proud at the forthcoming 18th National Sports Festival (NSF) being hosted by Lagos State, by finishing in the top three. Lam-Adeshina said in Lagos at the weekend that the athletes must justify the confidence reposed in them by the state government, by excelling at the fiesta. “Our athletes and coaches have received enough motivation to excel at the forthcoming NSF. Clinching at least the third position would go a long way to encourage the state government to further invest in sports,” he said. The commissioner told NAN that he recently hosted the coaches, athletes and executives of the sports council in his office to evaluate the state’s preparations for Eko 2012.

…Asoju Oba Cup to boost Lagos


he 44th annual Asoju-Oba Table Tennis Championships serves off today and it’s expected to be a rehearsal of sorts for Team Lagos’ players preparing for the forthcoming 18th National Sports Festival tagged “Eko 2012”. With the competition coming up close to the November 27 opening ceremony of the NSF, the state’s players in the table tennis event would no doubt have a head start over other participants. As the most viable platform for budding talent to showcase their skills, participants are always on the lookout for what could be rightly described as a flagship table tennis competition. This edition of the championship promises to be as thrilling as previous ones and no fewer than 70 players in the junior, intermediate and senior categories are set to strut their stuff.

Gov. Fashola

Super Eagles’ players celebrating their qualification for the AFCON in South Africa, after beating Lone Star of Liberia in Calabar on October 13 this year

NFF yet to decide on Eagles’ AFCON bonuses – Inyama EVEREST ONYEWUCHI


he Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) is yet to decide on the allowances and bonuses which the Super Eagles will earn during the Africa Cup of Nations in South Africa in January. Chairman of the Nationwide League and spokesman of the NFF Board, Chief Emeka Inyama, said the Federation could not have fixed winning bonuses for matches when its 2013 budget had not been approved by the National Assembly and sent to President Goodluck Jonathan for assent. The NFF board member said this yesterday, while speaking with National Mir-

ror in reaction to an online story which said that each member of the Super Eagles could earn “as much as $100,000 should they win the AFCON in South Africa.” “This is November and the Nations Cup is in January. How can we (NFF Board) be talking of fixing bonuses when we’re still waiting for the approval of our budget that is before the National Assembly. “We’re presently sourcing for funds to prosecute the Nations Cup. It’s when we get money that we start planning how to spend it. The story is not true; the Board has not discussed nor approved any bonuses,” Inyama said. But yesterday quoted an anonymous “top official” of the NFF as saying that incentives would not be the Su-

per Eagles’ problem at the Nations Cup. The unnamed official said, “If they go all the way and win the competition, they will each take away about $95,000 and when you add that to their daily allowances of around $5,000, you will have about $100,000. And the chief coach (Stephen Keshi) will get double this amount.” National Mirror learnt that in its 2013 budget before the NASS, the NFF proposed that each Super Eagles player would earn $10,000 for a win in the first round of the AFCON, where Nigeria is drawn against defending champion, Zambia, Burkina Faso and Ethiopia. CAN U-17 Final Nigeria


Australian envoy hails Obudu Race


ustralian High Commissioner to Nigeria, His Excellency Ian Mconville, has commended the organisers of the 8th Obudu Mountain Race and assured of his country’s resolve to collaborate with Nigeria in sports development. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Mconville was among 100 professional mountain runners who participated in the race at the Obudu Mountain Resort. The envoy said that he was happy to hit the 12.3 kilometre race with “some wonderful world class in the athletes.” “I really enjoyed participating and I think the authorities have done very well

and the World Mountain Running Association has done a great job too. I am not as well prepared as someone might think but I try to keep fit all year and do a couple of 10 to 12kms run each week. It is helpful to be healthy and fit and not indulge in excessive eating,” the Ambassador added. Ethiopia’s Abebe Dinkesa won in the male category while his compatriot, Etenesh Dironeda, won in the female category at the 2012 meet. By this feat, the Ethiopian duo carted away the prize money of $50, 000 USD each. Dinkesa had previously won the event at the 2008 edition of the annual mountain race.

