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Vol. 9 No. 37

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

General Buhari insists on bloody 2015 if . . .

. . . putting the people first

Zhul-Qadah 15, 1433 AH

More female pilgrims deported from Saudi Arabia

Police arrest Christian attempting to board Hajj flight

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We did not clear Nigeria of corruption – Transparency Int’l replies Jonathan A

statement by President Goodluck Jonathan in his i n d e p e n d e n c e anniversary speech yesterday

that Transparency International (TI) has in its latest report commended his administration’s fight against

corruption has taken a dangerous twist as an online news portal, has reported the world body as saying that it

never issued such a report. Premium Times reported that TI had in an email to it denied having any recent

rating or report that places Nigeria as the second most improved country in the fight Contd on Page 2

Boko Haram targets northern leaders, wives Says Abu Qaqa still alive From Mustapha Isa Kwaru, Maiduguri


R-L: PDP National Chairman, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, Senate President, David Mark, President Goodluck Jonathan, Vice-President Mohammed Namadi Sambo, Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Mariam Aloma Muktar, Minister of State for Defence, Erelu Olusola Obada, cutting the 52nd Independence Anniversary cake, yesterday at the State House, in Abuja. Photo: Joe Oroye

he Jama’atu Ahlis Sunnah Lil Daawati Wal Jihad, popularly known as Boko Haram, has declared a full scale war on Northern leaders, governors, and officials in authority even as it debunked statements by the military Joint Task Force (JTF) that it has killed its spokesperson, Abu Qaqa. Others on its hit list it said are wives of security and government officials. The group in a video broadcast by its leader, Abubakar Shekau, posted on YouTube said it would begin to target the leaders. Shekau, who spoke in Hausa said the group will now target northern leaders who he said have messed up themselves. “This message is for those in authority (Emirs, Governors, and people in authority). Wallahi you have no resting place again and no resting time again, either we are here or we are not. You (the

Northern leaders) have messed up yourselves and you have messed up your own situation”, he said. Stating that the sect will now target women related to security agencies and state officials, Shekau also accused the security operatives of targeting female members of the sect alleging that the women were tortured after incarceration by security agencies. According to him: “As at Saturday when I made this video, Contd on Page 2

PD INDEX 1st Oct., 2012


BUYING 154.7 250.6 200 0.2848 41

SELLING 155.7 252 201.5 0.3048 41.5


BUYING 202 257 40 158

SELLING 204 259 42 160























Who wants Taraba Deputy Governor impeached?, Page 37

Inter’l Digest

31-34 36







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Buhari insists on bloody 2015 if . . . From Muhammad Adamu, Kaduna


he Presidential candidate of the Congress for Progressive Change in the 2011 election, Muhammadu Buhari, has again said that the 2015 elections will be bloody if the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) attempts to rig it. Buhari who spoke at the Kaduna state secretariat of the CPC while inaugurating a reconciliatory committee of the party said he stood by the popular ‘Kare Jini Biri jini’ statement he made earlier which pitted him against the federal government and the PDP. “This was a remark I made when the delegation from Niger State visited me. I had explained to them our political activities for the past 11 years. I told them that in 2003 we went to the Supreme Court, same with 2007 and 2011. “After then Kogi, Adamawa, Sokoto including other byeelections. All of them I have heard and seen. “This has confirmed to us that the Federal Government of PDP and over 20 PDP controlled state governors do not have the intention of doing justice. “And we have all agreed that in every worldly activities if there is no justice it will not

succeed even in one’s house. We should just wait for time , it will not work. “They said they won election over one year and one month now. Have we seen peace? Where did the country’s wealth go? “Therefore, I have explained to the people that, this is what happened in Adamawa, this is what happened in Kogi, this is what they did in Sokoto and what has happened during the bye-elections. But Kaduna State have conducted themselves during the Igabi Local Government byeelection for State House of Assembly. “They met with their State and National House of Representatives with the party leadership and complained to the Police and the Army that they are not seeking for any favour, but insisted that justice should be seen to be done during the election. “I now said that they struggled and made ‘Kare Jini Biri Jini’ and CPC won its seat in that election. That is all the ‘Kare Jini Biri Jini’ that I said! I am still standing by my comment and I did not withdraw it,’ Buhari re-affirmed. “I then said, from now to 2015, they should not be reckless in the local government election .I now said that all the local government

General Buhari councils in Nigeria must become Igabi. “If they refuse to become like Igabi, then they will continue to become slaves to themselves if they refuse to liberate themselves. “This is because those people who are supposed to make justice do not have the slight intention of doing justice. This is not slavery and since it is not slavery then it should be seen to be done accordingly otherwise let it not be possible. “Because of that, I said those from Igabi constituency and

party members in Kaduna State and all of us and those elected, God bless them. It was not a small task, those that were beaten came to tell me and I begged them to take heart because no victory is achieved in slumber. You must fight for it. “The Zaria bye-election has really confused me. We tried but there were hypocrites among our party members which we cannot control. ‘However, from now to 2015,we see how the people will be enlightened to agree to make sacrifices to regain peoples respect. Continuing the CPC presidential candidate warned civil servants who have sympathy for CPC to be careful so as not to lose their job. He cited an example with his home state Katsina where a local government grade level 16 officer was demoted to work under a level eight officer simply because he was identified to be sympathetic to CPC. In his remarks, the Chairman of the Kaduna CPC, Ahmadu Yaro Coca Cola said the committee was constituted to resolve the any impending misunderstanding and internal crisis between aggrieved members of the party.

We did not clear Nigeria of corruption Contd from Page 1 against corruption contrary to the proclamation of the President. President Jonathan had in his speech applauded his administration’s fight against corruption and mentioned that TI had in a recent report rated Nigeria as second most improved country in the fight against corruption. His words: “Even as we remain focused on the issue of security, the fight against the scourge of corruption is a top priority of our Administration. We are fighting corruption in all facets of our economy, and we are succeeding. We have put

an end to several decades of endemic corruption associated with fertilizer and tractor procurement and distribution. We have exposed decades of scam in the management of pensions and fuel subsidy, and ensured that the culprits are being brought to book. “In its latest report, Transparency International (TI) noted that Nigeria is the second most improved country in the effort to curb corruption. We will sustain the effort in this direction with an even stronger determination to strengthen the institutions that are statutorily entrusted with the task of ending this scourge.”

However, in its report posted yesterday evening, Premuim Times said it contacted TI and that the organization denied issuing such report. It quoted TI as saying: “Transparency International does not have a recent rating or report that places Nigeria as the second most improved country in the fight against corruption,” the group said in an email to this newspaper. The report quoted TI as saying that its most recent indexing of Nigeria’s corruption activities was in the 2011 Corruption Perceptions Index, which measured perceived level of public sector corruption in the

country. According to the report, in that index, Nigeria scored 2.4 on a scale where 0 means highly corrupt and 10 means very clean. It was ranked 143 out of 183 countries. That rating, the media organisation recalled was actually a dip in performance for Nigeria as the country was rated 134 out of 183 countries the previous year, 2010. It said the Special Adviser on Media, Reuben Abati as well as the Special Assistant on Public Affairs, Doyin Okupe, did not answer or return calls put to them neither did they reply text messages sent to their telephones.

Boko Haram targets northern leaders, wives Contd from Page 1 between seven and ten of them (women) have been incarcerated. We don’t know where they are kept or what they are doing to them.” “But as Muslims, we know what unbelievers do to women …Now, married women are victims of State terror,” he added. He said the group will retaliate by attacking women related to security and state officials. He also condemned the

controversial “anti- Islam” video made by an Israeli – American, which ‘dishonours’ Prophet Muhammed. His words: “I have words for you (the makers of the video). All these have no impact on the prophet you know, however you wait and see what the consequences will be for you. Shekau also condemned what the group described as the lies of negotiations with government officials saying it had no plans to negotiate with the government. He said the

authorities are killing instead of dialoguing with members of the sect “The claim that we are negotiating with the state is untrue, that is the figment of their imagination. We are not in dialogue with anyone, but this seems to feed their taste or their appetite for disinformation…All I can confirm is that they are killing us rather than dialoguing with us,” he said. Debunking statement by the authorities that Qaqa and

other leaders of the group have been killed in a shoot-out in Kano recently, the Boko Haram leader said such was not true. He said group’s leadership was still intact. “The most bogus of these claims is that the leadership of our group has been decimated or arrested. It is probably the leadership of the rogue group that they killed which they created in the first place. You can go ahead and even declare that this broadcast is fiction,” he said.



More female pilgrims deported from Saudi Arabia From Agaju Madugba, Kaduna and Iliyasu Garba, Minna


he Saudi Arabian authorities have deported another set of 44 female pilgrims from the holy land on allegations of violation of the Saudi policy on Muharram. The affected pilgrims are from Kaduna and Kebbi states. A report monitored on the Hausa Service of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) in Kaduna,

yesterday, said the women were flown to Yola airport where they are currently awaiting return to their states. About 1000 female pilgrims have so far been denied entry into the holy land, a development that has since engendered diplomatic rows between the Federal Government and Saudi Arabia. Also, the authorities deported eight female intending pilgrims out of the 462 that were airlifted

on Sunday from Niger state. The pilgrims were sent back to Nigeria barely 24 hours after the inaugural flight from the Minna airport apparently on the same flight that took them there. The airlift of pilgrims from Minna airport was earlier suspended by the National Hajj Commission (NAHCON) until last Sunday when Governor Muazu Babangida Aliyu flagged off the inaugural airlift hoping that normalcy had returned.

Out of the 461 pilgrims that were airlifted from Minna air port no fewer than 180 of them were female pilgrims out of which 8 were returned for not having a Maharam a male guardian. The Public Relation Officer PRO of the Niger state Pilgrims Welfare Commission, Alhaji Awal Sani, confirmed the deportation adding that they arrived the Minna Airport at about 6:25 in the morning.

Reps to probe Otedola’s N140.9bn settlement to AMCON By Lawrence Olaoye


he House of Representatives yesterday declared that it would institute a probe into the payment of N140.9 billion outstanding debt owed by the business mogul, Mr. Femi Otedola, to Assets Management Company of Nigeria (AMCON). According to a release made available to newsmen yesterday by the chairman, House Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Zakari Mohammed, the payment was credited to AMCON’s Managing Director, Mustafa Chike-Obi. Mohammed stated: “Obi confirmed that AMCON Board met last Thursday and approved the transfer of the businessman's assets as well as undisclosed cash to AMCON as full payment and final settlement of Otedola's liabilities.”

Abacha, Alamieyeseigha to get honours By Richard Ihediwa, with agency report


ate dictator, Gen. Sani Abacha as well as ex-convict and former governor of Bayelsa state, Diepreye Alamieyeseigha have been listed for honours by the Bayesla state government. Bayelsa state governor, Seriake Dickson announced yesterday during his address to mark the 16th anniversary of the creation of the state that the duo would be honoured for the roles they played in favour of the state. The two former leaders would be immortalised by the state which has concluded arrangements to name some state owned establishments after them. The announcements sparked off reactions from some stakeholders especially against the backdrop of the past of the two honorees.

Ever busy Federal Secretariat completely empty due to the 52nd Independence Anniversary public holiday, yesterday in Abuja. PHOTO: JUSTIN IMO-OWO

Obasanjo killed internal democracy in parties, says Na’Abba From Edwin Olofu, Kano


ormer Speaker of the House of Representatives, Alhaji Ghali Umar Na’Abba has said that former President Olusegun Obasanjo should be held responsible for the death of internal democracy in political parties in Nigeria. Na’Abba, who spoke to newsmen yesterday in Kano, said instead of internal democracy to thrive in Nigerian, s“Our best brains are becoming causalities; and they are the ones that

understand the workings of democracy. People now engage themselves in sycophancy so that they can remain relevant in the scheme of things”. Na’Abba added that the greater number of those in political positions in the country got there through the back door. He further noted that, “the situation in the country is so bad that people don’t ask who is elected, but who is given the party’s ticket”. Na’Abba, who is a chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), did not spare his party in

his assessment, just as he opened up that in 13 years of PDP’s ruler ship at the federal level, the party has not been operating with a clear-cut manifesto. “I believe that the missing link is leadership. Elections in Nigeria must be free and anybody who wins must be allowed to take their mandate. The issue of the absence of internal democracy portends danger in Nigeria. You see incompetence in the administration of our country from the local governments to the federal level,” said the former Speaker.

Police arrest Christian attempting to board Hajj flight


29-year-old, Plateau stateborn teacher, Lohnan Joseph, has been intercepted while trying to board a Saudi Arabia bound flight at the Sultan Abubakar III International Airport, Sokoto on Sunday. Joseph, a Christian and a former teacher at Global Kids Academy, Sokoto, was said to have joined the queue of Zamfara state intending pilgrims, who were about to board the flight in the early hours of Sunday. Speaking to newsmen, Alhaji Mukhtari Lugga, Zamfara state

Commissioner for Environment and one of the state’s Hajj officials, who was among the people who spotted and consequently intercepted the suspect, said “Joseph just came from nowhere and joined their queue during the screening”. Lugga said 40 pieces of 10,000 French francs, eight pieces of 5,000 French francs, one piece of 1,000 French franc and N610 in different denominations were found in his possession as well as his personal belongings and credentials concealed in a black bag.

Asked why he, as a Christian, joined the line of pilgrims boarding a Hajj flight, Joseph said: “I am a Nigerian, so I don’t believe in discrimination, whether you are a Christian or Muslim”. Joseph also said that his mission was not to travel but only to visit the airport and come back. While parading the suspect, Sokoto state Commissioner of Police, Alhaji Shu’aibu Gambo, said the suspect was intercepted at around 9 am, as he attempted to join the screening line of Zamfara pilgrims. (NAN)

Explosion: Suspect arrested as police detonate IEDs in Jos From Nankpah Bwakan, Jos


he Plateau state police command has disclosed that a suspected terrorist attempted to wreak havoc in the state when he planted improvised explosive devices (IED), one of which went off without causing damage at Ajayi Junction in Kwararafa area of Jos north local government area of the state. The command's Public Relations Officer, DSP Abuh Emmanuel, said but for the timely intervention of the police anti bomb squad led by ASP Abel Mbibi who swiftly moved to the scene to detonate unexploded IEDs, many lives and property would have been wasted. He further commended the cooperation of members of the public for the distress calls which frustrated the evil agenda of the terrorist. According to him, though some devices exploded before the arrival of the police, the anti bomb squad successfully recovered, defused and evacuated other devices in order not to cause more havoc in the community, adding that there was no casualty and damage to property. He said members of the public arrested a suspect in connection with the incident and handed him over to the Special Task Force (STF) for interrogation and possible prosecution.

Tragedy as Bashir Dalhatu loses son in crash From Edwin Olofu, Kano


ragedy struck yesterday at the family of former minister of Power and Steel, Alhaji Bashir Dalhatu as his son, Dalhatu Bashir Dalhatu, was killed when he was knocked down by a speeding motorist while he was traveling on a power bike. The accident occurred in Asaba, Delta state while the late Bashir was returning from an event in Uyo. Eyewitnesses said the motorist who knocked him down was on top speed when the accident occurred. Bashir, who is survived by his wife and two kids in addition to several siblings, was buried yesterday in Kano in accordance to Muslim rites.

Late Dalhatu Bashir Dalhatu


THE PAGE 4 REPORT AEPB and the vengeful return of second hand car dealers, others in Abuja Once upon a time in the not too distant past, Abuja, the nation’s federal capital, was a city to rival the most organized on the continent, and pleasant to behold in the eye to boot. Those were the days when Malam Nasir el-Rufa’I held fort as Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT). In those days, the ubiquitous second hand car dealers, commercial motor cyclists, street hawkers, unregulated motor parks and such like activities that congested major streets in the city, were moved out of the metropolis to the satellite towns. But two ministers after el-Rufa’i’s departure, the Abuja of old is back with vengeance. What happened between then and now is what this report by Etuka Sunday sets out to unravel.


oing by the indiscriminate profusion of second hand car dealerships, motor parks of all colours and hues, car washes and places of worship dotting major streets in Abuja, one would be right to think that there is no authority to regulate such activities in the nation’s capital. A visit to some of the districts, notably Utako, will reveal this eyesore. There is hardly a street not over run by all manner of unregulated commercial activities, with the most common being carwash. The result is congested and dirty streets. Which leaves one wondering what the Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) is up to. And nostalgia for the el-Rufa’I era, when such activities were relocated to the satellite towns like; Mararaba, Nyanya, Jabi, Lugbe, Idu, Karimu Kubwa, Gwarimpa, and Kuje. Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) was set up in 1989 by the government to keep the city clean, beautiful and free of street activities that attract unnecessary congregation of people. The Board also has the responsibility of monitoring the environment to check for pollution, degradation

and public safety. In a bid to beef up the activities of the board, a task force and mobile courts were set up to try possible offenders or violators of the environmental laws. To that extent, the only notable success of the AEPB is the reduction of road street hawking. As for the satellite towns, the board may as well not be in existent. A mere thought of such places presents a mental picture of dirty streets with pure water sachets littered all over without proper disposal and other unwholesome activities that would mirror these places as unkempt. What could be the reasons? It is believed that some car dealers make up to 300% return on their initial investment annually. The business is lucrative because availability of market for imported used or brand new cars as a result of the poor transportation system in Nigeria. Today, there is practically no brand of car that is not found in the second hand car dealership market. Some of the brands are include Toyota, distributed by Toyota Nigeria; Honda, distributed by Stallion Motors; KIA, distributed by KIA Motors;

FCT Minister, Senator Bala Mohammed

Minister of Trade and Investment, Olusegun Aganga BMW, distributed by Coscharis Motors and Mitsubishi, distributed by CFAO Motors, among others. To some people, the insatiable desires of expensive and exotic cars by Nigerians especially government establishments and corporate bodies have contributed to proliferation of car dealerships in the federal capital.

Nigerian government establishments and corporate bodies like banks and insurance companies are in the habit of replacing official vehicles with new ones every year or twice every three years. While the global economic meltdown has forced car sales to decline globally, the Nigerian auto sales has retained its

lucrative status, still selling large units at attractive sales margins. They posited that the main buyers of new cars are corporate bodies especially Banks, insurance companies, Manufacturing and transportation companies, whereas private individuals mainly in the formal sector buy fairly used cars. An Abuja-based resident and dealer, Mr. Joseph Avihi, who is the manager of Freedom Motors Nigeria Limited around Kubwa 2nd Gate, narrated how he joined auto-sales business and the journey so far. “It all started in 80s when Shagari was in power and after I finished my technical school. I secured a job in a company where I maintained office cars and I drove my ogas (superiors). It was in the process of driving and maintaining the cars that I joined car sales business in Kaduna. I grew up in the business,” he narrated. According to him, “the real people behind this business are mostly senior government officials. That is why the vehicles are everywhere. Most of the big men have the cars at home so they would call us to pick them up for sale. I have more than thirty cars in my care and they were given to me by big men working in ministries or those that want to travel abroad,” he said. “I have cars worth more than N50 million, and I don’t even know some of the owners. They work with connection. People would direct them to me that the man is good therefore their cars would be safe in his hands. I don’t know some of them for 3 years except when they come for their money. We work based on trust and understanding, provided their properties and money would not be lost. “I get percentage from the sale of the cars. But aside that, I have my own that I sell because I can’t keep more than ten cars on my own for sale. Last week, someone left his car in my hand and travelled. So that is how we got some of these cars.” For regulations in FCT, he said “they have not been doing much because they said we should go to Tunga- Maje, from there they said Dede and they don’t build the place for us. The whole place is bushy and nobody is going there. So you see they are not serious” he said. The work of A.E.P.B should not be seen in the area of hawking alone; it should be extended to other dirty activities that constitute hazards to people’s lives and blocking traffic. As a result, the government must be contacted to ensure that a permanent site is allocated for auto sellers so as to prevent them from blocking the traffic.



