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PDP top shots hijack opposition merger

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Celebrity Nigeria’s midfielder John Mikel Obi, (right) takes part in a training session in Vilamoura on the eve of the friendly against Cape Verde.

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Top Stories

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

January 19, 2013

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Man who spent 20 years in hospital

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Hit-and-run LAGBUS driver kills mother of three

Professor Wole Soyinka; Osun State Commissioner for Culture and Tourism, Sikiru Ayedun; Senator Sola Adeyeye, representing Osun Central Senatorial District (middle) and others, during Soyinka’s visit to the construction site of Osun Grove Modern Pavilion in Osogbo, Osun State yesterday

Soyinka takes River Osun to Brazil

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Woman with world’s largest breasts rejects breast reduction surgery

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n a bid to unite Nigerian worshippers of Osun, the Yoruba goddess of fresh waters and fertility, with Osun worshippers in the Caribbean, Nobel Laureate, Professor Wole Soyinka yesterday in Osogbo scooped the spiritual Osun River into a container with a view to transferring same to worshippers in Brazil. Over 50 million people of Yoruba descent are believed to be living in the Diaspora all over the world, with the largest concentration in Central America and the Caribbean. The Nobel Laureate disclosed that during a previous visit to Brazil, he found out that Yoruba people in the Diaspora as well as people of other races who are worshippers of Osun only use symbolic water in a bowl to depict the Osun River during their worship sessions and festivals. He then promised the worshippers that on his next visit to the South American country, he would bring them water from Osun River, so as to confer originality to the spiritual essence of water during their festivals. He said at the Osun Grove in Osogbo yesterday, “I am taking Osun Osogbo water samples to Brazil to the Osun worshippers. We have a lot of Black people

From left, Soyinka, Ayedun, Adeyeye, Chairman, Osun Tourism Investment Drive, Mr Abimbola Daniyan and others at the site yesterday

there and many of them are devotees of Osun, Sango, Obatala, Ogun, Yemoja and other deities. “When I visited the worshippers in Brazil, I found out that they have preserved Yoruba culture, from the liturgies to some of the prayers and even the processions of the devotees. I saw the Iyalorisa of Osun. I saw a bowl of water, which was symbolic of Osun River and I promised them that I would bring them the actual water from Osun.” Soyinka, who is a UNESCO Ambassador, also visited the groove to inspect the conditions of the tourist sites, relics and natural resources within the groove.

“I came to see how the work is going on here because there is a lot of restoration work going on here. And there is always a conflict of ideas when projects like this are being done in making sure that one element in a preserved place like this does not clash with another element. We came to take a look; to see if there is any kind of advice we can give, to see how we can harmonise things.” Soyinka, who went round the Osun Grove with the Senator representing Osun Central Senatorial District, Professor Sola Adeyeye, also observed that some of the relics, art and cultural artifacts need constant maintenance and restoration so

that they may retain their potentials as tourist attractions. He also inspected the new spectators’ arena, which is under construction to make sure the structure blends with the natural flora and fauna of the groove. The Commissioner for Home Affairs, Tourism and Culture, Mr. Sikiru Ayedun, told reporters that the government of Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola is leaving no stone unturned in making sure that the State of Osun becomes the major tourist destination of the country. Ayedun said the purpose of the UNESCO Ambassador’s visit hinges also on how to harmonise the interest of government and the community, as well as the ways and means of preservation of the infrastructure within the groove. He expressed strong conviction that with the personality of Soyinka, who attested to what is on ground in the grove, the Government of Osun is certainly taking the tourist sites of the State to the international level. “The essence of this tour is to harmonise the interest of the government, the community and the preservation of the site as regards the infrastructural development that the government is putting in place. “Professor Soyinka has attested that what is on ground conforms to the natural environment. We are indeed taking the development of the site and some other tourist sites in the state beyond Nigeria. It is already being internationalised and that is the path we intend to follow,” Ayedun concluded.


Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

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January 19, 2013

Saturday Starter

The Year of Fire? Is 2013 the Year of Fire in Nigeria? From Lagos to Sokoto, Awka to Lokoja, palaces to shanties, mansions to markets, offices to stalls; all over the country incidents of conflagration continue to make headlines. Lives have been lost and properties worth billions of Naira destroyed. The question now is: is 2013 going to be synonymous with fire in Nigeria? KEMI OLAITAN, THOMAS USHIE AND EMMANUEL SUNDAY

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013 arrived on the wings of gloom on Lagos Island as a result of a fire disaster on the popular Lagos Island on December 26, 2012. A firecrackerinduced inferno had claimed no fewer than two lives; more than 12 buildings were also razed while billions of Naira merchandise was destroyed. It was a fire disaster too many for the Lagos State government which decided to implement and monitor the ever present ban on the use of firecrackers during celebrations. The result was a New Year celebration devoid of its characteristic use of fireworks. As if this was not enough, a few days into the New Year, the popular Labaowo Market in Ibadan went up in flames. No fewer than 300 shops were razed. This was followed by the popular Bola Ige International Market in the city. It was also gutted by fire. After that it was the turn of the South-South geopolitical zone. At Mbiama, a border community between Bayelsa and Rivers states on the East-West Road a tanker exploded and went up in flames. The ensuing conflagration rendered hundreds of people homeless. Fire is not a respecter of anyone; not even the blueblood. Very early on Tuesday January 8, it paid the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi III a visit. After three hours it consumed 21 rooms of his ancient palace. Six structures in Makoko waterfront community,

Yaba Local Government Area of Lagos State were also razed; destroying property which monetary value is yet to be ascertained. This is just as the Oko Oba Timber Market was completely burnt down. This came barely 24 hours after a storey building on Igando road, Ikotun-Igando Local Council Development Area, (LCDA), was gutted by fire. The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation( NNPC) pipeline at Arepo village, Owode, Ogun State also exploded killing over 50 suspected vandals. The explosion followed a fire which was sparked off by some vandals who stormed the creeks by boat to siphon fuel from the NNPC pipeline. And it goes on, on and on. Such a high number of fire incidents in such young a year! Are these pointers to what the year would experience, analysts are wont to ask. The situation was, however, not surprising to some; especially relevant government agencies. They saw it coming. Just two days into the New Year the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) through its SouthWest Zonal Coordinator, Mr. Iyiola Akande, cautioned Nigerians against harsh weather condition as well as fire outbreak during the dry season. The NEMA official gave the warning in a statement by the agency’s Information Officer, Ibrahim Farinloye. According to him, the caution becomes necessary following the effects of extreme weather which resulted in excessive rainfall and flooding in the country last year.

He stressed that there was the need to prepare against risks associated with early dry season. “NEMA is appealing that all disaster management and municipal authorities should enlighten the public on avoidable fire incidents during the period. “All community leaders should be involved in educating Nigerians, particularly those living in peculiar environments – such as those dwelling in thatched houses, especially in rural areas. “We need to be cautious about the use of firewood or other smouldering objects and heating materials and where such cannot be avoided; the fire should be put out immediately after use,” NEMA had advised. The Comptroller General of Nigeria Fire Service, Olusegun Okebiorun, also warned Nigerians to be careful while dealing with materials that could easily ignite fire in the dry season just as he expressed the Service’s preparedness to enforce the National Fire Safety Code (NFC) on all public buildings as contained in the Federal Government Circular. All these point to fact: due to the prevailing circumstances and peculiarities of Nigerians, it is suspected that fire would rage this year. While NEMA, according to Farinloye, had been able to predict a season of raging conflagration based on research, empirical data and collaboration with similar agencies, some individuals had relied on other sources to make their predictions and warned Nigerians on the impending rage of fire. CONTINUED ON PAGE 5


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January 19, 2013

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Saturday Starter

‘Nigerians should be more safety conscious’ Mr Ibrahim Farinloye, National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) South West Information Officer, speaks on why the agency warned against fire outbreak in the New Year and government’s efforts to curb fire incidences. Excerpts:

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ou warned against fire incidences in the New Year. What gave you the indication that there would be so much fire? NEMA has Planning, Research and Forecasting Department and the synergy between the Agency and its various stakeholders is very cordial and smooth. Exchange of information made it possible for NEMA to predict future events especially going by the extreme weather condition we experienced from rainy season when about 16 states had devastating flooding. The cycle of disaster is that the other side of disaster may occur after sometimes, the second reason why NEMA predicted the fire outbreak was that South-West has all indications of fire outbreak as it is densely populated and premises that have gardens and consumes high capacity of electricity while the control of electricity is left for children when their parents are out for their businesses. Most children in the rural areas engage in wild life games, bush burning in efforts to get bush meat as it is the normal practice in the zone. So, chances that there could be cases of fire are very high. How prepared is NEMA for the prevention and assistance in cases of fire outbreaks? NEMA is presently located in the six geographical zones, including an operational office in Abuja and hopefully within the year, the agency will move closer to the grassroots with additional operational offices in certain disaster prone zones. This is to bridge the gaps between the grassroots and NEMA. There has been a disconnect between NEMA and the grassroots with near or non-existing state and local governments’ structures that are supposed to serve as links to the theatre of the disaster. NEMA has gone down to the grassroots with the employment of Grassroots’ Emergency Management Volunteers; NEMA/NYSC Emergency Management Vanguards; Executive Volunteers’ on Emergency Management and Schools’ Emergency Management Clubs. These bodies were trained in various aspects of emergency management starting from identification of disaster risks, how risks develop into hazards and hazards into emergencies. They were trained on what to do at each stage. They trained on first aid administration and what to do after the first aid

administration. The Director General, Alhaji Muhammad Sani-Sidi, has f brought in private sector, NGOs, FBOs and CBOs directly to enhance effective and efficient disaster management in the country. They are to be fully trained on various technicalities of emergency management in all the 774 local government areas. These bodies have greatly helped NEMA to respond and intervene promptly in many incidences and played vital roles in our state of preparedness because the dynamism of disaster needs dynamic approaches and diverse methodologies in tackling it. How many fire incidences have you recorded in the New Year and what is the extent of damage? Oyo State -7, Osun State - 2, Ogun State – 3, Ondo State - 0, Ekiti State – 0, Lagos State – 6, General cause – Mishandle of inflammable objects and electric sparks. How well were you able to assist? Victims of disasters are entitled to relief materials from their immediate local government and where the local government is overwhelmed, it will request the state government to assist the victims. If the state is also overwhelmed, then NEMA will be contacted to assist the victims. NEMA has warehouses that stockpile both food and non-food items in the six geo-political zones of the country. There are more than enough relief materials

Farinloye

as well as post disaster trauma services depending on the nature of the incident. What is your view on the response of fire fighters to cases of fire and how effective have the police been in the prevention of looting and crowd control? Fire service personnel and other stakeholders respond promptly and timely. They take their positions well. The major handicap is the disconnect or gap between federal and the other two tiers of government that fail to establish their structures in complementing the Federal NEMA. All the existing structures in the country are not financially independent,

full of ad-hoc staff and the politicisation of emergency management matters in many cases. Except Lagos State, no state in SouthWest is capable of combating most cases because of lack of fire appliances. All over the South-West zone, there is no water hydrant where fire appliances can possibly refill its water. The standard in fire disaster management is that in every 50 metres there should be water hydrants but it takes up to five kilometres before fire appliances can get water to refill. Nigerians do not care to learn about the simplest safety measures especially on fire prevention and management. Nigerians do not have fire extinguishers in their homes while most extinguishers in public places are not functional. Illegal electrification and by nonprofessional electricians cause electric sparks. Respective state Ministry of Works are still working towards coming up with the total losses from the incidence. The Police and Nigerians Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) have the mandate towards effective and efficient crowd control on any occasion. They try their best, but there is need for Nigerians to be safety conscious when there is disaster because on-lookers or surging crowd/spectators are those that suffer secondary disaster in cases of fire incidences. They distract and disturb effective and efficient disaster response for prompt search and rescue activities.

‘More people now buy fire fighting tools’ Frank Eguabor is the Managing Director of Chiman Fire Protector. He spoke with FUNMI SALOME JOHNSON.

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or how long have you been in the business? I have been in the business for about 15 years now. I not just sell fire fighting equipment I am also a trained fire fighter. How would you rate the business now? The business can be described as lucrative, more so nowadays with the increase in incidences of inferno. The patronage level has increased these days. I think because of the recent fire disasters, a lot of people are now becoming more and more aware of the need to take preventive measures to safeguard themselves from fire outbreak. Before now, most of the clients we had were majorly offices and filling stations. But these days, quite a number of people are now buying for their homes and cars. What are the types of fire fighting equipment available for use in the market? There are various equipment used in fighting fire. The major ones are the fire extinguishers which are in two types. We have the powder type and the gas type. We also have others such as

the nose cover, fireproof jacket, helmets and shoes. Although an amateur may not need to get all of these, the fire extinguisher is a very vital one to have at home and in offices. What is the difference between the powder fire extinguisher and the gas type and with what advantage? The major advantage of the powder fire extinguisher over the gaseous one is the fact that the powder one can be used from a reasonable distance from the fire while you have to move close before you can use the gas type which is quite dangerous especially for one who is not a trained fire fighter. Secondly, the powdered type is used for most fire types while the gas type is used majorly for fire caused by fuel explosion. The only disadvantage of the powdered type is that when the fire is off, you will have to start cleaning up the whole place that will be littered with powder while the gas type will not have such effect. Are the equipment locally made or imported? They are all imported: we have no locally made one. The only thing is that we have refill. When the content is finished

Eguabor

or expired we have a few companies like ours that service and refill but there are no locally made extinguishers. How affordable are these equipments? They are not so expensive at least in comparison to their importance in saving lives. The powder type that is 6kg is sold for about N6,500 while the gas type is about of the 5kg goes for about N8,500. We have other smaller sizes like the ones used in cars.


Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

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January 19, 2013

Saturday Starter

2013: Nigeria’s year of fire? CONTINUED FROM PAGE 3 These are the members of the clergy. Many of these people of God had seen it coming and warned members of their congregation nay Nigerians in general. Her Grace Capt. Dr. Prophetess Dorcas Bajomo-Obiri, is a world renowned seer. During the Cross Over vigil service at C&S Church of God Oke Anu, Olorunda Street, Ijaye-Ojokoro, Lagos State, she prophesied that fire incidences would be rampant in 2013. But she gave an antidote to the impending disaster. “God revealed to me that fire incidences would be of high proportion this 2013. Fire will consume property of the rich and the poor during this year. Many properties and human lives would be lost to fire in this year,” Bajomo-Obiri had cried that Monday night. “The antidote to this disaster is fasting and prayer. We all should be in prayers. We should also fast so that God would avert these impending disasters,” she added. Another member of the robe who gave a damming prediction on 2013 and fire disasters is Prophetess Rebecca A. Adeniyion. In her church’s 21-day yearly programme which took place at the church auditorium Christ Apostolic Church, AgbalaItura, Ojo, Lagos from 1 through 21 December 2012, and attended by different men of God, Adeniyion said Nigeria should expect more fire disasters in 2013 and that citizens should be very careful with the way they handle fire or highly combustible things. She, like Bajomo-Obiri, hinged the impending disasters on the country’s leaders who have shunned everything good for lack of the fear of God, untruthfulness, immorality, getting richer in ungodly ways and other vices. While the people of the robe had traced the etymology of the fire punishment to the unbecoming ways of the country’s and proffered different prayers and fasting as antidote, government agencies which deal more with empirical data and

‘We saw hell in Jankara Market’ Sikirat Adelabu is a trader. She lost wares worth thousands of Naira and her shop to the Boxing Day fire cracker-induced Jankara Market fire disaster of 2012.

H Bajomo-Obiri

Adeneyi

research say caution is the word. Not less than 607 fire incidents were recorded in Oyo State in 2012 during which 38 persons died and 48 people saved in the incidents by the personnel of the Fire Services Department in the state. The state Director of Fire Services, Mr Kareem Oyekunle, made the disclosure, lamenting that just about two weeks in the New Year, his department had responded to as much as 46 fire emergency calls in which a life was saved and three were lost. He disclosed that his men had so far this year saved properties worth four hundred and thirty million, eight hundred thousand Naira (N430,800,000) from the fire incidents in which three million, four hundred thousand Naira (N3,400,000) worth of property were destroyed. He added that in view of the expected many more weeks of dry season, the citizens should be fire conscious and adhere strictly to fire safety rules such as avoidance of indiscriminate smoking, nonhoarding of flammable liquid, burning of refuse under close supervision and ensuring that the fire is totally put off by wetting the place of burning after among others. Apart from trying to salvage human lives and property and arrest the raging

fire, victims, sympathisers and fire fighters still have another common foe to contend with: the looter. At any disaster site looters are ubiquitous. Some do it under the guise of being sympathetic to the plight of the disaster victims while others go about it brashly. It is, however, not an uncommon sight to see policemen and other law enforcement agents keeping an eagle eye on disaster sites. The Force Public Relations Officer, Frank Mba (CSP), told Saturday Mirror that the role of the police during fire incidents is to maintain law and order as well as prevent untoward attitude of people during such occasions. He claimed that on many occasions, men of the Nigeria Police Force had successfully prevented looting of property and also quelled would-be disruption of law and order. “During a time of fire incident, the major role of the police is to be on hand to maintain law and order. Remember that it is at such times that some disgruntled elements would want to ventilate their grievance on the system. But with our men in place, such acts of looting and mayhem are frontally curtailed. We have done this in many parts of the country before,” he added.

ow does it feel to lose all you have to fire disaster? It is a sad experience which nobody would ever wish for. It is like turning back the hands of time and starting life anew as a new born baby. Fire clears and consumes all what one has worked for in their whole life in a matter of minutes. It is a disaster that should only be imagined than experienced. But I thank God that I am still alive. What did you lose to the fire disaster? My family lost their valuables, goods and means of livelihood. I lost my shop and all my life investment in that shop. That shop was my life because it is from there that I feed myself and family but in a twinkle of an eye, it went down in fire. We rescued just a few goods from the shop and even some of those we rescued ended up in some wrong hands. It is a sad story I don’t want to remember. How are you planning to start up your business again? Did any of those who came to sympathise with you offer any financial assistance? The major problem is renting a shop. As you can see, all the buildings affected by the fire have been pulled down. I was not expecting money from those who came to sympathise with me. It is not about giving me money but showing me love and care. And that was what they have been doing. Although some gave me money, it was not enough a start up capital. The little money I have saved, I can use it to start little by little. But as I have said, the major problem I have now is money to rent a shop. Once you have a shop in a strategic location, you can be supplied goods on credit. It is not easy at all to own a shop in this area.

‘My sad experience with fire’ Mrs. Ogunjirin lost properties and goods worth millions of Naira to the Oko-Baba Sawmill and Timber Market inferno of Tuesday, 8 January, 2013.

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Ogunjirin

hat was the cause of the fire and what did you lose? The fire started in broad day light but unfortunately, nothing could be rescued. I was not here because we were on Christmas holiday to resume on January 14. I learnt that some people residing here stored fuel. This can be really true because they owned and ran small generators. So, obviously it was those living here that were responsible for the fire. It started from one of the living ‘pako’ rooms and when I was told that the factory was on fire, before I got

here, I only could see smokes and ashes and debris of machines and saw mill engines. It is not the first time. It happened two years ago and allegedly caused by the same people. I lost my machines and all my wood to the fire incidence. It is not long when I restocked preparatory for the New Year’s work. There were some cash in the workshop that also perished in the fire. The money was from the sale I made during the holiday. Since the banks were closed to customers, I could not lodge it. Unfortunately, it got burnt in the fire. Do you see this kind of ‘New Year’ fire as marking the beginning of a new thing? This is not a good way to start the New Year at all. Fire incident is definitely not

a good way to start the year. But we don’t know what God has in stock for us. We look up to Him. With what happened, would you quit the business so that your children would take care of you? And what do you think the government can do for you and other victims? I can still work and feed myself and family as a timber miller. I am not ready to die now. So, I am not ready to stay at home to be fed by people. Governor Fashola should please, for the sake of saw millers who have lost their machines, woods, logs, and other properties worth millions of Naira, reallocate the land for us so that we can pick the pieces of our life and start to work again. This is the best way we can compensate ourselves.


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NATIONAL NEWS

January 19, 2013

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Opposition merger: PDP top shots hijack process •Attempts to woo Obj, govs, others revealed OBIORA IFOH ABUJA

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he proposed merger of top opposition parties including the Action Congress of Nigeria, Congress for Progressive Change and All Nigeria Peoples Party among others may have been hijacked by the ruling People’s Democratic Party (PDP). The Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, the Congress for Progressive Change, CPC and the All Nigeria Peoples Party, ANPP had earlier agreed to work out a merger arrangement until Wednesday when CPC announced it would rather go it alone with ACN. Saturday Mirror gathered that the decision of the CPC to go it alone with ACN is unconnected with the suspicion that top PDP leaders are really behind the original merger arrangement having infiltrated the group.

Sources disclosed that meetings have been held on several occasions since last year in different parts of the country, particularly in Abuja, Ota, Minna and Kano on the need to harmonise interests to ensure that the merger arrangement becomes a viable option to the dominance of the PDP. Leader of the CPC and former military Head of State General Mohammadu Buhari in one the meetings held in Kano was said not to be comfortable with the incursion of some PDP elements in the arrangement and sworn to back out should the door be opened to all comers. He was particularly worried about some elements in ANPP who he said had betrayed him in the past. He said although he had nothing against former President Obasanjo being wooed, he objected to the likes of a former governor of Borno State who incidentally is one of the lead-

ers of the ANPP. It was based on the position of the former head of state that the CPC officially announced that it would go ahead with the merger arrangement only on the ground that ANPP is excluded. But buttressing the fear of Buhari, the CPC governorship candidate in Enugu State and a chieftain of Congress for Progressive Party, CNPP, Osita Okechukwu, told Saturday Mirror that the status of ANPP was not yet clear as the party was assumed to have PDP elements. Okechukwu stated that the present merger is the first phase and subsequent phases would come up after the ACN and CPC merger talk. Asked why it is difficult to have other parties at this stage of the merger talks, he said: “To make it easier, as the General has said, ACN and CPC had reached a certain level before 2011 general election. You know within ANPP,

there are some associates of PDP there and that was what the General was particular about because some of these elements might not allow the merger to work. So, why don’t we make sure that it works before allowing everybody to come in?” Also the ANPP Board of Trustees chairman and former governor of Borno State, Senator Ali Modu Sheriff told Saturday Mirror shortly after the BoT meeting of the party held on Tuesday that the merger with CPC was no longer a priority to the party. According to him, ANPP would rather concentrate in rebuilding ahead of the 2015 general election. According to him, “We reviewed the general activities of the party, we had earlier set up a committee to recommend how to rebuild and restructure all our chapters throughout the country. The BoT devoted time to look into the report of the committee and based

on the report we have taken decision to embark on fencemending in any state branch where there is a problem. “The report presented to us concerns the current state of our party chapters in all the 36 states of the federation. From the report, we are convinced that apart from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), there is no any other party with as much structure like the ANPP nationwide. Apart from the ruling party and ANPP there is no other political party that has a structures from the wards up to the national level. We are trying to look inwards and consider how best to reposition ANPP as a party. We believe that for us to talk to anybody on merger, we have to first repair our home.” Already Imo State governor, Owelle Rochas Okorocha, has indicated interest to dump All Progressive Grand Alliance, APGA, to pitch tent with the new party while some PDP governors who are not satisfied with the

Mali: Fears over possible terrorists attack in North A ZA MSUE KADUNA

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L-R: Former president of Ghana, Mr. John Kuffour; former Head of Interim Government, Chief Ernest Shonekan; former president, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo and Senate President, David Mark, at a civic reception to celebrate Obasanjo in Abeokuta, yesterday.

Mark, Kuffor, Shonekan, others extol Obasanjo FEMI OYEWESO ABEOKUTA

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enate presidents, David Mark; former Ghanaian president, John Kuffor and former Head of Interim National Government, Chief Ernest Shonekan were among eminent personalities that extolled the leadership qualities of former President Olusegun Obasanjo yesterday in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital. The trio spoke yesterday in Ogun at the grand civic reception organised by the South West zone of the People’s Democratic Party

(PDP) to welcome the former president home after retiring as the Chairman of Board of Trustees (BoT) of the party. Kuffor, who in his keynote address, noted that very few heroes were honoured while still alive, described Chief Obasanjo as a living and outstanding legend who had contributed to the transformation of African economy and restoration of peace across the continent. Describing Chief Obasanjo as a “gift to Africa” whose leadership qualities transcends Nigeria, Kuffor also stressed that the former Nigerian president

had greatly contributed to the transformation and upliftment of less-privileged African countries. In his remarks, Senate President, David Mark described Obasanjo as an outstanding Nigeria statesman whose record would be difficult to surpass. In his own remarks, former Heads of Interim National Government (ING), Chief Shonekan described Obasanjo as a man of integrity who stuck to the military agreement of handling over power peacefully to elected civilian in 1979. He said Obasanjo, who

started life from a humble beginning was passionately committed to the unity of Nigeria and that he had never physically or emotionally deviated from that course. In his remarks, Chief Obasanjo who responded to all the encomiums showered on him by the eminent personalities attributed his accomplishments in life to “the grace of God”. Obasanjo said all his actions in life had been guided by three principles of whether he could defend his actions before people as well as whether such action benefits the majority of the people.

development in their party, particularly the romance between President Jonathan and the PDP chairman, Tukur may also join forces with the new party. A source also said that the members of the Nigeria Governors Forum are also watching the development with keen interest as the relationship between its PDP members and the Bamanga Tukur-led PDP has continued to get worse. The Gov. Chibuike Amaechi led governors forum has refused to work with Tukur since his assumption to office in March 2012 over their inability to get their choice, Dr. Babaye Shehu elected as the National Chairman of PDP. It is no longer news that Niger State governor, Dr. Babangida Aliu has flagged off his presidential campaign defying party norms that an incumbent is given the first right of refusal. It is believed that President Jonathan still harbours second term ambition.

here is palpable fear of attack in the North as Mali rebels gain entrance into Nigeria through its borders. The fear is fuelled by the suspicion that the rebels might join forces with the dreaded Islamic sect, book Haram which has threatened the peace of the country in recent time. Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Azubike Ihejirika, had on Thursday disclosed the presence of some Mali trained rebels in Nigeria, assuring however that internal security measures and that of neighboring countries were being beefed up. Gen. Ihejirika dropped the hint in an interview with journalists after the take off ceremony of troops on the Nigerian Battalion 1 of the African Led International Support Mission to Mali (AFISMA) at the Nigerian Army Peacekeeping Center (NAPKC),Jaji, Kaduna State. Saturday Mirror gathered that security agencies are worried over more deadly terrorist bombings especially in the Northern

part of Nigeria if preventive measures are not put in place by authorities. A dependable security source said that both plain clothes and special terrorist force squad had been sent to strengthen security checks at the nation’s borders for manhunt of Mali rebels. “What happened during late Mammar Gaddafi’s Libya uprising should not repeat itself in Nigeria. Many fighters entered Northern Nigeria and we experienced more terrorist deadly attacks than ever before. “The Mali terrorists’ war will end up putting Nigeria into more attacks because as chief of army staff had said in Jaji some Mali rebels are in the country already, and all hands should be on deck if not our situation will be worst.” Meanwhile, former governor of the defunct Kaduna State, Alhaji Balarabe Musa, in an interview with Saturday Mirror warned the federal government to be wary of western interest in Mali saying it is possible for Boko Haram and other militant groups to link with Mali rebels for possible attacks in Nigeria.


Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

NATIONAL NEWS

January 19, 2013

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Lawan/Otedola bribery scam: Reps’ probe report out soon TORDUE SALEM ABUJA

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L-R: Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal, Alex Badeh; Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Adm. Dele Ezeoba, and Minister of State for Defence, Erelu Olusola PHOTO: NAN Obada, during the decoration of newly promoted Senior Officers in Abuja, yesterday.

SSS parades suspected bombers of Jaji Cantonment OMEIZA AJAYI

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he State Security Service, SSS, yesterday paraded two suspects, Ibrahim Mohammed (a.k.a. Alilullah and Mohammed Ibrahim Idris, who it alleged carried out the bombing of the Saint Andrews Protestant Military Church at the Armed Forces Command and Staff College, Jaji, Kaduna State, on November 27, 2012. The suspects were also said to have admitted participating in other attacks in Kaduna State, including the one on St. Rita’s Catholic Church and Badarawa. Parading the suspects, Deputy Director, Public Affairs of the SSS, Marylin Ogar, told journalists at a press briefing in Abuja, that Mohammed, 18, hails from Ilobu Village in Ilobu Local Government Area of Osun State, while Idris, 50, a yam hawker comes from Jalingo, the Taraba State capital. According to Ogar, the suspects would soon be handed over to military authorities for further investigation while other suspects arrested in connection with the bombing are still being questioned by the service. While she expressed the determination of the Service to continue to

evolve strategies towards ending the spate of terrorism in the country, Ogar enjoined Nigerians to avail the SSS of vital information that could assist it on its job. Ogar noted that Lawal personally wore the military uniform with the rank of a Captain which afforded him free access into the military formation in Jaji. “Lawal volunteered to carry out the Jaji suicide attack personally since no suitable person could be sourced for the assignment due to time constraint. “Ibrahim Mohammed accompanied the two suicide bombers up to the gate where he bade them farewell,” Ogar stressed. Ogar pointed out that Mohammed Ibrahim Idris served as a motivational preacher and a father figure for members of the sect as well as conduct surveillance on selected targets using the cover of a yam hawker. During interrogation, Ogar said, Mohammed confessed to have been indoctrinated into the Boko Haram sect by one Bashir Madalla, who also trained him in the use of fire arms and the production and priming of Improvised Explosive Devices, IEDs. According to him, Madalla who is now late, sent one Mallam Lawal, one

of the suicide bombers, to Damaturu, Yobe State, to retrieve some military uniforms and weapons from Boko Haram cells in the state and that the said Lawal often appeared in military uniforms with the rank of a captain without being detected and arrested. While speaking to the press, Ibrahim Mohammed admitted that it was prior to the Ramadan fasting he joined the sect, adding that his first job was to go to Zaria to collect a bag of fertilizer that would be used for making IED. The 18-year-old mechanic confessed that he dropped out of school at JSS3 and went to stay with his uncle in Kaduna. He said a Toyota Matrix was used for the Jaji bombing and it was his first involvement in the act of terrorism. He further revealed that before he joined the sect, he was not happy with the sect’s activities, saying he became satisfied with the sect’s onslaughts when he finally joined them. He said the attack on Jaji was personally carried out by one Tasiu and Mallam Lawal who assumed the leadership of the sect in Kaduna following the death of Bashir Madalla. He added that Lawal decided to personally carry

out the attack since there was no other suitable person to be saddled with the deadly assignment due to time constraint. He also said he accompanied the bombers to the gate of the Armed Forces Military cantonment and bade them farewell even as he admitted to have taken part in procuring the fertilizer used in priming the Toyota Matrix car that was used in the suicide mission. The car, he admitted, had been parked in the residence of Mohammed Ibrahim Idris, which served as the sect’s safe haven. On his part, Idris, admitted that he was also indoctrinated into the sect in August 2012 by a fellow yam hawker, Mallam Lawal, after which he was relocated to Kaduna by Lawal and given a two-bedroom flat in Rafin Guza area in Kaduna, which serves as the sect’s operational base. Idris said that he served as a motivational preacher and father figure for the sect as well as conduct surveillance on selected targets using the cover of a yam seller. The unexpected attack on Jaji, led to the removal of the Commandant of the Armed Forces Command and Staff College, AFCSC and the deployment of another officer to the institution.

eport of the House of Representatives Committee on Ethics and Privileges’ probe into alleged bribery case involving Hon. Farouk Lawan and businessman, Mr. Femi Otedola will soon be presented for debate, House spokesman, Hon. Zakari Muhammed said yesterday. The House had early last year, instituted a probe into allegations by oil magnate, Mr. Femi Otedola that he gave Hon. Farouk Lawan and Mr. Boniface Emenalo, Chairman and Clerk respectively of an Adhoc Committee that probed oil subsidy claims by marketers, US$620,000 to delist his company’s name among indicted oil marketing agencies on the committee’s list. Hon. Muhammed who spoke at a press briefing at the National Assembly at the weekend, said the report would not be “swept under the carpet” as the House intended to see the

end of the allegations. “We are not going to sweep any investigations or report under the carpet, we investigated the issue and we would soon come up with the report”. Mr. Muhammed pleaded with Nigerians to exercise patience with the House on the matter, as it was doing its bit to ensure the culprits in the case face justice. “The House has made its case clear on this issue; we have said repeatedly that we are not ready to protect anybody found wanting in any case of corruption”. On the call by Lagos Lawyer, Mr. Festus Keyamo, on the Police to hurry the case to court, the House said, “well, it is left for the security agencies to decide”. The Hon. Gambo Danmusa-led Committee on Ethics and Privileges, have had sessions with Hon. Lawan and Mr. Otedola on the allegation. But Otedola has repeatedly refused to appear incamera with the Committee, arguing that he made the allegations in open and would prefer an open testimony with the committee.

