December 1 - 2, 2012
Vol.1, No. 2
... A common bond
2015: Why Jonathan can't contest –Senator Waku I have no sympathy for Suntai
With Mark, Idomas can’t govern Benue
Corruption: Death sentence should be part of Constitution – Prof. Nwala
Zik's sons fight over mother's interest in politics Page 17
Argentina ready to invest in Nigerian football – Amb. Chive
2015: Why Jonathan can't contest ... SENATOR J.K.N WAKU has been a strong voice in the Senate during the 4th National Assembly and was credited to have insisted that Senators be addressed as "distinguished". The controversial Benue-born politician in an exclusive noholds-bar interview with the Editor, Weekend Accord, ANTHONY MALIKI, spoke on a wide range of issues.
hat have you been occupying your time with since you left the Senate in May 2003? So many people have been asking me the same question and it baffles me. I am 66 getting to 67, so I spent only four years in the Senate, which means, that I have spent quite a number of my life in the private sector than in the legislature or in government. But be that as it may, it doesn’t make any difference to me because if you cast your mind back, when I left the Senate, your colleagues were here and when they confronted me with a lot of questions like what is your opinion or how do you feel out of Senate? What is your reaction to your not coming back? Etc, I said to them, one, God knows why I am not coming back. Two, power belongs to God (and) He chooses who to make what; He chooses not to make you. But my only regret when I left the Senate was that Benue lost a voice and Nigeria lost a voice that was loud and clear. But it doesn’t make any difference to me whether I am in the Chambers or not. What I ought to do for this country, I’ll continue doing it. My comments about National issues do not change my criticisms about the government - both of the states and federal. My reaction to government on certain issues
they have done and are credible enough; I have not hidden my opinion about them. So you come to a point in your life, whether you are government or not, that your voice is important if it can add value to the society and that is what I have been doing right from my childhood to the current time. So, obviously, it has been challenging as a private business person and I can’t say it is all rosy. As it is said, the “the struggle continues,” both politically and economically. You have been in and out of the Senate for close to 10 years now. Looking back, is there any remarkable thing that the Senate and the lower House have done to your admiration? And is there any particular issue or action the federal lawmakers have taken, which you think ought to have been done differently? I cannot be a judge in my own
court. These are my colleagues. Like the proposed Constitutional amendment that is on-going now, I have my contributions and I have talked to a few on the issues that should not be tampered with. Like the issue of the Central Bank, I am saying I am not in support of amending the Act which was done just five years ago, and after that you want to amend it again. Maybe in another five years to come, somebody would come again and say “hey, it was not properly done.” I think the autonomy of the Central Bank should not be tampered with and most especially going by the public opinion, which seems to be that they want tamper with the governance of the Central Bank for their personal benefits. I have talked to quite a few of them (lawmakers), that the intention may be nice, but the public opinion is against them, and I was privileged to be at a sitting of the House Committee on Banking and Currency where I saw a lot of presentations from the public out of which 99.9% of all the presentations were of
Boko Haram is something that has been created by certain people in this country in authority to balkanize the north for 2015, nothing short of that.
December 01-02, 2012
the opinion that the Act is coming at a time it shouldn’t come. Nigerians are completely not in support of the amendment. In my own submission to them, I am of the opinion that the autonomy in the current Act should remain. Then the issues of the Central Bank currency introduction of which the National Assembly threw out, I am in support of that. I think in some few areas, I support and some areas I do not actually support. Like when the amendment was brought about or was to be brought about, the six - year single tenure is not only corruption, but criminal for any governor to divulge himself away from the governance of the people and try to contribute, even now as it is, some of them still want to come back for a second term; they are still stealing money. When you give them the opportunity not to subject themselves to second electoral processes, of course you are giving them an absolute licence for stealing; and what are they stealing for? “I don’t need you anymore.” And of course, they would steal the money, keep it, and then manouver the Parliament in various states which, it is generally known, are rubber stamps; they have nothing to do, they can’t even bark, not to even bite. So, obviously it would become the most corrupt in its highest magnitude. Therefore, I am not in support of that. That is if they don’t have the intention of coming
back. They would loot the entire treasury. He has no apology; therefore he is not going to support himself to any electoral processes anymore that people would ask questions. These are areas that I think that that clause should not be brought to Constitutional amendment at all. Then the other is, if they want to do justice to this nation and allow the process of true democratization, then let’s centralize all the electoral processes and let the INEC control and conduct all the elections including that of local governments, because it is criminal and we are heading for a total anarchy and a serious revolution that nobody would be able to control in this continue, because all parties are guilty of these crimes. When party ‘A’ controls a state, they just sit in Government House and write the results of elections. Indeed, there is a limit to which you can push the people and when they revolt, I bet you, the consequence is better imagined. Two remarkable things happened in the National Assembly in the last 10 years of your exit. These are the sudden death of President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua and the menace of Boko Haram which is presently facing us. How do you look at the way the matter was handled by the National Assembly? Continue on page 3
December 01-02, 2012
The Waku Interview ... Continued from page 2
And as a leader of the Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF), how do you view the divergence of opinions on the issue of insecurity in the North, especially with people like Solomon Lar saying that government should not dialogue with the Boko Haram while others like Professor Jerry Gana are urging the government to accept dialogue? Are you sure you are not misquoting Solomon Lar? It is in the papers. But I am still asking, are you sure you are not misquoting Solomon Lar? That is a man that needs peace. He is a peacemaker in all angles because Solomon Lar would to go any length to support negotiation for peace of this country. Then coming back to Arewa, I made several comments about Boko Haram. You are taking me back. So what is your personal take on the peace move by the Boko Haram group? My quarrel with Boko Haram is, who are the Boko Haram people? And the Federal Government should negotiate with who? But if anybody or group of persons have decided today, to say “we are Boko Haram” and called for negotiation, I think it is a good development. The impression has been created in certain quarters that Boko Haram was born as a result of thuggery, which was sponsored by people wanting to keep themselves at all cost in power but who failed to meet the demands of the group and it became three factions in Boko Haram. There is economic Boko Haram, there is criminal Boko Haram and there is political Boko Haram. So, it may have started with political Boko Haram and some elements of criminality came in and it took a different dimension and if we need negotiation, then I think it is important for the Federal Government to go to the negotiating table and we would know who they are at that negotiating table and we can bring them to book. Then we can look for ways to look into their cases. Now, we would know who we would be dealing with. So it’s a good development. Are you comfortable with the choice of Saudi Arabia as venue for the peace talk? Negotiation is better done on a neutral ground. So, wherever they (Boko Haram) chose is okay by me. Nigeria has a good rapport with Saudi Arabia, so they shouldn’t be afraid. The choice of Buhari by the Boko Haram group as one of those to lead the negotiation and his rejection of his nomination has become rather controversial. How do you view the scenario? Nigerians are not being fair to Buhari. Buhari is quite a decent man in this
country whether you like it or not. So, if people we are looking at Nigeria with the credibility of those if we sit down and negotiate on our behalf, whether I know them or I don’t know them, I don’t think anything is wrong with that. If they call me, it is an opportunity of finding out what they want. But he (General Buhari) has turned down the offer… (Cuts in) He has turned down the offer because of the actions of Nigerians. He has turned down the offer because Nigerians are accusing him of being one of them (Boko Haram group). Look, Boko Haram is not an issue we should talk much about. I support Buhari 100%. The Federal Government is Boko
He [President Jonathan] will not come out in 2015 [because if he attempts to do so], it is either Nigeria will disintegrate or there will be a civil war.
Haram. The President told us in public that he knows members of Boko Haram; that they are in his cabinet that they are in the military, in the judiciary and in the legislature. If a President can come out to identify some culprits, why are we wasting time? Boko Haram is something that has been created by certain people in this country in authority to balkanize the north for 2015, nothing short of that. (QUOTE). The impression has been created in certain quarters that it is the north that created Boko Haram to make Nigeria ungovernable for Jonathan so that he would be afraid and would not come out in 2015. How founded or unfounded is this school of thought? He (President Jonathan) will not come out in 2015 (because if he attempts to do so), it is either Nigeria will disintegrate or there will be a civil war. (QUOTE). So that question is not even a matter of negotiation. You can take people for a ride for too long. You want to hear the truth from me? Goodluck is the most incompetent president Nigeria has ever produced. With due respect to his personal ambitious of becoming Nigeria’s leader, he has become one, but what is the progress so far? He said Transformation,
but is it transformation to criminality? Or is it transformation to absolute corruption? He is not prepared for that office; he is not capable of holding that office. Are you not mindful of the activities of the reported clandestine organizations geared towards his election campaign? So, when you say he is not coming back, what do you mean by that? He will not win. He is a Nigerian constitutionally and he is entitled to vie for the presidency but don’t forget, he has been sworn-in twice as a president; he cannot be sworn-in three times. It is a legal battle that needs to be sorted out. But that was exactly most of you politicians said when he came up in 2011, and despite the fact that many people said he would win, he did, so how is 2015 going to be different? The circumstances are quite different from what they were in 2011. Nigerians gave him the opportunity. It is not where he comes from; if he likes, let him go and bring his son to run this country. We need a competent leader. We are not talking about the fact that it is the turn of the north, or the turn of the south or whatever. We are talking about Nigeria; a competent leader with a clear focus a leader that cannot condone corruption; Goodluck has promoted corruption in different dimensions. How do you view the controversy surrounding report of the Ribadu-led petroleum subsidy committee? You see, Ribadu report, I have not taken time to study it, but like any other person, in judgement, meetings, in any organisation, the minority always submits its report. Where a minority report is not submitted, the report is as good as it is. It is again the corruption in its nature. There are certain people who are indicted in that report and of course, they want to use Ribadu’s disagreement with Orasanye as a scapegoat. There is a report, go through it, if anyone has a minority report, let him present it. The offices that are being shared today in Nigeria from the Peoples Democratic Party were done by me and people like Simon Shango. It was a committee of nine. Habu Fari was a member, Abba Dabo was a member. As a matter of fact, Abba Dabo was the chairman of that committee. In Bamanga Tukur’s house in 1998, where this zoning formula came up, I stood up to object to the National Chairman for northeast or northwest. I stood up and I objected it and they said to me go and put your minority report, because it was 2 against 7. It was indeed a minute minority report. I signed the report, me and Simon Shango signed; we presented our minority report. The Central Working Committee looked at the minority report and accepted it as the main report. That is where the party is going on today with those zoning. Since then, nothing has changed. So, minority report can change to a majority report if you advance your superior argument. So, you can’t eat your cake and have it. You are a member of a committee, you have not made your position and you have not resigned. Indeed, they should bury themselves in shame. The last time we spoke we asked you where you belonged politically because we were not clear whether you were in the Continue on page 6
December 01-02, 2012
I’ve no sympathy for Suntai ... Continued from page 3
PDP or ACN or any other party. A year ago, it was reported that you have come back to the PDP and this week, Dr.Iorchia Ayu, Senator Akaageger and some other notable politicians are coming back to PDP in Benue. What has really happened? You see, that time you came to me about a year ago, I think you misunderstood what I said then or you deliberately refused to take note of what I was saying. I never left PDP until when I left PDP. For six solid years, I was on sabbatical. I did not attend any meeting or political activity anywhere in this country. I decided to stick to my private business until when in my opinion the PDP goes back or comes back to the original objectives upon which it was founded. In those six years, based on pressure, I should call-off my sabbatical - not return - because I never left PDP, and I called-off my sabbatical, reviewed my activities in the PDP of which one of them took me to Anambra to do the primaries that brought Chuba Okadigbo’s wife to the Senate. I did that and many others; and you know what Anambra is. I went and came out victorious. So, when I came back from that assignment, what motivated me to go on sabbatical and return, nothing has changed most especially when we did primaries and we came back, some people that had not appeared before were returned to the National Assembly. I did resign from the party and pitched my tent with the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN). So, for anybody to say he does not know where I belonged is unfortunate. I don’t do hide and seek games. I am either for you or against you. Two things Nigerians know about me, I am either for you or against you. So, you are not part of those coming back to PDP in Benue state? How could I come back to PDP? And in any case, Ayu is coming back to PDP. Ayu has never left PDP. Don’t forget, Ayu was the Secretary of this consensus. And I bet you, I am not only a member of the ACN, I am one of the senior members of the ACN in Benue State. So, I know my members. What Ayu has failed to do for which banks do is that when you have a bank account that is dormant, you write a letter to the bank that you want to reactivate your account and there are conditions that you follow. So, Ayu has never left the PDP. I give him credit for that. We were all members of the Social Democratic Party. When you are a dormant member and want to reactivate your membership, you go quietly and write to the bank and say look, I have lost my membership or I have not operated it for several years and I want to reactivate my account or my membership and doing so, I want to do it publicly so that people would now know that I have reactivated my membership. He is not a member of the ACN. I challenge him to tell me where in Benue State, where did he register as a member of the CAN? He might have a good number of friends in the ACN minus me. Is he not your friend? He is not. I cannot pretend. I am not, I repeat, I am not. Is it for the fact that your political philosophy and his own are quite different?
But let me ask you, on what platform was the Tor Tiv elected and for what tenure? You talk as if the Governor of Benue is the exclusive right or preserve of the Tiv people. What makes you believe that? He is an opportunist. I am not an opportunist. I am a struggling person, he is not a struggling person, he is an opportunist. That is where we differ. Don’t you think that Ayu’s staying power lies in his intellectual dept that see him being a member of one committee or the other at every turn of event? Doing what? Which committee? That is why I say he is an opportunist. Does he have intellectualism in party? Intellectualism in party is about who you are able to convince and come with you. How many people can come with Ayu? When Ayu was in AC and election was conducted, he did not win one councillor. That was in AC, we are no longer AC now. They are two different parties, two different constitutions. During that period of AC, we conducted elections, how many wards did he produced? 2015 elections is around the
corner and there is this issue of rotation that is already brewing serious controversy in your state, Benue, with regards to who among the three senatorial zones should produce the governor. Ordinarily, people feel that after Suswam’s tenure, that is Zone ‘A’, it should go to Zone B, but for the fact that the Tor Tiv comes from Guma, therefore the Guma/ Makurdi axis should not contest. I don’t know where you stand? I stand for good candidate. I pity these over ambitious politicians that are not conscious of the public sensibilities. But let me ask you, on what platform was the Tor Tiv elected and for what tenure? You talk as if the Governor of Benue is the exclusive right or preserve of the Tiv people. What makes you believe that? (QUOTE) Perhaps, may be because of their population, the Tiv assume they can continue to produce the
governor of the state. It doesn’t give them the exclusive right. In Kwara, Lafiagi became Governor of Kwara State and the entire tribe of Lafiagi is not upto one Local Government in Kwara State but he became governor. What makes you think that an Idoma cannot be Governor? Politics is about negotiation. It is compromise and consensus. So, it is not Zone ‘B’ and Zone ‘A’ but the whole Benue State even though they may be in majority. Idomas are not organized, that is why you are looking at it as something different. If we get a good Idoma man, he would become the Governor of Benue State. I chaired the campaign organisation for Chief Mike Onoja (in 2007); he is an Idoma man. Idoma themselves are not organized. Ask me why, they went into that election with no proper coordination mechanism. When they did that election, it was Stephen Lawani, former deputy governor Ajene, Abba Moro, Igbagu, Mike Onoja, about five of them that I can remember now. In Tiv, it was Suswam, Paul Unongo, Mvendega Jibo, Abu King Shuluwa and Professor Hagher. When that election was conducted, there was no clear winner based on the PDP Constitution. None of them got over 50%. It was the Idoma that “donated” their votes to Gabriel Suswam. Is that the kind of people I would waste my time defending? It was Idomas themselves “donating” the votes to Gabriel Suswam, so they should hold themselves responsible. General Onoja runs in 2003 with Mike Mku. General Onoja put up a brilliant performance. All the votes Onoja garnered at that primaries were from the Tiv, so let nobody deceive you that an Idoma man cannot rule Benue State. If they had not “donated” those votes, would they have made any difference? They would have made a difference. Onoja could have won. Onoja came close. I make bold to say, Mike Onoja was the best candidate at that point in time. Benue would have been a different thing now. I make bold to say this. One thing that can prevent Idoma from becoming a governor in Benue is that if the Tiv people know, if they know you are sponsored by David Mark, they would turn to another issue. Yes. So, David Mark would be the stumbling block? Yes, I have to tell you the truth. When David Mark was with Babangida and there were positions allocated to Benue State, that time there were the Igalas and the Tivs and Idoma. Out of a total of 111 Board appointments that were allocated to Benue State, the Idomas had 100, Igala had four, Tiv had six. Today, go to all parastatals, all appointments made for Benue, if there are nine, Tiv would take three. Are you aware of that? Until today, no Idoma man, group or organisation had come down to condemn what David is doing, so we assume he is doing their bidding. No Idoma, elder or whatever has come out to condemn it. So, this means he is doing their bidding. He represents them, I have no quarrel with that, but the office he holds now is more than Idoma people. That is number three man in the country. No Tiv man would have the courage to speak the way am speaking Continued on page 7
December 01-02, 2012
With Mark, Idomas can’t govern Benue Continued from page 6
(only if will you publish this) about the feeling of the Tiv people of Benue State and he is doing it with impunity. So, what would you want David Mark to do? No, I don’t have any control over David Mark. I don’t want him to do anything. He is a matured man - a General in the military, a Governor, Senate President; what do I have to say? He has never one day put a call to me. He is my colleague. David doesn’t know where I live. And of course, there is nothing in this world, except if there is a calamity affecting him or affecting me. David has never invited me for a wedding or naming ceremony or anything. I am not complaining; it is rather good for me because my Tiv people would accuse me of fraternizing with him and yet they have been let back. Gemade’s problem is that he is hobnobbing with David Mark. That is his problem with the Tiv man today. What a nice man, very industrious. When Gemade is in a position, he brings the Tiv people close, which you cannot take away from him. But with his conniving with David Mark has put the Tiv people, quote and unquote, “you move with people who are cheating your people” and you don’t show any remorse. If there is any remorse, it is not noticeable. Can you say that the ACN, which you are major stakeholder, is still on the ground in Benue state? You don’t tell me that. I can’t be a judge in my own court, I told you that. The question is predicated on the fact that ACN came less than three months to elections (in 2011) and put up a brilliant showing, but now that people like Senator Joseph Akargeger are decamping to PDP, where does the party’s strength lie again? I don’t talk about decampees. They are decamping from PDP to PDP. Look, let me tell you something about Nigeria politicians. Life is not all about winning; it is about what you stand for. If winning comes, you now have the opportunity of giving the people development. But it is about principles. Look at the Liberal Party in UK, it was established in 1994 with seven members, today, they are in opposition government in Britain. This is what human beings should work towards. So, tomorrow, if you get one man, one vote, ACN would win the election. Is it not sad that only month after the peace initiative between Taraba and Benue States in Takum, there is an escalation of crisis there? We have complained about it. We
had peace when it was Gongola State and we reached a point where Bamanga Tukur had to appoint a Tiv man as Commissioner outside Benue State and the Tiv man outside Benue State was Commissioner for Local Government Service Commission. Jolly Nyame continued from there. So, it is not new. The Tor Tiv led a team to Wukari, Takum, visited Donga and Jalingo. It is not today they have started, so any person can continue
One thing that can prevent Idoma from becoming a governor in Benue is that if the Tiv people know, if they know you are sponsored by David Mark, they would turn to another issue. Yes.
peace mission and would achieve success. Peace is a process; it may take a longer time to realise it. For instance, the one that happens in Nasarawa State, I was deeply involved in the peace mission and the governor then stood firm, Abdullahi Adamu and when Abdullahi left, all the structures he established for bringing peace Akwe Doma came and destroyed them and that is the price he is paying and that was why he lost the election. It is the Tiv votes that pushed him out of Government House of Nasarawa State. About 30, 000 votes went for CPC. What is your reaction on the position of deputy governors looking at what happened in Taraba with the absence of the governor? The same thing happened in Akwa Ibom. Why is it so difficult for some governors to allow their deputies to succeed them? The Akwa Ibom man, we were told he resigned. His case cannot be brought as an example. If I know my right and I commit no offence, I go to court. Well,
it is a serious dimension of Taraba issue and that may even scuttle democracy. In the first place, why do you make him your deputy if you didn’t trust him? In the first place, the deputy belonged to people, people nominated him. Without a deputy, you cannot run. The worst crop of governors ever produced in this country is these ones. Most of them do not believe they are governors, they believe they are rulers. They totally ignore the governed. I have no sympathy for what happened to Suntai. I have no sympathy for him. In fact, I am calling on Federal Government to probe him, to pay compensation for the lives lost as a result of recklessness. Of course, he went to Aviation school, what year, 2010 as a governor, certainly they would pass him and they would pass you to your detriment and that is the price you pay.A poor state like Taraba, you bought an aircraft for them. If you are able to buy an aircraft, why don’t you employ a professional pilot? It is an act of arrogance. And God is angry. My prayer is that he should not died and come back to see that he is not God. He has constructed an airstrip to his village. He does even go by road. Whether he survives it or not, it’s already a lesson to others. But I pray he survives so that it could be a lesson to him. It is just like Gabriel Suswam. First year in office, he went and did PhD three years. Two things would happen, he either abandoned his duty as a Governor of Benue State or he bought it. These young people have good opportunity to really prove that we are competent. So, my advice to the people of Taraba is to let the Constitution prevail. Many people know, deputy governors, they are like spare tyres. Because you have power and you want to subdue the powerless, if they cry out to God, God will hear them. My ambition is that Benue has a good governor. My ambition is that Nigeria produces a leader. General Buhari and Tinubu are again in the fore-front of a proposed merger to defeat the PDP but this is not the first time. What is there to suggest that the merger will work come 2015? We would be able to defeat the PDP. PDP has lost its focus. There is too much corruption; there is too much lawlessness in PDP. If all the parties come together, we would defeat the PDP. There is no internal democracy in all the parties. The beauty of democracy is to allow you choose who you want. What are the likely scenario we should witness in 2015? I have said it before, when that merger failed and I told Nigerians hold Tinubu and Buhari responsible if PDP returns to government, I still maintain it. When you want to build democracy for the people, first you don’t think about yourself. That is why I left the PDP. If I want to remain in PDP, I would have remained; nobody can drive me out of the party, nobody. I and Abubakar Rimi registered PDP and nobody has ever come to counter. It is my baby. The offices being shared today was done by me, Simon Shango and I. Shango id alive, Habu Fari is alive and many others; Honourable Abdullahi Gumel and Ambassador Kazaure. I am an old politician and I feel proud. Let me tell you, democracy without opposition is a dictatorship and the country would find itself in deep corruption that we cannot get out of it. I feel bad when I look at what is happening in the Houses of Assembly. A Speaker would get up calling a Governor Executive Governor or my goodness, a Speaker.
