Nigeria plans £5000 visa bond for UK citizens EXCLUSIVE T AYODELE OJO LONDON
Vol. 3 N0. 657 687
hree months to the commencement of the £3,000 visa bond regime due to be imposed on Nigerians travelling to the United Kingdom, the
ASUU denies asking FG N92bn Again, WAEC
Federal Government may have perfected plans to impose a £5,000 visa bond on prospective British citizens visiting Nigeria. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2>>
cancels results, five years after
Thursday, July August 4, 2013 15, 2013
Boko Haram: DHQ confirms
killing Shekau’s deputy ISE-OLUWA IGE, OMEIZA AJAYI, OLUFEMI ADEOSUN, INUSA NDAHI AND AZA MSUE
arely 48 hours after the massacre of 52 people in Konduga, Borno State, by terrorists, the Defence Headquarters, DHQ, has confirmed the killing of Momodu Bama, said to be the Second-inCommand to the Boko Haram Islamic sect leader, Abubakar Shekau. The DHQ said that Bama’s death had been confirmed by other arrested terrorists. It said that the development followed encounters with the sect around the Bama corridor, as troops intensified pursuit of terrorists who had been unleashing mayhem on BorCONTINUED ON PAGE 2>>
HIGH SPEED RAIL MASTER PLAN: A PEEP INTO THE FUTURE?
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Jonathan’s stooge P.5
149 die in Egypt’s mass protest
...VP resigns, Army declares national emergency P.51
Thursday, August 15, 2013
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Boko Haram: DHQ confirms killing Shekau’s deputy CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1
no and Yobe communities. The DHQ said that Bama was a vicious and heartless terrorist, who took delight in personally slaughtering his victims. He had been a most wanted criminal with a N25m bounty placed on his head. “Momodu Bama has been personally leading the attacks against troops and innocent citizens in the communities of Yobe and Adamawa”, said the Director, Defence Information, Brig.-Gen. Chris Olukolade. He also described him as a specialist in manning the anti-aircraft guns of the group. “He is known to be vicious and heartless with a penchant for personally slaughtering and executing his victims.” Olukolade also confirmed the killing of Bama’s father, Alhaji Abatcha Flatari, who he said was one of the “spiritual guiding lights of the outlawed terrorists group.” The defence spokesman added that 18 other terrorists were also killed in the encounter while 24 were arrested. He, however, stressed that the troops “are continuing the pursuit of the terrorists, while intensifying aggressive aerial and land patrols to ensure better security cover for the communities, especially in the two states.” But controversy has ensued over who was really responsible for the killing of Bama as the Joint Task Force, JTF, ‘Operation Restore Order’ in Borno State yesterday claimed that the top Boko Haram commander was killed by its men. The JTF denied the reports in some national dailies yesterday, which credited the killing to the Military Special Operation Unit, Mubi Battalion, Adamawa State. Bama was allegedly killed on August 4, in Bama, Bama Local Government Area of Borno State, during a Boko Haram attack on Mobile Police base in the town. JTF spokesman in Borno State, Lt.- Col. Sagir Musa, in a statement in Maiduguri also confirmed that Bama, a.k.a Abu Saad, was killed along with his
father during the attack.. Sagir said: “He (Momodu Bama) was on JTF’s wanted list of terrorist suspects. He is an indigene of Bama Local Government Area. JTF had earlier placed a N25m bounty on him, being a member of the Boko Haram Shurra Committee, but we have made a tremendous achievement in the recent Boko Haram alongside his father, Abatcha Flatari”. Sagir noted that Flatari was the spiritual mentor of Boko Haram terrorists in charge of indoctrinating foot soldiers who were mainly abducted children. On the recent coordinated attacks in Bama, Konduga, Monguno and Mafa local government areas of the state by terrorists, he said that the JTF had destroyed and dislodged the insurgents in most of their camps in the Sambisa Game Reserve Forests and other places. Sagir said that only a few surviving ones were unleashing terror in some villages to demonstrate that the sect members were still strong. However, the Jama’atu Nasril Islam, JNI, led by the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar, yesterday raised concerns over the continued killings of innocent people in the states under emergency rule. He was specifically worried by the recent attack on a mosque in Bama, Borno State, describing it as barbaric. In a statement, the JNI Secretary- General, Dr. Khalid Abubakar Aliyu, said the callous attack, resulting in the deaths of over 50 persons when the sacred month of Ramadan had just ended was condemnable The body called on government to urgently stop the terror attacks on peace loving people by restoring law and order. The statement condoled with the victims of the attack, saying the restoration of telecommunication network in Borno State should be a priority to enable residents contact security agencies when required. The statement reads in part: “As always, Jama’atu Nasril Islam, JNI, under the leadership of Alhaji
Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar, the Sultan of Sokoto and President-General, JNI, received with consternation and daze the senseless killings that occurred at police and military formations in Bama, Malam Fatori, Borno State, which was climaxed with a senseless killings of innocent worshippers during early dawn prayers at a mosque in Konduga village, some kilometres from Maidu-
guri, Borno State. “As with previous similar cases, the sporadic gun shots that ensued after the attacks and the setting ablaze of houses were very worrisome and call for immediate investigation that must bring an end to these repeated acts of terror on innocent souls. “We are indeed perplexed that with the state of emergency currently in place in Borno State and
with the visible security check points at every nook and cranny of the state, it is hardly believable that such dastardly acts could still occur unabated. “Hence, the JNI is seriously perturbed by it and calls for curtailing the proliferation of small arms. “Inasmuch as there is the need for restraint and caution on the part of the security men in the affected areas, we are interested to know how
the perpetrators gained access to the cordoned areas with such explosives and guns. “Who were they? Why they were not prevented or arrested? What were the motives behind such repeated orchestrated heinous acts? Indeed, there is much more than meets the eyes.”
CAN condemns killing of Muslims Also
CONTINUED ON PAGE 5>>
L-R: Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Senàtor Anyim Pius Anyim; Vice-President Namadi Sambo and President Goodluck Jonathan at the Federal Executive Council meeting in Abuja, yesterday. PHOTO: NAN
Nigeria plans £5000 visa bond for UK citizens CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1
This is in retaliation to the new but controversial immigration policy of the UK scheduled to commence in November 2013. The Home Office of the United Kingdom, recently classified Nigeria, India, as “high risk” and placed a £3,000 bond on every Nigerian visiting Britain. The bond will be forfeited to the British government if an immigrant overstays his permit. More than two million Nigerians are residing in the UK. Uproar had greeted the immigration policy described as “discriminatory” since its announcement in June. Nigeria is one of the countries put on the British “high-risk-list”. Others are India, Ghana, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. The countries are slated for the pilot scheme of the new immigration policy to check immigration abuses.
A reliable source at the Nigerian High Commission in London told National Mirror that the refusal of the British Government to backpedal on the visa bond compelled Nigeria to fight back. The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Olugbenga Ashiru, had earlier assured that Nigeria would react appropriately if the policy was eventually implemented. The source, who is a senior officer of the High Commission but did not want his name mentioned, told our correspondent in London that Nigeria had officially protested to the British government over the policy. He, however, said that there was no sign that the British would rescind the decision. “As a responsible country, we have protested officially against the discriminatory policy to the British government. But from all indications there is no going back on the
policy. We have tried to make them see reasons on the need to review the new immigration policy, but it is like a done deal. “Don’t forget that Nigeria has threatened to retaliate if the policy is implemented. So, we are only waiting for the implementation and the modalities of the new British immigration policy. But I can assure you that the Nigerian government won’t fold its hands. We would even raise the stake beyond the £3,000 they are asking Nigerians to pay as bond. We are looking at £5,000 as visa bond for UK citizens visiting Nigeria. This is our plan, which is subject to the approval of the Federal Government,” the source told National Mirror yesterday. This stand is bound to strain the diplomatic relations between Britain and its former colony, Nigeria. Early this year, British Prime Minister David Cameron chided Nigeria for passing anti-gay bill
and threatened to cut aid to the country. Also, Cameron recently berated Nigerian leaders for the mismanagement of the country’s huge natural resources. But the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ spokesman, Ogbole Amedu Odeh, denied knowledge of the £5,000 visa bond. “I’m just hearing that from you. I’m not aware of any £5,000 visa bond for British citizens,” Odeh told National Mirror on phone yesterday. “Nigeria has not got official correspondence from the British government. Anytime Nigeria gets official communication on the policy, we will react appropriately.” Meanwhile, Nigerians in the UK under the umbrella of the Central Association of Nigerians in the United Kingdom, CANUK, have said that if this bond is implemented, wrong people will be targeted. In an interview with CONTINUED ON PAGE 5>>
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Thursday, August 15, 2013
Discovered! Blood test that predicts how long you’ll live SAM EFERARO
cientists in Britain have developed a novel blood test that could provide clues to the ageing process and determine how long an individual may live. In a recent publication in the International Journal of Epidemiology, the scientists say they have discovered key metabolites in the blood – described as chemical ‘fingerprints’ left behind as a result of early molecular changes before birth or in infancy – which not only could provide clues to health later in life but also pave the way for the development of therapies to treat age-related conditions. Funded by the European Commission, Researchers from the Department of Twin Research at King’s College London, the research involves “metabolomic profiling” -- the study of metabolites that specific cellular processes or changes leave behind in the blood. Analysing blood samples donated by over 6,000 twins, they identified 22 metabolites directly linked to chronological age -- the concentrations of the metabolites were higher in older people than in younger people. Their finding suggests that levels of this novel metabolite, which may be determined in the womb and affected by nutrition during development, could reflect accelerated aging in later adult life. The scientists say the findings show it is possible that these markers of aging can be identified with simple blood tests in the future, which may provide further clues to the aging process and could pave the way for development of therapies to treat agerelated conditions. Study leader Professor Tim Spector and, Head of the Department of Twin Research at King’s College London, said: ‘Scientists have known for a long time that a person’s weight at the time of birth is an important determinant of
Simple bood test may provide clue on aging in future
health in middle and old age, and that people with low birth weight are more susceptible to age related diseases. So far the molecular mechanisms that link low birthweight to health or disease in old age had remained elusive, but this discovery has revealed one of the molecular pathways involved.’ One particular metabolite -- C-glyTrp -- is associated with a range of age-related traits such as lung function, bone mineral density, cholesterol and blood pressure. Its role in aging is completely novel. Crucially, researchers found it was also associated with lower weight at birth when they compared the birth weights of identical twins. To explore the link between birth weight and the metabolite, the researchers showed via genetic tests that the gene influencing the levels could be modified “epigenetically” (whereby genes are
switched on or off by chemical switches triggered by the person’s environment or lifestyle). These epigenetic changes may then influence metabolism during a person’s lifetime, which in turn influences their risk of age-related diseases. Ana Valdes, lead researcher from King’s, said that “human aging is a process influenced by genetic, lifestyle and environmental factors, but genes only explain a part of the story. “Molecular changes that influence how we age over time are triggered by epigenetic changes. This study has for the first time used analysis of blood and epigenetic changes to identify a novel metabolite that has a link to birth weight and rate of aging,” she said. “This unique metabolite, which is related to age and age-related diseases, was
YOUR RIGHT TO KNOW
Lightning linked to onset of headache, migraines
niversity of Cincinnati (UC) researchers have found that lightning may affect the onset of headache and migraines. These results, published recently in the online edition of The Journal Cephalalgia, are the first tying lightning to headache and could help chronic sufferers more efficiently anticipate headache and migraine arrival and begin preventive treatment immediately. Geoffrey Martin, fourthyear medical student at UC, and his father Vincent Martin,
MD, professor in the division of general internal medicine, UC Health physician and headache expert, led the study which showed that there was a 31 percent increased risk of
headache and 28 percent increased risk of migraine for chronic headache sufferers on days lighting struck within 25 miles of study participant’s homes. In addition, new-onset headache and migraine increased by 24 percent and 23 percent in participants. “Many studies show conflicting findings on how weather, including elements like barometric pressure and humidity, affect the onset of headaches,” Geoffrey Martin says.
different in genetically identical twins that had very different weight at birth,” she said. “This shows us that birth weight affects a molecular mechanism that alters this metabolite. This may help us understand how lower nutrition in the womb alters molecular pathways that result in faster aging and a higher risk of age-related diseases fifty years later. “Understanding the molecular pathways involved in the aging process could ultimately pave the way for future therapies to treat age-related conditions. As these 22 metabolites linked to aging are detectable in the blood, we can now predict actual age from a blood sample pretty accurately and in the future this can be refined to potentially identify future rapid biological aging in individuals,” she further said.
Obese dads pass metabolic disorders to kids –study
f you are obese and hope to be a father, here’s another reason to lose weight: your children and grandchildren may inherit your waistline or metabolic disorders. That’s because scientists have discovered in mice that obese fathers, even those who did not show any signs of diabetes, passed this negative trait on most frequently to their daughters. Sons don’t entirely
dodge this genetic bullet either -- both sons and daughters of obese fathers have increased risks of developing metabolic diseases, such as diabetes. “If these findings hold true in humans, then a father’s diet and body composition at the time of conception is likely to affect his future child’s health and risk of lifelong disease,” said Tod Fullston, Ph.D., a
researcher involved in the work from the Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology at the Robinson Institute, Research Centre for Reproductive Health at the University of Adelaide in South Australia. “Fathers should aim to be as healthy as possible at the time of conception to give future generations the best possible chance of good health.” -Science Daily
Thursday, August 15, 2013
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
L-R: Chief Medical Director, St. Nicholas Hospital, Dr. Moses Majekodunmi; Very Rev. Yinka Omololu and Lagos State Commissioner For Health, Dr. Jide Idris, at a health and education for all programme in Lagos, yesterday. PHOTO: NAN
L-R: President, Nigerian Institute of Management, Dr. Michael Olawale-Cole; Vice Chairman,Rotary International Nigeria National Polio-Plus Committee, Mr. Femi Lawani; Ikeja District Governor, Rotary International, Mr. Olugbemiga Olowu and Chairman, Rotary International Nigeria National Polio-Plus Committee, Dr. Abdulrahman Funsho, at a news conference in Lagos, yesterday. PHOTO: NAN
L-R: Company Secretary, MRS Oil Nigeria Plc, Mrs. Oluwakemi Jafojo; Chairman, Alhaji Sayyu Idris Dantata; Acting Managing Director, Mr. Paul Bissohong and Director, Mr. Patrice Albert, during the 44th Annual General Meeting of the company in Lagos, yesterday.
Wife of the Ogun State Governor, Mrs. Olufunso Amosun (in black jacket) addressing participants at the flag-off of the Green Empowerment for the Youth-Waste to Wealth scheme in Abeokuta, yesterday.
Al-Mustapha: Appeal Court decision perverse –Lagos State AUGUSTINE MADU-WEST AND WALE IGBINTADE
he Lagos State government has described the decision of the Court of Appeal that discharged and acquitted Major Hamza al-Mustapha, former Chief Security Officer, CSO, to the late Head of State, Gen. Sani Abacha and Lateef Sofolahan of any involvement in the murder of Alhaja Kudirat Abiola as perverse and a miscarriage of justice. The State in two separate appeals signed by the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Ade Ipaye before the Supreme Court, alleged that the appellate court misapplied principle of law and thereby regarded the entire evidence presented by the prosecution as mere suspicion. Consequently, the State urged the Supreme Court to allow the appeal and set aside the judgement of the Court of Appeal delivered on July 13, 2013. The State in its proposed
Notice of Appeal, raised questions regarding the Court of Appeal’s evaluation of the evidence relied upon by the trial judge in its judgement. The state also queried the correctness of the Court of Appeal’s decision on the materiality or otherwise of the alleged contradictions in the testimony of Banabas Jabila (a.k.a Sgt Rogers) and Mohammed Abdul (a.k.a Katako), (PW1 and PW2 respectively). Specifically, the State urged the Apex Court to set aside the whole decision of the Court of Appeal, saying it was a miscarriage of justice. The State also added that the lower court erred in law, when it substituted its own assessment and evaluation of the evidence with that of the trial court in its judgement when it held that there was no credible and reliable evidence in the entire record to justify conviction. Part of the ground states: “In the circumstances of this case where
the Court below could not assess the witnesses, consider their demeanour, the nuances of the process before the court, including specific conducts, or attitudes of witnesses in relation to specific, critical, vital and material evidence, oral or otherwise; the Court did not disclose sufficient reasons for substituting its own view for those of the trial court.” Besides, the State stated that the lower court erred in law by misconstruing the “witness protection” programme as inducement in its evaluation and used that as the basis for disbelieving the testimonies of PW2 and Pw3. The appellant stated that “The court below erred in law when it held that there were material contradiction that rendered the testimony of Mohammed Abdu unreliable.” The six grounds of appeal are; that the court below erred when it determined that there were material constrictions that rendered the testimony of Banabas Jabila unreliable;
that the court below erred in law when it held that there was nothing to show that the Major Hamza alMustapha and Lateef Sofolahan conspired with any other person to kill the late Kudirat Abiola; that the court below erred in law in holding that there was no basis for conviction and that the charges have not been proved against the accused persons beyond reasonable doubt and that there was nothing connecting them with the commission of the offence Others are; that the court bellow erred in law by substituting its own assessment and evaluation of the evidence with that of the trial judge in its judgment, when it held that there was no credible and reliable evidence in the entire record to justify the conviction of the respondents; that the court below erred in law when it held that ‘’there is no credible, cogent and reliable evidence linking the appellant with the murder of the deceased; that the court bellow erred in law
when it held that there was no evidence whether direct or circumstantial which points to the commission of the crime of the murder of the deceased to the accused persons. The appellate court had in a unanimous decision held that the prosecution failed to prove its case beyond reasonable doubt and consequently quashed the death sentence passed on them by Justice Mojisola Dada of a Lagos High Court. The appellate court in its lead judgement, delivered by Justice Rita Pemu supported by Justice Amina Augie (presiding) and Justice F O Akinbami respectively held that there was no nexus between the appellants and the murder of Alhaja Kudirat Abiola on June 4, 1993. Resolving all the three issues raised against the prosecution, Justice Pemu held that the testimonies of all the prosecution witnesses were worthless and could not sustain the offence of conspiracy or murder.
The appellate court further held that the 326-page judgement delivered by the trial judge was needless and an indication that the trial judge was finding a way round the doubts created by the prosecution. The court stated that the prosecution did not solicit the assistance of the trial judge to convict the appellants as none of the prosecution witnesses added any value to the case adding that “the 326-page judgement could not provide evidence where none existed.” In Kano State, elder statesman, Alhaji Ibrahim Babankowa warned that the Lagos State government action to drag al-Mustapha before the Supreme Court could affect the fortune of the All Nigerian Peoples Congress, APC. Briefing newsmen in Kano, Babankowa noted that the steps taken by Lagos state also have the capacity to rekindle distrust between the Hausa/ Fulani extraction on one side and the Yoruba on the other.
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Thursday, August 15, 2013
Nigeria plans £5000 visa bond for UK citizens CONTINUED FROM PAGE 2
National Mirror in London, CANUK Chairman, Bimbo Folayan, said: “On the visa bond, we’ve expressed our feelings that this is not a right policy. We feel that the wrong people are being targeted. We believe that this will be counter-productive and we think this is more political, more economical than immigration related.
“We have protested to the Commonwealth Office, they have listened to us and they promised to get back to us. “Because of the present situation of British economy, it is probably another way for the Home Office to make money. But that will be to the detriment of genuine travellers. The £3,000 bond will only swell the purse of
the British government.” They, however, opposed the planned retaliation of the British immigration policy by the Federal Government of Nigeria. Folayan added: “Our position is that two wrongs cannot make a right. I believe that Nigerian government should not retaliate wrongly. Three times this year, I have gone to Nigeria with
British investors. So, it means if I’m going to Nigeria, I will have to look for £5,000 visa bond for each of the visitors. “So, this can only hurt Nigeria. This can hurt investment inflow in Nigeria. We do not support the £5,000 proposed visa bond. Either way, from the British government or Nigerian government, we do not support the
R-L: Member, Peoples Democratic Party Reconciliation Committee, Senator Ibrahim Mantu; Secretary, Ambassador Umar Damagun and Bayelsa State Governor and Chairman, Hon. Seriake Dickson, during the meeting with chairmen, secretaries and other executives of non-PDP states in Abuja, yesterday.
policy. “Policies are made and can be changed. If this is injurious to the economy of the UK, they have to change the policy. I don’t see anything cast in stone on the matter.” The group, however, said that there was no basis for Nigerians to come to UK illegally. “The region of the world that is enjoying growth is Africa and that is where the focus is. In UK, we are not recording so much growth and the economic forecast is not too promising. “So, everybody is feeling the pain. There are not many jobs in the UK any more. There is actually no basis for any youth to leave Nigeria and live in UK illegally because, one, there are no jobs. Two, if you come illegally, that is even worse because you cannot get a job without relevant papers like work permit whereas there are opportunities in Nigeria,” Folayan said. Nigerians also decried their being labelled as “high risks”. “Nigeria is
not high risk. The vast majority of Nigerians living in UK are students, workers and those born in the country. That is not to say that there are no illegal immigrants. “We strongly feel that Nigeria is not a high risk country regardless of the statistics they might have gathered. We object to targeting a few countries, calling them ‘high risk’. “We do not support illegal immigrants. We actually encourage Nigerians in the UK to regularise their papers. We’re also in the forefront of encouraging Nigerians living in UK illegally to embrace the opportunity that have been provided by the International Organisation of Migration, IOM, for them to go back home and live more meaningfully than staying in UK without getting a job because of lack of regular papers.” The group noted that the £3,000 bond would only embolden desperate people rather than serve as deterrent.
Boko Haram: DHQ confirms Why Jang can’t lead NGF –Nyako killing Shekau’s deputy A ISEOLUWA IGE AND MARCUS FATUNMOLE
CONTINUED FROM PAGE 2
President of the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor, expressed dismay over the killing of Muslim worshippers in Konduga, describing the act as callous. In a statement signed by the CAN spokesman, Mr. Kenny Ashaka, in Abuja yesterday, Oritsejafor said the latest massacre was condemnable, bestial and a cowardly act perpetrated against the people fulfilling their spiritual obligation towards their Maker. While calling for the respect of human sanctity across religious divide, the CAN president expressed sympathy to the families of those who lost their lives in the unfortunate incident and prayed that God grant them the fortitude to bear the lost. Meanwhile, the Federal Government yesterday said that the plans by the
Boko Haram, to disunite and disintegrate the country were stopped by the timely declaration of a state of emergency in Adamawa, Borno and Yobe in May this year. The Minister of State for Defence, Olusola Obada, who spoke with newsmen at the end of the Federal Executive Council, FEC, meeting also disclosed that many insurgents with dangerous weapons had been arrested by security men and that they would soon be charged to court for prosecution. Obada said that before the declaration of the state of emergency in the three states, the nation’s territorial integrity was already under threat, as the insurgents were almost succeeding in usurping powers of the lawful authorities of the states. She, however, added that the military in the Joint
Task Force, JTF, had demonstrated high level of professionalism in tackling the insurgency. The minsiter said many of the insurgents had been arrested and handed over to the necessary authorities for prosecution. She added that a large amount of arms and ammunition, which should not be in the hands of the insurgents, were recovered from them. Obada however expressed hopes that the Federal Government would end the insurgency in the country with the involvement of civilian populace in intelligence gathering. She said: “Today (yesterday) marks three months when Mr. President declared the state of emergency in the state of Adamawa, Yobe and Borno. A lot has been achieved in these three months.
damawa State Governor, Murtala Nyako yesterday gave the reason why his group believes the Governor of Plateau State, Jonah Jang should not lead the Nigeria Governors Forum, NGF. Governor Nyako said Jang was President Goodluck Jonathan’s yes man and would not represent the interest of the governors and the nation, if allowed to head the Forum. Nyako told State House Correspondent in Abuja after a closed door meeting with the President. The Governor however refused to give the details of the meeting. According to him, there are laid down procedures for whoever would lead the Forum. The criteria, he said include “someone who can be trusted by all, one who will not aggravate issues in the eyes of the President, someone who has some degree of
chemistry with the President that the President will be comfortable with and one who is not a yes man to the President.” He also spoke on the meeting which began on Monday to resolve the crisis in the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP He said: “In a democracy, when you have an issue you discuss. The election in the Governors Forum has become an issue. It shouldn’t be an issue. When you say 16, 17, 18, 19, 20 even someone who is in elementary school knows which is higher. “If one group got 19 votes the one got 16, in democracy even in the eyes of the people in elementary school they know that 19 is higher than 16. It should not be turn into controversy. What could be related to that is that it could not be the figure. We could all agree that whoever got the highest figure won the election. “We have already in the governors forum, established certain criteria for leadership within us. He
must be somebody we trust. I would like to have a leader of the forum who when he is with the president in the small room talking about Adamawa State can put in a word for Adamawa State. It should not be someone who will aggravate issues in the eyes of Mr President. That element of trust must be there. If I vote for somebody it must be somebody I could trust. “We also said it should be somebody who has some degree of chemistry with the president that the president will be comfortable with. Now if we find that the president is not comfortable with him, can we do a little bit of psychological work to get the two of them to have the same chemistry?” "The other one we feel is that he should add some value to Mr. President. If you have a forum leader who is seen to be part of the president that has become a yes man of Mr. President then the governors will say he is not representing our interests.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
FEC approves N8.7bn for printing textbooks ISE-OLUWA IGE ABUJA
he Federal Executive Council, FEC, yesterday approved N8.7 billion for the printing and distribution of textbooks and library resource materials for primary and junior secondary schools across the country. The Minister of Education, Prof. Ruqayyatu Rufa’i and the Minister of State for Education, Nyesom Wike, made the disclosure yesterday in Abuja after the FEC meeting. The ministers said the textbooks would be avail-
able in the next six weeks to the pupils in primaries one to six and those of junior secondary schools. They said the project covered the printing of over four million books in English Language, Maths, Basic Science and Technology, Social Studies and Library Resource Materials, and would be provided free of charge. The project is to be funded through 15 per cent of the consolidated revenue of Universal Basic Education Commission, UBEC. The council also approved N2.138 million for a contract for the sup-
ply of water to the Abuja Technology Village and its environs, N427 million for tender and design of engineering infrastructure contract in Kyami district along Airport Road and purchase of 40 vehicles as part of the preparation of
the National Population Commission, NPC, for the 2016 Census. The Minister of Information, Mr. Labaran Maku, told journalists that the NPC brought memo for the purchase of utility vehicles. This was approved and President Goodluck Jonathan directed that all the vehicles should be purchased locally from indigenous manufacturers, a development which fetched the Nnewi-based Innoson Motors Vehicle Manufacturing Company, IVM, supported by the Bank of Industry, the contract.
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
New naira notes’ll be circulation next month –CBN
he Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, said it would take delivery of new naira notes before the end of September for circulation. The CBN Deputy Director, Operations, Dr. Tunde Lemo, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, in Abuja yesterday. The apex bank had earlier said that new naira notes would be in circulation by June and that the smaller denomination notes (N5, N10, N20, and N50) would be reprinted on paper. “We are going to take delivery of the new notes from this month of August. We are taking delivery of the new notes before the end of September,” Lemo said. He added: “The public would get a large quan-
tity of the new notes to replace the old and mutilated notes, particularly the higher denomination notes in the first instance, then later the lower denominations.’’ On the scarcity of the lower denomination notes, the deputy director blamed commercial banks for what he called “poor circulation”. He said: “For the lower denomination; well, I think the banks are really the ones that are really not allowing the lower denomination in circulation, largely, because of the carrying value. “Most people don’t require small denomination. But for buying things in the market, if you look at the veracity, you find out that the N50 circulate more than the smaller ones.’’
Osoba, Aig-Imoukhuede, others to speak at NGE conference
L-R: Imo State Deputy Governor, Prince Eze Madumere; Governors Kayode Fayemi (Ekiti State), Ibikunle Amosu (Ogun), Tanko Al-Makura (Nasarawa), Abiola Ajimobi (Oyo) and Rauf Aregbesola (Osun), at the meeting of All Progressives Congress (APC) governors, in Lafia, Nasarawa State, yesterday.
Don’t legislate on LG administration, APC govs warn NASS
he Progressives Governors’ Forum, PGF, yesterday held its maiden meeting in Lafia, Nasarawa State. The governors discussed a number of issues on how to moving the country forward as well as strategies to complement efforts of the interim national executive of their party, the All Progressives Congress, APC. The meeting was attended by Governors Kashim Shettima (Borno State), Kayode Fayemi (Ekiti), Rauf Aregbesola (Osun), Babatunde Fashola (Lagos), Abiola Ajimobi (Oyo), Abdulazeez Yari (Zamfara), Ibikunle Amosun (Ogun), Adams Oshiomhole (Edo) and the host Umaru Tanko AlMakura (Nasarawa).
Governor Owelle Rochas Okorocha of Imo State was represented by his deputy while Governor Ibrahim Geidam of Yobe State sent an apology for his absence. In a communiqué read by Fayemi at the end of the meeting, PGF resolved that the issue of local government administration, recognising the fact that federalism was the basis for Nigeria’s sovereignty, was a matter within the purview of the federating units. It added that any attempt to legislate on any aspect of local government administration by the National Assembly would tilt the country towards a unitary state, arguing that this would un-
dermine and weaken the fundamental principles of the federalism. On revenue allocation, the meeting noted that despite recommendations made to the Presidency, no action had been taken on the extant proposals on the need to give more funds to the states and local governments. The PGF recommended that the powers to alter the revenue allocation formula currently with the Presidency should be vested in the National Assembly henceforth. The APC governors also condemned the repression in Egypt following the unconstitutional ouster of a democratically elected government and called on the international community to ensure
speedy resolution of the crisis. They also condemned the killing of security operatives at Alakio village by the outlawed Ombatse militia and commended the Nasarawa State government for instituting a Judicial Commission of Enquiry with a view to bringing to book the perpetrators of the dastardly act. According to the communiqué, the PGF resolved to complement the efforts of the Interim National Executive of the APC and to drive the process of consolidation through accommodation and tolerance in order to carry everybody along, “since democracy is a game of numbers and compromise”.
ditors will from August 21 to 24 converge on Asaba, the Delta State capital, for the ninth All Nigerian Editors Conference. At the conference, economists, ministers, governors and top businessmen are billed to come up with viable suggestions on how the country can be weaned from its age-long dependence on crude oil as its major revenue earner. The theme of the fourday conference, which will be chaired by renowned veteran journalist and former governor of Ogun State, Aremo Segun Osoba, is; “Nigeria Beyond Oil: Role of the Editor.” Businessman, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, is expected to set the tone of the conference in a keynote address. Ministers listed to speak on key issues that are germane to the diversification of the economy are those of Agriculture, Akinwumi Adesina, who will speak on “The Value Chain Roadmap,’’ and Edem Duke (Tourism) who will speak on “Oil Exhaustible, Tourism Inexhaustible.” Managing Director/ Chief Executive Officer, Access Bank Mr. Aigboje AigImoukhuede, and the Special Adviser to the President on Performance Monitoring and Evaluation, Prof. Sylvester Monye, will deliver papers on “Financial Institutions in a Non-Oil Economy’’, and
“Opportunities in Non-Oil Nigeria,’’ respectively. Moderators at the event include the Executive ViceChairman, Nigerian Communications Commission, Eugene Juwah; and Mr. Onyema Ugochukwu, a former Editor of the Daily Times and former governorship candidate on the ticket of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in Abia State. Minister of Information, Mr. Labaran Maku, will speak as the Special Guest while Senator Anyim Pius Anyim, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation and Special Guest of Honour, is expected to provide some food for thought in his remarks. Apart from the host governor, Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan, who will deliver the welcome address, other governors from the northern and southern parts of the country will be on hand to offer their views on the path the country should tread to stop its dependence on oil. Aware of the fact that retirement is inevitable after a successful career as a journalist/editor, the Guild set aside the last day of the conference for the expected 300 editors to brainstorm on “Life After The Chair: The Editors’ Colloquium,” a session to be facilitated by the Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of Daily Trust, Kabiru Yusuf, and chaired by another notable journalist, Mr. Ted Iwere.
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Thursday, August 15, 2013
ASUU denies asking for N92bn earned allowance from FG KEMI OLAITAN IBADAN
he Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) yesterday denied ever demanding N92 billion as earned allowances in the 2009 agreement it signed with the Federal Government as alleged by the Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister for the Economy, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala. The union, in a statement by the Chairman, University of Ibadan chapter, Dr. Olusegun Ajiboye, said the minister was being economical with the
truth. It challenged the executive arm of government to publish how much it received yearly as allowances for Nigerians to see those draining the resources of the country. The minister was reported to have said on Tuesday that the Federal Government did not have the resources to pay the N92bn allowances being demanded by ASUU. Ajiboye described the amount mentioned by Okonjo-Iweala as “concocted falsehood and a figment of imagination of the minister.”
The ASUU boss disclosed that the earned allowances jointly calculated with the Federal Government in the 2009 agreement amounted to N87 billion and covers allowances for three and half years for thousands of lecturers in Nigerian’s universities. He said the N87 billion was a compromise made by ASUU by scaling down from N127 billion to N87 billion. Ajiboye, who asked Nigerians to “rise against people who are bent on destroying public institutions such as the minister”, alleged that she “is an
IG reports soldiers’ assault on policemen to Ihejirika SOLA ADEBAYO WARRI
he Delta State Police Command and the 19 Battalion of the Nigerian Army, Koko, the headquarters of Warri North Local Government Area, are on war path over assault on a police team. Already, the Inspector General of Police, Mr. Mohammed Abuabakar, has reported the Commanding Officer of the Army formation, Lt. Col. Frank Etim, to the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt. Gen. Azubuike Ihejirika, over the conduct of his troops. It was learnt that the IG acted on the strength of the petition by the state Commissioner of Police, Mr. Ikechukwu Aduba. It will be recalled that a police escort team attached to the convoy of the state
Commissioner for Poverty Alleviation, Dr. Anthonia Ashiedu, was on Tuesday attacked by soldiers in Koko. One of the policemen, simply identified as Constable Ekome, was beaten up for allegedly blaring siren within the premises of the council secretariat, which is close to the temporary headquarters of the Army formation. Ekome, who was the driver of the police van, fainted following the attack. The soldiers ignored the commissioner’s pleas to stop the attack. The commissioner, who was helpless, conveyed the badly battered policeman to the hospital after the soldiers were convinced that he had been sufficiently punished for his action. Aduba told National Mirror yesterday that the action of the soldiers was
“irresponsible and unwarranted,” adding that the police team did not violate any law by blaring siren within the premises of the council. Aduba said: “This sheer brutality is uncalled for in a democracy and it is irresponsible of a sister security organisation. The military is expected to complement the efforts by other security agencies, especially the police in crime control and prevention and we wonder when it has become a crime for the police to use siren. “The police are allowed by law to use siren and by the way when has it been the duty of the military to enforce traffic laws? Are they road marshals or members of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC)? I have reported the incident to the IG.”
We need more personnel to enforce traffic law –Lagos MURITALA AYINLA
agos State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Ade Ipaye, yesterday said the number of police officers in the state is inadequate to fully enforce the state Traffic law. Ipaye said the state lacks the power to coerce the police to enforce the law in order to effectively achieve set objectives. The commissioner’s remarks followed accusations that the Traffic Law was only centred on the restriction of commercial motorcyclists popularly known as
Okada, while other aspects of the law were not enforced since last year. Some sections of the law restricted the movement of heavy duty trucks from 9:0pm till 6:0am, while selling of alcohol and other narcotics were equally banned from motor parks. Touting by National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) was equally restricted to motor parks, but all these still remain unchecked, one year after the law was enacted. But reacting to the allegations, Ipaye said: “I wish Lagos State Government has its own police force, then, we can say that we
are being selective in the enforcement of the Traffic Law. “In Nigeria, the law making is not conterminous with law enforcement. Lagos State Government through its House Assembly makes law; the enforcement is by the police force. They are the enforcement agency created for the enforcement of entire laws made in the country. “I can’t tell the state police commissioner to enforce a particular section of the law today and the other tomorrow. It doesn’t happen that way. The police are an autonomous agency.”
agent of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund, IMF, planted in government to destroy public institutions”. The ASUU boss maintained that the N87 billion was computed based on 15 per cent of the annual recurrent expenditures of some Nigerian universities. He said: “I want Nigerians to ask the minister where she got her figure of N92 billion from. There was never a time that ASUU made a demand that is up to N92 billion. I think the N 92 billion is just the imagination of the minister of finance and coordinating minister for the economy. “ But that is not to say that this government did not enter into an agreement with us. This is a government that signed an agreement with us on January 24, 2012 to the effect that they will inject N100bn as funding into the universities in the first one month and that before the end of 2012, they will inject another N300 billion
“The same government did not put down a kobo to any of these universities. So it is a sad story that we are hearing now that the government cannot meet a demand of N87 billion whereas the government said that they would keep on putting N400 billion annually for three years consecutively to the tune of about N1.2 trillion and if the government is now saying they cannot meet N87bn, Nigerians should know that this is not a government that can be trusted for anything. “ We see the minister herself as a mole in this government. She is planted by the IMF and World Bank to come and destroy public institutions in Nigeria. And so, we call on Nigerians to stand up against this kind of individuals. These characters are just there to destroy public heritage of this country. They do not care whatever happens to the generality of Nigerians. “The total amount of earned allowances for academic staff in Nigerian
universities for the three and a half years computed together with the government was N87 billion. And that was agreed at based on negotiations because we started from N127 billion and it was reduced to N107 billion before we now got to 15 per cent of salary payment of each. It is called earned allowances and it is sum total of the excess work, which academic staff had done for the past three and a half years. “You are now telling Nigerians that this is what these people are asking for as if it’s a new thing. Nigerians should know that it is what the people have worked for and not N92 billion. It is fallacy and what these people (Federal Government) are just pushing is propaganda. And Nigerians should not take to this propaganda. “If you have worked for three years and half years and you have not been paid and somebody now wants to negotiate the payment of the job that you have done. I think this is unrealistic and it’s not acceptable.”
Thursday, August 15, 2012
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Obadare: Osun raises 14-man burial committee Family of five dies in fire •Evangelist begins final journey today outbreak ADEOLU ADEYEMO OSOGBO
sun State government has set up a 14-man committee to oversee activities relating to the burial of the General Overseer of the World Soul Winning Evangelistic Ministry, WOSEM, Apostle Timothy Oluwole Obadare, which begin today. The Commissioner for Home Affairs, Culture and Tourism, who is also the
Chairman of the committee, Alhaji Sikiru Ayedun, disclosed this in Osogbo yesterday at a press conference to herald the burial activities. Ayedun said the committee had already commenced its work to ensure a hitchfree burial ceremony. While giving the breakdown of how the N35 million approved by the state government for the burial would be spent, the commissioner said that “N15
million was set aside for construction of mausoleum, N10 million for logistics for the burial ceremony and N10 million for intervention work on the premises to accommodate the multitude and the adherents coming for the burial from far and near”. He, however, disclosed that the remains of the evangelist would arrive the state today and “will be received by officials of the state government
at Asejire by noon while the corpse would be led in transit to Owena for onward movement to Akure, Ondo State. “The corpse would arrive Osogbo again on Friday and a brief service would be held in honour of the prophet at the Osogbo City Stadium before moving to Ilesa for the lying-in-state. The final burial ceremony would be held at Ileki in Ilesa,Osun State on Saturday”.
L-R: The Ahaba of Ajagba, Oba Olu Adesayo; Ajero of Ijero, Oba Adebayo Adewole; Ewi of Ado-Ekiti, Oba Rufus Adejuyigbe; Leader, Yoruba Obas Conflicts Resolution, Olugbo of Ugboland, Oba Obateru Akinruntan; Akran of Badgry, De Wheno Aholu-Menu; Olokuku of Okuku, Oba Abioye Oyebode; Akirun of Akinrun, Oba Abdul Rauf Adedeji and others at the meeting of traditional rulers on unity among obas in Yorubaland in Ibadan, yesterday.