Kid MPs to FG: Fight insecurity, child abuse By Maryam Garba Hassan


he Nigerian Children’s Parliament (NCP) has called on the Federal Government to address issues of insecurity, flood, child abuse, education and healthcare for the development of the nation. The children made the call in a resolution reached yesterday in Abuja at the end of a Special Sitting of the Parliament and the first Speakers’ Forum with the theme “The Education and Health State of the Nigerian Child since Independence”, organized by the Ministry of Women Affairs. In his opening address, the former NCP President, Ibrahim Adamu Abdullahi, commended the ministry for supporting the participation of children in governance and urged government and parents to inculcate peace in their children. In her address, the minister who was represented by the Permanent secretary, Mr. George Ossai, called on stakeholders to appreciate children’s creativity, intelligence and brilliant ideas that could create changes in policy direction in the best interest in the nation. According to her , Nigerian children are concerned with good governance and its implication for the promotion of their rights and the rights of others adding that the Parliament has also made the country to realize that children’s perspectives and awareness on national issues was unique and valuable. “Therefore, creating opportunities for you to discuss can call for change of strategies in addressing issues affecting not only your life but also the lives of generations to come”, she said.

Nasarawa state Governor, Alhaji Tanko Al-makura (middle), inspecting a parade to mark the 52nd Independence Day celebration, yesterday in Lafia. Photo: NAN

Adegbite, a unifying force, says Senator Adamu S

enator Abdullahi Adamu has described the death of Dr. Lateef Adegbite as a great loss, not only to his family and the people of Ogun State, but also to Nigeria. Senator Adamu, who spoke yesterday at the National Assembly in Abuja, noted that Adegbite was a good Muslim who had worked assiduously alongside other stakeholders to foster unity

NGO organises independence party for vulnerable children By A’isha Biola Raji


entre for Family Health Initiative (CFHI), a nongovernmental organization has organised a party for helpless children from schools in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) for the celebration of the 52nd independence anniversary of Nigeria. The party which involved cultural presentations of different ethnic groups by children and quiz competition among three schools; L.E.A Kubwa, L.E.A Azayapi and L.E.A Biaji and other side attractions was organised to celebrate with orphans and vulnerable non-orphans . According to Dr. Uwem Udoh,

Programme Manager, Prevention and Community CFHI, the health promotion organization is involved in health projects like model health facilities, health clubs in schools, introduction of free medical care for vulnerable children and school materials including school fees for children in public schools only. One of the beneficiaries, Yohanna Tanko from Mabushi said, “they have been helping us from primary school and I’m now in JSS3. I’m an orphan, they came to our community and requested for orphans to come out. They shared books and sandals to us and they have been paying my school fees since I was in primary school.”

and understanding between Muslims in the North and Southern, thereby serving as a “unifying force” within the Nigerian Muslim community. The Senator who represents Nasarawa West Senatorial District in the Senate, noted that the late Secretary General of the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA), would also be remembered "for building

bridges of unity among adherents of the two dominant religions in Nigeria-Islam and Christianity". Senator Adamu particularly recalled Adegbite's remarkable efforts in dousing the religious crisis that loomed in the country in 2002, following the protests that had trailed the blasphemous publication by ThisDay when Nigeria was about to host the Miss

World Beauty Pageant. “Those untiring efforts of his (Dr. Adegbite), if we recall very well, earned him wider recognition, accolades”, the former Nasarawa State governor added. The senator extended his heartfelt condolences to the President of the NSCIA and Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Saad Abubakar, and the entire members of the NSCIA.

Deputy Imams, Sheikh Kabir Ahmad led other Muslims to read a complete Surah Yasin, (Chapter 36) of the Holy Qur’an for the repose of the soul of late Adegbite. Ahmad, who was assisted with another deputy Imam, Dr Ahmad Makari, eulogised the sterling qualities of Adegbite and urged others to emulate him. He said that during his lifetime, his main focus was Islam and the overall interest of the Muslim Community in Nigeria. “He died thinking about Islam and the Muslim community. His legacies will continue until the last Day of Judgment. We shall surely miss him and we will continue to

pray for him till eternity,” he said. Speaking in the same vein, Sheikh Abdurasheed Adiatullah, a member of National Council of Ulamas in Nigeria, who also prayed for Adegbite, said that he was a focused Islamic leader. Adiatullah said that as a founding member of Muslim Students Society of Nigeria in 1954 and NSCIA in 1973, Adegbite’s exit had left a big vacuum for the Muslim Community in Nigeria. The NSCIA Director of Administration, Malam Amin Igwegbe described his late boss as ``very sincere, upright and courageous leader, a bridge builder and a promoter of peace.’’

…as Muslims pray in Abuja


uslims across all groups converged at National Mosque, Abuja yesterday to offer prayers for the late Dr. AbdulLateef Adegbite, former, Secretary-General, Nigeria Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA). Adegbite died on Friday September 28, during a brief illness in Lagos at the age of 79. The prayer was coordinated by Muslim Consultative Forum (MCF) and Muslim Media Practitioners of Nigeria (MMPN), as well as Abuja Muslim Forum and was attended by representatives of Islamic societies and Muslim groups in Abuja. One of the National Mosque

ACF congratulates Nigeria @52, mourns Adegbite By Jamila Nuhu Musa


he Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) has congratulated the governments and people of Nigeria for attaining 52 years of independence celebrated yesterday. In a statement issued and signed by its National Publicity

Secretary, Anthony N.Z. Sani, in Abuja, ACF, said the Independence day was worth celebrating because despite the challenges posed by insecurity and socio economic development brought about by our collective inability to solve social and economic problems for desired performance, most Nigerians are determined to remain together in

a united Nigeria and reverse the setbacks for common good of not only the present Nigerians, but of generations to come. According to the release, corruption was the bane of Nigeria’s socio-economic development having distorted national ideals and moral values, including social contract among individuals and

groups. “That is why campaigns against corrupt practices must be a task to be undertaken not by Federal Government alone, but also by all state governments and all Nigerians with patriotic courage”. ACF suggested that, to achieve significant development, there must be no war, hence perceived grievances should be buried in favour

of reconciliation for peaceful coexistence and development “more so that what does not break Nigeria can only make it much stronger”. In a separate statement, the Arewa Consultative Forum condoled Nigeria and family of late Secretary General of the Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs, NSCIA, Dr Lateef Adegbite over his demise.


NGO introduces forum for good governance From Ahmed Abubakar, Dutse


n online nongovernmental organisation known as 'Dandalin Siyasa Online Forum',has introduced a platform for fair play in Nigerian politics as well as to enable politicians provide good governance to the electorate by adhering to their various political party manifestoes. Speaking to the press in Dutse, Jigawa state capital, the chairman of the forum, Alhaji Ubale Hashim, said the platform is a nongovernmental, non partisan, non religious/ethnic as well as nonprofit making. The forum is, "rather to provide a political platform to enable politicians in this country to play the game of politics right, devoid of bitterness or rancour", explained the chairman. According to Hashim, the forum was established four years ago with the aim of redefining Nigerian politics, from the way it is being played in the country and to educate politicians on how to conduct themselves during campaigns and rallies across the country, especially before the 2015 general elections. The chairman further explained that the membership of the forum is drawn from various organisations, companies and public offices comprising of people of like minds that to come together to design a new dimension to Nigerian politics.


Cleric condemns Saudi Arabia for deporting Nigerian female pilgrims From Bala Nasir, Kano


Kano-based Islamic scholar, Sheikh AbdulJabbar Nasiru Kabara, has called on the Federal Government to do all it can to protect the integrity of Nigerian citizens wherever they find themselves around the globe. Sheikh Kabara was speaking to newsmen in Kano yesterday following the recent spat between the Federal Government and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia over the detention and deportation of

female pilgrims. The Islamic scholar who was apprehensive over the issue stated that molestation of Nigerian citizens by any country under any guise should not be tolerated by the Federal Government. "There is the need by the Federal Government to act sternly against the molestation of Nigerian female pilgrims so as to serve as a deterrent to any country that wants to emulate Saudi example under any guise. "We can no longer continue to tolerate excesses of some countries

against our citizens for no just cause, as such, government should act fast against such countries to protect our sovereignty", he said. He said that in global diplomatic parlance the Saudi attitude towards Nigerian female pilgrims is tantamount to humiliating a sovereign nation. He said the arrogance of the Saudi government was so apparent because while diplomatic options were being considered by the Nigerian government right from the beginning of the em passĂŠ, Saudi authorities went ahead to deport the female pilgrims.

He further said a situation where a visa was issued to a potential traveller by the country he intends to visit, it is abnormal for that country to detain such traveller after arriving in it shores. He lamented that on several occasions Saudi authorities treat Nigerians with disdain, an attitude that seems to be very odd to a friendly nation. Sheikh Kabara stated that no matter the circumstances, Saudi Arabia would never treat Western countries the same way it treated Nigerian pilgrims recently.

Putin congratulates Jonathan on Nigeria's Independence By A'isha Biola Raji


ussian President, Vladimir Putin had sent a congratulatory message to President Goodluck Jonathan on the country's 52nd independence anniversary. The congratulatory message was contained in a statement made available to our reporter from the Russian presidential executive office. The statement read in part "Please accept my profound congratulation on the occasion of the Independence Day of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. "I am confident that friendly relations and mutually advantageous bilateral cooperation between Russia and Nigeria will keep on developing for the benefit of our peoples and will contribute to stability, security and progress in the African continent. "I wish you well-being, health and success, and I wish peace and prosperity to your compatriots".

L-R: Deputy Director, Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development, Mrs. Mary Chidoke, Director General, Women Development Centre, Hajiya Fatima Betara, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Women Affairs, Mr. Geoge Ossi, Director Child Development in the Ministry, Hajiya Rabi Galadima, and Deputy Director, Vulnerable Children in the Ministry, Hajiya Fatima Abdulkadir, during the special session for the Children's Speakers Parliament on the Independent Day annivessary, yesterday in Abuja. Photo: Mahmud Isa

Benue flood: NAFDAC DG donates relief materials From Uche Nnorom, Makurdi


he Director-General National Agency for Food and Drugs Administration and Control (NADFAC), Dr. Paul Orhii, yesterday, donated relief materials worth over N5million to flood victims in Benue state.

Donating the items which include 500 bags of rice and different types of drugs, the NAFDAC DG urged the internally displaced persons to see the incident as providential. He said the donation is meant to complement the effort of the state government in alleviating their

sufferings. Dr. Orhii said the agency would take samples of the water for laboratory test, adding that they will do everything to ensure that the victims do not contact diseases. "We will ensure that the drugs and food given to you are of good

quality. We do not want your condition to be made worse than it is", he said. The DG also advised the victims to live friendly by cooperating with each other even as he lauded the state government's effort in rehabilitating the victims and giving them succor.

Federal School of Statistics, Kaduna relocates to Manchok


he Federal School of Statistics, Kaduna, has relocated to a permanent site in Manchok, after 30 years in its temporary abode in Kaduna. The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), reports that the school, which offers diploma and certificate courses, got a permanent site at the former U.P.E. Teachers College, Manchok, near Kaduna, built in 1976. It is the only statistics school in the North with the other two located in Ibadan and Enugu.

NAN reports that the school has classes, halls, staff quarters, and hostels meant for the defunct U.P.E. Teachers College, which was abandoned with the collapse of the scheme. "There was just no space for expansion at the temporary site in Kaduna, but the facilities here are totally in bad shape and need a lot of resources and attention to meet our needs", the Rector, Mr. Benjamin Igben, told our correspondent, who visited the school yesterday. Igben, who said that management was "strongly

determined to move in and move on" at the new site, disclosed that 250 students had since started classes in Manchok in spite of the teething problems. He said that the major concerns for the school management included the dearth of classes, offices, residential accommodation for both students and staff, and access roads. He expressed optimism that such worries would soon be tackled. "We have inherited some

structures, but you can see that many of them have been pulled down by fallen trees; the environment is also largely bushy, so we shall be seeking for more assistance from the Federal Government to ensure a conducive environment for teaching and learning. "This school is the only statistics school in the North, so we expect the northern states to also support our growth to help us to train quality statisticians which are very crucial to our planning and growth", he said. The rector noted the lack of toilet

and sanitation facilities, as well as water and electricity, and called on wealthy individuals to support the school to provide such crucial needs. "What I have as hostels are eyesores; there are rooms, but they are not in good shape. The roof on the ladies' block has been blown off, while the staff quarters have been occupied by illegal squatters. "We are entering into some agreement with the Government Secondary School, Manchok, to use some of their vacant classes", he said. (NAN)



BPP set to blacklist incompetent contractors By Ibrahim Kabiru Sule


o properly oversee public procurement process, the Bureau of Public Procurement (BPP) has launched a national database registration for contractors, consultants and service providers. Through this method, a transparent and corrupt-free

procurement process in the country would be achieved by the provision of a level playing field for holistic participation from various categories of Nigerians in government business. This was stated by the Director-General of the Bureau, Emeka Ezeh during the presentation of the scheme at the Ministry of Works, in Abuja. Ezeh disclosed that the

exercise would enhance the status of BPP as a one-stop shop for the registration of contractors, consultants and service providers who are interested in undertaking government business. The Director General then expressed optimism that the exercise would expose the proliferation of registration by contractors in different MDAs , just as it will curtail the usual

bottlenecks and complexities encountered in the process. “Through categorization and classification, incompetent people who want to do government business because they have people in the government will be discouraged. The era of knowing one big man in the government that would spring a contract with or without the prerequisite qualifications will

Pray for Nigeria’s prosperity, Emir urges

Minister orders varsities to teach enterpreneurship From Olanrewaju Lawal, Ilorin


he Minister of Education, Professor Rukayatu Rufai Alkali has directed Nigerian Universities to include entrepreneurial skills in their curriculum in order to make their graduates employers of labour instead of job seekers. The minister of Education who gave the directive in Ilorin, the Kwara state capital while speaking at the second convocation ceremony of AlHikmah University, Ilorin stated that university graduates are expected to be good in learning and character and in addition should be able to reduce the unemployment problem in the country by being self reliant. The minister whose address was read by Prof. Bayo Lawal warned the universities against compromising standard in their teaching and learning process so that their certificates would not be mere sheets of papers. In his remark the governor of Kwara state Alhaji Abdulfatah Ahmed who was represented by the state commissioner for Education and Human Capital Development, Alhaji Saka Onimago commended the institution for carrying education to greater heights. He said education is very important hence the state government decided to make it more functional. The Vice Chancellor Al-Hikmah University, Professor Sulaiman Age Abdulkareem said the university was an off shoot of the College of Arabic and Islamic legal studies (CAILS), Ilorin, adding that the institution graduated 528 students last year. He put the number of graduands of the 2011/2012 academic session at 455, adding that they would be awarded in various degrees in humanities, management and natural sciences. He said: “In our maiden convocation ceremonies last year, we presented three sets of 528 graduands spread over 2008/2009, 2009/ 2010 and 2010/2011 sessions for the award of honours and degrees. This is a pointer to the fact that we are making steady progress in the number of graduate turn-out. “Out of this figure, eight are in first class (honours), 128 are in second class (honours), upper division, 219 are in second class (honours) in lower division, 94 third class, while five had pass. The college of humanities is presenting for graduation 136 students, college of management sciences 193 and college of natural sciences 126.

be disallowed through this exercise”, Ezeh said Responding, the Minister of Works, Mike Onolememen, thanked the Director-General and stated that the exercise would promote accountability and the rule of law. He promised that the Works Ministry would adopt the system as soon as it takes off and would encourage others to follow.

From Salisu Zakari Maradun, Gusau


Niger state Governor, Dr. Mu'azu Babangida Aliyu (middle), chatting with intending pilgrims during the flag off of the 2012 airlift to Mecca, Saudi Arabia, on Sunday in Minna.

Oni, Arisekola mourn Adegbite From Inumidun Ojelade, Ibadan


he Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) National Vice Chairman (SouthWest), Chief Segun Oni has said the death of the Secretary General of the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA), Dr Lateef Adegbite was “a great loss to the nation, most especially the Muslim Community that he served devotedly with his time, energy and resources.” Oni, while consoling the Muslim community and the entire people of Nigeria on the death of the Islamic scholar, said Dr. Adegbite was an

illustrious Nigerian, a committed patriot and an outstanding statesman who served the country diligently both politically and religiously. The statement signed by Oni’s Media Aide, Mr. Lere Olayinka reads; “No doubt, Dr Lateef Adegbite played his roles well both in government as Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice in the defunct Western Region, and in the area of religion, being the spokesperson of Islam in Nigeria as the secretary of the religion’s highest decision making body (NSCIA). “Papa was a shining light in the legal profession and a religious icon, whose devotion to

administration of justice and religious tolerance in Nigeria cannot be over-emphasised. “It is also on record that Dr Adegbite founded the Muslim Students Society of Nigeria (MSSN). “No doubt, he lived a fulfilled live and will be missed greatly by all. An Ibadan-based business mogul, Alhaji Azeez Arisekola Alao also described the death of Alhaji Lateef Adegbite as a great loss to the Muslim community and the nation at large. Arisekola said the entire whole wild world will missed Adegbite’s contribution saying he was a successful religious leader.

he Emir of Maradun in Zamfara State, Alhaji Garba Muhammad Tambari has called on Nigerians to continue to exhibit dedication and trust as their guiding principles toward taking it to a greater height. He also urged the people to serve the nation with patriotism devoid of materialism for the sake of the future generation who will take the mantle of leadership of the country. Muhammad made the call in his palace in Maradun while speaking with our reporter during the weekend. According to him, Nigerians owe it a duty to respect the country and conduct themselves decently wherever they found themselves as they have no other country they can be proud of than Nigeria. “I call on all and sundry, irrespective of geo-politics and ethnicity, to render selfless service to the nation”. The emir stated that at this crucial time, the nation needs prayers, unity and understanding among the people. He therefore called on the intending pilgrims of the emirate to embark on prayers for the protection of both the state and the nation. “ I am therefore once again, soliciting for the support and cooperation of the people though they have for long been cooperative, so that together we can move the emirate forward.

Dana yet to compensate owner of damaged N500m property From Suleiman Idris, Lagos


he owner of a duplex and warehouse that a Dana airline aircraft crashed into on June 3, 2012 killing all 153 occupants of the plane and scores on the ground, Pastor Daniel Oluranti Omowumi, has revealed that the airline is yet to compensate him for the

damage of property worth over N500 million. In a brief chat with aviation correspondents in Lagos, he explained that his decision to delay demand for a redress over “the insensitivity” of the Indian owned airline, was in respect for the plane’s passengers. He said that since June 20, following the request of the airline, he forwarded a

comprehensive letter of claim through his solicitor Messers Dele Adesina and Co, but lamented that up till now the airline has not honoured its obligation to settle him. According to him, he rejected the sum of N500, 000 offered as temporary relief explaining that “it will not in any way address the inconvenience, torture and homelessness” his family has

suffered after the crash. He said “my lawyer clearly indicated in my letter to DANA Air that my property serves as my residence and business premises, as I use the place as a furniture factory , warehousing goods for people and running a fish pond.” He urged the aviation minister to compel the airline to carry out its responsibility.



FCT councils get N2bn revenue, SURE-P allocations T

NOA DG mourns Adegbite By Tobias Lengnan Dapam

By Josephine Ella


total sum of N2.053 billion revenue allocation has been disbursed to the six area councils of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) for the month of August 2012 from the Federation Account Allocation Committee and the Subsidy Reinvestment and Empowerment Programme (SUREP). The allocation represents an increase of N267 million or 15 per cent over the preceding month's figure of N1.786 billion. Disclosing this during the FCT Area Councils Joint Account Allocation Committee meeting in Abuja, the Minister of State for the FCT, Oloye Olajumoke Akinjide, also said the FCT Administration would next week

commence biometric audit of all the workers in the Area Councils. She explained that Value Added Tax (VAT) accounted for the lion's share of N1.054 billion of the total allocation to the six Area Councils Abaji, Abuja Municipal, Bwari, Gwagwalada, Kuje and Kwali. The FCT Area Councils had received VAT of N796.29 million for the month of July 2012. Akinjide disclosed that the statutory revenue allocation was N675.20 million, SURE-P (N113.54 million), refund by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (N23.10 million), FCT Administration's 10 per cent Internally Generated Revenue (N145.92 million) and exchange rate gain of N41.86 million.