December 01-02, 2012
For your Photo News coverage call these numbers: 07098213737, 08033116821, 08035994250, 08036269692
NAFDAC at SSFFC Meeting in Argentina By TOM CHIAHEMEN (who was in Buones Aires)
he first meeting of the Member State mechanism on substandard/ spurious/falsely-labelled/falsified/counterfeit medical products, took place in Buenos Aires, Argentina from November 19–21, 2012 with over 40 countries, including Nigeria, in attendance. Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO), Dr Margaret Chan, said in her welcome address that it was envisaged that the outcome of the three-day meeting, chaired by Nigeria’s Permanent Representative in Geneva, Ambassador Umunna Humphrey Ejiakor, would complement
and strengthen WHO’s long-established measures to ensure the availability of good quality, safe, efficacious, and affordable medical products. She acknowledged that there had been significant reduction in Malaria prevalence in Nigeria as a result of the sustained effort by the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) to combat fake and counterfeit malaria drugs. The Nigerian delegation to the meeting was led by the Director-General of NAFDAC, Dr. Paul Orhii, who was accompanied by Agency’s Director of Narcotics, Hashim Ubale Yusuf; Deputy Director (PR & Protocol) Abubakar Jimoh and some senior officials from the Federal Ministry of Health.
NAFDAC DG, Dr. Paul Orhii with Director-General of the World Health Oorganization (WHO), Dr. Margaret Chan at the meeting.
Nigeria’s Ambassador to Argentina, Barr. Chive Kaave (2nd left) poses
NAFDAC Deputy Director (PR & Protocol), Abubakar Jimoh going through
NAFDAC DG, Dr. Paul Orhii with Dep. Director (PR & Protocol), Abubakar
a document during the meeting.
Jimoh, armed with vital statistics on drug control in Nigeria.
with the DG of NAFDAC, Dr. Paul Orhii (centre); Nigeria’s Permanent Representative to Geneva, Ambassador Umunna Humphrey Ejiakor and other members of the Nigerian delegation.
DG, NAFDAC, Dr. Paul Orhii with NAFDAC Director of Narcotics, Dr. Hashim
L-R: Ambassador Chive Kaave, Dr. Orhii and Ambassador Umunna
Humphrey Ijiakor at the Hotel Panamericano, venue of the meeting.
December 01-02, 2012
From the Editor-in-Chief
et me start by apologizing to our readers nation-wide, for the absence of the second edition of Weekend Accord from the newsstands last week. This was caused by technical hitches that made it impossible for us to successfully carry out the production of that edition. We have already taken necessary steps not only to ensure uninterrupted production in the days ahead, but also to keep improving with every edition, in terms of quality and richness of content. For instance, we plan to introduce a number of columnists whose thoughts and views on topical national issues will help to build the national consensus that is necessary for the prosperity, growth and development of our society. Beginning with this edition, the Backpage of the Weekend Accord will be manned by Iyorwuese Hagher, PhD, who is undoubtedly one of Africa’s most strident voices on social justice today. A Statesman, scholar, poet, and playwright, Ambassador Hagher, the immediate past Nigerian High commissioner to Canada, has been a grassroots development activist, a deputy Chief Whip of the Nigerian Senate, a Minister of State and Ambassador to Mexico. Hagher taught drama at the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria, and was for many years the Chair of the Department of Theatre and
Communication Arts at the University of Jos. He is the founder of the Leadership Institute Nigeria and ProChancellor of Afe Babalola University, Ado-Ekiti, Nigeria. We are honoured to have Ambassador Professor Hagher,
OUR TEAM Editor-in-Chief/CEO: Tom Chiahemen Managing Editor:
Head, Business Dev.: Tim Tuse Adverts Manager:
Circulation Manager: Douglas Ejembi Lagos Bureau:
OUR PHILOSOPHY The best way to protect the national interest and forge National Accord is to protect the interest of the Nigerian people, especially the weak and the voiceless in society, more so in our system that officially endorses the policy of majority and minority groups
whose column, “HAGHER @ Large” promises to be as thought-provoking, bold and blunt as many of his books, including “Nigeria: After the Nightmare.” He is announcing his arrival this week with “Hanging on the Cliff between Wars and a Revolution.” As from next week, we shall also be introducing a pictorial page that will showcase the magnificence of Nigerian cities and their contemporaries worldwide. Our special pull-out on Small & Medium Enterprises (SMEs) also promises to be a must-read. Then, there will be Rivers & Bridges; Sands & Times; People & Places; Metro and; Classified, among other special sections. In this edition, we serve you four hot pages of WAKU interview and the brewing rancour in the household that the late Zik of Africa left behind. Certainly, soccer fans in Nigeria and indeed Africa will be delighted to read our interview with Nigeria’s Ambassador to Argentina, Barrister Chive Kaave. Reason? He says the magicians from this Latin American country are coming very soon to help Nigeria produce her own Maradonas and Messis. The best is yet to come.
TOM CHIAHEMEN Editor-in-Chief
letters to the editor
Charity work: You can still offer ideas Dear Editor, In one of his epoch making books; Giving: How each of us can change the world, the former us president, Bill Clinton suggested that the act of giving takes many forms and emphasize that offering of ideas can be just as important as contribution of money. In Nigeria today, study has shown that one in three orphanage homes suffer some forms of societal rejection, inadequate funding and lack of recognition. In some homes, hunger is a constant companion and untimely death is the stranger the children may have to confront due to poor Medicare. Can we continue to watch when we can do the very little thing within our capacity to bring about great and indelible changes in their live? Some of us will advance the excuses are that we are unemployed, we don’t have money, what could I possibly have in me to give to someone else? Yes, under your predicament
you can still be a blessing to others, you can offer ideas that doesn’t cost you money How many of us as Christian fathers and mothers have ever organized prayer meetings on behalf of the less privilege in our midst. As member of the parliament, have you pushed for a bill to include the orphans and other vulnerable children in the yearly budgetary allocation at federal and state level. As a media practitioner, how many times have you written an article aimed at stimulating the spirit of giving in the people? As student leaders, is the rag-day no longer in vogue, do you still organized other students to solicit alms for the motherless babies in our orphanage homes. Many of us erroneously think that doing charity work has no reward but we have forgotten that the Bible says that “the liberal soul shall be made fat: and he that watereth shall be watered also himself”. “It is more blessed to give than to received (Acts 20:35)
So, let us all engage in one form of charity work or the other, keep on helping those around you, you will surely be blessed Jeff Nkwocha National Coordinator NIGERIAN ORPHANAGES NETWORK,WARRI www.nigerianorphanages.blogspot.com/ 08030485016
EDITOR’S NOTE OUR PHILOSOPHY
All letters to the editor, which must be brief and precise, should be typed and send to: The Editor, Weekend Accord SF 006, Transpharm Plaza Opp. Jabi Motor Park, Jabi District, P.O. Box 6488, Garki, Abuja or emailed to: firstname.lastname@example.org
December 01-02, 2012
Funds hamper mass production in Fed Poly Nasarawa By DOMINIC AKPENSUEN
ducation is key to n a t i o n development. As a result, Nigeria cannot toy with issues concerning the sector. That is why over the years, heavy budgetary allocation is slated to boost the sector. Besides various policies are being formulated to fashion out good educational system in the country. It on this back-drop that the deputy Rector, Federal Polytechnic Nasarawa in
Nasarawa State, TPL O.S. Madaki said the Polytechnic is ready to satisfy the society’s needs in terms of technological innovation if the Federal Government support the institution with enough funds to mass produce it varieties inventions, in various departments. He made the plea in an interview with NATIONAL ACCORD WEEKEND at the National Education Innovation Exhibition organized by the Federal Ministry of Education in collaboration with the Federal Ministries of
C o m m u n i c a t i o n Technology, Health, Science & Technology and Trade & Investment held at the old Parade Ground, Abuja. Speaking on behalf of the Rector of the Polytechnic, Dr. Pius Otaru Salami, the deputy Rector expressed delight on the inventions and described them as fantastic. His words: “One of our challenges is financial support, certainly funding, but by the time we want to mass produce, we need more funding”. However, Madaki is of the view that the institution can also source for funds through
CPC member donates motorcycles to Wards A staunch member of Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) in Karu Local Government Area of Nasarawa State, Alhaja Aliyu Musa Turaki (Tafida Mararaba) has donated 3 new motorcycles to the Ward executives of Karu, AsoKodape and Gurku Kabusa with N30, 000.00. This gesture, according to him is to support the government of Gov. Umaru, Al-Makura in building the party to make meaning to the people. While donating the motorcycles to the CPC Chairman of Karu Local Government Area, Alhaji Aliyu Musa Turaki expressed his gratitude to Allah for making him belong to the CPC family and charged all members to contribute in building the party as well as cooperating with the government in all its policies and programmes in order to impact positively on the lives of the electorates across the state. Turaki called on members to always contribute no matter how little what they have to the party so that cooperation, unity and development of the party and its members can be achieved in the state. He further said that government is team work and everybody should contribute his quota for the upliftment of the party. Alhaji Aliyu who is a member of the Nasarawa State Pilgrims Board, expressed his happiness and satisfaction to the government of Gov. Al-Makura and thanked all members of the party for their cooperation and understanding even in the face of difficulties. He called on the members of the party to work hard for the sustenance of the party. He said the donation of the motorcycles to the Wards, is an expression of his happiness and
his determination to move the party forward, and to as well remind those members in positions of authority to borrow a leaf from this kind gesture. Reacting to this gesture, the CPC Chairman of Karu Local Government Area, Alhaji Baba Ali, said it is the first of its kind in the whole of Nasarawa State and charged all members particularly those offered appointments to follow the same trend for the overall upliftment of the party and welfare of its members thereby demonstrating the spirit of oneness. He charged all party faithfuls to contribute in order for the party to put up a befitting performance. Expressing satisfaction in the same trend, Hajiya Rukkayya, Women Leader of TA’AL Gida Gida said, Turaki has done something that nobody else has ever done since the inception of CPC government of Al-Makura and called on the members of the
•Alhaji Turaki party to follow the good example laid by the donor of the motorcycles to the party. She used the occasion to thank Gov. Al-Makura for sponsoring many people to this year’s Hajj and for giving them all the comfort while in the Holy land. The occasion which took place at the party office in New Nyanya, attracted a large crowd who expressed satisfaction to this development.
SSAUTHRIAI cautions on representation By ANTHONY MALIKI The National Executive Council of Senior Staff Association of Universities Teaching Hospitals Research Institutes and Associated Institutions (SSAUTHRIAI), has observed with dismay the continued representation of SSAUTHRIAI by Mr. M.O. Akinade and B.A. Akintola the then National Secretary and Acting President-General of the Union respectively at meetings on matters affecting it. In a statement made available to NATIONAL ACCORD WEEKEND by the acting National Secretary, Comrade J.C. Ugwoke, it was noted that Mr. Akinade has ceased to be the National Secretary of the Union since September, 2009 while Mr.
Akintola ceased to be Acting President General since February, 2010. The NEC of SSAUTHRIAI noted that in its meeting held on 15 th November, 2012, it resolved that further invitation of Mr. Akinade and Akintola to represent the Union by relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies to meetings on matters affecting its members will be highly resisted by the Union. The statement added that it has Comrade E. N.C. Uzoalu, President General, Comrade Kasimu Kolo Ndatsu, Vice President General, Comrade J.C Ugwoke, Acting National Secretary, Comrade (Mrs.) H.M. Adeyelu, National Treasurer among others are National Executives of the body.
some private partners but the Federal Government still remain the back-bone of the institution. The Dean, School of Engineering of the Polytechnic, Engr. Okechukwu
Innocent, disclosed that the inventors are Projects of students but supervised by the Lecturers but added that some are innovations of Lecturers themselves. Engr. Okechukwu also lamented that, if the government can assist the institution with funds, definitely quality materials items would be produced.
Commissioner lauds Dankwambo on water dev’t From DAVID HASSAN, Gombe Gombe State Commissioner of Water Resources and Environment, Hon. Idris Mahdi has expressed happiness over the developmental stride on water in the state. Hon. Mahdi was speaking through his Permanent Secretary in the ministry, Alhaji Abdullahi Mohammed in an interview with our correspondent in his office also stated that the issue of non availability of water supply in the state has come to an end as government has tackled the menace drastically. The Commissioner said based on effort of the present administration to ensure that every citizen of the state benefit the dividend of democracy, governor Ibrahim Hassan Dankwambo has made a wise decision of making water and environmental sanitation as his major priority.
He explained that the abandoned water pipe lines across the state has equally taking a new look where governor Dankwambo has approved the renewal of the abandoned water pipe lines across the state to ensure that every citizen benefit. The commissioner also emphasized the need of making the developmental stride on water in the state as timely where government are working tirelessly to ensure that its administration sustained the life of the people. Speaking further, the commissioner said arrangement has been put in place where government made pronouncement that they are fully ready to satisfy peoples demand. He warned citizens in the state to desist from building houses close to river bans, adding that flood is the major factor that consumes lives and properties of Nigerians during raining season.
Establish resting areas in motor parks, govt urged By CHRIS DNK RICHARDS
Road transportation is a very vital sector of the economy because it is pivotal to the socioeconomic development of any nation. Drivers are the engine of road transportation but in Nigeria today the welfare of drivers lives much to be desired. In order to enhance road transportation and improve the welfare of drivers, the Drivers Welfare Club was established by a group of patriotic Nigerians. Chairman of the Drivers Welfare Club in the Federal Capital Territory, Mr. Chinedu Ogene has been speaking on the activities of the group. In a chat with news men in Abuja yesterday, Mr. Ogene advocated the establishment of special sleeping areas for drivers to enable them have their siestas after each long distance trip. He lamented that the high incidence of motor accidents in Nigeria is attributable to the stress experienced by drivers as they have little or no time to
refresh after their trips, saying ‘’we are not happy that long distance drivers instead of relaxing themselves after each journey, engage in alcoholism, drug abuse and other negative vices. On the persistent fuel scarcity in the Federal Capital Territory, the FCT chairman of the Drivers Welfare Club urged the relevant authorities to find a lasting solution to this problem. Continuing, Mr. Ogene solicited the co-operation of all drivers in the FCT towards the collection of a token fee of Fifty Naira from all drivers so as to boost the treasury of the association. This according to him will enable the Drivers Welfare Club to assist drivers who are involved in accidents, untimely death and other emergencies. Speaking also, a prominent transport owner and Managing Director, Nyanya Mass Transit, Prince Arthur has advocated for the establishment of special patrol teams to monitor the activities of drivers od our high ways.
December 01-02, 2012
news Orubebe’s house gift from SETRACO under probe T
he Federal House of Representatives on T h u r s d a y mandated its Committee on Niger Delta Ministry Affairs and Committee on
Anti-corruption Agencies to investigate the allegations of corruptly receiving a house gift from a construction company, which has
been consistently levelled against Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Elder Godsday Orubebe. Orubebe had been accused of failing to
Nestlé donates table water, food products to flood victims in Nigeria
Banks’ fraud hits N4b – NDIC report
By EWACHE AJEFU
The loss to the Nigerian banking system due to fraudu-lent activities hit over N4 billion according to recent annual report released by the Nige-ria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC). Also, a total of 2352 fraud cases involving N28.40 billion were reported to the NDIC within the period under review as against 1532 cases totaling N21.29 billion recorded in the preceding year. The report further said that frauds and forgeries increased by 33.40 per cent while the number of attempt for frauds went up by 53.5 per cent. the report attributed the increase in the number of fraudulent cases to rising fraud attempts through
Internet banking and suppression of customer deposit. The Corporation further said that top 10 banks with the highest number of reported frauds accounted for 87.1 per cent of the banking industry fraud cases in 2011 compared in 2010. It also said that of the 2352 fraud cases reported during the period 498 were attributed to staff/ staff participation, indicating an increase of 141 from 357 cases recorded in 2010. It said that the number of staff involved surged by 39 per cent in 2011 compared with the preceding year, adding that highest number of workers participated in frauds during the year was the clerks and
LOSS OF DOCUMENT This is to notify the general public that the Original Documents issued by the Federal Housing Authority in respect of a Plot fully developed, situated at Road 39, Plot 369, Gwarinpa Estate, Abuja, belonging to ALHAJI BALA ALFA is missing. Anyone that finds it should please contact the nearest police station or call 08092171472. Signed: G. A. MICHAEL, Esq
Cashier status as had been the case in the preceding year. Further analysis of the types and nature of the frauds and forgeries committed during the year under review, revealed that ATM fraudulent transfer/withdrawals which accounted for 738 and 331 frequency respectively, was the largest number of perpetration within the period under review. The report also indicated that there were rising fraud cases through Internet banking and suppression of customer deposit, adding that the capital adequacy ratio of the Deposit Money Banks improved from 4.06 percent in December 2010 to 17.71 in December 2011.
include the said house, located at Mabushi District in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory in the assets declaration form he filled and submitted to the Code of Conduct Bureau, because it was a form of bribe from construction outfit, SETRACO. The decision to investigate him was reached after debates on a motion brought to the floor of the house by Hon. Kehinde Oluwasegun, representing Ijebu/ Odogbolu Federal Constituency in Ogun State, under Order 8 Rule 46 Section 1 of the House Rule. “Mr. Speaker, it is saddening for me to have to come up with a motion of this nature to address a matter that ought to have been taken up by our Anti-Corruption Agencies,” Oluwasegun began in his motion. “This Motion is brought against the back drop of mounting disclosures of corrupt practices labelled against a sitting minister by some anti-corruption outfits in the country.”