First Lady returns next week •To attend conference in Ethiopia ROTIMI FADEYI ABUJA

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irst Lady, Dame Patience Jonathan is to return to the country mid next week after which she will attend the First Lady Only Brainstorming Session of the 12th Organisation of African First Ladies Against HIV/AIDS starting on January 27th at the African Union building in Addis Ababa. According to a source close to the Presidency, Dame Patience would accompany her husband, President Goodluck Jonathan to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. While Jonathan will be attending the 20th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of States and Governments which holds between from 27 to 28 January, his wife would attend the First Lady Only Brainstorming Session of the 12th Organization of African First Ladies Dame Patience is the President of the African First Ladies Peace Mission (AFLPM). An online news portal, SaharaReporters had on Monday reported that

Dame Patience was flown out to Germany last Sunday night on another emergency health issues. It also said that the urgent nature of her departure for Germany led to cancellation of her appearance at an event on Monday where the president hosted foreign ambassadors to Nigeria to a cocktail party. However, the source said she followed doctor’s instructions to return for routine check up and was not at any time flown out on an emergency. Dame Patience last public appearance was when she attended the Armed Forces Remembrance Day Church Service with her husband at an event held last Sunday afternoon at the National Christian Centre, Abuja. The Presidency is yet to come out with any official statement on the report concerning the health of the First Lady. In August last year, it was reported that Dame Patience was flown to Wiesbaden, Germany, where she was said to have received treatment for an undisclosed ailment.


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Immigration recruitment scam: Minister launches probe of former CG OMEIZA AJAYI

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ollowing the sack of former Comptroller General of the Nigeria Immigration Service, Mrs Rose Chinyere Uzoma, Minister of Interior, Comrade Abba Moro, has set up a six-man committee to investigate how the former CG ran the service. The move, he said, was to rectify all anomalies,

just as he denied accusations of witch-hunting. Only on Tuesday, President Goodluck Jonathan ordered Mrs Uzoma to proceed on pre-retirement accumulated leave. The committee which was inaugurated on Thursday night behind closed doors in Abuja, is chaired by the Director, Paramilitary, Mr. Keftin Amuga, with Dr Attahiru Rufai Kawu as deputy chairman. Other members are Al-

haji Kurfi A. Ibrahim, Babandede Mohammed, Mr. E. S. A. Ojo and a representative of the State Security Service (SSS). At the event which had in attendance the acting Comptroller General of the NIS, Deputy Comptroller General, Rilwan Bala Musa, the minister said he had received some petitions and appeals from officers of the service bordering on fraud, injustice and tribal sentiments in the

conduct of a recent promotion exercise in the service. He stated further that other serious allegations ranging from certificate forgery and non-adherence to the principle of seniority in determining officers eligible for promotion were also received. “After the last promotion of officers in the Nigerian Immigration Services (NIS), I received some petitions and appeals from some officers of the service bordering on fraud, injustice and tribal sentiment in the conduct of the

promotion exercise. “There were other serious allegations ranging from certificate forgery and non-adherence to the principle of seniority in determining officers eligible for promotion; these are all serious allegations that cannot be ignored”, the minister stated. The committee which has one month to submit its report is to verify the allegation of secret recruitment/appointments for sale and to investigate allegation of superannuation, nepotism and adop-

tion of primordial sentiments in the promotion of officers within the service. Others are to establish the number and category of officers that sat for the last promotion examination, to establish the number of officers promoted vis a vis the approved establishment for the promotion year, to screen and authenticate the certificates claims of officers in the service and to work out modalities on creating more promotion opportunities within the Nigerian Immigration Service.

Ratify domestic monetary zone Jonathan pays unscheduled visit to treaties, Jonathan tells ECOWAS Police College, Lagos ROTIMI FADEYI ABUJA

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resident Goodluck Jonathan has reminded ECOWAS member countries on the need to urgently ratify and domesticate all relevant treaties and statutes that would lead to the successful launch of the West African Monetary Zone (WAMZ) on January 1, 2015. Jonathan stated this in Abuja yesterday at the 31st Convergence Council Meeting of the WAMZ. The president who spoke through Vice President Namadi Sambo appreciated the notable successes recorded towards the launch of the monetary union, He, however, lamented the consistent underperformance of some member states in reducing inflation and fiscal deficit, which are critical to the successful launch and sustenance of the union. “Our present position can be likened to the final

lap in a relay race. This is where the race is won and lost. We can choose to either win or lose, but I will rather be on the winning team. All that is required now is total commitment, dedication and focus. Member countries must, as a matter of urgency, ratify and domesticate all the relevant WAMZ statutes and treaties. On our part, the Nigerian Government will not only continue to play its leadership role, but will also lead by example, “he said. Speaking further, he urged member countries to strike a balance between nationalistic and regional interest, charging them to find the right solutions against factors that would impede the attainment of the monetary union by the set date of January 1, 2015. “I am confident that our concerted determination to succeed will see us through the challenges that lie ahead,” he said. In her remarks, Coordinating Minister for the

Economy and Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi OkonjoIweala, stated that WAMZ provided a veritable platform where member countries address issues affecting their growth. She noted that the region, through its laudable economic policies, was able to weather the storm through the global economic downturn, urging member countries to build on the successes achieved. The minister lamented that some member countries were lag in meeting some of the criteria for the successful launch of the union, stressing that Nigeria and Ghana had made appreciable gains towards this end. She also stated that Nigeria was making concerted efforts at reducing her fiscal deficit, debt profile and the diversification of her economy, while urging member countries on the need for political will and abiding faith in the WAMZ project.

AFCON: NSC charges Eagles to win trophy

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he National Sports Commission (NSC) yesterday urged the Super Eagles not to forget their main objective at the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) tournament. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the tournament will kick off today with Bafana Bafana trading tackles with the Blue Sharks of Cape Verde Islands, in the opening match. The Super Eagles’ will open their campaign on Monday, Jan. 21 in Nelspruit, against the Stallions of Burkina Faso.

Dr Patrick Ekeji, DirectorGeneral, NSC, in an interview in Abuja, however, said the Eagles should not forget President Jonathan’s mandate. According to Ekeji, “the message was given to the team last year in which it was charged to go and win the trophy for Nigeria. “They should go and do their best and of course the objective is to go and get the trophy. “To get the trophy, you have to do your very best and they have told Nigerians that they are going to do their best and we wish them

the very best,” he said. Ekeji’s message came just a day after the team landed in South Africa for the AFCON tournament. The Eagles’ are drawn in Group C, alongside Ethiopia, Burkina Faso and defending champions, Zambia. The Eagles played four tune-up matches, drawing two and winning two. The Eagles drew 1-1 against Catalonia, 0-0 against Cape Verde, won 1-0 over Sparta Rotterdam of the Netherlands and recorded a 5-0 win over Farense FC of Portugal.

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resident Goodluck Jonathan yesterday paid an unscheduled visit to Police College in Ikeja, Lagos State. Jonathan was on his way to an ECOWAS meeting in Ivory Coast when his plane diverted to Lagos where he made a surprise visit to the . According to an online publication, Saharare-

porter, sources say that even his top aides were taken unaware by the unscheduled stop. The police authorities were also said to be caught unawares and had in fact rented the college to host a private wedding, which is illegal. Jonathan demanded that the top brass explain the renting of the college but they

had no sufficient answers. The president immediately commenced an inspection of the college, starting with the student hostels where he discovered their deplorable conditions. At the time of this report, the inspection was on-going with the president moving from one hostel to the other.


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NATIONAL NEWS

January 19, 2013

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FG considers new consumer protection bill •NICON emerges NiCA best insurance company of the year

OLUFEMI ADEOSUN ABUJA

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he federal government is set to come up with a competition and consumer protection law that will enable businesses to operate more effectively in the Nigerian market place. Minister of Trade and Investment, Mr. Olusegun Aganga, stated this in Abuja at the maiden edition of the Nigeria Consumers’ Award (NiCA). NiCA was organised by the Consumer Protection Council (CPC) to re-energise the Nigerian market-place for a healthy competition, which is capable of increasing consumer satisfaction from interactions between

the consumer and provider of product and services. Aganga who was represented at the event by Chief Samuel Ortom, Minister of State for Trade and Investment, said government was poised to ensure that appropriate safeguards are being put in place to protect investors and consumers alike. He said ``citizens’ empowerment and well-being are key performance indicators of the Transformation Agenda of the present administration``. This he said informed ``the resolve to take to the National Assembly, in no distant future, a competition and consumer protection bill``. According to him, when passed into law, the bill will

bring about a competition regime that will enable businesses to operate more effectively in the Nigerian market place. He said, ``It will also enable the nation to harness the gains of privatisation and deregulation, modernise the legal provisions for consumer protection in Nigeria, and at the same time build the required synergy between competition and consumer protection in the country``. Meanwhile, NICON Insurance Plc has emerged Nigeria Consumers’ best insurance company of the year. In the highly competitive insurance category, NICON came top out of the 107 insurance companies voted for by the Nigerian consumers.

It robbed shoulder with Niger Insurance Company and AIICO Insurance Company in the top three to carry the day. Other companies that won the NiCA award include GT Bank in the banking services, Nokia in the mobile phone accessories, Indomie in the food products, Coca Cola and Star in beverage group. Also in the roll call of winners are: Close Up in the personal care products, ABC Transport in transport services, Arik Airline in airline services, LG in the kitchen and electronics appliances, MTN in the communication service provider and NNPC filling station. Speaking with journalists shortly after receiving

the award, the elated Managing Director, NICON Insurance, Mr. Emmanuel Jegede, said that the award was in recognition of the company’s numerous services to its clients, stressing that it would further spur it to do more. His words: “I feel very happy. I feel it is in recognition of our numerous services to our clients. When you are recognised, you cannot but be happy within yourself that you are doing the right thing and this is what we have seen tonight. To whom much is given, much is expected. We have no choice than up the scale in our drive to satisfy the yearnings of our clients. The clients are expecting more from us. Nigerians are expecting more from us. We have no choice than to do more.”

Jegede explained that in a bid to do more, the company had designed special packages for its clients for the ongoing year. For instance, he stated that the company had come up with a special product for its clients in the directors, officers and executives cadres in both full time and part-time capacities. “First of all, we have developed special product for directors, officers and executives both in the full time and the part time bases. We call it directors and officers insurance. This covers the liability of officers that occupy the position of authority. This insurance provides indemnity for all your legal services, all legal expenses that you incur in defending your action when you are in office,” he further explained.

Jonathan’s aide calls for scrapping of state-local government joint account

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Lagos in the last two days and that it was sad that the non-payment of pensioners had led to the untimely death of many in different parts of the country. The chairman, who could not give the exact amount that government owed them, said that some were owed eight, 12, 14, 18 and 72 months respectively.

It would be recalled that about 100 placard carrying pensioners had protested in front of the General Post Office, Marina, Lagos on January 8 over unpaid pension arrears. The protest, which was held simultaneously nationwide, was to ensure that the federal government responded to their demand.

he Special Assistant to the President on Media, Mr Bolaji Adebiyi, on Friday in Umuahia, called for the scrapping of state/local government joint account. Adebiyi said that the development of Nigeria would continue to be hampered except local governments were given more powers, as well as enabled to facilitate development. He was reacting to the call by the Abia State governor, Chief Theodore Orji, for the sustenance of the joint accounts. The presidential aide told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that the local councils could be better structured to facilitate development at the grassroots level. He said that the present arrangement would not inspire development in the rural areas, as funds meant for the local

THOMAS USHIE

citadel of learning and an envy of other universities. Obilade gave the assurance in her maiden address titled “TASUED in the Quest for Global Excellence: I Come as a Partner” delivered at the university. She noted that the school is blessed with crops of seasoned lectur-

ers and administrators who could bring her vision for the institution to reality. “I want this community to know that I have not come as a liquidator or an undertaker. It therefore behoves on all and sundry to join hands together and work to ensure the continued existence of TASUED. It is in

R-L: Managing Director of NICON Insurance, Mr. Emmanuel Akinmolu Jegede, receiving the Nigerian Consumer Award from Director General of Consumer Protection Council (CPC), Mrs. Ify Umenyi, in Abuja, yesterday.

NIPOST: Pensioners vow to continue protests

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ggrieved pensioners of the Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST) on Friday said that post offices nationwide would remain locked as their meeting with the management on Thursday in Abuja ended in a deadlock. Mr Yomi Akindutire, Chairman, Lagos State Chapter, disclosed this while speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos. He said that NIPOST management was not prepared to settle their sevenyear unpaid pension arrears, or reach an agreement with them on the issue. Akindutire said that the protest would continue indefinitely and NIPOST offices nationwide would not be allowed to operate until when government attends to their plight.

“The meeting we held in Abuja was deadlocked. The management did not come forth with any settlement plan for the pensioners. “We told the NIPOST management that they should pay those who retired in 2005 and 2006 six months arrears and those who retired in 2012 should be paid November pension before we discuss the gratuity terms, `` he said. He said that the management did not take any decision on the terms which left the pensioners with no choice than to continue with the protest until further notice. He said that the pensioners would be ready to discuss and reach agreement with the management if the terms were agreed on. Akindutire confirmed that two pensioners died in

councils were deducted at different levels of governments. Adebiyi said that the situation where the local councils were relegated to the background and most of their responsibilities usurped by the state governments was counterproductive. “ Generally, joint account has been abused in many instances, my view is that we have to go back to reforms to give local governments autonomy to control their economies. “So, I think that there has to be a reform that gives local governments more responsibilities and more resources to carry out those responsibilities. ``I say this because the local government councils are much closer to the people and they can be major catalysts and major facilitators for development in the country,’’ he said.

this wise that I come as a partner and as a friend”, Obilade stated. She therefore sought the cooperation of members of staff of the university with a view to enhancing shared vision, commitment, understanding, trust, and promotion of the spirit of forgiveness among others.

I’ll make TASUED world class varsity, new VC assures

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he new Vice Chacellor of Tai Solarin University of Education (TASUED), Ogun State, Professor Oluyemisi Oluremi Obilade, has assured the university community that her mission is to make the varsity a world class


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Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

SOUTH WEST

Ondo PDP slams Mimiko’s Abiye Safe–Motherhood Project OJO OYEWAMIDE AKURE

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he Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ondo State has criticized the Abiye SafeMotherhood programme of the state government, describing it as “a total

deceit”. In a statement made available yesterday by the party’s Publicity Secretary in the state, Wale Ozogoro, the party said the health programme only existed in theory and that its impact was not being felt by the people of

the state. The statement said: “It has been observed with bewilderment that the Olusegun Mimiko government continues to deceive and laud falsehood in the name of the health programme called ABIYE. We have observed

without bias that the programme only exists in theory while implementation is accomplished through the hyper-media propaganda. “We had hoped that the government in 2013 should have come up with a New Year resolution

to desist from deceitful disposition and sorrowful falsehood and occupy herself with genuine and dedicated governance. Instead of painstakingly working out how to successfully implement the programme, if indeed it exists, the government is busy engaging media hyper manipulation of falsehood, wanting to make people believe what is not in existence and expending the common wealth of Ondo people in the name of propagating it in a USA conference.” The party added that it was laughable the government had stretched

“her falsehood beyond the shores of this country to hire questionable individuals in foreign countries to laud this deceit”, wondering what the Government stands to benefit from it. Lamenting that the health sector in the state had remained comatose, the party said the government could only boast of two maternity centres called Mother and Child hospitals in two local government areas after four years, adding that infrastructural development and road construction had become a mirage.

Ex-Rufus Giwa Poly Librarian assassinated in Akure HAKEEM GBADAMOSI AKURE

A L-R: Professor Wole Soyinka; Governor State of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola; Senator Sola Adeyeye; representing Osun Central Senatorial District and Chairman, Osun Tourism Investment Drive, Mr. Abimbola Daniyan, during the visit of Professor Soyinka to the construction of Osun Grove Modern Pavilion in Osogbo, Osun State, yesterday.

Inferno: Akinjide sympathises with Alaafin KEMI OLAITAN IBADAN

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inister of State for Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Oloye Olajumoke Akinjide, has described the fire incident that recently engulfed the palace of the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Olayiwola Adeyemi 111, as a

big setback to the Yoruba cultural renaissance. Akinjide’s expression was contained in a release issued to journalists in Ibadan, Oyo State, yesterday by her media assistant, Alhaji Isiaka Kehinde. The release quoted the minister as saying Oba Adeyemi should accept the incident as an act of God.

Akinjide was quoted as saying, “As I feel deeply saddened by this occurrence, I am at the same time thankful to God that no life was lost in the incident. “ The minister described the Alaafin as a Yoruba Cultural Ambassador and lamented the irreparable damage the fire outbreak has wreaked,

Ekiti targets N14b IGR ABIODUN NEJO ADO EKITI

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hairman of Ekiti State Internal Revenue Service, Mr. Isola Akingbade, has said that measures have been put in place to realise the target N14 billion Internally Generated Revenue for 2013. Akingbade said the measures border on blocking all leakages of

government revenues included introduction of e-payment system, Point of Sales (POS) and the Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) Project. He told journalists in Ado Ekiti yesterday that apart from boosting the state IGR, the POS would make payment of tax more convenient for people. According to him, the state has already

taken delivery of 15 POS equipment. Akingbade hinted that the state would begin to look inward to the Agricultural Sector, Commerce and Tourism in a bid to increase its IGR. He explained that the informal sector including artisans and market people would not be left out. The IRS boss appealed to people of the state to patronize the state for

stating that it might be difficult to replace some of the artefacts already destroyed by the fire. She then called on illustrious indigenes of Oyo State and all that are enamoured of Yoruba culture to contribute towards the rebuilding of the palace which she said is a miniature cultural museum. their vehicle registration, assuring that registration in the state was the cheapest in the South-West. He explained that everybody from 18 years earning regular salary either from government or private organisation was entitled to pay tax. He said the new tax regime was in favour of workers because the law stated that N200, 000 and 20% of the gross salary of each worker was not taxable.

former Chief Librarian of Rufus Giwa Polytechnic (RUGIPO), Owo, Taiwo Akinyosoye was murdered in his house in Akure, Ondo state capital in the early hours of yesterday. Akinyosoye was until his death, the chairman of the Adebowale Community Estate Landlord Association, in Akure, Ondo State. According to wife of the deceased, Justina Akinyosoye, the hoodlums invaded their home around 4:30 am and held the whole family hostage before killing her husband. Mrs Akinyosoye said she woke up to visit the toilet but found out that there was no water in the reservoir and had to open door to power the pumping machine. She said further that the assassins who have been in the compound pounded on her, her son who was around and her husband and took them to separate rooms in the house. The woman said she was ordered out of the room naked and was put at the driver’s seat of her Audi car and ordered to drive out of the Estate with her husband being kept in the booth of her car. Her words, “I was directed towards On-

doRroad and turned towards a bush where I was asked to closed my eyes and by the time I open my eyes, they have left with my husband body. I raised alarm and was able to cover my nakedness with the help of a nearby church where I was given cloth and when we search the area, we discovered the dead body of my husband” A resident of the community informed our reporter that the incident was immediately reported at the Fanibi Police station and said the police took prompt action by depositing the remains of Akinyosoye in the morgue. A friend of the deceased who spoke on condition of anonymity said the deceased was a former staff of Rufus Giwa Polytechnic Owo, RUGIPO, and was sacked in a controversial circumstances from the institution in 2011. Confirming the development, the image maker of the police in the state, Wole Ogodo said the incident was a clear case of assassination Ogodo said that investigation is ongoing to know those behind the gruesome killing of the Chairman of the Landlord Association, He said further that the case has been transferred to the Criminal Investigation Department in the state.


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REGIONAL NEWS

January 19, 2013

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SOUTH EAST

Imo PDP to Okorocha: Explain N40b Bond CHRIS NJOKU OWERRI

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he Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has accused Governor Owelle Rochas Okorocha of Imo State of diversionary tactics to shift the attention away from the N40 billion Bond his administration entered into with some banks in the state. Addressing journalists in Owerri, yesterday, Chairman of the party in the state, Chief Eze Duruiheoma (SAN) said the Okorocha government has serious obligation to explain to Nigerians why his administration entered into a bond of over N40billion with the Zenith Bank using the local government allocations as collateral. According to Chief Duruiheoma, “This is more so when the reason for this latest upsurge in Ohakim baiting “is traceable to the recent arrest of the Governor Okorocha’s men by EFCC.

•As NURTW demands probe of Ohakim

“The Zenith Bank connection is not difficult to understand, considering the relationship of that bank with the commis-

sioner for Finance who was also arrested.” In the meantime, members of National Union of Road Transport Work-

AWKA

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he crisis rocking the All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) in Anaocha Local Government Area of Anambra State has taken a new dimension as members now demand for the removal of the council party chairman, Mr Ifeanyi Orji, from his position. The crisis which pitched the embattled Chairman against both the key stakeholders and party members in the

council, reached its peak on Thursday, January 17, 2013, when hundreds of APGA chieftains drawn from all the communities and political Wards of Anaocha, stormed the party headquarters in Awka, where they passed a vote of no confidence on Orji. The irked party men also announced that they have chosen Mr Ambrose Aforekelu, to lead them as chairman of Anaocha Local Government chapter of APGA. The move of the Anaocha APGA party members

soon threw the state’s executive of the party, led by Chief Akunwata Mike Kwentoh into a dilemma. Chief Kwentoh alongwith other members of the state executive committee of the party later held hours-long meeting with key leaders of the protesting party members on how to resolve the dispute in the council. The close-door meeting between the two excos was nearly marred by disagreement and a shouting match. Chief Kwentoh later emerged from the

meeting to address the protesters on the resolution of the meeting. When Chief Kwentoh started to reel out the agreements reached with the protesters, especially as it affected the removed Orji, journalists were asked to leave the arena. However, it was gathered that during the briefing by Chief Kwentoh, the protesting members rejected the position taken by the state EXCO on the issue. Sources which spoke with Saturday Mirror on the outcome of the meeting said that Chief Kwentoh urged the to sheathe their swords, but the protesters rejected the pleas.

Shut up, MASSOB tells Uwazuruike’s critics NWABUEZE OKONKWO ONITSHA

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hieftains of the Movement for the Actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB) have described critics of their leader, Chief Ralph Uwazuruike, as bunch of faceless elements out to destroy Igbo unity. The group insisted that the factional election of Ohanaeze Ndigbo

the former governor by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC). The groups admitted

National Orientation Agency sensitisation road walk on “Do the Right Thing’’ campaign in Enugu, yesterday.

Anaocha APGA crisis deepens as members demand chairman’s removal CHARLES OKEKE

ers (NURTW), women and youth groups have staged a peaceful protest in Owerri, demanding for the immediate arrest of

slated for today in Abakaliki, Ebonyi State will not hold because the election had been conducted last Saturday and appropriate personalities elected as new executive. Addressing journalists yesterday in Onitsha, the Regional Administrator of MASSOB for Awka North, Mr. Tony Nwodo described the statements credited to some group of people who described themselves as foundation

members of MASSOB as irresponsible utterances against Ndigbo. Nwodo also stated that the attack on Chief Uwazuruike by those he described as faceless and selfish elements was sponsored by politicians who wanted to hijack the last Ohanaeze Ndigbo general election, but could not succeed. Nwodo’s words, “I want to warn those who after collecting money

from politicians, come out to attack our leader and Ezeigbo Gburugburu to stop their antics or else we shall henceforth begin to sanction them and make sure they pay dearly for an insult on Chief Ralph Uwazuruike and Ndigbo. “These people were not MASSOB members as they claimed, rather, they have been busy acquiring land and building hotels.

PHOTO: NAN

the failure of the Ohakim administration and bemoaned on the massive fraud and corruption by the former governor and some chieftains of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). Speaking on behalf of the NURTW in the state, Comrade Chukwuemeka Obuh said it regretted that someone would spend years as governor of a state without any visible project to speak for the administration. Chief Duruiheoma observed that rather than clear the allegation, the governor adopted diversionary tactics to shift the attention of the people to the fraudulent activities being committed by his administration. The PDP state chairman accused Governor Okorocha of exhibiting sheer malicious hatred against the former governor Ohakim even when he knew that Ohakim made significant achievements during the last administration.

Imo youths flay FG over sack of Immigration boss CHRIS NJOKU OWERRI

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he Coalition of Igbo Youths Assembly (CIYA), yesterday expressed dissatisfaction over the sudden removal of the Comptroller General of Nigerian Immigration Services, Mrs. Rose Chinyere Uzoma. The group described the removal of the former Immigration boss as inhumane adding that the dreaded sectionalism and marginalization of Ndigbo had made a sudden return. In a statement jointly signed by the President General and Secretary of CIYA respectively, Hon. Innocent Madu and Ajuzie James, the youths chided the Federal Government for sacking the Immigration boss after she had contributed immensely to reposition the Immigration Services. The statement read in part: “Since July 2010 when she was appointed as the Comptroller General of the Nigerian Immigrations services, she

served her fatherland selflessly and with every iota of sincerity, patriotism, uprightness. Her few years in office brought about untold positive change and incomparable facelift in the Nigerian Immigration Services. But despite all these laudable achievements, she was sacked in a manner that suggests bias and ethnic sentiments”, the statement said. The statement further faulted what it described as an incessant discrimination and victimization of the Igbos in public offices, adding that such development will continue to threaten the unity of the country. “The forceful removal of the Comptroller General has come as an unmerited penalty over a misunderstanding between the Minister of Interior and the Immigration boss and a thorough investigation into the matter would have allowed Nigerians the chance to know the true state of the matter instead of tarnishing the image and hard earned integrity of the woman,” it said.


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January 19, 2013

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

SOUTH SOUTH

Odi community sues FG, demands N20b compensation CHRIS NEWMAN PORT HARCOURT

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fierce legal battle yesterday commenced between the Odi community of Bayelsa State and the Federal Government of Nigeria, as a N20 billion lawsuit was instituted at a Federal High Court sitting in Port Harcourt, Rivers State. The lawsuit is seeking compensation for the destruction and genocide committed against the people of the community by Nigerian security agents in 1999. Presiding Chief Judge, Lambo Akambi SAN after giving due attention to the address and a short documentary on the destruction of Odi town by the soldiers said that the case was a constitutional matter and called for proper deliberations. The defense counsel to the Federal Government, Mrs. Nkoli Amadi-Awa SAN, condemned the at-

titude of some elements in the community who allegedly attacked the soldiers on peace mission in the area which warranted governments action. But the plaintiff ’s legal team standing for the Community, Ifedaya Adedilope SAN, Luscious Nwosu SAN and Lawal Rabana SAN, insisted that the Federal Government committed genocide and has no legitimate right to use the tax payers money to purchase arm and ammunition to destroy a community because of an atrocity committed by a few bad eggs in that town. Adedilope, who presented the matter before the court disagreed with the position of the defense counsel , saying that for the Federal Government to take arms and ammunition against unarmed and defenseless innocent citizens of Odi was a grave injustice and denial of

Governor Seriake Dickson in a warm hand shake with Mr. Mahendra Patel after signing an MOU in Pakistan to build a steel plant and cold storage facility in Bayelsa State, recently.

human rights. The lawyer averred that 14 years after the ugly incident, the Federal Government kept mum over the issue. Adedilope also said

that the atrocity was committed against the Odi people had since rendered many homeless, and said that the evaluation report taken

to access the damages proved that the sum of N20 billion was needed to alleviate the plight of the people who are still being traumatized by the

Port Harcourt is a slum, says Orubebe Minister, an abysmal failure –Amaechi EMMA GBEMUDU YENAGOA

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he cold war between the Minister of Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs, Godsday Orubebe and Governor of Rivers State, Rotimi Amaechi deepened yesterday ,as the Minister described Port Harcourt as a slum with abandoned

projects. Orubebe regretted that Governor Amaechi was suggesting that governments of the South South states wanted to take over the construction of the East-West road to speed up the project. The Minister spoke at Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, with selected journalists shortly after an inspec-

tion of the East-West road, frowned at the disrespectful behavior of the Amaechi to the person and office of President Goodluck Jonathan. According to Orubebe, the alleged disrespectful behavior of the Rivers State Governor would no longer be tolerated and advised him to mind he business of governing his

Rivers sanitation agency eyes private sector a bill awaiting passage management into a busiparticipation was at the state house of assem- ness allowing the private SAM OLUWALANA & GODWIN OKONKWO PORT HARCOURT

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he Rivers State E nv i r o n m e n t a l Sanitation Agency says it is working on plans to make the issue of waste management in the state a private sectordriven and profitable venture for all stakeholders. Ade Adougun, Sole Administrator of the agency, who disclosed the plan to our correspondents in Port Harcourt, said there

bly intended to professionalise the process of waste management in the state. His words, “That is the key, translation of waste management into investment. What we met some months back was something that was run as a government parastatal. Something that is run basically as a social service but we think that waste management is not a social service, it is an investment. So the bill when passed into law will turn waste

sector to join the waste management value chain and make wealth for themselves. I think that is the key”, he said. Adeogun explained that the law would equip the agency to render quality services to its customers saying, “We have to render quality services to our customers who are going to be the waste generators and at the same time we get all private sector individuals who are interested in investing in the business investing in waste collection.

state which state capital had worsen in terms of development since he assumed duty. “He (Amaechi) was saying that the Governors of the Niger Delta want to take over the East-West Road. The resources of Rivers State are so enormous, but I can tell you that there are so many villages in Rivers state that have not been connected by road.” But , the Rivers State Governor ,through his Chief Press Secretary,

David Iyofor, said the minister’s game was to divert attention from his ineptitude and abysmal failure. Amaechi’s media aide said Ordinarily, he would not respond to the ludicrous, thoughtless and bizarre ranting of the Minister against the Governor. “But it has become imperative for me to do this and show clearly that the Minister’s game is just to divert attention from his ineptitude and abysmal failure.”

destruction of lives and properties. Justice Akambi later adjourned the case to 14th February, 2013 for further hearing. According to Oyofor, “Contrary to his (Orubebe)’s madcap vituperations, Governor Amaechi has tremendous respect for the office of the President of Nigeria and President Goodluck Jonathan. The office of the President of Nigeria is a big institution that deserves utmost respect and it would be grossly irresponsible for anyone to disrespect Mr. President, which unfortunately Minister Orubebe is doing by dragging the President’s name into his inability to deliver on the East –West Road.