Out of the total sum, the FCTA disbursed N836.24 million to the FCT Universal Basic Education Board (UBEB) for primary school teachers in the six area councils; N95.04 million to FCT Area Councils Pension Board (ACPB) being 15 per cent pension fund as statutorily required, and N20.53 million to FCT Area Councils Service Commission being one per cent training fund, also statutorily required. The net revenue allocation of N1.101 billion was shared by the area councils, with Abuja Municipal receiving N239.46 million; Gwagwalada, N192.25 million; Bwari, N187.60 million; Abaji, N175.93 million; Kuje, N165.38 million; and Kwali,

N141.24 million. Akinjide further stated that the Federal Government through the Federal Ministry of Finance paid N113.54 million to the FCT Area Councils being their share of the SUREP Programme for the two months of August and September 2012. She gave the breakdown of the distribution of the SURE-P funds as follows: Abaji, N13.93 million; Abuja Municipal, N33.54 million; Bwari, N18.58 million; Gwagwalada, N17 million; Kuje, N14.90 million, and Kwali, N15.59 million. The FCTA, according to the minister, earned N1.459 billion from Internally Generated Revenue as at September 21, 2012, with Abuja Geographical Information System (AGIS) being the largest contributor of N652.09 million of the IGR.

L-R: Minister of State for Education, Barrister Ezenwo Nyesom Wike, Acting Executive Secretary, Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC),Professor Charles Onocha, and an UBEC Publisher, Mr. Austin Onwubiko, during the minister's meeting with publishers of Federal Government free books to pupils, recently in Abuja. Photo: Justin Imo-Owo

From Ahmed Idris, Birnin Kebbi


he Kebbi state executive council headed by Governor Saidu Usman Nasamu Dakingari has approved the sum of N13.65 billion naira for the upgrading of Ambursa airport with the hope that next year, pilgrims from the State will be airlifted from the airport. This was disclosed to the press by the commissioner of information, Alhaji Sani Mohammed Kangiwa shortly after the council meeting in Birnin

52 anniversary: 'Nigeria is challenged by insecurity' From Olanrewaju Lawal, Ilorin


Kebbi approves N13.6bn for airport Kebbi. According to Kangiwa ''some months back the contract for the expansion of the Ambursa Airport which included lots 1,2 and 3 involving the control tower ,runway, and the airport terminal building awarded to CGC at cost of N11.3 billion naira" was awarded. In its today's meeting the council has ratified and approved the extension of the airport which to include lots 4 for navigational

Aids Communication and Metrological Equipment at the cost of 1.074,629.69.50 awarded to Avsatel Communication limited while the lot 5 involves the provision of Airfield lighting Systems and power supply at the cost of 1.331,116,076.88 which was awarded to General Engineering Company Ground Lighting limited bringing the total of lots 1,2,3 4 and 5 to 13.65 billion naira''.

All the extension work are expected to be completed by March next year . The commissioner also said that the Council approved the construction of 85 number houses for the staff of the Specialist Hospital at Kalgo at the cost of N712 695,161.32 million as well as the procurement of 12,500 irrigation pumps to be distributed to farmers in the State at the cost of 500,000,000.

Ajimobi attributes Nigeria’s woes to moral decadence From Inumidun Ojelade, Ibadan


overnor Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo state has attributed the current crises bedeviling the country to the moral decadence. The governor who said this at the weekend during the second convocation ceremonies of AlHikmah University, Ilorin, noted

he Director General of the National Orientation Agency (NOA), Mr. Mike Omeri, has described the late Secretary General of the Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs, NSCIA Dr. Lateef Adegbite as a pacifist who preached inter religious harmony and lived to promote peaceful co-existence in the country. In a condolence message issued by his Chief Press Secretary, Paul Odenyi, the NOA DG regretted that the 79years old Islamic scholar died at a time his voice was really needed in the promotion of peace and unity among the diverse people of the country. In his words: "Dr. Adegbite was a muslim who knew that other religions existed in the country and who wanted everyone to live in peace and brotherhood. He said that Adegbite's demise would be felt especially given his organisational ability, strong panNigerian ideology and Islamic intellectualism.

that Nigeria was going through trying times owing to decades of moral decadence. He said that the country had failed in its duty to produce children and youths who put Allah first in whatever they did. ``This is the foundation for the multi-faceted crises that have bedeviled the nation. As our elders say, it is a child that we fail to

educate who destroys the heritage of his parents. ``This is why crimes have become synonymous with our society. As our youths grow only in the knowledge of the world and not in the knowledge of Allah, so are the lapses showing in the breakdown in the fabrics of our society,'' he said. Governor Ajimobi, however,

stated that it was a great relief that the founding fathers of Al-Hiqmah University had identified the urgent need to emphasise moral education as a necessity and an integral part of the country's educational system. As a politician and public official, he said that his guiding principle is that the greatest form of worship was service to mankind.

s the nation marks 52nd Independence anniversary, Speaker of Kwara state House of Assembly Barrister Rasak Atunwa has observed that the nation is bedeviled with security challenges. The Speakler who stated this in llorin Sunday said Nigerians should use the occasion for sober reflection on issues impeding the political and socioeconomic emancipation of the country. Atunwa in a statement by his Special Assistant on Media Abdul Rahman Sanni noted that "the Nation is currently bedeviled with security challenges which call for collective effort in salvaging the nation out of her current travail." He expressed delight that Nigeria, inspite her pyramid of problems maintains her indivisible entity and advised Nigerians to always demonstrate high sense of patrioticism.

Jigawa lawmaker offers N3.3m aid to flood victims From Ahmed Abubakar, Dutse


s donations over the recent flood disasters in Jigawa state continues to flow in, the Senator representing the southwest senatorial district, Alhaji Abdulmummin Hassan zareku has distributed relief materials worth N3.3 millions directly to the victims in the affected seven local government areas under his constituency. This was contained in a press statement issued and signed by the personal assistant to the lawmaker, Malam Umar Yahaya and made available to our reporter in Dutse over the weekend.



There is fortune to be made in moulding blocks


or one, it does not require a huge capital outlay. Again, it is a form of business that does not need an operating license if it has to get off the ground. Besides all that, block-making is also unique, in the sense that ready-made buyers whose patronage is assured are just around the corner, so long as quality and affordable pricing are guaranteed. However, getting an open space for this form of business is one requirement that may be a little challenging since it is more of a city business. But don't forget that parcel of land which you have not developed; nor the fact that in your area, there are many empty plots which owners may not be ready to develop at the moment. If you make a bid, you may just be surprised at the results since most landowners do not exactly like their plots lying fallow. Even if you get it on rent, there is nothing to regret. Asquo, a bricklayer, shares his rags-to-riches story which resulted from making blocks on rented land which he eventually bought from the owner. He says he discovered in the course of his working career that block was one product in building that had

Block-making is one business that if properly managed, could make a quick turnaround in the fortunes of a small-scale investor. never sold for less than its price, nor been abandoned by buyers for the own's personal use. Just about a year ago, Asuquo

won a contract to construct a twostorey building in Lagos for an Abuja-based civil servant. And due to the confidence which the

owner of the project reposed in him, he was given money to buy materials for the house and build. After deducting his profit

upfront, which amounted to about N500, 000.00, Asuquo established a small-scale block industry. Throughout the course of the project, Asquo's block firm supplied all the blocks used in the building and this, he reveals, was his first breakthrough. Following this first outing, his firm became popular and began to supply blocks to other consumers, both in the area and beyond. However, his only secret is that while his competitors within the area were selling a nine- inch block at N90, he was selling his at N80, and this attracted many customers to him. Within a period of just four months, the block industry had begun full operations, supplying over 5,000 blocks daily. Though, the cost of building materials is expensive these days, Asuquo remains happy that his investment is yielding good returns and is growing popular by the day. Blocks used for building construction are in high demand, particularly in the cities, because of their resistance to termites, ants and fire. If properly installed, construction blocks can even withstand harsh weather conditions and earthquakes, too.

How to find your hidden talents (1)

7 ways to earn respect as a leader

veryone has a talent; Everyone. So maybe yours is blowing milk out your nose... it's still a talent. And most talents can be monetized. The key is to find your talent and then turn it into a scalable business. Too bad many folks get stuck on the "finding the talent" part. Here is a list of 55 ideas, all contributed by the TPE community, on how to find your hidden talent. You have it! Now find it: Sorry, no excuses allowed: First, figure out what benefits you are getting by not finding your own talents. For example, are you really afraid to try something new because it might not work, so not letting your talents surface gives you an excuse for not succeeding or do you just feel safer being able to blame your problems (boredom, lack of money) on someone or something else? Once you know what you are gaining by not seeking out your own talents, it is easier to let go of those old outdated beliefs about yourself and move on to new ideas. Jar painting out of necessity: I discovered my hidden talent of painting jars



in 1998 when I wanted something decorative to hold my 80 flavors of tea on my kitchen counter. I have now painted over 5000 glass jars (jelly jars, pickle jars, mayonnaise jars etc.) No two are alike and I've sold or given most of them away filled with candy, tea, paperclips, rolledup dollar bills. Mirror, mirror on the all: Think about the things that you do naturally that others say "I wish I could do that. as good as you do" and you say "whatever, no big deal, that's nothing, etc."

Are you feeling disrespected by your employees? It may be that you're failing in one of these seven areas. arning respect is in direct correlation to treating others with the same. Showing respect sounds like a basic skill, and yet somehow complaints about being disrespected run rampant around coffee rooms and bathrooms in companies around the country. Are parents and teachers shirking their responsibility for turning everyone into good little citizens that can play well with others? Perhaps, but more likely, cultural norms have changed. Families allow for greater familiarity, and schools are more focused on test scores and class sizes than they are on teaching little Johnny and Susie to stand out as leaders.

Here are seven tips to help you be the leader who earns respect rather than just demands it. 1. Be consistent. If you find you lack credibility, it's probably because you are saying one thing and doing another. People do pay attention to what you say until you give them reason not to by doing the opposite. You don't have to be predictable, just don't be a hypocrite. 2. Be punctual. Nothing makes me lose respect for someone more then being made to wait. Time is the most valuable commodity for successful people. Missing appointments or being late demonstrates a total disregard for the lives and needs of others. Get control of

Quote Success is the child of audacity Benjamin Disraeli

Do you wonder why some people naturally gain respect, while others have to command or, worse, demand it?

your calendar. 3. Be responsive. The challenge with contact management today is there are too many ways to communicate. Between Twitter, Facebook, Messenger, text, phone and Skype, people are in a quandary to know what is the best way to reach you. And even with all the channels, some people still don't respond in a timely manner, leaving colleagues hanging or chasing them. Limit your channels and respond within 24 hours if you want to appear communication worthy. 4. Be right much of the time, but be comfortable being wrong. The simple way to be right is to do your homework and state facts that are well thought out. Still, you may have to make a best guess now and then even when information is too scarce to know for sure. Take it as a qualified risk, manage expectations, and if you're wrong, smile and be happy you learned something that day. 5. Forgive others and yourself for mistakes. If you're not erring, you're not trying. Healthy leaders encourage experimentation and create environments of safe failure. Encourage people to take mitigated risks, and set an example for how to shake off a failure and bounce back. 6. Show respect to others when they are wrong and right. Disparaging people who make errors will reflect worse on you than those who err. On the flip side, any jealous tendencies toward those who succeed will surely be noticed by those around. Live as if in a glass body. Assume all can see inside your heart. 7. Help those who are holding you back, but not too much. Good leaders help those around them succeed by overcoming weakness. But respect is lost quickly for the boss who placates habitual troublemakers at the expense of the group's success. Know when to support weak players, and cut them loose when they clearly hamper the result.





N5, 000 note: Mr. President, right on

he recent decision by the federal government to shelve the introduction of the N5,000 note is a welcome one for which President Goodluck Jonathan deserves commendation. Before this timely intervention, the nation's political and economic climate had been unnecessarily heated by the seeming obstinacy of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to go ahead with a policy that was clearly against the wishes of Nigerians. The apex bank had been so gong ho about its stance that one was left to wonder if the new note was meant for people from another planet not Nigerians that have rejected it outright. Nigerians from all endeavours economists, businessmen, politicians, civil society groups etc - had voiced concern about the viability of the new note especially at a time when the CBN insists it wants to turn the economy into a cashless one where minimal transactions would be conducted using physical cash. Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, who heads the bank, and is not new to stoking controversy, had made a case for monetary restructuring particularly the introduction of the N5,000 note which he argues would not lead to rise in inflation. He also said that when it comes into circulation, only high net worth individuals would have access to it.

Discerning Nigerians were, however, quick to point out the difficulty there would be in restricting access to the new high denomination, considering the fluid nature of business transactions. They argued that prices of goods and

We are delighted that, for once, President Jonathan's government has read the mood of the nation correctly and acted accordingly services would increase dramatically especially with the conversion of N10 and N20 to coins. It took the intervention of both chambers of the National Assembly for the federal government to see reason and jettison that ill advised policy. We are delighted that, for once, President Jonathan's government has read the mood of the nation correctly and acted accordingly.

OUR MISSION “To be the market place of ideas and the leading player in the industry by putting the people first, upholding the truth, maintaining the highest professional and ethical standards while delivering value to our stakeholders”

Unlike in recent past, particularly earlier in the year when its arrogance led to a needless standoff with Labour over the fuel price increase, it is refreshing to see that this government has allowed common sense to prevail this time around. But for this foresight, the nation would have witnessed yet another long drawn battle with Labour and civil society groups that had vowed the resist the introduction of the new note. We strongly frown at the manner in which officials of the apex bank attempt to ram policies down the throats of Nigerians as if they are doing us a favour. It was disheartening that instead of engaging effectively with Nigerians over the issue, the CBN came across in a rather arrogant manner as if the policy was irreversible. The CBN governor should be cautioned to be level headed in his approach to such issues in the future; after all, he is there to serve not the government that appointed him but Nigerians. Like he did during the fuel subsidy crisis, his outing this time around did not do his image and reputation any good. We hope the federal government will continue to be a listening one as it has demonstrated over this issue. That way, it will help to restore Nigerians' confidence and regain their trust in it.









“To be a reputable, profitable, innovative and technologically reliant media company offering world class services and products”


By Kay Soyemi


lright folks, I am not ghoulish and also pretend to be very religious as well. At least, I go to church on Sundays and pray with one eye closed and the other one properly riveted on that pretty girl a couple of pews ahead in the short, tight fitting skirt that gets my red blood racing and my imaginations, all the way up in heaven! I go to church on Sundays and scream my hallelujah slightly louder than the dementedsounding woman at the back of the church. Yes, I will confess that I have not managed to steal enough Nigerian and bank depositors’ funds to pay N45mill in tithes, but God knows I contribute my widow’s mite in the hope of making the heaven between that girl’s shoulder blades and belly button! God knows, whilst I portray my religious fervour and rhapsody among the


Something about Asó Rock congregation, I fervently hope my other half does not notice my lustful devotion to the muscles under that tight fitting skirt nor the fact that I make beelines to two pews ahead of mine when it is time to shake someone’s hand and say they are blessed! Indeed, that skirt is blessed in having my destination ahead of me! If only I could replace it and put it where it rightly belonged – on the floor and without care or a prayer! Either way, my devotion to the church is not the reason I am lustfully confessing here! Rather, it is the surprising fact that I remain very superstitious despite my professed love of Christ! ah, there is fire on this mountain!! Perhaps, that is an inevitable bit of me as a black man. I was never any good at Mathematics when I was at school, but somehow managed a

weak pass in that silly subject; a pass that was enough to gain me an admission into universities in those days to study something related to Arts. I eventually ended up studying Humanities! But ah, I digress again!I had enough Mathematics knocked into my coconut head to recognise averages, statistics and recurring decimals. Which brings me to the source of my present musings. Does anyone recognise the recurring decimal in the following names - IBB, Abacha, OBJ, UMYA and GEJ? Does anyone else note the statistics, averages and frequencies? Ok, you may not be as superstitious as I am. No, your Mathematics may be better than mine but a pattern I do see. IBB was the first sit-tight that wanted Asó Rock in eternity, he ended up without Maryam.

Abacha was next on that ambitious trail and he ended up in a box, unsung and unloved. Shortly afterwards, OBJ came along, conquered and conspired for third term agenda; he paid for it with Stella! Then came UMYA; of course, it can be argued he did not fit into the mould of his predecessors, but he did not hang around long enough for us to decipher his body language before he expired on the throne. Whilst some said UMYA’s bad luck was Jonathan’s goodluck; I do wonder what is the fate of Goodluck; is it Patience? Alright, let’s look at the pattern again - female partner, followed by the occupant of the throne, followed by wifey, and then hubby, and ah, ah, ah holy ghost them! I pray for Patience, in the name of..., ah, pardon me church, I meant in the name of the Father!