Mrs Suswam tasks physically challenged on self-reliance From ATI TERKULA, Makurdi Wife of the Benue state governor Yemisi Suswam has advised the physically challenged not subject themselves to sympathy and condemnation but to explore ways to discover their talents to enable them become self reliant. Speaking while disbursing loan to persons with disabilities under the Economic Empowerment programmes for persons with disabilities in Makurdi Mrs. Suswam said the initiative is a significant milestone in the determination and commitment of the state government in addressing the needs of persons with disabilities with a view to harnessing their potentials and talents for state and national development. Mrs Suswam stated that the programme is aimed at mainstreaming persons with disabilities who are leaders of tomorrow into the transformation agenda of the Benue state government and imparting the necessary skills that will help persons with disabilities in rural and urban areas to live and contribute
Pension Commission opens zonal offices
From DAVID HASSAN, Gombe The Director-General of view to end the suffering the National Pension of pen-sioners in the area. Speaking further, the Commission, Alhaji Mohammed Kabir Ahmed DG said that about 3.5 workers are said that effort to make million pensioners relevant in the already in the scheme, society, the commission adding that there is a has paved way to open need for government to zonal offices across the geo tackle the menace of political zones in order to pensioners seriously. According to him, the ensure they sustained the demand of pensioners in commission is working hard to ensure that every the country. The Director-General pensioner benefit his was speaking when he labour as was stipulated paid a courtesy call to in the Constitution of Gombe State Governor Nigeria. The DG also said that Ibrahim Dankwambo in Government House there would be no Gombe. He also said the meaningful development encouraging Commission has decided without to choose Gombe to serve pensioners to witness the as zonal centre of the dividend of democracy. Responding, Governor North-East zone with a Ibrahim Hassan Dankwambo thanked the DG for the visit and assured him that his adminisThis is to notify the general public that the tration has already put Original Conveyance of Provisional thing in place in order to Approval of Plot 842 of about 600m2 in maintain the integrity of Zuba II, Part II,Abuja, issued by Gwagwalada pensioners in the state. He said government Area Council belonging to ABUBAKAR on its part can only plan IBRAHIM, has been reported missing. All for the retirement of the efforts made to trace it proved abortive, civil servant after they might have retired from please if found report to the nearest police the civil service to enable station. them benefit.
LOSS OF DOCUMENT
meaningfully to the development of their fatherland. She urged beneficiaries to consciously apply the skills they have acquired during their training even as they exercise discipline in the management of the resources entrusted in their care.
Akunyili takes Bauchi snake samples for analysis From SHEHU USMAN, Bauchi Samples of snakes believed to be foreign that infiltrated into the Yuli Village river stream from the recent flood that devastated the Duguri district area of Bauchi state would be taken to determine the appropriate anti-venom vaccines. The assurance for the snakes’ samples taking was Monday given by the Chairperson of the Presidential subcommittee on Flood Relief and Rehabilitation, Prof. Dora Akunyili when the body visited Duguri district to donate relief materials to flood victims in the area. Akunyili who led the sub-committee to the Yuli village river stream site bordering Bauchi and Taraba states to also assess the extent of damage caused by the flood and emphasize with the victims was told that the foreign snakes infiltrated into the district area following the Cameroonian dam outlet release of water during the just ending rainy season. She noted that unless the samples of the snakes were taken to determine the appropriate antivenom vaccines, the infiltrated different species of the snakes would portent great danger to the inhabitants of the district area. The sub-committee chairman emphasized with the flood victims that washed away about kilo meters of sugar-cane plantations and other river stream vegetables thereby depriving means of livelihood for hundreds of inhabitants of the Duguri district area of Bauchi state. She also assured the people for the restoration of electricity supply to the area that has been without light for the past seven months, saying government would soon come to their rescue from the darkness.
December 01-02, 2012
interview Corruption: Let death sentence be part of Constitution – Prof. Nwala The nature of PROFESSOR TIMOTHY UZODINMA NWALA is still as radical as in his days as the Secretary of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU). He is an authority in African Philosophy and was the first scholar to introduce African Philosophy in the curriculum of university education in the world. He spoke to ANTHONY MALIKI, Editor, NATIONAL ACCORD WEEKEND on critical issues concerning Nigeria chiefly, the Constitutional Review, Biafra question and corruption amongst others.
any constitu tional confer ences took place in Nigeria in one form or the other and many see the present review effort by the National Assembly as a jamboree. Do you share in that view? Well, let me start from one immediate experience I had. The other week, I was home to chair the session of my Federal Constituency in continuation of the discussion and debate. What I came out with was that in spite of everything; the exercise was worth something in the sense that it has helped to bring the people into sharing some common awareness on the political events and issues around them. At least for that kind of education in terms of civil consciousness and mass awareness of what is going on. But, I think that is as far as it goes because what matters is what comes out at the end of the day. But more particularly, I am one of those that share the view that our nation does not have a solid foundation. What I mean by that is when you look at the circumstances of its birth, the way it was created by the British, many to serve the British interest and then the kind of internal divisive forces built into the structure to make sure that Nigerians don’t believe in themselves, they don’t agree and made them easy prey. Those internal divisive forces are still at work. For example, they made the north, under Sardauna and Abubakar believe that they are their darling, they made the Yorubas and Igbos, Azikiwe and Awolowo, not to agree, and
they made the Yorubas and the north not to agree. So, they were in-built and it was skewed. They were using the north for their interest. So, what am saying was that the foundation is faulty. It was 1994 that we try to seriously address that issue, at the 1994/1995 Constitutional Conference and for me that was the most comprehensive Constitutional and meaningful conference Nigeria ever had. When you think of this debate about organizing a conference about determining the future of Nigeria, I would say that was done to a large extent in the 1994 Constitutional Conference. The unfortunate thing is that the outcome of that conference was aborted. The result of that conference was aborted. That Conference addressed everything. Let’s take the Arewa proposal for dealing with corruption. It was for the first time that a proposal was agreed by Nigerian leaders, that there should a Tribunal for the prosecution of ill-gotten wealthand prescribed death sentence for those found guilty. In that Conference where all the major leaders of this country, the late Saraki was there, Yar’Adua senior was there, Umaru Dikko was there, Ekwueme was there, Ojukwu was there. In terms of the
Prof. Timothy Uzodinma Nwala geo-political zone, it was at the Conference that it was done. It was agreed that there should be six zones in other to achieve equity, justice and power sharing. It is unfortunate that the same forces who have been creating problems for this country some of them were there in the time of the military, before Shagari came, some of them during the time of Shagari, some of them during the time of Obasanjo, these are real enemies of this country, they are always thinking in terms of their own power influence and to serve whoever is in power and not the nation, so unfortunate these are the people that undermined the outcome of that Conference. The 1995 Draft Constitution, I was one of the authors of that Constitution, and you know now the Federal Government is asking us to get back to that Conference. In fact, it is the reference point for this present review. So, unfortunately, that Draft Constitution was not signed and when Abubakar [Abdulsalam] came, the same enemies of the nation moved in to make sure that Constitution was thrown-out and gave us the contrition called the 1999 Constitution. So, the problem as I said is not with the ordinary masses of this country. When you meet the
ordinary Yoruba man and an ordinary Igbo man, you see cordiality and friendship. When you meet and ordinary Igbo man and an ordinary Hausa man, you see friendship. It is only the politicians that moved in to divide them; either they use the instrumentally of religion or ethnicity. Having been part of a previous Constitutional Conference and still a loud voice on issues in this country, what are the key areas that should be addressed in the present review? First of all, I think the whole process of reviewing the Constitution is not likely to give us what we need at this point in time leaving it to the National Assembly, I would have preferred a situation where the government organizes a Delegates election and divide this country into…call it “360 Constituencies” representing all the ethnic and other interest and get them to elect delegates, solely for Constitution making. But what you have in the National Assembly they have a different agenda, a different programme, different orientation, different concern and if they bring in the real politics into the making of the Constitution, we are not going to get much out of it. Let
It was for the first time that a proposal was agreed by Nigerian leaders, that there should a tribunal for the prosecution of ill-gotten and prescribed death sentence for those found guilty.
the National Assembly concentrate on the law-making. More crucial questions had to be dealt with than the ordinary questions they are dealing with now. So, when people call for a National Conference, which I leant the North has agreed, the South-South has agreed there should be one, South-West and South-East have agreed there should be one, not Sovereign National Conference. We are talking of a Constitutional Conference, where people would elect delegates for that sole purpose, which would require some kind of strong will from the leadership to organize it and then at the end whatever comes out of that exercise should be put in a Referendum. Not the kind of thing they are giving us now, it is a patch work. Apart from the issue of the process and the issue of Referendum, which is very important, I believe that the geo-political as created should be protected. They are zones for power sharing, zones for resource sharing and internal cooperation. They are not designed as a tier of government. The purpose of these zones is to use them as bases for power sharing. In terms of ministerial appointments, you weigh them in six classes. Each zone gets Class A and ministerial positions, Class B, Class C and so on. The ministers are not equal, they should be weighted. So, they are very fundamental. Then, the other element is the rotation of power. It is very critical. Mark you before that proposal came up, because the political situation in the country was such that the north maintained military and political power, even though they were weak in economic, bureaucratic and media power. That is why you can see, no other zone can lead a coup at that time. It was obvious. For some of us, we use to make a joke that it was a “Northern army” and not “Nigeria army”. However, Obasanjo tried a lot to balance it. We now have a relatively national army. Rotation of power is very fundamental. That time one section was dominating. Therefore, we said the Presidency should rotate among these zones. It is very fundamental even though some our northContinued on Page 17
December 01-02, 2012
interview ‘Corruption: I support death sentence’ Continued from Page 16 ern colleagues fought against it. That is why Tanko Yakasai became apostle of zoning and rotation, I laugh because he voted against it at the Constitutional Conference. One man that has been very sincere on the issue of rotation and zoning was Adamu Ciroma, because when they were scheming to remove it from 1995 Constitution, he issued a statement, warning the country that whatever anybody want to do with 1995 Constitution, they should not touch rotation and zoning. It was important for the unity of the nation. Then coming to the Federal Character, we still have a situation where, may be because of indiscipline in the system, young chaps leaving schools, can’t get a job on merit. The system is such that you have to go to a Senator, or minister to get a note before you get employment. It is sad. It is very painful. That is why we said let us establish a Federal Character Commission. Another is Revenue Sharing Formula. There should be a formula that would reconcile derivation and needs, if we are remaining as one federation. They are important. For a federation people want to live together. Corruption is very, very critical. I believe that the anti-corruption institution should be reorganised. I believe that the best way is make it independent and make what I call social forces represented in the body and that body should have power of a Tribunal. Power of arrest, of investigation, trial and committal either of imprisonment or death sentence. Perhaps that is why there is call for separate courts to try corruption cases. Yes! I supported that. What I am saying is that for example the EFCC Board should represent these critical social forces, where people are really conscious, the NBA, ASUU, Labour movement, CAN, the Muslims who are against corruption and it should be independent. Still, what are those areas you want to be looked into? First, let’s begin with the number one question. Should we be together or not to be together? I can assure you majority of Nigerians would say, let us be together. But we should stay together under the conditions of equality and
under the conditions of freedom. What I mean by that is the attempt to have a governmental system that does not give room for local, cultural and even political autonomy does not make sense. You can see the spirit of local autonomy surging. Whether you call it South-West integration, or process of floating a State flag; these are spirit of self-determination. But are these positive trends? It reflects a trend that should be taken care of in Constitution making. One could have local autonomy in the management of their affairs and let the Federation be like a coordinating entity. Remember that in Europe they have this problem when they had these large collections of nationalities in one State. They kept doing it, eventually when they have States equivalent to nationalities. But, if we are in this business for this long, we can make it work, by a having a Federation that make for greater internal autonomies. As you said, though the issue of corruption was adequately addressed in the 1995 Draft Constitution which was not signed. Now, how do we tackle the issue? I tell you, there is no greater way of addressing it as the proposal of Arewa should be given national support. Advocating for death sentence? Yes, yes, yes. It happened in many other countries. Once, you get one, two, three people suffer it, it would sanitize the system because the corruption is terrible. When you go to the rural areas, and see how people are suffering. I would personally agree with the Arewa position that there should strong measures including death sentence. That would be my own suggestion. But you see, there are lots of factors in corruption. In America, you don’t have death sentence, but American system has grown to a point where rule of law has become a major element in their political culture. Let’s take the instance, when President Clinton was facing problem in the Monica Lewinski case, it was his friends that raise money to pay for the legal fee. This is a man sitting on top of the world. Look at when Al-Gore was campaigning, he used envelopes in his office to send mails, he was surcharged. Why is that kind of thing happening in this
country? I accept that there so many forces, so many powerful forces, but I have to say in connection to that, is part of our problem is that who have led us and are part of this problem have refused to go on holiday. Are you talking of people like Obasanjo? I am talking of all of them. Right from Gowon, Shagari, Obasanjo to Babangida to Abubakar. All of them should leave, should retire and go to the farm. Why are they in the political environment? In fact, they should not come near Aso Rock at all. We have their records. If there is a problem on an issue, the aides of the President would research on how past Presidents handled the matter and remodel it to suit the situation at hand. You don’t need a Babangida to tell you what to do, a Gowon to tell what to do. These men should retire. They are polluting the political space. But as long as they remain, they become role models whether they are good or bad. Talking about corruption, do you think the ICPC and EFCC are doing enough? Going with our circumstances now, if they are doing enough, they wouldn’t have any problem. Should they be scrapped? Let me say from the word go my idea is any such agency should have quality Boards and the membership should be drawn from the major social forces. For example, the NLC should nominate somebody there, whose activity they would monitor. CAN, the Muslim association and ASUU which have become a major
force in this country, should be represented in the Board and one of them should be chairman and it should be independent that should be serviced by legal experts. But to avoid it being a loose institution we need a Board made up of these critical social forces I mentioned. There was this Ribadu Report that was submitted, and right in the Hall, there was discerning views by members of the committee. What is your take on that? Make take on it is that certain bodies that are meant to address critical issues in our society should not just be people picked by Mr. President, here and there anyhow representing political and ethnic interests. I have grown to have faith in these critical social forces. If the committee is made up of persons from such social forces, it would produce a more authentic report. What other areas or issues do you want addressed as a country? It is in the issue of National reconciliation. If I don’t say this, I won’t be honest to myself. I think the issue of Biafra should be revisited. When we think of Biafra, we also think of Germany. Germany was defeated in the First World War and heavy indemnity was imposed on Germany and Germany was humiliated and treated like an outcast. Nobody cares and Germans almost lost their pride over the years, until somebody emerged and promised he was to help them recover their pride. Who was that? It was Hitler. Let’s take Biafra for example. If you reflect on the phenomenon you call
MOSSOB and Uwazuruike. He has gotten to a point in becoming a cult figure in Igboland. Apart from Ojukwu who led the war, Uwazuruike has become a cult figure, who could ask markets to close and they obey. Imagine, in his case, he was preaching non-violence. He had also preached violence, they would have followed him. Tomorrow, there could be another Hitler from Igboland. So, it is better for us to revisit the issue of Biafra. That is what I think Achebe’s book is saying apart from telling the country, the fact we already know. That we have a faulty foundation and should begin by what the North is asking for, South-West is asking for, South-East is asking for; that there should be a National Conference to address this issue of how do we organize ourselves. But more importantly, Nigeria should resolve the problem of Biafra for the sake of the future. In what terms do you want the Biafran issue revisited? I would ask you to read the submission of Ohaneze Ndigbo during the Oputa Panel. A Panel which people who think they are the owners of this country messed up. Can you point out part of the submission. For example, I was in Biafra. We just graduated. I went round with the Scandinavian journalists, so after the war, I thought over the whole thing, I could see devastation, I could young people coming to me because I was like a cult figure to them, “what do we do?” Somehow, something came to my head and we all trooped to Enugu and got involved in the “Food for All” programme and christened after East Central State out of which the NYSC was born. We provided a kind of postwar therapy to give them a means to survive. Uptil today, there is no comprehensive programme to reconstruct Igboland. No conscious programme. Let me tell you something. Rebuilding Igboland is rebuilding Nigeria. And more so, you have a people by their culture who given to entrepreneurial spirit. They are p utting that spirit not for the Igbos for Nigeria as a whole, in Lagos, in Abuja, in Kano, everywhere. Why don’t we find a way to make amends of that period and say to the Igbo people, “we are sorry” and let have a special programme to rebuild their area.
December 01-02, 2012
December 01-02, 2012
Some freshers play ‘God’ in NASS – Hon. Elumelu Controversial Hon. Godwin Ndudi Elumelu representing Aniocha/Oshimili Federal Constituency of Delta State in the House of Representatives, and the House Committee Chairman on Health, affirms that even new members play God, and as such, saw hell in the hands of their constituents in the course of the recent public session towards amending the 1999 Constitution. He spoke with OGBU NGENE on the foibles and follies of his colleagues among other issues.