Bayelsa CAN denies alleged N15m fraud EMMA GBEMUDU YENAGOA

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he last is yet to be heard of the looming crisis in the Bayelsa State chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), as it yesterday denied an alleged misappropriation of N15m flood fund given to it by the state government. Investigations by Saturday Mirror revealed that the fund which was

paid in two installments of N10 million and N5 million to the group last year, almost tore CAN apart when some members alleged that the sum was embezzled by some influential figures in the group. But the Senior Special Assistant on Religion to Bayelsa governor, Rev. Sam John-Peters, at a briefing yesterday in Yenagoa, insisted that the N15 million meant to assuage the sufferings of

last year’s flood victims was judiciously used. Governor Seriake Dickson had approved the payment of the money following the devastating effect of the flood which ravaged six localgovernments of the state. Presenting a breakdown of the expenditure, John-Peters said CAN also received donations from churches and individuals amounting to N733,435.


Politics

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

13

January 19, 2013

Ali Jonathan

Obasanjo

Tukur Oyinlola

Amaechi

PDP: Battling with odds from all sides TEMITOPE OGUNBANKE

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t the moment, all is not well with the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). The party, in the last few months, has been battling with lots of crises that have divided the party leadership. Needless to say that different groups have emerged within the party which prides itself as the largest party in Africa. The groups are battling for the control of the soul of the PDP. At present, leaders of the party are locking horns in crises which were powered by the alleged tussle between former President Olusegun Obasanjo and President Goodluck Jonathan, particularly, over who becomes the next chairman of the Board of Trustees (BoT); the removal of the national secretary, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola and the 2015 presidency among other issues. Since the resignation of former president, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo as the chairman of the PDP Board of Trustees (BoT) in April 2012, the party has been finding it difficult to choose his successor. Two attempts by the party to name the BoT chairman hit the rock again during its January 8 meeting in Abuja as a result of power tussles and general internal wrangling among the party leaders. The aftermath of the meeting where a

six-man-panel was set up to reorganise the BoT, according to many political observers has deepened the crisis in the party. Some are of the view that the reorganisation of the BoT is part of the strategies by power brokers in the party to edge out some people from taking part in its affairs. The gang up against the national chairman, Alhaji Bamangar Tukur, is another critical issue rocking the boat of the PDP. At present, there are many forces against Tukur and prominent among them is the Nigerian Governors Forum led by Governor Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers State. The governors are believed to be working assiduously to send Tukur parking from office. The crisis that led to the bone of contention between Tukur and some PDP gladiators resulted from the decision of the National Working Committee (NWC) to dissolve the executive of the Adamawa State chapter of the party, led by Alhaji Umaru Kugama. The dissolution of the Kugama executive, backed by Governor Murtala Nyako of Adamawa State, was seen as a deliberate act by Tukur to weaken the governor, an action which other PDP governors saw as an affront. They believe that if Nyako is allowed to suffer in the hand of Tukur today, any of them could be the next victim. The governors who were not satisfied with the NWC position on Adamawa PDP saga, two weeks ago assembled in Abuja and threat-

ened to dissolve the NWC if it failed to rescind its decision on the dissolution of the Kugama-led executive. Worried by what may follow its refusal to yield to the warning of the governors, considering the influence of the governors in the party, 10 members of the NWC, led by PDP deputy national chairman, Dr. Sam Sam Jaja, at a crucial meeting a few days after the threat by the governors disowned the dissolution of Adamawa PDP executive without Tukur’s permission. Tukur, not comfortable with the trend of event, immediately described the reversal by the NWC members who did not consult him over the matter, as treachery. The crisis has drawn the attention of the president, who has made some efforts to calm frayed nerves. However, some political analysts are still convinced that the matter is yet to be put under control. While the governors and Tukur were still flexing their muscles, the crisis in PDP took a new dimension last Friday when a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja sacked Oyinlola as the national secretary of the party on the ground that he was not validly nominated by the South-West zone of the party. But while Oyinlola and some PDP chieftains were still battling to save the situation to appeal the court judgement, the NWC after an emergency meeting in Abuja, presided over by Tukur on Monday, directed that the party’s deputy national

Anenih

secretary, Mr. Solomon Onwe, should act as the acting national secretary, pending when Oyinlola, who had appealed the judgment and is seeking a stay of execution of the order, is able to get the court to suspend the order removing him from office. While some people see Oyinlola’s replacement as the right step by the party, others consider it to be a deliberate plan by the Tukur-led NWC to oust Oyinlola, whom they see as the eyes of the PDP governors in the national executive arm of the party. Considering the circumstances surrounding the removal of Oyinlola, Tukur and other members of the PDP executive elected during the March 2012 national convention of the party may be shown the exit doors if other zones decide to adopt the method used by the Engr. Adebayo Dayo-led Ogun State PDP to prevail on Justice Abdul Kafarati of the Federal High Court to sack the former national secretary of the party from office. Though many reasons have been given for the ongoing crises in the PDP, analysts have traced the big fight to the 2015 general elections. Many of the party gladiators are believed to have interest in contesting for political offices, especially the presidential seat and that is why they are positioning themselves well for the CONTINUED ON PAGE 15


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POLITICS

January 19, 2013

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

‘ACN, CPC merger is an Chief Taiwo Abayomi Kuye, Lagos State chapter Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Financial Secretary and member of the Central Working Committee (CWC), in this interview with TEMITOPE OGUNBANKE described the proposed merger of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) and Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) as the marriage between a cat and mouse. He also bares his mind on the ongoing crises in PDP, 2015 general elections and the battle for South-West among other issues. Excerpts:

P

DP at the national level is involved in various crises. Are you not worried? The ongoing scenarios in PDP are healthy for the party because PDP is the largest of its kind in Africa. What is happening in PDP today is healthy for our democracy and it happens like that everywhere. I believe that at the end of the day all forces will come back and meet at the roundtable to resolve the issues. How do you see the recent removal of Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola and the appointment of an acting national secretary by the National Working Committee? He (Oyinlola) was removed by the court and there is nothing wrong in the step taken by the NWC by appointing an acting national secretary. What the chairman did is very good and it is to save the name of the party because the issue in context is a matter of the court. What the party did was to respect the rule of law. I believe everything is in order. Don’t you think the ongoing crises in PDP will affect the fortune of the party in 2015? It will not because we in PDP know how to manage our problem. I believe that within a short time everybody will come together at the round table and sought out the issues. Ahead of 2015 general elections, the real politicking seems to be gathering momentum. How would the PDP manage the emergence of candidates, which has always been a major problem over the years? It doesn’t happen in PDP alone, it’s everywhere. The trend is even worse in the ACN than PDP. However, I believe that now that the leadership of the party has come together and those outside the party are trying to come back to the fold we’ll wrest power from ACN. I believe things will be done appropriately to the best interest of the party. I know that there will be a level of management where candidates or congresses for the emergence of candidates will be well managed. What is your take on several criticisms over the selection of former PDP national deputy chairman (South), Chief Olabode George, as a member of a six-man panel to reorganise the PDP’s Board of Trustees (BoT)? Nigeria is gradually turning to an-

other thing and it is sad that many professionals are gradually turning themselves to errand boys. How could somebody in the name of politics be calling Chief Olabode George an exconvict just because he (George) was among the six-man panel set up by the PDP’s BoT? Many people who were regarded as ex-convict in Nigeria are great leaders of this country today. People like late Obafemi Awolowo, former President Olusegun Obasanjo, among others are still regarded as leaders of this country today despite going to jail. I don’t blame those behind the reports on Bode George because I believe they are serving the interest of their master, Bola Tinubu. Many of those calling Bode George, ex-convict, are even worse in corruption than Bode George. It is very clear to the whole world that the whole scenario and episode that happened during the trial of Bode George was political. It is very glaring that Chief Bode George was convicted, not for stealing a dime of public fund, but for flouting procedure for awards of contracts. What is the level of preparedness of the Lagos PDP towards 2015 general elections? The most important cliché in Lagos now is change and this is coming from every active and docile analyst in the state. PDP is well prepared and if you look at everything happening in Lagos State, you will agree with me that we are well prepared for the election. PDP is well prepared to take up that challenge in 2015. It is left to the ruling party, which is ACN, to be battle ready in the coming election. We are prepared; all our structures are on ground, from the wards to the state and from state to the national. All our members are battle ready to face the task ahead. We are very confident that we are going to win the next election. You sound confident of winning the election but how do you foresee PDP winning Lagos State, considering that previous threats by PDP in 2003, 2007 and 2011 to win the state failed? We are not going to make a repetition of those old days in terms of approach, structure and primaries. 2015 is going to be monumental in the history of politics in Lagos and I can assure you that whenever we get into the election proper, we will defeat the ACN hands down. The ruling party has created a re-

Kuye

cord for themselves that cannot fit them into position any longer in Lagos. Look at Okada riders, look at infrastructures, and look at increase in the tuition fees of Lagos State University (LASU) and more importantly, the exorbitant tax regime in Lagos. Local factories are folding up and running out of Lagos to other states. All these are the shadows chasing and militating against the ACN deadly administration in Lagos. Many people cannot afford three-square meals in Lagos again. The peasants, artisans, traders, students are all complaining and they are no longer enjoying what they used to enjoy in Lagos about 10 and 20 years ago because ACN is administering Lagos. So, we have all come to a consensus that there must be a drastic change in the state. We are prepared and we will get everybody out of that chain of deception and oppression in Lagos by God’s grace. At present, there is division in Lagos PDP. Is there any move to reconcile all factions? As far as Lagos PDP is concerned, I can assure you that meaningful reconciliation is in progress. The state chairman has been an apostle of reconciliation and he has been moving in and out to aggrieved members in the party. He has been talking to them collectively and individually on how best we can all come

together and wrest power from ACN. The best understanding for every sensible and loyal party man is to know that the best pursuant for any political party is to be in government rather than to stay outside and work against the party. The executive will ensure that we reconcile all factions and ensure that we go into the 2015 elections in one fold to see that we wrest power from ACN. ACN has not gotten anything done in Lagos and I have said it several times that ACN administration in Lagos is a shamble, charade and an administration that should not be allowed to exist any longer. As a member of the state executive and CWC, what is your assessment of the move to unite the party members? To the best of my knowledge, we have united about 75 per cent; the remaining 25 per cent are people that have left and the party leadership is trying to bring them back. You saw what happened at the last council poll, some of our members were not with us but with or without them, we won some council. Even at the tribunal constituted by the ACN government, we have won five councils. This tells you that we are not just making noise; the game is up for ACN in Lagos and they are aware. We don’t need any disintegration in Lagos politics, we need serious cohesion so that everybody will


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POLITICS

January 19, 2013

15

exercise in futility’ come together to build Lagos. Once a PDP administration is in Lagos, you will see an array of changes in the state. Some people have argued that the PDP at the federal level has not given the masses the array of changes you are talking about. What gave you the assurance that people will embrace PDP in Lagos? You cannot compare the central government with a state. A state is a federating unit. Let us commend the person sitting up there who is administrating 36 states. He is in charge of economy, health, defence and even Boko Haram. We should give the gentleman and his team a pass mark. It is not easy to be at the helms of affair, particularly the office of Mr. President. So, national admin-

istration is a far cry to that of the state. I believe Lagos is waiting seriously for PDP and we will not disappoint them. We will come on board and usher in a very sensible and well encouraging administration in Lagos State. Don’t you think the proposed merger by the major opposition parties can affect the PDP’s chances in 2015? Who is fooling who? Who are the people pushing for the merger? Who is Bola Tinubu? Who is Mohammed Buhari? Who is Ogbonaya Onu? All of them put together cannot stand the PDP at any level. So, what is the merger all about? Let them tell us who is going to be the presidential candidate, the secretary and the name of their new party? See,

they will never agree at a point owing to their selfish desires. Two out of the three people pushing for the merger cannot agree to surrender their present positions. I know Ogbonaya Onu very well and he could be said to be a gentleman. But for Tinubu and Buhari, tell me who will throw in the towel for the other. They are two greedy points that cannot agree at any level. The merger is a clear marriage of mouse and cat. Let us even assume it is possible, how far can they go in an election? Already as it is, ACN is going to lose ground completely in the South-West in 2015. The only state where we have a CPC governor is Nassarawa State and you know that PDP is controlling 24 seats of the 26 in the state assembly. Do you think such a governor will be

ready to put his government on the line? So, the proposed merger is an exercise in futility. How true is the report that the Lagos PDP has picked a candidate for 2015 gubernatorial election? The story is an imagination of the writer or the sponsor of the story. PDP has never picked any candidate. We have never sat at the Central Working Committee (CWC) to plan how the congress would be. CWC, which is the highest ruling body of the party in the state, has not done anything in that direction. It is a false story. As a member of the CWC, we have never stepped up action in picking candidate. The story should be discarded as it is aimed at causing disaffection and confusion within the PDP.

PDP: Battling with odds from all sides CONTINUED FROM PAGE 13 contest. At the moment, many of the PDP public office holders and chieftains have been rumoured to have interest in running for presidency in 2015. Among those speculated to have interest in running for the presidency are President Goodluck Jonathan; Vice President Namadi Sambo; former Vice President Atiku Abubakar; Governors Sule Lamido (Jigawa); Aliyu Babangida (Niger) and Isa Yuguda (Bauchi). Therefore, based on the presidential aspirations of some of the political gladiators in the party, some have started strategising for the election and doing everything possible to outsmart one another. The alleged second term presidential ambition of President Jonathan has pitched him against some party chieftains, especially the Obasanjo camp and the Northern Governors Forum, which seem to be against Jonathan’s re-election. Some of the South-South governors who seem to be nurturing the ambition of becoming a vice president are also believed to be working against Jonathan’s return to Aso Rock in 2015. The power tussle between Jonathan and the Northerners became public last year as Northern governors chose to attend the wedding of the daughters of VicePresident Namadi Sambo in Kaduna over the burial of Meni Jonathan, the younger brother of President Jonathan, both of which took place the same day. The SouthEast and South-South governors, on their own part, attended the burial of Jonathan’s brother at the expense of the wedding of Sambo’s daughters. Among those that work assiduously toward the emergence of Jonathan as president during 2011 presidential election is Obasanjo, but today the duo are not in good term. Though both of them have denied their rift but those in the know are of the view that they are no longer in one accord. In fact some have attributed the resignation of Obasanjo as BoT chairman to his disagreement with the president. At the moment the power tussles between Obasanjo and Jonathan is generat-

ing serious issues in the party and both groups are doing everything possible to outsmart each other. Political observers are of the view that the tactical exclusion of Obasanjo’s candidate, Dr Ahmadu Ali, from the BoT chairmanship contest with the re-election of Senator Walid Jibrin from North-Central as BoT Secretary is a deliberate move to silent Obasanjo. The removal of Oyinlola, who is one of the foot soldiers of Obasanjo was also seen as a clear signal from Jonathan’s camp to reduce Obasanjo’s influence in the party. Apart from the problems with the PDP at the national level, some of the state chapters of the party are also not finding it good. Presently there are many splinter groups and factions in the party at the state level and all of them are battling for the structure of the party. Apart from the internal wrangling that PDP is battling with, the opposition parties are a source of concern. In fact, the PDP is having a sleepless night, considering the success being recorded in the move by the opposition parties to come together in order to send PDP packing from Aso Rock come 2015. The major opposition parties - Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) and All Nigerian Peoples Party (ANPP) - are presently working toward an alliance to form a mega party, which they will use as a strong platform to end PDP reigns in 2015. Having seen the handwriting on the wall that the merger of the opposition parties may affect its fortune in future elections, PDP has also deemed it fit to embark on reconciliation moves to bring some of its disgruntled and former members back into the fold. While pursuing their reconciliation move assiduously, PDP is also believed to be wooing some of the opposition parties’ governors and leaders to come to PDP. Some of those party leaders being wooed by PDP are; All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA), Labour Party (LP), Accord Party (AP) and Peoples Party of Nigeria (PPN), who seem not to be in line with the proposed merger talks. Considering the notion that there are no

permanent friends or enemies in politics but permanent interests, many people are of the view that PDP may resolve its crisis before going into 2015 general elections. This position is hinged on the fact that despite the mass exodus of some PDP founding members and chieftains, such as Atiku Abubakar, Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu, Solomon Lar, Abubakar Rimi, Audu Ogbe among others to other political parties

during the 2007 and 2011 general elections, the ruling party still had an upper hand. This may not be an exception too as 2015 is still a very long way in politics. As far as many are concerned, there is ample room for intrigues, alignment and realignment to bring PDP back to its track and give a ray of hope. But can the miracle of the past be re-enacted? May be if PDP is able to put its house in order.

In your refreshingly different

HIV/AIDS cure: The false starts At the turn of the century in year 2000, the name Jeremiah Abalaka was a household name in the country. Then he claimed to have discovered an effective cure for the treatment of HIV/AIDS. With his claim, his clinic in Abuja became as Mecca of sort. Today, nothing has come out of that claim. Several others have also come out with claims of having discovered the world-wide search for this elusive scientific breakthrough until Prof. Isaiah Ibeh, Dean of Medical Science, University of Benin, came up with his own discovery recently. He has however recanted after his claim was followed by criticism.

Such claims are the focus of this week’s special report. Why would an academic of such standing come out with such claim knowing full well that it would go through such scrutiny? What really are the process involved in drug development and most importantly, what happened to those with similar claims in the past?

Can these two walk together?

It is no longer news that the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) and the All Nigeria People’s Party (ANPP) are planning to fuse to become a mega party. Of the three parties, ACN and CPC have Alhaji Muhammadu Buhari and Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, two personalities with larger than life image and most importantly whose world views, are diametrically opposed. The question now is: Would these individuals be able to work together? Not only that, would the mega party be able to achieve its objective - displacing the PDP in 2015? For answers, pick a copy of the Sunday Mirror.

Gruesome murder ... and a mother’s agony Laz Anyanwu, former director of Protocol to Sir Jude Agbaso, the deputy Governor of Imo State was abducted and a few hours later, his body was found mutilated and dumped by the road-side. Tomorrow, we bring you the details about his death, especially the agony of his mother, a retired Chief Confidential Secretary in the state’s Ministry of Agriculture.

‘I was impregnated at a tender age’ “I was pregnant when I was quite young; I was barely 16, and even though I had enough reasons to abort it, it didn’t work for me. I got that kind of advice but it just did not work…” Read the true life story of Toyin Alausa, one of the popular faces in most soap operas on television, tomorrow. These and many more available tomorrow in your


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Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net


MAGAZ INE

Kel

...Waxing stronger Sex talk 10 sure ways to rev up a limp noodle!

z z z z z z

Relationships Heartbreak: who feels the pain more?

z z z z z z

Fashion • Dress empire • Hot and... pregnant!


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Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Celebrity

T-Code became famous with the song, Hotter Than Fire and he has since been waxing stronger. In this interview with OSEYIZA OOGBODO, he speaks on the originator of Fuji hip-hop, his alleged problem with Terry G and why he parted ways with his Hotter Than Fire co-singers, Sheyman and Dr Pat. Excerpts:

Y

ou are popular for your Fuji hip-hop style. How did it happen? I began singing professionally in 2000 with a full Fuji music band. Later, I delved into hip-hop. I felt it was time to step up as an educated guy. As a matter of fact, singing just Fuji wasn’t giving me the recognition I wanted so I decided to modernise it and the only way was to make it hip-hop. I did so and it has paid off for me and I’m the pioneer of Fuji hip-hop anywhere. You say you are the pioneer but people believe you are copying LKT. No. I’m not. I’m way ahead of LKT. I often wonder why people think I copy songs that LKT did or that I imitate his voice. That is a capital NO. I’m always amused when people think I’m the one copying him. Let me tell you, I can tell you when LKT started his career as a

‘Fuji hip-hop is my baby’ musician. But he can never come out to say he knew when I began singing. Except if he goes to do research on me. But no problem, it’s good to have someone who wishes to be like you. That makes you a role model. He is also doing Fuji hip-hop but genuine music analysts can tell who the original is and better among us. See, I’m the king of the genre, and that’s not in contention. But I see everything as a healthy competition between us. After Hotter Than Fire, people expected more songs from you, Sheyman and Dr Pat, but you parted ways instead. Why? I left them because I rediscovered myself and realised I had to do new things on my own. I found out it was time to be myself again as I was before and not in a collective. Also, I know the value of being independent and I realised it more when people were saying I couldn’t survive without Sheyman and Dr Pat so I decided to leave them to stop people thinking that without Sheyman and Dr Pat, I couldn’t survive. Is it true that you have a beef with Terry G? I still see him as my colleague but I’ve learnt a lesson I will never forget from him. People who are following our ca-

reers will easily know what can be the cause of discord between us. What are the challenges you are facing? I don’t believe in challenges. I see them as paying one’s due as it is impossible not to have challenges, even if you are the best at what you do. So I believe one will continue to pay his due as long as he lives. Even mega stars like Chief Ebenezer Obey, KSA and others are still paying their due. Once you stop, you are gone, career wise. So it is normal to me that I’ll keep paying my due. Most musicians are uneducated or dropouts. How about you? I am different. Education is very important and I believe in it so much. That’s why I studied Banking and Finance at the Kwara State Polytechnic and graduated in 2002. But I’ve always loved entertainment from when I was little and I was already trying my hand at music before I gained admission. So, when I graduated, it wasn’t difficult for me to decide to delve fully into music especially as the Nigerian music industry was really growing then and keeps growing fast even now. There is also this talk about you and Laide Bakare.

They are irrelevant and unnecessary rumours. What’s the big deal in having a working relationship with her? I’m not surprised that people are making insinuations about us, but that is the world for you. Anyway, I met her at an event of another actor, Saidi Balogun. That was in 2011. Funny enough, we were fans of each other. Even as at the time we met, one of my songs was her ringtone. Anyway, I sold the idea of us doing some things together to her and when we met again at another event shortly afterwards, she said she was interested in us working together and that was what gave birth to her record label project. We recorded Azonto Fuji which is now everywhere. It is one of the tracks in my upcoming album which will soon be launched. Some of my other tracks on it are Iwa featuring 9ice, Shalanga and Joromi. Why did you choose T-Code as your name? In this industry, you need a name that will make people want to know who you are. It should, however, be simple and easy to pronounce and remember. And most times, we choose our artiste name from our original name and that’s what I did too. My name is Taiwo Korodo so I combined the first alphabets of the two to make T–Code because I’m a coded guy.


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January 19, 2013

Entervaganza

With OSEYIZA OOGBODO

08023755142 kingseiza@gmail.com

Clarence Peters’ coldness to fan

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eing a celebrity involves a lot of sacrifices, chief of which is the propensity to be recognised in public. It would however seem that Clarence Peters who has been a celebrity all his life is not ready to make the necessary sacrifices that come with his celebrity status. As the son of ace juju musician, Sir Shina Peters, and A-list Nollywood actress, Clarion Chukwurah, CP was born a celebrity and attention has always been on him. Much is always expected of children born to celebrity couples, as it is believed that their parents must have deposited their own talents in them, and CP has not been found wanting in this realm. He is probably Nigeria’s top music video director at the moment and is a success in his own right. So, he has lived up to expectations. But unlike his parents who are both in front of the camera, CP is basically

Iyanya

Iyanya: Caught in success’ trap?

Kel

Kel waxes strong again

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fter the setback she suffered when she parted ways with Capital Hill, the record label that shot her to limelight back in the day with her smash hit, Waa Wa Alright and its follow-up, Too Fine, Kelechi Ohia, better known as Kel, is finally making a return to the success she once enjoyed. While she was the hottest female rapper then, she almost faded off when Capital Hill sacked her unceremoniously for the same reason(s) Trybe Records also sacked its own female rapper, Eva Alordiah, last year. Luckily for Kel, she has finally put the psychological effects of her Capital Hill sack behind her and is now moving forward at a fast rate. The video for her W4–featured song, Give It To You, which was shot in South Africa must have done the magic of returning her to the limelight once more. Or could it be that she’s working with a producer who has the right chemistry with her? Give It To You was produced by Tintin and he’s the one who also produced her latest single, Show The Way. No matter what is making things work right for her, Kel is waxing strong again and that’s good news for the industry.

behind it. Still, he is famous especially as he is heavily dreadlocked. He has become so successful that he is now a goldfish in a bowl. But CP might do his public image more harm than good if he keeps reacting the way he did to a fan that approached him at the Ikoyi passport office recently. According to an eyewitness, CP was approached by an excited fan who greeted him. But the fan and the people around were shocked by CP’s cold response. But the fan’s enthusiasm would not be dampened as he coolly explained to CP that he was an admirer of his and he would like them to cooperate on a project. At the end of it all, they exchanged numbers. But if CP keeps reacting in the same manner when he is recognised in public, what will happen to his brand?

Peters

ne of the challenges that come with success in the entertainment industry is time management. Entertainment practitioners suddenly find themselves so busy with their newfound success status that they are unable to manage their time properly to attend to all their engagements and commitments. A few years ago, at the height of his African Queen fame, Tuface Idibia encountered a similar problem. He was scheduled to perform at an Ali Baba event at MUSON Centre but got there late from another event in Ghana. Ali Baba was so furious that Tuface had to appease him both publicly and privately before he could truly forgive him. OJB Jezreel who produced African Queen also couldn’t handle the surge of artistes who wanted to work at his studio due to the success of African Queen. Such was the rush that they were working day and night and the studio’s equipment broke down. Kukere crooner, Iyanya, is the latest entertainer having issues with time management. Kukere is definitely the biggest song in town currently and Iyanya is getting a lot of shows worldwide as a result. However, he wasn’t able to honour his commitment to perform at Opa Williams’ shows and this is one success trap that Iyanya should better avoid in future.


ENTERVAGANZA

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January 19, 2013

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

CLASSICAL RYHMES

AIRWAVES LINK

Skuki seeks relevance I

t is said in the music industry that you are only as relevant as your last hit. And this is now the case with the singing brothers, Skuki. About three years ago, they had a monster hit in the song, Banger. Such was its acceptance that it even won them a huge fan base outside the shores of the nation. Banger wasn’t their only major hit then. Stamina, featuring Mo’ Cheddah, was also very well accepted and Fire also spread their name like fire. The brothers have however been trying their best for some time

now to score major hits again. To this end, they have released Halleluyah, Move It and Necessity, but

those songs can’t be said to have broken the grounds that Banger and Stamina did. Nevertheless, the brothers are back again with yet another single, B.A.D which stands for Beautiful And Different. Will B.A.D be the song to return Skuki to the prominence which was once their lot? Only time will tell. Meanwhile, they announced late last year that they would introduce their own brand of condom into the market this year. At this point, that seems like a more astute business venture for them.

Shuki

Amaka Igwe’s TV ambition on course S Igwe

aying this is the best of times for film and media personality Amaka Igwe is not out of turn. She is about to realise one of her dreams: the kickoff of her TV station. Since it’s very difficult to get a television broadcast licence in Nigeria, how much more operate a TV station,

Igwe must be in the best of spirits as her TV station is set to begin official broadcasting next month. It is however not surprising that she has been able to come this far to the point of owning a radio and a TV station. She has always set the pace with her TV programmes, especially Checkmate and

Fuji House of Commotion. And after proving she has what it takes to run a media organisation with the success of Top FM, she will definitely conquer the television broadcasting sector too, though it is a much more difficult proposition than the radio broadcasting sector.

GPTBFS features the 10 biggest music videos

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his week’s edition of Glo Presents The Big Friday Show (GPTBFS) is unique. It is the best of music special and thereby features the 10 biggest music videos on the show for this season. They were chosen by MTV Base and Globacom through Facebook, Twitter and SMS. Known as The BFS Jams Countdown, MTV Base disclosed that the countdown includes the videos of PSquare, Burna Boy, Iyanya, Ice Prince and other top-rated artists. The edition, which is the fifteenth of its third season, also features the latest entertainment and celebrity gossip on the Vlog segment, Celebrity And Fans Meet, and the Prank Yo Peoples! segment which offers viewers an opportunity to prank their friends and send in their prank video by MMS or by uploading it on Facebook.

Ice Prince

Molejo Artist: Bouqui Verse 1 Be ready to And battle like I’ve had those often and flows I got those, the best you see That’s the way you oughtta be Spreading from life monopoly I can dance some rock Sing on tops [c’mon] Chorus Mo le jo lori agolo Mo le jo lori agolo Bi Jesu gba mi laye, mo le jo Mo le jo lori agolo o Bi Je su gba mi laye ko ri o pe Verse 2 You can bump it in the club Bump it in the pub You can bump it anywhere Even in your bath tub So this is not about me or about you It’s all about G O D Pay attention to the truth All I need is one mic and one song, And one laugh, one mind and I’m done I said it before and I will say it again I’m his and I’m proud that’s the making It don’t matter how you wanna praise his name It don’t matter just let it be you’re doing the same Dance try mummy Keep it steady Let me see you on the floor Dance to daddy I am a thoroughbred Check the track records How we reminisce He never gave me up We stay connected like the spine to the skull I get protected even when I flop Repeat chorus Bridge Se iwo lejo, se iwo lejo, mo le jo Se iwo lejo, se iwo lejo, e mi lejo


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ENTERVAGANZA

January 19, 2013

BOX-OFFICE HITS

BRAIN BEHIND THE SCENE

Biodun Ibitola …

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his is one movie that will heat up the cinemas. Movies in its category always do and A Haunted House should be no different. Its plot includes ghosts, which are always a box-office pull, and romance, another guaranteed commercial selling point of movies. AHH’s storyline will definitely win it many admirers. As its title suggests, a house is haunted by ghosts or a ghost in this case. Why is the ghost haunting the house? Did it die there while it was a human being?

Marketing Nollywood

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ou just have to give it to Pastor Mrs Biodun Ibitola as a brain behind the scene. Unlike most of her ilk who have to be based in Lagos which is the undisputed headquarters of entertainment in Nigeria in order to be relevant, Ibitola is based in Akure, Ondo State and she’s achieving just as much as the Lagos-based. Ibitola is a producer and marketer and director of Festival of Indigenous African Films. Summing up her endeavours in Nollywood, it adds up that she is going out of her way to market Nollywood for its further development. She does through her organisation, Remdel Optimum Communications which is popularly known as and has also made her too to be known as Remdel. Remdel has produced and marketed many movies including Owo Eje, Ofinga, Afonja, Odidere and Ogiri Oko. It has also marketed the albums of several musicians including Tope Alabi’s Uncommon Favour and Angeli. But not satisfied with marketing movies and albums, and really eager to push Nollywood

forward, Ibitola associated with others to found the above-mentioned film festival. The festival is indeed genuine testimony of her ingenuity behind the scenes. While others would prefer to hold such a movie festival in Lagos or Abuja at the worst, Ibitola and Remdel didn’t think beyond Ondo State where they had been operating all along. They hold the festival in Akure and Ibitola told Entervaganza why some time ago at a meeting at a popular celebrity hangout in Ikeja, Lagos. “Holding our festival in Akure is also part of marketing Ondo State to the world as it is unarguably Nigeria’s best scenic location for movie productions. There are rocks, streams, landscape, etc that make Ondo State a movie producer’s haven.” And on why the festival is now focusing on indigenous languages, she said that shooting movies in indigenous languages is the best way to market them to the world and at the same time preserve such languages.

