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23 minute read

Lagos

- The heartbeat of Nigeria

The UN estimated the city's population at 11.2 million in 2011. The New York Times estimates that it is now at least twenty-one million, surpassing Cairo as Africa's largest city. It is clear that whatever the size, and however the city is defined, Lagos is the center of one of the largest urban areas in the world. With a population of perhaps 1.4 million as recently as 1970, its growth has been stupendous. Rice estimates that Lagos generates about a quarter of Nigeria's total gross domestic product. The center of Nigeria's modern economy, Lagos has many millionaires, but the UN estimates that two thirds of the population are slum dwellers. Babajide Sanwo-Olu -Governor, Lagos State

Lagos (Yoruba: Èkó) is a city in the Nigerian state of Lagos. The city, with its adjoining conurbation, is the largest in Nigeria, as well as on the African continent. It is one of the fastest growing in the world, and also one of the most populous urban

agglomerations.[Lagos is a major financial center in Africa; the megacity has the highest GDP, and also houses one of the largest and busiest ports on the continent.

Lagos initially emerged as a port city which originated on a collection of islands, which are contained in the present day Local Government Areas (LGAs) of Lagos Island, Eti-Osa, Amuwo-Odofin and Apapa; the islands are separated by creeks, fringing the southwest mouth of Lagos Lagoon, while protected from the Atlantic Ocean by barrier islands and long sand spits such as Bar Beach, which stretch up to 100 km (60 mi) east and west of the mouth. Due to rapid urbanization, the city expanded to the west of the lagoon to include areas in the present day Lagos Mainland, Ajeromi-Ifelodun and Surulere. This led to the classification of Lagos into two main areas - the Island, which was the initial city of Lagos, before it expanded into the area known as the Mainland. This city area was governed directly by the Federal Government through the Lagos City Council, until the creation of Lagos State in 1967, which led to the splitting of Lagos city into the present day seven Local Government Areas (LGAs), and an addition of other towns (which now make up 13 LGAs) from the then Western Region, to form the state.

Lagos, the capital of Nigeria since its amalgamation in 1914, went on to become the capital of Lagos State after its creation. However, the state capital was later moved to Ikeja in 1976, while the federal capital also moved to Abuja in 1991. Even though Lagos is still widely referred to as a city, the present day Lagos, also known as "Metropolitan Lagos", and officially as "Lagos Metropolitan Area" is an urban agglomeration or conurbation,consisting of 16 LGAs, including Ikeja, the state capital of Lagos State. This conurbation makes up 37% of Lagos State's total land area, but houses about 85% of the

state's total population.

The exact population of Metropolitan Lagos is disputed; In the 2006 federal census data, the conurbation had a population of about 8 million people. However, the figure was disputed by the Lagos State Government, which later released its own population data, putting the population of Lagos Metropolitan Area at approximately 16 million. As at 2015, unofficial figures put the population of "Greater Metropolitan Lagos", which includes, Lagos and its surrounding metro area, extending as far as into Ogun State, at approximately 21 million.

Economy The city of Lagos is a major economic focal point in Nigeria, generating around 10% of the country's GDP. Most commercial and financial business is carried out in the central business district situated on the island. This is also where most of the country's commercial banks, financial institutions and major corporations are headquartered. Lagos is also the major Information Communications and Telecommunications (ICT) hub of West Africa and potentially, the biggest ICT market in the continent.[86] Lagos is developing a 24-hour economy and has also been ranked as one of the most expensive cities in the world. In some parts of Lagos, residents have one of the highest standards of living in Nigeria and in Africa. [ At the same time, a sizable proportion of the residents live in slums without access to piped water and sanitation

The Port of Lagos is Nigeria's leading port and one of the largest and busiest in Africa. It is administered by the Nigerian Ports Authorityand it is split into three main sections: Lagos port, in the main channel next to Lagos Island, Apapa Port

(site of the container terminal) and Tin Can Port, both located in Badagry Creek, which flows into Lagos Harbour from the west.[103] The port features a railhead. The port has seen growing amounts of crude oil exported, with export figures rising between 1997 and 2000.[104] Oil and petroleum products provide 14% of GDP and 90% of foreign exchange earnings in Nigeria as a whole. [105]

Tourism Lagos, subsequent to the re-modernization project achieved by the previous administration of Governor Raji Babatunde Fashola, is gradually becoming a major tourist destination, being one of the largest cities in Africa and in the world. Lagos is currently taking steps to become a global city. The 2009 Eyo carnival (a yearly festival originated from Iperu Remo, Ogun State) which took place on 25 April, was a step toward world city status. Currently, Lagos is primarily known as a business-oriented and a fastpaced community.