hat is your assessment of the just concluded Town Hall meetings conducted by members of the Federal House of Representatives as part of the on-going efforts at amending the 1999 Constitution? It was very impressive. This is the first time Nigerians are being giving the opportunity to participate whether in fresh Constitution drafting or the amendment itself. From the response from the grass root and their commitment on that day, it clearly shows that they are appreciative of what the House is doing, by bringing such project to their domain. It was a huge success in terms of the turn-out and the involvement of the people, especially in my Constituency. Some Nigerians were skeptical about the intentions and the objective of the House. Some felt it was perhaps a jamboree, that at the end, a few of your colleagues who have not been relating well with their constituencies had it rough in the hands of those they claim that they are representing? How do you look at this development? This is what I always tell some of my colleagues, “you are voted into this office by the people, and it is mandatory that you have to be with your people, whether on daily basis of your being in the House, or on weekends when you are expected to reach out to your Constituency. But what we are seeing in some instances is that some of them are feeling that having been elected into the House is the end. Even among us, we found some of them that are proud, some are arrogant. So they bring that
Hon. Godwin Ndudi Elumelu arrogance into play in terms of relating with their constituents. Some of your colleagues claim that that they are Lawmakers, that primarily, their jobs is just to make laws, but people believe right or wrong that since they are being paid constituency allowances, they should justify all such expenses to the constituencies. What is the constituency allowance all about? When you mention the issue of
constituency allowance, constituency allowance is not for you alone to enjoy yourself. It is for you to go back to your Constituency to share it with them. The moment you don’t do that, they are monitoring you. So when you now come that you want to use them to shine, or to make people believe that you are performing, they will get back at you. And that was exactly what you saw during the Public Hearing in some Constituencies. Their people decided to disgrace them so that people will
know that they don’t come home. They don’t relate with them. They don’t even tell them what they are doing. They are waiting for another election to take money to go and buy them. And their people are saying “no, we will not tolerate that.’’ Nigerians are becoming aware. They are rising beyond the issue of having to come and dash them money. They are interested in what you can do; how you can represent them. Continued on Page 14
December 01-02, 2012
‘Some freshers play God’ Continued from Page 13 Does this imply that by 2015, this will reflect in the pattern of voting? If what I have seen should be converted into pure voting, we will lose many members beyond what happened before. Currently, the new members, those that are here in the House, are not ready to learn the rope. Some of them are busy chasing what they shouldn’t be chasing, while some of them are not ready to understand what is going on in the Chambers. In some instances, after Motions all of them would take-off. They don’t even understand anything. They don’t even sit down to look into the aspects of the Legislations, which is Constitutional. You can count how many members that have been able to sponsor Bills. Go and count, and check the previous year, and the year before. That will tell you whether it is progressing, whether it rising or it is falling. How feasible is the entire exercise? The 2010 amendment exercise failed because of the third term agenda. Now, as at last count, there are about 56 agitations for the creations of additional States in addition to the 36 states? I don’t think during that time Nigerians were allowed to participate. Nigerians were never given the opportunity to vote lineby-line on issues that bothers them as it relates to 1999 Constitution as it affects them. This is the first time they were allowed without any inhibitions, without any make-belief agenda. For instance, in my Constituency, I made it very clear as stipulated in the template, that they said I should be the Facilitator. But I allowed every member of the Steering Committee to take out the items line- by-line, and allowed the people to ask questions. I probably asked two questions out of the 43. By so doing, I did not influence their voting. The particular one that was shocking was that, on the matter that concerned the Traditional Rulers, they were sitting there, and people were saying “no.” I had to give them time to go and lobby the people who were there to vote for them. You can imagine when a Chief in your Kingdom is voting against you in the day-to-day running of the government. If you observe care-fully, the way Nigerians understand the day-today running of govern-ment is changing. It is totally different from what it used to be before. On the issue of State Police, they vehemently opposed it, that
Governors will witch-hunt those they do not like in the States. I did not tell them anything. Even before the person who was reading it could finish reading it, they said “no.” On the issue of autonomy, they said “scrap states INEC. Let national INEC conduct all elections at local government level, that joint Local Government Account with the state should be abolished.” The other contentious issue was autonomy for State Houses of Assembly. They were looking at individual conducts and behavior: that they are arrogant: that they voted them into the offices, but when they got into the offices, they did not remember them. That also generated some heat, but I took time to explain to them: that they should look beyond the present players that are playing the games now, and look at the system. If you want the Assembly to respond the way the House of Representatives is responding today, then speak out. To me, it was the first of its kind. If you want to compare this to third term, third term was totally a different ball game. It was more of a project that was being forced on the people. And where they thought money could get it done; they dolled them out. But now, I am sure that you have not heard of President of Nigeria influencing the National Assembly by giving them money to vote for, or against any item. The man has no time. He has no time for that. He is a Nigerian. He believes that whatever Nigerians come up with, he will comply. His own is to assent whatever that is the final output May we take a peep into some peculiar resolutions from your Constituency that did not form part of the template handed over to you
from the House? The only thing that is bothering my Constituency is the creation of State. We, the Anioma people, the Igbo- speaking people of Delta have said that we want to join our people. We need Anioma State. That is all we are asking for. That is what we have being asking for, even when General Ibrahim Babangida created Delta State, and sited Asaba as the Capital. We had expected it as Anioma. Don’t forget that South East has been short-changed. They have five, not up to six that others have. It will not be out of place to say Anioma should be part of the sixth. This exercise gave you a rare opportunity to interact with your people, and to also give account of your stewardship in the House. With the success you recorded at the event, does this serve as a launching pad for your 2015 ambition to succeed the incumbent Governor of Delta State? I do not have any intention for any office at this moment as I speak to you. I have always told people, and that is the truth, and God sees my heart, it will be very unfair to the people who voted us into office, barely one year, the budget has not been implemented, for me to go back and tell the people that I am interested in another office. I am always home every weekend. I am not one of the Abuja politicians. Until you have shown something to the people, they can’t vouch for you. And secondly, you should not be the one telling people “this is what I want to be.” If you actually believe you have what it takes to serve the people, let the people decide what they want you to be. For instance, when my Governor
I go home every now and then. I respond to their issues on daily basis. I receive not less than 2000 text messages on demands, school fees, hospital bills, accommodation inadequacies among others. And all the funds I have received in terms of quarterly allowances, I plough them back to them.
was to be re-elected, I bought his nomination form. That was because I believed in what he did. What did he do? Within 100 day in office he tarred the road to my village. This was something for eight years, somebody could not do. Two, it is in my constituency he cited the airport, which in my own opinion, he has developed and increased the economic well-being of my constituency. Thirdly, there had never been permanent Government House in Asaba. I am not a praise singer. If he is not doing well, I will tell him. I am talking of my constituency. Others may have other issues to talk about. In my constituency, he is building a permanent Government House. He is building one of the biggest Government Houses in Nigeria. Also apparently because of his commitment and show of leadership, the Federal Government recently approved the Asaba International Airport and Cargo Unit, which is now being built. And they are located in my Constituency. So I have every course to be grateful to both State and the Federal Government. Coming back to politics, I am with my people. I go home every now and then. I respond to their issues on daily basis. I receive not less than 2000 text messages on demands, school fees, hospital bills, accommodation inadequacies among others. And all the funds I have received in terms of quarterly allowances, I plough them back to them. And I also use it to empower women. It is not the type you see members doing on television. These ones are real. Parts of what I was keeping to give in the next quarter, by way of keeping things for them, with the flood in my area, all I had done is to buy things with what I have in my National Assembly Account to now send relief materials to those affected areas in my constituency. With what you said you have done so far and what you are called to contest, will you succumb? If they want me, let them buy the form for me. If they put fish in your mouth, will you not take? Have you seen who they put fish in his mouth that will not take? If they say that is their wish, so be it. I will not go and force that out of them. I have being saying one thing that is killing the Parliament here. It is that we are quick to rush out. We rush in and rush out. When you go to America, and relate with them, some of them have been there for many years. The more you stay, the more you gain ground for your people; the more you understand the system.
December 01-02, 2012
PDP: Before and after Nwodo
By NWOBODO CHIDIEBERE
William Tyler wrote in one of his books; “I believe in the United State of America as a government of the people, by the people, for the people; whose just powers are derived from the consent of the governed; a democracy in a republic; a sovereign nation of many sovereign states; a perfect union, one and inseparable; established upon those principles of freedom, equality, justice and humanity for which America patriots sacrificed their lives and fortunes.”
illiam Tyler’s quote exemplifies the democratic principles of which America’s Presidential system of government was laid. United States of America has enjoyed more than 200 years of consecutive and uninterrupted democratic system of governance with two major political parties: Republicans and Democrats dominating its political scene for more than two centuries now. The strength of America’s democracy does not only base on the independence of the three arms of government namely: Executive, Legislative, and Judiciary, but on a wellstructured and institutionalized internal democracy being practiced by the two major political parties: Democrats and Republican. Internal party democracy is the bedrock of every democracy! America is being rated the best democracy in the world not necessarily, because of the conduct of its general elections, which is always adjudged to be transparent, free, and fair; but the transparent and democratic manner at which the two major political parties elect their candidates! In US, whenever any national or political issues are being debated, politicians does not re-group or take side along religious, ethnic or tribal lines; but along party ideologies and philosophies! Ironically, Nigeria culled its presidential system of government from America. In 1999, Nigerians heaved a sigh of relief, when we welcomed back democracy from the captivity where it had been during the Military reign. Unfortunately, since 1999 till now, Nigeria way of practicing democracy has been contradictory to what is obtainable in other advanced democracy like US, where we copied our Presidential system of government; because of how our political parties are being run like private business by the sponsors of the party! Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has been in the saddle for more than thirteen years now with little or no commensurate results to show for it! PDP has performed below the
expectations of majority of Nigerians since its emergence as the ruling party in Nigeria, and self-acclaimed largest political party in Africa! PDP as a party has performed poorly; not necessarily because its present leaders derive joy in impoverishing Nigerians; but the structures of the party has been hijacked by infidels who does not understand the ideologies and visions of the party as were articulated by the founding fathers of the party when the political party was being formed in 1998. PDP operated like a mafia world, devoid of rules and order, until the emergence of one of its founding fathers and former national secretary of the party in the person of Dr. Okwesilieze Nwodo as the national chairman of the political party, upon his emergence, Dr. Nwodo made up his mind to reform the party by restoring back the ideologies and visions of the party as was laid down by the founding fathers of PDP by introducing some policies which could have gone a long way in reforming the party. He reasoned that; if PDP as ruling and the largest political party in Africa could get it right by entrenching and institutionalizing internal democracy in the day-to-day running of the party; other political parties in Nigeria will tow the same path, and that would not only go a long way in shaping the destiny of this nation, but would encourage men and women of proven integrity to participate in active politics, at the same time enhance the growth of our young democracy; which is in line with what Dr. Nwodo used to say; “democracy is a journey; not a destination.” During the media conference Dr. Nwodo held with a group of journalists recently at his office,
Dr. Nwodo he said; “…when I became the national chairman, I was determined these ideals (the original ideologies and values of the party) returned to the party. I worked three years when the party was formed as the national secretary to the party to put these things in place, but when I came back as national chairman, I could not recognize the party I left only few years back. If you say ‘PDP’ out there, what you will hear instead of ‘power to the people’ is ‘share the money’ and if you are lucky somebody else will say, ‘share it equally’. So, PDP has been reduced from ‘power to the people’ to a party where they share money. Secondly, I discovered that majority of the people who were elected on the platform of PDP had absolutely no idea of what PDP meant. In my inaugural speech I spent time to say that out of about 40 suggested names, it took time before we finally settled for Peoples’ Democratic Party. The party was formed around the people; the party returning Nigeria to democracy. We examined these names before we arrived at PDP. The people in the party does not know the meaning of the flag. We had so many colors to use from. But we chose three colors that depicted the history of this country… so, most people in the party today don’t even know what these meant. They did not know the meaning of our slogan. ‘PDP – power to the people’. That one has been swept and buried. There was absolutely no internal democracy
“…when I became the national chairman, I was determined these ideals (the original ideologies and values of the party) returned to the party.
left in the party. Party leaders and candidates were now nominated by godfathers and godmothers from councilors to the presidency, party leaders anointed from ward chairmen to national chairman. The people of Nigeria were totally denied the power to elect their leadership from the smallest point to the highest point. No elected member of PDP has had a glance at the manifesto of the party he/ she is promising to work with and this is the covenant between the people and the party; telling the people what we want to do for them if they elect us. Most of these people do not have a copy of the manifesto and, therefore can not tell what it is all about. The party just became a vehicle to win election and it became the vehicle because the godfathers who held the party to ransom elected their stooges who are on a massage for them”, Dr. Okwesilieze Nwodo stressed. Upon his emergence as a national chairman, the National Working Committee (NWC), under his leadership introduced some policies which included but not limited to E-registration; which could have helped in returning the party back to the people where it originally belonged. E-registration could have assisted in unbound ling the party by setting it free from the stronghold of godfathers, at same time give members of the public the opportunity to register straight as members of the party via the internet without recourse to any godfather and godmother. E-registration would have enabled the party gained its financial autonomy by generating up to 10 billion naira through the E-registration programme annually, and also help the party to know the exact data of its bonafide members!
Unfortunately, the antidemocratic forces frustrated it! In the words of Dr. Okwesilieze Nwodo, he said, “even after registering the President online, other people were registering from every part of the world. But when we went to NEC meeting, the Governors killed it! This programme was supposed to generate a minimum of N10 billion for the party every year. In other words, making the party financially independent of any body who wanted to fund PDP and take over…” While he was championing those reforms as the chairman of the party, Dr. Okwesilieze Nwodo understood clearly what Niccolo Machiavelli said that, “Nothing is more difficult to bring about than a new order of things; because those who profit from the old order will do everything to prevent the new order from coming board and those who could profit from the new order do not do enough to make it happen; because man does not want try new things.” During the media interview, where he highlighted some of his achievements as a national secretary and chairman of the party, he said, “I don’t want to boast, but the facts are there. PDP has done only two primaries. The one I did in Jos as a national secretary that produced Obasanjo and the convention I conducted that brought out Goodluck Jonathan. From 1998 till today, if there has been a convention that is as good as these two I have mentioned, somebody should come and educate me and show me how he get up to 50% …” As sadly as it may sound, other political parties in Nigeria are nothing to write home about when it comes to what political party should be! Majority of those making noise in the opposition parties are nothing but disgruntled elements who were frustrated out of PDP! Opposition parties in Nigeria does not offer a good alternative to a politician who is looking for a party where internal democracy is institutionalized, and its programme being driven by a well-articulated party ideologies and values to enable him/her actualize his political ambition. Some people described ACN as Asiwaju Company of Nigeria, because of the way the party is being centered on one single individual, Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu! Mohammed Buhari who is the perceived leader of Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), can be described as the emperor of CPC’s empire; because of the way the party is being run at its whims and caprices! Until we return back the political parties to Nigerian people by entrenching internal party democracy, and institutionalize party ideology and discipline; Nigerian young democracy would continue to crawl like a toddler! Comrade Chidiebere is a public affairs analyst based in Abuja
December 1-2, 2012
Akume, Suswam and Karma From ATI TERKULA, Makurdi
any religions believe in the concept of reaping and sowing. This concept entails that whatever one does today must reflect tomorrow; for every action there is a resultant repercussion in like manner. This many call Karma. Though this piece is not crafted to serve any religious purpose neither is it aimed at substantiating this theory, it rather aims at bringing to fore the repetition of history and happenings in relation to actions of concerned political players. Karma as practiced is now believed to be taking place in Benue state political scene viewing the happenings on the political scene involving major players and actors in the state. NATIONAL ACCORD in this piece will tend to expose pointers to the application of the laws of Karma in Benue State, viewing the different democratic regimes and the repitition of patterns. Akume When Akume assumed office in 1999 after years of military rule, he became the Third elected governor of Benue State. Akume who was elected under the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), whose foremost promoters were his former boss and friend, Dr. Iorchia Ayu and his in-law Chief Barnabas Gemade. His Actions Akume had in the first years of his eight years in the Benue state government house initiated a running battle with the leader of the opposition in the state, Mr. Paul Unongo of the All Peoples Party a battle which lasted seven years of this regime. It was this battle that resulted the famous war in Kwande local government which lasted over two years claiming thousands of lives and millions worth of property destroyed. According to political analysts, this war was presumably caused by Akume’s insistence on blanket victory, making sure the opposition in the state especially Kwande where Unongo hailed did not win any seat at all. Akume made sure as a mark of assertion of his political superiority, made sure Benue returned only PDP candidates in 2003 causing pockets of violence in Kwande and his home place of Tarkaa Local Government. Prior to Akume’s battle against Unongo, was his sidelining of his acclaimed estranged godfather, Chief Gemade who is widely said to be the wallet behind the nurturing and subsequent victory of Akume and the PDP in the state. This battle which many have blamed Dr. Ayu as its mastermind, totally removed
Gemade from Benue local politics sending him on exile to Abuja. It was this battle that culminated into the ousting of Gemade as PDP national chairman. Also during this eight year sojourn, Akume also engaged his political predecessor Fr. Moses Adasu, in a bid to dim the former’s towering popularity as well as his ambition to return to the government house. Sources have it that Adasu’s criticism and later desire to unseat Akume earned the former who had been a lecturer at the Benue state University a termination of service at the University which he built in his 15 months in office. Akume is also touted to have withdrawn all constitutional percks and privileges due the former
governor. Many believe this action resulted in Adasu’s death as he died in penury. Suswam Hon. Gabriel Suswam who came into political prominence at the early age of 34 as a member of the federal house of representatives under the umbrella of the PDP in 1999 became the toast of many after been picked by his former political bedmate, Sen. George Akume, amongst an array of aspirants to succeed him in 2007 as Benue governor. His Actions/Akume’s Karma On assumption of office in 2007 as Governor of Benue State, Suswam maintained a cordial relationship with his benefactor, Sen. Akume, but this romance was shortlived as in a bid to
Hon. Gabriel Suswam who came into political prominence at the early age of 34 as a member of the federal house of representatives under the umbrella of the PDP in 1999 became the toast of many after been picked by his former political bedmate, Sen. George Akume, amongst an array of aspirants to succeed him in 2007 as Benue governor.
carve a niche for himself, also fell out with Akume whose influence according pundits was already chocking a younger and independent minded Suswam. Sequel to this fall out which till date concrete reasons have not been advanced, Akume in the same manner he fought Gemade, who at a point in 2003was forced into exile in the United Nigeria Peoples Party (UNPP), was also stifled out of the PDP, pitching tents with the Action Congress of Nigeria(ACN) where he ran a successful senatorial campaign but failed to unseat Suswam. As if to replay history and serve Akume the fruit of his style of democracy, the just concluded Local Government polls which has in contrast to Akume’s battle with Unongo which was ended in violence, is relatively peaceful though pockets of violence but as political watchers have revealed it also witnessed some form of rigging to ensure the opposition (ACN) lost out completely as was the case in 2003. The ACN and Akume loyalists have variously discredited the polls especially in local governments of Buruku, Tarkaa and Gboko which were touted to be opposition biased but have been won and delivered by the PDP, but have acknowledged that the cry of foul play by Akume and is lot should rather be seen as Karma in play.
December 01-02, 2012
Zik’s sons fight over mother’s plan to go into politics From STAN OKEKE, Enugu
’m interested in politics”, Prof. (Mrs.) Uche Azikiwe, Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe’s widow, had told NATIONAL ACCORD WEEKEND in an exclusive interview recently. “If I’m allowed to choose, I will start from the local government as chair person, where it will impact positively on members of the society, and not jump-starting. I believe that the best way to climb the ladder of of politics, is from the last rung of the ladder, and then you move up. I’m putting it in prayers. YES! I will swim in the political waters when the time is ripe”, she had said. That secret ambition so openly expressed by the erudite professor, has now formed the point of disagreement between her otherwise two agreeable sons, Uwakwe Azikiwe, 35, and his elder brother, Molokwu, 36. While Uwakwe is against their mother seeking an elective post, Molokwu does not see anything wrong with that. “I will always tell her not to go into politics”, Uwakwe says in answer to a question on the issue. “I don’t think she can survive the terrain, because the way politics is played now, you really have to be a “yes-man” or else you can’t really survive. She can’t be a yes person. She’s accomplished in her field, so you can’t come and tell her she has to do this and she knows that it is wrong. I don’t think that she will do that”, Uwakwe continued. On Molokwu’s part, it was a different ball game. “If she decides to go into politics, after due considerations, she has my support”,Molokwu insists. “If she makes up her mind that’s what she wants to do, welland fine, but of course, I will give her my honest and total opinion, and after listening to my opinion, and she still feels like going for it, she has my 100% support”. Does this mild disagreement mean that there’s war in in the house of the great Zik of Africa? NO! Just two brothers looking at the same issue from different perspectives. Uwakwe is obviously a chip off the old block. The last son of the political icon and Nigeria’s first president, Dr. Nnamdi
•Uche Azikiwe, Molokwu and Wwakwe's mother
•Molokwu and Uwakwe Azikiwe
Azikiwe, Uwakwe believes completely in his opinion on issues, and goes ahead to proffer superior argument to back up his beliefs. But Molokwu, his elder brother, is on the quiet side. He believes strongly in what his father told him about venturing into politics, hence he looks at his stand on politics, philosophically. Though they seem to disagree as to whether their mother should go into the murky terrain of Nigerian politics or not, in truth, both of them agree that it is not time for their mother to venture into politics. “Presently, I’m not encouraged by the political situation even as it seems that our votes now count. However, there are still some more work to be done, so as to get it right”, Uwakwe began. “Generally speaking, people do not go into public office, thinking about service but about selfish and personal interests”. Molokwu agrees! “I think that the current political terrain is not actually what it ought to be. Politics in Nigeria is that of brute strength and money. If you don’t have both
confesses. “Like I said, the blood flows in me. At times, I doubt myself, but at other times, when I stay in my room reading an article in a newspaper, I find myself responding to that article. After a while, I look in the mirror and I say, aha, that’s a politician o. “I know it flows in me, but I still want to accomplish a lot in my career and after that, depending on the terrain, I really want to take my time to check out the terrain before I go into politics. Like I always tell people, the candle is inside me. Am just waiting for the candle to be lit. When that happens, I tell you, I know I will be there”. Molokwu on his part says, “Nigerians themselves
or one of them, things might be very difficult for you”. Interestingly, their mother, Uche, shares same views with her sons. “ What bothers me is the way politics is played in Nigeria, it’s very different from when mylate husband was in politics. Like these killings, it scares me. If you disagree with me, why don’t you try to convince me? Prove to me that your line of thought is better than mine and if you convince me, I’ll try and follow you. So, when I tried to discuss it with my sons, they said, ‘Mumsie, see how they are killing people’. Surprisingly, while Uwakwe does not want her mother to go into politics, at least just yet, he says he’s very much interested. “I’m interested”, he
Does this mild disagreement mean that there’s war in in the house of the great Zik of Africa? NO! Just two brothers looking at the same issue from different perspectives
sometimes say that leadership and followership go hand in hand, you get the kind of leadership you want. I’m sure that if the people want a change in Nigeria, they have to cause the change. At the stage we are right now, change cannot just happen”. Continuing, their mother said that she’s very much interested in politics, except for the fact that the terrain is terrible. “I don’t want to die. In my husband’s days, people respect views. But now, what do we respect? People and their purse”. On this point, Molokwu agrees with his mother. “I think there’s not been much improvement from what we had in the 60s and the First Republic. Politics in Nigeria is no longer politics of issues, it’s been turned into politics of people, money, and brute strength”. “One thing I always remember my father told me was, “if you want to dabble into politics, or want to be a public figure, you have to be accomplished in your private life first”, Uwakwe reveals. “In playing politics, you don’t have to sell your soul, or be a yes-man”.