Ambassador Mconville




Monday, November 19, 2012

National Mirror

Eko 2012: Jordaan, others for seminar AFOLABI GAMBARI


Zambia players after their Mandela Challenge victory in Johannesburg on November 14

hief Executive Officer of the South Africa 2010 World Cup, Danny Jordaan, has confirmed to attend a one-day seminar organised by the Local Organising Committee (LOC) for the 18th National Sports Festival scheduled for Thursday in Lagos. LOC Secretary General, Kweku Tandoh, said yesterday that the seminar was aimed at raising sports profile in Nigeria through mutual understanding and collaboration ahead of the festival which commences on November 27. “We want to use the opportunity of the number of people and sports administrators that would be in Lagos during the festival to brainstorm on the very important aspect of hosting a sporting event that we believe should be brought into the limelight,” Tandoh explained. “We also want to look at the benefits and legacies of hosting the event, as well as the linkages between sports and tourism, sports and business, sports

Soccer City incident: Zambia has forgiven SA –Kalusha N

and science, so that we can come up with solutions that will create structural readjustment in sports,” he further said. National Mirror gathered that the Director of the Department of International Cooperation and Development, International Olympic Committee (IOC), Ganda Sithole, and a University of Kent, United Kingdom lecturer, Dr. Sakis Pappous, would be among the speakers at the event where Sports Minister Bolaji Abdullahi will be Guest of Honour and Lagos State Governor Babatunde Fashola will be Chief Host.

Danny Jordaan

…Niger to gulp N75m




ootball Association of Zambia (FAZ) President, Kalusha Bwalya, yesterday confirmed that Zambia has accepted the apology from the South Africa Football Association (SAFA) over the stoning incident that followed Chipolopolo’s 1-0 win over Bafana Bafana in the Nelson Mandela Challenge in Johannesburg on November 14. Some Bafana fans had found the loss unbearable and resorted

to hurling missiles at the Zambian players and officials as their bus left the Soccer City after the game. Goalkeeper Kennedy Mweene and midfielder Felix Katongo suffered injuries as the bus was hit by huge rocks which shattered the windows. Bwalya, who spoke to National Mirror yesterday, said he had informed all concerned to put the incident behind them in the interest of football and relationship between both countries. “It is unfortunate that all ef-

fort and skills displayed on the field by both teams had trailed the unfortunate incident in priority,” Bwalya, himself an ex-international and Zambian greatest player of all time, said. “Apologies have been offered and accepted,” the African Footballer of the Year 1988 stressed. Meanwhile, Afcon 2013 Chief Executive Officer, Mvuzo Mbebe, has condemned the incident but said it would not affect the reputation that South Africa had over the years in hosting major tournaments.

Tennis: Atseye eyes Dala title YEMI OLUS


op player Henry Atseye has expressed confidence in his ability to win the 26th edition of the Dala Hard Court Tennis Championship as the main draws serve off today in Kano. Atseye got to the second round of the first leg of the Lagos Governor’s Cup last month though he pulled out of the second leg due to injury. But the 2011 winner of the men’s singles at the annual Central Bank of Nigeria Open Tennis Championship believes that he is prepared for the tournament.

“I believe that the Governor’s Cup prepared me in a way and I am glad that I gathered my ATP points which ensured that I can travel across the world to feature in tournaments,” Atseye, who is ranked 1671 in the world said, adding, “I just returned from the African Nations Cup which took place from November 5 to 11 in Senegal where I reached the quarterfinals in the singles and semis in the doubles. So, I am ready for Dala.” It is not clear what prize awaits the Dala Court winner this year, although last year’s men’s singles winner carted home N1m while the women’s category winner got N500, 000.

National Mirror learnt yesterday that only N 11.7m had been received out of N20.2m earmarked for the tournament where 20 men and 10 ladies would play in the main draws.

Sani Ndanusa

iger State Commissioner for Sports, Alhaji Hassan Abdullahi, said yesterday that the government had approved N75m for the state contingent to the 18th National Sports Festival scheduled to begin in Lagos on November 27. According to the commissioner, the state will present 200 athletes and 50 officials at the festival. “We will compete in 19 events during the sports festival,” Abdullahi said, adding that the sports include athletics, para-athletics, basketball, boxing, chess, deaf sports (athletics) and handball.” “Others are handball, hockey, judo, kick boxing, scrabble, squash, swimming, table tennis, Taekwondo and Tennis volleyball

Weightlifting and Wrestling. Part of this release the Commissioner said was for the purchase of kits and equipment that will be used by athletes during the tournament. Assuring that Team Niger will do the state proud in Lagos the commissioner said the team which has been in closed camp at two venues, Ahmadu Bahago Secondary School and the Women Teachers College both in Minna because the traditional camp at Paiko is being used for the ongoing orientation programme of members of the National Youth Service Corps. Abdullahi also told newsmen that the new kits for the athletes will be unveiled to the public before the team departs for Lagos on the 24th of this month 3 days before the commencement of the festival.