When the news of the Dame’s illness broke on SR, it started like a joke just like the UMYA saga until it became a reality. At this point or any other, I do not wish her evil and indeed, pray for her recovery, regardless of what I think of the PDP rule, under GEJ. If you like, call me a hypocrite, but I still like woman, Amen! Say it louder, aaaaahhhhhh, yes Lord, I am coming.....home! Seriously, if this pattern is sustained, then Nigerians should wonder if the next male occupant of Asó Rock would expire on the pew, ...aherm.., I meant throne! When that comes to pass, then I shall be very happy because the throne will suddenly become less desirable for crooks who wants to live forever. Do I hear a thunderous Ameeeen? Kay Soyemi is on Twitter

Yobe as a microcosm of Africa’s development paradigm By Yusuf Mustafa


y title for this article might seem like a wild exaggeration. How can a little state on the northeastern fringes of Nigeria be the microcosm of Africa? Well, it is not what you think. This is why I think Yobe state is a miniature model of Africa of which it is a part. My thoughts are inspired by a book I just finished reading about Africa. It is titled Africa Works: Disorder as Political Instrument, written in 1999 by Professors Patrick Chabal and Jean-Pascal Daloz, two European authors who looked inside Africa from outside. The basic thesis of their highly influential and, some would say, controversial book is that in spite of the appearance of perpetual chaos and crisis in Africa, the continent works in more ways than people (read: Westerners) expect it to. In spite of what the West says about Africa’s wars, famine, dictatorships, etc—factors that can halt the functioning of western societies—Africa still trudges along, they say. They point out that the predictions of many Western analysts that Africa would sooner or later implode and explode as a result of its chaos have not come to pass. Instead, Africa now has the world’s fastest growing middle class, and its economic growth has outrivaled that of Europe in the past two years. To give just one example, a World Bank report in the 1990s pointed out that Africa faced “dire” consequences because it was bedeviled by “income levels [that] are lower than in the late 1960s.” Its future was also said by the 1990s World Bank report to be bleak because it was “racked by war, disease and corruption; and its share of global trade has been shrinking; and it contributes only 2% of the world trade.” Reading the report, you would be reminded of the kinds

of scary reports you sometimes read in Nigerian newspapers about Yobe State—Boko Haram violence, people fleeing the state as a result of the violence, etc. Anyway, years after the World Bank’s predictions about Africa using Western standards, the continent still stands and has developed in ways that have confounded Western observers and theorists. The authors’ conclusion is that the appearance of disorder can be deceptive. That is, there may be order in what seems like disorder sometimes. You may argue that the authors are intellectualizing and making light of Africa’s developmental challenges and that many people still aren’t doing well in Africa despite all the growth our economies are said to have recorded. That may be true. But you can’t deny the fact that if countries in the West faced half the problems that African countries faced, they would be extinct by now. You also can’t deny the fact that Africa has come a long way from the 1960s, 1970s, 1980s and 1990s. Or that the middle class in many African countries is growing at a time it is shrinking in other parts of the world. The scholars called this contradictory development in Africa the “instrumentalization of disorder.” In more ways than one, Yobe State mirrors Africa’s contradictions. Here is a young state that is beset by Boko Haram insurgency; a state that, because of Boko Haram violence it has had to contend with in the last one year, you would expect to be comatose—the same way Westerners expected that Africa would be stagnant because of its perennial chaos. Yet Yobe State, by the accounts of many nonpartisan development analysts, is one of Nigeria’s fastestgrowing states, although popular media reports hardly portray this fact. Having lived in Yobe State for

some time myself, I can attest to the fact that the state is making more progress in its march to development than most states I know. In the areas of infrastructure, healthcare delivery, agriculture, education, rural transformation, employment generation, etc, Governor Ibrahim Gaidam’s record has no parallel in the northeast subregion and is certainly at par with such celebrated governors as Governor Raji Fashola of Lagos State. Unfortunately, Governor Gaidam’s modesty and humility, according to people who know him, have made his achievements not as widely known as some other governors who are doing far less but talking more. Let’s consider a few examples to make my point. Before Gaidam became Governor, Yobe State perennially appeared on the list of Nigerian states with the highest maternal and infant mortality rates. This was, of course, caused by inadequacy (and in some cases total absence of) basic medical facilities. And wherever medical facilities existed, people had no access to them because they couldn’t afford them. That has changed

now. Every pregnant woman in Yobe State is now entitled to free medical care. All Yobe State children under the age of 5 are also entitled to free medical care. It doesn’t stop there. The governor also mandates government hospitals to give free medical treatment to all accident victims within 72 hours of admission to hospitals. My heart melted when I first learned of this gracious humanitarian gesture. This is probably the only state in the whole country that extends this kind of benefit to its citizens. To make its free healthcare delivery policy even more meaningful, the state is building and upgrading health centers and hospitals all around the state. The latest of such efforts are the construction of a 44-bed maternity ward at the Sani Abatcha Specialist Hospital and the completion of a new 200-bed capacity hospital both in Damaturu. Agriculture, the mainstay of Yobe’s economy, has also received a massive boost in the past few years. Every farming season, the Gaidam government spends hundreds of millions of naira to assist farmers in cultivation, irrigation and

For a state that is wracked by Boko Haram chaos, Yobe’s progress is nothing short of remarkable. One is tempted to ask: If Yobe can be this functional and competitive in spite of its security challenges, what could it possibly be in peace times? Or has Governor Gaidam ‘instrumentalised disorder’, to paraphrase the authors of “Africa Works: Disorder as Political Instrument”? Maybe, maybe not. But what is certain is that researchers interested in the paradoxes of chaos and development in Africa will find Yobe a compelling case study

getting access to fertilizer and chemicals. The government has also made available N20 million naira recently to assist the Chad Basin Development Authority (CBDA) to dredge the Kumadugu-Yobe River “so as to de-silt the River and clear it of Typha grass which often inhibit fishing especially around the Nguru-Gashua area,” as one writer put it recently. But it isn’t only in the areas of health, agriculture, roads, infrastructure, etc that the Gaidam administration is blazing a trail; it is also on record as one of the most peoplecentered administrations in Nigeria. Governor Gaidam personally symbolizes this with his open-door approach to issues, his tenacious insistence that government officials answer to the needs of the people at all times, and his humble, philosophical take that as leader, he is personally accountable to the people and God Almighty. Few people are aware, for instance, that Yobe State is the first state in the nation to implement the N18, 000 Minimum Wage. Not even Edo State that is ruled by a former NLC president or Ondo State that is ruled by a Labor Party governor beat Governor Gaidam in that respect. For a state that is wracked by Boko Haram chaos, Yobe’s progress is nothing short of remarkable. One is tempted to ask: If Yobe can be this functional and competitive in spite of its security challenges, what could it possibly be in peace times? Or has Governor Gaidam ‘instrumentalized disorder’, to paraphrase the authors of “Africa Works: Disorder as Political Instrument”? Maybe, maybe not. But what is certain is that researchers interested in the paradoxes of chaos and development in Africa will find Yobe a compelling case study. Yusuf Mustafa, a social and political affairs commentator, lives in Wuse II, Abuja.


By Emma Agu


hen Information Minister, Mr. Labaran Maku, mooted the idea of a fact finding tour of projects in the country, many would have written it off as a gimmick. The typical Nigerian cynicism would have taken centre-stage. Was it going to be a whitewash, a smokescreen, indeed a cover up? As it turned out, the media tour of projects being executed in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, under the Bala Mohammed Administration proved to be the perfect tonic for restoring hope to a despondent people. Evidence of the surprise that awaited the team of inspectors started early from the first port of call, the Abuja Light Rail. Conceived to provide a reliable, comfortable and affordable means of transportation for the hordes of commuters who are daily subjected to intolerable travelling conditions in and out of the capital city, the FCT Bala Mohammed Administration has literally staked its existence on the project. Now let us recall the reasons for the tour. Flagging it off from the conference room of the Federal

By SOC Okenwa


s the President of the supposed Giant of Africa, a corruption-ridden country, Goodluck Ebele Jonathan is an interesting character indeed. His ‘embattled’ presidency is, of course, interesting in more than one way: cluelessness, regular gaffe-spewing interventions, corruption scandals here and there, Boko Haram and the terrorist blend, cocktail of scandals bordering on mediocrity and fiscal indiscipline. Yet, the greatest challenge facing President Jonathan is how best to ‘transform’ Nigeria from what we are used to before his emergence: epileptic power supply, dilapidated network of roads, lack of pipe-borne water, primitive diseases like malaria and cholera, dearth of good medical facilities etc. Whereas Jonathan could be excused for saying he never sent tsunami to the north to destroy the food stockpiled there or earthquake to sweep away good roads across the country he must be held to account for what he has done towards ameliorating those terrible conditions inherited from his myopic predecessors. Whereas the people in his village cannot afford to buy bottled water or packaged food, according to him, something the Occupy Nigeria protesters in Lagos were supplied abundantly with when the antisubsidy heat was on earlier this year we shall always remind the president that when he was going to school in Otueke village he had told the nation how his poor parents could not afford to buy him a pair of shoe; his duty here, therefore, faced with this misery, this indigence stalking many homes a Nigerian is to create a conducive environment for selfactualisation by creating new job opportunities, by providing constant power supply and by checking corruption that has blossomed into a frankenstein


Abuja light rail lifts Jonathan’s agenda Immigration Service, the Lower Capital Territory (FCT), progress. Will the aim be achieved? Only Usuma Dam water treatment Information Minister Labaran Maku had disclosed that the tour time will tell. Yet, going by evidence plant and the provision of would afford Nigerians the from projects in the FCT, one can engineering infrastructure in opportunity to evaluate on-going say without equivocation that, in Kubwa Satellite Town, Wuye, projects aimed at achieving the the area of infrastructure, Nigeria Maitama Extension and the ‘transformation agenda’ of has a bright future. Without a various road projects. In one moment of P r e s i d e n t exuberant Jonathan. The hyperbolism, philosophical a n o t h e r underpinning is to s e n i o r make government Peoples Daily welcomes your letters, opinion articles, text journalist accountable to the messages and ‘pictures of yesteryears.’ All written compared the people; to redirect contributions should be concise. Word limits: Letters - 150 scale of work the thrust and focus words, Articles - 750 words. Please include your name and in Abuja to a of journalism a valid location. Letters to the Editor should be addressed Marshal Plan. practice in Nigeria to: P u t by emphasizing differently, developmental The Editor, the Jonathan journalism instead Peoples Daily, 1st Floor Peace Plaza, transformation of the focus on agenda is negative reporting; 35 Ajose Adeogun Street, Utako, Abuja. working. to restore ownership Email: let Back to of democracy to the SMS: 07037756364 the light rail people-the ultimate project: sovereign. It is within this broad ambience that doubt, the team of inspectors could Judged by work at the Wuye end civil society organizations, the not hide their delight at the of the tracks, one will be media, public office holders and the progress of work at the Abuja Light completely in order to wonder FCT Minister Bala general public have embarked on Rail Project, the digital passport why of the Nigerian Mohammed has been so excited this unprecedented partnership for complex


over the project. But wait a minute. The entire team was held spellbound at the Idu Production Plant of CCECC, the Chinese firm handling the project. Before inspecting the plant, the team had been taken to see several kilometers of rail track already laid by the company. If the media was looking for good news, there was a surfeit of it; strong enough to believe that the Jonathan administration, if spared of distractions would not only deliver on the project but would fulfill its covenant with the people. First good news: already in stock are slippers enough to lay 60 kilometers of track, far in excess of the 45 kilometer requirement; second good news: by completion in 2015, 309 Nigerian engineers and Emma Agu, publisher of Zest Traveller magazine is former Managing Director/ Editor-in-Chief of Champion Newspapers Limited and onetime chief press secretary to former Head of the Interim National Government, Chief Ernest Shonekan.

A President in (economic) chains monster. President Jonathan might not be a General, a Pharoah or a dictator (like Ibrahim Babangida, Sani Abacha or Adolf Hitler for example) but good things could come out of these characters — we have examples around the world to prove this point. While ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo could be blamed partly for foisting GEJ on Nigerians Nigeria, since flag independence in 1960, has never had any good leader well prepared for the task of leadership at the apex. Alhaji Shehu Shagari never bargained for the presidency in 1979 but OBJ dragged him into it; the late Umaru Yar’Adua never had any ambition of becoming Head of State but OBJ ‘muscled’ him into accepting the poisoned chalice that quickened his demise. GEJ was content governing his oil-rich state of Bayelsa but OBJ sought him out and ‘coronated’ him as Yar’Adua’s Vice only for death to ‘crown’ him with the ultimate prize as ‘king’. Not blessed with rhetorical gifts the President commits gaffe after gaffe attracting criticisms from his opponents and critics. Nationally acclaimed as a ‘bad’ public speaker often given to articulating defensive personal issues with the opposition than important issues of the day President Jonathan is clearly overwhelmed (if not intimidated) by the ‘sophistication’ of his office and the huge task ahead. So sometimes he tended to serve out a cocktail of incoherent rantings unbecoming of a president. But instead of gaining sympathy or understanding from those opposed to his style and mediocrity he provides openings for more attacks and skepticism. Verbal gaffes aside we are worried lately that President Jonathan has become a glorified ‘victim’ of economics, politics of economics; he is apparently held ‘hostage’ by economic hawks and

barracudas in and around his uninspiring presidency. The Ngozi Okonjo-Iwealas, Sanusi Lamido Sanusis, Olusegun Agangas are seemingly in control exploiting the novice status of the Ijawman to their advantage. Bamboozled or mesmerized out of his wits with bogus ‘facts’ and figures presented by these ‘economists’ the president, instead of confessing his bewilderment, plays along by acquiescing. When a Commanderin-chief is such naive a lot of forces unpatriotic tend to hold the nation to ransom. But folks let us not confuse issues here. We are not saying that a president must be an economist before he performs creditably. No! What is at issue here happens to be the ability of an elected president to master his brief and seek to presidentially be in total control of his entire impulse discharging his duties without fear or favour, and striking without compromise when dereliction of duty occurs from any quarters. GEJ is a PhD holder in zoology but that cannot be an excuse for failure unless he is telling us that working in the zoo or the classroom should have been a better vocation for him. However, GEJ is damn right on one point: the rot in the land never started with the advent of his

presidency. Even before Shehu Shagari, who never wanted to be president, was made one by OBJ’s obsession with mediocrity General Yakubu Gowon had declared gracelessly, made temporarily ‘mad’ by petro-dollars that came in torrents, that Nigeria of the 70’s had no problem with money but what to do with it! After killing millions of Biafrans (Igbos) in an organized pogrom nay genocide misnamed war of unification, something that should have been qualified as war crimes with Jack thrown behind bars, Gowon, in his martial best element, betrayed greatness Nigeriana by squandering millions of dollars in white elephant projects. Let us just consider two policy failures that exposed GEJ’s lack of control of his economic elements; that gives some truism to our stand that the President is one executive in economic chains. Last January (infact on new year’s day) the President, acting blindly on a bizzare recommendation by the fiery trio, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Sanusi Lamido and Diezani AlisonMadueke, had removed the socalled fuel subsidy on petroleum products increasing the pump price of PMS by well over three hundred percent and throwing

Not blessed with rhetorical gifts the President commits gaffe after gaffe attracting criticisms from his opponents and critics. Nationally acclaimed as a ‘bad’ public speaker often given to articulating defensive personal issues with the opposition than important issues of the day President Jonathan is clearly overwhelmed (if not intimidated) by the ‘sophistication’ of his office and the huge task ahead

Nigeria into a state of anarchy that lasted for weeks. Occupy Nigeria demonstrations were spontaneously organized across the cities especially Lagos igniting the can-do spirit of Nigerians. The President was forced to back down ‘capitulating’ at the last moment after heated negotiations with the labour unions. But he succeeded in stamping an increased price of close to fifty percent thus accentuating the suffering of Nigerians. In the end, months after that epic battle with power, we have found out the mind-boggling fraud that is “subsidy”! Trillions upon trillions of Naira paid out by smart corrupt government agents to phony companies and oil cartels masquerading as importers of fuel! Today, no one has been jailed for this monumental scam of the century perpetrated against a nation with active connivance of the PDP ‘gods’ in power. In the last three years or thereabout, over $6.8 billion had been looted from the petroleum sector by smart crooks working with all impunity. The system is damn too corrupt and the President must give a damn this time around! No country makes any progress in such criminalised system in which executive robbers steal billions and retire in palatial homes without any hint of justice running its course. President Jonathan can stop corruption in Nigeria if the will is there, but there is none on the horizon unfortunately. On the other hand however if he himself is embroiled in the web of intrigues surrounding the off-shore/on-shore conundrum then Nigeria is finished! He might, then, be the veritable undertaker sent by horrified gods to right the Lugardian wrong of 1914. SOC Okenwa can be reached on



CBN, National Assembly and rule of law A By Jiti Ogunye

careful reading of the provisions of the CBN Act reveals that the so-called statutory autonomy the apex bank claims does not make it immune to the exercise of legislative powers of the National Assembly. The CBN Act was made by the NA and can be amended by it. And when its provisions are read together with the provisions of the 1999 Constitution (Const.), as amended, it becomes clearer that the CBN’s “statutory autonomy” is not absolute. First, let us discuss the provisions of the CBN Act on which the claim of the CBN’s untrammelled “statutory autonomy” is anchored. Section (S) 1 (3) of the Act provides that “in order to facilitate the achievement of its mandate under this Act, and the Banks and other Financial Institutions Act, and in line with the objective of promoting stability and continuity in economic management, the Bank shall be an independent body, in the discharge of its functions...” The rule of law, as formulated in several decided cases on interpretation of provisions of statutes, is that the provisions of a statute are not read in isolation of one another, but construed together in order to bring out the intendment of the law-giver. As we have seen, under Ss. 8 (4&) and 50 (1&2) of the Act, it is mandatory for the Governor of the CBN to appear before the NA,

By Abdulbasit Mukhtar


he crisis of Nigerian female pilgrims refused entry to Saudi Arabia has finally made it to the headlines of local newspapers in the Kingdom. Before now, only the Saudi Ambassador to Nigeria H.E. Khaled Abdurabuh presented his country’s position on the issue. A Saudi daily newspaper AL-HAYAT on Saturday 29/09/ 2012 quoted the spokesperson of the Saudi Ministry of Hajj, Hatim Qadi, to have said that Nigeria violated the terms of the agreements reached for the 2012 hajj operation. One of the terms, according to him, is that female pilgrims under the age of forty-five must be accompanied by a male relation, known as Mahram. The ambassador could not have been as blunt as the Hajj Ministry spokesman, because a good ambassador should, at all times, strive to maintain good relations between his country and the receiving state. The Saudi Hajj Ministry’s account is slightly different from what we have been told by our officials. While not mentioning the forty-five years age threshold, our officials stated that an understanding was reached with the Saudis to allow female pilgrims arriving without male relations to be accompanied by officials of the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON). This is an indirect admission that indeed the Mahram issue is included in the agreement. But more than that, we should be interested to know

discuss the Bank’s objectives and plans, and submits reports to it. So, when the CBN Governor performs or fails to perform this statutory duty, what does the NA do? Take a briefing during an appearance, or take a report and archive it, and do nothing? More directly, did the CBN Governor discuss its new currency note plans with the NA, as mandated by the Act, before flagging off the project? If he did, did the NA approve of it? If he did not should the NA keep quiet, as if the NA has no say? The Constitution is the ground norm (basic law) of Nigeria, and all other laws, including the CBN Act, are subject to its provisions. If any other law is inconsistent with the provisions of the Constitution, the Constitution shall prevail, and that other law shall to the extent of the inconsistency be void (Section. 1). When the relevant provisions of the Constitution are construed, it becomes more obvious that the “statutory autonomy” being claimed cannot prevail over constitutional provisions. Not in Nigeria. Not in any decent representative government anywhere. The NA has the power to legislate for Nigeria, and check and balance the federal executive branch of government, in accordance with the principle of checks and balances, which tames the rigidity of the doctrine of separation of powers in a presidential system of government. Now, the exclusive legislative powers of the NA are listed under

the Exclusive Legislative List contained in the 2nd Schedule to the Const. Items 6 and 15 thereof are “Banks, banking, bills of exchange and promissory notes”; and “Currency, coinage and legal tender”. Obviously, therefore the CBN’s N5, 000.00 currency note issuance is within the legislative competence of the NA into which the NA can cause an investigation and over which it can pass resolutions. We submit that the exercise of powers contained in the CBN Act is subject to the power of the Courts. S.6 (6) (b) of the Constitution says that “the judicial powers of the Federation shall be vested in the courts…and shall extend to all matters between persons, or between government or authority and to any person in Nigeria and to all actions and proceedings relating thereto, for the determination of any question as to the civil rights and obligations of that person.” Under S. 251(1) (d) of the Const, the Federal High Court has an exclusive jurisdiction in civil cases and matters “connected with or pertaining to banking, banks, other financial institutions, including any action between one bank and another, any action by or against the CBN arising from banking, foreign exchange, coinage, legal tender, bills of exchange, letters of credit promissory notes and other fiscal measures Therefore, it is plain that contrary to the misconception of its provisions, by a lot of people, the CBN Act, in spite of its

authoritarian language, does not grant the CBN absolute autonomy. Activities of the CBN are subject to legislative oversight and judicial review. The functions, duties and operations of the CBN are not immune to ultimate legislative intervention, when necessary and desirable. The CBN is not a republic or an autonomous territory within the Federal Republic of Nigeria. The ultimate manager of the Nigerian economy under the Constitution is the Nigerian State (S. 16). The proponents of CBN’s absolutism in our monetary system must be asked what is happening currently to the statutory autonomy and independence of the national (central) banks of Greece, Portugal, Italy and Spain, under the interventionist, salvage mission of EU bail-outs, or what happened to the statutory autonomy and independence of the Federal Reserve Bank in the US, when the US Congress intervened to save American Banks considered as too big to fail, and the auto industry from virtual collapse. The Nigerian economy is an integrated system. It is not a compartmentalised, CBN economy under the aristocratic sandals of CBN emperors. Unelected bankers and their collaborators in the Economic Management Team, a body that is unknown to any law, should not be the sole deciders of our monetary destiny, without any form of accountability

whatsoever. That will not be democracy but dictatorship. When in 2008, Chukwuma Soludo floated his naira redenomination exercise, only an emphatic no from President Yar’Adua put paid to the idea. Unlike now, there were no resolutions from the NA; yet, in the face of these resolutions, it is being argued that the CBN and the President can go ahead because legislative resolutions lack the force of law – as if the NA’s resolutions on the doctrine of necessity that catapulted Dr. Goodluck Jonathan to an acting presidency in 2009 also did not “lack the force of law.” Recently, the President, at a public function, complained about dictation by the NA to the Executive on budget preparation and implementation, stating that, sometimes, the Executive was so peeved that it considered resorting to the Court for the judicial interpretation of the scope of, and limits to the powers of the legislature over the Budget. Maybe, we have reached the stage when the NA should resort to litigation in the Supreme Court, under Section 1(1) (a) of the Supreme Court (Additional Original) Jurisdiction Act, Cap S16, LFN, 2004 if its resolutions and laws continue to be ignored by a Presidency that now appears more imperial than republican. The rule of law may thereby be enriched. Jiti Ogunye is Principal Counsel, Jiti Ogunye Chambers, Lagos

