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PUBLISHED SINCE MAY 29, 1968 OPINION Page 21

Harnessing the gains of democracy

THURSDAY, MAY 30, 2013

• Vol . 37 NO.243 • THURSDAY, MAY 30, 2013 • N100.00

Jonathan presents mid-term report

ABUJA - President Goodluck Jonathan yesterday in Abuja, implored Nigerians to assess his administration based on individual

scorecards. Jonathan said this while presenting the midterm report of his fouryear Transformation Agenda. He advised his critics to

the achievements had been enumerated by the ministers in his cabinet. He, therefore, urged

assess the report he presented based on their individual scorecards. The president said that all Continues on page 2

Democracy Day

Govs call for unity By SURAJU RAJI (With Agency Reporter)

DISCOURSE Page 22

Children’s Day A Clarion call to curb child theft in Nigeria

ABUJA - Governors. Liyel Imoke of Cross River, Sullivan Chime of Enugu and Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo State yesterday called for unity among Nigerians to move the nation forward just as lawyers praised the Judiciary in sustaining democracy. The governors, in their democratic environment goodwill messages on that all Nigerians aspire the 14th Democracy Day to live in. celebration, noted that According to him, the Nigeria as a nation, has democratic successes come to stay as one achieved in the past 14 entity. years of democracy, In a broadcast to mark have exceeded the Democracy Day in expectations. Calabar, Imoke said that “In 1999, when this democracy offered hope democratic dispensation of achieving and commenced, our ideals strengthening the and ambitions were

indeed lofty and to some, even unattainable. “This achievement demands collective commendation for every facet of our society as detractors only served to spur us on towards reaching our desired result. “Consequently, the

results of our collective efforts have become evident and tangible through socioeconomic development and growth,’’ he said. He urged the people of Cross River to consolidate the democracy and continue to instil and

observe the essential democratic tenets for a more prosperous State. In Enugu, Chime urged politicians to use the occasion of the 14th democracy rule of the country to unite to ensure quality leadership for the people. The goodwill message

signed by his Press Secretary, Mr Chukwudi Achife, yesterday urged all Nigerians to continue to pursue ideals and actions that would strengthen rather than undermine democracy. He said that unity,

Continues on page 2

CMYK

Army hand over 26 oil bunkerers to EFCC

ABUJA The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), said the Army authority has handed over to the commission 26 suspects arrested in connection with alleged illegal oil bunkering in Lagos.

This is contained in a statement signed in Abuja by the Acting Head of Media and Publicity, EFCC, Mr. Wilson Uwujaren yesterday. According to EFCC, the Army arrested the suspected illegal oil bunkering vessels

PREVENT FIRE OUTBREAKS Have a Fire Extinguisher in your home today. Courtesy: Edo State Fire Service

TIT BIT “Tomorrow may be the day that heals all wounds; but today is the time to apply the medicine.” - Kingsley Ogbeide-Ihama

believed to be loading unspecified quantity of stolen fuel. The statement said that it seized the vessel - MTSwordfish of two barges and arrested two crew members of the vessel and two staff of Liberty Jetty, Elegbeta, Marina Lagos, where the vessel

2013 DEMOCRACY DAY CELEBRATION: L-R: President Goodluck Jonathan, former Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon andn former President Shehu Shagari at the 2013 Democracy Day celebration Continues on page 2 in Abuja yesterday.

Nigeria’s problem not insurmountable - Mark

ABUJA - The Senate President, David Mark yesterday assured that Nigeria’s problem were not insurmountable. Mark gave the assurance in Abuja at a church service to mark the 2013 Democracy Day at St. Mulumba Catholic Chaplaincy, Apo. He reiterated that currently, insecurity was one of the nation’s greatest threats to

development but expressed optimism that it was not insurmountable. “All we need is a collective resolve to confront our challenges and find a lasting solution

to them. “The state of e m e r g e n c y proclamation on three states was a last resort to curtail the r e o c c u r r i n g

insurgency.” “I know it is yielding positive results. Very soon, it will be over as our military formations are living up to the task,’’ The Senate president

explained that the state of emergency proclamation in the three states was a last resort to tame the lingering

Continues on page 2

Tourism will curb unemployment LAGOS - Prof. Oladele Falade, Lecturer, Department of Tourism and Events Management, Afe Babalola University, Ado-Ekiti yesterday urged

governments to use tourism as a supportbase to curb unemployment. Falade made this call in an interview

- Expert with newsmen in Lagos. He said that tourism was so vast and rooted in all the sectors of the

economy, therefore, could play a major role to curb unemployment if well developed.

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News Army hand over 26 oil bunkerers to EFCC Continued from page 1 was harboured. It said that 20 other staff of Liberty Jetty, Elegbeta were arrested and handed over to the EFCC by Col. H. I. Dasuki of 81 Division Nigeria Army. It added that the military

authority also handed over to the commission six other trucks as exhibit. The statement said that the arrest was made at about 04:a.m. May 22, by the men and officers of ‘OPMESA’, who raided the Liberty Jetty,

Marina, following an intelligence report. It noted that the Army urged the commission to carry out further investigation on the source of the petroleum products and the operation of the vessel.

The Head of CounterTerrorism and General Investigation, EFCC, Lagos Zonal Office, Mr Aliyu Aminu, said that the commission would do its best in investigating the case.

Nigeria’s problem not insurmountable and fear of God.

Continued from page 1

menace of insecurity in the country. He challenged all Nigerians to be ambassadors of peace in the country to facilitate delivery of the dividends of democracy. According to him, the nation is currently passing through some difficulties, especially in the areas of security and socioeconomic challenges. “We can collectively resolve to say enough is enough. All our efforts toward development would come to naught if the crisis continues.’’

He thanked Nigerians for their perseverance and cooperation in the propagation and sustenance of democracy, adding that democracy was a process everyone should uphold. “It was by choice and design that the nation chose democracy as the best form of government. Democracy promotes rule of law, upholds human rights, and freedom of speech. “Whichever faith or religion, I urge Nigerians to continue to pray for peace, unity and

progress of the nation.” On the part of legislature, the Senate president assured of continued and responsive legislation that would carter for the yearnings and aspirations of all Nigerians. “We shall continue to identify and prioritise key areas where legislations will be required for the rapid transformation of the economy and polity.” Mark assured that the legislature would remain patriotic, honest, fair and just in the discharged of its duties and be guided by the Constitution

Tourism willlevelcurb unemployment of education before Continued from page 1

According to him, the sector involves transportation, building of hotels, hotel workers, Airlines, supply of food and drinks, arts and crafts, among others. He said that the industry could employ people with low level of education compared to other sectors of the economy that required high

someone could be employed. “Tourism is the only sector of the economy that encompasses other sectors, therefore, has vast area to engage the unemployed. “Government should concentrate in building a successful tourism to help curb the problem of unemployment, especially among the youths.

“The sector can employ from less educated to highly educated persons and has lots of opportunities for the youths. “Tourism has potential that if well tapped will increase the level of foreign exchange for the country. “It is the number one job provider everywhere in the world,’’ Falade said.

On his part, Rev. Father Innocent Jooji, the Chaplain of the Church, called on religious leaders to do away with provocative statements that might incite people to violence. He implored Nigerians to remain steadfast in prayers for the elected leaders to have political will to deliver dividends of democracy to the electorate. Jooji also urged political office holders to make the citizenry the focal point of their policies and programmes.

Mid-term report Continued from page 1 anyone willing to assess the government “to develop a marking scheme and mark us”. He said that the essence of the forum was to formerly present a document to Nigerians about the workings of government in the last two years.

Govs call for unity

Continued from page 1 especially among the political

class, would help in sustaining the confidence and respect of the people, adding that rancour was a deterrent to development and sustenance of democracy. Chime congratulated Nigeria for its 14 years of uninterrupted democracy, noting that it had proved commitment and zeal to make things right. “The political class should continue to work in unity to sustain the confidence and respect of the people,’’ he said The governor noted that in spite of the challenges facing the country, it had remained strong. He called on the people to support government’s transformation programmes aimed at driving the nation forward. In Ibadan, Gov. Abiola Ajimobi, while calling for unity, pledged to achieve the best of all he had in stock for the people. Ajimobi said that his administration had recorded tremendous feats from the urban renewal programme, which was aimed at transforming the state. He said government had within the last two years, constructed roads across the state, likewise making the Eleyele-Dugbe road a dual carriage way as well as Challenge-Toll Gate road, Challenge-New garage roads and others at Oyo, Iseyin and Ogbomoso. The governor said that the government had constructed bridges such as the Mokola Fly-over, the restoration

bridge along secretariatbodija-Agbowo road and built two new modern motor parks at Iwo road and Podo. He disclosed that his administration had changed the face of transportation in the state with the injection of luxury buses and tricycles into the Urban Mass Transit scheme. Ajimobi said that the state government, under the Urban Renewal Programme, had built neighbourhood markets at strategic places as well as beautified places like Iwo road, Molete, Mokola and Agodi-Gate. “The one-time dirtiest city in Africa is now getting new accolade as one of the neatest in Nigeria, having rid the streets of trading. “It is a task that all of us must do, no matter how discomforting it may be at the initial stages,’’ he said. Meanwhile, Some prominent lawyers in Lagos yesterday commended the judiciary for playing a vital role in the sustenance of democratic governance in Nigeria. The lawyers gave the commendation while speaking with newsmen on the occasion of celebration of Democracy Day. Prof. Taiwo Osipitan, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), said the judiciary had performed better than the other arms of government since Nigeria returned to democracy on May 29, 1999. “Among the three arms of government, I will score the judiciary as the best, but there is still room for vast improvement in the judiciary,” Osipitan said.

Mr. Dele Adesina , a SAN and former National Secretary of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), said the judiciary’s contribution to upholding the rule of law could not be over emphasised. “You can’t talk about democracy without talking about the rule of law which is anchored on the judiciary. “It is the judiciary that holds the other arms of government to ensure that things are done properly and under the provisions of the law. So far, I believe that kudos should be given to the judiciary for being able to stabilise the system.” Mr. Onyekachi Ubani, the Chairman, Ikeja Branch of NBA, said the nation would have been in a worse situation without the efforts of the judiciary. “The judiciary has done its best to stabilise the polity, but much is still being expected from this institution, especially when it has to do with the speedy dispensation of justice.” Mr. Sebastine Hon , another SAN, said the level of impunity and violation of human rights had reduced in the country since the advent of democracy. “I accept that there are still some pockets of some unconstitutional actions by the government, but there has been an improvement in protection of individual rights more than under military regimes.” Also, Malam Mohammed Musa, the Chairman of Lokoja branch of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), said the judiciary flourished more

in the last 14 years of democratic governance than during the military era. Musa made the assertion in an interview with newsmen in Lokoja on the achievements of the country in the last 14 years. Musa said that the nation’s judiciary now had wider jurisdiction in cases bordering on the economy and politics with the adherence to the constitutional provisions for freedom of speech and the rule of law. He added that the people now had the opportunity to express their grievances and seek justice in court without any hindrance. The NBA chairman, however, urged political leaders to stop attempts at influencing judicial officers, noting that interference from politicians and the traditional institution had affected dispensation of justice. The legal practitioner noted that the spate of insecurity was taking the shine from the beauty of Nigeria’s democracy because the leaders had placed security on the front burner He stressed the need for political leaders to be decisive on security of lives and property irrespective of its consequences to their political careers. He added that the primary responsibility of government was the protection of the citizens’ lives and property. According to him, the nation’s democracy is being threatened by the ongoing insurgency and terrorism, kidnapping, armed robbery, communal conflicts and social vices and that the ordinary Nigerians now bear the brunt of the collective failure of

LG Poll:

Court strikes out application

By ROLAND OSAKUE

AGENEBODE – A High court sitting in Agenebode, headquarters of Etsako East Local Government Council, Edo State and presided over by Justice V.O.A. Oviawe has struck out the application brought before it by one Hon. Godwin Eshieshi for lack of jurisdiction. In the Suit with No HAG/01/ 2013, the applicant (Hon. Godwin Eshieshi) of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) had challenged the candidature of Hon. Abdulmalik Suleiman Afegbua, also of the same Party to contest the April 20 local government polls in the state. Hon. Afegbua, however, became the eventual winner of that election as chairman Etsako East Local Government Council. The trial Judge, Justice V. O. A. Oviawe ruled that the Electoral law of Edo state does not make provisions for an aspirant to go to court over issues based on party primaries.

He said that the issue of nomination was an intra party affair, as he pointed out that Section 15 of the Electoral law says that no one can substitute a candidate except in the eventuality of death or voluntary withdrawal. He, therefore, ruled that the court has no jurisdiction to hear the suit and thereby struck it out. Speaking shortly after the judgment, the Etsako East Local Government boss, Hon. Afegbua stated that he dedicated the victory to God and the good people of the locality. In his words, “He is my brother and we have worked together in the past. I wanted to greet him but he refused. I expected him to support me to move the Local Government forward”. Simon Mokidi Esq represented the defendant (Hon. Afegbua) while P.Y. Musa Esq stood in for the applicant.

Experts commend growth of capital market LAGOS - Some financial experts have commended the Federal Government for the gains recorded in the capital market since the advent of democracy in 1999. They gave the commendation in Lagos yesterday on the celebration of Democracy Day. The experts advised the Federal Government to consolidate on these gains by deepening the capital market. Mr. Henry Boyo, the Chief Executive Officer, Les Leba Ltd., said that government could achieve this by e n c o u r a g i n g telecommunications companies and other multinationals to list on the Nigerian Stock Exchange. He said that the current strength of the market depended solely on few stocks. Boyo said that more local enterprises should also be encouraged to be listed on the stock exchange to increase their participation in the market. He expressed optimism that the economy would improve and the stock exchange

would play more vibrant roles in future. Boyo, however, said that the growth experienced in the market since the beginning of the democratic dispensation had failed to reflect in the life of Nigerians. He said that this was due to the poor purchasing power and high unemployment rate. “Unfortunately, more Nigerians have been added to the rank of the poor, while millions of our youths roam the streets in search of gainful employment,” Boyo said. Mr David Adonri, the Chief Executive Officer, Lambeth Trust & Investment Ltd., said that the capital market had soared under the new democratic dispensation. The All Share Index of the Nigerian Stock Exchange attained its highest point of 66,000 points in March 2008 before the global meltdown forced it down to 19,000 points in 2009. “It has recovered and currently stands at 37,000 points.”

NFC MD promises to reposition corporation ABUJA - The newly appointed Managing Director, Nigerian Film Corporation (NFC), Dr. Danjuma Dadu, yesterday expressed his commitment to reposition the corporation. This is contained in a statement issued by Mr. Brian Etuk, the Head, Public Affairs, NFC. The statement quoted Dadu, who assumed duty on May 22, at the NFC headquarters in Jos, as pledging to re-engineer the Corporation to promote the film industry. He said that the move was crucial for the transformation

of the Nigerian film industry to make it one of the best in the world. “Consequently, he (Dadu) is to pursue sustainable programmes and activities that will reposition the NFC to tackle trends in film development toward making the sector a driver to the nation’s economic prosperity,” it said. Dadu also promised that under his leadership, the NFC would work toward the production of cartoons in the three major Nigerian Languages and Pidgin English.


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Inside Edo Egor Council Assures NYSC Members BENIN CITY – Hon. Of Security (Comrade) Enobakhare assured NYSC/Corps of security and welfare package. The chairman of Egor local Government Council, Hon. Victor Osayande Enobakhare has promised better security for lives and property of National youth service corps NYSC members serving in his council area. Disclosing this in Uselu, the headquarters of the local government during the NYSC/Corps Employers workshop, the council boss declared that adequate security would be put in place to secure the lives of the corps members during their stay in the locality. Comrade Enobakhare revealed that a better welfare package will be provided for the NYSC members. He maintained before declaring the programme open that the work of corps members is a national assignment that brings about unity of everyone in the country. He urged employed NYSC members to give adequate

support that will make their NYSC job easier while in service. The Egor Local Government Council Chairman expressed joy that his council was chosen as a centre by the NYSC authority for the programmee. In a welcome address, the Edo State Coordinator of NYSC Barrister Adebayo Somefun who was represented by Mrs. AwaObaabhia said that the workshop was specially designed to bring the management of NYSC and all corps employers together towards consolidating on the

gains and channeling a better course for the future, noting that the workshop was aimed at providing veritable opportunities for cross fertilization of ideas between the NYSC and Employers of corps members with a view to improving on the administration of corps members by the stakeholders. In a keynote address by the Director General NYSC BrigGeneral NT Okorenffia who was represented by Mrs. Awa Otoakhia said that the workshop will serve as an avenue for evaluating their performance as stakeholders in the National Assignment.

The Secretary to Edo State Government (SSG), Prof. Julius Ihonvbere (middle), being presented with a gift by the Commissioner for Budget and Planning, Mr. Lawrence Aghedo (right) while Mr. Taiwo Akerele (left), State Co-ordinator of SEEFOR looks on during a working visit to SEEFOR, Palm House, Benin City yesterday. Photo: QUEENETH OROBEDO

Oredo To Renovate, Build Cemetries, Markets

By INNOCENT OMOAKA

BENIN CITY – The Chairman of Oredo Local Government Council, Edo State, Hon. Osaro Obazee has assured the people of the Local Government Area of infrastructural development across the council area. Hon. Obazee gave this

assurance during an unscheduled visit to cemeteries, abbatoir and markets across the local government area. According to the chairman, among the infrastructures to be developed are the three existing

cemeteries in Oredo, the abbatoir at Ogoula market at Upper Uwa Street and Ogiso market along 2nd East Circular Road. He said all these places would be renovated to international standard. He added, that the cemeteries when renovated will also serve as recreational and tourist centres, while the renovated markets would accommodate all traders trading on road sides and other unauthorized places. The renovated abbatoir, according to the chairman will

improve the sanitary conditions and make it neater to guarantee hygienic atmosphere for meat consumption. Similarly, Hon. Osazee revealed plans of his administration to build additional markets to compliment the existing ones that would be renovated. However, he called for partnership and cooperation from the people of the council, as he promised that his administration is geared towards delivering its campaign promises to the people.

The chairman who was accompanied during the unscheduled visit by his vice, Mrs. Smith Ikponmwonsa and members of the newly constituted task force on environmental sanitation, warned operation of private motor parks, banks and other groups in the local government area who fail in participating in the environmental sanitation exercise, that it is not going to be business as usual as defaulters would be sanction appropriately henceforth.

. . . To Renovate Health Centres By ADAMS OYIBOKE

Secretary to Edo State Government (SSG), Prof. Julius Ihonvbere (right), receiving a congratulatory card from Chief Christian Odoka, Chairman, Igbo ACN, Edo Chapter during a courtesy visit by the association to Government House yeterday. Photo: QUEENETH A. OROBEDO

BENIN CITY – The Oredo Local Government Chairman, Hon. Osaro Obazee has expressed his readiness to renovate all existing Primary health care centres in the locality in order to bring health care delivery to the door step of the people. He made this known in his address during this year’s Health week of the University

Neighbourhood Watch Canvasses Community and the prompt response by By NDIDI OJIEH continue to collaborate with the Policing relevant security agencies. police in order to rid the state BENIN CITY – The Executive Chairman of Edo State Neighbourhood watch, Maj-Gen Charles Omoregie (rtd) has emphasized the need for the people to embrace the concept of community policing as an essential ingredient of modern security system. Maj-Gen. Omoregie who was exchanging views with newsmen in his office in Benin City over the weekend noted that community policing involves the delection of crime

He pointed out that the Edo State Neighourhood Watch, had since its inception been very proactive in nipping crimes in the bud across the state. He said the committee is organized and structured to cover the 18 Local Government Area and 192 wards in Edo State, adding that its personnel are on ground in areas the police could not cover.

He acknowledged that much work still needed to be done in the training of personnel and the provision of necessary logistics that would enhance the activities of the committee. Maj-Gen. Omoregie however commended the efforts of the state government in the establishment of the committee and its desire to curb crimes in the state. He said the Edo State Neighbourhood watch will

of criminals and criminality. Maj-Gen. Omoregie called on the new council Chairmen community leaders and other stakeholders to encourage the activities of the Edo State Neighbourhood watch in their respective domains. According to him the issue of security should not be left to the police alone because, ensuring safe neighbourhood requires the effort of every one in the state.

of Benin (UNIBEN) Medical Students Association, health outreach held in Benin City. The Health week was organized by the Medical Students Association of UNIBEN in collaboration with the Local Government Council. Hon. Obazee said that the free health services which coincided with Nigeria’s Democracy Day was in line with his electioneering promises of bringing dividends of democracy to the entire people of the locality. He said the local government council decided to collaborate with the medical students Association of the University of Benin because of the relevance of good health in the day-to-day activities of the people, especially the market women. He used the occasion to advice market women to come out enmass to check the state of their health, saying “health is wealth.” The council chairman commended the Students Association and the President Association of Resident Doctors, University of Benin

Teaching Hospital (UBTH), Dr. Okador Kinsley for their humanitarian gesture and sued for sustenance. Earlier, the President, University of Benin Medical Students Association, Master Agbedion Osagie said that the Association created an Health outreach at Urokpota Hall as part of their 2013 Health Week. He said the local government contributed tremendously to the development of the society before he was elected chairman, hence their choice of Oredo Local Government Council to host the programme. Speaking with The Nigerian Observer, the President, Association of Resident Doctor of Nigeria, UBTH branch extolled President Jonathan’s efforts in health care delivery system in Nigeria in the past two years. Dr. Okafor however, used the occasion of the Democracy Day to call on Federal Government to sign into law, the National Health Bill in order to fast track health care delivery system in Nigeria.


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Inside Edo I’m In Office To Serve By THOMPSON ERHOMONSELE

Representative of Chief of Naval Staff/Director, Naval medical Services, Rear Adm. Samuel Epelle, presenting mosquito net to a pregnant woman during the Navy’s 57th anniversary week medical rhapsody in Pyakasa, Abuja recently.

BENIN CITY – Commissioner for Special Duties, Oil and Gas, Edo State, Hon. Orobosa Omo-Ojo (JP) has declared that he is in office to serve the people and this is only reason he ventured into the murky waters of politics. He made the remark when the executive and members of the Alliance for Continous Change, Ovia North East Local Government Area Chapter paid him a visit in Benin City. The commissioner, who affirmed that his entrance into politics has served as a barometer that had changed the atmosphere of politics in Ovia North East Local Government Area assured the Youths that he would always be relevant in politics because he has the clout. Beside encouraging them to build their inherent powers to have a say, Hon. Omo-Ojo hinted

- Omo-Ojo that he would organize a sports competition in the area, urging them to look inward to identify and choose their biblical “Moses” that would save and lead them alright. Earlier, President of the Alliance for Continuous Change, Ovia North East Local Government Area Chapter, Mr. Uyi Amienoho and others who spoke including Pastor Kingsley Agho described Hon. Omo-Ojo as their leader with vision, charisma and dynamism that they would always look up to. They admitted Hon. Omo-Ojo pragmatism, adding that his performance as a Special Adviser on Culture and Tourism to Edo State Governor, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole earned him the appointment as a commissioner. While thanking God for finding him worthy to occupy a position of leadership, they declared their unflinching support to the commissioner.

Commissioner Reiterates Govt Agenda

Naval Medical officers checking blood pressure of residents of Pyakasa during the Navy’s 57th anniversary week medical rhapsody in Pyakasa, Abuja recently.

BENIN CITY – The Edo State Commissioner for Budget and Economic Planning, Hon. Lawrence Aghedo said Governor Adams Oshiomhole’s administration is committed to the development of all the communities in the state. Hon. Aghedo made this assertion when elders of the Okaigben Development Association, Benin, Branch paid him a courtesy visit in his office. In his address on the occassion, Mr. Pius Okonobo,

ANEEJ Tasks Security Agencies, Leaders On Human Rights Democracy Day:

By OSAZUWA AKONEDO BENIN CITY - Africa Network for Environment and Economic Justice (ANEEJ), a nongovernmental organisation based in Benin City has called on President Goodluck Jonathan

and security agencies in the country to always respect and protect human rights as the nation marks its 14th Democracy Day anniversary. In a press statement signed by the Executive Director of ANEEJ, Reverend David Ugolor, ANEEJ urged the presi-

dent and the 36 states’ governors to always consult with the people before carrying out projects as it is expected in an ideal democratic dispensation. “Africa Network for Environment and Economic Justice as a network committed in the struggle for the entrenchment of

good governance call on the president and the 36 states governors to be more transparent, accountable and most importantly, to always execute people oriented projects as a way of truly reminding the people that they are no longer in the military regime where things some-

Council Boss Charges Communities On Peaceful IGARRA - Communities In a similar development, Co-Existence in Akoko-Edo Local Government Area have been charged to eschew any act that is capable of desrupting the peaceful co-existence in the place. The council Chairman, Hon Joseph Akerejola gave the advice when the traditional rulers and leaders of Ikpeshi and Egbigere clans paid courtesy call in Igarra. According to him, without peace, no development can take place.”

He noted, “I want to appeal to you all not to engage in any activities that can impede peace within and among neighbourhoods because, without” peace, no meaningful development can survive.” Akerejola who told them not to lament about the past but to look forward, said such act is capable “of derailing who is on the right track.” His Royal Highness, Oba of Ikpeshi, Nicholas Odama who

led the delegation said they were in his office to formally congratulate him on his election as the chairman of the council. He said; “we are happy to have” a youth as the first elected council chairman in the history of Akoko-Edo”. HRH Odama added that; “this shows God wants to use him (Akerejola) to achieve great things in the largest local government in Edo state”.

Hon. Akerejola has assured the women in the locality of his administration’s support in all ramifications. He made the pledge when the National Council of Women Societies (NCWS), Akoko-Edo chapter paid a courtesy call to his office. He noted that nothing can be done without the women hence he has to focus on their development affairs since they are too important to be neglected.

times were done without consultation or their consent” said Ugolor. ANEEJ said the nations security agencies should shun all forms of human rights violation and abuses which was a common incident during the military era in the country. “We specifically call on our security agencies to always respect and protect the fundamental rights of the people which is one of the glorious benefits of democracy and shun all forms of human rights violation and abuses which was a common phenomenon observed during the military regime”, he said Furthermore, ANEEJ said that all Nigerians, particularly leaders should use the occasion to reflect on the deeds of the military government which undermined the nation’s progress and therefore put an end to such deeds for the betterment of the country.