Lagos has become an important location for African and "black" cultural identity. [ Lots of festivals are held in Lagos; festivals vary in offerings each year and may be held in different months. Some of the festivals are Festac Food Fair held in Festac Town Annually, Eyo Festival, Lagos Black Heritage Carnival, Lagos Carnival, Eko International Film Festival, Lagos Seafood Festac Festival, LAGOS PHOTO Festival and The Lagos Jazz Series which is a unique franchise for high quality live music in all genres with a focus on Jazz. Established in 2010, the popular event takes place over a 3-5 day period at selected high quality outdoor venues. The music is as varied as the audience itself and features a diverse mix of musical genres from Rhythm and Blues to Soul, Afrobeat, Hiphop, Bebop and traditional Jazz. The festivals provide entertainment of dance and song to add excitement to travelers during a stay in Lagos.

Lagos has a number of sandy beaches by the Atlantic Ocean, including Elegushi Beach and Alpha Beach. Lagos also has a number of private beach resorts including Inagbe Grand Beach Resort and several others in the outskirts.

Lagos has a variety of hotels ranging from three star to five star hotels, with a mixture of local hotels such as Eko Hotels and Suites, Federal Palace Hotel and franchises of multinational chains such as Intercontinental Hotel, Sheraton and Four Points by Hilton. Other places of interest include the Tafawa Balewa Square, Festac town, The Nike Art Gallery, Freedom Park, Lagos and the Cathedral Church of Christ, Lagos.

One day I went to see a patient, a middle aged man. As I approached him, the air around me was filled with a foul odor. It was like the odor of a rotten egg. As I moved closer, the odor got so unbearably intense that I put on a face mask to protect my nose. When I arrived at his bedside, I saw that all of the other providers also had face masks. The foul smell was not from a rotten egg, it was from the man’s gangrenous leg. The leg was as black as charcoal. But that was not the patient’s only problem. He was barely conscious because of the effects of the toxins from his gangrenous leg. The man I described is not unique. His case shows just one of the long-term complications of uncontrolled diabetes mellitus. In the long run, if blood sugar levels are not properly controlled, the blood vessels that supply key parts of our bodies are damaged. When it affects smaller blood vessels (micro-vessels) of the body, peripheral nerves, eyes, and kidneys suffer. If nerves of the feet are involved, it causes diabetic neuropathy. Sensation in the feet is impaired. As a result, when a foot injury occurs, you may not notice it. Because you don’t notice the initial injury, it can become more severe or get infected. Uncontrolled blood sugar levels make it harder for your body to fight infections or to heal, making it more likely that an injury to the foot What To Worry About, If You Worry About

By Dr. Olufemi Y. Saliu Diabetes

will lead to an amputation. If eyes are damaged by elevated blood sugar, they can develop cataracts, vitreous hemorrhage, retinopathy, and eventually blindness. Diabetes is the leading cause of blindness in adult Americans. If sugar damages the kidneys, the complication is chronic renal failure, which may eventually require dialysis. And patients on dialysis have an average life expectancy of 5-10 years. [Source: https://www.kidney. org/atoz/content/dialysisinfo]

Uncontrolled blood sugar level can also damage large blood vessels (macro-vessels) in the neck and in the brain, leading to stroke. Damage to the coronary arteries of the heart can lead to heart attack. Finally, damage to the vessels in the legs can lead to gangrene of the foot or of the leg, just as in the patient I described at the beginning of this article. When the foot doesn’t get adequate blood circulation, tissues die, leading to gangrene. If the gangrene is severe enough, to save the patient’s life, they may need to amputate the leg just below the knee. If diabetes remains uncontrolled, the amputation is extended to above the knee. And then to the hip: hip disarticulation. The higher up a leg an amputation goes, the less likely it is that a patient will adapt well to a prosthetic leg.

If you have borderline diabetes, be mindful of these long term complications. If you have diabetes, be mindful of them. If you are healthy now, be mindful of them. We should all be mindful of them. The patient described above started out as a borderline diabetic. “A thousand and one steps begin with the first,” so the saying goes. It’s better to take steps towards health, not towards sickness. Regardless of where we are today, we should all take action to protect our health.

We should avoid what we need to avoid. We need to avoid drinks with added sugar such as malt drinks or carbonated drinks. We need to avoid cookies, candies, cake, and ice cream. Finally, we need to avoid the two most impactful food items of all, bread and rice.