Taekwondo starlet wants action YEMI OLUS


inner of the girls’ 10-11 category at the recent Chika Chukwumerije Sports Foundation International Taekwondo Championship, Sophia Nwogu Chigozie, has called for more taekwondo activity in the country. The 11-year-old scholar of Eaglets International School Owerri, Imo State told National Mirror over the weekend that it would serve the sport well if well-meaning Nigerians complemented the Beijing 2008 Olympic bronze medalist, Chika Chukwumerije, by organizing similar competitions for

Nigerian youths. “I think the organisers have proved worthy of helping the youths to grow and contribute their quota to national development,” Chigozie said. Despite fighting with injury to win her fourth taekwondo title, the taekwondo starlet insisted that her exploits in the sports had derived from encouragement she received from her parents who are both Police officers as well as taekwondo practitioners. “I believe that more talents can be discovered by the Nigeria Taekwondo Federation (TFN) with more competitions like the CCSF tournament,” she admitted.

National Mirror



Monday, November 19, 2012



Osaze returns with bang, as Musa nets eighth goal

uper Eagles’ striker, Osaze Odemwingie, returned to his scoring ways, hitting the winner in West Brom’s famous 2-1 win over Chelsea at the Hawthorns on Saturday night in the English Premier League. It was also a night which had all the three goals come from headers. Odemwingie, playing in his newlydeployed deep role planted a delightful header to Shane Long’s cross for the Baggies’ second goal in the 561st minute which also proved to be the match winner for the fourth-placed West Brom. The goal upped his tally to five in nine appearances. Still in England, the Chelsea duo of John Obi Mikel and Victor Moses could do just little to prevent the hosts from snatching maximum points. Mikel, as usual, helped keep things tight in the midfield but found tough matches in Long and Morrison, though, he still found space to hit a shot from a distance which went wide as he continued to search for his first Premiership goal. He was however pulled out with just eight minutes left on the clock. Moses was on from start to finish; his second start so far this season for Chelsea, but failed to add to his lone goal tally. He missed a great chance that would have evened scores for the Blues. He has so far made six appearances since his summer switch from Wigan Athletic. Super Eagles debutant Shola Ameobi was introduced at the start of the second half for Newcastle, who were felled 2-1 at home by visiting Swansea City. He’s still in search of his first goal this season, having featured eight times. In the lower leagues in England, forgotten Super Eagles striker Sone Aluko netted a brace for promotion-chasing Hull City in their 3-2 away defeat of his former club Birmingham City. Aluko put Osaze in joyous mood after scoring goal against Chelsea his side’s noses in front as early as 14 minutes. He doubled his and Hull City’s acminute. The victory was their third this Euro Leagues – Results count 12 minutes later. Hull hit the third season as they continued to wallow in goal in the 33rd minute before the hosts England the relegation waters after 15 games. rallied to reply two times but that was not Arsenal 5 – 2 Spurs Still in Belgium, former Qatar-based enough. Norwich City 1 – 0 Manchester Utd striker Derick Ogbu was in the thick of Meanwhile, his compatriot, Seyi Oloaction for start to finish for OH Leuven 2 – 1 Everton finjana, who had been sidelined for al- Reading who were humbled 3-1 at home by Mons 2 – 3 Manchester Utd most the better part of last season, was Aston Villa on Saturday. Ogbu, who was club’s top handed a starter’s shirt alongside Aluko. Manchester City 5 – 0 Aston Villa scorer last season with 10 goals could But he managed to last till the 63rd min- West Brom 2 – 1 Chelsea only manage an assist for Cameroon ute when he was pulled out. The former QPR 1 – 3 Southampton striker Christian Pouga to pull a goal Wolves midfielder has only played 10 back. He has so far scored four goals in 16 Liverpool 3 – 0 Wigan times for the manager Steve Bruce’s side. league appearances this season. He has In France, former Golden Eaglet Simon Newcastle 1 - 2 Swansea City also been cautioned thrice so far. Zenke was in action for bottom-placed AS Fulham 1-3 Sunderland Young Nigerian striker Imoh Ezekiel Nancy who managed a point in their 3-3 Germany was in action for Standard Liege until draw at Troyes on Saturday. The former 68 minutes when he was substituted for 2 – 2 Augsburg Strasbourg Academy player was substi- Eintracht Frankfurt Standard Liege who forced hosts Zulte tuted in the 76th minute but not after as- Hanover 1 -2 Freiburg Waregem to a goaless draw yesterday. sisting in their third goal scored by Bra- Nurmberg 1 – 1 Bayern Munich The 19-year-old hit man has so far five zilian defender Andre Luiz. He played his Borussia Dortmund 3 – 1 Greuther Furth goals in 12 appearances for the mulseventh league game of the season. tiple Belgian champions. He has also Hamburg 1 – 0 Mainz 05 Missing on the visitors’ side was Eabeen yellow-carded and red-carded once gles returnee defender Onyekachi Apam, Spain apiece. who was dumped on the bench for 90 min- Deportivo La Coruna 0 – 2 Levante In Spain, Obafemi Martins returned utes in their Friday night encounter PSG Real Madrid 5 – 1 Athletico Madrid from the Venezuela friendly with a goal which they famously won 2-1. Apam has for Levante as they punished sinking Barcelona 3 – 1 Real Zaragoza so far played two games this season. Deportivo La Coruna 2-0 yesterday. Mar2 – 1 Espanyol In Belgium, big Nigerian striker Mi- Valencia tins opened scoring in the 40th minute chael Uchebo’s patience paid off netting Osasuna 0 – 0 Malaga after being teed off by Barkero before his debut goal for bottom-placed Cercle the latter put the icing on the cake eight Brugge, who surprisingly beat RC Genk striker came off the bench to finish off minutes from time. Martins, who missed 3-1 on Saturday. The former VVV Venlo the visitors with the third goal in the 78th