Dana crash victim sues Lagos for N65m K AYODE KETEFE
astor Daniel Oluranti Omowunmi, who allegedly lost multimillion naira properties in the Dana plane crash, has filed a suit against the Lagos State government. Omowunmi is asking for N65 million damages for alleged illegal taking over of his land by the state government. The cleric, in a suit brought by his lawyer, Mr. Oumide Olaiya of Dele Adesina Chambers, is contending that the state government has illegally revoked his right of occupancy to a land which belonged to him. The state governor, the Commissioner for Lands, Housing and Urban Development and the AttorneyGeneral and Commissioner for Justice were joined in the suit as co-defendants. Omowunmi is asking for a number of declarations, such as a declaration that he is still the lawful owner of all the four plots of land situated along No 8/10 Popoola Olaniyi Street,
Iju-Ishaga and covered by a certificate of occupancy dated 28th September, 2011 and registered as Number 40 at page 40 in Volume 2011T of the Land Registry Office, Ikeja. The claimant is also seeking a declaration that the defendants’ revocation of the his right of occupancy and taking over of possession of the said four plots of land without payment of appropriate compensation to him are wrongful, arbitrary, unjustifiable, illegal and unconstitutional. He is therefore asking for an order directing the defendants to pay him N45 million as the value of his land before any valid or legal revocation and acquisition of his land. Omowunmi seeks for general damages of N20 million as well as the cost of the suit. He is also seeking two orders in the alternative to the order above. These are: “An order of this honourable court directing the defendants to immediately allocate to the claimant another land commen-
surate in size and location to the claimant’s land before any valid or legal revocation and acquisition of the claimant’s land. “An order of injunction restraining the defendants, agents, privies and or anybody claiming through them or acting on their behalf from further
trespass on the land until the order of this honourable court (for payment of compensation) is fully complied with.” Dana flight 992 crashed on June 3, 2012 into residential area of Iju-Ishaga in Lagos after being air borne for about 45 minutes en route Abuja to Lagos.
ire yesterday razed a three-bedroom flat at Shagari Estate in Mosan Okunola Local Council Development Area in Ipaja area of Lagos, killing five members of a family, while properties worth millions of naira were destroyed. It was gathered that the victims were asleep when the fire started around 1 am. The fire was said to have been caused by a burning candle stick. A resident, who did not want his name mentioned, told our correspondent that the victims were family members, but said he was unsure whether the head of the family was among the dead. He said: “I don’t think their father was among the victims because I know their father was outside the country but the bodies of two elderly women, one
Ogun women protest early marriage bill FEMI OYEWESO ABEOKUTA
undreds of women yesterday in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital, staged a peaceful rally to protest the National Assembly’s resolution to pass into law, the bill supporting early child marriage. The protesters, which included market men and
N2,000 luggage charge, for commercial products –FAAN OLUSEGUN KOIKI
he Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, FAAN, has once again denied that it was forcing air passengers to pay N2,000 luggage charge. FAAN, however, disclosed that it only charged excessive baggage containing commercial commodities, camouflaged to pass through carousels without the payment of the mandatory tariff by some passengers. Its General Manager, Corporate Communications, Mr. Yakubu Dati, said in a statement yesterday that the move by the authority was aimed at blocking all areas of revenue
leakage. Dati was reacting to a statement credited to the Consumer Protection Council, CPC, which threatened to sue FAAN for infringement on the rights of air passengers in the country. The GM said the authority, in its continuous bid to ensure efficiency, transparency and fair play, only ensured that excessive baggage, not containing personal effects, were not camouflaged to pass through carousels without the payment of the appropriate tariff. He said: “The general public will note that traders and importers rather than send cargo through the appropriate terminals prefer
male adult, and two male teenagers were taken to the mortuary.” Some of the residents of the area, who spoke on the incident, said they could not ascertain the state of origin of the victims, but said they were from the eastern part of the country. Confirming the incident, the Director of Lagos State Fire Service, Mr. Rasak Fadipe, said his men discovered the trapped bodies of the victims during the course of fighting the fire, adding that the bodies had been handed over to the police at Ipaja. He said: “We suspect the cause of the fire is candle stick. They might have lit candle before falling asleep because there was no light at the time the incident happened. Perhaps, the victims were killed by the smoke of the fire. “We had to call for two trucks of 10,000 litres of water from Ikotun and Agege before we put out the fire. We were able to save other buildings around.”
to travel with their goods under the cover of personal effects thereby subjecting our facilities and passengers to untold hardship and delays. The authority is determined to ensure a fast processing of passengers and goods. “The authority also in order to ensure that the recently installed carousels are not subjected to misuse by the excess baggage syndrome had to discourage passengers from cutting corners through this practice.” Dati reiterated that the authority was committed to operating under global best practices, but said a patriotic effort to put a stop to the malpractice was being portrayed negatively by the CPC.
women, religious groups and civil society groups, organised themselves under the aegis of the Concerned Women Forum, CWF. They stormed the state Secretariat of the Nigeria Union of Journalists, NUJ, at Iwe Irohin House in Oke-Ilewo, Abeokuta to register their displeasure over the matter. The women, who were led by the Iyalode of Egbaland, Mrs. Alaba Lawson, carried placards bearing different inscriptions such as: “Give us education, not marriage,” “Child marriage is barbaric, no to it,” “Woe to husbands of underage, they are evils,” “Ogun children reject child marriage,” among others. The aggrieved women bemoaned the attitude of the lawmakers, who they said ought to be good examples for Nigerian children. “Is that the next thing we need in this country? What are they looking for? What are they portraying to the other nations of the world?” the protesters asked. Speaking with journalists during the rally, Lawson explained that child marriage would deprive girls the right to get adequate education, adding that the act had destroyed the lives of young girls in some parts of the country.
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Drowned corps member buried at Igbokoda River bank OJO OYEWAMIDE AKURE
member of the National Youth Service Corps, NYSC, in Ondo State, Miss Juliet Irorohboje, who died in a boat mishap in the coastal area of the state last week, has been buried amidst tears. The deceased was buried at the bank of Igbokoda River where she died about 2.25pm Tuesday, just as the NYSC has expressed its readiness to redeploy corps members who have phobia for river to other parts of the state. The burial had in attendance the family of the deceased from Ughelli, state NYSC officials, officials of the Ondo State Oil Mineral Producing Area Development Commission, OSOPADEC, corps members, students and Chairman of Ilaje Local Government, Soji Ayenuro. Irorohboje got drowned last week along Ilepete Igbokoda waterway when the boat that was conveying her and her fiancé caught fire while the operator was trying to refill it without switching off the engine. To avoid being burnt by the fire, the deceased jumped into the river and got drowned in the process. Her corpse was later recovered the following day by marine policemen at Igbokoda. Friends, colleagues and family members of the deceased wept uncontrollably as her body was lowered into the grave at the bank of Igbokoda River. The state NYSC Coordinator, Kuoye Isiaka Olanrewaju, in a message delivered on his behalf at the burial, described Irorohboje’s death as shocking and irreparable loss to her family and the country. Kuoye said his office was prepared to redeploy any corps member that had phobia for river in the area to other parts of the state. He said: “We are prepared and willing to redeploy any corps member that has phobia for river to other parts of the state. This will have to be for only those of you that are not used to river or that are afraid to travel on water.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
Murder: Court to consolidate cases involving Ekiti APC chair ABIODUN NEJO ADO EKITI
n Ado-Ekiti Magistrates’ Court has ordered the consolidation of two cases on the murder of a Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, member, Mr. Ayo Jeje, in Erijiyan-Ekiti, Ekiti West Local Government Area of Ekiti State on March 31. While Chief Magistrates’ Court 111 headed by Chief Magistrate Simeon Ojo, is trying the state Interim Chair-
man of the All Progressives Congress, APC, for the murder, Magistrates’ Court 1 is handling the case of four others allegedly involved in the killing. In his ruling yesterday, Ojo said the two cases would be consolidated because they were on the same matter. Subsequently, the magistrate ruled that the matter be transferred to Chief Magistrates’ Court 1 for mention on October 18, 2013. Ojo agreed with the
oral application by the prosecutor, the Deputy Director, Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, DPP, Mr. O. P. Alabi; that since Chief Magistrates’ Court 1 was also hearing similar matter against the accused, there was need to consolidate the matters so that energy would not be dissipated unnecessarily. Jeje, a former member of the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, was shot dead on the eve of his defection to PDP in Erijiyan-Ekiti, while oth-
ers including 70-year-old Mrs. Juliana Adewumi, who later died at the Federal Medical Centre, IdoEkiti, sustained gunshot injuries in the attack on PDP members. Consequently, Awe and four others were charged with murder, attempted murder, conspiracy and disruption of public peace. Alabi had filed another oral application for an adjournment of the matter to allow the office of the DPP enough time to study the case file.
He said the DPP took over the prosecution of the matter from the police and was yet to be furnished with details by the police. Alabi added that since the accused were already facing similar charges in another court, it would be appropriate to consolidate the two cases. In his submission, counsel to the accused, Mr. Adetunji Oso, agreed with the prosecutor, while Mr Bunmi Olugbade, who held a watching brief in the matter, did not object.
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Thursday, August 15, 2013
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Anambra guber: APGA appoints selection panel to screen aspirants OBIORA IFOH ABUJA
he National Chairman of the All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA), Chief Victor Umeh, yesterday said the party had set in motion a process that would ensure the selection of a credible candidate for the November 16 governorship election in Anambra State. Umeh told journalists shortly after a meeting of the National Working Committee (NWC) in Abuja that a three-man screening panel headed by Alhaji Tayo Sowunmi had been appointed to begin sitting today in Awka, the state capital. Umeh said: “With the number of credible people expressing interest in flying the party’s flag in Anambra State, APGA now has a huge task to manage their individual ambitions. Problems usually arise if the ambitions of these aspirants are not properly managed, since only one candidate will emerge at the end of the primaries. “What we have put in
place is a process that would ensure that the party is not scattered because we are conducting primaries to select a candidate. We promise everybody equal opportunity and level-play field. “No matter how we make this promise, any person who may want to raise dust despite the loosing through
a transparent process, the party is prepared to deal with the situation. We have made adequate arrangement to ensure that APGA will nominate its candidate and be able to go into the contest.” Umeh said part of the things that the screening panel would be seeking from the candidate are per-
sonal data, academic qualifications and other necessary information relating to the aspirant’s previous involvement in governance and politics. He added that the NWC had approved setting up of a five-man appeal panel headed by Chief Tony Ojielo to begin sitting on Saturday so as to hear
complaints arising from the screening of the aspirants. Umeh said: “The screening panel will sit on Thursday and Friday and if any aspirant is not satisfied with the outcome of the screening, he or she is expected to appear before the appeal panel on Saturday to register his case.”
Anambra State Governor Peter Obi (middle) and the parish priest of St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Ukpor, Rev. Fr. Donald Chidolue (left), during the flag-off of the Afor Ukpor-Umunuko-Nza Ozubulu Road, yesterday.
…LP vows to reject failed PDP, APGA contenders CHARLES OKEKE AWKA
he Labour Party (LP) in Anambra State yesterday said it would not accommodate governorship aspirants from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) after they fail to win the primaries of their parties. LP Chairman, Mr. Sam Oraegbunam, said PDP and APGA aspirants would be rejected if they, in their usual practice, thought of running to the party to pick its governorship ticket. Oraegbunam said such aspirants would have no chance in LP and the party would not tolerate attempts to destroy it. He said: “LP also does not support the idea of zoning the governorship to any particular part of the state as being canvassed by some political actors. Anybody from any zone is free contest the governorship election.” Speaking on how LP is preparing for the October
local government and November governorship elections, Oreagbunam told journalists in Awka, the state capital, that the party is battle ready. He said: “The fact that we are not waiting for those that will fail in PDP and APGA to come and run on LP platform is a demonstration that we are preparing for the elections. Describing LP as the only party that is crisis-free in Nigeria, Oraegbunam added that the National Chairman of the party, Chief Dan Nwanyanwu and Governor Olusegun Mimiko of Ondo State would soon visit Awka to flag-off the party’s governorship campaign. He said that LP would present candidates who would contest for the chairmanship post of the 21 local government areas. Oraegbunam, who assured that LP would perform well during the elections, said: “Our credibility speaks for us; LP is the only party that is peaceful and really ready for the election. In APGA, there is crisis,
same thing in PDP and the newly registered All Progressives Congress (APC) has not even contemplated appointing its interim state officers. Labour Party is
ready for the election and we would make a big impact. “Labour Party does not believe in zoning the governorship of Anambra as
being canvassed by some political leaders and that for now, Dr Ifeanyi Uba is the only aspirant who has shown serious interest for the ticket of the party.”
Imo workers get promotion after 10 years CHRIS NJOKU OWERRI
he Imo State Government has begun promoting its workers, 10 years after the exercise was stopped. National Mirror investigation revealed that for over 10 years, civil servants in the state were not promoted. The situation, it was learnt, caused disaffection between the workers and the state government. The workers in May embarked on a strike to protest alleged irregular salary payment and lack of promotion in the civil service. It was gathered that except for the yearly increment of not more than N200, the workers were left on the same salary scale for many years. But shortly after the strike, the state government decided to conduct promotion exercise for all categories of workers. Although the promotion exercise is long overdue for release, it was learnt that the state Head of Service had directed that the promotion be released in batches beginning with workers on Grade Level 15 to confidential secretaries. Some of the workers told journalists under anonymity that they expected the government to release all the promotion at once.
Excitement as Udenwa hoists APC flag Ndigbo better off in Jonathan’s CHRIS NJOKU OWERRI
any people were excited yesterday as former Imo State Governor Achike Udenwa led stakeholders to lower the flag of the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) and host that of the newly registered All Progressives Congress (APC) in Owerri, the state capital. The event, which took place at the ACN secretariat along Owerri-Onitsha Road, cast doubt on membership of the Governor Rochas Okorocha-led faction of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) as none of the governor’s supporters attended the function. The governor was said to have travelled for an important assignment. The
state chairman of APGA, Marshal Anyanwu Okafor, also did not attend the ceremony. Speaking at the event, Udenwa, who was accompanied by other leaders, said the ceremony was far beyond just lowering and hoisting of flags, but “signifies growth from one phase to another in the nation’s political history.” He debunked rumours of possible hijack of the APC structure in the state, adding that no one had been anointed or appointed leaders at any level. The former governor said: “We only have the interim management committee set up at the national and state level who are charged to conduct registration of members and organise the party’s congress, no leader has emerged yet.”
administration –Minister CHRIS NJOKU OWERRI
he Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Prof. Viola Onwuliri, has deplored a recent insinuation that the South-East was marginalised by President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration. Onwuliri described the insinuation as “half truth peddled by self-styled political leaders.” Speaking during an interactive session with journalists in Owerri, the Imo State capital, Prof. Onwuliri said that contrary to the opinion of some Ndigbo, the South East geo-political zone is more than ever before entrenched in the Nigerian political mainstream.
She said: “Let me use this opportunity to condemn in unmistakable terms, the misleading and pervasive opinion that Igbo are marginalised under the current Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)-led government of President Jonathan. Let me call our people of the SouthEast to redouble their support and followership of the party.” The minister listed what the South-East benefited in Jonathan’s administration to include dualisation of Owerri-Elele-Port Harcourt Road, construction of the 90.5km Owerri-Onitsha Road, rehabilitation of Owerri Aba Road, rehabilitation of Onitsha-EnuguAbakaliki Road and Enugu International Airport, among others.
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Thursday, August 15, 2013
Stop using ambition to destabilise Rivers’ peace, Wike told •House raises alarm over Lloyd’s health SAM OLUWALANA
M Delta State Commissioner for Special Duties, Queen Victoria Ikenchuku and her Information counterpart, Mr. Chike Ogeah, during a mid-term media briefing in Asaba, yesterday.
Grounded vessel: Navy arrests six suspects EMMA GBEMUDU YENAGOA
resh facts emerged yesterday on the grounded barge laden with stolen crude as the Nigerian Navy in Bayelsa State said it arrested six suspected oil thieves that drove the tug to retrieve the vessel. The grounded vessel, MV LILA and tug, MV St. VICTORIA, have been impounded by a Naval gun boat, NNS BOMADI, at Odioama along St. Nicholas River in Brass Local Government Area of the state. Flag Officer Commanding, Central Naval Command, Yenagoa, Rear Admiral Sidi-Ali Usman, told journalists that operatives of the Forward Operation Base (FORMOSO) were making relentless efforts to ensure the barge was salvaged from its present position. He said: “On August 10, at about 18.25, a naval
team on routine patrol was attracted to a suspected barge movement from Odioama to St. Nicholas River. On approaching the self-propelled barge, it was discovered to have gone aground. The barge was identified as MV LILA. Usman revealed that five vessels linked with illegal oil bunkering in the state had been impounded in the last two months, stressing that more arrests would be made by the Navy. He said: “This will prevent the likelihood of oil spill and consequential damage to the environment. Similarly, investigation into the source of the suspected stolen product in the barge has been commenced. “That barge must have gone aground when they were making efforts to get it, but they were not aware that part of our strategy is also to contain these illicit activities
from the seaward end. So, when we noticed this, we tasked the unit over there to contain the activity and on the process, we found this barge abandoned. As I speak, some of our men are mounting surveillance there. It is in the course of the surveillance that we arrested this tug. The tug actually came to retrieve the grounded barge.” Usman added: “Somebody must have contracted the tug, the owner who uses his tug to come and retrieve his property. It would have been a different game if we were not able to lay hand on anybody. We were not deceived even with the abandonment, we quickly instructed that they should be within the area, that it was not a ghost that brought the barge there.” He warned that illegal oil vessels without valid documents plying the waterways
would be impounded. Usman said: “We are using this opportunity to warn illegal oil bunkerers; they are not supposed to be there. They required papers for them to be there. We will arrest any illegal vessel seen. Even as I speak now, we have arrested some vessels. More arrests will still be made, we are unrelenting. “Our strategy is of three fold, we will go after them in the creeks, also the areas where they carry out illegal refineries. If they are sighted, we will destroy them. “We patrol at the seaward end of the creeks. Any vessel of opportunities that is sighted there would be impounded. Any vessel without clearance papers will be seized. I hope vessels coming this way will comply. There is no room for illegalities in the sea, we cannot tolerate it any further.”
Tension in Bayelsa communities over oil, gas spills EMMA GBEMUDU YENAGOA
ension is heightening in Koluama 1 and 2 in Southern Ijaw Local Government Area of Bayelsa State following reported oil and gas spills from the Funiwa oilfield of Chevron Nigeria Limited. It was gathered that a team of engineers have begun fixing the leakages. Sources told National Mirror that the spills, which occurred barely a month ago, are causing discomfort among residents of both communities as they are threatening to protest the incident. The sources said that
Chevron had exhausted 250 bags of cement to curtail the spills, but the effort seems to have failed to yield desired result. A gas explosion occurred at Chevron’s K.S. Endeavour located offshore Koluama on January 16, 2011 forcing the rig to shut down operations for over four months. The General Secretary, Federated Youth Organisation of Koluama Kingdom, Mr. Ebrasin Leghemo, said that the incessant gas and oil spills in the locality had caused untold hardship to the residents. Leghemo said the residents could no longer embark on fishing as a result of the spills.
The secretary said: “If the trend is not check by the government and relevant agencies, it may bring about youth restiveness as claims put before Chevron in last year’s gas explosion in K.S Endeavour and fire incident in January 16, 2012 have not been paid to the claimants, yet another spills have occurred.” Leghemo, however, urged the state Ministry of the Environment and other relevant stakeholders to prevail upon Chevron to investigate the possible cause of the incessant spills and embark on measures to prevent subsequent incidents. However, several efforts to reach the company’s Policy Government and
Communities Relations Manager, Femi Odumabo, were not successful.
inister of State for Education, Chief Nyesom Wike, has been accused of using his political ambition to cause tension in Rivers State. This is even as a member of the state House of Assembly advised opposition politicians to employ the huge resources they had committed to causing crisis to generate employment for youths. In a chat with journalists in Port Harcourt, the Senator represents Rivers West, Wilson Asonobi Ake, cautioned Wike not to allow his political ambition to destabilise the state. Ake noted that Wike has the rights to contest for any political position in the country, but such should not be used to cause tension and destabilise the public peace. The Senator described as condemnable a statement credited to Wike in which he threatened to make the state governor uncomfortable, asking the minister to refrain from making such utterances. Ake, however, noted that zoning formula was an understanding, but that if the minister wishes to oppose it, history would remind him in future He said: “I am not against anybody showing interest in any position in whatever form. There is no law against
it. We only have moral and political understanding by allowing people to restrict their interest.” The Senator said for Wike to threaten to make people sleep with an eye open is condemnable, pointing out that the minister was a beneficiary of zoning. Ake, however, said peace talks had begun, but for a meaningful peace to take place, the state Commissioner of Police, Mr. Mbu Joseph Mbu, must be redeployed. Meanwhile, a member of the state House of Assembly, Hon. Leyii Kwamee, urged those investing huge resources in an attempt to impeach Governor Chibuike Amaechi to channel them to the establishment of industries. Kwamee said: “If such funds are channeled into establishing industries, it will go a long way in complimenting efforts by the state government to reduce poverty and the rising unemployment.” Kwamee, however, raised the alarm over the unstable health of the House of Assembly Leader, Hon Chidi Lloyd, who was granted bail by a court last two weeks. The House Deputy Speaker said that Lloyd was not only physical tormented, but was psychologically tormented during his detention, adding that the House Leader is currently not in a stable state.
NMA arrests 12 suspected quack doctors •Shuts four illegal hospitals
he Rivers Sate chapter of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) said yesterday that it had arrested 12 suspected quack doctors and shut down four illegal hospitals. In an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Port Harcourt, the state NMA Chairman, Dr. Ibitrokoemi Krukrubo, said the suspects had been handed over to the police. Krukrubo said the suspects were not qualified to
practice medicine and did not have the requisite skills and knowledge to treat patients. He said the arrest was part of the association’s drive to rid the state of quack doctors so as to restore sanity and regain the public confidence in the medical profession in the state. Krukrubo said: “We have shut down about four clinics and we are still investigating others. There’s a way we operate; we get the information and the in-
vestigation can sometimes take up to two months. “When we have the facts; we work with the Ministry of Health and the police and then shut down the hospitals. “The public needs to be vigilant. Before you (patient) can trust a doctor; you have to be sure that the person is a doctor. “The only way to be sure is through the NMA identification card and any other identification card should not be accepted by patients.”
Thursday, August 15, 2013
Kidnapped Ilorin kids found at Seme border WOLE ADEDEJI ILORIN
etectives at Seme border of Nigeria and Benin Republic have secured the release of the two children allegedly kidnapped at Idi-ApeQuarters of Ilorin, the Kwara State capital. The two children, a boy and a girl ages, were abducted in the early hours of Tuesday in Ilorin when they were sent on errand to dispose some refuse collections. After series of endless searches, information filtered into Ilorin that the kids have been found at Seme border at about 3:0pm as their abductors were about to cross into Benin Republic with them. It was learnt that the alleged trafficker stopped at a filling station to fuel his car when the children regained their consciousness and screamed for help. The alarmed was said to have attracted the attention of a police patrol team and members of the community to the scene. On sensing danger,
the suspected kidnapper zoomed off and abandoned the children with about four others. The victims were said to have given the police the information that enable the detectives to trace their homes in Ilorin and reunite
them with their family. However, the development, according to sources, prompted residents of IdiApe Quarters to comb the community and descended on some destitute whose activities had become suspicious.
During the raid, a pistol was said to have been found on a man, pretending to be a mad person. When contacted, the Kwara State Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Femi Fabode, confirmed the incident.
he Federal Government yesterday ratified the bilateral agreements between it and the neighbouring Niger Republic and the United Kingdom. The pact is to stem incidence of terrorist activities in the country. The ratification of the bilateral agreements with Niger and United Kingdom is one of the outcomes of the weekly Federal Executive Council (FEC) presided over by President Goodluck Jonathan yesterday. The agreement with Niger was done in October last year. Then it was agreed between the countries that the over 930 miles border between Nigeria and Niger Republic would be patrolled by the two countries. Northern Nigeria states that share border with Niger Republic are Borno, Yobe, Jigawa, Katsina, Sokoto and Kebbi. Borno also shares bor-
New varsities help to reduce unemployment –Emir
mir of Hadejia, Alhaji Adamu Maje, yesterday said the newly established federal universities had reduced unemployment in the country. Maje spoke when he
Commanding Officer, Special Military Operation Battalion, Mubi, Lt.-Col. Beyidi Martins (left), presenting the money recovered from suspected insurgents who robbed a Mubi-based Bureau de Change to the Bureau’s Chairman, Mohammed Nuru, in Mubi, Adamawa State, on Tuesday.
FG ratifies bilateral agreements with Niger, UK ISE-OLUWA IGE
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
ders with Chad and Cameroun while Kebbi shares border with Benin Republic. A month before the agreement with Niger, the Federal Government signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on strategic partnership with the United Kingdom to promote peace and security, trade and investment. The Minister of Information, Mr. Labaran Maku, flanked by the two Ministers of Education, Prof. Ruqayyatu Rufa’I and Ezenwo Nyesom Wike, told journalists after the FEC meeting that the Federal Government ratified the bilateral
agreements. Both agreements, according to a working document of the FEC, were aimed at military cooperation. Specifically, the defence cooperation with Niger Republic ‘is aimed at providing mutual military support, security of their common borders, intervention assistance, military assistance, exchange of intelligence on internal and external security, joint military exercise and operations.” “The MoU on bilateral military cooperation between Nigeria and UK is aimed at establishing a bilateral military cooperation within the frame-
work of our competent authorities as defined in the national legislation,” the document added. It also entails sharing experiences, information and training, in addition to maritime security in the Gulf of Guinea, as well as cooperation in terms of logistic supply.
Board allocates 2,584 seats to Jigawa pilgrims
he Executive Secretary of Jigawa State Pilgrims Welfare Board, Alhaji Muhammed Alhassan, has said that the state was allocated 2,584 seats for the 2013 Hajj exercise. Alhassan spoke yesterday in Dutse, the state capital.
He said that the state initially had 3,330 allocations, but reduced by 646 seats before the reduction of 20 per cent from each state of the federation. Alhassan said the board re-screened the prospective pilgrims and dropped some pregnant women who conceived after the first screen-
ing was conducted. He said the board also remitted about N1.3 billion to the National Hajj Commission as fee for the prospective pilgrims from the state. The secretary added that Max airline would fly out the pilgrims from the newly constructed state airport.
received the Vice-Chancellor of the Federal University, Dutse, Prof. Jibrila Amin, in his palace in Hadejia. He said that the new universities had brought a lot of development in those states where they were established. The monarch said that the university established in Dutse had created jobs for youths and enabled many others to have access to higher education. Maje lauded the ViceChancellor for setting good standard for the new university. The emir said: “I know the standard of the new school because when my children applied to the university, they could not gain admission due to their low scores in their JAMB exams.” Earlier, the Vice-Chancellor said he visited the mmir to sympathise with him over the flood that ravaged his domain. He sought the support of traditional institutions for the progress of the university.
Ex-Offa LG boss kicks against planned re-run election WOLE ADEDEJI ILORIN
ormer Chairman of Offa Local Government Area of Kwara State, Prince Saheed Popoola, yesterday said the August 31 re-run election fixed by the State Electoral Commission (KWASIEC) in the council was illegal. Popoola said that KWASIEC ought to have given 150 days notice before conducting the election. He described as unconstitutional the 18 days notice given by the electoral body. According to him, the KWASIEC’s decision contravened the law and it is capable of causing a breakdown of law and order in the local government area. The former council boss said: “KWASIEC Law makes it clear that a notice of 150 days must be given before the election is held. The commission wants to flagrantly abuse the law.
“This is to alert the whole world of the illegality KWASIEC is planning to unleash on the people. Obviously acting in connivance with the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) leadership in Kwara State, the electoral body wishes to cause breakdown of law and order in Offa Local Government Area by conspiring with some politicians to perpetrate fraud. “Because we knew the plots of PDP, we had drawn the attention of KWASIEC to the Law which provide for 150 days notice before an election is conducted. “Rather than respect the law, KWASIEC addressed a press briefing on Tuesday to announce that election into the council would hold on August 31.” Popoola had on Monday alleged that the electoral commission was about to jump the gun by conducting a rerun election ahead of October in Offa Local Government Area alone.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
2015: Agitators for Northern presidency not representing North –Ebute
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Ogun 2015: Daniel’s political traverse across parties
Anambra guber: PDP disqualifies two aspirants, clears 15 OBIORA IFOH ABUJA
wo governorship aspirants for the forthcoming Anambra State governorship election on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, were yesterday disqualified from participating in the August 24 primaries of the party. Chairman of the PDP Gubernatorial Screening Appeal Panel for Anambra State and former governor of Zamfara State, Alhaji Mahmud Shinkafi, told newsmen at the party’s national headquarters that Messrs Sylvester Okwonkwo and Onwuanyim Damian Afamaefule were disqualified because they could not provide valid tax clearances. The committee said
that of the four aspirants referred to it for investigation, only two were cleared. They are Ugochukwu Okeke and Tonye Nwoye. The Ambassador Aminu Wali screening committee had last week cleared 13 aspirants for the PDP primaries and disqualified four others
because of unresolved tax issues. Shinkafi said: “With the disqualification of the two aspirants, only 15 candidates have been cleared to contest the August 24 primaries in Anambra State.” He clarified that the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, used to clear aspirants but the task has since been pushed to the political parties, adding: “We don’t want to present any candidate who after winning election, would lose
at the courts.” Shinkafi said those cleared have given their words that they would abide by the outcome of the primaries and support whoever emerges the candidate. Similarly, the Anambra Ward Congress Committee chaired by the Speaker of Abia State House of Assembly, Sir Udeh Okoh, submitted its reports to the PDP National Chairman, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur. Presenting the report, Okoh stated that the com-
mittee exhausted all avenues to ensure a credible exercise and lauded governors of PDP-controlled states in the South-East for their support during the exercise. “By God’s grace we went there, we have done the job, we saw and we conquered” Okoh said. Okoh explained further that though the job was a difficult one, the support of governors of the PDP controlled states in the South-East simplified the job of the committee.
In a remark, Tukur said by the report, the party had broken the Anambra State jinx where it has always been by consensus and harmonisation. “This time around we have had ward election, I understand this is the first time it has happened in Anambra,” he said, adding: “This is the beginning of making sure that the PDP believes in transparent and deepened democracy; the belief that people should be allowed to express their rights.”
OSUN 2014: Ex-HoS joins race ADEOLU ADEYEMO OSOGBO
ormer Head of Service, HoS, of Osun State, Elder. Segun Akinwusi, yesterday declared his intention to contest the gubernatorial election in the state under the platform of the newly formed Unity Party of Nigeria, UPN, come 2014. Akinwusi, according to an online message sent to newsmen in Osogbo by his campaign organisation, Rescue Osun, stated that he would soon make his plan of action known to the
people of the state, adding that he has a formidable template that would make the state more virile and viable. The campaign organisation also stressed that only the former HoS could deliver the state from its present retrogressive situation, calling on the people of the state to rally round him to be able to give solace to them. It hinted further that efforts have been made by the former Head of Service to reach all stakeholders in the state to make his political dream a reality.
L-R: Chairman Mobilisation Committee, National Economic Summit Group, NESG, Kayode Falowo; Kwara State governor, Abdulfatah Ahmed; Chairman, NESG and leader of the team, Mr. Folusho Philips and a businessman, Alhaji Eyitayo Danmusa during the committee’s visit to the governor in Ilorin yesterday.
APC accuses Ogun PDP of pilfering members FEMI OYEWESO ABEOKUTA
he Ogun State chapter of the newly registered All Progressives Congress,
EBSIEC screens LG poll aspirants ALIUNA GODWIN EBONYI
he Ebonyi State Independent Electoral Commission, EBSIEC, has commenced screening of aspirants for the September 28 local government election in the state. The screening follows the earlier refusal of opposition parties to participate in the scheduled election on the ground that the commission in collaboration with
the Ebonyi state House of Assembly should reject the open ballot system. Briefing journalist in Abakaliki, the chairman of EBSIEC, Mr. John Nkwuda pledged the commitment of his commission to ensure a free, fair and credible election, but warned political parties against violent campaigns. He stated that the screening was necessary so as to enable the commission determine whether the candidates presented
by the political parties are qualified or not He said: “Political parties have had their primaries which we equally monitored in the 215 wards and 13 local government areas.” He expressed worries that apart from the six political parties that indicated interest, only four submitted lists of their candidates, saying that “the candidates will meet with the screening committee on Friday. Last day for the screening is August 19.”
APC, yesterday described claims by the crisisridden state chapter of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, that over 5,000 members of the APC defected to the party in Ijebu Igbo as ignoble. APC also said that it is regrettable that the crisisridden PDP has resorted to telling lies and desperately resorted to recruiting “undertakers” ahead of the 2015 general elections in the state. In a statement issued yesterday in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital by the Secretary of Ijebu North Local Government Area of the state, Adebayo Adekoya faulted the reported defection of members of the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, to
the PDP. The PDP had said that no fewer than 5,000 members of opposition parties defected into its fold at a rally organised in Ijebu-Igbo on last Sunday, August 11. The purported defection was said to have been attended by the Caretaker Committee Chairman of South West PDP, Chief Ishola Filani and the zonal secretary, Chief Pegba Otemolu among other chieftains. But Adekoya maintained that no genuine member of theAPC in Ijebu North and its neighbouring local governments would behave stupidly as to dump a focused party for a crisis-ridden PDP, stressing that such politician must have lost direction.
“How could a splinter group called Imole Group, with scanty membership strength and which has since been actively involved in Labour Party activities be referred to as APC faithful? The PDP has to resort to such cheap sensational and blatant lies in order to gain cheap political points that will end up in Pyrrhic victory. “The PDP is still under the illusion that Ogun State electorates have forgotten so soon their regime of deceit, maladministration, underdevelopment, imposition and impunity.” He appealed to people of the state to ignore detractors and support the governor’s mission to rebuild in the state.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Lagos PDP crisis deepens as group writes Dickson OLAJIDE OMOJOLOMOJU
faction of the Lagos State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP has written to the Governor Seriake Dickson-led National Reconciliation Committee of the PDP to wade into the crisis tearing the party apart in the Centre of Excellence, before it resorts to legal action.
This was despite claims by another faction of the party that there was no crisis in the party. A statement issued by Citizens Democratic Forum, CDF, yesterday, made available to National Mirror and signed by Prince Abiodun Emmanuel, Alhaji Wahab Sadiq, Engineer Jacob O. Dada and Mr Otitolaye Olusola, said the injustices and anomalies reflected in the composition of the party
executives from the ward to the state level in the Lagos chapter of party remained unattended to by the state leadership of the party, despite various efforts of the leadership of the Elders Council of the party through various representations to the leadership of the party at different levels and the Presidency.” The statement reads in part: “Even when these strata of the executives
were deemed to have not followed the normal laydown principles of our great party constitution as regards the conduct of congresses at these levels as supported by the letter dated March 5, 2012 by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, setting aside the so-put in place excos, the party has not addressed the issue till date.” Saying that it has taken
it upon itself as bonafide citizens and members of the PDP to acquaint the party once again of the issues at stake and asking that they be addressed immediately, the CDF asked that: “the executives of Lagos State chapter of the party be dissolved and a Caretaker Committee put in place until new elections/congresses are held; the illegal delegates derived from these executives be set aside and should not be allowed to participate in the elections at the South-West zonal congress slated for the August 24 and the National Convention of the party also slated for August 31.” Threatening that unless
the issues raised in its letter were addressed and urgently too, the CDF said that it would “challenge any such congresses/convention so conducted in this regard in a proper court of law.” The chairman of PDP in Lagos State, Captain Tunji Shelle (rtd) recently said there was no crisis within the Lagos PDP, adding that the purported INEC letter was fake. Olusola, however told National Mirror that the Chairman of the PDP Special National Congress and Convention Committee, Professor Jerry Gana, has said no delegate from Lagos PDP would be recognised during the convention.
CACOL faults Lagos State govt on Lekki cable bridge SINA FADARE
T Former Imo State Governor, Chief Achike Udenwa (middle) and other members of the defunct ACN yesterday at the hoisting of APC’s flag at the party’s secretariat in Owerri.
2015: APPA carpets Iwuanyanwu over anti-Igbo comment OLAJIDE OMOJOLOMOJU
he National Publicity Secretary of the All Peoples Progressive Alliance, APPA, formerly the Progressive Peoples Alliance, PPA, Dr. Vitalis Ajumbe, has carpeted Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu over his comments that the South-East should wait beyond 2015 to occupy the nation’s presidency. Ajumbe stated that at a time Igbo sons and daughters both at home and in the Diaspora were calling for
Igbo presidency in 2015, it is unbelievable that Iwuanyanwu could make such a self-centred assertion. In a statement made available to the media, Ajumbe said: “APPA as a party is highly disappointed with the remarks emanating from one of the supposed South-East leaders. “The statement by Iwuanyanwu shows the thinking and mindset of some old school politicians who have been living on government over the years without adding value to their people and are ready
to sell the future of Igboland for just a penny.” Ajumbe noted that Chief Iwuanyanwu at his age should be busy using his network of contacts to consult and seek support of stakeholders in other geo-political zones for the actualization of a Nigerian president of Igbo extraction. He further stated that time has come for Ndigbo totake their rightful position in Nigeria’s polity after years of marginalisation. The APPA scribe maintained that there is no
going back on Igbo presidency in 2015, stating that most political parties are conscious of the fact that Igbos have been denied the number one position for more than five decades and have decided to zone the position to the South East in order to gain massive support during the 2015 elections. Ajumbe assured Nigerians that APPA remains the only political party with human face and called on all and sundry to support the party in forthcoming elections.
he Coalition Against Corrupt Leaders, CACOL, has condemned in strong term the N39 billion spent on the construction of the cable bridge at Lekki, in Lagos, saying it was “an absurd of the highest order” and a drain on the tax payers’ money. CACOL disclosed this yesterday during its annual general convention and the public presentation of a book titled “Lagos Open Parliament,” edited by the CACOL Chairman, Comrade Debo Adeniran. Adeniran, who lamented that the whopping amount spent on the cable bridge could have been judiciously used to construct many kilometres of road somewhere else in the city and which could have served
Lagosians better, said: “Babatunde Fashola’s government lacks serious planning in Lagos to alleviate the suffering of the masses and provide for the welfare of the people, this is opposite of what should be of paramount importance to a responsible, responsive as well as a progressive government.” CACOL also condemned the recent ‘deportation’ of some people from Lagos to their states of origin, saying: “It was a criminal breach of the constitution of the country and a cruelty against humanity.” It added: “The government must realise that the concept of the mega city is a function of population, not about depopulating the state. It is based on the population that the state enjoys mega allocation from the Federal Government and attracts international funders.”
PDP publicity scribe: Aspirant kicks against consensus candidate OBIORA IFOH ABUJA
female aspirant for the office of the National Publicity secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the forthcoming Special National Convention of the party, Dr. Carol Nwosu, has said that adopting a consensus candidate for the position would only deepen the crisis in the PDP in Anambra State. Nwosu, who clamoured for more female representa-
tives in the party’s National Working Committee, NWC, insisted that democratic process must be followed in the selection of the party’s executives. Arguing that the inclusion of women in election and appointive positions would bring stability and the much awaited peace in the party and polity, Nwosu said that women participation in the nation’s politics would help in wiping out all manners of corruption and anti social activities especially among the youths.