Chairman of the Okaigben Development Association, Benin branch thanked Governor Adams Oshiomhole for appointing Hon. Aghedo from Okaigben – Ewohimi in Esan South East Local Government Area into his administration. Mr. Okonobo charged Hon. Aghedo to be loyal to Governor Oshiomhole’s administration and demonstrate high level commitment to the vision of transformation and development of the state. He charged the commissioner to use his good offices to attract more people-oriented projects to Okaigben Community. Hon. Okonobo drew the commissioner’s attention to the need to capture and tar the IseluIdumugie-Eguare road and Idumuagho-Idumobo Uzerbu road in next year’s budget. He thanked the ACN leader, Victor Eboigbe and Elder Sam Eboigbe for their leadership role in the community. Responding, the commissioner thanked the elders for the courtesy visit, stating that Governor Oshomhole’s giant strides cut across the entire state. Hon. Aghedo promised to offer excellent and dedicated service to Edo people in his capacity as commissioner for Budget and Economic Planning. He said he was privileged to have been called upon to be part of an epoch making administration, led by Governor Oshiomhole, adding that he would bring to bear in this administration, his private sector experience in his capacity as a member of the state Executive Council.


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South-South Shell MD Advocates More Environmental Awareness At Grassroots

PORT HARCOURT – Mr. Mutiu Sunmonu, the Managing Director of Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC), has advocated for greater awareness on the

need to protect the environment at the grassroots. Sunmonu, who said this

in an interview with newsmen in Port Harcourt, noted that the protection and maintenance of the

L-R: Managing Director, Bank of Agriculture, Mohammed Santuraki, Minister of State Agric Buka Tijani, Minister of Agriculture, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina and Minister of State FCT Oloye Olajumoke Akinjide exchanging some documents after signing the MoU between the Ministry of Agriculture and Bank of Agriculture in Abuja. Photo: OMOYE AMINU.

environment needed the commitment of all stakeholders. “I think I must admit that at the community level there is a lot to do; we need to get the people at the community level to start to appreciate the need for them to also play a part on the environment. “Education at the community level, education from primary to tertiary level, in my view, is an important area where you can get a lot more people to begin to appreciate what their own responsibilities to the environment should be. “I really believe that’s an area we must have to

focus on.” Sunmonu, who is also the Chairman of Shell companies in Nigeria, said that the company had been doing a lot in environmental issues. He said that the company

Traders Docked For ASABA - Two traders Assault were arraigned at an Asaba Chief Magistrates’ Court presided over by Mr. Steve Okebu for allegedly assaulting a police officer. The accused are Bala Mohammed, 30, and Suleiman Umar, 30. The Police Prosecutor, Sgt. Augustine Otubu, told the court that the accused persons on May 16 at Abraka Market assaulted one Sgt. Haula Ibrahim by

Owan West Gets New CPS SABOGIDAA ORA – Mr. Monday Akhifomwan Oise has been appointed Chief Press Secretary for Owan West Local Government Council. Oise, a Mass Communication graduate of Auchi Federal Polytechnic, Auchi worked with the Bendel Newspapers Company Limited (BNCL) before his new appointment. The new CPS served as the Palace Correspondent as well as Petroleum Monitoring Committee correspondent. It is expected that he will bring to bear his wealth of experience in his new appointment.

Monday Akhifomwan Oise CPS, Owan West LGA

had established a forum for constructive dialogue by al stakeholders on how best to protect the environment. “We started a programme on how to improve transparency about what we do; our transparency initiative is second to none.”

slapping him on his face. According to him, the offence is punishable under section 351 of the Criminal Code Cap C21 Vol.1 of Delta, 2006. The accused persons who pleaded not guilty to the two-count charge of conspiracy and assault were granted bail in the sum of N20,000 each and a surety each in like sum. Okebu ordered that the sureties should be civil servants of not less than Grade Level 08 and should provide two passport photographs each and swear to affidavit of means. He adjourned the case to June 14 for hearing.

Driver Arraigned For Stealing

L-R: Managing Director, Bank of Agriculture, Mohammed Santuraki, Minister of State Agric, Buka Tijani, Minister of Agriculture, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina and Minister of State FCT, Oloye Olajumoke Akinjide after signing the MoU between the Ministry of Agriculture and Bank of Agriculture.

Cross River Spends N24bn On Federal Roads

CALABAR - The Cross River Government said it had spent more than N24 billion on the rehabilitation of federal roads in the state. The state’s Commissioner for Works, Mr Legor Idagbo, made the disclosure in Calabar while briefing newsmen on the activities of the ministry in the past one year. Idagbo said that the State Government was still awaiting the refund of the money from the Federal Ministry of Works. “I cannot give you the exact amount we have spent so far on the rehabilitation of federal roads in Cross River State but it is in the region of

N24 billion. “Recently, the Federal Government confirmed that it is owing Cross River State N13 billion, yet up till now nothing has been given to us,” he said. According to him, the failure of the government to refund the money is not going to deter the state from repairing the federal roads. He assured that Gov. Liyel Imoke was ready to continue the rehabilitation of the bad roads in order to satisfy the people of the state. The commissioner appealed to the Federal Government to reimburse

the money to encourage the state to do more. “Everybody knows that we are having financial challenges, so we are appealing to the Federal Government to pay us. “We are also appealing to the government to expedite action on rehabilitation and reconstruction of the federal roads.” Idagbo named some of the roads that were rehabilitated by the State Government as CalabarItu, Ugep-Obubra and Ikom-Ogoja roads.

He said the State Government had also spent N469.4 million on the control of erosion at BBobsco. According to him, the World Bank is interested in the funding of three erosion sites in parts of Calabar. The commissioner said that the state alone could not fund the erosion control project because of its current financial status. “So, we are appealing to the World Bank to please come and support us.” He said that the ministry had sanctioned several contractors over noncompliance with laid down contract agreements while others had been commended.

ASABA - The police in Asaba have arraigned a driver, Jude Ejiofor, before an Asaba Chief Magistrates’ Court for allegedly stealing N2.2 million belonging to his master. The Police Prosecutor, Insp. David Okeh, told the court that the accused committed the offence sometime in November 2011 on Dennis Osadebey Way, Asaba. Okeh said that the offence contravened section 390(9) of the Criminal Code Cap C21 Vol. 1 of Delta State, 2006. The accused, however, pleaded not guilty to the onecount charge. He was granted bail in the sum of N500,000 and a surety in like sum by the Chief Magistrate, Mr. Steve Okebu. Okebu ordered that the surety must show proof of ownership of landed property or a civil servant of not less than Grade Level 16. He also ordered that the surety must provide two passport-size photographs and also swear to affidavit of means. He adjourned the case to June 6 for hearing.


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Across The Nation Zungeru Hydro Electric Dam Project To Be Completed ZUNGERU (NIGER) President Goodluck Jonathan has assured Nigerians that the 700mw Zungeru Hydro Electric Dam project would be completed within four years. He said that completing the project on schedule was in keeping with his administration’s commitment to providing adequate power supply. Jonathan gave the assurance at the ground-breaking ceremony of the project at Zungeru in Niger. The president said that the project would be financed through a long-term credit facility from the Exim Bank of

China. According to him, the Federal Government has paid its 25 per cent equity on the project. Jonathan said the government was not only committed to the completion of the dam but also committed to the development of other hydro projects in the Mambilla Plateau and Gurara River in Niger. “Today, the short and medium-term target projects in the road map on power have not only been attained but have been exceeded on many fronts. “Similarly, the challenges to private sector participation have been removed and various incentives such a regulatory

- Jonathan

frame work, technology and cost effective tariff for the power sales have been put in place.” He said the present administration was committed to meeting the challenges facing the sector by ensuring the completion of projects under the national integrated power projects. The president commended the government and people of Niger State for being good hosts to the dams, assuring that he would sign the amended HYPADDEC bill to ensure the take-off of the HYPADDEC commission. Jonathan said the dam would not only provide electricity but

would also provide 5,000 hectares of land for irrigation and fishing activities to boost the economic activities of the host communities. The Niger Governor, Dr Babangida Aliyu, urged the Federal Government to ensure

adequate compensation to people affected by the dam project. He said that his criticism of the president “is because, we want more, if we do not make noise, nobody will hear us”. The governor also announced the conferment of three traditional titles on the president, namely Jagaban Minna, DanHaski Kagara and Maiyaki

Kontagora. The president was also presented with a horse in appreciation of his efforts to develop the state. The Minister of State for Power, Hajiya Zainab Kuchi, said the contract was awarded to Synohydro Corporation of China and China National Electrical Engineering Corporation for N162.9 billion.

NLC Names Labour Houses After Departed Leaders ABUJA- The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) on Tuesday in Abuja decided to name its two labour houses in Lagos and Abuja after two of its departed leaders. NLC president Abdulwaheed Omar, who disclosed this at a press briefing, said the decision was taken at the National Executive Council (NEC) meeting of the congress. He said the congress in session named its subsecretariat in Lagos after its first leader, the late Pa Michael Imoudu. “The congress has also renamed the national secretariat in Abuja Paschal Bafyau Labour House, after our former leader who died in 2012. “Similarly, the NEC-insession has also named the national secretariat’s

Zamfara Govt Spends 27 Per Cent Budget On Roads GUSAU- Governor Abdulaziz Yari of Zamfara has said the state government has committed 27 per cent of its budget to road construction in the last two years. Yari said this at the inauguration of Gusau township roads as part of the two-year anniversary of his administration. “Despite inadequate flow of resources, our administration has placed priority on roads construction as platform for economic growth and social transformation of the state. “To realise our aspirations, we committed 27 per cent of our budget to construction of roads to provide sufficient network to facilitate economic activities,“ he said. The governor also said that the access roads, designed to link all the local government areas, would enable farmers to market their agricultural products. Yari said the state government had in the last two years engaged in the construction of about 700 kilometres of roads across the state, of which N62 billion had been spent. He urged the people to support the state government in its efforts to provide dividends of democracy to them.

auditorium after the union’s slain deputy general secretary, Comrade Oyediran Olaitan, who was killed on May 5, 2012. Olaitan was working with Gov. Adams Oshiomhole of Edo on secondment from the NLC. The NLC president said the congress called on state governors to create value around themselves by respecting the process and outcome of their forum’s election. He said “the congress irrevocably stands for certain values it will not compromise for anything, and urged the governors to restore dignity to their office. “We are opposed to impunity at all levels and the undermining of national security and unity. We have respect for process and its outcome. We stand for justice.’’ He said NLC’s NEC also called on the governors to “get back to work and stop overheating the polity’’, advising them not to jeopardise Nigerians’ hard-earned democracy. The labour leader urged the Nigerian Governors’ Forum to quickly fix whatever must have gone wrong as they are custodians of the people’s mandate and grand beneficiaries of the nation’s democracy. Omar said the NEC also called on government to ensure adequate power supply to meet national needs.

“This should be through the design and execution of seamless transition in its power reform programme,’’ he said. On security, the NLC president said the congress re-affirmed its belief in the sovereignty of Nigeria and supported the declaration of state of emergency in Borno, Adamawa and Yobe. He said everything possible should be done to protect the civilian population, with channels for dialogue with the Boko Haram insurgents kept open.

L-R: Chief of Defence Staff, Rear Admiral Ola Ibrahim, Chief of Staff to the President, DG NIA Ambassador Oladejo, Deputy Governor, Nasarawa State Luka Damachi, DG, SSS Ita Ekpenyong and Senate leader, Senator Victor Ndoma-Egba, during the Candle light procession in honour of the 10 State Security Services (SSS) personnel killed at Olabye Village in Nasarawa State recently organised by SSS headquarters in Abuja. Photo: OMOYE AMINU.

Okorocha To Dissolve Cabinet, Enumerates House, the Oguta Lake Motel Projects So Far Completed and Imo College of Advanced

OWERRI- Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State has said he would soon dissolve the State Executive Council and appoint new members to make the team more formidable. Okorocha stated this at a forum organised in Owerri to mark his second year in office. He commended the executive members for supporting his rescue mission agenda, adding that the reshuffle was necessary to re-invigorate the team. The governor explained that his two years in office had brought more development to the state, especially infrastructure development. Okorcha said N20 billion was spent to construct 15 kilometres of roads in each of the 27 local government areas of the state. He said that the state had spent N8.6 billion to build precast

schools, saying that the project would be replicated in the 305 wards of the state. According to the governor, the on-going construction of 27 general hospitals across the state is expected to cost N2.7 billion. Okorocha said the state spent N100 million to improve the Otamiri River in the state and the construction of mayoral and state liaison offices in Abuja. The governor said the recurrent expenditure within his two years in office stood at N83 billion while the capital stood at N103 billion, totaling N186 billion. He listed some of the projects executed in the two years to include the renovation of the Government House, Imo

Concord Hotel, Commissioners’ Quarters and the construction of the deputy and governor’s wife’s offices. Other projects are the construction of the Ikemba Ojukwu Centre, the Imo Traditional Council Parliament office, the Odenigbo Quest

Professional Studies (ICAPS). Other projects under construction, he said, included the Imo Broadcasting Corporation Studio Complex, Imo Ecumenical Centre, the Mbari Theatre, Imo International Conference Centre, the Freedom Square and the Marine University in Oguta.

Ogboru Faces Contempt Charge

LAGOS- The Assets Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) has commenced contempt proceedings against a former Delta governorship aspirant, Great Ogboru, before a Federal High Court in Lagos.

Cross section of the families of the late 10 SSS officers who were killed in Nasarawa State recently at the Candle light procession in their honour held at the SSS Headquarters in Abuja. Photo: OMOYE AMINU.

Counsel to AMCON Mr. Kunle Ogunba filed the contempt charge against Ogboru for flouting a subsisting order of court made by Justice Okon Abang, The order made on Jan. 13, had appointed a receiver manager for Fiogret Ltd, a company owned by the defendant, which is subject of a loan transaction with Equatorial Trust Bank (now Sterling Bank). Ogunba had argued that the defendant used the company as collateral to secure N33 million from the bank, for the importation of fish. He said that the defendant had, however, been unwilling to liquidate the debt, in spite of repeated letters of demand, which led AMCON to take over the company. It will be recalled that AMCON then filed an application before the court in January, seeking to appoint its counsel, Ogunba as receiver manager for the acquired company.


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Across The Nation KHA Considers N1.4b Supplementary Budget KADUNA- The Kaduna State House of Assembly has adopted the report of its Appropriation Committee on the N1.4 billion supplementary funds requested by the state government. The House had on Thursday May 16, referred the executive bill on the matter to the committee for examination and recommendation. Presenting the report, Mr Yohanna Jatau, Chairman of the committee, said the assembly should approve the request as the funds was meant to procure fertilisers for farmers in the 23 local government areas of the state. He explained N2.5 billion was required by the local governments to procure fertiliser this season but said only N1 billion was credited to the councils. According to the committee, the supplementary funds are meant to enable the local governments to raise the required N2.5 billion for fertiliser this season.

He reminded the House that a total was approved N2.9 billion in the 2013 Appropriation Act for the local councils to procure farming inputs.

Reacting, the Deputy Majority Leader, Alhaji Balarabe Jigo, commended the committee and called on the House to adopt the report. “The House should note that

there is a pressing need for fertiliser as the raining season sets in. I want this honourable House to adopt this report,’’ he said. The House which was presided over by the Speaker, Alhaji Muazu Gangara, adopted the report and fixed May 30 for its third reading.

KAFANCHAN - The Chairman of Jama’a Local Government in Kaduna State, Mr Dan Amos, has urged primary school teachers to stop grumbling over recent transfers in the area. The local government had conducted mass transfer of 300 primary school teachers from urban to rural public schools to improve educational standard in the rural settlements. Amos told newsmen in Kafanchan that the exercise was a combined effort of stakeholders in the educational sector in the state to address the falling standard of education. “Prior to the development, public schools in urban centres had six teachers to a class as against one or two in a whole school in a rural public school, which called for concern,’’ he said. He said the council had

Chairman Advises Teachers Against Grumbling

consulted and got approval before effecting the transfer. According to him, the council received the approval from the state Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB), NUT, traditional rulers and other relevant stakeholders who constituted the committee set up to handle the exercise. The chairman urged the teachers to accept the transfer as their contribution to the future development of children of the area and improvement in quality of education and general advancement of the area.

Children’s Day Council Boss Presents Music Bands To Pry Schools

Minister of State for Health, Dr. Muhammad Pate (middle), at the Ministerial Forum of 3rd Global Conference on Women Deliver in Kuala Lumpur,Malaysia recently.

OBOLLO-AFOR (ENUGU STATE-The Chairman of Udenu Local Government Area of Enugu State, Dr Godwin Abonyi, on Monday presented music bands to the 72 primary schools in the area.

Man Jailed For Stealing GWAGWALADA (FCT)-A Gwagwalada Upper Area Court in the FCT on Tuesday sentenced a 25-year-old man, Ibrahim Taiye, to 18 months imprisonment for stealing a power generator. The police prosecutor, Insp. Martha Paul, had told the court that Mrs. Jenitha Gajera of P.S.P.S, Gwagwalada, had reported Taiye at the Gwagwalada Police Station on May 17. Paul said Taiye of Gwagwalada Motor Park, was facing charges of criminal trespass and theft. She said the convict trespassed into the house of Gajera and stole her power generator, worth N60,000. “The said power generator was recovered from him by the police during investigation,’’ the prosecutor said. Reports say that the convict pleaded guilty to the charges and begged for forgiveness. The presiding judge, Alhaji Babangida Hassan, sentenced him to eight months imprisonment for each of the charges. He, however, gave him an option to pay N12,000 fine on each count of the charges. The judge also reminded the parties in the case that they have the right to appeal to the High Court of Justice within 30 days if they were not satisfied with the judgment.

Transfers:

Traders from Pelewura Market protesting over proposed demolition of their shops by the Lagos State Government at the State House of Assembly, Ikeja recently.

NSCDC Appeals To Bauchi ToRelocate Office

BAUCHI- Alhaji Shuayb Jibril, Commandant, National Security and Civil Defence Corps(NSCDC), Bauchi, has called on the state government to assist the command by relocating its headquarters. Jibril, while speaking with newsmen in Bauchi said the corps was currently facing many challenges and inconveniences at its current site. He said that offices surrounding the current location could be dangerous for the officers and men of the corps should there be any

outbreak of law and order. He said that the present office was surrounded by a market, a political party office, a welder’s compound and a motor park. “Our building is not safe because we have different kinds of neighbours that can cause problems or even accuse us of being biased,” he said. He said that the command had earlier requested for the old PDP Secretariat along Maiduguri road which would

be convenient if only it would be allocated to the organisation. According to him, the command is in dare need of an ambulance for some of its operations as its men are on a 24-hour patrol in the metropolis. He said that his men had arrested and prosecuted many members of the dreaded ‘Sara Suka’ group. The commandant also said that his men were being stationed in Mosques and

Churches every Friday and Sunday. Jibril said that any management of a Church or Mosque that had not been seeing his men should send a request, assuring them that such a request would surely be obliged. He called on members of the public to be securityconscious and report any suspicious person to the command. The commandant said that the NSCDC was working together with other security outfits in the state to rid it of crimes.

Reports say that Abonyi presented the bands at the councill headquarters in Obollo-Afor as part of activities marking this year’s Children’s Day celebration. He said that the bands served many purposes in primary schools, including sounding a warning to pupils when they were late to school as well as improving on their skills in music and march past. He said that the essence of the celebration was to demonstrate to the children that people in leadership had feelings for them. The chairman said that the chairmen of the 17 local councils in the state were collaborating with the state government to tackle the decadence in the primary schools. He said that the collaboration would turn the primary schools in the state into model learning centres in the next two years, explaining that a blueprint for the transformation was already being implemented. Abonyi also praised the teachers in the local government for the consistent improvement in the outlook of their pupils but warned them to desist from truancy. He said that government officials at different levels would be sent to the schools and health centres from time to time to monitor them for effectiveness. Students of secondary schools and primary school pupils took part in march pasts as part of the celebration while some also displayed cultural dances.


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North

Sokoto Spends N18bn On Roads SOKOTO - Governor Aliyu Wamakko of Sokoto State said that the government constructed and rehabilitated 40 roads across the state at N18 billion. Wamakko said 40 others were ongoing at N30 billion across the state. The governor said this in Sokoto at the inauguration of the

Hygiene LG Distributes Hand Washing Tools to Primary School FASKARI (Katsina State) Faskari Local Government of Katsina State has distributed hand washing facilities to primary school pupils to encourage personal hygiene among residents. Alhaji Isiyaku Ahmad, the Chairman of the council’s Transition Committee, handed over the items in Faskari as part of the ongoing Maternal and Child Health Week. He said personal hygiene was necessary to the promotion of community health and urged parents and teachers to inculcate the habit in children. The chairman also appealed to husbands to allow their wives to visit hospitals for medication and advice.

5-kilometre Tsafe road, constructed at N280.6 million. Reports say that the project was inaugurated by Alhaji Ibrahim Kazaure, former Special Duties Minister, who is also the National Vice Chairman of PDP, North West. According to the governor, “good road network boosts socio economic development as

well as enhances the aesthetics of the city.” “We are committed to completing all the ongoing road projects on schedule and according to the spefications” Wamakko promised. Kazaure had earlier described Wamakko as “the Messiah of the people of the state and he plays crucial roles in the

sustenance of democracy in Nigeria.” Kazaure appealed to other governors in the country to emulate the government in the provision of social infrastructure to the electorate. Meanwhile, Prof. Nuhu Yakubu, the Vice Chancellor of the Sokoto State University, said more than N10.3 billion had

been spent on the project by the state government. Yakubu announced this in Sokoto when Gov. Aliyu Wamakko inspected the ongoing projects at the institution as part of the 2013 Democracy Day celebrations . According to Yakubu,” these projects have met global standards and they will

Shagari LG Distributes Drugs To Health Centres

Minister of Water Resources, Mrs. Sarah Ochekpe (right), Chairman, House Committee on Water Resources, Rep. Aliyu Pategi (2nd right), Permanent Secretary, Mr. Baba Faruk (3rd right), and Chairmen of Boards of the River Basin Development Authorities during the inauguration of the Boards in Abuja recently.

Kano Approves N160m Projects for Bayero Varsity KANO - The Kano State Government has said it had approved N160 million for the construction of some projects at the Bayero University, Kano. The Governor of the state, Alhaji Rabiu Kwankwaso, made the announcement when he received the chairman and members of the board of directors of the Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital at the government house, Kano. The governor said the approval was part of his administration’s contribution to uplifting the standard of education in the state. He said that the State Government would expand the Gyadi-Gyadi road through Yantsaki link road to the hospital. Kwankwaso said the State Government was working with stakeholders towards making the Murtala Muhammad Specialist Hospital a teaching hospital of the Kano State University of Science and Technology, Wudil. He added that the new Pfizer hospital would be used by the North West University.

withstand the test of time. “We will try all we could to make the university meet world class standards in teaching, research and community service,” he added. Yakubu commended the government for attaching great emphasis to the university, which he said, would take off in the 2013/ 2014 academic session.

SOKOTO - Shagari Local Government of Sokoto State said on Tuesday that drugs and medical facilities worth about N6 million had been distributed to health institutions in the area. Chairman of the council, Alhaji Abdullahi Maigwandu, told newsmen in Sokoto that the gesture was part of its commitment to ensure qualitative health care delivery. He said the council would continue to provide basic health care needs for its health Institutions located in each of the wards in the area. He said arrangements had been completed for the retraining of health personnel to update the knowledge. “We want them to acquire more knowledge so as to ensure qualitative health care delivery is provided for our people,” he said.

Sultan Lays Foundation Of 500 Houses

L-R: Kebbi MDG Focal Officer, Hajiya Balkisu Koko and Kebbi Commissioner for Women Affairs, Hajiya Hafsat Gulumbe at the MDG Zonal Pre-Implementation Workshop on conditional cash transfer in Birnin Kebbi

CP Urges Berom, Fulani Leaders To Sustain Peace

JOS - The Commissioner of Police in Plateau, Mr. Chris Olakpe, has urged Berom and Fulani leaders to sustain the peace currently existing between them. Olakpe made the call at a stakeholders’ peace meeting organised by the Plateau Police Command in collaboration with the Special Task Force (STF) on the Plateau and other security agencies. He said that the meeting was to assess, review and re-evaluate the earlier agreement by the groups which resulted to “peaceful coexistence after

several years of fighting and killings.” “The last time we had a meeting we said ceasefire and the fire was actually ceased. “People have been asking me what the magic is and I have been telling them that the magic is the agreement by the people to seek and promote peace. “Because of your resolve those who don’t want us to be in peace will be exposed and will be punished accordingly,” he said. Olakpe warned the youth

against engaging in acts of impunity and lawlessness, stressing that anybody caught taking the laws into his hands would be punished. Gen. Gyang Pwajok (Plateau North) thanked the people for embracing peace and urged them not to allow the peace to depart. Pwajok, one of the initiators of the peace meetings, challenged the people to learn how to apologise to each other whenever they were wrong.

“When you tell your neighbour sorry when you go wrong, it does not reduce anything from you, rather, it brings peace and understanding between the two of you,” he said. The senator said that arrangements had been concluded to conduct similar meetings in all the local government areas of the state beginning with Riyom Local Government Area. The meeting was attended by traditional and religious leaders from Riyom, Barkin Ladi and Jos South local government areas.

SOKOTO - The Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar, on Tuesday laid the foundation of 500 houses to be built at N3.73 billion at Kalambaina, Wamakko Local Government Area of Sokoto State. Reports say that Abubakar performed the ceremony as part of the 2013 Democracy Day celebrations in the state. ccording to the sultan, the houses would alleviate the accommodation problems of the civil servants. “Housing is next to food in the hierarchy of needs and this is a very commendable gesture by the state government. “The governor has transformed the entire state in the last six years out of his eight years and if I should grade him, he has scored 80 per cent,” Abubakar said.


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North Prices of Grains Down By 30 Per Cent

Indirect Tax System Will Capture Informal Sector - Expert LAGOS - Mr Rasaq Quadri, former President of the West African Union of Tax Institute (WAUTI), has urged the Federal Government to introduce indirect tax to capture people in the informal sector effectively. Quadri told newsmen in Lagos that the indirect tax system would compel the public to pay as it consumed. He said that the gesture would widen the tax net and by implication, enhance revenue generation. He said that it was becoming difficult to generate revenue from the informal sector. According to Wikipedia, the informal sector or informal economy is that part of an economy that is not taxed, monitored by any form of government, or included in any Gross National Product (GNP), unlike the formal economy. Other terms used to refer to the informal sector can include the black market, the shadow economy, and the underground economy, to mention a few. “The Informal sector is a very serious challenge to the tax administration. So, it is not only in Nigeria, but it now has to do with how you tackle the sector. “The issue of informal sector paying as they are making income may be quite difficult unless we introduce the indirect tax system whereby you pay as you consume. “So, Most of your taxes will now be paid by consumption so that we will be able to meet up with the set targets and also bring as many as possible into tax nets.” Quadri said that the indirect tax system would also address the challenges of tax evasion, adding that every eligible taxpayer would pay as he consumes.