a sitter against Real Madrid on a wet pitch penultimate weekend, has now scored five goals in eight outings for his new club this season. In the second division in Spain, Super Eagles striker Ikechukwu Uche grabbed two goals for Villareal as they stepped up their promotion drive, humiliating Racing Santander 3-0 before their home fans on Saturday. Uche ensured victory by supplying the last two goals in the 39th and 53rd minutes, respectively. Manu had opened scoring in the 33rd minute as the victory helped the Marines maintain their fourth spot on the log. The Eagles talisman has now hit his seventh goal of the season from 13 outings so far this season. In Russia, Super Eagles winger Ahmed Musa has refused to stop scoring, netting once in CSKA’s 3-0 victory over Amkar Perm. Musa was clever to direct Alan Dzagoev’s through ball into the net for the league leaders’ second goal and turned provider for Latvia international Aleksandrs Cauna’s third and winning goal. The win has now stretched their points to 39 after 16 league games. He has now scored eight goals, making him the third joint top scorer in the chart. He has incurred the referees’ wrath once in 16 league outings thus far. In Ukraine, forgotten Eagles left back Taye Taiwo returned to Dynamo Kiev’s starting line up after missing four league games, to play 90 minutes in Dynamo Kiev’s 1-0 loss at Metalurh Donetsk on Saturday. He was playing his ninth league game for his on-loan side so far this season. His compatriot Haruna Lukman continued his superb resurgence by playing from start to finish in his third consecutive appearance for the multiple Ukrainian champions. He has so far played five times, getting a caution. Still in Ukraine, Benin-born striker Lucky Idahor was on for 72 minutes for Zorya, who pulled a point in a 0-0 draw at Metalurh Zaporizhya on Saturday. He’s scored twice so far in 15 appearances for his new club. He has so far gone into the referees’ books once. In Turkey, Kalu Uche failed to hit the target for newly-promoted Kasimpasa as they hit fellow newly-promoted Akhisar Belediyespor 2-0 yesterday. Uche, who, as usual, started the game, was pulled out in the 82nd minute. He had returned to his scoring ways, netting from the spot on the dot of 90 minutes penultimate weekend, having gone five games with scoring. He has scored six goals in 12 appearances and has yet to pick a yellow or red card. Earlier on Saturday, Super Eagles captain Joseph Yobo was in action for Fenerbahce who pulled a point in a 1-1 draw at Eskirsehispor. Yobo was on for 90 minutes. The former Everton star who returned from injury, has so far played eight times for the Turkish champions. He has so far remained card free.


Most expensive kidney stone Vol. 02 No. 494



Monday, November 19, 2012

On 18 January 2006, it was announced that Star Trek actor William Shatner (USA) had sold a kidney stone that he had passed the previous year for $25,000 (then £12,700) to online casino Shatner donated the money from the sale to the Habitat for Humanity housing charity.