Meanwhile more opportunities for women in national policy making for better national economic development have been advocated for. Making this passionate call was Dr. Betty Ihuaku Nnadi, who was seeking election for the post of the National Women Leader of the PDP in the forthcoming national convention. Dr. Nnadi, while speaking at the PDP office Wuse zone 5 Abuja, reminded that the development of the country cannot be left in
the hands of men alone. According to the former banker and one time women leader aspirant, the PDP, as the ruling party in the most populous black nation, should as a sense of urgency take the call into consideration in the pursuant of its transformation agenda. She said: “The women need to be given some reasonable percentage of the national quota and that will trickle down to our children and the youths.” Speaking on her ability to pioneer the affairs of
women in the executive of the ruling party, Dr. Nnadi, however, acknowledged the performances of the past leadership and noted that lots needed to be done in the area of equitable representation of women in the nation’s affairs. She pledged that if she attained that height, she would be able to galvanise Nigerian women to contribute meaningfully to national building. Her words: “My aim is to produce 100 honourable members in the House of
Representatives and about 33 distinguished senators and many more at the states Houses of Assembly. I will make fund and loans accessible to all women more especially market women and farmers among us”. She also promised to provide a solid structure that would ensure national unity and positions for women, adding that the structure will be in collaboration with the non-governmental organisations, which will bridge the gap between the rich and the poor in the society.
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Thursday, August 15, 2013
Former Senate President in the truncated Third Republic, Ameh Ebute, in this interview speaks on the agitation by some Northern political leaders for the presidency to return to the region in 2015, saying it is uncalled for. FELIX NWANERI brings excerpts:
2015: Agitators for Northern presidency not representing North –Ebute APART FROM THE MEMBERS OF THE
AREWA CONSULTATIVE FORUM AND NORTHERN ELDERS’ FORUM, THERE ARE
You have been silent since leaving the Senate in 1993 when the Third Republic was aborted by the military, what was responsible for the mum on national issues? It is not true that I have been quiet all along. I have been steering a group called the Congress for Equality and I participated in the zoning argument during the 2011 elections. The fact that I have not been more vocal is that you know that I am a legal practitioner and you know that it is not easy to cope with demands of the profession after whiling away too much time on political matters. You supported President Goodluck Jonathan in 2011. Are you satisfied with his performance, because it appears that most Nigerians are disenchanted with him? Since I am a lawyer, I need evidence to show that a lot of people are disgruntled with the administration because as a lawyer, you can’t act without evidence. It is normal that members of the opposition will not say anything good in what the President is doing, so they are bound to criticise, but in spite of the criticism there are certain things that one can point at as being the achievements of the Jonathan government. So, I do not agree with you that so many people are disgruntled. And you will agree with me that the government has just been in office for just two years. If at the end of the third year nothing happened, then you can say that the government has failed, but as far as I am concerned, the present government has achieved a lot. Can you list some of the sectors in which the government has performed? First, President Jonathan has introduced a new era of democracy in Nigeria; the era of unlimited tolerance which we have never witnessed before. You can insult him; you can say whatever you want to say, although I think that is democracy. That is why we have not gotten so many people, especially members of your profession in detention. I think that is one of the principles of democracy – tolerance. Tolerance leads to the observance of the rule of law. If you are not tolerant, you will begin to arrest people on the streets because they insulted Mr. President and there will be no respect for the rule of law. Secondly, most of the projects that this administration has embarked upon are still at the infancy stages. Just like former President Olusegun Obasanjo succeeded in the communication sector, Jonathan is succeeding in the power sector. He is bent on privatising the sector, so that in a year or two; though improvement is being noticed now, it will become as efficient as any power sector in the developed countries of the world. Thirdly, in physical infrastructure; you must have noticed the face-lift at most of our airports. Go to Abuja and Lagos airports and others across the country, you will see that
MILLIONS OF OTHER
NORTHERNERS WHO BELIEVE IN THE ADMINISTRATION OF
there is a great change. The several road construction works that are on-going is another plus. For example the contract for the Lagos–Ibadan express way has been awarded; move to the South-East, between Enugu and Port Harcourt is almost completed, then the East-West road From Port Harcourt to Warri is almost completed. You raised the issue of unlimited tolerance as one of the attributes of the President. How do you compare that with the face- off between him and the Rivers State governor, Rotimi Amaechi? You will agree with me that he has denied over and over again that he is not party to the crisis in Rivers State. Some people allege that he is behind what is happening in the state, but even at that, he has tolerated enough because if he is not a tolerant person Amaechi will not be doing what he is doing today; he will not have the audacity to confront the President of the Federeal Republic of Nigeria if Jonathan is not someone who tolerates everything. If I were the President, Amaechi cannot go that far he has gone. There are so many ways to deal with governors. Yes he (Amaechi) is a coordinate in the sense that governors are in charge of their respective states, but it is wrong for a governor to interfere in the activities of the Federal Government that is controlled by the same party that he was elected from. The actions of the Rivers State governor amount to indiscipline. What is Amaechi’s sin? His sin is that he is over ambitious. Instead of waiting for his time to come, his ambition to become the vice presidential candidate to a candidate in the far North has made him to take certain steps that amount to anti-party activities. You can see that some posters appeared in Jigawa State showing that wants to be a running mate to Governor Sule Lamido in 2015. Is that not speculative? And is it a crime for someone to have an ambition? When posters are pasted all over the
state; is it still speculative? The fact is the posters and his reaction shows that he consented to it. It is not a crime to have an ambition, but the ambition should be expressed within the context of the party’s discipline. But Amaechi is not the only one presumably angling to unseat the President in 2015. What of the mounting opposition from the likes of Prof. Ango Abdullahi, who appears to be speaking for the North where you are from? I am not a member of the Arewa Consultative Forum or the Northern Elders’ Forum, so whether Ango Abdullahi is speaking for both groups is left for him. But I am assuring you that apart from the members of the Arewa Consultative Forum and Northern Elders’ Forum, there are millions of other Northerners who believe in the administration of Goodluck Jonathan. So, when one person representing a few people being funded by the governors is holding press conference virtually every day, he is putting up his own ideas. You cannot say that the ideas are the thoughts of everybody in the North. Also, I don’t know whether Ango Abdullahi is speaking on behalf of the people he has been speaking for. I am not in the position to say that. I must agree that he is speaking for some people, but they are not the majority in the North. But why should the North be disenchanted? Alhaji Shehu Shagari was president for four years; he entered the second term before the military took over. The head of the military that took over from him was from the North, Gen. Muhammadu Buhari. He was almost one year in office when another Northerner, Gen. Ibrahim Babangida took over from him and was in office for nine years. Late Gen Sani Abacha was in office for five years. When he died, another northerner, Gen. Abubakar Abdulsalami was in office for one year and nobody complained. Although it could be argued that it was the military era, but the people who were the heads of the administration were all from the North. Then there was no Boko Haram, there was nothing anybody did to destabilise the country. So, should the North be bitter now for the eight years that President Goodluck Jonathan is trying to do? They should be patient enough, Nigerians were patient when these of-
ficials I mentioned were in office, why shouldn’t they be patient when other persons are in office for only just four or five years now. Does that mean that the presidency belongs to them? Are you saying that the Boko Haram insurgency is part of the agitation for power shift? Were you not in Nigeria when some people said they will make the country ungovernable for President Jonathan? Were you not in the country when some people said that if President Jonathan wins the 2011 election, they will make the country ungovernable? Are you saying that Boko Haram is not an off shoot of the election that took place in 2011? What then is your advice to the North? My advice to them is that they should wait until President Goodluck Jonathan completes his second term. It was by divine providence that zoning fell on the South-South, so the North, I am not too sure whether it includes the Middle Belt, should wait until the person whom God has given the presidency completes his tenure. God has zoned the presidency to the South-South, as a result of the unfortunate death of President Umaru Yar’Adua. When Jonathan completes his second term, one can then argue that it should go to the North, and that North I argue, should include all the zones in the region and not only the North-West. We also have the North Central and the North-East. Do you feel threatened over the emergence of the All Progressives Congress, APC? If I go into the history of Nigerian politics, you will agree with me that the merger will not work. I was in detention with Bola Tinubu in 1994, when I convened the Senate and urged Abacha, who had taken over to hand over to MKO Abiola and we were arrested and detained at Alagbon for close to 50 days. Tinubu knew what happened that time, so I am surprised that he can enter into a political marriage with these people. When Abiola was arrested because he declared himself the president as a result of the election he won; one midnight the whole Alagbon Close was filled with people and we thought he was going to join us in detention, an hour later people started wailing that he was being taken to Abuja. That was what led to his death and I don’t think that the Yoruba people have forgotten the issue to hobnob with people who are likely going to treat them the same way again. Who are the people you are referring to? You know them, you know the people that constituted the Buhari’s party. Buhari was the main Chief Adviser to Abacha when Abacha was president, as Chairman of the Petroleum Trust Fund, PTF, and they were very hard on us. I am not saying that they should not become president again, but I am warning Tinubu that what happened to us in 1994 could happen to him again, that he should be careful because he is my colleague.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
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Ogun 2015: Daniel’s political traverse across parties N ot quite long, news filtered in across the three senatorial districts of Ogun State that former governor, Otunba Gbenga Daniel would be launching the re-birth of the Labor Party, LP in the state in what was termed “mother of all rallies,” which was planned for the ancient city of Ijebu Ode in Ogun East senatorial district. But despite the public hoopla and expectation, the rally never held. Had it taken place, it would have put an end to series of speculations as to whether or not the former governor is still in the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, a party under whose umbrella he ruled the Gateway State for eight years. That notwithstanding, the truth about the current political status of Daniel, fondly referred to by his admirers and political associates as OGD, still remains that he is still a card carrying member of the LP. This was confirmed to National Mirror by the Ogun State Secretary of the LP, Sunday Oginni in an interview. Oginni, who described the former governor as “an enigma in Ogun politics,” also emphasised that Daniel has more political assets than liabilities, which the LP in the state hopes to cash on to enable it win the 2015 elections in the state. He also stressed that the former governor joined the LP in order to enable him right the wrongs of the past, saying: “This man is an enigma in Ogun politics; so, the coming of Gbenga Daniel into any political party is the beginning of wisdom to winning any election in the state.” He added: “Otunba Daniel has come to join Labor Party and we believed that he has more assets than liabilities. Though as human beings, people may say one or two about his credibility, but we believe that with the kind of orientation that we have now, he is having the opportunity of making corrections of some of even the mistakes of the past as he joins the Labor Party. “This is because the Labour Party is different from the PDP, where he is coming from. This is a party with discipline and we believe that OGD has made the right decision to have dumped the dead party. The PDP is dead in Ogun state.” Oginni noted that as a two tenure governor, Daniel would have preferred to join the cream of winners, and with him in the LP, it was certain that the LP will defeat the All Progressives Congress, APC in the next election. He said: “OGD has no option that to join the winning team. And we are appealing to other politicians in Ogun State who are still grandstanding to quickly take action like Gbenga Daniel and join the LP.” Prior to Daniel’s joining the LP, there had been allegations against him which bothered on anti-party activities. He was also accused of fraternising with about three political parties in the state. At a meeting of the Ogun East Senatorial District of PDP held in Isara Remo, in the Remo North Local Government area of the state on July 27, the party suspended Daniel along with 12 others “for alleged romance with the Labour Party in the state.” The Chairman of the PDP in Ogun East Senatorial District, Chief Doyin Fakoya, who announced Daniel’s suspension, gave names of the 12 others to include Idowu Osho, Gbenga Sadiku, Yetunde Majolagbe, Mabawonju Shitta, Ayantola Lawal, Raufu
FEMI OYEWESO writes on the political journey of former governor of Ogun State, Otunba Gbenga Daniel as he crisscrosses from the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP to the Peoples Party of Nigeria, PPN, which he founded in the run-up to the 2011 elections and finally berthing at the Labour Party, LP and its implication on the 2015 governorship election in the Gateway State.
Jinad, Oguntade Adeleke, Gbenga Buhari, Yinka Sotunde, Gbenga Sokoya, Zainab Lawal and Olu Osho. Fakoya, who claimed to have obtained a copy of the letter which suspended Daniel from his ward chairman in Sagamu, stressed that the party in Daniel’s Ward 12 decided to effect his suspension in order to restore discipline to the party. He said: “As of today, I am the Chairman of the PDP in Ogun East Senatorial District. I have got a copy of the letter that Otunba Daniel has been suspended. He was suspended by ward 12 Sagamu Constituency 2.” Flanked by the party’s chairmen in Sagamu, Ikenne and Remo-North LGAs, Fakoya also stated that a disciplinary committee set up to look into the allegations against Daniel and the 12 others, found them guilty. The Ogun East Senatorial Chairman also
POLITICAL ANALYSTS AND WATCHERS OF EVENTS IN THE
GATEWAY STATE, WAIT WITH BATED BREATH TO SEE HOW FAR DANIEL’S ROMANCE WITH THE
LP WOULD CARRY
HIM AS THE RACE TO
THE 2015 ELECTIONS CONTINUES TO GATHER STEAM
stated that the suspension of Daniel along with the others was in line with the directives of the National Chairman of PDP, Alhaji Bamangar Tukur who had instructed them to restore discipline in the party. Meanwhile, the report of the eight-man disciplinary committee led by Gbenga Salako, dated June 3, which found Daniel and his political associates guilty, accused them of not attending the party’s meeting at the ward level for a long period of time. It also accused them of defecting to the PPN before the 2011 elections. Having been found guilty over the allegations, Fakoya declared that “Otunba Daniel was the one that brought the PPN to Ogun State; he is financing Labour Party at the moment. You cannot be in two parties at the same time; you cannot be in PPN, PDP and LP at the same time.” He added: “Otunba Daniel is like any other citizen that jumps into any political party; he was fortunate that he governed Ogun State for eight years. Is that the reason for him to be in three political parties at the same time? So, if the party from his ward said it has suspended him from the party, so be it”. Aside the suspension, there was also the news that the state chapter of the PDP was planning to expel Daniel. The state chairman of the party, Adebayo Dayo, in an interview with newsmen on June 30, was also quoted to have said that leaders of the party would meet to determine if Daniel would remain in the party or not. Dayo, who noted that the PDP needed more members to enable it win the 2015 elections, however said the party will not involve somebody whose interest is divided. His words: “That does not mean that somebody who had been a very active
member and leader of our party can be fraternising with various political parties. He was in the PPN and recently we heard that he intended to go to the LP, and he’s romancing the Unity Party of Nigeria, UPN, as well. How can a leader of our party be doing all these? You cannot be in PDP and PPN at the same time.” But, apparently reacting to the plot, Daniel quickly led some of his associates to a meeting with the national leadership of the LP in Abuja, where arrangement for his defection to the party was finalized. Among those who accompanied him were the Chairman, Subsidy Reinvestment and Empowerment Programme (SURE-P) in Ogun State, Chief Kayode Ajibola; Hon. Segun Seriki, Mr. Ladi Adebutu, Mrs. Iyabo Apampa, Senator Tunde Osholake, Alhaji Sarafa TunjiIshola and Chief Kola Ogunjobi. Speaking on the defection of Daniel to the LP, against the background of his political antecedents, Oginni said those who see nothing good in the move are the same people that have benefitted from the actions and in-actions of Daniel in the past. He said: “What we are saying is that in every human endeavour, there is a room for improvement and time of learning and making mistakes. Today, the LP is here to correct the anomalies of the present government in Ogun State. “Those people who have been painting OGD as evil genius are the same people who benefited from huis the actions and in-actions in the past. They are the ones that have greatly been compensated from his largesse in one way or the other in the past. It is because they are jittery of ODG’s presence in that LP that has made them to be criticising him.” He added that no notable politician, who is relevant in the scheme of things in Ogun State at the moment can deny rising through the OGD political family, including the incumbent governor, Ibikunle Amosun. Oginni said that Amosun was actually one of the OGD boys and he became a senator of the under the OGD political family. Commenting on the PPN, founded and funded by the former governor, Oginni said the PPN was a child of necessity, born when the battle over who represents the PDP in the 2011 election became tough. “The PPN was a child of circumstance, child of necessity when it became too obvious that he could not have his ways again in the PDP. The party was just used to fight the injustice that was done to Gboyega Nasir Isiaka, who won the PDP governorship ticket at the state convention held at MKO Abiola stadium where all the National Executive officers of PDP and that of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC were present,” he explained. The state LP secretary said that discussion on Ogun State politics would be incomplete without the mention of Daniel, adding that any political party or politician who ignores him does so at its/his own peril. Meanwhile, National Mirror reliably gathered that the three lawmakers elected on the platform of the PPN in the Ogun State House of Assembly have all joined their benefactor in the LP. As events unfold, political analysts and watchers of events in the Gateway State, wait with bated breath to see how far Daniel’s romance with the LP would carry him as the race to the 2015 elections continues to gather steam.
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Thursday, August 15, 2013
APC’s boisterous entry
NDUBUISI firstname.lastname@example.org (08023016709 SMS only)
t was all excitement, and to a large extent, a great relief that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), finally registered the All Progressives Congress (APC), as a political party. This merger of Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), All Nigerian People’s Party (ANP and a faction of All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA), is unarguably the first of its kind in the political history of Nigeria. I see the development as a landmark in the nation’s quest for a viable political system. We can now look forward to the emergence of a new political culture in the country. The ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has dominated the political scene for about 14 years now; the tendency has not been healthy both for the political health of the nation and the expectation of Nigerian for a responsible and responsive governance. Many Nigerians have hailed the de-
velopment as a bold one in the right direction. And the new party is gearing up for action both in its systemic structuring and agenda creation. A successful take off of the new party is definitely going to be smooth given the fact that it is an amalgam of existing political parties There have been many side talks as to the objective of the new mega party. Definitely, it will not take long for Nigerians to see the direction, intention and the programmes of this new party. There have been divergent opinions on the real intention of APC. On the one hand, a school of thought has reasoned that APC is all about giving the PDP a big fight in 2015. However, those on the other side of the debate divide believe the party is the North’s ace to return to power in 2015. Actually, the names being touted as its flag bearer in the 2015 presidential elections are basically of Northern extraction; southerners are mere running mate hopefuls. It is interesting that some of the chieftains of the new political party are apprehensive of this suspicion and they have been reacting to it accordingly. Governor Fayemi of Ekiti State stated recently that the new party is the joker of the progressives of the country to wrest power from the ruling PDP. The party is ‘’an ideology committed to rescuing Nigeria from many years of bad leadership and disappointing governance… It is not driven by individual
A POLITICAL PARTY THAT IS FOUNDED ON MERE QUEST FOR POLITICAL POWER AS TOOL FOR SELF ECONOMIC
ADVANCEMENT, WILL SOON NATURALLY AND SURELY DIE.
whims and caprices’’, was how he put it. As to the effect of APC’s creation on the ruling party, Dr Doyin Okupe, the Senior Special Assistant to the president (Public Affairs), provides an insight when he recently says in a statement that the leaders of the new party are “yesterday’s men” and thus “politically expired.” Nigerians are waiting to see if there will be a real or cosmetic change in the polity. What the nation needs now is the emergence of young and vibrant new generation leaders that believe in the nation. It will be tragic if APC emerged in the scene solely with the purpose of wresting power from the ruling political party, or being a platform for self aggrandizement. We need a strong opposition as this remains the panacea for bad government. Politics should be seen for what it ought to be: to attend to and promote public good and welfare. It is not all
about fighting and winning elections for individual and group aggrandizement. Thus a viable political movement should be made of men and women of like ambition and aspiration for the nation, with a long term agenda of building a united, strong and virile nation. A political party that is founded on mere quest for political power as tool for self economic advancement, will soon naturally and surely die. We have had a bitter taste of misrule, insensitivity and uncaring leadership in this country. Nigerians want to see a change for the better. The interest of all the so-called political gladiators is what they can amass to themselves from the confusion. It is when this expectation is not met that we hear voices of dissent. This is why our politics is still steeped in primordial values and realization of myopic ambition. Whatever the case may, the INEC took a wise decision in the registration of APC. The verdict of the Abuja federal high court too in nullifying itsINEC’s power to de-register political parties is also a welcome development. The parties should be allowed to grow and die naturally. The real anxiety should be if we should ever have structures on ground to ensure that Nigerians are given the ample opportunity to exercise their franchise rights without let or hindrance. Professor Ndubuisi, an attorney at law, is of the Department of Philosophy, UNILAG
Blueprint for successful anti-corruption crusade
he news of the ordeal of Police Sergeant Chris Omeleze, attached to the Lagos State Command Motor Traffic Division (State MTD), who was recently caught on video demanding for bribe from a motorist, did not come as a surprise. Such incidents underscore the reality majority of Nigerians live with everyday. Hardly would a day pass without news of police extortion or criminality in one form or the other. What may come as a mild surprise, however, is the prompt reaction of the police authorities. With the speed of lightning, the erring officer was identified, arrested, made to face orderly room trial and sacked; all in matters of days. In spite of this apparently commendable reaction by the police authorities, one still feels perplexed with this nagging question: If the leadership of the police force had this remarkable level of intolerance for corruption, why is the graft culture so endemic in the force? The tragedy of the likes of Omeleze is that they are just the scapegoats of a pervert system. What the police authorities have done does not translate to any authentic advancement in our quest to fight corruption. It represents mere pruning of the branches of the corruption tree while the stem and roots are being hypocritically nurtured with fertilizer! If anybody scoffs at the efforts of the Federal Government in fighting corruption, the person, from the government’s perspective, must have been an uncharitable critic who refuses to appreciate the “monumental” efforts being made to ex-
AS LONG AS THE LEADERS OF THE COUNTRY LIVE IN OPULENCE IN POVERTY-
STRICKEN COUNTRY LIKE OURS, THEY WOULD NOT HAVE THE MORAL VOICE TO DEMAND HONESTY AND PATRIOTISM FROM THE FOLLOWERS tirpate the scourge. But is the Nigerian government fighting corruption? Hardly! If the truth must be told, all the efforts of the successive governments made so far amounted to nothing beyond scratching the surface of the problem. The strong foundation for removing corruption or even reducing it has never been laid. To make any battle against corruption winnable, we must begin from the top. Accordingly, I would propose that the executives should be banned from awarding contracts directly. Government should not deal directly with disbursement of public funds in contract awards for goods and services. This function of award of contract must be taken over by registered and reputable procurement agencies from the private sector. If the government’s role is limited to policy formulation and provision of frameworks for projects execution, a lot of politicians who want to go into government with intention to loot would be discouraged as there would be no money to steal.
Secondly, the criminal justice system must be strengthened to ensure certainty of detection of fraud, while government itself must muster the political will to prosecute all corrupt public officials and their cohorts, no matter their status and affiliations. All the lacunas in the criminal law must be cleared and loopholes plugged to ensure no flimsiness in prosecution, like in a case when somebody would steal N34 billion and being asked by the court to pay a meager N750, 000, to be set free. If we are really serious, we should reserve very severe punishments to corrupt people to serve as deterrent to others. While one may not advocate capital punishment for offences of official corruption as the case in China, still draconian measures must be taken against corrupt officials. Not only must all the stolen assets be taken away from them, all those convicted must be banned from holding offices for life and their names entered in the National Dishonourable People List. Profligacy of government and official wastefulness must also stop, is it not sheer incongruity for a nation to have the highest-paid (or at least one of the highest-paid) legislators in the world in country where 70 per cent of the people live below the poverty line of £1.29 a day? Is that not itself legalized corruption? Shouldn’t the entitlements and emoluments of public office holders reflect the level of our socio-economic development? I can never understand why a nation that pays N18, 000 monthly minimum wages for productive working class would callously
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maintain a class of aristocrats who rank among the highest paid in the world. As long as the leaders of the country live in opulence in poverty-stricken country like ours, they would not have the moral voice to demand honesty and patriotism from the followers, nor would they get any if they do. The leaders must set the moral example, accordingly, government must not be seen to be reducing its self-professed war to utter ridicule by reeling out presidential pardons to those who have sinned against the law of the land and had been duly convicted of their crime. The convicts, must the made to carry the stigma for life to serve as terrifying warnings to all those similarly inclined to subvert the interest of the nation for narrow selfish interests. Send your views by mail or sms to PMB 10001, Ikoyi, or our Email: mail@ nationalmirroronline.netmirrorlagos@ yahoo.com or 08164966858 (SMS only). The Editor reserves the right to edit and reject views or photographs. Pseudonyms may be used but must be clearly marked as such.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
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SM, STRATEGIC DEVELOPMENT
On INEC’s registration of APC
he recent registration of the All Progressives Congress (APC), a new political party fused from the merger of erstwhile Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), All Nigeria People’s Party (ANPP), Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) and fraction of the All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has been hailed by many Nigerians. Prior to the development, there was the apprehension of deft moves by the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to scuttle APC’s registration. Indeed, the tense political atmosphere engendered by the relatively long wait for the registration of the new party was virtually defused by the apex electoral body’s decision viewed widely as pragmatic. This bold step has, without doubt, posed a major challenge to the ruling party that prides itself as the largest political party in Africa. A recent statement credited to the PDP Board of Trustees chairman, Chief Tony Anenih, said as much. “We must not live under the illusion that our party is invulnerable. Although, the existing opposition parties are still too small, fragile and sectional, we must not ignore the possibility that a merger of these parties may constitute a threat to our current dominance of the
political terrain”, Anenih had NDEED, SINCE THE told PDP governors, National Assembly members and state RETURN TO DEMOCRACY chairmen of the party from the South-South geo-political IN 1999, THERE zone in Asaba, the capital of HAS NEVER BEEN Delta State last May. Indeed, since the nation’s return to ANY SPECTACULAR democracy in 1999, there has never been any spectacular CHALLENGE TO THE challenge to the ruling party RULING PARTY AT THE at the centre. All attempts by opposition parties to forge a CENTRE common front to do political battle with the PDP had been expectations of Nigerians and feeble or half-hearted at best. The chairman of INEC, Prof. international observers from the newly registered party are Attahiru Jega, in his defence high. It is believed, for examof APC’s registration, stated ple, that Nigeria’s democratic that the decision to register the party was well thought out. experiment has been bereft of serious and articulate opposiHe said at a recent stakeholders’ meeting on voters’ register tion for the over 14 years the nation embraced civil rule, optimisation and the commiswith the ruling party enjoysion’s plans for continuous ing a wide majority margin at voter registration in Abuja both the Senate and the House that the now merged political of Representatives. This trend parties met all the requirehas largely worked against the ments set out by the Electoral Act 2011 for the registration of doctrine of checks and balances that is a cardinal requirenew political parties. He statment in a democratic setting. ed, in addition, that the newly The abnormality has resulted registered political party was in the stunted growth of the eligible to participate in the nation’s democracy, with orNovember governorship elecdinary Nigerians as the main tion in Anambra State. victims. It is thus expected With such firm assurance, that the APC would bring more the coast seems clear for the vibrancy to bear on the josAPC to move ahead with its tling for political power at the internal alignment without national level as 2015, another prejudice to a couple of court election year, inches nearer. cases challenging its registraIt may be too early to inteltion. By the same token, the
ligently speculate on what the real intentions of the new party are all about until its structure takes concrete shape, and its manifesto and programmes become sufficiently clear. All that may be safely said for now is that the APC has its eyes on the 2015 Presidency. It is, however, important to stress at this point that Nigerians may not be too pleased, indeed, may be very much disappointed, if the new party is strictly formed to contest the 2015 general elections or to assist in returning power to a section of the country and thereafter go into oblivion. In advanced democracies, political parties are ideology and programmes-driven in pursuit of national interest. They do not just spring up to fight and win elections and feel contented with sharing the spoils of office. This myopic agenda has more or less been responsible for the uncelebrated deaths of countless political parties in the country. Some chieftains of the APC have claimed the new party is committed to the noble plan of rescuing Nigeria from years of disappointing leadership and unrewarding governance. But the hard ball for the new party is that the taste of the pudding is in the eating. The entire nation is watching. Nigerians are anxiously awaiting the magic wand of the APC.
ON THIS DAY August 15, 1975 Bangladesh’s founder, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was killed along with most members of his family during a military coup. Rahman (March 17, 1920 – August 15, 1975) was a Bengali nationalist politician and the founder of Bangladesh. He headed the Awami League, served as the first President of Bangladesh and later became its Prime Minister. He is popularly referred to as Sheikh Mujib (shortened as Mujib or Mujibur).
August 15, 1998 Omagh bombing in Northern Ireland, the worst terrorist incident of The Troubles: The Omagh bombing was a car bomb attack carried out by the Real Irish Republican Army (RIRA), a splinter group of former Provisional Irish Republican Army members opposed to the Good Friday Agreement in Omagh, County Tyrone, Northern Ireland. Twenty-nine people died as a result of the attack and approximately 220 others injured.
August 15, 2005 Israel’s unilateral disengagement plan to evict all Israelis from the Gaza Strip and from four settlements in the northern West Bank began. The disengagement plan was a proposal by the Israeli Prime Minister, Ariel Sharon, adopted by the government on June 6, 2004 and enacted in August 2005, to resettle all Israelis from the Gaza Strip and four other settlements in the northern West Bank.
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Thursday, August 15, 2013
IN CONJUNCTION WITH
Again, WAEC cancels candidates’ results five years after • It is unfortunate –Head, National Office Barely six months after National Mirror exclusively reported the cancellation of the SSCE results of about 300 former students of Ogudu Senior Grammar School, Lagos, by the West African Examination Council, WAEC, four years after they wrote the exams, the council has again cancelled yet another set of results five years after being released. MOJEED ALABI reports. Iguridu
bviously devastated and worn-out, Malomi Butane Prosper, a final year student of the Department of Geology, Faculty of Physical Sciences at the University of Benin, Edo State, walked into National Mirror newsroom in Lagos on a sunny afternoon. He was coming from the Head Office of the West African Examination Council (WAEC) Yaba, Lagos, where he had spent two days trying to find out why the sudden cancellation of Biology, one of the subjects in his Senior Secondary School Certificate Examination results, written five years ago at Diamond Scholars Academy, Benin City, Edo State. Prosper’s trouble started about a month ago when the university’s Senate met to screen the list of prospective graduating students in preparation for their mobilisation for the mandatory National Youth Service Scheme programme. “I was shocked when I was told by my department that Biology had been cancelled by WAEC. I could not believe my ears because this is the same result I used to gain admission in 2009 and has also been using since. I have also used it several times to apply for scholarships and bursary awards and no verification ever identified this,” Prosper narrated. Based on investigation, it was discovered that Prosper, with examination number 4131271142, was one of about 120 candidates that sat for the May/June 2008 examination in his school. On 27th of September 2008 when the result was released, Prosper found out that out of eight subjects he registered for, Physics was marked “outstanding” while he did not sit for Economics and Geography and was correctly recorded to be absent. Two months after, exactly on November 20th, Prosper’s Physics was released and he later got his certificate through his school. However, the 25-year-old, who lamented the shame and troubles brought upon him by the new development, said the principal of his secondary school, Mr. Odijie Felix had followed him to the exam body’s zonal office in Benin where they were asked to write a letter to seek validation of the result. “We wrote the letter but about two weeks after, the officer- in-charge said there was
WAEC online statement of result now
Original certificate earlier issued to Prosper
little he could do and directed me to approach the headquarters office in Lagos. Unfortunately, when I approached the Lagos office the man I was directed to meet by the receptionists was not only hostile but hardly gave me any clue. “I had to hang around by sleeping in a school compound till the following day so as to see somebody who could tell me the way out. Again, I was directed to the same man who reluctantly told me that it could take months to get any official response. That was when I decided to approach National Mirror’s office because I read about a similar case it had resolved in the past,” Prosper explained. Now, Prosper is disturbed about the development. He said if urgent steps are not taken, his dream of becoming a geologist in few months could be shattered, “because only the ongoing ASUU strike has delayed the Senate’s decision to announce my ex-
pulsion from the university.” When National Mirror spoke with the principal of Diamond College, he expressed his surprise at what he called WAEC’s inconsistencies. He said another student, who sat for the same 2008 May/June exam and simply identified as Iwuoha Chiagozie with examination number 4131271134, had also approached the school for similar problem. “Chiagoze’s case is worse. His complete result was cancelled online, and we are not even informed in the school until the boy came around. So, we cannot tell how many students are affected now until they approach us,” the Principal told National Mirror. Similarly, another candidate, Eriata Jume Ruth, who sat for the same May/June 2008 exam at Eagle Secondary School, also in Benin City, is currently having trouble with her result certificate as it carries the passport photograph of a male candidate.
Ruth, with examination number 4131821125 said she discovered this error about a month ago when she attempted to secure her Ordinary National Diploma result from Delta State Polytechnic, Oghara, and approached WAEC’s Benin zonal office for her SSCE certificate as a requirement for the release of her OND result. “I was surprised to find a male photograph on my certificate,” she said, adding that she immediately complained at the WAEC office and was directed to liaise with the principal of her school. On getting to the school, it was discovered that the passport photograph belongs to another candidate, Ochei Nonso Francis with examination number 4131821291, who already has his certificate with his passport. In a telephone interview with National Mirror, Ruth’s former teacher and prinCONTINUED ON PAGE 22
Thursday, August 15, 2013
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LASU undergoing massive transforma When Prof. Oladapo Obafunwa resumed at the Lagos State University (LASU) Ojo, in November 2011, as its 6th Vice-Chancellor, he knew that he was in for a herculean task. Expectedly, the road has not been smooth, but the VC, in a recent midyear report, gave an account of his administration’s efforts to reposition the 30-year-old institution. MOJEED ALABI reports.
he story of the administration of Alhaji Lateef Jakande as the Governor of Lagos State cannot be told without a mention of the establishment of Lagos State University (LASU), Ojo. Founded in 1983 as the first and only stateowned ivory tower in the former British colony, LASU, according to Jakande, was for the advancement of learning and establishment of academic excellence. It was to provide the desired opportunity to the teeming population of youths, especially those bred through the provision of free primary and secondary education by the Jakande-led administration, who desired university education. True to its vision, the first one decade of its existence, according to stakeholders, proved LASU’s relevance to the attainment of this goal. Its multi-campus structure also provided the required opportunity for the vast population of workers in the state, who pursued one academic programme or the other at the school. However, following long years of misrule in the country, LASU was not an exception to the neglect suffered by virtually all sectors of Nigeria’s economy. With dwindling financial support base and lack of proper monitoring by the appropriate government authorities, the university steeply degenerated both in terms of its programmes and teaching/learning facilities. For example, the external system, created to raise fund for the smooth running of its affairs soon became another major albatross. To correct the wrongs and bring back the university to the right path required a leadership with firmness and strong aversion for corruption; the reason Governor Babatunde Fashola advanced for approving the appointment of Prof. Oladapo Obafunwa as the university’s 6th Vice-Chancellor. With the disaccreditation of 17 of its courses by the National Universities Commission (NUC); bastardisation of the external system; collapse of infrastructure, including lecture theatres and laboratories, and massive corruption allegedly being perpetrated by its officials, Obafunwa, the former two-time Provost of the university’s medical college, the then only surviving arm of the institution, knew the task ahead was not going to be smooth at all. On resumption in November, 2011, the Professor of Pathology and Forensic Medicine pledged his commitment to return the university to the path of honour through the provision of quality education, improved infrastructure, closure of all loopholes for fraud and corruption and provision of adequate security for staff and students of the institution. Today, and exactly 21 months after he took over the mantle of leadership at the university, Obafunwa, in a recent media briefing to intimate the public on the developments
on the campus, expressed his mixed feelings about the state of the university’s affairs, but with a strong belief that his administration has achieved much. “It must be stated clearly that when we assumed duty we inherited lots of liabilities with little or no asset at all. And it is on this basis that our progress report must be judged. We must understand very well that a child suffering from kwashiorkor cannot regain his strength by taking balanced diet for just a day,” Obafunwa said. First on the list of his achievements is the reaccreditation of 16 out of the 17 courses axed some years ago by the NUC including Law, Economics, among others. He said, in March this year, NUC gave the university a marching order to begin recruitment of admission of candidates for each of the 16 courses beginning in 2013/2014 academic session. Aside this, the VC spoke about the introduction of new academic programmes aimed at addressing contemporary challenges in the larger society and preparing students with the required skills to cope in the emerging labour markets. These he said, include the introduction of Aeronautic Engineering, Civil Engineering, Agricultural Science and Film and Cultural Studies, with the Governing Council’s approval of the schools of Agriculture, and Film, Performing Arts and Cultural Studies. If materialised, the university will become the first university to offer Aeronautic Engineering in the country, and towards achieving it, “we recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Nigerian Air Force, to establish and strengthen academic relationships and cooperation on Aerospace Engineering, Aerospace and Satellite Technology, Artificial Intelligence and Robotics, among others.” He also hinted that the university’s radio station would soon hit airwaves with the commitment of the contractor handling the project to deliver it within the next six months. “We have since been licensed by the Broadcasting Organisation of Nigeria and we believe this will help, in no small measure, in preparing our students for the life after university education.” About the perennial case of late release of results and certificates, the VC was proud to announce that virtually every student who graduated from the university during the last convocation in February and with updated profile now has his certificate already signed by him. “I signed certificates of students with 1994 matriculation number. And for the first time, our students who sat for their final examination had their results and certificates released and were enrolled for the National Youth Service Scheme programme,” he stated. So, to those who claim their results have not been processed, Obafunwa stated that larger percentage of them never attended
Main entrance to the university
One of the ongoing projects at the university
FOR THE FIRST TIME, OUR STUDENTS WHO SAT FOR THEIR FINAL EXAMINATION LAST YEAR HAD THEIR RESULTS AND CERTIFICATES RELEASED AND WERE ENROLLED FOR THE
YOUTH SERVICE SCHEME PROGRAMME
the institution as confirmed by verifications carried out, urging anyone having problem with his result to approach the appropriate quarters for appropriate action. Also, according to the VC, sanity is gradually returning to the university system with proper identification of its students and the elimination of the external system as ordered by the governor himself and in compliance with the directive from the NUC. “Today, it is a law on our campus that students and members of staff must wear their identity cards while on the campus and that no student is allowed entrance without a prove of studentship. And towards achieving that was the provision of identity cards
for the genuine students as against the usual tradition of the influx of touts and miscreants to the institution,” he stated. On the infrastructural challenge facing the institution, Obafunwa reiterated the fact that the main campus in Ojo, had since become a construction site with many new infrastructures springing up, and the repair of existing ones too. The recent facility tour by the leadership of the institution with journalists revealed the completion of the School of Transport Building; completion of the first phase of the seven-storey senate building and the four-storey central library; completion of the twin lecture theatre in the Faculty of
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Zuma reinforces need to educate girl child TUNBOSUN OGUNDARE
embers of the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS), Africa region have been advised to go to school and ensure they take their studies very seriously so as to become relevant to themselves and the society in future. The advice was given by the chairperson of the African Union Commission (AUC), Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma in her keynote address to the conference of WAGGS, Africa region, which is still on in Lagos. Speaking on the topic: “African young women: Soaring towards excellence,” Zuma said girls and young women needed to be educated and empowered for them to grow up to make meaningful contributions not only to their families and communities but also to the larger society. “It is also a known fact that education will give you opportunity to make
informed decisions and choices that can help move the society forward. So, you have no excuse for failure. I mean, it is not tenable to say you fail because of your sex,” she stressed. The AUC boss, who also advised the young girls to value their bodies, respect one another’s rights, equally warned them against the dangers of child marriage, teenage pregnancy, as well as HIV/ AIDS that could truncate their future. She promised that the African Union as an umbrella association for African countries would continue to pursue the course of girl-child education and development and that she would like the parents to invest in their wards irrespective of their sex to enable them become assets to the society. Zuma from South Africa said AU is much interested in seeing them becoming doctors, engineers, journalists, artisans, architects, farmers, pharmacists, miners, botanists, economists, lawyers, entrepreneurs, musicians and so on and move the continent to the next level.
Lagos urges students to imbibe Ramadan lessons
Vice Chancellor, Prof Oladapo Obafunwa (7th left) with other principal officers of the institution at the newly completed university’s School of Transport complex.