President Goodluck Jonathan cutting the tape to officially introduce the Nigeria Fresh Produce Transformation Programme (NFPTP) at the 2013 Democracy Day celebration in Abuja recenty.

Power Generation: Minister

Inaugurates 6-Man C’ttee On Coal ABUJA - Mr. Musa Sada, the Ministry of Mines and Steel Development, has inaugurated a six-man committee to fast track government’s vision of generating power from coal as an alternative source of electricity. This is contained in a press statement issued in Abuja by Mr. Marshall Gundu, Deputy Director of Press in the ministry. According to the statement, the committee is headed by the

Director General of the Mining Cadastre Office, Mr. Mohammed Amate, and Mr. Idris Umar will serve as Secretary. The other members are the Director Generals of the Nigeria Geological Survey Agency and the National Steel Raw Material Exploration Agency. The Chairman, Solid Minerals Development Fund, the Director, Mines Inspectorate and the Director of Mines and

Environmental Compliance are also in the committee. The committee is to collate and evaluate available reports on Coal to Power Initiative with a view to establishing the status of the project as well as identify all assets of Nigerian Coal Corporation that had not been privatised. The terms of reference includes identification of the uses of Nigerian coal in addition

Air Travellers To Pay For Trolleys ABUJA- Air travellers will have to pay N150 for using a trolley at Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, an official of Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) has said. Mr. Chris Bature, FAAN’s Regional General Manager, North Central, made the plan known when he received a donation of 114 new trolleys from Family Worship Centre, in Abuja. The Resident Pastor of the church, Wale Afelumo, had told newsmen that the church made the donation for use at the airport as part of its 20th anniversary activities. “We are here at the airport to donate 150 trolleys to FAAN as part of our yearly corporate social responsibility for community development,’’ Afelumo said. He said 120 of the trolleys would be used at the international wing of the airport while 30 would be used at the domestic wing. Bature expressed gratitude to the church for the donation and added that FAAN had acquired more than 300 trolleys to replace the old ones. He said the change was necessary because of the large number of people using the airport. Bature said FAAN would

- Official

ensure that the trolleys from the church were used at no cost to passengers but that others would attract N150 to be used. “There was no particular charge for the use of the old trolleys but a new company has come in and will charge N150 per trolley. Bature said FAAN had met

with the new concessionaires and agreed that the porters to be employed to operate the trolleys would be at no cost to the agency. He said travellers would push the trolleys themselves in order to monitor their luggage but that porters would assist people with heavy luggage, the aged and the handicapped.

to it being a source of power generation and development of a programme to fast-track exploitation of coal resource for power generation and other uses. The statement quoted the minister as saying that the inauguration of the committee became necessary to examine ways to harness the large quantities of coal deposits in the country. “Nigeria is endowed with large quantities of coal deposits which can be used to generate electricity for Nigerians,’’ the statement said. The minister, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary in the ministry, Mr. Linus Awute, said the ministry had the expertise to drive the ‘Coal to Power Generation Project’ to fruition. Sada said the ministry could only achieve the feat if it worked in conjunction with the Ministry of Power and other stakeholders.

President Goodluck Jonathan presenting his administration’s mid-term report at the 2013 Democracy Day celebration in Abuja recently.

KADUNA - Prices of grains have gone down by about 30 per cent in Kaduna since the commencement of the rainy season. A check by investigation shown that the price of beans, maize, millet and guinea corn had gone down considerably. At the Chechenia grains market, a bag of a 100 kg of beans which was sold at N15,000 a few months ago now go for as low as N11,000. Similarly, the price of 100 kg of maize now attracts N5, 000 as against N8, 000, while millet is being sold at N6,000 per bag as against N9,000. In spite of the low prices, traders at the market, however, said the commodities were high when compared to two years back. According to them, the current insecurity in the country has limited supply sources and led to increase in transport cost. Alhaji Yusuf Haruna, the Secretary, Kaduna State Grains Dealers Association, said the relative low price was due to increase in supply, “as farmers usually offload their grains to get money in preparation for the new farming season”.

Delay In Fertilizer Supply Worries Farmers ZARIA (KADUNA) Farmers in Zaria, Kaduna State have expressed concern over delay in the supply of fertilisers for this year’s farming season. The farmers made their position known in separate interviews with newsmen in Zaria. Alhaji Yakubu Gure, a peasant farmer in the area described the delay as detrimental to the growth of farming business in the state. He appealed to the Kaduna State Government to expedite action on the supply of the commodity to farmers, to enable them make effective use of it. Malam Mahmud Barwa, a large scale farmer observed that the delay would not only affect those in the farming business but the entire state. Gure said, “Supply of fertilisers at the middle of the year is counter productive. “The delay is virtually a source of discouragement to farmers, because nowadays farming without fertilisers amount to waste of resources. “Therefore, I want to plead with Kaduna state government to kindly supply the commodity much earlier before the rainy season commences to pave way for bumper harvest.’’


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THURSDAY, MAY 30, 2013

NSE DAILY ACTIVITY SUMMARY (EQUITIES) AS AT TUESDAY(28/05/13) Stocks

Open

Close

Change

Deals

Units

Value

LASACO

0.5

0.5

0

1

2,000

1,000.00

7UP

50

52.5

2.5

21

144,149

7,584,171.43

LAWUNION

0.5

0.5

0

9

31,103,714

15,551,857.00

ABBEYBDS

1.5

1.5

0

1

500

750

LEARNAFRCA

1.97

2

0.03

17

632,008

1,248,202.74

ABCTRANS

0.96

0.96

0

12

475,400

456,948.00

LIVESTOCK

3.6

3.58

-0.02

50

1,515,488

5,475,762.70

2.37

2.43

0.06

16

20,268,727

48,636,754.96

2.01

2.01

0

21

323,155

649,096.00

ACADEMY

1.6

1.61

0.01

6

642,531

975,221.81

MANSARD

ACCESS

11.42

11.3

-0.12

181

7,150,138

81,613,332.19

MAYBAKER

AFRIPRUD

1.8

1.66

-0.14

43

254,162

444,273.18

MBENEFIT

0.5

0.5

0

1

3,800

1,900.00

AFROMEDIA

0.5

0.5

0

1

2,000

1,000.00

MCNICHOLS

1.72

1.88

0.16

18

745,000

1,191,100.00

AGLEVENT

1.68

1.68

0

8

120,313

200,919.48

MOBIL

118

118

0

7

26,823

3,164,214.00

AIICO

0.9

0.92

0.02

62

4,836,877

4,461,348.26

MRS

16.2

16.2

0

11

17,711

304,715.70

AIRSERVICE

4.31

4.7

0.39

20

538,735

2,508,176.50

NAHCO

7.7

7.7

0

97

8,765,485

66,152,007.87

ASHAKACEM

27.75

26.26

-1.49

97

4,021,047

104,861,331.54

NASCON

13.24

13.25

0.01

202

6,083,653

80,726,541.67

ASOSAVINGS

0.5

0.5

0

2

86,660

43,330.00

NB

171.9

174.08

2.18

230

2,879,248

499,469,564.79

18.7

18.7

0

3

1,300

26,741.00

BERGER

8.25

8.25

0

16

59,768

480,916.20

NCR

BETAGLAS

9.66

10

0.34

4

317,742

3,179,820.60

NEIMETH

0.8

0.85

0.05

10

264,494

208,370.50

0.8

0.8

0

18

855,733

674,977.06 137,783,558.73

BOCGAS

8.3

7.47

-0.83

1

120,000

896,400.00

NEM

CADBURY

58.08

52.28

-5.8

180

2,115,279

111,093,008.98

NESTLE

990

990

0

92

138,013

CAP

49.44

45

-4.44

25

214,683

9,670,354.22

NIGERINS

0.5

0.5

0

5

391,991

195,995.50

CAPHOTEL

4.59

4.59

0

1

500

2,070.00

NIWICABLE

0.5

0.5

0

2

41,831

20,915.50

CAPOIL

0.5

0.5

0

3

651,054

325,527.00

NNFM

25.91

25.91

0

12

28,634

715,587.20

CCNN

11.01

10.99

-0.02

32

499,438

5,490,730.00

NPFMCRFBK

1.04

1.03

-0.01

4

121,200

124,956.00

CHAMPION

4.4

4.4

0

5

11,010

53,288.00

OANDO

15.15

15.3

0.15

109

1,445,182

22,133,235.13

CHAMS

0.5

0.5

0

1

7,664

3,832.00

OKOMUOIL

47.5

47.25

-0.25

72

612,602

28,805,473.83

CILEASING

0.52

0.51

-0.01

21

1,942,886

983,859.77

PAINTCOM

1.4

1.4

0

19

958,505

1,344,341.78

30.01

30

-0.01

73

1,414,506

42,440,249.18

0.55

0.6

0.05

1

51,000

30,600.00

CONOIL

24

24

0

27

128,263

3,123,712.68

PRESCO

CONTINSURE

1.2

1.2

0

6

409,584

491,968.35

PRESTIGE

CORNERST

0.5

0.5

0

9

657,325

328,662.50

PZ

52

52

0

76

385,739

19,770,719.04

COSTAIN

1.63

1.5

-0.13

214

18,542,204

29,475,354.27

REDSTAREX

4.51

4.51

0

9

131,319

561,223.85

COURTVILLE

0.77

0.75

-0.02

31

3,073,200

2,234,065.84

RESORTSAL

0.5

0.5

0

1

2,000

1,000.00

CUSTODYINS

1.6

1.65

0.05

28

6,780,312

11,061,235.23

ROYALEX

0.55

0.54

-0.01

10

645,143

350,446.48

CUTIX

2

2

0

9

104,686

209,109.56

RTBRISCOE

1.6

1.72

0.12

18

321,580

544,653.92

DAARCOMM

0.5

0.5

0

5

41,000

20,500.00

SKYEBANK

5.03

5

-0.03

142

10,679,522

53,679,046.07

DANGCEM

186

186

0

33

253,869

47,159,491.30

SOVRENINS

0.5

0.5

0

2

60,000

30,000.00

15.25

15.7

0.45

27

877,815

13,622,876.78

DANGFLOUR

9.5

9.52

0.02

78

2,843,338

27,010,143.28

STANBIC

DANGSUGAR

10.5

10.46

-0.04

182

8,703,744

90,603,851.19

STERLNBANK

2.65

2.75

0.1

56

2,704,514

7,343,115.91

0.5

0.5

0

4

27,000

13,500.00

DIAMONDBNK

6.97

6.9

-0.07

51

3,094,628

21,328,128.99

TANTALIZER

DNMEYER

1.86

1.86

0

2

17,000

31,620.00

TOTAL

168.5

160

-8.5

26

176,042

28,397,288.26

DUNLOP

0.5

0.5

0

1

50,000

25,000.00

TRANSCORP

1.21

1.2

-0.01

153

19,934,745

23,928,402.19

EQUITYASUR

0.5

0.5

0

1

2,345

1,172.50

TRIPPLEG

2.29

2.29

0

1

319

660.33

ETERNA

3.01

3.24

0.23

21

292,923

919,548.36

UAC-PROP

15.75

15.16

-0.59

12

317,518

4,820,397.40

ETI

15.1

15.1

0

95

2,440,589

36,896,887.41

UACN

57.41

58

0.59

115

1,885,391

109,197,022.78

ETRANZACT

3.47

3.47

0

1

500

1,565.00

UBA

8.5

8.5

0

377

35,098,832

298,569,776.15

EVANSMED

2.86

3

0.14

14

488,473

1,423,308.00

UBCAP

1.26

1.28

0.02

82

2,568,079

3,326,488.75

FBNH

18.09

18.19

0.1

537

22,534,015

411,901,956.05

UBN

9.2

9.5

0.3

83

953,808

8,909,392.13

0.5

0.5

0

1

1,222

611

FCMB

5

5

0

90

6,719,851

33,473,263.38

UNIC

FIDELITYBK

3.13

3.11

-0.02

150

10,881,778

33,825,936.83

UNILEVER

66.55

66.6

0.05

71

478,165

31,535,338.08

FIDSON

1.78

1.79

0.01

47

2,644,715

4,730,413.70

UNITYBNK

0.65

0.63

-0.02

93

69,307,861

45,118,530.08

FIRSTALUM

0.5

0.5

0

3

100,000

50,000.00

UNITYKAP

0.5

0.5

0

1

1,000

500

FLOURMILL

85

85

0

51

707,847

60,127,076.00

UNIVINSURE

0.5

0.5

0

1

576,001

288,000.50

FO

14

14

0

28

183,755

2,769,075.95

UPL

5.49

5.49

0

3

45,349

232,859.04

FTNCOCOA

0.5

0.5

0

3

22,000

11,000.00

UTC

0.77

0.76

-0.01

8

425,831

325,804.06

GLAXOSMITH

58

58

0

46

301,659

17,994,870.94

VITAFOAM

3.32

3.3

-0.02

28

2,821,932

9,311,110.74

GNI

0.5

0.5

0

3

512,000

256,000.00

VONO

2.11

2.11

0

1

24,563

46,669.70

96.5

96.5

0

61

621,190

59,971,256.26

GUARANTY

29

28.9

-0.1

549

25,863,032

745,804,878.90

WAPCO

GUINEAINS

0.5

0.5

0

1

2,000

1,000.00

WAPIC

0.89

0.89

0

9

155,200

135,945.05

1.19

1.2

0.01

60

5,015,425

5,966,651.81

22.7

22.6

-0.1

329

27,114,561

614,994,080.54

Gain

Stock

2.5 2.18 1.25 0.59 0.45 0.39 0.34 0.3 0.23 0.17

TOTAL CADBURY CAP ASHAKACEM INTBREW GUINNESS BOCGAS UAC-PROP OKOMUOIL AFRIPRUD

GUINNESS

280

279.01

-0.99

86

685,025

191,597,577.77

WEMABANK

HONYFLOUR

2.98

3.15

0.17

52

2,695,705

8,469,472.79

ZENITHBANK

IKEJAHOTEL

0.78

0.72

-0.06

10

1,935,587

1,434,970.25

INTBREW

26.5

25.01

-1.49

73

673,046

17,023,746.92

INTENEGINS

0.5

0.5

0

2

110,000

55,000.00

INTERLINK

4.9

4.9

0

1

50

220.5

IPWA

0.66

0.72

0.06

6

199,650

141,577.19

JAPAULOIL

0.55

0.58

0.03

65

10,261,096

5,912,403.60

JBERGER

55

56.25

1.25

30

229,970

12,866,955.10

JOHNHOLT

1.6

1.6

0

7

36,424

52,522.56

JOSBREW

1.13

1.13

0

1

25,000

28,250.00

TOP 10 GAINERS Stock 7UP NB JBERGER UACN STANBIC AIRSERVICE BETAGLAS UBN ETERNA HONYFLOUR

Close 52.5 174.08 56.25 58 15.7 4.7 10 9.5 3.24 3.15

TOP TOP 10 10 LOSERS GAINERS Close

Loss

160 52.28 45 26.26 25.01 279.01 7.47 15.16 47.25 1.66

-8.5 -5.8 -4.44 -1.49 -1.49 -0.99 -0.83 -0.59 -0.25 -0.14


THE

NIGERIAN

12

The Nigerian Education Bank Bill which has passed second reading at the Federal House of Representatives, as explained by the initiator, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila proposes to establish the Nigerian Education Bank, with the primary duty of granting interestfree loans to poor students seeking higher education in Nigeria. The Bill seeks to make available to each benefiting student, a sum of five hundred thousand Naira (N500,000) repayable in two years after graduation. The repayment, according to the proponents would take the form of direct deduction of ten percent monthly deductions at source from salaries of beneficiaries or from the profits in the case of self employed graduates until the loan is liquidated. According to the provisions of the Bill, “applicants must have secured admission into any Nigerian Universities, Polytechnics, Colleges of education or any vocational school established by the Federal Government or the Government of the States of the Federation.” THE NIGERIAN OBSERVER commends the initiators and promoters of the Bill, which we consider progressive in a country where more than 70 percent of its population live below the 1 USD per day poverty line. For most Nigerians who have had to go through hell to obtain higher education, this is a watershed Bill not only welcomed by the poor, but groups marginalised by society such as orphans, physically challenged persons among others who do not have anywhere to turn to for higher education. It is not much of news that students of

THURSDAY, MAY 30, 2013

THE

NIGERIAN

In Support Of Nigerian Education Bank Bill tertiary school-Universities, Polytechnics, Colleges of Agriculture and Colleges of education and others have gone through untold difficulties over the years to pass through such institutions. We are glad that the Bill is currently being considered by the lawmakers. IT is equally heartwarming to note that, with the proposed law, Nigeria is on the right track to join the rest of the world in subsidizing education for the poor. It is important to note that Scandinavian countries such as Finland, Sweden, Norway, and Denmark have developed sound qualitative education and almost tuition-free higher education from cradle to grave. In fact, in Denmark, the tuition is free and, in fact, international students also enjoy free tuition provided they could show evidence of $6,000 feeding and upkeep fee per annum. Although tuition in Australia is not free, there are a lot of grants, scholarships and bursaries instituted for both the brilliant and poor students. These are best practices that this bill seeks to emulate. We recognise that schooling anywhere in the world is not easy and hardly cheap, it is against this backdrop that we welcome the move by the Federal House of Representatives to

introduce a law that would take such a load off parents’ shoulders. We equally wish to call on the upper legislative chamber, the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to concur the Bill as soon as it is passed by the lower house so that it can become a law in Nigeria. Our support for the bill notwithstanding, we are of the opinion that Section 22 of the bill must be re-couched to read that “beneficiaries should be made to pay back the loan as soon as they are employed” , not the two years contained in the bill, given the high rate of unemployment in the country. In our view, Sub-section 4 of the bill which stipulates punishments for offenders of the law in a case of default also requires a review to avoid the culture of impunity among young Nigerians who would take undue advantage of the benefits derivable from the law. Two years imprisonment or an option of fine of N500,000 being the same amount benefited by the beneficiary is not sufficient deterrence. We recommend five years imprisonment for offenders or a fine of N700,000 instead. WE believe the Bill also throws up the need for government at all levels to take urgent steps to improve the employment market in Nigeria to absorb the army of unemployed persons roaming the streets in search of jobs. Government should redouble efforts towards guaranteeing constant electricity supply, potable water supply, roads, railway system and other infrastructure needed to boost the nation’s industrialization, as a major way of making the law work efficiently when it eventually passed and assented to by the President.


THE

NIGERIAN

13

THE Holy Book thought us to know that love is not jealous, but that seem to be eluding mankind as man is always suspicious of his environment and lack the ability to trust his own shadow. No wonder most men and women busy themselves with the intension of wanting to catch their partner red handed by preying into their spouse’s phone mail box so as to know if they are cheating on them. Technology has made things easy, most especially in information dissemination. Letters written before now especially in the 20th century would take several days or weeks to get to

its destination and when the receiver responded, it takes another days or weeks to get to its’ destination and in some cases the letter gets missing in transition. Sending and receiving letters then was cumbersome. We cannot say that of today, as science has turned the world into a global village. Seeding messages from one person to another, no matter the distance has become a pleasurable thing to do as most lovers would spend endless time sending text massages. Since there is no more delay

THURSDAY, MAY 30, 2013

Relationship Flirtatious SMS

With Edith Imoisili

How Not To Be Jealous in the time of receiving messages, this has led to an increase in infidelity in most homes. Most men now text messages to some ladies they have little acquaintance with, professing their love for them and later delete these messages after reading the responds they got from them. It would amaze you to know that some men would deliberately leave some of their flirtatious messages undeleted for their preying partners to read. Their motive is to secretly enjoy the jealous reaction of their women, while they pretend to deny their involvement with the said lover. Men are not the only one that play this game women who are bored with their men sexual life style also play the game. Some of them can shamelessly go as far as

fore, it becomes imperative that all spouses should be cognizance with this fact and endeavour to understand their partners better before jumping into conclusion, even if you caught him or her red handed in the action. It is not advisable for you to secretly read his or her text messages not only will it brings you discomfort and anger, but also

searching for their lovers in the internet and thereby wasting their precious time sending as well as responding to the messages received. Purchase of laptops are on the increase not because it is being purchase for the purpose of business transaction, but solely to satisfy the yearning of the flesh as sleep has now eroded them and their spouses or lovers no longer satisfied them sexually. With this latest methodology of satisfying their sexual urge, many men and women have found themselves fallen into the hands of fraudsters who are also using the same social media to defraud their unsuspecting victims. It will interest you to know that some men and women found it difficult to trust their partner because of their extrovert behavior. Their extrovert nature makes it easy for them to be attracted to the opposite sex, whether the person is married or not and thereby exposing themselves to ‘sexual danger.’ Again, it is not all extroverts that are flirtatious and not all flirtatious people are extrovert. There-

hypertension. as well as tendency of breaking up your relationship. It takes years of patient to build trust and understanding, this also means years of practice to care for self, as well as making yourself attractive. Not only in terms of washing and creaming of your physical body but the totality of your being and to become the best man or woman in the eyes of your partner. You might wonder how possible this can be. Yes, it is possible if you are determined to make your relationship work and that is why I said that, it takes years of practice to achieve it. There are so many internal and external qualities your partner would wish you have and some of these qualities can be acquired, while some can never be gotten, for example, height, but for those that are achievable, it is a must that you have them. You need to ask yourself some of these basic questions: what is your educa-

“If you can answer these questions correctly and be frank with yourself, then you will discover that you have no business reading your spouse’s text messages, As I said earlier, it takes years of practice to become a lady or a gentleman. It is never too late, start today to cultivate good habit that will make you a better person. When you eventually achieve these noble objectives, you will discover that no man or woman can compare anybody to you. You will become the best thing that had ever happened to your partner.”

tional qualification, how is your mannerism, how confident are you, do have inferiority complex and how much do you love yourself, or do you brood all day over your lack of self esteem? In general who are you, what are you, have you ever taken a critical look at yourself and ponder the personality you called yourself? If you can answer these questions correctly and be frank with yourself, then you will discover that you have no business reading your spouse’s text messages, As I said earlier, it takes years of practice to become a lady or a gentleman. It is never too late, start today to cultivate good habit that will make you a better person. When you eventually achieve these noble objectives, you will discover that no man or woman can compare anybody to you. you will become the best thing that have ever happen to your partner. Here are the experiences of two women who are in a dilemma of not knowing what to do after reading the flirtatious text messages sent to their husbands by their husbands’ lovers. “I don’t know what to do. I don’t have many friends so I need help and advice I have been with him 15 years now, recently I found he was texting inappropriate messages to a client of who is a female, when I confronted him he denied it, so I called her to confront her but she denied it too. She would not admit to anything. She is married and very wealthy my husband is a construction worker, we are not wealth and I don’t know what she saw in him. But I only know that he is very hand-

some and loving. After my call to her, the calls and texts kept getting worse to the point that my husband hid his cell phone. he calls her 15 times a day I have texts her like crazy and I just found several messages telling her he will love her forever and she too will reply that she loves him too found other several messages that are very sexy between them but neither of them will accept it. I think because she is afraid to lose her husband who is a Dr. I need help, do I stay and pretend that nothing is happening? The text messages still continue and I am devastated. My heart is broken and he continues to deny it all. While telling me that he lovers me and I am the only one he loves and he says he doesn’t want to lose me”. ‘1 found text messages in my husband’s phone that were sent back and forth between him and another woman that he met while in school. She said things to him like “goodnight handsome “hey love” etc. What would you do? Most of the text messages were deleted. He was shocked that I even found the ones I did. When asked about it he became very defensive and angry. He told me I was acting crazy because I became so furious with him. He swears up and down that he didn’t cheat. But I feel as if he has cheated on me emotionally even though he may not have done anything physically. His excuse to me was that he wasn’t getting the positive attention he needed from me so when he began getting it from someone else he liked it. The situation has since been dropped but I still think about it”.

Tips For Marital Bliss * When you let her feel your affection, you create understanding between two of you and she will feel satisfied of your genuine love for her. *Protect her on a daily basis as this is the only way she will believe that she is save from danger and harm. *She might be physically large and strong, but beneath that look is a woman who needs you to be gentle as well as tender with her. *When a husband is witting and hilarious, it makes the wife to laugh more and reduce her stress, so develop a sense of humor. *The family that prays together stays together. * You do not abuse or insult your husband in the presence of your neighbours, as this action will diminish his morale, which might lead to quarrel and fighting between you two. * Don’t reiterate when he is angry as this action may bruise his ego, rather stay quite or take an excuse and stay away from his presence for a while so as to allow him calm down. *Do you get angry when you are rebuked by your husband or do you accept being corrected with love? *Avoid sudden major changes without discussion and giving her time to adjust. Proverb of the week If you are patient in one moment of anger, you will avoid 100 days of sorrow. Meaning: Avoid regret by taking time to think before speaking or acting angrily.


