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Oil firms dump LNG projects ...to boost investments in domestic gas market UDEME AKPAN

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nternational Oil Companies, IOCs, have started divesting in major Liquefied Natural Gas, LNG, projects targeted at the

Alison-Maduekwe

Vol. 3 N0. 657 697

Stalemate in Taraba

export market in favour of domestic schemes. This development followed improved policies, conditions and terms for the operators. The LNG projects presently under serious threat

include the Olokola Liquefied Natural Gas project, OKLNG, and the Brass LNG project, which have been on the drawing board for several years without any significant progress. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2>>

Onolememen

FEC approves N290m for checks on 3rd Mainland Bridge Lekki-Epe road: We’re only buying back the rights – LASG P.4,6

Thursday, July August 4, 2013 29, 2013

N150

Suntai fights back, fires commissioners, SSG ...speaks on state television I remain acting governor –Deputy

FELIX NWANERI AND WALE IGBINTADE

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n a bid to assert his authority, ailing Governor Danbaba Suntai of Taraba State yesterday, performed what has been described as his first official duty by sacking all his commissioners, Secretary to the State Government, SSG, Chief of Staff, Government House and the 22 special advisers. But, the Acting Governor of the State, Alhaji Garba Umar, called for calm following the purported dissolution of the state executive council, saying he and other major political stakeholders were working CONTINUED ON PAGE 2>>

Johnson

Telecoms subscribers insist on N602bn compensation for poor services

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L-R: Chief of Staff to the President, Chief Mike Oghiadomhe; Head of Service, Alhaji Goni Aji; Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Senator Anyim Pius Anyim; Vice-President Namadi Sambo and President Goodluck Jonathan at the Federal Executive Council meeting in Abuja yesterday. PHOTO: NAN

Why I sacked youth minister – Jonathan

Sex scandal rocks Owerri prison ...officials accused of impregnating inmates

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Guber poll: Anxiety in Ondo as S’Court rules today

Ibrahim

He gave forged list to President, says Gov Aliyu Young Shall Grow boss survives assassination attempt

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P.5 P.49


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News

Thursday, August 29, 2013

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Suntai fights back, sacks commissioners, SSG CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1

to resolve the impasse. Umar said he remains the acting governor until the House of Assembly reverses the position. National Mirror also learnt that there were forces plotting the impeachment of Governor Suntai on medical grounds. The State House of Assembly had on Tuesday announced that Umar would continue to act as the governor until Suntai was able to appear before the lawmakers to confirm that the transmitted letter to the House was genuine. The state has 13 commissioners and 22 special advisers. But, Umar as acting governor sacked five commissioners and four advisers and the Secretary to the State Government, SSG, for allegedly embezzling N400m flood relief funds. Suntai, in a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Mr. Silvanus Giwa, asked the former commissioners to hand over all government properties in their possession to their permanent secretaries. Giwa, who said that he was acting on the orders of Suntai, said all commissioners and special advisers had been relieved of their appointments. He passed the governor’s message of appreciation to

the out-goingofficials for their services to the state, and wished them well in their future endeavours. Giwa also announced the appointment of a new Secretary to the State Government, SSG, and a new Chief of Staff, Government House. The outgoing Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Timothy Kataps, was named as the new SSG and Alhaji Aminu Jika as the new Chief of Staff. The appointments take immediate effect. Briefing newsmen through his Press Secretary, Kefas Sule in Jalingo, Umar said that the state executive council was worried that some individuals were bent on fomenting trouble in the state, and urged the people to continue with their normal activities. He said he would address the people on the situation after the council meeting, and gave assurances that the issues at stake were being sorted out. “We shall definitely resolve this crisis. It is only one government here – the Suntai administration,” he said, even as he insisted that he was empowered by the State House of Assembly to act as the governor, noting that it is what the House says that he would comply with. “I am waiting to hear

from them. As I speak to you, if the Assembly tells me to revert to the position of deputy I will comply,” he said. It was learnt that a move by the state House of Assembly to impeach the ailing Suntai may have already been kick-started. A source told our correspondent that the 24-member House is already collecting signatures for possible move to impeach the governor. The idea is to collect signatures of two-thirds of members in the House to effect the move, a source said. Meanwhile, the gover-

nor last night addressed the people of the state, commending them for their steadfastness and prayers for his recovery. The governor’s address was televised on the Taraba Television, TTV, last night. In the address, Suntai congratulated the people on the 22nd anniversary of the creation of the state held on Monday August 27. While thanking the people in the statewide broadcast, Suntai asked them to live in peace. The immediate past Commissioner for Information, Emmanuel Bello confirmed the broadcast in

an interview with National Mirror last night. Also, he reportedly inaugurated the newly appointed SSG and CoS. There were reports that the leadership of the State Assembly met with the governor yesterday evening. Speaker Tsokwa was not available for comments on the outcome of the meeting, but Suntai’s Chief Press Secretary, CPS, Hassan Mijinyawa, said the meeting was meaningful. It would be recalled that Suntai was flown out of the country for urgent medical treatment following injuries sustained in a plane

crash in October 2012. Suntai, who returned to Jalingo on August 24, wrote to the House of Assembly informing the lawmakers of his return and readiness to resume office. The assembly, however, asked Suntai to appear before it to enable it to decide on his request. Instead of accepting the invitation, Suntai dissolved the state executive. The new SSG, who was the Commissioner for Justice until the dissolution of the cabinet yesterday, accused the Speaker of the Assembly, Haruna Tsokwa, CONTINUED ON PAGE 5>>

Youths dismembering the remains of a dead whale at Alpha Beach in Lagos, yesterday. INSET: One of the youths making away with a piece of the animal. PHOTO: YINKA ADEPARUSI

Oil firms dump LNG projects, boost investments in domestic gas market CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1

The development was unlike in the past when it was more attractive to harness commercial LNG for export to generate substantial foreign exchange for investors. It was learnt that many operators have considered increasing their investment in domestic gas production, processing and marketing for various applications because of improved local climate. Investigations showed that hope for increased consumption of gas at the appropriate prices is also heightened as a result of the successful moves by the Federal Government to privatise 15 Electricity Generation Companies, GENCOs and Electricity Distribution Companies, DISCOs. Consequently, operators in the gas sector expect the process to culminate in the emergence of large-scale

private sector gas consumers that are willing to base gas transactions on commercial terms, thus ensuring adequate returns on investments and profit. Already, Chevron Nigeria Limited, CNL, operator of the NNPC/Chevron Joint Venture has confirmed its withdrawal from the OKLNG effective July 31, 2013. The company stated that its decision was based on the inability of investors to get to the point of making final investment decision on the project, barely eight years of driving the scheme. Chevron’s General Manager, Policy, Government and Public Affairs, Mr. Deji Haastrup, who confirmed the development in a statement noted that “efforts over the last eight years to mature the project have not resulted in a final investment decision, FID.”

He quoted the Managing Director of Chevron, Mr. Andrew Fawthrop, as saying: “The business decision to withdraw from OKLNG is based on a review of our investment portfolio, the lack of progress on the project and a reprioritisation of resources to focus on growing domestic gas supply.” Haastrup explained that the OKLNG project company was formed in 2007 by NNPC, British Gas, Chevron and Shell. He stated that BG and Shell withdrew from the project in June 2012 and July 2013, stressing that NNPC was duly informed of Chevron’s decision to withdraw and the divestment process was being managed in accordance with the provisions of the shareholders’ agreement governing the project. The spokesman added that Chevron originally had

19.5 per cent equity in the project, but had increased to 22.74 per cent after BG’s withdrawal. He, however, maintained that Chevron remained fully committed to Nigeria and would pursue its investments in the country’s oil and gas industry. The OKLNG project is located between Ogun and Ondo states. The project was solidified in 2007 with the signing of a MoU between the shareholders. The plan of the project was for gas producers/owners to send natural gas to the facility where it would be converted to LNG for a fee and pumped into export ships for sale. Group Executive Director, Gas and Power, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, Dr. David Ige, had stated at the recent business forum of the Nigerian Gas Association, NGA

that the LNG projects were having challenges. “We are doing a multibillion dollar project in a fast changing business environment that makes convergence for FID a difficult task. Having said that, a lot of the angles for FID are being addressed one by one. We are closer now than before to the FID. I believe that we will attain the FID shortly on the Brass LNG,” he said Ige, had argued however that the withdrawal of Conoco Philips from the Brass LNG would not negatively impact on the scheme. “Conoco Philips is exiting Nigeria. It is not exiting the Brass project alone. It is exiting Nigeria as part of the global portfolio rationalisation. Exit of Conoco Philips should not be viewed negatively on Nigeria. “Global portfolio rationalisation is a good thing. It allows new players to come

in and ensure liquidity in the market. The exit of a player is really not a bad thing. It is part of giving reality to the industry going forward,” he had noted. The Group Managing Director NNPC, Mr. Andrew Yakubu, who addressed the Senate and House of Representatives’ Joint Committees on Petroleum Resources in Abuja early this year, had stated that the shareholders of the Brass LNG project were set to sign the Final Investment Decision, FID for the project by April 2013. But this has not taken place in the scheme which NNPC holds 30 per cent equity, while Bayelsa State Government has 10 per cent; LNG Japan, four per cent; Itochu Corporation, three per cent, and a joint venture between Nigerian indigenous company Sahara Energy and Sempra Energy holds two per cent.


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net



3

Thursday, August 29, 2013

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4

Photo News

Thursday, August 29, 2013

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

L-R: Deputy Registrar, First Registrars Limited, Mr. Abayomi Oluwato; Managing Director, Centre for Shareholders Enlightenment Ltd, Mr. Gbenga Idowu; National Co-ordinator, Pragmatic Shareholders Association of Nigeria, Mrs. Bisi Bakare and Head, Business Development Division, First Registrars, Mr. Yaya Lawal, at the Shareholders Enlightenment Session of the FirstDividend Plus Prepaid Card in Lagos, yesterday. PHOTO: YINKA ADEPARUSI

L-R: Company Secretary, Stanbic IBTC Asset Management Ltd. Mr. Chidi Okezie; Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Olumide Oyetan; Chairman, Mrs. Sola David-Borha, and Director, Mr. Audu Shuaibu, at the 2013 Annual General Meeting in Lagos, on Tuesday.

The Commandant, Nigerian Army Training and Doctrine Command, Major-General Shehu Usman Abdulkadir (right), making a presentation to the Governor of Niger State Dr. Mu’azu Babangida Aliyu during the latter’s visit to the governor in Minna, yesterday.

L-R: Chairman, Health and Management Care Agency, Dr. Kolawole Owoka; Board Chairman, Wetlands Health Services Limited, Dr. Tari Sekibo and Executive Director, Wetlands, Prof. Charles Amanze, at the HMCA Nigeria, South-South Providers Forum, in Port Harcourt, yesterday.

National News

Lekki road concession: We’re only buying back the rights –LASG DAYO AYEYEMI , WALE IGBINTADE JOHNSON OKANLAWON AND MURITALA AYINLA

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he Lagos State government yesterday said it has not terminated the concession agreement with the Lekki Concession Company Limited, LCC, to reconstruct and expand the 49.36km Eti-Osa Lekki-Epe Expressway. A statement jointly signed by the Commissioner for Finance, Mr. Ayo Gbeleyi and the AttorneyGeneral and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Ade Ipaye explained that the government is engaged in buying back the rights pertaining to the concession ahead of the 30-year period stipulated in the Design, Build, Operate and Transfer, DBOT, concession agreement. This, according to the statement could be achieved by purchasing all the shares in LCC. The statement said, “The Lagos State Government felt obliged to buy out the interests of the concession-

…‘LCC rakes N30m daily from toll’

aire in advance of the handover date of 2038 under a mutual settlement option also expressly provided for in the concession agreement. “This is after due consultation with all major stakeholders including the Lagos State House of Assembly based on various feedback and agitation made to the government.” It stressed that the buyback allows the government to take full control over the determination of the toll rates in order to continue to make it affordable for road users, adding that the LCC shall therefore continue to operate as a fully commercial entity for the benefit of taxpayers and the larger society. “More importantly, it would also preserve the ability of the government to complete and deliver the infrastructure by direct budget funding, which was also one of the reasons for the presentation of the year 2013 budget re-ordering to

the State House of Assembly,” the statement said. Explaining further reasons behind the fresh agreement, the statement said: “The project given its pioneering nature, had some underlying assumptions and market indicators under which the transaction was concluded, which have since drastically changed in a manner that it can no longer be sustained in its current form. “Such include the devaluation of the Naira and costs of construction. The LCC, which is the special purpose vehicle representing the investors, formally brought it to the attention of the state government that given the rapid rise in interest rates on local loans, and other cost parameters, it is compelled to raise tolls currently being charged at toll plaza one from N120.00 to N144.00 per car.” It added that the concessionaire also brought it to the attention of the state government, that as provid-

ed for under the agreement, tolling would have to commence at toll plaza two. “In addition, the concessionaire indicated that unless it realised more income from increased rates at toll plaza one and commence tolling at the same rate per car at toll plaza two, it would not be able to meet its commitments to investors in the project and continue to fund completion of the remaining sections of the road. “Furthermore, the LCC stated that toll plaza three, as contained in the agreement, must be built and tolls collected for the continued viability of the project,” the statement said. It however reaffirmed its unflinching commitment to the adoption of PPP model as a complementary policy thrust for the acceleration of infrastructure delivery towards improving the living standards of the populace. In a related development, fresh facts emerged yester-

day that the concessionaire allegedly rakes in about N30 million daily from toll collection on the road. An impeccable source who did not want his name mentioned, told National Mirror that the state government was no longer comfortable with the existing concession right earlier given to the company, which gives it the right to collect the toll for a period of 30 years in order to recoup its N50bn expenditure on the project. The source said the government had to consider the ‘buy-over’ of the infrastructure in order to meet other needs. “We heard from a very reliable source that the company realise not less than N30m daily. Multiply that in a month and imagine how much it will be in 30 years. Buying over of the infrastructure is the wisest option for the state government. Although, it has its economic implications, but it is better for a state government and its residents than to remain servitude to a company,” the source

said. Meanwhile, concerned built environment experts have expressed mixed reactions over the planned termination of the concession agreement. Speaking to National Mirror, Lagos based estate surveyor and valuer, Chief Kola Akomolede, said the termination would be unfortunate, saying it would generate two reactions. According to him, it would be good news for citizens of Lagos State if the action would mean the cancellation of toll on the route or reduction of toll fee from N120.00 to N60.00. He said the toll fee at the moment is high. “The money is too high, two toll points on a short distance on Lekki Road is too high. It is not done anywhere in the world,” he added. On the other hand, Akomolede said the cancellation of the concession agreement would be regrettable, as it is bound to send wrong signal to other investors that might want to take up such a project in the future.


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

News

Thursday, August 29, 2013

5

Why I sacked youth minister –Jonathan ROTIMI FADEYI AND PRISCILLA DENNIS

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he Presidency yesterday explained why the Minister of Youth Development, Inuwa Abdulkadir, was fired on Monday. It said that the minister was relieved of his appointment because President Goodluck Jonathan was disappointed by his handling of the National Youth Council of Nigeria, NYCN, elections in Makurdi and Minna. A statement by the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Dr. Reuben Abati, said the involvement of the minister in the election resulted

in the unfortunate fractionalisation of the council. The statement said that President Jonathan had no preferred candidate in the election, contrary to speculations in the media. It said that Jonathan regarded the Nigerian youth as his wards and constituents, adding that claims that he had a preferred candidate in the NYCN elections were baseless. The statement reads in part: “President Jonathan remains sincerely and unwaveringly committed to doing all within his powers to promote the credibility and integrity of the electoral process at all levels in the country. “He firmly believes that

a culture of free, fair and credible election must be constantly nurtured and encouraged amongst Nigerian youth and all other sections of the country. “In point of fact, it was Alhaji Abdulkadir’s regrettable deviation from this presidential commitment in the management of the NYCN elections that led to the decision to relieve him of his appointment as Minister of Youth Development. “President Jonathan was very displeased with the mishandling of the NYCN elections in Makurdi and Minna by the Ministry of Youth Development which resulted in the unfortunate fractionalisation of the youth council.

“The President found the ministry’s failure to provide appropriate leadership towards open and transparent youth council elections unacceptable. “President Jonathan is sincerely committed to doing everything possible to ensure that the Nigerian youth, on whom the country’s aspirations for a bright and prosperous future depend, are given the best possible upbringing and orientation. “The President, therefore, expects all officials of his administration to exhibit greater rectitude and sensitivity on issues related to youth development, and comport themselves at all times in a manner worthy

L-R: Senate President David Mark; former Minister of Science and Technology, Maj.-Gen. Sam Momah and Chairman, Senate Committee on Police Affairs, Senator Paulinus Igwe-Nwagu, during a remembrance service for the late Rev. Fr. Jerome Bello, at St. Mulumba Chaplaincy, Apo, Abuja, yesterday. PHOTO: NAN

of emulation by Nigerian youth.” Meanwhile, Niger State Governor Babangida Aliyu yesterday expressed support for the President’s decision to sack the minister and suspend the Chairman of the National Population Commission, NPC, Chief Festus Odumegwu. The governor stated this while receiving the Executive Secretary, Nigeria Christian Pilgrims Commission, NCPC, Mr. Kennedy Okpara, in Minna. He said: “The action of the President is what is expected of a national leader that does not want any of his officials to cause disharmony among the people. “And I am happy that the President queried and suspended the National Chairman of the National Population Commission; please thank the President for me for what he did to the Minister of Youth Development.” He noted that the role the minister played in the botched election showed that he lacked an understanding of his job and failed to present the actual facts of what transpired to President Jonathan. He said: “While the Nigerian Youth Council did not hold election in the Makurdi gathering but rather set up a transition committee, the minister and his aides gave a forged list of new executive members of the council to the President.” Aliyu said it was against this backdrop that the Ni-

ger State government accepted to host the election that returned Abdullahi Abdulmajeed as National President, adding that the transition committee solicited the support of the government and got a peaceful place where the election was conducted and supervised by some officials of the ministry and the Presidency. He added that Chief Festus Odumegwu, failed to ‘census’ his utterances, saying it was important for people to watch their words so as not to cause crisis in the polity. In a related development, the NYCN President, Mr. Yakubu Shendam, said the President had the right to relieve any appointee of his job and urged the public to stop making insinuations regarding the development. He, however, said the council was “still monitoring the situation of the removal of the minister.” This is even as he cautioned politicians against “desperate” tendencies as the 2015 general elections approach. Shendam, however, noted that he was not part of the Minna election. He explained that he was in Abuja when the election was holding in Minna, pleading with political gladiators to halt perceived attempts at “breaking the ranks of the Nigerian youth”, which he said, constituted “80 per cent of the nation’s population.”

Suntai fights back, sacks commissioners, SSG CONTINUED FROM PAGE 2

of misinterpreting the Constitution. “Misinterpreting the law, as the Taraba Speaker is doing is capable of causing discord among our people who may not have access to the constitution and may not know the correct position of the law,” he said. Kataps insisted that Suntai has indeed returned to work. The Speaker and the House Majority Leader, Hon. Joseph Albasu, had on Tuesday, disagreed over Suntai’s purported resumption of work. Human rights lawyer, Femi Falana (SAN), has already petitioned the Inspector General Police to investigate the authenticity

of the letter the governor transmitted to the House. Falana is demanding a detailed investigation of the letter purportedly sent to the Taraba Assembly. In the petition, he noted that barely one day after his return, a letter was delivered to the House declaring the governor’s fitness and readiness for work without affording the public a copy of his medical report of mental and physical fitness. The lawyer indicated he will go to court to compel the IGP to fulfill his constitutional duty if he does not accede to the demand within three days, including yesterday. The petition reads: “Since Governor Dambaba Suntai was brought back to

the country on Sunday, August 25, 2013 by a cabal of political mongers in Taraba State, he has been held incommunicado by those who have held him hostage. All efforts by the Acting Governor, the Speaker of the State House of Assembly, the Director of State Security Service and Commissioner of Police of Taraba State to meet with the Governor have been turned down by his captors due to the fact that he is not in a mental position to recognise anyone. The popular demand of the people of Taraba State that the governor should address them has also been ignored by the cabal. “Yesterday (Tuesday), a letter was transmitted to the House of Assembly which

claimed that the Governor has since resumed duty. Out of the 24 members of the House only seven have claimed that the letter was written by the Governor. Other members are convinced that it is forgery in every material particular. “Today, the political joke was carried to a ridiculous extent when the state cabinet was purportedly dissolved. The governor who is alleged to have resumed duty and taken the decision has not been able to report in his office. In the circumstance, the members of the Taraba State Executive Council should remain on their duty posts and insist on an urgent meeting with the governor with a view to confirming if he had ac-

tually taken the decision to sack them. On its own part, the House should not screen and confirm the list of commissioners being prepared by the cabal to replace the ‘sacked’ cabinet members. “However, before the state is plunged into further political crisis the attention of the captors of the ailing governor ought to be drawn to Section 1(2) of the Constitution which stipulates that no person or group of persons can take over the country or any part of it except in accordance with the provisions of the said Constitution. The Federal Government should therefore direct the security forces to round up the coup plotters who are currently ruling Taraba State by usurping

the constitutional powers of the elected governor. “Having regard to the experience of Acting President Goodluck Jonathan (as he then was) under the cabal that illegally ruled the country when the late President Umar Yar’Adua was in a state of coma the Federal Government should not hesitate to defend and protect the constitution in Taraba State in the interest of law and order in the country. All men and women of goodwill in the country should team up with the democratic forces in Taraba State to end the brazen impunity of those who are exploiting the health of Governor Suntai to achieve dubious political objectives.”


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News

Thursday, August 29, 2013

FEC approves N290m for checks on 3rd Mainland Bridge

•Okays $200m loan for FADAMA agric projects Akinwumi Adesina, said a

ROTIMI FADEYI ABUJA

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he Federal Executive Council, FEC, yesterday approved N290, 745, 000 to carry out comprehensive checks on the Third Mainland Bridge. Briefing State House correspondents at the end of the FEC meeting, Minister of Information, Mr. Labaran Maku, said the checks would include comprehensive underwater inspection, assessment of pilings, river bed bathymetric survey, profiling and echo metric test. According to Maku, the approval followed a memo brought by the Minister of Works, Mike Onolememen, to carry out the checks while the project has been awarded to Messrs Icecon Nigeria Limited with a completion period of two months. Maku said; “In order to save the bridge from extensive deterioration, council approved the award of contract for the consultancy services at the cost of N290, 745, 000.00 with a completion period of two months.” The minister explained that the bridge is a vital artery on the federal highways network connecting Lagos mainland to the island and following reports of oscillation and excessive vibrations of the bridge under traffic load, investigations and tests were carried out by experts on the bridge in 2008. He said the reports indicated that the bridge was structurally sound but required the replacement of damaged expansion joints and bearings. Maku said that the Ministry of Works decided that an Advanced Integrity Assessment, including echometric (sonic pulse) tests on piles was inevitable in order to authenticate the findings of the Nigerian Submarine Divers Limited. “The bridge is so key to traffic in Lagos that we cannot afford not to ensure that we are on top of the situation at all times. There is nothing wrong with the bridge at the moment; some minimal work was done recently by the Federal Ministry of Works. “What they are seeking to do is do a river belt review

of the state of the bridge and all the relevant tests, the piling tests to make sure that we are able to know what further maintenance would be required on the bridge if any,” he added. He also said that council approved a draft bill brought by the Minister of Justice, Mohammed Adoke, which seeks to provide for the prohibition, prevention, detection, response and prosecution of cybercrimes and other related matters. He said the bill would be transmitted to the National Assembly for passage into law. The council also gave approval for the Ministry of Finance to access an International Development Association, IDA, loan which is a World Bank loan of $200 million as additional financing for the Third National Fadama Development Project which Nigeria has been implementing for decades. According to Maku, the loan would help increase the capacity of farmers as well as increase agricultural productivity and training to strengthen the associations and various groups participating in the Fadama Tree projects. He said the loan is virtually interest free with 0.75 per cent on services with a long repayable period of 40 years with a 10-year moratorium. Speaking further on the Fadama Three Agricultural Project, Minister of State for Finance, Alhaji Yerima Ngama, said the total cost of the project would be $250 million. According to him, $200 million is coming from the IDA while $7.95 million would be matching grants to be provided by the federal, states and local governments and the balance, which would be $42.05million, would be provided in kind by the benefitting communities. “The loan is going to be negotiated and signed by the Federal Government and the states that are participating would also enter into subsidiary agreement with the Federal Government in the same terms and condition as the initial loans.” Also at the briefing, Minister of Agriculture, Dr.

total of six states are to benefit from the loan facility for the Fadama project including Lagos, Niger, Anambra, Enugu, Kano and Kogi States while focus would be on the production of rice, sorghum and cassava. According to him, the Fadama Three Agricultural Project is expected to reach about 317, 000 farmers and would impact on 1.7 million beneficiaries.

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

ASSBIFI wants CBN, NDIC to take over Union Homes LEONARD OKACHIE

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he Association of Senior Staff of Banks, Insurance and Financial Institutions, ASSBIFI, Unions Homes Savings and Loans Plc, has called on the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN and the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation, NDIC, to take over the management of Union Homes Savings and Loans Plc to prevent her imminent collapse. ASSBIFI, which is an

affiliate of the Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC, said this has become necessary for the benefit of depositors, shareholders, staff and all stakeholders as the management of the parent company, Union Babnk Nigeria Plc; has failed woefully in its obligations. ASSBIFI President, Comrade Sola Tokede, who disclosed this yesterday at a press briefing in Lagos, added: “We are aware of the various petitions by depositors to the CBN and NDIC complaining of the failure of Union Homes

Savings and Loan Plc to pay them their deposits, but to our amazement, they have turned deaf ears which smack of connivance of the highest order to bring the organisation down and sell it at a pittance to their preferred bidder, Mrs. Funke Osibodu.” The association also demanded the payment of gratuity to the 400 staff whose employment were wrongfully terminated “using the existing template for existing staff and not the recently introduced template which is a far from what obtained before now.”

L-R: Chairman PENGASSAN-Lagos Zone, Comrade Folorunso Oginni: Ogun State Chairman (NCP), Comrade Bemkola Solomon; Chairman, Gani Fawehinmi Memorial Organisation, Comrade Ayodele Akele; President, Women Arise/Campaign for Democracy, Dr. Joe Okei-Odumakin and Prof. Maurice Fangnon, Secretary General, Centre for the Defence of Human Rights and Democracy in Africa, at the fourth year remembrance of late Gani Fawehinmi in Lagos, yesterday.

US court okays trial of Nigerian on terrorism charges

EMMANUEL ONANI AND PAUL ARHEWE

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United States Federal Court, sitting in Brooklyn, New York, has granted leave for the trial of a Nigerian citizen, Lawal Olaniyi Babafemi, who is alleged to have provided material support to a designated foreign terrorist organisation, AQAP, a branch alQaeda in the Arabian Peninsula. The court will also try the suspect, also known as “Abdullah” and “Ayatollah Mustapha”, on charges of “using high-powered firearms in furtherance of that crime.” This was contained in a statement issued by the Information Unit of the United States Embassy in Abuja, yesterday. The charges were said to have been preferred against the defendant by the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, Loretta E. Lynch, John Carlin, Acting Assistant Attorney General,

National Security Division, and George Venizelos, Assistant Director-in-Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, FBI, New York Field Office. This was even as the US government ‘acknowledged the continued cooperation and assistance of the government of Nigeria in terrorism matters affecting both nations.’ The statement reads in part: “According to court documents, between approximately January 2010 and August 2011, the defendant traveled twice from Nigeria to Yemen to meet and train with leaders of AQAP, the Yemen-based branch of al-Qaeda. “Babafemi assisted in AQAP’s English-language media operations, which include the publication of the magazine ‘Inspire.’ “At the direction of the now-deceased senior AQAP commander, Anwar al-Aulaqi, Babafemi was provided by AQAP leadership with the equivalent of almost $9, 000 in cash to recruit other English-speak-

ing Nigerians to join that group. While in Yemen, Babafemi also received weapons training from AQAP. “The charges in the indictment are merely allegations and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty. “The government’s case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys, Zainab Ahmad and Hilary Jager, with assistance from Trial Attorney, William M. Narus of the Justice Department’s Counterterrorism Section and Trial Attorney, Timothy Hammer of the Justice Department’s Office of International Affairs. Meanwhile, a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja yesterday ordered the extradition of Babafemi, to the United States to answer the charges. The Federal Government initiated the extradition proceedings against Babafemi. Justice Ahmed Mohammed, who gave the ruling, ordered that the suspect should be handed over to the United States government

on or before the expiration of 15 days. “The entire document in relation to the suit in the local court plus the charges filed by the Federal Government and other material evidence against the suspect must be transferred along with him,” he said. Earlier, Mr. Muslim Hassan, counsel to the applicant, submitted that the attempt to extradite the 32-year-old Babafemi was for him to answer terrorism charges in the United States. But, Mr. Sulaiman Yahaya, counsel to the defendant, opposed the application, stressing that the suspect did not commit any terrorist act on United States soil to warrant his extradition to that country. The Federal Government exhibited a four-count charge marked: 13CR-109-JG, filed against Babafemi, who until now was based in the United States, fled to Nigeria upon realising that he was to be arrested by men of the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation, FBI.


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Reps to summon Okonjo-Iweala over varsity capital funds OBIORA IFOH AND JAMES DANJUMA

T Bauchi State Governor Isa Yuguda (left) receiving a souvenir from American Ambassador, Mr. Martins Brennan, who paid him a visit in Bauchi, yesterday. PHOTO: NAN

Health crisis: FG agrees to implement court’s ruling MARCUS FATUNMOLE ABUJA

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he Federal Government has agreed to implement the ruling of the National Industrial Court on the crisis between it and health workers. The decision followed a truce brokered between the warring parties at a twoday meeting in Abuja by the Minister of Labour and Productivity, Chief Emeka Wogu and Head of Civil Service of the Federation, Goni Aji. The truce consequently put to an end to a six-dayold industrial action embarked on by the workers last Wednesday and subsequent threat to force other health workers, who did not participate in the strike, to join the action. Addressing journalists yesterday in Abuja, Minister of Health, Prof. Onyebuchi Chukwu, said the decision to implement the

court’s ruling was taken in the interest of Nigerians. Chukwu, however, apologised to Nigerians for the ugly experience the disruption of medical services brought on them while the strike lasted. The minister said: “We were able to sit down, as government with the Joint Health Sector Unions. By 9:30 on Tuesday, the Memoranda of Understanding was signed. “It is obvious that many Nigerians who were ill at that time and who were following up at that time did not get the much-expected comprehensive care they needed. “It is important, of course, that I must express my regret over this as Minister of Health. I am in charge of the health sector; any disruption in the health sector becomes a major concern to me. It was in this spirit that the discussion took place. “We, as government, felt how do we get the workers

back to work? We felt that even though, government exercising its right of appeal has already registered its intention to appeal the case at the National Industrial Court, but since there was no stay of action order, that we could use that window to allow peace to reign, that was the way the agreement was anchored. There was no stay of execution of what the National Industrial Court decided. “I felt sad over an incident which occurred at the Nnamdi Azikiwe Hospital in Nnewi where a particular group felt they were on strike, apart from deciding not to work, decided to go back to the hospital and disconnect power supply to the Intensive Care Unit while patients were still on life-support. “We thank God, we didn’t lose a life; the doctors decided to do things manually, while the management quickly tried to fix the power support.

76, 000 Nigerians to perform this year’s Hajj OLUSEGUN KOIKI

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bout 76,000 Nigerians will depart the country to perform this year’s Hajj exercise in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. This figure was disclosed in a statement signed on behalf of the Director-General of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Mr. Fola Akinkuotu, by the agency’s General Manager, Public Affairs, Mr. Fan Ndubuoke. The statement claimed that Akinkuotu released the figure at the agency’s head office during a meeting with the representatives of approved Hajj air carriers and service providers in the

aviation sector. Akinkuotu, however, warned all service providers to abide by the law as NCAA would not hesitate to ground any airline that failed to adhere to rules, insisting that safety and security should be key in their operations. He specifically warned that the regulatory body would not accept any shortcoming in terms of operational deficiencies from any of the parties involved in the airlifting of the passengers to Holy land, maintaining that airplane, equipment and the crew must be airworthy at all times while passengers should be treated with dignity. Akinkuotu also charged the National Hajj Commis-

sion and all airline operators involved in the operations to ensure proper planning and orderliness. He reminded airline operators that the General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA) of Saudi Arabia had warned that female pilgrims under 45 years must be accompanied by a legal male escort listed on their HAJJ visa and also flight operators were not allowed to carry “Goro” fruits or similar products.” The chairman of National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON), represented by Mr. Muktar Mohammed, commended NCAA for its professionalism and prayed for a successful HAJJ operation.

he House of Representatives Committee on Education has threatened to summon the Minister of Finance, Mrs. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala. The threat is for her to explain the non-release of capital funds for the execution of projects in the federal universities across the country. Speaking yesterday in Katsina State, Chairman of the committee, Hon Aminu Fagge, said the House had visited the federal universities and was confronted with major complaint of nonrelease of funds for projects’ execution. Fagge said as a result of the development, it became necessary for the committee to look into such complaint and take necessary steps to address it. He said the committee would, therefore, summon the finance minister to explain why the funds had not been released when such funds were supposed to have released earlier than now.

According to him, the committee would monitor the release of the funds since it was part of its oversight function. He also added that the committee would ensure judicious utilization of the funds whenever they are released to the universities. The committee has queried irregularities in the recruitment of staff and appointment of officials at the Federal University of Agriculture in Dutsin-Ma, Katsina State. The committee, during a visit to the institution, chided the Vice-Chancellor, Prof James Ayatse, for failure to adhere to the federal character in recruitment of officials. It said those recruited to head various departments in the institution were not supposed to have been there in the first place. It alleged that the vicechancellor was frustrating indigenes of Katsina and other states in the NorthWest to secure employment into the institution. The committee said there

was the need for adjustment in the recruitment process to reflect the federal character. But the vice-chancellor said it was not his intention to create an imbalance in the recruitment of staff into the university. He said the institution’s management placed advertisement for PhD holders to head departments, but qualified candidates from Katsina and other neighboring states did not show interest. However, Ekiti Deputy Governor, Prof Modupe Adelabu, has called on the Federal Government to adequately fund university education. She described as unacceptable that products of the Nigerian university have become unemployable in both local and international market. Adelabu, who appraised the face-off between the Federal Government and members of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) in a chat with journalists in Ado- Ekiti, noted that the nation’s universities have become shadows of their glorious past.


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Anxiety over Supreme Court’s judgement on Ondo election HAKEEM GBADAMOSI AKURE

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nxiety mounted within the major three political parties in Ondo State yesterday as the people of the state await the judgement of the Supreme Court over the last governorship election in the state. The judgement was the only topic on the lips of people of the state as everyone awaits the decision of the Su-

preme Court on the appeal brought before it by the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and the proscribed Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, Olusola Oke and Rotimi Akeredolu. The duo are challenging the decision of the lower tribunal in the state governorship election, saying that the election that produced Governor Olusegun Mimiko, was fraught with irregularities. The lower tribunal

had earlier pronounced Mimiko the winner of the election for lack of concrete evidence from the two plaintiffs and their parties. However, as the Supreme Court is to deliver judgment today in the appeal, members and supporters of the three political parties expressed optimism over the possible outcome of the judgement. Some leaders of the political parties in the state

jetted out of the state yesterday to Abuja to witness the final judgement. In Akure, the state capital, politicians gather in groups to discuss where the pendulum will swing. While the Labour Party, LP, leaders are optimistic that the appeal will be thrown into the trash bin, the defunct ACN and PDP believed the table will be turned against LP and the governor of the state. Meanwhile, the Special

Adviser on Media and Publicity to Olusola Oke, Kunle Adebayo, expressed optimism that PDP will have a good story to tell today. Adebayo said; “All eyes are on the Supreme Court to determine whether a distorted and illegally overloaded voters’ register can be a basis for a valid election but we believe justice would be served. “We believe we have presented our case as eloquently and as necessary. Our expecta-

tion is that the decision of the Court of Appeal will be upturned and that the October 20, election will be nullified. “We believe the Supreme Court judgement will also serve as deterrence to those whose penchant is to perpetrate rigging and manipulation. “This judgment also will become novel and have a far reaching implication on the 2015 elections in this country,” he said.

N3bn OAUTH unpaid taxes: Osun threatens court action ADEOLU ADEYEMO OSOGBO

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Oyo State Governor, Abiola Ajimobi (left), acknowledging cheers from traders at the popular Bodija Market, Ibadan, recently engulfed in crisis, during his visit to the market, yesterday.

Ogun to establish N30bn cancer institute FEMI OYEWESO ABEOKUTA

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gun State government yesterday said it has concluded arrangement with an American based Global Cancer Control outfit for the establishment of a cancer institute as part of its commitment to fight the epidemic, which has over the years, ravaged the black continent. The institute, which is part of the Public Private Partnership, PPP, of the Governor Ibikunle Amosun administration, will be first of its kind in Africa and will be cited at the Olabisi Onabanjo Teaching Hospital, OOUTH, Shagamu. The institute is expected to cost state about N30 billion and is expected to focus on the research, training and treatment of the epidemic which has over the years defiled all known medication. At a press conference yesterday in Abeokuta, representatives of the American Global Cancer

Control outfit, the partnering agency and the state Commissioner for Health, Olaokun Soyinka, said the cancer centre will facilitate academic affiliation and improve an enhanced relationship between the tertiary institution and the cancer study center. Flanked by the state Commissioner of Information and Strategy, Yusuph Olaniyonu, Soyinka said the institute, whose foundation will be laid in October 2013, is expected to treat its first patient by January 2015 when it would have been completed. The commissioner further explained that the centre, upon completion, would take care of the need of Nigerians who have had to endure the hassles of travelling abroad for the treatment of the epidemic as all necessary facilities would be provided. Speaking on the development, Chairman of the Board of Managers, HTI Global Cancer Partners, Dr. Bert Petersen, said the institute would be a

holistic project that will be involved in prevention, health promotion, screening and the recruitment of experts, among others. Petersen, who said the epidemic is a black man’s disease, also emphasised that; “What is about to happen in Ogun State has not happened

elsewhere in Africa. This is going to transform the health landscape in Nigeria.” He lauded the Amosun administration for providing the needed leadership that encouraged the partnership which he said is “gradually bringing into being, real war against cancer.”

he Osun State government has threatened to drag the management of the Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospital Complex, OAUTH, Ile-Ife, to court should it refuse to offset its N3billion unpaid taxes within 14 days. Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Revenue Matters, Mr. Olufemi Balogun, who made the disclosure while speaking with journalists in Osogbo yesterday, warned the management of the institution not to try to play on the government’s intelligence on the 14 days grace requested from it. Balogun said; “We would seek legal means to recover the N3.1billion unpaid taxes from OAUTHC should the institution fail to respond within the 14 days grace period it sought from the state revenue service. “Though, the agency

has lifted the seal on the administrative complex of the hospital based on pleas and assurances to pay within 14days. “The re-opening of the administrative block of the hospital was done in good faith, because this will enable the hospital management come up with their position. “But, I want to assure you that if the hospital management fails to offset the outstanding taxes, this may attract legal action.” Blaming the closure of the hospital to the management’s ‘I don’t care attitude,’ the state government said; “The closure was as a result of management’s recalcitrant attitude by not coming forward with their position on the said N3.1billion debt. “When we contacted them on the matter, they gave a written commitment that the money would be paid within seven days, but surprisingly, they renege on their promise, which led to the closure.”

Two police officers detained over misuse of arms KEMI OLAITAN IBADAN

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wo police officers attached to the Oyo State police command are currently being detained for the misuse of arms in their possession. The officers who were being held over the incident that occurred at Orisunbare village, Oluyole Local Government Area, last week saw the officers shooting sporadically into the air, an action that led to panic and confusion among residents in the village. The two police officers were also alleged to have aided vandals at the NNPC pipeline site in the village. Speaking with journal-

ists on the incident yesterday, state Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, Olabisi Clet-Ilobanafor, said the two officers were detained in connection with their overzealousness and misuse of arms in their possession when the incident occurred. She said following the report in the dailies, the command investigated the incident to ascertain the alleged involvement of the two officers. She said: “At the end of our investigation, it was discovered that the officers were only carrying out their assigned duties, but this did not go down well with some of the villagers who saw the presence of

policemen as a denial of their means of livelihood. “The tanker that was allegedly used to carry fuel was a water tanker belonging to Avian Farms and was never used for fuel haulage. The tanker is here with us at the Eleyele Police Headquarters.” The driver of the tanker, Mr. Dauda Oladipo, who was also detained along with the tanker, said he is a staff of Avian Farms. “The tanker is used to convey water to one of our farms near the village. You can check inside the tank, what you will find is not fuel, but water,” he said. A middle-aged man, Olanrewaju Akanji, was said to have been beaten

to stupor by the police officers, who were accused of aiding vandalisation of NNPC pipeline in the village. Akanji, who sustained severe injuries, was rushed to a nearby hospital where he is currently receiving medical attention. It will be recalled that Orisunbare village had been experiencing activities of pipeline vandals in the past, forcing authorities to post security operatives to the area to monitor the pipeline. But rather than guiding against the activities of the vandals, the villagers had accused the policemen of engaging in pipeline vandalisation themselves.