Law; refurbished three-in-one Faculty of Education Lecture Hall and Teslim Elias Law library. The work on the students’ union building was also almost completed with the new Faculty of Science Complex already completed and the site for that of Management Science identified. “It is good to note also that the location of our university is waterlogged and we are usually confronted with flooding but through the support of the Lagos State Government, we have been able to work on the drainages to achieve proper channelisation. “The networks of roads on the campus would have also been constructed but the ongoing massive construction works which make heavy duty trucks to ply the roads forced us to halt the process for now, and instead, work on the drainages while the construction companies help to carry out temporary resurfacing,” the VC explained. On the agitation from the members of the university’s chapter of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) for the payment of the arrears of their salary incre-
ment, Obafunwa explained that 20 per cent of the money had already been paid and that the details of how the rest would be paid was being ironed out with the university’s treasury department. “Let me re-emphasise that LASU is not paying salaries in arrears. What we are paying is the arrears of an increment granted to staff some years ago. The university has continued to pay the new salary when due, and we shall not renege on this,” he further explained. The VC listed other welfare packages to include on-the-job trainings of workers, encouragement of research works by lecturers with approval of research grants, among others. While Obafunwa insisted that the efforts made so far are already yielding good results, he also acknowledged the fact that building LASU of his dream cannot be achieved in a hurry. He appealed to all stakeholders including the workers’ unions, students, parents and government to join hands to actualise the vision of the founding fathers of the university.
he Lagos State Government has advised students in the public schools across the state who are Muslims and observed the recently concluded Ramadan fast to continue to imbibe the good habit and teaching they were taught and exhibited during the one month spiritual exercise. The state Commissioner for Education, Mrs. Olayinka Oladunjoye gave the advice when the ministry hosted the public school students in the state to this year’s Ramadan lecture, tagged: “Importance of Lailat-ul- Quadri,” at the state secretariat, Alausa, Ikeja, last week. The commissioner, represented by the Assistant Director in the Policy, Planning, Research and Statistics Department of the ministry, Mrs. Azeezat Grillo said the importance of Ramadan and Lailat-UlQuadri to the youths in particular could not be over emphasized, thus, the need for students to continue doing good and be tolerance of one another irrespective of
religious beliefs and practice. Urging them to take their studies seriously so as to be able to become relevant to themselves and the society in future, Oladunjoye said there should not depart She also wished them all the best in their academic works and pray Allah to shower them with all the benefits in fasting period. On his part, the guest lecturer and Director of Finance and Administration in the Ministry of Youths, Sports and Social Development, Mr. Bashir Braimoh, advised the students to always remember Allah in whatever step they are about to take in life. He noted that it was when they do that in prayers and supplication that the almighty Allah would guide them in their daily activities. “I will also this medium to appeal to parents to ensure they train their wards on all issues including their mode of dressings to reflect the true doctrine of Islam,” he concluded.
‘ASUU strike, threat to national security’ JAMES ABRAHAM JOS
resident of the Student Union Government (SUG) , University of Jos, Plateau State, Ajik Magaji, has said the prolonged strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) is a threat to national security. He told National Mirror in Jos that the industrial action made students to take to crime and social vices thereby endangering the future of the nation. “As the adage says; an idle man is the devil’s workshop, so is an idle student. The current security challenges facing the country will be worse if students continue to stay at home,’’ he said. Magaji noted that students had become ready tools in the hands of evil
people who do not wish the nation well because of the continuous closure of schools. According to him, many students had died because of `aimless journeys’ from one part of the country to another in absence of their class works. ``There are also increases in the cases on early pregnancies among the female students for lack of something serious to do,’’ he alleged. The student leader wondered why the Federal Government had reneged to honour the agreement it entered into with ASUU since 2009. ``The Federal Government and ASUU should look for a way of resolving the issues so that the students will return to class and acquire the education they need to contribute for the development of the nation,’’ he advised.
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Implement 27.5% Teachers’ Peculiar Allowance, Rep tells states TUNBOSUN OGUNDARE
he Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Education, Hon. Aminu Suleiman, has declared that there was no excuse for any state in the country for not implementing the 27.5% Teachers’ Peculiar Allowance. He stated this in a chat with
Be change agents, Fashola tells corps members
National Mirror in Lagos shortly after the National Examination Council’s (NECO) stakeholders’ forum recently. The lawmaker representing a Federal Constituency in Kano State, said it was very surprising and disturbing to hear some state governments saying they have no financial muscle to accommodate the 27.5 per cent Teachers’ Peculiar Allowances in their budgets. He said although, the issue was beyond the purview of the National Assembly, there is no
state government in the country that should not be able to pay the allowance. The reason, he said, was because the payment of the allowance is a voluntary contractual agreement between the teachers in public schools and their respective state governments. “For example, I work closely with the school trade unions and I remember when the agreement was reached between the two parties in 2010. I was also a part of the tripartite meetings involv-
ing the Governors’ Forum and the National Union of Teachers (NUT). I represented the National Assembly at the meeting and the agreement about the allowance was reached and sealed. So, I don’t see reason whatsoever for any state to refuse implementation of the agreement. That is why I will use this medium to implore states which are yet to implement the full payment of the allowance to do so in the interest of the education sector and the nation’s economy,” he said.
he Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babatunde Fashola has urged the ‘Batch B’ corps members of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) deployed to Lagos State to be the change agents for the positive turnaround of the country. Speaking at the ceremony to round off their three weeks orientation course at the Orientation Camp, Iyana, Ipaja, Lagos recently, the governor said the involvement of youth corps members in the development of the country had over the years proved to be a rewarding exercise. Fashola, represented by the state’s Commissioner for Special Duties, Dr. Wale Ahmed, attributed the achievement recorded so far through the scheme to vibrancy, energy and resourcefulness demonstrated by successive corps members since the commencement of the programme. Charging employers of corps members and residents in the state to throw their total support behind the scheme, the governor also urged the serving corps members to be law abiding wherever they find themselves. In her address, the state’s coordinator of the scheme, Mrs. Adenike Adeyemi expressed appreciation to the state government and other collaborating organisations for their supports while urging the corps members to take their primary assignments very seriously so as to ensure that their service year contributes meaningfully to the development of the state and the entire country.
L-R: President, National Postgraduate Medical College of Nigeria, Prof. Victor Wakwe, Chairman, Local Organising Committee, 8th Annual Scientific Conference and All Fellows’ Congress of the college, Prof. Olusegun Ojo and College Registrar, Prof. Wole Atoyebi at a press briefing to kick- start the ongoing scientific conference at the Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospital Complex, Ile-Ife, Osun State on Tuesday
OOU lecturers want VC sacked FEMI OYEWESO ABEOKUTA
ecturers at Olabisi Onabanjo University (OOU), Ago-Iwoye, Ogun State have demanded for the immediate sack of the Vice-Chancellor of the institution, Prof. Saburi Adesanya. The lecturers, who accused the visitor to the university, Gov. Ibikunle Amosun of violating the constitutional provision guiding the appointment of a VC before confirming Adesanya’s appointment as the substantive
Vice Chancellor of the institution asked the governor to reverse the decision otherwise the university would have it rough with the lecturers. Rising from its congress in Ago –Iwoye, ASUU’s chairman in the institution, Dr. Adesola Nasir alleged that the emergence of Professor Saburi as the Vice Chancellor did not receive the blessing of the Joint Committee of Senate and the Governing Council of the institution, hence, the need to reverse the appointment. According to him, VC cannot
head the Senate, which awards degrees on behalf of the university. So, there is already abnormality in OOU system if the VC is also the one heading the Senate. OOU’s ASUU does not see how such arrangement can work. That is why whatever reason used in appointing him should have followed due process. “Therefore, if the state government fails to reverse his appointment, which of course, OOU’s ASUU expects that it will, the university should prepare for crisis until the right thing is done,” he concluded.
‘Private sector involvement in education necessary’ HAKEEM GBADAMOSI AKURE
he Ondo State government has said the state would always welcome the participation of private sector in funding education in the state in order to achieve optimum result in the sector. The state governor, Dr. Oluse-
gun Mimiko stated this in Ile Oluji/ Okeigbo Local Government area of the state during the inauguration of the distribution of free educational materials to students of the area and the free holiday coaching organised for them by a member of the House of Representatives, Johnson Adeoba representing Ile Oluji/ Okeigbo Federal Con-
stituency. The governor, who was represented by the state Commissioner for Education, Jide Adejuyigbe said the recent development in the state had shown that government investment needed to be complemented by private individuals and corporate bodies to revamp the ailing education sector in the
state. Also speaking, Adeoba disclosed that more than 6, 000 students in the senior class were expected to benefit from the free holiday coaching, stressing that the programme, third in the series, was to prepare the students ahead of the next academic session and the school certificate examination.
97 for PZ Chemistry quiz semi-final
total of 97 secondary school students in Lagos State have qualified for the second stage of the ongoing PZ Cussons Chemistry quiz competition. Disclosing this, the advisory board chairman of the competition, Prof. Oladele Osibanjo said the number were those who scored 68 per cent and above in the first stage of the competition held across the state recently. Osibanjo, a Professor of Analytical and Environmental Chemistry said a date for the second stage would soon be announced while only the best four from the round would get to the final stage. He explained that 49 out of the number are students of public schools with Baptist Academy, Obanikoro; Egan Senior Grammar School; Central Senior High School; Federal Government College, Ijanikin and Festac Senior College had two candidates each. PZ Chemistry Challenge, an initiative of PZ Cussons Foundation, the corporate social responsibility arm of PZ Cussons Nigeria Plc, is a three-stage competition for Chemistry students in the first two years of senior secondary school education in the country. This year’s edition, which is the inaugural version, is restricted to students in Lagos State with the hope of extending to other states in later years. While the overall winner would go home with N700,000 worth of scholarship, a laptop and gold medal, his or her teacher would get N100,000 cash prize and the school would be presented with N100,000 worth of Chemistry books.
Again, WAEC cancels candidates’ results five years after CONTINUED FROM 19 cipal, Mr. Aghayirinemwri Oyi, said the error could not have been from the school because the two candidates wrote the exams and never had any issue throughout the time the examination lasted. Reacting to the series of questions raised, the Head of the Nigeria’s Office, WAEC, Mr. Charles Iguridu, said the development was an unfortunate one. He, however, noted that the council would not just cancel results or subjects of any candidate that had earlier been released without a reason. But even at that, he said he could not say for now why the results in contention were cancelled and promised that the council would investigate the matter for necessary action.
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Science education without functional laboratories Education T as I see it he government of Nigeria places a lot of emphasis on science education which is the bedrock of technological development. The establishment of science and technology based colleges and faculties in every university and the introduction of specialized universities of Science and Technology by both federal and state governments lend credence to this perception. However Nigeria has not experienced the expected breakthroughs in technological development. The reason I guess is the absence of functional laboratories! In the first place, there are not enough laboratory spaces to support meaningful investigations and training. Laboratories intended for thirty may be jam-packed with over one hundred students during practical classes or individual research projects. The metabolic activities of the human occupants alone could sufficiently compromise the controlled environment of the laboratory to prevent meaningful deductions from being made from the results obtained from such facilities. Apart from space, there is dearth of equipment in most Nigerian university laboratories. Even the most basic of equipment that may qualify a facility to be described as a laboratory may be absent. Advance laboratory equipment that would facilitate middle and advanced level investigations may simply not be available. When these advance pieces of equipment are secured by some institutions, they may remain non-functional because of insufficient power to operate them. The most constant features of many science laboratories in Nigeria are dilapidated workbenches littered with unserviceable equipment.
Another problem in the “Life” and “Chemical” sciences is the acute shortage of consumables which require regular replenishing for the day-to-day operation of the laboratories. Insufficient funding is the most common cause of shortage of consumables since they need to be replaced as they are used up. Inadequate planning and misplacement of priorities may also contribute to shortfalls in the supply of consumables. But by far, the most important impediment to the operation of a standard laboratory in Nigeria is the absence of dependable power supply. This impedes the conduct of routine practical classes as well as research projects. Power supply from the public utility company the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) is totally unreliable notwithstanding the widely reported improvements in power generation and distribution. The situation has been so bad in Port Harcourt that the University of Port Harcourt has been literarily in the dark since the beginning of the year. As a result, the backup power supply of the university has been severely overstretched and subject to frequent breakdowns. And when the power supply is restored, it is most often erratic and poorly regulated, dam-
by Tosanwumi Otokunefor
firstname.lastname@example.org 08030904461 (email/SMS only)
aging the few pieces of sensitive equipment that the institution has managed to procure. This is a common feature of many government owned institutions nationwide. Right now, basic research activity at our tertiary institutions is virtually at a standstill. It is practically impossible to train scientists and carryout meaningful research in laboratories in the absence of laboratory space, equipment, consumables or predictable power supply. Many of our science graduates do not have sufficient grasp of the theoretical aspects of their course content and little or no practical exposure at all. The fallouts of these incongruous situations are science teachers who cannot conduct simple practical classes in our secondary schools and laboratory scientists who cannot differentiate between malaria and typhoid fever in our hospitals. But contrary to expectations, record numbers of science professors have con-
WE WOULD DEFINITELY BE GOING NOWHERE IN OUR SEARCH FOR TECHNOLOGICAL BREAKTHROUGHS IF WE CONTINUE TO PLAY POLITICS WITH OUR TERTIARY INSTITUTIONS AND PAY LIP SERVICE TO THE DEVELOPMENT OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY EDUCATION
AOCOED donates computers to police TUNBOSUN OGUNDARE
he Adeniran Ogunsanya College of Education (AOCOED), Otto/Ijanikin, Lagos, has donated some office equipment, including computers, printer and photocopier to the Ijanikin Police Division under the Lagos State Police Command. Presenting the equipment, the Provost of the institution, Mr. Bashorun Olalekan Wasiu said the gesture was in line with the corporate social responsibility policy of the college. He noted that aside the production of quality manpower particularly for teaching profession in the country, AOCOED is also known over the years for promoting quality services in some government institutions that are directly beneficial to the society. He said the donation of the equipment to the police were to assist the security formation in providing quality service to the people of Otto/Ijanikin and its environs. He promised for more support and cooperation on is-
sues that can help men and officers of the police division to improve on their performances. According to him, the college was always in the past supported the course of the public in the college’s environment through its various programmes. For example, he said, the
College Medical Centre does not only provide medical services to its students and members of staff but also to members of the public within the Badagry corridor. Expressing appreciation, the officer in charge of the division, represented by Mr. Clement Atere, an Assistant Superintendent of Police thanked the
college management for the donation, saying the equipment would help the formation in no small measure in its activities. He promised to ensure that the equipment would be put to good use and that the police would also continue to support the college on security issues both in peace and emergency periods.
L-R: Registrar, Adeniran Ogunsanya College Of Education (AOCOED), Otto/Ijanikin, Lagos State, Mr. Bola Disu; Provost, Mr. Bashorun Wasiu and representative of Ijanikin Police Division, Mr. Clement Atere during the presentation of office equipment by the college to the police formation, recently.
tinued to emerge from these ramshackle laboratories and sometimes in record time also. They in turn have continued to churn out first class graduates and doctorate degree holders, raising serious questions about the quality of their products. Things have not always been so bad! With the power of hindsight, I can say categorically that the post independence era may remain the best years for Nigerian scientists for a long time. I can testify of a time in the early seventies to the nineties when NEPA was more reliable and the backup power supply at our universities more dependable. Then the product of the universities and other tertiary institutions were found competent in their areas of specialisation. Now everything seems to have fallen apart. We would definitely be going nowhere in our search for technological breakthroughs if we continue to play politics with our tertiary institutions and pay lip service to the development of science and technology education. Our laboratories are more than ever before now in dire need of equipment and supplies but even much more in need of a reliable power supply. Laboratories can maximise their lean resources and supplies if they are at least provided with reliable power supply. This will at least permit basic research activities and allow training of the next generation of scientists. The Goodluck Jonathan administration can reverse this situation by providing dedicated power supply to all federal universities in Nigeria beginning with the University of Port Harcourt from where he earned all his academic qualifications. For as the popular saying goes, charity begins at home.
Proprietor urges graduands to excel MOJEED ALABI
he Proprietor of Knoxfield Comprehensive College, Ijoko, Sango, Ogun State, Mr. Olugbenga Ola, has advised the students of the school not to lose focus in their desire to achieve greatness in life. The proprietor made this appeal recently during the school’s 10th graduation ceremony which featured exhibition of talents and creative works by the students. He said the excellence achieved by the school was as a result of many years of hard work and honesty and support of management and staff of the school, urging the students to view their graduation as the beginning of their journey to excellence. The school’s Head Girl, Rebecca Oluwatobi, who hoped to become a journalist in future, thanked the school management for instilling the culture of discipline and commitment to work in them. She promised to remain a good ambassador to the school and the country by extension. During the exhibition, guests were honoured with various artistic presentations, including drama, choreography, musical rendition, among several others. The Head Boy of the school, Akeju Ganiy, who spoke on behalf of his colleagues, thanked both the school management and their parents for investing in them, promising to contribute their quotas to return Nigeria to the path of greatness.
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UNILAG condoles with Fashola over father’s death OLAONIPEKUN AWEDA
Some of the students staging campaign against drug abuse during their visit to the university recently
Ex-drug addicts share experiences at Redeemer’s varsity OLAONIPEKUN AWEDA
t was another moment of truth and open testimonies at the Redeemer’s University, Redemption Camp, Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, Mowe, Ogun State, recently, when some students of the ivory tower earlier convicted of drug addiction but rehabilitated by the institution visited the university community
he Management of Bells University of Technology (BELLSTECH), Ota, Ogun State, has expressed its satisfaction at the result of the recent programme accreditation exercise carried out by the National Universities Commission (NUC). According to the official release from NUC, all the 18 programmes presented for accreditation in the university scaled through the critical assessments as adjudged by its team of experts and assessors. The university’s Vice-
to share their experience with their colleagues. The students, who were 10 in number, participated in the university’s programme tagged: “Recovery of Destiny (ROD),” and initiated in partnership with Christ Against Drug Abuse Ministry (CADAM). The initiative, according to the university’s ViceChancellor, Prof. Gbadebo Adeyewa, was aimed at
giving second chance to those he described as errant students and save them from the destructive power of hard drugs. One of the students, Dimeji Adebo, who said he had realised the danger drug could constitute to one’s life, noted that he was ready and committed to contribute meaningfully to any form of sensitization programmes targeted at curbing others from tak-
ing to drugs. He advised his former mates and friends not to attempt taking drugs or committing any other offence that may alter their future plans. Others, who also shared their experiences while at the rehabilitation home, narrated how they met rich people that drugs had turned to destitute. They said through constant reading of the holy
bible and other series of life changing programmes they went through at the camp, they had seen the good side of life without drug. In his response, the VC said their life-changing testimonies, had justified the decision to introduce the programme. He commended CADAM for the great work and promised the continuous support of the university.
he Management of the University of Lagos (UNILAG), Akoka, led by the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Rahamon Bello, had last Wednesday, paid a condolence visit to the Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, SAN, following the demise of his father, Pa Ibrahim Ademola Fashola. The VC, who on behalf of the members of the university community commiserated with the governor and the entire Fashola family, noted that the governor’s effective leadership skills were a reflection of the late Pa Fashola who he said lived a simple life. “It is on record that Pa Fashola was a man well loved by the high and low because of his humility, kindness and warm nature. These attributes are also the qualities that our amiable governor displays and which the University of Lagos has greatly benefitted from especially in recent years. We pray that the good legacies left behind by this great man of integrity will continue to wax stronger,” Bello said. In his response, Governor Fashola expressed deep appreciation to the VC and his delegation and pledged the commitment of the family to continue towing the path of their late father who he described as a hero.
BELLSTECH records 100% course accreditation Chancellor, Prof. Isaac Adeyemi, who commended the staff and students of the institution for their cooperation and support, said the new feat has only further put before them additional task of keeping the university’s flag flying. He enjoined both the lecturers and the students to embark on research works that could change could address contemporary challenges facing man, as a way of putting the university on the global scene. He pledged the support
of the institution for anyone carrying out on major unique projects that could transform lives, while maintaining the fact that as the first private university of technology in the country, BELLSTECH would produce Nobel Laureates in sciences. The university’s accredited programmes include Biomedical Engineering, Computer Engineering, Mecha-tronics Engineering, Electrical/Electronic Engineering, Telecommunications Engineering, Urban and Regional Planning and Mechanical
Engineering. Others are Accounting, Banking and Finance, Business Admin-
istration, Management Technology, Nutrition and Dietetics, Architecture,
Building Technology, Estate Management, and Quantity Surveying.
Vice-Chancellor, Bells University of Technology, Ota, Prof. Isaac Adeyemi (left) and his counterpart at Achievers University, Owo, Ondo State, Prof. Adebayo Odebiyi during a meeting of the Association of Vice-Chancellors and Registrars of Private Universities in Nigeria, recently.
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Thursday, August 15, 2013
Elizade varsity boosts students’ entrepreneurship skills TUNBOSUN OGUNDARE
lizade University, Ilara-Mokin, Ondo State has partnered a United States-based educational training systems company, CES Industries Incorporated. The partnership, according to the university’s ViceChancellor, Prof. Valentine Aletor, is to further inculcating the entrepreneurial spirit in the minds of students of the university, who will be specially trained on some skills that will make them self-reliant and employers of labour after
graduation . The VC said the collaboration was in line with the mission of the university and noted that once the students are skillful on particular trades while they are still in school, they will be self-employed after graduation rather than to be looking for the non-existing jobs elsewhere. He added that the overriding objective of the university was to produce graduates that would be competing favourably with their counterparts globally. Speaking during the visit to the university recently, the President of the
partnering Industries, Dr. Mitchell Nesenoff said the unemployment in Nigeria could not be tackled by establishing more industries alone, but also by giving entrepreneurial-oriented education to the youths. Mitchell maintained that Nigeria might continue to experience brain drain if
graduates of tertiary institutions in the country are not equipped with relevant entrepreneurial skills in the course of their studies. Noting that Nigerians’ craze for foreign education could only be tackled by developing the nation’s education Sector, Mitchell stressed the need for Nige-
rian universities to focus more on practical aspect of students’ disciplines that can place them side-by-side with their counterparts globally. He noted that his organisation was ready to train the students of the university on satellite communications system, microproces-
sor module, digital systems, cable and wireless system, electronic CAI software, computer aided design, air conditioning and refrigeration, GSM/ cell phone repairs among others. The goal, he said, was to ensure that these students are equipped for future challenges.
Ondo students want bursary increased HEKEEM GBADAMOSI AKURE
tudents in tertiary institutions across the country, who are indigenes of Ondo State, have appealed to the state government to increase the bursary allowance being paid to them annually by the state government. The new president of the National Association of Ondo State Students (NAOSS), Mr. Awodola Afolayan made this appeal during the inauguration of the new officers for the association last weekend. Afolayan said the amount being paid to them as bursary by the state government could no longer cater for their needs as a result of the current high inflation rate in the country. He specifically asked that
the bursary be increased from N10, 000 to N25, 000 so to assist them in meeting their pressing needs. The students’ leader said such increment would also help their poor parents meeting financial commitments other than the payment of school fess of their wards. Speaking earlier, the outgoing president of the association, Mr. Victor Oguntoyinbo commended the state government, particularly on the mega schools built across the 18 local government council areas of the state, saying it was a welcome development. He however, appealed to the governor to continue giving the education sector a right priority that can help move the state to the next level.
Members of Management, Elizade University, Ilara-Mokin with the President, CES Industries Incorporated, United States, Dr. Mitchell Nesenoff (2nd left) and his team during their visit to the institution recently.
FUTMINNA, IBB varsity students protest ASUU strike
he ongoing nationwide protest over the strike embarked upon by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) may hit Niger State next week as students of the Federal University of Technology (FUT), Minna, Niger State, and their counterparts from Ibrahim Babangida Uni-
versity, Lapai, also in Niger State, plan to stage a protest over the development. In a telephone chat with National Mirror, the FUTMINNA Students’ Union President, Salami Taye, said efforts were in top gear to mobilize both students and members of the public to protest the refusal of
the Federal Government to honour an agreement he said was willingly entered into with the striking lecturers in 2009. Taye, who condemned the action of the Federal Government for allowing the matter to degenerate, said it was the responsibility of the students to protect their future against what he termed
the resolve of the present crop of Nigerian leaders to destroy the country’s fortunes. He advised the Federal Government to consider the fate of millions of Nigerians who he said are affected by the strike including those artisans and traders who he said earn their livings on the campuses.
rom time immemorial, the issue of sex education among children and adolescents in African countries, particularly Nigeria has remained a taboo. Although, sex is a natural developmental process, many parents, as well as cultures and societies frown at discussing about sexual relationship with their minors because it is perceived as a forbidden thing. Most parents think that issue of sex education is not relevant to their children. Those in that school
Sex education, necessary for youths of thought believe that once you are not adults, you don’t have any business talking about sex. But they forget the fact that the world itself is becoming modernised everyday with the advent of technology. Without destroying the fabric of the society, it is imperative, in my candid opinion, to teach young people about sex education in a way that will not only reflect the values of the family and society, but also enhance sustainability of a balanced culture. Although sex is primordial, it is fundamental and
natural for every man and woman, except for religious beliefs to engage in for number reasons. Nevertheless, one thing is certain. If parents refuse to educate their children on sex-related issues, they will definitely learn it from other people, peer group or tools of mass media. Sex education is important as a developmental process in the life of a child with the tools to understand him/herself better in relation to the immediate environment and what can come up from such interactions. This is to say
that such interactions will improve the knowledge of such youths that will enable them protect themselves, especially from sexual exploitation. Sex education also provides young people with the information they need to understand their bodies, the dangers involved in engaging in sex before marriage, humanity, reproductive rights and body development such as puberty, menopause and aging. Humans are curious animals and young people are exploratory and like expressing their intrinsic
curiosity. Peer pressure and media are enormous influence in the lives of the so-called new generation, and if we do not teach the youths about the subject matter, somehow they will learn in a way that may have devastating consequences. This is because investigations have shown that one of the greatest problems facing young people in the country today is low level of awareness about sex, as well as it importance and consequences. So, sex education can also help the society guid-
ing against, sex abuse, unprepared pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases including HIV/AIDS which are now rampant among the youth globally with it dare consequences on the economy. We should not forget that children of today will grow up to become leaders tomorrow and when such segment of the society are not enlightened and educated on the good way to use and keep their bodies, the society will suffer for it in future. Gasmis is a student of Mass Communication, University of Maiduguri, Borno State.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
‘Condole’, unlike ‘console’, mandatorily takes ‘with’
AILY SUN of July 24 welcomes us this day with a sub-headline goof: “Gloom at home of First Lady’s mum… Bayelsa govt condoles family” The state government condoled with or consoled the family. “12 months (months’) free internet” (Full-page advertisement as published in the above medium by glo Unlimited) “Oduduwa University post UTME (post-UTME) screening exercise for 2013/2014” The citadel of learning does not need ‘exercise’ in this advertisement published in THE GUARDIAN of July 23. Still on the above: “Candidates who choose Polytechnics or Colleges of Education could (can) also apply” or Candidates who chose polytechnics or colleges of education could also apply.” There is harmony in collocation. The Guardian of July 16 carried diseased advertorials, headlines and sentences: “Nigeria rules out handling (handing) over Al-Bashir to ICC” “Gov Aregbesola’s flood control (flood-control) measures” “…we are delighted to have midwifed (sic) this game change (game-change) project.”
“South South & South East Traditional Rulers (Rulers’) Forum” “Please, take note that after 15 days of this notice, unclaimed products would be disposed off (of).” “The Management and Staff of Julius Berger Nigeria PLC felicitates (felicitate) with….” The PUNCH Back Page Friday Musings of July 12 committed an unusual blunder: “When was the last time any political office holder resigned their appointment on the ground (grounds) of public opprobrium?” “The ICAN Ikeja District Society July-September 2013 Training Calender” (Half-page advertisement, THE GUARDIAN, July 9) Spell-check: calendar
FROM MY MAILBOX “Regardless of the un-abating disregard, if not for conceited nonrecognition of your (and Bayo Oguntunase’s) modest effort at bringing people back to the path of syntactical and morphological sanity week in week out, your journalist colleagues remain obstinately incorrigible. It is howlers galore! If it is not ‘flagging off’, it is ‘commissioning’! All in the wrong contexts:
IF IT IS NOT ‘FLAGGING OFF’, IT IS
‘COMMISSIONING’! ALL IN THE WRONG CONTEXTS do not let the flag go down. There are many out there, especially teachers of the English language, who avail themselves of your weekly contributions. Do not be dissuaded. Stay blessed.” (Folorunso Babafemi/Babfranc Educational Services/Ilesa/08133197524) “Mark you, ‘shorthand for something’ is a phrasal idiom, hence ‘telly’ is shorthand for television, ‘fan’ is shorthand for fanatic, ‘uplift’ is shorthand for upliftment, ‘hive’ is shorthand for beehive, etc. ‘Upliftment’, like ‘uplifter’, has gained currency.” (Bayo Oguntunase/08029442508) “‘There is no country like Nigeria’ means that Nigeria is a figment of the imagination, whereas what is meant is that there is no other country like Nigeria.” (Jacob Oluyemi/08104036139) “Ebere, I told you in our telephone discussion, months ago,
that some Nigerians would want to defend the spurious use of local coinages and expressions like ‘upliftment’, ‘project commissioning’, ‘the governor gave the charge…’, ‘school run’ and ‘challenges’ in the face of huge socio-economic problems etc. Even the U.S. and European countries admit their problems! Ebere, please they may not understand and appreciate the value of your uncommon research effort in the practice of journalism in Nigeria. We used to say ‘news break’, but today it’s ‘breaking news’. That’s the dynamic nature of journalism that Ebere is attempting to signalize. “The ignorance persists because journalism teachers and Heads of News in NTA and FRCN are unable to follow these changes over time. Apart from misleading and indoctrinating the public, they continue to pollute the standard and vibrancy of the profession. This problem is a challenge to the NUJ. Imagine the flagship of radio broadcasting in Nigeria still refers to all her reporters as ’correspondents’ instead of differentiating them as we have today! Therefore, the NUJ should come out with a well-researched or well-grounded professional journal to give direc-
tion and ensure an acceptable standard. It can start off with quarterly publications. Ebere, please do not be discouraged. Keep it up!” (Sunny Agbontaen/08062998165) This paragraph was contributed by Mr. Kola Danisa (07059188542): “…high tension wires fell off and electrocuted people to death….” What is electrocution? Kindly yank off ‘to death’! “The party chairman left for the Abuja Airport en route (from where to) Yola” (Both errors were extracted from THE NATION ON SUNDAY, July 14) “Nigeria’s President Goodluck arrives (in) Beijing, meets President XI Jinping Wednesday.” (NTA News Scroll, July 9) ‘Arrive’ is not a transitive verb, so it cannot have ‘Beijing’ as object. Your readers cherish your competence in the use of modern English, not the brand consigned to the Dark Ages as noted in your response to the selfstyled 75-year-old language activist, Bayo Oguntunase. He insulted us (Wordsworth readers) by saying ‘look them up in the Desk Dico. Not listed in POCKET Dico’. He once claimed to have ‘about 12 dictionaries’. I told him sound editors do not approximate countable things (at least or no fewer than, yes). He did not acknowledge his blunder.”
Don blames education woes on poor funding, strikes Don’t give up, head boy OLAONIPEKUN AWEDA
lecturer at the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH), Ogbomoso, Oyo State, Prof. Nasir Tanimowo has said poor funding and incessant strikes by categories of workers in
tertiary institutions in the country had become strong impediments to the development of the education sector in the country. He said unless these challenges are tackled, the country would continue to produce half-baked graduates. The don stated this while delivering a paper titled:
“Education today in Nigeria,” during the end of the year/prize giving day ceremony of the Best Legacy International School, Awe, Oyo State, recently. Blaming high rate of illiteracy and low productivity on the government instability and policy summersault, Prof. Tanimowo said the
country would need to do something fast to address the situation in the interest of development. Speaking earlier, the Proprietress of the institution, Dr. O.Y. Giwa congratulated the graduands and urged them to be determined and committed to succeed as they further their studies.
Graduating students of Best Legacy International School, Awe, Oyo State during their graduation ceremony recently.
advises mates MOJEED ALABI
t was a good display of oration and sound leadership quality at this year’s annual end of year ceremony of Osun Baptist Conference Nursery and Primary School, Osogbo, Osun State, as the school’s Head Boy, Oguntola Abdul-Salam took charge to advise his schoolmates to continue to pursue excellence when they resume to their various preferred secondary schools. Abdul-Salam, who narrated the story of escape attempts of two frogs to illustrate his message, said there would always be trials in life but that giving up could not be the best alternative. “My dear colleagues, we must continue to face our studies as we proceed to our respective secondary schools and embrace
good virtues already instilled in us by our teachers. We must also learn from the story of two frogs, who fell into a basin of butter cream and struggled to leap to freedom but the more they tried, the creamier the butter became and kept holding them back. “So, one of the frogs to the other; ‘No use trying anymore, we will never get out alive.’ So it stopped trying and gave up. But the second frog never looked back, but answered his colleague; ‘Oh, I will keep trying.’ It kept trying and fortunately, it hit a hard butter, leapt onto it and escaped to freedom,” Abdul-Salam narrated. On his part, the School Manager, Mr. Olakunle Paul, enjoined the parents to keep guiding the steps of their wards to ensure a better future for them and the country as a whole.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Arsenal are a good side and they have managed to produce a good team year in, year out -Galatasaray striker, Didier Drogba
DStv B’ball League: Union Bank, Pillars await Final Four clash 30
Omeruo undergoes shoulder surgery
Enyimba FC is among the semi-finalists
Fed Cup: Lagos holds men, women’s finals Sept. 15 EVEREST ONYEWUCHI
he Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) and Host City, Lagos, agreed yesterday to hold the grand finale of this year’s Men and Women Federation Cup competitions on Sunday, September 15, 2013. NFF said in a statement yesterday that the agreement was reached at a meeting held at the NFF Secretariat, Abuja, where both parties also agreed on a number of programmes that will add glamour and essence to the grand finale, which will, for the first time, see the women’s event also concluded same day. NFF’s Director of Competitions, Dr. Mohammed Sanusi, who chaired the meeting, said both the Federation and Lagos State Government harmonised their proposals on several areas such as ticketing, marketing and sponsorship; media and publicity; security and crowd control; transport; prize monies; events and programmes; medical; parade of stars and; ceremonies on the final day. “We discussed at length on several matters and came to unanimous agreement on most of the issues. You know that both the NFF and Lagos State government have been pre-occupied with the objective of bringing back the glamour of the Federation Cup,” NFF spokesman, Ademola Olajire, quoted Sanusi.
…semi-finals on August 21 Most Valuable Player and Top Scorer in the two competitions. Also at the meeting were NFF’s Director of Marketing, Mr. Idris Adama; Assistant Director (Media), Olajire; Head of Marketing, Mr. Alizor Chuks; Mrs. Oluyomi Oluwasanmi, special assistant to Lagos State Commissioner for Youth and Sports and Mr. Dotun Coker, member of the board of Lagos State Football Association. The semi final-matches of both the men and women Federation Cup competitions will take place on Wednesday, August 21. In the men’s event, Enyimba FC tackles Lobi Stars in Benin City, while Warri Wolves are up against Akwa United in Bauchi. In the women’s, Rivers Angels are up against Pelican Stars in Abuja while Nasarawa Amazons tackle Bayelsa Queens in AdoEkiti.
“We are all working towards the same noble goal of making the Federation Cup bigger and better, and the meeting of the Main Organising Committee of the grand finale will harmonise all areas and ensure that we have magnificent organisation this year.” The grand finale will now come up on Sunday, 15th September, with the Women Final starting at 1.30pm and the Men’s Final kicking off at 4pm. Presentation of medals for both events will take place after the Men’s Final. A trophy tour to selected media houses and some NFF partners within Lagos State, designed to sensitise the world about the grand finale, will take place days before the event. A meeting of the Main Organising Committee (MOC) will also take place on Friday, 13th September, 48 hours before the grand finale. Both parties also agreed on prize monies for the Winner, Runner-up,
Semi-final fixtures Men Benin:
igeria international, Kenneth Omeruo, has undergone a keyhole surgery for a shoulder problem at a Chelsea private clinic in London. His adviser, Chika Conleth Akujobi, told MTNFootball. com: “Kenneth has undergone surgery for his shoulder problem today (Wednesday). “I spoke to him before he went into the theatre, he’s in good hands because that is one of the best hospitals for such surgery.” The player’s shoulder pulled out during the FIFA Confederations Cup in Brazil and it relapsed during training at Chelsea recently. Omeruo will now be sidelined for at least eight weeks, meaning he will miss next month’s 2014 World Cup qualifier at home to Malawi and
Di Matteo returns to coaching next year
x-Chelsea manager, Roberto Di Matteo, says he will return to football management in at least a year’s time. The 2012 FA Cup and Champions League winning manager with Chelsea was in Kampala, Uganda on Tuesday to launch a new fantasy game dubbed the ‘Guinness Football Manager’ and share his skills with local coaches. Despite winning the London club’s first ever and only Champions League title, Di Matteo, who replaced his former boss, Andre Villas Boas (AVB), was relieved of his duties by Chelsea owner, Roman Abramovic. The 43-year-old is, however, not about to go job hunting soon. “Of course I’m now looking forward to winning many more things ahead,” said the former Lazio and Chelsea midfielder. “But I’m gonna take this year off. I’ve received many offers but I have to take a
he could also miss even the final qualifying fixtures should Nigeria advance to that stage. Omeruo has returned to Chelsea after a loan spell at Dutch club ADO Den Haag. Manager Jose Mourinho is expected to take a decision on the 19-year-old central defender, whether to let him go on a loan deal in England or stay at Stamford Bridge.
rest, regain all my energies before I return to coaching, at least in a year’s time.” Di Matteo humorously and goodheartedly talked about his sacking, not holding grudges against Abramovic. “Most successful managers have been sacked,” said the cheeky Italian, adding, “So I have great company there (smiles). “Of course a double was down to hard work and experience. As a former player, I understand the mind of a player; that helped. But also to some degree AVB had a hand in our success.” Di Matteo will visit Nigeria tomorrow as a guest of Guinness Nigeria Plc in Lagos.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Willian on Liverpool radar
Ribery eyes UEFA prize
ayern Munich winger, Franck Ribery, believes he has a good chance of winning UEFA’s Best Player in Europe award, despite facing competition from Barcelona’s Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid. Ribery, 30, enjoyed an outstanding 2012-13 season as he helped Bayern claim a historic Treble. The France international could now crown his year when UEFA’s Best Player in Europe is named in Prague on August 29. “Clearly, for me, far too little Bayern players are left on the list. Take Thomas Muller, who would have deserved it. Thomas has also played a great season, it is a great
pity for him,” Ribery said yesterday. Ribery, however, believes the exclusion of his Bayern team-mates could increase his chances of winning the award. “For me personally that is good, even if I feel bad for my colleagues. Messi and Ronaldo have certainly scored more goals than me. But I have won the Treble and titles are always important with such awards.” “Messi and Ronald are great players, but I think that this season I have a great opportunity. The past season I was on the highest level, have been fit all the time and won everything there is to win. Those are good arguments.”
Suarez makes Reds’ U-turn
eleaguered Liverpool striker, Luis Suarez, has suggested he may be willing to stay at the club and end his dispute with the Reds’ outfit. Suarez had claimed that he had an agreement that he would be allowed to leave Liverpool if the Anfield side failed to qualify for the Champions League. But his desire to leave now appears to have changed. “For now, owing to all the affection of the people, I would be staying,” he declared yesterday while on international duty with
Uruguay, representing a remarkable u-turn from the talented forward. He had last week threatened to take Liverpool to Premier League arbitration to secure his release, saying: “I have the club’s word and we have the written contract and we are happy to take this to the Premier League for them to decide the case but I do not want it to come to that. We have the backing of the PFA.” But his latest comments would be a huge boost for the club ahead of the new season.
iverpool is ready to turn to Brazil playmaker Willian in the Reds’ attempts to make a marquee summer signing. Tottenham Hotspur is a rival in the race for the £35million-rated Anzhi Makhachkala star but Liverpool, having missed out on Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Diego Costa, is anxious to bring in a top name. Willian only moved to Anzhi in January but the former big spenders are being forced to sell all their biggest assets as the club’s owner Suleiman Kerimov has lost patience with the stars. The Russian billionaire has put the entire squad up for sale with a view to focusing on a new side filled with more local, younger talent. Liverpool Manager, Brendan Rodgers, is also on the verge of bolstering his squad with Granada left back Guilherme Siquiera after the club’s Managing Director Ian Ayre flew to Spain to negotiate a fee in the region of £6m.