December 01-02, 2012
I wasn’t arrested because of Otite killings – Hon. Suberu
hy were you arrested and detained at the Force Headquarters Abuja? I give glory to God Almighty for sparing my life. I also thanked the security operatives, especially the police for sparing my life, because the evil plans of those behind my incarceration was made impossible by God. My stay in the police custody for close to two months was a lesson for all would be politicians of our time. However, I don’t see my detention as a punishment; rather I see it as the price of leadership. Notable leaders like Obasanjo, Dimeji Bankole and several others had similar experience. Let me at this juncture thank Governor Idris Wada, a God-fearing governor who insisted on not joining issues with the security challenges facing the people of Kogi Central at that time. I pray God would continue to support and guide him in the transformation of the state. There was an allegation that the killing at Deeper Life, Otite might have been politically motivated which necessitated your arrest? In Kogi Central everything is tied to politics, participants in party politics, especially position seekers are out and hell-bent to destroy perceived opponents. Let me state categorically that my arrest and detention has nothing to do with the Otite Deeper Life killings and the killing of two soldiers in Okene. My arrest was purely based on a petition written to the Commissioner of Police of Kogi State by one Mallam Hassan O. Yusuf, the Liaison Officer 1 in-charge of Okehi, alleging that I am against his plan to sack over 500 workers of the local government and that my followers planned to cause breach of peace. The petition is there at the police command for anyone to confirm. You see my antecedents as a Chartered Banker who rose to the position of Manager in the banking industry before I joined politics does not portray me as mischief maker. Also, the little time I served as chairman of Okehi Local Government was full of good memories because my achievements in terms of human and physical developments are there for people to see. Then in Okehi, there was sharp deviation from the old pattern of looting to full blown development. These are my intimidating credentials that have earned me envy and witch-hunting by opponents. Their action was regrettable and we will take necessary legal action against them as soon as possible. They also alleged that your arrest was in connection with the murder of a young school girl. Was that correct? I wish to also state that I have no hands in the killing of the girl. That was why I was released after thorough investigation by the police. The man who confessed to killing the girl is still languishing in police cell at Lokoja. The killer hails from Ehiaga clan in EikaOhizenyi, while I am from Ubobo clan in Obangede. People from my clan are not known for ritual killings. That is the reason I was sent to school in order to equip myself and be relevant in the society. I am not half-baked as not to know the need to work hard and pray. The killer of the girl will surely face the wrath of God here and the hereafter. Some prominent persons from the
The violence which claimed the lives of 17 members of Deeper Life Church who attended Monday Bible study service at Otite in Okehi LGA of Kogi State and the murder of two soldiers posted to the Okene Council Secretariat by unknown gunmen drew the ire of Nigerians. In the wake of military operations to clean up the entire area of hoodlums some notable politicians were nabbed and were taken to Abuja for interrogation. One of them was HON. ABUBAKAR ADAGU SUBERU, the Special Adviser to Governor Idris Wada on Economic Matters. He was the immediate past Chairman of Okehi Local Government Area. He was recently released. In this Interview with ATABOR JULIUS our Kogi State correspondent he bares his mind on the circumstances surrounding his arrest and detention among other issues. Excerpts: area wrote an SOS to the President and the Governor Wada over the insecurity in the area, how will you describe their courage? Yes, we were in police custody in Abuja when we read their SOS to both the President and Kogi State governor. Their SOS was biased and politically motivated because they had drawn their conclusion before investigation. It is very sad that people of their status and wisdom could draw a conclusion in a matter that is before a competent police authority. What is your assessment of the current security situation in Kogi
Central? Today there is relative peace in Kogi Central. We thank the Governor for the continued presence of the Joint Task Force. Their presence has helped to check insecurity and the insurgence. However, one thing that poses threat to peaceful co-existence in the area is the politicization of matters of serious security challenges by politicians who are on witch-hunting or vendetta cause. I therefore urged security operatives to try as much as possible to live above partisan politics in the discharge of their duties. By and large, the security agents
are doing their best. I wish to let the people of Kogi Central know that they are not alone in Kogi State. They should keep the peace and allow the good things to come from government. What is your opinion of the crisis in the Kogi State House of Assembly? The crisis is normal and should be expected in politics. I urged them to put the crisis behind by supporting the new leadership in the House so that the state can move forward. As you are aware, the PDP is the party in government and it controls the majority legislators, so the noise being made from the House is by the minority party. The PDP in the state has thrown its support behind the new leadership, so also are the people of Okehi LGA. I therefore urge the new leadership to be focused. One may even go further to ask, how many of these legislators still visit their constituencies. Some of them have nothing to show for the constituency allowances they have been collecting. What is your assessment of the activities of the Liaison Officers? The governor has recently shed light on their performances. Most of them are merely running the government of transmitting themselves into executive chairmen and in the course breaching the peace. Like in Okehi LGA, workers are owed three months salary, even when 500 workers have been laid off. There is no on-going project. The situation is alien to the people of Okehi and they are waiting for the appropriate time when they will ask to know what their money was used for. Advise for the political class on the forthcoming local government election in the state. As you are aware, the governor has said it times without number that all votes will count. There will be no automatic ticket from government house and no contestant will be rigged in. So, I advised all PDP aspirants to go and work hard, campaign well on their programmes and pray to God. I am very hopeful that the local government election would be peaceful. How will you rate Governor Idris Wada’s administration so far? The governor is doing very well. He needs the support of everyone in the state. As an insider in the present government, I am aware that series of litigation against the governor has caused serious distraction and set back. Now that all that is over, the governor will be able to take stock of governance and will seriously impact on the good people of Kogi State. As a Special Adviser to the governor on Economic Matters, I am working on areas that I know will assist the governor in his transformation agenda, principally, on the area of revenue leakages, I am putting up a memo to identify them to the governor as well as ways and manner to curb the leakages, so that Kogi State can gain more from Internally Generated Revenue (IGR), to complement the federal allocation which is dwindling on a monthly basis. This I must accomplish because it is under my area of specialization. As an appointee in this administration, I must contribute my quota because the governor cannot do it alone.
December 01-02, 2012
12 controversial Nollywood actresses and their reckless lifestyles exposed P. 20
ntic a m o es r ith i n 3 e d w P. 2 9ice vement l invo rgrad unde
December 01-02, 2012
12 controversial Nollywood actresses and their reckless lifestyles exposed Movietainment Magazine in a recent piece discussed the prevalence of scandals in the Nigerian movie industry, these scandals which have become synonymous with Nollywood have been perpetrated mostly by female actresses. Scandals ranging from husband snatching to sexual immorality are synonymous with Nollywood acts, and this has affected the image of many Nigerian actors and actresses. That is why we decided to bring you the first part of an exposition on the reckless lifestyles of some Nollywood actresses in this edition. Mercy Johnson Mercy Johnson has always been in the news even before her controversial wedding to Edo big boy, Prince Odi Okojie on Saturday, August 27, 2011. The lady hit the news headlines when she was pictured exposing her private part at an event. It was obvious in the photograph that she did not wear pant or bra. Her wedding became an issue, which was feasted on by the print media as she was alleged to have snatched another person’s husband as revealed by one Lovelyn, a supposed wife of Prince Okojie. Mercy Johnson is one actress with scandalous sexual controversies.
been paid N5million for sex by the Managing Director of Sifax, Mr. Taiwo Afolabi. Tonto is also noted for being a lover of tattoo as she has more than 57
man at the back seat of a car in London. Funke Akindele Until her recent wedding to Oshodi big boy, Alhaji Kehinde Almaroof Oloyede, Funke was really an actress with many sex scandals. She was alleged to have fought with one of her colleagues on a movie set in 2011 over a man. Some have also rumoured that she had escapades with some notable men before her marriage, which held with funfare on May 26, 2012. Her wedding to Almaroof also became controversial as she was reported to be going into Almaroof’s life as a third wife. Genevieve Nnaji Genny, as sexy Genevieve Nnaji is fondly called, has been romantically linked with several actors in Nollywood. Ramsey Nouah, RMD, Pat Attah and others are some of the men she was rumoured to have dated. Genevieve was once said to have dated a topmost politician in Nigeria, apart from other alleged sexcapades here and there. Though she has become the face of a popular vehicle manufacturer, her sex life in the industry can never be easily forgotten in a hurry.
Ini Edo Another name on the list is that of Inibong Edobong, better known as Ini Edo. Ini is one Nollywood actress that is synonymous with sex scandals in the industry. Her wedding was a bit controversial after she was believed to have snatched Philip Ehiagwina from society lady, Ruth Okoro. She was once rumoured to be having a romantic affair with a governor in the South-South region of Nigeria. Also recently, she was reported to have left a club with another man. Tonto Dikeh Tonto Dikeh is unarguably the most controversial Nollywood actress. The beautiful lady has always been in the news since her emergence in the movie industry in 2006. She was recently alleged to have
designs on her body. One other thing about this lady is that she is a heavy smoker, and she once had a brawl with Van Vicker on a movie set in 2011.
Iyabo Ojo One of the best hands in the Yoruba genre of Nollywood, Iyabo Ojo is not new to negative stories. It was reported that a top Lagos politician and former Senator gave her the Range Rover SUV she is cruising around town. Her bitter fight with colleague, Lizzy Anjorin was almost becoming monumental until some industry heavyweights stepped in to broker peace between the two beautiful actresses. Apart from that, the controversial actress has been involved in several sex scandals and she was once reported to have been caught having sex with a
Tayo Odueke (Sikiratu Sindodo) Not many know Tayo Odueke by her real name, she is better known and addressed as Sikiratu Sindodo, a name she got from one of her movie flicks. One of her most popular scandals was her hot romance with a leader of the National Union of Road Transport Workers
(NURTW) in Oshodi, Lagos, Musiliu Akinsanya also known as MC Oluomo. Oluomo was even said to have sent her to Saudi Arabia for holy pilgrimage. She was also rumoured to have dated actor and producer, Kunle Afod. Just few months ago, the gist went round town that she was having an affair with younger brother of Kunle Afolayan, Aremu which she has profusely denied. She is presently rumoured to be in a sizzling romance with top Fuji artiste, Malaika.
was alleged to have caused the separation of fellow actress, Doris Simeon with her hubby, Daniel Ademinokan. Stella was reported to have started a love affair with Daniel before his marriage with Simeon crashed. Her secret was exposed by a soft sell magazine, which reported that Doris was ready to fight Stella for snatching her hubby. There were also reports that both Daniel and Stella have been seen
Stella Damasus Nollywood beautiful actress, Stella Damasus is seen by many as the industry ‘good girl’ until she
Though she has become the face of a popular vehicle manufacturer, her sex life in the industry can never be easily forgotten in a hurry.
together in some compromising ways. Though Stella and Daniel have denied having any amorous relationship, but some are still in doubt that their closeness is a business affair.
many men to her. The mother of two is surely not free from some scandals associated with the playacting profession in Nigeria. She has been severally alleged of hoping from one bed to another.
Bukky Wright Her failed marriages and romantic affairs with some big wigs in the industry have been a thing for many to feed on. Bukky Wright’s pretty looks has attracted
Faithia Balogun This estranged wife of top Nollywood actor, Saidi Balogun, Faithia is surely also not free of some scandals in Nollywood. She was once rumoured to have
fought her colleague in the Yoruba movie industry over a young Ibadan politician, Rotimi Ajanaku. She was rumoured to have alleged that the lady snatched Ajanaku from her. She was once reported to be in sizzling romance with the Director of Corporate Pictures, Alhaji Abdullahi Razak. It was also reported that this almost destroyed the marriage of the top marketer. One funny thing about Faithia is the fact that she is yet to drop the surname of her former husband, Balogun. Stephanie Okereke Stephanie Okereke was reported in 2011 to have fought with Genevieve Nnaji when she reportedly found out that Genevieve had allegedly cornered her link to a man in the presidency she reportedly introduced Geneveive to in the presidency. She was reported to have felt bad that Genny cornered her in getting access to the presidency through a former aide of President Goodluck Jonathan, Douglas Oronto. Stephanie was said to be the only link
Genevieve had to Douglas until she found her way through another means. Stephanie has also been linked with some sex scandals in the past. Mosun Filani At the wee hours of her movie career, was enmeshed into hot romantic relationships with actors; Muyiwa Ademola and Odunlade Adekola. She was reported to have almost ruined the marriage of Muyiwa, but for the understanding of his wife. Her wedding to Kayode Adeoye, who is a son of former police AIG, was very controversial. She was alleged to have snatched Kayode from another woman, who had two children for him. Weeks later, her former lover, Alhaji Babatunde, believed to be the head of ‘Omo onile’ in Epe, a suburb of Lagos, ordered Mosun to return a car gift he gave her while they were together. This was after Alhaji got the news that she has married Kayode. Culled from Movietainment Magazine.
December 01-02, 2012
Ajo Agôr: The most romantic Tiv singer Ajo Agor, noted for his love songs among the Tiv, speaks about his career and motivation. Reports TAHAV AGERZUA. How old are you now? I think I’m 100 years old. I was born during the reign of Chief Korinya Agbajir, an ancient chief from the present Konshisha Local Government Area. Have you been to school? I’ve not been to school. My father prevented me from attending school and preferred that I farm. Can you recall the time you started singing? I started singing while the first Tor Tiv, His Royal Highness Makir Dzakpe was alive. Was there any singer before in your family? There have been singers in my family. From my mother’s lineage, Abaya Ndere initiated me into singing. He ground fresh Jiagba (an herb) and gave me to eat. He also put some alligator pepper into my eyes. Before this, I was not singing, I was a trumpeter. From my father’s side, the late Avungu Toryongo was a renowned
singer. But I grew up in my mother’s compound at Mbasor, Gaav in Konshisha Local Government Area. I hail from Mbaikyobo, Mbakuha in Ushongo Local Government Area. Under what circumstances did you start singing? I started singing about a malignant sore I had on the left leg. I sang until the wound was healed. I knew Apemeshiligh Atia in Lessel. She hails from Mbaanyam, Atirkyese Ward of Ushongo Local Government Area. I was a petty trader who used to take my wares to Lessel, Ihugh and Ikyobo markets. She had married someone from Mbawuar, near Ihugh in Vandiekya Local Government Area but had come home for the treatment of an ailment when I spotted her in Lessel market. I approached her in the market and gave her toilet soap and cream. That was the beginning of trouble for me.
Ajo Agor and his lover, ‘Ape Mbagwa’
Soon all the wares diminished on account of her demands. I was left with nothing. Then the “radio man” surfaced from nowhere and overthrew me. That was the beginning of songs about her. I decided to call the man the radio man because he had goiter. He was a soldier. Then soldiers reigned and women flocked to them like flies. That was before the teachers took over. I am talking about life in the village in the sixties. When Ape started having an affair with the radio man, she started shunning me and I had to lament in songs. Incidentally, the husband of Ape was very friendly with me. He said his wife had rejected my approaches, according to my testimony in the songs. His worry was the soldier who I said Ape preferred. Funny enough, the husband re-
corded my songs and played them for Ape. Ape became annoyed that I had leaked her secret. At the time my songs became popular because of the love theme. You know human beings and love are inseparable. Men depend on women and women rely on men. My fame overtook so many singers when I hit upon Ape. But when Ape heard that I was lampooning her in songs, she grew more annoyed and vowed not to have anything to do with me. She said what angered her most was that each time she had a quarrel with her husband; he would play my songs in which I publicized her affairs with the radio man. Interestingly, those who enjoyed the songs intervened and reminded her that I was not insulting her but was making her popular. This made her reconcile with me.
I approached her in the market and gave her toilet soap and cream. That was the beginning of trouble for me. Soon all the wares diminished on account of her demands. I was left with nothing. Then the “radio man” surfaced from nowhere and overthrew me.
What other areas of interest do you sing about? I also sing about Agriculture. I remember that Numbeve Agaku from the State Ministry of Agriculture requested me to promote agriculture. As for election, I saw the benefit myself and decided to sing about it. First, the radio man was educated and this was one of the things that gave him advantage over me. I saw how educated people had advantage in several areas of life in the society and decided to encourage the people to give education attention. I also sing about politics because I too want government’s patronage. I saw that during the Aper Aku era, the governor gave singers like Tondo Kumbur vehicles. That was something good to happen to someone. I want to be part of that kind of patronage. What benefit do you derive from singing? Indeed I have received several benefits and gained a wide range of friendships among politicians and prominent people. I don’t mind the problems associated with politics, the benefits outweigh the disadvantages.
November 24-25, 2012
MIXED GRILL 24-year-old man breaks record, gets arrested after being caught with 15 prostitutes In a first of its kind, a Harare man appeared in court jointly charged with 15 commercial sex workers after they were nabbed during a police round up on 'thigh' vendors operating in Harare Central Business District.
hile most prostitutes appear in court MINUS clients, Tapiwa Musara (24) scored a first as it were, as he was the only man charged along with the 15 alleged thigh vendors. Tapiwa, along with 12 self-confessed hookers, readily pleaded guilty to soliciting for the purposes of prostitution while three pleaded not guilty. The three vehemently denied saying that they were not thigh vending, but they were just girls who were having some good time. The convicted 13 were slapped with US$20 fine and the court did not give them any time to pay as the fine had to be paid forthwith. Failure to pay the fine attracted a 10-day imprisonment sentence. State led by prosecutor Tendai Kabudura proved that on 13 November, at around 8pm in the CBD, Tapiwa along with the 12 had been nabbed by the cops after they were unlawfully and intentionally solicited for prostitution. It had been proved that they were standing along the streets luring men for sex in return for cash. They had all been asked what they were doing at the streets corners and they failed to give
satisfactory answers leading to their arrest and appearance in
court. The other three suspected prostitutes who pleaded not guilty
to the charge were back in court on 22 November for trial.