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Four arraigned over Ekiti APC factions’ clash •Hearing adjourned till Sept 13

ABIODUN NEJO ADO EKITI

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n Ado-Ekiti Magistrate’s Court has adjourned till September 13, further hearing in the five-count charge levied against four persons over last Friday’s violent clash between the All Progressives Congress (APC) members loyal to Ekiti State Governor Kayode Fayemi and those of the House of Representatives member, Hon Opeyemi Bamidele. When the four persons believed to be the lawmaker’s supporters were arraigned yesterday, Magistrate Bayode Owoeye granted them bail in a sum of N200,000 each and two sureties in like sum, who must be a sensible and reasonable citizens of the state and one of who must be civil servant not below Grade Level 05. The accused persons Sola Ojo, 46; Ade Balogun, 36; Ganiyu Ogunleye, 25; and Femi Ojo, 23 - were charged with five-count charge of felony, conspiracy, attempted murder, conduct likely to cause breach of public peace and malicious damage. In the charge sheet preferred against them by the Commissioner of Police, Mr. Sotonye Wakama, the accused persons were alleged to have attacked and

inflicted bodily injuries on Idowu Taiwo, Friday Pius and Ayodeji Olofin and as well damaging a bus valued at N370, 000 belonging to the Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC) Coordinator, Chief Niyi Adedipe, during the clash. The police commissioner said the offences were contrary to and punishable by sections 249, 302, 335, 451 and 516 of the Criminal Codes Cap 16 Law of Ekiti State 2012. Police Prosecutor, Corporal Oriyomi Akinwale, had urged the court to discountenance the request

for bail, expressing fear that the accused persons could jump bail since they were not residents in AdoEkiti. But counsel to the accused persons, Mr Emmanuel Adedeji, said it would be unconstitutional to deny them right to bail, especially that the charges against them did not carry death penalty. He said the accused persons should be presumed innocent until proved otherwise by the court, adding that the court had the power to grant the bail application since the offences were not punishable by death.

Convention: I’m committed to put PDP on track –Adeniran KEMI OLAITAN IBADAN

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head of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Special National Convention scheduled for the weekend in Abuja, an aspirant for the post of National Secretary, Prof. Tunde Adeniran, yesterday restated his commitment to put the party on the right track, if elected. In a statement he personally signed in Ibadan, Adeniran said that he had the capacity to transform the party. The former Nigeria’s Ambassador to Germany said there is no doubt that the party is currently confronted with many chal-

lenges, stating that his pedigree put him in a good stead to take the party out of its doldrums. According to him, PDP’s unity all levels would be his utmost priority such that the party could speak with one voice on all issues. He said: “With a united front, the party will continue to play its leading role in the nation’s democratic journey.” Adeniran said as someone who had been an active member of PDP since the advent of democracy in 1999 and who witnessed its high and low fortunes, he is better positioned to put the party back on the right track with the support of all stakeholders.

Traders jubilate as Ajimobi reopens Bodija market KEMI OLAITAN IBADAN

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raders at the popular Bodija market in Ibadan yesterday jubilated as Oyo State Governor Ajimobi ordered the reopening of the market. The market was shut following the violence which erupted among the traders last week Friday. The governor, who spoke at a peace meeting held at the market, appealed for calm. Ajimobi also announced the approval of N30 million for the families of the 14 Yoruba beans traders killed some weeks back by Boko Haram insurgents in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital. While urging for peaceful co-existence among the traders, he said development could only take place where there is peace. It will be recalled that there was a crisis at the mar-

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Thursday, August 29, 2013

ket last Friday between Hausa and Yoruba traders over sale of beans. The crisis led to the destruction of property worth several thousand of naira. Ajimobi, who assured the traders of loans for their business expansion, urged them to form cooperative groups to access the facility. The governor also assured of assisting those whose property were destroyed in the crisis. Chairman of Ibadan Foodstuff Sellers Association, Alhaji Olalekan Azeez, urged the governor to assist families of the deceased while the Hausa community chairman, Alhaji Garba Owal, called for assistance for losses incurred during the fracas. Meanwhile, the Oyo State Government has released N18 million to its 33 local government councils to tackle environmental challenges.

The Commissioner for Women Affairs, Community Development, Social Welfare and Poverty Alleviation, Mrs. Atinuke Osunkoya, gave the hint at the opening of the 2nd Conference of the Community Development Association of Nigeria (CDAN) held the Teachers’ House, Samonda, Ibadan. The one year-old association, which has its membership drawn from universities, other educational institutions, ministries and local governments across the federation, was led by Dr. Keye Abiona as the interim president. The commissioner, who was represented by Mrs. Chinyere Popoola, lauded the association for its community development efforts, as he hailed Governor Abiola Ajimobi’s determination to impact positively on the lives of the people at the grassroots.

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SURE-P poised to tackle graduates’ unemployment –Kolade ABIODUN NEJO ADO-EKITI

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he Subsidy Reinvestment and Empowerment Programme (SURE-P) is set to tackle youth unemployment through its Graduate Internship Scheme (GIS), its chairman, Ambassador Christopher Kolade, said yesterday. Kolade, who said job creation was a major concern of President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration, said GIS, which he described as one of the many interventions of SURE-P to create jobs for Nigerian youths, “has the mandate to create 50,000 jobs for graduates annually”. The chairman, represented by the SURE-P Technical Assistant, Community Services, Women and Youth Employment, Mr Emeka Ekpunobi, spoke at a sensitisation forum for stakeholders in Ado-Ekiti, the Ekiti State capital. He said: “The scheme targets making most Nigerian graduates more employable

through training and mentoring. “Over the years, employers of labour in the country have lamented that many Nigerian graduates are not employable. It is hoped that SURE-P, through GIS, will address this issue. One year down the line in the implementation of this scheme, a lot of lessons have been learnt with quite a number of challenges encountered.” Under the scheme, graduates will be placed in profit and non-profit makingorganisations as well as selected government agencies for one-year internship whereby the interns are expected to acquire professional skills, training and experience to improve their job-placement opportunities. Speaking at the forum, GIS Project Director, Mr. Peter Papka, who said about 40 million Nigerians needed employment, described SURE-P and its GIS as creations of government’s concern “about this high unemployment rate and its readiness to do everything

possible to reverse it”. Papka, who was represented by GIS Assistant Director, Mr. Fola Jimoh, appealed to unemployed graduates in Ekiti State to key into the scheme to enable them benefit from the effort to make them employable and self-sufficient. He said: “In Ekiti State, 58 organisations have registered and 13 have been approved to take interns. Also, out of the 4,084 graduates that have registered in the state, 46 have been matched to firms and only five have been hired”. According to him, one of the challenges of graduate unemployment is the inability of the system to absorb the nearly 300,000 graduates churned out by the nation’s universities and other tertiary institutions yearly. Ekiti State SURE-P Coordinator, Hon Femi Akinyemi, said no fewer than 30,000 youths had been employed under the community services of the programmes, which he said had translated to injection of over N150 million to the state economy.


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Officials accused of abusing, impregnating Owerri prison inmates CHRIS NJOKU OWERRI

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ndications emerged yesterday that the fundamental rights and dignity of female inmates at the Owerri Prison are now being violated following allegations that they are subjected to sexual abuses, which sometimes allegedly result to unwanted pregnancies. But the allegation was denied by the Prison authority, which described it as untrue and malicious. However, it was gathered

• Allegation baseless, says PRO that some of the female inmates, who were not pregnant as at the time they were convicted, have been delivered of babies. But prison sources said that some of the female convicts were pregnant before they were imprisoned. A source, who did not want her name mentioned, alleged that some of the female inmates, especially those who are still awaiting trial, “buy” their freedom to move about with sexual gratification

with some “corrupt prison officials”, who thereafter allow them to access privileged comforts denied other. The source said: “The babies delivered by these inmates are either illegally adopted or outright sold to operators of baby factories. This has been going on for a long time and the authorities are not ready to check the menace,” asking: “How else the situation could be explained, that a convict could be impregnated without the

knowledge of the prison officials? It is either that they are allowing their spouses to come and sleep with them in the prison or they are being impregnated by those who control them.” When contacted, the prison’s Public Relations Officer, Mr. James Madugba, said that the allegation could not be true. Madugba said: “I am speaking authoritatively, it is impossible to penetrate the female cell, which is con-

structed in such a way that it will be difficult for the female inmates to mingle with their male counterparts. “Female inmates are kept in a different building with its own big gate guarded by female prison officials who are instructed not to allow male officials into the building. “Female inmates who were pregnant when they enter the cell are given adequate care. When time of delivery comes, we take them to the Federal Medical Centre where they deliver their children, after which

they return to prison with their babies. “Sexual abuse does not arise, it is simply not possible. You cannot even see the female cell from the open compound; it is entirely segregated from other parts of the prison. “How can the spouse sleep with their convicted wives when they are not given the opportunity to be alone? When they visit, there are female Prison officials to listen to their discussions and the cell is finally closed by 6:0pm to visitors.”

Okorocha reiterates commitment to projects’ completion CHRIS NJOKU OWERRI

G L-R: Abia State Governor Theodore Orji; his wife, Mercy; Deputy Governor, Sir Emeka Ananaba and his wife, Nene, during the celebration of 22nd anniversary of the state creation at the Umuahia Township Stadium on Tuesday.

Assassination plot: Police arrest two for giving false information GEORGE OPARA ABIA

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he Abia State Police Command has arrested two persons for allegedly giving false information on assassination attempt on task force boss. The police arrested the suspects - Ndubuisi Anumoka and Ozioma Chinaka - in Aba for allegedly giving false information of a plot by four transporters to assassinate the Chairman of Abia State Task Force on Environment and Allied Matters, Capt. Awa Udonsi

Agwu (rtd). The task force has been having running battle with transport unions over the insistence by the former that the latter should relocate to the government approved motor parks. However, the suspects, who had been allegedly mounting pressure on the task force to ensure that all commercial motorists, including mass transit operators, relocate to the approved motor park, called Awa on phone on August 24 to inform him that the four transporters - Dr. Ifeany-

ichukwu Anele, Nchekwuba Eusebius, Marcel Amadi and Victor Ezeriwe - were planning to kill him. Based on the information, the task force chairman reported the matter to detectives, who immediately arrested them. On interrogation, the four transporters denied the allegation, saying it was a set up by their detractors who were hell bent on pitching them against the state government. Determined to get to the truth of the matter, the State Investigation Bureau (SIB)

traced the informant to Mr. Biggs along Azikiwe Road where he was arrested. When he was questioned by the police, the suspect admitted passing the information he claimed was given to him by Ozioma Chinaka to the task force chairman, but did not know it was false. The suspects were also said to be behind the allegation that the four transporters planned to cause riot in Aba on August 27 to disrupt the Abia Day celebration for which the transporters were invited by the police, quizzed and later released.

SURE-P committee to coordinate pilot scheme in Ebonyi ALIUNA GODWIN EBONYI

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he Subsidy Reinvestment Empowerment Programme (SURE-P) has inaugurated a committee to ensure adequate coordination and implementation of Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) Pilot programme in Ebonyi State. The committee comprises monarchs, re-

ligious leaders, government and women representatives. Speaking at the inauguration of the committee in Abakaliki, the SURE-P Facilitator and member Project Implementation Unit (PIU), Dr. Isah Jida, assured Nigerians that the Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) Pilot programme would be implemented in nine states across the six geopolitical zones of the

country. According to him, the CCT Pilot programme was designed to increase the utilisation of Maternal and Child Health services in health facilities through the provision and use of incentives that are of monetary value. Jida listed the functions of the committee to include coordination of the CCT Pilot programme; leading sensitisation and community

mobilisation effort for the programme; monitoring and tracking implementation of the CCT pilot programme as well as provide feedback and progress report to all relevant stakeholders. The state Commissioner for Health, Dr. Sunday Nwangele, described the initiative as a welcome development and expressed optimism that the CCT Pilot programme would achieve success.

overnor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State Government has reiterated determination to complete all the projects initiated by his administration. Okorocha spoke yesterday while inspecting the construction of the Orlu Urban Road. The governor expressed delight with the progress of the project’s execution, adding that its completion would, among others, enhance the beauty of the area, stimulate commercial activities and reduce the rate of crime wave as well as provide enabling environment for establishment of industries. Other projects inspected by the governor included the Okporo Housing Estate, UmunaNkwere Road, Orlu- Mgbee-Umuchima-Akokwa roads, among others. The governor also commended members of the Imo Young Engineering Corps from Imo College of Advance Professional Studies (ICAPS) who were on practical demonstration of their profession. He pointed out with delight the professional way the young engineers were carrying out the construction of drainages after their one year refresh course. However, some roads across the state have continued to deteriorate as residents appealed to the governor to fix them. Such roads are Fed-

eral Polytechnic NekedeIhiagwa Road, which motorists fear to ply due to deep potholes on it. A few of the transporters who decided to ply the road increased their fares by over 100 per cent. A journey of less than 20 minutes now cost between N150 to N200 from N50 and N100 charged previously. Meanwhile, the governor has approved the construction of additional 20 kilometre road each in Ngor-Okpala and Ohaji/Egbema local government Areas. This was contained in a statement signed by the Secretary to the State Government, Prof. Anthony Akwukah. Governor Okorocha explained that the new road project was in fulfillment of his promise to correct the neglect and marginalisation of the affected areas. He assured that his administration would not discriminate against any person or group irrespective of religion or locality.

Okorocha


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

South-South

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Police arrest three suspected kidnappers EMMA GBEMUDU YENAGOA

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special anti-kidnapping squad of the Bayelsa State police command yesterday said it has arrested three suspected kidnappers linked with the abduction of five construction workers in Southern Ijaw Local Government Area of the state. The suspects were picked up in their hideout at about 3.00am yesterday at Agrisaba in Nembe Local Government Area of the state, when security operatives invaded the community.

But a mastermind of the gang and surveillance contractor to the Nigeria Agip Oil Company, NAOC, Inemor Worikuma-Lemec and three others, were said to have escaped arrest. Worikumo-Lemec was said to be a former militant leader in Buo camp in Southern Ijaw Local Government Area of the state. The five kidnapped staff of the dredging firms were set free last Monday in Nembe after the payment of ransom. A security source told National Mirror yesterday that the arrested

suspects were identified as Izekemi Thomas, Desmond Sunday and Miss Naomi Bassey. Bassey is believed to be a girlfriend to the leader of the kidnapping gang. It was learnt that a tracking device was reportedly planted inside the N6 million ransom handed over to the kidnappers. We gathered that the leader of the anti-kidnapping squad only recovered N1.45 million from the suspects during the arrest. National Mirror was informed that the initial plan by the police was to

track and arrest the kidnappers after the collection of the ransom. The source continued: “They were sleeping when the police stormed the place. They hid the money in a designed safe in a clothes’ hanger. While we were trying to open up the safe to recover the identified tracker and money, the mastermind escaped in the other room.” When contacted, Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Mr. Alex Akhigbe, confirmed the arrest of the suspects and said the command would parade them today.

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Fake CNN reporter arrested in Bayelsa EMMA GBEMUDU YENAGOA

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36-year-old man and fake reporter with the Cable News Network, CNN, identified as Paul Yempe, was yesterday in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, arrested by the state Chairman of the Nigerian Union of Journalists, NUJ, Tari Akono. He was immediately handed over to officials of the State Security Service, SSS. During Yempe’s arrest, an identification card of the Rivers State Broadcasting Corporation and a fake identification card of the CNN were recovered from him. It was gathered that the fake reporter was arrested inside the office of the Commissioner of Energy, Ikio Francis, when the state NUJ chairman reportedly visited the area.

Investigation by our correspondent revealed that Yempe had allegedly swindled the state Information Commissioner, Markson Fefegha and the Secretary to the State Government, SSG, Prof. Edmund AllisonOguru, of some huge sums. The information commissioner had granted interview to the fake reporter to run a documentary on CNN on the activities of the state government, while the SSG reportedly lodged the ‘CNN journalist’ in a luxury hotel in Yenagoa and prepared a memo to settle the documentary bill. In an interview with our correspondent, Akono confirmed the incident, saying that an attempt by the fake journalist to affirm his genuineness led to the discovery of a fake CNN identification card in his bag.

Asaba airport to airlift pilgrims to holy land

T Delta State Governor, Emmanuel Uduagahn (left), receiving the Chairman, Nigerian Christian Pilgrim Commission, Pastor John Okpara during a courtesy call by Okpara on the governor in Warri, yesterday.

Catholic Church traumatised by Ayala’s death –Bishop SEBASTINE EBHUOMHAN BENIN

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he Auchi Catholic Diocese yesterday called for caution on the controversy trailing the circumstances under which Rev. Fr. Peter Ayala of the St. Thomas Moore Catholic Church, Sobe, in Owan West Local Government Area of Edo State, died last Sunday. Addressing the media at the Bishop’s Court in Auchi, Bishop Gabriel Dunia, sounded the note of caution so as not to jeopardise the investigation of the cause of death of the cleric. Dunia said: “Authoritatively and officially, the cause of death is yet unknown” as he berated those alleging that the late priest committed suicide. He said the Catholic Church has been severely traumatised by Ayalas death even as the members anxiously wait for the result of the probe

into his death. Ayala died in the morning of Sunday under yet-to-be-ascertained circumstances as he was reportedly found in a pool of his own blood right in his room with a locally made gun by his body and a spanner by his side. But there were other reports that he committed suicide while a source said the church was also looking at the angle of his death being a possible murder case since “he should have known that his gun was loaded and that why would he choose to service his gun on a Sunday morning instead of preparing for Mass?” Dunia continued; “Although, the body of Rev. Fr. Peter Ayala was found lying lifelessly in the pool of his blood with a locally manufactured gun and a big spanner on his body and floor, respectively. “These were only some of the clues on which ex-

pert’s examination must be effected to ascertain more authentic proofs of what led to the death. “Whatever might be said by anybody hitherto, were probabilities in as much as experts’ examinations could prove otherwise. “To all those who are prone to engage in some innuendos as regards the death of Rev. Fr. Peter Ayala, I wish to caution; so that they keep in mind that death is death. Whenever, wherever and in whatever way and manner it occurs, it cannot and should not constitute an occasion for derision, uncharitable assumptions and calumny against the living, the dead or both.” Stating his memory of the late Ayala, Dunia said he knew the “calm, modest and well behaved Peter Ayala, who worked under me as a seminarian when I was the parish priest of St. Joseph Catholic Church in Emeora 17 years ago.”

“A priest, who collaborated with me, nonetheless similarly, in the Diocese of Auchi, until his passage from this sinful world.”

he Delta State government is to collaborate with the Nigerian Christian Pilgrims Commission, NCPC to airlift pilgrims from the Asaba International Airport to the holy land. State governor, Emmanuel Uduaghan, said his administration would work with the NCPC to ensure that there were no hitches in the airlifting of the pilgrims, stating that neigbouring states should also, be allowed to make use of the airport to travel on pilgrimages. Speaking when a team

of the NCPC led by its Executive Secretary, Revd. John Kennedy Opara, paid him a courtesy visit, the governor observed that the use of the airport to airlift pilgrims is a welcome development. Uduaghan said his administration has also mapped out programmes to ensure that pilgrims from the state do not only embark on the trip for spiritual and moral revival, but also find time to study the agriculture programme of a place like Israel during the pilgrimage.

Group urges FG to bail out education sector RICHARD NDOMA CALABAR

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socio-political group, the Joint Action Front, JAF, has called on the Federal Government to do all that is needful to bail out the education sector in the country. JAF, joining forces with the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, in Calabar, had demonstrated in support of the ongoing strike by the nation’s university teachers, calling on the Federal Government to implement the content of the agreement reached with the teachers in 2009. The group said doing this will ensure a proper funding of the education sector in the country in line with international practices. It urged the government to also make tu-

ition free at all levels of education in the country. Speaking at the Botanical Garden Park, Mary Slessor Avenue, venue of the zonal protest, JAF Secretary, Comrade Abiodun Aremu and the Chairman of University of Calabar branch of ASUU, Dr. James Okpiliya, said the protest was to save public education from rot in the country. Aremu and Okpiliya said they became aggrieved that government at all levels operate anti-people policies without being bothered about the place of public education in Nigeria. The duo said they were angry that government has bluntly refused to give quality education to the common man despite the fact that 80 percent of the political elites

went to school on scholarship, stressing that the nation’s education has not been given the priority it deserves. They added that those in government have chosen to pay lip service to the education sector because none of their wards attends public schools. They said those in government perpetrate such evil because their children are all in private schools or are schooling abroad with funds stolen from public coffers. The leaders said Nigeria is not broke as claimed by the Finance Minister, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, asking from where did the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, got the billions of naira it used to salvage the banking sector from collapse or the N2.6trillion paid out as oil subsidy for fuel in the country.


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North

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Attack on lawmakers: Al-Makura seeks suspects’ prosecution ISE-OLUWA IGE ABUJA

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assarawa State Governor Umaru Tanko Al-Makura yesterday asked the police to investigate, fish out and prosecute the masterminds of last Tuesday’s disturbance of the state House of Assembly. Hoodlums, whose identities are yet to be known, stormed the premises of the Assembly to attack lawmakers. The incident happened shortly after Al-Makura left the Assembly. Al-Makura, who described the incident as unfortunate, unprovoked and unwarranted, said those responsible must be brought to book even as he warned that the government would not condone any recurrence. In a statement issued yesterday by the Commissioner for Information and Ethical Re-orientation, Elayo Mohammed, the executive also dissociated itself from the incident The statement reads: “The government of Nasarawa State condemns in strong terms the unfortu-

nate, unprovoked and unwarranted disturbance of Tuesday August 27th, 2013 on the premises of the Nasarawa State House of Assembly by yet-to-be identified hoodlums. “The attack coming shortly after a peaceful, frank and engaging session following appearance of Governor Umaru Tanko Al-Makura on the invitation of the House is highly regretted as it is by every means undemocratic for any group of persons to embark on violence in express-

ing their feelings. “Government notes that at the session, Governor AlMakura and members had an enlightened interaction during which the governor expressed delight at the manner proceedings were held. “While the action of these hoodlums remains condemnable, the government strongly dissociates itself from such unprovoked acts and sympathises with the Speaker and Honourable members over the sad incident.

“Government calls on security agencies to investigate and bring to book all those found to have been directly involved or have supported this unwholesome and dastardly act. “Government also warns that it will not condone such acts, which are capable of derailing the country’s democracy as well as causing disharmony among the people of this state. “Government is determined to promote and maintain peaceful co-existence among the citizenry as well as bring to book anyone who threatens the unity of its people no matter his or her position.”

KANO

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he management of the Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital (AKTH) has spent over N81.5 million on the training of 355 clinical and 114 non-clinical personnel in the last one year. Chief Medical Director of Aminu Kano Specialist Hospital, Prof. Aminu Zakari Mohammed, disclosed the information at a press conference to mark the 18th Abubakar Imam Memorial Lecture yesterday in Kano. He said 76 resident doctors who did the Part One and Part Two of the West African and National Postgraduate Medical Colleges Examination were successful. Mohammed added that 284 senior and 172 junior workers successfully passed their respective promotion examinations and had been promoted. According him, the teaching hospital has continued to record increased patient attendance, with over 373,092

Lawyer sues First Lady over agony caused FCT residents

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n Abuja-based lawyer, James Abah, has sued the First Lady, Dame Patience Jonathan, over a rally that she held recently in Abuja. The rally, which attracted women from across all the local government areas of the country, literally brought the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) to its knees, with cries of frustration by residents. The aggrieved lawyer also listed the National

L-R: Kaduna State Governor, Mukhtar Yero; Nigerian Ambassador to Pakistani, Amb.Dauda Danladi and Pakistan Business Associates Head of Delegation, Mr. Zafar Mehood, during the governor’s presentation of a souvenir to Mehood on his visit to Kaduna State, yesterday. PHOTO: NAN

Aminu Kano Hospital spends N81m on manpower development AUGUSTINE MADU-WEST

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

out patients’ attendance last year, which represents an increase of about seven per cent when compared with the 2011 figure. The Medical Director said that despite security challenges, service delivery had been satisfactory, pointing out that training and research efforts continued throughout the year in the teaching hospital with minimal disruption. Mohammed said 22 research works were published by workers of the Department of Internal Medicine last year.

According to the Medical Director, despite the capital budget of 44 per cent last year and 22 per cent in 2013, the hospital were still able to achieve remarkable capital development in the area of rehabilitation of the administrative block annex, as well as the expansion of Departments of Ophthalmogy, Pharmacy and Health Records. The management team, Mohammed said, introduced new clinical services such as functional endoscopic sinus surgery (FESS), diag-

IG set to re-marry

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he Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mr. Mohammed Abubakar, is set to re-marry, one year after the death of his wife, Maryram, the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports. The Force Public Relations Officer, Mr. Frank Mba, who confirmed the story, told NAN yesterday in Abuja, that the wedding has been tentatively fixed

for September 14, 2013 Mba, however, said the confirmation was not an invitation to members of the public as the wedding was the private affair of the IGP. He said: “I want to appeal to the media to respect the privacy of the intending couple. “We must all remember that there is a line between Mohammed Abub-

nostic and therapeutic nasal endoscopy, microlaryngoscopy, endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreaticography (ERCP) and interventions, among others. He said: “It is gratifying to note that the kidney transplant programme has resumed and so far, not less than three patients have undergone successful transplant.” Mohammed, however, expressed appreciation to the Kano State Government and others for supporting indigent patients at the hospital.

kar as a private citizen of Nigeria and the office of the Inspector-General of Police. “As much as possible, we urge the media to respect the privacy of his life and strike a robust balance between his quest for legitimate public interest and information.” It will be recalled that Maryam died in January 2012 shortly after Abubakar assumed office in acting capacity.

Council of Women Societies (NCWS), the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) and the State Security Services (SSS) as co-defendants. Abah claimed that the August 15 rally made him to trek from Wuse Market to Zone 2 and from Central Business District to Maitama. Consequently, he prayed the court for an injunction restraining the accused from restricting the movement of FCT residents within the country, except within the contemplation of Section 41 (2) of the Constitution. In his statement of claim, the plaintiff said: “I believe the 3rd and 4th respondents aided the 1st and 2nd respondents in conducting an unannounced barricade and restriction of major routes within the FCT. “After waiting for about an hour in traffic as a result of the gridlock, I also saw agents of the 3rd and 4th respondents heavily armed, directing and restricting people from driving through the road linking Wuse Zone 2 to Wuse market.”

US envoy commends Yuguda on peace

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he United States Ambassador to Nigeria, Martin Brennan, has commended Bauchi State Governor Isa Yuguda for the relative peace recorded in the state, describing it as a good atmosphere for development. Brennan gave the commendation when he visited the governor at the Government House in Bauchi. The U.S envoy, who said he went round a few places in Bauchi during his visit, also appreciated the level of development recorded by Yuguda’s administration. He also commended the state government for being up to date with its counterpart funding of all USAID assisted projects and programmes, assuring that the U.S. government would continue to support the state. Brennan said he had

useful discussions with the Emir of Dass, Alhaji Usman Othman, on areas of possible intervention by U.S. agencies, especially in the agricultural, health and education sectors. The envoy stressed the need for harmonious relationship among the people of state, as only peace could guarantee development. In his response, Governor Yuguda thanked the ambassador for his visit and assured him that the state is among the most peaceful in the country. According to the governor, the state had benefited in the development efforts of the U.S government and its agencies over the years. He noted that USAID aided projects, such as polio eradication, VVF center, girl-child education and others had improved the living standard of the people.


Thursday August 29, 2013

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

13

Politics

PDM: Between transformation and ‘political trickery’

Nigerians can’t trust APC because of dictators –Babatope

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Court restrains PDP, INEC from recognising Nwoye’s candidacy Uba snubs disciplinary committee Party presents Certificate of Return to Nwoye

OBIORA IFOH ABUJA

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he Federal High Court in Port Harcourt yesterday restrained the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, from recognising Tony Nwoye as the party’s candidate for the election. The court, presided over by Justice Hyeladzira Nganjiwa, gave the order in Port Harcourt following an originating summons filed by the Anambra state factional chairman of PDP, Ejike Oguebego. The court also restrained PDP and INEC from accepting the outcome of the primary election conducted by Mr. Ken Emeakayi‘s faction of the party. It said PDP and INEC should stop further action, pending the hearing of the motion for an interlocutory injunction and motion to set aside the interim order. But the national leadership of the PDP yesterday formally presented a certificate of return to Nwoye as its candidate for the November 16 governorship election in Anambra State. Also, Senator Andy Uba, did not appear be-

fore the party to explain why he should not be disciplined by the party for participating in what they called an “illegal governorship election”. Though, an aide of Senator Uba confirmed to National Mirror that the frontline aspirant was outside the country, but others invited to face the disciplinary committee failed to appear before the panel. Uba was invited alongside, his brother Chris Uba, the factional chairman of the state party, Oguebego, Chief Benji Udeozor and Mrs. Tonia Nwankwu. Nwoye emerged winner in a parallel PDP primary. Speaking with newsmen after receiving the certificate of return from the national chairman of the party, Bamanga Tukur,

AWKA

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agos-based oil mogul, D. Ifeanyi Uba, yesterday, won the primaries conducted by the Labour Party, LP, ahead of the November 16 Anambra State governorship election. Uba, who was the only aspirant in the primaries held at the Emmauas House, Awka, cruised to victory when the not fewer than 1,000 delegates drawn from the 326 wards of Anambra State unanimously voted by affirming ‘yes’ to Uba’s candidacy. The election was super-

The candidate also asked his opponents to join him and work towards securing victory for PDP, stressing that from the feedback he got after he reached out to them, he

Obi plans to mortgage Anambra, using business partner –Ngige ABUJA

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intended by the National Chairman of the LP, Dan Nwuanyanwu, who asked the delegates: “If you want Ifeanyi Uba to be your candidate in the gubernatorial election, say yes,” and the delegates raised their hands in support and followed it up with a resounding voice vote of “yes.” Speaking after the exercise, Nwuanyanwu described Uba as an employer of labour who has thousands of Nigerians under his employment. Responding, Uba said that his mission is to change Anambra State positively. He thanked the delegates for their support.

ing that “it is the national chairman of the party and secretary that present a party’s candidate for an election. Once a party presents a candidate INEC cannot object to it.”

L-R:Deputy Chairman, Peoples Democratic Party National Convention Planning Committee, Governor Godswill Akpabio; Chairman, Prof. Jerry Gana; Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu at a meeting of the committee in Abuja.

OBIORA IFOH

Ifeanyi Uba clinches LP ticket CHARLES OKEKE

Nwoye described his emergence as an act of God. He, however, said the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, cannot stop him from contesting the election, not-

was optimistic they would resolve whatever misgivings they might have against the outcome of the primary. Presenting the certificate to Nwoye at the party secretariat, Tukur underscored that the exercise where Nwoye emerged was transparent adding that he had never met Nwoye before the primaries. He said: “The candidate told me it’s the first time he was having direct contact with the Chairman and the National Working Committee, NWC. “When we met with the stakeholders, Tony Nwoye was not among the people invited. What happened was a clear manifestation that the people wanted him and they have spoken.”

he All Progressives Congress, APC, governorship aspirant in Anambra State, Senator Chris Ngige has alerted the people of the plot by Governor Peter Obi to mortgage the state by fronting a business partner as the candidate of the All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, warning that the people should not be fooled. Ngige also said his endorsement as a consensus candidate by the South East caucus received overwhelming support of party members. He said that in order for the party to keep to the dic-

tates of the electoral law, the party has decided to conduct the governorship primaries. He said it is not true that his open endorsement by Governor Rochas Okorocha was meant to give him an edge. Speaking with journalists after submitting his nomination form at the APC headquarters in Abuja, the former governor said: “What has manifested is that the incumbent governor wants to hand pick somebody from Fidelity Bank, an entity where he was chairman before becoming the governor. “Now he wants to bring back an Executive Director of the bank to govern the state. So all along when he

was preaching zoning to the north, the people know better. There is great lamentation and mourning by the people of the Anambra North over what have befallen them.” While defending the agitation by the Anambra North of marginalisation, Ngige said that as a realist he knew that the Obi government was playing hide and seek and that what Anambra needed was the best and that it is not segregated. But Governor Obi said Ngige is only misinforming the public. Speaking through his that he would support a candidate from Anambra North and that is simply what he is doing.

PDP convention: S’East retains zoning of party positions DENNIS AGBO ENUGU

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he leadership of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the South East yesterday retained its zoning of party positions to each of the states within zone that produced the previous members of the dissolved National Working Com-

mittee, NWC. The zone also said it has passed vote of confidence on the their sons and daughters that were part of the dissolved NWC and recommended them to the rest of the states for consideration to be voted back to their previous positions. Persons involved are National Vice Chairman of

the party, Austin Akobundu; former National Publicity Secretary Olisa Metuh, former Deputy National Secretary Solomon Onwe, former National Women Leader Kema Chikwe among others. The position was taken yesterday during its South East Zonal Executive Committee meeting held in Enugu.

Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Valentine Obienyem, Obi said: “In the normal mischief characteristic of Dr. Chris Ngige, rather than face the man with clean record and verifiable past, he is misinforming the people. What he is doing is a clear sign that he is not happy at the emergence of a man known for his character. He is already jittery and has so soon started speaking in tongues. Is it an Okija-going man or a depraved one that Obi should support? Ngige should better face his campaign than engage in cheap gossip and flights of fancy. “Evidently, Dr. Willy Obiano is more accomplished than he is. With a past not tainted by scandal or story of intrigues one must be invented. Is Ngige saying that any person who worked in a company Obi has interest should not be the Governor of Anambra State? As a person, does Ngige not have shares in companies? Can we say that any person working or who had worked in a company he has interest should be ostracised. This is childish tantrums.”


14

Politics

Thursday, August 29, 2013

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

PDM: Between transformation and ‘political trickery’

FELIX NWANERI writes on the metamorphosis of the Peoples Democratic Movement, PDM, pioneered by a onetime former Chief of Staff, Supreme Headquarters, late Gen. Shehu Musa Yar’Adua to a political party and the controversies that have trailed the development.

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he registration of more political parties by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, ahead of the 2015 general elections has not only opened the country’s political space, but provided alternative platforms for politicians jostling for the various elective positions up for grabs in the polls. Only recently, the nation was awash with the news of the registration of the All Progressives Congress, APC, a merger of leading opposition parties comprising of the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, All Nigeria People’s Party, ANPP, Congress for Progressive Change, CPC, and a faction of All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA. The APC’s listing however did not come that easy, as intrigues characterised its registration process, as a result of another political group’s claim to the acronym – APC. However, before the euphoria that greeted the party’s emergence could subside, INEC, penultimate weekend announced the registration of two more parties – Peoples Democratic Movement, PDM, and Independent Democrats, ID. While little is known about the background of the ID and its promoters, the PDM was before now in the consciousness of most political analysts and observers, as a result of its past role in Nigeria’s polity. The group was pioneered by a one-time Chief of Staff, Supreme Headquarters, late Gen. Shehu Musa Yar’Adua for the promotion of core ideals of democracy; sustenance of and support for peaceful coexistence among the diverse groups in the country; bridge building among the diverse segments of the country; promotion of good governance and sustainable development in Nigeria. The group accounted for the Katsina State-born Army general’s impressive performance across the country in the 1992 presidential primaries of the Third Republic on the platform of the defunct Social Democratic Party, SDP, that was however aborted by the then Military President, Gen. Ibrahim Babangida It was also claimed that the PDM’s structure was instrumental to the emergence of the late Chief Moshood Abiola as the flag bearer of the defunct SDP in 1993. Abiola went on to contest that year’s June 12 presidential election and was coasting home to victory until the election was annulled by Babangida. The PDM was later to play active roles in the transition programmes of the subsequent regimes of late Generals Sani Abacha and Abdulsalami Abubakar, particularly in 1999, when it was in the forefront in the emergence of former President Olusegun Obasanjo as the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP. In recognition of its influence, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, who took

Anenih

THE PDM WAS NEVER PROPOSED TO BECOME A POLITICAL PARTY; IT WAS ESTABLISHED TO STAND AS A BRIDGE

LINKING THE NORTHERN AND SOUTHERN PARTS OF THE COUNTRY over the leadership of the PDM after Gen. Yar’Adua’s death emerged as running mate to Obasanjo. It is against this backdrop that many fingers pointed towards Atiku shortly after the group metamorphosed to a political party, though he quickly denied the claim, saying he still remains “a loyal member of the PDP,” but will not stop any of his political associates from joining the new party. A statement by his spokesman, Garba Shehu, said: “Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar has said while he remains a loyal PDP member, he doesn’t have the right or power to stop others from associating or seeking registration for new parties.” According to him, freedom of association as enshrined in the constitution is the beauty of democracy, adding that he would not dissuade any of his followers from seeking a platform to promote their programmes. Among the associates of the former Vice President involved in the PDM include its interim National Chairman, Alhaji Bashiru Yusuf Ibrahim (Atiku’s former Special Assistant on National Assembly Matters), National Secretary, Dr. Joseph O. Akinwunmi; National Treasurer, Mr. Gagogo Emmanuel; National Financial Secretary, Mrs. Aku Cecilia Betzon and National Legal Adviser, Barrister Kabiru Umaru Dodo. But despite Atiku’s denial of any link with the new party, some members of the PDP have insisted that the PDM is his ‘Plan B’ in his quest to unseat President Goodluck Jonathan in 2015. A group in the ruling party - Concerned PDP Democrats, which made the claim, however advised the former vice president to show leadership by giving total support to President Jonathan. In a statement by its National Coordinator, Elvis Agukwe (a former Commissioner

Yusuf

for Information in Imo State), the group said: “We therefore call on Turaki to perish the idea of going to PDM and remain in PDP. He must not allow his ambitious spindoctors to deceive or mislead him again. This latest move is not good for Atiku’s political health as it will only portray him as a desperado politician who wants to become president by all means.” The chairman of PDP Board of Trustees, BoT, Chief Tony Anenih, on his part described PDM’s registration as a political trickery that will not survive the test of time, as leaders of the PDM did not intend that it should transform to a political party. He said: “Reports about the registration of the PDM as a political party by INEC have inundated the polity; and because of my leading role in the formation and nurturing of the Movement, concerned members have contacted me to confirm if it was our PDM that has witnessed the transformation. “After in-depth investigations and extensive consultations with a wide spectrum of the membership and leadership of the PDM, which is just like a pressure group within the Peoples Democratic Party, I consider it moral to use this medium to clarify that the PDM, which some persons, purporting to be interim leaders, secretly and mischievously promoted and succeeded in registering with INEC to operate as a political party, is not our PDM that worked with other political associations to form the PDP in 1998. “For the avoidance of doubt, the PDM, which we collectively envisioned under the leadership of the late General Shehu Musa Yar’Adua, remains an integral part of the PDP, whose Board of Trustees, I currently chair by the grace of God and the consensus of founding fathers and leaders of our great party.” He therefore urged those who look up to him for guidance to remain steadfast with him in the task of building a much more united and formidable PDP and “to discountenance the registration and treat it as a political trickery which will not survive the test of time.” Anenih’s position was corroborated by another leader of the PDM, Amb. Yahaya Kwande, who said the group was not meant to be a political party, but to serve as a bridge, meeting point and unifying forum for Nigerians from all walks of life. “The PDM was never proposed to be-

come a political party; it was established to stand as a bridge linking the northern and southern parts of the country and between people in different political parties; a meeting point for people in different religions and tribes and a unifying forum for Nigerians from all walks of life,” he said. Similarly, zonal leaders of the group under the chairmanship of Senator Abubakar Mahdi, at the end of an expanded meeting of the group last week in Abuja, disowned the new party. They described as unacceptable a situation where founding fathers, national caucus, zonal leaders and state management committees were not consulted and therefore, resolved that they are not part of the registered party as they remain members of PDM as a pressure group within PDP. Despite the disclaimer and controversy, the PDM, as a party has gone ahead to unveil its roadmap, assuring of a new political order that will guarantee fair play and quality service to Nigerians. The party said it will create an enabling environment aimed at ensuring good governance in the polity. Its other promises include setting objectives that would guarantee that economic and political power are genuinely democratised through political grassroots participation in the structures and organisation of power and intensifying efforts to stamp out all anti-social behaviour such as corruption, terrorism, indiscipline, lack of national commitment and avarice. This resolve, perhaps, explains last Wednesday’s visit of members of the North-East zonal executive of the PDP to the Abuja residence of Atiku to plead with him not to dump the ruling party for the PDM. The leader of the delegation and PDP North-East zonal chairman, Senator Lawal Girgir, told Atiku that they came to identify with him and also to seek his support on how to elevate the party in the zone. Atiku hails from the zone and is one of the party’s major financiers. Given the development, the questions on the lips of most political analysts are: Will Atiku leave the PDP if he fails to pick the party’s presidential ticket in 2015 and what are his chances of making a meaningful impact at the poll should he decide to run on the PDM’s platform? Second Republic parliamentarian, Dr. Junaidu Mohammed, who proffered an answer, said Atiku would be embarking on a political gamble should he opt for the new party, as it is one made up of expired politicians who have no fresh ideas on how to move the nation forward. According to him, the PDM is an extension of the PDP, which has failed to bring positive change to Nigeria after 14 years in power. “The noise that has attended the registration of PDM is puzzling to me because the promoters of the party have been active in the PDP since 1998. If those behind PDM didn’t make impact with the exit of Atiku Abubakar to the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, and back to the PDP, is it now they want to perform magic?” he queried. Although it would be too early to underrate the PDM, developments in the days ahead will determine if the group can re-enact the political savvy that made it a strong political force for decades, in the forthcoming 2015 elections.