2012 Hajj and the Mahram crisis how many NAHCON officials would have been sufficient to match the hundreds of stranded female pilgrims. Is substitution of NAHCON officials for Mahrams captured in the agreement? NAHCON also said that so far, over 24,000 Nigerian pilgrims, males and females, out of 95,000, have already been admitted for the hajj, suggesting that those ones fulfilled the terms of the agreement. It would appear from the foregoing that our officials have not handled the situation well enough. And the comments emanating from our side are not helping matters. One gets the impression that NAHCON does not want to accept responsibility for the mistake, probably out of fear that their image would be sullied. In fairness, the Commission has improved hajj operation since coming into existence in 2007. Before then, the hajj operations had always left much to be desired. We used to face yearly embarrassments begging the Saudis for extension to enable us complete our inbound flights. Despite being granted an extension in 2005, about 11,000 Nigerian pilgrims still missed the hajj. The following year, 492 pilgrims were returned home for arriving after the airspace had been closed. Image protection notwithstanding, the honourable thing we should have done is to see

where the problems lie and rectify them quietly rather than trying to defend the indefensible. To be sure, the hajj is the most important component of our bilateral relations with Saudi Arabia. With the record of understanding the Saudis have been showing to us on this matter over the years, it seems ill-advised to have issued them an ultimatum. It is even more painful that at the expiration of the ultimatum, rather than being allowed, more of our female pilgrims were still refused entry while some were deported. When the threat failed to work, decision was taken to send a delegation to Saudi Arabia! For what? To be ridiculed further? If anything, this has proved once again that, although our Senate and House Committees on Foreign Affairs have responsibilities to the people, their job does not

include and is not helped by threatening or issuing ultimatum to foreign governments. Our diplomats whose jobs it is, and are trained, to conduct our international relations should have been left to handle the matter, including giving advice on proper diplomatic protocol. If strong languages have to be used as is sometimes inevitable in diplomatic relations, such demarche should be delivered by the people mandated to do so, after careful assessment of everything at stake. The Premium Times columnist Muhammad Jameel Yusha’u in a May 15 2012 article titled: Child abuse, Kano to Jeddah and Nigerian Muslims narrated his personal experience at the hands of some Nigerian women who apparently abuse children to engage in begging,

The Saudi Hajj Ministry’s account is slightly different from what we have been told by our officials. While not mentioning the forty-five years age threshold, our officials stated that an understanding was reached with the Saudis to allow female pilgrims arriving without male relations to be accompanied by officials of the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON)

right at the Holy Mosque in Makkah. He described how shocked he was to see such an act being perpetrated and how he was told by a Nigerian student in Saudi Arabia that the matter had become a thorn in the flesh of the Saudis who were yet to know how to handle it. How can anyone guarantee that the strictness being applied by the Saudis is not a way to find a lasting solution to the kind of eyesore described by Muhammad Jameel? And who can blame them? You can imagine the contempt with which the Saudi authorities would view our country and our leaders. Is it with such image deficit that you issue an ultimatum and expect to be taken seriously? Charity, they say, begins at home. Once we put our house in order, we would be respected again all over the world as we once were and our diplomats would find their job of representing us a lot easier. The present crisis, like the 1996 meningitis one, will be resolved one way or another. All Muslims have a right to perform their religious obligations in Islam’s holiest places for as long as they abide by the rules. The lesson from this unfortunate crisis is never again to put ourselves in embarrassing situations. Abdulsabit Muktar is reachable on



Bag snatcher held over N.24m theft


Children having fun at Wonder Land, during the Independent Day celebration, yesterday, in Abuja.

Photo: Mahmud Isa

Indiscriminate dumping: Nyanya market may be shut down By Josephine Ella with agency report


he Director, Abuja Enviromental Protection Board (AEPB), Mr. Isah Shuaibu has warned traders in Nyanya market against indiscriminate dumping of refuse around the market environment. Shuaibu, who spoke while monitoring waste evacuation in the city, threatened to close-down the market if traders continued to sabotage sanitary measures in the

area but assured the traders of regular evacuation of refuse. ”I am warning you against indiscriminate dumping of refuse and I am using this opportunity to urge traders to police this market against abuses of sanitary rules. “If this habit continues, we will have no option than to close down the market because we know the magnitude of waste that emanates from this market,’’ he said. He however, assured the traders that the FCTA would collaborate with Nasarawa state

Government to bring an end to the inter-boundary transfer of refuse. He said that agents of AEPB would be assigned to designated areas to monitor dumping of refuse in refuse bins and to report to contractors for onward evacuation. Responding, Chairman of Nyanya All Traders Association, Mr Ikenna Madunagu, complained that some of the refuse came from the neighbouring communities in Nasarawa state. Madunagu maintained that the waste dumping point available

would not contain the pressure from both traders and residents of Nyanya. “Most of the refuse dumped here is coming from Mararaba and Masaka axis. Some residents from the neighbouring communities prefer to dump their refuse here while driving into the city. “Our traders alone cannot generate such magnitude of waste and we are appealing to the AEPB to ensure regular evacuation of this waste to prevent this area from pollution,’’ he said.

Three men arraigned over alleged theft of wooden doors


hree men are facing charges before an Abuja Senior Magistrates Court for alleged criminal trespass, joint act and theft. They are a security man, Idi Ibrahim, 50; a bricklayer, Timothy Tarfa, 23, and Eze Gerrard, 27. Police prosecutor, Paul Anigbo told the court that on September 25, 2012 Okoli Ugochukwu of Kubwa village reported the case to the Galadimawa village Police Post.

Anigbo told the court that same day at about 10 a.m., the accused, all of Biltimore Housing Estate, Abuja, were alleged to have stolen some items from an uncompleted building belonging to Ugochukwu. He said that when Ugochukwu visited the building he discovered that the accused had criminally trespassed into it, by removing 10 pieces of fixed wooden doors valued at N152,000.

Anigbo told the court that the offences contravenes the provisions of Sections 348, 79 and 288 of the Penal Code, but the accused pleaded not guilty to the charges. Counsel to the accused, Ikechukwu Nnemeka, urged the court to grant his clients bail in the spirit of Section 341 of the Criminal Procedure Code and the inherent jurisdiction of the court. Nnemeka also assured the court

that his clients would not interfere with police investigation, if granted bail. The Senior Magistrate, Aliyu Shafa, granted the accused bail in the sum of N50,000 each and a surety in like sum. He said the surety must be resident within the jurisdiction of the court, and adjourned the case to October 16, 2012 for further hearing. (NAN)

Gwagwalada Market Traders Association gets caretaker committees By Usman Shuaibu


21man caretaker committees to handle the affairs of Gwagwalada Main Market Traders Association have been inaugurated. Performing the inauguration ceremony, the secretary of the area council, Alhaji Usman Yahaya said that the administration of the council would support the association to achieve its goals.

He appealed to traders to join hands with the caretaker committee members so as to arrest the problems confronting the market. He further advised the caretaker committees to work together with the traders for overall development of the market and urged the committees to discharge their duties effectively. The scribe debunked the allegation that the market was sold to a private company as was insinuated by the marketers.

In his acceptance speech, the caretaker Chairman, Alhaji Nura Rimi said that his administration would take every members of the association along irrespective of their religion and political inclinations. He called on both officials and traders to deem it fit to contribute their quota towards the progress of the market. Rimi thanked the leadership of Gwagwalada Area Council for inaugurating the communities in

the market. This, according to him, the inauguration of the caretaker committees is a step in the right direction. On his part, the Secretary General of the association, Mr. Agu Okechukwu Samuel noted that the inauguration of the caretaker committees would pave way for peace to reign in the market. He expressed the hope that the committees would do their best to move the market to higher heights.

25-year-old man, Tony Okwajie, of Gwagwa, Abuja has appeared before an Abuja Chief Magistrates Court, charged with joint act and theft. Prosecutor Francis Tanko told the court that Mr Wisdom Okeji, of Gwagwalada, Abuja, reported the case to the police on September 25, 2012. Tanko said that the accused and another man, now at large, attacked the complainant at GSM Village, Wuse Zone 1, Abuja. “They attempted to collect the key to his car and other valuables. The accused forcefully collected the complainant’s hand bag which contained N240,000 and gave it to his accomplice to escape with,’’ he told the court. The accused person pleaded not guilty to the charges. The Chief Magistrate, Mr Azubuike Okeagu, granted the accused bail in the sum of N500,000 and two sureties in like sum. Okeagu said the sureties must reside within the jurisdiction of the court, and adjourned the case to October 24, 2012 for hearing. (NAN)

Five companies donates 20 trucks to AEPB for waste disposal


ive constructions companies in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) have provided 20 trucks to support Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) for waste evacuation in the territory. The companies are Julius Berger Nigeria Plc, Dantata and Sawoe Nigeria Limted and Groove Nigeria Limited and Salini Ltd and COAN West Africa, Nigeria Limited. Director of AEPB, Alhaji Isa Shuaibu made the fact known in Abuja while monitoring waste evacuation in the city. Shuaibu said the gesture by the companies was to support the board from time to time to ensure effective cleaning of the city. The director said the vehicles would work for two days and would be deployed to different parts of the city to convey waste to designated dumpsites. He commended the companies for their support and said the gesture would go a long way in addressing the challenge of waste evacuation in the FCT. Shuaibu said the board would continue to reach out to other organisations to support AEPB to achieve the herculean task of maintaining a disease free capital city. “We are grateful to some of these companies who have supported us with machines to supplement our machines for waste evacuation. We are calling on other organisations to also support us to achieve the herculean task of waste evacuation,’’ he said. (NAN)



Nigeria’s 52nd Independence: It’s a fruitless journey, say Abuja residents VOX POP Christopher Edache Ojebe, business man t 52, Nigeria is still dragging its feet. In terms of growth, Nigeria is trying but developmental wise, we are yet to find our bearing. The problem is centred on the issue of leadership. We have not gotten it right in terms of leadership. Our leaders are self centred, their focus is on their immediate families, friends and associates rather than the general masses. They think of a way of pleasing them instead of the well being of the masses. By the time they begin to think of the masses we will get things right and then the country will begin to move forward. In the next five years, all things being equal, I look forward to Nigeria making a head way with the Transformation Agenda of President Goodluck Jonathan. If the agenda is pursued with passion and sincerity of purpose, we will making a giant stride in terms of development. One other issue we are facing right now is corruption. This has eaten so deep into the fabric of our nation, so much more than even the common man on the street is corrupt. It is until we begin to work on our morals, see the nation as our home and all hands are on deck to make sure that we strive for the best, that Nigeria will then make a head way and corruption will be curbed. Dillon Ella, political scientist and artist Well, as far as I am concerned and if we must be honest with ourselves, at 52, I don’t think we can be able to point out any meaningful development or change, rather there are so many negatives things that are happening now that did not even happen in the last 40 years. So, I will say that things are even getting worse right now. Our major problem is the ideology of both our leaders and the followers. Our mindset is the biggest problem and until our mindset is changed towards certain things, we won’t be able to achieve what we need to achieve to be developed. What I mean in essence is our orientation, the way we think towards certain things. For example, when you talk about the issue of corruption, we cannot stop being corrupt except we disabuse corruption from our minds. That is the truth. In the public we can say don’t take bribe, don’t give bribe, but behind, it is the other way round. It is therefore, until we change our mindset that we can achieve or get to where we want to be. Then when it comes to the area of leadership, our leaders


Nigeria’s 52nd independence anniversary was marked yesterday on a very low key, apparently due to the insecurity in many parts of the country including Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory(FCT). Our correspondents, Josephine Ella and Adeola Tukuru, who went round the city to sample the opinions of residents of Abuja, in this vox pop, report that they were of the view that the journey so far has been fruitless. They blamed the situation on failure of Nigerian leaders and the negative mindset of the generality of the people. However, a few others think the anniversary is worth celebrating as according to them, the president administration of President Goodluck Jonathan has achieve some feat.

Christopher Edache Ojebe

Dillon Ella

Grace Ikpe,

Mrs. Tokunbo Osoba

Blessing Ogale

Azeez Olawale

have been very self-centred and selfish. Whatever they are doing, is not in the interest of the masses. They are doing it for themselves. Our leaders are not being fair and the policies they are initiating are for their own selfish interest. The issue of insecurity confronting the country still boils down to the mindset thing I am talking about. The Boko Haram issue for instance, boils down to idleness, poverty and unemployment which leads to crime. If you make life easy for people today, they may not even think of going into all these. My advice to our leaders is that they should go back to the drawing board and try to correct the many mistakes they have made and think of how they can make lives easy for the common man in the area of electricity, employment policy initiation etc. That will better the lives of the common man who due to poverty have been a ready tool in the hands of saboteurs and wicked people who want to destroy the peace and unity of

our country. Grace Ikpe, corps member I think we have not gone beyond where we have been in last five decades. In essence, despite the years Nigeria has spent, the country is getting worse as the days go by and the fault is from our leaders. If we can get good leaders, it will help us better to get where we want to be. We will now go forward instead of going backward. In the area of management of the masses and security, Nigeria has not made any head way. It is a great problem. The masses do have a role to play in moving the country forward because is not only the leaders but the followers need to contribute their part for the country to attain its goals and aspirations. For instance, like the issue of Boko Haram, the leaders of the group go to meet members of the public to recruit them into the militant group. The masses can show patriotism to the country by rejecting the offer. This can reduce the menace of terrorism

in the country. Mrs. Tokunbo Osoba, business woman I am happy that Nigeria is 52 today. It is a great progress for us Nigerians that we can survive these past problems, such as the Boko Haram insurgent, kidnappings, the fuel subsidy palaver and the rest, still Nigeria stands as the giant of Africa. Truly it is worth celebrating and I know that in a few more time to come everything will be alright. In the area of development the country has achieved a lot in this present administration of the President Goodluck. Take for the instance, electricity has stabilized in my area. We now have steady light in Kubwa. In terms of security, they are doing well and the rest. Blessing Ogale, Hair stylist Nigeria at 52 marks the remembrance of the country’s past achievement. I believe it is worth celebrating and I know that very soon we will get there. Concerning the present

leadership of Goodluck Jonathan I wish to use the medium to advise him to use the strategy which the past presidents who had succeeded in ruling this country used, so that he can also succeed. He has tried so far and he still needs to do more. Azeez Olawale, Mechanic As for me Independence is not worth celebrating, because things are still not moving in this country because of bad governance. Corruption, stealing, crime rates and Insecurity are still on the increase and yet we are celebrating Independence, then what is the essence of celebrating. Look at me as a mechanic, I don’t have a stable place to stay because the rent of shop is very expensive, things are difficult, especially for we the poor masses. To pay house rent in Abuja now is another problem. In fact I call on the President to have a rethink on how to rule this country and if it means changing those advising him, let him do so very fast.



A middle-aged woman patronizing locally made cooking utensil, at the weekend in Nyanya market.

Some unemployed young men taking nap, at the weekend in Bwari, Abuja. Ekiti state cultural troupe showcasing their rich culture at a public function, recently in Abuja.

A motorcyclist and his passenger constituting a threat to other road users, yesterday in A middle-aged woman patronizing second hand clothes, yesterday in Dutse market, Abuja Karu village, Abuja. Photos: Justin Imo-owo



NCC empower telcom consumers to report unfair practices by operators By Muhammad Sada


he Executive Vice Chairman, Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Dr Eugene Juwah on Friday urged telecommunications consumers in the country to protect their rights. Speaking at the First National Telecoms Subscribers Summit in

Lagos, Juwah said they could do this by reporting to the appropriate authorities any unfair practice by the telecoms operators. The summit, with the theme ''Nigerian Telecoms Revolution: Consumerism as the Last mile Challenge'' was organised by the National Association of Telecommunications Subscribers (NATCOMS).

Represented by Mr Tony Ojobo, the Director of Public Affairs, NCC, Juwah urged the consumers to take advantage of the Consumer Affairs Bureau (CAB), established by the commission to protect their rights. “In a bid to implement this mandate, the commission established the Consumer Affairs Bureau (CAB) in September, 2001,'' he said.

ICT experts lament over Jonathan independence’s broadcast By Chris Alu


takeholders in the I n f o r m a t i o n Communication and Technology (ICT), under the Umbrella of ‘ Save our ICT sector from collapse’ has again lashed out at President Jonathan for not mentioning the sector in his 52 Independence Day Broadcast anniversary. They said that the sector which is very critical to the growth and development of the country’s economy was not mentioned in his speech meaning that he has no plans to develop the sector despite the creation of the ministry. James Bawa of the Association of Telecommunication Companies (ATCON), said that Jonathan need to have said something about the ministry because it is very critical to the development of the country’s economy.

Apart from that, they say his statement on the sector could have been invigorated . Bawa said that despite the increase in mobile Telephony in the country over the last decade, there is no corresponding increase in broadband penetration. He said President Jonathan has neglected the sector by his democracy speech because he did not say anything about the sector and how his government intend to address many challenges facing it, such as low broadband penetration Poor quality of services, e-government, multiple taxation, vandalism of equipment and power outage. Chris Uwaje president, Institute of software practitioners of Nigeria (ISPON) in a swift reaction faulted the creation of the ministry of ICT without a special status. He said it is early to start assessing the ministry but we are looking forward to a knowledge-based ministry.

LASAA introduces Skype video to strengthen customer relations From Adesoji Oyinlola, Lagos


L-R: General Manager, regulatory affairs, MTN, Mrs. Oyeronke Oyetunde, president, National Telecommunications Subscribers, Mr. Deolu Ogunbanjo, and head, quality assurance/training, etisalat, Mr. Nwaje Jebunoh, during the first National Telecoms Subscribers Summit, recently in Lagos. Photo: NAN

DStv relocates to new satellite, changes channels numbers By Muhammad Sada


igeria's award winning television, DStv yesterday relocated its services to a new satellite, which allowed the pay-TV provider to add more channels to its lineup. To make space for the new channels and to group relevant channels together, some channel numbers will change as from 1st October, 2012. General entertainment channels with international

content are now located from channel 101 to 143, whilst general entertainment channels with local content feature from channel 144 to 169. Documentaries and lifestyle channels sit from channel 170 to 190, and the free-to-air channels such as SABC and eTV are on channel 191 to 195. The SuperSport channels in HD and SD will be housed from channel 200 onwards. Whilst some channels are

being moved around, DStv has put HD and SD channels on the same channel number. For example, M-Net and M-Net HD are now on channel 101. This means that if you are a DStv Premium customer with an HD PVR, you will receive M-Net HD on channel 101 whilst a customer with an SD decoder will get M-Net on channel 101. The only exceptions will be Discovery HD Showcase which is not available in SD and SuperSport HD channels, which are not scheduled with the same content as the SD channels.