Gerrard serves quit notice
ngland captain, Steven Gerr has hinted that the 2014 W Cup could mark his farewel the Three Lions. The Liverpool midfielder said at he did not expect to grace another jor international tournament, say he would bow out after 14 years on international stage and with over caps to his name. “I’ve got to assume it’s my last y I can’t assume I’m going to be her two or three years’ time,” Gerrard s before he led England against Scotl at Wembley yesterday. “I’ve got to make the most of ev single game. For all I know, I migh out of the picture in a year’s tim want to make the most of it.”
De Gea gets Spain assurance
pain Coach, Vicente Del Bosque, says David De Gea’s time will come in the national team, but has suggested the Manchester United goalkeeper will have to wait for the moment. Vicente had included five of Spain’s recently crowned European Under-21 Champions in his panel for yesterday’s friendly in Ecuador, excluding De Gea. “I have been watching the Under-21s and De Gea is a goalkeeper who will mark an era,” Del Bosque said. “At the present I do not find a reason to change the goalkeepers. If Casillas, Valdes
and Reina are here it is not because they are funny guys, but because they are good keepers. “At the Confederations Cup, the attention was focused on the goals because of Casillas’ situation and all worked well. They get on very well together, are good team-mates and I wanted to maintain the situation.” “There are good reinforcements coming from behind, who we are going to add in bit by bit. But for sure the block from Euro 2012 still have some distance left to go. We have a stable team with few players over 30. This team has a future.”
Sibaya quits Moroka Swallows
ormer South Africa international, Macbeth Sibaya, has parted ways from PSL side Moroka Swallows. The midfielder said he would remain in the sport, however, but declined disclosing his next move. Sibaya, 35, who returned to South Africa in 2011 to play for The Birds after his career ended in Russia, came within a whisker of helping Swallows win the Absa Premiership campaign in 2011, only to be beaten by Orlando Pirates. Last season Sibaya appeared
four times in the League Swallows, although he wa part of the squad that lifted 2012 MTN8 Cup. “Macbeth has left Swallow think it came to a point wh enough was enough. Ev player has a time frame,” Sw lows Coach, Zeca Marques, c firmed. “He will stay in the ga though because he is too v able to lose,” Marques added Sibaya won 50 caps for So Africa and was a key membe the country’s 2002 and 2012 F World Cup squads.
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National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Thursday, August 15, 2013
Tennis: Serena set for Europe, Asia
England captain, Steven Gerrard, said yesterday that troubled Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney would be welcomed at the national team to ease his stress. Rooney started up front against Scotland at the Wembley friendly after overcoming a shoulder injury in time for the clash with Gordon Strachan’s side. “Wayne’s just itching to get out there and play a game,” Gerrard said.
Brazil 2014: Muntari assures on World Cup ticket
Ronaldinho Brazilian player, Ronaldinho, has undergone surgery to have his teeth straightened and realigned. It’s believed a Brazilian surgeon spent less than an hour carrying out the procedure, with the operation involving the insertion of porcelain veneers and surgery on the gums. Ronaldinho has had series of treatments in the past to correct his protruding dentition. The experienced play maker is eyeing a recall to the Brazil team.
Michael Carrick withdrew from the England squad for the friendly with Scotland owing to an eye infection. The 32-year-old Manchester United midfielder had been in line to win his 30th cap at Wembley on Wednesday. A statement published on www. thefa.com stated that Carrick had withdrawn from the England squad and had been recommended for treatment.
Everton Manager, Roberto Martinez, is adamant that Leighton Baines will not join Manchester United this summer. David Moyes has been linked with a swoop for the left-back but Martinez insists a £12million bid in June was United’s ‘final offer’. Martinez has said he hopes to take the Toffees to heights unattained in the eleven-year reign of former manager David Moyes.
Jerome Stoke striker, Cameron Jerome, has been fined £50,000, subject to appeal, and severely warned over future conduct, after admitting breaches of FA betting rules. The 27-year-old was also warned as to his future conduct after admitting repeat breaches of the regulations. He has the right to appeal against the sanction.
ith just one match remaining in the group stage of the African qualifiers for the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil, Ghana is only a point away from reaching the final round. However, standing in the Black Stars’ way on September 6 is Zambia, who has ambitions of making its first finals after conquering the continent in 2012. Ghanaian midfielder, Sulley Muntari, who scored twice in seven appearances over Germany 2006 and South Africa 2010, doesn’t plan on allowing the Chipolopolo spoil his dream of playing at a third FIFA World Cup, a feat most Africans can only dream of. “We want to go to Brazil and we are focused on qualifying,” the AC Milan player, who has featured in every qualifier so far, including Zambia’s hard-fought 1-0 defeat of Ghana in June 2013, told FIFA.com yesterday. “We are ready for Zambia this time. It will be a tough game and we will do our best to win. We are on top of the group, closer to Brazil, and we want to finish it in grand style.” Ghana dislodged Zambia at the section summit thanks to nine points won from
Sudan and Lesotho, but their narrow advantage will not quell nerves about recent history against the southern Africans. Zambia recorded a surprise double over Ghana last year, a semi-final triumph at the CAF Africa Cup of Nations accompanying a Brazil 2014 qualifying success. Muntari featured in both matches, but the 28-year-old believes the Black Stars can manage to find more than the necessary draw at home. “They have troubled us for a long time and have given us sleepless nights,” he said. “But we want to make it big this time. We are poised to plant broad smiles on the faces of Ghanaians in Kumasi.” The former Udinese, Portsmouth and Inter Milan player believes the potential returns of Michael Essien, Kevin Prince Boateng, Andre Ayew and his brother Jordan to international football will bring the Ghanaians back to their best. The quartet hinted of a comeback following a variety of self-imposed exiles. “Andre and Jordan are coming back, so is Boateng. Hopefully Essien will also be back in the team and it will be amazing,” Muntari submitted.
Deaflympians shine in Sofia
igerian team to the world Deaflympics Championship in Sofia, Bulgaria has won a bronze medal. President of the Nigeria Deaf Sports Federation (NDSF), Usman A. Nahuche, who was also the leader of delegation, described the tournament as a “good one”, although the performance had disappointed many observers. “We did not do badly considering the level of preparation ahead of the championship,” he said. “We also lacked the necessary
igerian tennis prodigy, Serena Teluwo, will depart Lagos tomorrow on a training tour of Spain, United Kingdom and United Arab Emirates. The seven-year-old whiz kid, who is a primary three pupil in one of the Famous Nursery and Primary Schools in Somolu, Lagos will begin her month-long tour sponsored by sports enthusiast Yinka Oke in Spain, accompanied by her mother. Daughter of the proprietor of the defunct Obanta United, VIP FC and Frontliners FC, Chief Adewale Teluwo of Obanta, Serena has been the centre of attraction since she first held the racket at five years old. But her reputation soared last November during the tour of Lagos by the American tennis stars Serena and Venus Williams who undertook a clinic in Lagos where her drives, chips and power-packed serves endeared her to the spectators and authorities alike. “I am happy for this opportunity to explore the tennis world,” Serena said in Lagos yesterday. “I hope to learn a few things that would help me improve on my career and in the line of emulating my mentor, Serena Williams,” she added.
exposure unlike our counterparts who had attended several major champioships across the world.” Secretary General of the Nigeria Deaf Sports Federation, Lukman Agbabiaka, said the Nigeria Deaflymic football team could not match up with skills of their opponents, saying inexperience had stopped the side from advancing. “The table tennis team met better prepared opponents and played on a more sophisticated board that was alien to us,” Agbabiaka added.
NFF mourns Pascal Patrick’s dad
he Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has commiserated with former international defender, Pascal Patrick (MON), who lost his father, Sir Patrick Tanko, last Sunday. “On behalf of the NFF and the Nigeria football family, I hereby express heartfelt condolence to Mr. Pascal Patrick on the passing of his father, a former mechanical engineer of repute,” said NFF’s Director of Technical, Dr. Emmanuel Ikpeme. Ikpeme is officially acting as General Secretary in the ab-
sence of Barrister Musa Amadu, who has been on a two-week leave since last week. Sir Tanko died after a brief illness on Sunday, 11th August, 2013 at the age of 87. He was buried last week Wednesday. Pascal Patrick, a Member of the Order of the Niger, was a member of the Nigeria U-23 squad, Dream Team, that won a first-ever Olympic football gold for Africa, at the Centennial Games in Atlanta, United States of America in 1996. He also played for the Senior National Team, Super Eagles.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Durant returns to Seattle in summer league
Basketball League action between Kano Pillars and Dodan Warriors at the Indoor Sports Hall of the National Stadium, Lagos.
DStv B’ball League: Union Bank, Pillars await Final Four clash
nion Bank of Lagos are still celebrating after winning the 2013 DStv Basketball Atlantic Conference Final Four competition at the expense of Dodan Warriors of Lagos. Union Bank on Monday defeated Dodan Warriors 7963 to emerge the champions. News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the two clubs will represent the Conference at the 2013 National Final Four Championships to hold later this year. At the national championships, the two clubs will meet the Savannah Conference Final Four champions - Kano Pillars - and the
runners-up - Mark Mentors of Abuja. The dates for the National Final Four competition to take place in Lagos, have yet to be decided by the organisers, the Nigerian Basketball Federation (NBBF). Lagos Islanders emerged third in the Atlantic Conference while Oluyole Warriors was fourth. Union Bank Assistant Coach, Chris Okoh, told NAN after his club emerged the champions that it was a great achievement. “It is the greatest moment in the club’s history. We have had years of setbacks, but this season is
just something special. The club’s current players are obviously the best you can think of right now. “We will continue to train hard and remain positive as we prepare for the National Final Four, which is the ultimate,” Okoh said. Coach Peter Ahmedu of Dodan Warriors said that he was proud of the team’s second position. He said that he was looking forward to the National Final Four. “We played well, but luck was not on our side; we are the best team of the Conference. We look forward to the next and crucial event which is the National
Final Four competition, where we shall prove our worth,” Ahmedu said. In the other match played at the Indoor Sports Hall of the National Stadium, Lagos, venue of the competition, Oluyole defeated Lagos Islanders 59-53. The defeat halted Islanders dream of playing in the seasons National Final Four. Meanwhile, while new comers, Oluyole, rejoiced at picking one game out of the three matches they played; it was tears at the Islanders’ camp as they needed only one win to beat Dodan Warriors to the Conference’s second place position.
evin Durant hoisted 62 shots and scored 63 points, and played all but 15 seconds in 51 minutes of game time in his return to the summer league in Seattle. All that, and he still had time to pose for pictures and sign autographs when his car was surrounded by fans as he tried to leave. ‘’I just want to say I miss you guys,’’ Durant told a crammed small-college gym filled with about 3,000 fans, many in Durant’s old Seattle SuperSonics jersey. ‘’Thank you for the warm welcome. I can’t wait to come back.’’ Durant also took part in the Jamal Crawford Summer Pro-Am in Seattle on Sunday. It was his first time back in Seattle in a basketball capacity since the SuperSonics left for Oklahoma City in 2008. He was the NBA Rookie of the Year in Seattle in the 2007-08 season and continues to have an affinity for his first professional city. Durant tried to slip away from the gym quietly, but fans found his SUV and surrounded it nearly an hour after the game ended. Instead of forcing his way through, Durant stopped, signed autographs and posed for pictures from the backseat of his vehicle. Shortly after his game ended, Durant tweeted, ‘’I love and miss Seattle.’’ ‘’He reached out to me to come perform before in front of you guys,’’ Crawford told the crowd at Seattle Pacific University. ‘’He loves Seattle. He took his own jet. He spent a lot of money to come up here and perform in front of you guys.’’
Lagos T/tennis Classics: Lithuana, Cameroun join fray
he list of foreign players and teams confirming their participation increases, as the trio of Lithuania, Cameroun and Senegal joined the growing list of participants in the first Lagos International Table Tennis Classics. According to Main Organising Committee (MOC) of the tournament, Lithuania’s flag will be hoisted one of its national players, Matas Skucas. Also, the Secretary General of Cameroun Table Tennis Association, Moutien Eugene, who listed the quartet of Emmanuel Ngwe Nikeng,
Jague Ken Jiotsa, Nguepi Euidioum Dimitri and Ndikum Asaah Prosper for the tournament, has confirmed Cameroun participation. The team will compete in the senior and junior events. For Senegal, it was the President of the country’s table tennis federation, L. O. Balla that confirmed the team’s intention to the MOC. Balla listed the duo of Hamidou Sow and Dame Ndiaye Junio for the singles and doubles events, while the teams will be coached Mamadou Salif Niang. However, the President of African Table Tennis Federa-
tion (ATTF), Khaled El-Salhy, was hopeful that Nigeria would stage a befitting tournament. “It seems the event will be of a remarkable success due to value of entries and approved ranking validity. With Nigeria hosting such tournament, I want to say that it is going to create a good image for the game in Africa and a good platform for players to improve themselves,” the ATTF boss said. El-Salhy was thrilled with the quality of players that the tournament has attracted, saying, and “It shows the quality of the organization
put together by the MOC On plans to consider Nigeria for major ITTF competition in 2014, he said: “Yes for sure that Nigeria can host ITTF tournament and we are discussing this for 2014, maybe the second edition of the Lagos Classics is going to be part of ITTF World Tour in 2014.” He admitted that the Classics would surely afforded Nigerian players to showcase their talents. “They (Nigerian players) have traditional strength, and for sure they will try to use the chance of playing at home to gain more experience and ranking.”
Thursday, August 15, 2013
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Business & Finance The recurrent expenditures will be trimmed further from 71.5 per The GIS programme is one of the interventions of SURE-P. GIS cent in 2012, to about 68.7 per cent in the 2013 budget, while the is a platform that provides young graduates with temporary capital vote is expected to increase to 31.3 per cent from 28.5 per work placement as well as provide a livelihood for upto 12 cent in 2012 months. Vice-President, Namadi Sambo
CHAIRMAN, SUBSIDY REINVESTMENT AND EMPOWERMENT PROGRAMME, MR. CHRISTOPHER KOLADE
FG develops high speed rail master plan FRANCIS EZEM
s part of its strategic plans for the development of rail infrastructure in Nigeria, the Federal Government has developed a comprehensive master plan for high speed rail across the federation. The government had in its vision 20:20-20, through which it plans to launch the country into the league of one of the most 20 developed economies of the world come year 2020, said it is committed to the development of transport infrastructure, which it described as catalyst for the development of any economy. Under the new master plan, which is part of 25-year development project for the rail system in the country covering the rehabilitation of the existing narrow gauge and construction of modern standard gauge, the government intends to run a sixstructure plan for the high speed rail lines covering the length and breadth of the nation. The six–structure rail system comprises of the Eagle Line, which covers the high sped line from Lagos – Oshogbo-AbujaGombe and then down to Maiduguri while the Southern Line starts from Enugu-Benin CityIkeja Lagos down to Cotonou in the Republic of Benin.
The River Line passes through Katsina-Kano-Kaduna-Abuja and terminates in Port Harcourt while the Eastern Line takes off from Kaduna-Jos-Makurdi and terminates at Ikot Ekpene. Similarly, the Delta Line covers Ibadan-Benin City-Port Harcourt and terminates in Calabar, the Cross River State capital while the Northern Line covers Sokoto-Kano-Maiduguri and terminates at N’Djamena, the Republic of Niger. Deputy Director, Public Relations unit of the Nigerian Railway Corporation NRC, Mr. David Ndakotsu, who confirmed
the development in a telephone interview, disclosed that the high speed rail project is the 4th phase of the Federal Government’s rail development project. According to him, the government had before now concluded the first phase of the rail development and rehabilitation project, which includes the rehabilitation of most of the narrow gauge lines, which has also been concluded. He also disclosed that the government is currently on the second phase of the 25-year development project, most of which comprise of the development of
standard and modern gauge, which will be followed by the third phase, which covers strictly the standard gauge rail lines and to be followed by the fourth phase, which covers the high speed rail systems. Minister of Transport, Mallam Idris Umar had during a ministerial media briefing on the midterm performance of the current administration, hinted that the government has done over 90 per cent of the rehabilitation of the entire existing narrow gauge lines spread across the country, most of which are at various stages of completion.
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L-R: Human Resources Executive, MTN, Ms. Amina Oyagbola; S&D Executive, Mr. Omatsola Barrow and Customer Relations Executive, Mr. Akin Braithwaite, at the relaunch of MTN Virtual Top Up (VTU) Plus in Lagos yesterday.
Naira heads for three-week low ahead of next auction
he naira headed for its weakest level against the dollar since July 23 as demand increased before the central bank’s second foreignexchange auction of the week. The currency retreated 0.2 percent to 160.85 per dollar as of 1:02 p.m. in Lagos, the commercial capital, the lowest on a closing basis in more than three
weeks Bloomberg said yesterday. The naira weakened 2.9 per cent this year, the worst in West Africa after the Ghanaian cedi and Liberian dollar, among 24 of the continent’s currencies tracked by Bloomberg. The Central Bank of Nigeria, which will sell dollars to lenders at an auction today to support the local currency, sold $221.6 million on August 12, the lowest since May 15. The regulator is the biggest supplier of the U.S. currency and offers foreign exchange at a target of plus or minus three per
cent of 155 per dollar. “Importers that couldn’t meet their demand for dollars at the auction are resorting to the interbank market, thereby putting the naira under pressure at that window,” Kunle Ezun, an analyst at Ecobank Transnational Inc. (ETI) in Lagos, said by phone yesterday. “An increase in central bank supply will reduce the pressure.” The bank’s Monetary Policy Committee left its benchmark interest rate at a record 12 per cent for an 11th consecutive
Two traders charged over $6bn JP Morgan fraud
meeting on July 23 to protect the currency of Africa’s secondbiggest economy. It introduced a 50 percent cash reserve requirement on public-sector funds after warning about the risk of excess liquidity. Yields on Nigeria’s $500 million Eurobonds due January 2021 were little changed at 5.48 percent. Borrowing costs on local-currency debt due January 2022 rose 6 basis points, or 0.06 percentage point, to 13.09 percent yesterday, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
Lagos-Abuja 7.30 8.30 7.45 8.45 09.30 10.30 10.30 11.30 12.30 13.30 14.30 15.30 16.30 17.30 Lagos-Kano 08.00 09.15 10.30 11.45 14.30 15.40 18.15 19.30 Los-Maid&Yola (Mon-Thur) 09.30 11.30 Fri- Sun 10.30 12.30 Kano-Lagos 07.30 08.45 14.00 15.15 17.30 18.45 Kano-Abj 10.45 11.30 Abj-Lagos 09.00 10.30 11.00 12.00 12.00 13.00
Concerns mount over poor cyber security laws
Local e-ventures under threat of global cloner
Business & Finance
Thursday, August 15, 2013
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Two traders charged over $6bn JP Morgan fraud UDO ONYEKA
WITH AGENCY REPORTS
S prosecutors filed criminal charges against two former JPMorgan Chase traders alleging they falsified the bank’s books by inflating the value of credit derivatives to hide losses stemming from a trade known as the London whale. In a complaint unsealed yesterday, prosecutors charged Javier Martin-Artajo and Julien Grout, two former traders, with conspiracy, keeping false books and records, wire fraud, and making false filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. They face years in prison if convicted. According to the Financial
Times, the criminal charges are the first against individuals linked to the London whale debacle that resulted in $6bn in losses to JPMorgan and dented the bank’s sterling reputation from surviving the financial crisis unscathed. The SEC filed parallel civil charges against both traders. Jamie Dimon, the bank’s chief executive, initially called the trading loss a “tempest in a teapot” but ultimately acknowledged the mistakes publicly, calling them: “Bad strategy, badly vetted, badly monitored, badly controlled. Embarrassing. Terrible. Sorry.” JPMorgan is expected to reach settlements with authorities in the next few weeks. Bruno Iksil, the trader nicknamed the London whale, avoid-
ed criminal charges by striking an immunity deal with prosecutors in June in exchange for his co-operation. Mr Iksil reported to Mr Martin-Artajo and oversaw Mr Grout. Both Mr Martin-Artajo and Mr Grout are outside of the US. Their lawyers have said their clients are not fleeing from the charges and they have denied any wrongdoing. The case centres on how the traders valued credit derivative positions – largely illiquid securities that don’t trade on exchanges – made by the bank’s chief investment office in London where the men worked. Prosecutors allege from March 2012 until May 2012 the traders artificially inflated the value of positions “to achieve
L-R: Proposition Officer, Liability Products Team, Diamond Bank Plc, Mr. David Otukpe; winner of the star prize of Salary4Life in the July 2013 edition of the Diamond SavingsXtra reward scheme Season 5, Ms. Nneka Meenandu; and Business Manager, Dobbil Plaza Avenue, Alaba International Market branch, Mr. Chijoke Nwaogu at the prize presentation ceremony recently.
AIB to construct Wreckage Reconstruction Hangar to aid investigations OLUSEGUN KOIKI
n a bid to decode properly the probable cause of air accidents in Nigeria and other countries in the world, Accident Investigation Bureau, AIB, is currently constructing Wreckage Reconstruction Hangar at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport. With the construction of the wreckage reconstruction hangar, AIB will be able to gather the components of any crashed plane for a detailed analysis and examination with the aim of detecting the probable cause of the crash and the history of the components of the plane. This is different from the analysis conducted on the black boxes of crashed plane through the flight safety laboratory.
Also, the bureau has also finished work on the construction of its state-of-the-art flight safety laboratory, which is located in the Federal Capital territory, FCT, Abuja. The Commissioner, AIB, Capt. Muhtar Usman, disclosed these to National Mirror yesterday in an exclusive interview at the commission’s office at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, MMIA, Lagos. Usman revealed that works would be completed on the wreckage reconstruction hangar before the end of the year, adding that it would be able to store and analyse wreckage from accident that happens in the country and other interested state (country), which invites it to participate in any accident investigation. Usman said the hangar
would interpret fully air accident through analysis and graphic details, maintaining that the era where the probable cause of an accident could not be ascertained as a result of inadequate equipment was over. He assured that on completion, the wreckage reconstruction hangar would further enhance safety, comfort and security to the sector and would boost passengers’ confidence. He was however silent on the cost implication of the project to either the bureau or the Government, but said its main focus was to ensure Nigeria is at par with other developed aviation countries in the world. He said, “Our main focus now is to prevent an accident from happening and if it does happen, we should be able to know the cause and make safety recommendations to prevent other accidents from happening.
specific profit daily and monthend profit and loss objectives”. They allegedly did this to “hide the true extent of hundreds of millions of dollars of losses in that trading portfolio”, according to an FBI affidavit included in the complaint. JPMorgan restated its firstquarter results for net revenue by $660m as a result of the alleged mismarking. Prosecutors allege that as the trading losses mounted in early 2012 Mr Martin-Artajo pressured
Mr Iksil and Mr Grout to stop reporting losses in the portfolio. Mr Grout shifted from valuing the portfolio at the midpoint between the bid and ask prices by dealers, to a price that would reflect better prices for the portfolio. On March 15, 2012, prosecutors allege, they hid $292m in losses that should have been taken on the portfolio. Days later after Mr Iksil reflected a $40m loss in the portfolio and said the “lag” or loss could grow to $880m
Insurance sector contribution to GDP rises by 40% MESHACK IDEHEN
he Managing Director of Leverage Insurance Brokers Limited, Mr. Lanre Laoshe, said insurance sector contributions to Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) has risen by 40 per cent over the last two years. At a presentation showcasing the insurance industry in Lagos on Wednesday, he said the Nigerian insurance industry has continued to grow with the number of policyholders rising from 0.5 million in 2010 to 1.5 million by the end of last year. Laoshe said the Nigerian insurance industry is a dynamic and rapidly growing one that is poised to grow to a level commensurate with contemporary economies, pointing out during that period that the ratio of premium income to GDP increased from 0.5 per cent to 0.7 per cent. He said In spite of these recorded growth that when compared with other economies on the continent, there is still room for growth in the Nigerian insur-
ance market. According to him, the 49 insurance companies in the Nigerian market which consist of 10 composite insurers, 7 life specialist companies and 32 non-life risks underwriting companies are doing their best to ensure insurance takes its pride of place in the country’s economic development. He noted that some of the initiatives introduced by the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) in the bid to drive growth in the industry are yielding visible results, saying the Market Development and Restructuring Initiative (MDRI) which is the template for enforcing the compulsory insurance of public buildings and buildings under construction has done the industry good. Laoshe explained that MDRI also seeks to put in place adequate insurance protection for liabilities associated with use of such buildings, increase the number of insurance agents to introduce insurance products in order to drive the mass market as well as the introduction of micro insurance products in the market.
‘NIPOST plans to offer e-service for rural communities’
he Postmaster-General, Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST), Alhaji Ibrahim Baba, said yesterday that the service planned to introduce e-service in rural communities to enhance service delivery. Baba told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja that it was necessary for rural communities to be empowered with Information Communication Technology (ICT) to enable them to access information. He said that urban areas enjoyed better services because of available IT equipment, better connectivity, and power supply compared to what obtained in the rural communities. “Our emphasis actually is looking at the rural areas, because the rural areas do not have options; but for those of us who are in the cities and so on, we
may have options. “Therefore, we believe if the post office is adequately positioned in terms of IT equipment, connectivity, and power supply, then the people do not have to travel in Kilometres away from their villages and homes to transact government businesses or even to transact their personal businesses. “In essence there will be e-services for them,” Baba said. He said that in addition to rural areas not having options, they also did not have computers while those with computers might lack the financial capability needed for connectivity, if any. Baba said that the challenges were the reasons the federal government was working hard to ensure that e-service facilities were extended to rural communities.
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Thursday, August 15, 2013
Business & Finance
Thursday, August 15, 2013
FG plans modernisation of survey operations DAYO AYEYEMI
he Federal government has reiterated its commitment in modernising survey operations and techniques in line with the global trends in the country. This, it said would encourage the nation to embrace new innovation which will help it to have a unified datum for surveying and mapping activities. Speaking in Zamfara State yesterday while addressing this year’s Survey Coordination and Advisory Board on Training Conference, Minister of State for Works, Ambassador Bashir Yuguda, advised that in order to maintain standard, eliminate duplication and ensuring optimal utilization of scarce resources, there is need to develop a welldocumented policy for the implementation and management of
new technology in Nigeria He expressed gratitude to the Governor of Zamfara State, Governor AbdulAziz Yari for accepting to host the conference and their warm reception accorded the delegates. In a statement by Information Officer of the ministry, Idris Abdulkadir Bosuwa, the minister recalled that prior to the advent of continuously Operating Reference Station (CORS), practitioners used of classical or traditional method before adopting Doplers Satellite Observation. In view of mirage of problems confronting surveying and mapping activities, he said a more robust advance innovation known as CORS was developed for accurate positioning and navigation. CORS is an advance technology for the provision of reference datum for surveying and mapping purposes for our common good. It is an active control net-
work generating 3D-positioning information to provide support for 3D-positioning for metrology, space weather and geophysical application throughout the country. He said, “In fact in some area today in Nigeria many still connect their survey work to local origin. The above scenario poses greater challenges , which ranges from low accuracy, slow operational procedures, low quality products , difficult data analysis technique and processing, In view of these mirage of problems confronting surveying and mapping activities a more robust advance innovation known as CORS was developed for accurate positioning and navigation.” Yuguda further noted that the data generated from the application are useful in the area of crustal motion monitoring, sea level changes and ionosphere studies modelling.
Group Head, Agric Finance, Sterling Bank Plc, Mrs. Bukola Awosanya and Commissioner for Agriculture & Cooperatives, Lagos State,Mr. Gbolahan Lawal, during the Business Day Conference on Agric Business and Food Security Summit 2013 held in Abuja, recently.
MTN expands consumer choice with VTU re-launch KUNLE A ZEEZ
igeria’s largest telecoms network, MTN, has further enlarged the scope of option available to its subscribers with the re-launch of its Virtual Top Up Plus (VTU Plus). With the re-launch, the over 45 million subscribers on on MTN Network can use the electronic recharge option to recharge their phones both for voice and data services. Speaking at the launch of the electronic service in Lagos yesterday, the General Manager, Business Development, MTN Nigeria, Mr. Richard Iweanoge, said the re-launch was to further bring the innovative service to the consciousness of the MTN subscribers. Richard said though MTN had introduced the service before now,
the level of take-up has not been impressive in spite of the huge advantages it brings to telecoms consumers. He said: “What we realise on the VTU service is that, MTN was a bit ahead of time when we launched VTU for the first time. This is a technology that has to do with value and money. “So, people were reticent to take up the service initially. This however, does not mean some subscribers didn’t find VTU useful. But the trend now is that people are more comfortable in technology and they are doing things electronically and we feel at this period of cashless culture, the service comes handy for MTN subscribers.” According to him, “The VTU Plus is another innovation first from MTN. This product is the first of its kind , It does not exist anywhere in Europe or America.”
He explained that the VTU is an airtime recharge mechanism that allows a VTU vendor (VTU seller) top up MTN subscriber account without the use of USSD code. He said VTU enables subscribers to buy and sell air time with his phone without the 12 digit recharge PINs. Also speaking, General Manager, Sales, MTN, Mr. Adekunle Adebiyi, said VTU PLUS allows the retailer to sell VTU air time, in addition to other services directly to subscribers. The other services, he said, include data bundles, blackberry subscriptions and logical PINS.’ On the benefits VTU Plus to MTN’s over 500, 000 trade partners across the country, Adebiyi said, VTU Plus will enable MTN trade partners to make one single payment for stock but be able to sell 48 different MTN products and services.
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Gunmen release fuel tanker hijacked off Lagos
unmen have released a fuel tanker which was hijacked off the coast of Nigeria, security sources and the vessel’s manager said on Wednesday. Indian-based managers Medallion Marine lost contact with the Marshall Islands-flagged SP Atlanta on Sunday evening but resumed communication late on Tuesday, a spokesman told Reuters. “There was an incident on Sunday but the vessel is now fully under control of the company and, most importantly, all the crew are safe,” the spokesman said, without giving details of what occurred during the period of lost contact. Two security sources said gunmen boarded the vessel
while it was anchored near Lagos port, in the latest case of piracy off the coast of Africa’s top oil exporter. Tankers seized off Nigeria are often released after the oil, gasoline or other fuel on board is transferred to smaller vessels. Sometimes crew are kidnapped for ransom. Pirate attacks off West Africa’s mineral-rich Gulf of Guinea have almost doubled from last year and threaten to jeopardise the shipping of commodities from the region. They have already jacked up insurance costs. The SP Atlanta was attacked by gunmen last year off the coast of Nigeria’s oil hub Port Harcourt but guards on board were able to prevent the pirates boarding, security sources say.
Kogi settles N71.7m PHCN debt
ogi State government has paid N71.7 million debt its ministries, departments and agencies owed the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) in the past seven years. The PHCN, Lokoja Business District Manager, Mr Abdulganiyu Isah, said this in Lokoja on Wednesday at a stakeholders’ forum. He added that the amount was paid in three installments between March and April 2013. He said that the government action had reduced the amount being owed the organisation by consumers in the district to less than N900 million. Isa said that the Nigeria Army, police and the SSS owed the PHCN N100 million, N25 million and N4.8 million, respectively, and urged them to pay up. The Manager also urged other consumers in the district to pay their debts. He said that the huge debt, inadequate power generation and capacity limitation, both in transmission and distribution, were
militating against efforts to boost power supply to residents. He said that 500 units of 50 KVA transformers were delivered to the office, saying that the organisation would soon start installing the transformers to boost electricity supply in the state. Isa said that the PHCN had created more service centres in the city as part of effort to ensure prompt response to customers’ complaints. He said that many of the transformers in Lokoja were overloaded and appealed to the state government to come to the aid of the organisation by donating more 500 KVA transformers. The Manager stated that the organisation was not a party to the collection of money from residents for the purchase or installation of transformers. He also urged consumers to cooperate by reporting any erring official. On the problems of `crazy’ bills and low current of power supply being experienced in some parts of Lokoja, the Manager said that this would soon be a thing of the past.
Bakers’ association seeks financial aid from LASG
he Chairman, Association of Master Bakers and Caterers of Nigeria, AMBCN, Mr. Jacob Adejorin, yesterday urged the Lagos State Government to grant financial assistance to bakers to boost their production. Adejorin told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos that the financial aid would enable bakers to purchase raw materials and modern equipment to boost production. He said, “Government should help us by buying all the raw materials for baking - flour, sugar, all the materials are expensive; their prices keep increasing all the time; it’s a problem to us. Our customers don’t buy in
cash; we sell on credit, which is part of the challenges. “The time I began baking, customers used to pay cash for our products; they never owed; but now, if you don’t sell on credit, you will never see any customer. “And it is very difficult for us to have enough money to buy flour; it is very difficult for us bakers nowadays because when you collect all the debt owed by the customers and we produce, they will still buy on credit and only pay back maybe three days after, and the following day, production is affected. So, we don’t have enough funds to buy the materials; and the cost of equipment too is very high.
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Thursday, August 15, 2013
Concerns mount over poor cyber security Industry experts say the e-commerce revolution being driven by the Information and Communication Technology industry needs to be backed with necessary legislations aimed at protecting Nigerians online, reports KUNLE AZEEZ.
ith increased access to telecoms services, especially the access to the Internet being facilitated by telecoms companies across the country, some industry experts have raised the alarm over the danger, which the gradual ubiquitous access to the internet without necessary cyber security laws in place portends for the country. Cyber crime is an illegal activity which is mainly committed using a computer or Internet. In this activity, a computer or Internet is the major location of crime. It’s mainly committed by the hackers. It may be of various types like hacking or stealing data from online server or computer. Today, there are close to 50 million Nigerians who use the Internet, some of whom use the internet for legitimate activities while some other prowl the cyber space with the intend to defraud unsuspecting Internet users both within the country’s Internet domain or those transacting businesses with Nigeria from outside the country. The entry of low-cost mobile devices, tablets and Personal Computers and desktops coupled with on ongoing reduction in Internet cost to the consumers, as a result of intense competition among telecoms firms and other Internet Service providers in the country are key drivers of access to ICT tools and related Internet services. Also, the new trend blowing across the country, where many online retailing is increasing by the day with more companies wanting to have online presence to reach their customers and transact businesses with them and the cashless economy policy being driven by the Central bank of Nigeria and the operating banks and other players in the financial services industry evidence the growing importance of online-based transactions among businesses in the private sectors. In the private sector, the Minister of Communications Technology, Mrs. Omobola Johnson, recently disclosed that the effort of government in leveraging online platform to deliver services, do financial transactions and relates with stakeholders is gaining traction.
TO COPE WITH THE CHALLENGES OF INCREASING CYBER CRIMES, CYBER TERRORISM AND PHYSICAL TERRORISM, NIGERIA WILL NEED NOTHING LESS THAN ONE MILLION CYBER SECURITY EXPERTS IN THE NEXT TWO YEARS WHILE AWAITING
CYBERCRIME-RELATED BILLS SHOULD ALSO BE PASSED INTO LAWS According to her, the number of government services delivered online increased from 10 in 2011 to 30 in 2012 and by mid 2013, they have increased to 45, even as she stressed that 100 of such services are targeted by the end of 2015. She also said that the number of Ministries, Departments and Agencies with effective websites have increased from 370 in 2011 to 420 at the end of 2012. This figure has further reached 480 while our plan is to ensure all MDAs have functional website and portable by 2015. In essence, the private and public sectors continue to embrace online platforms in carrying out their businesses, with citizens getting increasingly savvy for online services because of the many advantages that come with Internet-based services. However, efforts by the Federal Government to really promote the adoption of the internet for delivering government information and services to its citizenry are being threatened by the recent spike in incidences of cyber attacks on websites of ministries, (MDAs of government, experts have said. e-Governance, according to industry experts strengthens the very fabric of democracy by ensuring greater citizen participation at all levels of governance
while same goes for the private sector. In the preceding year, cyber criminals attacked prominent government websites including the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Ministry of Science and Technology (MST). This trend, according to industry analysts is expected to continue in 2013. It is also particularly worrying because Nigeria still does not have requisite legislation to protect data, Information Technology (IT) infrastructure and prosecute perpetrators of cyber crimes. Already, a report by Ernst & Young, a global research and consulting firm, has estimated that the Nigerian economy loses $200 million annually to cyber crimes. At a workshop in July 2013, the Executive Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission, Dr. Eugene Juwah, urged the National Assembly to pass the Cyber crime bills pending in the legislative chamber into law. He said that as robust as the Nigerian Communications Act (NCA) 2003 was, some other laws are still needed to support telecommunications activities in the country, especially at a current time when the country is working towards electronic transformation of its economy.
Microsoft backs Africa’s capacity building KUNLE A ZEEZ
lobal Information Technology giant, Microsoft Corporation, has introduced the 4Afrika Scholarship programme, as part of its 4Afrika Initiative, in recognition of 2013 Interna-
tional Youth Day. Through the programme, Microsoft will provide mentorship, leadership and technical training, certification, university-level education, and employment opportunities for promising African students in a bid to drive capacity building in the black continent.
The company, in a statement, said mentorship will be provided by Microsoft employees from around the world, and employment opportunities will include internships and both part-time and full-time jobs within Microsoft, as well as with the company’s more than 10,000 partners across Africa.
“In that regard, the commission looks forward to the passing of the cyber crime law to support its effort at increasing cyber security,” he had noted. Speaking with National Mirror, a telecoms lawyer, Mr. Adewale Jones, has also lamented the prolonged delay and insensitivity of the lawmakers to passing the various cyber-related laws pending in the national legislative houses, into laws. “In view of the current national drive towards electronic transactions and more and more access to the Internet where people can decide to abuse the access to defraud and infringe on other people’s rights, the time has come to pass the bill into laws without further delay,” he charged the legislators. But according to the Chief Executive Officer, New Horizons, Mr. Tim Akano, to cope with the challenges of increasing cyber crimes, cyber terrorism and physical terrorism, Nigeria will need nothing less than one million cyber security experts in the next two years while awaiting cybercrime-related bills should also be passed into laws. Akano, who stressed the need for Nigeria to prepare for cyber warfare to protect its economy in the 21st Century, noted that in 2012 alone, an estimated $1trillion was lost to cyber-related frauds globally “although only $390 billion was reported for obvious reason.” He said the increasing dependence of economy and governance in banking, e-commerce, military, hotel and travel booking, university registration and education, among others bring the challenges of security to the table. “The more we deepen the usage of technology in a cashless economy like Nigeria, the more the vulnerability of the people and the nation. “This is why a country like India is targeting five million cyber security experts between now and the next three years. And as we speak, North Korea already can boast of 15,000 cyber security experts well trained to defend the cyber space of their country while China has over 25 million cyber commandos.” Speaking at recent forum orgainsed by the Electronic Payment Providers Association of Nigeria in Abuja, a cyber security expert, Mr. Obadare Adewale counseled orgainsations to upgrade their network authentications protocols. According to him, only through propoer and constant implementation of a strong and secure authentication method would orgainsations and individuals wave through the nascent payment system in the country, pending the passage into laws of various cybercrime-related bills. Through the company’s 4Afrika Initiative and YouthSpark programme, Microsoft said it was committed to helping millions of Africans get critical skills for entrepreneurship and employability. The statement said: “The 4Afrika Scholarship programme is one way the company intends to meet that goal, by helping ensure that promising youth have access to the education, resources and skills they need to succeed, regardless of their financial situations.”