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Politics

Thursday, August 29, 2013

How do you see the decision of the PDP to postpone its South-West congress earlier slated for last Saturday? It was a very wise decision by the PDP leaders who met in Abuja last week to suspend indefinitely the South-West congress of the party. There are many things that the leaders have put right by such suspension. One, there is a court injunction, which was secured by the former governor of Ekiti State, Engr. Segun Oni, saying that the South-West congress should not hold. No matter the interpretation or outcome of that injunction, PDP came out to show that it is a party that obeys the rule of law and so the congress was suspended indefinitely. Secondly, there are some things that in fact cannot be openly stated now about what was about to happen if the congress has taken place and PDP has to keep its house in order. Hence, the postponement of the South-West congress was very appropriate. The congress will hold very soon and everybody will be brought on board. What some of us are saying is that let everybody be put on board in a way that we don’t allow people of questionable character or leaders without pedigree to run the PDP in the South-West. The South-West has very articulate and vibrant electorate and that electorate will not accept just anybody who hasn’t got any credible antecedents to come out and say they are running the affairs of the party. Do you think the postponement of the congress will facilitate the peace move in the zone and the party’s plan to reconcile all the warring factions? The PDP has always involved peace moves all over the country and it is true that we have had problems in the SouthWest PDP for a long time. But we are coming together. We have very vibrant youths. So, we want to combine the vision and enthusiasm of these youths with the maturity and experience of the elders so that we can move the party forward. That is why in fact the reconciliation is very necessary and we are going to get it and once we get it, all the elements that make up for the militancy of the party, that make up for the popularity of the party will be put together so that peace, unity and cohesion would be advanced in the PDP. Are you saying that PDP will be a strong party to be reckoned with in the South-West in 2015? Of course come 2015, South-West PDP will be a very effective voice in Nigerian politics because we are aware of the challenges ahead of us. The great challenge ahead of us is ensuring the victory of the PDP at the polls and also ensuring that President Goodluck Jonathan has maximum votes to continue in office until 2019. And with those challenges facing us squarely, the PDP South-West will never gamble with opportunity to be put together and that is why all of us are now poised to ensure victory for the party, victory for President Jonathan and victory for the Nigerian people. Do you think your determination to ensure victory for the party in 2015 elections is realistic considering the crisis in the PDP? We must have crisis for goodness sake. A political party cannot but have crises. In fact, a Greek Philosopher, Herac Litus, said that society must be in permanent state of conflict. You can never get any organisation, country or society that is not faced

15

Nigerians can’t trust APC because of dictators –Babatope Chief Ebenezer Babatope, a former Minister of Transportation in the Sani Abacha-led military regime, is a member of the Board of Trustees, BoT, of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP. The PDP National Secretary aspirant, in this interview with TEMITOPE OGUNBANKE, speaks on the crisis in the party, this weekend’s special convention of PDP and 2015 elections, among other issues. Excerpts:

Are you saying PDP is not afraid of 2015? No, we are not at all because we know when to call a halt to all these things happening. All of us who are leaders; all BoT members, all caucus members, National Working Committee, NWC, members know when to call a halt and when we call a halt then we start the programme for the election. Let things go on this way. Let the political scene get interesting like what is happening within the PDP because we dictate the space and therefore we are not worried at all. But when we need to call a halt, we would call a halt and move forward and win the election by the grace of God.

Babatope

with crisis. But it is the ability of the organisation, country and society to manage its crisis that in fact brings it out as effective or ineffective organisation. That PDP has got crisis at the national level does not mean that the party is sick. We are aware of it and we talk about it. Talking about it shows that we want to solve the problem and we are going to solve the crises because all of us know that if we carry the crisis to ridiculous extent, then we leave political party like the All Progressives Congress, APC, that is very dictatorial and that is very confused, a chance of saying that they want to lead the country. Why do you think APC is dictatorial and confusing? The man, Mr. Buhari is not a joke. Not because I passed through his detention camps but because that is what he is. He is a soldier and many of the soldiers, except a few of them are dictators but his own is exceptional. Many of my colleagues in Second Republic politics perished and died as a result of the draconian politics of Muhammadu Buhari. And whether you like it or not, whether he contest or not, the image of Buhari as a dictator will affect the party. That is why I say the party is dictatorial and Nigerians should not allow their political direction to be led by people who in fact are not democrats. Many of the people that formed APC are not democrats and that is why this country must be very careful of the new party. There are some dangerous elements in APC, particularly, the ACN of the South-West of old that in fact are terrible people. It is believed that the crises in the PDP may

through the ability of the party to ensure that peace reign in the PDP. Governor Rotimi Amaechi and other governors are just expressing their opinions and they know when to call a halt to what they are doing. I am sorry for anybody that leaves the PDP to join APC. I will be so sorry for any governor that joins APC because the governor will discover later that he would only have signed his political death warrant by a reckless action of going to join the APC or to join any other party. Those who are members of the PDP will ensure that we give leadership to who leadership is due. We are not afraid of 2015. President Goodluck Jonathan is doing very well and with that the PDP is poised to repeat the victory of 2011 and to repeat the victories we have been given by Nigerians since 1999. So, there is no fear at all.

NIGERIANS CANNOT ALLOW THEIR POLITICAL DIRECTION TO BE LED BY PEOPLE WHO IN FACT ARE NOT DEMOCRATS.

MANY

OF THE PEOPLE THAT

FORMED APC ARE NOT DEMOCRATS AND THAT IS WHY THIS COUNTRY MUST BE VERY CAREFUL OF THE NEW PARTY consume the party before 2015 elections. That is not correct. You cannot say the governors who are elected must not have a say in the affairs of the country. You cannot say that the Senators and House of Representatives members or even the House of Assembly members must not have a say in the affairs of the country. They must have a say and what is important for us is for the party to make sure that all their affairs are conducted in a manner that inspire the reconciliation and peaceful existence and that is what the secretariat is expected to do. The secretariat of a political party helps the party to articulate the views of its members and to ensure that they are not views that will destroy the party. I believe that no matter the crises we have now, it would be resolved through dialogue and

Your party will hold its national convention on Saturday. What is your message for party leaders and delegates to the convention? The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, observed that there was something wrong with the first convention and we will correct them this time. It is not likely that the post of National Secretary would be contested because of Olagunsoye Oyinlola’s legal action. Therefore, the party will make a proper arrangement to ensure that it put into office those who will be able to manage the affairs of the party. Whatever position the party takes on the office of the National Secretary would be binding on everybody. That is party supremacy since it is not their fault. You cannot also blame Oyinlola for going to court. Oyinlola was removed in a manner that I will never support. Somebody just brought a court action saying that Oyinlola should be removed. Oyinlola must have all the full right that he has under the constitution of the party and Nigeria to seek for redress. So that is not a problem. I am contesting but I know that whatever the party decides on that position is binding. And whatever decision the party takes, there would be no quarrel. It is not that the party is against me, it is that, I am faced with a situation whereby we cannot proceed with the election that I am seeking for and therefore must work for my party. What is paramount to me now is that PDP wins 2015 elections; PDP wins elections in Ekiti and Osun states next year and President Goodluck Jonathan is return to power. That is what is paramount to me and whether secretary or not, I will do my best to ensure that these objectives are achieved.


Mail Mirror

16

Politics

It is no longer news that Adamawa State governor, Murtala Nyako has immense political differences with the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, but his inability to accord recognition to the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshall Alex Badeh since his appointment has raised questions over his style of politics, OBIORA IFOH reports.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Nyako: Fighting on all fronts

A

damawa State ranks as one of the states that has produced top leaders in the field of politics, civil service, military and even police. Three prominent political leaders in today’s Nigeria, including former Vice-President Atiku Abubarkar, the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur as well as the state governor, Murtala Nyako, reputed to have achieved virtually everything both in the military and in politics are all from the state. The state has also produced several Service Chiefs and Inspector-Generals of Police. It is the home state of General Gibson Jalo, who was the Chief of Army Staff under President Shehu Shagari. There was also Air Vice Marshal A. D. Bello, the late Air Marshal Ibrahim Alfa, who was General Ibrahim Babangida’s Chief of Air Staff and Nyako, who was the Chief of Naval Staff under the same Babangida administration. Similarly, Muhammadu Gambo Jimeta and Ibrahim Sulieman were Inspectors-General of Police. But in spite of these big names, the state has not witnessed the expected transformation neither has it seen peace since this dispensation, particularly in the last few years. Reasons are not farfetched. At the last count, Governor Nyako has engaged virtually every notable political leader in the state in a political fight over the soul of the state and the attendant result has been a divided house. His fight with President Goodluck Jonathan has nothing to do with the President’s delivery of democracy dividends but it is about his being denied “total control” of the PDP Adamawa State chapter. So, is his fight with Tukur. His quarrel with the PDP chairman is the root of the crisis in the party which has now spilled over to the Nigerian Governors’ Forum, NGF. Knowing the implication of a National Chairman of his party coming from his state, Nyako had fought against the choice of Tukur, until the superior fire power of Tukur’s supporters overpowered him. Like Tukur, Nyako wants his son to be the next governor of the state. To the people of Adamawa State, the fight against President Jonathan and other prominent sons of Adamawa like Prof. Jibril Aminu, who helped him to power, Alhaji Hassan Adamu, Chief Joel Madaki, is nothing compared to what they experience day-in-day out in the hands of Nyako. Last week, the Secretary to the State Government, Mr. Kobis Aris, descended on Tukur, saying “Tell me anything good that has come out of the party since he became the chairman rather he has brought

Nyako

Tukur

WHILE THE POWER STRUGGLE BETWEEN

TUKUR AND NYAKO IS UNDERSTANDABLE, THAT BETWEEN THE GOVERNOR AND THE

CHIEF OF AIR STAFF IS BAFFLING AND SURPRISING

Badeh

the party to ridicule.” In a chat with National Mirror, another aide of the governor, Adamu Bagda said that the peace between the governor and Tukur could be elusive until the party machinery in the state is restored to the governor. It is no longer news that the governor is leading the other northern governors to unseat Tukur. He has also threatened to dump PDP if Tukur fails to retrace his steps or is removed as the national chairman of the party. For most of the states, it is a thing of pride when their indigenes are appointed into high offices as such appointees are celebrated. Newspapers’ adverts are placed congratulating them and the President and most often times, a state delegation will also be put together to thank the President. The state government would traditionally hold a state banquet to honour such an appointee. So, when Air Marshall Alex Badeh was appointed as the Chief of Air Staff, he must have looked forward to being received by his state, but Nyako would not allow any of such to happen neither did he didn’t think much of the appointment. So, till date he has refused to host or officially receive the Chief of Air Staff nor attend any function by him, neither did the governor condole with him or visited during the burial of his mother. Sources close to the Adamawa State government said hosting the Chief of Air Staff would have amounted to recognising that there is a higher authority than

Governor Nyako. “You might wish to remember that he was Chief of Naval Staff, more than 27 years ago. So, what is the big deal about being a Chief of Air Staff,” said one of Nyako’s aides. But Badeh, according to sources in the know of happenings in the state, has continued to accept the lack of recognition from his governor. According to sources, the root of the crisis is the projects that the Chief of Air Staff, since his appointment, has embarked on in the state. The two main projects that have reportedly angered Nyako are the Air Force College project and the re-opening of the Air Force Strike Force Base. These projects attracted to the state barely a year after assumption of office should have been a source of joy to the state however, it is believed that the state government do not share in that glory. Specifically, Nyako is believed to be disturbed about the questions being raised now with the Air Force College about his failure to pay attention to education. The Air Force College project which started about four months ago is already nearing completion and is indeed ready for the first intake in September this year. The project has in the absence of any project by the state government also provided employment opportunities for the people of the state. The question being asked by the people, that has gotten Governor Nyako worried and subsequent allegation were that Badeh might be interested in becoming the next governor of the state hence the location of the Air Force College in Yola, the state capital, to showcase what he is capable of doing. The Air Force Strike Force base which was closed down during the Babangida

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administration was ordered re-opened by President Jonathan due to the war against insurgency. The North-East is the hot bed of the terrorist Boko Haram group. The upgrading of the base with the injection of more fighters, patrol aircraft and helicopter gunships has brought back life and positively impacting on the economy of the state. Badeh, as Chief of Air Staff, has never forgotten his roots. His village Vimtim in Mubi North Local Government Area, has a notorious water problem, leading to avoidable deaths. Attempts to solve the problem through the sinking of boreholes failed woefully in the past and expert advice given to the state government that only an earth dam will solve the crisis was not adhered to and tired of waiting for the government, elite from the town led by Badeh rallied friends who contributed to the building of an earth dam. In the same vein, Badeh sees his appointment as an opportunity to touch lives. This was what motivated him in instituting a sports competition in his local government to challenge the youths to “do something” with their lives. The last edition had the football legend Kanu Nwankwo as a special guest of honour. For the youths of the area, seeing Kanu in person was more than a dream come true. The effect of these programmes is what is causing problems for Nyako. His supporters are conscious of the fact that even if Badeh is not a candidate, he has the capacity to influence the political direction and this is why he is seen as a threat. For many people who are aware of the non-recognition of Badeh by the Nyako administration, when compared to the statement credited to the Director of Press to the governor, Ahmed Sirajo, alleging that the Chief of Air Staff, should mind his job and not get involved in politics was a huge surprise to many people, who asked rhetorically; “So, Nyako knows there is a Chief of Air Staff after all the self- denial.” “There has been no attempt, in fact there has been a denial by the Nyako administration that the Chief of Air Staff is from Adamawa State. There is nothing to recognise him as a worthy son of the state even a courtesy call,” says another resident. It was gathered that the Chief of Air Staff had at least five events to which the state government was officially invited but none was honoured. They include the ‘Thanksgiving Service’ on his appointment, the burial of his mother, the hosting of Badeh by his Course 21 mates. There was also the reception by the Adamawa Forum to which Nyako was invited and refused to attend. While the power struggle between Tukur and Nyako is understandable, that between the governor and the Chief of Air Staff is baffling and surprising to the people of the state. But those, who know Nyako are of the view that he wants to be the only voice and person that must be heard and seen in Adamawa State hence his penchant of picking fights with the entire people of the state. With 2015 by the corner, one expects that Nyako, knowing that he is in the last lap of his tenure should work to leave the state in one piece and not in tatters. Adamawa has so much to gain if the state government can connect to the centre.


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Views

Thursday, August 29, 2013

17

Appreciating IBB’s optimism about Nigeria EXISTENTIAL HUMANISM

FRY

NDUBUISI fryndubuisi@nationalmirroronline.net (08023016709 SMS only)

E

x-military President Ibrahim Babaginda is a news maker any day. His views on topical national issues are media delight. He is easily one of those that have shown special interest in the continuous existence of the country as a united entity. I see him as a patriot to the core, who carefully chooses his words when contributing to matters of national interest. IBB is not just a former leader of the country, he is also a leading voice in the North. That is why his opinion on any national issue is germane. Take for example the permissive pessimism on the fate of Nigeria in 2015, I mean the disintegration mantra. His position is elevating. A renowned lawyer and human rights activist went legal in his own prediction stating that the amalgamation that molded the country together will expire in 2014; which implies that the 1914 amalgamation of northern and southern Nigeria is meant to endure for only 100 years. For sure, there

T

is a general apprehension about the future of the country amidst the threat of fire and brimstone over 2015 general elections. It was in the midst of this uncertainty and apprehension that General Babginda (retd) took a bet on post 2015 Nigeria, thus add a sedative voice of reason to the raging debate. He is unequivocal that this prophecy of doom associated with 2015 will not come to pass.Hear him: ’’I can’t see that happening. We should not give prominence to that prediction. If it will happen I will know before now’’. He urged Nigerians, irrespective of the difficult time they are passing through, to remain steadfast in love and peace. This reassurance is timely given the level of fear and apprehension surrounding the future of the country. It is on record that no less a personality than another former military head of state, General Abdulsalami Abubarkar, also dismissed this fairy tale of disintegration. He treated it as the work of idlers and mischief makers. While it is pleasant to hear from these strong voices and personalities, what is missing in their optimism is not seeing the country the way it is and the way it is going. It is too simplistic to dismiss with a wave of hand visible signs and features of disintegration hanging on the nation like the sword of Damocles. While it is welcome to assuage the fears of Nigerians of an im-

NIGERIANS COULD BE WONDERFUL FELLOWS, SUFFERING AND

SMILING, BUT IT WILL BE GOING TOO FAR TO TAKE THEM FOR GRANTED pending doom, it will behoove on our leaders to see the danger on ground and suggest the way forward, particularly how to checkmate the morbid mentality and arrogance that some privileged Nigerians have displayed as if they are the crowned princes of the country. It may be good to be optimistic and positive about the future of the country, but being witnesses to some contemporary global developments where hitherto compact countries have got unpatched in Africa, Asia Europe, there might be the need to express qualified optimism on the future of the country. We only need to look at the old Sudan, Eritrea and Ethiopia, the former Soviet Union and Czechoslovakia. What about the crises and mayhem going on in Syria and Egypt? Though the circumstances of all these examples were not the same, but the critical factors inherent in basically all of them are intrigues, insincerity, ambition, religious bigotry and arrogance

for power. There were disquiet signs of trouble before the final bubble that tore everything apart burst. It is important we face reality in this country. What is unfolding before us all is not a way to build an enduring nation. The level of injustice in the country is suffocating. You see it everywhere. The government has lost faith with the people; what we see everywhere is hypocrisy and naked show of power and influence. The privilege class has taken over virtually everything and there is no attitude of caution or regret over it. The pervasive and strangulating economic situation in the country is enough to trigger a revolution. Nigerians could be wonderful fellows, suffering and smiling, but it will be going too far to take them for granted. It may well be that the country may not disintegrate. To look at the issue from this standpoint may actually be myopic. The enemies of this country could be found in the North, South, East and West. They are really the ones that have conspired to make the Nigeria big for nothing. While we welcome strong voices such as IBB to calm the nerves of worried Nigerians, they should also remind our leaders that the level of injustice and power show in the country is choking the common man on the street, and that these have the potential to trigger off crisis the end of which nobody could fathom. Professor Ndubuisi, an Attorney at Law is of the Dept of Philosophy, UNILAG

Ironies of huge human resources and stagnation

he gift of intelligence is the distinctive quality that sets apart human beings from the lower animals. Thus, all achievements humanity has posted from the dawn of civilisation to the present era are attributable to this unique ability of Homo sapiens to analyse, infer, imagine and project. The economists have also told us that of all the factors of production – land, labour, capital and entrepreneurship - entrepreneurship representing the mental inputs in the mix, is the most potent. But this fact with all its implications seems to have consistently eluded most of Nigerian leaders over the years. It is really sad that in this country, government after government, have settled into unfathomable fixation of construing human resources as a burden rather than a blessing. “We are too many, and we should not expect the government to cater to everybody’s needs. Government cannot provide everything”. These are samples of the strange statements we often hear from official quarters to justify anti-people policies. Normally, a huge population should be an index of potential growth and scope of attainable development, provided of course, it is well harnessed and driven to generate beneficial ends. But when the political class is wantonly clueless on efficient human resources management, it often sees huge population as a drawback to its developmental blueprints. We have millions of ablebodied men and women who roam the street in despair of what to do; hundreds of thousands of our youths have taken to crimes when no credible attempt is being

ABUJA IS REPUTED TO BE THE BEST PURPOSEBUILT CITY IN AFRICA, BUT IT WOULD HAVE PAID US MORE TO HAVE THE BEST MENTALLY DEVELOPED PEOPLE IN

AFRICA

made to harness their energies into national productivity pool. Government’s allocation to education sector and youth development, with the sole exception of the evanescent Chief Obafemi Awolowo’s free education project in the old Western Region, has always been dismal. Rather, billions of naira are routinely frittered away on non-productive ventures. The strike embarked upon by the Association of the Academic Staff of Universities (ASUU) has entered eight week, and our leaders do not see it as a national calamity. Yet the strike, which started on the on July 1, 2013, was spawned by the refusal of the government to implement some of the 2009 FGN/ASUU Agreement. Human resources capacity building has never been a primary focus of our leaders because in their short-sightedness they are unable to see the overwhelming advantages of such a strategic investment decision. And they do not care about abundant wealth procurable through people-empowerment enterprises. It is this kind of people-may-go-to-hell mentality

that explains why the governments at all tiers agonised and whined without limits on the profligacy of paying N18, 000 minimum wages to the workforce, but had no compunction paying whopping security votes to the paramount executives and maintaining the highest-paid legislators. One wonders what can ever be provided for the benefit of the masses, no infrastructure, subsidised healthcare delivery service for Nigerians is too expensive, quality education is unavailable for lack of funds, good roads, potable pipe-borne water and regular supply of electricity are unaffordable luxury; in short, social provisioning has been nonexistent. Nobody is answering the question of why the billions of petro-dollars earned over the past five decades have not been routed into providing the said infrastructure. Nigeria, is now scheming to be among the top 20 developed economies in the world by the year 2020! Will the expected growth occur in vacuum? Only God knows why our leaders always fail to appreciate the basic fact that real development cannot occur beyond the human capacity in their enclave and that human capacity is stifled when people are not empowered. If you like, you can build hundred millions skyscrapers and architectural masterpieces all over the landscape, if you don’t build human capacity you have only succeeded in erecting potential liabilities. For instance, Abuja is reputed to be the best purpose-built city in Africa, but it would have paid us more to have the best mentally developed people in Africa. Material infrastructure is nothing but temporal edifice that would become

CRITICAL STROKES

KAYODE

KETEFE

kketefe@nationalmirroronline.net 08032147720 (SMS only)

shameful ruins with time in the absence of proper maintenance administered by, sentient, competent, human agents. We are perhaps, the only nation that would set such gargantuan targets without any credible blueprints on human resource development and capacity building that would serve as the springboard for the explosive growth. Well, maybe we are hoping to achieve the greatness through prayer warfare and night vigils, or some other ritual observances, goodluck! Every Kobo spent to improve the lot of any Nigerian is a potential million naira as the country will reap in concrete terms in future. Every naira expended to rehabilitate the area boys, the almajiris, the illiterate sellers of fake merchandise and the youthful kidnappers, will go a long way in building human capacity for a renascent Nigeria. 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.


18

Editorial

Thursday, August 29, 2013

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

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

STEVE AYORINDE

„

MD/EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

YELE AKINROLABU

„

ED OPERATIONS

BOLAJI TUNJI

„

DAILY EDITOR

GBEMI OLUJOBI

„

SATURDAY EDITOR

DOZIE OKEBALAMA

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COORDINATOR, EDITORIAL BOARD

CALLISTUS OKE

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EDITORIAL PAGE EDITOR

ISE-OLUWA IGE

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ABUJA BUREAU CHIEF

KAYODE BALOGUN JNR

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SM, STRATEGIC DEVELOPMENT

FRANK OBOH

„

HEAD, GRAPHICS

I

Still on Boko Haram insurgency

n the last few years, the country has been battling with security challenges exacerbated by the Boko Haram menace. Initially, the campaign of violence was mistaken for one of the numerous religious crises the nation has had to contend with in times past. It is now obvious, however, that the current insurgency is more deeply rooted than the country and its leadership ever imagined. The violence has attracted several suggestions from stakeholders and efforts by the Federal Government to douse the flame, including the declaration of partial state of emergency in three states in the North East geopolitical zone. A grave distraction for a nation enmeshed in economic and social crisis the insurgency has been. The magnitude of damage to lives and property it has recorded is quite alarming. It was in the search for how best to tackle the problem that the FG set up the Presidential Committee on Dialogue and Peaceful Resolution of Security Challenges in the North. The committee is believed to be making frantic efforts to lure Boko Haram sect members to embrace peace. The committee’s earlier announcement of a cease fire agreement by the sect not long ago turned out a fluke, as no sooner had

the proclamation been made than the sect continued with its bloodletting and mayhem. Just recently, the committee went public again with another report that it had secured a “peace deal with the highest decision making body of the Islamic fundamentalist group, the Shura’’. Speaking at a press conference at the banquet hall of the Presidential Villa, Abuja some days ago, the chairman of the committee and Special Duties Minister, Tanimu Turaki, disclosed that the group had decided to enter into genuine peace negotiation with the government based on the tenets of Islam, the teachings of Prophet Mohammed and the writings of eminent Islamic scholars and jurists. Turaki played a two-week old video clip of the purported Shura Committee in which the sect’s top hierarchy conveyed its resolve to enter into ‘genuine’ peace negotiation with the FG in Arabic language at a meeting held in Bauchi. Turaki described the sect as a disciplined group that respects seniority. It was quite distressing, to say the least, however, that the otherwise good news by the Turaki-led committee was immediately undermined by yet another attack by members of the sect in Borno State. Reports said no fewer than 44 people were slaugh-

WHILE THE MILITARY CAMPAIGN TO CHECKMATE THE INSURGENTS IS IN PROGRESS, DIALOGUE AS BEING PURSUED BY THE

TURAKI

COMMITTEE SHOULD BE ENCOURAGED tered penultimate Tuesday night by some unknown gunmen at Dumba village on the outskirt of Baga town in the Kukawa Local Government Area of the state. About 50 gunmen were said to have stormed the village, killed the victims and also set some houses on fire. The development buttresses the need to still explore more and enduring options to ending the sect’s violence. The United States of America, while acknowledging the immense potential of Nigeria recently, stressed the absolute need for the country to overcome the Boko Haram scourge if she wants to move forward. Speaking at the opening of the NigeriaUS Bi-National Commission Regional Security Cooperation Working Group in Abuja, US envoy, Ambassador Wendy Sherma, rightly observed

that the problem of insurgency remained the greatest challenge to Nigeria’s development presently. She said ending the insurgence might not be easy and pledged US’ readiness to work with Nigeria to overcome the setback. The insurgency she, stated in addition, frightens and scares away investors from the country, creates widespread insecurity nationwide, especially up North and increases tension across various ethnic divides, in addition to generating fear and tension in Nigeria’s northern neighbours. This appears a timely and friendly advice from the Barack Obama administration. The FG should take it seriously. While the military campaign to checkmate the insurgents is in progress, dialogue as being pursued by the Turaki committee should be encouraged once the prospects are there. Equally fundamental is for the government to address, as quickly as it can, the general economic and social crisis that force sections of the populace to take the nation’s laws into their hands. In the fullness of time, nevertheless, recalcitrant leaders and members of the sect should be brought to justice in consonance with the laws of the land; and the victims of the unfortunate violence compensated.

ON THIS DAY August 29, 2003 Ayatollah Sayed Mohammed Baqir al-Hakim, the Shia Muslim leader in Iraq, was assassinated in a terrorist bombing, alongside nearly 100 worshippers as they left a mosque in Najaf. Al- Hakim ( 1939 - 2003) was one of the foremost Twelver Shi’a Muslim leaders in Iraq until his assassination in the bombing. He was the son of Grand Ayatollah Muhsin al-Hakim Tabatabai and al-Hajja Fawzieh Hassan Bazzi.

August 29, 2007 United States Air Force (USAF) nuclear weapons incident: Six US cruise missiles armed with nuclear warheads were flown without proper authorization from the Minot Air Force Base to the Barksdale Air Force Base. As a result of the negligence and following investigations, four USAF commanders were relieved of their commands while numerous other personnel were disciplined and/or decertified to perform certain types of sensitive duties.

August 29, 2012 At least 26 miners were killed and 21 others missing after a blast in the Xiaojiawan coal mine, located at Panzhihua in Sichuan Province, China. About154 miners were at work at the time of the incident. It was the deadliest mine accident since the 2009 Heilongjiang mine explosion and was as a result of gas explosion. About 51 wounded miners were rushed to the hospital, seven of them in critical condition.


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Thursday, August 29, 2013

19

Education Today

IN CONJUNCTION WITH

Strike: Who blinks first, FG or ASUU? Fifty nine days on, both the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and the Federal Government are yet to come to terms on how to end the ongoing strike by ASUU. While the Federal Government has asked the striking lecturers to return to class with an offer of N30 billion part payment of allowances, ASUU on its part has vowed not to return unless the 2009 Agreement is fully implemented. With the ensuing deadlock, TUNBOSUN OGUNDARE wonders when and how normalcy will return to the nation’s tertiary institutions.

Isa

Empty classroom in a university.

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oday makes 59 days when the Academic Staff Union of Universities commenced its ongoing strike over the failure of the Federal Government to implement the agreement it entered with the union in 2009. If stories emerging from the series of negotiations held so far by both parties are anything to go by, there may not be an to the crisis for a long time to come. Both parties have maintained their position. While ASUU would settle for nothing less than a full implementation of the nine-point agreements it signed with the Federal government in 2009, the Federal government has remained inconsistent in its reactions to the lecturers’ demands. First, the Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala told the lecturers bluntly that the Federal Government could not meet their demand. She said: “The country is still suffering from the effect of the 2010 increase in salary. Do we want to get to a stage in this country that all the money we earn is used to pay salaries and allowances? If the demands of the university lecturers are met and we continue to pay them salaries and allowances, we will not be able to

Rufa’i

OUR MEMBERS HAVE EARNED THEIR ALLOWANCES BY WORKING FOR THE MONEY AND THEREFORE WE ARE NOT BEGGING FOR CRUMP FROM GOVERNMENT provide infrastructure in the universities.” The story however changed on Tuesday when the Federal Government offered to pay up N30 billion out of the N92 billion it reportedly owe the lecturers as allowances President Goodluck Jonathan announced the payment in Owerri, Imo state and immediately asked the lecturers to return to work. . Represented by the Minister of Education, Prof. Ruqayat Rufai at the opening ceremony of the Federal Governmentsponsored transformation projects at the Federal University of Technology, FUTO, Owerri, Imo State, the president declared that ASUU had no reason to continue the strike again since the government had released the money meant for their allowances The President also used the occasion to

restate his administration’s commitment to the provision of quality education in the country and that the projects being inaugurated were fallout of the assessment exercise conducted by the government in the universities last year. But the lecturers were not impressed by the President’s gesture and had refused to call of the strike. In fact, ASUU has pulled out of further negotiation with the government accusing the Federal Government of insincerity in the implementation of the agreement, as well as the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) both parties signed in January last year. The union National President, Dr. Nassir Isa, insisted at a press briefing held at the University of Lagos that the government must first honour both the agreement and MoU for the union to consider further negotiation.

According to him, the government had never shown sincerity to implement the agreement but was rather emphasising the issue of “earned” allowances as if that was the main bone of contention. “When the strike started, government mischievously announced to Nigerians that ASUU’s strike was chiefly for the sake of money in the form of Earned Academic Allowances. Also at every meeting since the strike began, government’s team always repeat that the allowances were the major issue in contention even when the union has repeatedly said contrary. “Why would government dangle N30 billion as if it was a dole-out when in fact, that amount of money was unrelated to the agreement and the work of implementation committee? “Our members have earned their allowances by working for the money and therefore we are not begging for crump from government. The government owes them and they deserved to be paid.” With the hard stance by both parties, it is certainly going to be a long wait for students in the tertiary institutions and another harrowing experience for parents and the country at large.


Alma mater

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Thursday, August 29, 2013

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Lagos charges students to set up farm in schools MURITALA AYINLA

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s part of the moves to promote and arouse the interest of students in Agricultural Science from the early stage of their lives, the Lagos State Government has empowered 60 students from the state’s public secondary schools in agricultural entrepreneurship. The government also charged the students to set up farms at their various schools to enable them embrace agriculture as a laudable profession. The benefiting students passed through two weeks of intensive training in aquaculture, poultry, vegetable farming and tree planting at the Lagos State Agricultural Training Institute, Araga, Epe area of Lagos. The training programme tagged: “Agricultural Summer School” is part of the State’s Agricultural Youth Empowerment Scheme, AGRIC-YES. The training is the third in the series, with 10 students each drawn from the six Education Districts of the state. Speaking at the closing ceremony of the Summer School, Commissioner for Agriculture and Cooperatives, Prince Gbolahan Lawal said 180 students had been empowered so far, through the summer school, with no fewer than 60 students in each year, adding that 10 teachers had also been trained. Prince Lawal urged the youths to go back to their schools and set up farms, saying that 36 schools in the state already had farms set up by students who went through the empowerment training. He added the students had been taken round several farms and giving practical training on how to set up fish ponds, among others, appealing to them to go into agriculture when they completed their education. He said there was the need to boost food production in the state and that the frozen chicken imported and sold in the market were not for human consumption as they were hazardous. On her part, the state Commissioner for Education, Mrs. Olayinka Oladunjoye said the programme was designed to promote and arouse the interest of students in Agricultural Science and to enable them embrace agriculture as a laudable profession from the early stage of their development. Oladunjoye stressed that the programme was also designed to improve teachers’ technical skills necessary for career and personal and professional success, adding that there are development opportunities through practical agricultural literacy, awareness. Oladunjoye, who was represented by a director in the ministry, Mrs. Tini Idris stated that the Ministries of Agriculture and Education had completed plans to reactivate the ‘Young Farmer’s Club’ in all public schools in the state, while soliciting for more financial support from the Agriculture Ministry for the participants, especially those who might like to take Agriculture as a career in the future.

Entrance gate of the school

‘Foundation for my spirituality came from CMS Grammar School’ Venerable Bamisebi is a retired Vicar of the Cathedral of St. Jude Church, Ebute Metta. The 79-year-old clergy who had pastored both in UK and Canada before returning to Nigeria credited his success story to the foundation he had at the CMS Grammar School Lagos, where he chose Classics as his best subject. MOJEED ALABI writes.

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hen the Church Missionary Society Grammar School, now popularly referred to as CMS Grammar School was founded on the 6th of June, 1859, by the Anglican missionaries, the motive was to build future clergymen and administrators in the colonized Nigeria. As the first secondary school in the country, CMS was modeled after those that came before it on the African continent, especially the CMS Grammar School in Freetown, the capital of Sierra Leone, which was founded in 1848. Dedicated to God, Christian religion and spiritual values, especially as contrasted with material or temporal ones, the CMS Grammar School, since inception, has raised many African leaders and spiritual fathers who shaped the strong foundation built for Nigeria’s survival. One of the early beneficiaries of this tradition of quality education and spirituality is Venerable Olusegun Bamisebi. Bamisebi, who attended the school between 1947 and 1954 when it was still located at Odunlami Street, on Lagos Island, said school time was beautiful and lovely then. “There was humility, serenity and love, but now civilisation has come and we are wondering whether we should be proud of civilisation or not,” he said. Recounting his experiences at the school, the 79-year-old and former Vicar of the Cathedral of St. Jude Church, Ebute Metta, Lagos, said his foundation to become a vicar was laid at the school. “I could say my best subject then was Classics. I studied Languages and I could say Classics was more interesting to me while in grammar school because it was the course in vogue then. I also liked Latin, Greek and I went further to learn Hebrew, which granted me the opportunity to become a pastor. I pastored in UK, Canada and all over Nigeria and Lagos in particular for over 40 years. I

YOU COULD NOTICE THAT FROM MANY OF MY MATES WHO ROSE TO CONTRIBUTE SIGNIFICANTLY TO

THE SOCIO-ECONOMIC, RELIGIOUS AND POLITICAL DEVELOPMENT OF OUR SOCIETY YOU COULD TELL THE KIND OF EDUCATION WE WERE Bamisebi

retired from The Cathedral Church Lagos, where I retired as Vicar in charge of Saint Jude, Ebute Metta,” Bamisebi stated. Bamisebi thanked his teachers in the school for what he described as dedication to duty, humility and sincerity of purpose as he singled out the then principal of the school, Venerable O.O Adelaja for being his best teacher. He said Adelaja groomed him and his other classmates to take leadership positions in the larger society. “You could notice that from many of my mates who rose to contribute significantly to the socio-economic, religious and political development of our society you could tell the kind of education we were offered then. “The former Head of Interim Government of Nigeria, Chief Earnest Shonekan; the owner of Eagle Paint, Alhaji Disu; Prof. Akinsanya; Mr. Tunde Benson (SAN); Prince Bolarinwa Ogunlewe, among others were all my classmates, and we still meet regularly till date to contribute to the progress of the school,” the former student explained. He said apart from hard work, there were

OFFERED THEN.

also extracurricular activities as he was involved in the game of soccer, but only for pleasure. “I played football and I was involved in debating society, maybe because I was argumentative.” Today, Venerable Bamisebi sees the rot in the country’s education sector as an extension of the rot in the larger society, saying; “teachers in the past were very dedicated and students too were very obedient. Parents were also cooperative with the teachers and they helped teachers in moulding the children. Nowadays things have changed. Parents no longer have time for their wards.” He said to right the wrong, parents must be prepared to collaborate with teachers to train their wards to walk the path of honour and integrity. Asked what would be his priority if asked to make input in the country’s wobbling education sector, Bamisebi said; “I will first of all pray, pray and pray because changes come from the mind. I will then call on people who are humble because it takes humility to excel.”


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Education Today

Thursday, August 29, 2013

21

Lagos, UNESCO lift adult education scheme

•Train 110 facilitators TUNBOSUN OGUNDARE

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he Lagos State government has taken strong steps to further reduce the level of illiteracy in the state to the barest minimum by the year 2015. Statistics have shown through the last survey conducted two years ago by the Multiple Education Pathways Blueprint that the current literacy rate in the state is 87 per cent and the state is strongly determined to get to 91 per cent against the 60 per cent 2015 Education for All (EFA) target set by the United Nations. Against this backdrop, the state last week through its Agency for Mass Literacy, Adult and Non-Formal Education in conjunction with the National Mass Education Commission (NMEC), UNESCO and the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) Office, organised a six-day workshop for facilitators. These are people who supervise instructors and at times, teach adult learners at various centres in their respective local council areas. Theme “Revatilising

adult and youth literacy in Lagos,” the event had a total of 111 participants drawn from three local government areas-Epe, Ifako-Ijaiye and Apapa- in attendance. It was a pilot programme as similar workshop will be extended to facilitators in other council areas of the state in the future. Known as volunteer teachers, they were made up of primary school teachers, their retired colleagues and those who have flair for and passionate about teaching. They were taught the effective ways in catching and encouraging students not only to come to class but also to be focused and committed to learning. Specifically, they were also advised to always come down to the level of their students, majority of whom are older and had never been to school in their lives. They consist of market women and men, artisans, traders and all sorts. Declaring the workshop open, the Chairman, Lagos State House of Assembly Committee on Education, Hon. Wahab Alawiye-King, restated Lagos State’s commitment to the development of not only adult education but also education at all lev-

els in the state, saying education is a key to economic development of any society. He told participants that their contributions to the literacy scheme and by extension, economic development in the state was highly recognised and commendable, urging them to take what he called ‘selfless service’ more seriously. In his farewell message, the representative of the National Mass Education Commission, Mr. Bayo Adeyemo told participants to ensure that the new knowledge they acquired should reflect in their future assignments. On her part, Director of the state’s Agency for Mass Literacy, Mrs. Fola Amore also urged trainees to always come down to the level of their students, who were either dropped-out of school or never been to school. She said thousands of people are benefitting from the scheme yearly and consequently improving the economy. She added that the success of this programme would go to achieving the MDGs and shows the commitment of government in eradicating illiteracy and encouraging mass literacy in the country. On their part, some of

A cross section of participants at the workshop.

the trainees told National Mirror that the workshop exposed them to new knowledge that would greatly help them in future. Some had been part of the literacy scheme for up to 10 years or more and would still loyal to the course. They, however, urged the various local governments to provide necessary and enough facilities such as textbooks and writing materials for learners so as to make their job easier. They also asked the government to increase their monthly allowances. Stakeholders in the education sector present at the event included the Executive Secretary, NCMA, Alhaji JubrilPaiko, a UNESCO’s consultant in Nigeria, Dr. Kolawole Oseni among others.