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his is one movie that you should make a date with at the cinema. Even the harshest critics are praising it in America where it originates from. Its star-studded cast is definitely another strong point in its favour. A good number of your favourite movie stars: Halle Berry, Richard Gere, Kate Winslet, Uma Thurman, Hugh Jackman, Terrence Howard and many others are in it. You can then imagine that if one star is enough to sell a movie, an assembly of them in one will make that movie talked about, and that is Movie 43 for you. And if you want to know if it’s worth all the stars it parades, you have to

N o . The ghost came with the house owner’s girlfriend. Popular AfricanAmerican actor Marlon Wayans is the house owner whose girlfriend moves in with him after two years of dating. Though he is elated to have her with him, the ghost doesn’t allow him enjoy the relationship the way he should and wants. At first, the ghost is only a nuisance, rattling pots a n d slamming doors, but as things get worse, Wayans turns to a rag-tag crew of stereotypes, from a pseudo-priest (Cedric The Entertainer), a gay psychic (Nick Swardson), and a bald-headed security system installer/ghost hunter (David Koechner) to help him get a handle on his possessed girlfriend and the demon invading their house, smoking their weed, and sexually assaulting them. So what happens? Find out in the movie.

go see it when it hits the cinemas. Suffice it to say that its producers have described it as a comedy which is the most outrageous ever made while a reviewer analysed it as one of the most shocking, original and dangerous comedies ever made.


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January 19, 2013

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Relationships

Heartbreak: Who It’s harder on men

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eorge Bernard Shaw once wrote that a heartbreak is a curious sensation; the sort of pain that goes mercifully beyond our powers of feeling. He went on to say that when your heart is broken, your ‘boats’ are burned and nothing matters anymore because it is the end of happiness. Heartbreak generally does not discriminate between genders. I’ll not really go into the factors that can cause one’s heart to be broken, but the fact is that contrary to popular opinion about women been more involved emotionally in most relationships, men commit more in terms of time, finance and emotion to make the relationship work so I’ll say that heartbreaks are harder on men that women. It is a wrong notion to even think that the woman gets more affected when you look at it from the point of view of the man’s ego and selfworth being questioned since he has lost out to another man. In fact, whoever says that women are the only ones who feel bereaved after a failed relationship does not know what they are saying. You’ll be surprised at the amount of Nigerian men who take to psychological acts of violence all because their girlfriend or wife left them with heartbreak. Most men can’t imagine seeing their ex in the arms of another man so when a relationship goes sour, it becomes something too hard to handle. Some men even go as far as taking to alcoholism all in the name of trying to drown away their sorrows in booze. What women don’t know is that we don’t like starting what we can’t finish. It hurts our ego when things don’t work in our favour and that’s the truth. It makes us feel like a failure. This is especially seen in the way we are differently raised as kids. Women are generally raised to accept certain things in life like how to deal with emotions through tears and crying while a man is generally taught from boyhood that ‘big boys don’t cry’ and we learn to internalise our pains. Women therefore through the ages have a readymade support group of friends for

issues like emotional turmoil while men have to go it all alone. Another reason is that men are creatures of habits. It’s one of the reasons why it’s difficult to break the habit of drinking with the ‘boys’. As it is to break that habit, so it is when a man finally commits and has openness about his relationship with his woman. When a man falls in love, he falls very hard. The end of a relationship has a bad effect on a man’s emotional and mental health more than it affects women. Women’s mental health recovers quicker. I’ve had some friends who actually shut down completely for weeks and I had to practically drag them out of their houses to go back into the real world. This deep emotional severance is what makes a lot of men to find it difficult in recommitting themselves as deeply in a new relationship and it is this that makes women to think that men don’t fall in love. For a man, the maxim is; once beaten, twice shy. One of my friends whose heart was broken recently had it so bad that he was practically living in his car. He was so badly shaken with the experience of finding out that his wife was actually sleeping with one of her colleagues in the office. She even had the audacity to tell him to his face that she was tired of living a life of lies because she never loved him and she wanted out of the marriage. She wasn’t even bothered about the future of the two kids they had. All she wanted was to leave. For a lot of men, the first thing that comes to mind is denial of the obvious, which is that they have been dumped. They then progress to the recrimination stage where they start feeling sorry for themselves. It is at this stage that they need the support group of family and friends that women have but which men don’t get. Men repress their emotions at this stage because they don’t want an already battered ego to be destroyed and they therefore are kept in a perpetual state of sadness. But with the right information and support group, a lot of men are learning now how to deal with heartbreaks.

SEX TALK

This column is x-rated

10 sure ways to rev up a limp noodle

We know you love your man, but let’s be honest -- aren’t there a few things you wish he’d do differently between the sheets? If sex has become a little predictable here’s the good news: You can make your guy a better lover without damaging his ego. Here’s how to turn things around -- tonight! Talk about it Try bringing up the issue. Talk about what you would love to change -- just make sure it’s outside the bedroom. According to sexperts, these types of talks are better outside of a sexual situation. It is also a good idea to start from a positive place. You can start by asking your partner to share what he likes the best and the least about your sex life. Then you’ll have the forum to share your own thoughts.

Get out of your routine Does it feel like sex always happens at the exact same time every week? If 9 a.m. Saturday romps don’t exactly excite you, reset his clock with a simple game. Tell him playfully that you’re not having sex in the morning, but you’ll be ready and willing at ANY other time of the day. Men are competitive by nature, so he’ll be dying to prove that he can wait. It’s also important not to reject your partner outright. So instead of simply saying no,

offer some steamy coming attractions. Say something like, ‘I’m not feeling particularly sexy right now, but how about we shower together later? The key is to reschedule, not reject.

Slow Down Has a bed time quickie become the norm? We are all hyper-scheduled these days, which isn’t conducive to slowing down and enjoying life’s greatest pleasures. If your guy tends to be a speed demon, resist the urge to tell him to slow down and instead show him. For instance, if he’s flying through foreplay, pull away playfully for a few seconds. If he speeds up again, pull away again. Do it as many times as you have to until he gets the hint! And as unsexy as it sounds, scheduling time for sex can also help your man relax and stop racing for the finish line. Plan an hour of alone time in the morning before you get into your daily hassles, shower together and let nature take its course.


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RELATIONSHIPS

January 19, 2013

CHINWE ANNIE AMAECHI 07028684481 chinweamaechi@gmail.com

feels the pain more? No, it’s women

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This column is x-rated Take control If he’s not touching you in exactly the right place, or not doing exactly the right thing, take his hand and place it right where you want it. A little encouragement goes a long way, too. This is another area where positive reinforcement is key, because no one likes to feel like they’re doing a bad job in bed. So while you’re gently guiding his hand, murmur something nice and encouraging, such as ‘that feels great.” Women often expect their husbands to instinctively know what they like, but men aren’t mind readers. So give the poor guy a hint now and then.

This column is x-rated tures. There is nothing wrong with using what your man has to get what you want.

More visual tricks If you want him to be a tiger in the bedroom, then give him an eyeful. We’re not suggesting you prepare dinner in a G-string. But who says you can’t cook in your G-string, especially if you have your space to yourselves? If you can’t go this far, however, something as simple as sleeping naked or buying some lacy lingerie can turn your man into a sex machine. Plus when you look sexy, you feel more confident and less inhibited and your man will definitely find the bold you more exciting.

Don’t be missionaries

Relive the past

Man-On-Top can get boring pretty quick. Spice up sex by taking turns choosing positions and locations. There is surely more than one way to make a dog sit!

Every couple has memories of mind-blowing sex at a particular point in their relationship. Sometimes just being reminded of what can be (‘cause it once was) is enough to get a lackluster lover back on track. If you are married, bring out your honeymoon album and reminisce about the great sex you had before bills and kids came along. You can also point out photos of yourself in your sexiest outfit and remind your guy how lucky he is to have you. Do whatever it takes to reignite their passion for each other.

Get him motivated After a long day at work, it’s no surprise that you’re left staring at the ceiling listening to him sweetly snoring instead of heating you up. If your attempts at night-time loving are met with groans of “I’m too tired,” then try giving your guy more time to relax when he comes home. Turn on the TV and let him unwind. Or suggest just kissing and cuddling for five minutes before bedtime. We guarantee he won’t want to pull away.

Increase his passion Is your guy on the libido lowdown? Help him turn things around with some amorous adventure. How about watching a porn movie together? That will surely get your guy in the mood and things will start looking up faster than you can imagine. Men are visual crea-

Focus on one thing at a time Don’t attempt a sexual-180 degrees turn in one night, which will probably leave him suspicious that you’re unhappy with his performance, or worse, that you have been out and about sampling men. Instead, focus on introducing something new into your sex lives that will jump start passion, like bringing home an erotic video or surprising your partner with a sexy getaway to a local hotel. We’re sure he’ll be game!

eople fall in and out of love from time to time. A lot of relationships start well and end in very devastating circumstances. Almost every breakup, if not all, ends up in heart break. Sometimes, two hearts are broken, other times, just one person gets heartbroken. The question is who handles heartbreak better? I think that the most objective way of determining who recovers faster from heartbreak is to compare the rate of “come-backs” amongst men and women. In other words, which gender tends to find “new love” after a bad breakup? Which of the two ex-lovers is able to recover from the bad breakup and move on? It is quite easy to reach an objective conclusion on this matter. Just think about your friends’ relationships, the gist you hear in your neighbourhood and work places regularly and the news we hear or read about in the media. Clearly, men find it much easier to dust their feet and move on to the next woman. Women tend to mourn their ex-partners as if every relationship is equivalent to marriage and a break up is equivalent to the death of a spouse. As always, there are exceptions to every rule, so in very rare circumstances, we see men that find it quite difficult to move on after a bad relationship. How many times have you heard about a man that has remained single and “unattached” because he is still “mourning” a woman that broke his heart? Yet, we hear about women who lose their minds, leave their jobs, relocate to new cities, leave churches and develop health issues on account of heart-

break. If we realistically define the emotions men and women feel after bad breakups, we will see that women feel deep hurt while what men feel is more of anger, than hurt, thanks to their massive egos and business minds. If you listened to a man who has just been ditched by a woman, you will decipher that his lamentations are premised on the fact that the woman was the one who called off the relationship. It is an attack on his ego. He did the asking so he would rather be the one to put an end to what he started. Also, men see broken relationships like failed investments or contracts that went bad. They consider what they have “invested” in the relationship and moan about it. In my opinion, these feelings are far from hurt and heartbreak. Compare a man’s reaction to finding out that his woman is cheating on him to the woman’s reaction in the same situation. The man’s reaction would be more of anger than hurt. He will feel slighted and insulted; he should be the one cheating, not the woman, right? On the contrary, once a woman discovers that her man is cheating on her, she literarily feels a sharp pain in her chest; she is devastated because she has been slapped with the reality that she is not “the one and only woman” in her man’s life. It is true that some women tend to build tough skins and stony hearts over time, and are able to handle heartbreak quickly. But we must admit that such tough skins and stony hearts are built after a series of heartbreaks. On the other hand, men tend to have tough skins and stony hearts from the onset. So who finds it more difficult to handle heartbreak? Your guess is as good as mine.

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January 19, 2013

Woman

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Nigerian youths are too artificial –Alhaja Okunnu Although Alhaja Lateefat Okunnu was born with a silver spoon in her mouth, modesty and godliness remain her watchwords. A one time deputy governor of Lagos State and wife of former Federal Commissioner of Works, Alhaji Femi Okunnu, she has remained married for 49 years and is a point of positive reference in Nigeria and outside it. In this interview with YEMISI ADENIRAN, she speaks about her childhood, her days as a deputy governor, and her marriage of many decades.

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ou have been married close to five decades now. What is the experience like and the secret of its success? Above every other thing, God Almighty has been the power behind the marriage. Besides, the fact that we both share the same values; values of hard work, integrity, service to the community, nation and high performance is another advantage. My husband has been a public figure and a real encouragement to my career. He has supported my career from the onset. First of all, I started as an assistant lecturer in the then Federal Advanced Teachers College (FATC), now College of Education. I was like a pupil-lecturer and it was an international setting. The FATC was set up by UNESCO and we had international staff. It was an opportunity for one to grow in the profession with experts from different parts of the world like India, United States and the like. So, it was a very challenging assignment. In the process, I decided to go and do a professional diploma and that was where I got stuck to education for a long time. How did you meet your husband? The Lagos of those years used to be a small society, particularly among the indigenes. It was a close society. I am like a middle child and I have many elder

brothers and sisters as well as younger ones. My husband had not been a stranger in my family. He and my elder siblings went to school in the same area and all the schools were concentrated on Broad Street, Baptist Academy and Kings College and there’s the Islamic circle for the Muslim children. So, I think that was it. We took off as casual friends and later got more serious. For how long did you court each other before getting married? I think we had about three years of courtship while I was in the university and got married the same year I graduated, 1964. What was it like to be married to a commissioner in those days? In those days, public life was strictly guided by rules and regulations. The only time I was seen in the official car was when I was accompanying my husband to state functions. There was a time after the Civil War, we were on holidays, the Head of State was passing through and we were offered seats on the plane just from England back. Believe me, my husband was made to pay for my seat on that plane. It was that strict. It was not a time for frivolities, there was no time for excesses and my husband is a disciplined man. We insisted on staying in our private house. We did not move into any gov-


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WOMAN

January 19, 2013

ernment quarters and we did not seek any assistance, special or otherwise, in our home as the wife of a commissioner. It was a normal life we lived, there was discipline. I remember the wife of the then Military Administrator of Lagos State, Mrs Johnson (wife of Mobolaji Johnson), she also faced her career squarely. We met at the market and we were just ordinary people because the society did not allow for that type of officials ‘wife status as we have today. Looking at what we have today, which of the two styles do you prefer? I think I will prefer that a person’s private life should be separated from his public life. Much as this is not likely to be hundred per cent possible, at least, a woman does not become an official by virtue of her spouse’s in office. That way, you would be protecting your spouse because people would present things that are not good to you as good if you give them the chance. That will however not be possible if you have a clear demarcation. I never saw the inside of my husband’s office for the seven years he was a commissioner. I had no reason to do so because we were living together in the same house. I could ask any question I wanted, he could give me any gist he wished, so, I needed not stay around his office. I had my job which was very demanding. One other good thing about this was that it made it easier for one to adjust to life after all the glamour of office. We have cases of broken marriages these days more than before. What would you say is responsible for the increase? I would start from the basics; our values. Right now, we are neither black nor white. It’s a complete mix and unfortunately, the media exposure has its good, the bad and the ugly all mixed up. That is number one. The society is gradually breaking from its old culture which shouldn’t be so. It used to be one continuous culture and society and it should continually be so. There is nothing wrong in the old culture; the old one has a part to play even on the new one while the new one also does the same with the old one. The young ones have a lot to learn from the good old culture and the world really would have been better for it. The young ones in our own time were not just brought up by their immediate family; the extended family also contributed a lot to their growth. Even where there were domestic servants in our own home, for instance, we were made to work, serve with our hands. The domestic servants they had were for them and not us. We were made to do our laundry, go to the market and all that. This way, we were exposed to the society. This is not so today and it is affecting our youths. We were taught the way to manage ourselves and so we did. We were taught about the expectations of the society we live in and we guide against all the don’ts to avoid the effects. Both boys and girls

were made to understand our culture and be conscious of it. A part of the values that is absent today is that the young men are not given proper home training. Many homes train their boys to feel that they are superior to the girls, so, they have nothing to do with domestic chores. This is wrong and needs to be corrected for a wellstabilised home in the future. My own brothers carried me on their back because it was a condition for our parents to have a breathing space. They did all domestic chores with us and never saw themselves as superior to girls. One advantage of this virtue is that as these kind of guys grew up, they saw their wives as their friends, their pals and related to them as such. It was easier for them to allow their wives have a say in the affairs of the homes, they render assistance in the homes, the kitchen, even with the kids where necessary. The wives, on the other hand, also responded by honouring and appreciating them. Parents should endeavour to train their children well. They should let them realise the importance of being helpers to each other. Let them know that no gender is superior to the other. They should let the girls grow to know that our culture treasures respect and humility where their husbands are concerned. Many of the boys today are reneging in their responsibilities; it’s a question of fifty-fifty or nothing at all. They should be well counselled to know how to be responsible, what it takes to be responsible and how to remain responsible. All these should be done as they are growing and not when marriage is some weeks away. They should be familiar with our culture, the taboos in our society and the expectations. They should be taught to be original, appreciate themselves and their culture and stop their attitude of wanting to be like an American or a European. What are your found memories of your tenure as the Deputy Governor of Lagos State? How did you combine it with managing your home? My appointment as the deputy governor of Lagos State was a military decision and not by any vote. It was like a civil service posting. Before my appointment, I had taken interest in the affairs of Lagos State to see that the indigenes were not marginalised. So, I went on to pursue the indigenous policy, you may say, to a fault. I was also interested in the traditional setup; I enjoyed working with the obas. As the state’s chairperson of Tender’s Board, it was also good to be part of the market and local government. Combining my schedule with the home front, of course, was very challenging but I was lucky to have my mother-in-law with me. Her presence gave me peace of mind. There was closeness in the family but at least, I still had to go around for my shopping and the rest. But then, things were easier then. Traffic was not a serious problem, we had cars to move around as you could easily get a loan from the government to buy a car

25

Keeping ABREAST

Woman with world’s largest breasts rejects breast reduction surgery  Annie Hawkins-Turner has a bra size of 102ZZZ and her chest weighs eight stone.

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he woman with the world’s largest breasts in the world employs security to help defend herself against unwanted suitors who ‘chase’ her. Annie Hawkins-Turner, a 53-year-old from Atlanta, Georgia (USA) who has a bra size of 102ZZZ, says although they attracted ridicule when she was a child, her Guinness World Record-breaking breasts have since helped her develop a career as a ‘fantasy model’. Ms HawkinsTurner’s chest weighs eight stone. She says: “No one looks like me, I’m one in a million. I’m always imitated but never duplicated.” She adds that she has never contemplated undergoing a breast reduction. “I’ve never thought about bringing a knife to myself,” she says. “Why fix something that’s not broken?” Ms Hawkins-Turner, a sufferer of gigantomastia, a condition that involves slow, progressive growth of breast tissue, admits that despite her new-found fame, her breasts do create everyday problems. She says: “When I have to bend over, if I get up the wrong way I’m going to hurt myself. If I stand up for a long period of time, I do get numbness in my shoulders.” Even driving a car provides its own share of issues. “I’m not going to put on my seat belt because it’s too tight across my breasts,” she says. Her positive self image is unwavering, however, even when challenged by those around her. She has been bullied ever since childhood and is taunted daily by

strangers. “When I go out of my house I have to think about what my day is going to be like and who is going to attack me today. Every day someone teases me that doesn’t know me. They make fun of me and there’s no reason. I’m human like everybody else. I’m just blessed in different ways than other people. It affects my son very badly because people stare at me.” Ms Hawkins-Turner, who today makes a living as a model under the pseudonym Norma Stitz, said that the bullying began when she got her first bra at the age of ten. “I don’t know what size I was. I was just big,” she recalled. “The only thing I remember about those bras is they were cotton and they stuck out just like footballs and that’s when I knew I was different. “Kids are some of the worst people in the world when it comes to picking on people. I was teased a lot.” She admitted she was devastated to learn that she couldn’t even breastfeed when her children were born, because the size of her chest meant there was no comfortable way to place the baby against her chest. Another source of pain for her is her late husband of 13 years, Alan, who died seven years ago. “He turned my whole life around,” she said of the retired Air Force officer. “He treated me like a queen. He loved me and he loved my kids. He was my angel, it wasn’t just sexual.” Culled: www.mailonline.com


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January 19, 2013

Parenting

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

8A ways to be a better dad this New Year Children are like wet cement. Whatever falls on them makes an impression

re you a father who thinks he performed below average last year in the affairs of your home and family and wonders on steps towards being a good one? Here are some tips to make you one especially as we commence the New Year:  Take a hit for the team You must be willing to be selfless and make your family your number one priority. This means putting the needs of your wife and children ahead of your own. If you have to choose between what’s best for you and what’s best for your family, always choose your family first. You may occasionally feel a bit bitter and resentful for never coming first, but there is something primitively satisfying about sacrificing yourself for your family  Worship your wife It’s easy to take your wife for granted because she shows up for “work” every day, taking care of you and your children (even if she works full-time!). But being a mother is the most difficult, selfless, and often thankless job there is. You should constantly thank her for all she does for your family. You should also give her regular opportunities to take care of herself, whether exercise, socializing with friends, or just some down time to read or take a long bath. And, a bit selfishly, a friend of mine has a

saying that I love: “Happy wife, happy life” (I hope that comment doesn’t come across as sexist; not intended).  Communicate Communication is the most essential tool for the success of a marriage and a family. Yet it’s a tool that men are not traditionally very good at. Communication can occur in the form of words, body language, emotions, and action. Communication shows respect for all of your family members, ensures that everyone’s needs are being met, and reduces and resolves conflict. Talk to your wife and children, but, more importantly, listen to their messages, both obvious and subtle, and communicate back to them that you heard them and understand what they are saying.  Be emotional We live in a culture in which expressing emotions by men is considered a weakness. Yet healthy emotional expression, whether positive emotions like such as joy and excitement, or less positive ones, such as anger, frustration, or sadness, are essential for personal happiness, healthy relationships, and success in life. Being able to express all emotions is an important part of being balanced and open. A healthy emotional life is a lifelong gift you can give your children. And, contrary to what our culture says, it actually takes strength to be emo-

ParentingUpdate

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ew parents may think they have it bad with an endless stream of dirty nappies and sleepless nights to contend with.

But little do they know that the worst is yet to come. The hardest part of parenting is when a child first hits the age of 13, a new study has

tionally expressive because it goes against the typical definition of manliness (and going against tide is about as manly as you can get!).  Be tough Many parents these days have gotten the message from popular culture that they should be easy on their children. Well, let me tell you something: the world out there isn’t going to be easy on them, so you need to prepare them. But when I say ‘tough,’ I don’t mean being unkind or angry. I do mean that you should know what is best for your children and do what is best for them whether they like it or not. They may not fully appreciate it now, but they’ll thank you in the future.  Send good messages Your children are being bombarded by unhealthy messages everywhere they turn, most notably from popular culture. Yet, as their father, you have the ability to influence them most directly, most powerfully, and most positively. But to do that, you must do more than talk the talk; you must also walk the walk because your children will do as you do not as you say. Make sure the messages that you send them, whether in your words, emotions, or actions, are going to foster their healthy development.  Teach healthy values The values that your children learn when they’re young

will guide them in everything they do in their lives. Unfortunately, we live in a toxic popular culture that teaches children the most awful values, for example, disrespect, selfishness, greed, and indifference. To combat that influence, you need to make sure that your values are healthy and that your children are getting positive value messages from you.  Take care of yourself physically If you’re like many fathers to-

day, the stress of working hard to support your family and balancing all aspects of life can take its toll. Poor eating habits and lack of exercise and sleep can lead to obesity and other serious health problems. Being overweight, out of shape, sick, physically limited in some way (or, even worse, dead) at 50 isn’t being a good father. Find the time (it is possible no matter how busy you are) and make the commitment to maintain your health, for the sake of your family.

Tiny Feet

NAME: Royahn Abolore Alabi

BORN TO: Mr. and Mrs Adebayo Alabi AGE: 2 weeks BIRTH WEIGHT: 3.2 kg Have you just had a baby? Send a picture of your bundle of joy to mirrorbabies@gmail.com

Coping with adolescents is much harder than caring for new born babies –Parents z Sex, new technology, body image issues and laziness top causes of quarrels revealed. More than half of parents believe coping with teenagers is far more testing than caring for a newborn baby. They said that problems caused by surging hormones, such as indifferent attitudes and growing sexual awareness make this period the hardest time of parenthood. In the study, almost a quarter (24 per cent) of the 1,000 mothers and fathers questioned said that their children were most troublesome at 13. And the biggest cause of arguments was found to be teenagers’ laziness. More than half of parents - 55 per cent - say teenage children not pulling their weight

with household chores was a common cause of quarrels. The study found that other tough issues which rear their heads at this age include children becoming concerned about their body image and depression. A worried 14 per cent admit that their teens are very ‘body conscious’ and are keen to change their body shape. Further, a third of parents admit their teens slam doors and shout at them at least twice a week. Another major cause of concern is teens becoming sexually active. The research found that one in seven parents of 11 to 18-year-olds - 14 per cent - suspect their child has lost their

virginity with 43 per cent believing their child had sex for the first time while under the age of consent. New technology also plays a part in modern parenting as gadgets cause rows with 39 per cent of families. Also, due to the influence of social media, nearly half of parents think their children are worried about their popularity on sites such as Facebook. This may explain why 49 per cent of mums and dads believe their kids fret about ‘being cool’ and ‘fitting in’. The research did, however, reveal that by the time children are 17, the relationship they have with their parents improves considerably.


Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Hot and... pregnant!

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27

January 19, 2013

eing pregnant doesn’t mean you can’t keep up with the trends and feel fashionable. The key to dressing modern and sexy during pregnancy is to pick out the trends you like and adapt them to your new body. Check out these tips to up your pregnancy style quotient Show some skin Believe this, pregnancy offers the best chance you’ll ever have to flaunt cleavage, so take advantage of this fortuitous occasion and wear scoop-neck T-shirts or sweaters. Go skinny If you enjoyed wearing skinny jeans before you were an expecting mama, don’t be afraid to don tight-fitting pants now just because you’re pregnant. Many maternity lines are now making stretchy, super-comfy (and chic!) skinny jeans that will fit and flaunt your new curves. Choose snug over bulky Reaching for bigger clothes to hide your size sounds like a good idea, but it only contributes to a bulky look. Instead, slim down your silhouette and emphasize the features that aren’t expanding with snug-sleeved tops, skinnier pants, and button-down shirts or blazers (from your pre pregnancy wardrobe) left unbuttoned. Try knits that stretch to fit your form -- they’re sexy and feminine. If all

else fails, break out a crisp men’s dress shirt and pair it with leggings or jeans and a fitted T-shirt or tank underneath. This look is the perfect mix of sexy, modern, and classic style Go for colour! Don’t limit yourself to black and neutral tones -- colour is an essential part of the modern maternity closet. You’ll feel happier when you’re wearing clothes that aren’t drab. Get decorative Perk up a staid wardrobe with just a few decorative elements, such as ruffled trims or embroidered or beaded accents. Just be sure to stick with things that you’ll be able to wear more than once without feeling too conspicuous. Try some trimmings Try long, dangling earrings and lariat necklaces to de-emphasize fullness in your face. Wear a patterned scarf in your hair, put a jewelled cuff on your wrist, or carry a chic handbag. Better yet, if you’re not going to be on your feet all day, throw on some fun open-toe sandals or slingbacks. Sexy shoes can instantly perk up practically any outfit.

le StyGlam and

with Yemisi Adeniran

(08037801158) ydiran@yahoo.com


28

STYLE & GLAM

January 19, 2013

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Fashion Frenzy YEMISI ADENIRAN

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ften pronounced om-peer, the empire dress or top is a type of dress or top that has a fitted bodice that ends just below the bust; giving a high-waisted appearance. Best on slender-on-top or petite figures, the empire dress creates the illusion of length and camouflages a bottom-heavy figure or thick waist. It camouflages your stomach and give you the appearance of a long torso. It’s a very flattering shape for

BEAUTY

Q&A

nearly anyone. It hides any have and compliments your b nitely a good look for curvy waists are the best! They ar on almost anyone. Very sli it draws attention to the to Empire waists hides the lit have! While the style goes eighteenth century, the word the period of the First Fren Napoleon’s first Empress Jos harnais was influential in p style around Europe.

Your candid response to all fashion questions 51 fashion tips and tricks every girl should know 19. Shopping for a wedding dress or another big-event outfit? Head to the store with makeup on, proper undergarments, and your hair semi-done to get a better sense of how it’ll look. 20. Double-stick tape work to shorten a hem in a pinch if you can’t get to the tailor before an event.

21. Blot, don’t rub, when you spill something on your clothes. Wiping or rubbing will actually further ingrain the stain into the weave. 22. Panty lines are not okay! Every woman should invest in nude, seamless underwear. 24. If you don’t feel like trying on a dress but still want to see where the hem will hit you, align the shoulder seam exactly with your shoulder bone (not your collarbone).

25. Use 26. Ad while doi dark jean 28. To into each tly expan


Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

January 19, 2013

STYLE & GLAM

29

Facelift

tummy you may breasts. It is defiy women. Empire re very flattering imming because p of your waist. ttle flaws women back to the late d empire refers to nch Empire when séphine de Beaupopularising the

e hairspray to remove a lipstick stain. dd a 1/2 cup of distilled white vinegar to the final rinse cycle ing laundry to maintain the wash of your favorite pair of ns. stretch tight shoes, fill two freezer bags with water and place h shoe. Let it freeze overnight. As the water freezes, it’ll gennd your shoes.

Trendy shades

29. Frame vintage scarves for cool original artwork. 30. When getting jeans shortened, always ask your tailor to reattach the original hem. It may cost extra, but it’s worth it. 31. If blush or bronzer breaks in your handbag, pre-moistened makeup removing wipes will clean up the loose powder flawlessly. 32. Break in stiff or too-snug shoes by slipping them on with socks and blasting your feet with a hot hairdryer. TO BE CONTINUED NEXT WEEK

Today’s bright sunshine, and dusty roads have seen more people wearing sun glasses or shades as we call them more often. But you will find that not everyone looks stylish in them and this is because we just wear shades for shades sake, even when they do not compliment us. Shades are more than protection against light and dust- they are a fashion accessory. And like all accessories, they too have the potential to make you trendy, or and make you look suddenly like a celebrity. However, because what looks right on your friend or neighbor may just not be right on you, it became unavoidable for you to pick the right one. To pick the right shades there are some things about yourself that you need to consider. 1. The shape of your face for one is important. If yours is an oval face, then you are lucky because almost any style will look good on you. If you decide to go for square shaped frames, make sure they have rounded edges, and are medium sized. For you who have a perfectly round face, get shades which will make that face look a little thinner. So, you are going to go for frames that fit your face properly since wider ones will only make your face look large. Also since most round faces look short, you will want to make sure that the shades you get make yours look longer, so, the frames should not go too far beyond the cheek bones. For you with an oblong face, you need large frames since they will make your face appear a little wider, and shorter. 2. Complexion. Beside the shape of your face, mind your complexion. Getting black shades when you have a dark complexion will not compliment your look. Instead opt for metallic colours like gold or silver, and different shades of brown. As you pick out those shades, first try them out, look at a mirror, and if you like what you see, buy them. Now you will look just as hot as that blazing sun whose light you are trying to avoid.


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January 19, 2013

Male Essentials

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

08036961187

with Oseyiza Oogbodo w gbodo kingseiza@yahoo.com

White

swag OLUWASEGUN IJABIKEN

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ne way you can really prove you are fashionable now is to wear white trousers, be they dress trousers or jeans. White trousers are now a must-have in the wardrobe of fashionable men. White itself is one colour that is incomparable and is suitable with every other colour so white trousers will even be an advantage for you as you can wear it any top, shoe, cap or sunglasses that you want to no matter their colour. White trousers will only add to your swagger, so what are you waiting, get some for yourself now, and if you have it already, wear it to that next occasion to prove that you are in vogue.