If you are borderline diabetic, and you stop or cut down your bread and your rice intake, you will be amazed at the impact on your health. If you are diabetic, and you stop eating bread and rice, you’ll be amazed at the impact on your health. If you are neither borderline diabetic, nor diabetic, and you stop or cut down your bread and your rice intake, you’ll be amazed at the impact on your health and on your

weight. You’ll be amazed. Don’t take my word for it. Try it. You’ll be amazed.

“But now what can we eat?” is the most common question people ask me when I suggest that they avoid bread, rice, and other carbs – cake, cookies, cereals, and muffins. You can eat any foods that are rich in nutrients, but light in calories.

Eat a variety of vegetables, raw or steamed. Eat them every day, with every meal if possible. Let them be a significant portion of your breakfast, of your lunch, and of your dinner. And eat variety of low glycemic fruits. Go to the produce department of a grocery store to pick your favorite fruits and your favorite vegetables. Better yet, take the opportunity to try new fruits and new vegetables; expand your dietary horizons.

Eat grass fed meat, wild caught fish, and free range chicken. If the animals eat their natural diets – grass for cows, insects and seeds for chickens, and wild diet for fish – it is better for cattle, for fish, for chickens, and

ultimately, for you. If you want to be healthy, eat meat from a healthy cow, not from a diabetic cow; eat fish from a healthy fish, not from a diabetic fish; and eat chicken from a healthy chicken, not from a diabetic chicken. That is what to eat.

Snack on nuts, not on cookies or cake. Not on ice cream. Not on chips. Not on cereals. Not on donuts. When you snack on nuts, choose nuts that are relatively high in omega 3 fatty acids like walnut, almonds, and cashew nut. Eat nuts in moderation. A handful a day is all you need. Peanuts [which are actually legumes, not nuts] are relatively high in omega 6 fatty acids, a bad fat, and are not good for habitual consumption.

Drink water. And eat foods with high water contents. For example, fruits have a high water content, high fiber content, and high antioxidant content that are good for your health. Eat your fruits whole, rather than processed to get the full benefit.

Finally, remember to exercise. When you do, be mindful of your age, and of your health. Don’t do it because your spouse or your friend does it, do it because it is appropriate for you, so you do not hurt yourself.

Regardless of your health status, see your doctor at least once a year. Be compliant with your medications if you are on them. Ensure that a variety of fruits and of vegetables are a significant portion of every meal. Drink water and eat your fruits whole. Above all, watch out for bread, and watch out for rice.

Dr. Olufemi Saliu, MD is a boardcertified anesthesiologist in Los Angeles, California that has been in medical practice since 1985. He has a special interest in writing about and educating people on healthy nutrition & wellness

VOTE

PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION

Race for 2023 Begins With 2019 Presidential Election Settled,

With the Supreme Court’s dismissal of the appeal filed by Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate in the February 23 presidential election, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, against the victory of President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday, the curtain finally fell on the poll, unveiling the hustling for the 2023 race. THISDAY gathered wideranging consultations that had been restrained by the pendency of the appeal have now been unleashed with known gladiators whose presidential

ambition has been barely concealed, hitting the road. Leading the pack are two-term governor of Lagos State and National Leader, All Progressives Congress (APC), Senator Bola Tinubu; Vice President Yemi Osinbajo; Ekiti State Governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi; Pastor of the Latter Rain Assembly, Pastor Tunde Bakare; Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State; his Kaduna State counterpart, Malam Nasir el-Rufai; former national chairman of Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Attahiru Jega; and former governor of Anambra State, Mr. Peter Obi. A source said, although it is believed that Atiku might still show interest, his close associates are telling him that it is over and that he should take up an advisory role in politics.

The ambition of Obi, who was the running mate to Atiku in the February 23 presidential content, is said to be sustained by the clamour for a South-east presidency by Southern and Middle-Belt leaders, who argue that equity demands that after eight years of Buhari, the presidency should revert to the South of the country.

That the Southern leaders’ argument is failing is evidenced by the caliber of aspirants from the North and South-west, who analysts say, have positioned themselves strategically for the run.

Bola Tinubu Clearly ahead of the jostle in terms of positioning, the two-term governor started the race long ago, when after a THISDAY publication of his presidential interest in 2017, he issued a clarification that he would only throw his hat into the ring if Buhari stood down from the race.