Amore

Learn Africa launches library revitalisation project TUNBOSUN O GUNDARE

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leading learning resource company in the coun-

try, Learn Africa plc has launched a new initiative to boost reading culture among youths through the provision of up-to-date books in

school and public libraries across the country. The company launched the initiative, tagged ‘Support-A-Library project’ under its

L-R, Director of Publishing, Learn Africa Plc, Mr. Gbola Ayedun; Member, Board of Trustees, LeanAfrica Education Development Foundation, Mrs. Yetunde Aina and Head of Marketing, Learn Africa Plc, Mr. Allwell Nwankwo at the launch of the LearnAfrica Support-A-Library initiative in Lagos, yesterday.

education development foundation, a corporate social responsibility ar m of the organisation in Lagos last week. Addressing journalists at the event, the project team leader and member of the Board of Trustees of the foundation, Mrs. Yetunde Aina said the initiative was to get the public-spirited individuals, alumni associations, corporate organisations and social groups to donate books to schools and public libraries of their choice anywhere in the country. “The idea is to revive all public- owned libraries including those in schools at all levels of education and equip them with books relevant to each level across the 36 states of the federation and Abu-

ja, the Federal Capital Territory,” she said. She explained that the initiative had a dedicated website and offered special discounted book bundles for a donor or group of donors based on the particular library to donate to and the volumes of books to donate. The arrangement for the discounted bundles according to her, range from N50,000 to N200, 000 on the subjects relevant to curriculum of choice level of education in addition to the general interest books. Calling on individuals, organisations, alumni and Diaspora associations to support the initiative, Aina pointed out that libraries in the country must once again assume a pride of place in aca-

demics if the country would continue to produce the manpower that would drive the economy to a greater height. The director of publishing of the company, Mr. Gbola Ayedun in his speech noted that since gover nments could not provide sound education to the citizenry all alone, the private sector would have to lend support to the sector. He said LearnAfrica Education Development Foundation for instance, established purposely to support the growth and development of the education sector through the provision of educational infrastructural and engagement in philanthropic activities that promote learning in the country.


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Education Today

Thursday, August 29, 2013

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Danmole, Adefuye, others advocate resuscitation of inspectors for schools MOJEED ALABI

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he Lagos State Commissioner for Home Affairs and Culture, Hon. Alhaji Oyinlomo Danmole and a seasoned administrator, Sen. Anthony Adefuye, and some other eminent Nigerians have called for the resuscitation of functional inspectorate units in both primary and secondary schools in the country. They said doing so would boost both teaching and learning at those levels of education. They made the call separately at the 8th valedictory speech and prize giving ceremony of the Viscum Private Schools, Omole, Lagos, recently. According to them, paying unannounced visits by

officials of the inspectorate units to schools on regular basis to monitor activities of teaching and non-teaching staff would help keeping them on their toes. Congratulating the graduands, they urged them to be well- behaved and take their studies very seriously as they continue with their education pursuits. On their own contributions, the school’s Proprietress, Mrs. Oluwasumisola Adefuye and the Head Teacher, Mrs. Agnes Agbo expressed their profound gratitude to the parents and guardians for investing in their wards, saying it was a way of securing their future. They said the school would also not relent in producing students that would globally competitive.

Council boss cautions students on vices KUNLE A ZEEZ

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he chairman of Imeko-Afon Local Government Council area of Ogun State, Hon. Tajudden Ayilara has called on students, who are indigenes of the state to shun cultism and other activities unacceptable by the society. He made the call in a statement signed by the Director of Information in the council, Mr. Seguin Benco. He noted that the council spent N1.7 million as bursary allowances on 215 undergraduates who are

indigenes of the council area only this year. Encouraging students to always thread the path of honour, Ayilara said they could not afford to tarnish their family names, that of their schools and the local government area they hail from. He urged them to take their studies very seriously so as to be able to fulfil their dreams and aspirations for life. He also promised them that his administration would not relent in providing necessary facilities that would make life comfortable for them.

DevComs rewards education reporters

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non-governmental organisation, Development Communications Network will hold this year’s edition of Journalism Development Programme (JDP) Awards tomorrow in Abuja. The initiative is to celebrate and recognise journalists on the education beat in the country with dedicated news reportage on public educational sector the year round. A release by the Project Coordinator of the organisation, Mr. Ayodele Adesanmi said the initiative was to further encourage reporters on education and such other beats as health and agriculture to report developmental issues in the country more effectively. Adesanmi said seven journalists in all from

Kaduna, Lagos, Jigawa, Enugu, Kwara and Kano states, as well as Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, would be honoured at the award ceremony based on the quality of their writeups on public education in their respective states. He added that two from the list would emerge as the national winners in print and broadcast categories and that all the winners would receive substantial gifts and certificates. Adesanmi explained that this year’s award edition would mark the completion of JDP 2- a one year project on education reporting- which started with capacity building trainings for education reporters in Kaduna, Lagos, Jigawa, Enugu, Kwara, Kano and FCT.

L-R, National Treasurer, Academic Staff Union of Universities, Dr. Ademola Aremu; former President, ASUU, Dr. Dipo Fashina and President, Dr. Nassir Isa at a press conference on the ongoing ASUU strike in Lagos, last week.

Quality education, panacea to economic problems –ICPC boss TUNBOSUN OGUNDARE

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he Chairman, Independent Corrupt and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), Mr. Ekpo Nta has said that for Nigeria to solve its socio-economic problems, it would have to provide for high quality and sustainable education system. He made the observation at an education summit in Abuja where he presented a paper and the score card of the commission in the fight against corruption in

the higher education system since he assumed his current position. Nta noted that investment into education sector of any country, no matter how huge or little was an investment in the future of that country. “This is because quality and sustainable education sector, especially higher education, have the potential to create employment, improve wellness, create a well-informed citizenry, and effectively tackle corruption and impunity in the polity,” he explained. On the theme of the

summit- “Restoring all round soundness to higher education in Nigeria-, the ICPC boss said it was high time the country overhauled its higher educational system as failure to do so would not only jeopardise the development of the sector but the entire economy. Calling the proliferation of illegal tertiary institutions in the country, especially universities a national embarrassment, Nta insisted that if the commission should maintain the current tempo against operations of illegal insti-

tutions, it would help the sector and the country. To show the extent of the proliferation; the EFCC boss disclosed that the commission had closed down within five days in March this year about 20 illegal degree awarding mills, including those with acclaimed foreign affiliations without proof. He, however, called on every stakeholder in the sector to join hands with the government in sanitising the system and make the sector produce quality manpower to grow and develop the economy.

Educationist bows out of service after 35 years OLAJIDE OMOJOLOMOJU

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he Tutor-General and Permanent Secretary, Education District 1, Agege, Lagos, Mrs. Mopelola David has bowed out from the public service after 35 years of meritorious service to the Lagos State Government. A sent-forth ceremony was organised in her honour recently with many school principals, teachers and top government functionaries, including the Permanent Secretaries in the state’s Ministries of Housing and Energy/Mineral Resources, Mr. Tunji Odulana and Mrs. Obasa, respectively

in attendance. Mrs. David, who started her career as a teacher in the district and retired also in the district, was described as a good leader and dedicated officer. The Commissioner for Education, Mrs. Olayinka Oladunjoye, in her own remark, said the celebrator was a gentle and easy going person since she met her, adding that the retirement was another phase in her life. Oladunjoye advised everyone at the occasion to emulate her. The Head of Service, Prince Adesegun Ogunlewe, represented by the Director, Post Service Department, Mrs. Raolat

Alaka congratulated the retiree for her great achievement while in service. Born on June 12, 1955, Mrs. David attended Christ’s School, AdoEkiti and the University of Ibadan, where she obtained a degree in Biochemistry. She also obtained a postgraduate diploma in Education from the University of Lagos, Akoka. Her distinguished career hallmarked by excellence and laced all through with recognitions and awards, commenced at Ajase-Ipo Comprehensive High School, in Kwara State, where she served and was awarded the best

Corps Member. Immediately after her NYSC, she joined the teaching staff of Babalola Memorial Girls Grammar School, Ilesa and later transferred her service to the Lagos State Teaching Service Commission and was posted to Saka Tinubu Memorial High School, Agege in January 1980

Mrs. David


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Education Today

Thursday, August 29, 2013

NUC’s sham accreditation

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he National Universities Commission (NUC) is saddled with the responsibility of evaluating the quality of programmes offered by Nigerian universities and ensuring that they meet or surpass minimum standards set. It further assures that the graduates of such programmes attains an acceptable level of competence in their area of specialization as well as certify to the international community that they are adequately equipped for employment or further studies. Various reports of NUC’s accreditation committees seem to suggest that the nation’s public and private universities are actually of very high standard. However, the recently released National Economic Empowerment and Development Strategy (NEEDS) assessment report on public universities in Nigeria paints a contrary picture of the state of university education in Nigeria. This raises serious question about the credibility of the NUC accreditation programme. If the NEEDS assessment committee report is true, then the accreditations granted to many of the programmes in the nation’s universities may have been fraudulently obtained or given in error. The stories of graduates from our accredited university programmes who cannot read and write currently making the rounds seem to corroborate the position of the NEEDS assessment report. Newspapers are awash with stories of utter dilapidation in many Nigerian universities. The tragic death of two female students of the Ambrose Alli University,

ONE WONDERS WHAT AN OPEN WELL, WITH ALL ITS ATTENDANT RISKS OF WATER BORNE DISEASES, IS DOING IN A STUDENTS’ HOSTEL IN A UNIVERSITY, A CENTRE OF EXCELLENCE, IN THE

21ST CENTURY

Ekpoma, who reportedly drowned in a well located within the hostel premises points to the extent of decay in our tertiary institutions. The well was said to have caved in under the weight of students struggling to fetch water because the taps had run dry as a result of the incessant power failures that have become the constant feature of our national life. One wonders what an open well, with all its attendant risks of water borne diseases, is doing in a students’ hostel in a university, a centre of excellence, in the 21st Century. This is an excellent exposition of the rot in our university system. Yet all the programmes in this university were accredited before this incident. This also exemplifies the interwoven nature of the infrastructural deficiencies of the universities and shows how failure in one can precipitate a chain reaction. The power failure that precipitated the death of the two female students at the Ambrose Alli University would have also paralyzed activities in all the laboratories in the insti-

Education as I see it

tution while it lasted. Power outages are faby Tosanwumi Otokunefor info@alphaedufoundation.org miliar features of the 08030904461 (email/SMS only) nation and therefore of the universities in Nigeria. By inference, processes that culminate in the award of dedysfunctional laboratories are unavoidable gree are of no interest to the accreditation fallouts unless special efforts are made to officers. Sharp practices are rampant in remedy the situation. I wonder if the ac- the computation of degree results in some creditation teams think it worthwhile to universities. Candidates who ought not to ascertain the backup power supply in the graduate are released into the labour marinstitutions they visit. ket with loads of failed courses including More serious are allegations of magic core courses. Other candidates are allowed facilities that spring up overnight just be- to graduate with degrees they do not merit. fore accreditation exercises and disappear Some academic staff members do not soon after. These facilities include offices, have the appropriate qualification for the laboratories, computer labs, departmental courses they teach. Lecturers with low libraries and even classrooms, spaces allo- academic potentials are smuggled into the cated to and used by other departments but system on temporary appointment under simply relabelled for the sake of accredita- the cover of accreditation. To make mattion. Thereafter the facilities revert to the ters worse, many stakeholders including original owners and the struggle for surviv- staff and students are sidelined during the al continues; students race to classrooms accreditation process. There are only two ahead of others in order to secure space, plausible explanations for the bungling of and lecturers haggle over the right to use the accreditation exercises; either the acavailable classroom while students look on. crediting officers are corrupt or incompeThe most deceitful aspects of these du- tent or both. Though members of the combious accreditation activities are related promising accreditation teams are drawn to the science laboratories. There is no from the academia, the responsibility for running water most of the time and pow- their actions rests squarely with the NUC er supply is epileptic. For the number of who handpicked them for the assignment. students cramped in, the working space is The Federal Government is said to be grossly deficient. Broken down equipment planning a massive clean-out of perceived are brazenly displayed by the university bad eggs in the university system but I officials as functional. Full and partial ac- wonder what will be left of the system creditations are given to most of these pro- thereafter. Thinking aloud, I wonder who grammes despite these shortcomings. will carry out this cleansing if the NUC has Furthermore, it appears that some of the thus far failed so woefully.

Liberia students all fail varsity admission exam

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iberia’s education minister says she finds it hard to believe that not a single candidate passed this year’s university admission exam. Nearly 25,000 schoolleavers failed the test for admission to the University of Liberia, one of the two state-run universities in the country. The students lacked enthusiasm and did not have a basic grasp of English, a university official told the BBC. Liberia is recovering from a brutal civil war that ended a decade ago. President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, a Nobel peace laureate, recently acknowledged that the education system was still “in a mess”, and much needed to be done to improve it. “In English, the mechanics of the language, they didn’t know anything about it,” says Momodu, Getaweh University spokesman Many schools lack basic education material and teachers are poorly qualified, reports the BBC’s Jonathan Paye-Layleh from the capital, Monrovia. However, this is the first

OAU alumni to give back to department MOJEED ALABI

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Liberia education system is said to be in a “mess”

time that every single student who wrote the exam for a fee of $25 (£16) has failed, our reporter says. It means that the overcrowded university will not have any new first-year students when it reopens next month for the academic year, he adds. Students told him the result was unbelievable and their dreams had been shattered, our reporter says. Education Minister Etmonia David-Tarpeh told the BBC Focus on Africa programme that she intended to

meet university officials to discuss the failure rate. “I know there are a lot of weaknesses in the schools, but for a whole group of people to take exams and every single one of them to fail, I have my doubts about that,” Ms David-Tarpeh said. “It’s like mass murder.” Ms David-Tarpeh said she knew some of the students and the schools they attended. “These are not just schools that will give people grades. I’d really like to see the results of the students,”

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she added. University spokesman Momodu Getaweh told BBC Focus on Africa that the university stood by its decision, and it would not be swayed by “emotion”. “In English, the mechanics of the language, they didn’t know anything about it. So, the government has to do something,” he said. “The war has ended 10 years ago now. We have to put that behind us and become realistic.” BBC.

embers of the 2005 set of old students of the Department of English Language and Literature, Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife, are currently making plans to return to the institution to make their contribution to the place they described as the foundation of their career path. The former students, who christened their group “Ife English ’05,” have identified the inability of old students to make commitment to their alma mater as part of the contributory factors affecting the education system in the country. As a way of giving back to the institution, the group is making arrangement to organise career seminar for the students of the department and to also donate relevant facilities for the benefit of both the teachers and the students. The group, which is currently being coordinated by Mr. Ifeoluwa Akinboade,

held a meeting attended by some of the members including the former President of the department’s students’ associationAwovarsity English and Literary Studies Society (AVLESS), Mr. Babatunde Aribisala. The meeting concluded to hold a reunion soon where issues of the members’ commitment to the department would be adequately discussed. “We thought of donations at our last meeting which is an initiative to give physical gifts to the department on behalf of the class. This we hope could take place on the same day we organise career talk for the current students of the department. “The intention is to identify a few of the department’s needs and try to meet them to the best of our capabilities, given our budget and other variables. Laptops and multimedia projectors have been suggested as viable gifts to the department but we welcome further suggestions from members,” Akinboade stated.


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Thursday, August 29, 2013

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EDITED BY MOJEED ALABI mojeedalabi2@yahoo.co.uk

NANS leaders at a press briefing in Lagos, recently.

NANS berates FG over ASUU strike •Wants ASUU to introduce ‘scientific’ approach to resolve problems BAKARE WALE

400L ZOOLOGY, UNILORIN

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he Joint Campus Committee of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS-JCC), Lagos axis, has condemned the Federal Government for what it termed its poor management of the current impasse between it and the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) which, it claimed, led to the 59-day-

old strike by the latter. This was the position of the students from the higher institutions in Lagos State including the Yaba College of Technology (YABATECH); Lagos State University (LASU), Ojo; Lagos State Polytechnic (LASPOTECH), Ikorodu, among others, who rose from a media briefing held recently at International Press Center, Dideolu Court, Ogba. While addressing journalists, the Chairman of

Lagos axis of JCC, Comrade Yakub Eleto said the indefinite strike embarked upon by ASUU on July 2 had totally shut down the public university system nationwide with no teaching, conduct of examinations, grading of scripts, projects supervision and statutory meetings of the academic members holding in any of the institutions. “To us in NANS, ASUU’s demands of adequate funding of universities,

university autonomy, and academic freedom, among others, are legitimate requests which any responsible and responsive government must meet. We cannot continue to attend glorified secondary schools as universities where we use kerosene stoves as Bunsen burner with our hostels not better than poultry pens,” Eleto stated. However, the students would also expect ASUU, as a body of intellectuals,

to proffer other solutions to the crisis in the education sector rather than the strike it frequently embarks upon saying the consequences could be more damaging. “We, however, want ASUU to think of other means of dispute resolution instead of the incessant strike. ASUU is obviously the largest concentration of intellectuals in the country; hence scientific means should be devised to settle dispute,” Eleto added.

The students urged the Federal Government to, as a matter of urgency, immediately release the funds demanded by ASUU and honour the agreement it entered with the union in 2009. After the briefing, the students checked on the former NANS President, Mr. Lanre Arogundade, who was the nation’s student leader between 1984/1985. Mr. Arogundade advised the students not to relent saying the Federal Gov

Fayemi commends JABU MOJEED ALABI

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he Executive Governor of Ekiti State, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, has commended the management of Joseph Ayo Babalola University (JABU), Ikeji-Arakeji in Osun State, for what he described as its foresight in training future leaders in entrepreneurial studies and skill acquisition. Fayemi made the comment recently when the university’s management team, led by its Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Sola Fajana paid a courtesy visit to the governor in Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti State capital.

While commenting on the latest result of the Webometric ranking of universities, which ranked JABU as the best private university in the country, Governor Fayemi said that the current achievements was as a result of conscientiousness, integrity, hard work, cooperation and teamwork spirit on the part of the management and its crop of committed staff. The governor further expressed his willingness to identify with the university in its goals as he promised to look into areas where his government could partner the ivory tower. He also reiterated the

importance of bringing research discoveries closer to the community and therefore commended JABU for its relevance to its community. He urged the leadership of the university not to relent in its pursuit of contributing meaningfully to national development through education. In his response, the VC also lauded the governor for transforming Ekiti State in various areas of development. He appreciated his spirit of upholding the value of integrity “in a polity where such value has been eroded by the several societal factors.”

Vice-Chancellor, Joseph Ayo Babalola University, Ikeji-Arakeji, Osun State, Prof. Sola Fajana (2nd from left), Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State (3rd from left) with other principal officers of the university during their visit to the governor in Ado Ekiti, recently.


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Campus News

Thursday, August 29, 2013

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FATUA trains corps members on self development MOJEED A LABI

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he Federal University of Technology Akure, FUTA, has organised a capacity building workshop for members of the National Youth Service Corps, NYSC, serving in Ondo State. The programme, which was put up by the university’s Centre for Gender Issues in Science and Technology (CEGIST), was targeted at building confidence in the participants and to make them see Nigeria as one indivisible country.

While declaring the workshop open, the Registrar of the institution, Dr. Modupe Ajayi, stated that NYSC scheme was one of the very good initiatives ever created to unite the country’s future leaders and further link them with other ethnic societies and people. She added that many youths in the course of serving their nation had mingled with people of other tribes “while some in the process ended up getting married to people from the community where they serve while some even marry fellow corps members.”

She therefore enjoined participants to rediscover themselves by bringing out the best in them in the course of their service year. The State Coordinator of NYSC, Mr. Isiaka Kuoye, who was represented by Mr. Olu Fadairo thanked FUTA management and the centre for putting up such an initiative; the development he said, would further enlighten the participants on the essence of the scheme. He also advised the corps members to treasure what the university has offered them and use

it to develop themselves and for the progress of the country. Delivering her paper, titled: “Self promotion,” the Chief Executive Officer of Quintal Energy, Dr. Omotayo Dairo, urged the participants to work very hard and make positive impacts on the communities they serve. He also stressed that they should endear themselves to the people in their places of primary assignment and the larger communities through inculcation of moral and spiritual values. In another lecture, titled: “Finding love dur-

ing the service year,” delivered by the Dean of the university’s School of Sciences, Prof. Ibiyinka Fuwape, the participants were told that it was with love that mankind could live together as one and in it that a nation could grow. Noting that love was selfless and long-lasting thing that could not be pigeonholed, she advised corps members to always love God and appreciate themselves because they are the image of God. She added that they should be interested in each other’s progress and encourage one another to fulfil

their dreams. She further advised them to be prayerful and be dedicated to God in the process of finding love as it was a home that would bring out the best in a nation. Earlier, the Director of the Centre, Dr. Moji Edema thanked the management of the university for its Interest in the centre at all times. She said the centre decided to take the capacity building workshop to the youth corps members so as to promote self-development and make them realise their great potentials.

UNIPORT alumni to donate N850m to alma mater CHIDI UGWU ABUJA

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he President, University of Port Harcourt Alumni Association, Hon. Ike Chinwo has said the body was planning to construct a state- of –theart complex as part of its social responsibility to its alma mater. The proposed centre which is estimated to cost N850 million, already has an approved plan design, just as he said that the building would house digitalised Examination and Record facilities. He also disclosed that the body would establish research funds, as well as provide other facilities necessary for learning such as laboratories and classrooms for the school. Chinwo thus called on corporate organisations, as well as wealthy individuals who graduated from the institution to give back in making their alma mater great again. Amb. Godknows Igali, Permanent Secretary, Power while receiving the

delegation extolled the virtues which UNIPORT had implanted in its alumni, adding that he was inclined to support positives initiatives of the body, as alumni associations are viable instruments in the filling of infrastructural gap and leadership quest of their institutions. He therefore called on UNIPORT Alumni Association to work assiduously towards ensuring that the institution enjoys uninterrupted academic calendar as a crisis-free citadel of learning. While commending the officers of the association for their doggedness, he said they had shown passion in all that concerns the university since their coming on board. He added that he would continue to identify with the programmes and activities of the association, just as he said the development of the institution was key to the sustenance of the high rating as a foremost second generation university in the country.

Cross section of members of Christian Union, Lagos State University (LASU), Ojo, during an outdoor performance, recently.

Centre plans exhibition in FEDPOFFA

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he Entrepreneurship Centre of the Federal Polytechnic, Offa, Kwara State has identified some projects to be embarked upon in collaboration with relevant academic and nonacademic departments as part of efforts to properly groom students in entrepreneurship training. The centre’s Director, Mr. Kamaldeen Arowomole stated this during a

chart with the media stating further that the centre is also planning an entrepreneurship week celebration aimed at providing avenue for students and departments to showcase their products. Some of the projects lined up in the pilot scheme by the centre include block making, automobile diagnostics as well as agro-allied industrial products.

He added that the management of the polytechnic had been intimated of the initiative and that the centre had also requested from the management a piece of land for cultivation. The director, who said he would make sure that the centre boosts the internally generated revenue of the polytechnic through introduction of various unique ideas and

programmes, also advised members of the institution to come up with initiatives that could help the centre. He further explained that skill learning and entrepreneurship training is a potent weapon to fight the high rate of unemployment in the country and that the polytechnic has been trying to ensure that its graduates are employment creators.

FEEDBACK

YAKUBU TAJUDEEN

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ducation is obviously the most powerful weapon that can be used to change the world, says the great freedom fighter and legend, Dr Nelson Mandela. But how far have we as a people and nation strived to promote quality and affordable educa-

Education and development in Nigeria

tion as a means of changing our great country Nigeria for better? Before now, Nigeria’s education system was rated among the best in Africa. Then, few schools were in existence. The governments at all levels also lived up to expectations in funding and promotion of good and qualitative education to the benefit of many Nigerians.

Many of them had occupied high public offices and some are also still in position of authorities. But it is absurd that some have looted public treasuries and use their ill-gotten wealth to establish schools here and there using proxies to run those schools. In the face of these, the standard of education has continued to fall

as mass failure characterised the performances of secondary school students in external examinations and so on year -in year- out. John F. Kennedy, an American former president once says, “Upon the education of the people of a country, the fate of the country depends.”

Yet, most public tertiary institutions in the country are left in ruin. They have no adequate facilities to make teaching and learning friendly. Many of them are also without qualified lecturers. Yet, the country budgetary allocation for the sector keeps increasing without tangible results to show for it. Yakubu is a student of the Federal Polytechnic, Ado Ekiti


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Thursday, August 29, 2013

“BEFORE now, many Nigerians have (had) loudly condemned early marriage.” “…live in deplorable and heart renting (heart-rending) health conditions.” “Repackaging teachers (teachers’) training curriculum (4)” “I congratulate the NUC for (on/upon) the courage to extend the….” “Police foil robbery attempt” (Stv Morning Belt News, Monday, July 29). Since the robbery was foiled, it simply means there was an attempt! So, ‘foil robbery attempt’ is indicative of loose thinking. No dreaming: Police foil robbery THE NATION ON SUNDAY of July 28 disseminated Victorian (Old) English: “…as the love that binds the people together has gone with the wind.” News review: jettison ‘together’ to eliminate Elizabethan English (add together; join together; bind together; bend corner; pool resources together; extreme end; log of wood; electrocute to death; etc.) “…examines efforts to restore the lost love and peace in (to) the zone.” “The award is another testimony of (to) your sterling leadership qualities.” (Full-page congratulatory advertisement by the Ekiti State House of Assembly for His Excellency Dr. Kayode Fayemi, Governor, Ekiti State) “By going to IBB and OBJ in

‘Congratulation’ takes ‘on’/’upon’, never ‘for’ search of solution (a solution or solutions) to democratic challenges is indication (an indication) of how things have degenerated in the country.” “…on daily basis (a daily basis) it throws up millions of carbon in the atmosphere.” “Obesere raises alarm (the alarm) over impostors”

THERE ARE MANY CORRECT WORDS THAT YOU CANNOT FIND IN COMMON

DICTIONARIES, E.G. DUPER, FOOLER, UPLIFTMENT, CHEATER,

From my inbox Ebere, lest we forget, your socalled 60-year-old ‘uncle’, Kola Danisa, is an intellectual thug. And his linguistic problems are stereotypical: he is not well grounded in the grammaticality/ grammatology of the language; he does not read every day; he has no functional library, above all, he is unschooled, un-churched, unlettered, uneducated and uncultured. He wrote to me! “Check the word in the dictionary” (it is “look up the word in the dictionary”); “to look something up” means “to look for information in a dictionary or reference book, or by using computer, e.g. I looked the word up in the dictionary. He said “about 12 dictionaries” is wrong, adding that “sound editors do not approximate countable things”! Danisa, nothing could be further from the truth. There is no grammatical “rule” that prescribes or decrees that! It

FRAUDSTER, SCAMMER is correct to say or write: We have about 200 employees (Good Word Guide). The book is about 600 pages long (Glossary for College English). At the revival, about 300 souls were saved (Cassell’s German Dictionary). Besides, the other day, Danisa said “beehive of activity” was wrong. This is verbicide. “Hive” is shorthand for “beehive”. E.g. “But The Times” (London) did not go for “MS” nor would it condone “chairwoman” in place of “chairman” or Madam Chairman. “The Times” (London) was a beehive of activity – telephones ringing, typewriters clacking, and a lot of busy-looking people, each doing his own thing.” I repeat, “uplift” (noun and verb); “uplifting”, like “uplifted”, is an adjective; “uplifter” is also a noun. These words are listed in

World Book Dictionary (two volumes). Yes, “upliftment” is elongation for “uplift” (page 2299). The rule of the thumb is: You don’t assert what you do not know. “Witch-hunt” (circa 1885) is a noun; while “witch-hunting”, meaning “witch-hunt”, is a noun or an adjective. Note: “witch-hunting” is a correct word. Truth to tell, there are many correct words that you cannot find in common dictionaries, e.g. duper, fooler, upliftment, cheater, fraudster, scammer, conditionality, uplifter, etc. They are neologisms. Another note: “challenge” (challenges) is a euphemism for “disability (or disabilities) or problem “crisis” just as “social exclusion” is the latest euphemism for poverty. Therefore it is correct to say or write: The man is physically (or health) challenged. In conclusion, I agree with Thomas Babington Macaulay (1800 – 1859) when he opined: ‘Men are never so likely to settle a question rightly as when they discuss it freely’. Danisa is a sham, eogorrhoea, a verbal diarrhea! (Bayo Oguntunase, Ikorodu, Lagos, 08029442508). “Wordsworth is meant to teach, not abuse. It can teach better if it plays down on such words as ‘bunkum, foolishness, blunder’, etc., which can easily turn off a prospective learner. ‘Errors’ or

Lemo tasks governments on private schools TUNBOSUN OGUNDARE

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he Deputy Governor in charge of operations, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr. Tunde Lemo has called on governments at all levels in the country to provide enabling environment that would encourage wealthy Nigerians to invest their resources in the education sector, especially by establishing schools that would provide sound education to the citizens. Making the call recently in Lagos at the opening ceremony of the Lead Forte Gate College, Lekki, Lemo said government should, as a matter of necessity and urgency, device a mean to achieve the ‘laudable objective.’ He said it was only the

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coming in of private investors in the establishment of schools that are equipped with necessary facilities and personnel that the poor standard of education in the country could be addressed. He explained that even as school business is a social service and that government cannot do it all

alone, operators of private schools would need encouragement from the government. He described the establishment of Lead Forte Gate College by his wife, Yemi, as a sense of fulfillment for her passion in inculcating knowledge in the future leaders. In his remark, the

School Principal, Dr. Ben Greying, explained that the school was equipped with the state- of- arts facilities that would make learning and teaching friendly to both the students and their instructors. He stressed that the college was poised to produce leaders that would be competitive globally.

L-R: Principal, Lead Forte Gate College, Lekki, Lagos, Dr. Ben Greying; (2nd left) Managing Director, Mrs. Yemi Lemo and her husband and Deputy Governor in charge of Operations, Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr. Tunde Lemo, at the opening ceremony of the school, recently. With them are guests.

‘mistakes’ are more polite words to use in describing what is to be corrected. Psychology of Education teaches that the language/method of instruction matters a lot in learning. I believe Wordsworth has failed in this, but not Prof. Ebere Wabara. Thanks.” (Bassey Amana, Umuahia, 08036121293) My response: This column is for the exchange of ideas devoid of any didactic posturing or intellectual haughtiness and it does not abuse, but occasionally employs harsh words for incorrigible numskulls! Anyone interested in the correct use of the English language should be inclined to this unique marketplace, the methodology notwithstanding. ‘Error’, according to Dr. Adidi Uyo, has 19 synonyms—‘blunder’ is just one of them! On a lighter note, I am not yet a Prof. Constructive and well-researched reactions are welcome. However, a note of caution: inasmuch as I accept readers’ interventions, the privilege should not be abused by the use of foul language. Freedom goes with enormous responsibility and maturity. The essence of this column is to enrich our knowledge and application of this global tool of communication. Disclaimer: I do not share all the views of respondents especially when they are subjective—my duty is merely the provision of this free platform. Let wisdom prevail as uncouth reactions will no longer be published.

Ogun begins pupils’ enrolment in schools

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he Ogun State Ministry of Education, Science and Technology have advised parents and guardians to register their children and wards into primary one class under the Universal Basic Education (UBE) Programme for the next academic session. The State Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Mr. Segun Odubela, in a statement, said such registration should be made at the nearest school to them. Odubela in a statement issued by the press officer of the ministry, Mr. Kayode Oduyebo, directed Head Teachers of public primary schools across the state to ensure that the exercise which is free to all eligible six- year old children is hitch-free. The exercise, which commenced on Monday, August 19, is expected to end on Fri-

day, September 6, 2013. The commissioner advised members of the public to contact the zonal education officer nearer to them for further confirmation. It would be recalled that the State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) had as part of preparation for the commencement of the 2013/2014 session embarked on massive construction of blocks of classroom in selected junior secondary and primary schools in the three geopolitical zones of the state before the end of 2012/2013 academic session. Speaking at the commissioning of one of the projects, Mr. Odubela said the state government would not relent on its efforts towards ensuring the delivery of free but qualitative education to all children of school age in the state.


Thursday, August 29, 2013

120 youths for U-17 b’ball tourney in Lagos 30

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he Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) yesterday dashed Emmanuel Emenike’s hope of competing in the Europa League, Europe’s second tier club competition. Emenike and his compatriot, Joseph Yobo, and their Turkish club, Fenerbahce, had looked forward to playing in the Europa League, after they were dumped 5-0 (aggregate) by Arsenal, who on Tuesday night completed their routing in the Champions League play-offs with a 2-0 beating at the Emirates Stadium in London. Fenerbahce had an appeal pending at the CAS in Zurich, Switzerland over their match-fixing ban by the UEFA who suspended them for two seasons from participating in UEFA competitions. In a statement to National Mirror, CAS said after hearings on August 21 and 22 in Zurich, it delayed its ruling to allow Fenerbahce play the second leg of their match-up against Arsenal on Tuesday. “Pursuant to the UEFA decision, which is now confirmed by the CAS, Fenerbahce is excluded from two editions of the UEFA club competitions,” CAS said in the statement. Emenike and Fenerbahce were due to enter the Europa League after their elimination by the Gunners, but the CAS ruling now means they are barred.They have also been banned from next season’s Champions League qualifiers. UEFA had in June banned the Turkish champions for two years after

Sport

I will field any player who is as fit as he is also in tune with my focus towards success -Real Madrid Coach, Carlo Ancelotti

…Training begins for Japan friendlies

JOEL AJAYI ABUJA

...as Eagles’ striker goes down with Fenerbahce

EVEREST ONYEWUCHI

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Falcons’ coach, Okon, explains Dede’s drop

CAS dashes Emenike’s Europa League hope judging that club officials helped fix matches to win the 2011 Turkish league title. This is Fenerbahce’s second exclusion from European competition after they were withdrawn from the 2011-12 Champions League by the Turkish Football Federation while they were being investigated for match-fixing. They won the Turkish title in the previous season with a 4-3 win over Sivasspor in their last match, which was one of about a dozen games investigated by the Turkish Football Federation. In July 2012, 93 people, including club officials, coaches and players were charged in a civil trial which centred around the club’s league-winning run of 2011. Club chairman, Aziz Yildirim, was sentenced to six years in prison for fixing six matches, but was released from custody after launching an appeal. A UEFA statement yesterday, after the CAS upheld its ruling said, “The UEFA Emergency Panel will meet on Thursday (today) afternoon to decide on the consequences the confirmed exclusion of Fenerbahce SK from the 2013-14 UEFA club competitions will have on the UEFA Europa League.” Emenike returned to Turkey this summer from Spartak Moscow and joined Fenerbahce for 13million Euros, just two years he ran away from Karabukspor on unsubstantiated match-fixing allegation, ostensibly to compete in Europe’s elite club competitions that have now been aborted.

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

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uper Falcons yesterday resumed training at the FIFA Goal project pitch in Abuja ahead of twin friendly games with Japan’s senior national women team scheduled for September 22 and 26. No fewer than 24 players out of 40 invitees who have already reported to camp were part of their first training session at mid-day while the remaining 16 invited players were still expected as at press time. Speaking to National Mirror shortly after the training session, caretaker coach of the team, Edwin Okon, who explained why he invited only local-based players for the forthcoming encounters, particularly pointed out that his decision to keep aside first choice goalkeeper, Precious Dede, was to give room for the new invitees to develop in line with the mandate given him to rebuild the team. According to the former Falconets’ handler, “I want to build Super Falcons where we will not have to rely on one player or the other. There is no basis of talking about why we didn’t have foreign-based. I invited players based on the mandate I’m given which is to rebuild the senior national team. Be-

sides, the players who were invited are those I see at all times in our league. I don’t get to see those outside the country to access the level of their fitness. “Although, the foreign based are not out of my plans entirely, but we want to use these coming friendlies to start the rebuilding process. Most of the players who are already in camp are not new due to the fact that they have played at both U-17 and U-20 in the past. We don’t need to be disgraced when we confront Japan even though they are former world champions. I understand they have been in camp for months now, but that is not my concern.” The six times African champions have been without a coach since 2012 after Kadiri Ikhana quit following the team’s woeful performance at the African Women Championship (AWC) in 2012 when they finished fourth.

Okon

Fear no foes, Glo charges Eaglets

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E Emenike in Spartak Moscow’s colour before signing for Fe Fenerbahce

ajor sponsor of Nigerian National teams, Globacom, has charged the U-17 team, Golden Eaglets, to be courageous and entertain no fear in their group at the forthcoming FIFA U-17 World Cup holding in the United Arab Emirates. The team is grouped alongside current champions, Mexico, Iraq and Sweden in Group F in the championship. “Be brave! Go there and fight gallantly. We believe that none of the

countries in the championship can beat you; so be courageous as you file into the field in October to play for your fatherland,” Globacom encouraged the boys in a statement released in Lagos on Tuesday. The statement noted that Golden Eaglets can win the cup if the Manu Garba-led coaching crew can put out the right strategy for the games. “We have done it before and Globacom believe Nigeria can do it again,” the statement said.


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Sport

Thursday, ay, August 29, 2013

Willain

National Mir Mirror rror ro ro or r www.nationalmirroronline.net www.nationalmirroronline ine iin ne n e..ne .n ne n et et

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AVB confirm Bale move

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Willain makes Blues switch

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helsea has completed the signing of Brazil forward Willian from Russian club Anzhi Makhachkala for a fee thought to be in the region of £25.5m. The 25-year-old, who was poised to join Tottenham until Chelsea intervened last week, has been granted a work permit and has signed a five-year contract and will wear the number 22 shirt. “I’m very happy to be here. It’s been a dream of mine to come and play here,” Willain said. “Chelsea isone of the best clubs in the world, and now I’m going to play

for one of the best managers in the world, so I’m very happy and looking forward to it.” Willian had initially held talks with Liverpool over a move to the Premier League after Anzhi’s owner, Suleyman Kerimov, decided to slash the club’s wage bill. However, he then looked to have chosen Spurs over a move to Merseyside and flew into London for talks and a medical. But it emerged late last week that Chelsea had hijacked the deal to bring the player to Stamford Bridge.