THE

NIGERIAN

14

THURSDAY, MAY 30, 2013

View Point THE Standards Organization of Nigeria (SON) is the National statutory body responsible for standardization, regulation and quality assurance of goods and services. SON was established by Act No. 56 0f 1971 with 3 amendments of 1976, 1984 and 1990. The body has continually ensure that quality is the watch word and compromising it will spell doom for Nigerian products and the citizens will eventually be at the receiving end and to avoid this, quality of product is the main focus. SON in all her dealings continually emphasized that the only way of gaining sustainable competitive advantage in the market place is only by offering good quality products that are produced in line with quality procedures as enshrined in the Nigerian Industrial Standards (NIS). It is therefore imperative for all stakeholders especially those in the manufacturing sectors to ensure total compliance with the SON road map to zero tolerance of substandard products. To ensure this target is met, the Director General Dr Joseph Ikemefuna Odumodu gave the body a marching order to ensure that the six point agenda on which SON activities are predicated are implemented. The six point agenda include; d e v e l o p i n g competitiveness among locally produced products; monitoring compliance; capacity building; global relevance; consumer engagement and media engagement. These laudable

initiatives are the policy and the driving force put in place by the new SON under the Director General/Chief Executive, Dr Joseph Ikemefuna Odumodu who is pursuing a zero tolerance to substandard products in the country. His effort with the support of members of the body has yielded a great result as the zero tolerant to substandard products in Nigeria according to reports has now drastically reduced substandard products in the country to around 30 percent. SON is saddled with the responsibility of ensuring quality campaign which has created awareness among all stakeholders in this subsector in Nigeria. The achievement recorded can be linked to the recent forum held in Abuja by SON on cement products, and this has initiated an era of involving quality products considering the fact that cement subsector is an integral part in nation infrastructural development. SON as an Organization has called on all relevant government agencies and parastatals to join hands, team up and support the crusade of ensuring quality aimed at repositioning the country. This is important and necessary to ensure the enthronement of quality in all segments of the nation’s productive life. Speaking at the official presentation of SON quality certificate award to Asec Electrical Industries Limited for maintaining quality, the Edo State co-ordinator of SON Mr. Akogun Ojo called on other manufacturers to follow and toe the foot step of Asec in repositioning the

Ensuring Standardization Of Nigerian Products

manufacturing sector of the nation’s economy to global relevant. “This is necessary in order to create a level play ground for Nigeria goods to compete favourably with imported goods. However, this would only be a mirage if we all fail to embrace quality. If the goods we produce are not of

By RICHARD OKORO-EWEKA

the factory of Asec by our technical officers and outcome of labouratory analysis carried out on samples of products, the Organization deems it fit to award to the company, SON Mandatory Conformity Assessment Programme (MANCAP)

the certificates. He used the opportunity to call on the management of Asec to enlist and register PHCN among her customers if they deal in cable as part of their product. Engr. Nwosa said, standardization and quality is a global issue,

Joseph Odumodun, SON DG required standards, it means we are jeopardizing lives. If the services we render are substandard, it means they will not deliver the service that we expect them to deliver. Therefore, any money paid to obtain such a product or service is a waste”. Presenting the SON quality certificate award to Asec Electricity Industries Limited Mr. Ojo said having considered the series of inspections carried out at

certificate. This certificate authorizes the company to use the MANCAP NIS logo and number on its product. Speaking at the occasion, the Principal Manager of Benin Electricity Distribution Company (BEDC), Engr. Odashi Nwosa representing the GM of BEDC congratulated Asec for the achievement and called on the management of the Organization to maintain quality which was the reason for the award of

“This is necessary in order to create a level play ground for Nigeria goods to compete favourably with imported goods. However, this would only be a mirage if we all fail to embrace quality. If the goods we produce are not of required standards, it means we are jeopardizing lives.”

and quality virtually affects all areas of our lives likewise the sectors of the Nigeria economy. The importance of SON cannot be over emphasized, they are extremely important, because their function is to ensure that product does not compromise quality. “In PHCN, we are the major cosumer of electricity cables, we consume a lot. We have on and off shore materials which include transformers, almond cables and the likes. From start to finish SON monitor and ensure quality is in no way compromise. In all we do, quality is adhered to”. Engr. Nwosa used the medium to disclose the arrangement and preparation of the Federal Government of Nigeria to provide an uninterrupted and stable power supply to her esteemed customers across the country. He

said the federal government is ensuring that at least every Nigerian, get power supply constantly. “In fact, the Federal government wants to provide stable power supply and ensure there is no power failure of any sort across the country from now till enternity. This is the plan of the government, but we pray that God will give us the enablement to achieve this plan. As I speak now, the process is on”, he said. Thanking SON for the certificate award to Asec,

the chairman of Asec Electricity Industries Limited Sir Samson Awiaka expressed gratitude to God for the ahievment and also thank all the staff of Asec for their commitment and dedication which has resulted in the glorious presentation of the certificate. “This is what we have been waiting for, I never expected that this opportunity will arise now but thank God it’s now possible. When the team of Engr. from SON came calling, they threatened to close down the Company if it does not comply with the standard. We had to sit up and ensure we comply with the standard and ensure quality and today we are better for it. Nigeria today is full of products and items that short of standard, we know that gradually things will turn out for good. We thank God for an Organization like SON that is now making every Company in Nigeria to begin to have a rethink. If you are operating in Nigeria and not ready to comply, then you should be ready to shut down”. Furthermore, he said “We are assuring the SON that we will maintain the standard and everything SON has taught us will be strictly maintained and followed. We will not just relax but maintain and sustain the standard and quality. I want to Assure SON that whenever their

team of Engineers come calling, they will never find our Company wanting but rather will appreciate our effort to maintain standard”.


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THURSDAY, MAY 30, 2013

Child Health & You Nightmare To Mothers , Delimma To Physicians?

Chronic Non-Specific Cough In Children: COUGH is an important protective reflex enabling individuals to clear secretions within the airway. Cough is a reflex response of the respiratory tract to stimulation of irritants in the airway leading to forceful expulsion of such irritants through a partially closed glottis to clear the airway. Cough is not a disease BUT can be a source for spread of diseases such as tuberculosis, pneumonia, pertussis, diphtheria, acute respiratory diseases through spreading of infectious droplets in the environment. Cough is usually a symptom of a disease. However, whether it is severe or not; when cough persists for a period of time, it is major source of worry to mothers/ caregivers. Cough is perhaps one of the commonest symptoms in childhood and, although most acute cough is related to viral infections, there are common causes of cough in children such as upper airway diseases such as tuberculosis, pertussis-like illness, asthma and asthmalike conditions, recurrent viral respiratory disease, adenotonsillar hypertrophy, rhinosinusitis, oesophageal/ swallowing problems such as aspiration, trachea-oesophgeal fistula, and gastrooesophageal reflux disease. Others would include increased cough receptor sensitivity, functional respiratory disorder such as seen in habitual cough or vocal tie, non-asthmatic eosinophilic bronchitis and allergy, etc. Cough persisting for more than 3 weeks is known as chronic cough and in most cases, the causes are known. Sometimes cough of unknown cause lasting for more than 3 weeks can occur in children (referred to as chronic nonspecific cough) and may constitute major source of worry to caregivers. Chronic non-specific cough refers to cough in an individual lasting for more than 3 weeks with no other symptoms or signs suggestive of any underlying lung/airway disease. As aforementioned, causes of chronic non-specific cough are not known. However, some researchers had suggested possible relationship between the child’s cough receptors and the associated inflammatory response of the airways as well as inhaled irritants or allergens within the environment as trigger factors. Other trigger factors include tobacco smoking/cigarrates (parents that smoke in their homes), cooking with fire wood at home, and post-viral respiratory infection (persistent cough following an acute viral respiratory tract infections). Post-viral respiratory infection usually occurs after the child has had recurrent episodes of acute respiratory viral infection and the cough persists after the acute phase of the infection

without any other symptoms. This usually occurs with early exposure of the child to the environment either through the day care (crèche) or early school syndrome. Some authors had also suggested relationship between chronic non-specific cough and asthma in children. Major consensus in recent studies had shown that children with chronic nonspecific cough have slightly more reactive airways; however their airways are not as reactive as those of children with asthma. Some studies had also identified children with chronic non-specific cough who did not have hypersensitivity to the airways nor had history of atopy showing that chronic nonspecific cough is a disease entity of its own and may not have any relationship with asthma. Cough which persists without any known cause (in most cases for 3 weeks to 12 weeks) can be associated with considerable distress and impaired quality of life. The cough may be wet (in older children they may expectorate or have post nasal drips) or dry. Chronic non-specific cough is usually worse at night and disturbs the child from sleep. It may be associated with ‘stridor’ or ‘wheeze’. It would appear in many cases that the reported “severity” of coughing in a child is related to how it affects the parents (caregivers) or the teachers (for older children at school). Most mothers interviewed about chronic non-specific cough in children stated that such cough is a nightmare to them and to their children. The major concern for mothers was their fear that their child was going to die, usually because “the cough was on their chest” leading to choking on or of phlegm or vomit (Cornford 1993). There was also fear of death at night or sudden infant death syndrome or cot death. Some mothers were also worried that their child would develop long-term chest damage from such chronic non-specific cough. Cough in children is very common and, in the majority, is reflective of expected childhood respiratory infections. However, chronic cough may also be representative of a significant serious disorder and all children with chronic cough should have a thorough clinical review to identify worrying features suggestive of an underlying respiratory and/or systemic illness. There is no doubt that chronic non-specific cough is certainly a common and troublesome paediatric problem and so requires adequate clinical assessment and management. Because there are common associated consequences from chronic cough (such as retained foreign body) each child with chronic cough

By DR DAMIAN U. NWANERI

should be thoroughly evaluated by a medical doctor. This will enable identification of common abnormalities that may suggest more severe underlying lung/airway diseases. Worrying features suggestive of serious underlying lung/airway disease

The ‘watch and wait policy’ is the most important treatment modalities that should be offered by the physician to the parents/caregiver of a child with chronic non-specific cough. Regular follow-up and re-assurance on the part of the physician is required. The

paediatrician. There is no usefulness of cough syrups or mucolytic agents (examples bromhexine, acetylcysteine) in management of chronic non-specific cough in children because there is no scientific evidence that they work. Rather they may cause additional airway irritation. Some of the cough syrups

in children with chronic cough include newborn onset of the cough; chronic purulent cough; cough that started and persisted after choking episodes, during feeds or after feeds; presence or evidence of heart anomalies and chest wall deformities; coughing up of blood in older children (haemoptysis); recurrent pneumonia; general ill-health; and failure to thrive. All children with chronic nonspecific cough MUST obtain a chest radiograph (chest X-ray film). Other investigations that could be done in the hospital to exclude possibilities of having most of these possible underlying lung/airway diseases include spirometry, test for airway hyperresponsiveness, flexible bronchoscopy, bronchial washout for culture and sensitivity, chest and sinus computed tomographic scans, airway fluid/lavage and cellular assessment. Other lung function tests could be done. Chronic non-specific cough is a diagnosis of exclusion. When all investigation is normal with absence of any of the worrying features listed above in a child with chronic cough; it is termed as chronic non-specific cough. Chronic non-specific cough is usually self-limiting. Symptoms usually disappear within 3 weeks to 12 weeks after onset.

algorithm shown below can be of help in management of a child with chronic non-specific cough: Supportive treatment of chronic non-specific cough includes ‘fluid albitum’ which means adequate liberal oral fluid. This fluid can be water or home-made fluid from fruits or fruit juices, coconut water. Such fluid clears and soothes the airways with shortening of disease morbidity (relieve of symptoms). In cases where the cough is wet, low dose chlorpheniramine especially at night have been found to relieve symptoms. Other drugs that have been found helpful in relieving of symptoms include inhaled beta-2 agonists such as salbutamol inhalers and mast cell stabilizers such as cromoglycate and nedocromil (these drugs increase cough thresholds and reduce neurogenic inflammation which is believed to be the most important peripheral inflammation process involved in human cough). These drugs are preferably given as inhaled nebules in hospitals. It is important to note that response to inhaled corticosteroids and/ or bronchodilators does not necessarily mean that the child has asthma. There is need for further evaluation and followup of the child by the

contain codeine which may depress the central nervous system (especially the brain). Use of anti-microbial or antibiotics in management of chronic non-specific cough is unnecessary and amounts to waste of resources. It fosters development of antimicrobial/ antibiotic drug resistance as well as possible manifestation of the side effect of allusion to irrational antimicrobial/ antibiotic use. It also fosters loss of confidence of patients/ caregiver on the health care provider. Reliability and accuracy of chronic cough reported by the mother is an important aspect of management of the child. The mother is usually the most reliable reporter of symptom complexes of chronic nonspecific cough. She is also the most significant person in providing health care to the child. Difficulties in reporting the characteristic nature of the cough and other associated symptoms such as wheeze and stridor militate against diagnosis and management of a child with chronic nonspecific cough. In some instance, there is over-night recording of the cough; its characteristics, and all events surrounding the cough as well as events that transpired through the night. This is very

important in investigation, diagnosis and management of a child with chronic cough. The paediatrician has the role to thoroughly take good history, clinical examination and investigation and map out treatment modalities for the child. The paediatrician should explore the reasons for parental anxiety and reassure the parents that a watch and wait policy is probably all that is needed for a child with chronic non-specific cough. Simultaneously, it is necessary to detect environmental exacerbating factors and attempt to eliminate them (such as stoppage of parental smoking habit where applicable) and use of alternate fuel for cooking instead of fire wood (another source of smoking in homes). In some instances, parents are advised to remove rug carpets in their homes as well as regular washdown of the windows and window blinds; regular washing of the house-hold fans. Dusts and dust-like materials from these household items have been found to be precipitating factors to hypersensitivity of the airways and stimulators of the cough receptors. Other preventive modality may include thorough evaluation of day cares/ crèches as well as withdrawal of the child from the day care/ crèche in cases where early exposure to day cares/ crèches has been implicated. Providing parents with information on the expected time to resolution of acute respiratory infections may reduce anxiety in parents and the need for medication use and additional consultation. In conclusion, chronic nonspecific cough is a common childhood condition and may be troublesome to the child and to his mother/caregivers. There is need for appropriate thorough evaluation of any child with chronic cough so as to exclude serious underlying lung/airway diseases. Chronic non-specific cough is selflimiting; the watch and wait policy, use of liberal oral home-made fluid and regular follow-up are the best treatment modalities. DR DAMIAN UCHECHUKWU NWANERI Research Fellow I, Institute of Child Health, University of Benin And Consultant Paediatrician, University of Benin Teaching Hospital, Benin City Edo State, Nigeria. ‘CHILD HEALTH AND YOU’, a Weekly Thursday Feature, is a collaborative initiative between the Institute of Child Health, University of Benin, and the Bendel Newspapers Company Limited (BNCL), Benin City. Comments on this page should be forwarded to The Editor, Bendel Newspapers Company Limited, Benin City or Director, Institute of Child Health University of Benin, Benin City, Edo State.


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THURSDAY, MAY 30, 2013

Spotlight

NUC And Illegal Universities What can you call this situation? A situation that thrives on the inadequacies of the nation’s educational sector. A situation that capitalizes on the vulnerability of the young minds in the country that are seeking to be in Ivory Towers. It is a situation that has always repeated itself in Nigeria.

Illegal universities, have become a bone in that of Nigerian Universities Commission (NUC) and the education sector. Recently, the media was agog with news that 41 illegal universities have been shut down by the N.U.C. According to reports, the culprits were allegedly either using a fake name or illegally operating a satellite campus in the name of an approved or known institutions. While speaking, the representative of Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC), Prof. Olu Aina, said recent action is the first in the series of implementing the outcome of an ongoing ICPC/NUC University System Study and Review (USSR). Before this clamp down on illegal universities and other degree awarding institutions, NUC’s Chairman, had earlier announced that there are about 67 illegal institutions in the country. In the statement as released by NUC, the Federal Government have not licensed these “degree mills” and have, therefore, been closed down for violating the Education Act CAP E3 Law of the

Federation of Nigeria 2004. This law gives the NUC the power to regulate and supervise the operation of university education in the country. Similarly, section 25 of the Act, designates the NUC as the appropriate authority for the administration and enforcement of the Act in respect of university education. Again, professor Aina said that the activities of these illegal operators have impacts negatively on the mental, psychological and economic well being of many young Nigerians and their parents. He further noted that the institutions are a source of embarrassment to the government and a monumental corruption of the education system. Reacting to allegations from some quarters that the NUC had earlier granted temporary approval to the illegal schools to operate, Prof. Shola Akirinade, representing NUC Chairman, denied the report. He said that the commission does not grant temporary approval or license to operate an institution. Prof. Shola revealed that there were 14 stages involved before the NUC could grant license

BY EMMANUEL EGOBIAMBU

to any university in the country. The NUC/ICPC Task team was quoted as saying that this is a world –wide

operating in makeshift venues as most Nigerians who are tired of sitting for JAMB exams, see them as

phenomenon which occurs wherever demand for education or other services far outweigh supply. Now, I ask: for how long can we tolerate this? The spate that these institution spring up is jaw-dropping. These schools are often

a headway to escape the harsh realities of not getting admitted to tertiary institutions. Now, taking a look at a nation as United States, the Secretary of Education is required by Law to regularly publish a list of nationally recognized

“Now, taking a look at a nation as United States, the Secretary of Education is required by Law to regularly publish a list of nationally recognized institutions. This the secretary of Education does after some approved accreditation agencies as Distance Education and Training Council (DETC) and American council of Education have certified such schools institutions for such in line with the Higher Education Act of 1965.”

institutions. This the secretary of Education does after some approved accreditation agencies as Distance Education and Training Council (DETC)

and American council of Education have certified such schools institutions for such in line with the Higher Education Act of 1965. It is therefore imperative that the Nigerian Universities Commission (NUC) tightens its rules. The recent clamp down on illegal universities and the suspension of operational licences for seven universities in 2012, is an indication. These institutions were closed down after many years of operation. As NUC said, the reasons for their action are the deteriorating structures, conduct of multiple admission in a year and others.

Now, was the NUC not intimated before these schools began operation? If yes, what were the steps taken to correct the anomaly? Again, why is it

that it is mainly the Nigerian universities commission that is responsible for regulating university education? How would they be able to do the work alone? Going back to the suspension of the seven private universities in 2012, the ramblings it generated, is a testament to the need to further empower the commission(NUC). Although, the NUC is trying its best, the relevant stakeholders should also join the fight. It is only when the education of the nation is taken to heart, that we can finally certify our Ivory Towers as truly centers of excellence and not “degree mills!”.


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THURSDAY, MAY 30, 2013

Spotlight “Abuse of money is a great challenge to the naira notes. Nigerians do not handle money well. Monies are still been sprayed in parties, weddings and other social activities in the country. This makes the life span of the notes to be short once not properly handled.”

introduction of paper notes, should be invested in the economy to assist small business with credit. In same vein, a former president of the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN), Mr. Okechukwu Unegbu, said the CBN’s move amounts to waste of public funds. This recent move to reintroduce paper notes, just as the polymer, would have its

From Polymer To Notes

The Implication, Challenges And Gains

JUST recently, the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, announced its decision to change the naira polymer notes to paper. The change was made known by the CBN Deputy Governor (Operation), Mr. tuned Lemo. He said the apex bank was phasing out the polymer notes because they fade quickly. Mr. tuned said the C.B.N did not realized that the notes (polymer) would fade easily when they were introduced prompting the C.B.N’s decision to revert to paper notes. Before now, the Central Bank of Nigeria under the leadership of Prof. Chukwuma Soludo, launched the N10, N20 and N50 polymer notes on September 30, 2009. In 2006 the Central Bank of Nigerian had contacted Securrency, in institution partly owned by Reserve Bank of Australia, costing N750 million. The introduction of polymer notes, made Nigeria the 2nd

country in Africa and 24th in the world to issue polymer notes. The CBN, is saddled among other duties to determine the composition of currencies in terms of colours, security methods and material needed to produce them. Again, the printing of the paper notes, in the words of former Chief Executive Officer, Nigerian Security Printing and Minting Company (NSPMC), Mr. Ehidiamen Okoyomon, has made the country one of the five biggest spenders in terms of the currency printing. He also revealed that three billion notes are printed yearly in Nigeria. According to an economist, Mr. Bismarck Rewane, the proposal would not have any negative effect on the country’s economy and noted that the cashless society in Nigeria would reduce cash in circulation. Also, former president of Association of National

BY EMMANUEL EGOBIAMBU

• Sanusi Lamido, CBN Governor

Accountants of Nigeria (ANAN), Dr. Samuel Nzekwe, noted that the plan by the Sanusi-led Central

Bank, would amount to a waste of resources. He, instead, advised that the fund to be spent on the re-

printing done by a foreign company because of the unexpectedly limited capacity of Nigeria. Minting and Printing Company (NMPC). This is also going to gulp the country’s lean foreign exchange. Furthermore, to Mr. Leekita Israel an economics lecturer at University of Maiduiri, though the cost of printing might be higher when compared with that of paper notes, the polymer notes are more cost-effective. According to the Nigerian Pilot, the CBN admitted that the introduction of coins was misguided, consequently withdrew and publicly auctioned them at less than one tenth of the production cost. According to reports, the challenge before CBN is that the number of times lower notes are exchanged in a day, is uncountable. The reason is because the notes are used to

purchase sachet water, groundnuts, and other smaller products. This makes the notes easily mutilated thereby costing CBN more efforts to print new ones. Abuse of money is a great challenge to the naira notes. Nigerians do not handle money well. Monies are still been sprayed in parties, weddings and other social activities in the country. This makes the life span of the notes to be short once not properly handled. Experts are of the view that the apex bank, should reintroduce coins. The reason for this is that the coins can withstand pressure from frequent use. This singular act, will reduce the load of printing new currency notes often. Again, there is need to reorientate Nigerians on the proper handling of currencies. According to Mr. Ekungba, charging smaller notes from polymer to paper would amount to waste unless Nigerians’ change their orientation. He said Nigerians have a bad culture in terms of handling money while stating that the problem arising from abuse will continue unless the masses are oriented on the proper handling of the nation’s currency. Nigerians are still waiting to see if this move by the Central Bank, will have a permanent solution to the frequent change of currency notes from polymer to notes and vice-versa. Could this be for the better? Would it not amount to waste of resources? All these, will be answered in a matter of time!

Empowering Niger-Delta Youths Via Peace Concert YOUTHS are University acknowledged as the future of every society. There is no true development that does not integrate the youths of the society. It is against this background that youth development and empowerment remain a principal feature of all civilizens and progressive societies. In this regard Delta State cannot afford to be left behind. The peace initiative concert (PIC), on annual state wide event is a brainchild of S.O. Soladems Nig. Limited, whose aim is

to empower Delta youths through entertainment based Orientation on the imperatives and virtues of hard work, honesty and peaceful co-existence. The programme is also a platform to discover artistic talents in our youths with a view to building them into national and international entertainment Icons that we all will be proud of. In another word, when youths are inspired and empowered to succeed, new possibilities for wealth creation are initiated and grown while the society is ultimately

BY FRIDAY OBANOR

strengthened in the long run; relatively in Niger-Delta society there is no better time to start than now. Peace initiative concert (PIC) has successfully conducted auditions and peace rallies in communities like Oghara, Jesse and Sapele while the grand finale of the concert was done in Sapele Township Stadium on the 29th of May 2013. A total of 30 contestants that emerged from the process in three categories raging from the music,

dance and comedy participated in the build up to the grand finale where the eventual winners now emerged at the keenly contested gig. Prices were given to winners and various empowerment packages were also announced for winners. Established artists equally entertained the large crowd that trouped out for the event that faithful day. Achieving this lofty goal for youth empowerment requires an all-embracing

approach and successful integration of ideas, principles efforts from individuals, private and government organizations. It is in this regard, that people, finances, material, moral, partnership, assistance and support were required more than ever before to help offset the logistics for the programme in areas like monies paid to secure the stadium for use, prizes for contestants, engagement of star artists and sundry logistics. It was all songs of gratefulness to the Chief Executive Officer (C.E.O.)

of S.O. Solodems Nig. Limited, Chief Solomon Ojariefe without whose efforts this programme wouldn’t have seen the light of the day. Others include London Akpanoko and the staff and management of the London Royal Hotel for keying into the P.L.C vision as demonstrated by making available facilities for the programme free of charge. Also commended were staff and management of Green Ice Bar, Oghara and the Diplomat Hotel Jesse, whose facilities were used for auditions.


THE

NIGERIAN

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THURSDAY, MAY 30, 2013 With Obuseh Jude 0806385183

Security Issues

Tackling Insecurity In Nigeria THE shakeup in Nigeria’s security establishment is a welcome development that is long overdue. The president’s action represents a new resolve on his part to put a final stop to the several inefficiencies in the security sector that has gradually turned Nigeria into a bloody mess, due to the unchecked, braggadocios and perniciously violent activities of the Boko Haram sect and similar groups. But laudable as the President’s recent gesture is, one feels that the cleansing exercise should have been more all-encompassing, involving the complete removal of all the Service Chiefs as well, since they are also culpable for the worsening state of security in the country. However, in the midst of the hullabaloo surrounding the President’s unexpected recent pronouncements, we seem to be missing one salient point: The real reason for the current state of insecurity in Nigeria. It is my candid opinion that even if we totally overhaul our security system, without considering the core issues at stake, the problem of insecurity will still remain a reoccurring decimal in this country. The security agencies are only appendages of the state, and cannot act outside the purview of the political realities of the times. This has formed the fulcrum of my discourses on these pages since the inception of this column. It is my frank view that the real reason for the burgeoning state of insecurity in Nigeria is not only because the Boko Haram has gone rouge, or

that the security chiefs have failed in their duties as custodians of public safety - though both are good reasons - but largely because of some political variables that are not easily amenable to public scrutiny. For those of us who have followed recent developments in our political theatre, the nucleus of the current state of insecurity can be located in the struggle for the ownership and control of the Nigerian state by the political elites, who see the state and its resources as their personal possessions. It is the culmination of a zero-sum power struggle among seekers of absolute power to remain relevant in the politics of this country. The cases of bombings, shootings and other acts of terror launched by the Bokites against the Nigerian state and its citizens, started rearing their ugly heads after the 2011, General Elections which resulted in the overwhelming election of Good luck Ebele Jonathan by the people as the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, and the feeling by certain elements that they had been shortchanged in the new order. That is the simple truth. Another complementary reason is the failure on the path of the institutions of the state to exhaustively and satisfactorily perform their fiduciary responsibilities to the citizens. From a national executive that has largely been docile and, at best, reactive to the mounting security challenges facing the country, a legislature that has been more of a talk shop, a sickly, directionless

and disjointed judicial system that has ingloriously continued to woefully fail in discharging its duties to the letter, a police force that is corruption-ridden, illequipped and poorly trained, to other systemic incongruities, it has been a series of avoidable failures, inconsistencies and embarrassments for the Nigerian state and its people. How can there be

peace in this country? Your guess is as good as mine. So, in our quest to finding lasting solutions to the current threats posed by the peripatetic Boko Haram and other such depraved groups to the security of the lives and property of Nigerians, we must hew out the real challenges facing the security of Nigeria from the roots. Our political elites

us back to barbarous times by alluding to primordial sentiments in the quest to score cheap political points in order to gain some concessions; but a time to completely relegate selfish interests to the backseat. Our elites must realize that if Nigeria is allowed to go into extinction, they stand to loose more than the largely impoverished masses. Take it or leave it!

cabal of troubleshooters – the murderers of peace who do not wish us well. The sooner we start acting the better it will be for all of us. In all, the security of our country is the collective responsibility of all its citizens – both the rulers and the ruled. While the government has a key role to play, the ordinary man on the streets can also complement the efforts of

Lt-Gen. Azubuike Ihejirika, Chief of Army Staff

Mohammed Abubakar, I.G of Police

security in this country when the right policies are not constructed to check or counter threats to the safety of the people? How can there be security when the right laws are not enacted to check infringements on the liberties of the people? How can there be security in this country when the courts lack the enabling powers to bring disturbers of public peace to order? How can there really be

Again, the onus rests on the people of this country, to stand up to the incivilities of some of our antiprogressive political elites who have no respect for us. We must stand up to demand for the respect of our “rights to life” as stated in the constitution. We must resolve to begin to hold our political leaders accountable for their actions. This country belongs to all of us. It is not the property of a few dishonest individuals who think they can toy with our wellbeing whenever it sooths their fancy. This order of impunity must stop! Our collective security should no longer be toyed with. It should no longer be sacrificed on the altar of the invented superfluities of a

must endeavor to immediately commence the process of putting their house in order. They must learn to put the interest of the country before any other personal pecuniary considerations. They must sheath their swords and embrace peace for the good of this country and its people. This is not the time to aimlessly point accusing fingers at anybody or group. This is not the time to throw

“In all, the security of our country is the collective responsibility of all its citizens – both the rulers and the ruled. While the government has a key role to play, the ordinary man on the streets can also complement the efforts of government by supporting its security initiatives. But in doing so, those in authority must endeavour to put all the variables defining the current crisis in their proper perspectives in order to be able to properly work out an effective solution to the tragedy currently plaguing our country.”

government by supporting its security initiatives. But in doing so, those in authority must endeavour to put all the variables defining the current crisis in their proper perspectives in order to be able to properly work out an effective solution to the tragedy currently plaguing our country. The horse must be put before the cat and not the other way round. Anything short of this is an invitation to further chaos. Many innocent Nigerians have lost their lives to the demonic activities of violent groups like Boko Haram. Action must, therefore, be immediately expedited to check further unwarranted killings. God will imbue our leaders with the wisdom to resolve this mess. Peace!