As president Buhari indicated interest for a rerun, he got appointed as the vice chairman of the presidential campaign council, a position second to only the president

himself. With that, access to the presidential villa that had been partially shut for the greater part of the earlier days of the Buhari administration became more open to the consternation of his political tormentors in the inner recess of power. Watchers of the power game say Tinubu has not only used the presidential campaign of Buhari to bounce back to reckoning but has also leveraged on his control of the party machinery, held in trust for him by the national chairman, Mr. Adams Oshiomhole.

that this is fueled by the belief of powerful forces that he is nursing a presidential ambition. “They wish to rubbish him,” a source said.

Not a few political and social analysts agree that the little opportunity he got to stand in for his boss, he proved that he too could be president. Respected for his intellectual clarity and wide understanding of political and economic issues, Osinbajo, say some political watchers, may be the dark horse that would upstage Tinubu in the impending contest. But will vested interests baying for blood in the media allow him?

Yemi Osinbajo

The vice president has been subject of a flurry of corruption insinuation in the media, particularly in the social space. His close associates told THISDAY

Kayode Fayemi Also reputed for his intellectual arsenal, Fayemi is believed to be positioning

for the presidential slot. Political analysts point to his deft political move in clinching the position of the chairman of Nigeria Governors’ Forum earlier in the year, pointing out that he appears to be leveraging on it. To be fair, said an analyst, the Ekiti State governor, who just clocked one year of his second tenure, has shown leadership in his new position, breathing life into the almost comatose forum under former Zamfara State governor, Alhaji Abdulaziz Yari.

Standing on the forum’s platform, Fayemi, who was also minister of Solid Minerals, has been around the country, either delivering addresses or leading his colleagues on one advocacy or the other, the most recent being the governors’ battle against wholesome deduction of bailout refund as well as uniform implementation of minimum wage and the allied consequential adjustment. He is believed to be sounding out his colleagues and other power brokers on what 2023 would look like as he moves around the country supposedly on the forum’s assignment.

Tunde Bakare

The fiery pastor of the Latter Rain Assembly is the only one of the lots that has openly declared his intention to replace Buhari at the villa. Having run the race with Buhari in 2007, Bakare said he was the most suitable person to succeed the president in 2023. He told his congregation recently that he was not only interested in the race but was certain to win.

It is, however, unclear on which platform he would run being without a known party presently.

Nasir el-Rufai When in a prologue titled, ‘Defeating a Determined Incumbent – The Nigerian Experience,’ which he contributed to a book –Power of Possibilities and Politics of Change in Nigeria – written by the DirectorGeneral of the Progressives Governors’ Forum, Mr. Salihu Lukman, el-Rufai, canvassed the argument for the scrapping of zoning, to give way for competency, those not versatile in the subtlety in the nuances of Nigerian politicians would look at the argument on the face value.By 2023 when Buhari is expected to round off his term, power is expected to return to the South under the nation’s informal arrangement of power rotation.

considered argument, the 2023 race will be opened to aspirants from the North, especially in the two major political parties, the All Progressives Congress (APC) and PDP that to a large extent considered the power rotational principle an article of faith. And one of the main beneficiaries of such a new arrangement would be the promoter of the no-morezoning campaign: el-Rufai. El-Rufai, who by 2023 would have ended his tenure as governor, is one of the key Northerners being touted to take a shot at the presidency. Although he has not officially acknowledged his political ambition, as typical of a Nigerian power seeker, there is no doubt he nurses an ambition to be the next occupant of Aso Rock. Just on Wednesday, a shadowy organisation, Nasiriyya Group, modelled after a grassroots association promoted by former Kano State Governor, Dr. Rabiu Kwankwaso, for political mobilisation, rallied the governor’s loyalists to launch his 2023 bid.

The Nasiriyya Group, a support group loyal to elRufai, and headed by Alhaji Ibrahim Nabuga, Garkuwan Rijau, has started putting the blocks together to give wings to el-Rufai’s muted ambition. The Plateau State Chairperson of the group, Hajiya Nafisatu Omar, made a pitch for him, describing the governor as “a detribalised, and not a religious bigot, suitable for the job of a president.” The group has opened a campaign office for elRufai in Jos has launched the Nasiriyya Organisation Support Group(NOSG) to drive the governor’s yet-tobe declared presidential bid. A quantity surveyor, who launched his public service career as Director General of Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE), to oversee the nation’s privatisation programme under the administration of Chief Olusegun Obasanjo in 1999, made such an impressive showing that he got promoted to cabinet rank as Minister of Federal Capital Territory (FCT) during Obasanjo’s second term from 2003 to 2007.

El-Rufai, who will be 63 by 2023, is a focused administrator who

pursues his agenda with determination and has networks across party lines.