Ozil opts for Madrid

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eal Madrid midfielder, Mesut Ozil, who has been linked with a move to Arsenal and Manchester United, yesterday announced he will be staying at the Bernabeu. Rumours of a move were fuelled at the weekend when Ozil stormed down the tunnel after being substituted during Real’s 1-0 win at Granada, but the 24-year-old says he will be staying in Spain. “I have a contract until 2016, I feel very good here and get on well with my teammates. For me it’s an honour to play here with this team,” the

Germany international said. Ozil had reportedly been unsettled by the arrival of Isco and Real’s potential purchase of Gareth Bale which would leave his place in the side in doubt. But the former Werder Bremen player says he understands the role that new coach Carlo Ancelotti wants him to play this season. “I have the confidence of the coach and there is a series of objectives that we want to achieve in which everyone has their own role to play. This is one of the reasons I want to stay,” he added.

ottenham Manager, And las-Boas, has confirmed Gareth Bale is close to s a world record move to Real Ma Bale, 24, has been linked w switch to Real throughout the s fer f window after a spectacular s in i the Premier League, whic the t winger net 26 goals in all co tions. t The Wales international n nally appears set to secure his n awaited switch to the Bernabeu a Villas-Boas confirmed that th V clubs are in advanced talks o c transfer that will break the wo t cord. c “At the moment the two clu speaking. I’m not sure how s time it is going to take. It can h t very soon, it might not happ v soon,” the Tottenham boss said s “I suppose it could go to the la or o it could happen in next two But B you wouldn’t expect the b transfer in world football to h t easily .” e Despite admitting that Bale i to t a big-money move to the Sp capital, Villas-Boas suggested th c Welshman could be fined over h W ure u to turn up to training this w “The fact that he hasn’t turn I don’t know if it is the correct b iour, in the end it is pressure i statement from the player. Now s up u to the club to decide if it is able a offence,” he added. The transfer fee is anticipa smash the existing world reco s by b Real Madrid in 2009 when paid Manchester United €92m p for f the services of Cristiano Ro

Toon Army lures Ba

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eports yesterday said Newcastle United is interested in bringing Demba Ba back to St James’ Park before the transfer window closes. The Senegal striker only left Tyneside in January, joining Chelsea on a three-year deal after the Blues activated a £7m release clause in his contract. Ba has made just the one appearance in the Premier League this season in the 2-1 win against Aston Villa. With Romelu Lukaku’s return from his loan spell at West Brom, Ba has come under pres-

sure at Stamford Bridge, although he insisted in July that the extra competition would make him “play better”. Last season, the 28-year-old scored six goals in 22 games as the club secured a thirdplace finish in the Premier League. Newcastle is also understood to have reopened talks with Lyon over the potential signing of France striker Bafetimbi Gomis. The Magpies have brought in Loic Remy on loan from QPR already this summer but he remains their only summer recruit to date. Bale

B

Ozil

...He will flop –Stoichkov

arcelona legend, Hristo Stoichkov, has criticised Real Madrid’s world record push for Tottenham Hotspur winger Gareth Bale. Stoichkov believes Real Madrid has paid “way over the odds” for the Tottenham winger. “If Bale is worth 100m, I would have been priceless,” Stoichkov said. The Bulgarian has also hit out at Bale himself after the Welshman refused to turn up for Tottenham training on Tuesday and Wednesday. “Bale has shown a lack of respect toward his Tottenham team-mates by not showing up for training,” the former Barca hero further said. He also questioned the success rate of players from the

Premier League in Spanish ball. “No Englishman who cam Spanish football has ever ceeded,” Stoichkov contende

Stoichkov


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Sport

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Lagos Classics: Assar, Oshonaike exit mixed doubles

Tit bits...

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Barcelona midfielder, Cesc Fabregas, says it is his dream to stay at the club, saying he was never interested in joining Manchester United as widely speculated. The Premier League champion has been chasing the 26-year-old Spain international for much of the transfer window and is believed to have had several bids turned down in the attempts to prize him away from the Camp Nou.

Mata Chelsea Manager, Jose Mourinho, has insisted that midfielder Juan Mata will not be leaving the club despite speculation surrounding his future. Mata, who was left on the bench for Chelsea’s 0-0 draw with Manchester United at Old Trafford on Monday, has featured just one in their three Premier League games so far this season.

Di Maria

Real Madrid winger, Angel di Maria, has reiterated his desire to remain with the club, despite renewed reports linking him with a move away. Di Maria, 25, is believed to be a transfer target of both Arsenal and Turkish Super Lig club Galatasaray, with his future in the Spanish capital having been placed under the spotlight by the impending arrival of Tottenham’s Gareth Bale. Arsenal is also understood to be in the quest for the Argentina international.

Tevez

Juventus striker, Carlos Tevez, has suggested that he would have been open to joining AC Milan this summer, but the San Siro side was unable to meet Manchester City’s asking price prior to his move to Turin. However, a move to Milan never materialized and Tevez eventually joined Juventus for a fee in the region of 10 million euros, a figure which the Argentine claims the Massimiliano Allegri’s side was unwilling to meet.

Kompany Manchester City captain, Vincent Kompany, is keen to ensure that his spell on the sidelines is a brief one following his latest injury blow. The Belgium international missed the 3-2 defeat to Cardiff City last Sunday after suffering a groin strain in the 4-0 win over Newcastle United on the opening weekend of the new Premier League season, is confident that he can make a quick recovery.

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YEMI OLUS

F Bolt reiterates legend pursuit

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he fastest man on earth, Usain Bolt, yesterday visited FIFA Headquarters in Zurich, where he fielded questions from fans on Twitter and Facebook. Bolt is set to compete in the IAAF Diamond League today at the Letzigrund Stadium. The Jamaican, who is a huge football fan who has often flirted with the idea of playing professionally after he retires from the track, was greeted by FIFA President Joseph Blatter and Fuleco, the official mascot for the next FIFA World Cup. Blatter handed Bolt a FIFA No 9 shirt and personally invited him to Brazil 2014. “For years, he has dominated speed events,” Blatter said. “I’m very proud that this great gentleman is here today. He also showed again recently that the 4x100m is very important to him, which proves that he is a team player, just like in football.” Bolt, who was pleased to visit the Home of FIFA for the first time, said: “For me, it’s an honour to be here today. I follow football and today I saw the World Cup Trophy for the first time.” During the press conference, Bolt took time to answer questions from FIFA Facebook users, like Kevon Gordon from Montego Bay in Jamaica, who asked the six- time Olympic gold medallist which team he is tipping to win the FIFA World Cup.

“I’ve been watching a few matches this year and I’m impressed by Brazil,” he responded. “They have a young team and can win it at home. A lot of teams have figured out how to win against Spain,” he added. Bolt would love to see Jamaica at Brazil 2014, but his home nation is currently propping up the six-team group in the final round of North, Central America and Caribbean Zone qualifying. “I’ve been watching Jamaican football a lot over the past years”, he further said. “There is a lot of talent in Jamaica, natural talent just like in athletics. It’s important to try to teach them skills though. Football is more difficult and it takes a lot more time to develop than in athletics, but if we are getting the young guys and teaching them properly, it would be great.” FIFA has invited the IAAF Diamond League organisers to hold its pre-meeting press conference, in which the eight-time world champion in 100m, 200m and relay will partake, in the auditorium of the Home of FIFA, where all the football governing body’s important media events invariably take place. “I would like to become a legend,” Bolt, who is already an alltime great in his sport, said at the forum. “I want to be like Pele, Maradona, Muhammad Ali and Michael Johnson.”

ive-time Olympian, Funke Oshonaike, and Egypt’s Omar Assar yesterday lost out in the mixed doubles of the Lagos International Table Tennis Classics which served off at the Molade Okoya-Thomas Indoor Sports Hall of Teslim Balogun Stadium. The pair, seeded number one in the event, lost 2-11, 118, 12-10, 12-10 to the Nigerian duo of Olaide Atinuke and Seun Ajetunmobi. The knockout matches will smash off today as all seeded players made it to the stage. The two upsets recorded in the group matches were recorded by Nigeria’s Sola Oyetayo and Bose Odusanya, who both defeated seeded players like Mihai Bobocica and Rashidat Ogundele. Despite losing a match each, Bobocica and Ogundele progressed to the next stage of the tournament. In the group matches, each player played three matches with the top two players in each group progressing to the round of 32 in the men’s singles, while the top two players in the women’s singles advancing to the round of 16. The men’s singles had 16 groups while the women’s singles had eight groups. The players that advanced to the knockout stage in the women’s singles are dominated by Nigerian players while Congo Brazzaville duo of Han Xing and Onyiyechi Nwachukwu as well as Congo DRC’s Ammadine Litobaka also booked their places in the round of 16. Oshonaike led the Nigerian women in the singles to this knockout stage. Others are Halimat Hussain, Itoro Akpan, Ganiyat Olatunde,

Akide’s Play2Learn gets Campos date AFOLABI GAMBARI

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ampos Square Stadium, Lagos will host the Play2Learn screening organised by former Super Falcons striker, Mercy Akide-Udoh, on September 2 and 3. According to Akide-Udoh, the programme is geared towards identifying and recommending talented young girls for football scholarships to the USA. “We want give talented young girls from poor homes a chance to exploit their potential to improve their lives and then return home

to help their families and others too,” the former Nigeria international explained yesterday. “At the moment, we have 10 scholarships places available and we hope that as many girls as possible will come out and try to earn the spots,” she added. Akide-Udoh commended the Lagos State government for granting her free use of the Campos Square for the two-day exercise. “I want to thank the Commissioner for Sports, Mr. Enitan Oshodi, for his assistance,” she further said. Akide Udoh, who is the first

ever player to be named African Woman Player of the Year, is also the first African woman to play professional football at USA side San Diego Spirit, as well as being the first African Player to be named in FIFA All Star XI, first African to be nominated for FIFA World Player of the Year and first ever African Women Championship (AWC) top scorer. She is also the record African goal scorer with 49 goals for Milligan College, TN, two-time NAIA All American and is a multiple AWC MVP awards, USL W-League MVP 2003 and USL WLeague champion 2003.

Cecilia Otu-Akpan, Janet Effiom, Taiwo Williams, Ganiyat Ogundele, Olaide Atinuke, Rashidat Ogundele and Tolu Durosimi-Etti. Egypt’s Assar also led the men’s top seeds to the knockout stage where Italy’s Bobocia, as well as Nigeria’s representatives Segun Toriola, Aruna Quadri, Seun Ajetunmobi, Ojo Onaolapo, Kayode Adedeji and Sola Oyetayo will play in the round of 32.

WADA de-lists Rio Janeira’s lab

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he World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has revoked the accreditation of the LAB DOP-LADETEC / IQ–UFRJ Doping Control Laboratory (LADETEC) in Rio de Janeiro, due to noncompliance with the international standards. WADA said in its official website yesterday that the revocation would take effect from September 25. The body added that the laboratory, which was currently suspended, would not be authorised to carry out doping control testing on behalf of WADA or any testing authority. I n the meantime, the suspension remained applicable and LADETEC was therefore ineligible to perform analysis of doping control samples for any testing authority. The decision was taken by WADA’s Executive Committee following a review of the status of the laboratory by WADA’s Disciplinary Panel. WADA had suspended the Rio laboratory accreditation on Aug. 8 before a decision on revocation was taken by the Executive Committee. The body noted that LADETEC might appeal the decision at the Court of Arbitration for Sport within 21 days. ``It may also choose to reapply for accreditation, and can seek `fast track’ process from the Executive Committee’’. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the decision made by WADA’s Executive Committee to mark the second time that the Rio laboratory will fall below the required standards set by WADA. The laboratory was also suspended for nine months in Jan. 2012, before being reinstated following a WADA site visit that ensured that proper corrective actions had been implemented.


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Sport

Thursday, August 29, 2013

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

US Open 2013…

Federer clicks into gear with win over Zemlja

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hen Roger Federer is serving well and his forehand clicks, he is as irresistible now at 32 as he ever was in his glory years. He showed that last week in Cincinnati when he gave Rafael Nadal one of his few serious frights since the one the Spaniard suffered at Wimbledon and, apart from briefly suffering through impatience towards the end, he showed it on day two of the US Open against a markedly lesser opponent, the 62ndranked Grega Zemlja. The Slovenian did well to last an hour and 33 minutes with the Swiss on the main Arthur Ashe stadium, in a match held over from a rain-hit Monday evening. Federer, desperate to make a point with those critics

Federer Djokovic

who have written him off as a major contender since his recent fall to No7 in the world, was superb in winning 6-3, 6-2, 7-5 to remain on track for a 32nd encounter with Nadal in the quarter-finals. He will be comforted by his impressive stats: 85% of points won on his first serve, with 12 aces, backed up by 35 clean winners, the last of them a forehand volley to wrap it up. Federer, who has won this title five times, rushed through the first set in under half an hour, the first four games whizzing by in 11 minutes. The set had gone before most fans had tried the popcorn. Ditto in the second … and then a break for Zemlja in the eighth game of the third to level, briefly. For Jerzy Janowicz, his first match al also went by in a blur – and defeat. The Pole ro rose dramatically from the sort of obscure bac backwaters that Dan Evans has been treadin treading to take a set off Andy Murray in the 2013 20 Wimbledon semi-finals but on Tuesday lost lo in three sets to the Argentinian qualifier qualifi Máximo González. It was the second shock of the tournatourn ment, not quite as big as Evans’s first-day first-d win over 11th seed Kei Nishikori but unexune pected nonetheless. Janowicz, seeded 14, hit h 53 unforced errors, an appalling statistic in hours, a match lasting two-and-a-quarter hour trouble perhaps explained by the back troub solid he was having. González was sol in the 6-4, 6-4, 66-2 win.

Djokovic cruises past Berankis

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orld No 1 Novak Djokovic eased into the second round of the US Open with an efficient 6-1, 6-2, 6-2 victory over Lithuania’s Ricardas Berankis at Arthur Ashe Stadium. The Serbian, last year’s beaten finalist, was not at his absolute best. Berankis created eight breakpoint opportunities but nevertheless had far too much for his 23-year-old opponent, seeing him off in an hour and 22 minutes. Berankis gave the crowd hope they may see a contest by producing a cross-court pass to take the first point of the

N

match, but Djokovic asserted his authority to hold, then broke immediately and ominously. Berankis was on the brink in his next service game too, but saved a break point via a Hawkeye challenge on a backhand down the line and held to get on the board. Djokovic broke again in game six though and, despite facing a couple of break points himself, he served out the set. Djokovic has had a challenging few months, losing a number of big matches. In the build-up events he lost close matches to Rafael Nadal and John

o fewer than 120 boys and girls from 12 different basketball academies yesterday emerged after a screening exercise to take part in the U-17 Lagos State Grassroots Basketball Championships. The Technical Director, Lagos State Basketball Association (LSBBA), Gbade Olatona, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that the competition was in preparation for the National Youth Games, scheduled to run from December 5 to December 15 in Abuja. He said that the 3-day competi-

Isner, so the top seed d was delighted to put on such uch a convincing display. He said: “I was just very happy with the concentration because I didn’t play so well in Montreal and Cincinnati in the warm-up tournaments for the US Open. I had 10 days to really give everything I can on the practice courts. I was very committed and put 100 per cent into my preparations. “It’s starting to pay off. Of course, the first match was as good as it could be. Now I need to continue on working and stay on this course.”

Watson falls at first hurdle

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eather Watson came within touching distance of an unlikely victory in the US Open first round before falling short of emulating fellow Brits Laura Robson and Dan Evans and making the second round. The 21 year-old Channel Islander battled hard against Romania’s world number 19 Simona Halep before going down 4-6, 6-4, 6-2, in a match which, realistically, she was never expected to win. Halep, who took the title in last week’s WTA Tour event in New Haven to reach a career high ranking, was in deep trouble at 4-4 in the second set with Watson 40-0 up on serve. But the British number two lost the next five points to turn that into a break of serve, and once the favourite managed to edgily serve the set she found the confidence you

would associate with her recent form. Watson, under the temporary coaching charge of Jeremy Bates, up to that point had strictly followed his instructions to play aggressively and clearly took her opponent by surprise. She got off to the brighter start but her early 2-0 advantage was quickly pegged back. After breaking again she failed to serve the first set out at 5-3 but then broke in the next game as dusk began to fall. With numbing predictability Halep then took a tactical toilet break, but still showed frustration when she failed to pull away early in the second, angrily throwing her racket towards the chair. When Watson broke back for 3-3 the momentum seemed to be with her, but that ninth game, when she became a little tentative, proved decisive.

120 youths for U-17 b’ball tourney in Lagos tion would end on Aug. 30 with a coaching course for the basketball academy coaches at the Mobolaji Sports Complex, Yaba. “We are organising a tournament for our basketball academies that have been training since July, especially those still within the U-17 bracket. “These players will once again have a chance to showcase their talents and a chance to be seen by our technical crew, expected to take note of them.

“The essence of the tournament was to build in our players, a competitive mind-set and also make them to vie for jerseys during the final selection for the youth Games,” Olatona said. Olatona also told NAN that there would be a coaching course for the academy coaches, whose players had featured in the competition. ``We will have Prof. Omo Osagie, a Sports Consultant and a Technocrat during the game, to come and

oversee the training by the grassroots coaches. ``We need to update our grassroots coaches with new techniques and skills in the game,’’ Olatona said. The academies to feature at the competition are: the Zion, Deep Bond, Dell, Adopt A Talent, 43 Nigeria, Deepbond A, Warlord, Rookies and Deepbond B for boys. The girls’ academies are: the Del, Deepbond, Hope 4 girls and Rookies.

NBBF boss, Umar


Thursday, August 29, 2013

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

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Business & Finance The MoU encourages the Nigerian Air Force to provide tactical air support for sea-based operations against illicit operations of ships. The recent success of the anti-piracy operations involving the agency, the Nigerian Navy and the Nigerian Air Force has given an impetus to this agreement.”

Director-General, Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, Mr. Ziakede Akpobolokemi

The value chains are to create an enabling environment for increased and sustainable production of over one million tonnes of fish within the next four years, generate employment and pursue gradual reduction of fish imports. MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT, DR. AKINWUMI ADESINA,

Phone users insist on N602bn compensation for poor services KUNLE AZEEZ

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elecoms services subscribers under the auspices of the National Association of Telecoms Subscribers, NATCOMS, has insisted on its demand that telecoms firms compensate subscribers with about N602 billion worth of airtime credit for poor services. The association, had, earlier this month petitioned the Association of Licensed Telecoms Operators, ALTON, the umbrella body of the mobile operators and the Nigerian Communications Commission over the poor quality of services experienced by the subscribers and the need for the operators to compensate their subscribers. In the petition, NATCOMS demanded that telecoms operators pay N5,000 to each telecoms services subscriber in the country as a way of compensating them for the poor quality of services Nigerians had been made to experience in recent past. National Mirror learnt that with the N5,000 worth of credit demand per each of the 120.3 million active telephone users in the country, operators are being requested to pay N602 billion worth

of credit to telecoms consumers. But telecoms operators and the NCC have shown in their body language that they were not taking the rights group seriously as they seem to have shunned NATCOMS’ demand. However, President of the association, Chief Deolu Ogunbanjo, on Tuesday said the consumer advocacy body was serious about the demand, giving telecoms firms a two-day ultimatum to respond the consumers’ demand. Meanwhile, it was gathered that the renewed insistence by NATCOMS is coming on the

heels of compensation package announced by MTN Ghana to be paid to its subscribers on some shortcomings in service delivery such poor quality of service, drop calls, billing errors, among others. Ogunbanjo, regretted that the petition of his group through ALTON may have been ignored as there was no reply from the concerned mobile network operators or ALTON, which serves as the umbrella organisation for them. In addition, NATCOMS lamented the non-commencement of action by NCC or even by the Ministry of Communication

Arik Air

Technology. According to Ogunbanjo, NATCOMS is not relenting, but still expecting reply on its request from all the concerned organisations and agencies of government. Referring to the situation in Ghana, where he said consumer rights is taken more seriously, Ogunbanjo said: “MTN Ghana, the country’s largest mobile operator in terms of subscribers, has announced that it will offer a percentage of its service charge to compensate subscribers affected by recent network disruptions.

ABUJA

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he Accountant General of the Federation, AGF, Mr. Jonah Otunla, yesterday said about N120billion had been saved by the Federal Government from shady personnel claims in the past year. He attributed the savings to the

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L-R: Marketing Manager, Lager (Star, Goldberg), Nigerian Breweries, Mr. Tokunbo Adodo; Marketing Director, Nigerian Breweries, Mr. Walter Drenth and Corporate Media and Brand PR Manager, Mr. Edem Vinda, during a media briefing on Star’s Win and Shine promo in Lagos, yesterday. PHOTO: OLUFEMI AJASA

FG saves N120bn on fraudulent personnel claims – AGF TOLA AKINMUTIMI

Lag-Abj:07.15, 09.15, 10.20, 13.05, 15.20, 16.20, 16.50,18.45 (Mon-Fri/Sat/Sun). Abj-Lag: 07:15, 09.40,10.20, 12.15, 15.15, 16.15,17:10, (Mon-Fri/Sat/Sun); 12.15, 15.15, 16.15 (Sun)Lag-PH: 07:15, 11.40, 14.00, 16.10, 17.15 (Mon-Fri) 07.30, 11.40, 15.50 (Sat) 11.50, 3.50, 17.05 Sun) Abj-PH: 07.15, 11.20, 15.30 (Mon-Fri) 07.15, 16.00 (Sat) 13.10, 16.00 Sun) PH-Abj: 08.45, 12.50, 17.00 (Mon-Fri) 08.45, 17.30 (Sat) 14.40, 17.30 (Sun) AbvBeni:08.00, 12.10 (Mon-Fri/ Sat)08.56, 12.10(Sun)

continued operations of the Integrated Payroll & Personnel Information System, IPPIS, from April 2007 to date which helped in fishing out ghost workers in the public service, adding that “excess personnel cost discovered to have been channeled to non-personnel sub-heads by Ministries, Departments and Agencies, MDAs, but returned at the instance of the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation.” Otunla made the disclosure during his presentation on the Peer Review Mechanism during the visit

of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation and the Peer Review Team of Permanent Secretaries to the Office of the Accountant General explained further that “from April 2007 when the scheme commenced to date, 246 MDAs were enrolled with a total number of 250,000 staff and over N120billion cumulatively saved as a result of the difference between the amount government would have released to the MDAs based on appropriation and actual amount released and paid through IPPIS.” On the role of the Govern-

LG sells 8 phone models illegally in Nigeria, says NCC

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ment Integrated Financial Management Information System (GIFMIS), in managing public sector finance, Otunla said, GIFMIS had helped government increase the ability to undertake central control and monitoring of expenditures and receipts in the MDAs; facilitate access to information on financial and operational performance; improve internal controls to prevent and detect potential and actual fraud; strengthen governance and accountability, through efficient and effective service delivery.

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

Seeking increased role for states in ICT development

Devising growth for wine, spirit market

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Thursday, August 29, 2013

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

LG sells 8 phone models illegally in Nigeria, says NCC KUNLE A ZEEZ

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obile devices manufacturer, LG Electronics, has been selling a total of eight handsets models illegally in Nigeria without necessary approvals, the Nigerian Communications Commission has said. The telecoms industry umpire, in its second quarter enforcement summary, obtained by National Mirror yesterday, said the non type-approved handsets belonging to LG were identified in the market by its enforcement team. The phone brands include LG Optimus 3D-P920; LG Optimus Black-P970; LG. Optimus Net Dual SIM- P698; LG Optimus proc660; LG. Optimus One-P500; LG. Optimus ME-P350; LG. Optimus

L3-E400 and LG. Optimus L7P700. The NCC said “Necessary enforcement process has commenced and a notice of NonCompliance has been sent (to LG) in line with Section 133 of the NCA 2003 and Section 9 (a) of the Commission’s Type Approval Regulation 2008.” The NCC, through its enforcement team, has always waged war against illegal sales of non type-approved phones in the country. Last year, the commission embarked on a showdown with the phone manufacturers and dealers trading in phones that are not approved by the Commission with a view to sanitising the market and making the phone companies respect statutory provisions. Speaking on the illegal phone sales in the country, the Head of

Head of Enforcement Unit, NCC, Mr. Efosa Idehen, warned companies from selling uncertified phones in the country. Idehen said that the commission had always instructed the distributors of phones to sell only approved products. ”We advise them to bring their phones for type-approval. If they pass the test, then, they can be allowed to sell in the Nigerian market. We want Nigerians to obey Nigerian laws; there are laws guiding the sale of telecommunications equipment. “Whether smaller or big manufacturers, we expect them to submit their phones for typeapproval and Techno should not be an exception. We want the Nigerian market to grow, but it must grow through obeying the rules of the industry,” he said.

However, when National Mirror contacted the image-making consultancy firm to LG in Nigeria, Silver Bullet PR, for necessary links to speak with the LG officials, the

Public Relations agency, in spite of repeated reminders, promised to make LG official contacts available but did not do so as at press time yesterday.

Association raises alarm over influx of fake Asian tomato paste MESHACK IDEHEN

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he Executive Secretary of the Tomato Processors Association of Nigeria (TPAN), Mr. Dan Lekettey, said the spate of importation of adulterated tomato sauce in the name of tomato paste is becoming a source of grave concern to the association. In a statement on Wednesday, Lekettey said the trend has been heightened by the challenge of improper categorisation of the different types of tomato content imported into Nigeria, adding as things are, that Nigeria has been turned into a dumping ground for fake and low quality Asian tomato paste, He said the tools and techniques required to properly qualify before certifying these products are currently not be-

ing used, hence, imported tomato sold in Nigeria is more than 50 per cent cheaper than what it is being sold in their countries of origin. According to him,” This is a big question that manufacturers and regulatory authorities must answer. For example, 210 grams of supposed 100 per cent tomato paste of 285 brix is sold at between 1.1 euro and 1.8 euro in Europe while the same content is sold in Nigeria at N80. “The international standard is 28 per cent brix for canning and between 34-36 per cent brix for drumming. Majority of tomato paste imported however doesn’t exceed 26 per cent brix, resulting in watery paste. Unpatriotic marketers conniving with dubious foreign processors haul in tomato paste treated with food colour additives to achieve the deep red colour.

ACCA is building IFRS-compliant professionals – CEO L-R: Chief Operating Officer, Brimass, Mr. Stephen Ojji; Leadership expert and business coach, Mr. Brian Tracy; Head, Business Segment, Etisalat Nigeria, Mr. Bidemi Ladipo and Head, High Value Event and Sponsorship, Ms. Ebi Atawodi, at The Remarkable Leaders’ Conclave and Seminar Tour with Brian Tracy in Lagos recently.

Due process, paucity of funds slow down developments in aviation –Dati OLUSEGUN KOIKI

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he insistence of strict adherence to Due Process by the Federal Government and paucity of funds at the disposal of the Ministry of Aviation have been identified major reasons why development is slow in the Nigerian Aviation industry. He, however, said that Due Process will ensure accountability in the system. These were the views of the General Manager, Corporate Communications, Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, FAAN, Mr. Yakubu Dati in an interview with National Mirror at the headquarters of the agency yesterday. This is just as the ministry plans to ensure total perimeter fences at all the nation’s airports very soon. According to Dati, lack of developments in the sector by previous governments and ministers led to the huge in-

frastructural decays at the airports, but noted that since the current minister of aviation, Princess Stella Oduah came onboard in 2011, efforts are daily being made to grow the sector, which he said has received international attention. He agreed that there are several projects still needed to be done for the country’s aviation industry to be counted among the best in the world, but assured that with the current master plan evolved by Oduah, and being followed to the letter by all the agencies, the Nigerian aviation industry would continue to grow. He said, “I want you to know that aviation as a sector has some constraints. First, we need to make sure that before we commence any project, such passes through Due Process, which I think is very good as it will ensure accountability. Also, there is paucity of funds. There is so much that is being

done and there is so much that still needs to be done, but until we follow a plan and carry them step by step, we will not be able to achieve that.” On the absence of perimeter fences at major airports in the country, Dati explained that the government is on the verge of ensuring that all the airports in the country are well fenced to further boost safety within the airports. He noted that at the beginning of the many projects in the sector, the ministry focused on safety and infrastructural developments in the sector, which he said had improved from what it used to be in the past. Parts of the improvements according to him, is the ongoing remodeling of 22 airports simultaneously by the ministry, adding that safety equipment have also been installed in several airports under the supervision of the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency, NAMA, which he said reduced travel time between Lagos and Abuja by 10 minutes.

KUNLE AZEEZ

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he Global Chief Executive Officer of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants ACCA, Ms Helen Brand, has expressed commitment to continue building finance professionals who are knowledge-compliant with the International Financial Reporting Standard, IFRS. With over 500, 000 professional members and students in 170 countries bringing with them a multiple of socio-economic, ethnic and cultural experiences, ACCA said it would continue to ensure the maximisation of the finance function, as a body which qualifies finance professionals. Speaking at the Women in Finance Conference organised in Lagos, Brand said, “Though the IFRS was being enforced recently, ACCA has started training its students and financial professional in the reporting standards since early 1990s.” Brand, who stated that the level of compliance with the IFRS guidelines was still very low in Nigeria, urged orgainsations both private and public to ensure maximum compliance, even as she said all ACCA- certified finance professionals have

requisite knowledge to function as IFRS finance experts. Speaking on the event mainly attended by women finance professionals to with the ACCA Global CEO to brainstorm on the barriers faced by women in the corporate world and proffer possible solutions on how to overcome them, Brand said there was need for female finance professionals to be committed towards holding the most senior positions in their orgainsations. She, however, lamented that in spite of having 45 per cent of ACCA members and half its student intake female, women account for only 25 per cent of the most senior posts held in finance. “So, there is a great deal of work to enable the thousands of young women entering the accountancy profession to fulfill their potential and meet their aspirations,” she said. She stressed the need for businesses to embrace diversity, especially with regard to malefemale gender equality at work place and to give women finance professionals the opportunity to excel in their chosen career. She therefore advised companies on what they should so to establish a genuinely diverse finance function.


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Thursday, August 29, 2013

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Business & Finance

FG insists on 3% freight levy on empty containers FRANCIS EZEM

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he Federal Government has said that multinational shipping companies operating in Nigeria must pay the mandatory three per cent freight levy on imports coming into Nigeria and export going out of the country on the movement of empty containers. The government had recently approved a downward review of the three per cent benchmark levy on freight imposed on all import and export goods in and out of the country as part of measures to lessen the burden on the shipping community Section 15 of the Nigerian Maritime and Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, Act 2007 provides that the agency shall be funded from three percent of gross freight on all international inbound and outbound cargo

from ships or shipping companies operating in Nigeria, among others. Director of Commercial Shipping of the Nigerian Shippers Council, Mrs. Dabney Shall-Holma, who spoke in an interview in Lagos, disclosed that when a shipping company is lifting its own empty containers out of Nigeria, it is not expected to pay the three percent freight levy because it does not charge any freight on them. She, however, insisted that when a shipping company is moving empty containers belonging to other shipping firms, it must pay the three percent levy on freight being paid to it for moving the empty containers. “Freight is the cost of the value that you pay for carrying a cargo from one point to another because container in itself is a means of transport but when it is empty, it becomes a cargo and when you are

Thursday, August 29, 2013 moving it from one point to another, you must pay a charge because the shipping firm that is moving the empty containers charge freight on them”, she had argued. She noted that the Council, NIMASA and the Nigerian Ports Authority have always insisted that the shipping companies load empty containers out of the ports as they also take exports out of the country to check the recurring incidence of port congestion at the ports. The Federal Ministry of Transport’s had in 2011 issued a regulation, which made it mandatory for these shipping companies to load empty containers on board their vessels as they lift the few exports out of the country to reduce the pressure at the staking areas in the various seaports. This regulation was designed to check congestion at both the port terminals and port access roads as the limited spaces meant for laden containers were before now occupied by empty containers, which causes congestion at the ports.

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

86% of Nigerians don’t have insurance policy MESHACK IDEHEN

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igeria’s leading opinion poll and survey specialist, NOI Polls said 86 per cent of Nigerians do not have any form of insurance cover, while 9 per cent of them do not trust insurance service providers. According to the NOI Polls, motor vehicle insurance accounts for 63 per cent of insurance sales in the country, while lack of awareness and public enlightenment on the benefits of insurance are factors responsible for the low level of insurance penetration in the country. In a release made available to journalists on Wednesday, the firms said motor vehicle insurance was the most common insurance product patronised by Nigerians, while underwriters directly sold about 42 per cent of insurance covers. Insurance agents made 41 per cent of the total sales. “NOI Polls is revealing that almost 9 in 10 Nigerians (86 per cent) do not have any form of in-

surance cover. The results also indicates that vehicle/car insurance (63 per cent) is the most commonly purchased insurance cover, and Insurance companies (42 per cent) and agents (41 per cent) are the key channels of insurance purchase. “Furthermore, the major causes of the low market penetration and poor insurance culture are low awareness and poor enlightenment on the benefits of insurance (40 per cent),” the organisation stated. Speaking with National Mirror on the survey, Managing Director of NOI Polls Limited, Mrs. Oge Funlola Modie, said the research sought to review insurance culture in Nigeria in terms of level of patronage and the reasons surrounding poor insurance culture in Nigeria. According to him, the result of the poll confirmed that majority of respondents do not have any form of insurance cover; which is an indication of low insurance penetration in the country, and poor insurance culture amongst Nigerians.

Operator bemoans congestion of ports’ access roads

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Chairman, Nigerian Society of Engineers, Abuja chapter, Mr. Emeka Ozioko (left), with the Deputy National President, Mr. Ademola Olorunfemi, at the opening of 2013 Engineering Week in Abuja, yesterday. PHOTO: NAN

IFC raises $3.5 bn bond for private sector development UDO ONYEKA

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nternational Finance Corporation, IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, yesterday issued a $3.5 billion, five-year global bond, making it the largest to date, as part of its regular program of raising funds for private sector development lending. According to a statement by the corporation, the issue generated an order book of close to $5 billion and set the pricing benchmark for IFC’s FY14 borrowing program. “IFC’s funding operations are at the core of our business. They enable us to meet the financing needs of private sector companies in emerging markets, and provide IFC with sufficient liquidity to fulfill our counter-cyclical role in a fragile global economy,” said IFC VP and Treasurer, Jingdong Hua,.

“IFC’s priority is to support a vibrant, sustainable private sector that contributes to eradicating extreme poverty and pursuing shared prosperity in emerging markets and globally.” Consistent with IFC’s practice, the proceeds of this issue will be swapped into floating-rate U.S. dollar funds that will be available for IFC investments in emerging markets. IFC has issued dollardenominated global bonds each year since 2000. All IFC bond issuances are rated triple-A by Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s. IFC debt receives a zero risk weighting under Basel II. IFC Director for Treasury Market Operations, Wolfgang Meyer, said: “The strong demand for IFC’s global bond in a difficult market environment reflects our strong reputation as a committed issuer in the capital markets. The success of the issue leaves

us well-positioned as we seek to meet IFC’s largest funding program to date.” The transaction was lead managed by Daiwa, Deutsche Bank, HSBC, and TD. The statement also said IFC plans to raise $16 billion across a range of markets and currencies during its current fiscal year ending June 30, 2014. “Borrowings denominated in U.S. dollars account for the majority of IFC’s funding program. Other funding sources include the Australian-dollar Kangaroo market, the U.S. domestic market, and the Japanese market. IFC also issues discount notes in U.S. dollars and in the offshore renminbi market, thematic bonds that support specific areas such as climate change or microfinance, and local currency bonds to develop local capital markets and to fund local currency loans”, the statement said.

maritime operator, Mr Kingsley Ajah, yesterday in Lagos expressed concern on the persistent gridlock on access roads to Apapa and Tin-Can Island Ports. He told the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, in Lagos that vehicular congestion in the ports’ environment constituted challenges to economic growth. “With the roads remaining heavily congested, economic activities will continue to suffer. Imagine the number of manhours wasted on these roads,’’ Ajah said. He advised government to rehabilitate the roads to alleviate the suffering of port users. Chief Remi Ogungbemi, the Chairman of Association of

Maritime Truck Owners, AMATO, said that his members had not relocated to Badagry Expressway Trade Fair Complex due to some challenges. “Our members have not been able to relocate partly due to the bad state of the roads.’’ NAN reports that one week after the August 21, 2013 deadline for relocation, the truck owners have yet to move. The association recently expressed its willingness to support strategies proposed by the Federal Government to decongest the ports’ access roads. Accessibility to the port areas is one of the critical issues in the implementation of the International Ship and Port Facility Security, ISPS, Code.

Institute advises FG to reduce taxes imposed on MSMEs

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he Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITN) has appealed to the Federal Government to reduce taxes being paid by Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs). Mr Mark-Anthony Dike, President of the institute, told the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, in Lagos on Wednesday that high taxes were taking about 30 per cent of the profits earned by MSMEs. “MSMEs are not exempted from tax payment, but there is a need to protect them from high taxes because high tax is detrimental to the growth of MSMEs,” he said. Dike said that the issue of duplication of taxes had become a

serious problem for the industrial sector. “Duplication of taxes is frustrating and it has become a problem that needs urgent solution. “The national tax policy document highlights the taxes to be imposed on tax payers, but the rule is not being followed,” he said. Dike said that there should be upward review of taxes on consumer goods and services instead of income tax. “For instance, the Value Added Tax is painless for tax payers because they get value for their money. “Paying taxes on income is usually a big deal for the tax payers because it they are bulk sums,” Dike said.


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Info Tech

Thursday, August 29, 2013

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Seeking increased role for states in ICT devt To complement the various efforts being made by the Federal Government towards advancing a coordinated Information and Communication Technology policy development, stakeholders say state governments must play a more critical role in order to bridge the extant digital divide between the two levels of government. KUNLE AZEEZ reports.

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nformation and Communication Technology is currently recognised as a critical tool for engendering economic growth and market competitiveness by any country while its impact in boosting a nation’s Gross Domestic Product cannot be under-estimated. In particular, the unprecedented convergence of computer networks and other communication systems is a phenomenon that has revolutionised life on the planet. From the common desktop computers to the ubiquitous smartphones, tablets and most recently ‘Phablets’, stakeholders have come to terms with the fact that ICT has become the core of modern civilisation. In Nigeria, the ICT sector has made tremendous progress in the last 12 years, as the sector is, today, the fastest-growing sector of the Nigerian economy and has been for the past five years. According available latest industry statistics, the sector is contributing 8.53 per cent to GDP as at first quarter of 2013, active phone subscriptions and teledensity as at the second quarter of 2013 stood at 120.3 million and 85.25 per cent respectively, while the percentage of population with internet access was 22.7 per cent (subscriptions only) and there are over 4,644 public access points to the internet all over the country. However, with just a few states currently investing in the development of ICT in their domains, the gap between states has continued to widen in terms of development. Over time, it has become very obvious that some state governments are far behind their peers. The use and application of technology in governance is one thing that must be given a preference if any government must move forward and become competitive in the global space. Inasmuch as the Federal Government is trying to develop models that will see to the advancement of ICT in the country, state governments are expected to complement those efforts by ensuring that the ideas are sustained at the state level. Aside from complementing the initiatives of the Federal Governments, states are expected to come up with their own ICT programmes, which are all targeted at bridging the digital divide between Nigeria and the rest of the world.

An ICT access centre

EFFORTS BEING MADE BY THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT IN ICT DEVELOPMENT WILL NOT YIELD OPTIMUM RESULTS WITHOUT ACTIVE PARTICIPATION OF THE STATES AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS This mission formed the fulcrum of deliberations by at the second meeting at the second meeting of the National Council on Communication Technology, NCCT, held in Akure, Ondo State, recently. The meeting orgainsed under the chairmanship of the Minister of Communication Technology, Mrs. Omobola Johnson, was graced by representatives from 22 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, Ministries, Department and Agencies, MDAs, of government as well as other key parastatals of the states and federal governments. Speaking at the forum, Johnson said despite this success, there are still tremendous opportunities for growth, job and wealth creation and it is the mandate of this Ministry of Communication Technology strives to achieve by strengthening collaborations with the state institutions and organs irresponsible for ICT in those states to key into the various ICT development policies being deigned at national level to foster a wellcoordinated ICT development across the country. She maintained that synergy amongst national and sub-national institutions was of critical importance if the current gains are to be sustained; stressing that the NCCT has been established to facilitate inter-governmental consultations on ICT matters in order to avoid unnecessary disparities in ICT policies in Nigeria. According to the minister, who listed key areas where the country has been making inroads in ICT development, through the ministry, such as e-governance, promotion of local contents in

ICT, development of standard framework for local hardware manufacturers, software development, development of national broadband strategy, among others, stressed that states participation in driving the initiatives was key to making ICT industry a major source of growth and contributor of wealth and jobs for Nigerians. She said the efforts being made by the Federal Government in ICT development will not yield optimum results without active participation of the states and local governments hence, the need to address the important issue of the role of the states in many of the initiatives put in place at the Federal level. Common areas of interest, she said, include the implementation of the National Broadband plan, National Policy on ICT, digital and financial inclusion, local content framework, use of frequency spectrum and National Strategic Egovernment framework and collection of data on ICT sector. “There is no doubt that the states and local governments are in a good position to contribute their quota in this respect. State governments have more complete knowledge of their localities and can work closely with service providers in their respective states to identify where and what kinds of services should be made available and where there are underserved and unserved areas. “States are also in a better position to obtain the most accurate data possible on use of broadband and to continuously update and refresh the data provided by service providers to make it more and more accurate over time. States can implement independent verification programs to confirm service availability and

actual experienced upload and download speeds.” Johnson, while noting that state governments like Akwa Ibom, Edo, Ekiti, Osun and Ondo were already taking important steps in leveraging ICT for social economic development, added that the states had put in place projects and programmes that were driven by ICT with a lot of impact on the lives of the people. To ensure the sustainability of these initiatives and ensure that they transcend administrations, the minister suggested that states that do not have them should establish dedicated institutional frameworks for coordinating ICT matters, which could include the creation of ICT ministries or ICT development agencies in such states. Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Communication Technology, Dr. Henry Akpan, explained the importance of the NCCT policy thrust, which, he said, was for government to achieve the needed convergence of the various subsectors of the ICT industry and geared towards moving the country to a knowledge based economy. “I want to re-emphasise that this vision cannot be achieved without the cooperation and synergy of the three tiers of government which this Council is set to ensure,” he said. Ondo State Governor, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko, who hosted the stakeholders for the event, solicited strategic partnership between the government and the private sector in order to ensure that Nigeria transits from being a consumer nation to a highly productive one as far as ICT software and tools are concerned. He noted that Nigeria has vast potential, which can be explored and harnessed for the sustainable development of ICT infrastructure for e-governance, health care systems, and food security, among others. “But without effective linkages by all players in the spectrum, this lofty goal will remain a mirage. I am confident that with continued cooperation and synergy by all stakeholders, Nigeria’s future in ICT development is assured,” he said.