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THURSDAY, MAY 30, 2013

Issues IT is embarrassing that ten months after President Goodluck Jonathan appointed Colonel Sambo Dasuki (rtd.) as the National Security Adviser of Nigeria, the northern states of Maiduguri, Yobe, Bauchi, Kaduna and Jos has undoubtedly become an “axis of evil” where churches, markets, police personnel, barracks and facilities of telecommunication firms are bombed with reckless abandon by the dread Islamist group, Ansaru. As a provocative reception for Dasuki, barely four days after assuming office as Nigeria’s NSA, some terrorist on June 24, 2012, invaded Damaturu Prisons and freed one hundred and ninety-nine inmates. Thereafter, an attack on a Police post in Dala, Kano state, with expletives resulted in the killing of seventeen of the assailants. Not done, on July 8 and 9, 2012, suspected terrorists killed one hundred persons in Barkin Ladi and Riyom local government areas of Plateau state. In the process, a Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Gyang Dantong and the Majority Leader of the state House of Assembly, Gyang Fulani died in the attack. Other unfortunate examples are the shooting spree inside the Deeper Life Bible Church in Okene, Kogi state, in August 2012, which left no fewer than twenty worshippers dead, and the massacre of twenty-two students in Mubi by gunmen who, for one hour, forced the victims out of their hostels one after the other. The nation’s security agencies did not get a hit of the massacre while it lasted, even though it has always claimed to be “on top of the situation”. One November 25, 2012, a suicide car bomber at a church inside Jaji Army Barracks claimed eleven lives. The security situation in Kano, one of Nigeria’s largest cities and the commercial hub of northern Nigeria, has assumed a disheartening situation in year 2013. For instance, on Monday, March 18, 2013, a massive bomb blast rocked the Sabon Gari area of the city, killing an estimated sixty people and leaving several others injured. The blast, believed to be the handiwork of members of the violent Islamic sect known as Boko Haram, occurred in a busy inter-state luxury bus park located in the area said to be inhabited mostly by non-natives of Kano state. There are conflicting accounts Of the gory incident. While some eyewitnesses claimed that the bombing was carried out by three suicide bombers, others said the deadly explosions were caused by unknown terrorists who had hurled some improvised explosive devices into a moving luxury bus. Another account said two suicide bombers had rammed their Volkswagen Golf car, which was laden with explosives, into a bus filled with passengers. The resulting explosion had engulfed other buses in the park. Before the afore-mentioned incident, on January 2012, Kano came under another rare baptism of terror when multiple and co-ordinated bomb attacks swept through parts of the city with about one hundred and seventy persons, mostly women and children, reportedly killed in the attacks. The Boko Haram allegedly claimed responsibility for the incidents in a message posted on the internet by its leader, Abubakar Shekau. Simultaneously, three North Korean doctors were killed at a hospital in Yobe state while nine polio vaccinators were also murdered in Kano in a rash of terror attacks. Before the killing of polio workers, about six people lost their lives when gunmen opened fire on the convoy of the Emir of Kano, Alhaji Ado Bayero at about noon, killing his driver, orderly and a traditional guard who tried to protect him. Three others, including a top official of the Kumbotso local government council, lost their lives in the incident. Two of the Emir’s sons, who were part of the convoy, and two traditional Chiefs, the Turakin Kano and the Ciroman Kano, were also wounded in the attack. Although the Emir escaped unhurt, the incident had filled his subjects with dread and left them with the impression that the worst was yet to come. On Thursday, March 14, 2013, a gang of gunmen in Kano city ambushed and injured nine riot Police -officers in a truck on their way to their duty post. The nine injured riot Policemen were later admitted to the Armed Forces Specialist Hospital, Kano for treatment, while one of them, with severe injury, was transferred to the Dala Orthopedic Hospital for specialist treatment. Two days before then, a female Police officer, Maimuna Yusuf, was also attacked and shot dead by gunmen at GSM Village at Farm Centre, as she was fixing her car. No arrest has been made as the militants were said to have disappeared into a crowd, making it difficult for other officers to confront them adequately in order to avoid civilian casualties This is besides the fact that in what appears to be a wellorchestrated plot, Mr. Chinwike Asadu, Kwara state Commissioner of Police, was recently gunned down by unknown gunmen but it was not clear if his murder will not end up as another one of the growing list of unresolved high-profile killings in Nigeria. Shortly after Asadu’s killing in the early month of March 2013,

Harvest Of Terrorist Attacks Kano To Enugu: By AKPESIRI OGHENERHABOKE gunmen in Kano laid siege for Dahiru Majia, SP, and Commander, Police Mobile Force, Squadron 9, Kano. The deceased was waylaid and gunned down some metres before his house. Ironically, the late Kwara CP was a former MOPOL commander in charge of the state criminal investigation department, SCID, Panti, Lagos. Meanwhile, the recent killing of about one hundred and eightyfive people during a bloody clash between suspected members of the Boko Haram sect and the Joint Military Task Force, JTF, in Baga area of Borno state is totally condemnable. The high casualty rate, which also involved injury of many people and vandalization of houses, cars and motor cycles, raises salient questions on the handling of the clash by the military authorities.

Those affected are five members of the Shurra committee of the sect, including Imam Abubakar Shekau (50 million naira); Habibu Yusuf (a.k.a Asalafi), (25 million naira); Khalid Albarnawai (25 million naira); Momodu Bama (25 million naira); and Mohammed Zangina (25 million naira). The Boko Haram commanders are Abu Saad (10 million naira); Abba kaka (10 million naira); Abdulmalik Bama (10 million naira) Umar Fulata (10 million naira) Alhaji Mustapha (Massa) Ibrahim (10 million naira); Abubakar Suleiman-Habu (a.k.a Khalid), N10 million naira; Hassan Jazair, N10 million; Ali Jalingo (N10 million naira); Alhaji Musa Modu (N10 million naira); ‘Bashir Aketa (N10 million naira); Abba Goroma (N10 million naira); Ibrahim Bashir (N10 million naira); Abubakar Zakariya (10 million naira); and TukurAhmed Mohammed (10 million naira). Reacting to the recurring wave of violence that continues to

Terrorist Attack: Some burnt luxury buses lie in the parking area at New Road bus station in Sabo Gari area of Kano state recently

Although the Presidency has ordered a high-powered investigation into the incident, the military authorities reportedly admitted that thirty insurgents and about six civilians died in the massacre. As if the orgy in kano was not enough, about one hundred and sixty- six people were feared dead when a boat traveling from Oron in Akwa Ibom state to Malabo in Equatorial Guinea capsized at the Calabar waterways. Eyewitnesses said the boat was carrying one hundred and sixtyeight passengers when the accident occurred. Most of them were lgbo traders heading for neighboring Gabon. The victims’ corpses, numbering about 45, were said to have been deposited in University of Calabar Teaching Hospital, Calabar instead of Malabo, where the mishap occurred, because they were believed to be Nigerians. This is no doubt, an unusual period in the history of this Nigeria. At no time, except during the Nigeria Civil War and the riots that trailed the outcome of the presidential elections of 2010, has the nation been beset with human losses of this magnitude. The general feeling of apprehension among Nigerians seems further reinforced by the inability of the President Goodluck Jonathan administration to contain the surge indrive-by shootings and bombing, which has resulted in the deaths of many people since 2012 despite government’s declaration of nineteen Boko Haram leaders wanted over the spate of bombings and killings in the North-East of Nigeria. The list of those declared wanted comprised members of the Shurra Committee (the highest decision making body of the sect) and nineteen Boko Haram commanders.

strike at the heart of the North, the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammed Sa’ad Abubakar recently led other prominent Nigerians in appealing for the granting of amnesty to all the armed groups operating in the region. Obviously, the Sultan, who is also the President of the Jama’atul Nasril Islam, the umbrella body of all Muslims in Nigeria, was deeply worried by the turn of events in the region for the past two or three years. Abubakar had expressed the belief that the latter would respond positively to the gesture and trudge the path of peace. He argued that any terrorist who failed to grab the opportunity implied in the declaration of amnesty and lay down his arms would be criminalized. But, in a statement issued and signed in Abuja by its General Secretary, Musa Asake, the Christian Association of Nigeria swiftly opposed Abubakar’s request. At the last count, a distressed National Assembly, through its members from the North, had joined the call for the granting of amnesty to Boko Haram and other terrorist groups. The option of negotiating With terrorists, which some wellmeaning Nigerians prefer, seem l not to be working. Going by its confessions, the objective of Boko Haram is to establish an Islamic government in a part of the country. For such an “absolute terrorist” group, the objective cannot be achieved except “by bomb and rifle; the dialogue of bullets, the ideals of assassination, bombing, and destruction, and diplomacy of the cannon and machine-gun” as revealed by a United Kingdom’s Metropolitan Police document. This is the brand of terror Nigeria is contending with. This is the galling reality the federal government of Nigeria must face.


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Motoring

Vital Information For Vehicle Owners RELEVANT papers private vehicle drivers must be equipped with are: a. Drivers license b. Vehicles license c. Insurance papers d. If your vehicle is tinted, you must have tinted glass permit RELEVANT PAPERS COMMERCIAL VEHICLE DRIVERS MUST BE EQUIPPED WITH: a. Drivers license b. Vehicles license c. Insurance papers {either comprehensive or a minimum of third party insurance} d. Certificate of road worthiness e. Hackney permit for bus drivers {permit that designate routes} f. If your vehicle is tinted, it is advisable to get tinted glass permit. However, commercial vehicle operators (particularly intercity} are advised to dismantle their tinted glass for security reasons. FOR OPERATORS OF UNREGISTERED VEHICLE (BRAND NEW OR FAIRLY USED) A. DRIVERS LICENSE B. OTHER PAPERS THAT WILL ESTABLISH OWNERSHIP OF THE VEHICLE, NOTE: MOT is NOT part of the statutory documents police officers are expected to ask from motorists. ADVISE TO MOTORIST THAT FALL VICTIMS TO FRIVOLOUS DEMANDS BY POLICE MEN A. Call either the commissioner of police, area commander in charge of where you were arrested, police public relations

officers, or the divisional police officer in the area. B. Tactically take note of the identity of the policeman that stopped you, the area and whatever inscription in the vehicle that stopped you. COOLING SYSTEM It’s cheaper to prevent terminal engine overheating and damage than to cure them. All it takes is vigilance and a modest monetary outlay. Here is what to do: Don’t just put any water in the radiator the water has to be clean and preferably tap water. It is better to get a good coolant additive to add to it but make sure it is a good one, some coolant additive are worse than useless. I once used a coolant additive, which within weeks, dissolved sealing glue on the radiator hoses. This reduced the radiator’s effectiveness and rendered the heater useless. But a good additive will prevent rust and raise the coolant’s boiling point. Drain the radiator and replace with clean water once in three months and while at it, make a visual check for leaks or any damage on the radiator and the hoses. Repair any damaged fast. Daily, check the coolant level on the overflow container. Any usually noise from the water pump should be investigated, if the pump is damaged, repair is not always effective, so replace it. Belt should be tight. Afan with broken fins won’t work properly. Buying a spare fan belt is a good idea, but buys a good quality type. Ascertain the engine’s normal working temperature while driving, if there is a substantial increase, stop the car and check. Engine oil also is a coolant. Use a good brand.

“Slow down at the intersection. A vehicle coming from the other side may enter the space in front of you. You should be ready to stop. he may not have seen you, or he may assume that you had slowed down to turn . More motorcycle accident happen at intersections. Take extreme caution.”

Don’t set engine idle speed to high. Avoid excessive idling The tachometer has a red band, which should be avoided in normal driving. For air-coolant cars, inspect these components regularly; oil level, fan belt, fan housing, intake ducts and vent, if any inter cooler is fitted, ensure it works properly. THE MOTORCYCLIST Motorcyclists are six times more likely to die in a crash than people in other type on encase vehicles. The chances are 8:10 that a motor cycle accident will result in death or very serious injury. Road traffic accident studies and hospital records show that motorcycle riders usually suffer head and spinal column injuries which either result in death or paralysis. BEFORE YOU RIDE: Make sure your cycle is in good condition be particularly sure that the following are in proper operating conditions before you ride the motorcycle: brakes, tyres, clutch, and throttles, turn signals, brake lights, head lamps, rear lights, mirror and horn. RIDERS PROTECTION: Make sure you wear the correct outfit, to protect your head, eyes and to be seen quickly. Avoid flowing garment. Flimsy clothings, fancy boots and thin gloves are not particularly protective. Thicker and stronger ones help protect you in case of accidents. SAFETY HELMET: Always wear a safety helmet even on short trips, safety helmet worn in the correct way and properly fastened is the most effective way you could increase your chances of surviving an accident. If you do not fasten the helmet securely, accident may knock it off exposing your head and brains to severe damage. TURNING: Well before you reach your turn off, especially on busy roads, check traffic both ways, using your mirror and glancing over your shoulder, signal your intention and it is safe, take up position to turn especially when making a left turn. Keep going, make sure that your trafficator is on all the time. Plus your hand if possible. Make your

08023412452 With OSAGIE AIFUWA

left turn when it is safe to do so. AVOID BLIND AREAS: You must always avoid staying where the other motorist cannot see you. A simple rule is for you to avoid “Do not start off, turn right or left, or pull up without first glancing behind to see that it is safe” where you cannot get eye contact with the other motorist, if you cannot see his eyes, he may not be able to see you. KEEP YOUR DISTANCE: You must not follow a vehicle too closely. Always apply “two-second” rule, and wherever necessary, use the common sense modification the three or four second rule. Do not ride too close to the sides of other vehicles. Doors may open, extended mirrors may take a swipe, or the vehicle may swerve. APPROCHAING AN INTERSECTION: Slow down at the intersection. A vehicle coming from the other side may enter the space in front of you. You should be ready to stop. he may not have seen you, or he may assume that you had slowed down to turn . More motorcycle accident happen at intersections. Take extreme caution SPEED LIMIT: Outright speed limit is 100 km per hour for any vehicle on any road highway in Nigeria Specific lower speed limits are posted or motorcyclists. Do not exceed them. Remember: even though your motor bike may be more flexible to maneouver, any accelerate to match motor cars, you are more vulnerable and unprotected in case of a crash. GLANCING BEHIND: Do not start off, turn right or left, or full up without first glancing behind to see that it is safe. Give a clear signal of what you intend to do.


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Opinion

Harnessing The Gains Of Democracy “TODAY, our unity is firm, our purpose is strong and our determination unshakable. Together, we will unite our nation and improve the living standards of all our people, whether in the North or in the South; in the East or in the West. “We must grow the economy, create jobs, and generate enduring happiness for our people. I have great confidence in the ability of Nigerians to transform this country.’’ Those were the words of President Goodluck Jonathan when he assumed office on May 29, 2011 amid jubilations and hope for a better Nigeria. When Chief Olusegun Obasanjo became the country’s President in 1999, political analysts then expressed the hope that the restoration of democracy in Nigeria would solve virtually all the socio-economic and political problems of the country 14 years into the democratic dispensation, observers are, however, quick to wonder whether democracy, as practiced by the country’s politicians and understood by its electorate, has made any significant difference in the lives of the citizens. Cynics continue to criticise successive administrations for non-performance in spite of enjoying the inherent benefits of democracy. They insist that it is only when a democratically elected government is able to positively affect the lives of the citizenry that a democracy could be said to have yielded dividends. In a nutshell, they contend that the efforts of successive governments to provide basic amenities such as electricity, roads, health care, water and schools are simply not enough. On the other hand, optimists and social commentators insist that Nigeria is practising a true democracy, which has, indeed, produced a lot of social, economic and political gains for the country and its citizens. They argue that since the onset of the current democratic dispensation, Nigeria has, by all means, fared well. The government’s mouthpiece, the Minister of Information, Mr. Labaran Maku, stressed that President Goodluck Jonathan had fulfilled his campaign promises to Nigerians. He listed the areas in which

By IFEANYI NWOKO

the president had fulfilled his promises as improved investments in the power sector, road constructions, revival of the railways and job creation through the Subsidy Re-investment Programme (SURE-P), among others. Maku noted that Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) had grown more than that of any country in Africa in the last few years. On the issue of power, the minister assured the citizens that the Federal Government had been tackling the electricity supply challenges facing the country frontally, saying that more power projects would soon be inaugurated. Maku conceded that although a lot still needed to be done, the Federal Government was determined to complete all the major road projects as well as other infrastructural projects. “The ongoing East-West Road project would be completed by the end of 2014. “The SURE-P programme alone had impacted on no fewer than 3,000 persons in each of the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT). “In the 19 states so far visited during the good governance tour, we have seen some concrete development brought about by democracy, and what we saw is far better than what was obtainable during the military era,’’ he said. Sharing similar sentiments, the Minister of Works, Mr Mike Onolememen, said that the Federal Government was committed to expanding road constructions from 200,000 km to 300,000 km within the next five years. Without doubt, tangible efforts have been made in this regard. For instance, work has started on the Abidjan-Lagos transnational highway, which is expected to be completed in 24 months, while the construction of the 37-km Nkporo-Abiriba-Ohafia Road in Abia and to Osso Eda in Ebonyi, which was abandoned a long time ago, has resumed. Apparently irked by the condition of roads across the country, the Federal Executive Council (FEC) recently approved the award of contracts worth N51.4 billion for the construction and rehabilitation of 13 roads across the country. “The roads for construction and rehabilitation are Vandeikya-Obudu-Obudu Cattle Ranch road (Phase

One) in Benue, Mbaise-Ngwa Road in Imo and Abia and Abriba-Arochukwu-Ohafia Road, also in Abia. “The Makurdi-Gboko road (Phase One) in Benue, Ohafia in Abia to Oso in Ebonyi, Sections 1A and 1B of Sokoto-Tambuwal-JegaKontagora roads in Sokoto Kebbi and Niger states respectively were also among

the last 14 years, made some remarkable achievements. For instance, NAFDAC has been repositioned and strengthened to curb the prevalence of fake drugs in the country. Observers commend NAFDAC for its efforts to stamp out the production, supply and sale of fake or adulterated drugs in the country, describing the agency as an epitome of quality

month to benefit from quality health services. In the last six years, the NHIS has been able to cover not less than 4.7 million people in the formal sector, according to its Acting Executive Secretary, Dr Abdulrahman Sambo. Mr Emmanuel Okafor, a civil servant, said that he and his family had been enjoying excellent health care delivery via the NHIS since 2009, describing the health programme as a true dividend of democracy. Moreover, the country has experienced a remarkable growth, particularly in the agricultural sector where significant efforts have been made to equip farmers and

President Goodluck Jonathan

those awarded,’’ Maku announced, after the FEC meeting. This somewhat demonstrates the government’s commitment to constructing and rehabilitating roads across the country, even as the government plans to spend N921.4 billion on 925 ongoing road projects, which are expected to be completed soon. As part of efforts to enhance roads’ construction and maintenance, the Federal Government is proposing a new Road Sector Reform Bill to replace the Federal Roads Maintenance Agency Establishment Act No 7 of 2002 and herald the birth of the Federal Roads Authority (FRA) and National Road Fund (NRF). In the health sector, the Federal Government has, over

service delivery. Besides, the groundbreaking efforts of the Federal Government to eradicate polio from the country cannot be overemphasised. From all indications, Nigeria is set to be certified free of guinea worm disease, which has ravaged parts of the country over the years. Reports from the Nigeria Guinea Worm Eradication Programme (NIGEP) indicate that Nigeria has attained a guinea worm-free status and she is eagerly awaiting the visit of the International Certification Team (ICT) next month. As part of efforts to make healthcare delivery accessible to the citizens, the government also introduced the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), in which workers contribute a token sum every

enhance food production. In particular, the Agricultural Transformation Agenda of the Jonathanadministration is aimed at reviving and boosting agricultural production in Nigeria, while reducing the country’s dependence on food imports. The government’s agricultural transformation agenda has received support from international agencies like the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), which committed 88.5 million U.S. dollars (about N14.2 billion) towards the project. Besides, the Federal Government introduced the Growth Enhancement Scheme (GES), under its Agricultural Transformation Agenda, to boost supplies of agricultural inputs like fertilisers to farmers and cut

off the activities of middlemen in the inputs’ distribution chain. The Minister of Agriculture, Dr Akinwunmi Adesina, stressed that 4.2 million registered and certified farmers were to get fertilisers and improved seedlings directly from the government, while fish farmers would also get fingerlings. In the area of agricultural mechanisation, the government has been making efforts to expand the farmers’ access to tractors and other agricultural machineries, as it stressed that 400 tractors would be made available in 80 centres across the country for hire at subsidised prices. The government has also distributed high-yielding seedlings and seeds to farmers, even as the bio-safety bill, which is currently awaiting President Jonathan’s assent, is aimed at transforming agricultural production in the country via biotechnology applications. In pragmatic terms, the government has initiated plans to improve dry season rice farming, as part of designed efforts to boost rice production in Nigeria and reduce its over-dependence on rice importation. The government’s agricultural programmes have been yielding tangible results and it is very pertinent to note that in spite of the floods that ravaged many farmlands across the country in 2012, the country’s food security is still assured, as food prices have been quite stable. By most accounts, the government’s policy on the deregulation of the downstream sector of the petroleum industry has been quite beneficial. Observers note that the traditional long queues at fuel stations have completely disappeared, while petroleum products are now readily available across the country. One particular feat that excites observers is the growth of the telecommunications and the ICT sectors. Statistics from the Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC) reveal the exponential growth of the telecommunications sector has been instrumental to the creation of thousands of jobs and the employment of millions of Nigerians. The data particularly reveal that currently, there are 110,000,000 GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) subscribers in Nigeria, while the country’s tele-density peaked at 78.21 per cent by the end of 2012. Even as analysts insist that a lot still needs to be done in the nation-building efforts, they reiterate that the citizens have been enjoying the dividends of democracy since 1999.


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Discourse

A Clarion Call To Curb Child Theft In Nigeria Children’s Day:

SOME hapless children do not know the significance of the Children’s Day because they have already been snatched away from their biological parents and sold out to the highest bidder. Similarly, the import of Democracy Day has no meaning to several children who are languishing in their captors’ den. On ceremonial days such as Children’s Day and Democracy Day in Nigeria, fortunate chubby children, particularly selected for the occasions, are usually advertised, while millions of the hapless ones are tucked in inconsequential nooks. Concerned observers note that the child theft phenomenon in the country has assumed a frightening dimension, making it a topical issue in the public discourse. This, coupled with the strings of child rights’ violations, has also deepened child vulnerability in the country, they add. There have been stories of baby swapping or outright theft of babies in hospitals’ maternity wards, baby sales by some mothers and phoney motherless baby homes and orphanages. Nigerian children are increasingly becoming vulnerable; they are often exposed to maltreatment or child labour as roadside hawkers or house helps. The children are also exposed to child trafficking, prostitution, baby mothering and in extreme cases, they are victims of ritual killings. The recent chilling and bestial confession of a Lagos couple who ensnared helpless, hapless and defenceless children is a case in point. It is somewhat astonishing that children can be turned

By BUKI PONLE into objects of trade brazenly in a country which boasts of a child rights’ law and other related regulations. It is quite ironical that such bizarre things are happening in a country where policies aimed at promoting the wellbeing of children have been formulated and reviewed to ensure the survival, development and protection of the Nigerian child. Nigeria is signatory to international and continental conventions on the rights of the child. The UN Convention of the Rights of the Child and its AU derivative are cases in point. Nigeria, in partnership with development agencies, has also put some measures in place to develop health care services for mothers and children, while developing strategies for their enhanced welfare. In spite of the policies, laws and conventions protecting the rights of Nigerian children, policemen from the Lagos State Police Command recently arrested a couple and two others for alleged child theft and trade in children. Seven children, reportedly stolen by the suspects from their parents’ homes in Lagos and other parts of the country, have been recovered from the suspects by the police. One of the suspects, Adaeze, who was pregnant, blamed the devil and her husband for her complicity in the crime, disclosing that they have been involved in the illicit trade for around five years. Strange enough, she confessed that her unborn baby already has a prospective buyer. “Please forgive me; I was talked into it by my husband.