9ice denies romantic involvement with undergraduate
ver since 9ice and his estranged wife Toni Payne separated, tales of frolicking has followed the artiste about. It’s barely a week now that 9ice denied any relations with an Abuja lover whom reports say had a set of twins for him; now he’s had to deny another romantic affair with a u n i v e r s i t y undergraduate. According to the singer, tales of a romantic relationship with Babcock U n i v e r s i t y undergraduate Funmi Omotosho is false, baseless, and he found it hard to ‘fathom where the whole story is coming from’ as he claims to be good friends with Funmi
and her boyfriend. “I attended Funmi’s birthday not quite long which also had her boyfriend in attendance. Sincerely, I can’t fathom where the whole story is coming from but I know that the mischief makers are at it again,” 9ice said. 9ice in a recent interview with Vanguard Showtime, 9ice denied ever having a relationship with Abujabased Vicki Godis who reports say earlier in the year bore him twins. “I wish the press would verify their stories about me before publishing them. Nobody had any baby for me. That story is not true and I want to tell you that they are making it up,” 9ice said in the interview. S o u r c e : Informationnigeria.com
December 1-2, 2012
PEOPLE & PLACES
Igbo people, one people, great people, great culture I
By UZOMA AHAMEFULE
gbo people are unique people, very accommodating, generous and enterprising. Because of their zeal and determination to be successful one will find them in every remote village in Nigeria. As Yorubas in my view should pass as the most religious tolerant group in Nigeria so the Igbos are the highest investors in the project called Nigeria with their businesses and properties all over the country. If you see ten Africans outside Africa do not be too surprised to find out that eight of these people may be Nigerians and five or six might be Igbos. The culture of the Igbos imbibes braveness and foresight, thus there is no part of the planet that you cannot find an Igbo man as long as life exists there. No matter the risks and slim chances of survival in such places, Igbo men will always flourish to the surprise of those that do not know them. The spirit of a true Igbo man is ‘never give up’. An Igbo man may surprise one by building houses in places where indigenes may be finding it extremely difficult to pay house rents as tenants. Give them a little space they will transform it jealously to full opportunity. They are very peace loving people,
generous and hard-working. Those that are dazed at the pace of their success and may not be able to compete with them out of envy say “they are too domineering and money worshippers.” Igbo people are very intelligent people with a very high IQ in business management. An Igbo man, Dr. Ezekiel Izuogu, recently produced the first African made car called “Z-600”. The man that invented the formula that made it possible for computers to make 3.1 b i l l i o n calculations per second was an Igbo man in the name of Philip Emeagwali, an immeasurable i m m o r t a l c o m p u t e r wizard. The former US President, Bill C l i n t o n described him as “the Bill Gates of Africa “. The cultures
of Ndi Igbo are very rich and interesting and “Iriji” (yam festival) is one of those. As true sons and daughters of the soil, not even million miles away from home could kill the spirit of that ‘Igboness’ in the Igbos living in Diaspora. The Igbos in Vienna , Austria still practice the yearly ‘Omenala’ (culture) of ‘Iriji’ (yam festival) as if they are in Igbo land with all their traditional rituals observed. “Omenala ndi Igbo” (Igbo culture) are the customs, practices and traditions of Ndi Igbo that include dances of different types, attire, art, language, marriage and cuisine. When you see Igbo women dance, they are beautiful to watch and could make the hearts of some people to beat faster as they wriggle their waists to the rhythm of the traditional music bumming out from traditional instruments like ‘ogene’ (an instrument designed from iron), ‘udu’ (forged from a clay jug) and ‘oja or opi’ (traditional flute) to the admiration of all. The Igbo women are very beautiful and homely. The traditional attire of Igbo people are admirable with their chiefs and other
traditional title holders like “Nze na Ozo’s’ having red caps to distinguish them. But modern people now wear the traditional hats as fashion and most times with the traditional dresses called ‘Isiagu’ to match. The customs of “Iwa oji”
•A masquerade at the event
(breaking of Kola nut) in Igbo land and “Iriji” (yam festival) are very important traditions. If an Igbo man comes to one’s house and one kills a cow or even a lion for him with a lot to drink and varieties of food to eat but one fails to give him Kola nut, it is regarded that one has neglected him and equally has not given him any food. “Iriji” (yam festival) is a very big annual event in Igbo land to thank the gods for the yam harvest with traditional rites before the new yam can be eaten. However, the usual big celebration of the new yam festival was not done this year (2012), but the normal traditional ceremonies were performed at the “Akara Restaurant” situated in Koppstraße, 52 in Vienna , Austria on 27 October 2012. The Igbos in Vienna, Austria have continually demonstrated that they have not abandoned their culture and heritage, thus giving hope that generations will grow to know that there is the “Iriji” festival. Enough respect to the Igbos in Vienna and special thanks to the interim caretaker committee. Africans, be proud of your cultures and preserve them for the generations unborn.
December 01-02, 2012
An artist in a world of his own L
By SAM NWANZE
ike many other visual artists, he is eccentric by nature but highly focused in his art world. With a creative mind that is unique and penetrating, Nwadiaso Nworie, a 44 year-old artist from Umuakpu Village, Enuagu Amurri, in Nkanu West Local Government Area of Enugu State, was at home recently, when he spoke to this reporter in his studio located in his village. It was a meeting which left the reporter with the feeling that many visual artists in this country who are good in the usage of all kinds of motif to express themselves are really not known. The reason is that, most of them are not exposed to the public through the media or other medium like exhibition and other displays that could make them known. This artist falls into this category. Even though he has a display centre at Garki Area in Enugu urban, a 20 minutes drive from his village, he is yet to embark on aggressive exhibition shows to make the world know that a budding visual artist exists somewhere in Nkanu West Local Government of Enugu state. The artist is versatile but very good in sculpture, using woods and cement to create wonderful images, both abstract and realist. “I can handle all aspects of visual art be it drawing, painting, pottery, wood carving among others but along the line, I decided to concentrate on sculpture which has made me popular due to commissioned and uncommissioned works I had undertaken,” he posited in his bass voice. In this regard, he had done works for prominent traditional rulers in the state and beyond, creating motifs for their buildings which helps to give such structures special looks. On this, he said that artist is a designer in a way. His words: “An artist is a designer, if he or she really knows his or her work well. First, he could look at an environment and the structure and design a befitting art work that could give additional aesthetic value to what is already on ground.” As a sculptor, he had done personality images for many Nigerians with little reward. Why little reward, he was asked. His answer: “Most of
the time, I look at an individual from head to toe, put down a sketch of the person’s profile and do a full or half length sculpture image of such personality which could be amazing to him because it would be a near exact replica of himself in cement or wood. But because I did not consult him before the work is done, some simply pay what they want to pay which in most cases is under valued. But because I drive joy in using such jobs to advertise my potentials, I would not mind.” However, he had made money from commissioned works from affluent individuals. To show for this, he has a one storey building at his village home and rides a Mercedes Benz car and had acquired other properties. On while he had to stay in the village where his works and worth are not really appreciated, he said that it is a matter of choice. “This is a matter of choice and as you know, my village is not far from Enugu town, it is just about 20 minutes drive or less if not for bad road. Secondly, I want to stay near nature where I drive my inspirations from and I also get a lot of message from the spirit world on what to draw and create either in painting or sculpture,” he said. Asked who taught him, he said that it was inborn as nobody taught him the art although it runs in the family. “My father was an artist of a different kind. He was producing mortars, hoe handles among other wood works for the villagers but I took it from another angle which later paid off,” he said, pointing out that his other siblings were not interested even though they could do some art works. Some of his works on display are: Eagle, Crocodiles, Chieftaincy stool, among others. He hopes to participate in an exhibition one day. “My problem is that most of the artists who do solo or group exhibitions look at themselves as elitist because of their educational background, so some of us who could not go to the university but still produce works that are in some cases better than their own are avoided for group display. Because of this I just mind my business since I am not yet ready for solo exhibition,” he said.
December 01-02, 2012
Jabi/Utako: ‘Fleet Street’ of Abuja OJELI AWELE looks at where media houses are concentrated the most in Abuja
A typical newspaper stand in Nigeria
n most cities of the world, there are special areas for specific things, whether for good or for bad. For instance, the Wall Street in New York is a renowned financial hub of the world where major financial concerns have their headquarters and take farreaching decisions. The Hollywood area of Los Angeles, California in the United States is famous for movie studios and movie stars. It is situated at the west-northwest of downtown Los Angeles. For the media, such places also exists. The Fleet Street in London. It is named after the River Fleet, London’s largest underground river. It
was the origin and home of the British newspapers until the 1980s. Even though the last major British news office, Reuters, left in 2005, the term Fleet Street continues to be used as a metonym for the British national press. Crossing over to Nigeria, in Abuja especially, a kind of Fleet street exist in the Jabi/ Utako axis of the city. It harbours so many corporate offices and commercial outfits. But notably Jabi is a home of media and newspaper houses just like the Fleet Street in London tends to be the origin and home of British newspapers. These media and newspaper houses have either their corporate office
or their branch offices at Jabi. The Nigeria Television Authority (NTA) has its corporate office at Area 11 just as Radio Nigeria has its head office at Radio House, Area 10. Interestingly, the Abuja Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) has is secretariat also at Utako. Its former secretariat was situated at Zone 5. Newspaper houses such as the NATIONAL ACCORD has its corporate office in Jabi not too far from that of THISDAY newspaper. The Daily Trust newspaper has its corporate office at Jabi, an annex at Utako. The GUARDIAN has an Abuja corporate office
The LEADERSHIP also has its Head office also at Utako facing Kado-Wuse expressway facing the Mabushi area. Other newspapers houses such as, The Sun, The Tribune have their offices in Jabi. In the same vein, Jabi is heavily concentrated with so many commercial outfits and recreational places. The commercial outfits such as the banks, the shopping centres, plazas and business centres can be seen all over. There are various recreational places at Jabi such like the restaurants, the clubs, hotels, garden and parks and the most exciting place among them is the Jabi Lake where picnickers and
people go for jogging daily. An artificial lake, the Lake was commissioned in 2007 by the former President Olusegun Obasanjo. The major motor park in Abuja is situated at Jabi. It where one can get what type of vehicle to all parts of the country. Apart from that, Jabi/Utako is dotted with privately owned and government operated transport companies such as the ABC Transport, Peace motor, Edo Line, Greener Line Cross Line, Akwa Ibom transport Corporation amongst others. But on the whole, Jabi/ Utako axis is better known as the hub of media houses in Abuja. You may call it “Fleet Street” if you like.
December 01-02, 2012
How to date D
efine your expectations. Why are you dating? What are you looking for? Do you want a lifetime commitment, or do you want to live completely in the moment? Whether or not you’re seeking a commitment can make a difference in how you approach dating. If you’re dating for fun and companionship, what matters most is how well you get along, right off the bat. If you’re seeking a partner, you should be more willing to overlook initial shyness and awkwardness so that you can get to know a person over more than one date. Most of us are looking for a mixture of fun and commitment, but it’s important to know where you stand so that you can figure out if your date is on the same page. Don’t go out looking for a onenighter. Put yourself out there. You don’t have to hit the bars or the clubs to meet new people (although you can, if that’s something you enjoy doing anyway). Pursue interests and activities that mean a lot to you. The Internet has made this a whole lot easier. Check forums, listings, classifieds, and Internet mailing lists (known as “listservs”) for local events or meetings that are likely to attract people with similar interests or passions. When you’re there, be bold. If approaching someone you’re interested in isn’t really your style, you can still be bold by making yourself look approachable and inviting. Make eye contact, smile, raise your eyebrows—make a connection from across the room. Body Language is very important and can make someone interested in you. Don’t cross your arms because that makes you look closed off. Be selective. Don’t just date anyone who shows an inkling of interest in you. Despite what everyone says about not judging a book by its cover, people who are more discriminating tend to be seen as more desirable probably because having standards shows that you value yourself and aren’t going for a
It can be difficult to strike a good balance when dating. How do you appear interested without coming off as desperate or needy? How do you get to know someone without being nosy or rude? And how do you figure out how a person feels about you—or tell them how you feel about them— without either of you feeling uncomfortable? Dating is a tricky business, but here are some guidelines that’ll keep you in the mix.
SUPER THOUGHT AID TO THE NEEDY INITIATIVE THE GENERAL PUBLIC IS HEREBY NOTIFIED THAT THE ABOVE NAMED FOUNDATION HAS APPLIED TO THE CORPORATE AFFAIRS COMMISSION ABUJA FOR REGISTRATION UNDER PART 'C' OF THE COMPANIES AND ALLIED MATTERS ACT 1990 THE TRUSTEES ARE: 1. PASTOR (DR.) OMATOBE VICTOR ALIGAME 2. MRS. OMATOBE CLARA AIZE THE AIMS AND OBJECTIVES ARE: 1. SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC EMPOWERMENT FOR THE LESS PRIVILEGED. 2. PROVISION OF EDUCATION AND SCHOLARSHIP FOR THE LESS PRIVILEGED ANY OBJECTION TO THIS REGISTRATION SHOULD BE FORWARDED TO THE REGISTRAR-GENERAL, CORPORATE AFFAIRS COMMISSION, MAITAMA ABUJA WITHIN 28 DAYS OF THIS PUBLICATION SIGNED: SECRETARY
date with whoever crosses your path. At the same time, you don’t want to be too selective— if you keep holding out for the perfect person, you’re guaranteed to miss out. If you’re in a room full of people with similar interests, you should be able to pick out one or two people who you’d like to date— not 10, not 0. Make it a point to not leave the event without showing interest and making a connection with a few people. Trading phone
numbers and meeting in person is often a sign that a person desires an actual relationship. Make a good first impression. You want this person to enjoy the date, but you also want them to enjoy you as an individual, so be considerate and charming without looking or acting like someone you’re definitely not. People who do a very good job molding their behavior to other people’s expectations actually tend to have less satisfying relationships. It’s certainly possible— and beneficial for both you and your date—to make someone feel at ease without sacrificing your identity. Let them discover who you are (and don’t swing to the other extreme, babbling
about your life story and overwhelming them with too much information). Be honest. If you are not ready to be in a committed relationship, let them know straight away so that you do not give them false hope. If you’re just not interested in a relationship with them anymore, tell them so. Don’t lead them on. Explain that you just don’t see it going anywhere. Don’t say that you want to be friends unless you actually want to be friends and spend time with this person on a regular basis. If you are interested in seeing this person more often, honesty is still a critical ingredient to a healthy relationship! • Source: wikiHow to do anything
December 01-02, 2012
photo news Federal Poly Nasarawa showcases innovations National Educational Innovations Exhibition was held at the Old Parade Ground, Abuja between November 19 and 21, 2012 organized by the Federal Ministry of Education in collaboration with the Federal Ministries of Communication Technology, Health, Science and Technology and Trade and Investment. Here are photos of the innovations at the stands of the Federal Polytechnic, Nasarawa, Nasarawa State.
Federal Polytechnic, Nasarawa (left) with Engr. S. A. Ocheni of Agric, BioEnvironmental Engineering dept explianing the workings of the Melon Sheller machine.
Beniseed and rice harvester-reaper.
Right, Engr. P. V. Kwaya, Co-ordinator, Entreprenuership dept, right, with Deputy Rector, TPL, O.S. Madaki, third from right at the Inistitution's stand. Self-propelled boom sprayer.
Peddal operated cassava chipping machine.
Engr. Okechukwu Innocent, Dean, School of Engineering, Federal Polytechnic, Nasarawa explaining the workings of some products at the stands.
Feeding the Nation in a Special Way
Alhaji Isa Yaro CEO, Al-Gulam ntegrated Farm
Capacity/Products/Facts Started Production – 2006 124 Hectares Technical Partners: Hadejia/Jama’are River Basin Development Authority 150 KVA Generator Plant 2 Million Cubic Capacity Water Dam Producing 1.5 Million pieces of Water Melon in 3 months
Fish Hatchery – 1 Million Capacity Fish Pond – Accommodating 100,000 of Fish at a time Tomatoes Pepper Moringa trees Pawpaw Zobo
December 01-02, 2012
BODY & SOUL
Hair care tips W
e have about 100,000 hairs on our heads. Each hair shaft has three layers, with the cuticle, or outside layer, protecting the two inner layers. Shiny hair is a sign of health because the layers of the cuticle lie flat and reflect light. When the scales of the cuticle lie flat they overlap tightly, so the inner layers are well protected from heat, sun, chlorine, and all the other hazards that can come from living in our environment. When hair is damaged, though, the scales may separate and hair can become dry. Because the scales on dry hair don’t protect the inner two layers as well, hair can break and look dull. The type of hair a person has — whether it’s straight or curly — can also affect how shiny it is. Sebum, which is the natural oil on the hair, covers straight hair better than curly hair, which is why straight hair can appear shinier. Depending how long a person’s hair is or how fast it grows, the end of each hair shaft can be a couple of years old. So the hair at the end of the shaft could have survived a few summers of scorching sun and saltwater and winters of cold, dry air. How well you care for your hair from the time it emerges from the root plays a role in how healthy it looks. Caring for Hair How you take care of your hair depends on the type of hair you have, your lifestyle, and how you style your hair. Your hair type. People with dry, curly hair have different hair care needs than people with straight, fine hair. But all hair needs to be treated gently, especially when it’s wet. Wet hair can stretch, making it more vulnerable to breakage or cuticle damage. That’s why using a hot blow-dryer (or other heat styling products) on very wet hair can damage it. Long, high heat causes bubbles to form in the hair shaft, which causes them to break easily. Some people find that their hair gets oily in their teen years. That’s because the hair follicles contain sebaceous glands that make sebum, which moisturizes the hair and skin. During adolescence,
the sebaceous glands may become overactive due to hormone changes during puberty, producing more oil than needed. As with acne, oily hair is usually a temporary part of puberty. Many teens care for oily hair by washing it once a day — or more if they’re active. As long as you treat your hair gently when it’s wet, frequent washing shouldn’t harm it. If you have acne, it’s a good idea to keep the hair around your face clean so hair oils don’t clog your pores. If you’re washing your hair every day or more, it may be better to choose a mild shampoo instead of a shampoo designed for oily hair. For some people — especially people with fine, fragile, or combination hair (hair that’s oily at the crown but dry on the ends) — shampoos for oily hair can be too harsh. If you have oily hair and want to use a conditioner, choose one that’s made for oily hair. If your hair is dry, it’s a good idea to wash it less frequently. Some people only need to wash their hair once a week — and that’s fine. Many people who have curly hair also have dry hair. Curly and dry hair types are usually more fragile than straight hair, so you’ll need to be especially careful about using heat styling products. Shampoos made for dry hair and hair conditioners can help. Dealing With Hair Problems Here are some common hair problems — and tips on how to deal with them. Dandruff Dandruff — or flakes of dead skin — can be noticeable in a person’s hair and on clothing. No one really knows what causes dandruff, although recent studies seem to show that it may be caused by a type
of fungus or an inflammation. Dandruff isn’t contagious or dangerous. Over-the-counter shampoos containing salicylic acid, zinc, tars, or selenium sulfide can reduce dandruff flakes. When shampooing, massage your scalp (but don’t scratch) for at least 5 minutes, loosening the flakes with your fingers. Rinse your hair well after washing. If your dandruff doesn’t improve, see your doctor. He or she may prescribe a prescription shampoo and possibly a lotion or liquid to rub into your scalp. Hair Breakage Hair can break when points in the hair thicken or weaken. Sometimes this happens near the scalp so a person’s hair never grows very long. When hairs break at the ends, they’re called “split ends,” and the splits can travel up the hair shaft. A major cause of hair breakage is improper use of chemical hair treatments, like the treatments described above. But brushing or combing hair too frequently or in the wrong way (such as using a fine-toothed comb on very thick, curly hair or teasing hair) can lead to breakage. Hair extensions and braids can also cause breakage. Leaving them in too long or pulling them out without professional help can cause hair and scalp damage or even hair loss. Sometimes hair breakage and dry, brittle hair are signs of a medical problem, such as hypothyroidism or an eating disorder. If your hair is breaking even though you don’t treat it with chemicals or other styling products, see a doctor. S o u r c e : www.dailyglow.com
ast week, I started discussing this topic on living with hypertension and we highlighted certain aspects such as the causes of hypertension, definition of hypertension and the various stages of hypertension and also the things that every hypertensive person ought to know and practice. Today, we will continue on our discussion by further highlighting the challenges and recommended lifestyle modifications in high blood pressure. Hypertension is a chronic disease and usually is a life long condition which its sufferers must ensure that they continue to take treatment and other measures some of which I mentioned last week for the rest of their lives. Now, this I know is not cheering news particularly because anyone would easily desire to have treatment and closure of any disease condition that they may have. Also, because we live in a society where people always want to take advantage of other people’s desperation for their own financial gains. So we hear repeatedly claims by fraudsters saying they have a ‘’cure’’ for hypertension and sometimes their victims have used some of these concoction and ended up with fatal outcomes. Adherence therefore is the first challenge with hypertension but with counseling and good information this difficulty can be surmounted. Adequate information is particularly helpful because the lack of symptoms and signs [remember I had said last week that the disease is called the silent killer as a result of the absence of signs and symptoms, hence people may only know they are hypertensive as a result of complications] with this condition, so taking right action can only be founded on good information. Another aspect of living with hypertension is the need for regular visits to see the doctor. This is very important and my reason for making this emphasis is that many people do not see the need for this. The reasons are not far fetched, it is not enough to take medication but one must indeed have the required results of having taken them, so that is where the doctor comes in , to detect
HEALTH with Dr. Franklin T. Osungwu