5 easy fashion & style resolutions (1) N

ew Year’s resolutions are always hard to keep. Quit smoking: fail. Join a gym: fail. Cut down on nights out: huge fail. Whilst the sentiment behind such selfimprovements are genuine, temptation and obstacles surround us everywhere we go - whether it’s that extra pint in the pub or the soaring fees of gym membership. But, do not despair, there are plenty of ways us gents can improve in the style department. With the New Year, we have a new outlook on men’s fashion that is constantly expanding. 2013 can become the trigger for all of us to take that extra bit of care. Besides, it looks like the Mayans were completely wrong about the Rapture, and style has a purpose once more. We at FashionBeans have had a good long thought about men’s style and the need for enhancement as we go forward. Your personal resolutions may be doomed from the offset, but our five easy-to-implement New Year’s resolutions will help keep your style impeccable this year.

Resolution No. 1: Invest in good shoes The days of bad shoes are long gone, and we should be ushering in a golden age of quality footwear. Granted, some are bound to be left behind, but we all should go out and buy a pair of shoes to be proud of. With luxury comes a price tag, but I feel that spending that extra will work wonders. A good pair of brogues or Derbies can be a companion for life if you look after them properly. On the flipside, the formal route isn’t always the preferred choice, so feel free to dress them down with slacks, jeans and T-shirts. I’ve always found loafers to be a much more versatile style in that respect. Resolution No. 2: Avoid ‘Ladwear’ at all costs. Oh God, where do I even start with this one? Everything about typical ‘Ladwear’ (as I like to call it) is wrong. Let me be more specific: my friends and I define Ladwear as anything that wouldn’t look out of place in your local hang out. We all know what I’m talking about here:

T-shirts with s c a n t i ly - cl a d women dropcrotch carrot jeans that were more novelty than style, and oversized but rather lacking vests with the sole purpose of drawing attention to one’s creatine-sculpte d arms. It takes very little effort to smarten up your look and nobody likes looking back at embarrassing photos, especially when you’re old enough to know better. Let’s make the New Year a sartorially informed one, and replace Ladwear with heritage, classic and timeless pieces. Resolution No. 3: Embrace more trends A resolution that I need to stick to myself, because it’s easy to fall prey to style

monotony. My own wardrobe is incredibly basic and neutral, with a few flashes of print and colour here and there. In 2013, that just isn’t good enough. The motto “if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it” certainly rings true for many of us and our sartorial decisions, but as the boundaries of style and masculinity are stretched and transformed every season, there’s no reason why any of us should shy away from bolder, more experimental pieces. Believe it or not, such audacious choices are becoming increasingly acceptable by mainstream standards. I’m not suggesting you should don a leather poncho or the like in an effort to be fashion forward, but menswear really is on the move and I for one don’t want to be left behind. Find a happy medium between brave trends and your personal style and I can guarantee that you’ll be on to a winner. •To be continued next week


People

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

January 19, 2013

31

Shuibu Dansudu: Peacemaker in the making TEMITOPE OGUNBANKE

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lhaji Ado Shuibu Da Dansudu is the Chairman of Hausa Oke-Odo Community of Ok Government Market in Agege Local Gover Area of Lagos State. Since his h asbeen dosumption of office he has be capacity to ing everything within his capa Yoruba maintain peace between the Y the Okeand Hausa traders within th Odo market and other parts of the state. Dansudu apart from being the leader of the Hausa Community in OkeOdo Market iis also President of the Preside United Arewa Consultative and Forum National Vice Chairof man A r e w a Yo u t h s

Development Association. An astute businessman, he has brought smiles to the faces of many and is regarded as a mentor by some Hausa youths as a result of how he has been able to touch their lives. Speaking to Saturday Mirror on how he has been able to ensure the existence of a cordial relationship between the Hausa and other ethnic groups in the state, Dansudu said : “In the last few years, we (Hausa communities in Lagos State) have been able to maintain cordial relationship with other ethnic nationalities in Lagos State. We have a cordial relationship with all the ethnic nationality groups like Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC), Igbo, Ijaw, Niger-Delta among others. Our relationship is very cordial with them and that is why it has been very difficult to have the repeat of the ethnic clash between the Hausa and Yoruba, which happened during the annulment of June 12, 1993 presidential election and the death of Chief MKO Abiola. “In Lagos today, everything is in

order among all the ethnic nationalities and we are all living in peace and harmony. The cordial relationship among the ethnic nationalities leaders has opened doors for us to dialogue and understand ourselves and to know Nigeria’s problems. Dialogue has helped us to provide solution to many problems because anywhere there is problem we always call ourselves together to dialogue and find solution to it.” Speaking on the recent visit of the Political Officer, United States Consulate General, Nigeria, Mr. Ben Lazarus, to him, where they discussed at length how to resolve the insecurity problems in Nigeria, Dansudu said effective dialogue will proffer solutions to the insecurity problems. “I believe that the crisis in the North is a hidden agenda and some people are carrying out the evil act to destabilise the North and make Northern youths to be weak but we are not going to allow the ugly situation to continue. We will try our best to solve the problem,” he said.

Sotonye Akujobi: Preserving memory through charity FUNMI SALOME JOHNSON

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otonye Chinwendu Akujobi is an indigene of Rivers State and currently a successful business woman. However, she also runs a Non Governmental Organisation (NGO), the Daniel Ogechi Akujobi Memorial (DOAM) Foundation, which cares for the children and less privileged involved in road mishaps. Sotonye, one day, about six years ago, had gone to the Lifeforte School located in Mowe, Ogun State just like every mother to pick her child, her only son. Full of life the duo chatted happily as they made their way home. Eventually, only one of them, the mother, made it home alive albeit many days later and in pains. Daniel, for that was the five-year-old boy’s name, died. They were both involved in a ghastly motor accident that claimed his life days after in a hospital. Sotonye was with serious injuries that left permanent scars on her. It was November 2005. “I did not have a single premonition that, that terrible accident was going to happen that day, if I had known, I would not have even let him go to school that

say” Sotonye said amidst tears as she recalled the sad event. She told Saturday Mirror how she had had to wait for eight years of childless marriage before she had Daniel. “I had to wait for eight years before having him and after having him, I waited for another five years before I had the sister and then a set of twins. The twins died and now Daniel, my only son is also gone, it is really sad for me” she said trying to hold back the dam of hot tears threatening to burst. On what she missed most about Daniel, she said, she misses everything about him and that her only consolation is the fact that she now has a saint in him in heaven. “I miss everything about him; he would always refer to me as ‘My mummy’. He was such a passionate, affectionate and loving son; I miss him so, so much. But the only consolation I have is the fact that in him, I now have a saint in heaven and I know that I will see him again someday.” Grief stricken Sotonye after trying hard to get out of her grief, took it upon herself to start a Non Governmental Organisation in the memory of her late son. She called it Daniel Ogechi Akujobi

Memorial (DOAM) Foundation. She now uses the Foundation to care for the less privileged in the area of provision for health care for accident victims and education. The Foundation was started about three years ago, two years after the death of her beloved son. On what actually happened on that fateful day and whom to blame for the terrible incidence, Sotonye responded: “The car in front us was actually over speeding and could not control the car when it got

to a terrible pot hole, so it somersaulted and landed on the roof of our own car and that was how pandemonium was let loose. My driver died on the sport and my son died airborne three days after while flying him to South Africa for treatment.” According to Sotonye it is bad enough that the road is bad but it will also be a good thing if individuals check the condition of their cars before setting out. She absolves the government from every accident that happens on the roads.


32

Dear Igho

January 19, 2013

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

TTel: e 08023924679 (SMS only) ighomit@gmail.com

Having difficulties with relationships, family, work or any other aspectt off your life? lif Help is at hand with TOBORE IGHO OVUORIE Dear Igho, I am 16 years old and whenever I am supposed to go on any kind of celebration, my stomach rumbles. I get very uncomfortable and very nervous. My heart beats very hard. Any advice on how I can avoid that or are parties not meant for me?

Are parties not for me?

Tunmise, Covenant University, Ota, Ogun State.

Dear Tunmise, It’s due to anxiety. You’re having a panic attack. You have to get to the root of why you feel uncomfortable facing any kind of celebration. Perhaps you feel insecure around others, shy, can’t hold your own and feel threatened by large groups. If you’re not comfortable in your own skin, you’re not going to feel the freedom and relaxation you want when you’re around many people in one place. If you can’t seek a doctor’s help, there is medication for anxiety and it’s as simple as this: understand that you don’t have to prove anything to anyone. Please take note: No situation (other than a threat, or act of violence) should allow you to feel less of a person than those around you. We’re all in the same sinking ship (no one gets out of here alive!) but some row faster than others. Start rowing and do not see these situations as life and death issues, but more a gathering of humans who find pleasure in these types of social gatherings. You feel powerless in these situations, but it’s time to take your power back because life is too short to allow irrational thoughts to control you!

My flat mate is dating our neighbour’s husband Dear Igho, My flat mate is having an emotional and sexual relationship with our neighbour- a married man who is a father of three, and it’s been going on for four years. I really want to break it all up because it is making my friend miserable and they are both Dear Igho,

refusing to leave each other. They say it’s ‘hard’. I am dying to tell the wife everything. It is the only way I can see this ridiculous thing ending and my friend moving on. Should I tell? Worried friend, Dolphin Estate, Ikoyi, Lagos.

Dear Worried Friend, This isn’t your business to settle, and I would distance myself from it if I were you. I do understand, however, that you’re sick of hearing her moan about the frustration and misery she’s in with this married man. Rather than going to the wife, you

have every right to tell your flat mate these:, “This is a choice you’ve made, and I love you, but you have to leave me out of it from this moment on. Unless you leave him, nothing will change!” But, again, this is not your call to make because as the saying goes: “The road to hell is paved with good intentions”. Be tactful!

My mother-in-law is cheating!

I am a very understanding and loyal person. I have been married to my loving husband for a full year now. His mom and dad were unfortunate to divorce when my husband was little. Since their divorce, my father-in-law has been paralysed. He is about to have extensive surgery that could cause great harm or death. He hasn’t had sex since his paralysis, and I am not sure he could. No female companionship, nothing. My mother-in-law has remarried a devoted husband but he has back issues that don’t allow them to be intimate, which puts a strain on their marriage; especially since she feels more confident about her figure. She feels very attractive toward/ around her ex because of their history and connection when she visits

to be friendly. The issue is that my mother-in-law has confided in me that she and her ex have been having a little sexual fun together. She said she desperately needs this physical connection that her husband doesn’t give her. She justifies it as at least she isn’t out there with a 40-year-old stranger. I understand on the level of it being her ex husband and the connection that’s there, I just don’t know where to go from here. I honestly feel she is going to, and is excited to help out herself and her ex husband with sexual escapades (through sex toys) so they both get what they want but to me it is still cheating. I do not want to be a part of this. I am faithfully married and extremely happy with

their son. If he knew I took any part in this, he would be furious. Where do I go from here? I know I love the intimate connection with my husband and would be torn if we were unable to have our physical relationship. But I would never seek it in an ex . . . I don’t know. Please help. Mrs. Anonymous Lagos Mainland.

Dear Mrs. Anonymous, What you would do doesn’t matter. Stay out of it. Tell your mother-in-law (because of the delicate nature of it) that, although you care a great deal for her and her happiness, you’d just as soon she do what she

wants in this area, but don’t make you her confidante. Ask her not to be insulted; you love her and what she does is her business, but it’s hard knowing this information when no one else is privy to it. Her husband, no matter his back problems, should be able to have some type of sexual intimacy with his wife, but he chooses not to do it. I don’t blame your mother-in-law for seeking some fulfilment in this area. It’s all so sad. She feels starved, sexually, and your husband’s father is facing, yet another, awful scenario for his life. Leave them alone to do what they want to do. In a matter such as this, it’s not for us to judge how someone chooses to fill the emptiness in his, or her heart. We are human, and we have only one life to live.


Living

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

January 19, 2013

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Thursday 10 January, 2013 was eventful for most residents of the Millennium Housing Estate (MHE) Ojokoro-Ijaye, Lagos. They were held captive in their estate by the design of some of them and the Power Holding Nigeria Company (PHCN) Abule-Egba Business Unit. What could have brought about this tug of war? KING ODODORU

T

he sun came out early and beaming that Thursday morning. It was a welcome sight for many residents of the Millennium Housing Estate (MHE) Ojokoro-Ijaye, Lagos who had earlier experienced some chill occasioned by the harmattan fogs which hanged over their houses. It was 10 January, 2013. The gaiety which the smiling sun projected was however short-lived for the residents of the sprawling estate who did not dash out of their houses in the typical Lagos early morning rush. But as these residents now made for their different places of business they encountered a very unusual sight: the gates to the estate were shut from inside and barricaded by rows of vehicles belonging to the Power Holding Nigeria Company (PHCN) AbuleEgba Business Unit. Those who arrived at the gates in their cars sometime before 10am waited patiently in their automobiles while pedestrians made use of the small gate meant for them. However, as time went on and the queue increased, many of them got agitated, left their cars and went to the gates to inquire about what could have gone amiss. By this time, another vehicle of PHCN had attempted to seal off the pedestrian gate too. While some appealed to the PHCN officials to leave the gate, others hurled insults at them: an action which they (the PHCN officials) gladly retaliated. This was the situation for not less than two hours. The situation was practically getting out of hand when suddenly some of the PHCN officials were sighted in the premises of a Police Station that shared fence with the estate. The incident according to Mrs. Enote Lawal, the vice chairman of the Millennium Housing Estate Residents Association was a culmination of past face-offs between the electricity agency and the residents of the estate. She explained that the residents of the estate have been dissatisfied with the services of PHCN and have made concerted efforts to make the government agency improve on them but to no avail. “I was called by a friend that PHCN officials were locked outside the gate. When I got there, I was surprised at the sight of no fewer than six pick-up vans belonging to PHCN. They were filled to the brim with officials of PHCN. Some had no space so they hung on the vehicles’ tailgate.

Who blinks first? PHCN or Millennium Housing Estate residents “On top of each truck were not less than 10 ladders. These were what the residents saw and right way they knew what the mission of PHCN was: mass disconnection. Their reaction was spontaneous. Usually we don’t interfere in their business, but for over two years now we have been having crazy bills. The amount on the bills keeps increasing month after month. That would not have been a problem if residents get up to 20 minutes of power supply in a day. Sometimes, we go two or three days without electricity. We don’t get to use power and yet the bills have shot up to above N4,000 per flat every month.” Lawal was not done. She continued: “You can imagine as big as this estate, we do not even have one meter where they can come and do the reading. We only have very few prepaid ones. So how do they arrive at such bills? We know that the billing is crazy because the few residents who have prepaid meters confirmed that it takes them more than five months to consume N2000 worth of recharge. This is because the power supply is so bad. “Our direct neighbours (Jankara/Ijaye) have very regular supply and when we see this it becomes very annoying that you are paying for what you did not consume.” Statements by the residents association executive made available to Saturday Mirror said that series of letters had been written to the Acting Business Manager, PHCN Abule-Egba Business Unit, Mr. Alabi, the CEO PHCN, Ikeja Power Holding Company Alausa Lagos, The Chairman/ CEO Nigeria Electricity Regulation Commission (NERC) Abuja. In one of such petitions dated December 4, 2012 and addressed to the CEO, PHCN, Ikeja Power Holding Distribution Company, Mr. Alabi was accused of nonchalant attitude towards the plight of the estate residents. He was even quoted to have said he was posted to the area to make money for PHCN and so could only care less about

the overbilling complains. He also threatened to disconnect the estate from the national grid. But when Saturday Mirror contacted PHCN, a different story was told. An official of the PHCN who was present on that day, but pleaded anonymity described the residents of the estate as “notorious” adding that the electricity firm has never had it good with them. The official continued: “the residents of this estate are notorious for their unwillingness to pay electricity bills. They are fond of using local electricians to reconnect after they have been disconnected. We have found cases of persons with pre-paid meter who break the seal of the meter. They connect directly thereby bypassing the meter and using electricity but not paying for it because the reading is not charged to the meter. This is illegal. “They cannot stop us from coming into the estate to do our job, it is never done anywhere. They cannot teach us how to do our job. They suggested that we inform them in advance whenever we are coming to the estate. This is abnormal. Many of them have not paid their bills for more than one year and the exco members are trying to shield these ones from the penalties that are due them. “They have taken advantage of the fortress around the estate to perpetuate all forms of evil against PHCN officials. We have been harassed many times, we have been locked out many times, and we have been threatened many times. They act as if they are different from any other community in Nigeria. We can show you pictures of acts of vandalism on our installations in the estate. If they won’t allow us in, we won’t allow them out.” When asked about the issues of estimated billing/over billing, pre-paid meter, and inefficiency in the quality and

quantity of service, the official, who is a senior member of the unit, said: “They are not the only ones that are given estimated billing; it is the computer that does this. We calculate the amount of megawatts that enter into a transformer. That is what we share amongst all those that are connected to the transformer. That is how it is done everywhere. It is not our fault that they have not been supplied pre-paid meters, there are no meters again. If we had, why not? They complain of Jankara area having regular supply. Jankara is on 33000kva while the estate is on 11000kva. They are so full of complains. You need to see the amount of petitions in our office. “We went there with that number of persons to disconnect only those owing and not just anybody. The number was such so that we could also finish in good time. Is it possible to just disconnect everybody when we have so many innocent ones among them? Does that sound reasonable? Do you think we are mad people?” The PHCN team to the estate was led by the Senior Marketing manager, Mr. Olurinmade and the Senior Manager Public Affairs, Mrs Talabi Akinbile. Efforts to get the electricity firm to comment officially on the incident proved futile at the end of the day as the reporter was tossed from one person to the other and finally referred to one Mr. Ekun Adeyanju who is said to the General Manager PHCN, Alausa. However, he could not be contacted before press time. Meanwhile the residents association are resolute in their demands which are: that the estimated bills and debt attributed to the estate cannot be justified for lack of credibility, inefficiency in the quality and quantity of service, and therefore unacceptable; that pre-paid meters be supplied and installed in every flat; that estimated billing system be outlawed and that the Acting Business Manager of Abule-Egba unit desist from issuing further threats on the estate and its executive members.


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January 19, 2013

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

We are ruined

A section of the Oko-Baba Sawmill and Timber Market, Ebute Metta, Lagos, recently gutted by fire

When the news of fire at the Oko-Baba Sawmill and Timber Market, Ebute Metta spread like fire over the new media, many took it with a pinch of salt. Not the owners of the mills and residents though. Now, the fire has come and gone but will the operators of the mills remain there even after the Lagos State government has said it would relocate them? THOMAS USHIE

U

ntil Tuesday 8 January, 2013, more than 1,000 Lagosians ‘enjoyed’ a placid existence living in about 50 units of 7x6 wooden cubicles in the slum of Oko-Baba Sawmill and Timber Market, Ebute Metta. One unique attraction of this slum is the fact that it overlooks the Lagos lagoon from where nerve calming breeze wheezes through the slum. And not to be surprised, a room apartment in this slummy ‘lagoon estate’ costs as much as N40,000 per annum. But when on January 8, fire engulfed the shanty houses, consuming in its rage not only the shanties but more grievously, the saw mills machines, logs and woods, ravaging the means of livelihood of several Lagosians beyond redemption. The victims are yet to come to terms with reality. Although the fire subsided in minutes, the victims, despite Lagos State government’s offer of a relief camp, are

–Victims of Oko Oba Timber market fire

still enraged with temper flaring against what they say is the loss of their means of livelihood. The victims who crave independence and a free and fair opportunity to fend for themselves and family rather than “wasting” tax payers’ money in a relief camp, wondered “when and where we would work again” as Governor Babatunde Fashola during his condolence visit to the area after the inferno, warned that the sawmill should not be reconstructed. When Saturday Mirror visited the scene of the fire which is now a play ground with children innocently running round and rolling on the ashes, an obviously frustrated timber miller, Mrs. Williams whose husband owned and operated a sawmill, stood gazing grievously at the remains of their newly purchased 250 kva generator. It was acquired recently to power various machines used in the factory. And as Saturday Mirror approached to feel her pulse, she alleged sabotage. “People that are residing here (at the timber market) always set our factories on fire. Two years ago, we lost everything to fire in this market. This year again, it has happened. Where do we go from here?” she quizzed rhetorically Grieving her loss, she said that “I lost my ‘market’ (logs of wood and sawed timbers). I lost my new 250 kva generator, workshop, electric, cables and appliances. I lost goods and properties worth mil-

lions of naira to the fire. It was May last year that we rewired all the factories. We bought this 250 kva generator last year at the cost of 2.5 million Naira and we have not put it into use only for fire to consume it. I don’t want to say anything again. We lost everything this early January. It is just too much for the start of a new year,” an embittered Williams wailed. Continuing, she looked up to a divinely celestial consolation, enthusing that where there is life, there is hope for better days ahead. “It is the grace of God upon my life that I am standing strong right here. Some people collapsed when they got here to discover that all their means of livelihood had been lost to the fire. Some of them gave up. But I thank God for the grace and strength to move on. “It is really a bad and sad story this January but I have refused to be pitied. I don’t want people to start calling for pity. No. I see everything as a stepping stone for a joyful year,” she enthused. Narrating how the fire started and spread in a fleeting to engulf a section of the timber factory, Sampson Idem corroborated Williams on her claim that those residents in the market might have stored gallons of fuel which contributed to the escalation of the conflagration that engulfed the saw mill and timber market. “The fire started around 4.30 p.m. from a ‘pako’ (wooden) house. Those who were

close to the scene tried to put it off but before we could join, the fire increased in intensity. I suspect that there were gallons of fuel within the house the fire started if not, it would not have spread so fast to other areas. And you know, some other people have ‘I better pass my neighbour’ (small generators) which means that fuel would be inside those generators and would definitely contribute to the rapid spread of the fire. “We have been on holidays. We closed work in December last year and sawing operations should have resumed on January 14. Unfortunately, this would not be with the look of things. The government is threatening to relocate the market and has warned that the burnt saw mills should not be rebuilt. “Where are we going to start from? It is too early in the year to be jobless. Not after we have spent so much during the holidays and Christmas celebration. When and where would we start work now, we don’t know. The government should just help us so that work can resume because this is where we feed ourselves and children. I am working for the saw millers as a machine operator. There are several of my colleagues who do different jobs here from where they live their lives.” Asked to state the response of the men of the fire service towards putting off the fire, Sampson Idem took a disdainful deep CONTINUED ON PAGE 35


Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

LIVING

January 19, 2013

35

‘We don’t want to be relocated’ CONTINUED FROM PAGE 34 breath as his eyes rolled round the debris of the inferno when this reporter asked again to know the response of the fire services. “The fire service men arrived here around 6 p.m. with their truck when everything had been razed to ashes. I don’t know the excuses they have for such late arrival. “Those living here before the fire outbreak have been rendered homeless. They don’t have anywhere to go. You know how expensive it is to rent a room in Lagos. That is why some are living here under this kind of condition. And even then, this small ‘pako’ room is very expensive. One room goes for as much as 40 thousand naira per annum! It is quite expensive!” he revealed. And when asked whom the rent is paid to, considering the nature and location of the area which overlooks the lagoon, he retorted: “no bi person build the pako house? (are the wooden rooms not built and owned by somebody?) They were scheduled to resume work on January 14. But this resumption is now an illusion. Hakeem Yusuf said that some saw millers who travelled for the yuletide just arrived to their chagrin that they have nothing to fall back on. “There were people who travelled home only to return to Lagos to see a plain and levelled factory without even seeing the debris of their goods. As you can see, a bulldozer has cleared the place of all the debris. It was like a dream for them when they come back to see this scene of nothingness. It is really sad. Millions of Naira have been lost in this incident which has become like a yearly occurrence. Proffering a panacea to the regular fire that has always engulfed the Ebutte Metta saw mill and timber market, Mrs. Kemi Akinlabi whose mother owned a saw mill in the market said that the permanent solution is to stop people from residing within the complex as their activities contribute to the regular fire outbreak. “This place is a business centre for timber millers and wood sellers. It is not a residential area. I wonder why some people have taken it upon themselves to construct wooden structures and renting it out for residential purposes. You know where people are living; they are bound to make use of fire on regular basis. Fear of relocation The residents as well as operators of the saw mill are fear-struck at the rumoured relocation. “The idea of going to a camp to be fed by the government is not ideal at all. How would grown-up men like us be camped? Are we refugees? No, we can’t be refugees in our own country when there is no war. Even if there was war, we should be on the war front fighting rather than being in a camp. We want to work. But as at now, no hope!” Idem said. Also giving reasons why the planned relocation of the market would not be in the good interest of users of the goods, Akinlabi said that it would trigger high cost implication. “If the market is relocated to close to Ogun State, that means that those who

A cross section of victims and sympathizers at the ruin of the Sawmill

Williams

want to buy N5,000 worth of woods would have to pay fare to buy and pay heavily again, to transport it back to town for use. That means that the cost of doing anything that has to do with woods would increase. This is not advisable. It would deplete their income and profit. We are pleading with our governor, Fashola, to let the market stay and help in ensuring that those who have lost their goods to the fire incidence start working again in time. He should make the land available back again to the timber operators early so that they can recover early.” Protesting in the same vein, Charles Ogulor said: “We are working and earning our living from this timber mill. The government cannot just stop the owners of the mill from operating because of the fire incidence. They did not cause it. A responsible government would give the operators incentives so that they can resume operations immediately knowing that they contribute to the economy. They are employers of labour. If they cannot start work immediately, what would we do? Where would we go from here? How would we feed our families?” “Fashola should please pity us. We don’t have to be resettled in a camp. The money they want to use in building the camp should be saved for the benefits of Lagosians. What we need is work. We want to work. And for us to work, the market has to resume immediately. This is January and we cannot earn money. How would we feed our wives and children? The government should have pity on us. If I knew this would happen, I

Ogulor

would have travelled to my village for the Christmas to stay back for good. I don’t know why the government is treating the poor this way. It is the poor people that vote them into power but it is the same people that are suffering,” Charles Ogulor, who is a machine operator in the saw mill berated. Also pouring his heart out, a furniture maker, James Oguniyi, who told Saturday Mirror that the proximity to the raw materials he had hitherto enjoyed, has been threatened by the fire incidence, said that the fire incidence did not only affect the saw millers and their families but those who patronize them. “I am a furniture maker. I operate within this place because of the closeness to what I need to do my job. I buy woods here on regular basis and I don’t have to hire buses to convey them to anywhere. But with the fire accident, I cannot do all that now. I have lost my workshop as well as my customers. It is very sad. This is not what we expect in this New Year. It is just too early in the year. “The saw millers have lose millions of Naira in this fire. The stress we will go through to bounce back again would be so unbearable. But the fire did not affect only the owners of the factories but all of us including furniture makers who buy woods from them. You know, there are times you create a bond with you customer so much that it is difficult to break. Sometimes, they grant you credit concessions but the fire has broken this bond. I pray that the government would help them to re-establish

Idem

Mohammed

the factories very soon. This space is close to the people and we are pleading to the government not to relocate the market as we would have to travel far and pay heavy to buy woods. Responding to the provision of a temporary relief camp by the Lagos State Government for the victims, some of the victims, mainly young men, opposed the idea insisting on the immediately commencement of timber mill operations from the ashes of the burnt market. “What would a young able-bodied man do in a relief camp? Camp is meant for the refugees. We are not. We can sleep outside and do our jobs. The only favour we want from the government is to give a go-ahead to the operators to start immediately and we would be happy. We would clap for Fashola if he does that. That is what we want and not refugee camp. We still have our future. The downfall of a man is not the end of his life,” Sunday Akaleze enthused Speaking in the same vein, Isa Mohammed whose job is to load timbers onto trucks for bulk buyers, said that “I have been out of job since the holidays. I was hoping that with the resumption of work this January, I would start making money. How would I cope with life if the timber mill did not start operations? Would I start stealing? I am hungry and angry. I have a wife and four children and they depend on this market to feed. What would I do now?,” he quizzed in frustration.


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January 19, 2013

J

oseph Onwudinjo had gone to work one Sunday morning as an auto technician at a Lagos based firm, Bouyges Nigeria Limited (BNL) some years ago. He never returned home. Instead he was ferried to a hospital from where he was transferred to the Igbobi National Orthopaedic Hospital. That was 27 years ago. Now, Onwudinjo is 52 years old. Young Onwudinjo had worked for the firm for a shade over two years before the incident that grounded. “It was a Sunday afternoon, I was at our office which was then in Ikeja where I worked as an auto technician. I was forced by Mr. Anthony, a French man to operate a crane machine because of the absence of the operators being a Sunday. As I was about to lift the load, I never knew that one of the tyres of the caterpillar was leaking air and because of the heavy weight of the concrete, as I lifted the load, the machine threw me up to the first deck of the building under construction and I was badly injured on the spinal cord. I was rushed to the National Orthopaedic Hospital Igbobi where treatment commenced on me. It was a very black Sunday for me” recalled Onwundinjo. It was not only a black Sunday; it was one day he would never forget in his entire life. Still narrating his ordeal; “It is a very sad situation for me when after three months of being in the hospital, I was abandoned by a company I had worked for assiduously. And to think that being a young man at that time, I was engaged to a woman who because of my condition, walked out of that relationship and never returned” With tears in his eyes as he went down memory’s painful path, Onwudinjo said he was on the verge of tying the nuptial knot with the said woman before the ugly destiny altering accident. He, however, refused mentioning the woman’s name or that of her brother. “I was almost getting married to a woman I loved at that time before this incident occurred. When she heard of the incidence, she came to see me at the hospital and asked me if I could lift my legs and I told her I could not. The next moment, she stormed out of my presence and the hospital leaving me to my fate. That was the first and the last time she came to see me at the hospital. It was such a sorry case for me,” he pointed out. If he had felt bad of his fiancé’s action, the reaction of his employer to his plight according to him was shocking. Just months after the accident, the company too abandoned him. For years he was left to Mother Fate who later offered a helping hand in form of Mr Emmanuel Akoko, a lawyer and evangelist who took up the matter with his evasive employer. But before he met Akoko, a lot had happened to him in the hospital he was meant to be a patient who would spend some few weeks. He was to spend years after years. “I will be eternally grateful to one Professor Yinka Omorogbe who is a philanthropist who visited me regularly while at Igbobi. If not for her, maybe I would have been dead now. “After battling with the wounds I

Onwundinjo

How I was abandoned by fiancée, employer

–Man who spent 20 years in hospital

Joseph Onwudinjo is 52 years old. But more than 27 of those years have been spent either in hospital or wheelchairs. Onwudinjo has, however, not obliterated from his mind the sweet memories of his youth before the accident, the painful experience of abandonment of his fiancé and employer. FUNMI SALOME JOHNSON tells his story. sustained from that injury and after I have been abandoned by the company I worked for, I developed a terrible bed sore that almost killed me. It was at that time that I met Professor Omorogbe. She saw to it that I was treated and that I overcame the bedsore. She would always come around, buy me food and give me money, even till now. She was also the person responsible for my being at this place when I and two others in my shoes were told to leave Igbobi in 2006. We were supposed to have left but because we did not have anywhere to go, we remained at the Orthopaedic hospital, and they used to call us landlord of the place as we had been there for so long without a place to go. “At a point they put us in a place which is known as condemned ward where people who could die at anytime are being kept and they gave us an ultimatum

to leave the place. It was this God-sent professor that helped me and took me to the President of the Spinal Cord Injury Association who now took me in and put a roof over my head. The others are dead now, I am the only one left alive. I owe so much to this angel of a woman whom God has used to impact positively on my life” Onwundinjo said. The learned gentle man, Akoko , also took up Owundinjo’s matter with the company under which employ he sustained the life-changing injury. “I have known Joe since 1999. I met him at Igbobi in one of my visits to the place as an evangelist where we go to minster to people. He was not the only the one in that state at that time, there were about three of them with spinal cord injury who were abandoned to their fate. Among the three, Joe is the only one alive now.”