He asked me to get a child for him and promised to pay me N400,000. When I asked what he wanted to do with the child, he assured me that it was not for ritual purposes

single-room apartments without furnishing them,’’ she said. Concerned citizens, however, insist that the discovery by the police is just a tip of the iceberg, as there

temerity to go to that length in efforts to adopt a child. Mr Okechukwu Okpara, a lawyer, stressed that there were legal procedures for child adoption, adding that couples, who were genuinely interested in adopting children, should never feel ashamed to come forward and follow the laid-down procedures for child adoption. “Children are not objects

Hajia Zainab Maina, Women Affairs Minister and that his boss, Mrs Benedict, takes such children to the motherless babies’ homes. “Our targets are usually couples with more than three children. What we do is to move into an area and stay there for about two to three months to get acquainted with the people. “Immediately we get any child, we would vacate the vicinity and relocate to another area where we are not known. We usually hire

may be many Adaezes and Benedicts lurking around, flouting extant child rights laws and undermining societal, family values. Such unscrupulous elements in the society care less about the psychological trauma that is usually inflicted on parents whose children got missing. All the same, if the suspects’ claims that the buyers merely wanted to adopt the children are true, nobody should have the

“Our children need our protection from criminal elements in the society and from all forms of sexual and economic exploitation. “We will stop child trafficking, child labour and forced child prostitution; we will strive to restore the dignity of the child. “We will strengthen our child’s rights law such that offenders will get maximum punishment for their crime against humanity.”

that can be displayed for sale, no matter the cost; as such practice not only violates the children’s rights, self-esteem and dignity but the real essence of humanity. “It is also a manifestation of what some people can do to acquire money,’’ he added. Concerned over the alarming rate of child rights’ violations, the wife of Ebonyi Governor, Mrs Josephine Elechi, has called for stiffer penalties for offenders, saying that the current child’s rights law was too lenient. According to her, it is the sacred duty of the government and the family to ensure that the child is wellprotected from abuses and maltreatment. Elechi said that a lot of violent assaults were being committed against the child on a daily basis without the culprits being brought to

justice. She, however, stressed that she would collaborate with relevant stakeholders in efforts to amend the Child’s Rights Act and strengthen it. “Our children need our protection from criminal elements in the society and from all forms of sexual and economic exploitation. “We will stop child trafficking, child labour and forced child prostitution; we will strive to restore the dignity of the child. “We will strengthen our child’s rights law such that offenders will get maximum punishment for their crime against humanity,’’ she said Elechi stressed that the rape of any girl-child was tantamount to a rape on womanhood and a flagrant attack on the entire society. She, nonetheless, appealed to parents, especially mothers, to be mindful of the kinds of company which their children and wards kept and the places they visited. “I urge you to devote more time and resources to giving your children positive training and orientation because today’s child is tomorrow’s hope,’’ she said. Nevertheless, Ms Jean Gough, UNICEF Country Representative in Nigeria, underscored the need for collective responsibility for child’s protection, entailing the input of the community, government at all levels, traditional and religious leaders as well as the civil society and the media “All children are entitled to protection, as enshrined in the Child’s Rights Act,’’ she said. As the public awaits the prosecution of the suspected dealers in children in Lagos, analysts stress that the outcome of the case would be a test case in dealing with other cases of child theft, which appears not to have been specifically captured in the child’s rights law. They insist that if the various interventions for child survival, development, protection and participation are to be meaningful, child theft must be eliminated at all costs. “Of what use is a wellnurtured child who is stolen and sold like a chicken?’’ they quip. The analysts, nonetheless, appeal to states, which have yet to domesticate the Child’s Rights Act, to do so without further delay. So far, 24 states have adapted the law which was passed by the National Assembly in 2003.


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THURSDAY, MAY 30, 2013

Religion Who Wants To Be A Champion? (2) THE Bible says God will take the glory in battles. So the champion must go out, follow the course of God; and fight battles for victory — “who is this king of glory, the lord strong and mighty; the lord mighty; in battles” Ps 24:8 The neo — champion (the champion in the making) must know that without battles no victory and without victory no success to make him a champion! The neo- champion must know this when he is faced with battles — the prophecy of Jahaziel the son of Zechariah He prophesied thus: “Be not afraid nor dismayed by reason of this great mu1titude; for the battle is not yours but Gods” 2Chron 20:15 The neo —champion shall face three battles viz, financial battles, physical battles and spiritual battles. Firstly the devil will want to fight you financially because he knows the “power of money” in the making of a champion. He will go to the extent of attacking even your source of income in order to cripple you financially. Because financial strength gives the neo - champion the ability for mobilization. But don’t fear or give up God will not allow the devil cripple you. You will come out victorious. So in your financial battles do the following. 1. IDENTIFY YOUR SOURCES 2. DEDICATE YOUR SOURCES TO CHRIST — THE DEVIL FEARS WHAT IS DEDICATED TO CHRIST. 3. COVER YOUR INVESTMENTS OR SOURCES REGULARLY WITH THE BLOOD OF JESUS - This scares the devil. 4. USE YOUR INVESTMENT AS A TITHING POINT TO GOD. Tithe to God from that investment separately from your own personal tithe You will see how the devil will be scared to touch what belongs to God. Secondly the devil will also fight you physically. He did that to Paul to frustrate him from following the vision of God He raised “false brethren” even within the fold to fight Paul. He can do that also to you. He can even pressure you through physical ailment or bring physical torment on you... “there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of satan to buffet me” 2 Cor 12:7 The devil raised Goliath against David but Goliath the “champion of the Philistine fell before David the champion of God (I Sam 17:1-45 Goliath was a champion but not a champion of God. “And as he talked with them behold there came up the champion, the philistine of Gath, Goliath by name’ 2Sam 17:23 The devil can raise a physical goliath against the neochampion — but he must not be scared The antidote for physical battle is ALERTNESS AND PRAYERS. When the devil fights you through physical means you apply the instrumentalities of Alertness and Prayers — watch and pray. Joseph was very alert, hence he didn’t fall an easy prey to the amorous and adulterous move of Mrs Portiphar. It was the devil that used this physical means to do battle with Joseph. Thirdly he may come through spiritual means to fight the neo

— champion. The devils original state is spiritual and he thinks he is most powerful via spiritual means: Yes of course he is; but not with the child of God who has the Holy Spirit in him and abides in the word of God! The Bible tells us clearly that believers have spiritual authority over the devil and his cohorts. You must believe and internalize these biblical words of truth to avert spiritual warfare. “ye are of God... and have overcome them because greater is he that is in you than he that is in the world” l Jn 4:4 “whosoever shall gather together against thee shall fall for thy sake” Isa 54:1 5 “NO WEAPON THAT IS FORMED AGAINST THEE SHALL PROSPER AND EVERY TONGUE THAT SHALL RISE AGAINST THEE IN JUDGMENT THOU SHALL CONDEMN. THIS IS THE HERITAGE OF THE SERVANTS OF THE LORD, and their righteousness is of me saith the lord” Isa 54:17 As a child of God you are already fortified inside from spiritual attack because your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit. I mean that the Holy Spirit lives inside you. “Know you not that ye are the temple of GOD AND THAT THE SPIRIT OF GOD DWELLETH IN YOU” 1COR3:16, 1COR6:19. The Neo — champion should strongly believe these words; FAST AND PRAY AND KNOW THE WORD AND THE AUTHORITY IN THE WORD AND LIVE BY THE WORD (MATT 4:4). Then he is sure to overcome the devil in spiritual welfare. The Neo — champion must not keep the “property” of the devil if he is to be a real champion. And the property of the devil is willful sin! (Isa 59:12). TOTAL YIELDING TO THE HOLY SPIRIT. If you know the weight of the Underlined statement you then would understand why champions are totally yielded to the Holy Spirit THE LORD SAYS: “FOR MY THOUGHTS ARE NOT YOUR THOUGHTS NEITHER ARE YOUR WAYS MY WAYS. FOR AS THE HEAVENS ARE HIGHER THAN THE EARTH SO ARE MY WAYS HIGHER THAN YOUR WAYS, AND MY THOUGHTS THAN YOUR THOUGHTS” ISAIAH 55:8 Gods thought and ways are higher than man. So seek the higher way by yielding yourself totally to the Holy Spirit for the Holy Spirit can lead you to the depths of God. “For the spirit searcherth all things, yea the deep things of God” 1cr 2:10 so you want to be a champion subject yourself completely to the Holy spirit, for champions are persons whose lives are totally yielded to the Holy Spirit (the spirit of God or the spirit of Christ) and whose “champion” actions are Holy Spirit breathed, Holy Spirit influenced, Holy Spirit led and Holy Spirit acted; and the glory is unto God never unto man. Abraham was a champion in his own generation. He yielded to God when even at the age of seventy five years he was told to boldly leave his kindred and depart to another place where he

was to begin life afresh. You may say this is preposterous for a man of seventy five years but he followed the higher thoughts and higher ways of God, and departed accordingly (Gen 12:15) ELIJAH Was a champion in his own generation. At Mount Carmel he demonstrated a marvelous feat — a heroic act or “championic” feat! “And Elijah came unto all the people and said, How long shalt ye leap between two opinions, if the lord be God, follow him; but if Baal then follow him” l Kgs 18:21 The contest was to take place on Mount Carmel before all the people. The four hundred Baal prophets assembled on one side and he stood on the other side as one individual. And he

challenged them: “Choose you one bullock for yourselves and dress it first , for ye are many arid call on the name of your gods, but put no fire under” 1 Kgs 18:25 “FOR THE GOD THAT ANSWERETH BY FIRE LET HIM BE GOD 1 Kgs 18:24 The Baal prophets cried and cried from morning till evening to the Baals but no response even when they cut themselves as a mark of disgust for the gods to respond — No response. (l Kgs 18:28) Then came Elijah the champion with a “championic” or heroic feat. He made an Altar to the lord, put a trench and wood underneath and placed the bullock on the wood and commanded four barrels of water be poured on the sacrifice three times (that will give us twelve barrels of water). The Bible says that “the water ran round about: the alter and filled the trench” l Kgs 18:35. Now it was time for Elijah to pray; HIS PRAYER SHOWED ALL THE ACTIONS HE TOOK IN THIS SPIRITUAL MELO DRAMA WAS GOD INSPIRED(1) Firstly, he took 12 stones according to the twelve tribes of Israel (2) Secondly with the stones he built an alter unto God. (3) Thirdly he made a trench about the alter “as great as would contain two measures of seed” 1 Kgs 18:32 (4) Then he put the “wood in order and cut the bullock in pieces and laid him on the wood” lkgs 18:33 (5) Fifthly he commanded fill four barrels with water and pour it on the burnt sacrifice, and on the wood” 1 Kgs 18:33 (this was done thrice)

With REV. DR. A. A. OPARA

NOW HE PRAYED TO GOD: “LORD GOD OF ABRAHAM, ISAAC AND OF ISRAEL, LET IT BE KNOWN THIS DAY THAT THOU ART GOD IN ISRAEL, AND THAT I AM THY SERVANT AND THAT I HAVE DONE ALL THESE THINGS AT THY WORD” l kgs 18:36-37. The lord God responded because it was done at the instance of Gods word (instructions) and God can never deny his word- “So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please.” Isaiah 55:11. David was a champion. He defeated Gohath the champion of the philistines. David when he accomplished this feat was a youth as Saul the king established: “And Saul said to

become “fools” for Christ sake. Paul the Apostle and champion in his own generation declared: “We are fools for Christ sake” lCor4:1O Do not grieve the Holy Spirit (Eph 4:30), do not grieve him by being stubborn to his directive “for rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry” I Sam 15:23. GRACE When you have had an encounter with God and you have decided to yield yourself fully to the Holy Spirit, and follow after the vision of God without any shadow of doubt, what you will find yourself enjoying is his grace. It is not good to doubt God or refuse his instructions or limit his ability. If he has called you to do something he will make the provisions. Your duty or your

David thou art not able to go against the philistine to fight with him, for thou art but a youth, And he a man of war from his youth” I Sam 17:33 But David was being led by God as he had told the senior brother Eliab when he quarreled with saying “Is there not a cause?” 1 Sam 17:29. Before king Saul, David established the leading of God — How the lord had empowered him to single handedly kill a lion and a bear that had attacked the flock under his care: “Thy servant slew both the lion and the bear ... David said MOREOVER THE LORD THAT DELIVERED ME OUT OF THE PAW OF THE LION, AND OUT OF THE PAW OF THE BEAR, HE WILL DELIVER ME OUT OF THE HAND OF THIS PHILISTINE” 1SAM 17:36-37. Then Saul the king replied: “Go and the lord be with you” – l Sam 17:37 Even in battle David declared his total submission to God and the leading of Gods spirit. “THIS DAY WILL THE LORD DELIVER THEE INTO MINE HANDS.. .AND ALL THIS ASSEMBLY SHALL KNOW THAT THE LORD SAVETH FOR THE BATTLE IS THE LORDS” 1Sam 17:47. David eventually triumphed over Soliath l Sam 17:50. Every champion in Christ I have known in Bible days and even modern times have been persons who have yielded themselves totally to God. They have committed every venture of theirs to God; for him to speak, to direct, to lead and to accomplish it to his own glory. Indeed Gods champion

commitment is to follow him faithfully. This faithful fellowship not doubting produces the result of grace in your life. God’s grace is his favor on you which you surprisingly may not even deserve. The king James version Bible concordance describes grace as follows: “The kindness by which God bestows favor and blessing upon the “deserving” God is so merciful that he even grants his grace to sinners to pardon them for the remission of their sins through faith in Christ (Eph 2: 8); how much more grace will the believer enjoy who yields himself to the Holy Spirit. The secret of the successful champion in the lord is not only anointing but grace. As Joseph continued to yield himself to God, God continued to shower his grace upon him. The brother sold him into slavery and Potiphar bought him as a slave and put him in his house. But the grace of God followed Joseph that he was not frustrated as a slave in the house of Potiphar. “And the lord was with Joseph and he was a prosperous man, and he was in the house of his master the Egyptian” Gen 39:2. This was the grace of God. Potiphar then made Joseph “overseer over his house”, and “the lord blessed the Egyptian’s house for Josephs sake” Gen 39:5 when Joseph equally refused to yield to the amorous and adulterous advances of the masters wife because he saw it as a great wickedness against God (Gen 39:9), and he was eventually thrown into prison for

a false allegation by the wife of Potiphar, the grace of God was with Joseph even in prison. “And Joseph master took him, and put him into the prison ... But the lord was with Joseph and showed him mercy and gave him favor in the sight of the keeper of the prison” Gen 39:21 So Gods grace follows abundantly those who yield to him. I mean they enjoy Gods abundant grace. Paul the champion testified to this and said that the grace of God which he enjoyed in abundance even spurred him to work harder on the lords project. “But by the grace of God I am what I am; and his grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain, but I labored

more abundantly than they all, yet not I but the grace of God. Which was with me” I Cor 15:10. Did you hear what Paul said about grace — the grace of God. That the grace of God makes the champion —“BY THIS GRACE I AM WHAT I AM”. Any labour you undertake without faith in God and his grace is a labour in futility. Yes, grace does not condone laziness; PAUL ENJOYED GRACE BUT WORKED VERY HARD! However hard work without grace, will amount to zero, hence the Psalmist had written: “EXCEPT THE LORD BUILD THE HOUSE, THEY LABOUR IN VAIN THAT BUILD IT” PSALM 127: 1 RATHER HE WROTE: “BLESSED’S EVERYONE THAT FEARETH THE LORD, THAT WALKETH IN HIS WAYS. FOR THOU SHALL EAT THE LABOUR OF THY HANDS; HAPPY SHALL THOU ‘BE, AND IT SHALL BE WELL WITH THEE” PS 128:1-2. I have heard and seen “Born —Again” who enjoy financial grace when they are in favor with God. Financial grace arises when God bestows his favor upon you financially and you see yourself receiving financial abundance but unable to explain how! You cannot explain how in one month you have received so much financially. You see yourself even spending beyond your income if you are a salary earner, or you see your finances getting robust, you ask how has this happened? The answer is simple; financial grace of God.


THE

NIGERIAN

24

THURSDAY, MAY 30, 2013

International

Compiled By EDOBOR HARRISON

Top Pakistan Militant Suspected Dead In US Strike PESHAWAR, Pakistan — A suspected U.S. drone strike killed the No. 2 commander of the Pakistani Taliban yesterday, Pakistani intelligence officials said, although the militant group denied he was killed. If confirmed, the death of Waliur Rehman would be a

strong blow to the militant group responsible for hundreds of bombings and shootings across Pakistan. The United States has a $5 million bounty out on Rehman, who Washington has accused of involvement in the 2009 suicide attack on a U.S. base in Afghanistan that killed

seven Americans working for the CIA. Missiles fired by a U.S. drone slammed into a house early yesterday in Miran Shah, the main town of the North Waziristan tribal region, killing five people including Rehman, Pakistani officials said.

Taliban No 2 commander Waliur Rehman talks to the Associated Press during an interview in Shawal area of South Waziristan along the Afghanistan border in Pakistan.

Hundreds of Buddhists on motorcycles armed with sticks patrol in the streets of Lashio, northern Shan State, Myanmar, Wednesday.

Two officials said their informants in the field saw Rehman’s body, while a third said intelligence authorities had intercepted communications between militants saying Rehman had been killed. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to brief the media. A spokesman for the Pakistani Taliban, however, denied the reports. “This appears to me to be false news. I don’t have any such information,” said Ahsanullah Ahsan. Most of North Waziristan is under militant control, and journalists cannot access the rugged region near the Afghan border, making independent confirmation difficult. The missile attack was the first since Pakistan’s May 11 elections in which the American drone program was a hotly debated topic. It was also the first strike in Pakistan since President Barack Obama’s speech last Thursday during which he discussed more restrictive rules he was implementing on drone use in places such as Pakistan and Yemen. The tribal region in northwestern Pakistan is home to local and Afghan militant outfits, including alQaida-linked fighters. The U.S. has often criticized Pakistan, saying it does not vigorously target militants in these areas who then attack American troops in Afghanistan. Pakistani officials say their military is already overtaxed fighting militants in the tribal regions and in the southwestern province of Baluchistan, and that the casualties they’ve already incurred have not been properly recognized. Washington’s drone program remains deeply unpopular in Pakistan, even though the number of strikes has dropped significantly since the height of the

program in 2010. The strikes usually target al-Qaida-linked insurgents or other militants who fight in Afghanistan, although some strikes have killed militants at war with the Pakistani government. The Pakistani Taliban, officially called the Tehrik-eTaliban, has been battling government forces for years in a bid to push them from the tribal regions, cut Pakistan’s ties with the U.S. and eventually establish their brand of hardline Islam across Pakistan. Rehman has been on the U.S. radar for years. In 2010, Washington offered $5 million for information

US Investigates Train Accident ROSEDALE,US — Federal investigators planned to spend the coming days piecing together what caused a chemical-carrying CSX train to collide with a garbage truck, derail and explode at a rail crossing in suburban Baltimore. In the third serious derailment this month, a dozen or so rail cars — at least one carrying hazardous materials — went off the tracks around 2 p.m. Tuesday in Rosedale, Md., a suburb east of Baltimore. Several rail cars caught fire, sending a plume of black and gray smoke into the air that could be seen for miles, and an explosion rattled homes at least a half-mile away. At the derailment scene yesterday morning, the mangled truck lay on its side on the side of the railroad tracks, its contents littering the ground. The charred, derailed freight cars were about 200 yards west of the crossing where the locomotive hit the truck. Crews were using heavy equipment to clear trees, brush and other debris that were in the path of the derailed train. The corrugated metal walls of a warehouse next to the track were bent and warped. While local officials breathed a sigh of relief that only one person — the truck driver — was seriously injured and that the chemical fire didn’t pose a

Buddhist Mobs Attack Muslim Homes For Second Day In Myanmar

LASHIO, Myanmar Buddhist mobs armed with sticks and machetes burned Muslim homes yesterday for a second day in the northern Myanmar city of Lashio, contradicting claims in state media that soldiers and police had restored calm. A Reuters reporter saw scores of young men and boys on motorbikes and on foot marauding through the city of 130,000 people in a mountainous region about 700 km (430 miles) from the commercial capital Yangon. One person was killed and four were wounded in fighting that began at about 2 p.m., Ye Htut, spokesman for President Thein Sein, said in a Facebook post. Police fired their guns to disperse the crowd, he said. By early evening, Muslims

shops and homes were still burning in one quarter, underlining the difficulty the president faces in containing mounting religious violence in an era of historic reforms since military rule ended in March 2011. “I don’t know where the Muslims are. They all ran away,” said Kyaw Soe Win, a Buddhist resident of a mixed neighborhood where motorbikes and household possessions lay burning in the streets. Nearby, a man with a sword and a stick combed through the remains of one burned-out shop. State television said a mosque, a Muslim religious school and a number of shops were gutted by fires started on Tuesday by Buddhists who rampaged after

hearing reports of a Muslim man setting a Buddhist woman on fire and badly wounding her. State media said calm had returned by yesterday. Myanmar has struggled with religious unrest since June last year when fighting between ethnic Rakhine Buddhists and Muslim Rohingya erupted in western Rakhine State. That was followed by organized Rakhine attacks on Rohingya communities in October that New York-based Human Rights Watch said amounted to ethnic cleansing. The government calls the stateless Rohingya illegal “Bengali” immigrants from neighboring Bangladesh. British tourist Stephen Barker, 46, told Reuters he saw a group

of about 100 machete and stickcarrying youths rallying around his hotel in the early afternoon, including four or five monks. Police and military moved them on and arrested half a dozen people. “I got a light for my cigarette from one and he told me to kill all Bengalis while waving this 18-inch blade around.” Muslims appeared to have fled a mixed Lashio neighborhood known as Quarter Number 17. Tuesday’s unrest in Lashio was sparked by a quarrel between two people, named by state media as Aye Aye Win, 24, a Buddhist woman who sold petrol, and Ne Win, a Muslim man aged 48. MRTV television said Ne Win

leading to Rehman under their “Rewards for Justice” program. While Rehman was mostly known for his activities in Pakistan, the U.S. said in its announcement that he also participated in cross-border attacks in Afghanistan against U.S. and NATO personnel. The U.S. wanted Rehman in connection with his alleged involvement in an attack on a U.S. base in Khost, Afghanistan in 2009. The attack on Camp Chapman killed seven Americans working for the CIA, a Jordanian intelligence officer and wounded six other CIA personnel.

poured petrol over Aye Aye Win and set her on fire. She was in hospital, it said. After police detained Ne Win, Buddhists surrounded the police station and demanded he be handed over. When they refused, the crowd went on the rampage, attacking Myoma Mosque near Lashio market, residents said. The authorities attempted to restore order late on Tuesday by banning unlawful assembly under a state of emergency in the city, which is about 190 km (120 miles) from the Chinese border. In March, at least 44 people, most of them Muslims, died in the central city of Meikhtila after a rampage by Buddhist mobs incensed by the killing of a monk by Muslims, shortly after a violent row between a Buddhist couple and Muslim shop owners. Muslims make up about 5 percent of Myanmar’s 60 million people.

greater risk to nearby residents, some areas of inquiry for investigators were beginning to take shape. Robert Sumwalt of the National Transportation Safety Board said late Tuesday that the collision occurred at a private crossing where the only marking was a stop sign. He said it wasn’t clear why the truck was crossing the tracks or whether it was authorized to be there. The truck driver, 50-year-old John J. Alban Jr., remained in serious condition Wednesday morning at Shock Trauma in Baltimore, a hospital spokeswoman said. Two CSX workers aboard weren’t hurt. A team of 15 NTSB investigators was on the scene and would likely remain there for up to a week, Sumwalt said. Both the NTSB and the Federal Railroad Administration are investigating Tuesday’s crash of the 45-car train en route from Selkirk, N.Y., to Waycross, Ga. It contained a variety of products from lumber to printing paper. Police also planned to investigate the circumstances that led to the track collision, but it was not clear what, if any, charges the truck driver or anyone would face, said Baltimore County spokeswoman Elise Armacost. Gary Sease, a spokesman for CSX Transportation Inc., said four of the cars believed derailed carried terephthalic acid, a powder used in the production of plastics and polyester, among other things. He said it is not listed as a hazardous material. It was, however, the chemical that exploded as a result of the derailment, Sumwalt said. Sease said Wednesday that one of the cars that derailed was empty but might have contained residue of fluorosilicic acid. Fluorosilicic acid, a liquid, is a hazardous material that can produce toxic gases and vapors, according to a National Institutes of Health website. It is put in drinking water to prevent tooth decay and is used to preserve wood, harden ceramic and masonry, and treat animal hides, according to the NIH. Sease said the car bore a hazardous material sign because of the possibility that some of the fluorosilicic acid remained inside.


THE

NIGERIAN

25

THURSDAY, MAY 30, 2013

International

Compiled By EDOBOR HARRISON

Tunisia Police Seize FEMEN Activists For Disrobing

Security personnel loyal to Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad stand guard at a checkpoint in Damascus May 27, 2013.