Peter Obi Against the run of play, Mr. Peter Obi, a businessman with vast interest in banking, brewery and commerce, among others, emerged the running mate to Atiku. What undoubtedly gave him the post despite opposition from his fellow Southeast politicians, where the position was zoned to, was his eight-year stewardship as governor of Anambra State and his reputation as a parsimonious manager of public funds. Had the PDP succeeded with its appeal at the Supreme Court on Wednesday, he would have been the nation’s vice president by now. But with

the apex court’s summary dismissal of the appeal and age not being on his septuagenarian principal side by the next election season, Obi, who is now 58, looks sure, for now, as one of the likely serious contenders to scramble for the presidency in 2023. Given the groundswell of sentiments for the Southeast to be allowed to take a shot at the presidency, for the first time since the rebirth of democracy in 1999, given his credentials, Obi would stand tall among his kindred, should such concession get a nationwide backing.

The 1984 Philosophy graduate of University of Nsukka, and member of the Presidential Economic Team in the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan began his foray into politics when he vied for the governorship of his state on the platform of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) in 2003. Before he left office in 2014, he had started hobnobbing with the PDP, the then ruling party and his eventual defection to the party came as no shock to

political watchers.

Aminu Tambuwal Until the last hours, the auguries favoured Tambuwal, a former speaker, House of Representatives, to pick the PDP presidential ticket to square up to Buhari for the occupation of Aso Rock, the seat of power. He and Atiku were the frontline contenders for the party’s ticket and with backing from the powerful bloc of his fellow governors, he looked good to clinch the ticket until the table finally turned in favour of Atiku. With his defeat by Atiku, he returned to his state where through subterfuge, he had prepared the ground to be able to run for the governorship election, in case he lost the presidential ticket as he eventually did. Tambuwal, now 53, is a 1991 graduate of Law from the Usman Dan Fodiyo University, Sokoto, who began his political career at the outset of the Fourth Republic in 1999 as a Personal Assistant on Legislative Affairs to the then Senate Leader, Senator Abdullahi Wali. In 2003, he contested election into the House of Representatives on the platform of the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) to represent the Kebbe/Tambuwal Federal Constituency, and won.

Towards the 2007 general elections, he dumped the ANPP to join former Sokoto State Governor, Alhaji Attahiru Bafarawa, in Democratic People’s Party (DPP), which the latter founded. His membership of DPP was, however, brief as he returned to ANPP when his new party denied him, along with some other defectors, tickets to run for election. Again, he dumped the ANPP and moved with the party’s governorship candidate for Sokoto State in the 2007 election, Alhaji Aliyu Wamakko, to PDP. During his stay in the House of Representatives, he was

minority leader, deputy chief whip and at various times, a member of several committees, including the House Committees on Rules & Business, Communications, Judiciary, Inter-Parliamentary and Water Resources. Should the PDP throw open the 2023 race by abandoning the zoning policy or conceding the presidency to the North, Tambuwal, who is a veteran of many political battles and has over the years built political alliance across party lines, is in a good stead to vie for the party’s ticket. Attahiru Jega Until June 8, 2010 when the then President Goodluck Jonathan nominated him as the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the reputation many Nigerians have of Prof. Attahiru Jega, a former Vice Chancellor of Bayero University, Kano, was that of an academic and a unionist. As President of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), in the early 1990s, Jega rallied the union behind the labour and other activists to form a body of opposition to the military administration of Gen. Ibrahim Babangida, over his convoluted transition program and other policies. However, his defining moments were his superintendence of the electoral commission, especially after the shambolic conduct of the 2007 elections by his predecessor, Prof. Maurice Iwu, which the winner of the presidential stanza, Alhaji Umaru Musa Yar’Adua, said had shortcomings and his running mate who eventually succeeded him, Jonathan, confessed caused him a lot of embarrassment, notwithstanding the Supreme Court judgment that upheld their victory. Jega, a leftist academic with a doctoral degree in Political Science from Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois in the United States, brought credibility to the conduct of elections in the country that under his leadership, led to a drastic reduction in the number of election petitions filed to challenge electoral outcomes. His leadership style and predisposition contributed largely to the plaudits that trailed the conduct of the 2015 general election that saw for the first time in Nigeria’s annals the defeat of an incumbent president and the peaceful transfer of power from the ruling party to the then opposition party. He returned to his base after his tour of duty at INEC and nothing could have linked him to the jostling for the 2023 presidential race but for his declaration in August for the People’s Redemption Party (PRP), a party with a leftist leaning. Since his declaration for the party, the polity has been awash with tales of Jega’s warming up to throw his hat into the ring and be an active participant in a race he was once the chief officiating official. Source: ThisdayLive