Living with hypertension (II) non control of HBP , determine the cause and intervene accordingly. At this point I must remind everyone about the challenge of fake drugs which is still present with us and could be a cause. One could just imagine a situation were a hypertensive person stayed away from visiting his/her doctor for a check up and continued to buy the medicines and after a number of months or years develop a complication like a stroke. Having this example in mind one can easily see that is indeed cheaper to see ones doctor regularly than having to spend so much of time and resources managing a complication. Lifestyle modifications are a very wonderful and non medical intervention or practice in living well with hypertension and also several other disease conditions. Modifications of ones lifestyle is not as simple as it sounds but also requires good knowledge as its foundation for it to be sustained and for the benefits to manifest in the life or health of anyone. More commonly people who are inadequately informed do not practice these modifications consistently and not ever long enough. There are a number of modifications that people can make to help with high blood pressure control and reduction. I will mention them again and say a few things about each of them. 1. Exercise This is engaging in regular (daily if possible and better) physical exercise. Many people describe the recommended exercise as moderate and not excessive. Where possible could engage the service of a physical exercise expert. Such exercise lasting at least 30 minutes which may include walking, jogging
or the use of a treadmill. I should state again that the exercise is not such as an Olympic hopeful will engage in and the aim is not to drop HBP at one outing. This is a modification of lifestyle and the results are seen when this is done over a period of time and the benefits are such that the individual feels better and also improves mental state. 2. D i e t a r y Modifications This generally called the Dietary Approach to Stop Hypertension diets (DASH diets). There are a number of adjustments to diet that can be done in the bid to reduce or control hypertension. Some of such include: • Avoiding saturated fats, as seen in red meat and dairy foods and eating lean meat and fish. • Eating fresh fruits and vegetable more often and if possible daily. • Having the so called salt restrictive diet • Avoiding alcohol completely or very significant reduction in intake. • Not taking caffeine containing drinks e.g. coffee, energy drinks and some soft drinks. Having discussed extensively on hypertension let me close today by discussing the reverse side which is referred to HYPOTENSION. Hypotension or low blood pressure is present when there is not enough force from the heart to move blood around the body. This is said to be present when the BP is expressed as : < 90/60 mmhg There are a number of causes of hypotension which include loss of body fluid as in diarrhea and vomiting and also blood loss, could also be caused by a heart related disorder. Concluded
December 01-02, 2012
ICT is big business
– CEO Skilltouch Computers W
hat is Skilltouch C o m p u t e r Institution all
about? Skilltouch Computer Institute is a training outreach that trained people in such area like Microsoft office, data processing, desktop publishing, Information Technology and general computer application packages that is relevant in everyday personal and business use. What is the idea about computer training business? It is not all about computers alone, it about general training, preparing students for exams, local and international; giving them relevant official training. So, what prompted the computer training actually started by preparing students for exams, such as WAEC, NECO, SSCE, GCE and scholarship, Cambridge exams ‘A’ and ‘O’ levels. So when I started preparing people for that exams, along the way, I saw that it is important for me to go into ICT, because the world is generally changing, so gradually the computer training begin to developed and students started coming for computer alone, and now the computer aspect is standing on his own and tutorial aspect is standing on his own. In the course of training students, do you encourage those who wish to set up after the training for selfreliance? Yes, what we normally do is on weekly basis we organized seminars for our students. During these seminars we give them general over view of the entire scope of ICT; where it started from, where it is presently and where it is going. Even some of the technologies that we don’t have in this country, we teach them we introduced; so that we develop their interest, because when you want to go into any business the most important thing you have to develop interest in a particular area, and if you develop interest these areas, you also know about all the existing areas. Having introduced them in different areas, you begin to tell them how they can set up their own, they want to or how they can pick up a career. What are the government regulations in the ICT that
The introduction of Information Communication Technology (ICT) in the society not only eased information management and record keeping, but is a lucrative business that create jobs for many people. The Managing Director/CEO of Skilltouch Computer Institution, KOLAWOLE FAKOLUJO speaks with DOMINIC AKPENSUEN and AWELE OJELI in Abuja on the benefits and challenges of ICT business: Excerpts:
•Kolawale Fakolujo affects your business? The regulatory body for computer here in Abuja, first one is Agency for Mass Education (AME). They have a department that takes care for the schools running computer training, they formulate the policy and they monitor. Any person running computer training centre is expected he should belong to this Association. Then the policy that government introduced that affects us, although, they made policies that affect us positive and negatively. The policy that affect us positively, like the issue of introducing computer in many areas, for example, students now write
exams online, check result online, these are government agencies like WAEC and JAMB. Also like job application; everything that has to use computer to achieve, to make job easier, any policy that is in that direction affect us positively because at the end of the day we discovered that more people come for computer training. The policy that affects us negatively is the issue of rent access road, the issue of rent is private policy, but there are policies that government make indirectly that affect the rent, such as land usage, eventually it come down to the rent, some policy on power supply, increase the tariff on
power and when there is no electricity we use power generator, so when the tariff goes up it affects us, if the cost of fuel or diesel increase it also affect us. Apart from these what are the other challenges? Every business has challenges in terms of competition, there are always a competition, to face a challenge so you have to found a way of submerging that challenge, how to get clients in the mix of very strong competition. Another issue is housing, for instance, when the ban Okada in the FCT a lot of people find it more difficult to move, so people who came from out of town stop at a particular
bus stop, but those people who live where they can pick a bike it also affect them, although that policy is a good one, but indirectly affected us. Another policy is the housing policy which is the demolition of illegal structures around the FCT. Sometimes most of our students come from these areas and when there is demolition, some of the affected students stop coming, so that one too affect us. How is the student capacity? At every point in time we always have an average of 100 students on monthly basis. What of the staff strength? We have over 15 staff running all the programmes. ICT is a lucrative business and has drastically reduce the level unemployment so what advice do have for those that wish to go into this business? Actually it is a good business, but comes with it its own challenges. Anybody who is interested in doing this business, like any other business will have to do a feasibility studies. You first of all check if there is a need for that particular area where you intend to do the business, to make sure there is the need. You should also check out the modality of establishing your business, take in cognizance the power, is the business that needs power how you source for your electricity. Is there constant electricity supply? Where you want to situate your business, if there is not constant power supply, do you have a generator? Check the cost of renting a place, because when you rent a place at a particular amount will you be able to generate that amount? And the number of students you will get overtime, then innovative, because business is all about being creative, would are you doing something new? Or repeating what others are doing?
December 01-02, 2012
FEATURE As Igalas prepare for Attah’s coronation By GABRIEL AGBONIKA
he Igala people, who are the largest ethnic group in Kogi State, are in festive mood following the emergence of a new Attah Igala. Indeed the emergence of Mr. Idakwo Amen, the son of Legendary Ameh Oboni who reigned as Attah Igala between 1946 and 1956, has thrown the entire Igala people into a grand preparation for his coronation within the next few weeks. The choice of Idakwo Ameh, out of the seven aspirants to the powerful throne even though it has been officially kept secret, became public knowledge last week through a statement by the Etemali Igalamela, Mr. Abel Etu. In a statement made available to the News Agency of Nigeria in Lokoja, Mr. Etu stated that the king makers had submitted the name of their nominee to the Igala traditional council for ratification. According to the statement “we are unanimous in our choice of the right and acceptable candidate which should be kept secret for now”. He explained that the kingmakers had to come up with their choice of candidate after the foru ruling houses failed to produce a single choice. In his words, “ we the Igala kingmakers always follow the process in handling all matters before us” If the statement of Mr. Etu was ambiguous, in the choice of Mr Idakwo Ameh, Chief Livinus Enemaku, the chairman of the third class chiefs in the Area, is clear and straight forward. It was pointed out to the aspirants to the stool that direct sons of the late Attah were still alive and therefore grandsons would have to wait till direct sons have enjoyed their rights to the throne”, he said. Main while Idakwo Ameh is the only son of previous Attah who submitted himself for selection and he is believed to have already started the process of ascending to the throne of his father. A reliable source in Lokoja has confirmed that the name of the kingmaker’s choice has been forwarded to the office of the state Governor for adoption and clearance in the line with the Igala tradition. It will be recalled that for the past give months after the death of Attah Igala, Alhaji Aliyu Obaje the choice of a new monarch to occupy the exalted throne in the Igala kingdom of Kogi State, had divided the people into various bitter camps. The consequence of the situation is that it has caused an unnecessary delay over the announcement of a new Attah Igala. But now that he problem has been resolved by the categorical selection of Idakwo Ameh Oboni as the new Attah Igala the entire people are exited and are looking forward
Gov. Idris Wada of Kogi State
A reliable source in Lokoja has confirmed that the name of the kingmaker’s choice has been forwarded to the office of the state Governor for adoption and clearance in the line with the Igala tradition. to the coronation of the Monarch. Ordinarily and traditionally, the selection of anew Attah Igala, who is the head of the Igala traditional royal families and head of a centralized system of territorial administration, is not known to have attracted serious controversy because of historical records and laid down procedures guiding the kingmakers into taking the right decision. However recent events have shown that unnecessary politics and external religious interference into the selection process had heighten anxiety, and tension among the people in the area. Traditionally, the kingmakers, known as the nine wise men (Igala mela) are saddled with the responsibilities of selecting a new Attaqh Igala after the demise of an incumbent ruler. The selection is
normally done form among the royal families who are descendants of Ayegba Idoko. Historical Ayegba Idoko was not the first Attah Igala but he is believed to have firmly established the Igala kingdom, having sacrificed some of his children, (including his only beloved daughter, Inikpi, who buried alive) in order to save the Igala kingdom form several invading enemies. The three surviving children, namely Akumabi, Akogu and Ocholi became the ruling dynasty in Igala kingdom. The family of Akumabi later produced the branch of an additional fourth royal dynasty when Itodo Akumabi promptly replaced his cousin, Ahem Achor, after his sudden death while undergoing the process of ascending to the throne.
What has caused the present bitterness and apprehension among the Igala people was the unnecessary interference of politicians and other external religious interest groups to manipulate the selection process and install a new monarch of their choice. For example, it is a known fact that since the evolution of Attah Igala kingship only the SONS of a ruling family had been crowned. Secondly, ascension to the throne is based on rotation, (turn by turn) among the ruling families. However, according to our investigation, it is generally believed that Ocholi dynasty now has the turn to fill the vacant position of Attah Igala after the demise of Aliyu Obaje more especially as there are no other living immediate past monarch’s that could contest the vacant stool. In line with this calculation, Mr. Idakwo Ameh, the son of late Ameh Oboni, who ruled between 1946 and 1956, was overwhelmingly expected to be selected by the kingmakers for the throne. The major point in favour of Mr. Idakwo, according to many Igala People, is that he is the most qualified person among the surviving sons of past Attah Igala. In his book, “Ethos of Service,” Mr. Suleman Abdullahi and Abdulaziz Danjuma, stated that “only the King’s son would inherit the right to rule as Attah Igala while the descendants of the kingmakers would inherit their father’s right to decide who should be the king”. It was further explained that when a conflict over the succession arose after the death of AYEGBA,” the Achadu resolved that the throne should pas in turn to each of the three sons and their descendants and that only the branch of the family reigning at any point in time may live in Idah in order to minimize the nuisance value of the followers or sympathizers of an immediate past Attah.” In effect, if the rules were tobe strictly applied, it means that the entire family of the immediate Late ALiyu Obaje would not live in Idah, let alone to think of contesting the throne. Unfortunately the decision Mr. Peter Opaluwa, and Mr. Isah Odoma, as well as others who were not qualified but contested the throne and were apparently backed by some politicians, created the confusion and crisis over the issue. However the lesson to be learnt from the recent succession confusion is that politicians would always try to create crisis where none existed. But the good thing is that where there is a rule the right thing to be done will eventually prevail. It is therefore a sign of relief that the right and acceptable candidates has triumphed over fraudulent manipulation by some politicians.
December 24-25, 2012
COMMUNITY Traditional ruler calls for unity as Ndigbo in Abuja celebrate Iri-Ji Stories by GABRIEL GWAJIME
o ensure the continuous peaceful co-existence in the country among the tribes, a traditional ruler in Jiwa, in the Federl Capital Territory, Abuja, Alhaji Sa’idu Bello, has called for unity of purpose which, he says, will enable Nigeria to remain as an indivisible entity. Speaking in an interview with NATIONAL ACCORD weekend during the New Yam festival celebration of the Ndigbo held in Abuja, the traditional ruler urged all Nigerians to set aside tribalism along with religious sentiments, in order for the country to move forward. Alhaji Sa’idu, who is also the Chairman of a non-governmental organization in Abuja, Habitay for Humanity Foundation, further commended the Ndigbo for their New Yam Festival celebration, observing that such an event is capable of portraying the country rich cultural heritage to the outside world. While noting with happiness that peaceful co-existence in Abuja could not have come by chance, Alhaji Sa’idu charged other traditional rulers of the various ethnic groups to do everything humanly possible to ensure peace in their respective domains. According to him, “we in Jiwa have been trying our best to ensure that peace remains the focal point in the area. We preach and teach it to our children and our subjects. And, by so doing, we have impressed on them the essence of peace and togetherness in our areas.” On the celebration, the Sarkin Hausawa of Jiwa noted that such could not have come at a better time than now, “owing to some challenging situations that have bedevilled the country and the FCT
•Uwazurike promises to fight on
•Igbo elders celebrating New Yam festival in particular,” stressing that the festival was significant to Ndigbo in particular and Nigeria in general. Responding to questions on why he showed up for the annual event, Alhaji Sa’idu explained that he was present so as to support the Ndigbo in the FCT, “as such move could go a long way in forging national unity, irrespective of tribes and languages involved.” Alhaji Sa’idu who also holds the traditional tittles “Omokachi,” which means brave developer of peoples from Ndigbo in FCT, revealed how he has been dealing with people of other tribes in the territory without bias and sentiments. While commending the event organizers, the royal father
pointed out that such a celebration was capable of neutralizing all the tribal barriers which at times make Nigerians appear differently with others from outside. In another development, a leader of the Movement for the Actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra(MASSOB), Barr. Ralph Uwazurike told NATIONAL ACCORD weekend that he would never give up the demand for “the sovereign state of Biafra,” adding that “such would continue to be our demand and destination.” Barr. Uwazirike who also called for unity of purpose among the Ndigbo, however, warned against every divisive means that could jeopardize their corporate existence in the FCT, Nigeria and
beyond. In his address at the event, the Eze Igbo I of the FCT, Dr. Ibe Nwosu described the ceremony as an epoch-making occasion, calling on the Ndigbo from all walks of life to be at peace with one another for the interest of peace and unity in the country. A traditional leader of Ndigbo who further explained that the ceremony was to showcase several Igbo culture and tradition pointed out that the significance of the event was enormous. Many prominent sons and daughters of Igbo were present at the event with various Igbo traditional music, food and attires on display to the admiration and listening pleasure of all in attendance.
Kwali Area Council in the Federal Capital Territory, has begun a compulsory oneweek cleaning exercise in all
its 10 wards. This was made known to NATIONAL ACCORD weekend in Kwali by the Head of Environmental Sanitation Department, Alhaji Abdullahi Tarkwa. Alhaji Abdullahi who described a clean environment as “a health friendly environment,” added that most diseases could be avoided when people decide to create and stay in a clean environment and community. Speaking further, the HOD Environmental Sanitation, called for understanding and co-operation among all stakeholders in the council, “so as to make the exercise a rewarding experience for all in the council and FCT in general.” He further revealed to NATIONAL ACCORD weekend that no defaulter would be arrested during the time-frame for the exercise, adding that it was meant
to encourage the good habit of keeping environment clean and tidy at all levels. On the rationale for the exercise, the HOD said, such was in accord with a directive given to all the area councils by the FCT Minister of State, Oloye Olajumoke Akinjide, to ensure that the FCT remains a model city in the country and beyond. To ensure that all the wards are thoroughly covered, the environmental sanitation boss revealed that workable strategies have been mapped out for the programme, urging people to desist from open defecation as it contributes to environmental pollution of every community. NATIONAL ACCORD weekend learnt that the project tagged: “Clean and Green... Greater Abuja,” is powered by the Satellite Towns Development Agency (STDA).
Kwali flags off compulsory cleaning exercise In its bid to meet up with the City Centre and the Aso Rock Villa in terms of a clean and tidy environment devoid, the
•Alh. Abdullahi Takwa
Corps member offers free medical services to Gwagwalada residents Over 100 people in the Gwagwalada Area Council of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, recently benefitted from the free medical services provided by a corps member who is currently serving in the council. Uche Bikwe, one of the corps members serving in the Health Department in Gwagwalada, explained in an interview that he decided to provide free medical services to the people in the area as part of his Community Development Programme (CDP). This, according to him, was to reduce the health implications to the people at the grassroots level. Bikwe, who stressed the importance of health needs to all humans, disclosed that, through his free medical services at the grassroots, he was able to discover different health danger situations in many of the people that came for the exercise. This, according to him, inclue: high sugar level, high blood pressure, among others. In another separate interview, the officer in charge of Community Development Programmes in Gwagwalada Zone, Kwajafa Haiwa, informed NATIONAL ACCORD weekend that CDP was one of the cardinal points of the NYSC, adding that, during the programme more people have benefitted from the free medical services. Haiwa, who commended the the convener of the CDP for his thoughtfulness in providing free medical checks to all who came for the exercise, further explained how such a project had impacted on the people positively. She further appealed to the council leadership for more assistance to ensuring that health needs of the people were made a priority, noting that most patients suffering from one ailment or the other, could be assisted to live their normal lives due to free medical services which could ordinarily have taken huge medical bills in the hospital.
December 1-2, 2012
Argentina ready to invest in Nigerian Football – Ambassador Chive Nigeria, rated as the sixth global oil producer has embassies all over the world, but has the contributions of Diplomats posted to these countries visibly aided national growth? What efforts do they make to take Nigeria to the world and bring the world to Nigeria? In this interview conducted in Buenos Aires, KING JAMES YIYE, Broadcast & Online Journalist with Radio Netherlands Worldwide finds out from Nigerian Ambassador to the Republic of Argentina, His Excellency, BARRISTER CHIVE KAAVE how he is using his new office to make the change.
o how long have you been here? I resumed duty post in Buenos Aires, the capital city of Argentina on the 10th of August, 2012 and I’ve been here as the new Nigerian Ambassador to Argentina since then, with concurrent accreditation to three other Latin American countries of Chile, Peru and Uruguay. When you say ‘concurrent accreditation,’ what exactly does that mean? It simply means, I have accreditation to those three other countries and all areas of diplomatic service, consular services, issuance of visas, and areas of cooperation and all areas of business, culture, education and...whatever. That’s quite huge. Now, so far, what diplomatic moves have you taken to bring Nigeria to Argentina and take Argentina to Nigeria? Well, I first studied the Argentine environment, and one of the areas I discovered very quickly was that they have great passion for football just like we do in Nigeria, and I discovered that for the average Argentine, what they know about Nigeria is those soccer stars we produced some years ago, Jay Jay Okocha, Kanu Nwankwo, now Mikel Obi, Dan Amokachi and all of those, if you mention any of those names, they will quickly “oh yeah, Nigeria, great football”. And I discovered too that the average Argentine is a great lover of soccer, and because I also love soccer and managed it sometime ago when I was the Chairman of BCC Lions FC (of Gboko) in the 90’s, I took leverage of that interest to key into Argentine Football Federation and I visited them and they gave me invitation to watch their two World Cup Qualifier Matches in two of their Provinces in Córdoba and in Mendoza. In Córdoba, they played against Paraguay, and they beat Paraguay national team, and they also played with their neighbours Uruguay which I happened to oversee in
•Barr. Chive Kaave another Province called Mendoza, and I quickly keyed into the football tradition of Argentina, and as you know one of the Vice Presidents of FIFA is an Argentine, one Mr. Julio Grondona, who is actually the FIFA Treasurer and who has
been the President of Argentine Football Federation for nearly 30 years. I already have become friends with his son who is joining him in managing the football. And I visited the first division clubs of River Plate and Boca Juniors and one other
And we have agreed that I will take another group that is interested in investing in football in Nigeria, possibly even getting one of those clubs privatized so they can acquire the shares into it, manage it by international standard and help our players either come to Argentina, or move them to Europe whichever is applicable
called Independiente, they are among the key division one clubs in Argentina and I watched several of their matches, league matches and I have made a lot of friends, so the opportunity came when our National Team was playing in Miami in the US, so I took a group of football businessmen to meet with the President of Nigerian Federation in Miami and they had useful discussions. And we have agreed that I will take another group that is interested in investing in football in Nigeria, possibly even getting one of those clubs privatized so they can acquire the shares into it, manage it by international standard and help our players either come to Argentina, or move them to Europe whichever is applicable. Beyond football, any other plans to take advantage of Argentina and boost Nigeria’s economy?