TUNIS - Three foreign activists disrobed in front of the Justice Ministry yesterday to protest against the jailing of a Tunisian member of Ukrainian feminist group FEMEN, quickly attracting a crowd of offended Tunisians before the three women were hustled away by police. The trio, one German and two French, approached the entrance to the ministry wearing coats which they took off, revealing naked torsos scrawled with “Breasts Feed Revolution.” Wearing just jean shorts, the women chanted in English “Free Amina” and “Women’s spring is coming” as people in the crowd attempted to cover them. Tunisian woman Amina

Tyler scandalized society by posting topless pictures online in March in a FEMEN-inspired protest in which she scrawled “my body is my own and not your honor,” on herself. She was later taken into hiding by her family after conservative preachers issued death threats against her. The 19-year-old said last month she wanted to do one last topless protest before she left the country to study journalism in France and was arrested May 19 in the religious center of Kairouan where an ultraconservative Muslim group had hoped to hold a conference before it was banned by police. Tyler was charged with carrying a dangerous object, apparently a canister of pepper spray, and will appear before a judge Thursday. The women in yesterday’s

Syria Slams Coalition In Exile Ahead Of Peace Talk

DAMASCUS - Opposition groups on the ground in Syria slammed their counterparts in exile for undermining the rebellion and lacking legitimacy, laying bare chronic divisions among the foes of President Bashar al-Assad ahead of a planned peace conference. A meeting of the exiled National Coalition members in Turkey has so far failed to agree to attend the Geneva conference, provisionally planned for June, or who should represent them, and is deadlocked over Westernbacked proposals to widen its membership. Dismayed by the “ongoing

discord”, a statement by four leading opposition groups in Syria dismissed the meeting in Istanbul as a “feeble attempt to add persons ... that have no real impact on the revolution” and said at least half the coalition’s leadership bodies should be made of “revolutionary forces”. In what it called a “final warning” to the Islamistdominated coalition, the statement, issued in the name of the Revolutionary Movement in Syria, said it could not “bestow legitimacy upon any political body that subverts the

revolution”. The coalition failure to agree even the basic structure of its membership bodes ill for a unified stance on the peace talks, which aim to agree a transitional government and an end to a two-year conflict that has killed 80,000 people. “There is a daunting realization that the opposition has to get its act together before Geneva, otherwise the Assad team will run rings around us,” a senior opposition coalition source at the talks in Istanbul said. Diplomats say the Geneva talks, which Assad’s government has

agreed in principle to attend, could be held in mid-June, but the opposition has yet to commit to showing up, and officials in the Middle East say it will be pushed back to July. “Turkey is not expecting the conference to take place before the end of June as the opposition groups have to decide on whether they want to attend. This may take some time,” Turkey’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Levent Gumrukcu said. While the 60-member

Afghan Security Rescues Red Cross Staff

KABUL - A senior Afghan official said security forces rescued seven foreigners working for the International Red Cross yesterday after a twohour-long gun battle with insurgents at a guest house in the eastern city of Jalalabad. Interior Ministry spokesman Sediq Sediqi said the three women and four men were safe after police killed an insurgent who had remained holed up inside the compound. He said one of the male aid workers was lightly wounded. The other of the two assailants had detonated a suicide vest at the building’s gate at the beginning of the attack, killing an Afghan security guard, Sediqi said. Security forces were searching surrounding buildings in case any other attackers were involved and managed to escape, he added. A spokesman for the Red Cross in Afghanistan, Abdul Hasib Rahimi, said all organization’s foreign staff that were inside the compound are safe. He said they were checking to see if any Afghan staffers were there at the time, but added that local employees had left for the day an hour before the attack. The foreigners live in the compound, he added. A total of 35 Red Cross staff, including the seven foreigners, work at the facility, he said. “We contacted our foreigners, they are safe. We are now contacting Afghan staff,”

Rahimi said. Sediqi said Afghan forces arrived at the scene of the attack shortly after the suicide bombing at the door, which had cleared the way for the other attacker to enter. “As a result of the shooting exchange the gunman was killed and all seven foreigners who were inside the building were rescued safely. Only one foreigner has minor injuries to his leg, but the six others are unharmed. Right now the security situation is under

control,” Sediqi said. The attack in the eastern city of Jalalabad is the second major assault against an international organization in five days. Militants launched a similar operation against a U.N.affiliated group in Kabul last week that killed three people. There was no immediate claim of responsibility, and it is unclear why insurgents would want to target the Red Cross, which not only carries

out humanitarian work around Afghanistan but also is the conduit for families to communicate with detainees taken off the battlefield, including the Taliban. The Red Cross warned last month that security was deteriorating across Afghanistan as militants flood the battlefield and conduct attacks in what could be the most important spring fighting season of the nearly 12-year-old war.

An Afghan Policeman stands alert at the scene where after insurgents attacked the government compound in the eastern Panjshir province in Kabul, Afghanistan yesterday.

coalition has bickered over Western-backed proposals to dilute its Islamist domination with the addition of a liberal bloc, Assad’s forces have been pressing a fierce counteroffensive on the ground. Backed by ally Hezbollah, whose unyielding support contrasts with Western concern about arming a rebel force that includes al Qaeda-linked brigades, Assad’s army is fighting to dislodge rebels from a stronghold on the Lebanese border. His troops have already pushed back rebels in the southern province of Deraa and retaken some outlying areas east of Damascus, consolidating their hold from the capital up to the coastal heartlands of his minority Alawite sect.

protest climbed up on the gates of the Justice Ministry until police pulled them down and hustled them shouting into the building as an angry crowd, many of them lawyers there for work, gathered. “This is against our religion,” said Fatima Zahaouadi, a young woman wearing the black robes of a lawyer but without a conservative headscarf. “For these women to take off their clothes as part of freedom of expression is against our religion and the traditions of ArabMuslim Tunisian society.” The crowd surrounded the area where the women were being held and when the activists were transferred to a nearby building the crowed surged forward before being fended off by police. “The Ministry of Justice is not a house of ill repute,” said Fawzia Dridi, an angry bystander. The crowd also attacked journalists attempting to cover the event as well as lawyers who tried to protect the reporters. Police took several journalists into custody to take statements from them as witnesses before releasing them. Tunisia’s prosecutor’s office later announced the women had been taken to main police station for questioning before being charged, and their embassies have been informed. The French consul visited the women and said they were in good spirits. Lawyers said they could be charged with an attack on public morals or threatening public order, offenses which could carry up to a year in prison. A member of FEMEN who identified herself as Inna told The Associated Press by email Tuesday that the activists were protesting the treatment of women in the Arab world.

Kenya Police Accused Of Abusing Somali Refugees NAIROBI - Kenyan police abused and extorted money from Somali refugees after attacks in the capital believed to have been carried out by the Somali militant group al-Shabab, an international human rights group said yesterday. The Human Rights Watch report, covering mid-November to late January, also said that police arbitrarily arrested more than 1,000 asylum seekers. Kenya was hit by a string of grenade attacks last year in Nairobi’s Eastleigh area, which is highly populated by Somali immigrants. The Somali militant group al-Shabab had vowed to carry out attacks on Kenya because it sent troops into Somalia in 2011 to fight the rebels. A November 18th attack that killed nine people after an improvised explosive device tore through a minibus had also sparked riots and xenophobic attacks against the Somali population in the neighborhood. Police blamed the explosion on al-Shabab. The rights group said police used the attacks and a government order to relocate urban refugees to camps as an excuse to carry out the abuses. “Refugees told us how hundreds of Kenyan police unleashed 10 weeks of hell on

communities close to the heart of Nairobi, torturing, abusing, and stealing from some of the country’s poorest and most vulnerable people,” said Gerry Simpson, senior refugee researcher for Human Rights Watch and author of the report. Kenya police spokesman Masoud Mwinyi could not be reached for comment. Police abuses against Somali refugees and immigrants in Kenya are not new, Human Rights Watch said. In 2009, 2010 and 2012, Human Rights Watch said it reported on Kenyan security force abuses and other serious forms of violence against the population in the predominantly Somali-inhabited North Eastern region, including the Dadaab refugee camps sheltering almost half a million mostly Somali refugees. “Abuses documented in this report are extremely similar to abuses documented in previous reports, in terms of abuses on Somali refugees and Somalis it seems to be business as usual,” Simpson said. Human Rights Watch called for investigations on the police chief and his two deputies, and criticized the U.N. for not speaking out against the alleged abuse of asylum seekers.


THE

NIGERIAN

26

THURSDAY, MAY 30, 2013

International

Compiled By Edobor Harrison

Mother Of Newborn In Sewer Was Present For Rescue

BEIJING - The mother of the Chinese newborn trapped in a sewer pipe in a stunning ordeal caught on video had raised the initial alarm and was present for the entire two-hour rescue but did not admit giving birth until confronted by police, reports said Wednesday. The state-run, Hangzhoubased newspaper Dushikuaibao said police became suspicious when they found baby toys and blood-stained toilet paper in the 22-year-old woman’s rented room, in the building where Saturday’s rescue occurred in eastern China. The woman, whose name was not revealed in state media reports, confessed to police when they asked her to undergo a medical checkup. The woman told police she could not afford an abortion and secretly delivered the child

Saturday afternoon in the toilet. She said she tried to catch the baby but he slipped into the sewer line and that she alerted her landlord of the trapped baby after she could not pull the child out, the state-run, Jinhua-based Zhezhong News said. Video of the rescue of Baby No. 59 — so named because of his incubator number in the hospital — was shown on Chinese news programs and websites starting late Monday and picked up worldwide, prompting both horror and an outpouring of charity on behalf of the newborn. The mother’s reported confession raises questions about whether she intended to abandon the baby, while suggesting that she was desperate and did not know what to do. Zhezhong News said the woman is a high school graduate

UN Court Convicts 6 Bosnian Croats Of Atrocities THE HAGUE, Netherlands— A U.N. court convicted six Bosnian Croat political and military leaders Wednesday of persecuting, expelling and murdering Muslims during Bosnia’s war and said leaders in neighboring Croatia helped hatch and execute their plan to carve out a Croat state in Bosnia. It was the Yugoslav war crimes tribunal’s most unequivocal statement of Zagreb’s involvement in Bosnia’s 1992-95 conflict and followed the acquittals late last year of two Croat generals accused of atrocities against Serbs, a ruling that reinforced many Croats’ view that their country was a victim in the Balkan wars. A majority of the three-judge panel said the late-Croat President Franjo Tudjman was a key member of a plan to create

a Croat ministate in Bosnia with the aim of later uniting it with his country to create a greater Croatia, or leaving it as a separate independent state. Past rulings by the court have labeled fighting between Muslims and Croats in Bosnia an international armed conflict because of Zagreb’s involvement, but Wednesday’s ruling explicitly named Tudjman and his former defense minister, Gojko Susak. “This is the first time the court has been very clear and adamant about the significant role played by Tudjman and Susak,” prosecutor Kenneth Scott said. “There’s no question in my view that’s one of the most historical, remarkable things about the case.” Tudjman died in 1999 and was never indicted by the Haguebased court.

who works at a restaurant in the Zhejiang province city of Jinhua. She said she became pregnant after a one-night stand with a man who later denied any responsibility. The woman did not reveal the pregnancy to her parents. She also said she wanted to raise the child but had no idea how to do it, according to local reports. Firefighters were called to the residential building in the Pujiang area of Jinhua to rescue the baby, which was trapped in the L-joint of a sewage pipe just below a squat toilet in one of the building’s public restrooms. In the video, officials were shown removing the pipe from a ceiling that apparently was just below the restroom and then, at the hospital, using pliers and saws to gently pull apart the pipe, which was about 10 centimeters (about 3 inches) in diameter. The baby, who weighed 2.8 kilograms (6 pounds, 2.8 ounces), had a low heart rate and some minor abrasions on his head and limbs, but was mostly unhurt, according to local reports. The placenta was still attached. News of the baby’s ordeal was met with horror and pity by bloggers on Chinese sites. Most speculated that the child had been dumped by his parents down the toilet. The rescue prompted an outpouring from strangers who came to the hospital with diapers, baby clothes, powdered milk and offers to adopt him.

campaigner who led protests against Putin’s return to the presidency which the Kremlin has been trying gradually to snuff out. “He (Guriev) defended Khodorkovsky and said that the case was fabricated. An enemy? Of course,” Boris Nemtsov, a protest and opposition leader, said ironically. “He fights corruption? That betrays our fundamental ideals!” Since Putin’s return to the Kremlin after four years as prime minister, the authorities have moved across a broad front to silence critics, with Navalny now on trial on fraud charges which he says are trumped up and politically motivated. Non-governmental

Adnan Faihan, the head of the political bureau of the Asaib Ahl al-Haq group, speaks during a press conference in Baghdad, Iraq, Wednesday, May 29, 2013.

Iraqi Shiite Militia Warns Of Sectarian Fighting BAGHDAD - A senior member of an Iraqi Shiite militia that once fought the U.S. military warned on Wednesday that Iraq is heading toward widespread sectarian bloodletting similar to the kind

Russian Economist Flees In New Sign Of Pressure On Putin Critics MOSCOW - A prominent economist and government adviser has fled Russia after being questioned by state investigators, amid a growing clamp-down on groups and individuals critical or independent of President Vladimir Putin. Sergei Guriev, an Englishspeaking economist well known to Western investors, had been questioned as a witness in an investigation into the defunct Yukos oil company, whose founder Mikhail Khodorkovsky was jailed in 2005 for fraud. His real transgression, supporters and commentators say, was to support Alexei Navalny, an anti-corruption

Bosnian Croat Jadranko Prlic, right, looks at his watch prior to his judgment at the Yugoslav war crimes tribunal (ICTY) in The Hague, Netherlands, Wednesday May 29, 2013.

organizations such as rights groups, independent vote monitors and opinion pollsters that receive foreign funding have been told to register as “foreign agents”, a term with overtones of the Cold War and treason.

CHANGE OF NAME OKEALGWE – I, formerly Miss Precious Odiodio Okealgwe, now wish to be known, called and addressed as Mrs. Precious Odiodio Okechukwu. All former documents remain valid. Concerned authorities and the general public should please take note.

that once pushed the country to the brink of civil war. The head of the political bureau of the Asaib Ahl al-Haq group, Adnan Faihan, also said the militia is preparing to defend itself, but denied the group’s involvement in a spate of attacks targeting Iraq’s Sunni Arab minority. Iraq has been wracked by a wave of the most sustained violence the country has seen since American troops left in late 2011. The bloodshed, which includes coordinated car bombings blamed on Sunni militants as well as a string of attacks on Sunni mosques, is

CHANGE OF NAME ADEKUNLE – I, formerly Mrs. Adekunle Roseline, now wish to be known, called and addressed as Miss Osagie Roseline. All former documents remain valid. Concerned authorities and the general public should please take note.

raising fears that Iraq is slipping back toward all-out sectarian fighting like that which nearly tore the country apart at its peak in 2006 and 2007. “We have major concerns. Because what is going on now is the same that led to what happened in 2006,” Faihan told The Associated Press. “We are ready for it and we are ready to protect our people.” Faihan made the comments on the sidelines of a press conference it held in Baghdad under heavy guard by camouflage-clad militia members. During the event, Faihan distanced the group from recent attacks against Sunnis, saying such allegations were the result of a misleading defamation campaign. He railed against what he called a Turkish-Qatari agenda to create sectarian strife again and to divide Iraq — a reference to Sunni countries many Shiites accuse of backing

members of Iraq’s Sunni community who have been holding months of protests against the Shiite-led government. Years ago, Asaib Ahl al-Haq — or the Band of the Righteous — broke away from radical Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr’s political bloc and has been trying to morph into a legitimate political movement. It said in late 2011 it was moving away from armed struggle after U.S. forces left but it has not handed over its weapons. It and the Hezbollah Brigades were among a group of Shiite militias backed by Iran that carried out lethal attacks against U.S. bases in the summer of 2011. Faihan on Wednesday also urged the Shiite faithful to defend the Sayida Zeinab shrine in Syria. The holy site outside Damascus has been a rallying point for foreign Shiite militants fighting alongside government troops loyal to President Bashar Assad, whose Alawite sect is an offshoot of Shiite Islam.


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THURSDAY, MAY 30, 2013

“But When The Son Of Man Cometh . . .”

THE handing down, of spoken words is a difficult problem, especially, when spiritual values are to be conveyed How easily gaps of memory occur in the course of transmission and how much people are inclined to fill these gaps with ideas corresponding to their own way of thinking and their own views, so that the original meaning of what was said is often entirely lost. Unfortunately, the words of Jesus as recorded in the New Testament are no exception here, still less so, since they were not collected and written down until decades after His physical death. The authors bases their writings on oral transmission or written notes, with which they also, interwove their own views. As regards the sayings of Jesus Christ, we are dealing not with intellectually bound earthly explanations, but, with spiritual explanations and teachings which comprise the entire knowledge of Creation and which were partly misunderstood right from the beginning and were then also, passed on as such. For Jesus Him self said that in some things He had not been understood by His bearers, indeed not even by His disciples. In the very transmission of what was not understood, an alteration of what Jesus really said is inevitable. Every one knows that even after a short time he cannot exactly reproduce something he has heard and if there were several listeners, each one would describe it differently. This was already the same in past millennia and even spiritual inspiration could never quite eliminate it in the case of the disciples and the authors of the Gospels, although, their intentions were of the best. That this problem of

transmission also, troubles theological circles and not only at the present time, is shown in the explanation of D. Johannes Weiss, Professor of Divinity in his essay: “The Three Older Gospels” (1907). In this, he assumes that the Gospel of Mark was written approximately 40 years after Jesus life on earth. He then continues. But the period of 40 years is nevertheless, long enough to justify the anxious doubt as to whether in fact, a realiable recollection of the events and above all of the sayings of the lord still existed or had lack of understanding and deliberate intention and fiction already accomplished their work of distortion and destruction, before the Evangelists undertook to protect the treasure from further decay and mutilation? Closing one’s eyes to this doubt does not help nor does the naive assertion that this was not the case or the pious belief that God would not have permitted such damage to the teachings of Jesus, so necessary for us. Only though historical investigation and criticism will avail. After giving examples from the Gospels to show how Jesus sayings were changed and modified, professor Weiss, in another passage of the same essay expresses the following view. Considering these instance of misunderstanding and reshaping we may well overcome with painful regret that Jesus words were not written down and passed on as the case with Paul and so many other personalities who have led us to God. And we must earnestly asked . Were not many widely –diffused rays of His Light lot, because the mirror which was to hold them was too

Man And Nature With O.C. MADU 08056379608

small and too dull? It can be safely assumed that some aspect of His Beinghave remained unknown to us because there was no observer who could have understood them”. Many words would be lost because, they did not call forth a response in the souls of these people. The

as is explained and taught on the basis of false traditions. Volkmann says for example from Luke 14, 26: “If any man come to me and hate his father and mother and wife and children and brethren and sisters, yea, and his own life also he cannot be my disciple.

without burden or restraint to the lofty task. Equally asserted by Vollmann is the inaccurate transmission about the son of man . At, the end of His earthly activity, Jesus gave His disciptes the promise

selection preserved for us would be influenced by their narrow range of ideas and certainly many a word was originally given a greater and deeper meaning than we read into it today. So in connection with certain passages of the New Testament, the question as to what were the actual words of Jesus is really justified and we must beware of asserting with regard to such doubtful texts that Jesus spoke in that way. In many matters Jesus did not speak

Jesus. Who is “Divine Love” would never have made discipleship dependent upon “ hating” ones closest relation, Volkmann concludes that in doing so, He would have been inviting shows the absurdity of these transmitted words which Jesus is said to have uttered. He would have asked that too close personal ties should be avoided and that one’s ego should not be placed in the fore ground, so that, His disciples might dedicate themselves

concerning the coming of the son of Man. By the son of man He meant not Himself but another person. The disciples did not understand this and believed that Jesus Himself was the son of Man, an assumption which was certainly understandable and excusable at the time, because they were living in imminent expectation of the final judgment and the return of Jesus. Nevertheless hardly had Jesus uttered what to mankind is the most

significant prophecy-than the foundation was already laid for a very fateful error, which was passed on and finally incorporated in the Gospels. Hence, they contain a number of incorrect or at least, obscure phrases about the concept of the son of man, which Jesus in His simple and clear manner of expression would never have used. Clearly, Jesus proclaims the coming of a second Envoy, from God. Nevertheless, I tell you the truth, it is expedient for you that I go away, for if I go not away, the comforter will not come unto you, but if I depart, I will send him unto you. And when he comes, he will reprove the world of sin and of righteousness and of judgment—(John 16:7-8). I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now, howbeit when he, the spirit of truth is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall, not speak of himself— “He shall glorify me for he shall receive of mine and shall shew it unto you. All things that the father hath are mine. Therefore, said I, that he shall take of mine, and shall shew it unto you” (John 16:12-15). But the comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you (John 14, 20). To be contd.

“Jesus. Who is “Divine Love” would never have made discipleship dependent upon “ hating” ones closest relation, Volkmann concludes that in doing so, He would have been inviting shows the absurdity of these transmitted words which Jesus is said to have uttered.”


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THURSDAY, MAY 30, 2013

Cavani Dreamed Of Barca, Madrid

Madrid Close To Signing Suarez A REPORT in Sport claims Real Madrid are close to signing Liverpool striker Luis Suarez this summer. The Uruguayan international, understood to want a move away from the Premier League after being involved in several controversial incidents while at Anfield, is hopeful the English giants will let him leave at an affordable price. This would likely be around Ä25m plus one of Madridís youngsters moving in the opposite direction, with Redsí boss Brendan Rodgers thought to be keen on either Jese or Alvaro Morata, although the Spaniards would retain an option to buy both strikers back. Los Blancos plan to offer 26year-old Suarez a four-year deal at the Santiago Bernabeu but they could face late competition from Serie A, with Juventus, Inter and Napoli all believed to be interested in the player. Nonetheless, his in-laws live in Castelldefels, 20 kilometres to the south-west of Barcelona and he place he sometimes goes to escape the English winter, so he would be particularly receptive to a move to La Liga. Suarez joined Liverpool from Ajax before the start of the 2010-11 campaign and was second-highest scorer in last seasonís Premier League with 23, three behind Manchester Unitedís Robin van Persie. Read the original article on Football Espana - The ultimate website for English-speaking fans of Spanish football

EDINSON Cavani has assured that speculation over his future away from Napoli is no distraction, whilst he has still left the door open. The striker is strongly linked with a move away from the San Paolo this coming summer, with clubs in both the Premier League and Spain said to be tracking his situation. It is one that in facing the media this week on international duty, the 26-year-old was once more asked about. ìAs a child I dreamed of playing for Real Madrid or Barcelona, but now I am proud to be at Napoli, this is important,î Cavani told reporters this week. ìOn my future I cannot say anything, because I still do not know anything.

• Andrea Pirlo

ìIt is clear that being Capocannoniere in Italy gives me more responsibility in the national team, but I do not feel the pressure. ìI have a group that supports me and a Coach that gives me confidence. I like that the whole country is expecting big things from me.”

Juventus Remembers Heysel Victims JUVENTUS have marked 28 years since the Heysel Stadium disaster that claimed the lives of 39 football fans. May 29, 1985 saw one of the game’s worst tragedies unfold prior to the European Cup Final between Juventus and Liverpool. A total of 39 Juventus fans were killed and 600 more injured when they were pressed against a wall in the Heysel Stadium in Brussels. Posting on their official website today, Juventus have marked the event, which happened exactly 28 years ago.

ìJuventus Football Club today remembers the 39 innocent victims of the Heysel disaster in Brussels,î began the statement released alongside a picture reading ëin memoryí. ìOn 29 May 1985, the European Cup Final between Juventus and Liverpool, an occasion which should have represented a true celebration of football, was hit by one of the worst tragedies in the history of the sport.

Dutch Teens, Dad On Trial For Linesman Killing

SEVEN Dutch teens and a father went on trial Wednesday charged with kicking to death an amateur football linesman last year, a killing that sent shockwaves around the Netherlands and the world. Linesman Richard Nieuwenhuizen, 41, was allegedly kicked several times in the head by enraged youth players shortly after the final whistle at an amateur game in December. The linesman died shortly afterwards in hospital, leading to much soul-searching in the football-mad Netherlands, while the teenage boys and one of their fathers were charged with manslaughter. “After a long time, your trial is finally beginning,”

ìI do not get distracted at all when I hear about offers and interest from other teams, I am used to it now. ìHonestly, I still have a contract and I just think about Napoli. ìAfter the Confederations Cup? I will have a few days off.î Cavani is with Uruguay this week preparing for an upcoming World Cup qualifier away to Venezuela, which La Celeste need to win to have any hope of turning a poor campaign around. ìWe are playing for everything, it will be a very difficult challenge. We hope that by being united and giving our best that we can bring home these points for the standings.

judge Anja van Holten told the accused, most of whom have been in detention since being arrested last year. “These will be difficult days for you, we will try to take that into account.” Most of the accused teens’ parents were in court, with journalists only allowed to follow proceedings from a video screen next door because of the age of most of the defendants. Prosecutor Joost Zeilstra told the court: “All eight are suspected of being accomplices in Robert Nieuwenhuizen’s manslaughter.” “He was kicked in the head, neck and body, resulting in death.” One of the youths’ lawyers,

Geert-Iem Roos, told journalists outside the court that his young client was not entirely aware of what was going on.

ìBefore kick-off at the Heysel Stadium, the English hooligans caused a violent uproar against the Italian supporters. ìThe facility suffered from serious structural problems and

• Cavani

Bayern Chose Gotze Over Neymar

SPEAKING at a podium discussion, Hoeness talked of Bayern’s plans to lure Neymar to the Champions League winners, but previous negative experiences with Brazilians made them go after Dortmund midfielder Gotze instead. “Guardiola had certain ideas to sign a young Brazilian player. But in the past we have not had the best experiences with young Brazilians,” Hoeness said during the discussion. “If you then go and buy someone who costs 20 or 30 million Euros or even more, it is extremely difficult. We have seen

Berlusconi Snubs Allegri Again A PLANNED summit between Milan boss Massimiliano Allegri and president Silvio Berlusconi has been postponed again with the media claiming it is a snub to the coach. Allegri has one more year left on his contract and wanted to have face-to-face talks with Berlusconi and vice-president Adriano Galliani before deciding whether to accept the Roma job. However, the meeting has

the Sector Z collapsed while the Bianconeri fans were looking for an escape route: 39 people died and 600 were injured. ìIn order to prevent further disorder, officials opted to go ahead with the game, but the occasion and its subsequent result were never capable of erasing the tragic scenes witnessed prior to kick-off.

that in the Breno case. As he [Guardiola] wanted a similar player [to Neymar] we came up with Mario Gotze.” In early April, Bayern triggered a clause in Gotze’s con-

tract and completed the 37 million Euros transfer to Bayern. Directly after the transfer Dortmund coach Jurgen Klopp claimed they had no chance to convince Gotze of staying put, saying: “He is a Pep Guardiola favourite.”

Klopp Says No Bayern Offer For Lewandoski Yet JURGEN Klopp has stressed that Borussia Dortmund have not yet received an official offer from Bayern for Robert Lewandowski, but expects the Poland international’s future to be resolved shortly. One of the 24-year-old’s agents, Cezary Kucharski,

been postponed repeatedly from Monday to Thursday and now put back again to Sunday with Allegri forced to travel to Sardinia. Meanwhile, Roma have reportedly set an ultimatum for Allegri to accept their offer by Saturday or they will look elsewhere. It has been said that Berlusconi wants to force his coach to resign rather than be fired. • Robert Lewandowski

claimed that Lewandowski will leave BVB for Bayern in the summer transfer window after his other representative, Maik Barthel, previously stated that the striker has already agreed terms with another side. Nevertheless, Klopp has stressed that a transfer to Bayern is by no means a done deal yet. “We have not received an official offer from Bayern Munich as of yet, so I still expect Robert to play for Dortmund next season,” Klopp was quoted as saying by Bild. “We will make sure that all the speculation about his future ends in the next few days. “I will not be angry with him regardless of what happens. I am looking at this professionally. We will see what happens. Everything’s possible.