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Info Tech

Thursday, August 29, 2013

GSM operators’ capacity hits 204m lines STORIES: KUNLE A ZEEZ

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igerian Global System for Mobile, GSM, operators in Nigeria have further invested in their network as they increased their combined network installed capacity to 204 million telephone lines. The operators include, MTN Nigeria, Globacom, Airtel and Etisalat, which are the four major telecoms networks in the country. Installed capacity is the total number of telephone lines which the operators have capacity to accommodate at a particular period of time. It is a function of the amount of investment made by telecoms operators to expand their network. National Mirror learnt that in the first and second quarter of 2013, telecoms firms invested heavily especially in expanding their voice network capacity. According to latest official telecoms industry data, released by

the industry umpire, the Nigerian Communications Commission, GSM installed capacity which stood at 182 million at the end of December, 2012 increased to 196.8 million in January and February and by the end of first quarter, in March, it has increased to 207.6 million telephone lines. The figure, which hovered around 207.6 million through April, further experienced a surge to 207.7 million while it waned to 204.2 million lines in May and by the end of second quarter, in June, 2013. Meanwhile, as at end of June, the total number of active telephone lines on the four GSM networks, in spite of their capacity to accommodates 204 million lines, is 120.3 million. According to the official industry data, active subscribers fell from 120.7 million in May to current 120.3 million, leading to a difference of close to 400,000 phone lines, which went inactive

in June. Meanwhile, teledensity also witnessed a decline in June as it fell from 86.25 per cent in May, 2013 to 85.25 per cent at the end of June, 2013. Teledensity in the Nigeria’s telecommunications industry increased from 80.85 at the end of 2012 to reach 85.25 at the end of April, 2013. The NCC latest data revealed an increase in teledensity from 80.85 in December 2012 to 81.78, January; 83.29 per cent in February; 83.77 per cent in March and 85.25 per cent at the end of April, in the first quarter. In May and June, 2013, the phone density later increased to 86.25 per cent but declined, for the first time in 12 years, to 85.25 per cent respectively. Teledensity is the percentage of connected lines in relation to the population at a given period of time and its growth is proportional to the growth in subscriber base.

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Tech Box

ZTE expands portfolio with products

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global Information and Communication Technology equipment manufacturer, ZTE, has expanded its products portfolio even as it shipped 11.5 million smartphones in the second quarter. The shipments represents a year-on-year increase of 79 per cent, vaulting the maker of Grand S and Grand Memo to fourth position globally with 5 per cent market share, according to data from research company Strategy Analytics. The strong sales performance, which made ZTE the highestplaced Chinese smartphone manufacturer, is built on the company’s commitment to design excellence and customer satisfaction. ZTE will leverage its strengthening position in the global smartphone market to develop products focused on three key segments: 4G, high-end devices, and phones based on newer platforms such as Intel chipsets and the Firefox op-

erating system. To fuel ZTE’s development of high-performance products, the company plans to unveil its selfdeveloped chipset to power 4G devices at the PT/EXPO COMM CHINA 2013 conference in Beijing in September. The ZTE chipset will be the first in the industry to attain 4G standards in communications and data throughput, heralding a breakthrough in 4G technology globally. Since ZTE began its strategy revamp in mobile devices in 2011, the company has evolved its product lineup, offering flagship devices such as Grand Memo, Grand S, N986 and U988s for the high-end market, and diversifying from lower-cost products such as ZTE Blade and ZTE Skate. ZTE has one of the industry’s most comprehensive range of Android products, featuring devices with 4-inch, 5-inch and 5.7 inch High Definition displays, in addition to 5 megapixel, 8 megapixel and 13 megapixel cameras.

SWIFT Networks test-runs LTE tecnhology

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igeria’s leading provider of high speed broadband internet and data services to enterprise and consumer customers, SWIFT Networks, has said that 500 volunteers will testdrive its brand new Long Term Evolution (LTE) network in preparation for its launch in Lagos, in the first instance. SWIFT said it has built the LTE network on the spectrum resources of the Direct-On-PC which it acquired recently, enabling it to overlay the ultra-fast LTE network over its current 4G WIMAX L-R: Secretary, Lekki Residents’ Association, Mrs. Bunmi Obagun; General Manager, Marketing Segments, Airtel network to offer higher access Nigeria, Mr. Wole Abu; Vice President, Network Operations, Airtel Nigeria , Mr. Abdul-Hakeem Olasewere and Vice speed to its current and future Chairman, Lekki Residents Association, Mr. Gerry Otiji, during a visit by Airtel to the Lekki Orphanage in Lagos recently. customers. Wireless spectrum is a finite resource and LTE uses it more efficiently than other technologies, She said if businesses are not cent or more of enterprise work creating more space to carry data usinesses have been advised to embrace latest able to provide suitable devices will be “non-routine” by 2015, this trends in technological and the right applications from is up 25 per cent from 2010. For businesses, she warned advancement as they emerge which employees can work, the igeria’s third largest teleamong employees at work place overwhelming majority are likely that a failure to recognise and uncommunications service with a view to running secure to fall back on their personal de- derstand these changes has been provider in subscriber vices and unsecure technology leading not only to increasing base, Airtel, has unveiled a business operations devoid of IT security challenges, but also unique plan that gives its over 20 simply to get the job done. any risks. She explained that today’s dis- missed opportunities for growth. million subscribers on the netMaking the call in a statement, She added that technology work 100 per cent instant bonus Head, Corporate Communica- ruptive technology trends are irtions, Europe, Middle East and reversibly changing how we do needed to enable employees to on all recharges. This is to proAfrica at Dell, Ms Gladys Elia, business from both workforce and work efficiently according to their vide them wider opportunities individual demands. “If the right to connect with friends, family said one of such trends was the enterprise perspective. According to her, “Always-on technology is not provided, re- and business associates. work place transformation being search has shown that employees driven by Bring Your Own Device, connectivity, widespread use of Tagged: One SIM, the compaconsumer technology, highly pres- will take matters into their own ny said the product was first of BYOD, concept. sured chief information officers hands.” According to her, the rise of its kind in the telecoms industry Elia also maintained that IT and is non-restrictive in terms consumer technology and the of companies and ever increasing proliferation of “smart” mobile demands on Information Technol- policies and employee choice in of usage as the bonus can be consumer devices have turned ogy are altering the way employ- technology should be orchestrat- used for calls, Short Messaging ed within clear parameters speci- Service and data to all networks. employees into technology savvy ees work and businesses run” Elia, while quoting a recently fied by an organisation to achieve end users with high expectations In addition, customers can of the technology and devices report by Gartner’s Strategic growth and efficiencies as well as use the bonus for international Planning Assumption, said 40 per protect assets. they use in the workplace. calls to Canada, United States,

DELL tasks businesses on technology trends

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traffic and services and to deliver a better network experience. In addition, LTE delivers at least 10 times faster download speed than 3G and 4 times that of WIMAX 4G networks. Speaking on the development, the Chief Operating Officer of SWIFT, Mr. Chukwuma Okoye, said, the SWIFT new network would be Nigeria’s fastest and most reliable 4G LTE network, stating, however, that the company would not rush the launch as it takes every care to ensure that it getd it right the first time. He said getting the most aggressive users from SWIFT’s current customer base to test-drive it will enable the company to debug and fine-tune the network t to meet the exerting demands of its target customer base.

Airtel introduces One SIM product plan

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China, India and UK landline. One SIM also allows customers to add two special numbers of either friends, family or business associates to enjoy a special call charge of 2k/sec and N1/SMS all day. Furthermore, subscribers to ONE SIM will be rewarded with free 15MB data on recharge of N200 or more every week. According to the Chief Operating Officer and Executive Director of Airtel Nigeria, Mr. Deepak Srivastava, One SIM is revolutionary, given its distinctive value propositions that further affirm Airtel’s position as the leader in innovation in the nation’s telecommunications sector.


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Brands & Marketing

Thursday, August 29, 2013

37

Devising growth for wine, spirit market As unbridled influx of foreign wines and spirit through smuggling threatens the N280 billion industry, there is a concerted effort through an international wine and spirit fair to open up the market to world leading wine and spirit economies, reports ADEDEJI ADEMIGBUJI.

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y November 7, about 30 wine and spirit producers from over 14 countries will gather in Nigeria to partake in the Nigeria International Wine & Spirits Fair, which has been regarded as a world class trade and consumer event. For Nigeria, the event is expected to bring investors willing to operate in the liquor market, which is estimated to worth N280 billion. Now in its third edition, exhibitors from Spain, South Africa, United States, Argentina, Chile, Italy and France, countries with great exotic wine market, are expected to flood Nigeria with world class wines and spirits. Besides coming for exhibition, the global players are expected to tap directly into the Nigerian market against the usual back door importation which is believed to be aiding importers and producers of fake foreign wines, hence, killing the local liquor manufacturers. The Managing Director, Spronks Creations Limited, organiser of the fair, Aderonke Sobodu, said while highlighting the growth potential of the Nigerian liquor market, “the remarkable development and tremendous potential of Nigeria’s wine and spirit market has drawn much business attention in recent years. We are optimistic that the market is bound to grow in respect to value and volume in the coming years. This belief necessitated the organisation of the Nigeria International Wine and Spirit Fair to cater for the booming de-

Wine

AS WINE CONSUMPTION IS FAST GROWING IN THE COUNTRY, THERE IS NEED FOR PEOPLE TO CONSUME GENUINE PRODUCTS, FOR ITS HEALTH BENEFITS mand for wine and spirits in the country and also to create a trade platform for wine and spirit producers who seek expansion”. Sobodu believes that fair is significantly essential to international wine and spirit producers, distributors, suppliers, traders, consumers, the hospitality business and

other stakeholders. While the Nigerian market has been flooded with substandard wines including fake version of foreign brands whose physical absence in Nigeria has made fakers have a field day, the exhibitors says, “it is also highly essential for consumer edu-

Outdoor advertising audience measurement debuts in Lagos A DEDEJI A DEMIGBUJI

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s research development continues to redefine marketing communication activities in Nigeria, a major breakthrough has been recorded in the outdoor advertising landscape as the Lagos State Signage and Advertisement Agency (LASAA) commenced the outdoor audience measurement initiative, which reveals statistics about the opportunity to see outdoor adverts in Lagos State. Touted the first of its kind in West Africa, the tool is expected to publish audience research for radio, TV and press and will produce audience estimates for outdoor advertising. According to a release from LASAA, the data published will provide advertisers with the number of people exposed to the advertising campaign in specific locations where hoardings are cited as part of effort to deliver cost effective job for advertisers. Accordingly, the tool will segment the audience according to their age, sex, class, lifestyle and so on, hence, help media planners, creative agencies

and marketing and brand strategist to plan and evaluate advertising campaigns in the outdoor medium. The Managing Director of LASAA, Mr. George Noah, said the tool is the first of its kind that is be initiated in Nigeria since Outdoor advertising started more than 50 years ago. ‘’This is a defining moment in outdoor advertising practice in Nigeria. For advertisers to make informed buying decision, data analysis of the target audience is very essential. Outdoor advertising markets in developed economies are flourishing because data is available for both buyers and sellers of outdoor spaces to make informed choices and careful planning. We need to embark on a scientific audience research measurement to enable the sector compete favourably with radio, TV and press,’ he said. Noah said the Outdoor sector needs a people focused measurement system which will analyse audience estimates. He said further, “Scientific audience measurement will provide details of realistic opportunity to see (ROTS) with eye-tracking studies which will gauge the likelihood to see (LTS) factor

of the various types of display. This will also account for scale, orientation, distance, movement, illumination and spatially analyse the sites in relation to competitors, customer locations as well as traffic patterns’’. He concluded that traffic audit will offer immense value to advertisers in the area of accurate audience figures and also encourage advertisers in making informed outdoor advertising purchase. “The medium is changing at a rapid rate and we must think from the point of view of the audience, not from the position of a billboard structure. If we start with a deep knowledge of how people move about, advertisers can have the flexibility to decide what they put in their way in terms of communication opportunities. By defining the audience it will be possible to use the data to plan, trade and compute valuation for the medium” he said adding ‘’We need to encourage outdoor advertisers to consider more populated areas such as Ikorodu and Alimosho. The LASAA Outdoor Audience research we believe, will reveal the marketing potential of previously ignored areas’’.

cation in our fast growing wine and spirit market as knowledge strengthens the industry with quality service and smarter shopping.” With support from the United States, South Africa, the Lagos State Ministry of Commerce and Industry among others, there appears to be an end to complaints by local distillers and blenders of wines, spirit and other liquors who are worried about threat of fake brands that have continued to pose a major threat to the industry. In a recent report about the dangerous trend, the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, MAN, said that local distilling and blending subsector constitutes 40 per cent of the manufacturing sector’s strength adding that, the local industry’s main source of worry comes from dumping, which robs the Federal Government of revenues in duties and taxes, as well as undermines the market through cheap prices. A survey of the market presented by Distillers and Blenders Association stating that “These foreign wines and spirits brands enter into the country’s market through the nation’s porous borders without being registered with relevant regulatory agencies of government.” The Executive Secretary of National Union of Food, Beverage and Tobacco Employees and the Association of Food, Beverage and Tobacco Employers, Mr. Fatai Odesile had complained that over 650 different brands of substandard quality foreign wines and spirit are smuggled into Nigeria. “There had been massive illegal importation of wines and spirits into the country from regions and countries, like South Africa, Asia, India and Europe, among others. Specifically, the illegal influx of alcoholic beverages, wines and spirits into the country is an ominous wind that will blow nobody any good at the end of the day. Today, Nigeria market has become a dump yard for all manner of products regularly smuggled into the country without anybody raising eyebrows,” he said. In the light of this, the Chief Executive Officer, BBDO West Africa, Mr. Demola Olusunmade says, “The coming of the exhibitors from wine producing countries to the Nigeria International Wine and Spirit Fair will to a large extent help to check the incidence of fake and adulterated wine producers in the country”. Also, the Chief Reputation Strategist, Upticomm Marketing Company, Mr. Olusegun McMedal, said “As wine consumption lifestyle is fast growing in the country, there is need for people to consume genuine products, for its health benefits. Added to that, these exhibitors will be looking for distributors in Nigeria and their presence will boost the marketing of local production of wine and spirit.” Some of other highlights for this year are Don’t Drink & Drive campaign which is a CSR initiative aimed at promoting social responsibility in the industry.


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Race for brand expo begins STORIES: ADEDEJI ADEMIGBUJI

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s year 2013 begins to wind up, the race for the maiden edition of Nigeria’s brand expo has begun. Tagged, NIBEX, the expo is expected to feature renowned speakers from various institutions, FMCGs, marketing communications sector as well as financial experts in both private and public sectors and will reward successful brands with Brands TV Awards for Brand Excellence. While unveiling the maiden edition of the 2013 NIBEX, the Chief Executive Officer, BridgeWorld Communications Company, Mr. Gboyega Akosile told journalists that the expo will be an avenue to generate awareness about an emerging trend in brand promotion and market penetration, as well as learn new trends in technology for brand activation. The twin event which, according to Akosile started about three years when the idea was conceived to promote brands with exemplary performances in given year under review. “The event has been designed as a trade exhibition and Awards packaged by Brands TV, a produc-

tion of Bridgeworld Communications Company, to aim at bringing together exhibitors of both consumable and non consumable products made in or distributed in Nigeria. The Nigerian Brand Expo will feature renowned speakers from various institutions, FMCG’s, Marketing Communications sector as well as financial experts in both private and public sectors. NiBex 2013 and Brands TV Awards for Brand Excellence will also be an avenue to generate awareness about an emerging trend in brand promotion and market penetration, as well as learn new trends in technology for brand activation. It is planned to be an annual affair where attendance will be drawn from all sectors of the country’s economy.” Akosile said further that the event will present an exciting opportunity for the entire business community to converge and showcase their products in front of the world audience while it will also be filled with numerous participants, trade show exhibitors, professionals seeking networking opportunities and it will also serve as a melting pot for the brand sector. “We expect that the Expo will feature new cutting edge solution

providers while new products may also be unveiled by different brand promoters and marketing or distribution companies. NiBex 2013 is intended to become a must- attend for the consumers and traders who are looking for the next product that will satisfy their aspiration. It is also designed as a forum where government and private sector will meet, network and forge a robust partnership that will ultimately transform the lives of the consumers,” he said. Also, Akosile said the event will also award exemplary brands with The Brands TV Award. “The Brands TV Awards seeks to reward brands which have performed excellently well using different parameters to measure them in the past one year. There are different categories of brands to be awarded with plaques on the evening of Wednesday 23, October 2013. They are in telecommunications sector, banking, agro-allied industry, FMCGs, media and advertising, food and beverages and finally, there’s political brand personality which is aimed at raising the bar in the way political parties and government agencies/parastatals promote and market their activities,” he said.

L-R: Category Manager, Skin Cleansing, Unilever Nigeria, Rotimi Oyesiji; winner N1m, Mrs. Adebiyi Oluwatobi; Vice President Operations, Unilever Nigeria, Anil Gopalan; and Brand Manager, Lux, Olumide Aniyikaiye, at the prize presentation of the first millionaire in the ongoing ‘Lux Gold Search’ Promo in Lagos recently.

Guinness Nigeria launches Orijin in Oyo, P/H ADEDEJI ADEMIGBUJI

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uinness Nigeria Plc, Nigeria’s foremost brewing company, has launched Orijin, a new beverage into the Nigerian market. Managing Director and Chief Executive, Guinness Nigeria Plc, Mr. Seni Adetu while unveiling the new brand in Oyo and Port Harcourt, said Orijin is a product designed for the discerning Nigerian who wants to enjoy the best of African tradition with style. “Guinness Nigeria has a tradition of continuously delivering great brands to our consumers. Orijin is a premium value brand that will not only bring excitement to consumers but also give

them the opportunity to connect with their heritage. With a refreshingly unique taste, Orijin is the flavoured alcoholic drink our consumers deserve” Adetu said. He explained that “Orijin is a vibrant yet rooted brand – a celebration of modern African culture and embodies all that is alive and exciting in Africa today”. The Marketing and Innovation Director, Guinness Nigeria Plc Mr. Austin Ufomba said the new brand depicts Guinness’ genuineness in producing quality products that resonate with Nigerian consumers. While explaining the theme of a playlet for the unveil, Ufomba said, “We always want to be connected to our customers and our intention is to tell our story in

a way that allows us to relate to our esteemed customers and consumers. Testament to this is the effort of the cast in showcasing our African pride and heritage. The play was rightly titled the Orijinal because Orijin is the original drink of the true and modern African.” He continued: “In the last 18 months, Guinness Nigeria Plc had launched four quality products. We have launched Malta Guinness Low Sugar, Dubic Extra Lager, SNAPP and now Orijin. Our consistency testifies to our commitment to quality and innovation. It is in our DNA and our consumers can continue to expect the very best from the stables of Guinness Nigeria.”

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Lucozade Boost rewards winners on show

L

ucozade Boost has rewarded winners who shared stories on its three weeks Energy Moment Show radio programme. The Brand Manager, Lucozade Boost, Chidike Oluaoha said the energy show is a platform to engage and reward the esteemed consumer of Lucozade Boost. “It also availed Nigerians the opportunity to share their energetic moments with friends, colleagues and family members,” he said. The winner who came from Port Harcourt and won Lucozade Boost packs, Chika Onyemenem expressed gratitude to maker of Lucozade Boost. “I appreciate this gift from Lucozade Boost, I drink Lucozade Boost a lot and when the programme started on radio I participated in the show because it was very creative and exciting and to my amazement, I won Lucozade Boost packs” Chika enthused. The winner who came from

Enugu and won a BlackBerry smart phone, Emilia Anyaegbu also expressed her shock when she was announced a winner, “It is amazing, at first I did not believe it but now it’s true. I now own a BlackBerry after a long wait courtesy of Lucozade Boost. I thank the organisers. I am simply happy.” Also, another BlackBerry smart phone winner, Olapoju Olawole from Abuja shared his joy, “Sharing the energetic moments of my friend on radio was fun and unique and I believe it shows how much I know him. It is amazing I won a BlackBerry! I thank Lucozade Boost for the opportunity.” The Head of Marketing, Nutritionals, GSK Nigeria Plc., Cherry Eromosele assured that “GlaxoSmithKline, makers of Lucozade Boost, aims to improve the quality of life among Nigerians, enabling them to do more, feel better and live longer.’’

Promasidor Quill Awards introduces future reporter category

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romasidor Nigeria Limited, organisers of the annual Promasidor Quill Awards has included a special category tagged; ‘Best Future Reporter of the Year’ and Best Report on children in the 2013/2014 edition of the Awards, hence, increasing the categories to seven. While disclosing the increase in the number of categories at a press conference held at the Corporate head office of the firm in Lagos early in the week, the Managing Director, Promasidor Nigeria Limited, Chief Keith Richards said the Best Future Reporter of the Year category have been thought-

fully picked to encourage young writers that will eventually take up the mantle of journalism in future. “As earlier promised we have taken time to listen to the recommendations from the panel of judges, feedback from journalists and considered the growing media trend to improve the entry categories for this year,” he said. Richards noted that entries for this year’s Promasidor Quill Awards for journalists will begin from 9th September 2013 through to 30th April 2014 adding that qualifying entries are publications from 1st April 2013 through to 30th April 2014.

Lux Gold Search promo rewards first millionaire

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he first one million naira winner in the on-going Lux consumer promotion emerges as the search for gold enters its second month. Mrs Adebiyi Oluwatobi’s, the first winner of one Million Naira in the ongoing Lux Gold Search promotion was rewarded early in the week. “I can’t believe am a millionaire! Though I saw the advert on TV, I never believed it’s real but now that am a winner, many thanks to Unilever and I’ll always use Lux beauty soap,” she exclaimed The Vice President Operations, Unilever Nigeria, Mr. Anil Gopalan during the prize presentation in Lagos, while describing the promo mechanics said gold coins have been inserted in limited quantities bar of Lux beauty soap. “As regards this promotion, customers are expected to

go out and purchase Lux and stand a chance to find the gold coin to win instant prizes of 1million Naira for 5 winners; $1,000 for 30 winners; Blackberry Q10 for 20 winners; 10 washing machines; dinner tickets and other consolation prizes. The promotion runs throughout Nigeria and winning entries have been planted strategically in each region of the country to ensure winners emerge from each region,” he said. The Category Manager, Skin Cleansing, Unilever Nigeria, Rotimi Oyesiji noted that Lux is high quality soap, formulated with special natural ingredients and first class perfumes to suit different people; making them look more beautiful. It produces a creamy rich lather that cleans the skin well and leaves the skin smooth and soft.


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Brands & Marketing

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Chivita re-ignites brand position on strategic pillars ADEDEJI ADEMIGBUJI

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s part of efforts to reinforce its market share in the juice market, Chi Limited has positioned its brand, Chivita fruit juice, on three strategic pillars. Also recent market surveys have continued to place the brand as a dominant juice brand in the market. Following a blind taste test conducted among other fruit juice brand recently, Chivita reportedly ranked top among others in terms of taste. “As thousands of customers have attested to, even in blind taste tests, Chivita Premium Fruit Juice is truly 100 per cent fruit juice in content and contains no added sugar, no added preservative and no artificial colours and flavours,” said the report.

While relying on its three strategic pillars, Chi Limited was said to have been able to deliver the product through massive investment in latest technology that helps to address the needs of a growing healthconsciousness among Nigerian fruit juice consumers. Accordingly, the brand has been able to also win the Superbrand status second year consecutively which is said to be a rare blend of the best of Nigerian and imported fruit juices. In a market survey across Lagos, one of the whole sale manager at Rocket Store, Judith Umeh, interviewed said, “in its quest to enrich the quality of its flagship brand with premium taste and quality, the new Chivita Premium Fruit Juice comes with a newer, more attractive pack designed to give more impact and to focus more

on brand elements. Relying on consumer insights, the fruit juice is packaged in Tetra Pak elongated rectangular and easy-to-open formats that are a huge delight to consumers. The packs also enhance the taste of the fruit juice which comes in five variants of orange, pineapple, apple, orange-mango and duets of orange-pineapple. Consumers continue to choose Chivita Premium Fruit Juice because of its constituent and natural fruit taste. Chivita is thick and those qualities have been the reason for demand in our stores.” Recently, the brand came out tops ahead of rival brands like 5Alive in the maiden Generation Next survey awards, which is the largest brand preference study exploring the taste and preferences of at 15,000 youths accross the country.

L-R: Corporate Relations Director, Mr. Sesan Sobowale; Marketing and Innovation Director, Mr. Austin Ufomba; Regional Sales Director, Mr. Chizoba Ojelo and Divisional Sales Manager, Mr. Banji Womiloju all of Guinness Nigeria Plc at the launch of Orijin in Port Harcourt recently.

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ad VA NT AG E icon

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ith over two decades in marketing communications and media, Tunji Olugbodi is undoubtedly one of the finest brains in the advertising industry in Nigeria. He started his career at The Guardian and moved to advertising where he served in several capacities before being elevated to Executive Director, Client Service, Prima Garnet Ogilvy. He is a member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing, London and the Chartered Institute of Marketing, Nigeria. He is also a member of Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria. A Course Speaker for UAC Training School; Financial Institutions Training College Lagos; and a Faculty/ Circuit Speaker on Marketing/ Business and Management, Olugbodi attributes his successes in life and career to his uncommon optimism and his drive to create exceptional value in all he does. “I see myself as a brand activist and a passionate one at that. I am somebody who is an incurable optimist. I believe passionately in Nigeria and the future of Nigeria. Much more importantly, I believe in the future of the business of marketing communications in Nigeria’. Olugbodi is currently the Managing Director of Verdant Zeal, a full-fledged marketing communications

Olugbodi

I

SEE MYSELF

AS A BRAND ACTIVIST AND A PASSIONATE

ONE AT THAT .

I

AM SOMEBODY WHO IS AN INCURABLE OPTIMIST agency set to deliver exceptional results by consistently fulfilling brand needs across the globe. He is a co-founder of the Prima Garnet Communications, a leading ad agency, which now prides itself as a Pan-African agency.

Communicate with internal audience to drive brand vision

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nternal communication is important for any organisation in order to communicate its culture and values to the employees. It is only through internal communication that employees can be enlisted to the company’s vision and goals. The focus of this column last week was on living the brand but without a functional internal communication mechanism, there is no way employees can live the brand well. Internal communication enables the employees to know what is required of them as they need to be thoroughly immersed in the vision of the organisation. It is very vital for very one in an organisation to know where the organisation is headed. This helps every single individual within the organisation to face the same direction. It is not when

a customer will always lament when a particular employee is not at work on the day he visited the bank. It just happened some days ago when i went to one of the big banks. The couple seated beside me were commenting on another employee who has left the branch hence the many hassles and delay they face in getting things done. Most of the challenges that some organisations face are better addressed through internal communication before it creates image problems for the organization. For instance, the case of the poor customer disposition of some QSR’s staff discussed last week. When employees are not focused on, it creates huge perception challenge for the organisation. Most employees are just employed without a proper induction which has serious

Brand X-Ray with Ayodeji Ayopo Tel: 08023448199 E-mail: mayomipo@yahoo.com adverse effects on the organisation. How cam employees live the brand when they do not have any fair share idea of what the organisation stand for? This can only come through a proper internal communication function in an organisation. Every organization is expected to adopt a specific internal communication approach that helps achieve its goals. Employees need to be updated on a regular basis about the developments in the organisation. This

dismantles every culture that is strange to the organisation. Employees should also be encouraged to voice out their feelings and opinion about the organization. There should be regular face to face meetings to gauge the perception of employees. This goes a long way in empowering the employees to perform optimally. Internal communication is indeed a motivational tool when employees are involved in decision making process of the organisation. When their ideas

are welcome, they have a sense of belonging which helps them put in their best on the job. Employees who are on the lower rung of the ladders should not be alienated as this makes them unwilling to buy into the organisation’s goals and objectives. It is also a step in the wrong direction when employees obtain information about their organisations through external sources. It is better to sell an idea to your employees first before you take it outside. There should be a proper integration between internal and external communication. Employees need to understand the brand promise and the customer deliverables. When they believe in the brand, they will help the company carry it out through interface with the customers.


40

Global Business

Thursday, August 29, 2013

U.S. stocks fluctuate before home data amid Syria concern

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nited States stocks fluctuated after the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index dropped to an eight-week low Tuesday, before data on pending home sales and amid concern over a possible military strike against Syria. TiVo Inc. climbed 3.1 percent after the maker of digital-video recorders posted a profit. Joy Global Inc. lost 5.2 percent as the mining equipment maker said orders for new equipment are declining. The S&P 500 rose 0.2 percent to 1,632.97 at 9:45 a.m. in New York. The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 25.81 points, or 0.2 percent, to 14,801.94. Trading in S&P 500 stocks was 15 percent below the 30-day average at this time of day. “This is an environment where people are really focused on one variable which is going to dominate all others, and that is Syria,” Lawrence Creatura, a Rochester, New York-based fund manager at Federated Investors Inc., which oversees about $380 billion, said in a phone interview. “The reflex is to sell during times of sudden unexpected conflict and there’s no reason to believe that this time would be any different. Weakness derived from temporary events can often times be a great buying opportunity.” The S&P 500 slid 1.6 percent yesterday to the lowest level since July 3 amid concern the U.S. will take action against Syria. The U.S. and its allies are moving closer to

Obama

a military strike in response to an alleged chemical weapons attack near Damascus last week. President Barack Obama plans to release an intelligence assessment this week and U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron said Britain will put forward a draft resolution at the United Nations yesterday authorising action to protect civilians. Obama officials are in consultations with NATO allies including the U.K., France, Germany, and Turkey as well as Arab nations to determine which countries would participate in a military strike on Syria, said an administration official,

speaking on the condition of anonymity to discuss war planning efforts. The S&P 500 has lost 4.5 percent from a record high on August 2 amid growing speculation the Federal Reserve will reduce its monthly bond buying. Minutes of the central bank’s July meeting released August 21 showed policy makers supported stimulus cuts this year if the economy improves. Fed stimulus helped push the S&P 500 up as much as 153 percent from its March 2009 low, as better-than-estimated corporate earnings also fueled gains. A report yesterday showed pending home sales were unchanged in July, according to the median forecast of economists in a Bloomberg survey. The index from the National Association of Realtors fell 0.4 percent in June. TiVo (TIVO) advanced 3.1 percent to $11.31 after reporting second-quarter net income of $268.9 million, including legal settlements, compared with a $27 million loss a year earlier. Chief Executive Officer Tom Rogers said in an interview the company will be profitable for the remainder of the fiscal year ending January and through the following year. Avago Technologies Ltd. surged 6 percent to $38.75. The supplier of components for wireless communications reported third-quarter revenue of $664 million, exceeding the $617.25 million average forecast of analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

China says chipmakers must compete after $4bn deal

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ediaTek Inc. (2454)’s $4 billion purchase of MStar (3697) Semiconductor Inc. was approved by China’s antitrust regulator on condition the Taiwanese companies keep competing with each other in the television-chip business for three years. MStar shares rose by the 7 percent limit, the biggest gain since September 2011, to close at NT$263.50 in Taipei. MediaTek fell 0.4 percent to NT$366, while Taiwan’s benchmark Taiex index rose 0.1 percent. While it approved the deal, China’s antimonopoly authority said MStar’s liquidcrystal display television-chip business must exist as a separate entity to ensure fair competition, according to a statement posted Tuesday by China’s Ministry of Commerce, or Mofcom, on its website. MediaTek announced the deal last year and extended the closing deadline three times before Mofcom gave its approval. The handset-chip businesses were allowed to merge and the companies can ask

the ministry to lift its conditions after three years, according to the statement. The transaction is valued at 24.6 billion yuan ($4 billion), the ministry said. MediaTek and MStar yesterday said the transaction would close by Feb. 1 after Mofcom signs off on a plan to implement conditions the regulator imposed. Approval is expected within three months from yesterday, the Hsinchu, Taiwan-based companies said in an English statement to the stock exchange. “I can’t imagine anyone at MediaTek being all that pleased with the Mofcom conditions as they do appear stringent,” said Rocky Lee, the Beijing-based Asia managing partner at law firm Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP. Break-up fees or shareprice concerns may have led the companies to stay the course, Lee said. The proposed acquisition gives MediaTek about 61 percent of the global market and 80 percent of China’s market for LCD TV main chips, enough to suppress compe-

Xi Jinping

tition, according to Mofcom. MediaTek announced the deal in June 2012, saying it planned first to buy 48 percent of MStar, followed by a full takeover. China also limited MediaTek’s shareholder rights in MStar’s independent TV mainchip business, MStar Taiwan.

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Swiss agree on programme for banks to settle U.S. dispute

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witzerland said it has agreed to a draft plan with the U.S. for the country’s banks to settle a tax-evasion dispute after years of diplomatic wrangling. The Swiss Finance Ministry has been instructed to complete work on a joint statement with the U.S., the Bern-based government said in an announcement today. “It shouldn’t be too long” before the statement is signed, Andre Simonazzi, a government spokesman, told reporters in the Swiss capital. The agreement is the result of more than two years of negotiations over U.S. probes of at least a dozen banks, including Credit Suisse Group AG (CSGN) and Julius Baer Group Ltd. (BAER), which allegedly helped Americans evade taxes. While some of those banks are already in settlement talks, the U.S. Justice Department wants to widen its crackdown by forcing other Swiss wealth managers to disclose data on cross-border accounts. “I would imagine the Justice Department would want the end game to be a voluntary disclosure program for banks where they can come forward, admit their wrongdoing, if any, avoid prosecution, and not subject themselves to further scrutiny by the United States,” said Jeffrey Neiman, a former U.S. tax prosecutor based in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The Swiss Bankers Association, which represents more than 300 banks, welcomed the government’s announcement. “The program enables all banks in Switzerland to settle their U.S. past quickly and conclusively and creates the necessary legal certainty,” the Baselbased association said in a statement today. Switzerland, the world’s largest offshore financial center with about $2.2 trillion of assets, wants to prevent another bank suffering the fate of Wegelin & Co., which was indicted last year. Wegelin, the country’s oldest bank, pleaded guilty in January to helping U.S. taxpayers hide assets and has since closed its doors. Wegelin took over undeclared American clients from UBS AG. The biggest Swiss bank avoided prosecution in 2009 by admitting it aided tax evasion, paying $780 million and handing over client names. The U.S. wants lists of suspected tax evaders who shifted accounts from one bank to another, the Swiss government has said.

Canadian currency rises against peers on surging oil

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Prime Minister, Stephen Harper

he Canadian dollar gained versus the majority of its 16 most-traded counterparts as crude oil, the country’s largest export, touched its highest level in more than two years. The currency, called the loonie, rose against those of Canada’s commodity-exporting peers, Australia and New Zealand, amid bets military strikes by the U.S. against Syria may disrupt Middle East oil supplies. The loonie weakened against the U.S. dollar before data this week forecast to show the American economy expanded in the second quarter while Canada’s contracted in June, according to Bloomberg surveys of economists.

“There is a chain of impact that would cause crude-oil prices to rise, and an adjunct impact of that would be some strength in the Canadian dollar,” said Jack Spitz, managing director of foreign exchange at National Bank of Canada, by phone from Toronto. “I see the geo-politics as having a temporary impact on financial markets, from having a flight-to-quality perspective, risk-aversion metrics, and of course commodity-price rises.” The loonie, nicknamed for the image of the aquatic bird on the C$1 coin, depreciated 0.1 percent to C$1.0489 per U.S. dollar yesterday in Toronto. It weakened as much

as 0.4 percent. One Canadian dollar buys 95.34 U.S. cents. Canadian government bonds fell for the first time in five days, pushing the yield on the benchmark 10-year security up from a two-week low of 2.56 percent reached yesterday. The yield increased five basis points, or 0.05 percentage point, to 2.61 percent. The price of the 1.5 percent debt due in June 2023 declined 43 cents to C$90.48. Five-year yields rose four basis points to 1.88 percent before a government auction of the securities. The Bank of Canada said it will sell C$3.4 billion ($3.2 billion) of 1.25 percent debt due in September 2018.


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Thursday, August 29, 2013

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42

Capital Market

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Thursday, August 29, 2013

FG seeks advisers for $100m Diaspora Bond JOHNSON OKANLAWON WITH AGENCY REPORT

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he Debt Management Office yesterday said that Nigeria is looking for an international bank and a local lender to act as financial advisers for a $100m Diaspora Bond to be issued by the end of the year. The DMO told Reuters that the advisers will coordinate investor road shows and support the bond’s registration with United States and British authorities. The DMO expects to offer a coupon of around 350 basis points above the fiveyear US Treasury bond for the bond, which will have a 5-year tenor. According to the Western Union, Nigeria is the world’s fifth-biggest destination for

international remittances after China, India, the Philippines and Mexico, with five million Nigerians living abroad sending money back to relatives. The country is increasing the amount it borrows overseas to around 40 per cent of all debt over the next three to five years, from 12 per cent, seeking lower funding costs. However, the country issued a $1bn Eurobond last month and plans to raise an additional N80bn ($505m) in global depository notes this year. Bids for the diaspora bond adviser role are due on September 26. Citibank and Deutsche Bank acted as advisers on the Eurobond, which was four times oversubscribed. The Western UnionCo also stated two months ago,

that Nigeria received $10bn in remittances from citizens living abroad last year, out of $40bn sent back into the continent in total. The DMO Director-General, Dr. Abraham Nwakwo recently said that four Nigerian financial institutions had taken due advantage to issue Eurobonds between January 2011 and July 2013, amounting to $1.45bn. The companies included Guaranty Trust Bank, Access Bank, Fidelity Bank and First Bank. He said that the agency would further strengthen and deepen the FGN bond market for enhanced liquidity through the continued issuance of benchmark bonds and introduction of other varieties of debt instrument such as securities lending, bond switches and inflationlinked bonds into the do-

mestic bond market. The agency added that it will strive to strengthen the country’s presence in the international capital market through the issuance of the variety of debt instruments, such as the already approved N80bn FGN bonds in the form of global depository notes and $100m Nigerian Diaspora Bond. He however called on more Nigerian corporate companies to leverage on the existing sovereign benchmark to raise longterm capital in the domestic market and ICM to develop the real sector and build Infrastructure. He said that the domestic debt initiatives had led to the increase in foreign exchange inflows, which contributed to the growth in external reserves and stability of the naira.

Source: NSE

Source: Afrinvest

Market indicators All-Share Index 36,299.30 points Market capitalisation 11.51 trillion

Equities shed 0.5% as bears sustain hold OLAONIPEKUN AWEDA

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he benchmark index of equities continued on a bearish note on the Nigerian Stock Exchange yesterday, as more investors sold their holdings. Specifically, the All Share index declined by 0.5 per cent to close at 36,299.30 points, compared to the decline of 0.13 per cent recorded the preceding day to close at 36,480.24 points. Market capitalisation dipped by N57bn to close at N11.51trn, compared to the depreciation of N2.05bn recorded the preceding day to close at N11.57trn.