Thursday, August 15, 2013
New NCS President sets agenda KUNLE A ZEEZ
nder his two-year tenure as the new President of the Nigerian Computer Society, Prof. David Adewumi has said his main focus would be to build a society that has a robust membership base, an articulate and proactive National Executive Committee of the society, well-informed members for strengthening professionalism in the profession and Industry. Adewumi, who was recently elected as the 12th National President of NCS at the society’s 2013 International Conference and Annual General meeting held in Osun State, is a Professor of Computer Science at Bells University of Technology, Ota, Ogun State. He is also the Dean, College of Information and Communications Technology at the university in addition to being a visiting Professor of Computer Science to
many universities in the country. Adewumi promised commitment to pursuing vigorously the 11-point agenda for NCS in line with its vision and mission as a professional body in the country. These, he said, include strengthening existing and grow new NCS chapters; overhauling NCS’ Information Management System; strengthening relationship with Government Ministries, Departments and Agencies to foster use of Information and Communication Technology to achieve Millennium Development Goals. “We would also deepen collaboration with Corporate Nigeria, local and International ICT suppliers and ICT service providers towards enhancing professionalism and building Industry; expand membership base by encouraging and enhancing the capacity of NCS chapters to reach out to potential members in their locality; improve inter and intra Governmental relations and
build on the current visibility of NCS within Nigeria in particular and the world in general,” he said. Other objectives of the NCS President include “the creation of more productive working relationships with the international community on ICT; maintenance of excellent and mutually-beneficial working relationships with other professional groups within and outside the country; strengthening of NCS presence in Abuja and creation of a research and development Think Tank that will proffer relevant ICT solution to National issues.” While promising to be a people-centred President that harnesses ICT talent of members for national development towards making Nigeria the ICT centre for Africa, Adewumi, “to transform NCS into a highly visible and result-oriented society that will deliver quality services to all sectors of the Nigerian economy and her members.”
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Apple unveils latest iPhone next month
pple is expected to launch a new version of its iPhone on 10 September, according to Mobile World Live. A special event will be held to unveil the device which is believed to be called the iPhone 5S, following previous naming convention from Apple. Along with likely camera and processor improvements, the new flagship iPhone could include fingerprint sensor technology, following Apple’s acquisition of Authentec in 2012. There are also reports that the company will unveil a new, low-cost smartphone, called the iPhone 5C. The lower-cost device is believed to feature plastic casing available in a range of colours. There have been previous reports of an iPhone with a bigger screen. Speculation about a low-cost version of the iPhone has been cir-
BlackBerry 9720 Smartphone makes debut
lackBerry on Tuesday introduced the new super social BlackBerry 9720 smartphone to customers that want a smartphone that’s built for a communications centric experience. Designed for a premium look and available in a variety of vibrant colors, the new BlackBerry 9720 smartphone takes everything a user would get from a starter smartphone to the next level, and comes packed with all of user’s favourite social apps to user spark the conversation. Speaking on the latest phone, Executive Vice President for Group Managing Director, Computer Warehouse Group, Mr. Austin Okere (left) and President, CEIBS, Prof. Pedro Nueno, during the fourth China Europe International Business School (CEIBS) Africa graduation ceremony where Products at BlackBerry, Mr. Carlo Okere was a guest speaker in Accra, Ghana recently. Chiarello, said, “The BlackBerry 9720 smartphone gives you all the essentials of the BlackBerry smartphone experience to supShe stated that a virtualised means that organisations won’t port a communications centric KUNLE A ZEEZ environment provides small busi- need to invest in more physical lifestyle. It has the best keyboard nesses with a way of effectively servers in order to support the and functionality for BBM, as well leading Information managing their growing busi- growing business. She said: “With Hyper V, small Technology company, ness, enabling them to streamline DELL, has called on Ni- their IT Infrastructure, improve businesses can eliminate ungerian businesses to embrace lat- business scalability and respond necessary hardware and mainte- KUNLE A ZEEZ est server’s technology towards quickly to changes in the business. nance costs by consolidating apExplaining how businesses can plications and running multiple enhancing virtualisation of their advance their virtualised strategy, applications on one server. For igeria’s national telecoms operation to reduce costs. operator, Globacom, has While making this call in a Elia said, “Windows Server 2012 example where an organisation once required six servers the use introduced Glo Bounce, statement, Head, Corporate Com- comes with the latest edition of munications, Europe, Middle Hyper V, special transformational of virtualization means that they a special product designed to deEast and Africa at Dell, Ms Gladys technology software which en- can now be replaced with just one liver peerless value to Nigerian Elia, said as a company moves be- ables small businesses to advance or two physical servers and a cou- youths with reduced tariff. The national operator said it yond the small business stage and their virtualisation strategy. It ple of virtual machines. “Virtualisation is ideal for developed Bounce in order to exlooks to develop new products and can support up to 512GB of RAM services for its customers, it will and 2TB of disk storage allow- organisations looking to offer cite Nigerian youths and cater for require additional servers, which ing small businesses to run one specialised services or to grow their unique interests. Speaking at the launch of the can lead to increased costs and or more virtual servers across a beyond 25 employees. Through the use of virtualisation small product in Lagos, Globacom’s single physical server.” the need for extra storage space. Elia said Server 2012 clus- businesses can put in place the General Manager, Consumer MarElia noted that rather than invest in physical servers, small ters can contain up to 64 nodes, infrastructure to support the de- keting, Mr. Ashutosh Tiwary, said businesses are increasing look- compared to Server 2008 which ployment of new applications that the new product offers many ing to implement an Information contained 16 node capabilities, quickly and easily and can reallo- benefits to young subscribers on Technology virtualisation strat- stressing that each virtual server cate resources as necessary by im- the Glo network stating that such proving virtual machines across benefits include special call rates egy as a way of reducing risk and has similar properties to that of a single physical machine which servers. on campuses, free data, free ring minimising operational costs.
DELL tasks Nigerian businesses on virtualisation
culating for some time. A report by China Labor Watch into the working practices of Apple suppliers in July said staff at contract supplier Pegatron has been working on “a scaledback, less expensive version of the iPhone.” Apple Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Tim Cook’s meeting with the head of China Mobile also raised prospects of an iPhone supporting the world’s biggest operator’s 3G TDSCDMA network. When discussing Apple’s Q2 results last month, Cook said the company is “laser-focused and working hard on some amazing new products that we will introduce in the fall and across 2014”. The next-generation iPhone operating system iOS 7 is already in beta testing with developers. The update was announced in June and includes a significant redesign of the iPhone’s menus and icons.
as an updated BlackBerry 7 OS that adds many enhancements. “ According to him, the phone is perfect for customers upgrading from a feature phone or entrylevel Android or Windows Phone device, as well as existing BlackBerry smartphone customers, that want a richer experience and jump up in style and performance. The BlackBerry 9720 smartphone features a spacious BlackBerry Keyboard with distinct keys for optimal typing, a 2.8-inch touchscreen and trackpad for easy navigation, offers generous battery life, and numerous enhancements including: The new BlackBerry 9720 smartphone comes with BlackBerry 7 OS version 7.1, which features an updated interface that lets user swipe to unlock the phone or access the camera from the lock screen, as well as additional enhancements.
Glo crashes tariff in new proposition
back tunes, zero Facebook and unlimited free Short Messaging Service. “The product was developed based on extensive research which zeroed down on the passion points of Nigerian youths. Their basic needs and their desired benefits were taken into consideration before coming up with the product which has everything for everyone,” he said. Tiwary explained that customers on Bounce can call other Bounce customers at the heavily discounted rate of 5k per second and send SMS at the low rate of N3 per SMS. Bounce customers also stand to enjoy the Campus Zone rate of 5k per second to any Glo line and a flat rate of 10k per second to all other networks.
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Thursday, August 15, 2013
Brands & Marketing
Global research group votes for ads beyond borders ...to ensure good returns on investment
With increasing segmentation and multiplicity of media, marketers are beginning to experience nightmares in delivering campaign plans that ensure solid returns on marketing communication spend. To overcome such sleepless nights, a leading global communications research agency, Millward Brown, is urging marketing practitioners and admen to focus on creation of ads with appeals that transcends borders, ADEDEJI ADEMIGBUJI reports
ocusing on the complexity of the media as it grows into various channels for marketing purposes, a recent session for stakeholders within the marketing communication industry was meant to help practitioners to record return on investment and effective delivery of marketing campaign with the best research tools. With a fast developing media market, which is largely shaped by societal dynamics, a leading global communications research agency in Nigeria, Millward Brown, has affirmed that the industry needs to be research-driven to overcome increasing complexities that have made effective campaign delivery virtually impossible. According to the Chief Solution Officer, AMAP, MB Singapore, Shiv Moule, who attended the session, tagged: One size fits many: Advertising beyond borders, “Clients are faced with this increasing complexity and what we are doing is to help them navigate through that increasingly difficult realities that they are facing in the media world as we give them some ideas and concepts on how to tackle those complexities to achieve marketing results.”.
A cross-border advert
Aganist the backdrop of multinational companies’ knack for deploying global campaigns without due regards to individual market’s differences, Moulee insisted that every country is unique, and pointed out that advertising transference beyond cultural difference explains similarities of ad performance across markets. Voting for ads that talk to everyday situations rather than abstract ads, Moulee said there is a great degree of diversity within Africa while transference is relatively low within Asia but Europe is said to enjoy between 56-58 per cent transference. The speaker pointed out that music is extremely strong in advertising in Africa just as adverts that work in Nigeria, Ghana and Kenya show the following traits: Family and community themes- sense of happiness- emotional with underlying theme of music; Happy optimism – show positive images, sense of fun, optimism and drama; fun, music and humour among others. However, despite these common traits, functional transference within Africa is put at only 43 per cent. Zeroing in on each of the selected three African countries he said “there are clear
CLEARLY , THERE IS MORE DIVERGENCE THAN CONVERGENCE IN THE WORLD WHEN IT COMES TO ADVERTISING SUCCESSFUL cultural differences within Africa”. Ads in Nigeria reflect power, individuality, assertion; In Ghana ads exude authority, community, harmony structure while in East Africa ads are less hierarchical, there is harmony and comfort in ambiguity. Focusing on Nigeria, he said factors proven to contribute to successful ads include very strong sense of being Nigerian (nationalistic tones/tendencies), aspiration imagery, vibrancy – in the use of local music and use of colours. In Ghana, intimacy, emotional and a sense of family determine ads that work. From the above, Moulee submits “clear-
Fedex connects more African countries A DEDEJI A DEMIGBUJI
edEx Express has announced plans to expand its operation to the North and Southern part of Africa there by expanding its scope of operation within the African continent. South Africa, Malawi, Libya, Swaziland, Zambia and Mozambique are all now included in the growing FedEx destinations in Africa. The new offices will help increase support for FedEx’s customers all across Africa and beyond. FedEx Senior Vice-President,David Ross, said, “Libya has great growth potential as the economy stabilizes in
the post-revolution era. As a big contributor to international trade, FedEx will significantly support Libya and its business community, enhancing flexibility and speed to market.” The Managing Director of Red Star Express Plc, Mr. Sule Bichi said the expansion strategy by FedEx has a significant implication for both corporate and individual lives. “we are excited about the new business horizon that these developments in other African countries open up for our customers who have both business and personal interests in those newly added destinations. Our customers can count on significantly improved quality of service across the countries that are now
being connected through this business expansion by FedEX,” he said. FedEx expansion move has led to acquisition of businesses operated by Supaswift in South Africa, Malawi, Mozambique, Swaziland and Zambia. The multinational courier company has also teamed up with Takween, a Libyan company to re-launch its international services in the country. The acquisitions will operate under the FedEx business unit and will give it direct access to 39 facilities across the seven countries. The move will significantly extend the reach of the courier’s South African operation, connecting it to more than 220 countries and territories worldwide.
ly, there is more divergence than convergence in the world when it comes to advertising successful” pointing out why it is difficult and sometimes uneconomical to use the same execution across markets. Four key factors however affect advertising transference according to him, and these include stage of category development, brand stature and meaning, media exposure and advertising diet (these three are the main contributors in 70 per cent of cases where an ad fails to travel) while cultural factors also contribute to the list. “Stage of category development can influence how consumers respond to advertising. A number of categories are evolving rapidly and at different stages in across markets. This affects consumers’ expectations from brands and advertising”. Similarly, he explained that differences in brand stature can affect brand perception and expectations from advertising adding that brand status can vary significantly by market. Closing his presentation, while the MB chief did not expressly discourage or encourage ad transference, he urged marketers to evaluate the impact on their brand and adhere to the scheme that deliver the best ROI to the brand. As part of “bringing money back to the client pockets” after the huge investment on communications, Andrejz Suski, Head of Digital, MB South Africa presenting a paper with the theme: Changing Channel with confidence – a structure for innovation, affirms that media consumption is changing. According to him, “A 70 – 20- 10 framework can help drive innovation. It is all about optimization. Reallocating your spend can bring a bigger and better ROI”. Premium brands deliver better ROI no doubt, hence Shiv second presentation dissected premium brands and what price premium entails. “It is all about buying a brand, buying it more often and paying more”, he explains. Mechanics on premiumness include ability to command a price that is higher in a mass category. “A premium brand is one that is worth paying more for” Its DNA incorporates the following: Genuine –sense of authenticity, quality and confident; desirability –it must appeal to the senses and tactile feel; and exclusivity though this is more of a luxury brand trait, it implies that it must be a discerning choice. A brand could attain premiumness through innovation, association and communication. Focusing on the latter, a brand becomes premium if the messages resonate; there is emotional connect with the consumers and if the communication rides on a sharp focus on features of the brand. However, it is worthy of note that use of celebrity does not necessarily drive brand premiumness. In the same way as humour is revealed to be antithetical to driving brand premiumness.
Brands & Marketing
Thursday, August 15, 2013
Blackberry up for sale STORIES: ADEDEJI ADEMIGBUJI WITH AGENCY REPORTS
lackBerry, once the global leader in smartphone technology, has put itself up for sale after years of falling sales and failed revamps, says report. The smartphone, which once was seen as habit-former has suffered sharp decline globally in recent times as competition changed the face of Smartphone. However, early in the week, the company previously known as Research in Motion (RIM) announced the decision “explores strategic alternatives”.
While the company is scouting for buyers, the company could consider an option of going public as brand analysts expect a turnaround. Unable to match Apple’s iPhone for cool or the sheer range of devices from Samsung and others using Google’s Android mobile system, its market share has collapsed from close to 50 per cent in the US in 2009 to less than three per cent , according to figures released last week by the analyst IDC. On the day the news broke, the Z10, BlackBerry’s latest, much-hyped device was being offered for $19.99 by US mobile retailer Wirefly as against $199
when it was launched earlier this year. For BlackBerry watchers, the news is no surprise. The company lost $84m in the last quarter and announced 5,000 layoffs last year. “The beginning of the end started some time ago,” said Stuart Jeffrey, analyst at Nomura Securities. He said the company’s statement suggested it no longer had any confidence in its ability to get out its current predicament. BlackBerry, he predicts, is likely to re-emerge as a software company, perhaps with some contracts for supersecure government devices, but “without the handicap of all those uncompetitive handsets”.
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Johnnie Walker Gold Label Reserve comes to Nigeria
ohnnie Walker Gold Label Reserve is coming to Nigeria in a sparkling launch event that takes place at the famous celebrity owned club One Eleven, V.I., Lagos later in the week. The General Manager, Diageo Brands Nigeria, Mr. Felix Enwemadu, said “This event will prove that gold is more than just a colour – it is an attitude, a state of mind, a sense of arrival. We are excited to welcome Nigeria to experience this exceptional whiskey, and celebrate with us into a golden dawn.” Included in the cosmopolitan crowd will be Nollywood actors, musicians, artists and socialites who have all received a gilded invitation to experience the premier taste of Johnnie Walker Gold Label Reserve in Nigeria. Beckoned to enter by the night’s Golden Girls, and handed a flute of an indulgent Gold Label cocktail, guests will linger under the spell of gold’s alluring power, serenaded by a gold grand
piano. Celebrity DJs like DJ Exclusive are billed to set the mood from the poolside booth, where guests will be treated to a night of unforgettable surprises. Crafted to mark life’s legendary celebrations, Johnnie Walker Gold Label Reserve’s Nigerian launch will strive for new heights with an iconic dash of glamour. Under the glow of shimmering lights, the seductive taste of Gold Label’s smooth, complex blend will be savored into the early hours, as gold dust bursts from the sky. “Johnnie Walker Gold Label Reserve appeals to a stylish, discerning set that is also confident, progressive and innovative and we believe that Nigeria is ready for an international spirit that is both bold and mould-breaking. It is the perfect drink - one that transforms special moments into legendary celebrations,” says a Brand Ambassador for Diageo Reserve brands, Tim Etherington-Judge.
Campari commences taste of things to come promo
L-R: Deputy Governor of Imo State, Prince Eze Madumere; Manager, Government Relations, Etisalat Nigeria, Mr. Mohammed Suleh-Yusuf ; Deputy Director, Network Deployment, Etisalat Nigeria, Mr Adekunle Durojaiye and Head, Sales Support & Operations, Mr. Victor Nwaobia, during the Etisalat donation to Security agencies in Imo State,recently.
LG electronics unveils pink service for female market
s the growing demand for a specialized customer initiative for female customers gains momentum, LG Electronics, a global leader in Consumer Electronics has launched a unique womenfriendly customer service programme known as the ‘LG Pink Service’ in Nigeria. According to LG, the new customer service initiative is aimed at providing technical assistance across LG products to female customers at their homes. The Pink Service, a programme which is an extension to the LG’s Care and Delight campaign, will allow female customers to be served by women technicians at their homes, as an alternative to a male specialist visiting customer homes to advice on products and future care. While explaining the new value proposition, the Managing Director, LG Electronics West Africa operations, Mr. Deog Jun Kim said: “As a leading global brand, we strongly believe we have a role in solv¬ing cus¬tomer ser¬vice issues as well as forging new trajectories that will lead¬ the LG brand to newer frontiers. In the light of this, we have adopted this
new programme, the LG Pink service, a new approach to customer service that optimizes both people and processes, creating long-term cultural change and measurable results”. To ensure that a high level of customer-service is maintained, LG have selected the technicians with the highest skill-set to operate in the Pink Service programme. As with the policy of LG service practices, all LG technicians will continuously be reviewed to safeguard and ensure that a high-level of customer-service is maintained across all markets. Also, the Managing Director, Fouani Nigeria Limited, Mr. Mohammed Fouani said: “at LG Electronics, we understand our primal objective and what the consumers expect from us. Through the forward-thinking initiatives we have consistently adopted we have been able to create a vision and strategy that differentiates us from the competition. The posture we have adopted allows us to meet customers’ expectations as we deliver on our brand promise. “LG has always put the needs of its customers at the forefront, from producing the latest innovative technology to
customer service; and this was the motivation behind developing our Care & Delight services as an extension to the differentiated customer-oriented services LG provides. We introduced The Pink Service which is tailored to the special needs of our Nigerian consumers.” The General Manager, LG Service Centre, LG Electronics West Africa Operations, Mr. Weolwoo Choi said: “The Pink Service is the most recent innovative service to be introduced in Nigeria by LG Electronics. On the other hand, LG Care & Delight Moving Service Centre was unveiled last year allowing customers to effortlessly benefit from LG customer care service.” Owing to the fact that a critical component of improving the customer experience is the availability of experienced and well trained customer-facing personnel, the LG Pink Service lady technician service is said to be made of experienced and well trained female technicians adequately equipped to speedily provide needed customer support to female patrons .
ollowing the launch of the new TVC, Campari, the has launched “A Taste of Things to Come” promo. The eight weeks promo, aimed at rewarding loyal consumers of Campari is expected to end on September 16, 2013 and would run in seven major cities in Nigeria: Lagos, Aba, Enugu, Port Harcourt, Calabar, Abuja and Ibadan as well as some selected bars, grocery supermarkets and open markets. “A Taste of Things to Come” promotion, according to a re-
lease, allows consumers to purchase any bottle size of Campari and receive a coupon that qualifies them for the draw to win a Brand New KIA Rio, 42 inch Plasma TV, Mobile Phones and Digital Cameras. To participate, the consumers are expected to collect a coupon in any of the designated redemption centers in the cities, after presenting bottle cap as proof of purchase, tofill in name, phone number, address and email in the coupon.
Grand Oak introduces Bacchus Tonic in Tetra Pak
s part of the effort to consolidate its leadership in the Nigerian market and to enhance the image of its brands, Grand Oak Limited, Nigeria’s foremost marketer of spirit and wine has repackaged Bacchus Tonic Wine in Tetra Pak, the state-of-the-art packaging solution. Speaking on the new initiative recently in Lagos, Brand Manager, Bacchus Tonic Wine, Mr. Olayinka Amuwo, said the new look package is aimed at repositioning the brand in the mind of the consumer and to check the nefarious activities of producers of fake spirits and wines. Amuwo said Grand Oak is eager to consolidate on its market leadership and enhance its mar-
ket positioning by constantly providing added value to the brands on its stable to the benefit of consumers. Speaking on the advantages of Tetra Pak, the brand manager said the state-of-the-art packaging solution is eco- friendly and saves cost. He said that the company settled for Tetra Pak because it is a recyclable container made of mostly paper and is lighter than glass bottles. The packaging provides optimal product safety, hygiene and distribution efficiency using a minimum amount of material. He added that although glass appears to be an excellent packaging material as it has a higher environmental impact use than paper and plastic.
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Brands & Marketing
Thursday, August 15, 2013
ad VA NT AG E icon
Chivita celebrates 10 years of fruity war ADEDEJI ADEMIGBUJI
n the face of stiff competition in the fruit juice market, Chi Limited has unveiled a new campaign for its premium brand, Chivita Premuim Fruit Juice, to reinforce its “100 percent fruit juice content” a tagline that has won for the brand top-of-the-mind position among fruit juice consumers across all class. With massive entry of both local and foreign fruit juice, deploying various strategies to increase sales Chivita is said to have been able to increase market penetration against major rivals. Where other strong contenders in the likes of 5Alive (Coca Cola), Funman and Don Simon and over 15 other fringe players in the last decade have remained a portent competitor, industry observers said part of the reasons for Chivita’s steady climb is hanged on its three-legged brand promise: “No added sugar, No added preservative, No Artificial colours and Flavours.” These accordingly, is said to help consumers control their sugar level and help curtail other non-communicable diseases such as diabetes among others. Corroborating their views, a juice stockist at the popular Mushin Provision Market who declined to mention his name said, “There are some that are real fruit juice like Chivita, which is why many consumers are buying it.” The stock keeper, however, affirmed that most
L-R: Executive Director, E2 Marketing Ltd; Mr. Edward Ezewele; Executive Director, Mr Dayo Dahunsi and Managing Director, 70th Precinct Ltd Mr Osamede Umweni during the Media interactive with Nigeria Application Summit team held in Lagos recently.
consumers go for the brand because of the non-sugar and non-added preservative have made the brand a choice of the buyers. Chivita Premium Fruit Juice was first introduced in the country in 1996 at a time when a good number of Nigerian consumers had a penchant for patronising imported juice based on the perception that they are of higher quality. However, over the years, Chivita has grown its equity with campaigns that have helped to build brand presence and kept brand stuck in the consumers’ consciousness. One of such outstanding campaigns which aimed at positioning Chivita Premium Juice as a food product with Nigerian roots, ‘Be Nigerian, Buy Nigerian.’ The campaign sold the brand as a Nigerian brand of international quality such that big hotels and airlines now wet their clients’ palate with Chivita. The product is also found in markets outside Nigeria’s shores. Expressing
delight at the growing popularity of Chivita outside the country, a source within the company quipped, “Chivita has become a brand that makes Nigerians outside the country to be proud of their heritage.” Another appeal Chivita offers consumer is the manner of its presentation. The brand blazed the trail of introduction of the German tetra pack format (a huge attraction for middle and upper social class) which helped to ensure longer shelf life. The parent brand is a massive investor in marketing/ advertising support and has for years been exploring the accruals from celebrity endorsements of popular Nollywood acts such as Jide Kosoko, Ini Edo, Nkiru Sylvanus to rev up the brand visibility and connection with the consumer. The MD of Chi Limited, Roy Deepanjan admitted as much in a recent interview when he said, “To get the natural product to our consumers is not an easy task.”
ustin Ufomba, a member of Board of Diageo who serves in Guinness Nigeria as Marketing Director is one of the most innovative marketing managers. Since he was appointed on August 1, 2012, Ufomba has through his innovative approach to marketing, enhanced corporate governance within Guinness Nigeria. He began his marketing career at Guinness in 1995, as a management trainee in the sales and marketing function. He rose up to occupy several positions in the marketing department including Brand Support Manager, Brand Manager in charge of Malta Guinness and the flagship brand, Guinness Extra Stout. In 2002, he was seconded to Diageo Plc in the UK, the parent company of Guinness Nigeria as a Global Marketing Manager. This enriched experience lasted for 10 years, between 1995 – 2005. Ufomba joined Coca-Cola Nigeria & Equatorial Africa Limited in 2005 as Strategic Marketing Manager (Flavours). In 2006 he was appointed Strategic Marketing Manager (Colas) and subsequently, Strategic Marketing Manager for all Sparkling Beverages, with responsibility of building brands Coke, Fanta, Sprite, Schweppes, Limca and Gold Spot. As Marketing Director, Ufomba drove the marketing vision and strategy of the CocaCola Company in Nigeria after succeeding Kofi Amegashie. Starting as a Graduate Management Trainee (GMT)at Guinness Nigeria, Ufomba over a ten
UFOMBA DROVE THE MARKETING VISION AND STRATEGY OF
COMPANY IN NIGERIA
year period held various positions in Diageo including Brand Manager, Global Marketing Manager, Guinness (in the UK) and Project Manager, Marketing. From 2005 to date Austin has held senior leadership roles in First City Monument Bank (FCMB) and Coca-Cola. While in FCMB, he was the Vice President Brand Marketing and communication. He positively drove the marketing and communication unit, recording many success stories for the organization. He holds a first degree from Federal University of Technology, Owerri.
Marketing tactics and brands’ competitive edge
t is quite interesting to note that several companies are adopting new marketing tactics to remain afloat. This is because the business terrain has become highly competitive and the onus is on brands to create a differentiating edge. Some years back, I had written on how some brands evolved new strategies to remain active in business. I focused specifically on Quick Service Restaurants QSR‘s and their marketing tactics. Several years ago, QSR’s are only dominant where elites and top notch individuals stay. This scenario has since changed and you can find a QSR within Oshodi, Agege metropolis and other remote areas. This is one pro-active measure that QSR’s took to outshine each other and gain customers’ attention. I have always admired Al Ries
and Jack Trout due to their indepth and incisive work on the marketing landscape. In the book, Marketing Warfare, the authors were of the view that marketing is not a single-sided process of serving the customer. According to them, the true nature of marketing today is outwitting, out-flaunting and out fighting the competition. To them, marketing is war, where the enemy is your competitor and the ground to be won is the customer. One may not totally agree with the authors on some issues but the truth is that their postulations are real and well-tested. While reading “Bottom-up Marketing” authored by the duo, it is their viewpoint that an organisation should find tactics that will work. The tactics is then built into a strategy. I have also endeavored to analyze some tactics bring adopted by
Brand X-Ray with Ayodeji Ayopo Tel: 08023448199 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org some brands and the rationale behind it. A major one that appealed to me is one of the notable QSR’s, Sweet Sensation which deployed a tactic that defied some marketing logic. The brand has an outlet on Akowonjo road for several years where it has clearly established its brand presence. Sweet Sensation actually started a hot race for competitors along the same route. It was later that Chicken Republic and KFC joined sweet sensation on the same route. What however shocked several people including
myself was the establishment of another outlet by Sweet Sensation. The new outlet had a strategic advantage as commuters descending the Dopemu Bridge had no choice but to behold the brand with its strategic location advantage. The tactic of the Sweet Sensation brand is actually in sync with the postulations of Alries and Jack Trout that the true nature marketing is to outfight competitions. Sweet Sensation has two strategically positioned outlets with
200 meters radius from each other. This clearly showed that the brand retains more than half of the patronage to QSR’s on the same route. This also aligns with the submission of the two marketing strategist that a sure tactic is to find a way to move into the customers mind first. Sweet sensation brand has carved a niche for itself as customers move from one of its outlets to the other when either has a large turnout of customers. I have observed this overtime and the tactic is working for the brand. The Sweet Sensation brand would have definitely monitored the marketing trends to embark on a paradigm shift to not only influence the market but also dictate the pace. Brands concentrated its forces at very decisive points where the targeted mass audience is located.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
Wall Street dips modestly, but Apple extends rally
tocks were slightly lower on Wednesday as investors found few reasons to make big bets, with equities near all-time highs and little clarity over Federal Reserve policy. Apple Inc (AAPL.O) was one of the biggest gainers of the day, rising 1.7 percent to $498.28 to extend a rally that began Tuesday after activist investor Carl Icahn tweeted that he had built a “large position” in the tech company. However, those gains didn’t translate to a broader advance. Wall Street has struggled for direction recently, with the S&P 500 trading in a narrow range over the past month. During that period, the index has only closed once with a move greater than 1 percent. Trading volume has been among the lowest of the year, as earnings season winds down and economic indicators present a mixed view of economic growth. Currently, the S&P is less than 1 percent away from its all-time high. On Tuesday, Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart said the U.S. central bank could begin to slow its quantitative easing (QE) stimulus as early as next month, though data has been too mixed to outline a detailed exit strategy. “Investors are still trying to assess the Fed and what it will do next, leaving us to bounce around on a daily basis but essentially go nowhere,” said Paul Nolte,
managing director at Dearborn Partners in Chicago. “Things should be quiet until we get more clarity on that end. Equities have been tethered to Fed policy for much of the year, and many investors are worried that economic growth may lose momentum without the Fed’s bond-buying intervention. Many traders are awaiting clarity on when the program could begin to slow before adjusting positions. Producer prices were flat in July, below expectations for a 0.3 percent increase. The data could add to worries at the Fed
that inflation is too low, but stocks were little impacted by the news. The Dow Jones industrial average .DJI was down 50.10 points, or 0.32 percent, at 15,400.91. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index .SPX was down 2.14 points, or 0.13 percent, at 1,692.02. The Nasdaq Composite Index .IXIC was down 3.79 points, or 0.10 percent, at 3,680.66. Stocks have trended lower recently, with the S&P down for five of the past seven sessions. For the year, it remains up almost 19 percent. Cisco Systems (CSCO.O) weighed on the Dow, falling 1 percent to $26.06. The company is scheduled to report its quarterly results after the market closes. Deere & Co (DE.N) fell 1.3 percent to $82.92, even as its third-quarter earnings and sales beat expectations. The stock had advanced in premarket trading. Shares of Macy’s Inc (M.N) fell 3.8 percent to $46.65 after the company reported its results and cut its full-year profit outlook. Steinway Musical Instruments Inc (LVB.N) jumped 5.6 percent to $40.43 after it agreed to be taken private by Paulson & Co for $40 a share. Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co (GT.O) rose 1.7 percent to $19.54 a day after the company said one of its largest investors had raised its stake in the company by 44 percent.
Germany, France haul euro zone out of recession
he economies of Germany and France grew faster than expected in the second quarter, bettering a widely heralded expansion in the United States and pulling the euro zone out of a 1-1/2 year-long recession. The increased pace was primarily driven by renewed business and consumer spending in the 17-country bloc’s two largest economies. The euro zone economy was fragile overall, however, with some countries, notably Spain and Italy, still struggli ng. European Economic and Monetary Affairs Commissioner Olli Rehn said the data released on Wednesday showing 0.3 percent euro zone growth for the three months to June meant a nascent recovery was on a more solid footing. But he said there was no room for complacency and that maintaining pace depended on “avoid(ing) new political crises and detrimental market turbulence”.
The euro zone has been in a debt crisis for more than 3-1/2 years. Germany, the bloc’s economic powerhouse, grew 0.7 percent, its largest expansion in more than a year, thanks largely to domestic private and public consumption. France’s economy expanded 0.5 percent, pulling out of a shallow recession to post its strongest quarterly growth since early 2011. The turnaround was driven by consumer spending and industrial output, although investment dropped again. French and German growth compared with a second-quarter expansion of around 0.4 percent in the United States, considered one of the bright spots of the global recovery. Improvement was noticeable elsewhere in the bloc. Bailed-out Portugal’s GDP leapt 1.1 percent in the quarter, its strongest in almost three years, due to higher exports and the easing of a previous investment slump. Austria and Finland also saw improved gr
owth. But recession continued in the Netherlands - an otherwise core euro zone economy - as well in the debt-laden periphery.
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India restricts foreignexchange outflows
ndia announced restrictions on foreign-currency outflows by local companies and individuals after measures to contain a record current-account deficit and attract overseas investors failed to steady the rupee. The Reserve Bank of India reduced the amount that companies can invest overseas without seeking approval to 100 percent of their net worth from 400 percent, according to an e-mailed statement today. Residents can remit $75,000 in each financial year, from a previous limit of $200,000. The rupee erased losses in the offshore market after the announcement. The restrictions follow the central bank’s moves to tighten cash supply and the government’s attempts to rein in imports by raising gold tariffs. Steadying the rupee is the top priority for monetary policy, the monetary authority said on July 29. The latest steps reflect a shift to “Plan B,” addressing the capital account after trying to contain the current account, according to UBS AG. “The minute you restrict outflows, people will start legitimately speaking in terms of capital controls, although these are only on locals and not on foreign investors,” Bhanu Baweja, the global head of emerging market cross asset strategy at UBS, said in a phone interview from London today. “I don’t think this fixes India’s problem, at best it restricts about $5 billion of flows annually, which doesn’t make a dent on the big picture.” One-month offshore non-deliverable rupee forwards rose 0.1 percent 61.88 per dollar after yesterday announcement. Forwards are agreements to buy or sell assets at a set price and date. Non-deliverable contracts are settled in dollars. The Bank of New York Mellon India ADR Index was 0.4 percent lower at 10:05 a.m. in New York. The imposition of capital controls is one facet of the “impossible trinity trilemma” that RBI Governor Duvvuri Subbarao said the central bank is facing. The economics theory argues that it isn’t possible to have free movement of capital, a fixed exchange rate and an independent monetary policy simultaneously. The rupee plunged to an unprecedented 61.8050 per dollar on August 6, as foreign investors pulled about $10 billion from Indian bonds on concern the U.S. will pare stimulus.
U.S. producer prices fall over inflation pressure
.S. producer prices were flat in July and pointed to very little inflationary pressure in the economy, which could add to worries at the U.S. Federal Reserve that inflation is running too low. The Labor Department said on Wednesday a drop in natural gas and gasoline costs held back its seasonally adjusted producer price index. Analysts polled by Reuters had expected a 0.3 percent increase. But it was the weakness in the index outside of volatile energy and food components that will likely garner more attention at the Fed, which has recently flagged the risks posed to the economy by low inflation.
These so-called “core” prices, which are seen as indicators of trends in inflation, rose 0.1 percent during the month, below the 0.2 percent gain expected by analysts in a Reuters poll. The report helped push yields lower on long-term U.S. government debt, suggesting investors saw it as a sign the Fed might keep a major economic stimulus program in place for longer. Inflation has been trending lower for much of the last year despite signs of growing strength in the economy, and the Fed warned last month that low inflation could hurt the economy. Wednesday’s data showed the core in-
dex was up 1.2 percent in the 12 months through July, the lowest reading since November 2010. Analysts had expected that reading to fall to 1.4 percent from 1.7 percent in June. Low inflation is worrisome because it can encourage businesses and consumers to put off purchases. This undermines the Fed’s efforts to boost consumption by lowering borrowing costs. Policymakers also fear extremely low inflation because it raises the risk a major shock to the economy could send prices and wages into a downward spiral known as deflation. Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke pointed out this risk in July.
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Thursday, August 15, 2013
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Jaiz Bank targets national banking licence as APR acquires UAC Registrars TOLA AKINMUTIMI AND JOHNSON OKANLAWON
aiz Bank Plc has unveiled plans to obtain a national licence from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in furtherance of its corporate agenda of providing world class banking products and services to customers nationwide. This is even as the bank also disclosed that it would commence bidding for its Bureau de Change (BDC) customers from all branches by the first week of September 2013. A statement from the bank yesterday said it’s encouraged to opt for the
national banking licence following the deepening of its capital base which has grown from N5bn when it started operations last year to about N10bn. The statement quoted the Head, Corporate Communications of the bank, Mr. Idris Salihu, as saying that the bank can now process forex transactions for eligible BDC at the CBN. Meanwhile, Africa Prudential Registrars Plc (APR) said it has completed acquisition of UAC Registrars. The share sale and purchase agreement between APR and UAC of Nigeria Plc was executed by both parties in Lagos. A statement from the firm quoted the APR’s
Head, Strategic Business Transformation, Mr Opeyemi Onifade, as saying that the UAC Registrars’ proven track record in the industry and its quality customer service and timely response to market trends made it an attractive acquisition target. According to him, the ground-breaking deal will integrate the resources of both companies and drive the deployment of even more robust information technology platforms to further reduce operating expenses and increase overall profitability. He explained that UAC Registrars currently manages the registers of six client companies, including UAC of Nigeria Plc,
adding that the acquisition will open up new opportunities for the entity, not only in Nigeria, but across the African continent. The Chairman of APR Plc, Mrs. Eniola Fadayomi explained that the acquisition was part of the company’s strategy to achieve dominance in the share registration business in the country. She said, “Africa Prudential Registrars Plc is a thoroughbred in this sector. It has close to four decades of share registration experience in the Nigerian capital market, and is ranked number one in terms of automation and innovation among corporate registrars in Nigeria.
Market indicators All-Share Index 37,103.67 points Market capitalisation 11.75 trillion
Index drops 1.29% as bears sustain hold DAMILOLA AJAYI
he benchmark index of equities continued on a bearish note on the Nigerian Stock Exchange yesterday, as more investors took profit from the gains recorded last week. Specifically, the All Share index dropped by 1.29 per cent to close at 37,103.67 points, compared to the decrease of 0.59 per cent recorded the preceding day to close at 37,589.60 points. Market capitalisation depreciated by N154bn to close at N11.750trn, lower than the depreciation
of N71bn recorded the preceding day to close at N11.904trn. All the sectorial indices shed substantial part of their value, the Consumer Goods index shed 2.62 per cent to close at 1,033.65 points, followed by the Lotus Islamic index with 2.47 per cent to close at 2,576.05 points. The Insurance index lost 1.78 per cent to close at 135.93 points, while the NSE 30- index dipped by 1.57 per cent to close at 1,732.80 points. The Oil and Gas index fell 0.81 per cent to close at 201.92 points, while the Banking index declined 0.71 per cent to close at 404.40
points. The Industry Goods index dropped by 0.16 per cent to close at 2,259.78 points, while the Alternative Market Securities Index remained flat. Trans-nationwide Express Plc led the gainers’ table with eight kobo or ten per cent to close at 88 kobo per share, followed by Champion Breweries Plc with N1.77 or 9.99 per cent to close at N19.48 per share. Multitrex Plc rose by five per cent or 9.09 per cent to close at 60 kobo per share, while Jos Breweries Plc declined by eight kobo or 8.99 per cent to close at 97 kobo per share. Vono Products Plc appre-
ciated by five kobo or 8.77 per cent to close at 62 kobo per share. On the flip side, John Holt Plc lost 12 kobo or 9.38 per cent to close at N1.16 per share, while Ikeja Hotel Plc fell by eight kobo or 9.20 per cent to close at 79 kobo per share. Courtville Plc dipped by seven kobo or 8.86 per cent to close at 72 kobo per share, while PZ Cussons Plc declined by N3.82 or 8.68 per cent to close at N40.18 per share. NEM Insurance Plc depreciated by six kobo or 8.57 per cent to close at 64 kobo per share. A total of 438.9 million shares valued at N7.41bn were exchanged in 5,096 deals.