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Akoko further described Onwundinjo as a very gentle and honest man who is also very nice and straightforward and takes life as it comes. “At the time I met him, he had already resigned himself to fate and was determined to face life the way it comes. Things were really tough for him and he could barely feed. “Being a legal practitioner, I decided to give him all the assistance I could and so in 2003, on the 23 January to be precise, I wrote a letter to the company that has now relocated to Abuja appealing to the company to help in giving him his entitlement so he could use that to mend the pieces of his life. They promised to look into the matter. “At that time, I met with one Mr. Mba who was then the Personnel Manager of the company, but he was on the verge of retirement so he introduced me to Mr. Austine Egbuche who would be taking over from him. We waited endlessly with no words from them and so five years later, we wrote another letter dated 10 June, 2008 and which I personally took to their head office in Abuja but nothing has been done about the case till now. It is really a sad case, “he said. The claim that he was abandoned by his employer has, however, been refuted by the firm which now is based in Abuja. Saturday Mirror investigations revealed that the new Personnel Manager of Bouyges Nigeria Limited, Mr. Austin Egbuche stated in a telephone interview that Owundinjo case is a very well known one in the company. He, further, described Onwudinjo is an ingrate who does not appreciate what the company has done for him. Egbuche further stated in a publication (not Saturday Mirror) that Onwudinjo was compensated to the tune of N500, 000 which was paid him in batches adding that the accident was not an onsite, otherwise insurance would have taken care of him. Onwudinjo has, however, described the company’s claim as false. In a passion laden voice, Onwudinjo insisted that he was never given such an amount but instead, he was abandoned by the company. The Anambra born man in his response on a very furious note stated that the company abandoned him at the hospital barely three months after. He disclosed to Saturday Mirror that the only money he got from the company was his three months’ salary. He added that about two years after he had been at the hospital, the company came to make a payment of N15, 678 which was paid to the National Orthopaedic Hospital, Igbobi. He added that about two weeks after, he was given another sum of N10, 000. “Since then, I have been left to my fate with nowhere to turn to for nay assistance. If not for the help of good Samaritans and kind hearted people who have been helping me in feeding and sustaining my life, it has been tough,” Onwudinjo. Egbuche, the current Personnel Manager of Bouyges Nigeria Limited, told Saturday Mirror in a telephone interview that he was not in any position to talk about the issue adding that he was not on board of the company when the incident transpired.


Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

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Hit-and-run LAGBUS driver kills mother of three If Kafilatu Suratu had any premonition of death that fateful morning, she never showed it. She had just returned from Ibadan, Oyo State, where her elder brother died recently. She was determined to give him a befitting funeral. But hours later, she lay prone on the road, soaked in her own blood. She was knocked down by a hit-and-run driver. SEGUN ADIO

F

or 52 years old Kafilatu Suratu, death appeared a sealed deal. There was no way of escape for her. So sad was her fate that several dozens of benumbed Oyingbo residents took to the streets to avenge her death. Pandemonium broke out on Tuesday, January 15, 2013, when a LAGBUS ran over the innocent woman, and sniffed life off her in the process. But for the timely intervention of a detachment of policemen stationed in the area, the hit-and run driver would have been lynched. Suratu until her untimely death that Tuesday morning was a trader at the Oyingbo market where she sold frozen foods. The mother of three had her residence at No 2, Omidiji Street, Otto, in Iddo area of Lagos Mainland Local Government Area of Lagos State. Four days before her untimely death, Suratu was summoned to her Ibadan, Oyo State ancestral home over the demise of her elder brother. On receiving the call that day, the woman immediately left what remained of her wares and headed for Ibadan. As a Muslim, the brother was committed to mother earth same day and with the day for the party fixed, she returned to Lagos the second day hoping to intensify her work to be able to honour her pledge for the party. Around 10:15 a.m. that

Kafilat’s children

Kafilat

Tuesday, Kafilat was already at Oyingbo hoping to see how business was fairing before she would go home to change into her work dress for the day’s work. It was a journey she would not complete. As she made to cross the road into the market, an on-coming LAGBUS allegedly ran into her and crushed her. The hapless woman just lay still where she fell while the blood seeping out of her injures parts slowly but steadily enveloped her. After hitting the woman, the driver of the bus marked KP 21 KSF, reportedly sped off towards

the Iddo end of the area. But he would not make such an easy getaway. Some commercial bus operators reportedly gave him a hot chase, while the awestruck passersby yelled at the fleeing driver, at the top of their voices. Luck ran out on him as a light traffic build up before the Iddo Railway terminus slowed him down. The fleeing bus was overtaken and the driver dragged out. On seeing the approaching mob, the passengers in the bus hurriedly alighted and took to their heels. Within seconds, a mob had surrounded the bus. The mob

pounced on him and gave him the beating of his life. But for Providence, he might have been lynched. Back at the accident spot, Kafilat lay prone and bleeding profusely. Good Samaritans quickly came to her aid. They ferried her to a nearby hospital where she was pronounced dead. The frozen foods dealer was buried the second day according to Islamic rites. The rescued bus driver and his bus were later taken to Denton Police Station where they were both detained. Speaking with Saturday Mirror on phone, a son of the deceased, Mustapha described the death of his mother as painful and unimaginable. “Mama called me when she got to Yaba on her way home and I told her we would

see later that day when I return from work. Not quite 15 minutes after that, I got a call from an unknown person saying a bus had crushed my mother to death at Oyingbo. I thought it was a joke, but I rushed down there all for me to see my mother lying on the ground in the pool of her blood,” he added. A Police corporal at Denton Police Station, who craved anonymity, told our reporter that investigations had begun on the matter, while the driver was still cooling his heel in police custody. The policeman also disclosed that the office of the bus operator had been contacted. Saturday Mirror could not reach the spokesman of the transport firm on phone as his GSM lines were switched off.


38

TOURISM

January 19, 2013

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Temple of Wisdom

or Ile Ase ... Just ask and it shall be done The Temple of Wisdom

Is anything defying solution in your life? Legend has it that all you need is a visit to Ile Ase, the Temple of Wisdom, inside the palace of the Ooni of Ife

Staff of Oranyan

K AYODE FALADE

I

le-Ife now in the present day Osun State of Nigeria is generally believed to be the ancestral home of the more than 30 million Yoruba race. That explains why the University City is also referred to as The Source. The ancient city lives up to this appellation any time and any day. In its bowels lie many historical sites, symbols and artefacts. Perhaps, the one singular place that has the largest concentration of

these is the Palace of the Monarch, Ooni. Hardly would one sight any monument or structure in the ancient palace that does not have a very rich history and cultural/ religious attachment. It is indeed a bastion of these sites. Out of this long list, one of those that stand out and most symbolic is the Ile Ase. Literally, it means the House of Authority or House of So-Shall-It-Be. However, the bright and colourful signpost that stands before the modern structure that harbours the most ancient and first foundry in the world simply reads “The Temple of Wisdom” Now flocked by tourists, then it used to be crowded by the patrons of Ogunladindin, the first blacksmith. Ogunladindin, it was who, brought the art of blacksmithing into the world. One of the myths surrounding the personality of Ogunladindin Alagbede Akoko, has it that the renowned smith was sent by Olodumare to cast and make iron implements for humans. He always came every five days. And no matter the size or complexity of the work, he would charge a uniform price. Humans then were so fascinated and satisfied with his products that they wished to have him with them permanently instead of a sojourner. They devised a way. The great smith was offered a woman as wife. With this he had no option but to stay and cohabit with humans. With time he took in apprentices whom he taught the science of blacksmithing. With their notorious penchant for impatience and deceit, his head apprentice believed he had learnt enough and so could be on his own despite the warning of the great Ogunladindin.

The said apprentice left and set up his own foundry. To his chagrin, his patrons soon all returned to Ogunladindin as they found his inferior to his master’s. Unable to live with the shame and humiliation, the former apprentice concocted a plot to which Ogunladindin’s human wife was party to. At the discovery of the treachery Ogunladin ascended back to Isalu Orun (heaven) where he was from greatly annoyed and feeling betrayed and disappointed. He, however, did not ascend to heaven through a great chain without making some pronouncements which came to pass almost instantly. Hence, the place got its name Ile Ase, a place where whatever is said comes to pass. The belief in this myth is still persistent till this day. Many, from all walks of life, come to the Temple of Wisdom to seek for their life ambition. Inside the temple is a different ball game. The reporter’s guide, an Ilari Oba, warned strictly that photography is prohibited in the confines of the building. And that should anyone do it, the product would be blank. The reporter’s attempt to try this out and experiment was, however, discouraged. The ancient foundry of Ogunladindin still stands. Slightly off to the right, the tip of the chain through which the great smith ascended to heaven in anger still protrudes. Further off is a place where one is forbidden to reach. However, the shrine is white. A white foundry! A lot of people were entering the temple and praying: many loudly, but most, reverently and quietly. This is however after

they must have dropped some money. The belief that whatever one asks for in the temple will be granted is still very strong. Such is the faith of the believers that even foreigners are not left out. Many Caucasians at the place also followed suit and probably even more reverently than their African counterparts. “Many politicians come here especially before elections and during electioneering campaigns. Their prayers are always answered. Women in search of the fruit of the womb have been known to return with their children later to give testimony. They come with gifts and many things for the shrine and the priest,” the Ilari explained further. But why is such an ancient shrine wearing such a modern look from the outside? The Ilari replied: “Most of the structures here were renovated when the current Kabiyesi came on the throne. Being a widely travelled man before coming on the throne, he believes that these places must look attractive and appealing. So he approved funds for the facial upliftment of these structures. “You have been inside. The modernisation has not taken anything away from its efficacy and potency.” Why the name, Temple of Wisdom? “Isn’t it a wise person who would come and make supplication here? Is it not only the wise that would learn from the story of Ogunladidin? Everything that surrounds the temple radiates wisdom,” the reporter’s guide pointed out. If you want to go there and heap curses on your perceived enemy or bear evil intention against your fellowman, you need to think twice. “Anybody who comes there to curse their fellowmen will not get home safely. They will die before they get home. You must come with a clean heart and only ask for things that will beneficial to you or your fellow men,” the Ilari warned.


Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

39

January 19, 2013

Overweight and obesity

T

he terms overweight and obesity refer to a person’s overall body weight and whether or not it’s too high. Overweight is having extra body weight from muscle, bone, fat and/or water. Obesity is having a high amount of extra body fat. It is not just a cosmetic consideration it is a dire health dilemma directly harmful to one’s health. Millions of people worldwide are overweight or obese. Excessive weight or obesity increases the risk of developing many diseases and conditions. How much an individual weigh relates to the food and drink taken in, how the body processes them, and by the activity level. The causes of overweight and obesity are numerous. The balance between calorie intake and energy expended determines a person’s weight. Lack of energy balance most often, causes overweight and obesity. Energy balance means that the energy taken ‘IN’ equals the energy that comes ‘OUT’. The energy ‘IN’ is the amount of energy or calories an individual get from food and drinks. Energy ‘OUT’ is the amount of energy the body uses for things like breathing, digesting, and being physically active.

Thus, if a person eats more calories than he or she burns (metabolizes), the person gains weight (the body will store the excess energy as fat). If a person eats fewer calories than he or she metabolizes, he or she will lose weight. To maintain a healthy weight, the energy ‘IN’ and ‘OUT’ don’t have to balance exactly everyday. It’s the balance over time that helps an individual maintain a healthy weight. In addition to the above, an inactive lifestyle is also a cause of overweight and obesity. Many people spend hours in front of television and computer doing work, schoolwork and leisure activities. In fact more than two hours a day of regular television viewing time has been linked to overweight and obesity. Other reasons for not being active include relying on cars instead of walking, fewer physical demands at work or at home because of modern technology and conveniences, lack of walk ways in neighbourhood and recreation parks. People who are inactive are more likely to gain weight because they don’t burn up the calories they take in from food and drinks. Next, genes and family history of overweight and obesity is another predisposing factor. The chance of being

overweight is faster if one or both parents are overweight and obese. Children adopt the habits of their parents. A child who has overweight parents who eat high caloric foods and are inactive will likely become overweight too. However, if the family adopts healthy food and physical activity habits, the child’s chance of being overweight or obese is reduced. Certain medications may cause an individual to gain weight. These include some corticosteroids, antidepressants and seizure medicines. These medicines can slow the rate at which an individual’s body burns calories, increases the appetite or cause the body to hold on to extra water. All these factors can lead to weight gain. In addition to the above, some people, due to emotional factors eat more than usual when they are bored, angry or stressed. The environment in which we live influences not only what we eat and drink but also our level of physical activity. Eating in restaurants usually tempts us into eating larger portions and higher caloric foods, while the caloric and nutritional content of restaurant food is not always available to consumers. At home, higher caloric carbohydrates often are selected over vegetables and fruits because they are less expensive. With advancement in age, the muscles tend to lose, especially if activity is reduced. Muscle loss can slow down the rate at which the body burns calories. Midlife weight gain in women is mainly due to aging and life style but menopause also plays a role. Most people due to ignorance do not even care about their weight and the likely health problems associated with it. These can all be avoided if they care about their health. The health consequences of overweight and obesity include premature death, heart disease, diabetes, breathing problems, high blood pressure, arthritis, reproductive complications and certain cancers. The interesting thing is that over-

weight and obesity can be diagnosed easily. The common way to find out is to figure out the ‘body mass index’ (BMI), which is an estimate of the body fat based on height and weight. That is, it is a number calculated from a person’s weight (kg) and height (m). It is a gauge of the individuals risk for diseases that occur with more body fat. Although the body mass index (BMI) can be used for most men and women, it does have some limits. It may overestimate body fat in athletes and others who have a muscular build. ‘BMI’ may also underestimate body fat in older people and others who have lost muscle. Below is a guide you may find useful after calculating using your height and weight. All you need do is know the weight in kilograms, then divide by the height in metres squared. This will give you the BMI. BMI 18.5-24.5

normal weight

BMI 25.0-29.9

overweight

BMI 30.0-39.9

obese

BMI 40.0-above

extreme obesity

The higher the body mass index, the higher the risk of diseases. Reaching and staying at a healthy weight is a long term challenge for people who are overweight or obese. But it is also a chance to lower the risk of other serious health problems. Follow a healthy eating plan and keep your choice needs in mind. Do physical activity regularly and try to limit the amount of time spent on inactivity. With the right treatment and motivation, it’s possible to lose weight and lower long term disease risk. Some factors such as family history of overweight and obesity cannot be changed. However, other factors such as your lifestyle habits can bee changed. Achieving and maintaining a healthy weight isn’t just about a ‘diet’ or ’program’. It is part of an ongoing lifestyle that you can adopt now and stay with for years to come. Just remember that overweight and obesity happen over time when you take in more calories than you use.

LETTER

I itch anytime I make love with my fiancé Dear Doctor, In 2009, I had vaginal itching and discharge. I took some drugs after a test and the symptoms disappeared. It reoccurred in 2010 and I went for another test after which I took some drugs and injections. I have noticed that the problem starts each time I have sex with my fiancé. Just last week, I had sex with

him and the itching and discharge are back. Please help me out. I am tired. Bola, Lagos.

Mirror doctor replies Good to know that you always had a test done for the discharge before using medications. That the symptoms disappeared each

time after using the drugs is confirmatory that you had a cure of the underlying problem. From your mail, you said you noticed that the problem starts each time you had sex with your fiancé. This is obviously a sexually transmitted infection. It means having sex with someone who has the infection. Although there are other risk factors for vaginal infection which include diabetes, unprotected sex, multiple sexual part-

ners, reduced immune status etc, from your mail, considering the symptoms of itching and discharge you complained about after each sexual exposure with your fiancé, I can tell you it’s more of a sexually transmitted infection. I advise you discuss this with him, so both of you can go for the test and treat accordingly at the same time. The danger is, if only one partner takes treatment, the one who did not treat will re-infect the already treated partner, and thus, the infection will start again.


40

LEISURE

January 19, 2013

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net


Sport

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

January 19, 2013

41

Bafana Bafana of South Africa team looking set for today’s cracker against Cape Verde. INSET: Cape Verde’s Captain, Nando

AFCON: History beckons as South Africa battles Cape Verde in opener SAYO OGUNDEJI

WITH AGENCY REPORTS

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istory beckons today as the 29th edition of the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) gets underway in South Africa, with the hosts targeting its first win against debutants, Republic of Cape Verde at the FNB Stadium (Soccer City) in Johannesburg. While South Africa who hosted and won the continental show-piece in 1996 will be hoping for a repeat performance, Cape Verde’s ambition is to carry their impressive runs during the qualifiers into the competition. The Cape Verde Islands secured a place at the bi-annual competition for the first time in October after beating four-time champions Cameroun 3-2 on aggregate, but the South African national team coach, Gordon Igesund, is unperturbed about their credentials. According to Igesund, his side is aware of the threats posed by its opponents, but insists Bafana Bafana team are well pre-

pared for their opponents. “I have lot of information on them (Cape Verde), I have had a lot of professional people looking at them,” explains Igesund. “I know about how they play, I know all their players, I have DVD’s of each of them. I have information of all their players; so, we have the best information we can get considering the fact that we haven’t seen them live,” he said. Looking at the game itself and the tournament as a whole, Igesund does not feel his team will need much motivation to play at their best. “I don’t think I am going to have to do too much over the issue of players’ motivation. Playing in front of 90, 000 people is enough motivation,” adds the coach before saying his team just needs to build momentum and they could go all the way. “If we start scoring goals I think we can go all the way,” he enthused. Meanwhile, Coach Lucio Antunes of Cape Verde says his team will be taking comfort in the fact that the pressure will be

Heartland will rule the continent –Ibenegbu

P. 42

on the South African team to do well when they lock horns in the tournament’s opening match today. Antunes admits Group A will be tough for his team, especially playing against tough opponents from the continent, but expresses confidence in his team to survive. “I think that the pressure will be on South Africa since they are at home in the first match. “The group games will not be easy, even with us, but playing big teams from Africa will help us get to be among the best teams,” Antunes said. The tiny West African nation is on the rise, participating for the first time in a major tournament and they are the dark horses in Group A according to soccer analysts. They earned a credible 0-0 draw against Nigeria in Portugal last week in their final friendly match ahead of the continental tournament and their captain, Nando, said they have come to enjoy their first participation in the tournament, and play football without putting any pressure on themselves.

Clairvoyant Kalu sees gold for Eagles P. 43

“We are very happy and nothing more. We are well motivated to do well,” he said. The Cape Verdeans, having assembled players from around Europe with roots to the country, performed a giant-killing act in their final qualifying match, eliminating African powerhouse Cameroun three months ago to reach the continental showpiece. “For us, Cameroon is in the past now,” Nando said. “Our focus is on proving ourselves against the guys in our group and doing well against South Africa, Angola and Morocco.” Defender, Guy Ramos who plays for Dutch side RKC Waalwijk, is confident that the Africa Cup of Nations debutants can make the knockout stages of the competition. “It’s our first time at the Nations Cup and no one expects us to win the trophy which means every point we get there is a bonus point. “We are one of the smallest countries in Africa and no one expects us to win one match, but we beat Camerou n 4-0; they are a big country and we won. So why can’t we do the same thing against South Africa?” Ramos said.

Wenger sympathises with Benitez P. 45


42

SPORT

January 19, 2013

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

AFCON and need for Eagles to make history

A

ll is set for the kickoff of the 2013 edition of the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) holding in the former apartheid enclave, South Africa. And as expected, the opener holds today at the prestigious FNB Stadium in Johannesburg between the host, South Africa and giant killers, Cape Verde. Soccer-loving Nigerians may not need to bother their heads about the outcome of the opening match, at least for the now. Rather, Nigerians should focus on the match between our dear Super Eagles and the Stallions of Burkina Faso on Monday, at the Nelspruit soccer pitch. The reason for this is simply that all the participating teams, at this stage, would be busy contesting at the group stage, with all their concentrations focused on how they could snatch one of the top-two tickets from their various groups to qualify for the quarter-finals of the continental showpiece. For the Super Eagles who are pitched in Group C against Burkina Faso, Ethiopia and defending champions, Zambia, they may have their hands full following the shoddy manner in which Coach Stephen Keshi executed his build up to the tournament. Also, the contro-

HARD TACKLE with

Andrew Ekejiuba anelsports@yahoo.com versies that trailed his exclusion of some key players to the team, despite appeals from some stakeholders of Nigerian football to have a rethink over his actions, is a source of worry. Already, expectations are high as many Nigerians believe that nothing short of a victorious outing in South Africa is what the country needs now to cool some frayed nerves of past woeful outings in the competition. According to records, Nigeria last won the AFCON trophy in 1994 in far away Tunisia and since then, efforts made by subsequent Super Eagles squads to lift the trophy have continuously met a brick wall. It will be recalled that the worst incident occurred during the 2000 edition co-hosted between Nigeria and Ghana, where the Indomitable Lions

08023103605

Super Eagles captain, Joseph Yobo

of Cameroun snatched the trophy from the hands of Nigeria at the final of the competition played at the National Stadium, Lagos. That match ended two goals apiece after regulation time, before the Camerounians tri-

umphed via penalty shootout, no thanks to Victor Ikpeba’s miss which nailed Nigeria’s ambition of lifting the trophy for a third time after the 1980 and 1994 triumphs. With the 29th edition of the competition beginning today at the Madiba’s country, Nigerians are again in anxious wait hoping that the country would lift the silverware this time around. The question is that with the arrival of Keshi as Eagles sweat merchant, can the wishes of Nigerians be matched with action at South Africa 2013? The answer is left for the Eagles tactician and his lads to answer. Prior to the event, Chelsea of England midfielder, Mikel Obi had assured Nigerians that he was ready for the Nations Cup and the entire team was ready for the big win in South Africa. HT recalls that both Keshi and the Super Eagles captain, Joseph Yobo also re-echoed Obi’s assurances that the team was not in South Africa to count the numbers of flyovers in the former Apartheid enclave. But as I noted in this column last week, it will be suicidal for our coaches to continuously blow their trumpets and play their games on the pages of newspapers, rather

than matching words with action in the field of play. Another school of thought believes that whether the present crop of players in the Super Eagles are comparable to the 1980 or 1994 squads or not, they must find a way out of the woods because Nigerians are thirsty for victory. Really, these players must find a way of carving a niche for themselves by developing the will-power needed to crush every opposition on their way to achieving victory far away from home, as we did in 1994 in Tunisia. The goodwill of Nigerians to the team can only be meaningful depending on how the players, Keshi’s technical crew and the ‘wise men’ in the technical department of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) handles each opposition as they come in the continental competition. Surely, any failure on the part of the team in South Africa will set the tone for a massive soccer revolution in the country and possibly throw Keshi into the unemployment market just as those before him were treated. HT wishes the Eagles great luck and God’s abundant guidance to excel at South Africa 2013!

SPORT NEWS

Heartland will rule the continent –Ibenegbu Amaechi wrestling SAYO OGUNDEJI

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fter helping his side win the Super Four championship over the weekend, Heartland of Owerri midfielder, Ikechukwu Ibenegbu, has said that the Nazi Millionaires are poised to rule the African continent. Heartland had defeated Lobi stars to retain the 2012 edition of the Federation Cup and will represent Nigeria at this year’s CAF Confederation Cup. John Owoeri and Emeka Ogbuh gave the Owerri-based club a 2-0 victory over Lobi Stars at the Sani Abacha Stadium, Kofarmata, Kano, last Saturday and Ibenegbu who is popularly known as ‘mosquito’ is of the opinion that Heartland is ready to mount a serious challenge on the

continent. The team crashed out of the tournament last year to the fireworks of their opponents, AC Leopards of Congo, despite their 4-4 aggregate at the end of both legs. But the attacking midfielder insists his side has learnt from that experience and will do better than their last outing. “Our victory over Lobi Stars is a confirmation that Heartland is progressing in the right direction and I believe we are ready to improve on our performance as far as the continental championship is concerned. “The only way to convince people that our recent success was not a fluke is to go as far as possible in the continent and aim to win the Nigeria Premier League and Federation Cup for the third time,” he said.

tourney gets championship belt IFEANYI EDUZOR

O

Ibenegbu

rganisers of the forthcoming maiden edition of Governor Chibuike Amaechi Wrestling Tourney which is billed to take place in all the three senatorial zones of the state has revealed that they have taken delivery of gold trophies and championship belts for the week- long tournament. According to the coordinator of the championship, Prince Hammed Olanrewaju Mohammed, the belts which arrived from the United States of America met all the specifications required by various international wrestling sanctioning bodies. “As part of plans by the Nigerian Wrestling Federation to organize a world class championship

in honour of the Governor and people of Rivers State, we have taken delivery of championship belts and trophies for the tournament from America. “We received 7 gold trophies, 15 world-standard wrestling belts and souvenirs that will be distributed to all the Local Governments Areas of the State during the championship,” Mohammed said. Mohammed, who also doubles as President of the Nigeria Wrestling Federation, noted that the Federation is working round the clock to ensure that the championship attracts the best wrestlers from Europe and America, even as he assured that Nigerian wrestlers are ready to give the foreign wrestlers that will participate in the tournament a good run for their money.


Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

SPORT

January 19, 2013

43

Clairvoyant Kalu sees gold for Eagles EVEREST ONYEWUCHI

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Super Eagles players celebrating after scoring a goal during the AFCON qualifiers.

Bassey keeps faith with Eagles’ goalkeepers SAYO OGUNDEJI

N

igeria international, Akpan Bassey, says the Super Eagles stands a better chance of lifting the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations which gets underway today with the choice of Vincent Enyeama, Austin Ejide and Chigozie Agbim in goal. The Eagles, who until their arrival in South Africa on Friday, have been camping in Faro, Portugal in preparation for the continental tournament and have engaged in a couple of friendly matches. Nigeria has won the competition twice since inception and despite the team’s failure to qualify for the last edition which was held in Gabon and Equatorial Guinea, Bassey believes the trio of Enyeama, Ejide and Agbim are top goalkeepers on the continent whose experience could help the team win its third trophy. “The Eagles have had a good preparation and with the set of goalkeepers in the squad, I believe the team has better chances of going all the way to the

old in the air! That is what former Abia State Governor, Chief Orji Uzor Kalu sees as Super Eagles mark their Golden Jubilee at the Africa Cup Nations which opens in South Africa today. The Eagles debuted in 1963 and conceded 10 goals. But in a statement he sent to Saturday Mirror yesterday, Kalu recalled a 10-year sequence that had showered luck on Nigerian soccer ever since. He said, “Every 10 years since 1963, something good happened. In 1973, we won All Africa Games gold. In 1983, Nigeria won the Tessema Cup for the first time which took the Flying Eagles to the country’s first FIFA Championship, Mexico ‘83 and Stephen Keshi’s New Nigeria Bank Benin

won the elusive WAFU Cup. “In 2003, Golden Eaglets ruled the world in Japan, while Enyimba made history lifting the CAF Champions League in 2003. I am sure 2013, is for the Eagles again.” The ex-governor was not done. “Imagine this,” he explained.”When the Eagles won their first Nations Cup in 1980, their captain was a central defender, Christian Chukwu. When Keshi lifted the trophy in 1994, he was in the central defence even if he did not play in the grand finale. Now, you know skipper Joseph Yobo’s position. Good enough, the trio would be in South Africa.” Crystal ball, maybe. Kalu continued with his predictions and similarities. “There is the letter ‘A’ Connection. Men who supervised sports at the federal level in those years of cup glory had ‘A’ at the

Fans urged to welcome Bafana Bafana teams with flags and forego group stage vuvuzelas bonuses

S

outh Africa’s Sports Minister, Fikile Mbalula, has called on the country’s teeming football fans to take to their flags and vuvuzelas to welcome participating teams to the AFCON. “I am urging all South Africans to come out any time from 12:00 to 13:00, armed with vuvuzelas, whistles, horns, flags and ululations and throw their support behind the Bafa-

na Bafana,” Mbalula said. “Take your valuable lunch time from your busy schedule to blow a vuvuzela in your Bafana Bafana jersey as we welcome the sons and daughters of Africa to the land of our forebears. “The land of Nelson Mandela, Oliver Tambo, Charlotte Maxeke and Hellen Joseph,” Mbalula added. He called on the country to unite in the same spirit, the way it did during the 2010 World Cup.

I

n a bid to prove their commitment to their countrymen, the Bafana Bafana have decided to forego their match bonuses until they qualify for the quarterfinals of the 2013 AFCON. The team’s Captain, Bongani Khumalo, told newsmen in Johannesburg yesterday that representing one’s country was worth more than millions

Ref urges NFF to support Edibe

Enyeama

final of the competition. “Enyeama and Ejide have so many years of experience at the top, while Agbim has been impressive for his club and country and these are positives which the Eagles could use to their advantage. “All the players are aware of the desires of Nigerians winning the tournament one more time after the disappointment of the past and the dream is achievable if they all play to their full potential,” Bassey who won the Federation cup with Heartland in 2011 before moving to Hoàng Anh Gia Lai in Vietnam added.

beginning of their surname. Paulinus Amadike in 1980, Sylvanus Akinwumi in 1994 and today, Bolaji Abdullahi. And I hope you know that Keshi and his Assistant, Sylvanus Okpala also won the Nations Cup as players,” Kalu added. Missing the Nations Cup is also a blessing in disguise. “After 1963, the Eagles did not qualify until Ethiopia ‘76. They were in the final classification that earned them a bronze because for the first and only time, there was no grand-finale. “After missing Egypt ‘86, Manfred Hoener took them to Maroc ‘88,and got to the last two. In 1996 and again 1998, they were absent. When the team returned in 2000, a golden silver followed us. Ask Victor Ikpeba and the Tunisian referee. In South Africa, after missing the last edition, all I see is the Cup,” he added.

O

ne of Nigeria’s FIFA-graded referees, Mallam Sani Zubair, has called on the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) to assist Peter Edibe, the country’s only match official at the 2013 AFCON. Zubairu told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) at the weekend in Bauchi that in spite of the alleged snub by CAF, the choice of Edibe as an assistant referee was consoling. He, however, hoped that Nigerian referees would be considered in an officiating capacity in subsequent international competitions. “Although we only have an assistant referee representing Nigeria at the com-

petition, it is my hope that in future competitions, our referees will be considered. It has been long since our referees participated in officiating at the AFCON,” he said. Zubairu, who is also the Vice-Chairman of the Bauchi FA, expressed optimism about the Super Eagles’ chances of doing well at the biennial continental tournament. He observed that the NFF had trained the players very well, adding that the players were good and disciplined to perform the job and do their country pride. He further urged the authority to continue with the assistance it was rendering referees through training

Edibe

programmes and the provision of kits, saying that Nigerian referees were among the best in the world as they had performed wonderfully whenever they were given the chance to officiate.

of “Rands and Cents”. “It’s a great privilege for any player to play for his country; that honour is worth more than any amount of money. “At this stage of the tournament, the players collectively have resolved not to take any match bonuses in our group matches, until we qualify for the quarter finals stage. “We are sending the message that we’re here to fight for our country. “I think the perception has always been that the players are a bit selfish. I think the guys are showing courage by refusing bonuses until a later stage,” Khumalo said. He said the team’s main focus is the first match against Cape Verde today and ultimate qualification from the group. Meanwhile, Bafana Bafana’s coach, Gordon Igesund, said that they have got in-depth information on all the Cape Verdean players, as they lock horns with the Island nation in the opening match of the 29th edition of the AFCON at the National Stadium in Johannesburg.