Saraki: Tribute to a great Nigerian

he call came exactly 2.00pm that day in 1998. I was then the State House Correspondent of Thisday Newspapers in Lagos. It was an urgent one from a colleague and friend, Onyekachi Nwosu, who was formerly London Correspondent of Thisday but had been, appointed Head, Corporate Affairs, Societe Generale Bank (SGBN). The message was very brisque: “Duro, how would you feel working with Oloye?” I was transfixed on the phone for a while. Then I replied that, working with Oloye (late Dr. Olusola Saraki) was a lifetime experience “No sane being would like to miss” He then went on to say that if I was serious on the proposition, I should proceed to the headquarters of SGBN on Lagos Island to see Dr. Bukola Saraki. I did. His son, Bukola told me they were not just looking for a Chief Press Secretary but a political strategist, who would

Guest Columnist



draw a blueprint for the campaign headquarters of “Baba Oloye” as the late Saraki was fondly called. He went on to give me an assignment which I was to submit in three days time. I left with a warning that I was not the only journalist involved and that I must be the best to get the job. Off I went and was back the next day. Later, I was introduced to Oloye as his new Chief Press Secretary and he immediately took me in as a son. He told me that I would learn and benefit a great deal if I was hardworking and honest. He asked if my salary had been fixed and I said yes. He laughed and said he would double it but with a caveat, that “you must not allow Bukola know about it”. However, the bubble bust when Bukola discovered that Baba paid twice the salary approved. I was summoned and given a scolding of my life. Promptly, my salary was slashed. Baba got to know about it and invited me to his office, where he admonished that I should not take the issue seriously. He said, “Bukola would pay your normal salary and I will top it and don’t let him know of it,” he warned. That was how this great and benevolent man treated me all through my stay with him. Baba Oloye was indeed an enigma whose political shoes will be difficult to fill. He was benevolent to a fault. Above


NIGERIAN PROJECT AND WORKED TIRELESSLY FOR IT all, a core family man who wanted the best for his children. I recall how he showed me a cheque Bukola wrote in support of his presidential ambition. “Bukola just contributed N100millon to my campaign efforts. Would you imagine?”He said very proudly. The bond between him and his children was very strong indeed. One thing that really endeared me to Baba was his style of politics. Baba believed so much in party supremacy. He also believed that any member of a political party must be fiercely loyal to the party. That was why Baba invested billions of naira in politics. All through my stay, I did not recall a day without him financially assisting party faithful. After my appointment, I was opportune to get closer to the late business and political mogul and realised he was an intellectual of the highest order. His private library boasts of some of the largest collection of

books anywhere. And of course, he was an avid reader who most times engaged in philosophical works. Saraki was not all about money; he was indeed an intellectual giant. Much as he loved and appreciated people around him, he had no room for betrayal in any form. You could only betray him to your peril. A case in point was the crisis between him and former Kwara State Governor, Mohammed Lawal. While the quarrel was on, he called me to say: “Duro have you see what Lawal did to me? But I assure you his days in office are numbered. I will do whatever it takes to stop him from getting a second term”. That was quintessential Oloye. Lawal, later learnt the hard way as he was booted out of office. Saraki believed so much in the Nigerian project and worked tirelessly for it. He had his blueprint on how to make the country great. His dream was to win the Presidency but it was not to be. Not quite a few believed that the country missed the services of a great administrator who would have built a modern Nigeria. Late Saraki will be remembered for his avid interest in sports, especially lawn tennis. I am yet to see any Nigerian as interested in this game as Baba. He will never miss Wimbledon or any other major championship for anything. Of course, he was not just a lover of the game; he was also a great player. Nigerians and indeed the entire world will miss him. Will miss his philanthropy, benevolence, political sagacity; discipline and above all, his never- say- die spirit! Adieu. Meseko, Senior Special Assistant to Governor Idris Wada, was former Chief Press Secretary to late Olusola Saraki

Sport Extra


olden Eaglets of Nigeria were N1million richer yesterday following a show of magnanimity by the President of Nigeria Football Federation, Alhaji Aminu Maigari. Maigari gave the players and officials the amount inside the Dressing Room of the U. J. Es-

Maigari splashes N1m on Eaglets uene Stadium, Calabar after the Eaglets battled a 2-0 win over the ‘much more matured’ Mali U-17 side in their final 2013 African U-17 Championship qualifying fixture, first leg. Defender Wilfred Ndidi and midfielder Alhassan Ibrahim

got the goals for Nigeria in an entertaining game that was pockmarked by whistle-happy Ivorian referee, Kouame Ndri. “We are going to protest to CAF concerning this Malian team. Physiologically, it is not possible that the players are un-

der the age of 17,” observed Barrister Chris Green, chairman of the NFFTechnical Committee. The return leg will take place in Bamako in a fortnight with the winner on aggregate qualifying for the finals in Morocco NFFAminu President, Aminu Maigari Maigari next April.

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Monday, November 19, 2012  
Monday, November 19, 2012  

*No plan to remove fuel subsidy –Jonathan --Yet to decide on 2015 --Manitoba contract intact --Govt won’t negotiate with Boko Haram --...