MTN profit rises 22%, beating estimates DAMILOLA AJAYI
WITH AGENCY REPORT
TN Group Limited yesterday said first-half profit rose 22 per cent, exceeding estimates, after subscriber numbers increased in fastgrowing markets including Nigeria and Ghana. A statement from the company said sales advanced 9.8 per cent to 65.2 billion rand ($6.5bn). So-called headline earnings per share, which exclude one-time items, were 6.54 rand for the six months through June, compared with 5.36 rand a year earlier,
beating the 6.49 rand median profit estimate by four analysts in a Bloomberg survey. Total subscribers increased 6.5 per cent to 201.5 million, supported by 7.8 million net additions in Nigeria and further growth in smaller African markets such as Sudan and Ivory Coast. South African customer numbers declined slightly after weak consumer spending and tough competition hampered the business in Africa’s largest economy. MTN plans to add 21.1 million subscribers in the full year, the company said. MTN will try to lower its
cost base in South Africa in order to compete with aggressive rivals, Chief Financial Officer Brett Goschen told Bloomberg at a press conference. Savings will probably come from a reduction in distribution and procurement costs, while the company is reviewing its headcount, he said. MTN shares advanced 1.3 per cent to 198.50 rand in Johannesburg. The stock has increased 12 per cent this year, compared with a 0.7 per cent decline at Vodacom Group Limited. South African wireless companies are looking at other African markets as
Stock Updates GAINERS COMPANY
Primary Market Auction consumers increasingly use more profitable dataenabled smartphones and domestic voice service revenue declines. MTN data subscriber numbers increased by almost 30 per cent in the half year, while data traffic grew 56 per cent, the company said. MTN has expressed interest in expanding into Madagascar, according to people familiar with the matter. A move into India is also worth considering, Chief Executive Officer of the company, Mr. Sifiso Dabengwa told reporters.
Open Market Operations TENOR
Wholesale Dutch Auction System AMOUNT OFFERED
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Thursday, August 15, 2013
Stock exchange daily equities summary Equities as at August 15, 2013 1st Tier Securities
1st Tier Securities Sector
No Of Deals
Value of Shares(N)
No Of Deals
Value of Shares(N)
Thursday, August 15, 2013
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Int’l Youth Day: FG inaugurates peace campaign TOLA AKINMUTIMI, ABUJA LEONARD OKACHIE
he Federal Government has commissioned selected youth across the country on a peace campaign as Nigeria joined the rest of the world on Monday to celebrate the International Youth Day. The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Youth and Students Matters, Comrade Jude Imagwe, who performed the inauguration of the youth team in Abuja on behalf of President Goodluck Jonathan,said Inauguration of the youth was geared toward restoring peace in Nigeria. He said the project which has as its theme ‘I Sign 4 Peace’, was formed in response to the need for action to bring peace and unity to the country. Comrade Imague said that the project which was the first of its kind in the country would help to practically mobilise, and re-orientate Nigerian youths towards the restoration and sustainability of peace. “The President is committed to building a better Nigeria, but we cannot achieve this without peace.” He said peace does not just come, but work for and earned which is why the I sign 4 peace initiative is apt. Giving his inaugural speech, the coordinator of the project, Comrade Charles Olufemi, said youth must play their part to ensure the well-being of Nigerians and direct their energy to driving the country forward. He explained further “this goal of this initiative is to curb insecurity in the country by discussing Nigerian from belonging to anti-social groups on a sustainable basis” According to him, the project will aim at reducing the potential of insurgency and youth restiveness in Nigeria and to extensively curtail face-off between community groups and multinational companies operating in their
area. Olufemi also said that the vision of the initiative was to get Nigerians at all levels sign into the project, adding that visits would be paid to all highly placed Nigerians across board to ensure that they are committed to peace building in their community and the nation at large. By its design, the project will also ensure that youths from the local government level across the nation will be trained and re-oriented toward complementing government’s efforts at achieving peace. “Our dream is to achieve a Nigeria where citizens do the right thing without being forced, where information, exposure and education influences right orientation and positive attitudinal change of people, where energy of the youths are galvanized to drive the economy and political train of the country to the promise land in a harmonious society,” Olufemi assured. In a related development, the United Nations(UN) officials have highlighted the rights and potential of young migrants across the globe who they said often face hard conditions away from their homes. The UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon in his message to mark the International Youth Day said: “It is important to emphasis the positive contribution young migrants make to societies of origin, transit and destination economically by enriching the social and cultural fabric. “Most work hard to earn a living and improve their circumstances. The remittances they send to support families in their home countries are a major contributor to economies worldwide,” “When they return home, young migrants often enhance development by applying skills and ideas acquired abroad. “And, in many cases, women are empowered through migration as they gain financial and social independence.” August 12, 1999 was declared the
International Youth Day, following a recommendation from the World Conference of Ministers Responsible for youths. The theme for this year’s Day is "Youth Migration: Moving Development Forward''. Of the annual total of some 214 million international migrants, young people constitute more than 10 per cent, yet too little is known about their struggles and experiences. They are often accused by communities and politicians of taking jobs from local people, exposing them to further risk of discrimination. In other cases, young people left behind by migrating parents face psychological and social challenges and greater vulnerability. "Poverty, crowded and unsanitary living conditions and the challenges of finding decent employment are regular features of the migrant experience. These challenges are exacerbated by the current global economic and financial crisis. "In transit and at their final destinations, many young migrants face equal or greater struggles, including racism, xenophobia, discrimination and human rights violations. Young women, in par-
ticular, face the risk of sexual exploitation and abuse, ”Ban said.. He, however, urged Member States to consider the issue of youth migration during the High-Level Dialogue on International Migration and Development, which would be held in October during the General Assembly session. "I encourage Member States, youthled organisations and other stakeholders to act to promote the rights of all young migrants and maximise the development potential of youth migration,” the UN scribe added. The Director-General of the International Labour Organisation (ILO), Guy Ryder, said that the Day provided an opportunity to highlight the economic boost and social development that youth migration could bring to countries when it take place in conditions of freedom, equity, and security. He warned that when the conditions are not met, many young migrants are trapped in exploitative jobs. Ryder stressed: “And too often, they like other migrants become scapegoats for the shortcomings of economic and social systems,” Ryder said, adding that both host countries and countries of origin should undertake measures to protect migrants and create adequate job conditions for them. "Shaping effective policies for decent work for young people at home and in the context of migration requires the engagement of governments, employers’ organisations and trade unions in social dialogue.”
SCIENCE FOR KIDS
lectricity shocks us, because it is an outside force that interferes with the internal electricity our bodies' nervous systems generate. To fully understand why the chance encounter of these two electrical forces results in a shock to our systems, we must first understand the fundamentals of electricity itself. In scientific terms, electricity is considered a fundamental force, one that is extremely basic, and has been in existence since the beginning of time. Further simplified, it is so ba-
Why do we get shock from electricity? sic, that it defies explanation, and is Mother Nature's way of saying "Because I said so"! Electricity comprises positive and negative charges, opposite charges attract each other, and similar charges repel each other. Those charges attracted to each other can be separated, with the end product being potential energy, that is, energy that will be released as voltage, should the two reunite. We pay electric compa-
nies to separate the positive and negative charges for us, so that we have electrical energy at our disposal. In order for the charges to reunite, and for the potential energy to be released as voltage, a conductor, a channel that they can flow through, is needed. Insulators, such as paper and glass make poor conductors, while wire and water make excellent conductors. Unfortunately, since the human body
consists primarily of water, it too provides a superb conductor for electrical energy, or voltage. If, by chance, outside electrical energy enters our bodies, now conductors, we will be shocked when the voltage encounters, and interferes with, the internal electrical energy our nervous systems produce. The shocks to our bodies, and the amount of damage the electricity does to them, depends
upon the voltage our bodies are subjected to, upon its level of energy, and upon how much our bodies resist the flow of the electrical energy. When we are shocked, a variety of things may occur, none of which is desirable. Our muscles may twitch, we may experience problems in the nerve centers that control our breathing, or we may experience problems with our heart rhythms. The worst case scenario from being shocked is death. -coolquiz.com
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Thursday, August 15, 2013
Young & Next Generation
Elumelu endows The Future Awards Africa prize Research shows
negative effects of half-siblings
n another big move, one of Africa’s most influential entrepreneurs, Tony O. Elumelu, CON, has announced a 5-year endowment of The Future Africa Awards prizes. Recognised by the World Bank last year as 'The Nobel Prize for Young Africans', The Future Awards Africa, which is in its 8th season, is presented in partnership with the African Union Commission and Microsoft. “The future of Africa is in the hands of brilliant young minds such as these," said Tony O. Elumelu, Chairman of Heirs Holdings and Founder of the Tony Elumelu Foundation. “Our endowment, which looks to the long term, will not only support the sustainability of this important prize, but also encourage up and coming young African leaders, leaders who understand that they have a duty to stimulate this continent's economic and social development with creative solutions." Elumelu will also host 10 honourees for the African Young Person of the Year Prize to an exclusive reception and mentorship session at the Heirs Holdings office, Lagos, Nigeria on Friday, 16 August 2013. The event is scheduled to coincide with the week of the International Day of the Youth. The honourees are drawn from across the continent and include Africa’s youngest billionaire,
The Future Award 2010 in Lagos.
Uganda’s Ashish J. Thakkar, and Malawi’s inventor, William Kamkwamba, as well as Nigeria's music entrepreneurs, Peter and Paul Okoye (Psquare). Other nominees for The Africa Prize are Tanzanian entrepreneur, Patrick Ngowi; Nigerian social entrepreneur Grace Ihejiamaizu; Cameroon’s rural health worker, Foglabenchi Lily Haritu; entrepreneur and software developer, Kariuki Gathitu from Kenya; clean water advocate and social entrepreneur, Saran Kaba Jones; South Africa’s youngest patent holder and serial inventor, Ludwick Marishane; and award winning student inventor from Burkina Faso, Moctar Dembélé.
"We are excited to announce this institutional partnership as Heirs Holdings continues to set the pace for investing in Africa," said Chude Jideonwo, who is Executive Director of The Future Project. "Through his varied support for young African leaders, Mr Elumelu has shown his particular interest in the next generation of Africa's brightest and best, and in working with The Future Awards Africa, undeniably the leading platform on the continent for leaders, innovators, and entrepreneurs; he has taken yet another giant step." The awards event - to be televised exclusively for Africa Magic - holds in September 2013.
Female students exposed to corporate environment STORIES: LEONARD OKACHIE
o fewer than 25 students from the University of Lagos (UNILAG) were hosted recently by Multichoice Nigeria at its Head Office in Victoria Island, Lagos, as an opportunity for them to have an understanding of what goes on in the corporate world. The programme tagged “Girl Student to Work” project is conceived as a day when young female students from institutions of learning from
Nigeria are exposed to the reality of the workplace. The same theme is adopted for this year’s Women’s Day anniversary celebration in Lagos. Other young female students from UNILAG and Lagos State University (LASU) also got the opportunity of visiting corporate offices, government departments, and many other businesses across the Lagos State. The South African High Commission in the Federal Republic of Nigeria had previously identified the Take a Girl Student to Work project
Cross section of the students from the University of Lagos during the Take a Girl Student to Work initiative which took place at Multichoice Head Office, Victoria Island, recently.
as an annual social corporate investment event and a constructive way of positively contributing to the global efforts to address challenges faced by young women, particularly African women and “the girl child”. Interestingly, the students were taken round different departments and interacted with the staff of Multichoice on various issues as regards to the job. Political Counsellor, South African High Commission, Ms. Thandi Mgxwati; General Manager, Marketing and Sales, MultiChoice Nigeria, Mr. Martin Mabutho, and Head of Public Relations, MultiChoice Nigeria, Mr. Segun Fayose and others who addressed the girls, inspired them. Fayose in an interview with Young &Next Generation said that Multichoice Nigeria has been partnering with the Commission since 2009 and had even given employment to so of the girls who participated in the previous editions. “We have final year students from the University of Lagos and we are hoping that at the end of this session they will have a better persperctiver of what obtainsin the corporate world.And when they finally go for their NYSC they will have at the back of their mind that though it is a tough world out there, they have what it takes to rise above the challenges and to remember that as ladies, as girls, they are not disadvantaged,” he said.
dolescents who have half-siblings with a different father are more likely to have used drugs and had sex by age 15 than those who have only full siblings. That's according to new research from Karen Benjamin Guzzo, an assistant professor of sociology at Bowling Green State University, and Cassandra Dorius, an assistant professor of human development and family studies at Iowa State University.It was published in sciencedaily.com. Using data from the National Longitudinal Study of Youth, they examined a phenomenon known as "multi-partnered fertility" or MPF. This happens when parents who are not romantically involved with each other form new relationships and have another child with a new partner. "It's not new behaviour, but it's happening more often as more people are having children outside of marriage," said Guzzo. According to Guzzo, this is one of the first studies to examine the effect of parental MPF on children over the long-term, and the only study that takes into account background factors (such as the mother's level of education and household poverty) and the number of changes in family structure the adolescent experienced. The researchers looked at the connections between this re-partnering and additional childbearing on adolescent drug use and early sex. They focused on mothers and first-born children who lived with their mother most of their lives. "For children, MPF means having a half-sibling, but it also means, for first-born children, that they usually experienced their biological parents splitting up -- if they were together at all, lived in a single mother household for some time, experienced their mother finding a new partner at least once and perhaps lived with a stepfather, and finally experienced their mother having a baby with a new partner," Guzzo explained. Researchers looked at the mother's educational background, her own family structure growing up, and whether the child experienced bouts of poverty. They also examined family factors -- whether the father lived with them at birth, how many family transitions the adolescents experienced, and whether the mother ever married or cohabited, with the child's father or another partner. "We find that first-born adolescents with halfsiblings with the same mother but a different father do have less favourable outcomes compared to their peers with only full siblings, even after accounting for the mother's background characteristics, socioeconomic factors the child experienced growing up, and family instability and structure," Guzzo said. "Adolescents with a half-sibling with a different father are about 65 percent more likely to have used marijuana, uppers, inhalants, cocaine, crack, hallucinogens, sedatives, or other drugs by the time of their 15th birthday than those who have only full siblings. They are also about 2.5 times more likely to have had sex by their 15th birthday than their peers with only full siblings." Guzzo said it's not clear yet what drives these outcomes, but that in the future she and Dorius plan to explore differences in maternal behaviours, father and stepfather involvement, and adolescent perceptions of their relationship with their mother to see if these factors explain the association between having half-siblings with a different father and risky adolescent behaviour. "We are also planning to look at whether this association holds for children other than the firstborn, who tend to experience the most instability," Guzzo said.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
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Participants at the 5th AMLF held in 2012 in Dakar, Senegal.
STORIES: LEONARD OKACHIE
s media owners and managers drawn from across the African continent and beyond prepare for the sixth annual convention of the African Media Leaders Forum (AMLF), calls have been made to address the repressive media situation on the continent. The three-day convention with a focus on the theme “Media and the African Renaissance” will hold from November 6-8, 2013 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The AMLF which is the flagship of the African Media Initiative (AMI), is a unique initiative as it is the only Forum which brings together media owners and operators from around Africa to discuss the opportunities and the future of the industry, as well as ways to strengthen the vital role of the media on the continent. About 550 delegates attended the 5th AMLF in Dakar, Senegal in November 2012. The second edition with the theme 'Shaping the future in Africa' brought an audience of Africa's greatest in print, broadcast and online media together in Lagos. However, stakeholders are worried about the current severe blows by various governments on the freedom of expression in Africa, despite a resolution passed by The African Commission on
African Media Leaders Forum and press environment
Human and Peoples' Rights (ACHPR) in November 2010, urging governments to repeal criminal defamation. The Pan-African Parliament's (PAP) passed the 'Press Freedom for Development and Governance: Need to Reform' resolution in 2012, and the 'Midrand Declaration' in 2013. Both resolutions condemn violations of media freedom and put safeguards into motion for its protection, including an annual 'media freedom index' in Africa and a decision to collectively recognise WAN-IFRA's Declaration of Table Mountain Campaign to repeal criminal defamation. Regrettably, African governments have moved in the opposite direction in the past months with the introduction of highly restrictive media legislation. According to the 2013 Press Freedom Index released by Reporters Without Borders, with supplemental statistics from the Center for Press Freedom, African countries ranked among the 179 coun-
Nigerians to establish radio station in Cote d’Ivoire
group of Nigerians in Abidjan has announced plans to establish a radio station in the Cote d’Ivoire. The group, known as the Nigerian Independent Media Group (NIMG), announced the plan in a statement issued by its President, Mr. Ishola Maruf, in Abidjan on Tuesday. The group said the major reason for opening the station was to provide an avenue for the dissemination of information to the large population of Nigerians residing in the country. It said NIMG had received approval to commence the preliminary stages of registration with the relevant authorities. The statement also said that the proposal for establishing the station had been submitted to the Nigerian Embas-
sy in Cote d’Ivoire. The group said: ``We need an avenue to disseminate information about Nigeria to the more than two million Nigerians living in the country. "Already, Nigeria and Cote d’Ivoire have a cultural integration understanding, the radio station will also promote Nigeria’s diverse cultures and languages.’’ The group added that many Nigerians living in the country lacked access to information on events and activities of government in Nigeria. ``This will bridge that gap; it will be a station that Nigerians will hook up to for news from home and within.It will also provide employment opportunities for Nigerians in the country and reduce the level of idleness and joblessness among Nigerians in the country," it said.
tries on restriction of the press. The 10 African countries with most severe restrictions on press freedom are Eritrea (179 out of 179), Somalia (175 out of 179), Sudan (170 out of 179), Djibouti (167 out of 179), Equatorial Guinea (166 out of 179), Rwanda (161 out of 179), Egypt (158 out of 179), Swaziland (155 out of 179), Gambia (152 out of 179) and Democratic Republic of the Congo (Ranked 142 out of 179). Eritrea sits the bottom of the Press Freedom Index for the sixth successive year. With over 30 journalists imprisoned and no independent media outlets, access to information is severely limited. Eritrea is also the continent's leading detainer of journalists, making it the worst place in the world for Press Freedom. Similarly, in Somalia two journalists were shot the town of Kismayo on July 18, 2013, while over 18 journalists were murdered caught in violent crossfire in 2012. In Equatorial Guinea, President Teodoro Obiang directed or indirectly controls all media. Djibouti has no independent media and even detained a correspondent from the foreign based news site, “Le voix de Djibouti". As the only independent news outlet covering the country, its staff are continuously threatened and banned. Other forms of media access such as the Internet are severely restricted. Criminal defamation and military protection laws in Burkina Faso and Zambia have equally delivered severe blows on press freedom. However, while have saluted the courageous decision of the AMI board to hold the Forum in Ethiopia, others have remained critical, citing Ethiopia's huge challenges in fostering an environment in which both press freedom and freedom of expression can thrive. According to recent report by Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), there are six journalists in jail in Ethiopia and 49 journalists are living in exile.
“For an exiled journalist and publisher who faced many challenges while working in Ethiopia and who has imprisoned journalist friends, It is immoral for me to see African Media leaders gathered in one of the world’s press repressive country, Ethiopia. “If the meeting is really going to be held there, I would consider it AMI and African media leaders support the repressive press situation in Ethiopia. I would also consider it as they support the government for all actions it is doing against the press and its advocates,” Ethiopian journalist wrote on a website while calling for a boycott of the AMLF. Reacting to the criticism, the Chief Executive of AMI, Mr. Amadou Mahtar Ba in statement said he fully understands and respects the concerns being raised and is convinced that Ethiopia remains the most appropriate venue for AMLF 2013 for a number of reasons. He said: “This year marks the 50th anniversary of the African Union, previously known as the Organisation of African Unity. Since its inception in 1963, the organisation, a symbol of Africa's desire and determination to forge ahead in the true spirit of Pan Africanism, has been headquartered in Addis Ababa. Admittedly, it has not always endeared itself in equal measure to its collective body of stakeholders. Yet we must recognize its value as Africa's largest intergovernmental organisation, where the most critical matters touching every single African are debated throughout the year. I must admit that like many other Pan Africanists, I have been quite critical of some of the organisation's decisions. But I do acknowledge the key role it has played in the unification of Africa by promoting cooperation, friendship and mutual support among its member states, and the courageous positions it took at the vanguard for the struggle to liberate nations that were under colonial domination.”
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Thursday, August 15, 2013
Nnaji, Nwaogu for South East media summit DENNIS AGBO ENUGU
ormer Minister for Power and chairman of Geometrics Integrated power plant, Professor Barth Nnaji and Senator Nkechi Nwaogu of Abia Central have indicated acceptance to respectively deliver the key note lecture and chair the second edition of Nigeria Union of Journalists, NUJ, South East Media summit. The South East media summit is an annual event initiative of the South east zone of NUJ as part of social responsibility and platform for interface among the people of the zone in keeping with the agenda setting duties of the media. This year's summit has been scheduled to hold at Nike Lake Resort Hotel Enugu on September 20, 2013. Professor Nnaji is to deliver the key note lecture on "The Role of the Media in South East Integration", while Senator Nwaogu will officiate as the chairman of the occasion. Also expected at the summit are the five governors of the zone, Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, Anyim Pius Anyim, Dr. Ifeanyi Ubah, among other eminent people of the zone. Accepting the responsibility, Senator Nwaogu told a delegation of NUJ members that she was at home with NUJ's tab on the development in the
South East zone. She stated that as a daughter of the zone, the region's problem is her problem and would contribute whatever is in her reach to uplift the zone. She said: "It is obvious that we are the more deprived zone in the country and all developments here are based on selfhelp. "Journalists are looked on as people with wealth of information and information is power. As you represent the South-East you have realized some of the problems that have plagued us in terms of development, unity and cohesiveness and as you have invited me and others for your forthcoming annual summit which intends to x-tray these problems that sometimes put South-East in a way people think we are never united or never together. "Indeed as a daughter of the soil of South-East, their problem is my problem, our problem we should deliberate and participate in solving. "Everybody knows that of all the six geopolitical zone we are the least, I will say developed; whatever development that are found in South-East, will I say fortunately or unfortunately are self efforts of our kith and kin. "It beholves on all of us to come together and find a way that we can build a united South-East, a South-East that should belong to the comity of
Students challenge social media policy
nations, of Nigeria and participate and also make sure that other geopolitical zones should realize that we all belong to the nation called Nigeria. "Otherwise why should we only have five states have six and seven, why should we have 15 senators others have 21, why should we have 43 federal constituencies others have 97; I feel that time has come but I reserve my comment until when we all conglomerate." Earlier, the National Vice President of NUJ in charge of South East, Mr. Chris Isiguzo said that the summit is a forum for people with impeccable integrity, captains of industries, the academia and the political class to address issues of the zone. Isiguzo commended Nwaogu's acceptance for chairmanship of the event and promised that the this year's edition of the summit would be an improvement from the premier edition to address core issues of the region.
'Only one journalist insured among accident victims'
he President of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Mallam Garba Mohammed, on Tuesday urged journalists in the country to enrol in the union’s insurance scheme. Mohammed, who addressed a press conference in Ibadan, said that the insurance scheme was compulsory for every journalist. He said: “The NUJ personal insurance scheme should be compulsory for all journalists. Out of the victims of the last accident which occurred on the Ilesha-Ibadan road, only one of them is insured. "The person, who insured himself with the sum of N6, 750, would have N1.5 million as benefit to the family.’’ He urged members to also pay their check-off and professional dues promptly, adding that the increased rate of default had affected the body in the pursuance of its intended welfare pro-
grammes. Mohammed said that the NUJ would soon launch an endowment fund to cater for the families of those who died in the recent auto-crash. He disclosed: "We are planning to launch an endowment fund which will cater for the vic-
tims of the accident, their families and for future occurrences. "A five-man Board of Trustees consisting of credible persons outside the NUJ executive will be inaugurated to administer the fund. "Let me inform you that a percentage, like 30 percent of the endowment fund would be paid to families of victims. The launch of the fund will not be later than next month. "By next week, I will also meet with the chairmen of the affected states and see what next is to be done for the victim’s families.” He commended the government of Oyo, Osun, Lagos, the FRSC, police as well as media for their support over the incident. Mohammed also commended members of the NUJ across the country for offering support and urged them to keep praying for their departed colleagues.
San Francisco law firm representing the Student Press Law Center sent a letter to the Lodi Unified School District on Monday, urging the Board of Trustees to suspend a controversial social media policy that students have protested in recent weeks. The six-page letter from Attorney Thomas Burke of Davis Wright Tremaine LLP asks the district to suspend the new contract required of student athletes and extracurricular club members that allows punishments for inappropriate or "bullying behavior" on social media outlets. Students have complained that the contract is too vague and are upset that they could be in trouble for "liking" somebody else's post or marking a post as a "favorite" or for adult misinterpretation of their own posts. The letter provides several pieces of case law arguing that the contract is too broad in its wording and "violates federal and state laws and infringes on students' fundamental constitutional rights." "Along these same lines, the policy also violates the First Amendment Rights by giving school officials unfettered discretion if students' speech - even speech taking place off campus and having no connection to school business - is 'inappropriate,' and thus subject to sanction," Burke writes in the letter. Board President Ralph Womack said trustees have already planned to re-examine the social media contract at their Aug. 20 meeting, which could lead to some rewording of the agreement that students must sign. Student protesters attended the Aug. 6 board meeting to voice
their concerns about the contract, a day after they protested with signs on the Bear Creek High School campus. The onepage agreement is essentially a student waiver saying they agree to be punished - benched, suspended or removed from their teams or clubs - for their behaviour on social media. Womack said he likes to see students contributing to the dialogue of issues, including this one regarding the First Amendment. However, he said there are adults who have missed an opportunity to teach that there is a legitimate reason for the policy - that cyberbullying needs to be stopped. He said some students may be taking the policy too personally. "They are focusing on the wording instead of focusing on the intent," said Womack, later adding that he trusts that administrators would not abuse the power to punish students under the contract for things such as quoting controversial literature or rap lyrics. "Maybe it needs to be reworded, but it's really sad that they feel the need to get a lawsuit and an attorney instead of coming out and discussing it." Lodi Unified is committed to end bullying, Womack said. The district has seen a rise in bullying in social media in recent years, and has seen national news coverage from other areas where teens have committed suicide because of constant online attacks, Womack said. Womack added that athletics and clubs are privileges, not rights, so he stands behind the contract's validity. It's similar, he said, to not allowing an athlete with a GPA less than 2.0 to participate in sports.
Toronto Star puts up paywall
its fifth successive decline in quarterly profit. Its media business revenue fell 8% in the second quarter of 2013 compared to the same period the year before. At the time, its executives said the raising of newspaper paywalls should help the situation. Sources: Toronto Star/ Globe & Mail/Reuters
he Toronto Star, Canada's largest-selling daily newspaper, has erected a paywall. Subscribers are initially being asked to pay 99 cents (63p) for a month's full digital access. After that, they must pay $9.99 (£6.30) every month. Readers will be able to access only 10 free articles on the website before being required to pay a subscription. The paper's owner, Torstar Corp, has previously placed other of its titles, such as the Hamilton Spectator and the Waterloo Region Record, behind paywalls. In July, Torstar reported
Thursday, August 15, 2013
FOR YOUR SUCCESS
WITH DR. DEJI FOLUTILE
Today's Tonic (190
“Failure is nothing but success trying to be born in a bigger way.”–Catherine Ponder KEEP FAILING FORWARD! There is no reason to be afraid of failure once you know that no one has succeeded in life without failing one way or the other on the way. The fear of failure will turn us to mediocre in life. Achievers of life are noted for regular failures. The celebrated Thomas Edison failed in his experiments many times before becoming a success. But the wise inventor did not count those experiences as failures. He counted them as steps to success. What we call failures will determine whether we are ripe for success. If we see failures as steps to success, we will not give up until we truly experience the success we desire. We make things possible when we keep venturing no matter what until we see the way out or way up or way forward. There is this stubborn feeling in the stars of life that hidden in most failures are the gems of possibilities and opportunities. When others are moaning and backing off, the stars of life keep forging ahead in spite of failures upon failures. The popular and inspiring Michael Jordan attributed his success among other reasons to his repeated failures on the field of play. I have made up my mind that I will not fear failure of any kind. I will keep forging ahead and be determined to keep failing forward. What about you? DR. DEJI FOLUTILE Tel: 08035219966 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Follow me on Twitter @folutile
Entire boxing ring stolen from historic gym
th St. Gym in Miami Beach, Florida was hit by burglars, who emptied the historic gym of most of its contents, including the entire boxing ring. The 5th St. Gym is a landmark in the city, where numerous boxing legends including Muham-
mad Ali, George Foreman and Sugar Ray Leonard, trained. Nina Spencer, mother of the gym’s owner told WSVN 7 News, “Well, we were vandalized, as you can see, and the ring was stolen, and a lot of equipment and personal information.”
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Man denied life-saving surgery over 26-cent insurance dispute
man seeking treatment for a life-threatening illness had his health further jeopardized when his employer and health insurance company tried to cancel his coverage over a 26-cent dispute. The New Jersey Star-Ledger reports that in January, 33-year-old Sergio Branco was diagnosed with acute myelogenous leukaemia+ Left untreated, the illness can be fatal. When the truck driver took time off work to seek treatment under the Family and Medical Leave Act, he was told that treatment for the leukaemia required a bone-marrow transplant that would cost about $500,000, even with insurance. To make matters worse, when Branco returned to work after his federally guaranteed leave time, he was promptly laid off. Branco and his family weren’t worried, because they knew he was eligible for extended coverage under the government’s COBRA program. The family also launched
a fundraising site for Branco’s leukaemia treatments. The monthly fee for Branco’s COBRA insurance is $518.26. When his wife sent in the first payment, she erroneously made out the check for $518, forgetting to add the 26 cents. Thus began an extended feud among the family, Branco’s former employer Russell Reid, the insurance company handling his COBRA and even the Department of Labour.
Paychex, the company handling the COBRA payments, cashed the check but did not notify the Branco family of the payment error. In the middle of Branco’s treatment, he was informed by the hospital that he didn’t have insurance. “They’re playing with my husband’s life,” Mara Branco told the Star-Ledger. Technically, the payment was still not due. So the Brancos offered to make up the
difference, but they were told that his former employer had instructed Paychex to not accept any further payments — meaning that his COBRA insurance would be cancelled. “The whole time he said Paychex is giving me false information,” Mara Branco told the Star-Ledger after she contacted Branco’s former employer. “I told him if he’d just make a phone call everything would be all right. He said he’d see what he could do.”
Thursday, August 15, 2013
National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net
Community Mirror That is why we need to make choices in this country as we are getting to the stage where recurrent expenditures take the bulk of our resources and people get paid but can do no work.
Family drags Italian to court
MINISTER OF FINANCE AND COORDINATING MINISTER FOR ECONOMY; DR. NGOZI OKONJO-IWEALA
Retirees lament non-payment of gratuities, benefits AMOUR UDEMUDE ASABA
etirees of the Delta State Universal Basic Education Board, SUBEB, have cried out over the nonpayment of their gratuities and benefits since they left service. The retirees comprising teaching and non teaching staff who retired on 31st August, 2011, al-
leged that their monthly stipends have been stopped since November 2012, for no just reason. In a protest letter to Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan, and signed by Chairman Adhoc Committee of the retirees, Mr H. E Unuero and Secretary, Mr E. O Osikabor, noted that they have written series of letters to the Head of Service, Mr Okey Ofili and the State House of Assembly
over the development to no avail. While lamenting that their counterparts who retired in the local governments in 2011 were being paid through the old pension scheme, while theirs was stopped because some persons want to keep their money in an interest yielding account, appealed to the governor to wade into the matter. “As the state helmsman, we
will not ask for fish and you give us serpent. Please, come to our rescue and restore our monthly pension. We are suffering greatly, what other source of livelihood do we have than our monthly pension? Please be passionate enough and order its restoration. The Head of Service had categorically stated that neither the state government or local govern-
Bayelsa to institute welfare scheme for physically challenged
Mrs. Shema tasks women on self reliance
n keeping with supporting the weak and vulnerable, Governor Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa State has set up a committee to authenticate the number of physically challenged persons in the state. According to the announcement, the move is aimed at establishing the identities and number of physically challenged, in order to know those of the state origin. This is with a view to ensuring that they are properly verified within existing frameworks already established and the setting up of a welfare scheme to cater for the aged and vulnerable. Accordingly, physically challenged persons in the state who must be indigenes will soon be invited to register their names and provide other relevant details to enable them benefit from government support. This move became expedient in line with current realities and the need to give those properly authenticated and recommended by the committee as deserving of government support. It stated that, while government remains committed to the restoration of the lost glory of the state, it warned the physically challenged to be law abiding, as it will not tolerate any acts of lawlessness, stressing that, it will apply the full weight of the law on any individual or groups that attempts to take the laws into their hands. The statement further advised the physically challenged and other residents not to allow them to be used to cause a breakdown of law and order as well as create unnecessary disaffection amongst the people. It also called for support, encouragement, understanding and prayers of the people to ensure that the programmes and policies of government do not suffer setbacks.
ment have made its contribution to the new pension scheme on behalf of SUBEB retirees, as such they should continue to receive their retirement benefits under the old pension system, as this prompted the Director of Pension to commence the processing of their benefits from September 2011 to October 2012, but suddenly stopped in November for no genuine reason.
Free reader: A man reading some dailies at a newspaper stand in Lagos, yesterday. PHOTO:ADEMOLA AKINLABI
Mayhem averted over death of cement dealer EMMA GBEMUDU YENAGOA
he Police in Bayelsa State have succeeded in averting mayhem at Otuokpoti in Ogbia Local Government of the state, after a truck crushed a cement dealer identified as Monday to death. Irate youths had embarked on a protest over the death of the man before, police operatives from the Divisional Police Station at Azikoro intervened to
bring the situation under control. Driver of the vehicle who quickly sought police protection after the incident was nearly mobed by the rampaging youths. It was learnt that the incident was caused by the alleged reckless driving of the truck driver who was transporting sand. An eye witness who pleaded anonymity, said that the truck crushed the deceased as he was riding his motorcycle shortly after he had delivered some bags of
cement to a neighbouring community. He said:”The three trucks involved in the sand delivery were seen moving at top speed alongside each other on the narrow road. We saw one of the trucks run into the motorcycle and later discovered the victim was the cement dealer”. According to the source, sympathisers rushed the victim to the Azikoro Community Health Centre where he was pronounced dead.
Governor’s wife solicits support for less privileged INUSA NDAHI MAIDUGURI
ife of Borno State Governor, Hajiya Nana Kashim Shettima has appealed to individuals and donor agencies for support to widows and orphans in the state to enable them live comfortable lives. She said, the death rate in the state has forced many women into widowhoods, noting that,
government alone cannot cater for their needs, as collective support from all and sundry towards assisting the less privileged will go a long way in reducing street begging. Hajiya Nana who is the founder of ‘Support for Widows, Orphans and Tsangaya’ SWOT, said, widowhood is not by choice, but is inevitable that only few experience at a time in life when husband or wife dies, hence,
she deemed it necessary to set up foundation to assist the less privileged”. She noted that SWOT’s main focus is the widows, orphans and Tsangaya pupils among others, as they are faced with lot of challenges, some of them with no daily means of income, and only way out of the situation is to make them self- reliant through education and eventual financial independence.
ife of the Katsina State Governor, Mrs Fatima Shema has charged women to take advantage of opportunities offered by the government to become self reliant. Shema gave the advise in Safana Local Government Area while distributing food items, detergents and cash to women in the area. She said the state has various empowerment and welfare schemes aimed at improving their living condition, hence the need to fully involve themselves in some of the schemes. Represented by wife of the transition committee chairman, Mrs. Maryam Yawale, Shema called on women to cooperate and form associations to enable them benefit. In a related development, the wives of Matazu and Dutsi council area transition committee chairmen, Mrs. Bilkisu Haliru and Jumai Saidu, have embarked on distribution of food items and other essential commodities in their respective areas. The effort is in line with directive given by wife of the governor for the commodities to be distributed to many less privileged women in the 34 council areas of the state. Haliru assured that the distribution exercise would be a continuous one, even as she urged beneficiaries to support government policies that would lead to improved living condition for them and their children. Saidu said the commodities would go long way to cushioning the sufferings of the less privileged in society.
K AYODE KETEFE
wo members of the Alakija family have filed a suit against an Italian national, Stephano Onnis, before a Federal High Court in Lagos for allegedly defrauding a Nigerian firm, Dys Trocca Valsesia and Company Limited of millions of naira. In the suit, the plaintiffs - Olawole Alakija and Mrs. Dora Alakija, who are major shareholders in DTV, alleged that after the expiration of the appointment of Onnis as Acting Managing Director of the company, the Italian alongside others have continued to illegally occupy their positions in the board of the company. Other defendants joined in the suit in addition to Onnis are Guido Giachetti, Ernest Aisubeogun, Anthony Kalu, Deloitee Corporate Services Lim-
Thursday, August 15, 2013
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Fraud: Family drags Italian to court ited and Corporate Affairs Commission, CAC. In the affidavit,the Alakijas stated that Onnis had illegally reconstituted the Board of Directors of the company and appointed other persons as directors in defiance of the procedure laid down in DTV’s Articles of Association and the Companies and Allied Matters Act, CAMA. They contended that the action allegedly done at a time there was pending requisition by members of the company to reconstitute the board, was a flagrant abuse of due process and the statute. The plaintiffs further claimed that the defendants had since embarked upon fraudulent activities which included inflating of bills and invoices and reckless expenditure, especially on businesses outside the core competencies
of the company. The plaintiffs, in specific terms, alleged that one company, Deloitee Corporate Services Limited, was paid N105 million to file Form 7 at the CAC, which ordinarily cost only N200. In the light of their allegations, the plaintiffs are seeking an order setting aside all actions taken by Onnis and other purported directors so far and another order restraining them from further parading as directors of the company. In a similar development, the DTV’s Deputy Managing Director, Mr.
Adetokunbo Alakija, has petitioned the Chief Judge of Lagos State, Justice Ayotunde Philips, over alleged abuse of judicial powers by a Chief Magistrate in the state judiciary, Mrs. A.K Shonubi. In the petition filed through his lawyer, Mr. Deji Sasegbon, he is praying the Chief Justice to investigate the circumstances leading to how Mrs. Shonubi struck out a criminal charge against Onnis and another Italian, Mauro Monta who operates as DTV’s Purchasing Manager. Onnis and Monta had
earlier been charged in a criminal matter for making false statements to the police. They were charged for an alleged false accusation that Adetokunbo Alakija stole the original Certificate of Occupancy, CoO, of DTV in respect of a parcel of land and jetty belonging to the company. The police later found this information to be untrue and consequently charged Onnis and Monta for making false statements before Magistrate Shonubi on June 7, 2013. It was alleged that the Magistrate granted the
accused bail in the sum of N50, 000 with two credible sureties each and then adjourned the matter till June 21, 2013. Sasegbon, further alleged that the address of the sureties and their tax status were not verified as required by criminal proceedings law of Lagos State and yet the magistrate struck out the charge before the next adjourned date of June 21, 2013,even as he stated that when his team got to court on June 21, it learnt that the magistrate had struck out the charge against the Italians since June 11, 2013.
Kogi inaugurates waste management board WALE IBRAHIM LOKOJA
s part of efforts to ensure a clean environment in Lokoja, the Kogi State capital, the state Governor, Capt. Idris Wada has signed a law for establishment of the Kogi State Sanitation and Waste Management Board, KSWMB. The establishment of the agency was necessitated by a desire to curb the indiscriminate dumping of waste in the city, even as it is empowered to achieve a sustainable and orderly development of the environment. The acting secretary of the board, Mrs. Florence Joseph, however commended the governor for making the agency a real-
ity. Mrs. Joseph said the board is expected to work towards minimising the impact of physical development on the ecosystems of the state among others. She noted that owners or occupiers of premises are expected to keep their surroundings clean and free from all undergrowth, weeds, filth, rubbish, waste, refuse, obstruction of any description or any other nuisance. The acting secretary maintained that the board’s other function include; removing, destroying or demolishing illegal structures within the state, stressing that owners of residential buildings and regulated premises should provide sanitary toilet facilities in their premises.