Apple's new earpods aim to enhance your music listening


he iPhone 5 and iOS 6 have been the biggest talking points since the Apple event on Sept. 12, 2012 in San Francisco, with highs and lows surfacing about their features. However, in the realms of digital music it was news of two iPod evolutions (and the new EarPods) which interested us the most. EarPods you say? Don't you mean earbuds? Just like the iPhone 5, the new iPod Touch 5G and nano 7G

(rumored to be available in October) will have an improved set of earphones called EarPods. Apple say these have been designed to fit the geometry of your ear for a more comfortable fit while improving the sound quality. If you use earbuds to listen to your digital music library, you'll know how they can sometimes hurt your ears when listening for any length of time -- they also have the tendency to fall out too. So, this

is one feature that's certainly a welcome change in the audio department. In terms of new features for the two new iPods, it was the 5th generation iPod Touch that stood out the most. Although the official audio format support specs remain unchanged, new features include: new larger screen (4" Rentina IPS display), A5 chip, detachable iPod Touch loop, and Siri.(Source:

fter trials spanning over four weeks involving its Human Resources, Client Services and Business Development Departments, Lagos state Signage and Advertisement Agency (LASAA) is set to introduce Skype videoconferencing application as part of the agency's commitment to excellent customer relations and service delivery. The Skype video application will among other things ensure that response time to enquiries from LASAA stakeholders is quicker and faster thereby making service delivery more effective and efficient. The deployment of the Skype application, which will come into effect from today, is perhaps the first time such interactive platform is deployed by any regulator in the industry, in African continent. The initiative, described as trailblazing, has also received commendations from a wide spectrum of LASAA stakeholders. Skype allows users to communicate with individuals by voice, video, and instant

messaging over the Internet. The service has almost 700 million registered users across the world. In Nigeria, it is estimated that over one million persons use the service mainly for personal communication, but LASAA says it will adapt it as part of efforts to improve its relations with its stakeholders including outdoor practitioners, customers, prospects as well as institutions. Commenting on this new initiative, the Managing Director of LASAA, Mr George Noah, said Skype video application demonstrates the agency's commitment to the provision of value-addition services, and raise stakeholders' satisfaction and positive experience of LASAA. 'Our objective is to make every single customer contact a rewarding experience. In addition to Skype, we are exploring other social media platforms to make sure we use technology to help us do our job better. We provide services for over 70,000 customers and with it comes expectations of excellent customer service, that is what Skype will also help us achieve'' he said.

Telecoms: Saudi firm upgrade services in anticipation of Hajj By Muhammad Sada


audi Arabian mobile network, STC says that it has completed preparations to serve pilgrims for this year's Hajj season, having raised its network capacity by approximately 60%. The company said it has doubled connection capacity between its servers, in addition to boosting international link circles by more than 192,000 circles, in an effort to keep pace with the growing numbers of pilgrims and also supported its networks in Makkah and Madinah with more

than 747 new locations, aiming to raise the efficiency of mobile and 4G LTE networks. This change brings the total number of stations to more than 2,400 in Makkah and Madinah. STC improved the services it offers to pilgrims by expanding its network coverage to "Mawaqeet" regions and the roads that connect them to Makkah, in addition to covering 53 sites in the Haram with telecommunication services. STC added that it is the first operator to deploy LTE technology in Makkah.



Bamboo production to create 24 m jobs, N28.6 bn annual income By Adeola Tukuru


he Director of Forestry department, Ministry of Environment's, Mr. John Auta has said that bamboo production would create over 24 million jobs as well as N28.6 billion as annual income generation. Auta, at the weekend said the idea was in line with the transformation agenda of the present administration in the area of wealth-creation and employment generation. According to him the management of bamboo forest would generate large scale employment through harvesting, collection, transportation, storage, processing, utilization and marketing of products which would be replicated in Nigeria. In his words: "The comparative advantage for Nigeria to adopt bamboo as tool for employment generation and rural development is not in doubt because of the large pool of unemployed youths. "The availability of indigenous bamboo species that would thrive well even in poor or degraded soil in many parts of the country is another advantage to Nigeria. He also advised Nigerians to commence the propagation of Bamboo to reduce over bearing demand on timber products and said the department was already reaching out to relevant bodies to achieve the goal of cultivating bamboo and other non timber products. He said the Nigeria forest was lying fallow, waiting to be explored in areas that would positively affect the people. "Nigeria is blessed with bamboo resources which grows on both private and state forest lands in all the southern rain forest states up to some derived savanna states in the North central states of Nigeria. "Bamboo has high potentials for contributions to achieving sustainable forest management when it is optimally and efficiently utilized for producing substitutes for wood production and increases incomes for rural lively hoods. He announced that Nigeria became a member of the International Network for Bamboo and rattan (INBAR) to actualize the goal of achieving the bamboo production in the country. According to him, the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) had undertaken a project formulation mission for the development of project proposal on bamboo and rattan processing in Nigeria. He said the purpose of the project was to promote the development of bamboo and rattan value chain in West Africa and expressed the readiness of the department to collaborate with all relevant stakeholders to actualise the goal on the production of bamboo in Nigeria.

Nigeria’s addition to JPMorgan Index attracts N240bn J

PMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM), the biggest underwriter of emerging-market debt, has detailed the Nigerian bonds it added to its benchmark indexes on Monday and predicted the inclusion may lure $1.5 billion (N240 bn) to the country, according to a report by Bloomberg. The most-traded bonds maturing in March 2014, October

2019 and January 2022 will join JPMorgan's GBI-EM indexes between Oct. 1 and Dec. 3, Giulia Pellegrini, the bank's London-based sub-Saharan Africa economist, wrote in a note to clients. JPMorgan first disclosed the plans in August after central bank Governor Lamido Sanusi's decision last year to attract more funds by removing restrictions on foreign

investors holding debt of the country. The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) sold seven-year bonds at an auction last week at a yield of 12.9 percent, 3.24 percentage points lower than at the previous monthly sale. The nation's bonds will probably have a weighting of 0.72 percent in JPMorgan's GBI-EM Global Diversified index by December, according to Pellegrini.

"Nigeria is coming of age and we have certainly seen a number of emerging market bond funds active in the market," Daniel Broby, deputy chief executive officer at London-based Silk Invest Ltd., said. "We still see Nigerian yields as attractive but are currently shaving our exposure back a tad," he said, citing rallies across frontier markets. (Bloomberg)

Aviation experts agree on automation of revenue collection By Ibrahim Kabiru Sule


L-R: President, Enugu Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (ECCIMA), Dr. Theo Okonkwo, Enugu state Commissioner for Agriculture, Professor Martin Anikwe, and Director-General, ECCIMA, Sir. Emeka Okereke, during the 3rd National Agricultural Exhibition and Symposium, recently in Enugu. Photo: NAN

Royal Exchange’s gross profit hits N5.4bn From Ngozi Onyeakusi, Lagos


oyal Exchange Plc. has recorded gross premium income of N5.24 billion for the financial year ended 31st December, 2011. This represents an increase of 59 per cent when compare with N3.29 billion recorded in 2010 financial year. . Addressing shareholders at the company's 43rd annual general meeting in Lagos, the Chairman of the company, Mr Kenneth Odogwu stated that in spite

of the harsh economic environment the company recorded improved performance in its financials. "Royal Exchange group was able to identify and exploit new opportunities which affected significantly its general performance in the financial year under review", he acclaimed Investment income according to him increased marginally to N280.42 million from N254.36 million in 2010. He noted that the slow recovery of the nation's capital market and the

relatively low rates that preva iled in the money market during the year affected the company's ability to maximize investment returns from its quoted equities and cash portfolios. Odogwu also stated that the group achieved a profit before tax and exceptional item of N105.64 million from its operations while an exceptional item of N855.84 million increased the profit before tax to N961.48 million. Shareholders approved a dividend of 4 kobo per 50 kobo ordinary share payable to members whose name appeared in the company's register.

Foreign investors’dominance signals confidence in Nigerian market -NSE From Ngozi Onyeakusi, Lagos


he President, Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) Aliko Dangote have said the continued dominance of foreign investors in Nigerian capital market is a sign of confidence in our market.

Though, he said that the Exchange is not relenting in its efforts to encourage local investors to participate in our market. Dangote, who disclosed this Friday at the Nigerian Stock Exchange Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Lagos said both

foreign and local investors have the right to enter into the market. The ratio of foreign to local participation at the market has dropped from 80:20 to 70:30 signaling return of local investors, the NSE president added.

viation Stakeholders have converged in Lagos to fashion out the industry's way forward. The meeting had at the end reached agreement over the need for the aviation sector to be self-sustaining by generating enough revenue in order to fund the much needed infrastructural development and reduce its reliance on government subventions. The session, chaired by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Aviation, Ms. Anne Nkese Bassey EneIta, endorsed the change to the current wind of automation blowing through the Nigerian Aviation industry as it would ultimately bring the sector up to international standards. Further benefits from the new system, according to the stakeholders, is to ensure huge savings for the industry by stopping revenue leakages as well as substantially increase internal revenue currently generated by the sector. The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Aviation, Ms. Anne Nkese Bassey Ene-Ita, while speaking during the meeting said the aviation ministry was set to take the sector to greater heights but it would require the cooperation and support of all industry stakeholders to make its lofty dreams for the industry a reality. Ms Ene-Ita further stated that her ministry has considered stakeholder engagement key to the success of its plans as with their full buy-in, the industry will in no time be at par with standards in the industry globally. Heads of the ministry's parastatals presents at the event echoed the Permanent Secretary's position, by presenting revenue collection figures which leave much to be desired. They urged that with automation of revenue collection process, there would be an immense benefit therein. First Bank Nigeria Plc has been the banking partner in this process, which the Permanent Secretary said there is no room for panic, as expressed by some people. "We have carefully considered the automation of the collections of all agencies under the ministry and are convinced that both the savings we will make and the projected revenue gains resulting from blocking obvious leakages make this partnership the best for the aviation industry at this time. First Bank's pedigree is well known in Nigeria and we could therefore not have wished for a better banking partner", he said.




International Day of Peace and Nigerian children as agents of change S

eptember 21, every year, is celebrated as the United Nations International Day of Peace all over the world. This year, Nigeria’s Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development marked the day with the theme “Sustainable Peace for Sustainable Future”. Participants included from schools within the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja and there was a peace walk by 200 women. It is not news all over the world that women and children suffer the most in crisis situations and that the youth are the ones used by selfish Nigerians to cause the mayhem and violence that is ravaging the country. The more than 100 school children who converged on the National Centre for Women Development, Abuja, to mark the day demonstrated their desire for a peaceful Nigeria and

Recently, the country joined the rest of the world to celebrate UN International Day of Peace and the Nigerian children as agents of peace were among the key participants at the event organized by the Ministry of Women Affairs to educate the children on the importance of peace and the implications of crisis on the future of the leaders of tomorrow. Maryam Garba Hassan who was there writes. peaceful co-existence among the various ethnic groups in the country especially in the context of the prevailing security challenge that has bedevilled the country in the last 3 years. The children who spoke through past and present leaders of the Nigerian Children’s Parliament, call for the country’s leaders to ensure that peace is brought back into the country and call on the government to

secure the lives of the Nigerian child. They lamented the plight of the children who have become orphans through the various religious and ethnical crises in the country and others who lost their lives in the series of bomb blasts across the country. While calling on children all over the country to see themselves as instruments of peace and not conflict and segregation as the future

Women in a peace rally to mark the 2012 World Peace Day at the Federal Secretariat in Abuja.

belongs to them, the children added that sustainable development is not realistic without peace because peace is a prerequisite and a key component of sustainable future. The former speaker of the Nigerian Children’s Parliament, Idara Thompson, in a paper she presented, titled “The fate of the Nigerian child in crisis situation”, the devastating

effect of armed conflict on education and human rights abuses are keeping the Nigerian children out of schools, especially in Maiduguri and Yobe states where schools have been forced to send children back home because of attacks by the insurgent Boko Haram sect. Back home, the children are made to hawk wares and foodstuffs on the streets by their impoverished parents.

Thompson further explained that as they join the country to strive towards peace, unity in Nigeria, the adults and the leaders should seek means of resolving conflicts positively through dialogue as it is imperative and will ensure peace, security and stability in the country. Some of the children who spoke to Peoples Daily, said poverty is the major cause of frequent use of children and youth as agents to detonate bomb in places and commit heinous crimes in societies. According to them, only when the government is serious about advocating for peace and teach the Nigerian child the importance of peace to national development and to their future and live exemplary life, will the Nigerian child see themselves as agents of change and become agents of peace in the country. The Minister of Women Affairs, Hajiya Zainab Maina, said the involvement of children as key participants in its programme to celebrate this year’s peace day was because children and youth have an enormous stake in the present and future development of Nigeria. It was also an avenue for them to learn about the need for peace, peaceful co-existence and foster the culture of employing dialogue in conflict resolution among them. She lamented that the resources, energy, time and knowledge of more than the 75million of Nigerian population who are under 18years are misdirected towards violence adding that there is powerful opportunity for the country if children can participate

positively in all aspects of sustainable development. Zainab explained that the country’s commitment to peace is not how it tackles conflicts but the question about how we see and build our children, society and foster peace in the long run. According to her, in order to achieve that , children need education, political support, resources, skill and most importantly hope adding that children, peace and development are interlinked as peace enables development which is critical in providing opportunities for young people. George Ossi, Permanent Secretary of Ministry of women Affairs, said children as the bedrock of any society and the leaders of tomorrow, should be the focal point in the strive for peace in the country. He however, implored parents to inculcate peaceful and positive ideals in their children from a tender age as it is necessary because peace will intimately guarantee development that is sustainable with achievable results. The Permanent Secretary of Ministry of education, Alhaji Musa Hassan, said involving the full participation of the youth in the celebration of the day is important because they are agents of change for the future and sources of dynamism for the present adding that youth and women are among the priority groups for action on peace and conflict resolution. However, it is pertinent to note that young people between the ages of 15-25

years make up a large percentage of the world’s population and about 850m are living in developing countries, based on this parameter, young people have the capacity to challenge and change the world. The question here is how can the youth be agents of change in a country where their future as leaders of tomorrow is not secured and in a country where the bad eggs among its citizens use the youth as objects of destruction and in country where corruption has become order of the day and unemployment and poverty is ravaging its citizens?

Minister of Women Affairs, Hajiya Zainab Maina

School children during the 2012 World Peace Day celebrations in Abuja.

Photos: Mahmud Isa




Expectations game in full swing for U.S. presidential debate T

wo days before the first presidential debate of the 2012 campaign, allies of Barack Obama and Mitt Romney sought to influence expectations, with the president describing his debating skills as “just OK.” The Democratic incumbent and the Republican former governor of Massachusetts face off in Denver, Colorado, on Wednesday for their first of three televised debates. Advisers to both men have tried to lower expectations for their respective candidates, and Obama got into the action during a rally in Nevada. “Gov. Romney ... he’s a good debater. I’m just OK,” the president told a crowd of about 11,000 outside a local high school. “What I’m most concerned about is having a serious discussion about what we need to do to keep the country growing and restore security for hard-working Americans. That’s what people are going to be listening for,” he said. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie predicted fellow Republican Romney’s performance

would alter the course of the campaign. Polls show Obama with a slight edge nationally and in critical swing states that will decide the November 6 election. “This whole race is going to turn upside down come Thursday morning,” Christie told CBS’ “Face the Nation.” His comments strayed from the

script of both campaigns, which have tried to play down their own candidate’s chances and talk up their opponent’s, thus making it easier to claim victory or explain a defeat after the face-off. “I think what we need is a big and bold performance on Wednesday night, and that’s what he’s going to give us,” Christie said


of Romney on ABC’s “This Week.” Romney comes into the debate still trying to recover from a leaked video where the former private equity executive described nearly half of Americans as dependent upon government and who view themselves as victims. “We’ve had some missteps, but at the end of the day, the choice is

really clear,” Romney’s vice presidential running mate Paul Ryan told “Fox News Sunday.” Ryan tried to lower the stakes for Romney’s debate performance. “I don’t think any one event is going to make or break this campaign,” he said. Ryan said Romney would give a major foreign policy speech in the days after the debate.

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie

As polls show Romney trailing in Florida, other swing states, Obama edges towards 270 goal


he election is not over, we are told time and time again, and it’s not. There are still some 30-plus days to go, there are still debates to be had. It’s true that Mitt Romney trails President Obama in most key battleground states, but the margins are in single digits. And, lest we forget, it’s not that presidential candidates down in the polls haven’t come from behind to win in the past. President Jimmy Carter and Republican challenger Ronald Reagan were neck and neck for much of September 1980, with Carter even opening a small polling lead at the end of the month and expanding it into October ... until their debate on Oct. 28. And Reagan won in a landslide. Richard Nixon had a 15-point lead over Hubert Humphrey at the end of September of 1968. A month later it was down to eight. On election eve, Nixon was still up, by about two points. He beat Humphrey by about half a point. So there is evidence of voters changing their mind as the finish line approaches. But this year there doesn’t seem to be much movement in the polls, and certainly not towards Romney. Sometime in July, projections had Obama with 247 electoral votes to Romney’s 206, with 270 needed to win. Eighty-five electoral votes — from seven states — were still undecided. Since then, with the possible exception of Wisconsin, Romney has not advanced his cause in any of these states. And he’s probably still trailing in the Badger State as well. Let’s look at those seven tossups

(and we may be adding North Carolina to that list, after having put it in Romney’s totals): Colorado (9 electoral votes): Polls as of Aug. 6 column: Obama +1 2008 results: Obama +9 (54-45) Prez vote, 1988-2008: R-D-R-R-R-D Now: A recent Marist poll, conducted for the Wall Street Journal/NBC News, had Obama leading, 50-45 percent. An earlier Quinnipiac poll, for the New York Times/CBS News, had Obama up by one, 48-47 percent. Ryan Witt of the Examiner writes, “Of the seven polls released from Colorado over the last two weeks, Obama led in six of them. The more recent polls from the last week show Obama up by three-to-six points.” Romney arrived in the state on Sunday, trying to reverse that trend. Florida (29 electoral votes): Polls as of Aug. 6 column: Obama +6 2008 results: Obama +3 (51-48) Prez vote, 1988-2008: R-R-D-R-R-D Now: Romney got some good news today, as a Mason-Dixon poll conducted for the Miami Herald and Tampa Bay Times has the race a dead heat: 48 percent Obama, 47 percent Romney. And for all the concerns about the future of Medicare — and whether the selection of Paul Ryan for V.P. would hurt the GOP cause among seniors — the poll showed Romney holding his own on the issue. Asked who they trust more to keep Medicare financially stable, 49 percent said Obama, 47 percent Romney. Prior to the Mason-Dixon numbers, most polls showed a bigger Obama advantage. Both

Marist and Fox News had Obama up 49-44 percent. Iowa (6 electoral votes): Polls as of Aug. 6 column: Obama +5 2008 results: Obama +9 (54-45) Prez vote, 1988-2008: D-D-D-D-R-D Now: I haven’t seen any objective polling since a midSeptember WSJ/NBC poll had Obama up by eight. (Rasmussen has Romney up by three.) One person told me that Republicans thought Iowa was slipping away; another said the state was far closer than anyone had expected. I can’t get a sense of where things are. Nevada (6 electoral votes): Polls as of Aug. 6 column: Obama +5 2008 results: Obama +12 (55-43) Prez vote, 1988-2008: R-D-D-R-R-D Now: Talking Points Memo’s Poll Tracker has the president leading on the average of 5.7 percent. Politico’s Darren Goode writes that Nevada should be a “ripe pickoff target” for Romney: “The economy has been decimated by the housing crisis; an influx of new and largely politically unaffiliated residents has moved in; and the Republican Party has spent big to organize. The state also has a significant Mormon population.” But, he adds, the state “also has a large Hispanic population hostile to his anti-immigration stands, an active union political base of wellorganized casino workers and Harry Reid’s political machine, all mobilized to help Obama.” New Hampshire (4 electoral votes): Polls as of Aug. 6 column: Obama +4 2008 results: Obama +9 (54-45) Prez vote, 1988-2008: R-D-D-R-D-D Now: Looks to be a true tossup state, with an ever-so-slight edge to

Obama. North Carolina (15 electoral votes): Polls as of Aug. 6 column: Romney +5 2008 results: Obama +1 (50-49) Prez vote, 1988-2008: R-R-R-R-R-D Now: The Tar Heel State was long thought to be returning to the GOP fold this year. But a new poll by the Civitas Institute has Obama leading, 49-45 percent. That’s a bigger lead than a poll from last week, by High Point University, indicated; that one had Obama up 46-43 percent. Whatever the margins, the fact that the two most recent polls in North Carolina have Romney trailing is of great concern to the Republican camp. Ohio (18 electoral votes): Polls as of Aug. 6 column: Obama +6 2008 results: Obama +5 (52-47) Prez vote, 1988-2008: R-D-D-R-R-D Now: Not good news for Romney in a state that every Republican carried en route to the White House. A new University of Cincinnati poll for the Cincinnati Enquirer has Obama ahead 51-46 percent. A recent Marist poll had the president up seven. These numbers are not lost on Romney, who is beginning a bus tour of the state this week. Both sides are pouring a ton of money into Ohio. Virginia (13 electoral votes): Polls as of Aug. 6 column: Even 2008 results: Obama +7 (53-46) Prez vote, 1988-2008: R-R-R-R-R-D Now: This is a state that before 2008 had not voted for a Democratic presidential candidate since Lyndon Johnson in 1964. But new polls show they may once again favor Obama. A Fox News poll had the president up 50-43 percent.