44

SPORT

January 19, 2013

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Stars to watch at South Africa 2013 The 2013 Africa Cup of Nations will kick off today in South Africa with 16 teams participating in the continental showpiece. As expected, the host, South Africa, will battle debutants, Cape Verde, in the opening game today and our correspondent, IFEANYI EDUZOR, takes a look at some of the players that could spring surprises at the tournament.

Ryan Mendes (Cape Verde)

A

Victor Moses (Nigeria)

V

ictor Moses (born on December 12, 1990) is a Nigerian footballer who plays alongside John Mikel Obi for Chelsea. Moses can play in a variety of positions, but he is mostly

played as a left winger. He has represented England at under-16, under-17, under-19 and under-21 levels, but opted to play for the Nigerian national team as opposed to being fully capped for England.

t 22, Ryan Mendes is one of the most gifted players in the Cape Verde squad and he is expected to lead the attack for his country. He signed for Lille in 2012 and has been described as a player with great potential, who is good in the air and uses body strength, to shield the ball and bring it under control. He scored three goals during the 2013 AFCON qualifiers and proved to be a permanent danger in front of goal across the campaign. The winger is likely to be the top attraction for local fans during the tournament.

with Katlego Mashego. Chabangu combines pinpoint passing with an exceptional creative ability. Though he may not be a prolific scorer, but he can manufacture goals for Bafana Bafana, as his record stands at 2 goals in 14 appearances for the national side.

Paul Koulibaly (Burkina Faso)

Chabangu

Tresor Mputu (DR Congo)

K

oulibaly started his career with EFO in Burkina Faso and also played for Libyan sides Al Nasr, AlIttihad and Asswehly before joining Romanian side Dynamo Bucurest in 2012. He also won the Romanian Super cup in his

M

putu was born on December 10, 1985 in Kinshasa and he is a striker who has been described by former Cameroon and Congo coach, Claude Le Roy, as being “the next Samuel Eto’o”, who he picked for the 1998 World Cup in France as a 17 year-old. In 2009 and 2010 he captained TP Mazembe to

Mputu

first season with the club. The 26-year-old made his debut for the Stallions in 2006 and will be appearing at the Africa Cup of Nations for the third time after taking part in 2010 and 2012. He is the brother of Burkina Faso international striker Pierre Koulibaly. back-to-back CAF Champions League titles. Through the years Mputu, has been linked with several European clubs including Arsenal, but in August 2010, Mputu received a 12-month global ban following his aggressive actions toward a referee during a match between TP Mazembe and Rwandan army side APR FC.

A

t 24, Kwadwo Asamoah has emerged as one of the key players of Juventus FC, after years of growth in Udinese, and will lead Ghana to the 2013 AFCON behind striker and team captain, Asamoah Gyan. Asamoah who is appearing in his fourth AFCON tournament has become one of the engine rooms of Black Stars attack and is expected to propel the team to their fifth Nation’s Cup trophy.

Asamoah

Emmanuel Mayuka (Zambia)

M Mendes

Lerato Chabangu (South Africa) Gervinho (Cote d’ C Ivoire) habangu plays as a striker and midfielder for Premier Soccer League club Moroka Swallows of South Africa. He was part of Bafana Bafana’s 2008 Africa Cup of Nations squad and has been one of their leading lights this season, forming a dangerous partnership

Kwadwo Asamoah (Ghana)

ayuka is a Zambian footballer who plays as a striker for English Premier League side Southampton. Born in Kabwe, Mayuka began his career in Zambia at the Lusaka Academy at the age of 11. He debuted for the senior side in the 2007 COSAFA Cup, scoring the second goal in a 3–0 rout of Mo-

zambique. He scored the first goal for Zambia in the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations and scored the winner in the famous 1-0 victory over Ghana in the semifinals, thereby leading Zambia into the finals. He then played all 120 minutes against Ivory Coast in Zambia’s penalty shootout victory against the runners- up.

G

ervais Lombe Yao Kouassi , better known as Gervinho is an Ivorian footballer who plays as a forward for Arsenal and the Côte d’Ivoire national team. Since joining the national team in 1997, he has made 41 appearances and scored important goals for the Elephants. He was named in the Ivorian senior squad for the first time for the friendlies against Angola and Qatar in November 2007. The gifted player has announced his readiness for the 2013 Nations Cup by scoring many goals in friendly matches played by the team in preparation for the continental championship.

Gervinho

Mayuka

Abdelhamid El Kaoutari (Morocco)

A

bdelhamid is a French-born Moroccan defender who was born in Montpellier, France. He has spent his career coming through the youth ranks before eventually making the step-up to first team football in 2008. At 5ft 11, the 22-year-old isn’t the tallest of defenders, but his pace along the flanks has often left teams exposed. The defender who has been capped three times by the Atlas Lions played his first match for Morocco on June 4, 2011 against Algeria and it is expected that the dependable de-

El Kaoutari

fender will co-ordinate the defence of his team when hostilities begin today in South Africa.


Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

SPORT

January 19, 2013

Wenger sympathises with Benitez

A

rsenal manager Arsene Wenger admits he feels sympathy towards Chelsea boss Rafael Benitez. The former Liverpool boss has come under heavy criticism ever since he replaced fans favourite Roberto Di Matteo at Stamford Bridge and has won just two of seven home fixtures so far. Despite the hostility at the Bridge, Wenger does not think Benitez or his players

can blame the negative environment for their performances on the pitch. “You never know how much it affects the players. “The crowd can be a bit difficult or become enthusiastic if the game turns well. “Of course it tests the mental strength of the players. But for young players especially, it is not easy. “I think it is part of our job to deal with that and the only thing I can say, it

is easier to play in a positive environment than in a negative environment. “It is part of a football player’s career to deal with both sides of it. We have all played in hostile atmospheres. But it should not stop you from playing,” Wenger said. With the Gunners boss feeling the heat from his own fans this season, the 63-year-old can relate to Benitez’s situation but insists there will be no sym-

pathy shown on Sunday. “I feel sympathy for every manager until the day I play against him. Then the sympathy goes and comes back after the game,” he said. “We are all in the same position. We know we are in a fragile job and that the confidence is very important. It’s a job where you have to take care of your own team. “But the confidence of the crowd in the team plays a big part,” Wenger concluded.

Klinsmann hails Guardiola’s signing

J

Wilshere

Gerrard is my role model –Wilshere

A

rsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere is keen to follow in the footsteps of England captain Steven Gerrard and be ‘the heartbeat’ of both his club and country. The 21-year-old goes from strength to strength with every game as he looks to put a frustrating spell on the sidelines with ankle and knee injuries firmly behind him - crashing in a superb late winner against Swansea on Wednesday night to fire the Gunners into the fourth round of the FA Cup. While not wanting to add to the pressure already on Wilshere’s young shoulders from an expectant nation, Gunners boss Arsene Wenger is in no doubt there is plenty more to come. Wilshere’s energy and dynamism have drawn comparisons with Liverpool skipper Gerrard, whose determination helped the Reds win the 2005 UEFA Champions League final and saw

him tasked with leading the national side into the 2014 World Cup qualifying campaign under Roy Hodgson. “I remember Steven Gerrard scoring a similar goal to mine in the FA Cup final against West Ham and also the Champions League game against Olympiacos. He is a great player, but I think I am a bit different - his long passing is better than mine. “He has been the heartbeat of Liverpool for years. He has also been the stand-out performer for England as well. “He is a great role model for me. If I can get anywhere near as good as him and drive the team forward like he does, then I will be happy. “He was someone I looked up to when I was younger. He has 100 caps for England. For any young midfielder he is someone to base your game on and try to be like him,” said Wilshere.

urgen Klinsmann has revealed his delight at the return of Pep Guardiola to football with his former club Bayern Munich. The ex-Barcelona boss made the decision to have 12 months away from the sport after leaving Camp Nou last summer and the USA national coach believes the timing of his arrival in the Bundesliga will be ideal timing. “I just think it’s fantastic he’s back in the game. I think it’s a fascinating situation now for the club and the coach. “For Pep it’s a wonderful opportunity. It’s a huge challenge for him to work with Bayern Munich. It was about time that he came back into the game because he’s a very, very exceptional young coach out there. I just wish him all the very best there,” Klinsmann told reporters yesterday.

Guardiola

Klinsmann - who was in charge at Bayern during the 2008-09 season - is confident the 41-year-old will adapt to his new surroundings, but admits he is curious to see how he will implement his philosophy at a different club. “Every club is different. A coach adjusts to his environment. Pep will also adjust to the environment at Bayern Munich. That’s what makes every one of these clubs really different and special.

P

“We have to be champions. The team has the qualities to win. If the coach does a good job, PSG will win. Everything depends on the coach. “If PSG aren’t champions, it’ll be a failure. But it’s never easy, be it in Italy, England or France. You have to battle, especially when you change many things and work differently. The mentality of the players and all those who work in the club had to be changed,” Ancelotti said. However, a shaky Coupe de France win over amateur side Arras and a draining goalless draw with Ajaccio in their first Ligue 1 game of 2013 suggested

EURO BRIEFS

Milan working on Kaka loan

A

C Milan vice president Adriano Galliani has confirmed the club are working on a deal to bring Kaka back on loan from Real Madrid but admits it will be ‘difficult’. The Brazil international midfielder departed Milan for Real in a big-money move in 2009 after six memorable years with the Serie A giants, but the former World Player of the Year has struggled to find his best form at the Bernabeu.

Benitez

No FA action against Suarez

T

he Football Association have said that they will be taking no action against Luis Suarez after the Liverpool striker admitted to an act of simulation against Stoke City in the game at Anfield earlier this season in a bid to win a penalty. The player’s interview incurred the wrath of his manager Brendan Rodgers, who has said he will be taking internal disciplinary action against the player, but the governing body will not be getting involved.

Kaka

Portsmouth set for Sodje signing

P

ortsmouth are set to sign former Charlton defender Sam Sodje on a short-term deal. Sodje is available on a free transfer having been without a club since leaving Notts County last summer.

Lampard agrees terms with LA Galaxy

C

helsea veteran Frank Lampard has reportedly agreed to terms on a move to LA Galaxy at the end of the season. The midfielder has been told by the threetime Premier League champions that he will not be offered an extension on his current 150,000-pounds-aweek deal when it expires at the end of the season, bringing to an end a 12year association with the Stamford Bridge club.

Ancelotti: PSG have to be champions

aris Saint-Germain manager Carlo Ancelotti has admitted he will only have himself to blame if the club do not win the Ligue 1 title this season. Ancelotti, 53, took over in the French capital just over a year ago after his predecessor, Antoine Kombouare, had steered the club to the top of the table. The Italian saw Montpellier ease past his team in the finishing straight to claim the French crown last May, but after another bigspending summer, which saw the likes of Thiago Silva and Zlatan Ibrahimovic added to his squad, Ancelotti is aware there can be no repeat of last season.

45

Sam Sodje

PREMIERSHIP TABLE

Ancelotti

there is still work to be done, particularly with Lyon leapfrogging them into top spot. Though the vast sums spent on his squad have raised expectations that a first Ligue 1 title since 1994 will be coming to the Parc des Princes, and consequently increased the pressure on his shoulders, Ancelotti insists he is enjoying his first foray into French football.

TEAM

P

GD

PTS

1. Man Utd

22

27

55

2. Man City

22

24

48

3. Chelsea

22

24

42

4. Tottenham

22

12

40

5. Everton

22

9

37

6. Arsenal

21

16

34

7. West Brom

22

1

33

8. Liverpool

22

7

31

9. Swansea

22

5

30

10. Stoke

22

-3

29

11. West Ham

21

-3

26

12. Norwich

22

-10

26

13. Fulham

22

-5

25

14. Sunderland

22

-5

25

15. Southampton

22

-10

22

16. Newcastle

22

-12

21

17. Wigan

22

-17

19

18. Aston Villa

22

-25

19

19. Reading

22

-16

16

20. QPR

22

-19

14


46

January 19, 2013

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Nigeria has potential to lead Africa –Malaysia What can Nigeria learn from Malaysian economy? Well, to develop your local manufacturing industries, provide various incentives to attract more investment into the country. Create conducive and enabling environment.

Mrs. Norhaliza Halid, Trade Commissioner, Malaysian Trade Commission. Spoke with STANLEY IHEDIGBO on her mission in Nigeria to find a new market for her home country products and other related issues. Excerpts:

Are you aware that there are infrastructure challenges in the country and how are your people going to cope with it? For us to convince our home country people to come here and invest, we believe that Nigeria will improve very soon on the infrastructure facilities. That is main things in term of steadily power supply, steadily water supply, the labour force that will attract foreigners to come, should be resolved by the government authority in the country.

W

hat brought you and your team to Nigeria? Well, we are representing our home country Malaysia and we came with some companies that want to see things for themselves. Malaysian manufacturers are looking for new market for their products. We have a lot of products to share with Africa. We are one of the biggest economics in the South East Asia. We moved from agriculture to manufacturing country. So our people are so aggressive to find new market for their products. We want to be competitive; we want our presence in Africa, especially in Nigeria. Which is also the fastest growing economy in Africa. Again, majority of the Malaysians business people are not aware of Nigeria and the opportunity abound in it. And we are here to expose them to the market, established relationship with Nigerians. Because, there are huge opportunities for Malaysian in this country. Apart from your visit, what is the relationship between Malaysia and Nigeria before now? As I said early, Nigeria is a new market for the Malaysian manufacturers, because traditional we imports our products to other countries like USA, Europe, Asia. Although, there is little importation to Nigeria. But, we really want to have relationship with Africa, because Africa is the second largest continent after Asia continent. Again, Nigeria and my country have similar things in common or history, from British independent, we are English speaking countries, also our products are the same, because whatever is produced in Malaysian have it market here in Nigeria.

Halid

What other plans do the Malaysian business people have for the country after introducing their products to Nigeria market? I believe this is initiate stage because our first visit to Nigeria was about five years ago. But this time around we are here; we want to find a right partner first. Build trust, and also find the right supplier. Once we have a good relationship, probably any of the company will have interest to start small investment in term of technology and knowledge transfer, supplying raw materials. Because, Nigeria is becoming a manufacturing country and you need technology transfer which Malaysia companies are willing and ready to share with your country. Asia countries are known to flow in substandard products to Africa, especially Nigeria and it has become a great concern to our government. What should we expect from your manufacturers in term of standard and quality? We are here to share with your coun-

try, Malaysia products which are very high quality. We produced good quality products affordable to lower, middle and high class earner. We don’t go for volume as some countries do, which makes them not to care about standard and quality. So, we produced quality products because we have the raw materials, we have the technology and manpower. And I know Nigeria will benefit a lot from our country. What is the trade relationship between your country and Nigeria, in terms of volume? Malaysia’s bilateral trade with Nigeria valued $167.53m in 2012 as of January to September, according to the department of Statistics of Malaysia, and major exports to your country are palm oil, chemical and chemical products, machinery, appliance and parts, transport equipment and processed food. While our major imports from Nigeria are Metalliferous ores and metal scrap, crude rubber, manufactures of metal and others.

But in the same situation of infrastructure challenges, some of the Asia countries like China and others came and invested in the country? The Chinese have the resource, they are everywhere and have so many connection. Also have very good relationship with Africa countries includes Nigeria. I know my people are ready to establish a relationship with Nigeria and get right partner that will help them or guide them how to invest. As you are here in person to find out possible way to bring in your people to the country and established relationship, what guidance will you give Nigerians that are interested to partner with the Malaysian business people? I don’t know if Nigerians are aware of what we can offer to them, probably they should come to Malaysia and see for themselves the potential, the opportunities we have as a country. Also, we as an association will assist them arrange meetings with more people who are really interested to partner with Nigerians. The visit will help Nigerian business people who are interested to partner with our manufacturers to have more idea of what can be done in Nigeria. We are inviting Nigeria to partner with Malaysia, because there is a lot advantages both will share. And I am ensuring you that the two countries will benefit from each as the fastest growing economy in their continents.


Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

47

January 19, 2013

Turning tomatoes to money ... With tomato paste production I

n this country today, there are so many tomatoes grown all over. Research has shown that of the total annual production of fresh tomatoes in the country, about 30 per cent are wasted because of lack of preservation mechanism. In the northern parts of the country, there are large scale farmers of tomato, yet there is no preservation system to take care of the mass production. The only option available to Nigerians in this case is to establish fresh tomato processing plants to avoid wastages and at the same time encourage the farmers. The current administration of President Goodluck Jonathan is out to encourage investors in this area. More investors either individuals, group of investors or governments are advised to invest in this area. The writer will guide prospective investors in setting up this project from feasibility studies, site planning, procurement and installation of machines, development of marketing strategies and recruitment of experienced manpower to manage the project for profit. Though there are various brands of tomato pastes and purees imported into the country, Nigerians can comfortably produce quality tomato pastes/puree at reduced cost and eliminate the cost of importation.

Tomato paste and puree are consumed in all the Nigerian households. They are used in the preparation of different delicacies particularly stew. They are also used extensively in restaurants both small and big. The demand for these products is increasing everyday. The demand cuts across all parts of the country. Apart from the Nigerian market, prospective investors can sell to other parts of the African continent. Tomato can be processed into paste, canned and exported to other West African nations and sold within the country. The demand for this product is very high locally. To set up an effective and efficient tomato paste-producing plant an investor needs expelling machine, blending machine, filling machine, pasteuriser washing machine, stainless top working table and canning machine. It is also pertinent to mention that all these machines can be sourced locally. The machines can also be imported depending on choice. The raw material tomato seeds are widely grown in the country. Preservatives can also be obtained in the country. The major machinery and equipment required to set up this project are the extractor, mixer, pasteuriser, filling and

canning machines. These machines can be obtained locally from some tested machine fabricators. The machines can also be imported from some European countries. Details will be given to prospective investors. The production process is simple! It is made up of washing, pulverizing, mixing with preservatives and pulpurizing. Finally they are filled and canned. The canning materials can be obtained in this country too. The project can be set up with the sum of N12million as shown below. From investment analysis, the projected total sales in the first year will be N58 million. Deducting the projected costs of establishment, it then implies that the project can pay back the cost of establishment in the first year of operation. The rate of returns on investment, based on our projection is 67 per cent. The profit before tax of the proposed project is N15 million. This figure would increase to N38 million in the fifth year of operation. This project is considered feasible because the raw materials, required for setting up of this project are all available locally. The manpower is also available. The machines can be procured and installed by Nigerian machine fabrica-

tors, if the imported ones cannot be obtained. This project will forestall the importation of this product from overseas countries thereby conserve our foreign exchange. It can generate employment of not less than 10 unemployed youths, thereby adding to the deduction of unemployment in this country. For more information, particularly preparation of comprehensive and bankable feasibility reports, sourcing of the required funds, establishment and management of this project, contact the writer.

Financial Estimates Preliminary Invest- N250, 000 ment (including feasibility studies) Plants & machinery

N3, 500,000

Working capital

N3, 000,000

Utilities

N2, 500,000

Accommodation (variable)

N1, 500,000

Contingencies

N1, 000,000

Total

N11, 750,000

The project cost may either go up depending on some variables.

Courtesy: Uba Godwin, ubagodwin@yahoo.com


48

January 19, 2013

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

‘Quality is crucial in polymer business’ Akpotaire

POLY BAGS ARE USED BY ALL AND SUNDRY AND SO THE

DEMAND FOR THEM IS HIGH, ALTHOUGH BECAUSE OF THIS HIGH DEMAND, A LOT OF

PEOPLE ARE NOW INTO THE BUSINESS WHICH IN TURN HAS MADE IT VERY COMPETITIVE

FUNMI SALOME JOHNSON

P

roduction of polythene bags is a business that has been on the rise in recent times. There has been a sharp increase in the demand for these products in the markets hence making the business a lucrative one, Martins Akpotaire, who has been in the business of polymer for over 40 years, has said. According to the polythene magnate whose venture, Eugene Investments, is located at Orita Challenge, Ibadan, Oyo State, the business though lucrative requires a lot of feasibility studies just like in other dealings. According to Akpotaire, the business of polythene bag production is not for novice. “It requires a formal training of at least six months. You can either learn the rudiments of the trade from a professional in that area of business or you go to a post secondary institution to study the course. Those who are doing courses like petrochemical engineering would know everything needed to go into polymer business because it is an arm of the course. Anybody cannot just go into this kind of business because of its technicalities. It is a science related business,” he explained. Akpotaire noted that the necessary

tools needed to start off the business include the polymer machine, cutting machine, sealing machines and excluder machine used in plastic/ polythene decorations. He pointed out that the excluder machine also determines the texture and thickness of the nylon adding that other materials such as nylon itself, chemicals and other miscellaneous are also needed. “The business is quite capital intensive because apart from the afore mentioned, one also needs a space as well as to generate power in case electricity does not come from PHCN which is usually the case. Having your own source of power is very vital because of the epileptic power supply that we have in the country today,” he stated. According to Delta State-born entrepreneur, poly bag production business is one that any investor could start getting returns on not too long after commencing the business. He, however, stressed that the profit is commensurate with the investment. “The more you are able to invest in the business will also determine the turnover you will get on it. For instance, the turnover you will get on the business if you have about four machines to work with, is not the same you will get when you have only one machine” he added. Another advantage of the business ac-

cording to Akpotaire is the fact that it can always be started from a small scale. “You may not have N10 million to start off the business but you can start with about N800, 000. This means you may not have all the machines you need to start at once,” he explained. “If you do not have money enough to buy the imported machines, you can settle for a fabricated produced locally. It is less expensive and durable as well. The difference is just that, the imported machines do more jobs simultaneously than the locally fabricated ones” explained Akpotaire. He further noted that another good thing about the business is the fact that poly bags are used by all and sundry and so the demand for them is high, although because of this high demand, a lot of people are now into the business which in turn has made it very competitive. However, you will still have your own patrons especially when your job is neat and good. It is also very vital for one to use quality materials that are durable because this will definitely set one apart from the others. For instance, there are some nylon bags you buy and even before you walk a short distance, it will cut or your stuff may just drop from under. Those are the kind of things I am talking about. It is either that the nylons are not properly sealed or they may be of inferior quality. Using quality

materials is one of the ways to sustain good customer relationship. When people use your products and they see that they are good and durable, they will always give you the patronage,” explained Akpotaire In terms of challenges, Akpotaire noteed that the major challenge in the business is power generation. “Because of the epileptic supply of power in this country, anyone who is serious about his business will definitely look for an alternative means of generating his own power which is usually an additional expense. This in turn affects the general cost of production “. He further noted that another way to climb fast and make more money in the business having enough equipment, and doing commercial jobs for others. “I know someone in Iyana Ipaja area of Lagos who doesn’t even produce for himself but just do for others at a fee. He has about six different machines and all he does is to print jobs for others and he has made a lot of money for himself ” He also emphasised the importance of location which he added could have a large effect on the sales. For instance, if you are close to a booming market, you will record more sales than someone who is in a remote place. However, doing a good job is also very important. Because once your product is known and has been tested and trusted, they would always look out for it quality is key in poly bag production.”


Crime Watch

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

January 19, 2013

49

Crime Watch P. 50 Hotel steward shot dead over N45,000

BRIEFS Court remands lawyer in prison custody

A

n Abuja Senior Magistrates’ Court yesterday ordered the remand of a lawyer, Austin Nwora, in prison custody until the hearing of his case. Senior Magistrate Simisola Adeniyi gave the order, following a report to the Police by one Mrs Ijeoma Onuoha. Nwora was arraigned for allegedly inciting disturbance, criminal force, assault, mischief, unlawful restraint and criminal trespass on the family of Onuoha. The Police Prosecutor, Atteh Effiong, told the court that the accused was a neighbour of the Onuohas and was reported by their lawyer, Mr Ekerete Utioh. Utioh forwarded a written petition to the Commissioner of Police, FCT Command, on June 29, 2012. According to the prosecutor, on June 14, 2012, one Mrs Felicia Nwator and the wife of the accused Mrs Ebele Nwora incited public disturbance and caused breach of peace at their residence in Kubwa, Abuja. Effiong also said that Mrs Nwora used force and assaulted Mr Nnamdi Onuoha, the husband of the complainant.

Man, 25, in court for alleged bag snatching

T

he Police yesterday arraigned Leye Jamiu, 25, before an Abuja Senior Magistrates’ Court for allegedly conniving with two others to snatch a bag belonging to Hadiza Uzairu. Police prosecutor Abdullahi Adamu told the court that the matter was reported at the Wuse Police Station by Uzairu, who lives at No. 13, Omodende Street, off Moricas Street, Agege Lagos, on January 16. According to Adamu, the complainant was receiving calls along Accra Street, Wuse Zone 5, Abuja, when Jamiu and his colleagues, now at large, allegedly snatched the bag. He said all the suspects jointly attacked her and snatched her cell phone valued at N12, 500 and the handbag containing N50,000 cash. Adamu said the bag also contained a set of clothes valued at N10,000 as well as some make-up. The prosecutor said the accused committed the offence of joint act and theft. The accused, however, denied the allegation, and Senior Magistrate Aminu Eri granted him bail in the sum N10,000 with one surety who must be resident within the court’s jurisdiction.

Tenancy blues

Adedotun

‘How my landlady sent hoodlums to stalk and beat me’ When Pastor Oladejo Adedotun moved to his current abode six years ago, he never had the premonition of the difficulties that would signify the end of his tenancy. If he had, he might probably not have taken the accommodation. However, now he along with his family is being stalked and harassed by those he suspects to be his landlady’s men. SEGUN ADIO

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astor Oladejo Adedotun, his two wives and four children are currently living in absolute fear after suspected members of Oodua People’s Congress (OPC) allegedly stormed their apartment recently and sent members of the family in different directions. Sixty years old Adedotun lives with his family in a detached room and parlour (Self contained) at 28, Odunfa Street, Ebute Metta (East), in Lagos Mainland Local Government Area of Lagos State. He has been a tenant in the building in the last six years. The Fiditi, Oyo State-born cleric alleged that his current ordeal is the handiwork of his landlady, whom he claimed, had taken him to court and lost over the apartment he has been occupying since 2006. Whoever is behind Adedotun’s present predicament, it is clear that those people do not mean well for the man of God. This is more so because only recently, one of his children was accused of being a member of a robbery gang that struck in the area. The physical attack on Adedotun reportedly occurred on Thursday, 10 January, 2013 at Ondo Street in the community. On the fateful day, about five people clad in black attire reportedly accosted Adedotun while he was on his way home. One of the attackers reportedly called on Adedotun asking him why he stayed on in his house despite the insistence of his landlady that he should pack out. When he wanted to argue with the attackers, Pastor Adedotun was reportedly hit on the chest by one of them, who reportedly claimed that they were sent by the owners of the house he occupies, without payment. The attacker reportedly told Adedotun that they had already got paid to chase him and his family out of the said house. That was not all. About a week before the attack on Adedotun and one of his wives were also allegedly attacked in similar fashion at her shop in Oyingbo area of the

metropolis. Help eventually after came the way of the hapless woman who was rescued from the hands of her assailants by some Good Samaritans at the scene of the incident. Sometime in 2009, after Adedotun had completed his tenancy in the said building, his own apartment had already been shared to an unidentified woman. It was reported that rather than pay another year’s rent, the woman allegedly doubled the rent and asked for two years rent in advance. Efforts were reportedly made by Pastor Adedotun to sit down with the woman but the latter could not make herself available for negotiations. The mater soon took a legal dimension when the woman dragged the man of God before an Ebute-Metta Chief magistrate Court in 2009 in suit No. MCY/1653/09. After several adjournments by the trial judge over the absence of the landlady and her lawyers to appear in court, the case was struck out. Rather than come to collect the rent, Adedotun alleged that the landlady had been sending thugs and OPC members after her. Sometime last year, it was reported that about five carpenters climbed the building and loosened the roofing sheets without prior knowledge to the tenants. Upon seeing this, Adedotun reportedly alerted the policemen at Denton Police Station, Oyingbo, Lagos. The carpenters reportedly fled the scene before the arrival of the police. In a chat with Saturday Mirror on how he survived the latest attack on his life, Adedotun claimed that since the case was struck out in court in his favour, several death threats had been carried out on himself and his family members. “On the day they came to unleash terror on me, they threatened to demolish the house at the end of this month. One Abu held my cloth claiming he would break my head with a stick. It was people that separated us. I have reported the case at Denton Police Station, Area 2Command, Office of

Public Defender (OPD) and the National Human Rights Commission They called them but they did not yield,” Pastor Adedotun said, “Last Thursday, about five thugs said to be members of the OPC attacked me and threatened to kill me and my children if I do not move out of the apartment. But for the timely intervention of people around, I may have been dead by now. They however beat, and hit me with all kinds of objects in the process. They even threatened to kill me and my children if I do not move out,” he alleged. A neighbour to Adedotun, identified as Mummy Allu, recounted how the man’s son, said to be a friend to her own son, was almost framed up for a robbery case. Mummy Aliu claimed that was also part of a grand plan to ensure the man of God leaves the apartment at all cost. “I don’t live in that house, but I know that efforts had been on for a long time now to forcefully eject the man out of the place. I heard he already paid part of the rent he is owing. But when news got to me that his son was part of the robbers that invaded the community recently, I told myself that this was a design to nail the Pastor. On the day they claimed the boy (Pastor Adedotun’s son) was seen sitting with robbers, he was actually sitting with my son in front of our house. The two of them are friends. I think the fight should not get to the stage of calling someone a robber when he is not,” Mummy Aliu said. Mr Abu, elder brother of Pastor Adedotun’s landlady, when contacted on phone, would not pick his calls. Another tenant in the building however told Saturday Mirror that the owners of the portion of the building gave enough notice for them to move out for renovation works on the property. The woman, who wished not to be mentioned, claimed that her family was close to leaving the building after what she called ‘ceaseless harassment of occupants by owners’ agents.

Do you have a story for us? Contact 08138773277 or crimewatchmirror@yahoo.com


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CRIME WATCH

January 19, 2013

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Stanley was the head steward of a mini guest house in Lagos. He was said to be diligent and loyal. He might, perhaps, have carried these traits too far. He died protecting the N45,000 belonging to the facility.