A walk way bridge at Ijora Lagos, being converted to cattle rearing ground, yesterday.
PHOTO: OLUFEMI AJASA
Fadama villages commissioned in Ondo HAKEEM GBADAMOSI AKURE
n a bid to curb unemployment, reduce rural poverty and increase food security, the Ondo State Government has inaugurated two Fadama youth villages in the state.
The villages located at Legiri in Ondo West Local Government Area and Asejere in Ile Oluji/ Okeigbo Local Government will absorb 3,000 unemployed youths. Speaking at the inauguration, the Commissioner for Agriculture, Lasisi Oluboyo said the scheme was de-
signed to reduce rural poverty, increase food security and contribute to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goal,MDG. According Oluboyo, the villages will also serve as training bases for new generation of farmers, saying this will help transform them in the near future, even as it will also help curb unemployment. The commissioner who was represented by the Permanent Secretary in the ministry, Mr. Kole Ogunsuyi, said the Fadama project has empowered youths to effectively manage their resources and to participate in the design and execution of projects. He noted that Fadama has impacted positively in several communities through the provision of small scale infrastructure like market stall, road rehabilitation among others. He said “The effort of the
state government through Fadama lll project has led to increase in income of about 75 per cent of beneficiaries. “As part of effort in ensuring food security and wealth creation through agriculture, the government has given N200million to Agricultural Input Supply Agency, AISA, for the purchase of inputs for sales to farmers at 30 to 50 percent subsidy,” he said. Oluboyo disclosed that more than 15,000 youths have been trained and empowered on agriculture related business in order to replace aging farmers and called on beneficiaries to see the opportunity as a life changing venture. The state coordinator of Fadama, Mr. Olusuji Olatunji disclosed that N550 million has been disbursed to farmers since the inception of the programme, saying that 5,000 households have also benefited.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
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World News ““(Argentine) players should pray for
Ex-US Congressman Jackson Jr. sentenced to 30 months in prison
me to play an honest game on the pitch that God had put him on”
Egypt declares national emergency PAUL ARHEWE,
WITH AGENCY REPORTS
Brotherhood says over 2,000 killed VP announces resignation
gypt has declared a monthlong state of emergency after scores of people were killed when security forces stormed protest camps in Cairo. The camps had been occupied by supporters of former president Mohammed Morsi, who was deposed in early July. State media say the security forces are now in control of the two main camps. The health ministry says 149 people were killed - but the Muslim Brotherhood, which was behind the protests, says more than 2,000 died in yesterday’s violence. The state of emergency is scheduled to last for a month. It imposes a curfew in Cairo and several other provinces between 19:00 local time (17:00 GMT) and 06:00. The measure was taken because the “security and order of the nation face danger due to deliberate sabotage, and attacks on public and private buildings and the loss of life by extremist groups,” the presidency said in a statement. Vice-President Mohammed El Baradei has announced his resignation from the interim government in the wake of the violence. “I cannot continue in shouldering the responsibility for decisions I do not agree with and I fear their consequences. I cannot shoulder the responsibility for a single drop of blood,” he said in a statement. Meanwhile, nobody will resign
he Central African Republic is on the brink of collapse and the crisis is threatening to spread beyond its borders, senior U.N. officials said on Wednesday as they urged the Security Council to help fund and support an African Union peacekeeping force.
Egyptian security forces detaining a supporter of ousted Islamist President Mohammed Morsi as they clear a sit-in camp set up near Cairo University in Cairo’s Giza district, Egypt, yesterday. PHOTO: AP
from the Egyptian cabinet following the government’s decision to break up Muslim Brotherhood protest camps by force, said the leader of the political party to which both the prime minister and one of his deputies belong. Speaking after El Baradei quit in protest at the use of force that led to scores of deaths, Mohamed Abolghar, head of the Egyptian Social Democratic Party, said he had confirmed there would be no resignations. “Nobody will resign. I confirmed it,” Abolghar said. Both Prime Minister Hazem el-Beblawi and Deputy Prime Minister Ziad Bahaa El-Din are
members of Abolghar’s party. Diplomats said that they, like ElBaradei, had been pushing for a political solution to the standoff. “I am confident that, by the end of the day, Egypt will have a better future. We will have a real democracy. The Muslim Brothers will join the process when they know there are elections,” Abolghar said. Armoured bulldozers moved deep into the main protest camp outside Cairo’s Rabaa al-Adawiya mosque shortly after dawn on Wednesday morning. Officials say another protest camp, at Nahda Square, has been cleared and a mopping-up opera-
tion in the surrounding streets was under way. Reporters described wounded protesters being treated next to the dead in makeshift field hospitals. The 17-year-old daughter of leading Muslim Brotherhood figure Mohamed el-Beltagy was among the dead, reports say. Asmaa el-Beltagy was shot in the back and chest, her brother said. A cameraman working for Sky News, Mick Deane, has also been killed - as has a reporter for Gulf News, Habiba Ahmed Abd Elaziz. Shortly before seven in the morning, from a street corner near the Rabaa mosque encampment, I watched the raid begin.
Central African Republic on brink of collapse –UN The landlocked former French colony - one of the poorest places on earth - has been plunged into chaos since the Seleka rebels seized power from President Francois Bozize four months ago, triggering a humanitarian crisis
Central African Republic’s President Michel Djotodia (R) arriving for the Heads of States and Governments International Conference on the Great Lakes PHOTO: REUTERS Region in Nairobi, recently.
in the heart of Africa. The African Union this month rolled an existing 1,100-strong regional peacekeeping mission, known as MICOPAX, into a new larger AU peacekeeping force. The number of troops will be more than tripled to 3,600 and the force has an AU mandate to protect civilians, help stabilize the country and restore government. “The African Union has requested financial, logistical and technical support. We have recommended to the council to provide this support. We have also recommended to better adapt the U.N. (political) mission to the current situation,” U.N. envoy to Central African Republic, retired Lt. Gen. Babacar Gaye, said. The African Union and United Nations plan to send experts to
the Central African Republic shortly to assess exactly what was needed and U.N. diplomats said that on the basis of those reports the Security Council would respond with a resolution. Gaye and U.N. Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights Ivan Simonovic both signalled to the Security Council that the African Union force would not be enough to combat the crisis in Central African Republic, which borders six other states. “A much larger and nationally more diversified force is needed to provide security and protect the population,” Simonovic said. “Such a force would also prevent foreign rebel groups, such as the Lord’s Resistance Army or Islamist extremist groups, from finding a safe haven in the country.”
WORLD BULLETIN Deadly attacks force doctors to quit Somalia A medical charity that was a lifeline for hundreds of thousands of Somalis announced yesterday it was pulling out of the country, saying the threat of deadly violence had become intolerable. The withdrawal of Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF), or Doctors Without Borders, is a blow to the government’s effort to persuade Somalis and foreign donors that security is improving and a stubborn Islamist insurgency is on the wane. “The closure of our activities is a direct result of extreme attacks on our staff, in an environment where armed groups and civilian leaders increasingly support, tolerate or condone the killing, assaulting and abducting of humanitarian aid workers,” Unni Karunakara, MSF’s international president, told reporters in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi. Sixteen MSF staff members have been killed in Somalia since 1991 when civil war erupted, but the charity stayed on, negotiating with militant groups and resorting to hiring armed guards, something it does not do in any other country.
Chad suspends China’s oil firm over environment offence
Chad has suspended all activities of a China National Petroleum Corporation subsidiary for violations of environmental standards while drilling for crude oil in the south of the country. Chad’s oil minister Djerassem Le Bemadjiel told state radio late on Tuesday that a decision had been taken to indefinitely suspend CNPC’s operations after a visit at the Koudalwa field about 200 km (124 miles) south of the capital. “We found flagrant violations of environmental standards by the company ... CNPC’s behaviour was unacceptable,” said Le Bemadjiel. “Not only do they not have facilities to clean spilled crude, there were also intentional spillages in order reduce costs,” the minister said.
‘Ex-Algerian oil minister sets to face graft trial at home’
Former Algerian energy minister Chakib Khelil, wanted in connection with a suspected corruption case involving Algeria’s Sonatrach and Italy’s Eni, said he was ready to return home to be tried but demanded a fair hearing. Algeria’s attorney general said on Monday international arrest warrants had been issued for Khelil, his wife and two of his sons, as well as five other people. Algeria launched the investigation in February after Milan prosecutors said they were investigating Eni head Paolo Scaroni over alleged bribes paid to win contracts in Algeria for Saipem, in which Eni holds a 43 percent stake.
16 killed in deadly Iraqi bomb attack
A suicide bomb at a cafe in central Iraq has killed at least 16 people and wounded another 35, officials said. The blast happened in Balad, a largely Shia Muslim town about 80km (50 miles) north of the capital Baghdad. In a separate attack a bomb exploded near a football field in Muqdadiyah, also north of Baghdad, killing four people and wounding 14, officials said. There have been a number of attacks on Iraqi cafes in recent weeks, during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. More than 60 people alone were killed during celebrations for Eid al-Fitr, marking the end of Ramadan, earlier this week. Most of the casualties were in Baghdad, which was hit by apparently co-ordinated car bombings near markets, cafes and restaurants. This Ramadan in Iraq is thought to have been one of the deadliest in years, with more than 670 people killed. Many were targeted as they sat in cafes after breaking their daytime fast.
India laments submarine blast tragedy Indian Defence Minister AK Antony has described two huge explosions and a fire on an Indian submarine berthed at a Mumbai dockyard as a “shocking tragedy”. Navy chiefs earlier warned the families of 18 sailors on board the submerged vessel to “prepare for the worst” after the two near-simultaneous explosions. Antony offered “heartfelt condolences” to relatives of the dead. It is not clear what caused the blasts. Sabotage has not been ruled out. “A board of inquiry will cover the entire spectrum of the incident, we cannot rule out sabotage at this stage but all the indicators at this point do not support that theory,” navy chief Admiral DK Joshi said. “Divers have opened the first hatch of the [submerged] submarine and are in the process of going down now. A detailed examination can only be carried out after the water is pumped out and the boat has come back to the surface.”
North, South Korea reach deal to re-open industrial zone
North and South Korean officials have reached an agreement about re-opening the Kaesong joint industrial zone, officials from Seoul said. Operations there have been suspended since April when the North withdrew its workers amid rising political tensions. Yesterday the South’s Unification Ministry said a five-point accord had been agreed, but it remains unclear when operations might resume. It comes after Seoul called for “final talks” following six previous rounds. The agreement was signed by the chief delegates from the two Koreas, reports the Yonhap news agency. There are few details about the accord, but Yonhap says the deal is believed to ensure that a similar suspension of operations could not be repeated.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
ormer Illinois congressman Jesse Jackson Jr., once one of the most promising black politicians in the United States, was sentenced on Wednesday to 2-1/2 years in prison for misuse of campaign funds. Jackson, a former Democratic representative and the son of civil rights leader the Rev. Jesse Jackson Sr., apologized before U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson sentenced him on Wednesday. Jackson, 48, had pleaded guilty in February to misusing about $750,000 in campaign funds on luxuries such as fur capes, celebrity memorabilia, mounted elk heads and a Rolex watch. “I misled the American people,” Jackson said at the hearing. “I also want to apologize to my dad and my mother,” Jackson said, wiping away tears. “I take responsibility for my actions and I’m very sorry for what I have done,” he said. Jesse Jackson Jr. and his wife Sandi arrived in court for their sentencing hearing in Washington yesterday. His wife, Sandi, a former Chicago city council member, was sentenced to one year for falsifying tax returns that failed to report the campaign money as income. The couple have two children. Prosecutors have recommended the sentences be served at different times to reduce the impact. “I stand before you today asking for mercy,” Sandi Jackson said, adding that “my heart breaks every day with the pain it has caused my babies.” Jackson Jr. asked on Monday that the judge recommend to the Bureau of Prisons that he serve his time at a federal prison in Montgomery, Alabama, because it would allow him to be nearer to his wife and children. The judge
Ex-US congressman Jackson Jr. sentenced to 30 months in prison
Former Illinois lawmaker, Jesse Jackson Jr. and his wife, Sandra, arriving at federal court in Washington, yesterday. PHOTO: AP
said Wednesday she would make that recommendation. Jackson Jr. served in Congress from 1995 until he resigned after re-election last year, citing health reasons. WGN reporter on details from inside the courtroom …Play video.”He disappeared from public view in the summer of 2012 and speculation swirled for weeks about his condition. At first Jackson Jr. said he was being treated for exhaustion, and his doctor said in July 2012 said he was being treated for a “mood disorder.” He eventually was treated for at least six weeks at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, for bipolar disorder. Jackson Jr. also was sentenced to three years supervised release
and ordered to perform 500 hours of community service. Sandi Jackson was given 12 months supervised release and 200 hours of community service. U.S. prosecutors asked in June that two of the Jacksons’ houses, in Washington and Chicago, be subject to forfeiture, along with a bank account holding $80,000, as part of a $750,000 judgment. Prosecutors asked in a filing this month that the forfeiture motion be delayed until October 25 since Jackson has said he is trying to pay off the judgment. FILE - In this May 9, 1988 file photo, then Democratic presidential candidate Jesse Jackson, center, …Dozens of letters to the judge were filed in the court docket before the sentencing. They
Two pilots die in UPS cargo jet crash
wo people were killed when a UPS cargo plane crashed as it approached an airport in Birmingham, Alabama, turning into a fireball, say officials. The pilot and co-pilot, who were the only crew aboard, died in the incident. No-one else was hurt. The A300 plane crashed on approach to the airport before dawn Wednesday, said the Federal Avia-
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tion Administration. Officials say the aircraft went down in a grassy field near Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport. The Airbus, which was arriving from Louisville, Kentucky, was in several sections, Birmingham Mayor William Bell said. “There were two to three small explosions, but we think that was related to the aviation fuel,” he added.
The UPS plane burst into a fireball as it crashed while coming in to land in Alabama. PHOTO: AP
An airport spokeswoman said their operations had not been affected by the crash. There were no homes in the area where the plane went down. Smoking wreckage and charred debris were left strewn across the field, including the package delivery firm’s cargo. Sharon Wilson, who lives near the airport, said the plane sounded as though it was in trouble as it flew low over her house. “It sounded like an airplane had given out of fuel,” she told the Associated Press news agency. “We thought it was trying to make it to the airport. But a few minutes later, we heard a loud boom.” In 2010 a UPS plane crashed in the United Arab Emirates, killing both pilots. That incident was blamed on a cargo load of lithium batteries, which are sensitive to temperature. They caught fire, an investigation concluded.
included ones from Jackson Sr., ordinary people who had met the congressman only once, and Democratic Representative Marica Fudge, the head of the Congressional Black Caucus, asking for clemency.
Israel-Palestinian peace talks resume in Jerusalem
he first direct Israeli-Palestinian peace talks in three years have begun in Jerusalem, Israeli officials said. Few details have been released about the location, timing or agenda of the talks and both sides have been cautious about achieving any breakthrough. Overnight, Israel freed 26 Palestinian prisoners as part of the deal to restart negotiations. Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem continue to overshadow the resumption. The issue halted the last direct talks in September 2010 and Palestinian representatives have accused Israel of trying to sabotage the latest negotiations. In recent days Israel has announced plans for more than 2,000 new settlement homes. Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) official Yasser Abed Rabbo said the settlement expansion was “unprecedented”. “The talks might collapse any time because of the Israeli practices,” he told Voice of Palestine radio. There has also been scepticism on the Israeli side. The Jerusalem Post on Wednesday reported “extremely low” expectations about the latest talks. It quoted Defence Minister Moshe Yaalon as saying: “We’ve been trying for 20 years since Oslo, and for over 120 years of the conflict.
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Thursday, August 15, 2013
Insecurity: Katsina donates vehicles to police • Slashes Yar’Adua varsity students’ registration fees
JAMES DANJUMA KATSINA
atsina State Government has donated seven Toyota Hilux vehicles to the police to help them check frequent cases of cattle rustling, armed robbery and other vices. The vehicles would be used for security patrol and general surveillance in thick-forest locations in
the southern part of the state. This was as the state government has slashed the registration fee of the Umaru Musa Yar’Adua University, UMYU, by 25 per cent. The Special Adviser to the governor on Higher Education, Aliyu Haruna Jani, who disclosed this, said the slash covered both Art and Science students. Speaking during the do-
nation, Governor Ibrahim Shema said the vehicles would complement “special team of sister security organisations” recently formed to tackle security issues in the state. Shema, who spoke through his deputy, Abdullahi Faskari, said his administration would continue to give necessary assistance to the police to make their work more effective.
The governor, however, called on the public to “join the fight against insecurity” by giving “all necessary support to security agencies” in the state. Responding, the state Commissioner of Police, Moh’d Hurdi, said the Federal Government had completed arrangement to commission special security intervention measures in states with cases of cattle rustling.
Hurdi said the command would continue to do more to protect lives and property, adding that the command had recorded some degree of success in combating crime in the southern part of the state. Meanwhile, Jani said the decision to reduce the registration fees was taken at yesterday’s State Executive Council meeting. Jani explained that the government had in 2012, increased the institution’s registration fees in which Art students paid N37,000
while Science students paid N43,000. However, the special adviser said the government decided to review the registration fees and reduced same by 25 per cent. According to him, Art students will now pay N27,750 while Science students are to pay N32,250. Jani added that 25 per cent of all registration fees paid by students in the last session would immediately be refunded, including those that had already graduated.
Early marriage is slavery –Group OMEIZA AJAYI ABUJA
n Abuja-based group, the Association for Orphans and Vulnerable Children in Nigeria, AONN, has pilloried some senators for surreptitiously voting in support of early child marriage during the recent clause-by-clause review of proposed amendments to the constitution. Addressing a press conference in Abuja tagged: “Slavery Disguised,” Coordinator of the group, Mrs. Priscilla Nwachukwu, said: “It is madness for somebody to marry a child without considering the associated health,
social and economic challenges.” Nwachukwu added that marrying off Nigerian girls in childhood would only deepen their trauma and further enslave them. She said: “Child marriage has far-reaching health, social, economic and political implications for girl-child and her community. It truncates a girl’s childhood, creates grave physical and psychological health risks and robs her of internationally recognised human rights.” Nwachukwu identified poverty, social ties and protection as reasons why some parents give out their wards in early marriage.
L-R: Speaker, Bauchi State House of Assembly, Alhaji Yahya Miya; Deputy Governor, Alhaji Sagir Saleh and Vice-Chancellor, Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University (ATBU), Prof. Muhammad Hamisu, at the foundation laying ceremony of the ATBU College of Medicine, Gubi Campus in Bauchi State, yesterday. PHOTO: NAN
Residents rejoice over location of barracks in Mubi
he residents of Mubi in Adamawa State have commended military authorities for commencing work on a new barracks in the town. A cross section of the residents told the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, in Mubi yesterday that the development would further enhance security in the commercial border town. One of the residents, Mallam Buba Idris, said the establishment of the bar-
rack would consolidate the peace which had returned to the town. He said: “We are enjoying the presence of the military and will like to have them permanently here.” On his part, the Chairman of Mubi Bureau de Change, Alhaji Mohammed Nuru, lauded the setting up of the barrack in the area, saying that his members had every cause to thank God and the military for recovering money looted from
them recently by suspected Boko Haram members. Others, Rita Joseph, Maryam Wakili and Pius Zira, said they were excited over the new barrack and called for public support for government in its efforts to provide them with security. The Commanding Officer of Special Operation Battalion in Mubi, Lt.-Col. Beyidi Martins, said the Chief of Army Staff approved the barracks in view of the strategic position of the town.
Sokoto gets USAID’s 2.5m insecticides-treated nets
he United States Agency for International Development, USAID, has donated 2.5 million insecticides-treated mosquito nets to support the fight against malaria in Sokoto State. The Director of Medical Services in the state Ministry of Health, Dr. Halliru Al-Hassan, said this yesterday at a one-day round
NSCDC arrests civil servant for vandalism, stealing LIVINUS MENEDI YOLA
he Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC, has arrested a civil servant with the Adamawa State Ministry of Works for stealing over N5 million worth of construction materials belonging to the government. Parading the suspect and his accomplice before jour-
nalists, the state NSCDC Public Relations Officer, PRO, Sulaiman Baba, said the roofing materials were vandalised at the Ministry of Works zonal office in Numan where the principal suspect, a level 13 officer, works. He said: “The corps just arrested two suspects with vandalised roofing materials worth about N5 million. The materials were vandal-
ised from the Ministry of Works zonal office in Numan and the principal suspect is an employee of the ministry.” Baba, who indicated the resolve of the NSCDC to rid the state of vandals, said the suspects had been interrogated to ascertain their level of involvement in the crime and would be charged soon. According to the PRO, the law has given the corps
mandate to arrest, detain and prosecute suspects. He promised that the command would not relent in discharging its responsibilities. Baba, who said corps had made several arrests in recent months due to the vigilance of its men in the state, urged the residents to join hands with security agencies to stall the tide of vandalism of public property.
table discussion on maternal mortality and child survival, malaria and polio immunisation. The event was organised by the Voice of America, VOA’s health project in Sokoto. Al-Hassan said the nets would be distributed free to pregnant women, children under five years and other vulnerable groups. He said: “These nets were donated to the state by the agency under the presidential malaria initiative aimed at reducing the scourge of malaria. “The nets were provided to the state government through the Targeted High Impact States Programme, TSHIP, also an arm of USAID.’’ The director said the state government had taken formidable measures to ensure that the nets reached the targeted beneficiaries.
The Provost of the state College of Midwifery and Nursing Sciences, Alhaji Abdullahi Mohammed, said the college would, from the 2013/2014, commence special community midwifery programmes. He said: “With the recent upgrading of the college, we will soon start awarding degrees in nursing.’’ The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health, Dr. Buhari Kware, commended VOA for organising the programme. He said the state government was committed to meeting the health needs of the people at all levels. The Coordinator, VOA Health Project, Mallam Nasiru Birnin-Yero, said the forum was part of the station’s contributions to mitigating the problems of maternal mortality, boosting polio immunisation and child survival.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
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Lagos BRT: Tale of woes and battle There is an ongoing battle between efficiency, desperation and enforcement to sustain the original vision behind the establishment of the Lagos State Bus Rapid Transit (BRT). But LEONARD OKACHIE and FRANCIS SUBERU report that commuters are at the receiving end of the struggle.
hen the Lagos Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system, otherwise called Lagos BRT was launched on March 24, 2008 by the Lagos Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (LAMATA) )many residents of Nigeria’s economic and commercial capital heaved a sigh of relief, hoping it would ease the agony of traffic snarl in the metropolis, as they imagined commuting to and fro their businesses in the buses that ply on exclusive corridor. But five years after, the BRT has become a nightmare to commuters, with declining efficient service delivery, accentuated by decrepitude look of most of the buses in the fleet. The two types of buses – Blue, owned by the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) Cooperative and Red (LAGBUS), owned by the Lagos State Asset Management Company – are used in the BRT scheme. As many who hitherto parked their vehicles to patronise the BRT are now returning to their steering wheels, tension is heightening on the roads as Lagosians seek to get to their destinations faster by using the outlawed BRT corridor. The 22km length BRT corridor from Mile 12 to Lagos Island is a no-go-area for other motorists and this is given effect in the Lagos Traffic Law enacted in 2012. National Mirror’s investigations revealed that more Lagos motorists are violating the BRT corridor and are even willing to pay agents of the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA) and police on traffic duty, to have their way instead of experiencing the inefficiency of the BRT or boarding the buses that are fast becoming “glorified Molues.” Our correspondent took a ride recently in a BRT bus to assess its efficiency and the experience was that of a system bedevilled with litany of woes. By 8am on June 18, 2013, the Mile 12 terminal of the Blue BRT was overflow-
ing with passengers. Many of them struggled, shoved and pushed to buy tickets in various denominations. For instance, Mile 12 to Fadeyi goes for N70, while Mile 12 to CMS/TBS costs N120. “No change!” the ticketing officers kept yelling at the commuters with higher denominations like N500 and N1,000. Some of the passengers, who were in a hurry to get to their destinations, had to forgo their balance with the ticketing officers. “You people will never have the balance: that is how you have been taking my money,” a woman said while hurrying BRT bus being pushed to join the long queue. Our correspondent gave a ticketing officer N200 for a N120 trip. “No change!”She hollered and quickly ignored him. When he asked for his balance, the BRT staff pretended to be in a hurry, and only gave him a N50 note, keeping the balance of N30 to herself. “That is their style. Even when they have change, they tell you they don’t because they want you to leave it. They have done this to me several times. So what I do whenever I want to board the bus is to make sure I have the actual amount on me,” a man in his 40s said unsolicited. It was gathered that such act has become common with the ticketing officers. They deny their passengers their balance and pocket them at end of the day. Also at the Mile 12 to CMS terminal Managing Director of LAMATA, Dr. Dayo on this day, there was a long queue of pas- Mobereola sengers, a bus left at 9:15am and another given for such delay. Frustration was did not arrive till 10:25am. No reason was written all over the faces of commuters,
OUR CORRESPONDENT GAVE A TICKETING OFFICER N200 FOR A N120 TRIP. “NO CHANGE!”SHE HOLLERED AND QUICKLY IGNORED HIM. WHEN HE ASKED FOR HIS BALANCE, THE BRT STAFF PRETENDED TO BE IN A HURRY, AND ONLY GAVE HIM A N50 NOTE, KEEPING THE BALANCE OF N30 TO
BRT vehicles along with the carcass of the one burnt by a mob
CMS bound passengers waitng at Mile12 terminal
while some became restive. “Those personnel sitting there are not even telling us why the buses are not arriving,” a visibly angry woman said. A bus marked L08, which had earlier arrived developed mechanical problem and was abandoned until two mechanics, probably from their office came and fixed it. But the waiting passengers declined to board it and it was eventually driven out empty. Another bus marked 145 arrived by 10:35am. The window screens were broken and some of the passengers avoided sitting close to them due to heavy rain falling at the time. Others had no choice than to occupy the wet seats. “These people are stupid. They don’t have regard for their clients. These seats are wet but they don’t even think of what to do about them,” a furious elderly man said, after using his handkerchief to wipe where he sat. “Why is it that we don’t always get it right in this country? How old are these buses that they can’t be in good shape any longer? Just look at my body, how do I change the clothes I’m wearing now that I am going to the office?” another man asked no one in particular. The BRT buses are designed to carry 76 passengers, with 40 sitting and 36 standing, but that is not the situation as all the buses are packed with passengers. In fact, on this day, no fewer than 130 passengers were seen in most of them, a situation, which some passengers observed, is fast turning to ubiquitous Molue. More disturbing is the fact that the signal bells are no longer functioning. Passengers now shout “owa” to alert drivers that they want to alight. It was similar tale of woes when our correspondent boarded another BRT bus from Ketu to Fadeyi on July 17. There were long queues of passengers. Those waiting for bus seats had a queue that stretched towards Ketu Market, while those for standing had another long queue that stretched towards Ojota axis. About 30 minutes later, an overloaded BRT bus arrived from Mile 12 terminal. Some passengers scrambled to enter, even as it was visible that the vehicle had lost its balance because of overload. Passengers were shouting at each oth-
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to safeguard route
Poluting the environment
er, and almost exchanged blows for stepping on each other’s toes. Moments later, another bus marked 203 arrived. Expectedly, it was overloaded. The number of those standing was more than those sitting. There was commotion and bedlam in the bus. Two young women engaged in a squabble and rained abuses on each other over standing space. But several seats at the back of the vehicle were empty. Why? They were tattered and covered in dust. “Why should these people put this on the road? Just look at the seats; how much would it cost to put them in order. It is not as if their services are free,” a livid male passenger, said. Ironically, a bold statement by the BRT management pasted inside all the vehicles reads: “As a valued stakeholder in the BRT System, please make it mandatory to demand for the passengers’ copy of the ticket. In the event of any reluctance by the crew members on this and other general complaints you can reach us through this lines stated herein…” Despite the above assurance by the operators, many have continued to wonder why the system that was embraced and had turned to a model for other states a few years back is now a shadow of itself ? The dented exteriors, broken bumpers, broken lights, defaced registration number plates, dusty and dirty interior, reckless drivers, rude and corrupt ticketing officers, bad dedicated lanes among others,
WITH MANY WHO HITHERTO PARKED THEIR VEHICLES AND
PATRONISED THE BRT NOW RETURNING TO
THEIR STEERING WHEELS, TENSION IS HEIGHTENING ON THE ROADS AS
LAGOSIANS SEEK TO GET TO THEIR DESTINATIONS FASTER BY USING
THE OUTLAWED BRT CORRIDOR keen observers say are elements of a system that lacks maintenance culture. Yet, Lagosians who have put back their vehicles on the roads are arrested, prosecuted and fined if they dare use the BRT lanes to speedily get to their destinations. The Lagos Traffic Law 2012 stipulates that first offender pays a fine of N20,000, while subsequent infraction attracts N30,000. It also demands an imprisonment of three years or both. National Mirror’s correspondents, however, observed that policemen and LASTMA operatives are abusing this law
Passengers waitng for ticketing officer(s) at the Mile 12 terminal.
in dealing with traffic offenders. The Lagos State Taskforce on Environmental and Special Offences (Enforcement) Unit in April charged to court 42 motorists who were arrested for driving on the BRT lane. Thirty-four of the motorists had already been convicted by the Special Court sitting in Alausa, Ikeja, and slammed them with fines between N10, 000 and N30, 000, after they pleaded guilty to their charge. Speaking recently, the Taskforce Chairman, Bayo Sulaiman, warned motorists to desist from using the BRT lane, adding that those who violate the law will be punished severely. Sulaiman, who is a Chief Superintendent of Police (CSP) said that motorists ply the lane with impunity, stressing that the law on BRT lane is not to witch-hunt anybody. “But be rest assured that if people continue to ply on the BRT lane, we will enforce the law and go after them to ensure that they are prosecuted,” he added. The regulations restrict the use of the BRT only to franchised operators and forbid their use even by ambulances and fire service vehicles on emergency calls, other mechanically propelled vehicles or carts. But having observed how motorists continued to violate and pay the fines, Governor Babatunde Fashola warned that an option of fine might be removed and violators sent straight to jail. Fashola, who said this at the presentation of uniforms to about 1200 BRT bus pilots, officers and inspectors added: “We have noticed that when people are fined, they pay but we will soon remove the option of fine and send violators of the BRT lanes straight to jail. “I continue to tell Lagosians that the BRT Lane is no respecter of anybody, whoever you may be. We have started in the ordinary way. Those of you, who have cars, leave the BRT lanes for the poor. “We are in a democracy. Democracy is about choices we make. In this case, there is a regulation guiding the operations of the BRT. Anybody who violates lanes has abused democracy and we would allow the law to take its full course.” A commercial bus driver popularly referred to as Danfo, Ndubuisi Okoye, said the BRT traffic law has further given room to some corrupt police and LASTMA officials to engage in harassment and illegal extortions. He said: “I am a Danfo driver and I have been plying Ikorodu-CMS route for over eight years now. This new traffic law by Lagos State Government is a welcome development, but the police and LASTMA officials are abusing it. As commercial bus drivers, we see hell everyday in the hands of these people. We don’t even know who is in charge between LASTMA and the police. At times policemen stay till 11pm in order to catch any offending driver on the BRT lane. “If they catch you, even when it is off peak hour, they will charge you as much as N5, 000 or N10, 000 as bribe. But if you fail to comply with them, they will ask you to pay the official fine of N25, 000 as stipulated by the law. And most defaulting motorists would not like to go to court where they would face the full wrath of the law.” Another driver, Mr. Femi Ogunlade narrated their regular ordeals in the hands of policemen and LASTMA officials, adding, “Since the traffic law took effect in Lagos
last year, some police and LASTMA officials have taken it as an opportunity to extort motorists. At times, especially in the night, the policemen put on plain clothes and hide, waiting to pounce on any motorist that will violate the law. Even when you have contravened the law, but may be trying to navigate your way near the BRT lane, they quickly open your door and jump in. The rest is history as they ask you to park. You either pay the bribe as they demand of you or you pay the official penalty. “We don’t even know who is in charge between the police and LASTMA any longer. Both of them harass, intimidate and extort drivers on regular basis. At times we even prefer to fall into the hands of the police than LASTMA because the police collect cheaper bribe than LASTMA.” A school teacher at Maryland, Mr. James Effiong, opined that Nigerians are very good at breaking the law rather than protecting it. He stated thus: “One funny thing about us is that when we leave this country and go to other places we abide by their laws, but when we are in the country we find it very difficult to abide by the law. I think it is all about attitudinal change. In law there is what is called Egalintante ad Juris- meaning no one is above the law and all are equal. “We had a case in July last year, when Governor Fashola arrested an army colonel and a sergeant for driving on the BRT lane. The governor caught them redhanded and he wondered why as senior military officers, they chose to break the law instead of preserving it. I’m sure those soldiers have been indulging in such act before they were caught that day. They felt they were above the law. Most of our leaders are like that.” A technician, Mr. Robert Etuk, who plies Mile 12-CMS route daily said the idea to create the BRT lane by the state government was a good one, but there are still challenges in the execution. He said: “I live at Ikorodu and I have an office at Lagos Island, which makes me to ply the road on daily basis. What the state government has done is a good one, but I think there are areas that need to be addressed urgently. These BRT lanes were created out of the existing express roads that were not even enough for motorists. So this has added much pressure to the roads that are already in need of maintenance. “Take for instance, the BRT lane at Ojota is a death trap. Often, motorists going towards Mile 12 Market on Ikorodu Road, find it difficult to navigate because of the BRT lane there. There is usually fear of collision with an oncoming vehicles especially heavy duty vehicles.” However, some are of the view that the BRT lane is grossly underused in a big city like Lagos, where traffic congestion is a daily nightmare. One of such people, Mr. Okechukwu Okoye, who owns a shop at Mile 12 Market, said: “Private vehicles are restricted to only two lanes on federal roads, leaving the third lane to BRT. The BRT lane is usually scanty. Most times, these BRT buses leave their designated lanes and struggle with other vehicles on other lanes. Sadly, the LASTMA and police officers feed fat on these helpless motorists for violating the so- called traffic law.”
Oldest church building
Vol. 03 No. 687
Thursday, August 15, 2013
The oldest surviving Christian church in the world is a converted house in Qal’at es Salihiye (formerly Dura Europos) in eastern Syria, dating from AD232. In the 1930s, Yale archaeologists dismantled it and rebuilt it back in the United States.
Remembering Fagunwa, forest tapestry and new demons
t is a fitting recognition of scholarship that the world is celebrating the late Daniel Olorunfemi Fagunwa throughout this month. It’s been 50 years since that illustrious son of Oke Igbo in Ondo State departed, leaving a legacy of literary accomplishment that has continued to endure and awe-inspire. For the man famously known as D.O Fagunwa, quality mattered over quantity, which was why only his five fictional novels, all in Yoruba, have continued to signpost his pioneering role in indigenous African literature. When we think of him, what comes to mind are the fables and folktales, the rich Yoruba histrionics, the creative engagement with the extraterrestrial and the supernatural...all neatly woven through an autobiographical narrative that compels devoted reading. And in different forms and varying in-
t took the first touch of his Super Eagles’ debut for VVV Venlo of Holland striker, Uche Nwofor, in the 48th minute to snatch victory for Nigeria over South Africa in the 2013 Mandela Challenge yesterday at the Moses Mabhida Stadium, Durban.
SOMETHING BEFORE THE WEEKEND
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tensity, one has encountered his footprints in Ogboju Ode Ninu Igbo Irunmale (1938), Igbo Olodumare (1949), Ireke Onibudo (1949), Irinkerindo Ninu Igbo Elegbeje (1954) and Adiitu Olodumare (1961). There were a few other works, with fewer acceptances, that he authored, but no home or school, at least in the Yoruba speaking states of Nigeria, was complete without those popular five novels. As a testimony to the good education and better reading culture of yesteryears, it would be something akin to illiteracy, in the 1960s up to the mid-80s in particular, not to be able to recall the characters and scenes in Fagunwa’s novels. And thanks to Prof. Wole Soyinka and a few others who have made English adaptations of some of his works possible, the rich candour of Fagunwa’s literary works continues to travel far, attracting more readers. It is for this reason that those behind last week’s international conference that held in his honour in Akure deserves commendation and encouragement. Of particular mention are the Fagunwa Study Group and the Fagunwa Foundation, including the rich list of literary enthusiasts who have lent themselves to a worthy cause. Activities such as this, striving to immortalise true patriots and contributing to knowledge, ought to earn a loud applause in a country that is giving to the phoney and the ephemeral. It is saddening that apart from the State of Osun where Fagunwa’s books still enjoy considerable mention in schools, most states in the South-West have virtually abandoned the likes of
THE RICH CANDOUR OF
FAGUNWA’S LITERARY WORKS CONTINUES TO TRAVEL FAR,
ATTRACTING MORE READERS Ogboju Ode...Neither the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) nor the National Examinations Council (NECO) recommends those novels to students anymore. Not even for those opting to write Yoruba in the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME). This is unfortunate! Pray, what manner of Yoruba literature are students being offered these days if they are not made to encounter characters like Akara Oogun (the wise hunter in Ogboju Ode...) or Baba Onirungbon Yeuke (the old bearded sage in Ireke Onibudo)? The investigation by National Mirror’s Culture and Education desks reveals that overt politicisation might be responsible for the delisting of Fagunwa’s novels from recommended textbook list in secondary schools. Why does this country distress its heroes like this? Fagunwa died on December 7, 1963, drowning inside River Niger in Baro, while waiting to cross by ferry after his reading tour of some Northern states. Fifty years after, the federating states he left behind are still struggling with the
ideals of unity in diversity, fiscal federalism and religious tolerance, lack of which has bred the worst kind of terrorism. It must distress the creative muse in him that while the same river that took him away has continued to swallow many people ever since, the Second Niger Bridge, which is meant to stop the tide of wanton deaths and accidents on that major way linking the southern and northern parts of the country is yet to be completed after several years and many billions of naira. Although he wrote about gnomes and demons of the forest and man’s continual pursuit of knowledge and solution outside of himself, little would Fagunwa have known that the plots he created decades ago have been developed into real life situations today with a modern-day forest infested with gluttonous demons, anacondas and barracudass as well as the hippopotami, ravaging the same land and waters where they are feeding fat on. Fifty years on, Fagunwa would be embarrassed to see his local government area relying on lamps and generators for power and his great grand children being marked down at school for speaking ‘vernacular’ on account of conversing in the language that earned him fame and honour, like the award of a Member of the British Empire, many decades earlier. More astonishing, yet, would it be for him to see that the demons of Oke Igbo have found their way to the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, perhaps the most important road stretch in the country, inhabiting places of worship and minds of the faithful in a perennial battle of exorcism and survival. Which creative, discerning mind would not marvel at the billion-dollar merchandising that has flourished on that road, where ‘enemies’, like Fagunwa’s fabled demons, are turned into objects of mystification that must be subdued, exorcised, even killed in a never-ending attrition? In remembering Fagunwa, we should celebrate an uncommon genius without forgetting the unfulfilled dreams in the land of his birth.
Mandela Challenge: Eagles beat Bafana 2 - 0 Nwofor netted his second goal in the 67th minute off an Ahmed Musa’s cross to leave South African goalkeeper Ithumeleng Khune dumbfounded after his first half heroics had sent the home crowd of
supporters screaming at the stands. But the hosts have themselves to blame for being wasteful for the most part of the first half, although Eagles’ goalkeeper and captain, Austin Ejide also rose to the occasion a couple of
times when Bafana star men, Siphiwe Tshabalala and Bernard Parker came dangerously close. Nonetheless, the Eagles’ crew ensured victory with the infusion of the trio of Nwofor, Musa and Victor Moses at the start of the second after the first half yielded no goal.
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