Yes, on a more serious note, beyond football, I have already reached the Minister of Trade here and have already started organising a business trip of over 200 Argentines that are great businessmen here who will visit Nigeria in March 2013, and then begin a process of solid Direct Investment as the President, Goodluck Jonathan is been preaching, Direct Foreign Investment in our economy, we also have reached advanced plans to bring the Under 17 National Team of Nigeria to come here, and to expose them and to see the possibilities of their even signing on for some of the clubs here in Argentina, the Argentines believe that our footballers are strong, fast and skilful and they are looking forward to a lot of them coming here to play. Well, so far, that’s what I have been able to do and almost every week in and out, I have meetings with businessmen and women, and even today I held several, I’m going to go to one of their industrial estates tomorrow where there are small businesses by small holdings or small families who will be part of that delegation to Nigeria, if I can pull through that delegation, I can say that 40/50% of my mission is on its way to success. Okay, that’s great, let’s go back a little bit to football, nationally yes, you have plans and I’m just wondering, developing it at the grassroots, are there any immediate plans that you want Nigeria to benefit from Argentina? This group that I was talking about that desires to acquire one of the First Division Clubs, will not just acquire the club, they will also establish a Football Academy and is the best way that the Argentines do to develop talent, not just to acquire a club but also have a school, a football academy that is hunting for talent, is identifying talent, is nurturing the talent and then grooming it to become you know, 3, 4, 5, 70 years span to become
Continued on Page 37
December 1-2, 2012
Argentina ready to invest... Continued from page 36 great players in future, and if I can get them to establish a Football Academy of International Standard, I think that will be the first in Nigeria. Before this interview, you talked about Argentines producing the food that they eat, and given their population of just about 40 million or thereabout compared to ours of about 160 million. Are you thinking of ways of integrating the two countries through agriculture? Is there anything we can learn from Argentina? There’s a lot we can learn, because Argentina, even though their population is about 40 million, the landmass and size of Argentina is almost like four times what Nigeria is, and it’s largely of the same tropical climate like we have, and they are great producers of beef in the world, the first in the world, they are great producers of soya beans, they are great producers of beans and rice. And they have mechanised their agriculture in such a way that that they don’t only feed their citizens to the full, they also export a lot of soya beans and soya products and beef all over the world, and I believe that if we can bring them to mechanize our agriculture in Nigeria, and then move away from the present style of husbandry for cattle which we are doing now in Nigeria, it will go a long way, and I believe that the team that is coming to Nigeria in March 2013, many agriculturists will be part of it. Now, seeing an organized society like Argentina, you look at cabs here, they don’t
just have satellite navigation system but of course they have time calculators that you don’t ask a driver ‘how much?’ as done in Nigeria, you just look the display and pay, but here are people who take to the streets talking about inflation and high level of crimes and even unemployment, but again still looking at their currency which is about 4.79 to 5 Pesos to a Dollar compared to 160 Naira to a Dollar in Nigeria. Do you think Argentines are asking their President Cristina Kirchner for too much? Well, you know as a Diplomat, I would simply say that is a matter that is exclusively within their internal affairs, and I don’t want to comment on it, whether it is too much or whether it is too frequent or whatever it is, that is the Argentine society for you, going on strike is part of their culture, and there are no Police Men who even monitor the strikes, they just go about strikes like it happened yesterday, almost like the entire streets were free of traffic and movement but that’s the Argentine society for you, for the past 15 years, and since I came, almost every week there is some strike. So there is always something to go on strike for? Yes, there is always something that they go on strike for, even right now as I’m driving into your hotel, I saw a group of young people who are on strike, calling attention to the fact that there are so many young boys and girls on the street without food and without education, and that the government should do
One of my ambitions is to make sure that the President of Nigeria visits Argentina, and the President of Argentina visits Nigeria
something about it, take those young people off the streets, and either take them to school or find them something to do. So what else do you want Nigerians and Africans to know from you? Well, I have settled into Argentine society as its Ambassador, the 8th Ambassador of Nigeria to Argentina since 1981, the first Diplomat that ever came here came in 1981, between then and now, I am the 8th ambassador of Nigeria to Argentina, and I want to build from the successes of the last 7 Ambassadors and to move our relationship between Nigeria and Argentina to the next high level. One of my ambitions is to make sure that the President of Nigeria visits Argentina, and the President of Argentina visits Nigeria. In the last couple of years, only three Argentine Presidents have visited Africa, this present one who happens to be a lady, President Cristina Kirchner’s visited Africa thrice, she went to North Africa visited almost all the countries in North Africa, Egypt, Libya, Algeria, Tunisia, she then visited Angola this year, she visited Morocco at another time, she has not been to West Africa, and no Argentine President has ever gone to any part of West Africa, one of my greatest ambition is to make sure that happens in the next three years or so that I will be here. Are you missing the food at home? Yes, initially I was, but when my wife arrived about two months back, she was able to bring some Nigerian food which we savor and this evening when I host this Nigeria delegation that has come, you will eat proper Nigerian food. NAFDAC Director General Dr. Paul Botwev Orhii is leading this Nigeria delegation to Argentina, how would assess his tenure at NAFDAC? Well the personality of Dr. Paul Botwev Orhii, is perhaps what I can say the best choice that we would have made, as a Lawyer, as a Pharmacist and as Medical Doctor. That is all it takes, he understands the rudiments of the law, then the basics of pharmaceuticals combined with medicine, you will get the best for regulation of food and drug administration. And of course as you know, he is been rated very high in Africa, he has received several awards by the United Nations, he is doing an excellent job, and I think he has built a lot upon what others did, and we are all very proud of him, and wherever he goes, he receives great accolades, and the pharmaceutical industry in Nigeria is not the same because of Dr. Orhii and we thank God for that choice that President Yar'Adua made some three years ago.
SYLVESTER IKUEJAMOYE 08052952190 (SMS only)
Can this Retreat change things?
here is no doubt whatsoever that there is need for a RETREAT in our sports sector. However, Mandate view on this type of retreat is that, it must be able to stand the test of time. The outcome must be of value to the growth and development of sports in the country. Indeed, it must be able to chart a new course for our sport. Let it be noted that with the array of high personalities that graced the opening ceremony of the SPORTS RETREAT ably led by the President, C-in-C, Goodluck Ebele Jonathan with Members of the National Assembly as well as members of the Federal Executive Council including the shakers and movers of the private sector, Mandate cannot be more assured that this RETREAT is with a difference. That the outcome will be implemented and that our sports will be better for it. God forbid, if this fails again, then, sports in Nigeria is doomed. We dare not contemplate this. In this part of the world, we are known with all manners of Panels, Committees and others but in most cases, the result hardly see the light of the day. Particularly in the sports arena where MANDATE is modestly conversant, there are many Presidential committees’ reports wasting away somewhere in government offices or awaiting attention. It is interesting to also note that these committees were made up of prominent Nigerians. Many are Professors of note in the relevant field of sports with technical know-how, yet, the outcome of their assignments could not see the light of the day despite the millions of naira expended on panels. Mandate will like to plead that should this latest PANEL in RETREAT form should fail, let there be no any other one but let us look around for an individual that can aggressively turn our sports around for the better and be result oriented. But that person must have an agenda and a blue print for sports development in Nigeria and must be ready to present them to Nigerians. The person must also be able to sign a PACT of PERFORMANCE with Nigerians which must include a time limit within which results should be expected and failure to PERFORM within the time limit, he or she should resign and pay back all the allowances collected. The million question here is who can? My answer here is l can. l have what it takes to do it. l have the pedigree to do it with commitment and passion. l do know also that there are many Nigerians that can do it if allowed. l rest my case. Until we meet next week stay out of trouble and God bless Nigeria.
December 01-02, 2012
Megabuck$ footballer$! 1. Lionel Messi 2012 Earnings: •33 Million (£27.5m) 2011 Earnings: •31 Million Net worth: $110 Million – (estimated) Current Club: FC Barcelona The Barcelona star topped his •33 million earnings from the Spanish giants with sponsorship deals from the likes of adidas and Pepsi.
Net worth: $50 Million – (estimated) Current Club: FC Anzhi Makhachkala Over the past 12 months the Cameroonian striker added Puma and Ford as sponsors. Has much to be proud of – in the wake of his Champion League success with Barcelona and Inter Milan. He is Africa’s most decorated footballer of all time; has won the African Player of the Year award a record four times; in 2003, 2004, 2005 and 2010. The former Inter Milan striker joined Russian soccer club FC Anzhi Makhachkala in a three-year deal with an annual salary of •20.5 million Euros or $28.8 million at current exchange rates. The deal made Eto’o the highest-paid player in the history of soccer in term of club salary. Dwarfing the the •13 million ($19m) Cristiano Ronaldo earns at Real Madrid and the •10.5 million Lionel Messi is paid by Barcelona. Anzhi reached an agreement with Internazionale at $38.9 million transfer fee on 23 August 2011. Anzhi is owned by Russian investor Suleiman Kerimov, who is the 118th richest person in the world with a net worth of $7.8 billion.
2. David Beckham 2012 Earnings: •31.5 Million (£26.2m) 2011 Earnings: •19 million Net worth: £160 Million or $260m – As of May 2012, according to the Sunday Times UK Rich List Current Club: Los Angeles Galaxy Becks, 36, collected •31.5 million and maintained his high profile despite plying his trade in America with LA Galaxy. His endorsement deal with Adidas is the biggest in the sport thanks to royalties from soccer apparel and cleats as well as lifestyle lines like ObyO. In May 2011 he signed a deal with Samsung to become the company’s global brand ambassador for the Games.
3. Cristiano Ronaldo 2012 Earnings: •29.2 Million (£24.3m) 2011 Earnings: •27.5 million Net worth: $160 Million – (estimated) Current Club:Real Madrid Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo had to settle for third and •29.2m despite leading the scoring charts in La Liga with 32 goals in 26 games this season. Using social media to expand his brand. With 26 million Facebook fans, twice as many as any other athlete and 3 million Twitter followers; which is part of the attraction for sponsors like Nike, Armani, Coca-Cola and Castrol.
4. Samuel Eto’o 2012 Earnings:•23.3 Million (£19.4m) 2011 Earnings: •13 Million
5. Wayne Rooney 2012 Earnings:•20.6 Million (£17.2m) 2011 Earnings: •20.7 million Net worth: £45 Million or $72m – As of May 2012, according to the Sunday Times UK Rich List Current Club: Manchester United He lost his £600,000-a-year contract with CocaCola. He is back on form, the Manchester United striker was the Premier League’s top earner with •20.6m (£17.2m). He picks up £8m at Old Trafford a season from his latest five-year contract and, although he ran into trouble with Coca-Cola last year following off-the-field problems, commercial interest in the England star remains strong. Remaining sponsors include Nike and Electronic Arts.
December 01-02, 2012
Megabuck$... 6. Sergio Aguero 2012 Earnings: •18.8 Million (£15.7m) Net worth: £37 million or $59m – As of May 2011, according to the Sunday Times UK Rich List Current Club: Manchester City Argentine footballer Sergio Aguero is currently playing as a striker for both Premier League club Manchester City and the Argentine national team. Aguero drew the attention of Europe’s top clubs after he moved from Independiente to La Liga side Atletico Madrid in 2006. In July 2011, the player joined Manchester City for a five-year deal said to be worth £35 million (•42.35 million), making him the most expensive footballer in the club’s history.
2012 Earnings: •15.5 million (£12.9m) 2011 Earnings: •19.3 Million Net worth: $100 Million – (estimated) Current Club: Real Madrid Brazilian football attacking midfielder who is currently playing for Spanish La Liga club Real Madrid and the Brazilian national team. The Brazilian midi was featured on the cover of EA Sports FIFA Soccer 11. The FIFA franchise has sold 100 million units of the popular soccer game for Electronic Arts. Kaka’s major sponsors included Adidas, Giorgio Armani and Guarana.
7. Yaya Touré 2012 Earnings: •17.6 Million (£14.7m) 2011 Earnings: •13.8 Million Net Worth: £12 Million or $19m – As of May 2012, according to Sunday Times UK Rich List Current Club: Manchester City Midfielder for Premier League club Manchester City and the Côte d’Ivoire national team. His the junior brother of Kolo Touré, also his teammate at Côte d’Ivoire and Manchester City. Touré was awarded the award for African Footballer of the Year 2011. Touré moved from Barcelona to Manchester City in 2010 for a transfer fee of about £24 million (•29 million) and the five-year contract is estimated at a staggering £55.6 million (•67.3 million). The defensive midfielder quickly adapted himself to the new environment, showing his remarkable capabilities in attacking as well as defending.
8. Fernando Torres 2012 Earnings: •16.7 Million (£13.9m) 2011 Earnings: •14 Million Net Worth: £21 Million or $33.5m – As of May 2012, according to Sunday Times UK Rich List Current Club: Chelsea Spanish footballer who plays as a striker for Chelsea and the Spain national team, From Atlético Madrid, to Liverpool, and now Chelsea, Torres has been recognized as a world-class striker. In January 2011, Torres joined Chelsea for a record British transfer fee of £50 million (•60.5 million) on a fiveand-a-half year contract, making him the most expensive Spanish player in history.
10. Philipp Lahm 2012 Earnings: •16.7 Million (£11.9m) 2011 Earnings: •14 Million Current Club: Bayern Munich German professional footballer who plays for and captains both Bayern Munich and the Germany national team. Lahm is now recognized as one of the best full backs in the world. The right-footed player is able to play on both sides of the pitch, and is now mostly playing as a left-wing-back.
THE BACK PAGE
December 01-02, 2012,
Hanging on the cliff between wars and a revolution Hagher @ A
year ago, I trenchantly engaged America’s former Ambassador to Nigeria, John Campbell, for daring to suggest that a war between the Muslim North and the Christian South was possible! Soon after my book “Nigeria after the Nightmare,” was published, I was in Abuja, a few hundred meters away from the Police Headquarters when Boko Haram bombed it. I then knew that the paradigm had changed. Some people in Nigeria were now; sufficiently angry about something, that they were willing to blow themselves up for. I still believe that the “Campbellian war,” between a Muslim north and a Christian south, is an overstretched prognosis. There is no such geopolitical theatre or reality. But there are other theatres of war in Nigeria. The fact is that Nigeria is already at war. The Nigerian Government has itself since the advent of democracy in 1999, declared a war on corruption. The adversary, corruption, has won most of the battles in this war and has captured and held hostage many of the government war commanders. The reality is: There are not enough jails in the country to jail the corruptor enough courts to prosecute them. There are even not enough policemen who can arrest them. Nigeria is effectively colonized by corruption. This power determines the way we think and act and it occupies every aspect of our national life. We are happily and unhappily the land of Endemic Corruption. There are other theatres of wars raging in Nigeria. There are religious wars between: Muslims and Christians, Muslims and Muslims and Christians and Christians. There is a war between the men who seek to enslave women and those who seek to liberate them. There is a war between the youth and their perceived enemies – the elders – who have apparently stolen their future. There is a bloody war raging between the cattle nomads and the farmers.
There are political wars, which we euphemistically call elections, between the aspirants, and between the political parties. There is a war between the indigenes and their perceived enemies – the settlers. So many wars and so many battlefields bedevil us. It was to avert wars and mediate in conflicts that democracy was invented. But our democratic government throws its hands in the air and calls for prayers in apparent abdication of the responsibility to lead. Governance has become, instead of nation building, a desperate attempt to stop the country from drifting to war. The desperation is emboldening hitherto simmering conflicts, to war status. Wars are bad. They are easy to start but difficult to stop, and impossible to erase the scars. But violence and wars are inside all of us. It is the human virus lurking beneath the surface of our consciousness. They express who we are and give us a sense of meaning. The chaos that war brings is like a drug. We are all war addicts. This is why every bomb attack of the Boko Haram brings with its
excitement and fear. This is us – forces will side the leadership. The putative humanity, to make ongoing global narratives of violence By seeking UGO JIM-NWOKO meaning of who we are. Wars, violence as alternative to democracy should and chaos are beneficial to those in not be lost on Nigeria. When driven government who do nothing to curb to the wall, violence becomes the it. It brings security contracts that most powerful way for the human massage the other unwinnable war- society to achieve meaning. A the war against corruption. Wars, country that allows violence to violence and chaos also give escalate is on the escalator to selfimportance, to the otherwise dregs immolation. John Adams, one of the founders and criminal class of society. The thugs, robbers and rapists and those of the United States of America and to whom the shedding of human President, warned, that there is “no blood is a normal way of life now government armed with power matter. They can dictate the narrative capable of contending with human of political discourse. They now wield passions unbridled by morality and unelected power. They also have religion.” These passions and now, the opportunity to rise above grievances are too many. The worst their stations in life and sit at tables, one is corruption. Corruption is negotiating for peace with a cowed creating a gulf between the haves and the have-nots. The children of the and shivering political class. Many have survived the various have nots walk the streets, without wars being fought in Nigeria to-date. jobs and without power and meaning But there is a fate worse than war that in life. They are canon-fodder for the is looming on the Nigerian horizon. Nigerian spring. I join the national call for prayers. The Nigerian revolution! It will come as the answer to the call of duty of the I pray earnestly against any season Nigerian people in their diverse that will obliterate my country convocations, to re-define their Nigeria, especially the Nigerian political space and the conditions for spring. I pray that the almighty God their co-existence. A revolution is the who controls the hearts of leaders natural trajectory, when too many will give a new heart to all leaders of fronts of war are opened on a nation, Nigeria. Let them instead of focusing and when it seems there is no respite on their little pathetic egos, focus on in sight. The Nigerian revolution is the people to give them the milk of not farfetched. It will mestastize as a the land to drink as well. Give our cataclysmic explosion. It will be an leaders the courage to look problems all for all Armageddon. It will bring in the face and seek for solutions down the leadership of the country instead of looking for other people to as we know it now, and in its place, blame and scapegoats to sacrifice. Finally, I call on God to give our enthrone an unwanted but compelling monstrosity, that will leaders courage to move out of their claim to be purgative and cathartic comfort zone to make a difference, but in reality will be new greed thinking not about their positions and masquerading as old grievance. The comforts but to make a difference in Nigerian revolution will be pure the life of Nigerians. President Goodluck Jonathan mayhem. It will spare no leader past nor present perceived to have been corrupt. It will become a festering sore for settling old scores. Law and order will be brought down, and power in Africa nor indeed the world, can mediate in this. A Nigerian spring is a fate worse than Boko Haram and all the other wars that are raging. Take a look at Somalia, the DRC, Libya, Mali and now Syria. Could Nigeria be next? A Nigerian spring will spare very few leaders. It will be Jerry Rawlingian. I am not sure if the other – Alfred A. Knopf ranks in the military and security Published by The Accord Newspapers Limited: Suite 005, Transpharm Plaza, Opposite Jabi Motor Park, Jabi, P.O. Box 6488, Garki, Abuja. Tel: +234-7098213737; E-mail: email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; ISSN: 2141-8683 LAGOS OFFICE: 23C, Jeho-Shamma Shopping Complex, Abiodun Jagun Street, Ogba, Ikeja, Lagos. Tel: 01-8436071
Many have survived the various wars being fought in Nigeria to-date. But there is a fate worse than war that is looming on the Nigerian horizon. The Nigerian revolution! It will come as the answer to the call of duty of the Nigerian people in their diverse convocations, to re-define their political space and the conditions for their coexistence.
“An economist is a man who states the obvious in terms of the incomprehensible.”