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THURSDAY, MAY 30, 2013

Kolo Signs For Liverpool

Shearer Backs Pardew FORMER Newcastle striker Alan Shearer believes Alan Pardew deserves the chance to put things right at St James’ Park. The Magpies ended last season in 16th place in the Barclays Premier League after a desperate fight against relegation, and there have been concerted calls for the 51-year-old’s head from a growing and vociferous sec-

MANCHESTER City centre back Kolo Toure has signed for Liverpool and will join the Merseyside giants at the start of preseason. Brendan Rodgers has been looking to strengthen his defence since Jamie Carragher retired at the end of the 2012/2013 season, so Toureís experience is seen as a useful commodity. The Ivorian will be eager to reignite his career after playing second fiddle to a Vincent Kompany and co since arriving at the Citizens form Arsenal in 2009. The 32-year old played 18 games for the Sky Blues last

tion of the club’s support. However, Shearer is adamant the man who secured a shock fifth-placed finish 12 months earlier has earned the right to address what went wrong having been given the green light to carry on by owner Mike Ashley last week. He told the Journal: “I think he deserves to keep his job because of the season before. He bought himself

Martinez To Open Talks With Everton STEVE Nicol and Tommy Smyth discuss if Roberto Martinez is a good fit to coach Everton.Tags: Soccer, Everton, Wigan, Athletic, Epl, Premier, League, Roberto, Martinez The 39-year-old is the leading candidate to replace David Moyes, who is taking charge at Manchester United following the retirement of Sir Alex Ferguson. Martinez told Dave Whelan at a meeting on Tuesday that he wished to end his four-year stint at the DW Stadium, and the Wigan chairman then confirmed that he had given Everton permission to speak to the manager. Whelan also revealed that he wants around £2 million compensation to release Martinez from his contract, which has 12 months to run. Everton chairman Bill Kenwright, who has considered a number of candidates for the job, will now meet the Spaniard. Kenwright has interviewed three members of Everton’s coaching staff for the job - Alan Stubbs, David Weir and Duncan Ferguson - as well as departing

club captain Phil Neville, who has just ended an eight-year playing stint at the club. He is also understood to have sounded out Porto manager Vitor Pereira - but Martinez is the chairman’s first choice. Martinez led Wigan to the FA Cup for the first time in their

match Liverpoolís £ 15 million asking price for former Magpie Andy Carroll. Carroll, who left the

• Arsene Wenger

Henry Questions Arsenal Celebrations ARSENAL legend Thierry Henry has said that he hopes his former side’s exuberant celebrations after finishing fourth in the Premier League were not because they qualified for the Champions League - but because they denied Tottenham Hotspur a place. time leading goalscorer now Arsene Wenger’s men beat plying his trade in the US Newcastle United on the fiwith the New York Red nal day to clinch the final Bulls, insists that is not how Champions League spot and he will remember the season. send their North London ri“Yes, they finished in the vals into the Europa League top four. But there is only one - in doing so keeping up champion: Manchester Wenger’s 100% record of United,” Henry told Sky qualifying for Europe’s preSports News. “I’m a commier club competition. petitor, so there is only one But Henry, Arsenal’s all-

• Gareth Bale

a fee well in excess of £50million if they decide to let the 23-year-old leave, however. Barnett did little to play down the idea that Bale would be interested in a move to the nine-time European champions, telling Spanish newspaper Marca: “If (Real Madrid president) Florentino (Perez) is interested in Gareth Bale it would be an honour and we would listen, but Gareth’s contract is with Tottenham. We aren’t free to speak to anyone.” He added: “I do not know if there has already been an offer. What I know is that the player has three years left on his contract. “ Bale has just come through his most successful season, scooping several coveted

• Kolo Toure

Newcastle Can’t Afford NEWCASTLE United are Carroll reportedly not prepared to

thing I can remember from 2013 - and that is that United won the league. “For me, as a fan and as a player at Arsenal, we should be in the top four as normal but [instead] it saved our season.” The Arsenal players came under fire for their boisterous celebrations after the Newcastle game - with many suggesting they had reacted as if they had won the league title. But Henry hopes it was a

Bale Agent To Speak To Real Madrid GARETH Bale’s agent would be “honoured” to speak to Real Madrid over a potential move for his client to the Bernabeu. Jonathan Barnett, who represents the Wales star, expects Tottenham to demand

season en route to a second place finish in the league and a final loss to Wigan Athletic in the FA Cup.

awards after scoring 31 goals for club and country. Real Madrid have, as a result, taken a keen interest in the forward, with Zinedine Zidane - an advisor to Perez - recently lavishing praise on the former Southampton player. Spurs forged a club partnership with Real last summer as part of the sale of Luka Modric to the Spanish giants. Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy is renowned for being a tough negotiator - he blocked a £40million bid from Chelsea for Modric the previous year - and he recently vowed to hold on to Bale and Tottenham’s other stars this summer. Bale is widely regarded as one of the best players in the world and given that the price

Barcelona paid for Brazil star Neymar is reported to be around £50million, Barnett thinks Tottenham will demand a huge fee. When asked whether Bale would cost more than Neymar, Barnett replied: “Much more. He is a better player than Neymar and he has shown that in one of the best leagues in the world - the Premier League.” Bale has three more years left on his contract, but reports had suggested that Tottenham had opened talks with the Welshman over a new improved deal in order to keep him at White Hart Lane despite the club’s failure to qualify for the Champions League. Barnett dismissed that suggestion, saying: “We haven’t talked with anyone.”

• Andy Carroll

Tyneside club for the Reds at the end of the January transfer window in 2011 for a record fee of £35 million, had an unsuccessful time at Liverpool before finding his feet at East London side West Ham United on loan from the Merseyside giants. The 24-year old has reportedly welcomed a move back to St.Jamesís Park but Alan Pardew and co arenít willing to match the £15 million price tag, leaving only West Ham as a possible suitor for the England international.

Neville Set To Join Moyes PHIL Neville is set to return At Man Utd to Manchester United as a member of David Moyes’s coaching team. The 36-year-old was Moyes’s captain at Everton and is expected to be part of a major influx from Goodison Park including Steve Round, Chris Woods and Robbie Cooke. Neville, who played 386 games for United before joining Everton in 2005, is expected to become first team coach. The appointment comes as a shock move with Neville replacing the hugely respected Rene Meulensteen, who has reportedly chosen to quit Old Trafford rather than accept a demotion to become youth team coach.

Last month Neville confirmed he would leave Everton at the end of the season. He holds a UEFA B coaching licence and is part of Stuart Pearce’s England Under-21 staff.

• Phil Neville

Podolski Denies Transfer ARSENAL striker Lukas Rumour Podolski has refuted speculation that he might leave the Emirates this summer.

• Luka Podolski

The Germany international told Spox.com that he had no intention of leaving Arsenal. “I feel very comfortable and I am completely satisfied with my first year in England,” Podolski said. “I have no intention to leave the club. Rumours are rumours and I cannot stop them.” Podolski, who joined Arsenal from FC Cologne, is believed to have attracted interest from Italian champions Juventus and Galatasary in Turkey. He scored 16 goals in his debut season with Arsenal.


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THURSDAY, MAY 30, 2013

Pillars Aim To Topple Heartland

Sunshine Sack Coach Abimbola SUNSHINE Stars have sacked coach Samuel Abimbola following a poor run of results in the Nigeria league. Coach Napoleon Aluma has been asked to take charge of the team until a new coach is appointed. A top official of Sunshine said: “The poor run of form of the team and the inability of Abimbola to work with other backroom staff prompted our action. “We are 12th on the table

with 21 points from 15 games, that is not dream of the club and the state. We have no business being outside the top three.” Head of the technical committee of the DSFA, Akin Akinbobola, said Abimbola’s dismissal was as a result of the team’s poor performance in the league. He said the club would soon name a new coach, but assistant coach,

Injury Rules Out Mariga Of Nigeria Game INJURED Parma FC midfielder McDonald Mariga will not be part of the Kenya team that faces Nigeria on June 5 in a 2014 World Cup qualifier in Nairobi. Adel Amrouche told MTNFootball.com on Tuesday night that Mariga together with South Africa based David Gateri will miss the match due to injury. The Kenyan team left Kenyan yesterday to camp ahead of the game next week. The Coach reasoned that he wants the players to be focused for the match. The only foreign based players in camp are Oman based Kepha Aswani and

Azam’s duo of Humphrey Mieno and Jockins Atudo. Amrouche has also enlisted the services of his fellow Algerian Abdullah Ibrahim to help monitor the progress of the team as well as that of the Nigerians. The coach said Ibrahim’s main task will include watching and previewing video clips for both teams which will form the basis of their tactical approach. Players in camp: Duncan Ochieng, Abdalla Juma, John Njoroge, Eugene Asike (Sofapaka), Peter Opiyo, David Ochieng (Tusker), Humphrey Mieno, Jockins Atudo (Azam FC, Tanzania), Benedict Owuor, Jacob Keli (KCB), Francis Kahata (Thika United), Wilson Oburu, Abdulatif Omar, Ali Bhai (Bandari), Martin Musalia, Edwin Wafula (AFC Leopards), Kepha Aswani (Al Nasr Salalah, Oman), Andrew Murunga (Karuturi Sports), Mulinge Munandi (Ulinzi Stars).

McDonald Mariga

French Open: A cacophony of noise on Chatrier Court signalled the belated appearance of women’s third seed Victoria Azarenka at the French Open as the Belarusian eased to the second round. The stadium was barely one third full as Azarenka went through her paces but the low

Victoria Azatenka

Napoleon Aluma is expected to take charge of the team until then. “The present position of Sunshine Stars is not the dream of the state. The technical committee saw it wise to part company with the head coach of the team,” Akinbobola said. “I announce that with immediate effect, Samuel Abimbola ceases to be the coach of Sunshine Stars. “Napoleon Aluma will temporarily take charge until the appointment of a new coach and efforts to appoint new coach are in progress.” Akinbobola added that the team’s other coaches have been placed on half pay.

Moses Gutted By Eagles No Show As Eagles Take On Mexico Today CHELSEA winger Victor Moses has said he is group levels, but made his devastated that injury has ruled him out of Eagles debut against Rwanda upcoming matches for Nigeria. in a Nations Cup qualifier two The Super Eagles take The player said on his years ago and went on to shine on Mexico in a friendly Tweeter handle Wednesday as Nigeria won a third Nations in Houston, Texas, @Victor Moses: Cup in South Africa earlier this today. They then travel “Devastated not to be able year. to Kenya on June 5 and to represent my country this Injury-hit Spartak Moscow a week later they are in summer but have to respect striker Emmanuel Emenike Namibia for World Cup medical advice on injury. and Kalu Uche from Turkish qualifiers before they I’ll be supporting though club Kasimpasa have also jet out to Brazil for the Nigeria.” pulled out of the Nigeria squad FIFA Confederations Moses represented ahead of a hectic summer Cup. England at various age- schedule Moses has pulled out British Hopes End As Watson of all these games and his club have Loses At Roland Garros announced he will only BRITISH interest in opening set and that was the be fit again by July 6 the French Open ended only break in the opening after undergoing when Heather Watson stanza. treatment.

Azarenka Through To Second Round decibel level from the crowd on another chilly day in Paris was countered by the grunts, howls and groans coming from the two players. Azarenka just about won the noise battle, although

Victor Moses

Russian Elena Vesnina ran her close, and she had little trouble winning the match either, going through 6-1 64. Incredibly making her eighth main draw appearance at the French Open despite still being only 23, Azarenka had to wait until the fourth day to begin her challenge after rainy weather on Tuesday meant her firstround match was cancelled. She now faces the prospect of seven matches in 11 days if she is to win the title here. The twice Australian Open champion has never shone in Paris, with her best performance being quarterfinals in 2009 and 2011. “It was great to start and there some tough points, especially for a first round match,” Azarenka, who was briefly troubled in the second set, said on court before declaring her love for Paris. She will face Germany’s Annika Beck in the second round.

went down in three sets to Switzerland’s Stephanie Voegele. The British number two and world number 48, in her first match since March after suffering from glandular fever, lost 4-6 6-2 4-6 in 118 minutes. Watson was Britain’s last representative in the singles draw after Elena Baltacha and Laura Robson lost in the first round. Andy Murray was forced to withdraw from the tournament through injury and four players failed to come through qualifying. Watson, who turned 21 on Sunday, lost her serve in the fifth game of the

But the Guernsey player levelled against her opponent, ranked eight places lower, by breaking three times in the next set as she looked to reach the last 64 at Roland Garros for the third consecutive year. However after Voegele took a lengthy bathroom break between sets, she broke Watson in the opening game of the decider and that proved pivotal as she rounded out victory in just under two hours. During her lay-off, Watson’s ranking has slipped and she has lost the British number one position to Robson. She will look for better fortune in the grasscourt season, having reached the third round of Wimbledon last year.

PILLARS will seek to regain top spot in the Nigeria league when they take on current leaders Heartland in a replay in Abuja on Saturday. Heartland and third-placed Pillars are on 25 points from 14 matches but the Owerri outfit lead the 20-team Nigeria league table courtesy of a better goals’ difference. The Week 8 clash between the two top clubs will be replayed after crowd trouble at the Sani Abacha Stadium in Kano, when a policeman shot a fan and Heartland refused to play on for fear of their safety. Kano Pillars striker Kabiru Umar told MTNFootball.com that Pillars are ready to claim the full points at stake as he aims to wreck his former club with goals. “We would have loved this game be played in Kano, but the decision has been made to replay it in Abuja. This is a game we must win to reclaim the top spot. I know it won’t be easy but we will beat them,” Umar declared. “I am looking forward to getting the goals that will beat my former clubs.” The first match April 24 was goalless by the time of the fracas in Kano.

Milan Considering Rijkaard For Allegri Replacement MILAN are reportedly looking at former Barcelona coach Frank Rijkaard as an alternative to Clarence Seedorf and Massimiliano Allegri. The former Rossonero midfielder, who spent five years as a player at San Siro, has previously been linked with the Coach’s job. President Silvio Berlusconi will meet with Adriano Galliani and Allegri this Thursday evening where it is expected that the club’s current Coach will reach an agreement to leave, with Roma waiting in the wings. Former player Seedorf is seen as the club’s first alternative, but the Corriere dello Sport suggest that Rijkaard has entered into contention. The 50-year-old former Netherlands, Barcelona and Galatasaray Coach is currently out of work having left his role with the Saudi Arabia national team earlier this year.


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Muller Wants Ballon d’Or Trophy At Bayern THOMAS Muller is convinced that the next Ballon d’Or trophy should be lifted by a Bayern Munich player. The Bavarians dominated this season’s Bundesliga winning it by 25 points and they also defeated rivals Borussia Dortmund 2-1 in the final of the Champions League on Saturday. They now have the chance to secure a historic treble if they

beat Stuttgart in the DFB-Pokal final in Berlin on June 1, which Muller believes is enough for a Roten player to merit the prestigious gong. “Several of our players certainly would deserve it,” the 23year-old told Sport Bild.

“Actually, a Bayern Munich player has to be voted for the Ballon d’Or next.” The last four of the Fifaawarded trophies have went to Barcelona’s Lionel Messi. The last German to win the award was current Bayern sporting director Matthias Sammer playing for Dortmund back in 1996.

ITALY’s Giorgio Chiellini says that racist chanting from fans in his country is intolerable. Juventus defender Giorgio Chiellini believes players need to better distinguish racist chants from personal abuse thrown from the terraces. APChiellini said players were too quick to distinguish racism from what he labelled “personal abuse”. And the 28-year-old Italian international disagrees that offended players should not take

Stuttgart Hoping For Bayern Slip Up STUTTGART coach Bruno Labbadia has admitted that his side need Bayern Munich to perform poorly in the DFB-Pokal final in order to stand a chance of victory. The Swabians are considered clear underdogs against the European champions and the 47year-old is convinced that his team are depending on a sub-par showing from Jupp Heynckes’ men. “As things stand now, we have to reach our maximum and hope that Bayern don’t play at their highest level that day,” he told Kicker.

“That’s not the situation that I prefer. I would rather run ahead than try to keep up. I’d prefer for us to be favourites, which would mean we wouldn’t have any problems. “It would be solely up to us to win.” Labbadia went on to say that he hopes his side can challenge Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich’s hegemony in the Bundesliga next season. “If we deliver top work in all areas and play a consistent season, we will see what is possible in the Bundesliga behind Bayern and Dortmund,” he concluded.

• Ykut Kocaman

continue by the club management. Yildirim accepted Kocaman’s resignation this time, according to sports channel NTV Spor.

matters into their own hands by walking off the field. Racism has again reared its ugly head in recent times with Chiellini’s Azzurri team-mate Mario Balotelli reportedly often targeted by opposing supporters. However, it was the actions of Balotelli’s club ñmate, Kevin Prince-Boateng, who walked off the field after allegedly being the victim of racist chants, that created many headlines earlier in the season. But Chiellini said players were too quick to distinguish racism from what he labelled “personal abuse”. “You have to distinguish racism from personal abuse. Everyone has things chanted at them, that’s normal, but racist chants must be left outside,” he told figc.it. “If I hear a chant against

• Arjen Robben on duty for Bayern

REAL Madrid and Manchester City, two of Europe’s most powerful clubs, have reached what is being called an “antiBarca” agreement. A report in El Confidential claims that Florentino Perez and Ferran Soriano, Real Madrid club President and City chief executive respectively, have had contact several times in recent weeks with a view to implementing a non-aggression agreement between the clubs with regards transfers.

Hodgson Predicts Sturridge Rise AFTER scoring six times in his last six games with Liverpool, Daniel Sturridge’s new found form has earned him an extra payoff.Tags: Soccer, England, International, Sturridge, Daniel Sturridge, 23, is expected to earn a place in the starting line-up during Wednesday’s friendly against the Re-

Balotelli that isn’t racist, it’s wrong but it should be accepted. It’s another matter if the chant is racist, but even then you should not make the decision to leave the field. “There are other people who should make that decision.” Chiellini also weighed into the expulsion of his international team-mate Pablo Osvaldo from Italy manager Cesare Prandelli’s squad, agreeing with his national manager’s view that misbehaviour at club level should influence a players chances at international level. Osvaldo was kicked out of the Italy team after reports surfaced claiming the striker abused his Roma manager, Aurelio Andreazzoli during the club’s 10 loss to Lazio in the Coppa Italia final.

Madrid, City In Anti-Barca Pact

Fenerbahce Coach Kocaman Resigns AYKUT Kocaman quit as coach of Fenerbahce after winning the Turkish Cup but losing the domestic title to rivals Galatasaray. The resignation came a day after a meeting between Kocaman and club chairman Aziz Yildirim at which they discussed transfer plans for the new season, media reports said. Fenerbahce, who finished 10 points behind Istanbul rivals Galatasaray in the league, reached the semi-finals of the Europa League this season before losing to runners-up Benfica. In his three-season spell, Kocaman won a championship and two Turkish Cups. Kocaman resigned twice before during the two previous seasons but was convinced to

Chiellini Says Abuse Not Always Racist

public of Ireland at Wembley after a successful end to the Premier League season with Liverpool. The striker’s January move to Anfield appears to have improved his fortunes with the Three Lions and his 11 goals in 16 games for the Reds has garnered a comparison with Manchester United’s Danny Welbeck. “Daniel Sturridge has been an enormous talent for many years,” Hodgson said. “Chelsea paid a lot of money for him from Manchester City before he’d broken into their team but he’s been more of a regular at Liverpool. “He’s grown in confidence and week after week now we are seeing all the qualities we’ve always known he had. “In the same way Danny Welbeck did, we are hoping Daniel comes in and brings us something with his incredible pace, footwork and technical ability to help us win matches. This will be an

opportunity for him to show he can do it at a higher level.” Wayne Rooney, who ended a frustrating season at Old Trafford failing to earn a place on the United bench, is hopeful of regaining some form during the friendlies against Ireland and Brazil and Hodgson believes the 27-year-old’s club woes will not impact him. “If anything I find his desire stronger than when we first met,” Hodgson said. “I have nothing but the greatest faith in him. I know he’ll be really desperate to get out and show how desperate he is. “Good players can have bad games, it’s not an exact science. But my faith in Wayne Rooney has never wavered.” Rooney is expected to play just behind Sturridge, with Hodgson unable to hand him the free roaming midfield role which he has enjoyed at United.

“I know where it’s best for him to play and I have it fairly clear in my mind where I want to see him play,” he said. “Everyone knows his ability. I expect him to continue showing that. But who will it involve him playing with? That might be a position which is up for grabs.”

• Daniel Sturridge

In this sense, the Blues and Los Blancos intend to negotiate directly between themselves if one of them is interested in a player from the other’s team, thus cutting out the need for agents and other beneficiaries and leaving Barca out of the equation. From Soriano’s point of view this could be seen as a direct response to his deteriorating relationship with current Barca President Sandro Rosell, while Perez, who was once on good terms with Rosell, appears to have changed his stance. Among other reasons the tension between Real and Barca during Jose Mourinhoís era is cited and also allegations of doping levelled against the Catalans by the Madrid Press. El Confidencial also describes as ëinterferenceí from La Blaugrana in the chase for Brazilian wonderkid Neymar, with Real believing they had controlled the operation for his signature until Barca tied him to a deal.


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Mark Misses The Mark On Almajiri

THIS big elephant, Nigeria, still short-changes herself at every bend. Nigeria is simply satisfied with being the most populous country in Africa; hence it means nothing to her that her population is grossly understated. In the ten-yearly ritual called population census, we are not quite sure that those “countrymen” at the market square and the myriads of Almajirai are fully captured. Yet, these are the people that, in an ideal society, would require utmost care and adequate budgetary outlays. Our curiosity on the Almajiri question may have been aroused by the Senate debate on “A Bill for an Act to Repeal and Re-enact the Trafficking in Persons (Prohibition) Act 2003”, sponsored by Senator Victor Ndoma-Egba (PDP/ Cross River Central). Under the Teach Yourself Islamic Studies, we came out with a full definition of ALMAJIRI as a word that emanated from the Arabic word “ALMUHAJIRIN”, meaning migrant, which came as a result of Prophet Mohammed’s migration from Mecca to Medina. In Hausa land, Almajiri has become applicable to any person who begs for assistance on the streets or from house to house as a result of some deformity or disability. The Nigerian factor has since taken over the Almajiri system from its original intention. The system has since become a big source of child abuse because children between the ages of seven and fifteen years who attend informal religious schools now roam about collecting assistance and alms; and sometimes they engage in various forms of labour in order to survive. Sometimes, they fall into the hands of irresponsible adults who exploit them sexually.

Invariably, the Almajirai children grow up aggressive and violent, as they have been exposed to the vagaries of weather, different forms of pressure, problems, hunger and exploitations. Unfortunately, these are children who are supposed to be the leaders of tomorrow. The Almajirai have thus become sources of worry to the Northern elites. The system has become a source of embarrassment to the entire region. When the Trafficking in Persons (Prohibition) Bill came up for debates, Senator Alkali Abdulkadir Jajere (ANPP/Yobe South) chronicled his ugly experience, growing up in the system. The Senate President, David Mark, went to town and delivered a treatise on the sins of poverty. Mark missed the mark when he called for the abolition of the Almajiri system, when we should, in fact, be seeking ways to make it function better. This column finds one common fault with some of our legislators. Quite often, presiding officers who should talk less and listen more to their members soon hijack the debates and take over proceedings when they should only intervene in crucial moments to whip erring members on line. Listen to Mark: “It is amazing when we tend to make excuses for our failings. If you cannot gain employment, you go and join a terrorist group so that you can be employed. You join Boko Haram because you have no employment. If you are poor, you begin to traffic in human beings so that you can be rich… Everything is reduced to the level of unemployment in the country. Nigeria is not the only country where everybody is not employed.” The Almajirai did not ask to be born poor. It is not as if they had a choice between being poor and be-

ing rich and they deliberately chose the former. Mark’s suggestion simply mixes science with ethics; unknown to him that the essential difference between science and ethics is that science is descriptive while ethics is prescriptive. Science deals with what is, in the

government and society. They feel they are deprived, they feel injustice and they become enemies of the state and constituted authorities.” Shall we round up all the irresponsible men and castrate them as a way of limiting their reckless production escapade? No! That would be a return to atavism and cannot be permitted in 21st century Nigeria.

gas chambers. If all life offers you are broken eggs, you must quickly learn to make

• David Mark, Senate President` indicative mood. Ethics, on the other hand, deals with what ought to be, in the imperative mood. The stark reality of the situation is that the Almajirai are already here with us. What do we do with them? That is the question that we must answer at this ethical level. Governor Rabiu Kwankwaso of Kano State is visibly pained that “some irresponsible parents would give birth to some 30 children, decide to take care of only two and unleash the rest of the pack on society… They grow up to hate their parents, their leaders, their

As for the Almajirai, we are also reluctant to tap on the experience of the NaziGerman regime, which established a number of concentration camps where Jewish prisoners were gathered and executed in

omelettes. No one ever solves a problem by running away from it. Mark and his co-travellers cannot wish away the fact that there is a correlation between unemployment and criminality. No responsible

government can abdicate its responsibility of providing gainful employment to its citizens. The Almajiri question can only be addressed within an integrated context: The Federal Government must prosecute its Almajiri Education Programme with added diligence. The affected States should devote more of their allocations to education and housing, by upping the Almajirai in their scale of preference. The provision of rehabilitation centres and homes is an idea that is capable of removing them from the streets and under the bridges. The Almajirai must know that manna no longer comes from heaven. They must quickly inculcate the virtues of hard work. This underscores the need to establish long-term enlightenment and public education programmes to teach parents the dangers inherent in having more children than they can cater for. The concept of reward and punishment also requires us to give adequate biting teeth to some of our existing laws such as the UBE requirement that parents who refuse to send their children to school should be prosecuted and punished commensurately.

“If all life offers you are broken eggs, you must quickly learn to make omelettes. No one ever solves a problem by running away from it. Mark and his co-travellers cannot wish away the fact that there is a correlation between unemployment and criminality. No responsible government can abdicate its responsibility of providing gainful employment to its citizens.”

Printed and published by Bendel Newspapers Company Limited, 24, Airport Road, P.M.B. 1334 Benin City. Telephone; Lagos: 01 4930929, Benin: 052 257492, 257531 Editor. BARR. SOLOMON IMOHIOSEN - (07030699646), Marketing Manager (08023457566), Advertisement Manager (08023808856) Lagos Office: 3/4 Amode Close, Kudirat Abiola Way, By Olushonsun Bus Stop, Oregun, Ikeja, Lagos. Abuja Office: Floor 1, Edo House, 75 Ralph Shodeinde Street, Central Business District, Abuja. Tel/Fax: 09-5237631. All correspondence to: 24 Airport Road, Benin City. E-mail: nigerianobserver@yahoo.com (ISSN 0331-2674)

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