In the sectorial indices, Lotus Islamic index increased by 0.06 per cent to close at 2,533.18 points, followed by the Insurance index with 0.53 per cent to close at 140.99 points. The Industrial Goods index rose by 0.61 per cent to close at 2,186.21 points. On the flip side, the Consumer Goods index shed 0.94 per cent to close at 1,015.79 points, while the NSE 30-index lost 0.66 per cent to close at 1,695.34 points. The Banking index declined by 0.6 per cent to close at 393.24 points, while the Oil and Gas index dipped by 0.16 per cent to close at 191.45 points.

The Alternative Market index remained the same at 962.31 points. Jos Breweries Plc led the gainers’ table with 22 kobo or 9.95 per cent to close at N2.43 per share, followed by AG Leventis Plc with 14 kobo or 9.93 per cent to close at N1.55 per share. Livestock Plc appreciated by 36 kobo or 9.73 per cent to close at N4.06 per share, while Champion Breweries Plc gained N1.37 or 9.70 per cent to close at N15.49 per share. Prestige Assurance Plc rose by five kobo or 9.09 per cent to close at 60 kobo per share. Conversely, Interna-

tional Energy Insurance Plc dropped by 12 kobo or 9.84 per cent to close at N1.10 per share, while Mobil Nigeria Oil Plc declined by seven naira or 5.88 per cent to close at N112 per share. Dangote Flour Mills Plc shed 50 kobo or 5.26 per cent to close at nine naira per share, while Glaxosmith Plc lost three naira or 4.41 per cent to close at N65 per share. RT Briscoe Plc dipped by seven kobo or 4.38 per cent to close at N1.53 per share. A total of 223.71 million shares valued at N2.05bn were exchanged in 4,946 deals.

Travel firms drag European shares lower on Syria threat

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he threat of an attack by Western powers on Syria contributed to falls in European shares on Wednesday with travel stocks bearing the brunt of investor concerns, but a spike in oil prices boosted energy suppliers. Approaching the close, the FTSEurofirst 300 was down 4.58 points or 0.4 per cent at 1,197.78 points, with the index testing technical support around 1,192, having broken below the 50-day moving average. The prospect of a United States led attack on Syria, possibly within days, has raised concerns about the impact on the broader re-

gion. Head of investment strategy in Europe at Barclays Wealth, Mr. Kevin Gardiner, said the longer-term impact on market from the crisis in Syria should soften, but in the short-term the geopolitical backdrop would be difficult to trade as there are too many unkowns. “Short-term volatility would be the best way to play it,” he said. The cost of buying options to protect against future market swings, as measured by the Euro STOXX 50 volatility index or VSTOXX, jumped to one and half month high of 23 points. The conflict in Syria has

contributed to investors cashing in an eight per cent rally in European stocks since late June and purchasing safe-haven assets such as government bonds and gold, while the oil price has spiked on supply concerns. Societe Generale said the North Sea crude oil benchmark could surge as high as $150 per barrel if the war affects key oil producers such as Iraq. Travel & leisure stocks fell 1.6 per cent, led by airlines such as Lufthansa. On Tuesday, Investec said in a note that prices above $100 a barrel were a severe headwind to airlines’ profitability.

The threat of the conflict spreading throughout the Middle East also hit tour operators which sell holidays in the region with Tui down 1.4 per cent. Cautious guidance from Europe’s largest hotel operator, Accor, which fell 4.2 per cent, also weighed on the sector. The jump in crude prices, however, boosted heavyweight oil and gas stocks, which rose 2.3 per cent, and helped marginalise wider index losses. International gas and oil producer BG Group jumped 4.6 per cent, while Norway’s Statoil rose 4.3 per cent, also thanks to a new discovery.

Stock Updates GAINERS COMPANY

OPENING

CLOSING

CHANGE

% CHANGE

JOSBREW

2.21

2.43

0.22

9.95

AGLEVENT

1.41

1.55

0.14

9.93

LIVESTOCK

3.70

4.06

0.36

9.73

CHAMPION

14.12

15.49

1.37

9.70

PRESTIGE

0.55

0.60

0.05

9.09

UTC

0.65

0.69

0.04

6.15

TOTAL

155.00

159.90

4.90

3.16

PZ

36.50

37.61

1.11

3.04

ASHAKACEM

21.00

21.60

0.60

2.86

OKOMUOIL

45.00

46.00

1.00

2.22

LOSERS COMPANY INTENEGINS

OPENING

CLOSING

1.22

1.10

CHANGE

% CHANGE

0.12

-9.84

MOBIL

119.00

112.00

7.00

-5.88

DANGFLOUR

9.50

9.00

0.50

-5.26

GLAXOSMITH

68.00

65.00

3.00

-4.41

RTBRISCOE

1.60

1.53

0.07

-4.38

NAHCO

6.80

6.52

0.28

-4.12

NEIMETH

1.26

1.21

0.05

-3.97

UNITYBNK

0.54

0.52

0.02

-3.70

FIDELITYBK

2.77

2.68

0.09

-3.25

MULTITREX

0.67

0.65

0.02

-2.99

Primary Market Auction TENOR

AMOUNT (N’mn)

RATE (%)

DATE

91-Days

20,647.81

11.09

21-Aug-13

182-Days

30,000.00

12.25

21-Aug-13

-

-

-

-

Open Market Operations TENOR

AMOUNT (N’mn)

RATE (%)

DATE

167-Days

96,311.93

10.64

29-Aug-13

-

-

-

-

Wholesale Dutch Auction System AMOUNT OFFERED

MARKET DEMAND

AMOUNT SOLD

DATE

$300m

N/A

$263m

28-Aug-13

$300m

N/A

$300m

26-Aug-13


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Capital Market

Thursday, August 29, 2013

43

Stock exchange daily equities summary Equities as at August 28, 2013 1st Tier Securities Sector

Company name

1st Tier Securities No Of Deals

Quotation(N)

Quantity Traded

Value of Shares(N)

Sector

Company name

No Of Deals

Quotation(N)

Quantity Traded

Value of Shares(N)


44

Thursday, August 29, 2013

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Youth inmates are victims of social structure –Iwuagwu Youths constitute the highest number of inmates in Nigerian prisons who waste their productive years there. In this interview with LEONARD OKACHIE, the Executive Director of Prison Fellowship Nigeria, PFN, Mr. Benson Iwuagwu laments the situation and says urgent action must be taken to address it. What would say is responsible for most of the youths who are in prisons? It is a really sad phenomenon, but the youths are victims of degeneration in family values; degeneration in our socioeconomic capacity as a people, as a nation, because once a father or parent cannot provide for the children, it graduates to youths having to live on the streets, trying to fend for themselves at an early age. The issue of morality is also thrown to the wind and youths join bad gangs, before you know it they are into crime and criminality. That is why much more than 50 percent of our prison population today is comprised of able-bodied youths and young people. Most of the offences are robbery related for the males, surprisingly for the females most are murder related, manslaughter related. And this is what we in the Onismus Project, we are asking Covenant University to do a special survey on why a good number of female convicts are there on murder related charges. For the males, it is burglary, robbery, some will tell you they don’t know why they are there. The sum total is that these persons have not been properly engaged. The social structure made room in most cases for deviant behaviour that led them to prison. What do these youths normally tell you when you visit them in prison? They are starry-eyed; they tell you circumstances compelled them into crime that brought them into prison. But we must also say that some of them are victims of police brutality or indiscretion. Some of them in the course of roaming about are apprehended and when they are able to sort themselves out at the police station they end up being remanded in prison. What we have discovered is that at the root of our problem is socio-economic inequity, degeneration in family values. The elders are not showing the youths good examples and that is a major challenge. What are the achievements of PFN? Our achievements have been quite monumental. Prison Fellowship Nigeria is comprised of churches. It is not like any other NGO; it is a faith-based NGO where the membership is drawn from churches. And go to the prisons everyday you find churches there. So we are doing quite a lot, it is just that we have been publicity shy. But we have come to a point whereby in our strategy plan we need a lot more societal involvement because these persons go to the prison from the society and they come back to the so-

ciety. We don’t have the means to be able to provide the necessary structure that make for effective prison ministry. This is now we are convening a conference from September 12-13, 2013 and the theme is ‘Restoring Justice’ because justice is not just about arrest and charge and imprison. No, justice is about having a fair share in the commonwealth of the country. Do you cater for the women and children who are in prison as well? Women and children are all victims as well. PFN, we have a programme running at the female prison and medium prison, Kirikiri. We call it the Onismus Project, which is a mentoring pre-release programme, to empower them, encourage them and prepare them for life after prison. But the challenge we have there is that we don’t have the resources to be able to prepare adequately for them particularly issues of housing and post-release upkeep. These are critical issues that we solicit the understanding of the public at least in showing empathy to be able to make our society safer and make our young men and women more productive. What should be done to save these youths from prison rot? What we need to do is to come to a conference table where we will re-evaluate our socio-political and economic system because crime does not happen in isolation. We need to re-visit our criminal justice system away from a retributive system we have now to a restorative justice system that considers the plight of the

Iwuagwu

victims of crime; that aims not just at punishing the offender but rehabilitating the offender for the good of society. We also advocate for a change in social attitude towards those who go into the prison and come out of the prison. Also, those in governance must learn to apply the commonwealth to develop basic infrastructure that will provide the basic needs of our citizens; then you will find out that will generally ebb downward. This why we are convening this conference and we are looking at judges, magistrates, police and other correctional officers be there. We are bringing in specialist from Cananda where they practising restorative justice system in

addition to the common law system. If you go to the Alausa you find that youths are being put in prison. Some underage inmates are there but some of the police and the court will fortify their ages to be 18, whereas you look you know that this person is not and cannot be 18.But once the court record says it is 18 the prisons authorities cannot question that. So we need to revisit our social contract as a people and that is when we come to solution that each Nigerian child has a right to the commonwealth of Nigeria. So what is your advice for them? Our youths must not be persuaded by the wrong examples of some of our elders or leaders but we should know that in us we carry the image of God. Of ourselves we can make something out of our lives.We must allow the social values to swallow us because at the end of the day we will be the ones to suffer it.

Young generation lacks leadership qualities –Don MARTHA NWACHUKWU

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he chairman of the Institute of Supervision and Leadership (ISL), Professor Simeon Adeola Ogunlowo has identified lack of proper leadership orientation in Nigerian youths as the bane of the country's development. Professor Simeon said this during the fourth membership induction and inauguration of fellows of the Institute of Supervision and Leadership held recently at Excellence Hotel, Ogba, Lagos. According to him, to put the nation on sure path of development, there must be systemic re-engineering of the country in which the youths are trained and prepared not only for today but also for the future.

He said: "We have leadership problems on our hand in Nigeria. We have crisis ridden society - economically, socially and politically. We have industrial strikes all over the places. There are crass opportunism and power tussle even between elected representatives of the people and unelected appendages in government. "There are corruptions in high places, organisations are not performing to expectations and thereby creating disillusionment in the system. Hence, there is need for system re-engineering in this country. Our youths must not only live for today but they must be empowered to take Nigeria higher." He said the main aim of ISL is to bridge the gap of leadership failure in the country. He said the institute aims to find the missing links in the country's

marred leadership quality. He added that the goal of the institution is to grow generations of leaders from tertiary levels to higher echelons of power and status, saying the true tenets of supervision and leadership should be built on people in higher institutions and people placed in positions of authorities for achievement of excellence. Also, the Registrar of the institute, Dr Folorunso Sam Akinya said the institute's resolve had been that issues of supervision and leadership should not only be directed at people who are occupying high positions in government and private organisations but also students in tertiary institutions who are leaders of tomorrow and who should be assisted to imbibe the principles of effective supervision and leadership.


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Young & Next Generation

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Nigerian youths urged to embrace Luther’s legacy MARTHA NWACHUKWU

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igerian youths have been urged to follow the example of the late American civil rights leader, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., by tapping their creative abilities to dream big and use the dreams to forge a better and brighter Nigeria. The Public Affairs Officer of the United States Consulate General in Lagos, Mrs. Dehab Ghebreab, who represented Consul General Jeffrey Hawkins made the call at an event marking the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington and the “I Have a Dream” Speech by Rev. King, Jr. at the Magnolia Hall of the City Mall in Lagos. The March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom examines one of the largest political rallies for human rights in United States history. The March called for civil and economic rights for African Americans. It took place in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday, August 28, 1963. During the march, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. stood in front of the Lincoln Memorial and delivered his historic "I Have a Dream" speech advocating for racial harmony. Delivering a keynote address at the event organiseed by the U.S. Consulate General in Lagos in coordination with Gordon Barrett and Shell and attended by almost 1,000 Nigerian youths, mostly members of the National Youth Service Corps and Mrs. Adenike Adeyemi, the Lagos State Coordinator of NYSC, Mrs. Ghebreab said: “you should explore abundant resources and great opportunities in your nation; take up responsibility and make your voices heard for peace and progress.” Noting that young people are at

the heart of many of today's great strategic challenges, from rebuilding the global economy to combating violent extremism and building sustainable democracies, Mrs. Ghebreab charged the youths to act as catalysts and leaders of positive change in Nigeria. She highlighted the role Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, Former Senator John F. Kennedy played in inspiring American youth to serve. She also highlighted the central role youth played in President Barack Obama’s election campaign. She encouraged them to embrace the legacy of using non-violent protest as a mechanism of social change. “The nonviolent weapons that were used in the past can still be used today to promote equality and social justice,” she said. Citing the various forms of U.S government’s engagement with young Africans, including efforts led by the White House, the Department of State and other development agencies as well as the Carrington Youth Fellowship Initiative of U.S. Consulate General in Lagos, Mrs. Ghebreab added that “the goal of the United States is to empower young people to solve their own problems by empowering them to find jobs, and have a voice in the future of their countries.” Public Diplomacy Officer Rhonda J. Watson announced the Consulate’s launch of a “Dream or Prophecy” essay /speech contest and delivered remarks aimed at motivating the youth to be inspired by Dr. Martin Luther King’s selfless dedication to service to improve the lives of others. Using MLK’s ability to articulate his dream for equality for all people using persuasive oratorical skills as a model, she announced the launch of the Consulate’s essay

speech contest from September 1 to October 31, 2013 and encouraged Nigerian youth between the ages of 18-30 to submit their 500-word essay entry explaining their dream for Nigeria and what role they can play to improve the country. Essay entries should be submitted to: http:// tinyurl.com/essay50mlk . Attendees were also treated to the screening of a documentary about the 1963 civil rights March on Washington as well as remarks from speakers covering a wide range of interests. The President of Gordon Barrett, Ms. Taizir Ajala, told the youths not to stop at dreaming but to move further to living their dreams, while Mrs. Adeyemi asked them to see themselves as agents of change, which summarizes the essence of the NYSC scheme. Chief Executive of Joseph Consulting, Mr. Ugochukwu Omeogu, a motivational speaker and mentor/personal development and career coach, encouraged the youth not to allow their circumstances to deter them from achieving their vision. In her own remarks, Nigerian music star Onyeka Onwuenu also spoke about how she did not allow the discrimination of being a woman to hold her back from getting to the peak of her career and she went on to wow the crowd with a track of musical work, “One Love.” Mr. Bayo Omoboriowo, a 2012 Future Award winner for creativity and a street/documentary photographer, formerly called “Bayo Pure-water” since he earned his living selling water to go to school, and Ms. Joy Edojah Money, a young entrepreneur and recipient of a Shell LiveWire award for entrepreneurship, shared their experiences of how they moved up to success.

45

SCIENCE FOR KIDS

Meet these child inventors (1)

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hroughout history, man’s inventions have brought many benefits to us all. From the simple pencil to the modern mobile phone, inventions make our daily lives easier. Many of us form images of learned scientists, wearing laboratory coats and going about their experiments whenever we think of inventions. The truth is, many inventions are created by people from all walks of life. In fact, the following innovations we enjoy today came from the great minds of children.

PopsicleTM There is nothing like a PopsicleTM to cool us down on a hot and humid day. The PopsicleTM was invented by an 11 year old boy named Frank Epperson. He accidentally left his cup of soft drink mixture with a stirring stick in it at the front porch of his Popsicle house on a cold winter night. The next morning, the mixture was frozen. Frank Epperson did not think much of it until 18 years later, in 1923, when he decided to apply for a patent for his discovery. Thanks to him, millions of PopsicleTM are sold worldwide today and we can all enjoy these cool treats without messing up our fingers with melted ice.

Doodle Kids While children of his age were busy playing video games, Singaporean Lim Ding Wen, at the age of 7, was busy learning the concepts of comput- Doodle er programming. He wrote many cool applications such as “Doodle Kids”, a programme that allows children to draw on the computer. In 2009, at the age of 9, he became the world’s youngest Iphone developer when he developed the Iphone app version of “Doodle Kids”. He was featured in international newspapers and even has Youtube videos featuring himself !

Braille System

L-R: Rotary District 9110 Interact Representative, Interactor Adedamola Adepoju; Chairman, New Generation, Rotn. Kehinde Amao; new District Rotaract Representative, Rotr. Timothy Olaniyi Ayeni and his predecessor, Rotr. Yinka Folarin, during the PHOTO: YINKA ADEPARUSI installation of Ayeni in Lagos recently.

Louis Braille, at the age of 4, met with an unfortunate accident one day in his father’s workshop, blinding for life. In the past, the blind read from raised Latin letters on paper. Braille alphabet This was very tedious to produce and the books were heavy and big. After discovering how soldiers communicated silently at night without light, he created a raised-dot system in which the individual letters of the alphabet can be recognised by a touch of the finger. In 1824, at the age of 15, Louis Braille invented the Braille system, which is still being used to this very day. Source: http//nlb.gov.sg


46

Media

Thursday, August 29, 2013

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

FOI Act: NOA sensitises rural dwellers STORIES: LEONARD OKACHIE

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he National Orientation Agency (NOA) in Plateau State has begun the sensitisation of the rural dwellers to the provisions and benefits of the Freedom of Information Act (FOI). The Director, Mr. Musa Chantu, who led the NOA team to some local government areas, including Qua'pan, said the law had provided an opportunity for electorate to challenge their representatives on the absence of some development projects. “You can request for, and have access to details of finances meant for your area and challenge your representatives to go after them or account for them if the funds had been released,’’ he said in Qua’pan. He said that voters now had the right to documents hitherto classified as top secret, pointing out they should use the right to get informed so as to make informed decisions. The NOA official advised the people to take the campaign seriously and stressed that those in attendance must enlighten those that were absent. “You must also make efforts to fully understand the provisions of the act, to be effectively guided in all your actions,’’ he said. Chantu advised them to make enquiries on the running of government before demanding explanations on issues, stressing that such knowledge would help them to force leaders to be more accountable. The NOA boss, however, explained that the act was limited in some areas, especially those bordering on se-

curity, legal and health matters. Other limitations include the client and journalism confidentiality privileges. The director tasked corporate organisations and public institutions to acquaint themselves with the provision of the law, and to assist members of the public, who might need to explore its provisions. The District Head of Piapung, Mr. Emmanuel Kumshem, who spoke at one of the sessions in Quan-Pan, thanked NOA for the initiative and called on his subjects to take advantage of the exercise to get more knowledge. He said that their awareness of FOI privileges would give them a sound sense of belonging, especially on the programmes of government affecting the rural residents. Chantu, who reviewed the exercise, described it as “very successful so far’’. He said that residents of Kwa, Chip and Piapung Districts in Qua-Pan Local Government Area had shown great enthusiasm, while those in Pankshin, Mikkang, and Shendam local governments had asked for more copies of the FOI Act. He said: “From what I have seen so far, the sensitisation campaign is going on smoothly, and is measuring up to our expectations. The massive turn out of people is an indication that even those at the rural levels are becoming more aware of the need to always yearn for knowledge. “As you can see, in every of the points that we visited the turnout of people was massive and also cuts across age, religious and literacy divides. This is very good,’’ he said.

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colleagues to ban the state media outfits from covering the activities of the House. He said: “After all, it is the assembly that approves the budget of all government agencies, including the state media outfits. Why are they denying them and the people of the state their right to enjoy the dividends of democracy. “Will they ask the executive to pay for such services when they are called upon, will the executive too pay for such services?" Mr. Baba Ibaku (PDP-Udege/ Loko), seconded the motion for the ban of the media outfits from covering the activities of the house. Ibaku, who is also the Chairman, House Committee on Information, called on the legislature to seek alternatives. According to him, the assembly has made arrangements for live coverage from the Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria's Precious FM Station in Lafia. Ruling on the motion, the Speaker of the House, Mr. Ahmed Musa, directed all workers from the state's owned media outfits to leave the assembly immediately. Musa (PDP-Nasarawa Central) also directed the House Committee on Information to carryout thorough investigation on the matter and report back its findings for action.

“This suggests then that our mission in NOA will not be in vain; by the time Nigerians are fully aware of the workings of this Act, it will be a catalyst for the actualisation of our developmental strides.’’ The director said public office holders would soon be compelled to become accountable and responsible, using the provisions and privileges offered by the law.

Information Nigeria hits milestone, rewards fans

Nasarawa Assembly bans state-owned media

he Nasarawa State House of Assembly has banned media outfits owned by the state from covering its activities. The assembly took the decision because the media organisations demanded payment from the assembly for live coverage of events at the assembly. The decision was taken after deliberating on a letter from the Nasarawa State Broadcasting Service (NBS), demanding N10 million monthly as against N500,000 for live coverage of the assembly's sitting. According to the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, Mr. Godiya Akwashiki (PDP-Nasarawa Eggon West) raised the issue at a plenary session while discussing the letter sent to the House by the management of the NBS. Akwashiki, who is also the Majority Leader of the House, told his colleagues that the General Manager of NBS, Mr. Yusuf Musa, said that five commissioners and some advisers had directed that the outside broadcast van (OB Van) should not be brought to the House for live coverage during proceedings. “It is uncalled for and unfortunate for the general manager to take that decision to deny the people of the state the live proceedings of the activities of the House,'' he said. Mr. Peter Mbucho (PDP-Akwanga North) also urged his

NOA Director- General, Mr. Mike Omeri

Founder of Information Nigeria, Kingsley Ezeani at a forum recently.

I

nformation Nigeria, an Information portal focused on providing interesting Nigerian content has become the first media website in Nigeria to attain one million fans on Facebook and by achieving this milestone has been acknowledged as the fastest

growing page ever in Africa by Socialbakers.com (A social media analytics website). The Information Nigeria Facebook page has, overtime, become a very interactive platform where Nigerians air their views openly and learn more about Nigeria. The page has grown from 60,000 fans in August last year to one million fans currently. The page has seen phenomenal engagement rates with over 200,000 people sharing content from the page each week and with over 100,000 cumulative comments every day. "It is no surprise that we are being acknowledged as the fastest growing page ever in Africa, we have created a community of Nigerians actively engaging and interacting with fellow Nigeri-

Nigerian blog shortlisted for UN award OLUWAFEMI OGUNJOBI

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Nigerian blog ‘MDGs in Africa’ is one of 60 shortlisted finalists out of 422 projects submitted from 147countries, for the 2013 World Summit Youth Award (WSYA) in Colombo, Sri Lanka. In the sixth edition of the World Summit Youth Award (WSYA), the quality of the submitted projects brought the contest to a whole new level. The online jury selected the best

projects that will compete to become one of the 18 winners of the WSYA 2013. The first round of evaluation came to an end after 3 weeks of intensive work in which 27 specialists reviewed 422 projects from 147 countries. The six categories of the World Summit Youth Award are: Fight Poverty, Hunger and Disease; Education for All; Power to Women; Create your Culture; Go Green; Pursue Truth. WSYA is an annual event and a network for young people, under

ans and despite the huge sums of money spent by other brands to grow on Facebook, our incredible organic growth is proof that you always win when you put people first" says Kingsley Ezeani; founder of Information Nigeria. To celebrate this incredible milestone, Information Nigeria is giving out a Blackberry Q10 device to its one millionth Facebook fan. Information Nigeria is also giving out a number of Blackberry Q10 devices to winners of various contests to be launched on the Facebook page. The Information Nigeria website (www.informationng.com) is ranked by Alexa.com as one of the most visited websites in Nigeria with over 15 million monthly views from Nigeria. 30 years of age using the internet, mobile phones and other digital media to pursue the Millennium Development Goals into action. This global contest is dedicated to young developers who employ digital technologies to turn United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) into action. ‘MDGs in Africa’ competes with 59 websites/apps, and other innovative youth projects. If it withstands critical inspection by jury of International renowned ICT-experts, an invitation to Colombo, Sri Lanka, awaits the producer.


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Media

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Ex-NUJ boss harps on developmental journalism

F

ormer National Officer of the Nigeria Union of Journalists, NUJ, Mr. Ayoade Adedayo, has said that developmental journalism is key to the growth of democracy in Nigeria. Adedayo, an ex-Vice President of the NUJ, Zone B, said this recently while delivering a lecture entitled, “Journalism, Democracy Inseparable’’ at Oke-Ila town hall in Ifedayo Local Government Area of Osun. He said it was high time that journalists realised that the success of democracy de-

pended on the vibrancy of the mass media. Adedayo said: “Vibrancy of the media does not mean witch-hunting or pulling the government down; it is about drawing the attention of the government to issues. “As much as we owe the government constant reportage, we will also be helping the government by shedding light on areas where it needs to improve. Objectivity and constructive journalism should be at the back of the mind of every Nigerian journalist. “Considering what we went

through before democracy came to be in Nigeria, we as professionals are principal stakeholders in ensuring that it is nurtured to maturity.’’ He said that a performing government needed no image laundering, adding that what it needed was public relations. Adedayo said that the media were obliged to provide government the needed feedback with a view to assisting the government in responding to the yearnings of the people. The lecture was organised by a volunteer group named ‘De-Raufs’

47

Media Abroad

Armstrong

Lance Armstrong settles with Sunday Times

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isgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong has reached a settlement with the Sunday Times, which he sued for £1m after it published an article suggesting he was using performance-enhancing drugs before his confession. The multiple winner of the Tour de France admitted last year to doping during his career, revealing his repeated denials were "one big lie". The American sued the newspaper nine years ago for libel following the article, seeking damages from the chief sports writer David Walsh and the deputy sports editor at the time, Alan English.

The Sunday Times was forced to settle the claim in 2006 and agreed to pay Armstrong £300,000, the newspaper reported. But after his confession the paper launched a high court bid to return the money, plus £720,000 in costs, and has reached a confidential settlement, the newspaper said on Sunday. It said Walsh and English had "reached a mutually acceptable final resolution to all claims against Lance Armstrong related to the 2012 high court proceedings and are entirely happy with the agreed settlement, the terms of the which remain confidential". theguardian.com

UNESCO chief urges inquiry into death of Egyptian journalists

L-R: Managing Editor, The Nation Newspapers, Mr. Waheed Odusile; Managing Director/Editor-in-Chief, The Sun Publishing Ltd, Mr. Tony Onyima and Chairman, Nigeria Union of Journalists, Lagos State Council, Comrade Deji Elumoye, during Onyima’s condolence visit to NUJ in Lagos, yesterday.

Enugu House of Assembly goes online DENNIS AGBO ENUGU

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he Enugu state House of Assembly has established a functional website, www.enugustatehoa. gov.ng, making it the third in the country to become part of the emergent e-legislation regime after Lagos and Kano state Houses of Assembly. The House is therefore to make use of e-legislation andoperational legislative budget offices. Commissioning the website yesterday, Speaker of the state house of assembly, Mr. Eugene Odoh said Website was made possible through partnership with DFID- SAVI Odoh stated that without law making, there would be no law interpretation and its execution, adding that the elegislation has improved capacity of the house members. He stated that it will help in both pre and post budget allocations as well as in research.

The speaker noted that it is an interactive forum for easy access to the legislators and for a maximum of 48 feedback by the representatives. Odoh described it as a dream come true, which according to him would make the lawmakers more responsible and alive to their responsibilities. According to him, “with the advent of the website thus embarking on e-legislation, we must be conscious of the fact that we are now under public surveillance and the world can now use this platform to asses us. “This noble project will also assist us and our staff in data collation, processing and information dissemination”. Odoh further stated that information played vital role in legislative processes and law making, adding “if it is technologically driven, it makes the job of the legislature easier and enhances

productivity. “Now we can access the website to acquaint and expose ourselves with what our counterparts all over the world are doing and domestically improve on it. “It will also assist us in conducting researches in relevant areas of specialized interest. Individuals can use this medium to determine our level of improvement and commitment to the people”. The Speaker commended the Enugu State Team Leader of SAVI, Pastor Mrs. Ifeoma Chukwuma, as well as the South-East Regional Adviser to the organization, Kevin Gager for providing the website and for assisting the Assembly to open a budget office. He said: “You have also moved a step further to assist us in our town hall meetings, assisted the House in furnishing the Legislative Budget Office for a smooth take-off ”.

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he head of the United Nations agency tasked with defending press freedom has denounced the deaths of three Egyptian journalists and called for a thorough investigation into these incidents. "I deplore the deaths of Ahmed Abdel Gawad, Mosab AlShami and Tamer Abdel Raouf," said the Director-General of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Irina Bokova, calling on Egyptian authorities "to do everything possible to ensure the security of media workers." Ms. Bokova expressed her distress and concern over the violence directed against the media

in Egypt, where five media professionals have been killed while carrying out their duties in the span of a few days. According to Reporters Without Borders, Mr. Gawad, a reporter for the Egyptian daily Al-Akhbar, and Mr. Al-Shami, a photojournalist for Rassd News Network, were killed on 14 August while covering demonstrations in the capital, Cairo. Both died from gunshot injuries. Raouf was the regional director of Egypt's Al-Ahram newspaper. He was shot dead at a vehicle checkpoint in Damanhur, in the Beheira Governorate in northern Egypt, on 19 August. Another journalist in the car, Hamed Al-Barbari, was injured.

Institute offers fellowships to journalists

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he Radcliffe Institute Fellowship Program is a scholarly community where individuals pursue advanced work across a wide range of academic disciplines, professions and creative arts. Stipends are funded up to US$70,000 for one year with additional funds for project expenses. Fellows receive office or studio space and access to libraries and other resources of Harvard University during the fellowship year, which extends from early

Sept. 2014 through May 31, 2015. Applications are judged on the quality and significance of the proposed project and the applicant’s record of achievement and promise. Visual, film, video, sound, and new media artists may apply for either one or two semesters. Journalism applicants are required to have worked professionally in the field for at least five years. The application deadline is Oct. 1. For more details visit ijnet.org


Cocktail

48

x

Thursday, August 29, 2013

FOR YOUR SUCCESS

WITH DR. DEJI FOLUTILE

Today's Tonic (197) “Anything that’s causing excitement within us is evidence of a Spirit message that’s saying, “You can do this – yes, you can!” – Wayne D. Dyer RESPECT YOUR INNER URGE! There is a saying that you can never be hungry for what does not exist. The fact that you are hungry for something or for an experience shows that the thing and the experience exist. It is good to obey our inner urge for greatness and prosperity and do whatever we can to turn the urge into physical realities. Moment by moment contemplation of our true identity can transform our lives and destiny. Our Divine essence is the true identity we should reflect upon when dealing with the obstacles of life. The way a caterpillar insect will see an obstacle will be different from the way butterfly will see the obstacle. Let’s remind ourselves that it is the caterpillar that is transformed to butterfly. When we keep growing on a constant basis, it won’t be long when we will be transformed and we will see our present hurdles as opportunities in disguise. What am I saying? Respect that hunger within you and go for your dreams. Don’t think that you will find things easy. Don’t think that because something is not easy, therefore it is impossible. The real you is unstoppable. Give room for yourself to manifest in style!

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Oddities

Stolen Bible returned 42 years after

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200-year-old Bible has been returned to Holy Trinity Church in England -- by the thief who stole it 42 years ago. The thief and his wife had come to the town from Germany to take an English language course in 1971, and some of the lessons were held at the

church. Disappointed with the lessons, the thief saw the bible and decided to take it with him and improve his English by reading it. Simon Scott, treasurer at the church, received a letter from the thief along with the massive, leatherbound and brass-clasped volume.

The letter explained the theft, and the thief ’s subsequent guilty conscience. The thief also admitted that although he took the Bible to improve his English, he “never got round to doing it.” The thief also said his wife was “pretty angry” with him for stealing the Bible.

“Whenever I came across the bible I would have this guilty conscience about doing it,” he wrote in the letter. “I’ve never managed to pluck up the courage to come and hand it back personally,” he wrote. “But now that I’ve retired, I’ve definitely decided to get on the right side of things.”

DR. DEJI FOLUTILE Tel: 08035219966 Email: deji.folutile@gmail.com Follow me on Twitter @folutile

Thieves steal cash machine from bank

P

olice in Liverpool, England, say they are searching for thieves who stole a cash machine from the outside wall of a bank. Three men snatched the automated teller machine from the NatWest bank

early Sunday, the Liverpool Echo reported. The suspects were seen dragging the ATM, which contained an unknown amount of money, to a dark coloured car. The bank was closed off as police investigated the scene.

The stolen Bible.

PHOTO: UPI


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Thursday, August 29, 2013

49

Community Mirror CBN is unaware of security concerns regarding cashlite policy by stakeholders.

Man arrested for filming police arrest

50

CBN GOVERNOR; SANUSI LAMIDO

Four killed in assassination attempt on transporter FRANCIS SUBERU

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police corporal, a driver and two suspected assassins were yesterday shot dead following an exchange of gunfire between the police and gunmen at Festac Area of Lagos. The Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, CEO, of the Young Shall Grow Motors, Mr. Vincent Obianodo narrowly escaped death as he was shot in the hand during the encounter. The hoodlums were said to have attempted killing the transporter, but were repelled by his police escort. The suspected assassins were said to have trailed him from his office and almost killed him as he

approached his residence at 4th Avenue, Festac Town. It was gathered that the gunmen fired at him, but his driver quickly sped off. The police escort from Patrol and Guard unit were said to have immediately engaged the hoodlums; even as the area ‘E’ commander, Mr. Dan Okoro was alerted and he mobilised his personnel

to the scene. Following the shootout, two of the suspects were killed, while a police Corporal, Ngozi Chijioke was also shot dead. A police officer, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said it was a typical assassination attempt. He said; “If it was a kidnap attempt, the gunmen would not have fired directly at him.

The way they fired at Obianodo showed they wanted him dead.” When contacted, the state Police Public Relation Officer, DSP, Ngozi Braide confirmed the incident, saying the transporter was accosted by some hoodlums on 22 Road, Festac Town. She said: “The hoodlums opened fire and his driver was killed. Obianodo was shot on his

arm and a police corporal was also killed. However, the police shot two of the hoodlums dead while others escaped with bullet wounds.” According to her, the hoodlums’Toyota Highlander Sport Utility Vehicle, SUV, was perforated with bullets; adding that the police recovered one AK 47, one AK 49 rifles and eight loaded magazines with ammunition. She said the motive is still unknown; “We cannot narrow it down to assassination, kidnapping or armed robbery until investigations are concluded”. However, the Commissioner of Police, Umar Manko has appealed to hospitals and the public to report anyone with bullet wounds to the nearest police station.

Man arrested for defiling 6-year-old girl

Jilted lover pours hot water on boyfriend

FEMI OYEWESO

ADEOLU ADEYEMO

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OSOGBO

ABEOKUTA

he Ogun State Police Command said it has arrested a man identified as Sanmi Oyewole, for defiling a 6-year-old girl in Abeokuta, the state capital. In a statement by the command’s Public Relations Officer, PRO, Muyiwa Adejobi said the 37year-old Oyewole committed the crime on Ayedi Street in Isale Ake Area of the metropolis. In the statement, Adejobi said the culprit confessed to committing the crime by luring the little girl into his room with a N50 note where he forcefully defiled her, even as the girl’s mother was away. He further stated that a medical examination carried out confirmed that the girl was defiled, stressing that the suspect has been taken to the State Criminal Investigation Department, SCID, Eleweran for further investigations. He also said that a blood stained bed sheet was recovered from the apartment of the suspect. Adejobi also explained the suspect fled immediately after the incident, but was later arrested by police detectives attached to Adatan Division in Abeokuta. The police, however, promised to work with necessary agencies, particularly the Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development to stop the menace.

Flood caused by the overflowing Gubi Dam in Bauchi yesterday.

PHOTO: NAN

NDDC: Monarch seeks appointment of indigenes into board HAKEEM GBADAMOSI AKURE

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he chairman of the Traditional Rulers of the Oil Minerals Production Communities of Nigeria, TROMPCON, the Amapetu of Mahin Kingdom, Oba Lawrence Omowole, has appealed to President Goodluck Jonathan to insist on equity in the appointment of a new board for the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC. In a written letter, Oba Omowole, urged the President to do justice in the appointment as stipulated by the Act establishing the Commission. The monarch who noted that the posts of the Managing Director and Executive Directors of the Commission had been rotating among the four states of Delta, Rivers, Bayelsa and Akwa Ibom, said that Ondo State has been short changed in the past. He said successive govern-

ments had failed to observe the NDDC Act in the appointments of the managing director and the executive directors, noting that section 12 provides that “there shall be for the commission, a managing director and two executive directors who shall be indigenes of the oil producing areas starting with member state of the commission with the highest production quantum of oil and shall rotate among them in the order of production”. Oba Omowole however urged the president to consider the state in the appointment of the managing director and executive directors in the new board. The national chairman of TROMPCON listed the nine member states in order of highest production as Rivers, Akwa Ibom, Delta, Bayelsa, Ondo, Imo, Abia, Edo, and Cross Rivers. He said the positions of managing director and executive director have only been circulated

amongst the states of Rivers, Akwa Ibom, Delta and Bayelsa. He said the monopoly of the three positions by the first four states is in breach of the provision of the NDDC Act and offensive to the spirit of equity, fairness and inclusiveness most desired for the unity, peace and development of the region. “Neither the founders of the commission, the National Assembly or the leaders of the region ever contemplated the inconceivable situation of an executive cartel within the commission.” He urged the commission to emulate TROMPCON where all zones in the region have produced national chairman and chief executive, saying it is a clear indication of equity within NDDC states Oba Omowole, however insisted that the offices of the managing directors and the two executive directors be rotated to include states so far excluded .

he birthday celebration of a male student of Osun State Polytechnic, Iree, Adelana Niyi, turned sour as his girl friend, Yetunde poured hot water for jilting her at the party. Community Mirror investigation revealed that Yetunde, who exchanged hot words with the celebrant for inviting other ladies and ignoring her, reportedly went berserk and poured boiling water on Adelana. Sources said before the incident, Adelana tried to pacify his girlfriend but to no avail, even as Yetunde rejected all entreaties, and went ahead to pour hot water on Niyi, causing him severe burns on the chest, neck and right hand. The incident attracted the attention of residents in the neighbourhood who rushed Adelana to a nearby hospital for medical attention, while Yetunde was handed over to the police. When contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, Mr. Tope Abiola said the incident took place outside the school premises; hence the authorities could do nothing about the situation. “It is very unfortunate and we sympathise with the victim and his parents. It is a criminal act, the school authorities could not do anything about it”, Abiola added.


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Community Mirror

Thursday, August 29, 2013

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

Man arrested for filming police arrest FRANCIS SUBERU

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he Lagos State Police Command has arrested a medical representative for attempting to film the arrest of a commercial motorcyclist. The representative, identified as Gregory Ekene Muonyililo, was arrested at the Amuwo Odofin Area of the state for trying to take video shots of policemen

allegedly harassing a commercial motorcyclist. Community Mirror gathered that the policemen attached to Area E Command, were trying to arrest a yetto-be identified commercial motorcyclist for violating traffic rule which restricted motorcycles on some roads. The victim’s brother, Onyeka told Community Mirror that: “Apparently the policemen set up a checkpoint in front of his

office and were arresting commercial motorcyclists. He started filming the scene with camera on his cell phone. “Although he should have been more discreet, they saw him and became agitated. They confiscated the phone from him after a few words were exchanged.” He added, “They went

back to their duty post with his phone and my brother went back to work. When they later came looking for him, he thought it was to give him back his phone but to his surprise, they arrested him. “They took him to the Special Anti Robbery Squad, SARS, Ikeja, where he was detained”. When contacted, the

state Police Public Relations Spokesperson, Ngozi Braide, a Deputy Superintendent of Police, debunked claims that the policemen were making monetary demands on the commercial motorcyclist. She also debunked claims that the victim was taken to SARS, but rather the X-Squad Department where investigation was ongoing.

She said, “I do not like it when people try to frame the police. I spoke to the man who was arrested and he never told me the police were asking for bribe from the commercial motorcyclist. “What he said was that he did not like the way the police were trying to forcefully arrest the commercial motorcyclist”.