Marist had it 49-44 percent. It was 52-44 percent in the Washington Post poll, and 50-46 in Quinnipiac/ N.Y. Times. One more thing to consider: As Romney tries to turn the corner and hope that events — and debates — will put him into the lead, there is also the specter of early voting that he must contend with. More than 30 states allow voters to cast their ballots in advance of November 6, starting with Iowa, on Sept. 27. (Ohio begins early voting on Oct. 2, North Carolina on the 18th and Nevada on the 20th.) If the estimates are correct, that close to 40 percent of all voters may commit in advance, the Romney strategy of hoping for a mid-to-late October turnaround could be in jeopardy. Electoral Vote Contest: Predict how many electoral votes President Obama and Mitt Romney get on Nov. 6, and the person who comes the closest wins a Political Junkie tshirt! Make sure to include your name and address and mail to: Deadline is Tuesday, Oct. 2 — the day before the first debate. In case of a tie, the earliest entry wins. Meet the Challengers: I initiated this feature back in 2006, by which I asked for you to send in campaign buttons for candidates for the Senate, House and governor. My end of the bargain — aside from satisfying my button craze, which is bordering on the unhealthy — would be to feature the candidates in a “meet the challenger” section of the column. I’m resuming it next week. Send your 2012 buttons to me at 635 Massachusetts Ave., N.W., Washington, D.C., 20001.



Snoring during pregnancy linked to high blood pressure and preeclampsia W omen who begin snoring during pregnancy are at strong risk of developing a serious complication, according to researchers from the University of Michigan. The study of more than 1,700 women found around a quarter of them started snoring while pregnant. They had double the risk for high blood pressure compared to women who didn’t snore. This pregnancy complication can develop into eclampsia if left untreated, which is a life-threatening type of seizure. Lead author, Dr Louise O’Brien, said: ‘We found that frequent snoring was playing a role in high blood pressure problems, even after we had accounted for other known risk factors. ‘And we already know that high blood pressure in pregnancy, particularly preeclampsia, is associated with smaller babies, higher risks of pre-term birth or babies ending up in the ICU.’ The study, published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, showed an association rather than a causal

link. However, should it be shown, the researchers estimated around 19 per cent of pregnancy-related high blood pressure cases, and 11 per cent of preeclampsia cases could be helped by treating snoring. Pregnant women can be treated for sleep-disordered breathing using CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure). It involves a machine, worn during sleep, that uses mild air pressure to keep the airways open. It is possible that use of CPAP may decrease high blood pressure in pregnant women, and O’Brien has such a study currently underway to test this hypothesis. Dr O’Brien said: ‘Hypertensive disorders of pregnancy are a leading global cause of maternal and infant deaths and cost billions of dollars annually to treat. ‘By asking pregnant women about snoring, especially in those with high blood pressure already, obstetric healthcare providers could identify women at high risk for sleepdisordered breathing and intervene during the pregnancy. This could result in

As association was found between snoring more than three times a week and high blood pressure in pregnant women. better outcomes for mother and baby.’ It follows another study earlier this month from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, which found obese women who suffered

obstructive sleep apnoea during pregnancy were more likely to have babies who had health problems. They found babies of mothers with the breathing disorder had a greater risk of needing

neonatal intensive care than unaffected overweight mothers. The study also found OSA was also associated with higher rates of pre-eclampsia in the overweight women. Source:

Feeling stressed out tied to heart disease risk P

eople who report feeling high levels of stress in their daily lives are more likely to develop heart disease than those who don’t experience as much stress, according to a new review of earlier studies. While the finding isn’t surprising, the review gives a clearer picture of the relevant research to date. “Everybody knows that stress is bad for your heart... but the evidence has been scattered out over the years,” said Donald Edmundson, a professor at Columbia University Medical Center and one of the authors of the study. Starting with a large British study from the 1960s that found an increased heart disease risk among poor people, researchers have linked stress to poor heart health. And just this year, a study of 200,000 people in Europe showed that those who have stressful jobs are more likely to receive a diagnosis of heart disease than people whose jobs are less demanding and offer more freedom (see Reuters report of September 14, 2012). To get a better grasp of what the research has had to say about people’s own perception of stress and their heart disease risk, Edmundson and his colleagues gathered the results of six large studies on the topic. Nearly 118,000 people participated in the studies, which surveyed the participants about the stress in their lives.

Some studies used a scale of how frequently or how severely the people felt stressed out, while others used a simple yes or no response to the question of whether someone had felt stressed. At the beginning of the studies, none of the participants had been diagnosed with heart disease.

Over follow-up periods anywhere from three to 21 years - the researchers tracked how many of those surveyed developed coronary heart disease, a condition in which the heart’s arteries narrow due to cholesterol-rich deposits. Eventually, the buildups can snag the blood flow to the heart and cause heart attacks.

According to the National Institutes of Health, coronary heart disease is the number one killer of men and women in the U.S., with more than 400,000 people dying from the condition each year. Taken together, the studies found that people who felt stressed were 27 percent more likely later to be diagnosed with coronary

Feeling stressed out? You are at risk of heart disease

heart disease, be hospitalized with the condition, or die from it. Edmundson said the rise in heart disease risk related to stress is equivalent to smoking five cigarettes a day. However, there is no ironclad proof that stress is to blame for the heart problems. One possible explanation is that stress raises the blood levels of hormones that can be take a toll on the heart. In addition, people who are stressed might behave in ways that are less healthy, “like smoking, unhealthy dietary choices, physical inactivity etc. These mechanisms usually interact, making the situation much more complicated,” said Dr. Demosthenes Panagiotakos, a professor at Harokopio University of Athens, who was not involved in the study. In an email to Reuters Health, Panagiotakos said Edmundson’s review supports the link between stress and heart disease, “however, this is based only on six relevant studies, a fact that makes the causal inference very difficult.” Edmundson said people can take steps to reduce their stress, such as exercise, yoga and meditation. “Good old-fashioned exercise, good old-fashioned stress reduction techniques, are probably - the study hasn’t been done yet - but are probably going to be good for healthy people to offset their risk of heart disease going forward,” he said. Source:



Who wants Taraba Deputy Governor impeached?


ecently former Minister for Defense and elder statesman, General Theophilus Danjuma, at a pubic function lamented the subjugation of state Assemblies and Judiciary by state governors when he said “The most stifling concentration of power is not in the central but at the state level. The governors, almost all the governors, are sole administrators. The first thing they do when they get to power is to ‘pocket’ the state Houses of Assembly, neutralize the judiciary and abolish the local government.” By the time the elderstatesman was making the comment, he was probably unaware of the political scenario playing out in his home state, Taraba. Danjuma is from Taraba State, where its Governor Danbaba Suntai has mandated its House of Assembly to commence the impeachment of its Deputy, Alhaji Sani Abubakar Danladi. It began early last year when Suntai allegedly declared at one of the State Executive Council meetings in Government House that he had lost confidence in most of his principal officers, including his deputy. Since then, Governor Suntai was said to have severally accused his deputy of holding clandestine meetings with his political opponents in the state in Abuja and of lately Saudi Arabia where he performed lesser Hajj. Suntai was allegedly to have told his deputy that he will personally supervise his impeachment after accusing him that he (Sani Abubakar), the PDP national Chairman, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, Senator Jummai Aisha Alhassan, Senator Abubakar Tutare and Abdulmumini Vaki, past state chairman of PDP, held another meeting in Abuja and resolved to kill him [Suntai] so that his deputy could succeed him. Few days after the allegation, the Taraba State House of Assembly initiated impeachment process against Danlandi after a motion to that effect was moved in the assembly by the Deputy Speaker, Abel Peter Diah. The motion was signed by 21 out of 23 members in the state legislative body. The lawmakers, who accused the deputy governor of using his office to acquire a business venture worth billions of naira, resolved to give him a two-week ultimatum to respond to allegations or face removal from office. In the motion, Danladi was accused of diverting a Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) project to his private school, Yagai Academy, which houses his other business ventures like Yagai

Taraba state Deputy Governor, Alhaji Sani Abubakar Danladi, has been in the eye of the storm recently with the state Assembly determined to get him out of office. Our Correspondent, Ayodele Samuel, in this piece examines the intrigues and politics behind the Deputy Governor’s travails and asks ‘who wants Danladi impeached?’

Alhaji Sani Abubakar Danladi Water, Yagai Printing Press and Yagai Restaurant. The state lawmakers said locating the MDG ICT Centre and the sinking of motorized boreholes in Yagai Academy are gross misconduct as the school remains a private venture of the deputy governor and the facilities sited there could not be accessed by the public. They also alleged that Danladi used his influence to acquire “a large expanse of land in Jalingo on which he built Yagai Academy (together with all other multi million naira business ventures sited therein like Yagai Water, Yagai Printing Press and Yagai Restaurant), an institution which is worth about a billion naira alleging that his total emoluments as a deputy governor could not justify such investments. The lawmakers therefore alleged that and in doing this, the Deputy Governor has not only breached the code of conduct for public office holders which requires that he shows transparency in the act of governance. He was also accused of undue interference in the postings and transfers of indigenes of his local government area, Karim Lamido, and has been working against the interests of other stakeholders of the local government area. Responding to the lawmakers’ allegations, Danladi said the Yagai Cybercafe was an initiative of a member of the House of Representatives and the present Chief Whip of the Green Chamber, Ishaka Bawa, who is representing the Wukari/Ibi federal

Istifanus Gbana constituency. He said the project was carried out by MDGs projects for Yagai Academy and that the Yagai Academy did not request or solicit for either in writing or orally. According to him, the projects have MDGs Logo to indicate that it is the contribution of the MDG to the development of the school. He insisted that Yagai as a profit making body could sink a borehole from its profits. He added that the contract for solar light at Yagai and street light were not awarded by

his office adding that all the contracts were awarded by the state government after being subjected to due process. He also said his office was not assigned the responsibility of monitoring and supervising the contract and he could not be held responsible for the diversion of such projects. The Deputy Governor also presented a document to show how he acquired and built the Yagai Academy from various individuals and evidence of a bank loan from the Zenith and First Bank where he

Governor Danbaba Danfulani Suntai

collected facilities to develop the institution. He pleaded with the members of the House of Assembly to be objective in their deliberations and promised to be more committed to the party and the people of the state. However political stakeholders believe that there were political undertones to all the allegations and counter- allegations alleging that the lawmakers are merely doing a hatchet job for the governor to remove his deputy. They are wondering how a deputy governor would perform his duties without active support of his principals even as they wondered how the Taraba deputy governor got the MDGs ICT Centre cited inside his Academy in the first place. They are equally at a loss at who approved the buildings at the academy just as they are at a loss at who signed the Certificate of Occupancy (C of O) for the Yagai Academy. The Speaker of Taraba state House of Assembly, Istifanus Gbana, at a solidarity rally in support of the impeachment move staged by PDP supporters in the six local government that made up the northern zone with majority of the people from Dalandi’s hometown Karim Lamido, restated the house commitment to impeach embattled Dalandi. Gbana denied allegations that house was being remotely controlled by the governor insisting that the House was merely carrying out its constitutional responsibilities to oversight the executive and checkmate its excesses. Also, the chairman of the House Committee on Information, Mr. Daniel Ishaya Gani, has said the impeachment process was not initiated by forces outside legislative chamber, saying members were genuinely concerned about the ‘gross misconduct’of the deputy governor. Special Adviser to the Governor on Media, Istifanus Giwa, however refused to respond to question posed to him but also reinstated that the matter is purely legislative. However the state Commissioner of Information Emmanuel Bello argued said “Governor Suntai doesn’t meddle in what legislators are doing. He is a firm believer in the rule of law and separation of powers. This is purely a legislative matter. So count him out of this.” But political watchers and indeed, residents of the state are eagerly waiting to see the end of the ‘impeachment’ process.



ACN plans to manipulate electorates with money, LP alleges From Ayodele Samuel, Lagos


he Labour Party in Ondo state has alerted on alleged plans by the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) to buy the peoples votes by doling out lots of money to the electorate in their desperation to win the October 20, governorship election. According to the LP, this was one the highlights of a meeting by the ACN leaders at a meeting held on Saturday at Fountain Hotel, Ado Ekiti, the capital of Ekiti State. The hotel, it alleged, is owned by a chieftain of the party who is a current political office holder in the state and is now the training camp for thugs and other clandestine activities that would be imported into Ondo state by the party, LP alleged. According to the LP Publicity Secretary, Mr Femi Okunjemiruwa, the exercise codenamed “Operation Capture Ondo state” which is being coordinated by a South West governor had earmarked Two Million, Five Hundred Thousand naira (N2.5m) to each of the 203 wards in the state for the massive buying of voters cards from the electorate at the initial stage. The money would be increased as the need arises in the next few days as the election draws near. Okunjemiruwa added “Indeed, it was with part of this money that the party has deployed people out in the state to mop up voters cards but this is no longer working out as planned, owing to our strident cries to the people coupled with the massive voters’ education going on in the State. It is equally gratifying to commend the law enforcement agencies for arresting some members of the ACN who were buying voters cards and charging them to court. “The aim of this war chest by

the ACN is to deploy people who would embark on house to house lobbying of people with amount ranging between N5, 000 to N10, 000 or more depending on the bargaining power of the person to be so hoodwinked. “This is coming on the heels of the realisation that in a free and fair election, they would lose their deposits in Ondo state due to the performance of the Dr Olusegun Mimiko led government in the State. Again since we blew the lid on their plans to induce some officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to rig the election, this now appears a mirage, they have

resorted to their damned ‘operation see and buy’ over the electorate in Ondo State”. It would be recalled that only last week, the LP blew the open plans by the ACN to unleash maximum terror on Ondo state and turn it into a theatre of war ahead of the October 20 election. The LP had alleged that the opposition party had procured N200m worth of arms and ammunition with which various attacks are intended to be unleashed on the state to prevent a conducive atmosphere for the election due to hold in the next three weeks. It had urged the law

enforcement agents to, as a matter of urgency, investigate the activities of the party and its agents who are planning to unleash terror on the state; a plan which it noted are being coordinated from Ado Ekiti and Osogbo. Amongst others, the LP said as part of the plans to effect this, arrangements had been concluded by the opposition party to bring to the state ahead of the October 20 election date one hundred sophisticated guns and the accompanied ammunition as well as bullet proofs which the organisation claimed the ACN had already procured.

R-L: Bauchi state Deputy Governor, Alhaji Sagir Saleh, sympathising with Bauchi state PDP Organising Secretary, Alhaji Mohammed Sade, after his release by unknown gunmen, yesterday in Bauchi. Photo: NAN

2015: PDP vows to capture Borno and Yobe From Ahmed Kaigama, Bauchi


he National Vice chairman of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) North East, Senator Lawal Girgir, has vowed to capture the two states bei8ng controlled by the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) in the zone in 2015. Girgir stated this at the official commissioning of the PDP North

– East Zonal office in Bauchi at the weekend. He said “I am optimistic with the determination and commitment of the leadership of the party that the party is going to take away the two ANPP controlled states, Yobe and Borno” Girgir, who is from Yobe State, commended the Bauchi state, Isa Yuguda, governor for providing the office accommodation in the

state He, however, commiserated with Yuguda over the recent attack on the residence of the former Secretary to Government of the Federation, Alhaji Aminu Saleh, by gunmen which led to the death of two policemen. The Publicity Secretary of the party North East Alhaji Al Amin Sani Mohammed described the gesture by the

Bauchi state governor as a welcome development. According to him, the office accommodation will facilitate the party activities in the region, Mohammed said the provision of PDP North East Zonal office accommodation will make the leadership of the party to swing into action that will lead to the progress of the party.

52nd anniversary: Nigeria bedeviled with security challenges, says Kwara Speaker From Olanrewaju Lawal, Ilorin


s Nigeria marks her 52nd Independence Anniversary, the Speaker of Kwara state House of Assembly, Barrister Rasak Atunwa has noted that the greatest challenge facing the nation today is that of insecurity. The Speaker who stated this in

llorin recently Nigerians should use the occasion for sober reflection on issues impeding the Political and Socio –economic emancipation of the Country. Atunwa in a statement by his Special Assistant on Media and Public Affairs, Abdul-Rahman Sanni stated “the nation is currently bedeviled with security challenges which call for collective efforts in

salvaging the nation out of her current travail.” He expressed delight that Nigeria, in spite of her pyramid of problems, maintains her indivisible entity and advised the people to always demonstrate high sense of patriotism by putting national interest above other considerations to ensure accelerated political and socio-economic

transformation of the Country. Atunwa, who admonished Nigerians to avoid acts capable of derailing the nation’s democratic practice, said the state House of Assembly under his leadership would continue to be responsive to the yearnings of the people of the state by enacting people friendly laws and create platform for good governance in Kwara state.

Hajj deportation: Baraje, others want peaceful resolution with Saudi authorities From Olanrewaju Lawal, Ilorin


ormer Acting National Chairman of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Kawu Baraje and Muslims Media Watch have cautioned the government to handle the recent deportation of the nation’s women pilgrims to Saudi Arabia to handle the matter cautiously. Baraje in his reaction to the development said the matter was being resolved and urged Nigerians, particularly the pilgrims, to be patient and not overheat the situation. The PDP chieftain stressed the need for harmonious relationship between the government and workers by always engaging in dialogue in solving labour matters stressing that Nigerians should remain hopeful of a better nation. Also the coordinator of Muslim Media Watch Group, Alhaji Ibrahim Abdullahi, has condemned the deportation of Nigeria’s intending female pilgrims by the Saudi Arabia authorities. The coordinator of the group, in a statement in Ilorin yesterday advised the Saudi authorities to henceforth carry along stakeholders in future Hajj opeAbdullahi noted that Nigerian female pilgrims had been performing the holy pilgrimage to Mecca for years without the condition that their family members must accompany them to the holy land. “For Saudi authorities to bang such a policy on the Nigerian pilgrims when Hajj airlift operation has started and to have stepped further to the extent of detaining and repatriating them after days of stay at Jeddah and Medina International Airports, is therefore condemnable”, Abdullahi stated. Explaining that Allah abhors Muslims who create hardship for fellow human being, Abdullahi said “what Saudi government should have done is to let the National Hajj Commission (NAHCON) know of their determination to enforce the law of Mahram on Hajj pilgrims from this year early enough for Nigerian states pilgrims welfare boards to educate their pilgrims so as to comply accordingly”. He added, “while we are not denying the fact that that policy is in the line with the Sunnah (i.e. Tradition of the Holy Prophet), we abhor embarrassment and discomfort created for our people at the mainstream of Hajj operation; a situation that portrays the Saudi authorities as insensitive to the plight of poor pilgrims that are going for pure religious duty. “The chairman of National Hajj Commission (NAHCON), Mall. Muhammad Musa Bello, has said that the issue of male pilgrims accompanying all female pilgrims from Nigeria was not part of Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed with Saudi government for this year’s Hajj,” he said.