SEGUN ADIO

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tanley hailed from Delta State. He was 19 years old but shouldered the responsibility of being the head steward of a guest house around Ishaga Market in Ifako/Ijaiye Local Government Area of Lagos State. With his performance and popularity at the facility, only those in the known knew that he was only a couple of years old in the employ of the guest house. Unlike most teenagers, not a few people, patrons of the facility and neighbours alike, knew him as diligent, hard working and dutiful. All these were, however, revealed as sympathisers who crowded round his prone body as it lay on the floor soaked in blood sang his praises. On his shoulder was a deep gash while congealed blood covered his abdomen on Tuesday, 8 January, 2013. What could have lead to such a violent death for such a young promising land? Two suspected robbers, it was later revealed, who had been regular visitors at the guest house/bar located in the heart of the market in the community. In the early hours of Tuesday, January 8, 2013, Stanley was asleep in his small room in the complex when the suspected robbers barged their way in to carry out their act. Apart from the drinks sold at the guest house, about a dozen rooms are also offered for guests who wish to stay the night. Stanley upon the completion of his secondary education back in Delta State, had moved to Lagos and stayed with his elder sister who reportedly lives around Iju area of the metropolis. Barely three months after he joined the employ of the guest house; he was elevated to Head Steward, and thus allocated a room in the complex. He reportedly saw the offer of a room as an opportunity to enjoy some privacy away from

Hotel steward shot dead over N45,000 his sister’s rented apartment. He wasted no time in moving to the room. He had since lived there until death came calling that fateful day. As part of the schedule of work at the guest house, two other stewards were to work over-night with him being head of the unit. While the two other stewards served customers with drinks, the payment for the drinks went to no one but Stanley. Once all customers left, the two stewards on duty slept on mats bought for that purpose at a corner of the reception, while Stanley retired to his room. It was the routine of the facility staff. On that fateful day, all rooms in the complex were reportedly booked and filled with guests, but unknown to Stanley and his men, two of the guests were men of the underworld. Around 6:00a.m on that day, the two men stealthily made their way into Stanley’s room, while the two stewards snored in their sleep at the reception. The two robbers, aware of the way to Stanley’s room, soon

knocked at his door pretending to be one of the stewards wishing to pass a message to the unit head. Immediately he opened the door, the two robbers were said to have held his cloths and pushed him far into the corner of the small room, shutting the door behind them. It was reported that the robbers asked him to cooperate with them and make no attempt to raise the alarm. They reportedly told him that they were there just for the proceeds of the previous day. Shell-shocked Stanley reportedly told the robbers that he recognised them having been there almost the whole of that week to cool themselves there. He also reportedly asked them how they found their way into his room. His questions, no doubt, fell on deaf ears as one of the robbers reportedly asked him to submit all money made in the last 24 hours to them. But he was said to have refused to be blackmailed. He promptly told the assailants that there was no money with him, saying that he had handed the day’s proceeds over to the

owners of the business before close of work the previous day. But the two robbers were not taken-in with his explanations. When they realised that he was unbending in his excuses, one of the men reportedly grabbed a bottle in the room and broke it on his head and stabbed in on his shoulder. Stanley then reportedly engaged the two robbers in struggle, despite the blood gushing out from his shoulder. Stanley reportedly gave the two robbers a hard fight. At a stage, the one of the robbers reportedly produced a pistol from his pocket and shot Stanley point-blank twice in the lower abdomen. The Delta State-born steward slumped immediately and lay in the pool of his own blood. He was dead within minutes. A paltry N45, 000:00 was the total proceeds for the company that fateful day. The gun shot reportedly sent the other occupants of the guest house scampering for safety, the robbers reportedly made away with all money found in Stanley’s room and shot their way

out of the complex. He was reportedly taken to his country home last Wednesday for burial. Speaking with Saturday Mirror, a friend of the owner of the guest house, identified as Taiwo, claimed that the robbers were reportedly known faces who had been visiting the complex for some time now. “The death of the innocent boy was a rude shock to some of us who knew him well. He was a gentle and easy going young man. He could also be said to have died for the cause he believed in because he refused to hand over to the robbers the money meant for his employers. His death was painful indeed,” Taiwo added tearfully. A neighbour, Mama Chichi, said that the loud report of the gun was heard in her house two buildings away from the hotel “It was a bad experience. I have never seen that in my life. I was about going to my shop when the gun shot sounded and the bag in my hand dropped to the ground. The shout of ‘thief, thief ’ later made me know that they were robbers,” she said.


Crime Extra Pastor falls out with church member over N3.2m car Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

January 19, 2013

51

Ikenna Ohaedoghasi is a pastor. One of the devoted members of his church is Mike Onuoha. Now, the two are at each other’s throats. What could have turned the sheep against its shepherd? SEGUN ADIO

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astor Ikenna Ohaedoghasi is the leader-in-charge of a new generation church at Oke Afa, Isolo, in Ejigbo Local Government Area of Lagos State. The membership of his church runs into thousands. His ministry has blossomed into a mega church in the last couple of years. The clergyman, also, could not be said to lack well-to-do members though his church is still considered a growing one. One of his devoted members is Mike Onuoha. His membership of the church notwithstanding, Onuoha is one of the closest to the man of God. Unfortunately, however, Onuoha got betrayed by the man he trusted and listened to, Ohaedoghasi. The hitherto rosy relationship between Ohaedoghasi and Onuoha nose-dived recently when the clergyman, allegedly connived with one Eze Nwabueze and some others to defraud Onuoha. According to Onuoha, Ohaedoghasi and his partners-incrime, allegedly forged his car dealer payment receipt supposedly to defraud him. The forged receipt, written to the tune of N3.2 million, was reportedly aimed at purchasing a Toyota SUV for the private use of the clergyman. The receipt was concocted in such a way as to look as if Onuoha wrote it. The receipt was dated Decem-

ber 2, 2012. That was not the first time Pastor Ohaedoghasi would be stabbing his ‘friend and confidant’ in the back. Sometime on Wednesday, October 10, 2012, same Ohaedoghasi, said to be acting also in concert with his gang, at No 9, Olaitan Street, Surulere in the metropolis, allegedly whisked away a Toyota Hiace bus belonging to Onuoha. The stolen bus which was registered as JJJ 989 AA, was valued at N2.8 million. When Onuoha discovered the latest fraud against his establishment, he promptly reported the matter to the X-Squad of the Lagos Command of the Nigeria Police to. The law enforcement agents promptly commenced investigations. In the end, Ohaedoghasi and Nwabueze were arrested for their complicity in the crime. Onuoha was quoted to have told law enforcement agents that the acclaimed man of God had duped him in the past, but he did not take cognizance of it. He however charged investigators to dig into the past of the clergyman, after which he claimed more of Ohaedoghasi’s shaddy dealings would be uncovered. At Olaitan Street, venue of the crime, Saturday Mirror gathered that the theft of Onuoha’s bus at the time caused a lot of stir in the neighbourhood until the case was finally rested. According to Iyke, a resident of the area, “When the news of the theft was first announced,

everyone in the community was worried, not only because the owner was hurt by it, but because it was a signal that we all needed to sleep no more. It was totally unbelievable that a selfproclaimed man of God was behind it,” Iyke said. A female member of the Ohaedoghasi’s church, who pleaded anonymity, expressed surprised when confronted with the story

that the man leading her church was involved in car theft. The woman, who claimed that if the matter proved to be true, she would stop attending the church, however, told Saturday Mirror that there is need for patience in the case. Her words: “What you have told me cannot be possible and that is why I said we should keep our fingers crossed. I think we

should allow the law enforcement agents to come up with their findings before we begin to conclude on anything”. However, Ohaedoghasi could not be reached for his comment. A policeman at the X-squad however confirmed Ohaedoghasi’s arrest. The law enforcement agent claimed that the matter would be charged to court after investigations are completed.

Trigger-happy policeman on trial for shooting driver, passenger NWABUEZE OKONKWO ONITSHA

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trigger-happy police corporal attached to the Central Police Station (CPS), Onitsha, Anambra State is now facing orderly room trial in the State Police Command for allegedly shooting and injuring a commercial bus driver and one of his passengers in the commercial city of Onitsha.

The suspect whose name, Sunday Peters, according to the source, shot the duo on Thursday while on duty as one of the police escorts to a bullion van belonging to one of the new generation banks in Onitsha. According to the source, the incident occurred at the Ozamagala Street Junction by New Market Road, Onitsha while the policemen were escorting the empty bullion van back to the bank premises.

Sources close to the scene of the incident said that trouble started for the victims when they were moving from the Main Market, Onitsha, towards Awka Road, and the bullion van which the policemen were escorting ran into them. According to Saturday Mirror source the bullion van was moving on the wrong side of the New Market Road, Onitsha, when it encountered the bus driver and his vehicle carrying

the other victims. When the bullion van could not pass easily, the source added, the police corporal alighted from the escort van and started flogging the driver for obstruction. It was gathered that the passenger whose name was given as Uche Chigerem only intervened by appealing to the policeman to stop beating the driver, explaining that the blockage on the road was not his fault. Chigerem’s intervention in-

furiated the policeman so much so that he extended the flogging to him at once and as he posed some questions as to why he was being flogged, the policemen pulled out his gun and pointed it’s nozzle at him. Our source stated that when the victim realised that the policeman was about pulling the trigger, he quickly pushed the nozzle downwards and the bullet went off, shattering his two legs and piercing the driver’s arm.


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January 19, 2013

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net


Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

REGIONAL NEWS

January 19, 2013

53

NORTH

Kwankwaso slams NASS over hike in 2013 budget benchmark AUGUSTINE MADU-WEST KANO

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overnor Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso of Kano State has come down hard on members of the National Assembly over their decision to increase the 2013 budget benchmark from $78 from $75dollars. Governor Kwankwaso also described as ‘selfish’

the on-going moves by the legislators to amend the constitution, pointing out that it was game by them to further amass wealth to the detriment of the nation. Speaking in an interview, Kwankwaso described members of the National Assembly as a thin gods whose activities could affect the running of the nation especially

our nascent democracy. He faulted insinuations that the governors were the real powerful persons in the polity. In the words of Governor Kwankwaso, “The mistake people are making is I am a Governor in kano state. If you see me in London, you should ask me what I am doing there. Even if you see me in Abuja, you should ask

me what am I doing in Abuja. If I am in Kano, you cant say what am I doing in kano. I had an opportunity to be in this office in 1999 -2003 and that was when Governors were Governors and the Governors forum was Governors forum. I don’t think any member of the national assembly has the gut to abuse governors. They had no reason to do

that. “But now, I can tell you that the National Assembly is so powerful that even governors are just nothing to them because they decide everything for the country. The most powerful person in Nigeria today in my opinion today is in the national assembly. They dictate the tune, they decide what everybody in this country

should get to the extent even the other tier of government like the States level, they want to decide what each local government should get and that is the problem and that is why we always praying we should have certain checks and balances.” “I understand that they take $75 per barrel in the budget estimate. Now it is $78 per barrel.

NOA urges Nigerian leaders to be more time conscious WOLE ADEDEJI ILORIN

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he attitude of giving no respect to time particularly, among Nigerian leaders has been described as one of the vices killing the country’s economy. This was the lead campaign in Ilorin by the Kwara State office of the National Orientation Agency (NOA) along others across the country to flag off the “Do The Right Thing: Keep to Time, Nigerians” awareness campaign. The campaign which took NOA to places in the state capital like Maraba Motor Park, the premises of the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA), Radio Kwara, Ipata Market, Oja Oba and the Post Office round about was witnessed by a large crowd of people who followed the train

L-R: Kaduna State Governor Mukhtar Yero; Commissioner for Water Resources, Mr. Sunday Katung and Secretary to the State Government, Alhaji Ishaq Damahawayi, at the inauguration of motorcycles, vehicles and water treatment chemicals in Kaduna, yesterday. PHOTO: NAN

of vehicles adored with awareness banners. Speakers at the rally called on public officers,

political office holders, governors, ministers and leaders generally to shun henceforth, the habit of

making people to wait for them endlessly at public functions thereby wasting precious manpower time

that could have been used to enhance economic productivity in Nigeria. In his address at the

Yero increases water supply in Kaduna

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he Kaduna State Government on Friday inaugurated 15 vehicles and equipment worth N470 million to improve water supply in the state. Governor Mukhtar Yero said at the ceremony in Kaduna that the government would embark on new water projects, while the existing ones would be rehabilitated to meet public demand. ``Plans are underway to construct additional water schemes in Kaduna metropolis and Kachia, in an effort to meet the growing demand for potable water supply in the state.’’ Yero said that the

150-million-litre Zaria Water scheme was ongoing and would soon be completed to serve communities in seven local government areas in the northern part of the state. `` My administration

is genuinely committed to the provision of basic social amenities to the people of the state. `` The inauguration of these items worth over N470 million is a clear demonstration of our efforts to

improve the living condition of our people.’’ Yero, however, emphasised the need for judicious use of the vehicles and other items, warning that the would not tolerate abuse in whatever form. Earlier, the state Com-

missioner for Water Resources, Mr Sunday Katung, said the government had awarded contract for the completion of the rehabilitation of the existing water schemes in Kaduna, Zaria, Kafanchan, Kagoro, Zonkwa and Saminaka.

rally, the state Director of NOA, Alhaji Salihu Bello said it would be difficult to witness the transformation desire of the country if the trend of the terribly declined culture of keeping time, otherwise called “the African Time” is not checked. “In order to achieve the desired transformation of this country, time must be respected and utilized well’, he had said The NOA Director added: “ In all spheres of our lives, we are expected to abolish lateness to duty posts, at organized events, respect the time given to talk, promptly discharge duties given to each and everyone and all other responsibilities, be polite and refuse to keep people waiting un necessarily and we should remember at all time that; “ time is money.”

Katung said that the state government had taken over the payment of eletricity bills from the state Water Board. He said the ministry had introduced a new arrangement for easy supply of diesel to the water works for efficient service delivery of water to the people.

Bauchi civil servants vow to boycott verification exercise TITUS EZEKIEL BAUCHI

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ivil servants in Bauchi State civil servant say they may not participate in the verification exercise to be conducted by the Bauchi Civil Service Commission for workers on the pay roll of the state government. The Chairman of the Bauchi State Joint Pub-

lic Service Negotiation Council, Comrade Ali Ahmed, told journalists in Bauchi that the council has directed all workers affected by the impending verification exercise to be conducted by the state Civil Service Commission to boycott the exercise. A statement by the workers says, “ We heard that the state government

intended to conduct a verification exercise of its workforce from level 07 and above, but they asked the workers to purchase a new Civil Service Form and asked them many questions that were implicative. Before you apply for a post as a civil servant you most have purchased and filled CSC form now why are you

buying the form again after you have spent many years in service, and government started the exercise without contacting us as stake holders in the matter.” Meanwhile secretary of the organized labour in Bauchi State, Comrade Sagir Kafi , in a statement said, “ the commission did not inform ministries

,departments and agencies of the affected workers with respect the verification exercise”. He described the exercise as ill time and urged all affected workers to stay away from the exercise until they receive further directives from the union, and urged workers to ensure strict compliance with the directive.


54

REGIONAL NEWS

January 19, 2013

Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

NORTH

Niger to spend N21.7m on insemination of 300 cows

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he Niger Government will spend N21.7 million on the artificial insemination of 300 cows, in a bid to produce high breed cows in the state. Dr Isah Vatsa, Commissioner for Livestock and Fisheries, in the state, made this known to journalists in Minna, yesterday. Vatsa said that the state executive council had approved the proposal by the ministry to procure feeds for the 300 cows selected for the artificial insemination programme across the state. He said the feed would consist of varies of feeds that was appropriate for the selected cows under the programme.

According to him, after the cows have been administered doses of artificial semen, which will lead to delivering exotic high-

breed cows. He expressed optimism about the success rate of the programme and its multiple effects on the

production of meat and milk by the cattle owners. ``The high breed cow will each produce 20 litres of fresh milk as against 2

litres being produce by our local cows,’’ he said. Vatsa said the ministry had selected some Fulani cattle owners for the first

L-R: Chairman, Misau Local Government Area, Alhaji Ibrahim Waziri; Emir of Misau, Alhaji Mohammed Manga III and Deputy Governor of Bauchi State, Alhaji Sagir Saleh, during the Deputy Governor’s visit to the emir in Misau, yesterday. PHOTO: NAN

phase of the project, adding they had agreed that they would isolate the selected female cows from the herd. The commissioner said the cattle owners also agreed that most of the selected cows would not be pregnant before been administered with artificial semen. He said the ministry official had kept a regularly check on the selected cows toward ensuring that they were properly given their feeds and attended to their medical need. He said those benefitting from the programme would not pay any fee for the artificial insemination or the feeds to be provided but they were expected to sustain the programme.

Insurgency: Kano Christians embark on 3-day fasting AUGUSTINE MADU-WEST KANO

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s the search for peace in Kano State continues, Christians in the troubles state are to embark on a 3-day intensive fasting and prayers for God’s intervention in the insurgency that is tearing the state apart. This is even as the military-led Joint Task Force JTF, as intensify their raid on suspected hide-

outs of militants of the Boko Haram sect, according to a statement from 3 Mechanized Brigade of the Nigerian Army, Kano. The spiritual gathering will involve the all Christians denominations in the state and will begin from January 25, 2013, at the St. Charles Catholic Church. Disclosing the planned fasting in a chat with Saturday Mirror, Kano State chairman of the Christian Association of

Nigeria (CAN), Bishop Ransom Bello, said the security situation in the state calls for spiritual intervention for peace to return in the commercial city. Bishop Bello said he is convince that only the Almighty God can restore peace in the city and the country at large following the security challenges across the nation, hence the universal week of prayers. His words, “President Goodluck Jonathan

should demonstrate greater political will in dealing with this ugly situation, all those believed to have played different roles in promoting the Boko Haram saga, no matter how highly placed should be dealt with appropriately.” Meanwhile, in a statement from Bukavu Barracks, Headquarters of the 3 Brigade Nigerian Army, Kano, signed by Command’s spokesman, Captain Ihedichi Iweha said the security agents

Lawmaker warns NASS against passing Grazing Reserve Bill into law JAMES ABRAHAM JOS

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member of the National Assembly, Hon Bitrus Kaze, yesterday expressed reservations over the bill before the National Assembly for an Act to provide for the establishment of the National Grazing Reserve and Stock Routes. Kaze who represents Jos South/Jos East of Plateau state in a statement yesterday said “rather than solve any security problem, the discriminatory provisions of the Bill if passed will certainly worsen the age-long

clashes between farmers and the pastoralists.” The Lawmaker, while underscoring the importance of land to Nigerians noted that, “the importance of land in the Nigerian body polity cannot be over-emphasized, seeing that over 85% of Nigerians rely on it for their livelihood. The framers of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 as amended (The CFRN 1999), unmistakably conferred a constitutional status on the Land Use Act 1978. The CFRN 1999 section 315(5) provides that nothing shall invalidate any of its provisions which shall continue to ap-

ply as any other constitutional provisions and shall not be repealed except in accordance with the rigorous provisions for the alteration of the constitution itself.” Kaze also recalled that on 28th March, 2002, The Supreme Court of Nigeria presided by Justice Muhammad Lawal Uwais, Chief Justice of Nigeria made these pronouncements: “Where the provision in the Act is within the legislative powers of the National Assembly but the Constitution is found to have already made the same or similar provision, then the new provision will be regarded as invalid

for duplication and or inconsistency and therefore inoperative. The same fate will befall any provision of the Act which seeks to enlarge, curtail or alter any existing provision of the Constitution. The provision or provisions will be treated as unconstitutional and therefore null and void.” He also expressed worry that “under the Bill, for any land to be constituted as National Grazing Reserve, all that is required is a mere “notice” to the “State Governor where the land is situate... and the Governors in each State shall co-operate with the Commission.”

involve in the JTF assignment are doing their best to restore peace and order in the state. The statement read in parts: “In keeping with the mandate of the JTF towards protecting the good people of Kano State and updating her periodi-

cally on the fight against terror, it has become apparent for the JTF to issue this statement, at about 1530hrs yesterday, men suspected to be members of the terrorist network launched a failed attack at one of our check points at Mariri general area.

3 killed, 4 injured in Gombe raid on terrorists hideout DANJUMA WILLIAMS GOMBE

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hree people were feared dead yesterday morning, among them a student of the Federal College of Education (Technical), Gombe, with four seriously injured when soldiers raided a suspected terrorists base in Gombe, the Gombe State capital. Narrating the incident to reporters, a student of FCE and a survivor of the raid, Abubakar Adamu, stated that the soldiers came to their house around 3:30 am in London-Maidoruwa, a suburb of Gombe town which is directly behind FCE and started pooling down the mud house they were staying in with their amoured vehicle. He said a gun battle ensued much later between men suspected to be members of Boko Haram and

the soldiers. The eye witness said the students were terrified and ran for safety, escaping through their window. He said however that three people, including a student of FCE, Aliyu Jibrin, a prelim student, was killed. He said he couldn’t identify the other two dead bodies. However, the Commandant of the 301 Battalion of the Nigerian Army Gombe, Colonel Joseph Iwara, told newsmen on phone that the Army, acting on a tip off, raided the suspected criminals’ hideout but said only one person was killed. He said the suspected criminals were heavily armed which made the army to strategise before attacking the area. He added that on reaching the place, the criminals opened fire on them.


Saturday Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

INTERNATIONAL NEWS

January 19, 2013

55

Mali Islamists tougher than France anticipated –Envoys

…Army ‘regains Konna’ as Nigerian troops arrive

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BA planes sit on the runway at Heathrow as staff at the country’s main gateway try to keep the network moving.

Heathrow cancels flights over low temperature T

en thousand people were left without power yesterday and Heathrow closed one of its runaways as most of the UK woke to a thick blanket of snow. Eight inches had fallen by 9am, with more than 2,000 schools closed across Britain and the transport network in chaos. There were cancellations and delays at most airports and on trains, while major traffic routes, including the M4 between Bristol and Bridgend, were impassable after cars skidded and crashed. Around 1,000 Welsh schools closed, 400 in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight, 200 in Wiltshire, 300 in Gloucestershire, more than 20 in West Sussex and just one in East Sussex so far.

RWE reported that 10,000 of its customers were without power in Wales, after lines were brought down by snow this morning. The snow hit the London area at around 8.30am, by which time millions of commuters had already completed their journeys into work. At Heathrow, 70 flights were cancelled, and the delays and cancellations had a knock-on effect for almost every airport in the UK. Flights at Gatwick, Newcastle, Birmingham, Stansted, Manchester London City, Leeds Bradford, Land’s End, Newquay and Glasgow airports were disrupted and Bristol, Southampton, Cardiff and Jersey airports closed entirely because of snowbound runways.

Trains were delayed and cancelled, with Virgin Trains lifting all ticket restrictions for the remainder of the day. East Coast have removed restrictions for passengers leaving London Kings Cross after 10am, allowing you to travel earlier. Eurostar axed four trains between London and Brussels. Families were warned only to go out if absolutely necessary as Wales, the West Country, eastern England, the North East of England and Scotland were worst-hit areas this morning - with the bad of severe weather set to spread across the country. In Wales, 1,100 schools are now closed and special arrangements are being made in many areas for Alevel and AS-level students

who are due to sit exams yesterday. Some 200 schools have closed in Wiltshire after heavy snow started falling in Berkshire and Wiltshire two hours ago. South West Trains said there would be no service between Salisbury and Bristol Temple Meads all day. Railway operator First Great Western is also advising travelers to check before setting off. Drivers in Wales were facing major problems, with the M4 closed between Bridgend at junction 36 and Pyle at junction 37. Gritters have been out in force, and the Highways Agency has issued an amber alert, advising motorists to take extra care and check weather forecasts before they travel.

‘You’ve got to feel sorry for them,’ he said. ‘I’ve been reading how cold it is back there. Yes, it’s very, very hot here but all I have to do is run into the surf and I cool down immediately. The heat wave caused traffic chaos, with traffic lights breaking down and there were major delays on the city’s rail network after critical power units succumbed to the heat. It was so hot that CityRail put out warnings to passengers saying that if they began to feel unwell on a train they should seek

help – or get off at the next stop and look for assistance. Everyone was advised to carry a bottle of water with them. Race meetings in New South Wales were called off and golf courses were empty – but public swimming baths were filled to capacity. Thousands of revellers at the Big Day Out at the Sydney Showground were also warned to drink plenty of water and wear protective clothing and sunscreen. The rising heat, caused by reduced cloud cover over central and western

Australia in recent weeks and which allowed a very hot air mass to build, has brought added problems to firefighters battling bushfires in Victoria and New South Wales. In the Coonabarabran district in north west NSW, firefighters were trying to stop a massive bushfire that has destroyed 51 homes since it ignited last week end. A 44,500-hectare fire is reported to have cut off the small town of Licola in eastern Victoria after blocking its sole access road.

...as Sydney sizzles under hottest day

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s Britain shivered the Australian city of Sydney is experiencing its hottest day on record. Thousands rushed to the beaches in and around Sydney as the city recorded its hottest-ever day – 45.8°C, 0.5°C above the previous hottest day in 1939. At Sydney airport, the temperature was even higher - 46.4°C. Reclining on Sydney’s Bondi Beach, British tourist Jamie Watson, 22, from Manchester, took pity on ‘the folks back home.’

rench troops’ initial clashes with Islamist militants in Mali have shown that the desert fighters are better trained and equipped than France had anticipated before last week’s military intervention, French and other United Nations diplomats said. The realization that the fighting could be bloodier than anticipated in the weeks -- or months -- ahead might make Western countries even more reluctant to get involved alongside France. French officials, however, hope it will rally their allies behind them, diplomats say. A number of diplomats said it was clear that the initial French assessments of the militants had underestimated their strength. It is a view that French officials do not dispute. The diplomats were speaking after French forces had their first encounters with Islamist fighters in recent days. The ground war appeared headed for escalation on Thursday as French troops surrounded the town of Diabaly, trapping rebels who had seized it three days ago. “Our enemies were

well-armed, well-equipped, well-trained and determined,” a senior French diplomat said. “The first surprise was that some of them are holding the ground,” he said, adding that others had fled during six days of French air strikes aimed at halting the militants’ offensive and preventing the fall of Mali’s capital, Bamako. “They are better trained, I think, than the French had anticipated at the beginning and are fighting harder than had been anticipated,” a senior Western diplomat said. However, Malian army has recaptured Konna after Islamist rebels fled, the military and residents in the strategically important central town have said, just as the first badge of Nigerian troops arrive Mali. France began its intervention in Mali a week ago because of the rebel takeover of the town north of the capital. Earlier this week, French officials denied a claim by the Malian army that the government had regained Konna. Meanwhile, the UN refugee agency says it fears the fighting could force 700,000 people from their homes.

Journalist shot dead in Somalia

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nknown gunmen shot dead a Somali radio producer yesterday, the first journalist to be killed this year, an editor with his Somali radio station said. Eighteen journalists were killed last year, making Somalia one of the most dangerous places in the world for journalists. Two gunmen shot dead Shabelle producer Abdihared Osman Aden in the Somali capital, Mogadishu, said Mohamed Bashir Hashi, the radio station’s editor. Somali journalists say impunity is fueling the killings. The National Union of Somali Journalists said in November that journalists in almost every region of the country commonly face harassment, blackmail and arbitrary police detention. In addition, criminals are hired to suppress them. “It’s an appalling mur-

der but my message is they cannot silence us from telling the truth,” Hashi said. No action has ever been taken following a case of violence against a Somali journalist, The National Union of Somali Journalist said in a report to mark the International Day to End Impunity on November 23, sponsored by the free expression group, IFEX. Somalia’s government should implement judicial reforms that will aid free and fair trials, as well as provide judicial protection for the media and ensure that police adhere to the law, according to the report titled “Impunity: War on Somali Journalists.” The international community can assist Somalia’s federal government to put in place effective and functional public law and order, the report said.


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I heard that PDP wants to sue the Lagos State Government to stop the Lagos State Security Trust Fund from functioning. I have news for them, they should make my day, because we will meet them in court. Lagos State Governor, Babatunde Fashola, reacting to a call by the PDP that the LSSTF’s accounts and activities should be probed.

Saturday, January 19, 2013. www.nationalmirroronline.net

Obama’s second coming: What’s in it for Africa? B arack Obama begins his second term as 44th President of the United States tomorrow amid feelings of pride and solidarity across the African continent. The second term will firmly establish him in history beyond the happenstance of a first term. Understandably, there is a sense of glowing pride by all of us of the black race in celebrating the fact that one of us is running the affairs of the greatest economy and the most powerful country in the world. Yet, there are also palpable feelings of disappointment and even frustration expressed by Africans who believe he did not do enough for the continent in his first term. First of all, those who voted for Obama for the second term must be appreciated, particularly the Americans of colour. Among Africa’s political class, there is a sense of urgency and growing expectation from America’s first President of African ancestry. This point has been well-emphasized by senior officials of the African Union Commission including Chairperson Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, in her congratulatory message to Obama, and deputy chairperson Erastus Mwencha, in his interview with the Voice of America. All people of African descent must feel proud and encouraged by Obama’s two term presidency. The consensus is that progress in U.S-Africa relations has been slow despite the euphoria and high hopes that

with President Olusegun Obasanjo hexcellency2011@yahoo.com spread across the African continent upon Obama’s victory. In 2008, many observers believed that given Obama’s strong ties to the continent, his administration would play a significant role in urgently resolving some of sub-Saharan Africa’s worst challenges. We are neither hoping or expecting that he would open the US treasury to Africa. Rather, we expect that he will understand the African situation and empathise or advise when necessary. Indeed, some months into his first term, Obama made a significant statement to the rest of the world that Africa would have a prominent place in his administration’s foreign policy by visiting Ghana in July 2009, the earliest visit to sub-Saharan Africa by any U.S President. Former Presidents Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush had been the only U.S Presidents to visit the region in

their presidency and had gone on to make significant impact on U.S-Africa relations. The Obama administration’s choice of Ghana for his first visit was strategically made to align with its vision for Africa the continent. It was an endorsement of the West African nation’s strides in democratic governance but more than that, it was a demonstration of his administration’s belief that the partnership between America and Africa would only be built on “mutual responsibility”. On that premise, the key message in Obama’s Ghana speech was that “Africa’s future is up to Africans,” a point which I emphasized in an article on his victory four years ago. In the said article, I had argued that Africa can get a catalyst from the rest of the world but Africans will have to continue to be the architects of their own fortune or misfortune. It was

SPORT EXTRA

AFCON: Nwosu cautions Eagles’ defenders IFEANYI EDUZOR

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n ex- international, Henry Nwosu, has advised Super Eagles Coach, Stephen Keshi to ensure his defenders play with caution at the Nations Cup and avoid giving opposing strikers room to penetrate their goal area. The Super Eagles will play their first Group C match at the 2013 AFCON finals on Monday, January 21, when they confront Burkina Faso at Nelspruit. He told Saturday Mirror that the Super Eagles made up of both foreign and home-based players are capable of

Nwosu

putting up a good performance at the continental showpiece, but warned that there is need to ensure a proper coordination between the defence and the midfield for the team to excel in

South Africa. “Keshi is doing a wonderful job with the team and he has selected quality players that are capable of performing well at AFCON, but he must look seriously at the defence and ensure they play with alertness and not commit unnecessary errors that will give undue advantage to opposing attackers,” Nwosu said. He however added that if the Super Eagles technical crew will be able to ensure proper coordination between the midfielders and the attackers, pressure on the defence will be less, thereby increasing chances of the team scoring against their opponents.

clear to me then, as it is now, that the USAfrica partnership will largely depend on whether Africa is willing and able to seize opportunities for a stronger, mutually beneficial relationship, and not for a dole out. But Africa expects more effective actions rather than talks and sermons. Although there have been setbacks in some countries, events in the recent past give hope that Africans are ready to take responsibility for their continent and to reach out to the world not as beggars for aid but as partners in a world that is growing more and more interconnected. Across the continent, the democratic experiments that became popular about two decades ago are firmly being established in the political systems of most countries. Democratic elections, although still fraught with some irregularities, continue to show Africa’s commitment to reforms in the development of quality leadership. Within the last four years of Obama’s presidency, elections and democratic transitions have been held in more than a third of Africa’s 54 countries. The 2011 elections in Nigeria and 2012 elections in Senegal with the recently held Ghanaian elections, and the Kenya polls scheduled for March this year, are all indications of the continent’s commitment to peaceful, free and fair polls.

TO BE CONTINUED

PREMIERSHIP FIXTURES Today’s Matches Liverpool v Norwich 15:00 Man City v Fulham 15:00 Newcastle v Reading 15:00 Swansea v Stoke 15:00 West Ham v QPR 15:00 Wigan v Sunderland 15:00 West Brom v Aston Villa 17:30

Sunday, January 20, 2013 Chelsea v Arsenal 13:30 Tottenham v Man United 16:00

Monday, January 21, 2013 Southampton v Everton 20:00

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Saturday, January 19, 2013