Police cordons town hall over crisis FRANCIS SUBERU

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he crisis generated over the attempt to inaugurate the community town hall in Ota Area of Ogun State last Saturday has continued as Armoured Personnel Carrier, APC and mobile policemen were drafted to the ancient town. The senator representing Ogun West Senatorial district has described the protest as “provocative.” In a statement signed by his senior legislative aide, Kunle Somorin, he described the protest as “highly unnecessary.” According to the statement, “Senator Akin Odunsi considers the action as distractive and unworthy of reaction. He believes it does not have the blessing of the PDP leaders because notable members of the party who are of Ota origin, led by Senator Ayodeji Otegbola, Chief Mukadas Alani Akinde, among others, were at Olota’s palace to felicitate with him, where he was also conferred with title of the Maiyegun of Ota-Aworiland” The statement stated further that “We consider the dubious claims of these mischievous PDP leaders as total fallacy, spurious, provocative counter-productive and unnecessary war-mongering.” The senator further stated that, “There is a need to set the record straight that these disgruntled chieftains of the PDP or some discredited politicians acting in cahoots with them lack credibility and locus to speak for the Ota people” Senator Odunsi, while speaking on the town hall said “The story of the hall itself puts a lie to their claims that it was a PDP

project and part of President Goodluck Jonathan’s “Transformation Agenda. The Ijamido Hall is a community project of the OtaAwori people. It was commenced on April 14, 1979 and has suffered many setbacks in the past 34 years” The statement continued that “ Considering how dear the project is to the people, Senator Odunsi, after due consultations with the community leaders, the traditional authorities and people made it a top priority in his very first submission of constituency projects when he was elected into office in 2011 through a letter of January 19th, 2012 and addressed to Senator Muhammed Maccido, Chairman, Senate Committee on Appropriation and reflected on page 138 of the 2012 Appropriation Act (budget) under the Ministry of Agriculture & Rural Development “ “It is a well-known fact that members of the National Assembly are permitted to facilitate constituency projects dear to them in their senatorial districts and constituencies and all of them have commissioned such projects to the delight of their constituents “ the senator noted.

L-R: Olota of Ota, Oba Adetoro Oyede; Asiwaju of Ota, Chief Wasiu Ogundare and Senator representing Ogun West, Sen. Akin Odunsi, during the inauguration of projects in Ota community recently.

Digital Water Screen excites Lagosians

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pot-on-Media caused quite a stir at the live activation of Digital Water Screen held at the Lagoon Front near the popular Fish Market under the new bridge linking the Law School with Falomo on Lagos Island. Traffic was brought to a crawl as motorists, pedestrians and commuters struggled to catch a glimpse of the digital water advertising, the first of its kind in Africa. The spectators were

amused at the pictures and logos of corporate bodies being projected on water jet which serves as the canvas. This is another format for outdoor advertising which provides a unique canvas for a variety of projected media like digital video projection, laser graphics and large format slide projection. It offers a good blend of art and technology with a natural canvas. Some representatives of corporate organisations

could not ignore the opportunity to look in to inquire on the possibilities of placing their company adverts on this platform. LASAA’s Business Development manager, Mr. Siraj Bello who represented the company’s Managing Director, Mr. George Kayode Noah at the event, said that LASAA will be utilising the acres of water space in Lagos as well as the darkness in the evenings for this project. Managing Director of

Family perishes in midnight inferno

HENRY IYORKASE MAKURDI

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ire has claimed the lives of oneTerhemba Makaar, his wife and their four-year-old daughter in Makurdi, the Benue State. Community Mirror gathered that the fire started at 2am as the neighbours were awoken by cry for help from the deceased’s apartment who is a senior

official of the National Union of Road Transport Workers, NURTW. Police source said the cause of the inferno had not been identified, but investigations are on to unravel the mystery behind the tragedy. An eye witness who pleaded anonymity said: “We were suddenly woken up by shouts of fire, coming from the house. The flame and

smoke were very strong as the room had only one entrance door with burglar proof, so it became very difficult to go inside to rescue any of them”. It took the determined efforts of some youths to finally break into the house, even as Mr. Makaar, his wife and four-year-old daughter were burnt beyond recognition.

But their only son, nineyear-old Aondugu Makaar survived and was immediately rushed to St. Theresa Hospital, Makurdi, where he is currently receiving treatment. In his reaction, the Benue State Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, Deputy Superintendent Daniel Ezeala, said an investigation is in progress to unravel the immediate cause of the fire.

Spot on Media, Mr. Sesan Ogunro, said his company hopes to turn the lagoon front venue of the live activation of Digital Water Screen to a garden park, adding that this is another plus for Lagos. With this launch, Lagos has been added to the list of other cities like New York where Nike launched its Melo 8 campaign on the Hudson River, Toronto Halifax during the Nissan Altima product launch and Dubai global village, where digital water advertising is delivering remarkable value to brands. Present at the event were representatives of Forte, First Bank, Pepsi and a host of other. Similar technology was deployed by LASAA during the last Lagos 2012 countdown. The project, in partnership with Spot on Media is part of LASAA’s plans of developing a signage and outdoor advertisement master plan for t Lagos.


Thursday August 29, 2013

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

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World News

UN Council set for war in Syria as West readies attack

“When you are talking about Dr King’s speech at the March on Washington, you’re talking about one of the maybe five greatest speeches in American history”

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PAUL ARHEWE,

WITH AGENCY REPORTS

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N forces have launched air strikes on rebel positions near Goma, the main city in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, a spokesman has said. The UN had used “attack helicopters and its artillery” to push back an offensive launched by the M23 rebel group, the spokesman added. One United Nations peacekeeper was killed and three others were wounded in the operation. “The Congolese Armed Forces launched an attack against M23 positions on the Kibati heights, north of Goma ... We have just learned that one U.N. peacekeeper has been killed. Three others have been wounded,” Farhan Haq said. More than 80 people were reportedly killed in fighting last week. The UN has deployed a new intervention brigade to mineralrich DR Congo to tackle the rebels. The rebels seized Goma last November, but withdrew under diplomatic pressure. The UN peacekeeping mission in DR Congo, Monusco, was fighting alongside government forces, said Monusco spokesman Felix Basse, Associated Press (AP) news agency reports. “Monusco has enlisted all

–UNITED STATES PRESIDENT, BARACK OBAMA

UN forces launch air strike against Congo’s M23 rebels

A new UN brigade has the mandate to neutralise and disarm the rebels.

of its attack helicopters and its artillery... to push back the M23 offensive that is under way right now on the hills of Kibati,’’ he was quoted as saying. Kibati is about 15km (nine miles) north of Goma, a city of about 200,000 people. The M23 said the Congolese army and UN intervention brigade had attacked its forces in areas north of Goma with infantry, air strikes and heavy

weapons, Reuters news agency reports. Government and UN forces have been battling the rebels since last week. A doctor in Goma, Isaac Warwanamiza, told AP he had seen 82 bodies, including those of 23 government soldiers, on Sunday. The UN has an 18,000-strong force in DR Congo. Its intervention brigade,

PHOTO: REUTERS

made up of some 3,000 troops, has a mandate to disarm and neutralise rebel groups in the region. It is the strongest mandate ever given to such a force by the UN Security Council, UN officials say. The M23 is made up of deserters from the Congolese army. About 800,000 people have fled their homes since it launched its rebellion in 2012.

Banned Tunisian jihadist planned assassinations, secession –Ministry

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he freshly banned jihadist group Ansar al-Sharia was planning a series of political assassinations in Tunisia in its effort to establish an Islamic emirate in North Africa, the Interior Ministry said yesterday. The ministry disclosed Ansar’s plans one day after Prime Minister

Ali Larayedh declared it a terrorist organization and said the state now had proof the militants had killed two secular politicians and several soldiers this year. Ansar al-Sharia is the most radical Islamist group to emerge in Tunisia since secular autocratic ruler Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali was toppled in 2011, and poses a

Tunisia’s Interior Minister Lotfi Ben Jeddou (R) seen during a news conference PHOTO: REUTERS in Tunis, yesterday.

test to the authority of the moderate Islamist-led government. “This organization, which was collecting large quantities of weapons, planned to spread chaos and create a security vacuum through assassinations, before seizing power and establishing the first Islamic emirate in North Africa,” Mustapha Ben Amor, a senior ministry official, told reporters. Among its targets were Mustapha Ben Jaafar, chairman of the assembly writing a new constitution, former Foreign Minister Kamal Morjan, Amer Larayedh, a senior official of the governing Islamist party Ennahda, and several journalists, he said. Tunisia, which has taken an increasingly tough line against armed militants stoking uncertainty here, is struggling to save its nascent democracy amid popular discontent and the Egyptian army’s ousting of the Muslim Brotherhood government there.

Interior Minister Lotfi Ben Jeddou told the news conference that dozens of arrested Ansar members had made confessions that helped the government piece together its structure and plans. Among the evidence he showed were documents, videos and email and Skype exchanges his ministry had obtained that he said proved Ansar was loyal to al-Qaeda in Islamic Maghreb (AQMI). He also displayed a diagram depicting Ansar’s internal hierarchy. The ministry added that Ansar, which it said received its funding from like-minded groups in Yemen, Mali and Libya, also planned to attack factories and other economic sites in Tunisia. Ansar leader Saifallah Benahssine, also known as Abu Iyadh, is a former al Qaeda fighter in Afghanistan being sought by Tunisian police for allegedly inciting an attack on the U.S. embassy in Tunis in September 2012.

WORLD BULLETIN

Somalia strikes deal with former Islamist over port city

Somalia’s central government agreed yesterday to recognize a former Islamist commander as the interim leader of the southern Juba region, a deal that could help end months of clan fighting and cement plans for a federal nation. Diplomats said the pact signed in Ethiopia’s capital, after days of talks and delays, was a significant step towards stabilizing Somalia as it seeks to create devolved government, and could become a blueprint for sharing power in other areas. An official from Mogadishu’s government signed the deal with Sheikh Ahmed Madobe, who has been vying for control of Jubaland’s port city of Kismayu and its hinterland against a clan warlord widely seen as backed by Mogadishu. “We are hopeful that this process will be a starting point for Somalia to be a federal state,” Madobe said at the signing, through a translator. “There will be people who won’t be happy, but the fundamental issue is the interest of the Somali people.”

Egyptian police make 60 new arrests

Egyptian security officials say police have detained more than 60 supporters and members of the Muslim Brotherhood over the past 24 hours, including relatives of top leaders. The crackdown on the group, from which ousted President Mohammed Morsi hails, started shortly after the 3 July coup. It intensified this month after a deadly security force raid that cleared out two of the group’s sit-ins. Officials, speaking anonymously in line with regulations, said on Wednesday that they arrested Saad el-Shater, the 23-year-old son of the Brotherhood’s imprisoned deputy leader and financier Khairat el-Shater. The elder al-Shater is charged in relation to the killings of protesters outside the group’s headquarters in June.

Ethiopia’s Jews repatriated to Israel

About 450 Ethiopians of Jewish descent have been repatriated to Israel, concluding an Israeli government-backed scheme to relocate the community. Their migration was “historic”, Israel’s Minister of Absorption, Sofa Landver is quoted as saying. Many members of the Falash Mura community lived in poor conditions in northern Ethiopia. The Falash Mura’s ancestors converted to Christianity under pressure in the 19th Century. They have been waging a decades-long campaign to be allowed to settle in Israel. Their campaign has been plagued by controversy, as some Israelis questioned their Jewish links while others accused the government of not doing enough to help them.


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World News

Thursday August 29, 2013

National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

UN Council set for war in Syria as West readies attack

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he United Nations Security Council was set for a showdown over Syria yesterday as Britain sought authorization for Western military action that Russia called premature and seems certain to block. U.N. chemical weapons experts investigating a gas attack that killed hundreds of civilians in rebel-held suburbs of Damascus made a second trip over the front line to take samples. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon pleaded for them to be given another four days to complete their mission and a U.N. official said there was some friction with impatient Western governments who show little interest in waiting for the inspectors’ report. The United States and European and Middle Eastern allies have already

pinned the blame on President Bashar al-Assad’s forces. Even if a skeptical Russia blocks U.N. approval, U.S.-led air strikes on Syria, possibly lasting several days, look all but certain - though the timing is far from clear. The UK National Security Council has agreed the “world should not stand by” after the “unacceptable use” of chemical weapons by the Syrian government, Prime Minister David Cameron said. The emergency meeting agreed a recommendation to be considered by the cabinet on Thursday. Britain has also drafted a UN resolution authorising “necessary measures” to protect civilians. This will go before the UN Security Council in New York later on Wednesday.

Bomb attacks kill 71 in Iraq, 201 injured

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t least 71 people were killed and 201 wounded in a series of bombings and other attacks across Baghdad on Wednesday, police and medical sources said, extending the worst wave of sectarian bloodshed in Iraq for at least five years. It was not immediately clear who carried out the attacks, which appeared coordinated, but Sunni Muslim insurgents including the al Qaeda-affiliated Islamic State of Iraq have significantly stepped up bombings this year. More than two years of civil war in neighbouring Syria have aggravated deeprooted sectarian divisions in Iraq, fraying the country’s uneasy coalition of Shi’ite Muslim, Sunni Muslim and Kurdish factions. In Sadr City, an impoverished Shi’ite district in

Baghdad’s northeast, two car bombs killed seven people. A restaurant owner said he saw an attacker just before one of the explosions. “A man parked his car in front of the restaurant. He got breakfast and drank his tea. (Then) I heard a huge explosion when I was inside the kitchen,” the owner, who requested anonymity, told Reuters. “When I went outside, I saw his car completely destroyed and he had disappeared. Many people were hurt.” Another car bomb killed seven people and wounded 23 in Jisr Diyala in southeastern Baghdad, police and medics said. The Interior Ministry described the attacks were “terrorist explosions” but said the number of people killed was only 20, with 213 wounded.

Space For Sale

•Terrorists will strike Europe with chemical weapons, says Syria

The resolution condemns the use of chemical weapons and demands that the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad cease to use such weapons. The Syrian government has denied it is responsible for a suspected chemical attack near Damascus on 21 August in which hundreds of people are reported to have died, blaming opposition forces. Meanwhile, Syria’s deputy foreign minister said yesterday that the United States, Britain and France helped “terrorists” use chemical weapons in Syria, and that the same groups would soon use them against Europe. Speaking to reporters outside the Four Seasons hotel in Damascus, Faisal Maqdad said he had presented U.N. chemical weapons inspectors with evidence that

A Free Syrian Army fighter passing by the convoy of U.N. vehicles carrying a team of United Nations chemical weapons experts at one of the sites of an alleged chemical weapons attack in Damascus. PHOTO: REUTERS

“armed terrorist groups” had used sarin gas in all the sites of alleged attacks. “We repeat that the terrorist groups are the ones that used (chemical weapons) with the help of the United States, the United Kingdom and France, and

this has to stop,” he said. “This means these chemical weapons will soon be used by the same groups against the people of Europe,” he added. That has set Western leaders on a collision course with Moscow, Assad’s main

arms supplier, as well as with China, which also has a veto in the Security Council and has criticized what it sees as a push for Iraqstyle “regime change” - despite U.S. denials that President Barack Obama aims to overthrow Assad.

Obama, marchers mark 50 years since King’s ‘Dream’ speech

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housands of marchers gathered on Washington’s national mall yesterday to commemorate civil rights leader Martin Luther King’s famous “I have a dream” speech 50 years ago as activists said his goal of racial harmony remains elusive. Remarks from President

Barack Obama, the first black U.S. president, and bell ringing around the world marked the moment that King ended his landmark address, which came to symbolize the struggle for equality among blacks and whites in America. Marchers, many wearing T-shirts with King’s

Crowds gathering on the National Mall to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington, yesterday. PHOTO: REUTERS

Castro condemns report that Cuba blocked Snowden’s travel

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etired Cuban president Fidel Castro blasted on Wednesday a report in a Russian newspaper that his country buckled to U.S. pressure and blocked former U.S. spy agency contractor Edward Snowden from travelling through Cuba to exile in Latin America. Castro, who ceded power to his brother Raul in 2006, and is rarely seen or heard from in public, said the article in the Kommersant newspaper on Monday was a “lie” and “libel.”

Castro, in a column on various international issues, from Syria and Egypt to robots doing police work and Snowden, and carried by official media, hailed Snowden and lashed out at U.S. spying as repugnant. “It is obvious that the United States will always try to pressure Cuba ... but not for nothing has (Cuba) resisted and defended itself without a truce for 54 years and will continue to do so for as long as necessary,” Castro wrote.

face on them, began their walk near the U.S. Capitol and carried signs such as “Stop the new Jim Crow” and “Every Texan deserves a vote.” Fighting restrictive voting rights laws that Democrats say hurt minorities, combating joblessness and reducing gun violence among African Americans are among the issues that civil rights leaders put at the forefront of their efforts in 2013. “This march was supposed to be about jobs, but it’s about a lot more,” said marcher Ash Mobley, 27, of Washington who said she was there to represent her grandmother, who had been at the 1963 event. The marchers were led by a line of military vet-

erans and people who had been at the 1963 march, their arms linked. People sang “We Shall Overcome” and other civil rights anthems. Participants gathered at the Lincoln Memorial, site of King’s address on August 28, 1963, for speeches from dignitaries and civil rights leaders. The ceremony will include bell ringing at 3 p.m. EDT, 50 years to the minute after King ended his clarion call of the civil rights movement with the words “Let freedom ring.” About 50 U.S. communities or organizations have said they will ring bells. The Swiss city of Lutry and Tokyo are also taking part, said Atlanta’s King Center, one of the event’s organizers.

Scientists create human ‘mini-brain’

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iomedical scientists have turned human stem-cells into peasized mini-brains with a neural structure similar to the brain of a developing embryo. These “cerebral organoids”, as they are termed formally, are the best living model of a human brain created so far. The scientists at the Institute of Molecular Biotechnology of the Austrian Academy of Sciences (IMBA) in Vienna have already used their mini-brains to investigate one neuronal

disorder, microcephaly, in which the brain does not grow properly. They hope to apply the technique to more complex conditions such as autism and schizophrenia, for which no good animal models are available. “In addition to the potential for new insights into the development of human brain disorders, mini-brains will be of great interest to the pharmaceutical and chemical industry,” said Madeline Lancaster, first author of the study published online in the journal Nature.


National Mirror www.nationalmirroronline.net

North

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Police arrest 20 robbery suspects, recover arms, others AUGUSTINE MADU-WEST KANO

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he Kano State police command yesterday said it has arrested 20 armed robbery suspects in renewed raids on criminal hide-outs and other black spots in the state. Also recovered from the suspects, who were paraded by men of the state anti-robbery squad at the Bompai Headquarters of the police command, were assorted weapons, ammunition, stolen vehicles and others. The items displayed by the state Police Commissioner, Mr. Musa Daura, include AK47 rifles, automatic and locally made pistols, 18 rounds of cartridges, and as-

sorted ammunition. The police commissioner, who addressed journalists yesterday on the performance of the command, also displayed 20 recovered stolen vehicles and 12 motorcycles from car/motorcycle snatching syndicates now in police net. He told journalists that the feat was one of the most remarkable achievements and breakthrough of his command lately and commended the Kano public for their support and cooperation in terms of furnishing officers with timely and necessary information which accounted for the success recorded. The police chief said most of the paraded suspects were arrested for conspiracy to

commit armed robbery while others were held for offences ranging from illegal possession of prohibited fire arms and theft of cars and motorcycles, pointing out that they have all confessed their involvement in the said crimes. The police commissioner also recalled that in midAugust, detectives from the command arrested one Musa Ibrahim, Dauda Mohammed, Ali Sheriff and Abdullahi Salisu, for allegedly conspiring to form a gang of robbers which had been terrorising residents of the capital city. “They have all made confessional statements which led to the recovery of two Honda vehicles and dangerous weapons” said the com-

missioner. He said his men sighted a Toyota Liteace bus with five occupants at a village in Dawakin Tofa in a suspicious manner, “they were accosted and arrested, during interrogation, they confessed that their mission was to carry out a robbery operation in the area. Daura also said that among the suspects in police net was one Ibrahim Salisu Aminu, a successful farmer who specialises in hiring young men for the purpose of stealing motorbike for him for a fee. The suspect, he added confessed that prior to his arrest, he had 10 employees for that job while six stolen motor-cycles were recovered from him.

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‘Coconut water helps blood flow, reduces plaque formation’

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dietician with Garki Hospital, Abuja, Dr Yemisi Olowookere, said yesterday that coconut water helps dilate blood vessels, improves blood flow and reduces plaque formation in the body. Olowookere, who is also the chief executive officer of Diet365 Global Website, told the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, in Abuja that the most essential thing about coconut water is its low carbohydrate and sugar contents and that it is 99 percent free from fat and oil. The dietician said apart from its being 99 per cent free from fat, it has been proven to be a universal natural donor as it contained a lot of vitamins and minerals that are necessary for healthy human nutrition. “As a natural isotonic drink, coconut water has the same level of the electrolyte balance as plasma of blood. “Its composition is high in thiamine, magnesium, niacin, phosphorus, vitamin B12, iron, vitamin B6, potassium, foliate, zinc, pantothenic acid, sodium, riboflavin, calcium and manganese,” she said. According to her, the minerals, potassium and magnesium in the coconut water, help in reducing high blood pressure, adding that

it was packed full with potassium more than banana. Olowookere said coconut water was a wonderful energy drink as it had less sugar and sodium content compared to most sports drinks. “It is the best choice to rehydrate, replenish and boost the body’s energy levels after any strenuous activity or workout. “Taking it on a regular basis could be quite effective at regulating blood pressure due to its high concentration of potassium.” Olowookere further revealed that coconut water was a natural electrolyte and isotonic beverage, which helps to increase the body’s metabolism and as such could be of benefit to people struggling with weight. She also said coconut water acts as a detoxifying agent and the strongest antidote against any form of poison in the body. “Coconut water has a therapeutic effect on the urinary and reproductive systems; it is reported to clear up bladder infection, remove kidney stones and improve sexual vitality. “It is promoted as natural sports drink that could be consumed before, during or after a workout, to provide replenishment and rehydration applicable for all levels of activity,” she said.

APC will oust PDP in Kogi –Stakeholder Speaker, Nasarawa State House of Assembly, Hon. Musa Ahmed-Mohammed, addressing PDP youths that paid him a visit over Tuesday’s attack at the House, yesterday.

WALE IBRAHIM

House orders Yuguda to suspend Education Commissioner

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EZEKIEL TITUS BAUCHI

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he Bauchi State House of Assembly yesterday called on state governor, Isa Yuguda, to suspend and probe the state Commissioner for Education, Alhaji Ibrahim Aminu, for failing to end the lingering crisis retarding the sector. The House took the decision as a result of the deplorable and deteriorating condition of public schools in the state and the need to entrench quality education. The motion to suspend the commissioner was moved by the Chairman, House Committee on Education, Hon. Abdullahi Muktar, representing Udubo Constituency. During the deliberation, the House noted with dis-

may that the education sector is in limbo, describing the situation as disturbing, considering the huge investments made by the government in the sector. The House also observed with dismay that the failure of the Ministry of Education to improve the fortunes of the state in the sector has been responsible for the mass failure recorded in NECO and WAEC examinations in all public schools compared to private ones. Some of the reasons, according to the House, are poor conditions of service for teachers, who implements education policies and programmes as their salaries are not paid as at when due. The House also lamented existing poor infrastructure in public schools, such as

learning materials and classrooms even as pupils are made to sit on the floor using mats in place of chairs. The lawmakers blamed the poor conditions of the public schools on lack of sincere leadership; even as they also complained about sharp practices in the policy of direct feeding of pupils. Meanwhile, the House has mandated the Public Accounts Committee to look into the causes of delay in the execution of ongoing road projects in the state from 2008 to date. This followed the presentation of a comprehensive report of the high-powered committee to investigate the causes of delay in road construction by the administration with a view to hasten their completion. The committee had la-

mented that over N12 billion was released by the state government for the construction of four access roads in the three senatorial zones with down-payment of over 60 per cent of the projects funds, yet only 20 to 40 per cent of the job has been carried out. The committee indicted the state Ministry of Works and Rural Development and two others construction companies after interactive session with the stakeholders at different times to unearth issues that require clarifications. The committee said China - Zhangao Construction Company collected N5.2 billion for the execution of Ningi-Bura road while Sino Rich Fields collected N2.7 billion in a contract worth N2.9 billion for the construction of Alkaleri-Futuk road.

LOKOJA

chieftain of the All Progressives Congress, APC, and a former gubernatorial candidate on the platform of the defunct Alliance for Democracy, AD, in 2007, Chief Yakubu Rotimi Obadofin, has said that the APC is ready to oust the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the Kogi governorship election in 2015. Obadofin, who said this while fielding questions from journalists shortly after receiving an award of excellence bestowed on him and other recipients by the publisher of Kogi Affairs yesterday in Lokoja, said the time has come to wrest power from the PDP. He said in the 22 years of the creation of Kogi State, much still needed to be done in terms of infrastructural development,

adding that some of the states created along with Kogi are doing well in area of development. The former gubernatorial candidate said as from 2015, APC will continue to deliver genuine dividends of democracy like other states where progressive elements have taken charge, noting that there has been clamour for change by the electorate in the state. He lamented that the 10 years of domination by the PDP in the state has not yielded positive results as lots of resources have been wasted during the past administrations. In a reaction, Chairman of the PDP in the state, Alhaji Hassan Salawu, said the PDP has contributed immensely to the development of the state, adding that the oppositions’ outcry will not deter the development strides of the present administration.


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Thursday, August 29, 2013

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FG battles to secure pipelines,

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ith 187 billion standard cubic feet (scf) of natural gas, over 36 billion barrels of crude oil and 4,000 megawatts (mw) of electricity, Nigeria remains a major energy nation in the Gulf of Guinea. The production, refining/transmission, distribution and marketing of products such as crude oil, natural gas, petroleum products and electricity are carried out through the use of key infrastructure, especially pipelines and distribution lines. Take the case of West African Gas Pipeline (WAGP) as an example. The 678 kilometre WAGP links the existing Escravos-Lagos pipeline at the Nigeria Gas Company’s Itoki Natural Gas Export Terminal in Nigeria and proceeds to a beachhead in Lagos. From there, it moves offshore to Takoradi in Ghana, with gas delivery laterals from the main line extending to Cotonou, Benin Republic, Lome, Togo and Tema in Ghana. The Escravos-Lagos pipeline system has a capacity to deliver 800 MMscfd to users. The main offshore pipeline runs East to West at an average water depth of 35 metres though some sections such as the South East of Ghana, South of Lome and the Benin – Nigerian frontier ranges between 50 to 70 metres. The main pipeline is 20 inches in diameter. Cotonou and Lome laterals are eight inches respectively while the Tema lateral is 18 inches. The termination point at Takoradi (Aboadzi) forms part of the main pipeline. WAGP transports purified natural gas free of heavy hydrocarbons, liquids and water, ideally suited as fuel for power plants and industrial applications. Eightyfive per cent of the gas is for power generation while the remaining is for industrial applications. Also, the crude oil that Nigerian Petroleum Investments Management Services (NAPIMS), a subsidiary of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) makes available for local consumption is usually sent to the refineries through a network of pipelines. On completion of refining, the petroleum products such as petrol, diesel, kerosene and cooking gas are distributed through pipelines. The NNPC that emphasises the importance of pipelines stated that: “PPMC receives crude oil from the NNPC unit called the NAPIMS. PPMC then supplies the crude oil to the NNPC local refineries however; petroleum products are sometimes imported to supplement local production when the local refineries are unable to process enough for the country’s needs. It further stated that: “Petroleum products either imported or refined locally are received by the PPMC through import jetties and pipelines and distributed through pipelines to depots strategically located all over Nigeria called bridging to designated retail outlets. There is also provision for using the rail system to move products from some of the PPMC depots. Unfortunately, these facilities are under serious threat as a result of increased encroachment. National Mirror’s investigations in Gulf of Guinea, including South West, Niger Delta showed that vandals have devised a new strategy locating

Gangs involved in oil theft have for many years located their bases close to the nation’s petroleum pipelines. This enables them to steal crude oil and refined products worth billions of naira. UDEME AKPAN, who visited notorious areas, including Arepo and some parts of the Niger Delta reports the government’s efforts in the bid to win the battle against oil theft.

An electricity vandal electrocuted in Benue

their operational bases on or close to the pipelines without the knowledge of security agencies. Findings showed that the nation has lost commercial quantity of crude and products valued at billions of dollars in the past few years. Spokesman of the Pipelines Products Marketing Company (PPMC) Limited, a subsidiary of NNPC, Mr. Nasir Imodagbe, disclosed in a telephone interview that: “We have heard about situations where people deliberately locate their structures

close to our facilities, especially pipelines so that they can steal our products. This is despite the Right of Way we have secured for the pipelines. However, the NNPC seemed bent on tackling the development. Our correspondent found out that it has embarked on massive clearing of illegal structures in and around oil and gas pipelines as part of measures adopted to tackle vandalism and oil theft in all parts of the nation. The exercise is further targeted at securing the facilities for maximum operations,

THE EXERCISE IS FURTHER TARGETED AT SECURING THE FACILITIES FOR MAXIMUM OPERATIONS, INCLUDING RELEASING COMMERCIAL CRUDE OIL FOR EXPORT TO BOOST FOREIGN EXCHANGE, AS WELL AS IMPROVED SUPPLY OF PETROLEUM PRODUCTS FOR DOMESTIC CONSUMPTION

People scooping fuel oblivious of the danger

Kegs belonging to pipeline vandals arrested in Ogun State

including releasing commercial crude oil for export to boost foreign exchange as well as improved supply of petroleum products for domestic consumption. The clearing started at Arepo in Ogun State where hoodlums have vandalised and stole products in the past few years. The NNPC later moved to other parts of the nation, especially the Niger Delta where a lot of works have been done to rescue pipelines from attacks. Specifically, investigations showed that illegal structures were removed from major lines, especially the Aba-Port Harcourt line which operations were scuttled for several months because of hoodlums. PPMC records showed that over 5, 000 arrests have been made across the nation. While some of the cases have been resolved, others are still pending in various courts. The Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Mr. Andrew Yakubu, disclosed that an indigenous engineering firm, ENIKKOM, was mobilised to redirect the pipeline from the reach of vandals with modern technology to monitor the facility regularly. Yakubu stated that NNPC has started matching words with action to ensure that vandalism and oil theft become a thing of the past. He disclosed that the NNPC has also built a watch tower and police post to ensure that the hot spots are completely secured. The GMD stated that the project has the full support of President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan and top leadership of the security agencies and appealed to state governments, local governments, host communities and other stakeholders to join hands with the NNPC to stamp out pipeline vandalism for the growth of the economy. The Managing Director of the PPMC,


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Insight

Thursday, August 29, 2013

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power installations

Mr. Haruna Momoh, said with 258 tanks in the 21 depots and a holding capacity of 2.6 billion litres of petroleum products and with the over 5,000kms network of pipelines across the country, the NNPC is ready to constantly supply products to the nation. He assured consumers that NNPC would continue to ensure that fuel queues remain a thing of the past. The Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Azu-

buike Ihejirika, said it is the duty of the army to support civil authority and that the army has mobilised to Arepo in order to re-establish the right of way of the NNPC pipeline from Mosimi to Ibadan within 90 days, assuring that the military engineers would deliver on their mandate. A visit to Arepo showed that the swampy terrain has been opened up, making it possible for security and other personnel to monitor the area unlike in the past. This has attracted the comments of some stakeholders. For instance, the National President of Oil and Gas Service Providers Association of Nigeria, (OGSAN), Mr. Colman Obasi, stated in a telephone interview that the measure would assist to achieve stability in fuel distribution in the nation. He said: “Many of the nation’s downstream infrastructure are located in remote areas, including Villages in the Niger Delta and other parts of the nation.” Obasi called for the paying of more attention to these and other places as provided for in the proposed Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB). Specifically, Obasi stated that the allocation of 10 per cent funds to host communities in the new PIB may likely encourage residents in such communities to assist in watching over such facilities. The rescue mission is not targeted at pipelines alone. Many Electricity Distribution Companies (DISCOs) and State Governments have embarked on massive demolition of illegal structures constructed under power installations nationwide. The demolition is based on the dangers which the instillations, especially power lines can cause to people and Organisations. Investigations showed that parties decided to move into action when many DISCOs compiled and handed over comprehensive lists

THE RESCUE MISSION IS NOT TARGETED AT PIPELINES ALONE. MANY ELECTRICITY DISTRIBUTION COMPANIES (DISCOS) AND STATE GOVERNMENTS HAVE EMBARKED ON MASSIVE DEMOLITION OF ILLEGAL STRUCTURES CONSTRUCTED UNDER POWER INSTALLATIONS NATIONWIDE

Fire outbreak caused by pipeline vandalism

Suspected pipeline vandals paraded by security agents

Fire fighters battling to extinguish fire in Lagos

of structures erected under their installations to the different State governments. For instance, the Lagos State Government is working closely with the Ikeja Electricity Distribution Plc and Eko Electricity Plc to demolish the illegal structures, including residential houses, offices and shops. A Lagos State Government official who preferred not to be named said: “It is necessary for relevant stakeholders to work to together in order to complement themselves. For instance, the States have the powers to demolish such structures but may not know all facilities that are affected.” He said the DISCOs have a comprehensive list of affected installations but don’t have the authority to carry out such demolition. Spokesman of the Ikeja Electricity Distribution Plc, Mr. Pekun Adeyanju, who confirmed increased threats to power lines in Lagos said: “We have noticed an increase in the number of people who have constructed illegal structures under our installations.” The situation is not different in Oyo State as investigations showed that many people have erected structures too close to power installations in the State. Public Relations Manager of Electricity Distribution Plc; Mr. Jide Oyenuga, said in an interview that there has been a noticeable increase in the number of people building structures under power lines in Oyo State. Oyenuga who disclosed that the firm has organised a stakeholders forum to take a critical look at the implications of the development said: “The Oyo State Government that played active role in the engagement promised to intervene. We have started noticing some changes.” The development is not limited to Oyo State. Investigations showed the operations of the Enugu Electricity Distribution Plc

have been greatly threatened as a result of the construction of buildings under its power lines, including 330KV, 132KV, 33KV and 11KV. About 82 locations have already been identified in areas such Okigwe, 400 in Ariaria, Aba, and 412 in Orlu. The Public Affairs Manager of Enugu Electricity Distribution Plc, Mr. Eseme Udoh said the illegal structures abound despite repeated warnings. He said: “The Enugu State Government is assisting us to check the development. For instance, the government has evacuated all tankers and other trucks under high tension lines after our sensitization”. Udoh stated that many illegal structures are still under the power lines. This is not a good development because occupants of such structures can easily be electrocuted, if any problem occurs on such power lines. The Chairman of Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) Mr. Sam Amadi said in an interview that the Commission has already written to support the Lagos State Government to carry out the demolition. NERC is an independent regulatory agency which was inaugurated on 31st October 2005 as provided in the Electric Power Sector Reform Act 2005. It is mandated to carry out the monitoring and regulation of the electricity industry, issuance of licences to market participants, and ensure compliance with market rules and operating guidelines. These and other measures may go a long way to deter culprits from invading the nation’s valuable assets. But close observers still feel that more drastic measures are needed to discourage hoodlums from tampering with the facilities put in place to ensure crude oil, petroleum products and electricity are supplied to all parts of the nation.


WORLD RECORD

Shortest flash of light Vol. 03 No. 697

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Thursday, August 29, 2013

Choosing a redeeming secretary for PDP

rdinarily, one should have no business worrying about who becomes the National Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). After all, according to conventional wisdom, a political party is a private association. But this is not exactly correct. More realistically, one can define a political party as a private association with a public purpose. It is this “public purpose” character of a political party that justifies our interest in who governs in a political party. The PDP has a chance to begin to redeem its image this time by choosing a National Secretary any ruling party will be proud to have. This candidate is Professor Tunde Adeniran. Here is why we think so: Professor Adeniran is a foundation member of PDP, and founding members are never happy to see their dreams and

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N150

On 20 June 2008, Dr Ferenc Krausz (Austria) along with a team of physicists from the Max-Planck Institute of Quantum Optics in Garching, Germany, announced that they had achieved light flashes lasting only 80 attoseconds.

ritish boxer, Anthony Ogogo, has been forced to withdraw from his planned bout in Las Vegas on September 14 due to injury. The 24-year-old, who stopped Gary Boulden in the fifth round in Hull in July, had been due to fight

Guest Columnist

Douglas

Eze

what they have labored for wasted. He will do everything possible to redeem the image of the party as originally conceived. Adeniran combines skill in practical grassroots politics with intellectual wisdom in politics. One skill comes from the fact that he brought PDP to his native Ekiti State and has also participated in the governorship race. The other skill is the fact that he is a Professor of Political Science. Politics is not a dirty game as most Nigerians wrongly think. It is a noble activity with rules and principles, and the professor in him will equip him to teach PDP how to do away with the dirt in ‘PDP politics’ and return its nobility. Africa’s leading political party needs such salvation! Adeniran has accumulated immense administrative experience. You remember he was once the secretary of MAMSER, the Chairman of National Orientation Agency (NOA) and the Minister of Education. As a Minister of Education, he presided over a ministry with the largest number of parastatals in the nation. As if this is not enough, he went on to serve as Nigeria’s ambassador to Germany and more recently as the Chairman of the Governing Board of Universal Basic Education. These have equipped him with the level of administrative competence no previous PDP secretary has been. It is not surprising that it is the same Adeniran that organized the most credible presidential primary PDP has seen. Yes, in January 2011, Professor Adeniran headed a 43-member electoral panel that gave Nigeria its best presidential primary ever.

PROF HAS THE DIPLOMAT’S SENSE OF DECORUM AND PROPRIETY, NOT THE IMPROPRIETY AND LOQUACITY OF THE AVERAGE

NIGERIAN

POLITICIAN In the process of these numerous assignments, the former ambassador has garnered immense national exposure. His job as chairman of UBEC involved him in dealing with all the 36 states of the federation. It is exactly this exposure and familiarity with all parts of the country that being the National Secretary of the ruling party will require of him. Adeniran is an incurable democrat and this comes from his humble character and his Political Science exposure. It is easy to ask people to be democratic when they have democracy in them. Adeniran has democracy in his blood and this makes him eminently qualified to supervise the internal democracy project in the PDP. Knowledge and ideas rule the world and this man is a quintessential man of knowledge and ideas. As a scholar-diplomat you cannot have a better generator and deployer of ideas and knowledge. As the chief administrative and accounting officer of the party, Prof will encourage extensive use of research as a tool for the

Sport Extra Boxing: Injury knocks Ogogo out of Las Vegas duel on the Floyd Mayweather Jnr-Saul Alvarez undercard. However, to ensure Ogogo remains fit and healthy for the remainder of the year he has pulled out of the showdown in the States.

Ogogo, a bronze medallist in the middleweight division at the 2012 Olympics, is expected to return to the ring as soon as possible and hopes to fight at least twice more before the end of the calendar year.

organizational development of the PDP. Tunde Adeniran is public-spirited and he is very strongly steeped in the public service ethos. The problem of most of our politicians is that they are in politics to serve their personal interest. There are strong indications that Adeniran is motivated by the desire to serve the public interest and not the interest of self or his group or community, but the interest of all. For him the legitimate worry should be how to make PDP serve the public good in Nigeria. Political power is not for personal aggrandizement; it is for solving the problems of society and improving the human condition. Prof has the diplomat’s sense of decorum and propriety, not the impropriety and loquacity of the average Nigerian politician. He has integrity and manifest fairness in his human relations, not the greed and duplicity of the average Nigerian politician. His presence at the National Secretariat of the PDP will itself constitute good political education because he will bring transparency, sophistication, fairness and effectiveness into the running of the party. As a people, we are not noted for fitting round pegs into round holes. But for once let us try this time to match people into their area of core competence. Let the Transformation Agenda begin with the ruling party and with people who have ideas that can transform! The job of the convention delegates should not be to find job for somebody as National Secretary. Their assignment is to vote in somebody who will bring value to that office and make PDP and the nation proud. Now that they have another chance to make a qualitative difference to the PDP through their vote, they should not waste this vote and chance. Professor Tunde Adeniran as National Secretary of PDP will be one of the best things to happen to Africa’s biggest ruling party. Dr. Eze, a public policy analyst and communications consultant, wrote from Abuja

“I’m hugely disappointed to have to pull out from this card as this has robbed me of the honour to be involved in one of the biggest cards in recent history,” he said yesterday, adding, “I’m hoping to get back in the ring as soon as possible.”

Ogogo

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