16th Anniversary of Nassarawa state: Doma sues for peace By Umar Muhammad Puma


he immediate past governor of Nasarawa state, Alh. Aliyu AkweDoma, has urged the people of Nassarawa state to unite and work in harmony with other tribes in the country in order to develop the state in particular and the nation in general. The former governor made the assertion in his good will message on the occasion of the 16th anniversary of the creation of Nasarawa state and 52nd independence anniversary of Nigeria. Akwe-Doma said that for the country to continue to exist as a corporate entity, all ethnic groups must accept one another as members of one family. The former governor however enjoined the different ethnic groups in the state and in Diaspora to strive and face the challenges of modern Nigeria through education as well as fully participating in the political development of the country. Doma said his people should not sit on the fence, but should be active players in the evolution of a modern Nigeria. He further challenged the people within and in the Diaspora to come back home and contribute meaningfully to the socio economic development of the state and indeed Nigeria. According to him, "it is therefore pertinent to urge all our people to be wary of our enemies and detractors who do not wish us well". "It should be noted that such people are busy deploying various tactics and intrigues to distort the dreams of our founding fathers and sow seeds of discord and animosity where none existed." He noted with concern that the people of the state should not allow those detractors to succeed. The former governor however charged the people of the state to put in their best in armoring against these evil machinations of enemies just as he asserted that the Nassarawa people's aspiration include their unity and progress for them to remain steadfast and committed to the collective aspirations upon which the states was founded. Doma enjoined Nigerians to continue to learn to tolerate one another as well as ensure peace and unity in the country. He therefore stressed that peace remains veritable tool for national development while urging all Nigerians to continue to pray for the progress of the country.

New Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) North East Zonal Secretariat commissioned by Bauchi state Deputy Governor, Alhaji Sagir Saleh, recently in Bauchi.

Insecurity: Group canvasses support for Niger governor From Agaju Madugba, Kaduna


aduna-based civil society organization, Coalition for Good Governance and Probity, has called on the Federal Government to support the initiative of Chairman of the Northern States Governors Forum (NSGF), Dr. Muazu Babangida Aliyu, who is also the Governor of Niger state, towards ending the current security challenges in the north. In a statement signed by the Chairman and Secretary of the Coalition, Abdullahi Suleiman and Mrs. Amina Ibrahim respectively, the Coalition said it was confident

that given the right support, the committee would bring about the needed peace and security in the north. The Coalition commended Aliyu for constituting the committee, pointing out that the move shows that he is worthy of the position he currently occupies. The statement however condemned what it described as subtle campaign of calumny against the governor by sponsored agents parading as members of the opposition. The statement read “The Coalition for Good Governance and Probity condemns the sponsored attack against the Chief Servant of

Niger state, Dr. Muazu Babangida Aliyu, by hired agents masquerading as members of the opposition in Niger state. “The allegations against Governor Babangida Aliyu are nothing but a 2015 political mischief by some persons who feel threatened by his rising political profile and his outspokenness on national issues. “The coalition supports the efforts of the governor who is the Chairman of the Northern States Governors Forum for inaugurating the Ambassador Zakari Ibrahim committee on peace in northern Nigeria. “Governor Aliyu has proven to

Zaria CPC members want deputy chairman removed From Agaju Madugba, Kaduna


undreds of Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) members from Zaria local government stormed the party’s headquarters recently demanding the removal of the Deputy Chairman, Alhaji Bashir Saidu, over alleged anti-party

activities. In a petition addressed to the CPC National Chairman and signed by the Zaria Local Government Chairman, Hussaini Central, and the Secretary, Alhaji Yushau Mohammed, the protesters urged the leadership to take disciplinary action against Saidu. The petition listed some of the

allegations to include breach of CPC constitution and anti-party activities even as they contended further that Saidu should be held responsible for the party’s loss to the PDP during the recent byeelection for a vacant seat at the Kaduna House of Assembly. The petition reads, “We, members of CPC comprising 13


wara state governor, Alhaji Abdulfatah Ahmed, has said that the independence nation’s 52nd anniversary calls for sober reflection. Ahmed in his anniversary message in Ilorin yesterday noted that the country would have disintegrated

wards in Zaria local government came together and decided to suspend Alhaji Bashir with immediate effect and he should be directed to hand over all the party’s property in his care to the party. We hope appropriate actions will be taken against Bashir in order bring back the lost glory of our party.”

National burden weighs Jonathan down, says Jang From Nankpah Bwakan, Jos


lateau State Governor Da Jonah Jang yesterday disclosed that President Goodluck Jonathan is carrying heavy national weight on his shoulder and such is

beginning to weigh him down. The governor however appealed to the people to use the occasion of the celebration of the nation’s 52nd independence anniversary celebration to pray for the President. According to him, the President needs the grace of

God to be able to move the nation forward but said that the country has witnessed serious transformation right from 1960 to date. Jang however regretted that corruption, immorality and other negative social vices have eaten deep

52nd Anniversary: Time for sober reflections- Gov Ahmed From Olanrewaju Lawal, Ilorin

be worthy of his position and responsibility as a statesman and advocate of peace. The coalition is of the belief that the committee is capable of ending the Muslim/ Christian violence in northern Nigeria and the insurgence that is going on in the north at the moment. “The coalition calls on the Federal Government to support the efforts of Governor Babangida Aliyu in trying to find a lasting solution to the problem of violence in Nigeria. We also call on other detractors in Niger state now used by political forces from outside of the state to end their mischief in the best interest of the north in particular and Nigeria in general.”

due to political and religious violence but for prayers and God’s favour. He said “We must also celebrate the resilience of our country which has survived a civil war, coups d’état, violent political upheavals, threats to our corporate existence and natural disasters. Governor Ahmed who was represented at the occasion by his

Deputy, Elder Peter YashIkira added “we must dwell on the fact that Nigeria is a land of hope with enormous potential for greatness. Nigerians have demonstrated boundless capacity for excellence and innovativeness as witnessed by landmarks attained by our people at home and abroad in all spheres on human endeavor.”

Governor Ahmed who expressed optimism that Nigeria would continue to wax stronger on economy said its natural resources, coupled with its vast human capital, are the seeds with which “ we will cultivate unprecedented economic transformation for the benefit of the current and future generations of Nigerians.”

into the fabrics of the country claiming that God has destined that Plateau state would be a shining light but some people are bent on darkening the shining light of the state. The Director of Press and Public Affairs to Jang, Mr. James Mannok in a press statement urged Nigerians not to dwell on the negative side but the positive strides the country has recorded in the last 52 years of independence. The statement said “We are on a journey which also comes with challenges but we should remain optimistic because we will overcome and come out stronger if we do away with vices like corruption, immorality, sectionalism and unpatriotic traits among others”.



PDP, an ‘internal colonialist,’ says ACN From Ayodele Samuel, Lagos


he Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) yesterday referred to the People Democratic Party (PDP) as an internal colonialist which had wiped off all the gains of the nation’s independence from British colonialists in 1960. This is coming as the party urged the people to guide their loins to fight for true independence from the ruling party. The opposition party in a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, on the occasion of the nation’s 52nd independence anniversary yesterday said that incompetent leadership, bad governance, massive corruption and lack of patriotism by successive administrations have made Nigerians worse today than they were shortly after independence. “A country that offered so much hopes and possibilities for its citizens at independence has today become a land of suffering, insecurity and near hopelessness, no thanks to visionless leaders who have failed to lead a wellendowed nation to harness the talents of its vibrant, energetic and resilient people. The result is what we have today: a country exhibiting all the characteristics of a failed state,’’ it said. ACN however urged Nigerians to keep hope alive and to remember that they hold all the aces in securing their independence from the rapacious, thieving and bumbling class of people masquerading as leaders. The party said while it would be unfair to blame the current leadership of the country for all the woes of post-independence Nigeria, the truth remained that the current administration has proved as incompetent and visionless as its predecessors in its fickle efforts to take

Nigeria to the promised land. “About 13 years after the PDP took over the reins of power in Nigeria, the people have been left to gnash their teeth and rue lost hopes and opportunities. Over two years of President Goodluck Jonathan being in charge, it has been a season of cluelessness and the country has been forlorn of hope. “Therefore, we are saying to the good people of Nigeria: Use your power to do away with a party and government that have only enriched their ranks and impoverished the people; that celebrate growth without development and hail so-called jobcreating projects without jobs; and a party and government that tout a two-week wonder of rainfall-induced power stability as evidence of a

successful power sector reform. “Some 52 years after independence, it is time for Nigerians to say NO to a party and government that say the manufacturing environment is improving when factories are either shutting down or functioning far below installed capacity; a party and government presiding over a leading oilproducing nation in which its people are daily searching for kerosene, petrol and diesel; a party and government that say they are winning the war against security at a time a State Commissioner escorted by armed police can be kidnapped, perhaps by ransom seekers; a party and government that say security is improving but are cowering behind the walls of a fortified presidential villa

to mark independence anniversary for the second year running. “It is time for Nigerians to seek a credible alternative to a party and government that say they are winning the war against corruption when the worst case of corruption in the country’s history, the stealing of billions of naira in the name of fuel subsidy, has yet to be conclusively tackled. “That alternative exists in the party and governments that have given the people of Lagos, Edo, Ekiti, Osun, Oyo and Ogun states reasons not to see democracy as a failed system of governance, and it is time for Nigerians to embrace this alternative to avoid setting the nation on the path to another 52 years of paper independence,’’ ACN said.

L-R: Senate President, David Mark, receiving an award from the leader of ECOWAS Women Parliament, Mrs. Haddy Nyany, during their visit to the Senate president, recently in Abuja. Photo: Mahmud Isa

Deputy Speaker canvasses global dev’t, religious tolerance By Lawrence Olaoye


eputy Speaker of House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha, has called on parliaments across the world to promote democracy, wealth creation, poverty reduction, religious tolerance in their various countries to foster global development options. In a press statement released on his behalf in Abuja signed by the Special Assistant Media and Public

Affairs to the Deputy Speaker, Dr. Austin Uganwa, Ihedioha in a key note address delivered in Rome at a world conference on e-parliament and celebration of World Democracy Day said “As a branch of government responsible for approving budgets , we should exercise our power of appropriation in support of policies and programmes that are geared towards tackling the basic conditions that retard development.”

He advised participants to draw from the fresh perspectives and ideas offered by the conference to develop their e-parliament to strengthen good governance and democratic values in their countries. The Deputy Speaker expressed the commitment of Nigerian parliament towards the promotion of democracy, rule of law, peaceful co-existence of people across the globe, religious tolerance and development-based policies.

Condemning the growing spate of terrorism in the world, Ihedioha informed the gathering that the Nigerian Parliament recently enacted Terrorism (Prevention) Act that provides for stiff penalties to help scale down the incidence. He urged the international community to explore the abundant human, material resources and huge market potentials evident in Nigeria to embark on direct foreign investment in the country.

Dariye reconciles with Jang From Nankpah Bwakan, Jos


ormer governor of Plateau state and a serving Senator, Joshua Dariye yesterday reconciled with his successor, Governor Jonah Jang to commemorate the nation’s 52nd anniversary in Jos. The ground for the reconciliation was the Government House Chapel of Grace which was built by Dariye’s administration though dogged with serious controversies. Pastor Chidieber Harry, the Chaplain of the chapel commended Dariye for building the chapel and asked the congregation, which Jang was part of, to applaud Dariye for initiating the project. The Chaplain reconciled Jang and Dariye with the supporters of both parties happy with the reconciliation service. Shortly after the reconciliation, Senator Dariye said “I think a lot of people make mistakes; I don’t have problem with Governor Jang; I have been coming here when there are special events, I was here when his son wedded and I will be frequent. We built this chapel as a place for worship God. Plateau has been subjected to a lot of events, let us put this as a memorial and we may not be here forever and generation coming will say it was God that brought us out”. Dariye further confessed “I wasn’t a perfect governor; I made my mistakes and the mercy of God kept me and that was why when I was going for my Senatorial election, ‘it was Dariye the grace of God.’ Therefore, to my successor I have every reason to support him because I have been here. I have no reason to fight the governor and he has no reason to fight me because what we have is Plateau project”. Dariye stated further “Chief Solomon Lar, who is our founding father, is here and I’m sure if the invitation to Tapgun and even Atukum they will be here too and in most cases, the people in protocol messed him up. A lot of sycophants existed during my time and they are still existing, but a good leader should go above that small circle and be leader for all”. On his part, Jang described the alter of the chapel as the alter of the state saying he had instructed all politicians and heads of the church in the state, especially the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) to gather here from time to time to worship God for His protection and mercy on Plateau state. He disclosed that “When I walked into here today, I felt the holy spirit upon me the way I never felt it”.

At 52, Nigeria has nothing to celebrate, says Al-makura From Ali Abare Abubakar, Lafia


overnor Umaru Tanko Al-makura of Nasarawa state has said that 52 years after attaining independence, Nigeria has nothing to celebrate noting that the nation is still struggling with a plethora of development challenges.

Al-makura who made the declaration at the 52nd independence anniversary of the country and 16th anniversary of his state lamented “We are still fighting corruption, instead of upholding transparency; our democracy still fledgling when it should have been a model after half a century of independence.”

While blaming lack of good leadership for the poor state of the nation, Al-makura further lamented that 16 years after the creation of Nasarawa state, the desire of the people for “self determination, economic empowerment and social cohesion, are still a far cry away.” He blamed the apparent loss of

confidence by the people on government following the decay in infrastructure, poverty, and collapse in healthcare system, poor educational facilities, low morale in public service and stunted development. The governor stated that at the inception of the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC)’s administration in the state, driven

by the zeal to better the lots of the common people, the government embarked on projects it considered critical. These according to him include constructions of network of roads in Lafia, the state capital, and other urban centres, improvement of power and water supply among others.



Say what?

Source: Reader's Digest

FACTS * One of Hewlett Packard's first ideas was an automatic urinal flusher. * Eric Clapton did not play the very famous first riff on the song "Layla". That was Duane Allman. Clapton comes in later.

Quick CrossWord (39) ACROSS

1 Palpitate (5) 5 Speedy (5) * The two-foot long bird called a Kea that lives in New Zealand likes to eat the strips of rubber around 7 On the ocean (2,3) car windows. 8 Upper limb (3) * The province of Alberta, Canada is completely free of rats. 9 American cafe (5) 10 __ Orton, playwright (3) * Illinois has the most personalized license plates of any state. 12 Eagle’s home (5) Source: Weird facts 13 Science of numbers (5) PHOTO OF THE DAY 14 Overly sentimental (5) * There are more cars in Southern California than there are cows in India.

DOWN 1 Durable timber (4) 2 House-dweller (8) 3 Idiotic (9) 4 Dutch cheese (4) 6 Small boiled sweet (4-4) 10 Leap (4) 11 Erotic (4)

Yesterday’s answer

A brave zookeeper, Jeff Harwell, has taken a real leap of faith - into a swimming pool with a fearsome tiger. Jeff Harwell dived into the water closely followed by 450lb Bengal tiger Akasha to the astonishment of visitors, at Africa Wildlife Park at Camp Verde in Arizona, United States. Source:

. . . putting the people first



Gibraltar join UEFA on probation


he tiny British colony of Gibraltar was admitted as a provisional member of European football's governing body UEFA yesterday following a decision by the executive committee meeting in St Petersburg. A decision on whether to grant full membership to the colony, which has a population of only 28 000, and allow it to become Uefa's 54th member will be taken by the full Congress in London next May. Gibraltar's case has been strengthened by a Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) ruling that Uefa has to consider its membership. Spain still claims sovereignty over Gibraltar after it was ceded to Britain under the 1713 Treaty of Utrecht. An edict from the Consejo Superior de Deportes to all sports federations in Spain says they should block any membership application

Newcastle to end Virgin Money deal


ewcastle said the club will announce a new shirt sponsor in the coming weeks after ending their deal with Virgin Money a year early. The bank will remain a sponsor of the Premier League team until the end of this season but Newcastle have decided not to take up the option of a second 12 months. Newcastle managing director Derek Llambias says "we will be announcing a new sponsorship partner shortly which represents an excellent commercial deal for both parties."


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QUO TABLE Q UO TE UOT QUO UOTE Agreed, the leader matters but he cannot change things alone. All of us Nigerians must work together to rebuild our nation. Our men and women will change things in this country. - President Goodluck Jonathan on clloective leadership

Deportation of Nigerian pilgrims: The world is teaching us a lesson O

ther nations will continue to teach Nigeria basic lessons in civilization and governance so long as its leaders fail to live up to their responsibility of ensuring that the rule of law is entrenched in our society. Three things have happened of recent in this regard. After the corrupt Nigerian judicial system gave a clean bill of health to James Ibori, a former state governor, a powerful adviser to former President Umaru Yar'adua and the biggest financier of the ruling PDP in the 2007 elections, British courts found him guilty of the same corruption charges and sent him straight to jail. Our judges should bury their heads in shame. Some Niger Delta youth that were on his payroll even threatened to attack British oil interests in the Niger Delta, proving further that Nigeria is a jungle where thieves and cannibals go about free and celebrated as leaders. South Africa denied some Nigerian passengers entry when it discovered that their claim to having been vaccinated against yellow fever was false. When a Nigerian presents a yellow card at any airport in the world, the general perception is that it is false. And, truly, it is except in few cases. Nigerians, as usual, complained. The third case is the recent deportation of 1,226 female Nigerian Muslim pilgrims from Jeddah for the failure of each to comply with the requirement of the company of a mahram - a person who is prohibited, under shariah law, from marrying the woman. Space is made on the visa form and card for the name of the mahram but Nigerian pilgrim officials always play "419" by writing false names on the card and presenting them to the Saudi embassy for approval. The embassy has no option but to issue the visa. When the female pilgrim arrives Jeddah there would be nobody answering the false name she provided in her visa. During the lesser hajj, female pilgrims concoct what is called "mijin visa", or visa husband, to get around the rule. This is just any man the woman picks among pilgrims on the trip. Nigerians! The Saudis have been overlooking this perfidy for years. This year they decided to

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King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia

put an end to the nonsense. Nigerians, again, complained. The President sent a delegation to plead with the Saudi authorities. No one cared to listen. In spite of the appeals, the pilgrims who were detained in a cage like kangaroos under subhuman conditions were eventually deported back to the

jungle. Officials of the National Hajj Commission and the state Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Boards, like our corrupt judges, should bury their heads in shame. They have brought unnecessary hardships on the female pilgrims and disgraced the nation in no small measure. But they are not alone. They are just like numerous other


Nigerian officials at various levels of government: nobody feels that it is imperative to apply the rules. Their perception of office is that it is a shop for making profit. Against these officials should our anger be directed, not against the Kingdom that is simply applying its laws. This, however, I understand, is not the popular reaction of Nigerians to the crisis. Now that we have been hurt by the deportation of Nigerian pilgrims, our officials will finally start to pay attention to the provisions of the law. But only now it is after the damage has been done to the pilgrims and to our image. The world has realized that the only way to get us know that laws are important in the affairs of any nation is to strictly apply them on us. If we have destroyed our country by turning away from the rule of law, they are telling us that other nations are not that primitive. They are ready to teach us a lesson. The question is: Are we ready to learn? No, unless it becomes necessary, like when we go on pilgrimage or visit other countries. But once in Nigeria, we are happy to lead a life of the jungle where the strong flout every rule and go Scot-free. No wonder, our security problem continues to increase by the day. I am sorry to say that the end of our desire to live primitively is not in sight, yet. Thank God, we are not the only Homo sapiens inhabiting the planet. Other nations are ready not to allow us destroy it as we destroyed our country. Follow Dr. Aliyu U. Tilde on http://fridaydiscourse.

Now that we have been hurt by the deportation of Nigerian pilgrims, our officials will finally start to pay attention to the provisions of the law. But only now it is after the damage has been done to the pilgrims and to our image. The world has realized that the only way to get us know that laws are important in the affairs of any nation is to strictly apply them on us. If we have destroyed our country by turning away from the rule of law, they are telling us that other nations are not that primitive. They are ready to teach us a lesson

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Peoples Daily Newspaper, Tuesday 02, October, 2012  

Peoples Daily Newspaper, Tuesday 02, October, 2012 Edition